Monday, September 23rd, 2013
Monday, April 30th, 2012
New Study Examines Patent Applications by Gender, Link to Women Entrepreneurs
WASHINGTON, DC– The number of women obtaining patents has grown at an accelerating rate over the past 35 years and in numbers considerably higher than previously reported, a new study commissioned by the National Women’s Business Council (NWBC) has found.
The largest spike came in 2010, when 22,984 patents were granted to women, a 35 percent jump over the previous year, according to the NWBC study. In 2009, women received 17,061 patents, a 4.5 percent increase over the 16,321 issued in 2008.
The details are part of the preliminary findings from an extensive review of patents granted between 1975 and 2010 by the U.S. Patents and Trademarks Office. NWBC commissioned a private research company, Delixus, Inc., to conduct the study to determine the rates of women who apply for and receive patents. The study, which also will examine data on women with trademarks, is the first of its kind to explore this issue in depth, mainly because federal patent and trademark applicants did not ask for gender information. Newly-passed legislation will allow USPTO to start tracking gender data this year.
Research on intellectual property can help better understand the potential growth of women-owned businesses, said NWBC Chair Donna James.
“Patent and trademark ownership often is an indicator of entrepreneurial activity – historically, women have not been a large segment of this activity. A bump in IP ownership could indicate strong growth in women-owned companies,” James said. “NWBC actively sought out this study because little research has specifically examined women business owners and intellectual property.”
NWBC researchers examined the names of all patents granted over a 35-year period, determining gender by using the applicant’s name. To do this, researchers relied upon multiple sources, including the U.S. Census Bureau and the U.S. Social Security Administration, which compiles a list of the 10,000 most common American names for men and women. Because of the nation’s changing population demographics over the last quarter century, researchers also relied on commercially available data of the most common names in Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Indian, Spanish, German and French. Uncommon names from other foreign countries, as well as unisex names, also were examined. Just under 6 percent of the names in patent disclosures could not be identified as male or female.
Details of the full report, which will include numbers on women, patents, trademarks over time and by industry, will be released during an upcoming news event at the USPTO headquarters in early March. NWBC will commemorate a 35-year history of women inventors by featuring a new female inventor every day on its website during March, which is Women’s History Month.
The NWBC is a nonpartisan federal advisory council created to serve as an independent source of advice and policy recommendations to the president, Congress and the U.S. Small Business Administration on economic issues of importance to women business owners.
NWBC is the government’s only independent voice for women entrepreneurs. It is made up of 15 prominent women business owners and leaders of women’s business organizations. Each member is appointed to a three-year term.
Monday, April 23rd, 2012
What is the most important marketing item you have? Here’s a hint: It’s small, it’s inexpensive, and you haven’t given it much thought.
It’s your business card.
Most of us think of business cards as just a reference document, a means of conveying basic information people need to contact us. We rarely design our business card with the idea that it will be a marketing tool.
Looking at your business card as a marketing piece opens a new way of thinking about that small piece of cardboard.
Why not have different business cards for different occasions? Perhaps you want one for networking events or trade shows and a slightly different one for clients or customers.
Here’s a business card refresher:
• What to include: Once upon a time, people put only their name, company name, address and one phone number on a business card. Then came fax numbers, e-mail addresses, cellphone numbers, Web sites.
All that information isn’t necessary; too much information forces use of tiny type. Tiny typeface is going to be hard to read. Moreover, all that data mean you’ll likely omit information that’s more important: What you actually do. Add one brief line describing your business, especially if you have a specialty. If you have more than one specialty, have more than one card.
To make room for that marketing line, you may have to get rid of other data, especially for cards you use at networking events. Do you still need your fax number? Can you eliminate your full street address?
• Color: Adding color makes a big impact, and it’s not that expensive. Color is especially good for logos. Be careful to make sure your information remains clearly readable. Light-colored ink on dark paper and pale ink on any paper are hard to read. Choose colors that are appropriate to your line of business.
• Logo: Logos make business cards stand out. If you don’t have a logo, consider designing one or using typeface in such a way as to make “logotype.” Adding a graphic element such as a bold line, triangle or circle adds visual interest and helps people remember your business.
• Reverse: I once had beautiful cards with just my logo against a black background on the reverse. People were frustrated when they couldn’t write on the card. They wanted to jot down something they wanted to remember about me.
That doesn’t mean the backside of your card has to remain blank. Use it to print more information about your business or to offer a discount or to put appointment date. Remember, once someone has put your card in a file or a drawer, they’ll never see the reverse side again.
