A free month of advertising from AdWords Express

Wednesday, November 28, 2012
(Cross-posted from the Inside AdWords blog)

The holidays are a busy time for everyone, and small businesses are certainly no exception. To help businesses reach new customers this season and keep the holiday spirit rolling into 2013, we have a special offer for new AdWords Express users in the U.S. If you sign up for AdWords Express before December 16, 2012, you’ll receive a free advertising credit in January worth what you spend between now and the end of this year.*

Since AdWords Express launched in July 2011 in the United States, we’ve seen businesses from toy stores to tree farms use AdWords Express to get their businesses discovered online. After 16 busy months, AdWords Express has expanded its borders to 12 additional countries and 9 languages, so that gift shops in Germany, heating contractors in the U.K., and surf shops in Australia can get on the map in front of potential customers in time for the holiday season.

Watch these businesses talk about how they use AdWords Express to maximize sales in the busy season:


Remember, the sooner you start advertising online, the more holiday customers you can reach and the more free advertising credit you can earn, so visit google.com/adwords/express today.

Happy holidays from the AdWords Express team!


*Terms and Conditions

Gmail and Drive - a new way to send files

Tuesday, November 27, 2012
(Cross-posted from the Gmail blog)

Since Google Drive launched in April, millions of people have started using Drive to keep, create and share files. Starting today, it’s even easier to share with others: you can insert files from Drive directly into an email without leaving your Gmail.
Have you ever tried to attach a file to an email only to find out it's too large to send? Now with Drive, you can insert files up to 10GB -- 400 times larger than what you can send as a traditional attachment. Also, because you’re sending a file stored in the cloud, all your recipients will have access to the same, most-up-to-date version. Like a smart assistant, Gmail will also double-check that your recipients all have access to any files you’re sending. This works like Gmail’s forgotten attachment detector: whenever you send a file from Drive that isn’t shared with everyone, you’ll be prompted with the option to change the file’s sharing settings without leaving your email. It’ll even work with Drive links pasted directly into emails.
So whether it’s photos from your recent camping trip, video footage from your brother’s wedding, or a presentation to your boss, all your stuff is easy to find and easy to share with Drive and Gmail. To get started, just click on the Drive icon while you're composing a message. Note that this feature is rolling out over the next few days and is only available with Gmail's new compose experience, so you'll need to opt-in if you haven't already.

The Business November 28th 2012, The "Black Cyber Wednesday Door-buster!" Edition

Monday, November 26, 2012
 Did you shop til you dropped all pretense of human decency and clawed at the eyes or your fellow man to get the last off-brand, 47 million inch TV? Did you laugh all the way to the bank? Did you also cry when you got there and realized you had spent all your money in a tryptophan induced frenzy? If you didn’t shop, did you maintain a vigilant presence on social media so the world knew you were saving it by not shopping?

Either way, The Business wants your business!

We have a super spectacular list of g
uests that are available for lease or purchase.

Drennon Davis is back for a limited time only, get him while he’s hot and fresh!

From his elaborate characters and sketches, to his provocative songs and animation, Drennon has made a name for himself as one of the most innovative minds in today’s comedy scene. His live performances of the Imaginary Radio Program combine live music and beat-boxing with one-man sketches into a show that the Los Angeles Comedy Bureau writes "not only lives up to its name, but exceeds expectation in what you could possibly think it is." Drennon was featured on NBC's Last Call and was a semi finalist on Last Comic Standing. His new animated show The Long Legs can be seen on MTV's rebirth of Liquid Television in 2012.

Drennon comes 2 for 1 with DJ Real!

Nick Stargu is DJ REAL, a San Francisco-based alternative musical comedy act. Performing all original songs, complete with costume changes, bad dance moves, and interactive multimedia, DJ REAL’s live act has been likened to the Talking Heads, The Residents, and Steve Martin. With a wide range of influences, DJ REAL’s songs vary from hip-hop, to folk, to the bizarre.

PLUS we will be joined by Portland darling and beautiful animal Ian Karmel.

