Sunday, May 20, 2012

Luxury Brand Consulting-How to

A career in luxury brand management


The price tag on a Jimmy Choo shoe is enough for many to pop their eyes out and the cost of a Louis Vuitton gown enough for people to shake their heads in disbelief. Yet, if you are one of these who can see beyond the money associated with these ionic brands and find yourself admiring their lineage a career in luxury brand management may turn out to be rewarding.
The growing number of Indians in the billionaire’s club coupled with a conspicuous rise of the urban elite class has seen many international luxury giants queue up to woo the Indian customer. Pulling out all stops on luxury a spectrum of premium merchandise and services ranging from designer dresses and handmade jewelry to watches and accessories, from custom cars and blue blood clubs to premium vacation resorts and exotic real estate is on offer for those who can afford to pay the price.
The need for individuals who can manage this upswing in this demand as well the clientele who generate it has led to the creation of new careers in luxury brand management.
Luxury brand management can best be described as an interdisciplinary subject that applies time tested management practices to businesses that offer premium services. The primary role of a luxury brand manager is to understand the heritage and history of the brand and associate its value with a potential set of clients. This person is chiefly responsible for the sometimes difficult task of keeping the brand popular while retaining its exclusivity, ensuring that the brand remains a popular and favored choice amongst both the masses in terms of desire and the elite in terms of purchase.
A typical workday begins with meeting clients or planning new corporate gift ideas with senior decision makers. This may be followed by taking out some esteemed clients for a business lunch or attending a promotional event in the evening.
A strong business management background coupled with functional experience in management practices is essential to the success of a luxury brand manager. Since luxury brand management involves a high level of customer interaction those with a natural flair for networking especially with the corporate class and the ability to build up a rapport with key decision makers will do well for themselves in this industry.
Luxury houses possess zero tolerance for anything that is below average or of low quality. Thus, it is essential for an individual working in this field to set a high standard for maintaining quality good customer relations and efficient time management skills.
It is essential for luxury brand managers to be in love with their product and believe that the company offers a value addition in terms of status and elegance to its client. A luxury brand manager who assumes the role of a mentor can spearhead the transformation of and merging luxury brand into a dominant market player.
Premium segments like custom cars, fashion, wines, chocolates, spa services, jewelry, leather accessories, watches, signature pens etc. have arrived on Indian shores and are in need of experienced brand managers.
With luxury brands spreading operations to newer countries, as a brand manger with a large luxury house, you can be the face of the brand in India or at a destination abroad managing the company’s operations and customer relations in that particular region. Thus a luxury brand manager also needs to constantly question and redefine the contours of luxury keeping in mind changing times, perceptions and tastes of the region’s public and also often provide design support to country specific limited edition product lines.
In India, one can take off as an executive and move up the ranks to become in charges of exclusive brand showrooms. With experience one can expect to handle their brand regional business expansion plans, organize prestigious events to market the brand, develop promotional campaigns and headhunt for a popular brand ambassador amongst other responsibilities. The more enterprising ones can even learn the tricks of the trade and go on to float their own companies in the future.
Currently, few options for study of luxury brand management exist in India with the only direct course on offer being the Global management Program for Executives in Luxury management offered by IIM- Ahmedabad in association with ESSEC Business school Paris. Professionals with an upper executive level experience can attend this unique program that aims to provide in depth training on the luxury business, its specificities the implementation old strategies and the exciting opportunities in emerging markets such as India. Participants of the program will get trained at ESSEC Paris where they get top interact with faculty, alumni touring international fashion houses and luxury business houses followed by intensive training at the IIM – A campus.
Luxury brand management is offered as an undergraduate elective and as a PG specialization in a number of European colleges. If you are contemplating going abroad to study the subject, it would make sense to look at countries like the UK, France and Italy which are home to some of the best names in luxury merchandise.
Some institutes offering popular courses in luxury brand management include;
1) Ecole Superiure des Sciences Economiuques et Commerciales (ESSEC), Paris.
2) Winchester school of Art, University of Southampton, UK.
3) University of the Creative Arts, London, UK.



Luxury Brand Consultant Career

So..I'm watching The new season of the Bachelorette and this one guy comes in on a helicopter and he is a "LUXURY BRAND CONSULTANT" I look up on yahoo "What is a luxury brand consultant" and nothng really comes up? So is this a real job or career? Im gonna find out!


ok this is the only thing i got so far..

Amanda Tattam
The massive growth of luxury goods has now extended deeply into China, India and other markets. Estimates vary, but some say the luxury market is worth between 60 billion and 20 trillion US dollars, including consumers who are trading up. That is, the increasingly wealthy middle classes, who 30 years ago, would have thought it luxurious to have two TVs in a household. Mark, can you explain how a luxury brand distinguishes itself from other brands?
Mark Ritson
The question today of what makes a luxury brand a luxury brand and how do we distinguish it is very hard to answer. The standard business response is to say, ‘they are more exclusive’. And we get exclusivity by having high price and relatively small amounts of the product available. The reality, however, of luxury brands is that they are sold in their millions, and in some cases, are not priced that much higher than the standard output. The only way I can really answer your question is to say, it is all relative. As you said in your introduction, it wasn’t that long ago in Australia that we would have considered two televisions to be a luxury, or even further back, one colour television. And you can make a strong argument, for example, that Starbucks in China, right now, is a luxury purchase – because of its cost, because of how frequently it is purchased by many people. So, I think the long answer is a complicated one, but the answer is, it depends who you talk to. I think in the business community what we would say, is that there is a small cluster of ‘more expensive brands’ which have a distinct strategy that we would identify as being ‘luxury brands’ and they start with the Rolls Royces and the Tiffanys and the Louis Vuittons of the world. And, I think that tends to be how we see them.
Amanda Tattam
Okay. So, what is the difference between ‘old’ and ‘new’ luxury for example?
Mark Ritson
It is an interesting one. It isn’t actually related to the age of the brands. So, two of the new classic luxury brands would be Coach, which is more than 60 years old, and in many cases would refer to Burberry, as using new luxury strategies. And Burberry is 151 years old. So, it isn’t their actual age. The term, ‘new luxury’ refers to a different approach to marketing luxury brands. A different approach in the sense that there is more focus on customers, greater production of the numbers. So, they might still have higher prices, but if you look at the typical Coach handbag, which is a well-known brand Japan, China and America, Coach would be making significantly more of it than the ‘classic’ old luxury brands like Gucci or Prada. And the final limit of new luxury which is of, I think, great distinction, is the new luxury brands have embraced production in China, far more so than the older luxury brands that continue to make most of their products, in some cases, in the traditional European artisan centres.


