Category Archives: Newspaper & Journal Articles

America’s Healthcare Advocate Cary Hall talks Medicare Open Enrollment

America’s Healthcare Advocate, Cary Hall, discusses Medicare Open Enrollment on his blog today.

Don’t miss it!

BizTV Doubles Distribution in 2013, On Track to Hit 33 Million Homes by Q1 of 2014

BizTV announced today that it has doubled its distribution in 2013; reaching over 15 million BizTV Doubles Distribution in 2013, On Track to Hit 33 Million Homes by Q1 of 2014broadcast homes in August. In addition, BizTV says it is on track to hit 33 million homes by the first quarter of 2014.

“We are extremely excited to see the growth of BizTV,” says Scott Miller, Executive Vice President of parent company Center Post Holdings. “BizTV is now in its fourth year of operations, and our affiliates see the value in providing their viewers with content to help them manage their business or personal finances.”

BizTV started 2013 with five affiliates including Atlanta, Dallas, Denver and Salt Lake City. New affiliates include WPBH 60.2 in Philadelphia, KHMP in Las Vegas, KCTU 43.4 in Wichita, WGGS in Greenville, South Carolina and WBFT 46 in Raleigh/Durham, North Carolina.

Additional markets are scheduled to come online in New York, Fresno, Bakersfield, Kinston, North Carolina, Cleveland and San Diego.

Miller credits the growth to the economy, “With the uncertainty in Washington and Wall Street, more Americans are interested in getting into business for themselves or managing their personal finances. BizTV gives them the tools they need to do both.”

Interested affiliates can contact Mark MacGregor, VP of Affiliate Relations for BizTV at or 727-686-4415.

BizTV is the home for your business. Whether you’re an entrepreneur, small business owner or just managing your family’s assets, BizTV can help. BizTV finds the resources you need to manage your money, start your latest venture or grow your business.

Centerpost Holdings is privately held and based in Arlington Texas. It’s properties include, BizTV, Penny Sports, BTRN, LTRN, Austin I Lab, Everything Internet, College Real Estate, Key-Linx broadband, and various real estate holdings.

If you don’t get BizTV in your area, find out how here!

You can also watch BizTV live online on

Are you a fan of BizTV? What’s your favorite show? Share in the comments!

Entrepreneur Events for July

Check out these entrepreneur and startup events coming in July!

July 10th Entrepreneur Group Of Georgia Presents: Understanding Financials in Running a Company

5:30-6:30 Networking and hors d’oeuvres
6:30-7:30 Panel Discussion, Questions and Answers

Meeting Dress is Business Casual.
Two drink tickets are included with each registration.

July 10-13 International Startup Festival

StartupFest is known for bringing together some of the best and brightest entrepreneurs from around the world. This event unites aspiring entrepreneurs, founders, and entrepreneurial vets for three days of inspiration and innovation. The theme of the 2013 festival is ‘the stories behind startups’. And with elevator pitches in real elevators and panels of grandmother judges, the stories from this year’s event are bound to be interesting!

July 15-18 Creative Entrepreneurship Conference

The program will cover various aspects of creative entrepreneurship practice, research and education.
More specifically, we seek to gain new insights in the questions:
What constitutes creative entrepreneurship and what it means to be a creative entrepreneur?
What factors affect our understanding and how the definition varies in different socio-cultural contexts? Can profitability and aesthetic and social needs of the cultural sector be served at the same time? What constitutes effective teaching? What should we teach: value creation or business approaches, or both?

These and other questions will be discussed through a multicultural and international perspective.

Examples of innovative programs and approaches to teaching, research findings and cases that illustrate how art related businesses can address concerns of the cultural sector, economy and society will be presented.


July 16 TriConf

TriConf is an “unconference” (also known as a “barcamp”—a fast-paced, self-organized event with no distinction between “speakers” and “attendees”, guaranteed to be fun and educational.

The barcamp philosophy is: everyone has something valuable to contribute and to gain.

Now in its third year, TriConf is one of the best representations of the heart of the amazing Tri-City community who work (and live) on the web.

July 17 Crowdfundx NYC

Crowdcentric hosts CROWDFUNDx NYC with presenting sponsor American Express OPEN Forum & supporting sponsor Nokia@Work. It features our challenge event with a one-day conference focused on crowdfunding for businesses. We will provide a stage for thought leaders in crowdfunding, entrepreneurship, & early-stage investment.

