The Extreme Futurist Blog
Helping you read yourself into the future.

Social Media Management And Your Business May 12, 2015

For any small business, finding profit, and finding it soon, is an important thing.  It’s not hard to understand why, either; most businesses are going to open with tens, if not hundreds of thousands of dollars in debt.

Think about it like this.  Before any business opens its doors, there’s a few things they need to do.  First, they need to find a place to operate the business out of, and then to make sure that said place is up to codes applicable at both the state and federal levels.  Then the business owner will need to file for the various permits that their business will need at the state, city, and federal levels, and, perhaps, even at an international level, although very few small businesses are going to be doing business on an international scale right after opening.  Then you need to spend the money to outfit your new business space with whatever you need.  Are you going to be doing fabrication for metal parts?  You’ll be spending hundreds of thousands of dollars on complex machines to fill the needs for whatever specs you have in mind.  Are you going to be running a restaurant?  Ovens, warming trays, grills, an industrial dishwasher, all of this will need to be bought before you can open.  Then there’s the work that goes into redecorating the space that you’re going to be renting as well.  Add this all together, and you’ll see that just to open, you’ve spent an immense amount of money.

You’re going to be spending the next five years or so operating at a loss, too, which can be a real problem.  This is also why you’re going to need to find profitability so quickly.  You’re going to be trying to pay off the debt you’ve taken on just to open, and you’re also going to need to cover your operating costs and the costs that go hand in hand with running a business can be relentless.  In fact, the first few years that a business is run are so often rocky that even the Internal Revenue Service is going to be willing to give you a break, which is why they so rarely audit businesses younger than five fiscal years old, even when they aren’t paying very much in taxes because they’re writing off so many dollars worth of losses.

So, it’s obvious that finding profitability is important if you don’t want to end up going bankrupt early into your business venture, but how can you, as a small business operator and owner, find said profitability?  Well, one great way is to turn to social media management and marketing, and retaining the services of a social media marketing company.

social media marketing companiesA social media firm is going to be able to help you to tap into that newest frontier in marketing and advertising, social media.  Social media is something that reaches all the way around the world, meaning that whether your product is something made to be sold locally, or something that you can (and hope to) sent all over the world, you’ll be able to reach out to the people that you want to reach.  Even better, you’ll be able to reach them with targeted advertising in order to make sure that you’re getting out your advertising message to the people most likely to be receptive to it, as told by their very own actions on the social media sites they frequent.  They’re basically telling you how to market to them, and what to market to them, doing most of the job for you.

Another important part of all this is hiring someone who can offer some form of social media management service. This is extremely important because people like to be able to go to a social media account for the things that they buy, a place on their favorite social media site where they can receive information on the various changes that their favorite products are undergoing, and the things that the company that makes them is up to.  Another great thing about having a social media presence for your product and your company is that it makes the consumer feel like they’re connected to your product and business in a personal way, making it seem like you’re interested in their individual business, especially if your reply to posts they make on social media.

So, if you’re still trying to find that fabled profitability, consider hiring a social media marketing company.  You’ll be glad you did when you’re able to reach your customers easily and effectively.


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What Social Media Marketing Can Do For You May 10, 2015

For any business, no matter how large or small it is, maintaining profitability is paramount to having a successful business.  It’s more important for a small business than a large one, however.  The reason for this is that a small business is likely to have more debt on hand and less actual assets that they can live without if they have to sell them off, while a large company, on the other hand, will probably have six months’ worth of operating capital stashed away in case of an emergency, meaning that, if they stop earning money tomorrow, they’ll be able to survive for six months without any real worry (beside the worry that goes with the fact that your company has stopped making any money at all, I mean, which is a very real fear).  Most small companies can’t afford to run like that, even though their operating costs are much less.  Then, of course, there’s the fact that a large company is likely to have more assets they can sell off, things like trucks, locations, property, and the like.  So, having established the importance of profitability, how does one attain, and then, more importantly, maintain it?

social media management agencyIn order to attain and maintain a profitable posture, a business needs to market itself to the world.  You can have the greatest, most cutting-edge products, with the best and most kind-hearted staff, and prices that are well below or equal to those of the competitor, and you can still lose business.  It happens all the time.  Look at what happened to Betamax.  It took on VHS in order to be the first device that would allow people to bring pre-recorded video into the home, letting them watch movies and television programming on their terms.  The VHS cassette was large, bulky, and was capable only of playing the video and the sound, nothing else.  The Betamax cassette was smaller, still fairly bulky, and was capable of not only playing the actual video with appropriate sound track, but also of things like closed captioning and dubbing the voice in other languages, as well as skipping ahead by chapter, something that wouldn’t be seen again until the DVD came around.  In every way, the Betamax was the superior device for enjoying home video, and they were both priced at around the same price, with not enough discrepancy in price to explain the difference in market share that they both ended up with.  So, how, then, did the technologically inferior VHS cassette become the video format of choice, while the Betamax found itself on the scrap heap?  Marketing made all the difference.  VHS cassettes got their word out first, faster, further, and they won the war, while the superior Betamax decided that they could rest on the fact that they were the superior product.  And that was a mistake.

So, then, how does one market their product to the people?  There are, of course, the classic ways, you’ve got television ads, which are expensive to air and expensive to produce, you’ve got the cheaper radio ads which don’t always reach an attentive customer, and you’ve got the cheapest, the printed media ads, which tend to just not reach all that many people these days, as printed media is in the midst of dying and outlets are closing daily.  These are all acceptable ways to get your message out, and if placed properly, in places likely to be seen by people who would buy whatever you’re offering, they can lead to some increase in business.  But there’s an even better way, these days, to reach the consumer, and it is nowhere near as expensive, although you may find yourself needing to hire an outside PR firm in order to utilize it.

Social media marketing is a great choice for a small business, especially one that is just starting out or one geared toward younger people.  There are a lot of reasons that social media marketing is great, but to me, the best is this: people are identifying the kind of consumer they are on social media.  Every bit of info you give in your profile, every time you ‘follow’, ‘like’, ‘share’, or even make a post, you’re telling the world what you’re likely to be interested in.  There are algorithms that you can use on Facebook to tell you, based on posts, likes, follows, and profile information, almost everything you’d like to know about a person, and they are eerily accurate.  After you know who to market to, all you need to do is get an ad their way and your job is done.

So, if you’re looking for profitability and growth, consider social media marketing, and even consider working with a pr firm that offers social media management services.  You’ll be glad you did.

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3 Reasons to Choose an Invisalign Orthodontist May 9, 2015

Choosing an orthodontist is a complicated thing, especially if you’ve been diagnosed with some sort of misalignment of the teeth that requires a treatment program.  It’s honestly much more simple if you end up having an overcrowding issue which requires the surgical removal of a tooth to alleviate it; at that point, there’s not a lot of choice involved, just the simple, rote removal of a tooth and maybe a bit of work to realign the others now that they have the appropriate space needed to stretch out.

For a lot of people, the orthodontist they choose will influence what choices they have when it comes to orthodontic appliances to fix the alignment of their teeth.  Today, the standard treatment is standard metal braces, which have been exploding in popularity since the 1970s, when they first came into use.  Basically, outside of extreme cases, if you go into the orthodontist’s office, this is what you’re going to be having installed in your teeth, because it has a proven record of success, and because it is such a step up from the earlier technology that it replaced (orthodontic headgear, in this case).

There are, however, newer options, but not every orthodontist professional is able to offer them.  Because of this, choosing your orthodontic specialists can, and will, influence the availability of newer options for teeth alignment technology.  These options can include things like Invisalign, which is a much better technology, and one that has a lot of advantages over standard metal braces.  What follows are just three of those advantages.

1.  Comfort

A big consideration for anyone when getting something installed in their mouth is that it will be at least somewhat comfortable, or bearable, over the long run.  Having teeth realigned isn’t a simple process, and because of this, whatever option you go with to realign the teeth is something that you’re going to need to have on your teeth for quite some time.

Braces, on the one hand, are not comfortable.  They protrude from the teeth outward, rubbing and scraping against the fleshy inside of your lip.  This can cause abrasions, scrapes, lesions, and other discomforting things that most people won’t find pleasant.  As time goes on, you’ll get used to it, but that in no way makes it a good thing, just something that you can get used to and bear.

