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Entrepreneur Mom

with Aliza Sherman

If you own a business - home-based or otherwise - this is the blog where you'll find practical tips and smart ideas about entrepreneurship. I've started and run 4 different businesses so "been there, done that." I'll also invite successful entrepreneurs to share their best advice with you.

To learn more about Aliza, check out her profile on Work It, Mom! and her website, www.mediaegg.com.

Working Virtually While Traveling

Categories: Tech & Net

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palm treeI’m about to take two extended trips away from my well-equipped home office and am trying to be prepared for doing work - if needed - away from all my tech tools.

I think we all tend to rely so much on our perfect office or home office set up that we forget to develop a plan for remote work - particularly in remote places. This plan includes purchasing the equipment necessary to cover all the tech bases while you’re away.

Here are the things I’m thinking about before my trips.
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How Do You Remember Everything You Have to Do?

Categories: Business Essentials, Tech & Net, Uncategorized

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I just forgot something very important this week, and I did have a strong feeling that I forgot to do something, but couldn’t quite place what it was.

I forgot to blog here on Thursday! Yes, even though I’m blogging regularly on Tuesdays and Thursdays, I somehow spaced it out and woke up this morning with the sinking feeling that my last post was on Tuesday.

So this got me thinking about ways to remind myself of things, especially as my project load gets heavier and my memory is trapped somewhere in the chaotic recesses of my “Mommy Brain.”
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What’s a Social Network?

Categories: Tech & Net, Uncategorized

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As part of my Internet consulting business, I try to stay up-to-date on all the latest and greatest social networking sites.

What is a social networking site, you ask? In non-techy English, it is a site that leverages the exponential power of connections meaning that it provides you with tools to take advantage of the “who you know” network.

If you know 10 people and they each know 10 people, the theory of social networking sites is that you now potentially know 110 people because your friends could introduce you to their friends. Another theory of social networking sites is that if you have things in common with your 10 friends, chances are you may have something in common with their 10 friends or 100 other people. Most social networking sites are based around common interests as the magnet and the glue of “friendships.”

I’m going to write several posts about social networking, particularly for work at home moms, but first I’ll give you a brief list of popular social networking sites and how they might work for you. Keep in mind that I’m only mentioning the ones that I’ve tried myself and narrowing them down to 3 in each category is tough but otherwise, this post would go on for days!

Professional Social Networks

1. LinkedIn - This is really the top professional social networking site. Once you add your professional contacts, the site provides tools for getting introductions using the theory of 6 degrees of separation although usually anyone you’d like to meet is about 3 degrees away from you. I’ve made contact with former colleagues and have been able to get introductions to people I’ve wanted to meet such as an editor at LifetimeTV.com. My LinkedIn page.
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Opening an Online Store - Elements of Ecommerce

Categories: Tech & Net

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(excerpted from my new book Streetwise eCommerce (Adams Media, Oct 2007).

So you want to open a store exclusively online? I discussed the first things you need to consider in my post Starting an Online Business, but here are some more specific thoughts on the elements of ecommerce. When you are setting up an online catalog or your e-store, you need a check-out component with secure transactions i.e. a shopping cart system. You can handle this in a number of ways:

1. Third party shopping cart solution. This would be a company that hosts all the shopping cart elements on their servers and you like into their system from your online store - something like CoolCart.com or Volusion.
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Should You Blog for Business?

Categories: Tech & Net

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It seems like everybody wants a blog these days, but is a blog really necessary for a company? Here are some things to ask yourself before blogging for your business.

1. Do you have time to blog? Blogging is a time consuming process because people who read blogs expect a certain amount of fresh content on a regular basis - at a minimum, weekly - preferably several times a week.

2. Do you have anything interesting to say? Blogs about your company and your products may sound interesting to you, but people rarely tune into a “commercial” blog unless there is additional information of real value.
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Starting an Online Business

Categories: Biz Nuts & Bolts, Tech & Net

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What does it take to start a business online? I’m talking about a solely online business, not the online component of your “bricks and mortar” business but a bonafide e-biz.

Starting a business online - an e-store, for example - does not mean instant success. Some things to consider before starting an online business are the same things you need to think about before starting a regular business.
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My Second Life Business

Categories: Tech & Net, Uncategorized

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Okay, I know some of you will think I’m nuts, but I have started a business in the virtual world called Second Life.

RU4 Real tee - Cybergrrl Oh Teez

For the uninitiated, Second Life is a 3-dimensional computer environment (I do not call it a game and most people using the service do not either). You can create an avatar to represent yourself “in-world” (the term that refers to being in Second Life). You can move your avatar around different islands that “residents” (the people inhabiting/using Second Life) build.


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