Amanda Tattam
Okay. When you market a luxury brand, what instincts and desires are you really appealing to and has that changed over time, do you think?
Mark Ritson
Clearly, when you are marketing luxury brands, you are selling more than the functional product itself. No one buys a Louis Vuitton bag for four or five thousand American dollars, simply because they want a bag. And, indeed, if you look at luxury watches, we spend, in many cases, tens of thousands of dollars for these items. Clearly we don’t need that, because our phone tells us the time. There is usually a clock in the room. We could buy a one-dollar watch, which would do an equally good job. So, beyond the function there is something else, and it is clearly the symbolic. Clearly, it is the identity, which the brand confers upon the owner. You might see that as being a sense of superiority, perhaps. But we don’t think so within luxury brands. We like to think – and I think it is true of most of the customers that we bring into luxury brands that the real attraction has always been a link to ‘something special’. A link to a story, or a founder, or a creator or a time, that is something a little bit special. And I think it is that ‘authenticity’. When one buys a Dior handbag, there is a strong line of authenticity, going all the way back to Christian Dior, 1947, this incredible moment of fashion. So, I think what we are really appealing to in a world where most people feel dislocated from any sense of authenticity, here is something which is ‘pure’, here is something which has a ‘specialness’ to it and you can be a part of that.
Amanda Tattam
You’ve noticed that there is a proliferation of these cheaper imitations, the fakes, especially with jewellery and shoes and handbags and so forth, this doesn’t seem to damage the genuine article, though, why is this so?
Mark Ritson
It is a very complex picture. And, I think, before we get onto these counterfeits and talk about why they don’t damage them, let’s also be clear that it isn’t a legal practice and certainly it is true that all the luxury brands have worked together with various different countries and law forces to attempt to reduce them. Now, having said that, from a business point of view, counterfeit goods have absolutely no impact whatsoever on the success of luxury brands. In fact, they may even work to their favour. The reason, first of all, why they don’t damage a luxury brand, is very simple, I don’t think that, in the history of Gucci, they’ve lost a single customer who bought a counterfeit rather than the genuine item. Now, do people buy the counterfeits? Absolutely, in their thousands. Would any of those people bought the genuine article? Absolutely not. If one is paying ten thousand dollars for a bag, it is certainly not because one is attracted to just the bag. It is the brand itself. And when one buys a counterfeit bag one is not buying the brand, and the consumer knows that. So, the first thing to say is that, I don’t think it cannibalises the sales.
Now, another argument that is often used with counterfeits, is ‘yes, but it damages the brands exclusivity, to see all of these Louis Vuitton, Gucci, Prada bags walking around the streets’. Again, that may be true, but I’d offer an alternative explanation as well, which is: you’ll often see someone walking down the street and you might think in your own mind, ‘that’s not someone who should be carrying that beautiful Gucci bag. It must be a fake.’ In reality, perhaps it is not. And yet, that counterfeit mindset often allows us to offset, the ‘non-exclusive’ image of the brand. So, are counterfeits a problem? Yes. Do they cause a major impact on these brands? No. And in fact, many of the luxury brands use them very strongly to measure market demand. One of the reasons you know that a luxury brand is healthy, is when it has attracted a good deal of counterfeits.

The black market is much quicker, much faster, much leaner, much more entrepreneurial. So, when they start to copy your bags in Canal Street or in the markets of Shanghai, it is because they’ve recognised that market demand for that brand is growing. But it is fair to say that we spend a lot more time in luxury brands worrying about what is called the ‘gray market’. The black market is when you sell fake or counterfeit or stolen goods. The gray market is when you sell genuine products but through non-affiliated or non-endorsed channels. Everyone has bought luxury products through the gray market, they just don’t know it. It is a genuine watch, but it is sold to you through someone who isn’t one of the approved sellers. And he has bought that watch, from either a wholesaler from another country, he has got them in a cheap job lot, and he is selling them to you in a discount price in a non-appropriate way, in a non-appropriate place to a non-appropriate customer. These are the people that damage our brands. Because, over time what happens is, the prestige and exclusiveness of these brands is damaged when they are sold at discounts in the wrong places to the wrong people.
Amanda Tattam
You touched then about fashion and so forth, how does gender influence things, are there different ways that you market to men and to women and what about in different parts of the world, do Asian women respond differently to advertising, than say, western women, I know we’re using very broad terms here, ‘Asia’, ‘west’, but – and also the other demographics, age and race – I know there are some big topics there, but-
Mark Ritson
Gender is not as important as we might think. Luxury has always been a predominantly a female market; age is incredibly important. And it has become more important in the last five to ten years. We see a group of – to use the common phrase, Baby Boomers – but, essentially this demographic group that we see across the world, these people are now in their 60s and beyond. They have a large amount of money. They have limited amounts of time. Still, they like to travel and they know they are not going to be around forever. These people are discerning. You know, if you’re going to buy a bottle of wine and I’m 65 years old and I’ve 250,000 dollars in the bank, you know what? It is going to be a good bottle of wine. The final issue of race is an intriguing one, particularly in North America. I personally believe that the face of luxury in America is ‘black’. The group that leads luxury is not this WASP community of very well off middle aged Americans – who do buy their luxury brands – but the people who lead that market, are, for me, for the most part, African American. It would be a mistake to see, for example, the hip-hop community as being not consistent with the luxury brands. If anyone has grasped the true meaning and heritage of luxury brands, it is that African American community. So, I think there, race plays an interesting role to.
Amanda Tattam
Sure. So, in Asia, what brands or products do customers identify more strongly with?
Mark Ritson
It is interesting and I think if you look at the Asian region, there are a couple of different stories playing out. The first and the one we shouldn’t forget is the story of Japan. Japan has, for at least the last forty years, been the leading market for all things luxury. It is a generalisation, but it holds true almost every time, that all great luxury trends, all great brands have found success first in Japan. Very simply because the Japanese are probably the most discerning and tasteful customer on the planet. They love heritage. They appreciate the finer things in life. And it is very hard to find any example of a luxury brand that has not first had success in Japan.
Amanda Tattam
Even in good times and bad?
Mark Ritson
Especially in bad times. So, one of the intriguing things about luxury brands and Japan is a notable example, they’ve had a very tricky ten or fifteen years, only now really have they come through what has been one of their worst times in their postwar economy. And yet, during this time we have seen sales of most luxury items, whether it be luxury wine, watches, jewellery, leather goods, fashion, all of these products have sold spectacularly well. So yeah, even in good times and bad. Look, aside from Japan within Asia, clearly the other story is the story of China. And we are seeing in China a remarkable revolution in luxury. All the research that has been done, all the indicators we have so far, suggest that the Chinese consumer, is as, if not more interested in luxury brands than the Japanese consumer. So, once you do the maths on that one, it becomes pretty obvious where the future of luxury will be. And of course, one of the things that is feeding into that is that when, a new economy, like the Chinese economy, really gets going, it begins with luxury. It doesn’t start with small, domestic brands. It trickles down from the top. We saw that in Eastern Europe 15 years ago. The first stores to open in East Germany, for example, were the Versaces of the world. So, in that sense, I think there are two stories. The oldest story in the world, that is, of Japanese discretion and the story of Chinese growth. And yet, both I think represent the two, most important poles of the luxury consumption.
Amanda Tattam
So, you’ve talked about these demographics, what kind of market research and methodologies are used before you decide how money should be spent in a marketing campaign?
Mark Ritson
There are many so-called ‘old luxury brands’ that would perceive research to be the wrong thing. And will have a long, 200 year old history of being very successful and doing absolutely no research of any kind at any time on anyone. They would believe that their brands are about creativity, about fashion, and the definition of fashion is not about giving people what they want, it is about changing things. The creative directors make the decisions and the consumers will follow them. It is fair to say, however, that in the last five years, we’ve seen a revolution – and I don’t use that word lightly – from some of the brands who have used extensive market research. Similar to the kinds that we would see in the consumer goods: focus groups, surveys, the analysis of sales data. So, it isn’t the most advanced research. But there is a growing focus on doing it. And I think that is probably the biggest question mark right now for most luxury brands: to what degree should we ask the consumer what they want?
Amanda Tattam
So, as high-end consumers become more discerning and ethically driven with their purchasing, how does the luxury industry handle concerns for example, the use of sweatshop labour or sustainability issues?
Mark Ritson
It is an interesting one and for once it is not that relevant to luxury brands. And I say that because, the luxury brands have never had a problem with sustainability or with sweatshop labour. They’ve been playing a very sustainable game for a very long time. The idea of using sweatshop labour would be literally impossible for a luxury brand. Not because of any ethically driven decision making, but simply because of the quality and the huge necessity to produce the very best clothing or products – you simply wouldn’t use people who weren’t artisans, that weren’t very heavily remunerated, that spent a lifetime working for you. I think on the environmental issues again, there are some key questions. Specifically, I think in the areas of fur and in the way that animals are treated and in animal testing. But again, with those to one side, you can again argue if you look at the way that premium wines are grown and the way in which the land is respected, if you look at the relatively small amounts of product that are used, in a very sustainable way because they’re very expensive products, actually the luxury brand industry, I think, has something to teach the consumer goods industry on sustainable business practices too. Again, not because there has been any ethical orientation within these companies, simply because when the raw materials are so expensive and the need to produce quality is so paramount, a sustainable approach tends to be the one that is adopted.
Amanda Tattam
Finally, I would like to ask you about the expansion or contraction of the market for luxury goods, does making luxury goods more affordable to more people actually diminish their value – because, a lot of people want to buy them because they know only a small number of people have them, aren’t they always going to be by their very nature, exclusive and only available to a very small group?
Mark Ritson
It is absolutely true that in the original histories of most luxury brands, there was a natural limitation on the number of products that were available. So, exclusivity originally was, in the case of Champagne, for example – Champagne is an area, it is not a grape – there weren’t that many fields in Champagne, and the original manufacturer of champagne was a problem, because many of the bottles, almost 40% in some years, would explode. Because, in the early days, they hadn’t worked out the correct manner of storing the champagne. This is way champagne became a luxury wine. Because there wasn’t that much of it. There was natural exclusiveness. In the global world we live in today, we certainly sell a very large amount of these so-called exclusive brands. So, if it was purely being based on the number being sold, it would be very hard to claim that a brand like Bollinger, for example, is exclusive when it is selling two hundred or three hundred thousand cases of champagne a year. So, the trick is to get as many sales as possible, but while maintaining a very high level of quality and also using price to maintain that exclusiveness. So, if we were to begin to lower the prices of these luxury brands, combined with their large sales, it perhaps would begin to tarnish their images and that is where, I think, you will see luxury brands in trouble, when they begin to sell – not just a lot of these things, but at lower prices, not monitoring the quality carefully enough.