On the other hand, Invisalign braces are form-fitted for your teeth, meaning that they’re designed to be snug and to blend in with your teeth without adding on a lot of bulk.  There’s no sharp corners to protrude into the aforementioned fleshy part of your mouth, so there’s no chance that it’ll be causing that sort of discomfort, and the fact that it’s form fitted means it’s going to be, in general, a much more comfortable experience.

2.  Discretion

quality adult orthodonticsDiscretion is a big deal when it comes to treatment for alignment issues, and if you look at the history of such devices, you’ll notice a definitive trend from more conspicuous to more discreet.

Braces, for an easy example, are much more discreet than their earlier predecessor, orthodontic headgear, was.  This may be one of the contributing factors to the quickness with which they replaced orthodontic headgear, along with the fact that, in general, they were simply a better and more simple option for realigning the teeth.

Invisalign invisible braces, on the other hand, are the very acme of discretion when it comes to treating the misalignment of the teeth.  They’re absolutely clear plastic aligners, meaning that when they’re in your mouth, they’re going to allow the natural color of your teeth through, rather than attempting to blend in with the teeth or anything like that.

3.  Cost

I’m sure by this point you’re wondering what the catch is.  Well, truth be told, there really isn’t one, but there is a drawback in the price.  Standard metal braces, the standard treatment for malocclusions (a fancy word meaning misalignment of the teeth) are about three thousand dollars out of your pocket.  On the other hand, Invisalign, discreet adult braces, with all the amazing advantages that it has to offer, costs only a little bit more, five hundred dollars more, to be exact, which is, to my mind, a great value.

So, if you’re looking to improve the alignment of your teeth, why not do so with the most up-to-date technology available?  Find a local professional orthodontist who offers Invisalign, and ask them if it might be the best option for treating your teeth, and it if is, take the plunge and fix those teeth!  You’ll be happy that you did when you have a smile you can share with the world!


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Trade Show Displays Are Important May 4, 2015

Some things should just be left up to the experts and designing and building effective trade show displays are one of those things. Advertising and marketing is a field that takes many different forms and all kinds of creative ideas can be implemented if they are effective. It is a fluid field where new tactics, techniques and methods are being used all of the time in order to create exposure for various companies and their brands. Trade shows are nothing new but the displays that are made for them have been evolving over the years and have been becoming more elaborate. No matter how flashy the trade show display is though, there are some specific goals that an event designer wants to keep in mind when designing it.

1. Lighting – Lighting needs to be designed and built into the display in order to make sure that it can be seen clearly. Convention centers and trade show venues provide general lighting for the event but in order to make individual displays viewable, they need to have their own independent lighting system. Most professional event designers know practical ways to accomplish this so the display looks clean and works well with the lighting that is was designed with. The best display in the convention can be easily reduced and made less effective without the proper lighting.

2. The third dimension – There is no good reason to set up a two-dimensional trade show display in a three-dimensional world. A person’s visual sense can be more easily stimulated when it detects depth of field. Affordable 3-D pop-up displays are popular at trade shows so those who do not have a huge budget can still have a trade show exhibit that is respectable and looks like it was professionally designed. 3-D displays can be constructed in may different ways out of various materials, even light-weight gazebos that you see at outdoor events and parks made out of a framework of hollow aluminum poles with fabric stretched over it.

3. Make it fun – Trade shows are not only just places where grown adults in specific industries go to make contacts and expose their company and products, it is also a place where they like to have fun. There are plenty of extracurricular activities that take place outside of the convention center but people like to have a good time while they are at the trade show as well. Creative and interactive trade show exhibits that are designed to engage more than just a couple of the human senses can make for an enjoyable experience for those attending the convention. Raffles and product giveaways can help people remember their experience because they can take something tangible away with them that will fortify their memory of it.

4. Welcoming environment – A trade show exhibit should not resemble a carnival booth with a table in front and a space behind that people are not allowed to enter. As much of the space that a company has access to at a trade show should be fully utilized to allow for the best design possible. Even the space on the floor should be seen as valuable square footage that can be used to create an impression on those who visit the booth. Removable vinyl wraps can be stuck to the floor with company logos or graphics that can help propel a brand much better than the event center floor could. People should be able to come inside of the exhibit and be a part of it instead of feeling like someone on the outside looking in.

5. Work with other vendors – What is good for one vendor could also be good for another because exposure is the name of the game. This means that vendors working together to create activities to encourage people to come by and visit everyone can increase everyone’s visibility and engage the typical trade show attendee more than otherwise. A scavenger hunt that involves picking up a business card from a specified amount of booths could be a good strategy to help everyone get visitors, no matter where their booth happens to be located.

Any number of techniques and strategies can help a company at a trade show but having an effective trade show exhibit design gives them the best possible shot at making a positive impression on the trade show guests. Providing a memorable experience is the goal and putting on the best display possible could cause people to form memories that are connected to their emotions in ways that will bode very well for any company who is able to pull it off.

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Why You Need The Assistance Of Product Development Agencies April 30, 2015

When it comes to business, there is one mantra that everyone should stick to, and that is the idea that, as a business, you must always, always, be moving forward.  In this way, business is very similar to a shark; if a shark stops swimming forward, stops ensuring that the water is continuously moving over its gills, it dies from asphyxiation.  The same is true with a business.

While this motion forward, for a shark, is a very literal motion, when it comes to a business, it’s more a need for them to continuously expand and grow in one way or another. For a lot of business, this expansion takes the form of presenting new products to the market in order to tap into new clients, and to offer something new to people they’ve already serviced in one way or another.  This process is research and development, the process by which new products are introduced to the market in order that the company might sell it to the various segments of market which they’re interacting with.

professional product development companyHowever, for a small business, there’s one big hiccup in the process of product development.  You see, while you may have the technical expertise, on hand (and by may, I mean I really hope that you do have this expertise on hand, otherwise you’re going to have a lot of problems running your business in the future without the know-how to actually create a product) to create new products and to update your current product lines, it’s likely that, as a small business, you don’t have a huge marketing staff to do the development work that a new product requires.

That’s not to knock the small company in any way, it’s just a simple acknowledgement that, when it comes to a small business, having a lot of marketing muscle on staff is very rarely a major concern.  Marketing employees are, to be blunt, expensive, and keeping just one on staff can cost somewhere in the fifty thousand dollar a year range, plus whatever benefits you usually offer, which, if you’re running a business of fifty people or more, basically means you have to provide them health insurance.

So, what, then, are you to do to get the marketing expertise that you need?  Why, you hire one of the many product development agencies that exist in your particular industry, of course.  Doing so is much cheaper than having to pay for putting someone permanently on payroll.  You’re basically getting the same expertise that you would get for multiple hundreds of thousands of dollars, and the same work that you’d get from a team of employees with years of experience, at a massive discount.

So, what will this marketing team do for you, you may be asking at this point, once you hire them and contract them for the duration of your product research and development project?  Basically, they’ll control, and perform, every aspect of the marketing and advertising portion of your project, the development of the market image of your product, no matter what it is.

This will manifest itself in a variety of ways, which is why selecting the right product development agency is such an important step when it comes to the act of research and development.  They’re going to basically be overseeing the image that your product will project into the market, not just concerning the product itself, but also concerning your business.

They’ll also be doing a lot of the hard work that goes into figuring out which segment of the population you should be marketing your product to.  This is important, because as a small business, you’re not going to have the kind of money needed in order to reach everyone in the United States with your marketing and advertising messages, to say nothing of the fact that you don’t have the kind of money to reach the entirety of the world.  You need to decide what segment(s) of the population your money is going to be best spent on, and you’ll be well equipped to do so with the help of your product development agency.  This is great, because the better the return for you investment is, the more money you can spend to put together advertisements getting at your core customer base, instead of wasting money on people with no interest in anything that you have to offer.

So, if you’re in the midst of producing a new product, consider hiring in some outside help in order to provide the marketing muscle you need.  You won’t regret the minor expense when it pays off in a big way.

