3 Can’t-Miss October Events for Canadian Small Biz Owners

October smallbiz events
October 1st, 2014 marked the start of Small Business Month across Canada. Now in its seventh year, Small Business Month provides small businesses an opportunity to attend one of several events and get exposure to; networking tips, strategies for finding new customers and suppliers, and learning growth tactics from many experienced entrepreneurs and professionals.

Sage One has partnered with many leading business brands across Canada to support Small Business Month and offer businesses like yours a special prize package worth $16,000. Enter online simply by telling us a little about yourself and what your business goal is for 2015.

In addition to this amazing prize, we’ll be in attendance at one of Canada’s largest national business event series, the SOHO SME Business Expo in Toronto on 15th October and Vancouver on 30th October. We’re excited to be a sponsor of this event – it’s a great opportunity to be inspired by other successful small business owners. Learn from our speakers’ success and failure stories and get valuable tips for sales, marketing, finances and more. If you’re in the area, drop in and come meet us. Say hi, submit a feature request or offer some feedback – we love meeting our Sage One customers!

This month, we’ll also be sponsoring the Canadian National Women in Business Conference on October 19th and 20th in Vancouver. This fantastic event delivers every time! It’s where women business owners and professionals learn, network and develop meaningful mentoring relationships. We have a special offer just for Sage One customers– receive discounted entry and pay just $100 for registration when you enter the promo code SavewithSage before October 17th. If you’re planning on attending then let us know so we can arrange to meet you!

Finally, October marks the kickoff of the Small Business BC Awards. Nominations are open to businesses in British Columbia – so go ahead and nominate a business partner, customer, or even yourself! Every nomination counts.

Take part in one or more of the events offered this month – and get ready to launch your business into 2015. We wish you and your business endeavors the best of luck for October and the months ahead!

About the author:

Keith Arkle – Product specialist and customer advocate
My inspiration arises out of testing new ideas, learning from the results and implementing new features and products in order to better serve our customers. I am always on a mission to “crack the code” and discover what works best for our customers and their businesses. In my free time, I make it my mission to seek out the best cherry-flavored foods – cherry slushies are my Achilles heel.

Drop me a line at keith.arkle@sage.com. Follow me on Twitter.

Introducing the Sage One Mobile App

Sage One mobile app

Did you know that 94 percent of small businesses now use smartphones to conduct business? If you’re part of that 94 percent, this statistic may not surprise you. You’re probably among the two-thirds of this group who have saved money by using your smartphone to help manage your business. But has smartphone use also become a competitive necessity?

Your competitors are likely now using smartphones to help respond to customers more quickly. As a result, consumers have come to expect a higher level of service from large and small businesses alike. That’s why we’ve built a new app to help Sage One users better compete.

With the new Sage One iPhone app, you can create and send professional customer invoices from your phone. You can see the status of all invoices; apply customer payments, and re-send invoices that are unpaid. It also makes it so easy to track and categorize expenses while you’re on the go. Because the app is part of Sage One, you can switch between Sage One on your phone and in your browser without interruption.

Get your Sage One app on the App Store. If you’re not using Sage One yet, sign up for a free trial, then install the app. As always, send us your feedback and let us know what we can do to help you run a successful business…from anywhere!

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About the author:

Mike Savory – Customer advocate and automation engineer
I operate at the intersection between technology and ease of use. I strive to make our customers’ lives easier through elegantly automating manual processes. Much of my time is spent listening to small business owners, making sure to bring their voice to the table in everything I do. My free time is spent with my kids, which includes being a Cub Scout leader for an energetic group of 10-year-olds where I’m lobbying for a Software Product Management badge.

Drop me a line at michael.savory@sage.com.

Follow me on Twitter.

Why Mobility for Small Biz is Taking Over

small business mobility
It’s official—mobile technology has taken the top spot as the United States’ leading digital platform. Total activity on smartphones and tablets now accounts for 60 percent of digital media time spent in our country.

It’s not surprising. Life – and work – happens on the go. With mobile technology, small business owners are able to work smarter and more efficiently. Mobility has changed the game for small businesses owners, and it’s no longer optional to participate in the mobile revolution.

