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Small Business Saturday includes input from SCORE


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Published on: Tuesday, December 07, 2010

By Victoria Brinkley

The SCORE chapter in Washington, D.C. helped to jump start many local businesses that now benefit from Small Business Saturday.

Created by American Express to celebrate smaller venues, the huge shopping day now occurs the Saturday following Thanksgiving. Benefits for participating American Express card members included a $25-off offer when consumers purchased from a small business, and businesses were eligible for free advertising on Facebook.com.

In honor of Small Business Saturday, the CEO of SCORE, Ken Yancey, was interviewed on MSNBC to discuss the retail holiday sandwiched between Black Friday and Cyber Monday.

Yancey said during the MSNBC interview that there are benefits, aside from convenience, to shopping with small businesses — parking is easier, the crowds are smaller and the service is better. Plus, for specialty items, customers can talk to the retailer about the product and hear what other customers are saying — creating a rapport between the consumer and the business.

“It creates vibrancy (and) good economic health,”Yancey said in the MSNBC interview.

Of course, there are several major steps to starting a business, but the most crucial is the drafting of a business plan, which can be elaborate or straightforward, depending on what the entrepreneur wants to convey.

The organization offers nearly 40 programs in different areas of business, teaching the entrepreneur or aspiring owner how to cope with situations that may arise.

“All SCORE volunteers have expertise in business management,” said Jonathan Groner, SCORE spokesman.

Therefore, SCORE offers workshops dedicated specifically to the business plan. The workshop covers the concepts a business plan should include, and the next workshop begins at 9 a.m. Dec. 16.

“It is always an important guide for the entrepreneur that helps him or her to make decisions of the issues involving financing, marketing, production and every other aspect of the business,” Groner said.

SCORE encouraged its clients to find ideas for promoting their business in honor of Small Business Saturday and directed them to SCORE’s Facebook page for creative marketing ideas. The organization also directed its efforts toward the general public, telling consumers to purchase at small businesses.

SCORE, which started in 1964, is a national organization dedicated to the success of new and existing small businesses. Locally, SCORE is donating both time and talent to entrepreneurs by offering counseling, mentoring, and workshops to all types of small businesses.

For more information about SCORE, visit scoredc.org. Prince George’s County entrepreneurs may contact the counseling center in Largo at 301-583-4603 to make an appointment.

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