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Are Dental Implants the Right Choice for You? April 14, 2015

The things we do in our day-to-day lives put a lot of stress on our teeth, and sometimes this can cause damage to our teeth and our smile.  There’s a lot of things that we do every day that cause damage to our teeth, from the things we eat and drink to the way we live our lives and the things we do (or the things we fail to do, as the case may be).  However, thanks to some immense leaps forward in dental technology, today there is something that we can actually do about it.

Of course, first it’s important to understand exactly what you do to your teeth every day that cause them damage.  Do you start your day with a cup of coffee?  Not only will it stain your teeth the same way that smoking will, but even worse, it is slowly wearing away the enamel with every sip, ignoring the added effects if you put in some cream, sugar, or various flavoring ‘syrups’.  Maybe you’re a more healthy kind of person, and you grab a glass of cranberry or cran-something juice, or go for that breakfast staple, orange juice?  Bad news; they all contain various acids, all of which act on the teeth for the worse, again, wearing away at that protective enamel.  Maybe you just drink a glass of water that contains some trace amounts of fluoride, which will actually strengthen your teeth, incidentally.  However, if you grab, say, on your way to work, a bacon egg and cheese sandwich from your local drive through or coffee shop, cafe, whatever the storefront may be, you’re also putting your teeth at risk; the food that you consume is going to be stuck in your teeth and slowly deteriorating enamel until such time as you brush your teeth and get the debris off.

Then there’s the things we do in our daily life that cause damage to our teeth.  Things like simply being clumsy, say, falling down just wrong and knocking out a tooth.  There’s also the conflicts we get into, fighting with other people who can, and has, resulted in the loss of a tooth here and there.  There’s even simple idiocy, people who’ve knocked out their teeth when trying to get something heavy off of a high shelf and having it land on their jaw, for an easy example.

Finally, there are those things that people neglect to do that can lead to the loss of teeth to cavities.  Things like simply failing to brush and floss your teeth regularly, for an easy example, or things like refusing to go to the dentist to get your cavities treated, letting them get so bad that the tooth rots to the point there’s little to nothing left.

the benefits of teeth implantsWhen we let things get this bad, what can be done?  In this modern-day and age, you can get a dental implant to replace a missing tooth.

It is, however, quite a lot of effort to get a dental implant.  To begin with, you’re going to have to have the remains of the previous tooth removed, so that there is room for the dental implants (this is obvious).  Then you’ll need to have the nerve endings removed via drilling or various other surgeries.  Then comes one of the most important parts; your local cosmetic dentist will take a drill, and will dig a hole into your jaw line.  Into that hole, they will place the dental implant, which is basically a titanium screw with a veneer on the end, made of porcelain, to simulate the missing tooth.  Once the dental implant is in place, they’ll basically give you various medicines that encourage the bone to close in and over the titanium screw, treating the whole thing as if it were a real tooth, and holding it in place the same way it would do for the real tooth.  If this process doesn’t occur, you may end up having to start back over at the step of ‘drilling a hole’ and begin the whole process again.  As you can guess, this whole thing can be painful, but such is the price of beauty!

So, if you’ve got a hole in your smile and find yourself feeling self-conscious about it, make an appointment with your local trustworthy family dentist and see if they can offer you a dental implant, or, indeed, if a dental implant is right for you.  You won’t regret it when your smile is restored to its  former glory.

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Learning About Adult Braces For Smile Correction April 4, 2015

Everyone got having braces out of the way when they were a good right? It might seem this way sometimes, but it couldn’t be further from the truth. There are millions of adults out there who need and want smile correction treatment. Some of them are afraid to seek the help of a professional orthodontic specialist. They may be self-conscious about having braces as adult and that’s fine. They may also perform a job where appearance is just too important to have a mouth full of metal. Others may not even be sure what options they have as an adult with a need to correct their crooked smile.

You might be surprised to know that there are several options beyond traditional braces. Each one of them offers some level of discretion, and if you evaluate all of them you might find the perfect tool for you. There are products old and new that may serve the exact purpose you need. Smile correction while nobody notices. So what are these options and how can they help you?

You might be one of the lucky ones who, while in need of corrective measures, isn’t in bad enough to shape to even require braces at all. An orthodontist may evaluate you and determine that best cause of action to go with is a spacer or simple retainer. These are both great choices, as they aren’t really noticeable unless people are intensely studying you. Sometimes an orthodontist will start with one of them, hoping it corrects the teeth sufficiently. Of course, this isn’t the typical case, and often times even after using one of them you’ll end up needing braces.

Let’s learn a little bit about traditional braces before we move on to other options. They are still the most commonly used form of smile correction. We know that braces have a fantastic success rate for correcting your smile and giving you long-lasting results. The process isn’t really simple, but it can be pretty easily explained. Brackets are attached to the teeth in need of correction. Wires are then attached to the brackets and tweaked to the exact tightness needed. It really is an exact science to figure out just how much you need to move a certain tooth. Braces are a solid option that really do work, they just aren’t the best when you’re focused on being discreet.

InvisalignIf you like the idea of going with the tried and true method of regular braces but would like to be a little more discreet, you should consider clear braces. They work the same way as the other braces, with a bracket and wires, but they aren’t nearly as obvious. Rather than steel in your mouth, glinting in the sun whenever you talk, your braces will be clear. They aren’t very noticeable, but people can still probably tell you are wearing braces. If you want to be more under cover than that, you’ll have to consider another treatment.

Discreet lingual braces for teeth straightening are a fantastic option for those who don’t want people to be able to notice that they are wearing braces at all. Your job may require a lot of time in the public eye, or could be heavily based on appearance. If this is the case, you probably want to avoid traditional braces in any style, clear or metal. Lingual braces are also known as hidden braces, because they are actually placed behind your teeth instead of in front. They still use brackets and wires, and they’ve been used for many years with success. The only issue is that if your mouth isn’t well suited for them, they can be quite uncomfortable. Be sure your orthodontist makes sure they’ll be a good fit before you go this way.

In my opinion, the best option you have today is Invisalign. This teeth straightening product is newer than the other, but has been around for quite a few years by now. It’s tried and true, and works well enough that most orthodontists do offer them. The a clear plastic tools that are placed over your teeth. They are removable and changed to fit the treatment goals as the process moves along. I think they are great because they are completely clear and extremely difficult for people to notice, even when they are standing right in front of you. If you’re looking for the ultimate in discretion when it comes to smile correction, look no further.

Don’t let cosmetic worries stop you from making a visit to the orthodontist. There are so many options out there nowadays that you’re bound to find something perfect for you.

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7 Tips for Professional Grow Rooms March 29, 2015

cannabis growing roomIt’s a great time to be alive. After years of needless and harmful prohibition, several states have finally come around to marijuana legalization. In started in the 1990s with medial legalization in California, and culminated in 2012 when Washington and Colorado voted in favor of recreational cannabis. The first recreational store opened in Colorado in 2014 and the rest is history. Downtown Denver and the surround area have as many medical and recreational dispensaries as they have Starbucks. Business is booming and the economy in Colorado is thriving as a direct result. Many people are opening businesses related to the industry, and you may very well be one of them. If you’re thinking of starting a storefront to sell marijuana, your grow room is going to be a very important part of that. Take these seven tips into advisement before you open your store.

1. Air-Tight and Light Proof

First of all, you want your grow room to be an air-tight space. This will make temperature and atmosphere control a great deal easier. You won’t be having to compensate for a drafty room and keeping your carbon dioxide levels steady will be a cinch. Additionally, you want your paneling to be light-proof, and you want to ensure there are no points for like to leak in. As you might know, having your crop flashed with light when it’s sometimes dark can present major problems.

2. Flexibility

You may want to consider a modular marijuana grow room for this very reason. If you build your grow to fill a traditional room, you may run into problems when it comes time to expand. If business is successful, you may need to grow more product than expected, or you may decide to open additional stores. Either way, if you’re in a static room, it’s going to be difficult to expand. You’ll have to move or remodel your space to fit your needs. On the other hand you don’t want too much space for your grow initially. The solution is a modular grow room. Essentially you’ll build a room within room in an existing building, storage space, or warehouse. Then, when it comes time to expand, you’ll simple add on to your modular grow room. It will be easy, safe, and inexpensive.