Ian Karmel is a Portland comedian whose style zig-zags between the eclectic and the universal, appealing both to crowds who own homes in the suburbs, and crowds just staying with their parents in the suburbs until they figure some things out. Coming from an improv background, including time with The Groundlings and the Upright Citizens Brigade, Ian entered the world of stand-up with a unique perspective that helped him win the 2011 Funniest Person in Portland, 2010 Portland Amateur Comedy Competition and has given him the opportunity to perform at the Bridgetown Comedy Festival, Bumbershoot, Austin’s Moontower Comedy and Oddity Fest, Portland’s Helium Comedy Club, Philadelphia’s Helium Comedy Club, Austin’s Cap City Comedy Club, Seattle’s Comedy Underground and Los Angeles’ Comedy Store. In addition to stand-up, Karmel has appeared on television, playing a character in IFC’s sketch show Portlandia and as a post-game analyst and commentator for the Portland Trailblazers.

 
We are also happy to have Matt Lieb and William Lushbough. Your regulars will be there as well. Mr. Sinister and Mr. Drucker will be back next week, but Mr. Keane, Mr. Koll, and Lady Gill will be holding down the fort.

THIS WHOLE SHOW COSTS JUST $5.
$5!

AND you can bring a friend for free. http://thebusinesscomedy.blogspot.com/

We sell out! Get there early for a seat.

BYOBargain Burrito.

Five for Drive: Tips for Sharing and Collaborating with Google Drive

Wednesday, November 21, 2012
Editor’s note: In November, we’re sharing tips on how your business can get the most out of Google Drive. Our final post features 5 ways you can share your files. Previously we’ve featured Google Drive basics and tips for creating and editing the documents your business needs.

Is your business looking to increase internal collaboration and share files on the web? Below, you’ll find 5 tips on how you can use Google Drive to collaborate on your documents and share them with the right audience.
  1. Click on the Share button in the upper right corner of any document to make sure the right people have the right access. By setting the visibility options, you can share your documents with a specific group, anyone with the link, or anyone on the web. To give access to a specific group of people, you can add collaborators and decide if each person should be able to edit, comment on, or just view your files.
  2. Transfer ownership of a file or folder to let someone else manage it for you. The new owner can then add or remove collaborators, share the file with others, and change visibility options and access privileges.
  3. Download the Google Docs App in Hangouts to open, discuss, and add comments to a document, all while you’re in a Hangout. This way, you can review a file face-to-face in video chat with a co-worker, even if you’re away from the office.
  4. Publish your documents and get a URL that you can share with the whole world. Use the publish feature to email your customer base a link to your most recent newsletter or to send a presentation of your business’s most popular products to a potential client.
  5. Share files to your Google+ stream publicly or with a specific circle of clients, and let your followers flip through one of your business’s presentations or fill out a feedback form all without ever leaving the stream. For each document you share on Google+, you can set access rights so your audience can edit or simply view it.
Looking for even more tips about Google Drive? Check out the Help Center, the Google Apps Learning Center, or Drive’s Google+ page.

The Business November 21st 2012, The "Emily Squared" Edition

Monday, November 19, 2012
This Holiday season, we are thankful for our Emilys. Two Emilys in particular, and they will both be here on Wednesday so we can give them thanks.

Emily Heller is a comedian and writer who likes you very much. You may have seen her on the third season of John Oliver’s New York Stand Up Show on Comedy Central, or as one of the New Faces at the 2012 Montreal Just For Laughs Festival. In 2011, She was included in Comedy Central’s Comics to Watch, won Rooftop Comedy’s Silver Nail Award, and was named one of
the “Funniest People in Town” by 7x7 Magazine. Praised in San Francisco for what her friends call her “self-deprecating feminist slob poetry,” Emily now lives in New York City and performs stand-up all over the country.


Emily Maya Mills is an actor, writer and stand-up comic based in Los Angeles. She's been seen on Parks and Recreation, Ellen, Conan, Childrens’ Hospital, Key and Peele, Downers Grove, Harry's Law and many of television’s weirder commercials. Emily is a graduate of Emerson College is a regular performer at the Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre. Her three-woman sketch group, Birds of Prey, won Best Sketch Group in a Punchline Magazine survey and continues to produce exclusive videos for FunnyorDie.com and Cracked.com.

These fly birds aren’t Turkeys! They’ll cran your berry! You’ll want to do the Mashed Potato with them! You’ll want to fill your body cavity with their delicious stuffing!


Your regulars will be there as well, Sean “Sweet Potatoes” Keane, Bucky “Gravy” Sinister, Mike “Terducken” Drucker and Caitlin “Green Bean Casserole” Gill.


We sell out! Get there early to score a seat.


BYOBurrito de Pavo.