This is perfect for those who are a small business owner, startup or social enterprise entrepreneur looking to see how your work may be affected by crowdfunding.

July 18 GSA Entrepreneurship Conference

The Entrepreneurship Conference is an annual event that addresses the challenges, solutions and trends impacting the semiconductor entrepreneurial landscape and serves as a platform for start-ups and interested parties to meet face-to-face. This year’s program will address:

  • Alternative funding models that spur investment and mitigate risk.
  • Ways emerging companies can collaborate with their ecosystem partners to reduce costs and infrastructure requirements.
  • The key elements that are required to ensure a successful exit.

The event will close with an evening networking reception that can be used to further discussion and interest.

July 21 – 23 Inc Small Giants Passport Event

You’ve read about them in the pages of Inc. Now experience them like never before as this Inc. Small Giants Passport Event takes you on an exclusive, unprecedented journey inside the walls of award-winning companies! The first stop in this series, Nick’s Pizza and Pub. At the Nick’s Pizza and Pub Passport Event you will: Tour Nick’s Pizza and Pub and receive an in-depth look at their award-winning training philosophy, meet the team responsible for creating exceptional and memorable company culture, and walk away with an inspired and jam-packed mind full of immediately actionable take-aways.

July 22-23 3rd Annual International Conference on Innovation and Entrepreneurship

Innovation is the introduction and creation of something new, in the form of an idea, skill, product, service or process, that helps improve an organization or society. The Annual International Conference on Innovation and Entrepreneurship (IE) hopes to introduce a wider view of innovation as new methods of creating value, and to focus on research that study innovative processes, organizational practices, systems, supply chain design and other mechanisms that are related to operations in practice.

This conference aims to explore policies, measures and mechanisms for promoting innovation and entrepreneurship in various areas.

July 22-26 OSCON

Sponsored by O’Reilly, OSCON is one of the top conferences for the open source community. This conference attracts developers, innovators, business people and investors alike to learn about writing beautiful code. If you’re looking to bolster your tech infrastructure, this is the conference for you.

July 27 SOLVE Conference for Women

Powered by Chic CEO, the SOLVE Conference for Women is a hands on, one-day intensive for female entrepreneurs with real business challenges looking for real business solutions. Join us as we spend an action-packed day working through some of your most frustrating business challenges. Collaborate with other attendees to SOLVE problems and ideate with experts to get the answers you need. This conference is limited to the first 100 attendees, so don’t wait to reserve your seat.

If you have a conference or event, send it to or leave us a comment. And, always check for local events to connect!

Tips to Write a Press Release

Let’s say you’ve started your business. A mom and pop store. A coffee shop. An app development company.

Whatever the case, you’ve got money and you’re rolling. Now, it’s time to the tell the world that you’re here, How to Write a press releaseyou’ll grow, and you’re raring to go. One way to spread your message is a press release.

A press release is a news story written in the third person (that’s “he” and “they” instead of “I” and “we”) that is meant to pique the interest of journalists and editors by demonstrating the newsworthiness of your information. Here’s some things that a press release is NOT:

  • Talking about yourself and how great you are
  • Full of quality judgements (you need to appear impartial)
  • An advertisement

You want to show that you are an expert in what you do. You want to help a journalist write a story, not a human interest piece.

Here are some tips.

How to Write a Press Release

1. Make it newsworthy

Remember how I said above that you are demonstrating the newsworthiness of your information? If you don’t have something newsworthy, you don’t have a press release. If you have to, find an angle. Why is your business important? What have you brought to the table (not qualitative; quantitative). This is not a place to talk about your customer service. For the app developer, talk about the app you’ve developed. For the mom and pop store, tell them about your roots in the community and how you’re helping bring jobs to the area.

Look at the word: Newsworthy. Is your press release discussing something that’s new?

2. Keep it short

Press releases aren’t longer than a page. They’re usually half a page. Trim the fat.

3. Give it a headline

When you put up a press release, you put it in a place for reporters to find. Give it a snappy, catchy headline that will make them choose you. Try to keep that snappy catchy stuff up in the front, too, but focusing on a strong first paragraph. I would usually front load the first paragraph with the most important information. The second or last paragraphs would get a quote from within the company or a brief company history (like “started in 2005…). Even that company history was kept less than three sentences.

