6 Challenges of Water Treatment in Rural Areas

Rural water purification can be a challenging task to accomplish when compared to city water treatment. This is because the concentration of contamination in rural water is high. Most often, these concentrations go undetected. The major challenges of water treatment in rural areas are the water sources. These include:

1. Access to Drinking Water

Many people in the rural area don’t have access to good drinking water. There is no denying the fact that rural areas, just like the cities, have abundant water; however, it’s not in the right condition for human consumption. The use of polluted water has resulted in several deaths and chronic illnesses. Lack of access to safe drinking water is one of the biggest challenges facing people living in the rural area, hence the need to improve the water treatment process.

2. Lack of Infrastructure

Aging infrastructure, which includes pipelines, dams, storage, tunnels and treatment facilities are a major concern in rural areas. The majority of water infrastructure in rural areas needs to be updated.

3. Hard Water

Hard water problems are the most common of all water treatment problems in the home. Hard water occurs when the primary source of water picks up mineral content from the earth such as magnesium and chalky calcium. The mineral content of the water depends largely on the water source. One of the major water sources in rural areas notorious for supplying hard water is the borehole. Hard water is easy to detect. One of the major signs is when your soap doesn’t lather. Also, you may see water spots of your dishes. To solve the problem, homes in rural areas require water softeners. You could potentially find more information at Global Hydration, which has additional resources available on their website.

4. Hydrogen Sulfide

Minerals in water can cause a bad smell. This is usually caused by highly corrosive hydrogen sulfide gas. Without the right water treatment system, it may be difficult to filter hydrogen sulfide out of the water. Unfortunately, a standard water softener will do nothing to improve the condition of the water. A special water treatment softening system designed to eliminate this mineral content is required.

5. Water Sources

Some of the water sources in rural areas include lakes, rivers and ponds. The water quality from surface water sources is largely influenced by happenings within and around the surrounding environment. The concentration of contaminants in lakes, ponds and river water tends to be high. On top of that, the water can produce an earthy taste, making it unsafe for drinking. Since they are the major sources of water for communities in rural areas, water taken from these sources as drinking water require more water purification to make them safe for use.

6. High Sodium Content

High sodium content can affect the taste of your water. Typically, all water supplies have sodium content, but it’s at a lower concentration. But when the concentration is beyond normal, it changes the taste of the water from good to bad, making it unsafe for use. The best solution is to get a reliable water treatment system capable of fixing this problem.

Knowing the right water purification equipment to purchase depends on the concentration of contaminants in the water.

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Debunking 6 Myths about Paternity DNA Testing

Diagnostic DNA tests for most people entail testing for paternity or other forms of family relationship. Besides, a large percent of DNA tests are done for paternity reasons. DNA testing can be used for a variety of other reasons besides paternity and dna testing for ethnicity, such as in criminal cases. However, despite the popularity of DNA testing, several misconceptions surround paternity DNA tests.

1. DNA tests require blood or spit

The DNA sequence of an individual is the same in close to all cells in the body. Therefore, a DNA test is not limited to using cells in blood or spit. Experts can perform DNA tests on other cells in the body like the ones found after rubbing the swab on the inside of your check.

2. The DNA test is too expensive

The DNA analysis has changed over time, which makes testing more affordable than before. Surprisingly, you can perform a DNA test at the comfort of your home by purchasing a home collection kit, which is affordable. However, you would have to incur extra costs if you need the results for legal purposes like social security, child custody or support. However, the price is worth the peace of mind you enjoy after getting the results.

3. Paternity testing takes too long

It should be one of the most common myths about DNA testing, which discourages several people from taking the testing. In reality, paternity testing is super-fast. It takes between five and ten days for the DNA samples to reach the lab, and about two business days to get the results. Therefore, you no longer have to wait for DNA results for months.

4. Paternity testing is only done after a baby is born

On the contrary, you can perform a DNA testing on a pregnant woman using safe methods that are non-invasive. You need blood samples from the alleged father and the mother. Also, a paternity testing can be done at least eight weeks into a pregnancy, and it is safe for the fetus and the mother.

5. You can’t prove paternity when an ex-partner doesn’t agree to a test

The myth has prevented several people from finding out the truth about the paternity of a child. The fact is that you can still prove paternity even if your partner is against taking the test or is not available. You can use the DNA of the parents of the alleged father so that the medical expert runs a grandparent test. You can consult an accredited lab to know about other family tests that can be sued for paternity testing.

6. Paternity tests are painful

The fact is that needles are not used for paternity testing. The samples can be extracted using cheek swabs. Therefore, you don’t have to shy away from paternity testing in fear of needle-pricks.

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The Top 4 Marks of a Good Mover

Maybe you’re looking to move to take advantage of better home prices in a different part of your city or province, or in another part of Canada altogether. Maybe you are sending your child to university, and they need to haul their possessions to campus for the term before bringing it all back home with them afterward. Maybe you are a newlywed looking to settle down somewhere. Whatever the case may be, you’re going to want to move the right way, which means finding the best movers in Canada to help.

1. Quality Moving Vehicles

It’s fair to say that the best artists can create great artwork with whatever’s lying around. It’s also fair to say that the Renaissance Masters had a hand in creating all their masterpieces by having access to the finest paints, brushes, and painting materials of their time. By that same token, the best moving teams will typically be able to boast a fleet of moving vehicles that are of the utmost quality. These vehicles should be fast, durable, spacious, and allow for easy storage. What’s more, they should also allow for loaded goods to be easily secured to prevent them from sliding around from side to side.

2. Quick Turnaround Times

Of course, those moving vans won’t count for very much if the movers in question aren’t able to get a move on, and quickly! As such, it should go without saying that when looking for a quality moving team, you will want to check and see who can boast the best turnaround times. You don’t want your move to take an interminable amount of time, so finding a team that can do the job quickly and effectively is always the goal. There are online resources available at Premiere Van Lines Edmonton, which may provide you with more information.

3. Versatile Performance

In addition to all of that, you’re going to want a team that can also help you out with a wide range of different moves. After all, there are many different situations in which you might find yourself needing to move, as described above. Finding a moving team that has versatility means finding one that can answer many different types of moving challenges with the same level of commitment and quality assistance. They may also explicitly offer different types of moving services, so be sure to check their webpage to learn the types of moves in which they specialize.

4. Special Expertise

None of us want to work with a team that’s substandard in any facet of life, let alone one as important as moving. That’s why one of the most defining marks of a good moving team is often simple expertise and experience. Check to see how long they’ve been doing what they’re doing, and what kind of feedback they’ve received. If you’re dealing with a top-tier team, their customer reviews should reflect it.

Few decisions you make in your life are likely to be as important as the one you make when you decide to pull up the stakes and move somewhere. Make sure you make the right choice when selecting a moving team by considering all of these factors while researching your options before making a final decision.

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5 Reasons to Replace Windows before Undertaking Other Home Improvement Projects

Every home is going to need improvements, no matter how new or beautiful it is; it’s only a matter of time. If you are planning to undertake a home improvement project, then you probably have a list of things to do. Which improvement should you prioritize? It might be wise to start with the windows. Here’s why.

