Business License: The In’s and Out’s of Getting One

Applying for a business license is something you should do as soon after you decide to start your business as possible. There are different requirements for getting a business license at the federal, state/city and county levels. Each location is different in those requirements and there are even some locations that may not require you to have a business license, but you need to determine what your business requires by following and completing the steps below. 

Find information on starting your business, including applying for a business license by visiting the site of the Small Business Administration (http://www.sba.gov).   

There you will find links to help you determine, what if any, licensing requirements there are for your business based on the type of business you own. 

A few common licenses include: 

Basic Business License

This license allows you to conduct a business in your locality. Some places require it, others don’t, so check with your local and state taxing authorities to determine your individual case. 

Occupational & Professional License

There are certain professions that require you to carry a special license or certification to conduct business. Some of these businesses include:  

  • Accountants
  • Doctors
  • Barbers
  • Security Professionals
  • Other Professionals
  • Real Estate Agents 
  • Licensing Based On the Type of Products You Sell such as Insurance or Real Estate. 

Tax Registration

One of the biggest reasons a business license is required is for tax purposes. The type of business you run, along with other factors, will determine your tax rates at the state and federal level. It will also help to determine if you are exempt from taxes, such as sales.  

Trade or Doing Business As (DBA) Name

Many states require a special license if you are a sole proprietor doing business under a name other than your real name. You might also need to post a public announcement of the name in a printed media.  

Employer Registration

If you have, or plan to have employees, you’ll need an Employer identification Number (EIN). Check with your states Department of Revenue or Department of Labor. 

A business license is something that, if you’re required to have one, you should acquire as soon as possible. Some states can and will penalize business owners who operate a business without the proper license, so don’t delay in finding out what your business needs. The Small Business Administration (SBA) often hold business workshops to help business owners know what’s needed to operate the business. Check your state or http://www.sba.gov to find a SBA location near you.

Join an Online Community to Get Ahead in Business

If you want to join an online community rather than build your own, it’s important to look at several communities to ensure that you spend your money and/or time wisely before getting too involved. It’s pretty easy to tell quickly if a community is one you want to stay involved in if you know what to look for.

* Uses Real Names – You don’t really want to waste time in a community where everyone is anonymous. You want to make real connections with real people with whom you can conduct business. When you are dealing with a lot of anonymous people that isn’t going to happen; instead you could end up scammed.

* Has Active Discussions – The owner of the group should be working hard to ensure that discussions stay active and productive. If no one has started a new discussion in the last week other than to spam the group, it’s probably not a very good community.

* Offers Plenty of Content – You want to be part of a community that offers informative content to the audience that is helpful to their business. If the content and information that is available is old and outdated, it might not be a community that you want to waste time on.

* Has a Podcast – A really good addition to any online community is a podcast where the host interviews members and also experts in the niche. This keeps everything new and fresh for the members and keeps them coming back.

* Community of Customers – The best community you can join is a community full of potential clients for you. For example if you’re an author’s VA you might want to join a community of authors.

* Community of Colleagues – Alternatively, you might want to learn more about your niche by joining a community full of your actual competition. It can be very enlightening to learn from others who are doing what you are doing.

* Notice Who Is Commenting – When a discussion starts, who is starting it and who is commenting on it? You may notice that the same people are always involved in the discussions. That is okay as long as the comments are well formed, intelligent, and there aren’t a lot of disagreements without someone checking the discussion.

* How Many Blatant Ads Appear? – Some measure of promotion is okay because it’s their community that they started likely to promote themselves, but you want the promotions to be well thought out and not the only thing the community is about.

* Do They Offer Live Events? – Webinars, teleseminars, Twitter parties, and even in-person live events speak to a well-organized and established online community that will continue to grow and thrive.

Choosing an online community to become a regular part of is an important thing to consider, because it takes a lot of time and effort to create value from the experience. You don’t want to spend your time in the wrong place. To join a community of Christian women who mean business and intend to be successful, join The Lydia Circle.

How to Use Scaled Content in Your Business

Business women need to learn how to use content in their business. Content is truly the lifeblood of online business, giving your a presence for your target audience. Content comes in many different forms from video, audio, text and everything in between. There are many different types of strategies you can use to develop your content. One is to create scaled content.

What is Scaled Content?

Scaled content is information developed on the same topic but used in different ways to reach different audiences or the same audience multiple times. Scaled content is all about creating the right content for the right audience and delivering it with the right technology. You’ll want different content for product pages, email messages, and marketing collateral that all describe the same thing, and you’ll want to use different words and sometimes different personalities to fit the form and technology you’re using.