3. Location is Important

It’s a good idea to scout your location well before moving your grow their. Make sure that you’re in a relatively safe area, as you will be growing a product that is a commodity in very high demand. Make sure that you have a well-lit property with the necessary security measures in place. Some businesses even put their grows on the same property as their storefront. This allows for getting product to the store easily, and cuts down on transport costs.

4. Cleanliness and Organization

First of all, you don’t want to be mixing up strains. Your clients may be relying on the effects of a particular variation of cannabis, so make sure that you take utmost care when it comes to organization. Take care to also make sure that your grow is clean. This will help you avoid pests and other maladies. You’ll be much more likely to put out a top shelf product.

5. Properly Installed Equipment

The last thing you want to deal with is improper wiring or faulty installation of lights and ventilation systems. Another advantage of going modular with your indoor marijuana grow rooms is that the companies that install them typically offer track systems for lighting and fans. That way you know your equipment will be safe and secure. It will also be easy to adjust things as needed. Moving a light to a different area of the room will be a breeze when everything is on a track system.

6. An Expert Grower

If you’re getting into the cannabis industry and you’re not an expert grower, you better hire one to work for or with you. In a lot of cases a master grower is going to want to be a partner, not an employee, at least when it comes to small businesses. You can build the prettiest grow room possible, but if you don’t know how to grow you will be in big trouble. Competition is incredibly tough, especially in bigger cities like Denver. If you don’t have a top quality product you probably won’t succeed.

7. Have It Up to Code

The marijuana industry is heavily regulated. You’re going to undergo multiple inspections before you can open your retail store. You may want to find a company who can build out a custom grow room that meets all building code needs as well as meet the requirements for state and local regulations. Don’t let a simple oversight hold you back from opening your store.

Following these seven tips can get you head the right direction when it comes to running your own marijuana store.

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Why You May Benefit From Hiring an Accounting Firm March 27, 2015

In order to achieve wealth in any way, even if all the wealth you seek is the money to live comfortably and to have something planned away for your retirement and to leave your children after you pass on, then there is one key to success:  financial planning.  Good finances, and careful saving, can help to ensure a lifetime of fiscal solvency, while failure to plan for the various expenditures and windfalls you will experience will lead you to debt.  People who end up in debt can spend entire decades, even entire lives trying to get out from under it.  There are people who get into debt so deep that the only way to continue to subsist is to pay off one debt with another debt, doing so over and over again, until such time as you have no credit left and end up having to declare bankruptcy and hope that your debt can be discharged with the helps of the courts.  Of course, even more terrifying is the idea of getting into debt to the government, whether it be the federal government, state or city or other local governments, or to the Internal Revenue Services, becoming a victim of the complexities of the tax code.

tax accounting servicesA real issue that comes up when dealing with the issues of finance and taxation is that there is so little information given to young people on how to deal with any of these issues.  Most parents do not share with their children how to properly fill out taxes and correctly claim the right amount of deductibles and tax write-offs; it just isn’t something that people normally share with their kids.  The home also doesn’t seem to be the best place for teaching financial planning techniques or the balancing of a budget or checkbook (and let’s be honest here, nobody balances their checkbook anymore.  We all trust to the bank’s account balance that we can view on the internet with great ease, and don’t tend to notice that the balance can be off unless we note a lot of unauthorized withdrawals or something similar).  We also don’t teach anything about balancing a budget in schools, even though we used to, at least, teach a little bit about it.  Of late, many schools are cutting home economics classes, where one used to learn what was to be known about things like balancing the budget, making good purchasing decisions, and paying your taxes.

Taxes, of course, are always getting more and more expensive and more and more complex, and with that they become harder and harder to understand for the lay person who doesn’t spend the entirety of their time studying the tax code.  Where, when first taxation was introduced at the state level in the United States, it was only a few pages long and was easily read by anyone who was literate, today, it consists of hundreds upon hundreds of pages that are updated and changed annually.

So, with the issues in the lack of overall education on budgeting and tax paying and other fiscal issues, and the overwhelming complexity of the tax code as it currently exists, what can one do?  Where can one turn in order to find someone, or group of people, who can assist you in better managing your money in all facets of your life?

These people are CPAs, working in CPA firms that are of various stripes, some specializing in tax accounting, some in personal finance, the list is really exhaustive when it comes to the services that they offer.  The acronym ‘CPA’ stands for ‘Certified Public Accountant’, and is a title that denotes that an individual has gone through intense education and training and certification in various financial aspects, and are now certified in their expertise by the government or an agency that acts much like the guilds of old.

CPA firms are experts in financial planning, helping their clients and customers to create budgets that will set them on the path to better fiscal solvency, helping them to clear away their debt and grow their money, their bank account, and their retirement funds.  They do this by helping to cut away the fat in a budget, trimming away that which isn’t needed while maintaining that which is necessary.

CPA firms are also experts in tax law, allowing for the decoding of the tax code and helping to impart, to their customers, a better understanding of how best to work within the tax code in order to pay the least amount in taxes and get the largest return.  This helps keep more money in your pocket, and allows you to ensure that you’ve got more money in your budget to work with.

So, if you’re finding yourself in dire financial straits, or if you think you’re paying the IRS too much money, contact your local CPA firm today.

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What to Look for When You Pick a Denver Orthodontist March 23, 2015

Yes, I know that I’ve said ‘Denver’ orthodontist, but if you remove the references to location-specific information, you could really use this to pick an orthodontist just about anywhere in the US (and possibly in foreign nations.  I know, for example, that many orthodontists in Thailand boast of being trained and certified in the US).


A polite staff is a good staff.  Nobody likes to deal with gruff or rude staff, and the ability to keep office morale high is an indicator of a well-run organization.  Anyone who works in corporate team building will tell you that.  Everyone, from the dental assistants and the secretaries to the D.D.S. and other Doctors of various forms of dentistry will be, hopefully, polite.  I know, it’s common to think that people who are rude in the vein of Dr. House of television fame are some sort of super-intelligent maverick who knows more and is thus entitled to an attitude, but more often than not, arrogance and rudeness reveals a problem in an organization.


Overall hygiene is important in every branch of medicine, but especially so in dentistry.  These people, and the tools in their office, are going to be in your mouth.  If you have any fears concerning the cleanliness of an office, or of the dental implements contained within, you may want to seek dental help from another facility.  There are corners that can be cut to save money in almost any organization, but identifying what those corners are is very important, and in a job so reliant on sterile instruments, hygiene and cleanliness simply cannot be neglected.


I don’t mean location in that you need to find an office of Dentistry with a fantastic view, but more that you may want to find one close by.  The procedures they perform can be time-consuming and, if you’re unlucky enough to suffer the need for a root canal or to need treatment for something like a dental abscess, you will understand why it’s greatly preferable to go to a nearby office rather than having to drive across town.  A long and bumpy car ride while every nerve in your jaw cries out in pain is one of the least enjoyable experiences life has to offer.  Just take my word for that.

Knowledge of modern techniques and treatments

This is one of the really important ones.  Far more important than location.  Most orthodontists and dentists can tell you something about the basics of braces.  Brackets, plus wires, plus dental adhesives, ceramic or metal (and by metal, I mean stainless steel), and you keep them on and get them readjusted until your teeth are straightened to perfection.

But what you really want is someone who knows the options you have, and the difference that those options make.  What’s the upside and downside associated with have ceramic braces instead of stainless steel?  What’s the best choice for discreet braces for adults?  What braces will be affordable for my kids? Are braces the best way to straighten my teeth?

There are a handful of modern techniques worthy of note in orthodontic dentistry today.  As braces have evolved, they’ve strived to be more comfortable and more discreet.  The first modern braces were impossible to miss even from afar.  Today, we have things like ceramic braces that are much harder to spot (although they do suffer from issues if they’re not well maintained).

the power of orthodontistryEven ceramic braces, though discreet and durable, are not the most modern of tooth realignment technologies available today.  Thanks to the advances in computer sciences that have been made in the last few decades, you can get custom-made invisible braces that resemble retainers more than braces.  Invisible braces, branded ‘Invisalign‘, can be produced and customized to the individual by using x-ray images, photographs, and molds of the teeth.  Mixed with specialized computer programs, these data points will provide an affordable, invisible, durable, and comfortable set of aligners that resemble a set of retainers more than they resemble what the average person imagines when they hear the word ‘braces’.  These aligners are to be worn for a prescribed amount of time, in a prescribed order, and will slowly align the teeth into the optimal positioning for your particular jaw.  They’re a great choice for adults and children, and are affordable and discreet, which is really helpful if you work or if your child has to go to school, where visible braces can be a source for teasing and taunting. An orthodontist up-to-date on the latest techniques, procedures, and technologies will be able to tell you more, and to help you choose, from a variety of options, the orthodontic appliance that is best for your particular situation and needs.