1. Safety and Security

You may not think about it, but your windows are an entry and exit point to your home, so windows that malfunction put you and your family at risk of theft. Before fixing the kitchen, bathroom and other parts of the home, it’s wise to keep your home protected against criminals and even the weather outside. By installing new windows, you’ve taken a step to protect your loved ones and property. Modern windows are made of quality materials and are much harder for uninvited guests to break into.

2. Style

Many people undertake improvement projects to give their home a new look. Improvements give you a sense of comfort knowing that you’re living in a home that fits your taste and lifestyle. If you want to give your home a facelift, replacing the old windows might be a great idea. There are many window style options to choose from, including awning, casement, and picture windows. Starting your home improvement efforts on the outside is a great initiative, as it gives guests an idea of what the interior will look like and improves your curb appeal. Remember that replacement windows not only enhance the look of your property on the exterior alone. They also have a huge impact on the interior as well.

3. Energy Efficiency

Many older homes are still using traditional windows built with single-pane glass. These old windows cannot withstand extremely cold winter conditions. Often, they can freeze open or shut too. With the rise in heating and cooling costs, replacing original windows with energy efficient ones can help you save more. You don’t have to worry about paying exorbitant utility bills.

There’s no denying the fact that replacement windows are expensive. But if you don’t mind installing new windows, you’ll start to enjoy great savings on your energy bills. On top of that, you’ll spend less on repairs and maintenance. It might be helpful for you to visit Panes and learn from the information on their website.

4. Noise Reduction

If you live close to the airport, a school or a busy area, you probably have a lot of noise to deal with. Window replacements with dual pane or a laminated glass will drastically reduce external noise, allowing you to enjoy your home peacefully without worrying about the hustle and bustle outdoors.

5. Keep the Weather Outside

The weather outside your home can affect the air quality in your home. Old windows, if not replaced, can leak. This gives water easy access into your home. This makes your home an open target for mould growth. Inefficient windows are highly vulnerable to leaks.

Poorly installed windows will give you a less than desirable result. It is imperative that you consult a professional window replacement contractor with experience in the business.

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8 Effective Corporate Event Management Tips to Have in Hand

To be a successful corporate event manager, there are a couple of traits that you need to exercise. These traits don’t just involve picking the ideal party rentals for your events. The big corporates and event managers didn’t get to where they are now by sheer luck. Instead, the worked their way through the nooks and crannies and figured out the traits that set them apart from the rest. Learn these traits and tips, and you will also be on your way to becoming the next big name in the corporate event industry. Here are some of the tips you need to note.

1. Always have a detailed brief

Ensure that you know what your event is aiming to achieve. Whether it is launching a new product or perhaps welcoming a new acquisition to its portfolio. It is always crucial that you have a short, detailed brief of the event. This is how you will know and even determine the kind of event venue to hire. You will know the venue to hold a formal event and not hire a venue that is more of glitz and glamor.

2. The venue is your best friend

An experienced corporate event manager does not treat the venue as just some other space that is needed to host an event. Instead, create some form of connection with the venue. This means that whenever you need the venue staff and services to go the extra mile, it will have your back. Develop a collaborative working relationship with the venue owners, and you will be one step closer to hosting the most successful event.

3. Have everything in writing

Handshake agreements won’t do. In as much as you may be excited to venture into a new deal with a new company or event, you need to ensure you have everything put in writing. And if any alternative inclusions or omissions need to be done on the agreement, then have that in writing too. This will help you avoid any confusion or miscommunication down the line of your contract.

4. Have one point of contact

Clear communication means everything in this business. Communication is key. You need to exercise both the talking and listening traits and master them. Master how you will be communicating with your clients be it in person, through email or any other mode of communication. This is crucial to the success of any event.

5. Different is good at times

A corporate event manager who is creative enough to offer unique content for the event or business will go a long way within a short period. Flex your creative muscles and be the event manager who always thinks outside the box and the message you intend to send to your clients will be received with open arms.

6. Create a sense of urgency

Be in the habit of creating a sense of urgency to venues to service your brief within the shortest time possible. The venue will also appreciate your transparency in the issue and even acknowledge your urgency on the matter. This also enables you to balance your urgency with a more realistic time frame of the event.

7. Reason as you plan the event

As you review different corporate event options, be the type who thinks outside the box and compare different event options that have worked out in the past. These event venue options will not work out for you all of the time, but you can always try to add a little flavor to some of your previously used event venues.

8. Events held in-house

Different venues offer different services. And by now, you probably know that simply because one venue held one event, it may not be the right one for another. An in-house supplier can, thus, save you a lot of time and money as you also keep control over other aspects of the event. Carefully consider the in-house services that are on offer at the time of the event.

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5 Interesting Facts on How Professional Office Cleaning Will Improve Your Business

When it comes to how improving a business, or ensuring that your business grows and becomes more successful in this competitive industry, office cleaning Toronto should always come as a top priority. Most people don’t like to clean. Others don’t clean even their homes for that matter. And that’s why we have professional office cleaning service providers.

And businesses benefit a great deal from hiring professional cleaners to ensure that the business environment is ever clean. As a businessperson, you will come to learn that there is some kind of relationship between a clean office and improved business performance. So, never underestimate the benefits a clean office can have on your business. In this article, you will learn five reasons why you need to have your office clean and why you need to hire a professional office cleaning service today. Dig in.

1. Making a good impression

For every business, a good first impression is everything. And it’s what will determine whether you land a deal, or make a loyal customer from a potential client. Imagine having a potential business partner or customer walk into your dirty office and you are hoping to strike a million-dollar deal with him/her. Well, chances are that you won’t. Nobody will take you or your business seriously if you don’t care enough to clean your business environment first. Have a spotless office where you can feel more confident talking business deals with your potential clients and partners.

2. Stay healthy

Bugs, germs, and bacteria are known to like dirty places. And dirty offices are no exception. Don’t wait until you start seeing bugs crawling in your office or you start seeing people getting sick more rampantly before you call an office cleaning service. Dirty offices are known to form breeding grounds for viruses as well. Have a clean office and you will have healthy employees. And healthy employees mean more efficient work is being done. Unless otherwise.

3. Save time and money

In as much as cleaning is usually an undesirable task, it can also be quite time-consuming. Especially when you leave dirt and dust to compile in the office for a while. It will add to the total time spent to clean the office. And that can end up taking a significant chunk of your valuable workday. And just to be clear, no employer would want to pay employees to waste time cleaning their workstations like every day. As an employee, you can avoid this by outsourcing professional cleaning services to do that job.

4. Get the job done right

It should only be obvious that a professional cleaning service has the right tools and supplies for the job when it comes to cleaning your office workstation. Professional cleaners can easily and effectively tackle any mess in your office. Should you choose to do that yourself, chances are that you are not going to do it as well. Or you may even end up damaging some things in the process.

5. Avoid Hassles

There comes a time in every business where every moment counts. And it seems like you don’t have any time to spare cleaning your workstation. That, however, doesn’t mean that it needs to stay a mess until the day you get the time to clean it. You can simply outsource a professional cleaning service to do the job for you. Letting you and your employees concentrate on what matters more, your jobs.

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Education Savings Plans in Canada: What You Need To Know

An registered educational savings plan from Heritage Education Funds is a savings plan used to fund a child’s later education years after he/she graduates from high school.

The purpose of an RESP is to ensure that there is enough money for college or university payments, and that there is a much higher chance of the child finishing university even in the event of a death in the family, or if the parents are unable to support the child after high school because of age or disability.

