What Can Luke Skywalker Teach You About Content Marketing? Well, Nothing But …

What can galactic hero Luke Skywalker teach you about content marketing? OK, nothing really. Come on. He’s a fictional character. But actor Mark Hamill, who has played the iconic characters for four of the popular movies in the Star Wars franchise thus far, will be a keynote speaker at Content Marketing World 2016 in Cleveland in September. So if you happen to be passing through the star system and have the time, you may want to hop into your X-Wing, landspeeder or Corellian cruiser and check out the event. Hamill will be joined by some more terrestrial guests — like Ann Handley, Chief Content Officer for MarketingProfs;  Joe Pulizzi, founder of the Content Marketing Institute, which puts on the event; and Rand Fishkin, SEO wizard at SEO MOZ. See more details and other events below. To see a full list or to submit your own event, contest or award listing, visit the Small Business Events Calendar . Featured Events, Contests and Awards Content Marketing World 2016 September 6, 2016, Cleveland, Ohio Content Marketing World is the one event where you can learn and network with the best and the brightest in the content marketing industry. You will leave with all the materials you need to take a content marketing strategy back to your team – and – to implement a content marketing plan that will grow your business and inspire your audience. TechCrunch Disrupt SF 2016 September 12, 2016, San Francisco, Calif. TechCrunch Disrupt is the world’s leading authority in debuting revolutionary startups, introducing game-changing technologies and discussing what’s top of mind for the tech industry’s key innovators. Disrupt gathers the best and brightest entrepreneurs, investors, hackers, and tech fans for on-stage interviews, the Startup Battlefield competition, a 24-hour Hackathon, Startup Alley, Hardware Alley, and After Parties. MozCon September 12, 2016, Seattle, Wash. Three days of forward-thinking, actionable sessions in SEO, social media, community building, content marketing, brand development, CRO, the mobile landscape, analytics, and more. MozCon speakers share next-level advice on everything from building a loyal community to making data-driven decisions in your marketing. Leadpages’ Converted 2016 October 18, 2016, Minneapolis, Minn. Converted 2016 will be an immersive experience taking place over two action-packed days in Minneapolis. We’ll share data-driven, practical tactics that will make a difference in the way you grow your business. Discount Code biztrends ($100) Lean Startup Conference October 31, 2016, San Francisco, Calif. A gathering of thousands of thought leaders at Pier 27 for a week of keynote talks, interactive workshops, speed mentoring, industry dinners, bootcamps, and startup tours at the scenic edge of San Francisco. The conference unites intrapreneurs and entrepreneurs from government agencies, international conglomerates, boot-strapped startups, and civic organizations in their mission to create radical change in their industries. Influencer Marketing Days November 14, 2016, New York, N.Y. Influencer Marketing Days is a unique conference dedicated to all things influencer marketing. The event is for marketing professionals responsible for their company’s influencer marketing strategy, campaign development, and relationship management. Whether you already run influencer marketing campaigns or you’re investigating ways to leverage this powerful type of marketing, Influencer Marketing Days will equip, educate, and inspire you to make the most of your efforts. NextCon16 November 14, 2016, Scottsdale, Ariz. No matter your industry, company size or role, you can take advantage of the fresh perspectives, creative strategies and expert advice shared at NextCon. You will walk away with actionable insight to take your business to the next level and gain the insight and inspiration to make an impact. More Events Cyber Security Educational Seminar August 30, 2016, Lisle, Ill. How To Create A Full-Time Income Online? August 30, 2016, Carlsbad, Calif. Home Delivery World West 2016 August 31, 2016, San Diego, Calif. ‘On the Fly Development Tactics For Millennials’Webinar by TrainHR August 31, 2016, Online Free ChallengeHER Chicago Government Contracting Event for Women Business Owners September 1, 2016, Chicago, Ill. Bootstrappers Breakfast: Hard Drive: 7 Practices to Launch a Startup September 2, 2016, Palo Alto, Calif. The Fourth International Conference on Digital Information Processing, E-Business and Cloud Computing (DIPECC2016) September 6, 2016, Online The Fifth International Conference on E-Learning and E-Technologies in Education (ICEEE2016) September 6, 2016, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia Presenting Powerfully September 6, 2016, Online 2016 Chicago Innovation Awards Nominee Reception September 7, 2016, Chicago, Ill. ALM and Balance Sheet Optimization September 7, 2016, New York, N.Y. Digital Media Strategies USA September 7, 2016, New York, N.Y. Grow your business and brand with great PR September 8, 2016, Botany, New South Wales IRS Enforcing Due Diligence Rules against Return Preparers September 8, 2016, Online Integration Day September 10, 2016, Bengaluru, India Growth, Innovation and Leadership: Silicon Valley Conference September 11, 2016, Santa Clara, Calif. 2016 Workforce Planning  and Technology Event September 13, 2016, Online WBDConnect September 13, 2016, Rosemont, Ill. AltFi Global Summit 2016 September 14, 2016, New York, N.Y. More Contests The Ultimate Small Business Leadership Conference September 21, 2016, San Diego, Calif. 15th Annual Chicago Innovation Awards October 25, 2016, Chicago, Ill. This weekly listing of small business events, contests and awards is provided as a community service by Small Business Trends and SmallBizTechnology . Skywalker Photo via Shutterstock This article, ” What Can Luke Skywalker Teach You About Content Marketing? Well, Nothing But … ” was first published on Small Business Trends