Feast your way through Google business tips

Want a feast this Thanksgiving without crashing into a tryptophan-induced slumber? Work your way through three courses of business tips that we’ve rounded up from our 10 in 10 series.

If you want more detail or links to learn even more, check out our full posts on ways your business can use Chrome, Gmail, Google+, and Google Calendar.


Posted by Jacinth Sohi, Google and Your Business Blog Team

Get Your Business Black Friday Ready with Google Offers

Friday, November 16, 2012
Is your business Black Friday ready? After a hearty helping of turkey and lots of sides, folks often have a hankering for some serious shopping. It’s a great time to showcase value and offer some irresistible deals. This year, Google Offers is here to help small businesses run deals and get discovered. Best of all, it’s a deal for you, too. Getting started is free.



Get Started 
It’s easy to make a Google Offer right from the Google Places for Business dashboard. Verified business owners already using Google Places for Business, skip on ahead to Create an Offer. Get started on Google Places for Business by entering your business’ phone number here.

Create an Offer 
Ready to create your offer? You can customize whether you want to offer customers a percentage off their sale, a flat amount of money off, or a free item. You’ll also need to know how many offers you want to make available, for how long they’ll run, and a few other details. We’ve got a gallery of photographs, too, to make sure your offer looks great.

Meet New Customers
Your new customers will be able to discover nearby offers on Google Maps for Android. We’ve got some offer management tools, too, so you can see and control the duration of your offer. Offer going well? You can extend the offer, or, limit its availability if needed. You’ll also be able to see how many people have redeemed or are planning on redeeming the offer. Happy savings!

Five for Drive: Tips for Creating and Editing in Google Drive

Thursday, November 15, 2012
Editor’s note: In November, we’re sharing tips on how your business can get the most out of Google Drive. Our second post features 5 ways you can create, edit, and enhance your files. Previously we’ve featured Google Drive basics. Check back next week for tips on the many ways you can share and collaborate on the documents in your Drive.

Businesses looking for pointers on documents, spreadsheets, presentations, and more, keep reading! This week, we’re sharing 5 tips on how you can use Google Drive to create and edit the documents you need to keep your business running smoothly.
  1. To create a new document in Google Drive, simply hit the ‘Create’ button to choose which type of file you’d like. To collaborate on your business’s existing documents like Word, Excel, and PowerPoint files, you can upload them to Google Drive for easy editing and sharing.
  2. Use a template to create the specific types of documents your business may need, such as letterheads, sales presentations, inventory trackers, or customer feedback forms. Browse the template gallery to find examples best suited for your business.
  3. Make your presentations more compelling by embedding YouTube videos into your slides. You can play the video from directly within the file as long as you have an internet connection.
  4. View the revision history of your document, spreadsheet, or presentation to see the changes made by you and any other collaborators. You can also revert to earlier versions of a file and see edits made to any of these versions.
  5. Use other apps in Drive, such as Forms, Drawings, and Fusion Tables. You can also download third-party apps from the Chrome Web Store that allow you edit images and videos, fax and sign documents, manage products, create flow charts, and more.
Looking for even more tips about Google Drive? Check out the Help Center, the Google Apps Learning Center, or Drive’s Google+ page.

Luxury Car Hire

Wednesday, November 14, 2012
Why rent a standard car, when there is luxury car hire available? Luxury car hire allows you to suddenly realize your dreams, and the good news is that you don’t have to take out a mortgage to make your dreams reality! Join me as we get into the hot seat of a fast car! The doors open and you enter the car. You are in the driving seat, and you put the keys in, and the luxury vehicle sparks into life. You hear the engine roar, and you know the whole day is going to be amazing! You are in the front seat of your favorite luxury car, and though many people who see you that day, and turn there heads like an uncontrollable itch, they will not know what we know right now. The luxury vehicle is not yours. You didn’t buy it, you found it through luxury car hire. It is a dream come true, and you didn’t have to invest a lot of money, and you don’t have to worry about maintenance, you don’t have to worry about filling it with expensive fuel every day. For many people this is a dream that is in the reality for them. Luxury car hire makes dreams reality, and it doesn’t cost a lot of money. Whatever you do, you always have the option of experiencing this amazing experience. For many people the luxury vehicle that is strolling down the road, has come through luxury car hire. But no one knows! You could think they are multimillionaires, but often they are people like you and me who got tired of just looking at posters, looking at the scale model car, and got tired of the irritating twitch of snapping a neck while turning to see a Ferrari go past! Many people do it several times each year, and once you start, you can’t stop! It is truly a thrilling experience, and once you must try at least once in your lifetime!