Since education will be better assured after high school, many people invest in this type of savings instrument in Canada and around the world.

Thinking of Getting an RESP

In Canada, RESPs are usually opened for children, but at the same time you can open one for yourself or another completely unrelated adult. The adult who is responsible for signing up for the education savings plan is called the main subscriber of the plan.

RESPs Are For Most Families

Do RESPs only begin to pay when a child is in college? Not necessarily. In Canada, the benefactors of Heritage RESPs can begin taking payments from their RESPs as early as secondary school or high school. These payments are called EAPs or “educational assistance payments.”

While EAPs are not the ‘meat’ of RESPs as these are designed to assist during the tertiary tier of education, the EAPs are a big help, especially to families who don’t earn a lot more than what they need to live comfortably.

Obviously, this instrument is aimed for families that are currently stable but run the risk of not being stable because of existing or foreseen issues in a decade or so, such as medical conditions or the age of the breadwinners of the family.

Important Facts about RESPs

Before signing up for a registered education savings plan, here are some important reminders:

1. RESP savings are considered tax-free in Canada. As long as the savings are within the normal bounds of what is expected of this savings plan, the taxman will not touch your investment earnings.

2. The federal government puts the money devoted to RESPs as grants or bonds. Grants or bonds are financial instruments that naturally earn over time. This applies to all RESPs that are subscribed for individuals aged seventeen and below. So it really is a good idea to start early with your financial savings for your child.

3. The lifetime maximum contribution for each child is $50,000. So if you have three children, you can only contribute up to $150,000 if you apply for an RESP for each of them.

Many banks and financial institutions that offer RESPs require monthly, quarterly, or annual contributions, though. It would be best to ask the institution offering the plan to you about their regular payment structure for clients.

4. The money that you get from an RESP are not tax-deductible. On the bright side, the money will not be taxed upon withdrawal.

5. A subscriber should be allowed by the financial institution to withdraw the money from an RESP at any time and for any reason at all.

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5 Reasons To Hire A Limousine For Your Engagement Party

Engagement parties are a big deal. People look at photos from their engagement parties from time to time and just reminisce about the good time they had that day. An engagement party cannot be celebrated the same way you would celebrate a birthday party or just a party that you decided to throw at your place. It needs to be special, well planned and memorable at the end of the day. The limousine becomes one of the luxuries incorporated in an engagement party. Here are 5 reasons to hire a limousine from party rentals Toronto for your engagement party.

1. Safety

Hiring a limousine means that you will also have a chauffeur. This is the best part because the biggest challenge about transportation during engagement parties is that everyone drinks and has so much fun to the point where they will have to hustle for a designated driver to get home safe because no one is in a position to drive. This hustle can be avoided by hiring a limousine as it comes with a chauffeur.

2. More people

You obviously want to celebrate your engagement party with a lot of people. Your friends and family will definitely want to be there. It is not a secret that it would be impossible to fit a large group of people in a taxi. Hiring a limousine ensures that most if not all of your friends can have fun with you in the ride as you cruise through the city. You can easily fit up to thirty people in a limousine and have fun.

3. Luxury

We all know that an engagement party happens just once in your life. Well, unless you plan on getting engaged again, pun intended. This simple fact should motivate you enough to want all the luxury that you can get in the world during this day. A limousine will come with some screens and good music. The sound and lighting as well as some very classy and comfortable seats. This is probably the best thing for you and your friends on your big day.

4. Status

The treatment you will get at the clubs that you visit will probably be very different with a limousine as compared to arriving on foot or in a cab. You really won’t have to make long queues because the limousine company ensures you get VIP treatment.

5. Grand entrances and exits

You do not get to do this every day. When you look back on this day in future, you will want to remember the grand entry and exit that you made because you hired a limousine. It also does not hurt that limousines these days have dance floor so it might as well be a party venue.



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7 Things Product Packaging Must Do

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Product packaging is incredibly important to building a brand. It helps to give your product it’s own style and persona. And it is for this reason that when delving into the product packaging marketing sector that you should consider these seven tidbits.

In business, almost everything that you do should be revolved around building your brand and making it stand out from the numerous competitors out there. So to help you out in your endeavors we have taken the liberty to compile a list of 7 things you should keep in mind about product packaging.

And just when you thought to build your brand was getting easier…

7 Things Product Packaging Must Do

# 1 – Branding Strategy

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As just mention – in business, everything needs to be planned out; this is especially true for your branding strategy. Are you focusing on product packaging for a small business or are you focusing on a corporate branding?

Why this is salient is because of the impact it has. Let’s take Sony for example that is a corporate brand. Sony is what is being branded not the products.

So keep in mind what you are trying to brand – a product or a corporation. Understand that corporation are an authority.

# 2 – Production & Time

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In the product packing production, it would prove most valuable to your business if you take into account the time it will take to create this product packaging brand. The adage “time is money” is especially true in this situation.

# 3 – Let The Product Packaging Represent the Brand

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Excellent product packaging represents their product or brand. This has an incredible psychological impact on people and makes them more prone to buying the product. The design of a product is significant in making that sell.

# 4 – Make The Packaging Practical

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You want your product to be safe and sealed; free from people who could easily steal a newly purchased item. However, at the same time, you want a package that isn’t going to cause someone who has just bought the item a few minutes trying to unpack the new product. Make the product packaging practical. Easy to open yet hard to get in.

# 5 – Product Protection

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Continuing from the last entry – it is crucial to make sure that the product packaging will not be easily accessible to the product. Create a seal or packaging that will keep robbers out of a product – not only to protect your product but it also to save money (stolen items cost).

# 6 – Grab The Consumer’s Eye (Attention)

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Some specific designs and colors will captivate your consumer. You may want to do a bit of research about colors and images that will lead for consumers to be more prone to buying your product.

# 7 – Trigger An Emotional Response

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In marketing, it is essential to understand the psychology behind marketing. If you want to make a sell, you have to provide people something they need. In offering a product that can assist people in their daily lives, you will be able to trigger them emotionally, and once you have captured their hearts, it is all the easier to make the sell and build the brand behind it.



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Remedies to Dealing with Stress at Work

When you crunch the numbers of the total number of American citizens who are always stressed up by work or at work, you will find that the figure is pretty high. In fact, studies and behavior assessment surveys have found that the percentage of employees who are extremely stressed at work ranges between 20% and 40% which is pretty high. Using predictive index on employees can help in making sure you help your staff in handling any other work issue they have. And by reading this article, you may already know that stress, even from work, comes with other grave health risks that can range from colds and flu to metabolic syndrome and heart disease.

Then again, you can also take certain steps to deal with all the stress that comes from work. Try these following steps and see how it works out for you.

  1. Start the day off right

A stressful morning will only add to all the stress you are going to get off work as well. What with the waking up in the morning to prep your kids for school, sitting in the traffic for ages, grabbing breakfast before you hit your office. And it is a routine that you have to live with, not that you like it particularly but have to do. Try and start your days with a positive attitude and you may see some difference.

  1. Be clear on any requirements

Unclear requirements can also contribute towards work stress. Maybe you are still new in your workplace and don’t really know what is expected of you. Or even when your requirements keep changing, then you will definitely be stressed. You can try and talk to your supervisor about the issue and see how he/she can help you out. In most cases, they offer good solutions.