What can galactic hero Luke Skywalker teach you about content marketing? OK, nothing really. Come on. He’s a fictional character. But actor Mark Hamill, who has played the iconic characters for four of the popular movies in the Star Wars franchise thus far, will be a keynote speaker at Content Marketing World 2016 in Cleveland in September. So if you happen to be passing through the star system and have the time, you may want to hop into your X-Wing, landspeeder or Corellian cruiser and check out the event. Hamill will be joined by some more terrestrial guests — like Ann Handley, Chief Content Officer for MarketingProfs;  Joe Pulizzi, founder of the Content Marketing Institute, which puts on the event; and Rand Fishkin, SEO wizard at SEO MOZ. See more details and other events below. To see a full list or to submit your own event, contest or award listing, visit the Small Business Events Calendar . Featured Events, Contests and Awards Content Marketing World 2016 September 6, 2016, Cleveland, Ohio Content Marketing World is the one event where you can learn and network with the best and the brightest in the content marketing industry. You will leave with all the materials you need to take a content marketing strategy back to your team – and – to implement a content marketing plan that will grow your business and inspire your audience. TechCrunch Disrupt SF 2016 September 12, 2016, San Francisco, Calif. TechCrunch Disrupt is the world’s leading authority in debuting revolutionary startups, introducing game-changing technologies and discussing what’s top of mind for the tech industry’s key innovators. Disrupt gathers the best and brightest entrepreneurs, investors, hackers, and tech fans for on-stage interviews, the Startup Battlefield competition, a 24-hour Hackathon, Startup Alley, Hardware Alley, and After Parties. MozCon September 12, 2016, Seattle, Wash. Three days of forward-thinking, actionable sessions in SEO, social media, community building, content marketing, brand development, CRO, the mobile landscape, analytics, and more. MozCon speakers share next-level advice on everything from building a loyal community to making data-driven decisions in your marketing. Leadpages’ Converted 2016 October 18, 2016, Minneapolis, Minn. Converted 2016 will be an immersive experience taking place over two action-packed days in Minneapolis. We’ll share data-driven, practical tactics that will make a difference in the way you grow your business. Discount Code biztrends ($100) Lean Startup Conference October 31, 2016, San Francisco, Calif. A gathering of thousands of thought leaders at Pier 27 for a week of keynote talks, interactive workshops, speed mentoring, industry dinners, bootcamps, and startup tours at the scenic edge of San Francisco. The conference unites intrapreneurs and entrepreneurs from government agencies, international conglomerates, boot-strapped startups, and civic organizations in their mission to create radical change in their industries. Influencer Marketing Days November 14, 2016, New York, N.Y. Influencer Marketing Days is a unique conference dedicated to all things influencer marketing. The event is for marketing professionals responsible for their company’s influencer marketing strategy, campaign development, and relationship management. Whether you already run influencer marketing campaigns or you’re investigating ways to leverage this powerful type of marketing, Influencer Marketing Days will equip, educate, and inspire you to make the most of your efforts. NextCon16 November 14, 2016, Scottsdale, Ariz. No matter your industry, company size or role, you can take advantage of the fresh perspectives, creative strategies and expert advice shared at NextCon. You will walk away with actionable insight to take your business to the next level and gain the insight and inspiration to make an impact. More Events Cyber Security Educational Seminar August 30, 2016, Lisle, Ill. How To Create A Full-Time Income Online? August 30, 2016, Carlsbad, Calif. Home Delivery World West 2016 August 31, 2016, San Diego, Calif. ‘On the Fly Development Tactics For Millennials’Webinar by TrainHR August 31, 2016, Online Free ChallengeHER Chicago Government Contracting Event for Women Business Owners September 1, 2016, Chicago, Ill. Bootstrappers Breakfast: Hard Drive: 7 Practices to Launch a Startup September 2, 2016, Palo Alto, Calif. The Fourth International Conference on Digital Information Processing, E-Business and Cloud Computing (DIPECC2016) September 6, 2016, Online The Fifth International Conference on E-Learning and E-Technologies in Education (ICEEE2016) September 6, 2016, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia Presenting Powerfully September 6, 2016, Online 2016 Chicago Innovation Awards Nominee Reception September 7, 2016, Chicago, Ill. ALM and Balance Sheet Optimization September 7, 2016, New York, N.Y. Digital Media Strategies USA September 7, 2016, New York, N.Y. Grow your business and brand with great PR September 8, 2016, Botany, New South Wales IRS Enforcing Due Diligence Rules against Return Preparers September 8, 2016, Online Integration Day September 10, 2016, Bengaluru, India Growth, Innovation and Leadership: Silicon Valley Conference September 11, 2016, Santa Clara, Calif. 2016 Workforce Planning  and Technology Event September 13, 2016, Online WBDConnect September 13, 2016, Rosemont, Ill. AltFi Global Summit 2016 September 14, 2016, New York, N.Y. More Contests The Ultimate Small Business Leadership Conference September 21, 2016, San Diego, Calif. 15th Annual Chicago Innovation Awards October 25, 2016, Chicago, Ill. This weekly listing of small business events, contests and awards is provided as a community service by Small Business Trends and SmallBizTechnology . Skywalker Photo via Shutterstock This article, ” What Can Luke Skywalker Teach You About Content Marketing? Well, Nothing But … ” was first published on Small Business Trends

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10 Tips to Build an Effective Online Marketing Strategy

