Archive | June, 2010

Bringing Your Product to Market 4.4. Concepting and Testing

Bringing Your Product to Market 4.4. Concepting and Testing

4.4. Concepting and Testing In the concepting phase, you convert your idea to a full description. In this phase, you define all your product attributes, features, parts, size, weight, price, packaging, distribution channels, and promotions―as much as you can flesh out about what your end product actually will be and what it will look like [...]

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Bringing Your Product to Market 4.3. Idea Screening

Bringing Your Product to Market 4.3. Idea Screening

4.3. Idea Screening Idea screening is a process, formal or informal, through which you evaluate a product or service idea to determine if it’s worth the time and money to develop further. Idea screening answers two basic questions: Is this product feasible? Is this service doable? Will I make a profit? The whole point of [...]

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Bringing Your Product to Market 4.2. Idea Generation

Bringing Your Product to Market 4.2. Idea Generation

4.2 Idea Generation Corporations have formal processes and departments for generating ideas. A huge number of people are often involved: R&D, marketing, and even consumers. Because they have all these resources, corporations develop product ideas at a pretty rapid clip―but most of them never get out of the idea stage! You, on the other hand, [...]

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Borrowed $500 and Started CelebriDucks

Back in 1986, I started an animation company that over time grew to become the largest publisher of animation artwork from television commercials in the country having created the first ever animation art lines for Coca-Cola, Anheuser-Bush, M&M/Mars, Pillsbury, etc., etc. I started it by borrowing $500 from two different good friends and eventually paid [...]

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Bringing Your Product to Market 4.0

Bringing Your Product to Market 4.0

Customers see products and services; they don’t really see much else about your business. You worry your head about the entire business, so you pay attention to marketing, branding, operations, and profit. But your customer only really cares about the thing you make or the thing you do. And when they look at your product [...]

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Hardware and Software Internet 3.19. Virtual PBX Software

Hardware and Software Internet 3.19. Virtual PBX Software

If you have a computer and an Internet connection―and a giant helping of moxie and skill―you can always convert your PC into a virtual PBX. Why pay a monthly fee? If you have the know-how, you can purchase PBX server software, set up a PC as a VoiP PBX server, and start rocking. Unlike hosted [...]

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Hardware and Software Internet 3.18. Virtual Private Branch Exchange (PBX)

Hardware and Software Internet 3.18. Virtual Private Branch Exchange (PBX)

Chances are, you’ve spent a pretty fair portion of your life talking to people through a Private Branch Exchange . . . and you probably didn’t even know it. But now that you’re in business, you’re probably a bit jazzed about getting some of the fancy phone stuff. Stuff like extensions (“Dial 1 for sales, [...]

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Hardware and Software Internet 3.17. Virtual Fax Services

Hardware and Software Internet 3.17. Virtual Fax Services

Faxes seem pretty easy. Buy a fax machine, plug it into a phone line, and there you go. Well . . . Faxes are central to your business, so you have no choice but to have a fax solution. You can plug a fax machine into your existing phone line or you can buy an [...]

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Katydid started with less than $500

Shopforbags.com (SFB) is a women owned apparel and handbags distributor that targets small town salons, boutiques, and retail outlets. At Shopforbags.com, we make it easy for the small town retailer to order just what they need on a just-in-time basis with a low minimum order and same day shipping. SFB customers purchase with the confidence [...]

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Hardware and Software Internet 3.16. Internet Voice Portals (Vonage, Skype, Yahoo VOIP, Google VOIP)

Hardware and Software Internet 3.16. Internet Voice Portals (Vonage, Skype, Yahoo VOIP, Google VOIP)

3.16.1. Vonage http://www.vonage.com Vonage is a leading provider of broadband telephone services with over 2 million subscriber lines. Their award-winning technology enables anyone to make and receive phone calls with a touch tone telephone almost anywhere a broadband Internet connection is available. They offer feature-rich and cost effective communication services that offer users an experience [...]

