Book description

Book info

eBook formatPaperback, (torrent)En
PublisherEntrepreneur Press
File size5.8 Mb
Release date 07.03.2007
Pages count700
Book rating4.2 (70 votes)
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I liked Small Business For Dummies, but felt that I should get a second opinion. This book covered many of the same topics as the Dummies book, but seemed to be more detailed, and of generally higher quality. I'm not surprised, because it's authored by the senior vice president and editorial director of Entrepreneur Magazine.

The Dummies book was structured by topic (accounting, sales, taxes, etc.), but this one is arranged by action item (start a homebased business, get business insurance, promote your business). In that way, it provides an even easier to follow plan than the Dummies book.

I especially liked the sections on choosing a name, promoting your business, and tax-deductible expenses. I skimmed or skipped the parts about buying a business, seeking investors, and anything about running a physical store or office, since those don't apply to me at this point.

This book was published in 2004, so some of the information about office equipment, technology, and the Internet is inevitably dated. Still, the concepts remain mostly sound.

When the income from your part-time business is 30% of your full-time income, consider taking your business full-time.
Create a highly-focused niche based on socioeconomic status, generation, gender, lifestyle, tech savviness, and life stage.
Update your business plan annually to reorient yourself and catch any potential problems.
For income tax deductions for a home-based business, track the percentage of your rent, cleaning costs, and utilities that apply to your business.
You can contribute to a SEP even if you're the only employee.

Get general liability insurance of $2-3 million.
Use "errors and omissions liability" insurance to cover mistakes such as deleting a customer's files.
Get property/casualty coverage, and make sure it's replacement cost insurance.

Advertising and Promotion
Devote 2-5% of anticipated gross sales to advertising.
The best ads promise a benefit. Tell prospects what's in it for them; use "you" instead of "we".
Successful ads prove your unique advantage over competitors, and motivate prospects to take action.
Share simple DIY instructions, then an offer to provide more advanced service.
Small, frequent ads are better than large, infrequent ones.
Brochures are more professional than fliers.
Present yourself as an expert by speaking to groups, giving seminars, writing in trade publications, and appearing on TV or radio.

Pinpoint your USP (unique selling proposition).
Prospects have many needs, but one "hot button".
To overcome the objection about high prices, explain that you offer more services, a better warranty, or higher quality.

Make sure workers you classify as independent contractors meet the IRS' requirements.
- Have workers sign an agreement that they're responsible for their taxes.
- Have them send invoices.
- File 1099-MISC at year-end.

Keep detailed records of all business expenses: equipment, business expenses, auto, meals, entertainment, travel, home office.
Use fast, intelligent failure: try many ideas simultaneously, and keep only the positive elements.
When rejected, ask why. You'll learn how to help that customer or others.

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