The reality for most luxury brands is their shareholders these days, or their families demand enormous global sales. So, while they are certainly more available than they once were, in terms of where you can buy them and in what numbers, price prevents you from going out and drinking a bottle of Bollinger everyday. Simply because one cannot afford to do it. So, in that sense it is a balancing act. The numbers sold these days are extraordinary, of course, but the price, the quality, the creativity, if they remain leading and in the appropriate place, then, as we have learned over the last fifteen years, a luxury brand can sell extraordinary large numbers and still be seen as extraordinarily exclusive.

Courtesy of: Marketing Magazine
Sponsored By: Brand Aid

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Trade Shows

Market your products or buy new productsto sell at Trade Shows! Check out this website www.biztradeshows.com to search for trade shows in your area. http://www.festivals-and-shows.com/sitemap.html Is another great site to search for events such as fairs and festivals.If you liv in Citrus County Fl www.hernandofarmersmarket.com or www.sumtercountyfarmersmarket.com  and even www.hernandocountyfarmersmarket.webs.com  Ocala has a great market in the circle downtown check out here for a vendor application www.ocalafarmmarket.com www.circlesquarecommonsfarmersmarket.com

Parents Night Out

This is a great idea for a caregiver or babysitter...or even just to make a lil extra cash every other week or once a month. Advertise your PNO atleast a week in advance and charge between $15-$25 per child and if the person has more than one child then charge a smaller fee for the second child. I normally charge $25 for the first child and then $15 for the 2nd.. Offer Activites,Crafts,a Movie and Popcorn or Pizza.. Buy a box of juice boxes and give each child a snack or peice of pizza. Make it s slumber party setting and hold it for 4-5 hrs.. 6-11 or 6-10 is a great time because it gives parents the chance to eat dinner and see a movie locally. You can also offer Moms Day Out for 4-5 hrs during the week and use the same platform for pricing and such. I would make sure you limit space to 4-6 children for safety reasons. Also make sure yu are CPR certified and have all safety precautions like outlet covers in your home for smaller children!

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Start a Wholesale And Distribution Business

The products you buy at any retail store arrived there through a series of business transactions. The product was first manufactured then sold to a wholesale distributor who stored the product in a warehouse before shipping the product to the retail location. Wholesaler distributors can make good money provided they run an efficient operation and turn their inventory quickly. Starting a wholesale distribution business is a significant undertaking that will require substantial start up capital

Instructions


  1. Determine Your Product Line

    • 1
      Conduct market research to identify the category of products you want to carry. Look for products that have current demand and are selling in the market today. Competition in a given market is a good indication of demand for that category of products.
    • 2
      Search for suppliers. Look for manufacturers and importers who can supply large lots of high-quality products at low unit prices. The key to being profitable in the wholesale business is buying low and selling high. Purchasing in volume and selling smaller lots is the basis of this strategy.


 

Instructions

  1. Determine Your Product Line

    • 1
      Conduct market research to identify the category of products you want to carry. Look for products that have current demand and are selling in the market today. Competition in a given market is a good indication of demand for that category of products.
    • 2
      Search for suppliers. Look for manufacturers and importers who can supply large lots of high-quality products at low unit prices. The key to being profitable in the wholesale business is buying low and selling high. Purchasing in volume and selling smaller lots is the basis of this strategy.
    • 3
      Select those products from the products your suppliers have to offer that you believe you can sell profitably. Make a list of these products, including price points for various order quantities.

    Identify Your Customers

    • 4
      Search for retailers and large industrial operations that would likely buy items from your product line. Make a list of potential clients, including the products in which they are likely to be interested.
    • 5
      List and rank your potential customers according to the volume of product they are likely to buy. This will be determined by their retail sales volume and the product lines they carry.
    • 6 Approach the customers on your list with your product offerings. Negotiate volume and pricing with them for the items in which they are interested. Many will already have distributors they are happy with but some will respond to lower prices, while others may be interested in expanding their product lines.

Set Up Your Warehouse and Distribution

  • 7
    Buy, rent or lease a warehouse of sufficient size to store your products. This is likely to be a large expense and will require insurance for the building and contents. Ensure that your warehouse is located in an area close to your customer base to minimize shipping costs and has facilities for loading and unloading freight trucks.
  • 8
    Develop procedures for inventory control. You must know what comes into your warehouse and what goes out at all times. A real-time inventory-control software application with bar-code tracking is the best option for maintaining positive inventory control.
  • 9
    Set up your distribution system. Depending on your operation, this can range from contracting with UPS to make delivery of your products to buying and maintaining a fleet of delivery trucks. Carefully evaluate the costs of the options you consider. Operating your own fleet can be an expensive undertaking and often carries a high degree of risk.