Remember these key tips when you write your press release. You are informing the audience of your business’s news. Once you have your press release written and PROOFREAD, you’re ready to send it out.

Here’s a list of sources that will distribute your press release. Most of them require that you subscribe to a service, so you may want to take that into consideration before you pay for your release.

What are your press release tips? Share them here.

Entrepreneurs turned Politicians

While he didn’t announce his candidacy, Jack Dorsey has expressed an interest in running for mayor of New York some day. If you aren’t familiar with Dorsey, he helped co-found Twitter. He also had a hand in founding Square. You know. That little white box attached to the iPad Mini in all those new coffeeshops that you swipe your credit card through.

Jack Dorsey wants to be NYC Mayor

Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey

Dorsey is valued at around $1 billion dollars, but he wouldn’t be New York’s first billionaire mayor.

Mayor Bloomberg, New York’s current mayor, will be exciting his post on Jan. 1, 2014. Dorsey did not say he would be looking to enter the race then. Bloomberg has had some questionable laws passed, including the large soda ban that was overturned by the judicial system last week. On the positive side, New York’s population has reached an all time high. Bloomberg is also a former entrepreneur.

As far as Dorsey’s experience is concerned, Square was started in 2010 and now has 400 employees and a partnership with Starbucks. Twitter surpassed the 200 million user mark in December.

In January, John Catsimatidis, owner of the Gristedes grocery chain, announced his candidacy for mayor. Brian Sullivan, the founder and creator of PUR water filter, ran for governor of Minnesota. Founding father, inventor, and entrepreneur Benjamin Franklin didn’t mind throwing his hat into the political ring. Even Mitt Romney had an entrepreneurial background. And, probably the biggest name in entrepreneurs turned politicians, is Ross Perot. Perot founded EDS and then Perot Systems before his run for the presidency.

Many say that small business owners and entrepreneurs represent the American spirit. The entrepreneur is often seen as someone with a can-do attitude, a head for innovation, and an almost stubborn dedication to their vision. Is there something politicians and entrepreneurs share? Or are entrepreneurs drawn to an ideal? Whatever the reason, America has a long tradition of entrepreneurs turned politicians and that isn’t about to change.

What do you think? Do entrepreneurs make good politicians? Will the city of New York adopt Jack Dorsey as quickly as everyone else adopted Twitter?

Capitalizing on Opportunity

According to the papers, the Ravens won the Super Bowl.

According to Twitter, the winner was Oreo. And they won with an ad that didn’t go to CBS.

Everyone knew that this Super Bowl was going to be big for second screen viewers. If you aren’t familiar with “second screen” yet, the second screen refers to when television viewers have another screen in front of them, be it a computer, a smartphone, or a tablet. Super Bowl XLVII generated 231,500 tweets a minute, racking up 24.1 million tweets over the course of the whole game.

  • The big moments included:The power outage (231,500 tweets per minute, or TPM);
  • the 108-yard kickoff return by Raven’s Jacoby Jones (185,000 TPM);
  • the Raven’s winning moment (183,000 TPM);
  • Jones’ 56 yard caught pass for a touchdown (168,000 TPM);
  • Gore’s 49ers’ touchdown (131,000 TPM).

Beyonce’s halftime show generated 5.5 million tweets itself, which was more than was tweeted during the entire Super Bowl last year.

Most of the Super Bowl ads had some kind of hashtag tie-in to get people taking it to the second screen.

So why is Oreo the winner?

Oreo jumped on the blackout with this picture attached to a tweet. Their tweet read “Power out? No problem.”

The message caught on almost immediately, getting nearly 15,000 retweets (as of this writing) and more than 20,000 likes on Facebook.

Oreo has a 15 person social media team standing by to react to whatever happened during the Super Bowl. They had their own ad that aired which featured it’s own social media call to action to get people to pick sides: Creme or cookie? (We all know the answer is that it’s a perfect balance.) The team featured copywriters, artists, and strategists to respond to any situation. The company that handled the game day tweeting for Oreo was digital marketing agency 360i,

Oreo proves that while you can’t plan ahead for what might happen on social media, you can plan ahead with the right people to respond to whoever does.

While you might not have the budget for a 15 person social media team, you should still be aware of the trends are where your customers are. Don’t be afraid to drop a relevant tweet. You might just go viral.