At the end of the day, that’s what you’re looking for in a great orthodontist.  Someone who will help you make choices and make sure that they’re the best choice possible for you, your budget, and your peace of mind, concerning your teeth and your orthodontic appliances.  Someone who will be the very image of professionalism and trustworthiness.

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How Social Media Marketing can Profit your Business March 8, 2015

Every business needs profit to grow.  It’s an immutable law of the marketplace.  However, not every business is equally equipped to gain market share, which is what has to be done in order to increase your customer base in order to increase profits.

More established businesses have an advantage.  They’ve got more money to work with and a more widely known name, meaning they have more exposure.  To tip the scales further in their favor, they’re likely to already have an entire division, if not divisions, dedicated to advertising, marketing, and public relations.  These divisions are entirely dedicated to making sure that their business grows larger, faster, than any of their competitors.   They do this buy getting their messages out to the customer via various media sources.

Popular methods of reaching the customer are fairly obvious.  A large company will have the money on hand to tap into the more expensive venues, like television and film.  A thirty-second television ad can reach millions, especially if aired during popular national (or international) programming. However, the cost of the ad space, as well as the costs that are associated with producing the ad, or, more likely, series of ads, can be prohibitive to most smaller organizations.  More cost-effective, and more likely to be in the price range of a fledgling business, radio ads can reach many people.  However, they’re also easily ignored, with the majority of people listening to them while they’re driving to or from work, and really only using the radio as a source of background noise to their driving.  Print media, which is to say newspapers, magazines, and other periodicals, are a poor choice for most businesses, because they’re so rarely accessed by most of society.  Picking a venue to use to inform your customers can be rough.

As mentioned above, the costs associated can be prohibitive, especially if you’re going to try to do your own advertising in-house.  Many small businesses, especially those just starting out, choose to go with a public relations agency, which comes with a lot of benefits.  To start with, it removes the need for you to go out and hire your own public relations staff, something that, especially for a new or small business, is absolutely outside the realm of possibility.  After all the expenses associated with starting up a business, it’s not likely that your small business will be able to afford to keep someone on salary who costs forty thousand and doesn’t work with your customers, but rather solely works in trying to attract them.

Without the help of a PR firm, it’s also unlikely that you’re going to get a deal on media buys when purchasing ad space.  Large companies are able to get a deal because they’re buying in bulk, and they’re going to be buying in bulk again.  It’s almost guaranteed business.  Your small company, on the other hand, is going to buy very little, and going to be buying ad space very rarely. However, by going to a public relations firm, you can enjoy deals because they’re buying ad space in larger quantities in order to service the needs of all their clients, not just you.  You’ll also be better equipped to reach the target audience that you’re looking for with the guidance of your public relations agency.

Another way that they can help you is by helping you to manage your social media presence.  We live in a world where social media is growing at an exponential rate; most children have a social media presence before they can attend kindergarten, most commonly managed by their parents.  This means that more and more customers are signing into social media networks, where your ads can be seen, every day.  Better yet, they’re coming to where your ads are voluntarily.

A successful social media marketing plan will also include managing your social media pages, making sure that once a prospective customer (or return customer) has seen your corner of the social media web, they come back for more, providing you with return business.  This can be done with promotions, with deals, with updates on new products or services you’ll be offering, and by, in general, making them feel connected to your business via your social network pages.

Growth is important, and it can be a hard thing to achieve, especially when starting out.  Achieving growth in the early stages of opening a business is extremely important, though; without customers, you’re going to be closing your doors.  With customers, you’ll be expanding.  With a public relations agency by your side, you’ll be doing everything you can to achieve that growth.

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Five Solutions To Better Web Design March 1, 2015

experienced responsive web design agencyBy now it’s painfully apparent than in order to succeed in business, you’re going to have to build a proficient website. Whether this means you do it yourself, or you bring in a professional responsive web designer in to handle the hard stuff, you need to be prepared. By doing your research and knowing what you’re after, you’ll be one step ahead of the game. In order to have staying power in the business world, one must elevate themselves above the competition. One of the best ways to do that is design a truly great website, one that people want to go to and stay on. A lot of folks try to wing it when it comes to their presence on the web, and it shows. Avoid this pitfall and do it right. Put time and effort into your website and you will see it pay dividends. To help you along the way, take note of the follow five solutions to better website design.

Have A Professional Logo

Designing your company’s logo may not be as easy as it seems. You want to go with something that is memorable and will be instantly recognizable to your customers for years to come. The logo should be simple and clear enough to make a statement about your business to potential clients and customers as well. If you’re uncertain of your capabilities when it comes to this, don’t be afraid to outsource to a professional graphic designer. You may find it fairly reasonable to have a logo and a couple of alternates created.

Make Photography a Strength

Stock imagery just does not get it done when it comes to designing a professional and successful website. Expert web developers will tell you first hand, having professional photography can be the difference between a dud and a smash hit when it comes to website design. There are many, many photographers out there with high-end equipment that really do a fantastic job. Having images of your team of business in action is great for your website, and helps your image in the eyes of visitors.

Smart and Focused Design

You want your website to be memorable, but simple and easy to use at the same time. Employ colors on your site strategically, you don’t want to have something looking like the end of the Color Run (unless of course you have a news site covering the Color Run!). Have an established and consistent theme on your website that ties things together. Always take typography into careful consideration as well. One of the worst things for a website is to have it be illegible. Make sure not only that people can read your font, but that it fits into the theme of the site. Something like Comic Sans isn’t going to work well on a serious site. (Well, I wouldn’t recommend Comic Sans on any site for that matter).

Avoid Having an Annoying Site and Concentrate on Security

I feel as if these two things go hand in hand, so I’ve set them both up in the same category. Firstly, don’t be a nuisance. Nobody wants to come to a website with flashing banner ads, intrusive pop-ups, or spammy videos. Steer clear of these types of things at all costs. Directly tying into these types of things is security on your website. You want customers and clients to trust you and your site, so it may be worth it to consult a website developer when it comes to securing your website. Ensure that customer’s information is safe when it is being transmitted over your website, and it will go a long way towards establishing a great relationship.

Keep Mobile and Tablet Users in the Fold

Over the last five years or so, one of the biggest developments on the web has been the explosion of people using smartphones and tablets to access it. If you fail to account for these users, you’re going to be missing out on a massive chunk of the internet faring population. In addition, it will make your site seem unprofessional or unfinished if people cannot access it from multiple devices. You want to provide users on the go with the same experience people have using your site in the comfort of their own home. Always test your site and make sure it’ll work for everybody!

Your website is one part of your business that you definitely want to make a focal point. Not only can it be the most powerful marketing tool in your arsenal, but a well designed website can help increase your profits all across the board. Keep these five tips in mind, and approach your website with a tenacious and thoughtful attitude.

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Orthodontics Aren’t Scary February 26, 2015

Eventually, there will be a time in your life when you are going to have to talk to your parents about getting braces on – they will either start that conversation or you will! Putting braces on is really no big deal. While it can seem that you need to get nervous about them, putting braces on is just a normal way of getting through your life (you should think to yourself that it’s better to put them on now when you’re this young than when you are an adult, since it’s harder for them). You actually have a lot of malleable options that you can pick from (depending on how your teeth look), so when the time comes and you sit through that first appointment with the orthodontist, you should know that almost all tooth misalignment cases can be corrected with 100% improvement, and that once your treatment is done, you never really have to worry about it again!