  1. Stay away from conflict

Any sort of conflict or confrontations at work is bound to increase your work stress levels significantly. The best way you can go about this is to try and avoid any confrontations with your co-workers.

  1. Stay organized

Every time you enter your work office and see the huge piles and large volumes of work that need to be done you will immediately start to feel fatigued. Why not try and arrange your workstations first and get everything organized then start from there? You will find it’s much easier to work.

  1. Be comfortable

Psychological comfort is another culprit here. You may not immediately notice the stress you are feeling when in an uncomfortable chair even if it’s just for a few minutes but it is there all the same. Even the smaller things like office noise can do great harm over time. Get a comfortable and smooth working space.

  1. Forget multitasking

Just forget about multitasking altogether. Work on tasks assigned to you one at a time. You will find work will be faster and less stressful this way.

  1. Walk at lunch

Exercise and stretch your legs when going for your lunch to try and relieve your body of all the stress of sitting from morning. It helps.

  1. Keep perfectionism in check

You will definitely be feeling good about yourself whenever you achieve your goals at work. Maybe you are rushing to finish work before the deadline or work in fast-paced jobs. Try and be a high achiever and you will love its effects on you.

  1. Listen to music on your way home

After a long and tiring day at work, you can try and calm your mind with some good music you enjoy while driving home to help keep your mind off things and just relax.

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How To Set Up Your RESP Account in 7 Steps?

Educating citizens is the duty of the state. And with rising costs leaving more and more people unable to afford post-secondary education, the Canadian government has found a unique solution. Registered Education Saving Plan (RESP) is an investment scheme that provides investors with tax-sheltered accounts to be used for a child’s education. Furthermore, the plan of Heritage Education Funds comes with the benefit of government grants. Here is all you need to know about setting up an account.


Step 1


Make sure that the beneficiary is a Canadian resident. RESP eligibility mandates that. It is also better to start the account before the child turns 15. While it is possible to create an account after that, the requirements for 16 and 17-year-olds are much more complicated. In some cases, the child must be below 21 years of age.


Step 2


Get your finances in order. Before opening an RESP account, it is important to figure it out if you can afford it. Dissolving an account too early comes with its own set of penalties. Thus, it is important to handle money judiciously such that such a situation doesn’t occur.


Step 3


Decide which plan to choose. RESP offers three different schemes, each with its own set of rules and regulations. Individual plans allow subscribers to choose beneficiaries not related to them. Family plans make it easier to manage multiple beneficiaries and allow more control over the finances but parents must allocate funds to the child explicitly. Otherwise, the money might default to the last added beneficiary.

Group or shared plans are much more stringent. While allowing money funds to be allocated to multiple unrelated individuals, it also comes with more rigorous rules and a schedule for contributions. Thus, research is extremely important in understanding which plans to choose.


Step 4


Make sure your child has a Social Information Number (SIN). Without one, the child will not eligible for CSEG (Canada Education Savings Grant) provided by the government, which is the main benefit that RESP provides. You can apply for SIN for your newborn via the Newborn Registration Service.


Step 5


Set up your RESP account. This can be done in multiple ways. You can consult your financial advisor, go with a brokerage dealer or contact your local bank and ask them to guide you through the process. While filling out the paperwork, make sure to apply for all grants even if you think you won’t get them.


The primary benefit of an RESP account is the grants they provide access to. It may so happen that you are not eligible for a grant now, but after a few years your circumstances change and you require them. If you never applied for them, there is no way to receive the funds.


Step 6


Plan your contributions. Government grants can match 20% of your yearly investments up to $500 per year for a maximum of $7,200 for each individual. Thus, to get the maximum out of your account, you need to invest $2,500 yearly for 14 years and $1,000 for the 15th year. Thus, you will have invested $36,000. After receiving grants, this will amount to$42,200.

If you start when your child is a newborn, you can let this money sit in the account gaining tax-free interest. Thus, when your child is 18, assuming a 3% rate of return, the money will amount to $61,000 almost double of what you invested.


Step 7


Start contributing. If you have followed all the steps, you should have an account ready for your investments. All you need to do is now contribute to it.

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6 Essential Tips for Real Estate Online Marketing

In the real estate industry, professionals understand that the market’s success is unpredictable on your competitive edge. The importance of real estate crm has grown over the years. Example, in Canada, during the first quarter of last year, the total number of people that sell real estate increased to 108,706. This means that for every real estate agent, there are 245 people who are over 19 years. A competition like this needs one to be on toes and always updated on the latest trends in the real estate industry. This is where online marketing comes in. (more…)

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4 Elements to Look for In a Solid Food Delivery Bag

If you have ever worked in the food industry, you know that preparing excellent food and offering top-notch customer service are what will win the day. If you have ever been a delivery person in a pizza restaurant, then you know that getting the order right, getting it there on time and getting it there while it is still piping hot are all factors that will affect your tip. Getting the order right and getting it there on time are parts of customer service that require human effort. But, if you want to get food to customers while it is still in all of its gooey goodness, then you definitely need solid pizza delivery bags. Here are four things that a restaurant manager should look for when deciding on food delivery bags.

1. Good Insulation

The whole purpose of this bag is to insulate food to keep it warm. If the insulation is thin, it is not going to do its job. Poorly insulated pizza bags, can result in angry phone calls from disgruntled customers. It can also result in refunds and loss of your customer base. Do your self a favor and invest in the good stuff. You will be glad you did.

2. Tight Flaps

Your bag must close tightly. Insulation is only half of the package. If you want to keep the food warm, you have to keep heat from escaping. Having heavy-duty insulation is important, but for your pizza bags to be effective, you have to be able to seal them tightly. Make sure the flap will fasten securely to keep heat from getting out.

3. Handles

You may pack your pizza delivery bags to bursting or you may only be delivering one item. A good way to ensure you do not end up dropping your bag or slopping food everywhere is to get bags with handles. This will give delivery drivers more options for how to handle his or her pizza bag when removing the contents to pass the food along to customers.

4. Heating Elements

The ritziest bags have heating elements. This allows you to keep food warmer for longer. The food delivery bags plug into something that looks like a power strip when they are in the store and can then stand on their own in the delivery driver’s car. They can hold a charge for up to thirty minutes after which time they turn back into ordinary pizza delivery bags– or maybe a pumpkin. Either way, a heating element will help you keep your product mouth-watering for that much longer.

Having the right tools for the trade ensure that you can provide your customers with the best customer service. When looking for food delivery bags for your pizza shop, keep these items in mind.

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8 Fun Facts About Indoor GPS

Indoor navigation fills the blanks that global positioning systems (GPS) leave. Since satellites don’t pick up well indoors, navigating indoors requires a separate system that relies on near field objects. Indoor positioning systems may use dead reckoning, fixed anchor nodes or magnetic positioning to identify user and object or destination locations.

1. No standard exists for an IPS system. Multiple systems are in the market that use acoustic, optical and radio technology.

2. Similar systems detect magnenometric information inside iron ore mines or steel structures.

3. An indoor positioning system requires trilateration, meaning three independent measurements used together to unambiguously pinpoint a location.

