June 2009 - Issue 85
If you have invested a lot of money in your website,
you may decide it is time to recover the upkeep costs.
Extra income sounds tempting, but you may be concerned
that your users would not like seeing ads on your website.
Be sure to remain trustworthy in the eyes of your customers
by taking the following steps:
1. Be honest with your loyal clients and inform
them about your plans
Invite your clients to assist by referring advertisers
to you. If they have an opportunity to become involved
and give direction, you reduce the risk of complaints
or a breakdown in trust.
2. Sustain and respect your core activities
a) If your business includes forums and blogs, be sure
you don't place advertisements in places that make it
difficult for members to read, write and interact.
b) Be sure any advertising your company handles complements
your business and would be of interest to your clients.
3. Quality versus quantity
Always go for quality. Develop multiple streams of income
such as banners, pay-per-click, and premium membership
features. Remember not to bombard your valued clients
with in-your-face ads, pop-ups and cloaked advertising
as they will be a turn-off.
Be sure to analyze the results of your efforts regularly.
Monitor both the flow of income and how well the new
revenue generation is perceived by your loyal clients.
For more information, visit our
E-Business web pages or call 1 800 272-9675 to speak
with a Business Officer.
Whatever your business writing needs are, our library
collection can help. We will be happy to supply you
with information wherever you are in Alberta.
As you can see from the sample list below, we have
materials on writing for several different purposes.
* Business Letters Kit (CD ROM)
* Business Style Handbook: An A-to-Z Guide
* Everything Grant Writing Book
* Perfect Phrases for Business Letters
* Power Sales Writing
* Writing a Human Resources Manual
* Writing Effective Policies and Procedures
* Fat-free Writing: Business Writing for the Information
* Canadian Style: A Guide to Writing and Editing
* Powerful Proposals
For professional writers, we have information about
starting various types of businesses from freelance
writing to self-publishing.
For more information on these books and other business
materials, contact The Business Link Library
at 1 800 272-9675.
Position your organization in front of over
12,000 subscribers within Alberta and
beyond by becoming an
E-News! Issue Sponsor.
This and other unique opportunities exist for
your organization to be showcased within a number
of The Business Link's
associated products and services, providing you
with valuable profile within Alberta's
small business community. To explore
the options available for a strategic
relationship with The Business
Link, please contact Jim Ewing,
Business Development Officer at 780 422-7768 or
pour accéder, ou vous abonner à
ce bulletin électronique en français.
The Business Link knows the true value
of volunteers. We couldn't possibly offer the high calibre
of training opportunities, season after season, without
the expertise and generosity of our volunteer presenters.
The valuable professional advice available through our
Guest Advisor Program would not be possible without
the efforts and goodwill of our many volunteer management
consultants, lawyers, accountants, financial reps and
human resources experts. As we conclude our Spring 2009
season for training and guest advisors, we would like
to express our appreciation to all our volunteers for
helping us to support Alberta's small business community.
Whether it's for your community, for your family, for
your business, or just for yourself, why not consider
devoting some of your time to a volunteer activity?
It could broaden your outlook, give you personal satisfaction,
and potentially provide business leads depending upon
the type of volunteer work. You may also consider engaging
volunteers to help out in some way in your own business.
Be sure that a volunteer opportunity is viewed as a
win-win situation, i.e. both the volunteer and the organization
gain from the experience.
You're a successful entrepreneur
You're between 19 and 35
Apply today for the Young Entrepreneur Awards (YEA),
presented by the Business Development Bank of Canada!
The YEA winners will benefit from:
- nationwide media visibility
- unparalleled opportunities for networking with other
- valuable media relations training
- many skills development opportunities
For more information on the YEA and the eligibility
criteria, or to download the nomination form, visit
Deadline: June 24, 2009
2009 Young Entrepreneur Awards and Small Business Week
- Export Development Canada (presenter of the Export
- Deloitte (presenter of the Corporate Social Responsibility
- Borden, Ladner, Gervais
The Canadian Intellectual Property Office (CIPO) is
improving its business processes to prepare for the
adoption of new technologies that support e-business.
Currently, CIPO receives upwards of 800,000 paper documents
by mail and facsimile annually.