References:
Read more: How to Start a Wholesale & Distribution Business | eHow.com http://www.ehow.com/how_5863356_start-wholesale-distribution-business.html#ixzz1un9ZsJPe

Mason Jar Ideas

Dry mixes in jars are classic. Besides being a great way to store mixes they also make very fun gifts. I’ve found the best approach to this is to line your jars up on the counter and get all of your dry ingredients out. Measure out one ingredient at a time and place that amount in each jar. Continue to layer until you are done.
Here are some good recipes to start with.
My husband came up with this idea and i think i am rubbing off on him lol he had some other great ideas to this but i am gonna surprise ya all and tell you when i got it done!

Pankcake mix in a jar


  • Prep/Total Time: 10 min.


  • Yield: 8 Servings


  • Extra Ideas-Use store bought mix and then layer different mix in ingredients in tha pacake dry mix Mark ADD WATER or ADD MILK Only on the container. "Breakfast in a JAr"
    10 10

    Ingredients

    • 3 cups all-purpose flour
    • 3 tablespoons sugar
    • 2 tablespoons baking powder
    • 4-1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
    • 1 teaspoon salt
    • ADDITIONAL INGREDIENTS (for each batch):
    • 1 egg
    • 3/4 cup milk
    • 3 tablespoons canola oil
    • 1/4 cup chopped dried apples or cranberries, optional


    Directions

    • In a large bowl, combine the first five ingredients. Transfer to a 1-qt. jar with a tight-fitting lid. Cover and store in a cool dry place for up to 6 months. Yield: 2 batches (3 cups total).
    • To prepare pancakes: Place 1-1/2 cups mix in a large bowl. In another bowl, whisk the egg, milk and oil. Stir in dried fruit if desired. Stir into pancake mix just until moistened. Pour batter by 1/4 cupfuls onto a greased hot griddle. Turn when bubbles form on top; cook until second side is golden brown. Yield: 8 pancakes per batch.

    Nutritional Facts 1 serving (2 each) equals 329 calories, 13 g fat (3 g saturated fat), 59 mg cholesterol, 634 mg sodium, 44 g carbohydrate, 2 g fiber, 8 g protein.

    Friday, May 11, 2012

    Habits a Boss Loves

    Every boss wants employees who do their jobs well. But even among highly competent employees, practicing certain habits can really make you distinguish yourself. Here are 10 tips for making sure you're on the boss's A-list:

    Communicate, Communicate, Communicate


    Especially at the beginning of your relationship -- that is, when either you or the boss is new to the job -- err on the side of giving your boss too much information and asking too many questions.




    "There's no such thing as a dumb question," says Marianne Adoradio, a Silicon Valley recruiter and career counselor. "Look at it as information gathering."

    Don't keep up the constant stream of communication unless your boss likes it, though. It's best to ask directly whether you're giving the boss enough information or too much.

    Acknowledge What the Boss Says
    Bosses appreciate "responsive listening," says John Farner, principal of Russell Employee Management Consulting. When your boss asks you to do something or suggests ways for you to improve your work, let her know you heard.

    Collaborate
    When your boss has a new idea, respond to it in a constructive way instead of throwing up roadblocks.

    "Be willing to brainstorm ways to get something done," says Michael Beasley, principal of Career-Crossings and a leadership and career development coach.

    Build Relationships
    You'll make your boss look good if you establish a good rapport with your department's customers, whether they're inside the company or outside. Bring back what you learn -- about ways to offer better customer service, for example -- to your boss. This is also helpful for your own career development.

    "Everybody wins in the long run," Adoradio says.

    Understand How You Fit In
    Is your boss detail-oriented, or someone who keeps his head in the clouds?

    "The boss's personality is just incredibly important," says Norm Meshriy, a career counselor and principal of Career Insights.

    Equally important is understanding what your boss wants in an employee. It may be, for example, that a boss who is detail-oriented will expect his employees to be as well. But a boss who has no time for details may actually appreciate an employee who does.

    Learn the Boss's Pet Peeves
    If your manager has said repeatedly that she hates being interrupted first thing in the morning, don't run to her office to give her a project update when you first get in.

    Anticipate the Boss's Needs
    Once you have worked with your boss for a while, you should be able to guess what information he will want before approving your purchase order, for example.

    If you provide it ahead of time, "that's a gold star," Farner adds.

    Think One Level Up
    You still need to do your own job, of course. But when managers consider who deserves a promotion, they look for people who understand the issues that their bosses face.

    Open Yourself to New Ways of Doing Things
    When your boss comes to you with a new idea, don't simply dismiss it. If you don't think it will work, offer to discuss it further in "a mature, responsible, adult-like way," Beasley says.

    Be Engaged in Your Work
    Arguing with your boss over every request is not a good strategy, but neither is simply shrugging your shoulders and agreeing with everything your boss says. "The manager would like to see an engaged individual," Beasley says. That means both showing enthusiasm for your work and speaking up when you see room for improvement.

    What to do with YOUR Ideas?

    Advice from Lori Greneir

    I have an idea for a product. What should I do?

    Lori's best advice would be for you to research your ideas to see if there is anything exactly like it already out there in the market place that would be competitive. If there is not and you feel confident to proceed, we suggest that you talk to a patent attorney to see if you are able to procure a patent and to check that you are not infringing upon anyone else's patent.
    Then she recommends doing some market research to see if your product appeals to a broad cross section of people before you invest a lot of money. You always want to make sure people will like it, want it and need it. If the answer is 'yes', just know that starting your business and bringing a product to life to sell to the marketplace will require a lot of your time and attention on a daily basis. You will need to have passion and perseverance. We wish you the best of luck and success!

    Making Homemade Wine



    Ok this has been my Favorite Idea yet! Im gonna do  a little research and find out. Got the idea from reading an article in our newspaper about how big bottling companies add all kinds of extra ingredients (and chemicals) to their wines to preserve it... In the old days they would basically use grapes and the skins would be used to ferment the grape...it was au natural! So i think organic wine made with ONLY grapes would be an awesome idea that i'm sure someone else already has and has implemented but what the hell...im gonna find out anyway!!
    ok update-Read an article about pesticides on grapes

    Pesticides were found on 86 percent of the imported grapes tested.


    • There were 35 pesticides found on imported grapes:

    So this being the case,is why our wine is treated with chemicals..

    The actual process of winemaking is fairly straightforward. Traditional grape wines can be easily created, as well as those from fruits and even vegetables and grains. It is important to note that winemaking is not a hobby for those who are impatient. Homemade wines require months and sometimes years to reach their full drinking potential.

    Before you begin to make your first batch of homemade wine, you will need to purchase the right equipment.

