Business Services Blog
If you missed our most recent program in the Business Bytes series, check out the slide presentation below and contact us if you'd like to set up a personal appointment to get training.
The Business Bytes series is designed to introduce technology topics to local business owners and employees. Next month's topic is "Twitter for Business" so be sure to register now.
If you haven't checked out the video tutorials on Lynda you're missing out. Most of their tutorials are software related, but there are a few other topics hidden away in there. Just the other day they released a new one on making an effective resume; complete with exercises, cover letters, and thank-you notes. So if you are job hunting, or just want to rewarm your resume, check it out!
According to a recent PEW research study, 48% of Americans have researched a product or service online and 24% have posted reviews or comments about the things they buy. If you're a business owner or manager, it's definitely worth spending a little bit of time learning how to monitor what people are saying about your business online.
Our latest "Business Bytes" program focuses on review websites like Yelp.com and Angie's List. If you're interested in learning more, please take a look at the presentation slides below. Afterwards, schedule an appointment with a librarian who will be able to explain the finer details of each website and help you get started!
The Daily Herald recently published an article about what might attract businesses (both national and local) to communities like Arlington Heights. According to the article, some businesses look beyond tax incentives and consider factors such as good schools, transportation, and a village that will work with new businesses to give them the best chance for success.
The New York Times has been making their own news lately, but they've also been working on some interesting things to help small business owners. Recently, they began asking struggling small business owners to send in videos for their new "How I Saved My Business" section.
The first video features Yuki Mark Lim, who owns a business that furnishes and decorates apartments for short-term renters in Manhattan. He talks about what he did to reduce expenses (including moving his office into his living room) and how these steps helped him keep his business afloat.
Do you have your own story of how you kept your local Arlington Heights business afloat during these tough times? Let us know and we'll post it on our blog right here! Email us at email@example.com.
Harper College's Career Center hosts two job fairs every year and their next one is this Friday, April 1 from 11am-3pm. This event is free, open to the public, and will be held in the lower level of the Wellness and Sports Complex.
If you're planning to attend, or even if you can't attend but are interested in connecting with potential employers, be sure to check out their list of employers (pdf) expected to attend. Their job fair webpage also has some great tips to prepare for the job fair.
According to the AT&T Small Business Technology Poll (via Mashable), roughly 1/3 of small business owners reported that they couldn't make it without the use of their mobile apps. I'm not sure I buy the percentage, but I do believe that an increasing number of business owners and professionals are using their smart phones, iPads, and other mobile devices to help run their business operations and daily lives.
There are plenty of books out there that can help you maximize your mobile device. Here are just a few that you can find in the library:
For more recommendations on mobile apps, check out these articles on Mashable.
Earlier this week, we hosted the second of our Business Bytes sessions, "Create a Facebook Page for Your Business." We discussed the difference between Facebook "profiles" (for individuals) and "pages" (for businesses and organizations), the value in extending your brand and connecting with your customers through Facebook, and did a brief walk-through of the setup process. If you missed the session, you can view the slide presentation below (if the slides below don't work, try this link). If you have any questions, please contact Bill Pardue.
The next session is "Know What People Say about Your Business Online," on Monday, April 11 & Tuesday, April 12. Sign up now!
In case you missed it yesterday, Apple (i.e., Steve Jobs) announced the 2nd generation iPad with a whole new set of features and a slimmer, lighter design. We use an iPad here at the Answer Center to help people while moving around the library, but I can definitely see iPads being useful to small business owners. So, here are some features that might come in handy for someone running their own business:
- Connectivity: A lot of small business owners are constantly on the move and the iPad can help you stay connected through your email accounts, calendar, and contacts for clients and partners.
- Information: Since the iPad allows you to access the Internet via WiFi or a 3G connection, you can use it to quickly look up a piece of information you need to answer a client's question or do some research for yourself.
- Productivity: You can also use the iPad to write documents, create spreadsheets, edit movies, record sounds and voices, and put together a stylish slide presentation.
- Communication: One of the biggest additions to the new iPad is the presence of not one, but two cameras. With the FaceTime app, you can hold face-to-face meetings virtually wherever you are. You can also record in HD video and edit a movie on the fly.
- Sharing: Perhaps my favorite addition to the new iPad is the ability to connect to an external monitor via HDMI and display to others anything and everything you're doing on the iPad. This is a great way to share information and demonstrate something to others during a presentation.
If you missed the announcement, you can check it out in its entirety online or check out the following clip below.
By the way, one thing that got overshadowed by the news of the iPad2 is Apple's creation of a program, or a package of services, specifically designed for businesses. It's called Joint Venture and you can read more about it online.
Our first program for the new Business Bytes series was held last week. We introduced local business owners to Google Places and explained why it makes sense to verify your business' listing. If you missed the class, take a look at the slide presentation below and let us know if you have any questions. We'd be happy to meet with you one-on-one to help you set up your business on Google Places.
And don't forget to register for the next in this series on creating Facebook pages for businesses!