In an effort to improve the process for fee payments
sent by mail, facsimile or hand-delivery, CIPO is introducing
a new Fee Payment Form as well as two Practice Notices,
effective as of June 8, 2009. Read more on the new
fee payment practices.
Thanks to all who participated and to our great
presenters for a fabulous Spring training season. We
recorded our highest seasonal participation ever - 3,100
attendees! Stay tuned for the announcement of our Fall
schedule of sessions that will offer you a whole range
of quick-to-use, quick-to-learn business topics to help
you in your day-to-day operations.
The Business Link's Monthly
Networking Event will be held in Edmonton and Calgary
on Tuesday, June 16, 2009 from 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Meet prospective clients and trade business cards and
information with other entrepreneurs.
To join us for this event, you can drop into either
250-639 5 Avenue SW
100-10237 104 Street NW
For more information about this FREE event,
contact Jean-Jacques Mitakaro in Edmonton at
firstname.lastname@example.org or Alvaro
Carvajal in Calgary at email@example.com.
Local Business Incubators Connect
A Regional Alliance partnership among three local
business incubators, TEC Edmonton, novaNAIT and
the Northern Alberta Business Incubator (NABI),
was formed in 2007 to use a collaborative approach
in addressing the needs of early-stage companies.
This year, the Alliance welcomes two new members:
the Edmonton Research Park and the National Institute
for Nanotechnology. Together, these five incubators
are poised to increase regional business incubation
efficiency by leveraging each other's expertise,
services and programs. To read more about this
Conference for Business Incubators and Economic
Are you interested in business incubator management
practices, how business incubation can offset
the economic downturn, and creative incubator
marketing techniques? If you are, attend the 18th
Annual Canadian Association of Business Incubation
(CABI) Conference. Hosted this year in Edmonton,
September 13 to 15, do not miss this chance to
take part in advancing our business incubation
industry. For more information, visit their website.
International Potato Processing & Storage
June 23-25, 2009 - Delta Prince Edward Hotel,
2009 Berry Health Benefits Symposium
June 22-23, 2009 - Monterey, CA
NAFDMA Advanced Learning Retreat
Huber's Orchard and Winery
July 12 - 15, 2009
Starlight, Indiana, U.S.A.
Visiting and learning 'in season' from farm direct
peers is an amazing opportunity. Join the Huber
family operation and learn from their farm market,
family farm park, winery and restaurant experiences.
Assess the most current business and economic
indicators for the season and expand industry
networks. For information, visit www.nafdma.com.
Notice from the
Canada Border Services Agency re the Western
Hemisphere Travel Initiative.
As of June 1, 2009, Canadian citizens will
be required to present a valid passport, a NEXUS
card, a Free and Secure Trade (FAST) card or an
enhanced driver's licence/enhanced identification
card when entering the United States by land or
Canadian citizens flying to, through or from
the United States must present a valid passport
to confirm citizenship and identity. A NEXUS card
is also acceptable when used at a kiosk at designated
Canadian airports and at all U.S. Airports when
returning to Canada.
With a slow down in the local economy, many small
businesses are pushed to look elsewhere for business.
Enter the world of international business, where
from a financial perspective, a sale is a sale.
But if you are dealing with other countries, there
are a number of issues you need to consider.
One of those issues - immigration - can become
a human resources nightmare if steps are not taken
to ensure proper visas and permits are obtained
for any employees visiting that new market.
So where can you go for help? Ultimately, immigration
policy and procedures are set by each specific
country, and the best source of information is
the department responsible for immigration in
For a listing of all foreign representatives
in Canada, you can visit Foreign
Affairs and International Trade. Also, services
such as VisaHQ
provide useful information on specific countries
and their various requirements for entry.
So whatever you do, make sure you get the right
visa when visiting a country for any business
purpose. There is nothing worse than not being
allowed to return to a country where you have
someone ready to give you money for your product!
Most entrepreneurs don't start their businesses
as marketers but once you're open for business,
you're a marketer. "Every business is actually
in the marketing business," claims John Jantsch,
author of Duct Tape Marketing. "The failure
to realize this is why many small businesses fail,"
continues John. "You simply can't afford
to be 'no good' at marketing if you plan to stick
around and grow your business."
