If running a successful small business were simple, everyone would do it. But even when the economy clips along at light speed, operating—or starting—a small business in North Carolina is not for the faint of heart.
No matter what you’re going through, however, lots of entrepreneurs have been-there, done-that, too. Which means you can quickly access copious helpful information via various small business blogs and websites.
And because you’re busy running your business, we’ve done some of the grunt work for you. Here are 15 business blogs that consistently provide good ideas and tips for business in NC:
What you’ll find: One of the most-read blogs in the history of blogging. Seth Godin writes business marketing articles in easy-to-digest sizes. He eschews lots of fancy words, too, like “eschew.”
Why it matters: Seth Godin knows what he’s talking about. He walks the walk.
Who should read it: Anyone who doesn’t have a seven-figure marketing budget.
What you’ll find: Advice on how to keep fresh, compelling content on your website.
Why it matters: A company web site that’s stagnant—with no constantly fresh content—is missing out on leads.
Who should read it: Anybody who does their company’s marketing.
What you’ll find: This online lending company for small businesses provides helpful tips like Dos and Don’ts for Pitching to Investors.
Why it matters: Few other blogs address unsexy yet necessary topics like how to handle sales tax.
Who should read it: Any entrepreneur who realizes she doesn’t have all the answers.
What you’ll find: Articles written for small business entrepreneurs. The CEO of Exxon Mobil can take his eyes elsewhere.
Why it matters: It’s focused on entrepreneurial newbies, aka noobpreneurs, who are still learning the basics.
Who should read it: Anyone who is considering a new venture or has recently started one.
What you’ll find: In-depth articles on nearly everything business-related like how to be nice about it when you need to exclude associates from meetings.
Why it matters: HBR started nearly a century ago. They’ve learned a few things since then.
Who should read it: Anyone who wants to start a sentence with “Harvard Business Review says…”
What you’ll find: In addition to entrepreneurship, topic categories range from accounting to social impact.
Why it matters: Harvard isn’t the only college with a lot of smart people.
Who should read it: Anyone seeking knowledge beyond the usual startup tips. For example, the potential effects of CEO activism.
What you’ll find: a broad range of topics including books that business owners should read.
Why it matters: Fast Company regularly curates lists like the most innovative company and the best world-changing ideas.
Who should read it: Anyone who likes to keep updated on the latest business, marketing, and entertainment trends.
What you’ll find: In addition to the training content it provides, MarketingProfs posts articles, like how to put together an effective video marketing program.
Why it matters: Video marketing, such as the power of video testimonials, is essential for small businesses.
Who should read it: Anyone who knows they don’t know it all.
What you’ll find: A treasure trove of advice broken down by marketing, sales, service, and trends.
Why it matters: As a marketing automation company, Hubspot preaches the importance of solid content in emails and on websites. The blog proves they practice what they preach.
Who should read it: Anyone seeking practical advice on what makes effective web marketing.
What you’ll find: A massive amount of content aimed at anyone who is, was, or intends to become an entrepreneur.
Why it matters: With more than 40 years of publishing under its belt, Entrepreneur has reported on nearly every conceivable type of small business venture.
Who should read it: Anyone seeking inspiration or cautionary tales from the stories of other entrepreneurs.
What you’ll find: Hundreds of blog posts broken down into helpful categories like lead generation, SEO, and content marketing.
Why it’s important: As the name implies, Duct Tape Marketing knows most of entrepreneurs aren’t sitting on a pile of cash.
Who should read it: Anyone sitting on a pile of pennies.
What you’ll find: Trending topics, yes, but also advice on perpetual challenges like managing cash flow.
Why it’s important: American Express was one of the first companies to see value in creating exclusive online content for its business members.
Who should read it: Any entrepreneur who prefers the color black to red.
What you’ll find: Business insights with a technological bent.
Why it’s important: Forrester charges their clients a lot of money for in-depth research, but their free articles also provide value.
Who should read it: Anyone interested in learning how emerging technologies can help them succeed.
What you’ll find: Daily tips designed for entrepreneurs such as how to get your business off the ground with time management techniques.
Why it’s important: Articles are brief yet give plenty of practical tips for startups.
Who should read it: Any entrepreneur who wants to skip the fluff and get down to business.
What you’ll find: A resource uniquely designed for small town/rural entrepreneurship.
Why it’s important: A lot of great entrepreneurs reside far from D.C. or Charlotte and right here in Currituck County.
Who should read it: Entrepreneurs who embrace the potential of small town North Carolina.
As we said, it takes a special kind of person to start and run a small business. And we know your time is at a premium. We've curated these sites to save you the time of doing it yourself, and also because they offer a lot of great advice.
And don't forget, any time you need it, Currituck County Economic Development is here to provide more specific advice. We'd love to hear from you.