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Research Network Blog of NYS SBDC

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The Research Network aims the content of this blog primarily at the New York Small Business Development Center (NY SBDC) community on the kinds of things we encounter every day. Views expressed are those of the Research Network staff, and not necessarily those of the New York SBDC or its partners. Comments to an individual post are encouraged. Such comments will be monitored, so please, keep them clean and professional.
Updated: 3 hours 18 min ago

2014 FAST Tech Conference Thursday, September 25 at UAlbany

September 19, 2014 - 3:07pm
Are you looking to fund research or start a technology business?  Come and learn about how local entrepreneurs built theoretical business models into viable technology companies.  The program is open to students, faculty, researchers, alumni, and the general public, so reserve your seat today.

2014 FAST Tech Conference

Thursday September 25, 2014 from 8:00 AM to 12:30 PM EDT
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WhereUniversity at Albany - School of Business
School of Business Building - Living Room
1400 Washington Avenue
Albany, NY 12222
Driving Directions

Conference Schedule:
 8:00 a.m. to 8:30 a.m.
Check-In and Networking
8:30 a.m. to 9:40 a.m.-Plenary Session
 Tales from the Trenches
9:40 a.m. to 11:20 a.m.-Break-Out Sessions
 Transitioning from Research to Commercialization
Growing your Start-Up and
Holding onto Equity
Building a Successful Team
Turning Data into Dollars
11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.-Plenary Session
 Interview with a Local Success Story
Cost to Attend:No Charge Register Now! Event Contact:
Kate BakerSmall Business Development Center, University at Albanykbaker@albany.edu518-380-5073

On September 25th, the Albany SBDC will be hosting its 3rd annual technology conference.  Students, faculty, and staff from all colleges and organizations are welcome, along with all SBDC statewide staff.  The program is focused on startup and funding best practices from experts and local entrepreneurs. 
The conference features SBIR guru Drake Thomas of Brockport SBDC, and a keynote interview with Bob Godgart, founder of Autotask.  Autotask was recently purchased by a venture capital firm for an undisclosed multi-million dollars.  Please let us know if you would like to attend.
The New York State Small Business Development Center (SBDC), based at the University at Albany’s School of Business, has been awarded the University’s President’s Awards for Exemplary Community Engagement in 2013 and 2014, a recipient of a Tribecca Disruptive Innovation Award (, and named among the top ten centers in the nation by the U.S. Small Business Administration in 2009 and 2013. ( 
Categories: News from others

3 Things You Need to Do When Choosing Technology for Your Business

September 19, 2014 - 11:45am
As an SMB owner, you want to maximize the investments you’ve made in your business. You want to get more done in less time. And you want to ensure you’re communicating effectively with customers and employees. The right technology can help you do both. Here are three ways you can ensure you’re making the right technology decisions for your business.

1. Know that “free” often comes at a cost.

More from the America's SBDC.
Categories: News from others

Re-branding – how not to alienate your customers

September 18, 2014 - 11:29pm
Branding your business is tricky. You have to make sure it comes across as appealing, a ‘must have’ brand that’s not too pretentious.

Over time, your company will change leading to a need to refine your brand image, but even the smallest of changes can affect your target market and their perception of your brand.

Clive Rohald has written an interesting article in The Drum about how to give your brand identity a makeover without alienating your customers. Here are some of his thoughts.

Every company, at one time or another, will feel the need for a brand refresh. The question is, how can that be achieved without it turning into a disaster.

1. Why is there a need for change?

More from SmallBusinessNewz.
Categories: News from others

Why You Should Use In-Person Events to Foster Customer Relationships

September 17, 2014 - 11:03am
Why do people buy from you? It boils down to two things: they found you, and they picked you.

Let's talk about "they found you."

To get people to find you, you've got to tell them about yourself or someone else has to tell other people about you. If you're the only grocery store in your town, you don't have a problem with people finding you. You stick a sign outside and reach 100% of your target market.

Most of us, however, spend a lot of brain cycles trying to figure out how to tell the world about our thing. We use ads, content, social media, and so on to try to spread the word.

Moreover, getting someone's attention is becoming increasingly difficult. The amount of stuff being created today—such as photos, tweets, blog posts, Facebook posts, YouTube videos, and emails—is making it hard for our message to squeeze its way into people's limited attention span.

Read more from MarketingProfs

Categories: News from others

Top 30 Startups to Watch

September 16, 2014 - 3:32pm
In theory, entrepreneurship sounds awesome. You’re your own boss so you can set your own hours, work from home in your PJs and do work that really matters to you.

But as any entrepreneur will tell you, starting your own business is not nearly as glamorous. In fact, it can often be pretty scary and lonely. Entrepreneurs take a great financial risk to get their ventures off the ground, often using their own savings and quitting steady jobs to pursue their dreams. Yes, entrepreneurs make their own hours, but they put in many more of them than the average employee (often 12 a day or more) and, still, they face a high failure rate.

Entrepreneur values those who choose to create their own path, and we’re not alone.

Empact, a Princeton, N.J.-based company that provides education and networking opportunities to young entrepreneurs, today released its annual list of 100 startups led by entrepreneurs under 35 that should be on everyone’s radar. Those chosen for the Empact100 stood out among hundreds of submissions and impressed an all-star panel... Decisions were based on factors such as revenue, social impact, volunteer hours, growth over the past year and the number of employees.

We took the Empact100 and distilled it further, finding the 30 startups we think are most unique and have the potential to transform their industries, if not the world. While there were many impressive companies to choose from, these are the ones that excited us most.

Keep your eye out for them, and be prepared to tell your hipster friends that you heard of them before they got huge.

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Categories: News from others

Top 5 Current Scams in International Trade

September 15, 2014 - 11:14pm
#1 The fake freight forwarder company scam.
The fraudulent forwarders pose as legitimate companies with spare cargo capacity. Their truck arrives on-time to collect the freight and then disappears, never again to be seen.

The Scoop:
Here is how it works: Once a signed and sealed agency agreement is in place between both parties and business starts, all appears to be normal. This is until the cargo arrives at the port and no-one has received the original bill of lading from the forwarder in China. When contacted, the forwarder demands a large ransom for the release of the original bill of lading. Companies which refuse to pay find themselves on an expensive rollercoaster ride of meetings with customers, lawyers, insurers and shipping lines in order to obtain the original bill of lading so the cargo can be released. By spreading shipments around a number of shipping lines, fraudulent forwarders can make this recovery process even more onerous. These forwarders may be real companies who are just out for the quick kill, or fraudulent companies that are not registered in China at all as a freight forwarder, making it more difficult to take any recourse.

#2 The Close The Deal Meal Scam

A big deal is closed and the middle man encourages you to come to China (usually meetingclients in person is good advice) but while there suggests a celebratory meal for you and gift for your new customer.

The Sco