Archive for the 'business' Category

Are we a mission society?

We head a 501(c)3 non-profit organization that supports missionaries and missions in other countries so during our annual preparations to file vital paperwork with the IRS, I discovered a clause in the IRS’s Form 990 and Form 990EZ instructions that indicated that we might not need to file since we’re a mission society.  It says:

A mission society sponsored by, or affiliated with, one or more churches or church denominations, if more than half of the society’s activities are conducted in, or directed at, persons in foreign countries.

We fit the category of sponsored by one or more churches and over half our activities are conducted in foreign countries so I set about trying to discover how the IRS defines a “Mission Society.” Continue reading ‘Are we a mission society?’

For Sale: Photocopier Canon ir6000

THIS ITEM IS SOLD

Continue reading ‘For Sale: Photocopier Canon ir6000′

Bad News: Is knowing better than ignorance?

“It’s something you’d expect from Ebenezer Scrooge: Firing 20 employees of a sandwich shop days before Christmas.” That’s how WGN-TV described the firing of 20 workers.

For me, as difficult as that news may have been, I think I’d rather know bad news like this before the big Christmas day instead of right afterwards especially considering how people often overspend in preparation for Christmas. At least the newly unemployed could cull their gifts to something that matches their new budget instead of trying to convince family members to let you have their gifts back or to look for cash exchanges for the gift cards they gave you!

What about you? Would you want to find out after Christmas or before if you were about to lose your job?

DiGiorno Pizza Newsjacked the “Sound of Music”

I found another great example of newsjacking. DiGiorno Pizza got attention during the NBC’s Live Sound of Music Broadcast when they tweeted a series of messages drawing attention to how pizza should have been or “must” have been included in this production. This is classic and hilarious newsjacking!

DiGiorno Pizza live tweets ‘Sound of Music Live!’ Hilarity ensues

Here are some other examples  of newsjacking to get your mind going!

 

‘Useless Plastic Box’ on sale at Best Buy

A prankster put out a new product at Best Buy Stores in the Los Angeles area. The “Useless Plastic Box”.

This innovatively useless product was labeled as “Another gadget you don’t really need. Will not work once you get home. New model out in 4 weeks. Battery life is too short to be of use.”

This reminds me of things my brother and I and our friends would have pulled off together.

 

via Best Buy Prankster Puts ‘Useless Plastic Box’ On Store Shelves Across Los Angeles – ABC News.

Paypal-style “Contribution” Button

PaypalContributeLooking for a Paypal Style button that says “Contribution” instead of subscribe or donate? Here you go!

Right click the image to download it!

Model Release App : Easy Release

Getting model releases signed and organized has always been a hassle for photographers and videographers especially when they ‘re on the move. Now “there’s an app for that” too!

Now photographers can use their tablet or smart phones to get the releases signed and even translated on the go! Then you can have the Getty Images-ready release e-mailed to you in jpeg or PDF form ready for archiving. The releases even include a ID image so you can visually match the shoot to your images later on!

What a great idea! I’d love to try this one out

Easy Release by ApplicationGap replaces inconvenient paper release forms with a slick, streamlined model release app designed by professional photographers for professional photographers.

via Model Release App : Easy Release by ApplicationGap : HOME.

How A Pink Bowl Created Buzz

Just Salad's Pink Bowl Promotion

Just Salad’s Pink Bowl Promotion

Just Salad gave a great example of how to create buzz with people who already love their product: Faithful Customers.

They sent out 100 skip-the-line pink bowls to faithful customers and then promoted the concept and the buzz took things from there.

A happy Customer who blogged about his pink bowl experience!

Personally I’d never heard of Just Salad, but that may have something to do with me living in a third-world-country. However, I felt myself wishing I had a pink bowl from this restaurant and I could skip lines for a fresh salad! In fact, I think the TSA should  provide this sort of thing for lines at the airport! I can see it now…” Hey! You can’t cut in the line…Oh, sorry, I didn’t see your pink carry on bag. Come right on in!”

Ok, so that’s dreaming a bit. However, I think Just Salad did a great job of getting their name out there AND rewarding those who have been faithful to their business.

“For the cost of a bowl, shipping, and a free topping, $20? the small business reached thousands of customers and prospects.”

via How to Create Word of Mouth Magic | LinkedIn.

Our Debt: A Fire Out of Control

This is a short essay I wrote while a freshman at college in 1996. Things have gotten worse since then.

Our national debt began like a necessary, comfortable fire but has grown into a blazing inferno that is devouring our resources. Some have said that debt is the price of freedom or a “necessary evil” because that money was needed to kindle the financing of our fledgling nation and our war for independence.
According to Robert Burn’s article, “Born in Hock” in The Kansas City Star on March 1, 1993, our debt began with the Revolutionary War (1775-1783) and by 1789 was at $77 million. That was 38 times larger than our governments yearly revenue! Because of government concern about the debt, they were able to reduce the debt to a mere $38,000 by 1893, even after the costly Civil War.
Since 1893 our nation has increasingly lost consciousness about our financial status. Our debt has increased with each war and even reached the $1 trillion mark in 1981. Looking back we can see that our nation went through two World Wars, Korea, and Vietnam, but the shocking fact is that since 1981 our debt has more than quadrupled and now stands at the enormous amount of $5.2 trillion. The Linn County News of August 28, 1996 quotes our debt at $5,213,488,943,748.22, a nearly incomprehensible number. On a scale where five inches equals $1 billion, $5.2 trillion is more than 2,085 feet away. That is longer than six football fields end to end or $19,629.55 for every man, woman and child in America (based on a population of 263.5 million people)! Continue reading ‘Our Debt: A Fire Out of Control’

How to: Banking in Guatemala

Banking outside of your home country can be difficult, but it’s not impossible. With a little help and patience, you can transfer, access and use money anywhere in the world. Especially with online banking, it’s easier than ever to manage your finances from wherever your road takes you. Here are some tips from my experience as a foreigner living and banking in Guatemala.

How to get money from the U.S. to Guatemala

1) You can bring cash with you (Up to US$10,000 can be brought in  with out declaring it.) but then you’ll have to go to the trouble of

keeping it and yourself safe until you can deposit it in a bank or use it. (Note: you’ll need your passport with you to exchange this money into local currency at the bank.

2) You can use an ATM card to withdraw up to your daily limit. Just be sure to notify your bank that you’ll be doing this or they’ll lock your card down like Fort Knox.

3) I recommend that you have a bank account in the U.S. that receives funds for you and then take checks with you to Guatemala. By writing a check to yourself you can deposit money to your account in Guatemala (see more on this below). Continue reading ‘How to: Banking in Guatemala’