As an entrepreneur, you know you need to get things done as quickly as possible—and that’s why mobility is your new best friend.

Mobile Helps With Crisis Aversion

In the past, when a business experienced computer trouble, there was no immediate back up. This could mean lost revenue or customer relationships just because of a technological malfunction. With cloud technology, business owners are able to swap to their tablets or smartphones with ease, never missing a beat.

Mobile Helps with Day-to-Day Operations

Small businesses harnessing mobile technology experience increased efficiency and flexibility. Integration can help your small business unlock incredible productivity potential. From expense reporting to file sharing—now anything can be done on the go.

Mobile Enables Better Customer Service

Being mobile equals faster response time and happier customers. In a recent Twitter chat on the power of mobility, a common theme centered on the increase in customer satisfaction. One attendee announced, “We are able to interact more and be more available.” Other thoughts included the consumer’s increased ability to provide self-service and small businesses being able to provide processes more tailored for the mobile lifestyle.

Mobile Provides You With Better Access to Your Customers

Mobility allows small businesses to meet the customer where he/she is. Mobile technology helps you engage your customers with real-time alerts and messages. Geolocation technology can even allow you to interact with your customer when they are in the right place at the right time. Investing in mobile can also help improve customer experience through optimized pages and easy access to product information.

Mobile Fosters Personal Freedom

By 2015, 1.3 billion people will be telecommuting. Gone are the days where being chained to a desk from 9 to 5 is required, or even necessary. Mobile technology is directly related to this major shift in work style and the trend will just continue to grow in years to come.

This shift is allowing companies to reduce their overhead and increase overall efficiency—and time is money. Business owners and employees will both see the benefits of this shift. With this new “mobile office” in place, teams will stay better connected, remain flexible with boosted morale, and work where they work best. A win-win on all sides!

This mobile office means more than simply being able to work on the go. It also means improved team communication, better customer service, and a more streamlined business. How will your small business invest in mobile technology this year?

About the author:

Mike Savory – Customer advocate and automation engineer
I operate at the intersection between technology and ease of use. I strive to make our customers’ lives easier through elegantly automating manual processes. Much of my time is spent listening to small business owners, making sure to bring their voice to the table in everything I do. My free time is spent with my kids, which includes being a Cub Scout leader for an energetic group of 10-year-olds where I’m lobbying for a Software Product Management badge.

Drop me a line at michael.savory@sage.com.

Follow me on Twitter.

How to Do More of What You Love in Your Small Business

Get free trial of Sage One accounting and invoicing software
You didn’t go into business to crunch numbers all day. You struck out on your own to do what you’re great at – and you’d probably want to spend your precious time doing just that. You love doing what you do and the more time you can do that, and get paid for it, the better.

Unfortunately, when you start a business you also inherit a bunch a responsibilities that you might not love as much. Billing, invoicing accounting – all that “math stuff” that keeps your bills paid and your doors open.

These essentials can’t be left to the wayside. When you put off following up on invoices with late paying clients or letting that website hosting bill slip through the cracks, you’re limiting your businesses’ success. As your stress levels over the numbers increase, you’ll find yourself enjoying the work you love less and less. And at the end of this downward spiral, you’ll find yourself with a failing business.

Fortunately, it doesn’t have to be this way – there’s a way to do more of what you love in your small business without letting the essentials fall off of your radar.

You can cut down on the “work” of doing your business by letting a smart tool take care of the details for you. We live in a day and age where you don’t have to pull out a pencil and calculator to get your finances in order. Take advantage of the technology tools that are available!

Sage offers two simple accounting and invoicing solutions that are built just for small businesses like yours. They let you get back to doing the work that you love by making it simple to send out payment requests, get a high level review of the financial status of your business and get freedom from accounting chaos.

Try Sage One Invoicing or Accounting Standard free for 15 days. Let us take care of the math so you can do more of what you love!

About the author:

Jenn Boutwell – VP Marketing & Strategic Alliances
I am a Sage One brand ambassador and team building virtuoso. Professionally I am known for building strong teams and organizing complex situations. I am passionate about making small business owners’ lives easier so they can spend more time on what they are passionate about. When I’m not running between meetings, I’m running half-marathons and training for a full marathon.