4. Marketing and sales use the gps for indoors to make purchasing easier. For example, Apple iBeacons lets you order donuts on your phone, then alerts the cashier when you enter the bakery. The cashier scans a QR code on your cell phone and your payment processes automatically from your e-wallet or linked credit card. According to Apple, its system can pinpoint locations from to two inches to 160 feet.

5. Beyond commercial applications, there are systems of indoor navigation for the military, such as Locata, accurate up to eight inches from its target, according to test results made public in 2013. Such systems help “grunts” navigate indoors or in urban caverns, for example, sewers.

6. Using Bluetooth and an app, a user can access indoor maps that let them navigate quickly through large, indoor areas like airports, football arenas, or shopping malls. A quick search for a destination, say a specific gate, produces a route result and a signal that guides them through the route. Some systems offer specialized navigation aid functions for physically disabled or sight-impaired users. These help users locate needed building elements like automatic doors, elevators, accessible bathrooms and the help/information desk for check out of power chairs or indoor scooters.

7. Using beacon technology, an IPS can provide automatic, “E-Z Pass” access to buildings. It can recognize authorized users as they approach the building. For added security, a building owner might add thumbprint or eye-scan recognition.

8. Commercial mapping services created the first indoor maps. Google chose London’s Wembley Stadium and Las Vegas’ Caesars Palace as some of its first projects.

IPS and indoor mapping provide two examples of wide-ranging applications of the Internet of Things. Using only their cell phone and its Bluetooth, users can connect with, interact with and communicate with objects in their home, office or during errands, and navigate through any indoor area they visit.

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4 Benefits of Furnished Apartment Rental

Furnished apartments offer renters comfort, convenience, and affordable pricing when they’re searching for more than the traditional apartment can provide to them. Many people from all walks of life can benefit from rental of a furnished apartment, including people traveling for a conference or business meeting, students, military personnel and their families, and many others. Why is renting a furnished apartment so beneficial? The Premiere Suites website may provide additional insights if you need more information.

1. Short-Term Arrangements

Many people favor signing a 12-month rental lease agreement as it secures their rental for the next year. It’s a major hassle for others, however, and they prefer to rent without a lease. Many of the furnished apartments for rent are offered without a lease agreement, giving you freedom to rent for as little or as long as necessary. When a lease agreement is required, do not expect the landlord to hand over the usual 12-month lease. Furnished apartments are a great short-term rental solution available from as short as 30-days stay. Need a three month or six-month lease? Rent a furnished unit and the problem is solved!

2. Completely Furnished

As the name implies, furnished apartments have inside everything needed to man a household, from furniture and appliances to cookware and art for the walls. Upon arrival at a furnished apartment, you feel warm, welcome, and right at home. This is perfect for young couples, students, and others just starting out or who otherwise do not have the furnishings needed to fill a home or for other situations that make it difficult to relocate your belongings.

3. Save Money

Moving into a furnished apartment saves money in several ways. First, you don’t need to hire a moving company to relocate your belongings since everything is included in the rental. Plus, there’s no reason to spend hundreds to thousands of dollars to purchase furniture. Monthly rental rates are oftentimes cheaper than rates at traditional complexes, as a bonus.

4. Business Trips

Need lodging while attending a conference or a business meeting? Hotels are the usual lodging option chosen by travelers, but this choice becomes expensive and overwhelming very quickly. You’ll miss a kitchen and will despite fast food when staying in a hotel, and the lack of privacy is also of concern, especially if you’re traveling with other people. A furnished short term rental provides you a kitchen, reducing expense since you’re not eating out each day. Plus, you get plenty of space for each occupant, as well as privacy and comfort, all at a fraction of the cost of a hotel room rental.

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What Can Management Consulting Do For Your Business

Business management consulting entails helping companies to improve their performance. It involves carrying out analysis such as workload analysis and utilization analysis to determine the existing problems in the organization and developing plans for improvement. Organizations hire management consultants to conduct business management consulting services.

Management consultants have expertise and knowledge to offer approaches that will ensure business performance improvement. An implementation consultant provides organizational change management, process analysis, technology implementation, and strategy development. The consultants are professionals who bring in their methodologies to guide through the identification of problems in an organization to ensure more effective ways of performing tasks.

Why hire a management consultant
Every business will have to make a decision of whether to hire a management consultant or not at one point or another. With the right consultant, an organization can thrive by realizing sales growth and increasing profit. The benefits outweigh the costs of hiring an implementation consultant. Organizations hire management consultants to carry out the following tasks:
1. Detect problems

There will always be problems in a business that need to be solved. They could be a decrease in sales, internal management issues or cash-flow problems. Sometimes the management fails to detect the problems, so they keep on affecting the business negatively. That is why companies need to hire a consultant to detect the problems by carrying out tests and doing research.
2. Offer solutions
Detecting problems in business is just half the battle. A good consultant will use logistics to help in fixing the problem. Management consultants sit down with the managers or business owners and offer an efficient course of action to solve the problems.
3. Optimization
Some companies have inefficient work practices, yet they don’t realize how the inefficiency affects the operations of the company. Other companies are aware of it, but they don’t know how to fix the issue. Hiring implementation consultants will give the organization a fresh outlook on new ideas. It will also help to determine the most appropriate approach towards increasing productivity levels and improving quality management.
Types of business management consultants
Strategy consultants
They assist businesses to figure out issues in their work strategy and operations. That way, they enhance their performance through analysis of existing problems and coming up with plans for improvement. They play a major role in workflow management and technology implementation.
Human resources consultants
They are involved in the administration of a company’s human resources or workforce. The experts oversee organizational culture and leadership to make sure they comply with labor and employment laws. They also focus on talent management, mergers and acquisitions, and succession planning.
Marketing consultants
Their major role is to focus on developing strategies to successfully sell, promote and distribute products and services to targeted consumers. Businesses seek marketing experts to discover innovative techniques for launching and sustaining their business.
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Stretch Film Uses and Production Process

Stretch film is also referred to as stretch wrap. In a layman’s term, this is a stretchable film that is commonly used to wrap different types of items ranging from consumables to electronics. The film employs the principle of elasticity to keep the wrapped items tightly bound. In most cases, a shrink wrap is normally used around the material being wrapped with the aim of allowing the paper to shrink as heat is increased. Other than packaging smaller items, the film can be used to unitize pallet loads. The main aim of the Max film is to protect and at the same time secure and stabilize the cargo during transport. This way, it’s possible to deal with theft and tampering. In most cases, a stretch film should be puncture resistant to ensure the wrapped products are firmly and securely held.

Pallet Wrapping
Pallet wrapping process consists of two methods. There is the horizontal development and vertical development. When wrapping products, there is a highly stretchable film whose main purpose is to offer secondary protection. In most cases, the tension around this film is adjusted as wrapping takes place. In the market, there are several types of stretch films with the common ones being static dissipative film, Max film, machine stretch film, extended core film as well as hand and bundling film.

Materials used
Despite the fact that there are many materials that can be used to produce stretch wrap, the common one is the linear low-density polyethylene. In most cases, this material is as a result of a process called copolymerization of ethylene. The films can also be produced from other products such as octane, hexane, and butane. Stretch wraps are produced using two methods that include the blown process and the casting process. The blown production process is cost effective and produces quality stretch films compared to those produced by the casting process. Notable characteristics that every stretch wrap should have include puncture resistance, clarity, and static discharge as well as tear resistance and break strength.