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Hardware and Software 3.15. Web Conferencing and Collaboration

Hardware and Software 3.15. Web Conferencing and Collaboration

Web conferencing is a combination of Instant Messaging and desktop sharing. In a Web conference, you connect to other parties and “share” your desktop with them while also sending instant messages or Voice over Internet. The great benefit of Web conferencing is that it allows people to work on the same project without having to [...]

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Hardware and Software 3.14. Instant Messaging

Hardware and Software 3.14. Instant Messaging

The Internet allows you several communications alternatives that can significantly reduce or eliminate your phone bills. Aside from email, you can communicate to anyone offsite using your Internet-connected PC through three main methods: Instant Messaging (IM)—Instant Messaging allows you to send text messages instantly to other people’s computers, provided they are connected to the same [...]

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Hardware and Software 3.13. Browsers

Hardware and Software 3.13. Browsers

3.13.1. Internet Explorer http://www.microsoft.com/windows/products/winfamily/ie/default.mspx Internet Explorer, the most widely used browser in the world, is a free proprietary graphical web browser made by Microsoft and automatically installed with Windows Vista or Windows XP. It has been the most widely used web browser since 1999. Internet Explorer has been designed to view a broad range of [...]

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Hardware and Software 3.12. Calendars and Schedules

Hardware and Software 3.12. Calendars and Schedules

If you have any of the office suites, either installed or Web-based software, you pretty much have your calendar needs met. All the major office suites come with some form of calendar and contacts software and some, such as Outlook, integrate across several platforms. Still, you may want a totally Web-based calendar or scheduling system [...]

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Human Resources Management 3.11

Human Resources Management 3.11

3.11.1. MYstaff http://www.mystaff.com.au If you were a large corporation with big revenues coming in, you’d be installing an enterprise-wide Oracle or PeopleSoft HR software system. But you’re not a mega-corporation, so you’re either going to rough it with a spreadsheet or use a Web-based software solution designed to mimic the functions and capabilities of Oracle [...]

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Hardware and Software 3.10. Contract Management

3.10.1. Sertifi https://www.sertifi.com Sertifi is a unique online service that harnesses the power of electronic media and the Internet to help you manage and distribute contracts. You can create a branded area on the Sertifi Web site for managing all your contracts You can create or upload contracts, agreements, or other signature-bearing documents in your [...]

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Hardware and Software 3.9. Project Management

Hardware and Software 3.9. Project Management

Most every business, including yours, will be involved in a project at some point or another. Some businesses will do nothing but projects; those businesses at some point need to seriously consider a project management system to help manage their projects, even if they outsource project management to another firm. So what exactly is a [...]

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Hardware and Software 3.8. Bookkeeping, Finance, and Accounting

Hardware and Software 3.8. Bookkeeping, Finance, and Accounting

3.8.1. QuickBooks http://quickbooks.intuit.com QuickBooks is an accounting software product developed by Intuit, Inc. There are several different versions of the software tailored to specific industries and business needs. QuickBooks is by far the most widely used bookkeeping and accounting software for small business. The application enables businesses to tracks expenses, prepare and send invoices, put [...]

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Hardware and Software 3.7. Graphics and Image Editing

Hardware and Software 3.7. Graphics and Image Editing

3.7.1. Adobe Photoshop Adobe Photoshop, the graphics editor developed and published by Adobe Systems, is the current market leader for image editing. It comes in two versions: a full version that sells for around $600 and a scaled-back version, Adobe Elements that can be purchased for under $100. It is far and away the industry [...]

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Hardware and Software 3.6. Productivity Software

Hardware and Software 3.6. Productivity Software

Productivity software encompasses all those applications you need to make your business run. The fundamental productivity applications are called “office” applications, which typically refer to word processors, spreadsheets, email applications, calendars, contact management, presentation software (like PowerPoint), and note-taking software. More specialized products include graphic editing software, video editing software, accounting, project management, finance, and [...]

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