Drop me a line at jennifer.boutwell@sage.com.

Follow me on Twitter.

Sage One Encourages You to #believeinyou! The Power of Personal Brand at WomanCon 2014

Gabie Boko helping entrepreneurs at WomanCon

Last week we had the privilege of sponsoring WomanCon 2014, a day long conference for women entrepreneurs. The day was filled with inspiring conversations, and lots of networking. The event was in New York City and Sage One was on-site talking to attendees about their businesses, their passions, and what struggles they face. We learned a lot and it was sincerely a pleasure to be a part of such an amazing event.

Executive Vice President of Marketing for Sage, Gabie Boko, joined the Sage One team at WomanCon and delivered a powerful keynote. She discussed the importance of believing in you, or as she coined it: #believe in you. As an entrepreneur, you must recognize and be able to articulate who are you, as that’s the only real way to authentically connect with your audience, creating loyal advocates for your business. Gabie’s session was very interactive and the WomanCon attendees really seemed to identify with her message.

Some quotes that really hit home with me – and I think will resonate with you, as well:

“Who are you? The answer I’m looking for isn’t your company name or what product your company sells. Those things are important, but what I’m referring to is your personal brand – the essence of you – your core. Who are you, what do you stand for, what do you believe in, and is that translating to your customers?”

“We live in a world where it’s vital to have a strong company brand, and a strong personal brand. We cannot simply talk to or at our customers. There is so much noise in the marketplace today that you must find a way to stand out and truly connect with your customers. How can you do that? With a personal brand.”

“Everyone has a personal brand and it’s absolutely critical, now more than ever, to fully understand and believe in who you are – how you are unique and what you stand for – how you can communicate that to your ideal audience in order to serve them in the best way possible.”

“The main ingredient in a personal brand is authenticity. Developing a consistent, honest identity, no matter where your customers find you, is key. You must be the accessible face and personality behind your company. “

At the conclusion of her keynote, Gabie asked attendees to write down their personal brand tweet. It wasn’t an easy assignment! Really think about the quotes above and see if you can’t draft your personal brand statement in a tweet.

brand tweet from WomanCon

Who are you? We’d love to see it – tweet with #believeinyou.

About the author:

Tobi North – Creativity rock star and marketing master
I enjoy being innovative and creating communications that customers can relate to. I am always looking for that “light bulb” moment, when I find an interesting topic which I know our customers will love to learn more about. In between creative brainstorming sessions, you can probably find me at a concert or searching for the best BBQ joint in town.

Sage One + Google Drive Integration = Access to Your Invoices on Any Device

Google Drive plus Sage One One of the best new features of Sage One is the ability to automatically back up invoices and quotes into Google Drive. With this integration, you can quickly and easily access your invoices and quotes on the move—from any mobile device, without logging into Sage One.

Once you have the integration set up, all sales invoices and quotes you create in Sage One Invoicing or Sage One Standard are automatically synced with Google Drive. This gives you extra peace of mind and added flexibility to work on any device and share files with your team.

How to set up the integration

  1. Sign in to your Sage One account
  2. Go to: Settings > Sage One Settings > Google Drive
  3. Select Link Google Drive and then enter your Google account email address and password (unless you’re already signed in)
  4. And that’s it! Every invoice and quote you create, edit or delete in Sage One from now on will be automatically synced with Google Drive—for easy access from any device.

Google Drive integration with Sage One Google Drive is a free cloud storage service that lets you store all your files—on the web, in your home, at the office and on the go—so you can access them anywhere.

Note: Sage One will not have access to any other data in your Google Drive.

About the author:

Mike Savory – Customer advocate and automation engineer
I operate at the intersection between technology and ease of use. I strive to make our customers’ lives easier through elegantly automating manual processes. Much of my time is spent listening to small business owners, making sure to bring their voice to the table in everything I do. My free time is spent with my kids, which includes being a Cub Scout leader for an energetic group of 10-year-olds where I’m lobbying for a Software Product Management badge.

Drop me a line at michael.savory@sage.com.

Follow me on Twitter.