The specialist who will be putting on the braces for you is the orthodontist, a specialist in orthodontics, or the study of tooth and jaw alignment. They will be the ones to assist you in your journey through smile correction. You do not need a referral to see one – even if you do get a referral from the dentist, it really is for your own benefit, and all it takes is several months of treatment before you see the smile that you have been hoping for. There are many different kinds of options available for you, and depending on your specific case, you may be able to choose something that is discreet and secretive – that way, no one else would have to know that you have them on, or anything. But the best way to find out is to speak to one directly.

Maybe the orthodontist will suggest that you wear retainers first, if he or she thinks that your case is mild enough. Retainers are a custom fitted wire that is designed specifically for the shape of your mouth, and they are meant to hold teeth in place for a while. They are used to prevent further misalignment mishaps in the future (if the orthodontist can see there is a risk of that), or after a period of wearing braces for treatment to continue to hold the teeth in place. They are discreet and are easy to put on and take off.braces

The first type of braces we will discuss are metal braces, which are made of steel. We are all familiar with these: they look pretty much obvious and tacky. They consist of metal brackets that are applied to the front of the teeth, and there are wires that are connected throughout that the orthodontist will use to tighten teeth into proper alignment. The pros to these? They are the cheapest option available, and they are extremely malleable. They can help anyone from mild cases to pretty severe ones. But these are just not acceptable for any adults because of the way they look.

For those who are hoping for a little bit more discretion, there is the option of wearing ceramic braces (also called clear braces). These work exactly like the metal braces do, except the brackets that are glued to the front of the teeth are made of a ceramic alloy. This makes it so that they are not screaming for attention. They work for any and every case, and they are also one of the cheaper options for treatments. But there are much better choices for discretion, because peers will be able to tell that these are part of your treatment.

If you are needing more discretion, one of the best options for that are the lingual braces, which work on the same bracket and wire system but they are glued to the back of the teeth instead of the front. They are called hidden braces for this reason! These are incredibly uncomfortable to wear, though, so you will need tolerance as well as an eligible case for them. They are effective in treatment, but not so for severe cases, because they will not be able to fit considering where they are placed.

Also for moderate cases of misalignment is Invisalign, which is a clear plastic aligner that is worn like a mouth guard. A computer program takes a scan of a mold of your teeth, and the orthodontist uses the program to create an aligner that is then printed by a 3-D printer. You have to pay for a replacement aligner every two weeks to continue treatment, which makes this the most expensive treatment available.

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Consider These Tips to Improve Your Website Design February 7, 2015

Everyone works online nowadays – even if you have a physical site where you are selling products or offering services, you need a website to attract visitors to that physical site. Without a website, it’s like not being able to let anyone know where you are located. It’s not enough to have physical, traditional advertisements anymore – you know, the billboards and flyers being handed out? This is because everyone uses the Internet to look up things, so it’s necessary that you have a website in order to even have an existence for the local and regional community. If you offer products for sale, the Internet allows you to access other customers that are far away, for example. If you don’t have a website, you are doing your own business a serious disservice, so it’s important that you hire a web developer so that you get that business taken care of. Here are some things that you should keep in the back of your mind when you are working with the developer on your website:website development

1. The color wheel is useful, but can be destructive if you let it. Creative folks will know what the color wheel looks like. It’s a good reference to look at when choosing a color theme for your website. Complementary colors are situated opposite of each on the color wheel: for example, blue and orange, green and red, and yellow and purple. While these are great for contrast purposes in art, you should never use them on your website because they clash way too much and may make things harder to see because of blurred lines. A website designer will be able to help you further if you are wanting to have a very colorful website – otherwise, you should really stick to simplicity for professionalism’s sake.

2. It’s good to know about visual hierarchy, which is means of how visitors will be accessing information from your website. Readers will start on the left and head over to the right, then from the top downwards. This is why you are normally told to have your logo on the left corner, with most likely your links to the right of it or right under the logo. Links will help your reader navigate the website. Links take them right to where they want to be in the least amount of time necessary, and so you do not want to make this hard for them. They will stick around when other links to pages in your website seem interesting enough. But you do not ever want to make them feel as though they are wasting time.

3. This is often abused, but you need to make it easy for readers to read your website. Reading is a simple, easy task for adults, so it doesn’t make sense to make it difficult for them to be able to read information off of your website. This means to never use complementary colors for your text, because words will blur with the background instead of pop out. It’s best to use safer methods for text, such as black on white or vice versa. There are ways to incorporate color into text, but you need to discuss the details of that with your designer, since that is some advanced design technique.

4. When it comes to talking with your web developer, you should use photos of websites that you already like as examples for your ideas, and it’s normally so because as humans we often have miscommunication. When making your own notepad of ideas, keep in mind some elements such as color scheme, layout, link mapping, text and font and navigation. With all of these elements coming together just to create a website, it’s very important that you have as clear communication with your web developer as possible, so do your own personal research as to what you want your website to look like – this process should be enjoyable for you at least.

5. With advancing technology, it’s become necessary to consider responsive website design. This is because people are using their tablets and smartphones to connect to the Internet, aside from their personal laptops. So instead of thinking about designing just one website, it’s like you have to design at least two. The way a website looks on a desktop or a laptop will not look the same on a smartphone or a tablet by far. It will need a completely different layout,  because the smartphone design will need to be aligned mainly with from top to bottom, without any use for left-to-right, since there is no space literally for that. Viewers on the go will have an easier time accessing your website this way.

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Mutual Funds Are Great And Here’s Why January 30, 2015

Mutual funds are a collection of invested money that have been collected by investors that are all involved with the fund. They collect this money based on their shared general interests and goals, and they use the money to buy stocks, bonds, instruments in the market, cash and other fund investments. Mutual funds are among the easier options to invest money in, especially when you consider how complicated the stock market options can get. Each mutual fund is different, and each one will carry its own rules and guidelines that have been decided by the company that they are a part of, or by the investors that have been part of the fund for a long time.  When you are deciding to put some investments into some mutual funds because you want to start getting into the stock market, be sure to start with the right foot forward by doing enough research regarding the mutual fund – there is plenty of information out there due to the fact that financial activity in mutual funds are recorded for public funds

What does the mutual fund do when they want to keep track of all the bookkeeping, the financial transactions, audits and taxes? They normally hire mutual fund accountants, which make sure that all financial activity related to the mutual fund is done in compliance with regulations and guidelines established by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The SEC has demanded that all financial activity is transparent and on public record, which would then expose any sort of violation of ethical financial behavior. This is done for the safety of investors (including you), and the mutual fund accountant is tasked with taking care of the mutual fund in this way.

What kinds of mutual funds are there? There are index funds, bond funds, money market funds and stock funds. Each mutual fund will have its own investment strategy and goal that is geared towards the uniqueness of the fund, and it goes so that each mutual fund will have its own history and portfolio that is located in public record. Mutual funds are companies, which means that they can hire accounting firms to do all of their accounting for them, and that they have plenty of their own fees, volatility in the market and operational expenses. Investors have to contribute to these expenses and fees in order to keep the mutual afloat, so that means you have to remember that when you are investing into a mutual fund, and be sure that you can afford that as well, since it will affect your returns.

When you invest in a mutual fund, you are investing along with many other investors, which means that you are all part of it together. Their decisions will affect you because of your association with them, which means that if the mutual fund manager decides to invest the millions collected by the investors in large companies like Google or Apple, you will end up benefiting and profiting off of his good decision. It means that you can invest $1,000 to a mutual fund and start owning some stake in those various companies involved (whereas on your own, you will need $100,000 to do the same, for instance). Don’t forget that the same is true for a bad decision – because everyone pooled the money together, they all take the risk of losing money, too.

When you are starting your research about mutual funds, generally it’s a good idea to start by reading mutual fund audits, which will give you a truthful assessment on the financial activity going on in any mutual fund. These audits are required by the SEC, and they will tell you whether or not the mutual fund has been managed properly. It will also tell you an accurate portrayal of the value of the mutual fund and how the fund has been performing. Mutual funds, because of these annual audits, are becoming more popular among investors, they are becoming more accessible for different types of investors, and they are thus easier to invest in than they have been before. Mutual fund audits help you protect your money by keeping you from making harsh risky decisions.

