Small-business owners often use credit cards to manage tight cash flow, but many entrepreneurs are relying on personal credit, writes Mary Fox Luquette of the University of Louisiana at Lafayette. "A business credit card may allow a higher limit on the company's line of credit and build a credit record for future borrowing," she writes.
Hiring the right people, being able to make difficult decisions and knowing what drives the venture are essential for founder CEOs, writes entrepreneur Saptarshi Nath. "When the problem has been solved and the company is on its way to delivering on its mission, will you still be as excited about leading from the front?" he writes.
Hiring for early-stage startups can be critical, especially the first hire. "Being the first hire of a startup involves a lot more than what's on paper, and what's on paper is only a third of what you actually do," said Rebecca Parsons, director of operations for The Mill, a co-working startup.
Cathy Battreall, the first regional developer for fit20 USA, will aid the brand's expansion by opening locations in the Jacksonville, Fla., area. The fitness brand, which provides weekly personal training sessions involving slow-motion resistance, has more than 150 units worldwide.
Great Clips, a franchise brand with 4,500-plus salons in the US and Canada, has seen strong performance over the years and was No. 15 on Entrepreneur's Franchise 500 list. "We believe franchising is a great model," said CEO Steve Hockett.
Franchising can expand a company's footprint quickly if it's implemented properly, attorney April Mason writes. Mason offers five steps to get ready for franchising, beginning with securing necessary trademarks and creating an operations manual.
Long John Silver's and other brands could benefit from dining trends, with a Datassential survey finding that 58% of consumers are trying to eat more seafood. "The trend toward flexitarianism, especially among younger generations, will continue to benefit the seafood industry," says Josie Curtis of the Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute.
Bruxie, which announced its franchise opportunity last year, has already signed deals for 18 locations across multiple states, as well as 24 international units. The company intends to have 120 restaurants open within five years.
Lead nurturing programs will only be effective if sales teams can properly segment their customers and educate them according to their industry, needs and other factors, writes Lisa Heay. Improve marketing content by focusing on each customer's challenges early in the process and ensure that emails are visually appealing and feature a clear purpose, Heay writes.
Upscale department stores including Nordstrom, Neiman Marcus, Saks Fifth Avenue and Bergdorf Goodman have added bars to their New York City flagships to encourage customers to linger and keep shopping. "A round of drinks is a second pair of shoes," said David Bruno, a consultant on the Goodman's Bar at Bergdorf Goodman.