Social media isn’t just for promoting your small business — it can also be a great resource for providing customer service. And this week, Twitter added a location sharing feature that can make it easier for some businesses communicating with customers using direct messages.
And Twitter wasn’t the only social media platform to add new features this week. Pinterest also added an instant download option for those looking to share mobile apps on the platform. Read about these updates and more in this week’s Small Business Trends news and information roundup.
New Twitter Location Sharing Feature Aimed at Businesses Talking to Customers in DMs
Location is everything. It’s true. And small businesses using Twitter (NYSE:TWTR) as a customer service platform can now personalize their responses better with a new locations sharing feature. Using the Direct Messages feature on Twitter, companies can request to know the current location of a customer with a question.
Pinterest Users Can Now Download Your Mobile App Right From a Pin
Pinterest is making it easier for you to drive users to your app. The company has announced its Promoted App Pins are now available to all advertisers. This will make it easier for users to discover your mobile app and download it straight away.
Medical Cannabis: Why Physician Support Hasn’t Kept Pace With Public Approval
With nationwide acceptance for medical cannabis at an all-time high, a remarkable majority of physicians are still unwilling to certify patients. All too often those suffering from severe and chronic conditions are denied certification from their network of treating physicians.
This Top Ranked City for Entrepreneurs Might Surprise You
You don’t need to start your business in a big startup capital like the Silicon Valley or New York City in order to be successful. According to a new list from Entrepreneur and Livability, some of the best cities for entrepreneurs are actually lesser-known towns. Take Brookings, South Dakota, for example, which was ranked at number 25 on the list.
Messages of Joy in Advertising Copy Not Always Good for Business, Study Shows
There are many inspiring stories in the media about using affirming words, remaining joyful and optimistic in business, and also sending out positive messages to people. But, apparently, when it comes to the travel sector, using joyful words in advertising copy does not bring the best results.
Can Livestreaming Replace Blogging? One Fashion Influencer Says No
If you regard livestreaming as the undisputed “best” marketing tactic, you haven’t been in marketing long, especially if you think it’s a standalone strategy. Established brands know getting traction for a full blog requires good, consistent writing combined with patience and measurement, especially if tying in video — edited or live.
Restaurant Customers Prefer Silence to Top 40 While Eating
If you own a restaurant, there’s a good chance you have some music playing in the background for diners to enjoy while they sample your cuisine.
Small Businesses Will See Billions in Sales This Easter
The Easter bunny is hopping down the trail and a lot of small businesses are ringing up sales in record numbers. 2017 Easter Spending Estimates Estimates from the National Retail Federation suggest this will be the biggest Easter sales year ever in the U.S. NRF believes consumers will spend about $18.4 billion this year prior to Easter.
Small Biz Spotlight
Spotlight: Next Trucking Uses Online Marketplace to Connect Shippers and Truckers
Trucking is an evolving industry. But it’s not one that has kept up with new technology quite as much as others. Next Trucking is one business that’s looking to change that. The online trucking marketplace puts more tools in the hands of truckers and also makes it easier for companies to connect with carriers.
Small Business Operations
96 Percent of Accountants Feel Positively About Automation, Study Finds
The topic seems to strike fear in the hearts of employees in every industry: artificially intelligent, robots, automated systems and the threat of them taking over the world. But not every industry is dreading their presence. With the annual tax season in full swing, accountants couldn’t be happier with the thought of automation.
84 Percent of Small Businesses Rely on a Manual Process
A handwritten message to your loyal customers — nice touch! A handwritten invoice scribbled on a piece of paper — not so much. But handwritten invoices are just one of many critical financial processes many small businesses are still doing manually.
Small Maryland Brewers Foaming Over New State Regulations
Maryland’s House of Delegates passed a new bill that deals a major blow to breweries in the state. The legislation slashes operation hours from 12 a.m. or 2 a.m. EST to 9 p.m. on weeknights and 10 p.m. EST on weekends. Under the new law, Maryland breweries are also restricted from selling any beer in their taprooms not produced at the brewery.
Don’t Pay Your Tax Bill with a Credit Card
A big tax bill is like hay fever. You don’t want it, you try to avoid it — and then April rolls around and it hits you hard. Now you have to figure out how to take care of it. Taxes have to be paid, and putting them on your credit card might seem a good option.
Outside-the-Box Travel Expenses — What’s Deductible?
Most small business owners incur, to a greater or lesser extent, travel expenses for their business. You probably know how to treat the most common costs — hotel rooms, airline tickets, business meals — but there are a slew of other travel-related costs that you may incur. Some are deductible and some are not. Here’s a rundown.
Would You Ask Your Employees to Insert a Microchip?
Implanting employees with microchips might sound more like something from a dystopian novel than real life. But some businesses are actually finding practical applications for the technology. Epicenter, a startup based in Stockholm, Sweden is one example.
Cisco Targets Small Businesses with New Wireless and Mobility Products
Cisco Systems, Inc., (NASDAQ: CSCO), multinational IT and networking solution provider, recently announced a suit of new wireless and mobility products for small and medium-sized businesses (SMB) designed to help them compete with the deep pockets of bigger organizations.
Will This Robot Be Providing Salads for Your Employees?
Your next salad could be made by a robot. And it’s not just a generic, pre-packaged salad either. The startup behind this new technology has actually found a way to make truly customizable salads through automation. Meet the Salad Making Robot Named Sally Sally is a salad-making robot from Chowbotics.
58 Percent of Small Businesses Not Prepared for Data Loss (INFOGRAPHIC)
Small businesses know they can’t afford to lose data. Yet more than half (58 percent) of them are not prepared for data loss. Worse still, 60 percent of small businesses that lose data will shut down within six months. That’s according to new information gathered by Washington, DC-based research firm Clutch.
Starbucks’ New Mobile Store Should Have Small Business Owners Thinking
Starbucks (NASDAQ:SBUX) is finding new ways to integrate mobile technology and artificial intelligence into its stores. The coffee giant recently announced that it will test a new store model at its headquarters where all customers place their orders and pay via mobile, instead of waiting in line to deal with cashiers.
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