Usage of Stretch wraps
The stretch wraps can be used for one of the following functions. First, they can be used to protect the material under consideration from sun exposure and in this case, these wraps are referred to as UV stretch wraps. Second, the stretch wraps can be used to protect materials and products from moisture and dust. Third, the wraps can be used to offer tamper resistance as well as package pilferage resistance. Other common functions include offering stability during transport in that they help in the formation of a unit load. Finally, stretch wraps play an important role in improving the handling and storage of goods in a warehouse. Stretch wrappers can be divided into different categories. There is the manual wrappers, semi-automatic wrappers as well as automatic wrappers. For more information, visit Malpack Ltd.

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Why you Need to Invest in a New Mascot Costume

Mascot customes, commonly used in businesses and sporting events, serve as a brand’s or team’s spokesperson. They also attract a certain demographic and create awareness among potential customers. Even though mascots are not required for all businesses, they are certainly advantageous.


Mascot costumes will assist you to:

  • Connect with the young audience
  • Show others what your organization is all about
  • Create instant brand awareness
  • Communicate with people of all ages
  • Remind people of your brand and company

But, investing in a new costume doesn’t come cheap. Depending on the design, some custom mascots can cost thousands of dollars or even more. While weighing the advantages and disadvantages of spending money on the new costume, have a look at these benefits you’ll get when you do so.


Get mascots with an updated look

Whether you need costumes for your business, school, or charitable organization, it’s always good to make a change. You may have used your old costume for many years, and you think it’s time to retire them. This doesn’t mean that the existing costume hasn’t seen better days. Maybe it’s still dated. However, it’s always good to refresh your look periodically. A new costume will offer you that chance to update the looks of the mascot.


Get improved maintenance features

Since a mascot costume is an investment like any other, you want to benefit as much as possible. A new costume will have improved support features. This can include special hooks for hanging the costume up and a storage container.


Get a comfortable costume

Old costumes tend to be uncomfortable to wear at some point. They may be filthy due to sweat while others can be moldy. It would be unhealthy and uncomfortable to wear such a costume. Moreover, the old costume may not have been designed with comfort and breathability in mind.


New costumes today are made using breathable and lightweight materials and fabric. They are easy to clean and can wick away moisture. This offers the user a great experience like no other.


Deciding whether to budget for a new mascot costume isn’t easy. You will need to contemplate about the pros and cons against any other way you would have used the money so that you can make an informed decision. Even though you may choose to spend that money in other ways, do not ignore the importance of having a new costume. Once you have decided to get it, be sure to explore all the available options so you can get the best costume. If you would like to learn more, visit Hogtown Mascots Inc. for additional resources.

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3 Signs You Should Pursue a Business Degree

If you are a high school student who is getting ready to graduate and who is looking into your plans for the future, or if you are an adult who is thinking about going back to school so that you can meet your goals and make positive changes in your life (such as a second career), you might be wondering what program of study you should look into. You obviously have a lot of choices, but if you are like a lot of students, you might find that going to a business college is your best choice. These are a few signs that pursuing a business degree might be a good idea.

1. You Want to Be a Business Owner

Do you dream of owning a business of your own? If so, you might not even think that you need to worry about colleges or professional designations in order to achieve your goal. However, going to college for a business degree can actually be a very smart decision for anyone who is thinking about starting up a business. Then, you can learn about everything from bookkeeping for your new business to digital marketing and more, which can make it possible for you to plan for and run a much more successful business.

2. You’d Like to Work in a Big Company

Do you have your eyes on a large-scale Canadian business that you would like to work for? If so, you might be wondering what you will need to do in order to achieve this goal. Obviously, this will vary based off of the business that you want to work for and the type of job that you want within the company, but in many cases, large businesses appreciate and value business degrees. You might find that earning a degree in business is a great way to secure the job that you want.

3. You’re Not Sure What Career You Want

It can be easy to know that you want to go to college and that you want to secure a good job but to not be sure of what you want to do. This is especially common among younger adults, who might not have had much time to think about their path. If you are unsure of which direction to go in, you might find that pursuing a business degree is a smart choice. Then, you can have a diverse and versatile degree that can help you qualify for a host of different types of jobs.

Do any of these three things apply to you? If so, you may want to consider pursuing a degree in business at a local business college.

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IRS Toughens Rules on Small Business Insurance

Small businesses are one the most ignored financial sectors in the country’s economy. Government agencies such as the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and the Securities Exchange Commission (SEC) often come up with regulations that target only large corporations. Due to constant tendencies to overlook this vital sector of the economy, there is increasing levels of business malpractices, especially in the small business insurance platform.

New Measures from the IRS

In what could be an unprecedented attempt to control the sector, IRS recently came up with new stringent measures to tame the rogue small business owners. The agency is targeting small business insurance providers who take advantage of its leniency to engage in schemes designed to evade taxes.The agency came up with the new rules amid an ongoing investigation where an in-house insurance provider, which provides micro captive insurance, unknowingly fell into the trap of abusive tax evasion schemes. Such companies are highly prone to malicious programs formed by small business owners to shelter themselves from paying taxes.

Program Details

These programs can accumulate deferred taxes, unlike conventional insurance quotes. Small businesses can protect their products from risks that are costly for traditional insurance companies. In the process, the companies enjoy tax-free limits set by IRS.

What the New Rules Mean for Businesses

IRS announced that it is making the rules more unfriendly based on increased cases of tax evasion resulting from the questionable transactions recorded by micro captive providers. However, there is a brewing legal tussle between IRS and interested parties. Those against the new rules claim that IRS acted without considering the possible outcome of an ongoing tax case known as Avraham v Commissioner, which is at an advanced stage in the court. Most of them feel that the agency acted too soon.

The Current State of Insurance for Small Businesses

Many insurance companies provide small business insurance policies ranging from liability insurance to disaster and health insurance. However, insurance companies treat small business insurance policies like any other cover. They do not consider the scope of service delivery or the business portfolio of the company at stake. As a result, most small businesses opt for unconventional insurance covers such as micro captives. With the increasing difficulty to do business due to fierce completion from well-established companies, small businesses go for cheaper alternatives to help them cut costs, especially in risk mitigation.

How Small Businesses Can Be Insured

Through captive insurance, small businesses can insure themselves at incredibly lower prices. Many businesses prefer this type of insurance because of the planning advantages that come with it. Before a particular business qualifies for the advantages, it must produce a detailed document showing the risks insured.

History of Captive Insurance

Micro captive insurance was started in the 1950s. Today, more than 500 companies have at least one captive policy. Through the policy, many small businesses can now avoid the volatility of the insurance market through self-insurance. According to financial analysts, insurance for small business will never get better without captive insurance in it.

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Enterprise Content Management Strategy- Keys to Success

In recent years enterprise content management (ECM) is gaining greater significance and becoming more complex for a number of reasons. The truth is that the majority of organizations’ ECM involves maintaining important documents in a shared drive or in personal computers that gets pushed around using e-mail.

Managing content is not enough. What is more critical is the ability of accessing the correct record or document version when it is needed. Enterprise content needs to be managed in a way that its usage helps in achieving your organization’s business goals. A primary ECM goal is the elimination of ad hoc internal processes that could expose your company to existing regulatory compliance risks and other associated problems.Analyzing Current Status

An important step towards achieving the desired enterprise content management in the future is an understanding of your current ECM status. Employing a best-practice approach begins by mapping the current end-to-end business processes in use across your entire organization.