In addition, scaled content allows you to continually evaluate how it’s working. For example, do you have a way to tell whether or not the memes you pushed out through Twitter converted to leads or sales? Scaled content requires the technology to be in place to evaluate the effectiveness or ineffectiveness of the content.

Finally, scaled content requires that you have teams in place that can be trusted to make good content decisions – whether it’s real-time content marketing or planning for content being pushed out months from now based on product marketing material. Scaled content is visionary, builds relationships, and is assertive in that it just keeps on presenting your message in an effective manner.

Increasing the reach and impact of your content is difficult. But, if you put the right content into the right hands you can increase your reach across marketing channels. One way to do this is to offer affiliates editable content that they can use in their marketing efforts. Another way is to provide content like that to everyone who works in your company that they can use to get the word out. Or you can get colleagues and associates to share your information.

If the content is clear about what your objectives and goals are, while adhering to your company values, then it will work well to do what you want. The point is that you provide awesome content for sharing and commenting and you end up turning the content into more than it was to start with, because more eyes will see it due to more sharing and commenting. If your content is top-notch, they’re going to feel proud to share it.

Focus not only on content creation but on content curation, too. Content curation happens when you sort through large amounts of content, bring it together in a summarized form, and present it in a meaningful and organized way around a specific theme. The work involves sifting, sorting, arranging, and publishing information.You want to become the hub of the information that flows from all directions about your product, service, and audience. Your affiliates can use the content that you’ve created and add their own voice, as can your co-workers, virtual workers and brand ambassadors. By making it their own, it’s not duplicate, even if the messages are the same.

How to Scale Content

To scale content, you can:

* Curate content
* Revive your original content
* Send one message on multiple platforms
* Provide editable content to affiliates and associates

It can be hard to be relevant multiple times per day on multiple channels when you only have so much time and money to spend on content. But, if you get help via affiliates and those who work with you, as well as from colleagues and friends, then you can make your content work that much harder. Essentially scaling content is about getting the most out of the limited amount of content you can afford to produce.

Is Your Business Giving You the Cash Flow You Desire?

Have you started to make the income in your business you desire?  Are you actually making any sales at all?  I know how frustrating it can be to try to get a business moving on the Internet.   A lot of online business advisers will lead you to believe that it is very easy to be successful working on the Internet.  While some people can find fast success, most businesses take hard work and a decent period of time to make real money.

This is similar to what it takes to get a business started offline.  I worked with the Small Business Administration (SBA) for many years helping entrepreneurs to get their business going.  The major document required for business start-up was the business plan.  Not only did I help entrepreneurs prepare their plan through the SBA but I also taught business students how to create these real-life documents.  So I really understand how important it is to create a business plan to forecast the potential success of a business.

But after years of working with others and with my own companies I realize that there are a few steps that need to be taken even before writing the business plan to be sure you have the best potential for real success in business.  Doing these steps will also give you the best potential to generate cash flow as quickly as possible in the business.

I’ll fill you in on some of those first steps in the upcoming teleseminar scheduled for this Tuesday, May 21, at 10 a.m. PST.  We’ll only have 30 minutes at this time so be sure to get on the line on time.

Register for the call on the FREE Teleseminar page.  If you can’t make, I’ll send you the link to the recording afterwards and you’ll have a week to listen in.  After that, the recording will be in the NACWIB members area.

 

 

Do You Have Good Cash Flow?

Cash flow is what all business people want.  That’s a fact.  If you are operating a business that is not making money you will not be in business for long.  Unfortunately, getting the cash to flow in your business may not be happening as much as you want. That means you have a problem that needs to be analyzed and adjusted as quickly as possible.

The question of why this is happening (the lack of cash flow that is) doesn’t have just one answer. It would take looking at your particular business operation to provide specific suggestions.  But the most obvious reason would be a lack of adequate sales to bring in enough money for you to experience a profit.  Or you might actually be making sales yet can’t seem to pay your bills and realize a profit.  This could be from not earning enough to cover expenses even though money is coming into the business.

What if you can’t seem to make any sales or not enough to make a difference?  Questions you might need to ask are, are you marketing to the right target market?   Are you using the right pricing strategies?  Are your products and services up to par? These are some of the questions that will assist you to analyze problems with cash flow in the business.

Find out more about how to generate cash flow in your business.  Join the 30 Minute Quick Tip Teleseminar on Tuesday, May 21, from 10 to 10:30 a.m. PST.  I’ll be talking more about cash flow in business.  Click HERE to get more information and to register.