California workers loose cellphones

Governor Jerry Brown is starting to slash the California state budget and, on the chopping block, he has targeted cellphones.

He is requiring the return of 48,000 government-paid cell phones by June 1. He said he found it difficult to believe that 40% of state employees needed a work phone.

Does a small expense like a cellphone really make a difference?

Heck yes. This move is going to save the state $20 million.

On January 10th, Brown announced a budget that will slash $12.5 billion in spending and extend $12 billion in tax hikes.

Brown, who assumed office a week ago, has to contend with a $25.4 billion shortfall over the next 18 months. California’s fiscal year starts July 1.

Babson College offers entrepreneurial courses

Babson College is offering three new Summer Study Programs for outstanding high school students starting this summer 2011.

High-achieving teens entering their junior or senior year in high school may take one of two courses in a seven-week, residential program from July 5 – August 19.

* Babson Entrepreneur Development Experience: for the current or aspiring entrepreneur who wants to discover how to fit his/her business idea into the greater world picture through lessons of corporate citizenship and business development.

* Babson Idea Generation Program: for the aspiring changemaker who wishes to create innovative, real-world solutions to social, economic, and environmental issues — now. The student must want to develop his/her problem-solving skills and work in a challenging and fun team environment.

Tuition for either course is $7,380 and includes housing, meals, activities, and 4 college credits.

Each of these courses is taught by top-ranked faculty in a challenging campus environment. Students will earn 4 college credits and they may opt to take a second 3-credit class in courses that may include: macroeconomics, accounting, business law, calculus, printmaking or a foundation class in arts & humanities. They will differentiate themselves from their peers for college applications and have the opportunity to build their network in meeting with business leaders and industry experts, all while exploring the city of Boston.

High-achieving teens entering their sophomore year in high school may participate in a one week nonresidential experience from June 27 – July 1.

* Service Learning Experience: a non-residential program for rising sophomores who are passionate about social outreach and want to spend their summer experience helping some of the world’s biggest changemakers locally to make an immediate difference. No college credits are earned for this program.

Tuition for Service Learning Experience is $400 including materials and lunch.

Babson’s Summer Study Programs for High School Students provide a living/learning laboratory for students to focus on applying and advancing their knowledge in business and entrepreneurship. In this collaborative community, students will gain the tools and experience to impact and reshape organizations, industries and the world. Each program will introduce students to Babson’s way of Entrepreneurial Thought and Action and provide resources and strategies for students to think about company and world issues through their classes, cases, speakers and scheduled activities.

The application deadline is March 1, 2011. For more information visit:

Babson College in Wellesley, Mass., is recognized internationally as a leader in entrepreneurial management education. Babson grants BS degrees through its innovative undergraduate program, and grants MBA and custom MS and MBA degrees through the F.W. Olin Graduate School of Business at Babson College. Babson Executive Education offers executive development programs to experienced managers worldwide. For information, visit


Small Business isn’t Celebrating Health-care Reform

In March, Congress enacted the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), a 2,000-plus-page law designed to dramatically change how health insurance is provided in this country. The law might have been more aptly named the Small Business Health Insurance Act because its effects—both good and bad—will fall most heavily on small companies.

That’s because we have an employment-based health-care system and small businesses are less likely than large ones to provide employee health insurance. In 2010, the Kaiser Family Foundation, which keeps tabs on health insurance coverage, reported that 99 percent of businesses with 200-plus employees provided workers with health insurance, as compared with only 68 percent of businesses with 3 to 199 employees. Given these numbers, it’s fair to focus on small businesses when looking at the impact of the new law.

Read the complete story at Business Week


Intuit Inc. reports Small Business Employment Index Shows 0.3 Percent Job Growth for December

Small business employment continued to show growth in December with hours worked up and wages flat.

“We might expect that after months of high hours per employee, that businesses would hire and hours would fall back to normal. Instead, we see hiring up and hours worked up also. These are good signs for the recovery.”

Those were among the results of this month’s update of the Intuit Inc. (Nasdaq:INTU) Small Business Employment Index. The monthly report found that small business employment grew by 0.3 percent in December, equating to an annual growth rate of about 3.4 percent. This translates to approximately 57,000 new jobs created nationwide. The Index is based on figures from the country’s smallest businesses that use Intuit Online Payroll.