There are so many different ways to market a business online these days. But luckily, you don’t need to try all of them in order to find out what works. Members of our small business community have already done some of the legwork for you. Here are some of their top tips for developing an effective online marketing strategy. Increase Website Traffic and Get Better Leads Getting traffic to your website only really helps your business if you’re able to convert some leads. But there are some simple methods you can use to increase your web traffic while also converting leads, as Christopher Uschan outlines in this Acumium blog post. Create an Insta Worthy Account Instagram is becoming an increasingly popular marketing tool for businesses. But you need to really focus on creating an account that’s worthy of the platform if you want to get good results. Here, Kayla Wilkinson shares some tips for using Instagram on the Inkhouse Inklings Blog. Follow These Social Media Rules of Thumb Social media marketing isn’t an exact science. But there are some general rules that you can follow to make your business accounts more effective. Here , Rachel Strella of Strella Social Media shares some social media rules of thumb. And the BizSugar community chimes in with some thoughts here. Adopt These Digital Marketing Strategies From Pokemon Go Chances are, you’ve played or are at least aware of the augmented reality game that’s taking the mobile world by storm — Pokemon Go. But aside from being a fun and successful app, Pokemon Go can actually provide some useful digital marketing lessons to other businesses, as Jilesh Varma shares in this Blurbpoint post. Don’t Build Your Whole Content Strategy on Rental Property Social media and blogging platforms can be great for sharing content. But if you only rely on those platforms without having an actual site that you own and control completely, you could find your business in trouble if those platforms decide to make changes. Frank Strong of Sword and the Script explains more here. Amplify Your Marketing Productivity With These Tools When managing your marketing efforts, you can use a number of different tools to improve your results and efficiency. In this Duct Tape Marketing post, Joanne Torres shares some top marketing productivity tools. And BizSugar members also comment on the post here. Use These Quick SEO Hacks for Newbies SEO can be a complicated concept if you’re just getting started. But there are some simple things you can do to make the whole process of optimizing for search engines a bit easier. Here are some SEO hacks from Stephan Spencer on the Search Engine Land blog. Use Small Data to Help Increase Sales You hear a lot about big data these days. But small data can actually be quite helpful for businesses too. In this post, Neil Patel explains how you can use small data in your business to increase sales. Launch Your Startup With an Infographic Infographics can help you get messages across to online consumers in an interesting visual format. Here, Nick Bowersox shares some tips for using infographics in marketing efforts on the crowdSPRING blog. You can also see input from members of the BizSugar community here. Create a SaaS Knowledge Base Your Customers Will Love Technology has created plenty of opportunities for businesses to really personalize experiences for their customers. SaaS knowledge bases provide some of those opportunities when used effectively. In this Process Street post, Robin Singh shares how you can create a knowledge base your customers will love. If you’d like to suggest your favorite small business content to be considered for an upcoming community roundup, please send your news tips to:   sbtips@gmail.com Online Marketing Photo via Shutterstock This article, ” 10 Tips to Build an Effective Online Marketing Strategy ” was first published on Small Business Trends

There are so many different ways to market a business online these days. But luckily, you don’t need to try all of them in order to find out what works. Members of our small business community have already done some of the legwork for you. Here are some of their top tips for developing an effective online marketing strategy. Increase Website Traffic and Get Better Leads Getting traffic to your website only really helps your business if you’re able to convert some leads. But there are some simple methods you can use to increase your web traffic while also converting leads, as Christopher Uschan outlines in this Acumium blog post. Create an Insta Worthy Account Instagram is becoming an increasingly popular marketing tool for businesses. But you need to really focus on creating an account that’s worthy of the platform if you want to get good results. Here, Kayla Wilkinson shares some tips for using Instagram on the Inkhouse Inklings Blog. Follow These Social Media Rules of Thumb Social media marketing isn’t an exact science. But there are some general rules that you can follow to make your business accounts more effective. Here , Rachel Strella of Strella Social Media shares some social media rules of thumb. And the BizSugar community chimes in with some thoughts here. Adopt These Digital Marketing Strategies From Pokemon Go Chances are, you’ve played or are at least aware of the augmented reality game that’s taking the mobile world by storm — Pokemon Go. But aside from being a fun and successful app, Pokemon Go can actually provide some useful digital marketing lessons to other businesses, as Jilesh Varma shares in this Blurbpoint post. Don’t Build Your Whole Content Strategy on Rental Property Social media and blogging platforms can be great for sharing content. But if you only rely on those platforms without having an actual site that you own and control completely, you could find your business in trouble if those platforms decide to make changes. Frank Strong of Sword and the Script explains more here. Amplify Your Marketing Productivity With These Tools When managing your marketing efforts, you can use a number of different tools to improve your results and efficiency. In this Duct Tape Marketing post, Joanne Torres shares some top marketing productivity tools. And BizSugar members also comment on the post here. Use These Quick SEO Hacks for Newbies SEO can be a complicated concept if you’re just getting started. But there are some simple things you can do to make the whole process of optimizing for search engines a bit easier. Here are some SEO hacks from Stephan Spencer on the Search Engine Land blog. Use Small Data to Help Increase Sales You hear a lot about big data these days. But small data can actually be quite helpful for businesses too. In this post, Neil Patel explains how you can use small data in your business to increase sales. Launch Your Startup With an Infographic Infographics can help you get messages across to online consumers in an interesting visual format. Here, Nick Bowersox shares some tips for using infographics in marketing efforts on the crowdSPRING blog. You can also see input from members of the BizSugar community here. Create a SaaS Knowledge Base Your Customers Will Love Technology has created plenty of opportunities for businesses to really personalize experiences for their customers. SaaS knowledge bases provide some of those opportunities when used effectively. In this Process Street post, Robin Singh shares how you can create a knowledge base your customers will love. If you’d like to suggest your favorite small business content to be considered for an upcoming community roundup, please send your news tips to:   sbtips@gmail.com Online Marketing Photo via Shutterstock This article, ” 10 Tips to Build an Effective Online Marketing Strategy ” was first published on Small Business Trends

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4 Red Flags Your Company Is Lagging in Simple Tech

Don’t let old-fashioned technology prevent your company from attracting innovative Millennial employees and achieving its full production potential.

Don’t let old-fashioned technology prevent your company from attracting innovative Millennial employees and achieving its full production potential.