DIY-Strategic Planning

Let's start by talking about strategic focus. Leadership models and new business models are key ingredients to success in the 21st century. The successful 21st century business model is built around servant style leadership with a focus on strategic thinking by harnessing the creativity and innovation of the employees. The vehicle to accomplish this is the strategic planning process Strategy serves as the organization compass and roadmap to future success. Strategic thinking must be clear and communicated effectively throughout the organization. It is not something you can leverage with technology. It isn't something you will find in the latest business manual. It is embedded in the minds of your management team and most of your employees. It is your employees who are on the front line and know what is really going on with your customers and your markets. It requires effective leadership to release the power of the employees in building a strategic roadmap to the future. Defining objectives and developing initiatives and action plans to meet those objectives is the basis of strategic planning. However, it all starts with an end game, a "Vision for the Future." Strategic planning is a management tool. It is used to help an organization clarify its future direction - to focus its energy, and to help members of the organization work toward the same goals. The planning process adjusts the organization's direction in response to a changing environment. Strategic planning is a disciplined effort to support fundamental decisions and actions that shape and guide what an organization is, what it does and why it does it, with a focus on where it wants to go and how it is going to get there. Fundamental decisions, actions and choices must be made in order to develop a plan that provides a Roadmap on "How to get there from Here."." The plan is ultimately no more, and no less, than a set of decisions about what to do, why to do it, and when and how to do it. The scope of the strategy development process for any company is dependent upon individual business needs. The strategic planning process is a time and resource-consuming endeavor that involves many people in the organization. This process includes both tactical and strategic application. The DIY process assumes that you have a good handle on both your internal and external environment. If you don't you may want to consider hiring a consultant to do an internal assessment and survey your customers and vendors to analyze your external environment. Hiring a consulting firm can cost as little as $10,000 for a simple two day facilitation to upwards of $100,000 for comprehensive involvement by the consulting firm during the entire process. So, if you are not inclined to hire an outside consultant, you may want to follow this ten step process for DIY (Do It Yourself) Strategic Planning. Although it isn't possible to describe in great detail the entire process in an article (it would require 50 pages) the following is an overview of the process. The Ten Step Process Let's identify the steps first and then we'll discuss each one in a little more detail . I cannot emphasize enough that the true value of a strategic plan is not in the document itself. It is in the process of creating it, involving many of your employees from the bottom up. This empowers them to be more effective and better-informed leaders, managers and decision makers. 1. Select the strategy team and send a company wide communication 2. Create a Vision for the Future (End Game) 3. Preparation -----Secure an off site location for the kick off meeting which includes training the team on the strategic planning process. Purchase a strategic planning template, download one from the web or e-mail rick@ceostrategist.com for a generic sample. 4. Complete a SWOT analysis. (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities & Threats) 5. Identify the critical core initiatives that are necessary to support the vision for the future and to achieve its objectives 6. Develop strategic implementation plans (SIPs) that support the identified critical core initiatives 7. Prioritize the CCI's and SIP's based on the biggest impact on the bottom line in the shortest period of time. Modify and complete the document template to fit your company strategy 8. Develop an accountability process based on a structured monthly strategic review 9. Develop a presentation of the strategy for approval by the CEO, owners or Board of Directors. 10. Develop a Roll Out Strategy to explain the strategic plan to the entire company Step One --------- Selection and Communication It all starts with communication. The very first piece of information should be the announcement to all employees that the company is embarking on a planning process for the future. This memo should be sent from the President asking for everyone's support. (A sample memo is available from rick@ceostrategist.com) The memo will likely announce who the strategy team members are and ask for everyone to congratulate them and provide input at every opportunity. CAUTION: Make sure that you have talked to any employee in advance that was not picked for the strategy team that may feel that they should have been. Once the team is announced and the process starts make sure you continue to keep employees aware of the progress and solicit their input. A minimum of a monthly memo should be issued. The strategic planning process can take from 6 weeks to 12 weeks so it is important to keep everyone informed without releasing too much detail. The strategy team should include a senior accountant, and should consist of between seven and ten members. Team selection should be based on competence, integrity, work ethic, leadership skills, and future growth potential within the Company. The team will formulate and present the strategic document to the President/CEO and the Board of Directors. It is critical that all employees are empowered and encouraged to communicate their ideas and issues with any member of the strategy team. This process ensures accountability and ownership of the strategy at every level in the organization. Step Two --- A Vision for the Future (The End Game) The Vision for the Future (End Game) in business is simply defining what winning the game in your business is really about. What does winning mean. Just exactly what do you want your company to be when it grows up? Ask yourself the following questions from the perspective of looking five to seven years into the future. 1. What markets should your company be serving five years from now? 2. What products should you be distributing? 3. Who are your primary competitors? 4. What are your strengths? 5. What are your competitors' strengths? 6. How has your marketing strategy changed? 