Now that we’ve reached mid-September, kids across the country are back to school. And that leaves a lot of stay-at-home parents facing an empty house for much of the day. For some of those parents, it could be time to think about starting their own businesses.
This week, our Community provides some tips specific to prospective stay-at-home business owners. And we learn some lessons that all small business owners should heed as they continue to market their products and brands. Check out this and other highlights from our Small Business Trends community roundup.
Is Entrepreneurship Right for the Stay-at-Home Parent?
So with the kids back at school, you’re wondering what you could do with some of that extra free time. For stay-at-home parent with some time to spare, becoming a mompreneur or dadpreneur is certainly an option. Of course, starting a business takes more than just creating products or services and selling them. Nellie Akalp’s post is a good go-to list for prospective entrepreneurial parents . It highlights the hidden side of running a business. And it poses questions to help stay-at-home parents decide whether running a business is right for them.
What Will Apple’s New Phablet Mean to Marketers?
The iPhone 6 Plus is set to hit the market in a few weeks. And devoted users of Apple’s line of smartphones must be excited. For the first time in the device’s history, the screen is getting bigger. But here’s something small business owners and marketers may not have considered. The 5.5-inch display on the new device will create challenges for advertisers who have targeted users of iPhones in the past. Andrew Waber writes that the new screen size will force marketers to create new ads  to display correctly on the larger devices.
Sick Leave Mandate Signed Into Law
The State of California recently enacted a law that requires employers of nearly every kind to grant most employees paid sick leave. There don’t appear to be exemptions for small businesses in the California law, either. As laws like this become the trend, it’s wise to keep an eye on whether your state’s legislature is debating a similar bill. Dyanne Weiss writes that employees who work 30 or more hours per week must be given a total of 24 hours of paid sick time during the year  under the new law. That’s the equivalent of 3 full days, of course. Employees are eligible for the benefit after 90 days of employment.
Chipping Away At Your Paperwork Pile
(North Carolina Bookkeeping)
At the end of a fiscal quarter, a lot of small business owners are faced with the daunting task of catching up on financial paperwork. Receipts, invoices, and other papers need to be recorded  and processed. Tiffany Goodin provides some helpful tips and a checklist to help manage the results of your procrastination.
Dos And Don’ts of Pinterest Marketing
Facebook and Twitter command a lot of attention from small businesses marketers and with good reason. But Pinterest has been steadily garnering more users too. Those users are quite engaged with the site too, spending about 14 minutes there per day on average. As Carmine Di Maro points out, the visual-heavy social media site is a great way to showcase your business products. It’s a great way to share your expertise and inspirations, too. DiMaro’s recent post offers tips for marketing your business on Pinterest successfully. And it looks at some pitfalls to avoid, too.
Don’t Underestimate The Value of The Written Word
Florin Birgu of Egg Metrics has collected some really weird ads in this great roundup. We’re left to ponder whether some of these are errors or deliberate and clever attempts to grab a reader’s attention. Whichever they are, the roundup is a good reminder of the power of properly worded text ads . While your business may not be selling “Birthday Moms” or “Human Remains”, a clever, simple and attention-grabbing text ad could result in positive returns.
Get Help Expanding Your Business
At some point, business startups must consider bringing on either more employees or contractors to handle growth. This is especially true for “solopreneurs” who are wearing multiple hats while keeping their businesses operating. Small Business Trends Founder and CEO Anita Campbell provides this checklist for sole-proprietors working alone. It’s a helpful way to decide when it’s time to ask for more help in your business.
Avoid Shiny Object Syndrome in Marketing
If you always seem to be chasing what’s new in your marketing strategy, you may be suffering from Shiny Object Syndrome . Instead of chasing the most exciting new marketing approach on the Internet, try a simple message across multiple channels. You may find that a simple brand message spread across multiple channels will have a better effect and reach a larger audience. And it will prevent you from wasting time and energy on always recalibrating your campaigns to match the latest trends.
Understand the Limits of Facebook Marketing
Why Marketing Data is Only Half the Equation
Companies offering small businesses their online advertising services tout advanced knowledge databases. And these companies use advanced data collection to help advertisers target specific audiences. But despite the gobs of information gleaned from these tools, successful marketing also relies on intuition and listening to your customers. Tim Peter writes that feedback from customers and employees  can provide just as much insight for your next marketing campaign as the latest analytics.
Mompreneur  photo via Shutterstock