[via Innovation Excellence]

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This Device Claims to Turn Your iPhone into a 360 Degree VR Camera

Expectations for virtual reality are obviously quite high. And those expectations among content creators have led companies to introduce products aimed at helping to create content in the new format. Creators of the Insta360 ha done this in a unique way. While Arashi Vision, the company that makes the camera, has three different Insta360 versions, the one that’s been getting the most attention is the Insta360 Nano. The tiny 360 degree camera attached to your iPhone 6/6S and iPhone 6 Plus/6S Plus taking VR photos and videos through the phone. A 360-degree camera is key to capturing and rendering realistic VR scenes, so manufacturers are introducing novel ways to record the video with many different types of cameras. Insta360 Nano Details Advertised as the first 360-degree spherical iPhone video camera, and the smallest spherical camera in the world, the Nano is pretty small at only 0.8 inches x 1.2 inches x 4.3 inches. This makes it very portable, which can be an important feature when you are already carrying your smartphone. However, it also works as a standalone camera too, so if you don’t have an iPhone you can still use it to take pictures or record videos. The image quality is good according to the specs and some of the content the company has provided on YouTube. The camera has a 3040 x 1520 resolution for still pictures and 3040 x 1520 at 30 fps for moving images through its 210-degree dual fisheye lenses. All of these images are captured in a TF card that holds up to 64 GB. If you run out of space, you can download or live-stream the video and pictures on Facebook and YouTube. The Insta360 Nano comes with a micro USB cable that lets you connect it to other devices in addition to iPhones, and the box doubles as cardboard virtual reality glasses. In a hands-on review for  Mashable , Jason Cipriani said, “The Insta360 Nano’s photo and video quality is one of the best I’ve personally used on a 360-degree camera.” But he did have some complaints when it came to some software glitches that resulted in random prompts in Chinese, and he added it was not always user friendly. At $219 on Amazon, the Insta360 Nano is competing with the likes of the Ricoh Theta S ($360), LG 360 Cam ($179) and Samsung Gear 360 ($373), so it is somewhere in the middle. As VR adoption continues to grow, small businesses are finding innovative ways to use the technology and grow their business . Any company that uses regular videos to promote their business can use a 360-degree camera to let their customers experience that video from a new perspective. Real estate companies, outdoor adventure guides, resorts and designers are just some of the industries that can use VR to increase their customer base. Image: Insta360.com This article, ” This Device Claims to Turn Your iPhone into a 360 Degree VR Camera ” was first published on Small Business Trends

Expectations for virtual reality are obviously quite high. And those expectations among content creators have led companies to introduce products aimed at helping to create content in the new format. Creators of the Insta360 ha done this in a unique way. While Arashi Vision, the company that makes the camera, has three different Insta360 versions, the one that’s been getting the most attention is the Insta360 Nano. The tiny 360 degree camera attached to your iPhone 6/6S and iPhone 6 Plus/6S Plus taking VR photos and videos through the phone. A 360-degree camera is key to capturing and rendering realistic VR scenes, so manufacturers are introducing novel ways to record the video with many different types of cameras. Insta360 Nano Details Advertised as the first 360-degree spherical iPhone video camera, and the smallest spherical camera in the world, the Nano is pretty small at only 0.8 inches x 1.2 inches x 4.3 inches. This makes it very portable, which can be an important feature when you are already carrying your smartphone. However, it also works as a standalone camera too, so if you don’t have an iPhone you can still use it to take pictures or record videos. The image quality is good according to the specs and some of the content the company has provided on YouTube. The camera has a 3040 x 1520 resolution for still pictures and 3040 x 1520 at 30 fps for moving images through its 210-degree dual fisheye lenses. All of these images are captured in a TF card that holds up to 64 GB. If you run out of space, you can download or live-stream the video and pictures on Facebook and YouTube. The Insta360 Nano comes with a micro USB cable that lets you connect it to other devices in addition to iPhones, and the box doubles as cardboard virtual reality glasses. In a hands-on review for  Mashable , Jason Cipriani said, “The Insta360 Nano’s photo and video quality is one of the best I’ve personally used on a 360-degree camera.” But he did have some complaints when it came to some software glitches that resulted in random prompts in Chinese, and he added it was not always user friendly. At $219 on Amazon, the Insta360 Nano is competing with the likes of the Ricoh Theta S ($360), LG 360 Cam ($179) and Samsung Gear 360 ($373), so it is somewhere in the middle. As VR adoption continues to grow, small businesses are finding innovative ways to use the technology and grow their business . Any company that uses regular videos to promote their business can use a 360-degree camera to let their customers experience that video from a new perspective. Real estate companies, outdoor adventure guides, resorts and designers are just some of the industries that can use VR to increase their customer base. Image: Insta360.com This article, ” This Device Claims to Turn Your iPhone into a 360 Degree VR Camera ” was first published on Small Business Trends

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Transforming Healthcare from Within

How One Woman Is Working To Transform The Healthcare System From Within The successful decoding of the human genome in 2003 was a historic achievement.  Not only because it unlocked the biological code to life, but also because it marked a new fusion of life sciences and information technology, using powerful computers and analytical techniques to …

How One Woman Is Working To Transform The Healthcare System From Within The successful decoding of the human genome in 2003 was a historic achievement.  Not only because it unlocked the biological code to life, but also because it marked a new fusion of life sciences and information technology, using powerful computers and analytical techniques to …

[via Innovation Excellence]

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“Engage with Honor” Takes Leadership Lessons from Unlikely Experience