An authorized Duct Tape Marketing Coach and owner
of Strategies for Success, Cidnee Stephens promotes
these Seven Steps to Marketing Success.
Narrow Your Focus. Change your marketing
strategy from "anybody who" to "somebody
who". Define your target audience. Who's
your "ideal" customer? Which ones are
your most profitable?
Find and Communicate Your Core Difference.
Identify your hook. What do your customers love
about your product? Connect the dots between your
product and your customer's needs.
Build the Know, Like and Trust Factors.
Consumers taste and touch a product up to 27 times
before buying. "TRY-sumers" have replaced
consumers. So sample, sample, sample. Selling
is quick but marketing takes time.
Create Marketing Materials That Educate.
Create a "marketing kit" of materials
that are flexible, and can be changed easily.
Don't print large quantities at one time. Today's
brochure is your website, keep it updated.
Lead Generation Trio. Generate leads three
ways: Advertise - creates awareness and
develops leads. Referral Marketing System
- generates referrals through strategic alliances
and partnerships. Public Relations - is
a very powerful 'lead' generator. Develop local
media contacts and use them.
Automate and Dominate. Increase sales,
go 'online.' A website gives you credibility.
Include a 'Refer Us' link. Find a student in your
community to develop your website, take a course,
or hire a company to do it for you. A website
doesn't have to cost a lot of money.
Live By The Calendar. Marketing is your
#1 client, so put it in your calendar. Whatever
part of the day works for you, set a schedule
and stick to it.
For more information, visit Cidnee's website
Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development's Local
Market Expansion Initiative explores new market
opportunities for producers, improves market access
and enhances profitability at the farm gate. For
more information, call a New Venture Specialist
at the Ag Info Centre, toll free at 310-FARM (3276)
or visit www.agriculture.alberta.ca/localmarkets.
This article is brought to you by the federal
and provincial governments.
Typically, an extended period of successful
operations for a new business signals
the conclusion of the start-up phase.
This transition from start-up is important
because a decision on the course of the
venture must be made at this time.
Generally, the entrepreneur or owner
will need to decide whether to maintain
operations or grow the business. Not all
entrepreneurs desire to grow their businesses
- they are content with continuing to
offer their current level of services.
Many entrepreneurs do wish to expand
their businesses. This can be achieved
by purchasing assets, hiring more staff,
franchising, or pursuing other expansion-related
It is vital to have a plan in place when
you decide to expand your business in
order to maximize your chances for success.
A few key questions you may want to ask
yourself before you decide to grow your
- Is this really what I want to do? Why?
- Can I maintain operations while expanding
my business at the same time?
- Is there a growing need or market for
my product or service?
- Can my business model remain profitable
or will it have to change?
- Do I have the necessary skills to do
- Have I identified a team of professionals
to assist me? (e.g. employees, accountants,
human resource professionals, lawyers)
- How am I going to handle marketing,
operations, and financials?
For more information on growing your
business, contact a Business Officer at
1 800 272-9675.
This issue of Future Watch focuses on the labour
market in Alberta. Sources of information are
Finance & Enterprise, Employment & Immigration,
HR Sector Councils, Statistics Canada and Major
As with any future projections, unexpected developments
may change the course of events.
According to the latest employment projections
from the Alberta government, the following industries
are expected to remain steady or experience some
growth in employment in the long term as shown
Goods Producing Industries
Agriculture - steady, no increases over
0.5% in terms of changes.
Forestry - 2008-09 a dip in demand but
a marginal steady change in the range of 0.5%
Oil, Gas Extraction and Mining - somewhat
better growth in the area of 2.5% for 2010-12
in Extraction. Less in Mining and related Support
Construction - less demand in 2009-12
with 2011 showing below average outlook.
Manufacturing - little change in the Wood
Products in 2009 but growth in 2010-11.
As for other manufacturing sub-sectors, generally
slight increases are expected.
Wholesale - a peak in 2009 but lessening
thereafter decreasing to 0.7% by 2012.
Retail - similar to wholesale trade sector.
Service Producing Industries
Transportation - slight increase in 2011
but on average roughly 2.0 % growth.
Finance, Insurance, Real Estate and Leasing
- strong gain in 2011 with a slight decrease in