The day’s top five reads for small-business owners, as selected by our business experts, Rieva Lesonsky, Mike Michalowicz, Barry Moltz and Mike Periu.
Take a Break
We entrepreneurs pride ourselves on our 24/7 devotion to our businesses. We brag about getting by on three or four hours of sleep a night, about going months, even years, without taking a vacation and about how many electronic devices we own to keep us connected every waking moment. We believe the more we know and the sooner we know it, the better equipped we are to run our businesses. But maybe we’re wrong. Perhaps if take a break, even for a few hours, or go on vacation—without our phones, tablets and computers—we’d be able to recharge both our bodies and our brains. Distractions rob us of the ability to focus and ultimately to innovate. [Harvard Business Review
Venture Capital Industry Still Struggling to Recover from Tech Bubble
It may be 2013, but venture capitalists wish it was still 1999. According to a study by Dow Jones VentureSource, VCs have are still trying to recuperate from the 2000 tech-bubble burst. Last quarter, firms invested only $6.4 billion, a nearly 12 percent drop from the first quarter of 2012 and a 21 percent drop from the fourth quarter of last year. VC firms are not just investing less, but their ability to raise money is still weak, calling into question the long-term relevance of this once important industry. [Los Angeles Times
It Takes 24 Hours to Lose a Customer
It's silly to think that some companies can take days to respond. Business moves so fast these days, all questions from your online community must be responded to within 24 hours, or customers will think you don’t value them. Read how to implement the 24 hour rule. [business2community.com]
Google Bringing Free Internet Access to Provo
There is no such thing as a free lunch, but man-oh-man this sounds close. Google announced that every resident in Provo, Utah, will receive Google's gigabit Internet access service free for at least the next seven years. Utah's governor announced that Provo will be one of the first cities in the world to have access to broadband, like it does water and electricity. The "catch," if there is one, has yet to be announced. [CNET]
Should You Use a Content Marketing Agency?
Being an expert in your industry doesn't mean you are an expert in content marketing or planning. A content marketing agency can take your expertise, get it online and get it online regularly. If you aren't already producing great content frequently, this may be the best investment you can make. [Business2Community]
What is the best small-business news you've read today?