Could your leadership survive a crisis? If your company depended on one critical decision and only you could make it, would that decision be based on the bottom line or principle? These are questions that Lee Ellis, former Vietnam war fighter pilot and a five-year survivor of a prison war camp, struggled with on a daily basis. In his position, he grappled with and saw leadership at its best and its worst. That experience gave him a perspective that few people have survived to pass on. What is Engage With Honor About? Like Extreme Ownership , another book reviewed on Small Business Trends, Engage With Honor is about applying leadership lessons learned from the war , although from a slightly different perspective. Instead of focusing on what a leader does, this book focuses on who a leader is. Ellis focuses on the need for a leader to consistently maintain his or her values as a daily practice to avoid going into a downward spiral of dishonor. Consistent practice of values by leaders is critical, because, as Ellis points out, anyone is capable of dishonorable behavior under the right conditions. Engage With Honor  highlights several cases where this happens: Enron, government agencies like the EPA and IRS, the military, education and healthcare. The book sites cases of dishonor which were more than just sensational headlines on the late night news. They had real serious implications, costing taxpayers billions of dollars. As a POW in Vietnam, Ellis came to the conclusion that good leadership is a consistent re-dedication to values no matter the circumstances. Some of his fellow co-prisoners abandoned the Military Code of Conduct under the crisis of being captured. Others like Vice Admiral Stockdale clung to the Military Code of Conduct even under the reality of torture and solitary confinement. Ellis argues that Vice Admiral Stockdale was able to maintain his beliefs because he was clear on his values and communicated those values in his own actions and words whether he was alone or with a group of prisoners. That tenacity to the “right thing to do no matter what” as a leader is what leaders need to say, do, and re-dedicate themselves to every day if they are leaders who make a difference. Author  Ellis is not only a former Air Force fighter pilot, flight commander and POW, but a recipient of numerous military awards including the Purple Heart and Legion of Meritand and is now a leadership consultant. What Was Best About Engage With Honor? Engage With Honor is a great leadership book because it strips leadership down to its barest essentials while also telling the haunting (and very real) tale of the author’s life in a Vietnam POW camp. The book doesn’t go into extreme detail, but Ellis provides enough substance to show readers that this was a truly hostile environment that could not break the spirit of someone dedicated to their values. Using the simple metaphor of this harrowing tale, Ellis demonstrates his model of leadership with clarity and simplicity. What Could Have Been Done Differently The focus of Engage With Honor  is on fostering what Ellis calls “courageous accountability.” It points out the problems when people don’t engage in this kind of behavior (lying, cheating, stealing, etc.), but it doesn’t get bogged down into ethical dilemmas like whistleblowing. The book’s focus is on the principles that leaders (or really anyone) can follow, not the particular steps they should take Why Read Engage With Honor? If you are a business leader who was inspired by a book like “Extreme Ownership,” you will probably enjoy the insight and perspective of   Engage With Honor . It provides a different perspective, however. “Extreme Ownership” focuses on what leaders should do. “Engage with Honor” focuses on who they are. In addition, if you are looking to develop or refresh your company’s leadership and ethics development, this book provides excellent and straightforward advice on what you might want to include in the program. This article, ” “Engage with Honor” Takes Leadership Lessons from Unlikely Experience ” was first published on Small Business Trends

Could your leadership survive a crisis? If your company depended on one critical decision and only you could make it, would that decision be based on the bottom line or principle? These are questions that Lee Ellis, former Vietnam war fighter pilot and a five-year survivor of a prison war camp, struggled with on a daily basis. In his position, he grappled with and saw leadership at its best and its worst. That experience gave him a perspective that few people have survived to pass on. What is Engage With Honor About? Like Extreme Ownership , another book reviewed on Small Business Trends, Engage With Honor is about applying leadership lessons learned from the war , although from a slightly different perspective. Instead of focusing on what a leader does, this book focuses on who a leader is. Ellis focuses on the need for a leader to consistently maintain his or her values as a daily practice to avoid going into a downward spiral of dishonor. Consistent practice of values by leaders is critical, because, as Ellis points out, anyone is capable of dishonorable behavior under the right conditions. Engage With Honor  highlights several cases where this happens: Enron, government agencies like the EPA and IRS, the military, education and healthcare. The book sites cases of dishonor which were more than just sensational headlines on the late night news. They had real serious implications, costing taxpayers billions of dollars. As a POW in Vietnam, Ellis came to the conclusion that good leadership is a consistent re-dedication to values no matter the circumstances. Some of his fellow co-prisoners abandoned the Military Code of Conduct under the crisis of being captured. Others like Vice Admiral Stockdale clung to the Military Code of Conduct even under the reality of torture and solitary confinement. Ellis argues that Vice Admiral Stockdale was able to maintain his beliefs because he was clear on his values and communicated those values in his own actions and words whether he was alone or with a group of prisoners. That tenacity to the “right thing to do no matter what” as a leader is what leaders need to say, do, and re-dedicate themselves to every day if they are leaders who make a difference. Author  Ellis is not only a former Air Force fighter pilot, flight commander and POW, but a recipient of numerous military awards including the Purple Heart and Legion of Meritand and is now a leadership consultant. What Was Best About Engage With Honor? Engage With Honor is a great leadership book because it strips leadership down to its barest essentials while also telling the haunting (and very real) tale of the author’s life in a Vietnam POW camp. The book doesn’t go into extreme detail, but Ellis provides enough substance to show readers that this was a truly hostile environment that could not break the spirit of someone dedicated to their values. Using the simple metaphor of this harrowing tale, Ellis demonstrates his model of leadership with clarity and simplicity. What Could Have Been Done Differently The focus of Engage With Honor  is on fostering what Ellis calls “courageous accountability.” It points out the problems when people don’t engage in this kind of behavior (lying, cheating, stealing, etc.), but it doesn’t get bogged down into ethical dilemmas like whistleblowing. The book’s focus is on the principles that leaders (or really anyone) can follow, not the particular steps they should take Why Read Engage With Honor? If you are a business leader who was inspired by a book like “Extreme Ownership,” you will probably enjoy the insight and perspective of   Engage With Honor . It provides a different perspective, however. “Extreme Ownership” focuses on what leaders should do. “Engage with Honor” focuses on who they are. In addition, if you are looking to develop or refresh your company’s leadership and ethics development, this book provides excellent and straightforward advice on what you might want to include in the program. This article, ” “Engage with Honor” Takes Leadership Lessons from Unlikely Experience ” was first published on Small Business Trends