Usually investors run into a mutual fund through their 401(k) retirement plan. However you go to them, most of the mutual fund industry is based mainly on stocks, but larger mutual companies can have 45 options or more for you to invest in. This means that if you have an interest, it will exist through stocks. If you want, you can invest in mutual funds that are specialized in smaller stocks, dividend-paying stocks, growth funds or value funds!

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A Social Media Agency Makes A Difference January 28, 2015

There is a difference between telling people what to think and providing them with facts from an objective standpoint so they can decide for themselves. We cannot always count on news sources, traditional or internet, to report stories in a way that the general public is able to  critically decipher and develop their own well thought out and informed opinions about. Sometimes, people need helpful and subtle hints to push them in the right direction so that they are not blinded by less relevant information that clever language may have been used to put a spin on. This can go both ways, but if it is for a noble cause that you personally stand behind, wouldn’t you want all of the help that a strategic social media marketing agency could provide to get your message out?

Information comes from a lot of sources these days which makes it harder to control; for the government, news reporting agencies, corporations and the individuals that it affects. There are pros and cons to a free press becoming even more free with the advent of the internet, so it is all the more important to be able to control what you can about the information that people pick up and share with their peers. There are popular online social media websites where people congregate every single day and they bring their media appetites with them in order to feed on what they believe is nourishing or at least entertaining. The media diets of daily internet users are as diverse as the literal diets of the people who frequent various internet news sources looking for stories that they find interesting.

So many people want to be the first to get wind of an interesting story so they can share it with their friends that when they get a whiff of something interesting, they can rush to every online community that they are a part of and post the information for others to read and share themselves. Because people commonly behave in this manner, internet hoaxes can easily gain traction and spread throughout internet communities before a spokesperson or PR person who officially represents the person, company, organization or government entity that the story is about is able to discredit and refute it. Anyone and any organization can be targeted, so social media management representation is good to have because no one knows why or when they could be attacked or have something erroneous or downright lies published about them online.

People who know how to validate and fact-check stories are few and far between as it pertains to those whose main news source are social media websites. We are not dealing with Pulitzer prize caliber journalists for most of the stories that are shared on some of the most popular social media websites that millions of people read and regurgitate every day. So, having a PR firm who understands and practices the valuable merits of proper journalism and can easily discredit and mount a counterattack against the opposition when necessary is a great resource for any person or organization to have in their corner. Public relations are not just for reactionary measures though, they can be used much more effectively from a proactive standpoint.

Most of the success of a social media agency or a modern-day PR firm is dependent upon  maintaining a strong understanding of the client’s audience and cultivating genuine relationships with relevant news sources who can help create influence. PR professionals do not just react to stories, they in fact more often proactively design communication campaigns in order to get ahead of and control the flow of information. They write articles and statements on behalf of their clients and other content for websites and reputable news sources. They even work with their media contacts to provide relevant, featured news articles that promote a positive image for their clients.

PR firms are used to delicately delivering sensitive information to the public or the employees of corporations who may be not react well to some unfortunate news. Anything that can hurt production or contribute to a negative public perception of a company affects their bottom line, so the consulting fees that are required by an experienced public relations company who specializes in being the bearer of bad news is definitely worth it. For example, no airline employee wants to hear they are going to have to enforce baggage fees for their air travel customers, and their customers are definitely not going to be happy about it either. There are at least a couple of PR companies who have experience with this scenario that know a thing or two about delivering unfortunate news that no one is going to be happy about.

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Web Developers Should Know the Basic Dos and Don’ts January 20, 2015

Websites today have all started to kind of look similar, and that is a good thing in many ways because taking the time and energy to figure out a website like it’s a new language is not a good use of anyone’s time. There are company informational websites that people use almost like they did a phone book years ago and there are e-commerce sites that people used to use like a tangible product catalog. Both of these kinds of websites should be designed differently and they often are. There is a standard design for the kind of website that a company has constructed on their behalf depending on the information that they want to present to the internet public looking for their products or services and there are common dos and don’ts for a website design company.

1. DO make the most important information on a website the easiest to find – This means that whatever it is that is the company’s primary call to action should not be more than one click away, if it is to be a click away at all. Sometimes it is a good idea to have this information on the first page that internet users arrive at after they type in keywords that cause a webpage to come up on the search engine results page that they click on. The most relevant information should never feel like finding a needle in a haystack and if your company has a lot of information to present then it should be presented in a way that makes sense.

2. DON’T present information in a cluttered, unorganized kind of way - Human eyeballs gather information for the human brain and require that the information be provided in a discernible fashion so that it can be categorized and delivered appropriately. Certain advertising principles need to be adhered to with regard to the design of a website and often just being remembered is one of the main objectives, especially in industries with stiff competition. So, if there is something that makes a company special and separates it from the pack, this differentiating factor should be presented in a way that the internet visitor will remember, but not until after they realize they have arrived at the right place.

3. DO use intelligent branding and slogan placement – A company’s logo is an important tool that is meant to be remembered. Repetition is an effective mechanism for memory and on a webpage this concept can be applied in a couple of different ways. On many informational webpages a company’s logo is centered on the top of the page or located on the top left or right. This is the case on every page of the website and it usually doubles as a clickable link that brings the visitor back the homepage. Sometimes, a digital marketing agency will soften the logo image and place it in the background of the web pages in a repetitive pattern that is reminiscent of wallpaper. If a company has a clever slogan that will help people remember them, a web developer may decide to place it at the bottom of every page or opposite the logo, if the slogan is not included as a part of the logo.

4. DON’T allow pup-ups of any kind on a webpage - Pop-ups are a scourge and it seems that the only people who enjoy them are the internet marketers that sell advertising and use these annoying little boxes as their message-delivery vehicles. With pop-ups it is simple: They are ineffective and upsetting to an internet webpage viewing experience. Friends don’t let friends click on pop-ups and good web designers don’t allow pop-ups to infect the websites they design like a cancer that will ruin their bounce rate. When a website viewer arrives at a website and then leaves it within a short amount of time it contributes to their bounce-rate.

There are an immense amount of things that a good web developer knows about their business that can help just about any other business increase theirs. New web development agencies are being created every single day because the internet generation is graduating from college in spades every single semester with valuable and relevant experience in the fields they have educated themselves in to be employable. Effective web development is a crucial piece of every modern-day business who wants to be successful but finding a developer that knows what they are doing is an important piece of the puzzle. Finding one that knows the basic dos and don’ts of the business is a good place to start for any business who is looking for the proper internet partner.

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Mutual Funds Usually Play A Part In A Sound Financial Strategy December 29, 2014

There are no guarantees in life, this statement is especially true regarding financial investments whether they are for one’s retirement savings or with the general intention of building wealth. Just about everyone in this world, to one degree or another depends in many different ways on financial systems in order for there to be any certainty in their lives. Most people are quite focused on their security in every sense of the meaning and their financial security is of particular concern. There are plenty of people who receive an extensive education and work as accountants and financial planners in order to help businesses get organized and help secure people’s futures. Many accountants go on to take their Uniform Certified Public Accounting Examination so they can gain employment at a CPA firmIndividual people and businesses alike enjoy feeling secure so they can think about the future instead of feeling like they need to be constantly concerned about the now.

People did not used to live as long as they are living today and they had much more to worry about on a daily basis in terms of just being able to put food on the table that they scarcely had time to worry about things like retirement. 401K savings plans began gaining popularity in 1980s after a tax-free income deferment provision was added to the Internal Revenue Code in 1978 that allowed people to move a portion of their earnings into a savings account before it was taxed. Money markets and investment strategies and vehicles have been evolving ever since and although 401K plans began as a simple way to defer a portion of one’s income for savings, more involved ways to invest those savings have been created to help retirement accounts grow more quickly. Getting creative and finding ways to save money can become a healthy habit and can lead to interest in many other kinds of investments.

401K plans are usually offered through one’s employer where they are presented with investment options like, mutual funds, individual brokerage accounts, and guaranteed insurance contracts. So, instead of money just going to a savings account where it sits and gains interest, it instead goes to work for the 401K contributor in ideally, high-performing investments. One is never taxed until they access their 401K funds, normally when they retire. There are some exceptions where one Is able to gain access to their funds like a financial hardship or for a down payment on a home, but there are stiff penalties for doing so if they should feel they need to make a withdrawal. Many people make other investments through a stock broker or a trading company of some kind on top of their 401K investments as well and that can make a lot of sense. Everyone should at least have a retirement account of some kind, that is if they ever plan on retiring and want money saved up to live off of.

