Crowdfunding is a relatively novel way for startups and entrepreneurs to raise money to support their fledgling companies - and sometimes it actually works.
How the SBA, SBDC, & SCORE can help your small business
The SBA (Small Business Administration) is a United States government department tasked with supporting and nurturing entrepreneurs, startups and small businesses.
What can it actually do for you?
We were curious about this so we asked our community for their stories about how the SBA - including the SBDC (Small Business Development Center) and SCORE (Service Corps of Retired Executives) who are also funded/supported by them - had impacted their ventures. Not including their websites that offer a huge online repository of information, articles and business resources (we'll list a bunch of important online resources for you to explore at the end of the article).
The over-arching impression I got from the responses was that most people are not aware of just how much support there is made available to them by the SBA, SBDC and SCORE. It's not only about getting loans, trust me.
Here are a few of their stories...
Geoff Orazem, the co-founder of Eastern Foundry, a startup incubator for government contractors, told us that the SBA was a huge help when it came to marketing.
Initially Geoff felt like they didn't really have a handle on how to market and promote their new business.
He reached out to Nirav Rajapara and Charles Motte at the Howard University SBDC (which is an SBA program) that provides counseling services to prospective business owners.
Ultimately, the results of their efforts proved to be a great success, as Geoff explains...
Phil Stempin, the CMO of ColdAvenger, is a big fan of the SBA because it has helped them with early phase growth that was being stifled by their own limited resources.
Was it worth it flying all the way to Germany? You bet.
Here's something else Phil told us that might be of interest to any small company looking to expand their horizons overseas.
Someone Special Books
Heather McCarthy owns Someone Special Books a small business that makes use of SCORE's consulting services. She relates how starting a business with no experience was extremely challenging.
As time went on, Heather and Kate started to pick up important business skills and begun to make real headway.
She goes on to praise the flexibility and diversity of options open to entrepreneurs making use of SCORE - everything from webinars, to meetups, and face-to-face consultations are available for free.
And, it's great to hear that things are going well for Heather and Kate...
Each of the organizations have their own local, regional and national services on offer, so it's worth checking out what may (or may not) be available for you to make use of in your area.
Have you made use of the SBA, SBDC, or SCORE? What was your experience? Do you have any tips or advice for how to get the most out of a relationship with these organizations? Share your thoughts in the comments below.
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Here are some great ideas that incorporate free stuff (products and services) in order to generate trust, improve revenue and grow your business.
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This article will give you five great ideas for free product and service offerings that you can integrate into an existing organization or use to help grow a startup.
A cash flow statement usually includes money flowing in and out of a company, but this article is full of ideas and tips to get more money flowing in.
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This article will look at a very simple sales forecast and provide plenty of great sales strategies, ideas and advice for you to incorporate into your own plans.
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