[via Small Business Trends]

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Innovation and How to Recruit and Retain Top Millennial Talent

As discussed in the new innovation book Robert’s Rules of Innovation II: The Art of Implementation, one of the biggest reasons why the actual implementation of innovation can become such a formidable if not insurmountable process is because of people-related issues. A key element to successfully implementing innovation is finding and keeping the right people. …

As discussed in the new innovation book Robert’s Rules of Innovation II: The Art of Implementation, one of the biggest reasons why the actual implementation of innovation can become such a formidable if not insurmountable process is because of people-related issues. A key element to successfully implementing innovation is finding and keeping the right people. …

[via Innovation Excellence]

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Product Naming 101

If you ask business experts what is the most fundamental ingredient in a successful product launch, you may hear three things: distribution, quality, or pricing. All three are merely givens in this era—mandatory.

If you ask business experts what is the most fundamental ingredient in a successful product launch, you may hear three things: distribution, quality, or pricing. All three are merely givens in this era—mandatory.

[via Innovation Excellence]

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Keep an Eye Out for This New Edible Food Packaging (Watch)

Food packaging is traditionally expensive, wasteful and bad for the environment. But what if there was a way to produce that packaging so that it’s actually cheaper, more sustainable and won’t lead to overflowing landfills? The answer might be simpler than you’d think. Researchers are currently working to create packaging that consumers can just eat along with their food. The new edible packaging is made from milk proteins that have no taste. And if you don’t want to eat the packaging, it’s also biodegradable. In addition, the U.S. already produces more milk than the population can consume. So this solution could actually solve multiple problems at once. And if those factors weren’t enough, it turns out that milk proteins actually keep out oxygen better than plastic packaging. So using it could mean that food would spoil slower than it does in the packaging we currently use. Product Innovation Must Benefit Consumers to Be Successful That last point is important, because if the only benefits were to the environment but not to consumers, the idea might not take off. However, this solution seems to be one that benefits all sides. So it shows just what type of innovation can be possible with some creative thinking and a willingness to try something completely different. The new packaging isn’t likely to actually hit shelves for at least another three years. But the possibility could lead to some big things for food producers in the future. Image: Newsy via American Chemical Society This article, ” Keep an Eye Out for This New Edible Food Packaging (Watch) ” was first published on Small Business Trends

Food packaging is traditionally expensive, wasteful and bad for the environment. But what if there was a way to produce that packaging so that it’s actually cheaper, more sustainable and won’t lead to overflowing landfills? The answer might be simpler than you’d think. Researchers are currently working to create packaging that consumers can just eat along with their food. The new edible packaging is made from milk proteins that have no taste. And if you don’t want to eat the packaging, it’s also biodegradable. In addition, the U.S. already produces more milk than the population can consume. So this solution could actually solve multiple problems at once. And if those factors weren’t enough, it turns out that milk proteins actually keep out oxygen better than plastic packaging. So using it could mean that food would spoil slower than it does in the packaging we currently use. Product Innovation Must Benefit Consumers to Be Successful That last point is important, because if the only benefits were to the environment but not to consumers, the idea might not take off. However, this solution seems to be one that benefits all sides. So it shows just what type of innovation can be possible with some creative thinking and a willingness to try something completely different. The new packaging isn’t likely to actually hit shelves for at least another three years. But the possibility could lead to some big things for food producers in the future. Image: Newsy via American Chemical Society This article, ” Keep an Eye Out for This New Edible Food Packaging (Watch) ” was first published on Small Business Trends

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Top Stories: Pinterest, Kickstarter Reveal New Features

