Business

Crowdfunding: How Running a Business is like Running for President

By Desiree Yang

Technology has eradicated the need for businesses to rely on operating at physical stores, which more often than not require a large amount of manpower. These same advancements have also made available a wider range of funding opportunities, and people are no longer limited to loans from banks, family, friends or investors. Enter crowdfunding, a new method of funding that allows people to fund business ideas or products from community contributions. It is essentially the funding of a venture with money raised by appealing to a ‘crowd’ via platforms like Indiegogo and Kickstarter. Crowdfunding opens up endless possibilities for startups, and even a project as banal as making potato salad can garner an outpouring of support. Zack “Danger” Brown’s potato salad Kickstarter campaign drew a grand total of US$55,492 in funding – far surpassing his goal of US$10. Trying to get your business started through crowdfunding is a lot like running for president in the US, and here’s why. (Read More Here!)

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Q&A: How Important is My Business' Name to its Success?

Question: I’m in the process of setting up my own business and am trying to come up with a good name. I am unsure how far the name will end up defining my business. How important is my business’ name to its success?

Answer: “What’s in a name? That which we call a rose/ By any other name would smell as sweet,” muses Juliet, one half of the famed pair of star-crossed lovers. That’s all very well in the world of Shakespearean verse and poetry, but in a fiercely competitive climate permeated by aggressive marketing and branding, can a business really afford to pay no heed to its name and brand? (Read More Here!)

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Q&A: How Can I Use Social Media to Grow My Business Effectively?

Question: I’m looking to grow my business outside of the traditional advertising mediums. Given that millions of people check their social media feeds daily, how can I use social media effectively to grow and market my business?

Answer: We live in a time when technology has redefined much of what we know. Businesses are no longer confined to brick and mortar establishments, and marketing tactics have transcended traditional means like newspapers, magazines and television and taken to social media sites like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. (Read More Here!)

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Part III: Mixing Friendship and Business – Should I Work For My Friend?

By Desiree Yang

In the third and final part of our three-part series on mixing friendship and business, we explore perhaps the trickiest scenario out of them all: Should you, or should you not, work for a friend?

It’s crossed all our minds before – the rosy prospect of having working for a close friend and not having to straighten up nervously whenever they walk by. When your close bud offers you a position at their company that they think you’re perfect for, it’s almost impossible to turn down. But before you take up the offer without a second thought or write off the idea altogether, take the following into consideration. (Read More Here!)

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So You Think You Can Do My Job - Internet Entrepreneur

By Desiree Yang

Even at the tender age of 22, Abel Chua is already the CEO and founder of Global Blaze Solutions, a software company that provides its clients with revolutionary software solutions. One such example is Globby, a software platform which addresses e-commerce needs of businesses by providing both commerce and marketing analytics in a single platform.

Globby was the result of Abel’s mission to bridge the gap that exists between business owners and their customers. And since its establishment last year, Globby has gone on to serve the needs of more than 100 brands and businesses, with popular model, blogger and co-owner of My Dream Bag, Yan Kay Kay, taking up the role of Globby’s brand endorser.(Read More Here!)

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Mixing Friendship and Business (Part II) – Should I Invest in My Friend’s Startup/Company?

By Desiree Yang

For a moment, consider the following: who is one of the world’s wealthiest men and a successful investor and businessman to boot? It’s none other than US business magnate Warren Buffett, chairman, CEO and largest shareholder of multinational conglomerate Berkshire Hathaway, and this is what he has to say about investing.

“You don’t need to be a rocket scientist. Investing is not a game where the guy with the IQ of 160 beats the guy with only an IQ of 130.”

Well, if only it were really that simple! Investing your hard-earned money to secure your financial future is a no-brainer, but there are countless factors for you to consider when you’re deciding whether to invest in a bedrock stock like Apple or Coca-Cola or in a friend’s startup/established company.

For the latter, let us return to the age-old adage mentioned in the previous article. And if you are seriously considering investing in a friend’s startup/established company, consider the following before diving in heart/head-first. (Read More Here!)

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Mixing Friendship and Business (Part I) – Should I Venture into a Startup with My Pal(s)?

By Desiree Yang

We all know the age-old adage – never mix friendship with business. The Facebook success story provides a good illustration, what with the lawsuit that co-founder Eduardo Saverin filed against the Chairman and CEO of Facebook, Mark Zuckerberg, in an attempt to claim a share of the company based on his involvement during the development phase of Facebook on the crest of the social network’s astounding success.

But in contrast, the founders of (Brooklyn-based) Blue Marble Ice Cream are testament to the idea that it is, in fact, possible to be friends with your business partners. In an interview with BBC News earlier this year, the dynamic duo made no attempt to discount the challenges that they have faced in running the company together – instead, they shed considerable light on how they have managed to drive their business to where it is today.

So, if you’re toying with the idea of venturing into a startup with a friend(s), consider the following before diving in heart-first. (Read More Here!)

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3 Ways to Ensure Your Start-Up Remains on Track

By: Png Han Yong

You’ve got a great business idea, found interested parties willing to invest in it, and now your very first start-up is finally up and running. Congratulations!

Starting a business is no mean feat, and the time and effort spent maintaining it can prove to be an even more demanding task. Even as you enjoy your initial success and make plans for your business’ future growth, new and unforeseen factors can demand a shift in your attention.

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Book review: Body Language & Productive Workplaces

By Melainne Chiew

So I judged another book by its cover.

It was exactly the sort of book I would pass over at the library or the bookstore, not that I would have ever noticed its unimpressionable blue paperback and simple red lettering, sandwiched between other books; at first sight it looked like one of the free self-help books people thrust into your hands as you made your way through the subway.

Still, it was the book my fingers started to gravitate towards almost immediately, as my editor cheerfully piled onto my mounting work load; I remembered thinking, “What an unattractive looking book, but I still want to know," almost unnecessary considering how highly I regarded my own expertise on body language. While I was never always observant, I began to pick up on the little signals people gave out and I trusted that mine was accurate.

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How to write a business plan: The first step towards starting your own business

A business plan is a document that summarizes an entrepreneur's thoughts and experiences-on his current investors, clients, suppliers and employees-into a formal scheme.

By Moh Fei Yuen

Why write a business plan?
A business plan serves as a tool to facilitate communication between an entrepreneur and his potential investors. It is a platform for the entrepreneur to manifest his ideas for business expansion to potential investors, and also serves as a visual guide to help the entrepreneur better understand where he is, where he wants to be and how he plans to get there.

Business plan format
There is no fixed format; there are only recommended ones. Business plans require different formats to communicate different objectives to different readers. You will need to use a format that most effectively communicates:

(a) the company’s current status amid a bigger industry and market
(b) the product, and its marketing and sales strategies and finally
(c) a realistically projected revenue. Below is a recommended format:

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