Document the flow of information from people, apps and systems, and how that is creating content within your enterprise. This is what will provide you with useful insights into the current organization’s information ecosystem.

Define the Scope

ECM program scope defination is critical to user adoption and successful implementation. Considerations must be given to organizational and geographic requirements, timeframes, legacy content, information types and classes, and the customer communication management platform. The enterprise content management capability must include resilience in managing the growth of documents and also facilitate adaptability of emerging technology trends.

New Strategy Implementation

For ECM, change management goes a bit further than controlling software and managing hardware, and how they are affecting your network. It’s more about people, training, culture, and communications. It must also have a customer communication management platform that addresses the possible effects of the new changes and also anticipate user resistance.

The overall strategy must address areas of change that include processes, technology, procedures for technology version-control, retention periods, as well other areas that relate to the future desired state of ECM. Considerations must cover how the ECM strategy is going to impact employee interactions and activities plus how the benefits of the new procedures, systems and practices will be conveyed. Most importantly, it must address the drivers or reasons to implement this change.

An all-inclusive record management capability has to be part of the organisation processes and systems. ECM software tools may be employed for identifying duplicate or near-duplicate content. A vibrant enterprise information security classification scheme has to be developed.


Accomplishing all the above demands a cross-functional organizational team effort; executives must give the corporate vision, heads of departments sharing their operating goals while the user community continually documents challenges encountered daily. Ultimately, a well-designed ECM strategy will help you achieve goals such as eliminating bottlenecks, streamlining access, and minimizing organization’s overhead.

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Copywriting Tips for Generating Leads Through Email

Lead generation software is very helpful for increasing and managing your leads. However, you’ll still need the art of copywriting to send out compelling emails to your subscribers that direct them back to your website or landing page for a product you’re selling. If you want to improve your B2B marketing and email lead generation, implement the following copywriting tips for generating leads through email:

Write Killer Subject Lines

The most important aspect of your email is the subject line because it determines whether or not someone clicks on your email. If they don’t find the subject line irresistible to click, then they’ll likely delete it without ever seeing what you have to say. You can improve your subject lines by personalizing them, speaking to problems your target audience is facing, and occasionally adding fun emoticons for personality. When you add emoticons, make sure they will show up correctly on all devices.

Include Images in the Email

People are visual by nature and will feel more motivated to read your email when images are included. Some people will back away if you send a text-only email that doesn’t have any visuals. Images in your email copy can also help your audience quickly understand your message.

Keep It Short and Sweet

Most target audiences prefer shorter emails because they have busy lives and don’t want to spend too much time in their inboxes. Cut any unnecessary words from your copy. Not only will this shorten your emails, but it will boost your clarity.

Convey What Value They’ll Receive from Your Email

The subject line of your emails should convey what value they’ll receive from your emails. Will they save money on their PPC marketing? Will they eliminate stress during tax season? Or will they receive a discount on one of your products? Value must always be communicated in the subject line to encourage clicks.

Use Second Person

Some businesses write their emails in first person, but it’s better to use second person in email marketing. As you’ve probably heard before while learning about marketing, people don’t care about you. They care about themselves. By using second person, you place the focus on them.

Write Effective Calls to Action

Every email you send in your email marketing should have an effective call to action. Just as you should spend time writing a great subject line, you should put thought into your calls to action. A good call to action contains action words, communicates what you want the reader to do, and is relevant.

Lead Generation Software

A combination of using a good lead generation software with excellent visitor tracking features and writing better emails for your email marketing will help you boost leads through email. Implement the above copywriting tips to improve your email lead generation.

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How to Take Your REALTOR Marketing to the Next Level

As a real estate agent, your efforts may be regularly focused on trying to find new leads to follow up on. After all, without leads, you simply cannot generate sales and close deals. Real estate agent marketing commonly includes direct mail marketing and generating leads from yard signs in front of listed properties.


However, you may be looking for REALTOR marketing that goes a step above and beyond these common methods used to generate lead. With your effort focused in the right direction, you can get more leads without breaking the bank with a huge marketing budget.


home-blue-circle Update Your Website
Your website is one of your most significant tools available when it comes to REALTOR marketing, but you may not be using in the most effective way possible. Some real estate agents believe that simply having an online presence is enough to generate great business, but this unfortunately is not always the case. First, you need to update your website so that traffic is driven to it. This may be by incorporating a blog or RSS feed into the website, and both of these will keep fresh, relevant content on the website. This promotes great rankings with the search engines. In addition, you can also incorporate videos into your website, and this is great because YouTube is owned by Google.


home-blue-circle Other Creative Website Marketing Ideas
You may have heard that SEO, or search engine optimization, can drive traffic to your website organically, and this is true. You simply select a few optimal key words, and you place them strategically in your text as well as in off-site articles that link back to your website. Search engine algorithms change regularly, so take time to research current SEO tips before you get started. In addition to this, consider adding some lead generator or capture tools onto your website. For example, you could have a mortgage calculator that requires the user to enter their contact information before seeing the results of their calculator query, and you can program the calculator tool to email the contact information to you in real time.


Direct mail marketing is effective, but it unfortunately is not enough to generate the results that most real estate agents desire. Your broker may already have a website for the company or team, but it can be beneficial to have a personal website for you as an individual agent as well. Simply having the website is not enough, and you can easily incorporate these tips into your website to generate incredible results from it.

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Five Reasons Why Your Business Needs Business Cheques

When you have just started your own business, it may feel natural to simply write a cheque from your personal chequing account. However, this can be a major mistake that can make it very difficult to separate your personal finances from your business finances. In order to get in the habit of keeping your business and personal life separate, and to reap several other benefits, you will need business cheques.


1. Less Tax Hassles

Business cheques make it much easier to avoid tax headaches. Since all of your business-related payments will have been made under your business name, it will be much easier to claim these as business expense deductions for tax purposes. It will be much easier to substantiate the deductions you make in the event of an audit. Business cheques become a requirement when you have become incorporated.


2. Manage Your Personal Finances Better

All of your business income is sent to your business checking account. Then, you can designate a set amount that is transferred from your business checking account to your personal checking account. By keeping this set amount consistent, you will know how much you must budget for and will be less tempted to spend too much of your profits on better months. You will have a cushion to support you during less profitable months.


3. Take Advantage Of Limited Liability Laws

When you keep your finances separate, and your business is forced to file for bankruptcy, your creditors will be able to go after the finances in your business chequing account. However, the creditors will not be able to target your personal finances. One exception is if you are constantly mixing your personal and business expenses. If you are often using business expenses for personal matters and personal finances for business expenses, the courts will not necessarily see you and your business as a separate entity and you may be sued.


4. Delegate Tasks To Employees

Business cheques can have multiple signers. If you need to delegate purchasing and other financial responsibilities to an employee, having business cheques will make it much easier to do so. Employees can simply write checks for business matters. External accounting services can be given authorization to examine your business’s account statements.


5. More Professional

Ultimately, having business cheques makes your business appear more professional and established. This will increase the odds that customers are willing to do business with you. When a cheque has your own name on it, rather than the name of your business, some customers will wonder how serious your business is.

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Protecting Your Brand Name Online

Where will you be at midnight tonight?