Pinterest has been adding new features to help businesses reach their target audiences in the platform. One of the most recent updates is a promoted video feature. And Pinterest isn’t the only online platform making changes. Crowdfunding site Kickstarter also added a follow feature, making it more social. These updates and more are included below in this week’s Small Business Trends news and information roundup. Social Media Pinterest Introduces Promoted Video, Three Other Platform Improvements After testing with 12 early partners, including Lionsgate, bareMinerals and General Mills’ Old El Paso, Pinterest recently announced it is rolling out Promoted Videos (that is, video ads) in the U.S. and U.K., with featured Pins beneath. Kickstarter Adds a Follow Feature, Makes the Funding Platform More Social In news of interest to crowdfunding entrepreneurs, Kickstarter recently rolled out a new ‘Follow’ feature that allows users to follow creators directly and be first to find out when their next projects launch. Once you follow a Kickstarter creator, you’ll also be notified when they’ve backed a project that’s just getting off the ground, the crowdfunding company said. How Snapchat’s New Acquisition Vurb Transforms Business Search Snapchat is paying $110 million, with 75 percent in stock and 25 percent cash to acquire mobile contextual search engine Vurb. The deal also includes a $75 million retention bonus to keep Vurb founder and CEO Bobby Lo. Vurb touts itself as tool for helping consumers decide what to do and who they want to do it with. Need to Share Some Content? Dlvr.it Provides Syndication Service Dlvr.it provides brands, publishers and marketers with a way to syndicate content using their social media channels. Essentially, dlvr.it provides you with a simple way to curate content and automatically distribute it to preferred channels. The platform enables you to share content from RSS-enabled sites to social networks. Management Your Business Can Overcome Huge Obstacles – Just Like the Rio Olympics (Watch) A few weeks ago, many experts expected the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio to be a disaster. Now that the games are over, it seems that those experts were mistaken. That’s not to say that there weren’t any issues. Aside from the green pool water and the now infamous Ryan Lochte incident, there were several smaller incidents that went mostly unnoticed. Marketing Tips Can  Your Business Benefit from Influencer Marketing? Intellifluence Says Yes Joe Sinkwitz left a comfortable, high-paying career as a marketing executive to found a startup, Intellifluence, a platform that helps brands partner with influencers . The reason: To give small businesses access to the same type of influencer marketing opportunities that were only available to large corporations. What Sasquatch Can Teach You About Brand Excellence ESPN The Magazine is essentially the print equivalent of a prime-time advertising slot for big brands. But in a publication driven predominantly by striking imagery and cool aesthetics, standing out from the crowd can be nigh unto impossible. That’s where it comes in handy to have constant access to an eight-foot, 374-pound model covered in hair. Retail Trends Shopkeep Boasts Simple, Inexpensive POS for Small Businesses The Shopkeep app is an iPad point-of-sale (POS) system that claims to add simplicity and speed to sales functions SMBs need to effectively run and manage their operations. The company boasts a comprehensive iPad POS system for small business owners that seems to come fully loaded with all the big business features at a small business price. Small Biz Spotlight Spotlight:  iMOBDEV Claims More Than 500 Customized Apps and Websites Worldwide Mobile apps are becoming more and more popular for businesses in a variety of different industries. For those who want to look into getting their own mobile apps or even just building a more professional website, there’s iMOBDEV Technologies. The company prides itself on providing technologically advanced options for business websites and mobile apps. Small Business Operations Time Running Out to Take Advantage of Error in USPS Shipping Rates The U.S. Postal Service is announcing yet another change in its shipping rates . This change affects companies that ship First-Class Mail Parcel Retail lightweight packages. These packages weigh between 1 and 3 ounces. The cost of shipping these packages beginning August 28 will be $2.62. That’s a 17-cent increase over the current rate of $2.45. New Research Says Houseplants Can Make Businesses Safer (Watch) Your business might soon be adding indoor plants to the list of necessary safety equipment needed around the office. Mobile Technology App or Credit? Why Cash May be Replaced by Mobile Payments It is Monday morning in San Francisco, and you have just woken up late. To help in your rush to get to work on time, you use your favorite ride service app to pay for a driver to bring you to work. On the way to work, that pre-coffee, drowsy feeling starts to kick in, so you use your Starbucks app to order a coffee and a breakfast snack to get you through the morning. Is Your Business App On Android? Here’s Why It Had Better Be Planning a new app for your small business? Make sure you build it on Google’s (NASDAQ:GOOGL) Android, since that’s where you’re most likely to find your customers. According to a new Gartner report, Android is dominating the smartphone marketplace with a whopping 86.2 percent share in the second quarter of 2016. Technology Trends Has Fitbit Been Stealing Trade Secrets? Judge Says No (Watch) The competition between wearable device companies Fitbit and Jawbone is heating up. Jawbone recently accused Fitbit of violating patents and poaching its employees in an effort to steal trade secrets. But the U.S. International Trade Commission just ruled that Fitbit didn’t misappropriate anything. The ruling is obviously good news for Fitbit, although Jawbone wants to review the ruling. Kobo Provides eBook Alternative to Amazon When considering the platform on which to publish your next ebook or from which to purchase your next business ebook or online magazine, it may be helpful to consider that Amazon is not your only option. Kobo is a Toronto-based company that has been providing an open platform as well as it’s own eReader platform, since 2009. The Robocall Strike Force Teaches How to Go the Extra Mile for Customers (Watch) Chances are, you’ve received one of those unsolicited robocalls or automated text messages at some point. And you probably haven’t been too happy about it either. But a new task force made up of some of the biggest names in tech is trying to put a stop to those unwanted calls and texts. Google, Apple, Verizon, Microsoft and more are all part of the Robocall Strike Force. Want to be Productive? New ZEEQ “Smart Pillow” Analyzes Sleep Patterns Artificial light, and now information and communications technologies are some of the factors responsible for people sleeping less, so it is fitting ZEEQ is using the same technology claiming to offer better quality sleep . What Uber’s Self-Driving Car Tests Can Teach You About Offering New Services (Watch) Uber is starting to test out its self-driving car service in Pittsburgh. And it’s doing it with real passengers in the vehicles. There will still be a driver in the front seat of each self-driving car with hands on the wheel in case they need to take over at any point. And an engineer will also be in the passenger seat to take notes. Kickstarter Photo via Shutterstock This article, ” Top Stories: Pinterest, Kickstarter Reveal New Features ” was first published on Small Business Trends

