No cost/low cost resources for marketers and entrepreneurs

I know there’s something just “wrong” about blogging early on Thanksgiving morning, but I acknowledge the fact that I’m a workaholic and frankly what better time for a little peace and quiet to actually think without interruption!

This blog was prompted by an email from a friend/colleague who is pulling together a list of resources for small businesspeople/entrepreneurs and asked me if I had anything to add. I did – more than I thought I would actually. So, I decided to share my list here and invite others to add to it.

One of the many things I have to be thankful about this holiday season is the broad range of resources and information readily available – at low and no cost – to small business owners like me.  Here’s a short list of those that come to mind:

–  Association sites like www.iabc.org and www.prsa.org. While much of the information available is for members only, there are still helpful resources out there and you just might want to consider becoming a member.

– Informational sites like www.ragan.com, in my opinion one of the richest sources of information about all aspects of communication that’s out on the web.

– Sites for journalists, PR people and, frankly, business people who want to get in on the inside track – like www.mediabistro.com and www.helpareporter.com.

– Sites that let you distribute your news release online – free – (not necessarily a good way to generate media attention, but a good way to drive traffic to your web site). Check out www.prlog.com, www.freepressrelease.com.

– Online services that facilitate your emarketing efforts – like www.constantcontact.com or www.surveymonkey.com – not free, but definitely very reasonable.

–  There are some good LinkedIn groups that target small businesses/entrepreneurs – some of the ones I’m in are: OnStartups – The Community for Entrepreneurs and The Blog Zone; I’m sure there are a lot of others.

– A broad range of business and marketing experts on Twitter that you can follow – some of my favorite are Seth Godin, Guy Kawasaki, Mike Stelzner (white papers), Joel Comm and Ed Bennett.

– Some podcasts that might be of interest: Harvard Business Idea Cast, Internet Marketing Secrets, Today in Social Media (Clayton Morris’ podcast).

That is literally just the tip of the iceberg. In fact, sometimes there is *so* much content available, that it can be overwhelming. Still, the ability to access expert advice immediately and at no or low cost is definitely something I’m thankful for (right after my family, my friends, my health, good food, fine wine…)

Happy Thanksgiving!

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