Route 422 Business Advisor

From the Editor's desk at Route 422 Business Advisor — Relevant news and information of interest to business owners and operators along the Route 422, Route 100 and Route 30 corridors in Southeastern Pennsylvania. Please visit www.422bizmag.com

 

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Many Applications for “Chatbot” Automated Assistants

Hureka has built a new app for restaurant owners. Talking with Roopak, I hear the excitement in his voice when we discuss the new chatbot. From many conversations we’ve learned the average restaurant owner is having a tough go of it — miniscule margins, high rent, staff retention, spoilage and numerous challenges to keep the customer engaged and to encourage repeat customers. The new restaurant app can solve these issues. Consider it an automated service executive, with zero downtime which takes milliseconds to answer customer queries.

Starting a Business, What You Need to Consider

If you’re thinking of starting a business, congratulations, as this can be one of the most rewarding experiences you could ever have. However, to have a successful business there are several factors to seriously consider before taking that first step.

You should consider a team of professionals to help your business get started on the right foot.  A good accountant and lawyer are critical in the beginning. 

Here are a few initiatives that you want to get right… from the start.

TAX & ESTATE PLANNING Charitable & Gifting Strategies

The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act passed in December 2017 preserved tax benefits associated

with charitable giving to qualified charities. Common charitable organizations include:

❏ Religious - church or other affiliations

❏ Charitable - hospitals, Alzheimer's association, Multiple Sclerosis Foundation, etc..

❏ Education - private high school, college or university

❏ Scientific - medical research, such as the Cancer Research Institute, etc..

❏ Veterans - Wounded Warrior Project, Hope for the Warriors, etc..

What is Sequence of Return Risk?

Greg Koch's picture

Sequence of returns risk can affect your long-term income the most in your early-retirement years. That is the timespan just before and right after you retire. You may have heard of that period called the “retirement red zone,” or generally the 10-year spread prior to and after retirement.

Thinking About Owning or Growing a Business?

Owning or growing a business is certainly challenging. The level of responsibility on the business owner is tremendous, increasing as the business grows. Availability and accessibility are key and absolute critical elements in growth. Hiring employees to help diffuse the pressure by means of delegation brings on its own new set of challenges and difficulties.

How Machine Learning Can Improve Small Business Operations?

One way is real time advertising.  Ads served up on Facebook or the same ad showing up on the next website you visit… because of your search behavior moments ago.

Hurekatek.com recently listed five ways to use chatbots for marketing to assist any business regardless of size. Customer support, digital assistant, research assistant, marketing automation and email marketing were covered because of published research indicating the need for all businesses, large and small, to take some form of action to employ at least one of the methods named.

Retain Clients — Grow Your Business

How much time and money do you spend trying to get new customers? How much time and money do you spend keeping your existing customers? Ray Kroc, founder of McDonalds was quoted as saying “It is much more profitable to sell multiple products to one customer than to sell just one product to many customers.”

What is a 1035 Exchange?

Greg Koch's picture

Do you have a current annuity or insurance policy that doesn’t fit your needs? If you are on the lookout for a new policy, a 1035 exchange may be a good option for you.

How a 1035 Exchange Works

ESTATE PLANNING Part Two - Last Will versus Living Trust

The correct strategy for you last will or living trust depends on your individual

circumstances and objectives. A last will determines how your assets pass to your heirs or others

at your death; whereas, a living trust is created in your lifetime and affects your property during

your lifetime and upon your death. If you establish a living trust, then it is advised that you have

a “pour-over will” for any assets that may not be in trust at the time of death.

A last will generally costs less and is very easily established, but cost should not be a

Wading onto the Board of a Nonprofit Corporation

If you are a business owner, or one of the otherwise active members of the community, I believe there is a ninety-percent probability you will end up on the board of a nonprofit corporation. This is good. It is good for you and great for your community.  Some will serve small entities of little geographic reach, while others will help govern and direct organizations serving the reach of the Commonwealth and beyond.

Bigger Isn’t Better

We’ve all heard the biblical story of David, whose well-aimed stone brought down the giant Goliath. When negotiating telecom services, small companies armed with powerful negotiating techniques can do as well or better than their larger counterparts. Here are four tips to help:

1. Know what you have and what you need.

Why is Estate Planning an Essential Component of Financial Management?

Estate planning is an important part of your overall financial management strategy

because with a plan in place you will avoid unintended consequences. Certain plan documents

will assist you in your lifetime, whereas other documents will assist upon death. If you become

incapacitated, then you will have a trusted, competent person or persons that you have named to

handle your financial and health affairs. If you pass away, then your assets will be distributed per

What Is A Funeral Trust?

Greg Koch's picture

Like other major life events, pre-funding your funeral will give you peace of mind, comfort and assurance knowing that money will be there to pay your final expenses. Now, wouldn’t it be nice to have an insurance policy that is designed to do exactly that? Pay for your funeral costs, while also having the money protected from Medicaid or creditors so it will be available for its intended purpose?

How will my SURVIVORS pay for my funeral?

An Ounce of Prevention is Worth a Pound of Cure

A recent report published by Identity Theft Resource Center stated that since May 1, 2018, there have 383 data breaches across various industries including the military, financial, healthcare and others so far this year. Imagine if that is your customers’ data that was compromised

7 Things Your IRA Custodian Won’t Tell You

Greg Koch's picture

What hasn’t your IRA Custodian told you?

It is important to know what your IRA custodian will tell you and what they will not or cannot tell you. The I in IRA stands for individual and many times it is up to the individual to know things or keep track of them.

Marketing Lessons from Driveway Spammers

Every spring they appear like leaves in the fall. Unwanted, they sit at the end of the driveway in the muddy-muck left from winter. Landscapers, contractors, handymen, and asphalt companies have all latched on to a marketing technique that bears some discussion.

Here’s how it works: Print up a cheap flyer on yellow or green paper, grab some gravel or a single rock, stuff both into a plastic bag, and tie it closed. Then head for my neighborhood and litter every driveway in sight.

Tax Planning 2018: How will your tax situation be different in 2018? What is the effect of the new tax law changes on your situation?

This is the perfect time of year to do tax planning, and planning ahead provides the

greatest opportunities and benefits to you. Even before considering the new tax law changes;

determine if there will be any change to your income and deductions this year versus last year.

For example, in Tax Year 2017, did you have a large capital gain or loss, sell a rental

property for a one-time gain, get a one-time taxable distribution, or did you make a deductible

retirement plan contribution? Are you scheduled to make estimated tax payments based on last

PayPerClick–Instant Results = Big money SEO-Delayed Results = Lasts Forever

In an article written earlier for these pages, we covered how the criminal behavior at a respected news magazine read by at least three generations and, likely some millennials, when International Business Times (IBT), publishers of Newsweek, were exposed by SocialPuncher  and BuzzFeed showing how IBT, in order to secure a government advertising contract for nearly $3 million, purchased fraudulent traffic directed to their websites in order to embellish their presentation to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and secure the contract.

Retirement Planning - Part Three Retirement Investing and Setbacks

Whether a person has many years until retirement or it is just around the corner; investing

for long term growth is essential. In an earlier article, it was mentioned that proper balance

between the basic asset classes - stocks (equity assets) and bonds (fixed income) - helps to

decrease market risk. Essentially, the higher the allocation to high quality bonds the lower the

market risk. In addition, diversification within those basic asset classes further decreases risk and

provides the best potential for above average returns.

 

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