    You will need:
    • Primary fermentation container
      (4-gallon food grade quality heavy plastic container with lid)
    • Secondary fermentation containers (2 or 3 1-gallon glass jugs)
    • Bung
      (rubber cork for the airlock to fit in, should fit into secondary fermentation container)
    • Airlock
    • Large nylon mesh straining bag
    • 6 feet of clear plastic ½" tubing
    • 5 wine bottles for one gallon of wine
    • Corks (size #9 fits standard wine bottles)
    • Hand corker
    • Hydrometer (measures sugar content)
    Other items that are useful but not essential are:
    • Thermometer
    • Acid titration kit (measures acid level)
    • Grape press (essential if you are making wine from fresh grapes)
    • Thermometer
    All of these items can be found at a winemaking supply store. While shopping for equipment, make sure to pick up the following specific ingredients that you will need to add to your wine:
    • Campden tablets
    • Wine yeast
    • Yeast nutrient
    • Pectic enzyme
    • Grape tannin
    • Acid blend


    Step-By-Step Winemaking

    Step One - Choose your recipe and fruit

    For your first attempt at winemaking, it is usually best to stick to a simple, straightforward recipe for grape wine. You probably have familiarity as to what a grape wine should taste like, and it's usually easy to find suitable grapes or grape concentrate. Remember to inspect your fruit carefully. Crush a couple of grapes between your fingers and taste the juice. If you have purchased a hydrometer, use it to measure the grapes' sugar content. It should be between 22 and 24 brix, which means that the alcohol content of the wine will be approximately 11 percent. Next, thoroughly wash fruit, removing any debris or insects. Throw out any grapes that appear to be rotting. Make sure to remove the stems from the grapes. The stems can cause a wine to taste bitter.

    Step Two - Wash your equipment

    It is essential that you begin with a sanitary environment and absolutely clean equipment before starting the process of making wine. Used bottles, in particular, should be sterilized before being used again.

    Step Three - Extract flavor

    Depending on the recipe that you are following, you will need to extract the aroma and flavor of the fruit by crushing, chopping, soaking, pressing, or boiling. The extracted fruit is called "must." Make sure to follow the recipe's instructions carefully with this procedure. It can make or break the quality of the wine. Once extracted, the must will be placed in a primary fermentation container.

    Step Four - Blend Additives

    There is more to wine than just fruit, and these other ingredients are necessary to the flavor, quality, and shelf life of your vintage. Pay close attention to the order in which you blend in additives. Additives are generally blended with the must in the primary fermentation container. However, the yeast may not be added in until days after the other additives are blended.

    One additive that is called for in almost every wine recipe is a Campden tablet. This is actually a sulfite that prevents oxidation and growth of wild yeast while promoting the growth of cultured yeast.

    Pectic enzyme is another common additive used in fruit wines. It helps promote flavor, aroma, and acid extraction from the fruit. Tannin is also frequently needed to add bite to white wines. And, of course, sugar and yeast are necessary to produce a wine's alcohol. Granulated sugar is the best sugar for making wine. Avoid using brown or powdered sugar. Some recipes, however, do use honey instead of sugar. The yeast that is required for winemaking is different than bread yeast. Ask your winemaking retailer which variety is required for the type of wine that you are making.

    Once the additives have been blended into the primary fermentation container, the wine will begin fermenting. This process usually lasts from 3 to 10 days during which time the container should be covered loosely with a piece of cloth and a rubber band around the opening.

    Step Five - Transfer into the secondary fermentation container

    Once the initial fermentation process has ceased, the wine will need to be placed into a glass jug that is sometimes referred to as a "carboy." To do this, you will first need to strain the pulp from the liquid and then pour the liquid through a funnel into the container. Once the wine has been poured, the container needs to be fitted with a fermentation trap, called an "airlock." The wine will need to ferment in this container for several weeks.

    Step Six - Rack Wine

    The procedure of racking the wine is essential to winemaking. Racking is the process of siphoning the wine off the sediments into a clean secondary fermentation container. This can be done with a flexible plastic tube. Racking is usually done on a regular basis over several months until the wine is clear and ready to be placed in bottles.

    Step Seven - Bottling

    Finally, when the wine is sufficiently clear and the fermentation process has ended, it will be time to bottle your vintage. The easiest way to transfer the wine from a secondary fermentation container into bottles is to siphon it using the tubing that you used for racking. It is important not to overfill the bottles and to secure corks tightly. Newly bottled wine should be stored upright for the first three days. After that, it should be stored on its side at 55 degrees Fahrenheit. White wine should be aged for at least 6 months before sampling, and red wine should be aged for a minimum of 1 year.

    Thursday, May 10, 2012

    Child Acting

    My daughter is a True Natural Born Talent and i think she would do awesome at acting....she does too! She just won 2nd place in the count on a public speaking competition and she is so dramatic in her tone...i absolutely love it! So this is my next venture....breaking her into the acting business with little or no money just plain talent =) Let's see what we find..

    This site looks to be free but i am still waiting for an email  https://elitecastingnetwork.com
    www.myactingagent.com looks ok yu can search through auditions available

    Mobile French Fry Business

    Before my father in law moved back to Canada he had a great idea to start a mobile french fry cart business... start up cost was about $10k-$20k, which is nothing compared to most business start ups... He even went as far as getting the paperwork for it, but then had a change of heart. My husband and I were talking about it yesterday (cuz like i said, i'm always thinking business) and he said he thinks it would still be a good idea... i need him to think that cuz he has my start up money lol! Anywho =) Here is a lil info i was looking up....

    On its own or combined with a grill cart, the fry stand brings America’s favorite snack to your event. With large commercial fryers the options are endless.

    Seasoned French fries: Freshly prepared at you event. or as we would do it (poutine)
    Chili Cheese Fries: Fresh fries with chili and cheese
    Onion Rings: Freshly fried yummy onion rings
    Corn Dogs: Kosher beef dogs freshly battered and fried at your event.
    Chicken Nuggets: Perfect for the kids!
    Cheese Sticks: Mozzarella cheese sticks
    Buffalo Wings: Freshly fried and served with ranch and blue cheese dressing.
    Jalapeno Poppers: Stuffed with cheese
    Nachos and Cheese Sauce

    Here is a GREAT low cost option for a table top fryer
    Avantco 20 Pound Countertop Fryer Twin Pots 120V (DF-6L/2)This Avantco 20 lb. twin pot countertop fryer is suitable for light duty applications such as delis, sandwich shops, and concession stands. With a 15-minute heat-up time, this fryer is ready to use in no time! Each removable tank has a capacity of 1.5 gallons (6 liters), and the unit uses 20 lbs. of shortening. Additionally, each tank has its own temperature switch with a range of 120 to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. You don't even have to use both sides, since each fryer has its own cord.

    Handles are included on each tank for easy removal to dump the old oil. Additional accessories include a night cover for each tank, and 2 fryer baskets. The Avantco double countertop fryer requires a 120V electrical connection. Check it out here for only $217.99 CLICK HERE Frech Fry Cutters also availble for under $200 at this site.


    Another great idea would be adding drinks like sweet tea and lemonade and arnold palmer (half and half tea and lemonade drinks!) My husbands fav =) offering bottled water also.Buy a case for 5 bucks and sell at 1.00 each.
    My idea is to have NO change! Only $ and be able to take credit or debit cards also.... so i need to look into this... and an air conditioned unit woooooo today is may 10 and hot as hell here in florida!

    http://www.webstaurantstore.com/cecilware-arctic-deluxe-20-2pd-double-bowl-5-4-gallon-premix-cold-beverage-dispenser/ LInk to drink disenser double dispenser with cooler

    Tuesday, May 8, 2012

    How to become CEO of a company

    I am watching Undercover Boss and there is a woman who is CEO going undercover at Fast Signs (the company she runs yet never has printed a sign in her life) so I wondered (as always =) ) How can this woman who have never even worked in the business of sign Head the entire company....here is what i found:

    Whether you're looking to start your own company or head an existing one, becoming a CEO (chief executive officer) is a life-changing experience. It takes more than business savvy and management abilities to steer a successful company. Some self-exploration will serve you well in the future when the newness of the experience has worn off and you realize you're responsible for your staff's well-being.