May I suggest that you may want to consider being at your computer at that time?

Why? Because Facebook has something going on at that time that is vital for you personally and your business that’s far more important than sleeping ever will be!

As a PR person and marketer, you know the power of branding and controlling your brand name.

Tonight at midnight, Facebook is staging one of the greatest branding grabs ever – giving the opportunity to own your own name on Facebook.

But, you say, I already have my name on Facebook. But, what’s key here is not your name, it’s your URL.

Every time you want to send someone to your Facebook profile or page (remember profiles are your personal section on Facebook, pages are your business side, and you can have unlimited numbers of pages) you currently have to send them to a URL that looks something like this:

www.facebook.com/people/Your-Name/52446540 (That’s an inactive URL, BTW, so don’t click it.)

Wouldn’t you rather be able to send them to www.facebook.com/yourname ?

That’s what’s Facebook is making possible tonight – the ability to own your own name, or more importantly, your company or brand name on Facebook.(Can you imagine someone else owning your brand name on that vital site?)

And the fact that Facebook’s making this a first come first served situation, this is why it’s also vital that you’re awake and at your computer tonight, who needs sleep anyway?

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What Is Meant By The Terms Boilerplate Language And Safe Harbor Statement In A Media Release?

Big question mark made from smaller question marks (retro colors)

Boilerplate language:

Boilerplate language is a media release refers to what is traditionally the final paragraph of the release, which provides generic information about the company. It usually tells whether the company is publicly or privately traded, its stock ticker, where it’s based, the brands it owns, what it does, etc. Basically, it’s a piece of copy that is designed to communicate the basics about the company that gets routinely pasted on the end of each media release.

Consequently, it’s usually the first thing that gets cut if the release gets run, but that’s a totally different discussion.

Here’s a sample of boilerplate language from a recent AT&T release:
About AT&T
AT&T Inc. (NYSE:T) is a premier communications holding company. Its subsidiaries and affiliates, AT&T operating companies, are the providers of AT&T services in the United States and around the world. Among their offerings are the world’s most advanced IP-based business communications services, the nation’s fastest 3G network and the best wireless coverage worldwide, and the nation’s leading high speed Internet access and voice services. In domestic markets, AT&T is known for the directory publishing and advertising sales leadership of its Yellow Pages and YELLOWPAGES.COM organizations, and the AT&T brand is licensed to innovators in such fields as communications equipment. As part of their three-screen integration strategy, AT&T operating companies are expanding their TV entertainment offerings. In 2008, AT&T again ranked No. 1 in the telecommunications industry on FORTUNE® magazine’s lists of the World’s Most Admired Companies and America’s Most Admired Companies. Additional information about AT&T Inc. and the products and services provided by AT&T subsidiaries and affiliates is available at http://www.att.com.

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The Power Of Bloggers To Increase Even Further

A team works together to pull up a growth arrow

“The power of bloggers to influence thought, to reach large numbers of people and even to eclipse the impact of traditional media is huge and will grow even larger in the near future,” Blogging and Social Media expert Don Crowther announced today at the 2007 Blogword and New Media Expo in Las Vegas.

“What the traditional media doesn’t recognize is that many bloggers, though unrestrained by traditional journalistic methods and ethics, have audiences and actual readership larger than many newspapers, television and radio shows,” Crowther said. “Plus this audience is often more loyal and able to be influenced than that of traditional media, giving bloggers tremendous power to shape opinions, actions and purchasing behavior.”

The implications of this power are far reaching. Crowther indicated:

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Removing Fear Through Effective Public Relations

I like my neighbor, with one small exception – he raises pit bulls. He’s got 8 of them, with 3-4 rotating in to live right next door all the time.

Justified or not, the entire neighborhood is scared of them, with parents being unwilling to let their kids play outside unsupervised (a first in my small subdivision.) My wife’s terrified of them, and if she’s outside when he lets them out to do their business she goes inside until they’re done.

It’s even gotten to the point where calls have been made to the police several times by various neighborhood members for various infractions.

So I admired the way he pulled off a public relations coup this week.

Most of the neighbors were out enjoying a summer evening (hey, when it’s too cold to go outside for much of the year, we Northerners take advantage of every nice evening we can get!), watching the kids play and enjoying parental conversation, when the neighbor walked out of his house carrying a laundry basket onto his driveway.

That attracted a few eyeballs. But when he reached inside and pulled out a 10″ long, 4-week old puppy, it took just a few minutes before the entire neighborhood was gathered around, and each of the 8 puppies had someone cuddling it.

They were awfully cute puppies and they did what puppies do naturally – they captured the hearts of everyone.

As I was holding the puppy, I mentioned to him that I should get my wife to try to remove some of her fear of the pit bulls. He not only thought that was a good idea, but told me to take a puppy to her. A few seconds later, my wife was right in the midst of the cuddle session.

It’s been interesting to watch my neighborhood ever since. Each night, the puppies come out, and everyone gathers around. Barriers are being broken, fear is being reduced, comfort is increasing.

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Creating Advertising That Offends Your Customers: I Dont Get It

I was shocked this week to see an ad by Ford for their Mustang. It shows a father and son in a dark parking lot. The son’s driving, he peels out, runs a bit, then stops. The father turns to him and says “That’s what I’m talking about. This is not a toy! Want to go again?” Both laughs and they peel out again.

Now I’m sure this ad strikes deep to the heart of a few fathers who want their sons to relive the father’s teenage streetrodding experiences. And, when they dragged those fathers into focus groups the ad was probably met with applause.

But what’s clear is that they didn’t test the ad with others – the moms, the families who have lost a child to being hit by a teenage driver, MADD members, and those who look for our teenagers to be law-abiding. To them, this ad is not only offensive, but it constitutes “fighten words”.

The ad has already been pulled in at least one market where recent highly-publicized teen accidents have raised awareness of the dangers of telling kids that it’s ok to drive cars recklessly “as long as they don’t get caught.”

Want to judge the spot for yourself? It’s the one with the grinning man’s face.

This ad is just another in a recent trend towards offending one market segment while seeking to attract another. Carls Junior’s Paris Hilton adwas one we recently commented on.

Sephora has recently done the same thing with coffee cups with a lipstick mark on the rim, making them appear to have been used.

Frankly, I don’t get it.

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Our Favorite Online Press Release Distribution Services

One of the most frequently asked questions we receive is which press release distribution service we recommend.

First, let me make a distinction. We have found that there are two types of press release distribution services.

– Ones that get your release out to lots of different sites on the web.
– And those that get your release into the hands of print and broadcast reporters.

Frankly, we’ve not been able to find one service that does well with both. Either they do a good job online, or they do a good job reaching reporters, generally not both.

This article will focus on the only one we’ve found that does a reasonable job of doing both at a reasonable price. In future issues we’ll discuss some of our other favorite tools.

The service is called The Yearbook of Experts and it’s one of those gems that few people know about, but really seems to work.

The Yearbook of Experts provides you a number of services, just one of which is a press release distribution service. You get:
– A profile in the printed Yearbook of Experts
– A profile in their online online ExpertClick directory
– Inclusion in their Power Media BlueBook and CD-ROM and online access to their database
– Training in how to use their service

And, the part you’ve been waiting for
– The ability to send out releases and articles through their NewsReleaseWire.

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