Beth Anne Whalen has 13 years of sales, sales management, and marketing experience. She has worked for Enterprise Rent-A-Car, First Advantage Corporation, and Raymond James. She was also co-founder and president of www.forsalemagnets.com.

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Big Play on Name, Big Play on Revenue

In case you haven’t heard, today the 7-11 convenience store chain is offering “Free 7.11 ounce 7-11 Slurpees on 7/11″. Catchy, eh? The nationwide chain runs this promo every year to celebrate the anniversary of the famed American icy treat. (81 years old today!) Aside from the ancillary sales coming from freebie-seeking customers, the PR... Read more »

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Planning…for Happy Employees

Coming to work 3 years ago for Palo Alto Software was quite a change from my previous post of 10 years in corporate America. One of the many refreshing changes: a family friendly company. It is not unusual to see a tot in the office from time to time, stopping in with mom or dad.... Read more »

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Marketing’s view is 30,000 feet, Sales’s is 3 feet.

It is not uncommon in the business world for people to lump sales and marketing together. At my former employer, I was a manager in the sales and marketing department. The only thing was, there were only sales people in our department – no marketing personnel. I remember having a talk about this with our... Read more »

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Birthday Spam? (and I’m not talking processed meat)

Yesterday was my birthday. In the year since I had my last birthday, there is no question that social networking sites have made leaps and bounds in their popularity and usage. I am forever getting invitations to join business networks: Linkedin, Ryze, Plaxo…and the list goes on. Most of the time, I bite. I can... Read more »

If you give an inch….

Today a colleague shared a website with me that promotes a new concept in children’s shoes. The hook is that the shoes are designed to grow with your child’s feet. (think accordion) The company who came up with the idea is called Inchworm. As a parent of a 2 and 3 year old, my first... Read more »

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Now that’s window shopping!

Each day on the way to work I pass a small woman’s clothing store called The Clothes Horse. I always look. The clothes are fantastic. And that’s exactly the point for owner and manger Anne Hathaway. In this otherwise small store in an unassuming building, the owner has mastered her location by taking advantage of... Read more »

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Hockey Wisdom

As a small business owner it is easy to get discouraged on those days when you are questioning a big decision you made. A lot of times it comes down to a gut feel and a leap of faith.  For the times that you might end up on the wrong side of a decision, keep... Read more »

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The Root Canal Theory

At Palo Alto Software we have sometimes used the root canal analogy to describe a business plan.  It is something you need, but that few people look forward to doing.  One of the principles of developing Business Plan Pro was to help people get over their fear of writing a business plan by providing a... Read more »

It’s the Economy, Starbucks

As many may know the majority of US Starbucks closed yesterday from 5:30p – 9pm for a company wide training session.  Touted as half-training – half pep-rally, Starbucks seeks to turn around their recent financial losses and their growing reputation as producers of mediocre drinks. With the economy on the decline, one could gather that... Read more »

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“Green” is the new “Low Fat”

Yesterday I attended a business lunch where the keynote speaker was the gentleman responsible for organizing the upcoming 2008 Olympic Track and Field Trials here in Eugene, OR.  (A huge deal for our small town that produced Steve Prefontaine!)  The last part of his talk provided for a Q & A session.  There were the... Read more »

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The Devil is in the Details

Being an outside sales person for Palo Alto Software, I am keenly aware of the process that other sales people use when trying to sell to us.  This week a company contacted me to try and get our advertising dollars for their magazine and website. The meeting was cursed before it even began. Here’s why: ... Read more »

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The Sample Business Plans You Won’t See…

At Palo Alto Software, we pride ourselves on the wide variety of sample business plans that we offer in Business Plan Pro.   From car wash to pharmacy and most everything in between, there are plans that entrepreneurs will find to help them start their particular type of businesses.   But below are 5 actual “ventures” that,... Read more »

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No Means Yes!

Yesterday I was having a conversation with a young woman who is working as an outside sales rep for a car rental company that relies on local insurance companies to refer business to them. It is her first time in a sales role, and being a little green, her confidence is not yet where it... Read more »

10 Q Interview with Palo Alto Software Founder and President, Tim Berry

I recently read an article in the format of 10 questions asked to Tim Berry. Being a loyal Palo Alto Software employee and small-business junkie, I wanted to share this bit of history of how we got to where we are today, as well as some tips, stories….and a little advice from Tim. http://azsmallbiz.blogspot.com/2007/08/10q-interview-with-palo-alto-software.html –Beth... Read more »

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The rising cost of PB&J….

I have a favorite restaurant here in Eugene that I absolutely love…or should I say…did love.  This cafe has several locations around town and they are wildly popular.  Like any business would want to do, they are hoping to capitalize on their success.  Thus, they just opened their first “franchise model” store in town.  But... Read more »