    Read more: How to Become a CEO | eHow.com http://www.ehow.com/how_2064135_become-ceo.html#ixzz1uKd6BCzk

  • 1
    Be honest about whether you're ready to take on the responsibility of being a CEO. The buck stops with you. No matter who messed up, everyone will look to you to make it right.
  • 2
    Assess how much risk you can take. The CEO makes decisions that affect the health of a company, whether it's their own or someone else's. You'll need to combine creativity with caution.
  • 3
  • Think about your vision for what you want to do in life. You could direct a manufacturing company to international success, but if you know they exploit their workers and it bugs you, you'll feel empty.

  • 4
    Figure out a strategy for your career. Write a detailed business plan if it's your own company. Target an industry and map out where you could fill a need and how you're going to do it.
  • 5
    Work on your communication skills. Take a course in business writing. Read articles on making presentations.
  • 6
    Delegate tasks as much as possible. Trust your team's abilities and let them do their job in peace. Listen to their suggestions and, if they don't match your company's strategies and vision, explain why.
  • 7
    Maintain good relationships with your staff. Learn everyone's first name, no matter how large your company is. Pay them generously and reward them for creativity and quality.

  • How does one become a chief executive officer (CEO)? Is there a certain blueprint to follow in order to attain this prestigious title? What professional and personal traits are necessary for the position? Technically, anyone can fill the chief executive slot, but typically those who have distinguished themselves in some manner and have strong leadership characteristics end up getting the job.

    Education
    There are no laws stipulating that chief executives must have attended college or that they must have a master's degree. However, very few people make it to the top of the corporate ladder these days without some sort of formal education.

    Why is having a formal education so important? There is no simple answer to that question; however, completing university courses does provide one with exposure to a number of disciplines and causes a person to think, interact and share ideas with others, which are valuable experiences for a CEO to have. A degree from an Ivy League school or other top-tier institution is sometimes given even more credence because of the competitiveness that often accompanies such programs.

    Many CEOs have some form of business degree. Note, however, that the degree could be in economics, management, finance or another business-related discipline. (Think you need an MBA to stay competitive? Read Should You Head Back To Business School?)

    Some well-known chief executives, however, dropped out or never went to college:
    • Richard Branson, CEO of Virgin Group
    • Michael Dell, CEO of Dell Computer (NYSE:DELL)
    • Barry Diller, CEO of IAC/Interactive (NYSE:IACI)

    Personality Traits Having a degree from a top-notch school and an exceptional knowledge of the industry in which the company operates are great qualities to have. However, those qualities in and of themselves don't guarantee that a person will make it to the top of the corporate ladder. Personality traits may also play a role in an individual's ability to attain chief executive status.

    Typically, CEOs are:
    • good communicators, deal makers and managers
    • extroverts who are eager to go out on the road and tell their company's story
    • able and willing to present a cohesive vision and strategy to employees
    • able to garner respect
    Experience
    Generally speaking, a person must have a great deal of experience in the company's field in order to become CEO. A chief executive's job is to provide vision and a course for the company to navigate, which is difficult to do without extensive experience and a working knowledge of the potential risks and opportunities that lie ahead for the company.

    Prior senior-level managerial experience is also generally a must. After all, how can an individual be expected to run a multimillion- or multibillion-dollar company with hundreds or thousands of employees unless he or she has previous experience managing and/or overseeing other employees?
    A great example of someone who worked his way up the ranks is, again, Jack Welch. Welch joined General Electric in 1960 as an engineer and worked his way up to vice president and vice chairman before becoming CEO in 1981. By the time he got there, he knew the company and the landscape well. He had also previously held a high-level position.
    Then there's Andrea Jung, CEO of Avon Products (NYSE:AVP). Jung has a sizable amount of experience in retail. After graduating from Princeton, she worked for Bloomingdales, where she was part of the management trainee program. From there, she also worked at Neiman Marcus, another high-end outfit where she served as executive vice president. When she finally came to Avon, she started as a consultant and then moved up to chief operating officer (COO) before finally landing the chief executive position.
    Bottom LineAlthough some individuals are born leaders, most are made. Becoming a chief executive typically takes years of hard work. Extensive experience in the company's field is desirable and some companies tend to prefer those with degrees from upper-tier schools. Finally, those that have worked their way up from a low level within the organization may have an advantage, as they arguably know the company better than any outsider ever could.

    Read more: http://www.investopedia.com/articles/financialcareers/08/ceo-chief-executive-career.asp#ixzz1uKfCzQ00

    Trademarking your Business,Logo,Idea

    All About Trademarks

    A trademark includes any word, name, symbol, or design, or any combination used, or intended to be used, in commerce to identify and distinguish the goods of one manufacturer or seller from goods manufactured or sold by others, and to indicate the source of the goods. In short, a trademark is a brand name. A service mark is any word, name, symbol, design, or any combination, used, or intended to be used, in commerce, to identify and distinguish the services of one provider from the services provided by others, and to indicate the source of the services.