7. What are your core competencies? 8. What is the size of your revenue stream? 9. How is your revenue stream segmented? 10. Do you have a Human Resource Development plan? The CEO/Owners should create the "Vision for the Future" (End Game) for presentation to the strategy team. Step Three --- Preparation Running a strategic planning process is not just designing a template and having the team members fill in the gaps. On the contrary, it means carefully coaching the management team through a thinking process. Often, the actual strategic plan is even less important than the development and growth of the team members participating in the process. The strategy team should be trained on the process you intend to follow in developing the strategic plan. Once that is competed the CEO/President should present the vision of the future with copies for everyone and then excuse himself from the meeting to allow the strategy team to tear the end game apart and put it back together. The President will have explained that they have the right and the obligation to challenge the end game if they do not agree with any part of it. However, any challenge to any portion must be accompanied by alternative recommendations. The concept is to finalize a "Vision for the Future" that everyone owns. Step Four---- The SWOT analysis The team will conduct a SWOT (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats) analysis to identify critical constraints and potential opportunities for growth. Step Five --- Developing the Critical Core Initiatives from the Vision for the Future Critical core initiatives are over arching initiatives that are found within the Vision for the Future. An example may be defined as a human resource initiative for becoming employer of choice. There are many independent action steps (Strategic Implementation Plans - SIPs) that will be required to accomplish the Critical Core Initiative (CCI). They may include training, education, leadership development, compensation and benefits etc. Identifying the CCI's first is necessary to move on to the next step which is creating SIPs for each CCI. Step Six--- Prioritize the CCI's and identify individual SIPs for each CCI A Strategic Implementation Plan (SIP) is a set of tasks that supports a Critical Core Initiative and therefore creates fundamental change in the way you do things. SIP work deals with long-term improvement and change, balancing concern for today with concern for the future and is a fundamental task of managerial decision-making. Work against SIPs deals with improving things for tomorrow. Each Critical Core Initiative is supported by a set of SIPs that contain a sequenced set of tasks, schedules, and named responsible individuals. The creation of SIPs indicates that the chosen area is one that provides a high payoff in terms of innovation and managed change. Step Seven --- Assign sections of the strategy template to be completed by different team members Developing the strategy document from team homework assignments completed over the previous weeks is a matter of following the template that has been modified to meet your specific company needs. Step Eight --- The accountability process The key managerial tool to ensure steady, consistent progress on SIP tasks is the formal Operational Review Meeting (ORM). This is the foundation to insure that the strategic plan is successful. The ORM is held monthly. The purpose of the ORM is to: o Clearly understand the status of your key initiatives. o Keep executive focus on strategic, rather than just urgent, issues. o Facilitate communication and support throughout the executive team and the company. o Formulate emergency responses to company-wide threats or opportunities. o Leverage all appropriate company resources while maintaining proper accountability for performance. The ORM should be attended by members of the Strategy Team, executive management and other senior managers. It will follow a formal agenda and discussions will be driven by two objective measurements: performance of Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) and progress of SIP task completion. SIP and action item owners will be held accountable for achieving the desired results by the due date indicated on the plan. The entire team will be held accountable for meeting SIP goals. Step Nine --- Developing the presentation for approval The strategy team will provide the strategy document to ownership at least one week in advance of the formal presentation. Representatives of the strategy team will present the plan and defend it from a considered corporate challenge. The purpose of the challenge is to ensure that the plan is well thought out and based on a realistic assessment of the company's risks and constraints. The presentation will also demonstrate the degree of commitment and ownership by the team. The objective of the meeting is to formally endorse the strategy for the company. If necessary, the team will revise and re-present the plan to obtain ownership approval. Step Ten ---- The Roll Out Process After formal acceptance, the President and two to three strategy team members should schedule meetings to introduce the strategy to the entire management team and all other employees, thus formally launching the strategy. This should be a big deal and should be completed as quickly as possible. In person presentations by executive management and strategy team members is highly recommended. Strategy Development Overview Strategic planning is a management tool. It is used to help an organization clarify its future direction - to focus its energy, and to help members of the organization work toward the same goals. The planning process adjusts the organization's direction in response to a changing environment. Strategic planning is a disciplined effort to support fundamental decisions and actions that shape and guide what an organization is, what it does and why it does it, with a focus on where it wants to go and how it is going to get there. Discipline is a prerequisite to this process because it requires laser like persistence to result in a productive strategic planning initiative. The process raises a sequence of questions that helps planners examine current reality, test assumptions, gather and incorporate information about the present and perform trend analysis on the future industry environment. The prioritization of initiatives and SIPs is an essential step. Although your strategic plan will cover a five to seven year period prioritized SIPs are worked on during the first twelve to eighteen month period based on bandwidth and resources while other CCIs and SIPs are deferred. It is much more effective to completely finish three or four SIPs pertaining to one or two CCI's than to work on ten or twelve SIPs and accomplish nothing.

