Business Events

As a business owner, you’ll probably attend a few business events occasionally. If you haven’t attended any business events yet, please make arrangements to start now. Business events can be a very productive way to boost your business and bring it to the next level. You won’t be sorry if you locate and find business events that are full of potential clients.

One thing is for sure, once you start going to live business events you’ll end up hooked on them. However, before going to a business event it’s important to understand your goals and motivations for attending and plan how you’re going to make the most of it. And remember, the event itself is not the end – it’s just the beginning.

Here are seven tips for making the most of a business event

1. Take Business Cards

You want to take business cards, mostly to give you an excuse to get theirs. But, someone might follow up with you based off your card, so make sure your business card truly represents what you do.

2. Nix the Hard Sell

At the event you’re not trying to sell anyone anything. Instead you want to be a resource to everyone you meet so that you can help them with their needs. In business, people help those who help others.

3. Work on Your 30-Second Elevator Speech

You want to be able to describe what you do to people without sounding like a robot or confusing them. Practice answering questions that people might ask about your business.

4. Don’t Be a Social Butterfly

Yes, you want to meet people, but it is better to focus on meeting just a few very interesting people each event. If you meet more than five people at each event, you probably won’t be able to remember them. Of course it depends on how long the event is, but for an hour-long event, meeting three to five people is a good night.

5. Ask Questions

Since you’re not going to try to meet everyone, spend time talking to each person you meet, but mostly spend time listening. To listen more, ask open-ended questions about each person that you meet. Believe it or not, they’re going to remember you more, the more they get to talk about themselves.

6. Get Their Cards

Once you’re done taking to someone, find time either during the event or just after to write memorable notes on the back of their business card. In this way, you can use it to follow up later. The follow-up is where the business is.

7. Follow Up

After the event is over, within 24 to 48 hours you want to follow up with each person that you personally spoke to and that you obtained a card from. The follow-up is the most important aspect of attending business events.

Another factor that can make a huge difference in the success of going to business events is to make sure that you stand out in some way. Many people have trouble remembering names at events and matching them with faces. If you can wear something or say something that keeps your image in their mind, so much the better. Differentiating yourself from the other business owners at the event is essential to your success.



Business Start-Up Legalities


As the saying goes, nothing is done until the paperwork is complete

A lot of people jump into starting a business without giving much thought to the business start-up legalities. This can become a problem. While each country, state, city or province has its own rules, there are some basics to consider. It’s important to at least know where to look for the information.


Decide the Type of Business Entity

Starting a sole proprietorship is the simplest, and no paperwork needs to be filed that is special. However, if you want to start any other type of business entity such as an LLC or Inc., you will need to file special paperwork. There are websites today that will help you file the paperwork if you don’t want to hire an attorney. However, it is highly recommended that you hire a business attorney in your area to handle these issues.

Choose a Business Name

If you’re not using your own name as part of your business name, you’ll need to find out if the name you want to use is available. Depending on the type of business entity you choose, such as sole proprietorship or LLC, there are different rules regarding business names. You may need to file a DBA (doing business as) in order to conduct business using that name. If you have a corporation and you want several different businesses under the corporation, you’ll need to file several DBAs.

Obtain a Federal Employee Identification Number (EIN) (USA)

Even if you have no intentions of ever hiring employees, this is something that is important. You can do it right on line and you don’t even need to have a business license yet to do it. In fact, you should do this prior to getting a business license so that this number can be on your business license. Use this number instead of your social security number anytime you do business with anyone. It’s safer because you can avoid the problems with identity theft, and in some cases it is required to have this number to be seen as a real business.

Get a Business License

Each country, state, province and city has its own rules regarding business licensure. Most cities and counties require even a home business to be licensed. In some cases you will need state licensure. The best place to find out what you need is to go down to your local court house and ask or look up the search terms, “Getting a business license in Your City, State”. It’s usually a very simple process which requires a small fee.

You will need to renew this license each year. Depending on your type of business, you may need other permits and licenses to be legal. You can go to your local SCORE office for more information and help.

Open a Business Bank Account

Depending on your type of business, you may only need a separate personal account. Business accounts can be expensive. But, you do need to open a separate account. In many cases if you don’t have a business account you won’t be able to get a merchant account enabling you to take credit cards. If you plan to use PayPal, check the current rules and terms of service to ensure that you can be compliant. You will need your EIN and your business license to open a business bank account.

These are just a few of the legalities of opening a business. Depending upon your type of business, it may be more or less complicated. However, don’t ever shy away from making sure the paperwork is done, and done right, when embarking on business ownership. Doing it right from the start will ensure your continued success.


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