    Types of Trademarks
    Trademarks protect words, names, symbols, sounds, or colors that distinguish goods and services. Trademarks, unlike patents, can be renewed forever as long as they are being used in commerce. Specific types of trademarks include:
    • Service marks identify and distinguish the source of a service rather than a product.
    • Certification marks are any word, name, symbol, device, or any combination, used, or intended to be used, in commerce by someone other than its owner, to certify regional or other origin, material, mode of manufacture, quality, accuracy, or other characteristics of such person's goods or services, or that the work or labor on the goods or services was performed by members of a union or other organization.
    • Collective marks are trademarks or service marks used, or intended to be used, in commerce, by the members of a cooperative, an association, or other collective group or organization, including a mark that indicates membership in a union, an association, or other organization
    Registering a Trademark
    You can establish rights in a mark based on legitimate use of the mark. However, owning a Federal trademark registration on the Principal Register provides several advantages, including the following:
    • Constructive notice to the public of the registrant's claim of ownership of the mark;
    • A legal presumption of the registrant's ownership of the mark and the registrant's exclusive right to use the mark nationwide on or in connection with the goods and/or services listed in the registration;
    • The ability to bring an action concerning the mark in Federal court;
    • The use of the U.S. registration as a basis to obtain registration in foreign countries; and
    • The ability to file the U.S. registration with U.S. Customs and Border Protection to prevent importation of infringing foreign goods.
    Any time you claim rights in a mark, you may use the "TM" (trademark) or "SM" (service mark) designation to alert the public to your claim, regardless of whether you have filed an application with the USPTO. However, you may use the Federal registration symbol "®" only after the USPTO actually registers a mark, and not while an application is pending. Also, you may use the registration symbol with the mark only on or in connection with the goods and/or services listed in the Federal trademark registration. Starting the Process
    Step 1: Is your product eligible for a trademark?
    Most U.S. applicants base their application on their current use of the mark in commerce, or their intent to use their mark in commerce in the future. What is "use in commerce"? For the purpose of obtaining Federal registration, "commerce" means all commerce that the U.S. Congress may lawfully regulate; for example, interstate commerce or commerce between the U.S. and another country. "Use in commerce" must be a bona fide use of the mark in the ordinary course of trade, and not use simply made to reserve rights in the mark.
    Generally, acceptable use is as follows:
    • For goods: the mark must appear on the goods, the container for the goods, or displays associated with the goods, and the goods must be sold or transported in commerce.
    • For services: the mark must be used or displayed in the sale or advertising of the services, and the services must be rendered in commerce.
    If you have already started using the mark in commerce, you may file based on that use. A "use" based application must include a sworn statement (usually in the form of a declaration) that the mark is in use in commerce, listing the date of first use of the mark anywhere and the date of first use of the mark in commerce. A properly worded declaration is included in the USPTO standard application form. The applicant or a person authorized to sign on behalf of the applicant must sign the statement. The application should include a specimen showing use of the mark in commerce. Step 2: Conduct a trademark search
    The next step is to search our database, before filing your application, to determine whether anyone is already claiming trademark rights in a particular mark. You may conduct a search online for free via our TESS (Trademark Electronic Search System) database. If your mark includes a design element, you will need to search it by using a design code. To locate the proper design code(s), please consult the Design Search Code Manual.
    Registering a Trademark
    You may file your trademark application online using TEAS - the Trademark Electronic Application System. TEAS allows you to fill out an application form and check it for completeness, and then submit the application directly to the USPTO over the Internet. You can pay by credit card, through an existing USPTO deposit account, or via electronic funds transfer.
    You may also contact the Trademark Assistance Center for a hard copy of the Basic Facts brochure, or a paper form. Paper forms are not processed as quickly as those submitted electronically, however.
    Registering a Trademark Overseas
    Federal registration is not valid outside the United States. However, if you are a qualified owner of a trademark application pending before the USPTO, or of a registration issued by the USPTO, you may seek registration in any of the countries that have joined the Madrid Protocol by filing a single application, called an "international application," with the International Bureau of the World Property Intellectual Organization, through the USPTO. For more information about the Madrid Protocol, click here.
    Also, certain countries recognize a United States registration as a basis for filing an application to register a mark in those countries under international treaties. See TMEP Chapter 1000 for further information. The laws of each country regarding registration must be consulted.

    FAQ's
    How long does a trademark last?
    Rights in a federally-registered trademark can last indefinitely if the owner continues to use the mark on or in connection with the goods and/or services in the registration and files all necessary documentation in the USPTO at the appropriate times. In general, the owner of a registration must periodically file:

    • Affidavits of Continued Use or Excusable Nonuse under 15 U.S.C. §1058; and
    • Applications for Renewal under 15 U.S.C. §1059.
    Forms for filing these documents are available at http://www.uspto.gov/teas/. For further information on maintaining a federal trademark registration, please contact the Post Registration Division at (571) 272-9500.
    How different does one trademark have to be from another?
    After an application is filed, the assigned examining attorney will search the USPTO records to determine if a conflict, i.e., a likelihood of confusion, exists between the mark in the application and another mark that is registered or pending in the USPTO. The USPTO will not provide any preliminary search for conflicting marks before an applicant files an application. The principal factors considered by the examining attorney in determining whether there would be a likelihood of confusion are:

    • the similarity of the marks; and
    • the commercial relationship between the goods and/or services listed in the application.
    To find a conflict, the marks do not have to be identical, and the goods and/or services do not have to be the same. It may be enough that the marks are similar and the goods and/or services related.
    If a conflict exists between your mark and a registered mark, the examining attorney will refuse registration on the ground of likelihood of confusion. If a conflict exists between your mark and a mark in a pending application that was filed before your application, the examining attorney will notify you of the potential conflict. If the earlier-filed application registers, the Examining Attorney will refuse registration of your mark on the ground of likelihood of confusion.

    What is the difference between the notations TM or SM and the ®?
    Any time you claim rights in a mark, you may use the "TM" (trademark) or "SM" (service mark) designation to alert the public to your claim, regardless of whether you have filed an application with the USPTO. However, you may use the federal registration symbol "®" only after the USPTO actually registers a mark, and not while an application is pending. Also, you may use the registration symbol with the mark only on or in connection with the goods and/or services listed in the federal trademark registration.

    Is my trademark registration valid outside the United States?
    No. However, if you are a qualified owner of a trademark application pending before the USPTO, or of a registration issued by the USPTO, you may seek registration in any of the countries that have joined the Madrid Protocol by filing a single application, called an "international application," with the he International Bureau of the World Property Intellectual Organization, through the USPTO. For more information about the Madrid Protocol, click here.

    Also, certain countries recognize a United States registration as a basis for filing an application to register a mark in those countries under international treaties. See TMEP Chapter 1000 for further information. The laws of each country regarding registration must be consulted.

    Where to submit an application-The OFFICIAL website to do is http://www.uspto.gov/

    Or there are other sites such as... but i have no exp with this site..
    http://www.legalzoom.com/sem/trademark-fast.html?WT.srch=1&kid=26841e4a-58cc-6d49-ab1c-000017cc12cd&se=msn&q=application+of+trademark&refcd=MS8916219071e_application_of_trademark&tsacr=ms822284484&cm_mmc_o=FlECjCayzpwFzyL%20|%20mwzygt%20|%20PbET%20|%20WH8CjCayzpwFzyLj-55kbgzfbBECj

    Making Cookies for Fun and Profit

    More info from Kate McFarlin on starting a cookie based home business:

    f you have a talent and love for baking, as well as a desire to have your own home business, starting an in-home business baking cookies may suit you. Before you start this venture, there are a few things that you will need to know and complete to ensure that your company gets off on the right foot. Start-up budgets for a home business such as this are typically quite low, especially if you already have all of the baking supplies on hand.

    Step 1

    Determine your niche. Every successful business has a niche that it exploits to succeed. The same is true in the cookie business. You need to have something different that makes your company stand out from other cookie makers. Do research in your area to determine what other bakeries are doing and which companies are supplying your local stores. This will help you see what you can do differently or better to compete on the same level as these businesses. For example, if there are no businesses supplying cookies made with only organic materials, this would be an excellent niche to fill, particularly if your town has a big fitness and nutrition community. Other examples include specialty cookies in interesting shapes, flavors or colors, or cookie "cakes" for special occasions such as birthday parties.

    Step 2

    Purchase the necessary equipment. If you will be doing specialty cookies, you will need to have the molds or forms for these cookies. While you can start out small using your regular cookie sheets and cutters, if you expand, you will need to have the materials available. Other equipment you may need would include icing bags and decorating tips, as well as silicone sheets for non-stick cookies as well as basic baking ingredients and icings.

    Step 3

    Apply for any licenses and tax identification numbers your local jurisdiction requires. Some localities will require a general business license, as well as a food handler's permit. Others may require only one or the other, or neither. If your state has a sales tax and you sell direct to the public, you will need to obtain a tax ID number to track your sales tax payments. If you have employees, you will also have to use a tax ID number to track payroll taxes and fees. A food handler's permit is required in many jurisdictions for any business that prepares food for public consumption so that local health departments and other regulators can track you. Try your state, city and county websites for information on the permits you will need, or visit your local city or county clerk's office to find out what to research.