Mortgage accounting services are offered to individuals and companies who have real estate assets. There are millions of home owners in the US and although most of them are single-home owners who do not have a need for a mortgage accountant, there are many investors whose portfolios contain real estate investments that require this kind of expertise. Knowledge of taxes, interest rates and all kinds of things are important for a someone to have access to if they do not thoroughly understand these things themselves. Most independently wealthy people who did not start that way attribute most of their financial success to making smart real estate investments because historically speaking, real estate is a very smart investment, especially in appreciating residential and commercial markets. There have been real estate lulls that have occurred in the past but more often than not, they are considered safe investments that generally appreciate over time.

When an investor is a little more involved they tend to get their hands into stocks, bonds, cash and commodities. They may put more time, attention and money into mutual funds as well but when someone is dealing with a serious amount of cash that they want to invest, they start to look into hedge funds. Hedge funds are high-risk investments vehicles that only individuals with very high net worth and approved and accredited financial institutions are allowed to take part in, because with big risks come big rewards and sometimes big losses. Monumental losses are not common but only individuals and financial institutions who have the ability to recover if they were to lose big are even able to take the chance, which is a good thing.


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The 411 on Braces December 24, 2014

Getting straight, beautiful teeth is normally a must for most people, who feel that either need to compete with other people in order to make a proper first impression, or just to be able to feel better about themselves or to feel more attractive. It’s something that is on the minds of all who have crooked teeth – they may just not talk about it much. It’s hard not to understand why – we see all successful people and anyone in front of a camera to have straight teeth. It makes us look different to others, as they will determine us to be more clean and in control when we have straight teeth. Just think about the last person you know to have terrible teeth – it’s likely that for a short while, at least, you didn’t think too highly of them, unfortunately. It’s nothing to be ashamed or concerned about. It is crucial to have straight teeth, especially if you are thinking of entering the professional sphere. Whether you are in high school, which is the prime time to be wearing braces or in college, of which you are terrified of being rejected by your peers in this age because you are all trying to grow up into being adults, there are several options available so that wearing orthodontic treatment options don’t have to be a bother or a concern.Invisalign

Basically, the reason why most adults shudder at the idea of wearing braces at their age is because of the nasty reputation of metal braces. The use of metal braces are pretty much kind of unapproachable due to the fact that it’s extremely noticeable to others when you have them on, which plays into the stigma that is haunting the wearer. It’s not a method that people reach out for anymore, but it’s decent in the ideal sense to understand the way it works so you can understand the way the other alternative methods work. Metal braces are made of steel, and they are comprised of brackets that are attached to wires. The wires are what pull the teeth into place as they are tightened by the orthodontist. The brackets are essentially glued to the front of your teeth, which is why everyone can see them.

As stated before, these kinds of braces can make people feel very insecure about their appearance, and if your crippling low self-esteem continues to bother you daily, it can actually have an impact on your livelihood, which includes how you make friends and how you get jobs. Orthodontists have been since trying very hard to find ways to make teeth alignment strategies more approachable to others by trying to make them more discreet. One of these newer treatments would be the creation of clear braces, which are built exactly like metal braces except that they are made of materials that make them clear and see-through, instead metal. This material blends in so much better to the teeth than the metal braces which create nothing but a stark contrast. The clear braces also do not reflect light like metal braces do, which makes them less noticeable. They are not invisible though. Friends and peers will be able to tell that you have braces on, but at least it doesn’t really attract unwanted attention like metal braces do. Some of them are made of ceramic, which are called ceramic braces.

If you are in the corporate world or anything like it, then clear braces can’t work for you much. But for you, there’s the extremely discreet option of wearing lingual braces, which are designed to hidden as they are attached to the back of your teeth. They also follow a bracket and wire system as the traditional braces, but the great perk is that no one else will be able to tell that you have them on. They are painful at times and it’s makes it very difficult for the orthodontist to put it on. It takes very careful technique to put them on safely, as well. They are more expensive than the previously mentioned options.

Recently, there have been releases of invisible braces, or what many people will know it to be Invisalign. This is the best technology at its finest in the field of orthodontics. The orthodontist will use a computer program to scan a mold of your teeth, and then create a model with adjustments for the treatment. An aligner is then made from a 3-D printer, that is personalized to the patient, and it wears very easily like a mouth guard. No pain or glue or wires necessary for this! The greatest perk of the Invisalign is that it does look invisible to most other people, and right now it’s among the most popular methods of teeth alignment strategies that is growing every year.


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Orthodontics in Sacramento For All December 16, 2014

One of the biggest factors that people weigh the most heavily in the equation of what they want to do for a living has to do with where they want to live. If this means more than how much money they can make or what they are actually doing for a living, then where one wants to reside is going to influence the direction their education and careers are going to take them more than just about anything else. It is no wonder why so many practice orthodontics in Sacramento because it is a beautiful place to live and there is a large enough populous who makes on average makes a pretty good living to help support their practices. Some of the most popular destinations for medical professionals are some of the most popular and desirable lifestyle centers of country. Cities all over California are popular places for a medical professional to want to reside and establish their practice, as is Seattle, New York City, Las Vegas and various cities in Texas. One can make a profitable living and have a stable career as an orthodontist and when that fact is combined with a strong likelihood that you can also live where you want to live; it is no wonder why so many people with medical field aspirations pursue careers in dentistry and orthodontics.

No one can get into orthodontics without first studying dentistry. It does not matter if they get a Bachelor of Dental Surgery (BDS), a Doctorate of Dental Surgery (DDS) or a Doctorate of Medical Dentistry; the field of dentistry is the initial road that anyone who wants to become an orthodontist has to travel down. After obtaining either one of these required scholastic accolades, a future orthodontist is eligible to complete a residency after they apply and are accepted to a board-certified program. The American Board of Orthodontics oversees these programs to ensure that their curriculum and training is top-notch so that anyone who completes their program at any residency location is fully qualified to be an orthodontist. During one’s time spent at their residency, they not only get a thorough education through a strict and detailed curriculum, but they also work hands-on with patients (mostly applying fixed straight wire appliances, or braces to those who are not familiar with orthodontic jargon). So, when completing one of the last steps required before officially becoming an orthodontist, the resident can effectively present six different mandatory cases of the highly individualized orthodontic treatment they provided based on the experience they gained during their residency. If the board is satisfied and the resident then passes their written orthodontic exam, they become certified orthodontists by the American Board of Orthodontics and are able to set up shop anywhere in the country.

Invisible braces are a teeth straightening method that any orthodontist living and working in a part of the country where people feel self-conscious about the braces procedure. There is some flexibility involved with this term though because sometimes it refers to braces with clear, plastic brackets that are difficult to detect and other times, Invisalign is what is being referred to.Invisible or clear braces are a great alternative for teenagers and adults who want to have a perfect smile but are self-conscious about the idea of how noticeable traditional stainless steel brackets and wiring are to others. When people feel like there may be social and/or professional repercussions associated with having their teeth or bites corrected, it can keep them from doing anything at all. When this happens, it is a shame because everyone should be so lucky as to feel confident about their smile because when they do not, they are not able to express joy in the most natural way. Do not underestimate the power of a smile because it can honestly make someone’s day.

Some people who are scared about the idea of getting braces are great candidates for Invisalign but sadly, others are not. Invisalign is a procedure that uses clear, plastic ‘trays’ or ‘aligners’ that fit snugly up against a patient’s teeth and no metal, plastic brackets or wiring of any kind is required. For those whose individual situation is such that their orthodontist believes that they can deliver satisfactory results with Invisalign braces; it is often an opportunity that a patient will jump at because invisalign is almost completely undetectable, as opposed to traditional braces. Even braces applied using plastic or ceramic brackets are by no means invisible although their presence is obscured at least slightly. For this reason, those whose orthodontist’s recommend Invisalign usually agree that it is their best option.

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