Articles

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By Pat Hammond

Why does it have to be either/or? Why do people think you can't love another platform without hating WordPress?

Let me start by saying that I don't hate WordPress.

At a time when Drupal and Mambo were the only real choices for a Content Management System (CMS) WordPress hit the scene like a breathe of fresh air.

The WordPress interface was much easier for the end user and compared to its older counterparts WordPress was lightweight, easy to customize and fast to deploy which helped it quickly win the top spot as most popular CMS.

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By Pat Hammond

Reputation & Reliability

Do I really need to say this? How you honor your commitments is a reflection of your reliability and when you're a small business owner your personal reputation, good or bad, directly affects your business.

To put it another way, if you say you're going to do something you really need to do it.

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By Pat Hammond

New Year/New Feature

It took a while, but it's finally here. I am excited to announce the launch of the Queen City Buzz events page.

Back in September I said that I wanted to add an event page that links to one central community calendar with listings of all the local business, networking and tech events, but there wasn't one.

To be honest, there still isn't one.

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By Pat Hammond

Making it Work!

This week's motto is a nod to the fact that sometimes, no matter how well you plan, things go sideways.

It might be an issue with equipment or a service provider, it could be a client that changes their mind after you sent the file to the printer or it might just be that you screwed up.

It happens.

In a perfect world everyone gets a do-over. Unfortunately this is the real world where clients expect us to finish projects on time and on budget, no matter what challenges pop up along the way.

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By Pat Hammond

I admit it, I used to be a shareware junkie. There's something about finding all the features I love about those uber expensive programs in a free alternative. Sometimes you get what you pay for, but if you're persistent you might just find an awesome open source program that meets or even exceeds your needs.

Here is a list of my Top 10 Favorite Free Tools:

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By Pat Hammond

It's no secret that I love a good plan and while I'm not a fan of New Year's resolutions, the start of a new year is a great time to review last year's business goals, specifically what worked and what you can do better.

With that in mind this week's motto is Define Your Goals.

Don't drive yourself nuts, just take a look at your overall business plan and break it down into manageable SMART goals. (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, Timely) Setting quarterly benchmarks with monthly action steps.seems to work best for me, just remember to leave a little flexibility for the unexpected, like breaking both of your hands. (You can't make this stuff up...)

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By Pat Hammond

A new year traditionally means new beginnings and after our soft start last September the team at Queen City Buzz is looking to hit the ground running in 2015.

To start things off I am posting a weekly one-liner. No, I don't mean jokes. In this instance a one liner is a quick bit of wisdom to help you (and me) find balance and inspiration, both in business and at home.

This week's motto is simply one word: BALANCE.

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By Pat Hammond

Does your small business have a marketing strategy? Did you actually sit down and think about how your company is going to attract new business or are you playing it by ear? What about the competition?

If you're like most people, you probably hate the idea of writing a marketing plan almost as much as you hate marketing. The problem is that a lot of business owners think that they can put up a website or place a few newspaper ads and call it marketing, but it's not.

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By John Rolfe

It’s always so hard to know your first step. “What direction should I go in? What if I make mistakes? Can I get advice that won’t bankrupt my company before I even get started?”

I own Silver Chain Games, a little retail board game seller in New Hampshire. We don’t have a store front. We don’t have employees. I wouldn’t even call it a small business, it’s a micro-business. I do game parties in interested people's homes. And believe me, doubts are there.

The only people that don’t have doubts are those people that have nothing to lose or so much money that they don’t care if they lose a little. If you're reading this article then you are probably neither of those. Don’t worry, I’ve got some advice for you that may help.

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By Pat Hammond

Have You Ever Used a Business Model Canvas?

We all know the importance of planning when it comes to starting a business, but why would you want to waste your time writing a fifty page business plan when a one page snapshot will do?

Originally developed by Alexander Osterwalder, the business model canvas was designed to cut the fluff and drill down to the details.

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