    Step 4

    Check with your local zoning board. Residential areas typically have strict zoning laws about the types of businesses that can be run in those areas. It is essential to check with your local zoning commission before you start your business to ensure that it is legal to operate one out of your home. Failing to do this may result in the shutting down of your business temporarily until you can move to a commercial location. Typically, a cookie baking business will not be a problem in a residential area, but it is best to check ahead of time.

    Step 5

    Get a commercial driving license. This is only necessary if you will be delivering your cookies to retailers and/or customers. While it is not specifically essential, it is best to operate your business as above-board as possible and fulfill all the requirements of operating a commercial business.

    Step 6

    Explore marketing avenues for your cookies. You will need to decide first if you are going to target retailers or consumers for your creations. This will help determine which marketing avenues to take. Typically, a small baking business like this will benefit from fliers placed around town, networking with local retailers, coffee shops and restaurants as well as utilizing radio and print advertising. If you want to expand your business out of your local area, consider Internet advertising as well. Your local newspaper may also be interested in doing a piece about your new business and this is a great way to get free advertising. Get in touch with the food page, or the business page of your paper and offer to do an interview. The same is true of local television and radio stations. If you have a local morning show, they may even be willing to do a baking segment with you.


    TRADEMARK YOUR NAME AND IMAGE SO NO ONE STEALS YOUR IDEAS!!!-Next post will inform you on how to do this for anything =)

    Cookie Business From Home

    I make cookies ALL of the time and my cookies are actually really really good! I even got a compliment from an ex baker that we were delicious. My cookies take about 10 min to bake and only 5 min to prepare...So "Brookie's Cookie's" may be my next from home business =) Here is a little info on how to start a cookie business from your home! Great idea for SAHM!!

    Selling your cookies is a great way to combine your love of baking and a home-based career. However, starting a home-based cookie business requires more than a batch of snickerdoodles. It takes research and planning to ensure your business gets off to a good start. Further you need to comply with state laws regulating food sales, which includes obtaining a special permit.

    Step 1

    Decide what types of cookies you will be baking. You can specialize in one type of cookie, such as chocolate chip or shaped and decorated sugar cookies, or you can offer a variety. If you will be the sole baker, consider the amount of time you have vs. the amount of time each type of cookie takes to create. Drop cookies take less time than decorated ones. Also think about storage and delivery. Decorated cookies will require special storage and delivery to prevent them from being ruined. Create a price for each type of cookie by single purchase and in bulk. Your prices need to include the cost of ingredients, preparation time, business overhead and your desired profit margin.

    Step 2

    Contact the state's occupational licensing board that regulates food sales to learn about the laws regarding food businesses operated from home. Some states may require you to have a separate kitchen with its own oven, refrigerator and other equipment. Other states only require that your kitchen tools and food ingredients be separate from your personal ones. A health department official may need to inspect your home business kitchen.

    Step 3

    Make your business official. Apply for food permits as required by your state. Obtain a business license from your city or county government office. Contact your state's comptrollers or taxation office about a sales tax permit if sales tax is collected on food in your state. If your business name will be different from your given name, file a doing-business-as statement with your county. Purchase business insurance to cover your home business.

    Step 4

    Purchase the equipment and supplies need to create your cookies. These items include bowls, utensils, mixers, baking pans and measuring devises, which need to be kept separate from your personal cooking items. Buy packaging materials, such as plastic wrap or bags, and pastry boxes to store and deliver your cookies. If your state requires food labels, use computer label stickers to print your labels and stick to the cookie packaging.

    Step 5

    Sell your cookies. Photograph your cookies to use in your marketing materials, such as portfolios, brochures and ads. Send a news release to your local media outlets about your new business. Take samples of your cookies to local stores, cafes and caterers, and ask about offering your cookies as part of their service. If you can ship your cookies, consider selling them through a website.

    Info from: http://smallbusiness.chron.com/start-cookie-business-home-4261.html


    More info and tips on how to get started:

     

    Rent vendor space at a local farmer's market. Farmers' markets routinely encourage local businesses, especially those who make their own products, to sell on market premises. Bake your best cookie recipes and place a platter with samples prominently in the middle of your table or booth. You can have a member of your staff walk around the market offering samples to other vendors and market attendees, market rules permitting. Farmers market organizers require vendors to fill out an application and provide proof of health department inspection to sell products to the public.

    Contact local businesses that sell cookies and related items. Some businesses openly seek locally produced items for maximum freshness. Such businesses could include, but are not limited to, restaurants, catering and event-planning businesses, coffee shops and supermarkets. Visit the websites of such businesses and look for links that read "sell to us" or "vendor information." Make appointments to meet with store managers and buyers. Take a tray of samples, brochures and order forms to accommodate on-the-spot orders. Iowa State University says that some vendors may require you to have business liability insurance, which you can purchase from the company that insures your vehicle or home
    Rent a food cart or food truck to sell home-baked cookies at various locations in your area. You must apply for a permit and submit to a health department inspection to operate legally in your jurisdiction. Upon receipt of your permit, use social networking forums to get the word out about your business. Announce daily cookie specials and where interested customers can find you throughout the day.

    Product Sourcing

    This is just a super small amount of info on product sourcing because i had this saved to my computer.. I will be expanding this section soon and talking more in depth about product sourcing. I will also make available an ebook with a large amount of websites i found through trial and error over the last 3-4 yrs sourcing myown products. I will tell you what i have learned and how i learned the ard way when purchasing some items!

    Trading or B2B websites and MY reviews on them



    Product sourcing is a vital part of the world’s economy. Its use continues to grow, and an increasing number of businesses cannot compete without it. In fact, it has become so integrated into how business is done that many of those sourcing products are barely aware they are doing it.

    However, this does not mean that those sourcing parts of their production do not need to be informed and exercise caution to make sure things are done correctly and in the most efficient manner possible. Things still can and often do go wrong. Countries like China and India obviously have very different cultures, and other factors such as unfamiliar legal systems can also cause unwanted surprises.

    For these reasons, a sourcing strategy is always advisable. Ideas to include strategic sourcing require planning and constant refinement to ensure they are working as they should and in the most efficient way possible. By researching and implementing a sourcing strategy, every business can increase their productivity and efficiency.


    www.rstrading.com
    - closeouts, overstock, customer return merchandise, surplus and liquidation merchandise you can request a catalog..alot of namebrand mixed items such as dkny shirts and nike kids apparel at around $2.95-$4.95 each but yu have to buy them by the pallet or moq so you may be spending alot up front


    www.liquidationcloseouts.com
    -They actualy have a section on the left to click on that says ebay items to sell.. and a phone number where you can call and find out the better deals also..Their claim to fame says “

    Liquidation Closeouts is the leading supplier and wholesaler of things to sell on eBay.” they have a drop down menu for searching but again you must buy by the pellets and have room in your home for these items..you are probably looking at spending about $2500 at the least for these items and doing alot of work selling them for profit...but profits can end up being double or triple what you paid..


    www.closeoutplace.com -
    One of my fav’s because they have a catalof of NFL closeouts for dirt cheap but you have to order atleast $300 (?) and they go very fast...also someone already has first dibs on the steelers items!


    www.mannequinmode.com teen mannequin mode $140 $30 for a head for use on advertising your clothing on ebay ect.

     
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