• Printing your cards: Local copy shops, such as Kinko’s, are fast and relatively inexpensive. They also have designers who can help you lay out a card. Use an online printer, which is less expensive than copy shops. With an online printer, you upload your design or choose from its selection. The quality of online printers can vary, and you’ll be limited in your choices of card stock, colors and such.
Remember, your business card is a representation of you and your company. A little planning can help you make the most of that small piece of marketing real estate.
Monday, August 22nd, 2011
As an entrepreneur, you are part of the gigantic wave that’s growing in size and sweeping across America. Many business experts predict that in the future, 99% of all new innovations and changes will come from people like you and me in the small business arena throughout our nation and the world.
While the gigantic business dinosaurs and Fortune 500 companies are closing their doors, downsizing and becoming lean and mean, thousands of new businesses are emerging. Is this for you? Well, listen up! It is predicted that approximately 85% of all working people will be employed by small businesses. Sadly, approximately 88% of all small businesses will fail in the first few years. You do not have to be one of them! Recommendations: Plan your work and do your plan. Get going start your Business Action Plan right now!
Monday, August 8th, 2011
We attended at workshop last week and one of the questions was, “When was the last time you updated your business plan?” The majority of the women business owners didn’t raise their hands and some of them having been in business for quite a few years didn’t even have a business plan. So ladies let’s get going a start your plan or get it out and update it right now.
For the next few weeks we are going to go over what should be in your Business Acttion Plan.
A big qestion that we get a lot when women come into our office to start their business is “Why do I need a business plan?” The entire plan is aimed at making profits. You need to consider to following questions and more. What business am I in? What services or products do I provide? Where are my customers? Who are my competitors? How do I market and advertise? Where can I go for help? How much money do I need to get started? Where do I go for financing? These are only a few of the questions you will have to address.
No one else but you can answer these questions to ensure your business succeess. You have to respond to these in writing of your own individualized Business Action Plan (BAP).
Monday, August 1st, 2011
Your at a wedding or other social gathering, great place to promote your business?? It all depends on how you network and handle yourself. Talk to new people. Don’t stay safe with your circle of friends, circulate. Remember your business cards. Introduce yourself and ask how they know the guest of honor or the host. If the conversation starts up great continue, if not move on. Make sure you have your elevator speech down pat, don’t make it a sales pitch. Don’t forget to ask them questions too. See if there is a business relationship that may develop. Make this a two way street. Don’t just make it about you. See if you can help them too and if you say you’re are going to do something for them, do it! Collected business cards, make sure you respond to them with a quick note or phone call. Put your new contacts to use, follow through and watch your business grow! Networking is something that can be done everywhere. Don’t let the opportunity pass you by. You never know who might need your business services.
Monday, August 1st, 2011
You may be thinking “Why should I waste my time on drawing up a plan?”
These are the benefits of your Business Action Plan (BAP) to you:
1. A path to follow to make profits. It guides you through the turbulent economic seas and into harbors of choice.
2. A BAP is your business profile. It makes it easier to let your banker in on the action. By reading your BAP, it gives real insight into your situation and lends credibility on whether or not funding is feasible.
3. This can be your communications tool when you need it to orient sales personnel, suppliers, and others about your operations and goals.
4. A BAP develops you as a business leader and manager. It can give you practice in thinking about competitive conditions, promotional opportunities, your cash flow status, and situations that are advantageous to your business.
5. It is your “road map” to success.
Monday, July 25th, 2011
Complete the following statements as they pertain to your business:
I need to know more about the following aspects of my business:
Individuals who can provide me with the information I need are:
I have developed supportive relationships with the following people outside my immediate business area:
I intend to include the following new people in my support system:
The game plan to expand my support network this week is:
“Where you are tomorrow depends on who you meet today!”.. Dr. Patricia Laino
Monday, July 18th, 2011
Don’t… Be afraid to ask. Don’t Expect instant results. Don’t Betray confidences. Don’t Discuss death, disease or domestistics. Don’t Be discouraged, if you get the “brush off”. Don’t Tell everything to everybody. Don’t Tell someone what to do. Don’t Be discouraged if there is a lull. Don’t Pass up any chance to network.
Monday, July 11th, 2011
Do… Create a networking file. Select the right person to contact. Include women in all areas and all age groups. Keep expanding your network continuously. Be business like: talk about career, business getting ahead. Keep your promises. Read up on a sugject before you network. Offer your expertise generously. Join traditional organizations too.
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