“Small business is still the most vigorous sector of the employment picture,” said Susan Woodward, the economist who worked with Intuit to create the Index. “We generally see a rise in employment for all businesses in December, but this year it is unusually strong. We can hardly see the recovery in overall national employment, but among small businesses, the recovery, albeit slow, is unambiguous.”

Based on this latest data, the employment growth rate for November was revised upward to 0.4 percent, equating to 73,000 jobs added for the month and a 4.4 percent annual growth rate. Since the growth trend first began in October 2009, small business jobs have increased by a revised estimate of 880,000.

Compensation Flat, Hours Worked Up

Total compensation per employee was flat in December while hours worked were up, compared to November.

Average monthly pay for all small business employees was $2,607 per month in December, a nearly 0.1 percent decline, which is considered flat, from the revised November figure of $2,609 per month. This translates to wages of about $31,300 per year, which is part-time work for many small business employees.

The weakness of the overall employment picture is still reflected in small business compensation,” said Woodward. “Though small businesses are hiring and asking their people to work longer hours, they don’t have to pay more to get people. While compensation is flat, these numbers don’t mean that people didn’t get overtime and bonuses in December – they did. But on a seasonal and trend adjusted basis, compensation is not up.”

Small business hourly employees worked an average of 107.5 hours in December, translating to a 24.8-hour work week. This is a nearly 0.2 percent increase from the revised November figure of 107.3 hours.

“Hours are still strong,” added Woodward. We might expect that after months of high hours per employee, that businesses would hire and hours would fall back to normal. Instead, we see hiring up and hours worked up also. These are good signs for the recovery.”

Small Business Employment by Geography

The Intuit Index also breaks down employment by census divisions and states across the country.

“All divisions continued to show employment growth except for the West North Central division, which continued to see job losses for the sixth month in a row,” said Cameron Schmidt, vice president of Intuit’s Employee Management Solutions division. “Most states saw increases in employment with Washington seeing the strongest increase month over month.”

U.S. Census Division Percent Change in Employment
East North Central +0.2%
West North Central -0.2%
Middle Atlantic +0.3%
Mountain +0.2%
New England +0.4%
Pacific +0.3%
South Atlantic +0.3%
East South Central +0.3%
West South Central +0.4%

Small Business Employment by U.S. Census Division continues to grow in most parts of the country except for the West North Central division. The data reflects employment from nearly 60,000 small business employers who use Intuit Online Payroll. The month-to-month changes are seasonally-adjusted and informative about the overall economy.

State Percent Change in Employment
Arizona +0.5%
California +0.2%
Florida +0.4%
Georgia +0%
Illinois +0%
Maryland +0.5%
Massachusetts +0.4%
New Jersey +0.5%
New York -0.1%
North Carolina +0.1%
Texas +0.5%
Virginia +0.4%
Washington +0.6%

Small Business Employment by State is up for many states across the country with the highest increases month over month in Maryland and Washington. The states above reflect those for which Intuit Online Payroll has more than 1,000 small business firms represented. The month-to-month changes are seasonally-adjusted and informative about the overall economy.

About the Index

The Intuit Small Business Employment Index is based on aggregate and anonymous online employment data from nearly 60,000 small business employers, each with fewer than 20 employees. These small businesses use Intuit Online Payroll from Intuit, the No. 1 payroll provider with more than 1 million customers. These smallest employers are important to the economy as they comprise 87 percent of the total U.S. private employer base and employ nearly 20 million people. More information is available at:

Intuit reports data for three categories: small business employment, compensation and hours worked. Intuit analyzes and publishes the data at the beginning of each month. The Index also includes employment data broken down by geography. As with the government data, there may be revisions to the Intuit Index numbers. These revisions are partly due to calculations using the latest month of new Intuit data. These calculations include re-computing seasonal factors and the moving average process used to obtain the curve, which can change the values for previously reported months. Changes to the data are also due to revisions to the government employment data, which is used to calculate the Intuit Index.

While the Intuit Small Business Employment Index offers macroeconomic insight about the economy generally, it does not indicate or represent changes in Intuit’s business results for any period.

The Index data reflects monthly employment activity in small businesses, and is adjusted to account for changes in Intuit’s Online Payroll customer base. The percent change is measured monthly using the change in employment for existing Intuit Online Payroll customers from one month to the next. The set of customers changes each month so the measurement is the change, for each pair of months, for customers who are present in both the earlier and the later month.


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