Pinterest has been adding new features to help businesses reach their target audiences in the platform. One of the most recent updates is a promoted video feature. And Pinterest isn’t the only online platform making changes. Crowdfunding site Kickstarter also added a follow feature, making it more social. These updates and more are included below in this week’s Small Business Trends news and information roundup. Social Media Pinterest Introduces Promoted Video, Three Other Platform Improvements After testing with 12 early partners, including Lionsgate, bareMinerals and General Mills’ Old El Paso, Pinterest recently announced it is rolling out Promoted Videos (that is, video ads) in the U.S. and U.K., with featured Pins beneath. Kickstarter Adds a Follow Feature, Makes the Funding Platform More Social In news of interest to crowdfunding entrepreneurs, Kickstarter recently rolled out a new ‘Follow’ feature that allows users to follow creators directly and be first to find out when their next projects launch. Once you follow a Kickstarter creator, you’ll also be notified when they’ve backed a project that’s just getting off the ground, the crowdfunding company said. How Snapchat’s New Acquisition Vurb Transforms Business Search Snapchat is paying $110 million, with 75 percent in stock and 25 percent cash to acquire mobile contextual search engine Vurb. The deal also includes a $75 million retention bonus to keep Vurb founder and CEO Bobby Lo. Vurb touts itself as tool for helping consumers decide what to do and who they want to do it with. Need to Share Some Content? Dlvr.it Provides Syndication Service Dlvr.it provides brands, publishers and marketers with a way to syndicate content using their social media channels. Essentially, dlvr.it provides you with a simple way to curate content and automatically distribute it to preferred channels. The platform enables you to share content from RSS-enabled sites to social networks. Management Your Business Can Overcome Huge Obstacles – Just Like the Rio Olympics (Watch) A few weeks ago, many experts expected the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio to be a disaster. Now that the games are over, it seems that those experts were mistaken. That’s not to say that there weren’t any issues. Aside from the green pool water and the now infamous Ryan Lochte incident, there were several smaller incidents that went mostly unnoticed. Marketing Tips Can  Your Business Benefit from Influencer Marketing? Intellifluence Says Yes Joe Sinkwitz left a comfortable, high-paying career as a marketing executive to found a startup, Intellifluence, a platform that helps brands partner with influencers . The reason: To give small businesses access to the same type of influencer marketing opportunities that were only available to large corporations. What Sasquatch Can Teach You About Brand Excellence ESPN The Magazine is essentially the print equivalent of a prime-time advertising slot for big brands. But in a publication driven predominantly by striking imagery and cool aesthetics, standing out from the crowd can be nigh unto impossible. That’s where it comes in handy to have constant access to an eight-foot, 374-pound model covered in hair. Retail Trends Shopkeep Boasts Simple, Inexpensive POS for Small Businesses The Shopkeep app is an iPad point-of-sale (POS) system that claims to add simplicity and speed to sales functions SMBs need to effectively run and manage their operations. The company boasts a comprehensive iPad POS system for small business owners that seems to come fully loaded with all the big business features at a small business price. Small Biz Spotlight Spotlight:  iMOBDEV Claims More Than 500 Customized Apps and Websites Worldwide Mobile apps are becoming more and more popular for businesses in a variety of different industries. For those who want to look into getting their own mobile apps or even just building a more professional website, there’s iMOBDEV Technologies. The company prides itself on providing technologically advanced options for business websites and mobile apps. Small Business Operations Time Running Out to Take Advantage of Error in USPS Shipping Rates The U.S. Postal Service is announcing yet another change in its shipping rates . This change affects companies that ship First-Class Mail Parcel Retail lightweight packages. These packages weigh between 1 and 3 ounces. The cost of shipping these packages beginning August 28 will be $2.62. That’s a 17-cent increase over the current rate of $2.45. New Research Says Houseplants Can Make Businesses Safer (Watch) Your business might soon be adding indoor plants to the list of necessary safety equipment needed around the office. Mobile Technology App or Credit? Why Cash May be Replaced by Mobile Payments It is Monday morning in San Francisco, and you have just woken up late. To help in your rush to get to work on time, you use your favorite ride service app to pay for a driver to bring you to work. On the way to work, that pre-coffee, drowsy feeling starts to kick in, so you use your Starbucks app to order a coffee and a breakfast snack to get you through the morning. Is Your Business App On Android? Here’s Why It Had Better Be Planning a new app for your small business? Make sure you build it on Google’s (NASDAQ:GOOGL) Android, since that’s where you’re most likely to find your customers. According to a new Gartner report, Android is dominating the smartphone marketplace with a whopping 86.2 percent share in the second quarter of 2016. Technology Trends Has Fitbit Been Stealing Trade Secrets? Judge Says No (Watch) The competition between wearable device companies Fitbit and Jawbone is heating up. Jawbone recently accused Fitbit of violating patents and poaching its employees in an effort to steal trade secrets. But the U.S. International Trade Commission just ruled that Fitbit didn’t misappropriate anything. The ruling is obviously good news for Fitbit, although Jawbone wants to review the ruling. Kobo Provides eBook Alternative to Amazon When considering the platform on which to publish your next ebook or from which to purchase your next business ebook or online magazine, it may be helpful to consider that Amazon is not your only option. Kobo is a Toronto-based company that has been providing an open platform as well as it’s own eReader platform, since 2009. The Robocall Strike Force Teaches How to Go the Extra Mile for Customers (Watch) Chances are, you’ve received one of those unsolicited robocalls or automated text messages at some point. And you probably haven’t been too happy about it either. But a new task force made up of some of the biggest names in tech is trying to put a stop to those unwanted calls and texts. Google, Apple, Verizon, Microsoft and more are all part of the Robocall Strike Force. Want to be Productive? New ZEEQ “Smart Pillow” Analyzes Sleep Patterns Artificial light, and now information and communications technologies are some of the factors responsible for people sleeping less, so it is fitting ZEEQ is using the same technology claiming to offer better quality sleep . What Uber’s Self-Driving Car Tests Can Teach You About Offering New Services (Watch) Uber is starting to test out its self-driving car service in Pittsburgh. And it’s doing it with real passengers in the vehicles. There will still be a driver in the front seat of each self-driving car with hands on the wheel in case they need to take over at any point. And an engineer will also be in the passenger seat to take notes. Kickstarter Photo via Shutterstock This article, ” Top Stories: Pinterest, Kickstarter Reveal New Features ” was first published on Small Business Trends

[via Small Business Trends]

Follow us @innovationheat – lists / @blackbolenay