The Business November 14th 2012, The "North Atlantic Treaty Organization" Edition

Monday, November 12, 2012

A friend of The Business is back in town! We’ve missed him since he moved to New York, but he’s been visiting our living rooms every Thursday night via the excellent show he writes for, Totally Biased with W. Kamau Bell. Come enjoy him live and in the flesh here in SF! We are happy to welcome Nato Green.

Nato was named SF Weekly’s Best Comedian of 2010 and got his own cover story in 2011 for getting “smarter and faster” and putting on “legendary” shows that keep audiences “doubled over.” Nato is the
creator of Iron Comic, the Iron Chef-spoofing comedy game show that he often co-hosts with Moshe Kasher. Nato's humor commentaries have appeared in Huffington Post, the San Francisco Bay Guardian, The Rumpus, The Bold Italic, and more. Daniel Handler, aka Lemony Snicket, said Nato is, “Righteous and hilarious, bracing and a hoot, Nato Green is like finding a shot of bourbon at your co-worker's stupid vegan potluck.”




That’s not all! Also joining us will be the hilarious John Roy. He is visiting from Los Angeles, and we are pleased he has time to get down to Business.

John began his career performing in independent rooms in Chicago. After honing his act in clubs around the Midwest, John competed and was crowned the first champion of CBS' Star Search, in 2003. He has performed stand up on numerous television shows, including The Tonight Show, The Late, Late Show with Craig Ferguson, and Last Comic Standing, where he was a semi-finalist. He made his debut on Conan, in 2012. John's CD Dressed for Recess, was released in 2008 on RBC records and continues to receive frequent airplay on Sirius Satellite Radio.

Your regulars, Sean “Kosov-O-NO-YOU-DIDN’T” Keane, Alex “Greece-y Turkey” Koll, “Brussels” Sinster and Caitlin “Eisenhower? I barely knew her! I’m de Gaulled!” Gill will be there for you as well.

Make a treaty with yourself to join our organization! Tickets are just $5, and you can even bring a friend for free with one of these handy 2-for-1 coupons.

BYOBurrito, they are the international symbol of peace. Move over,  doves.

Five for Drive: Tips for Getting Started with Google Drive

Friday, November 9, 2012
Editor’s note: Over the next few weeks, we’ll be sharing tips on how your business can get the most out of Google Drive. This week, learn the basics, and check back for our next posts highlighting some of Drive’s key apps and features.

Businesses wanting to streamline their files and folders, look no further. With Google Drive, you can instantly create new documents, spreadsheets, presentations, and more. This week, we’ve got 5 tips on how your business can use Google Drive to store, edit, and share all of your documents. Learn about how you can access your files from anywhere and collaborate with colleagues in real-time.
  1. Install Google Drive on your computer to free up space on your hard drive and keep all of your business’s documents in one place. Simply drag and drop all your files and folders into your Google Drive folder to begin syncing items. Any file you sync to your Drive will be accessible on the web via your Google account (in My Drive) as well as on any phone or tablet where you have Drive installed.
  2. Download the Google Drive app for your Android or Apple device to access your files on the go. Any changes you make on one device are automatically synced with the rest of the places you have Drive installed, as long as you have an internet connection.
  3. Use the share feature in Drive to share files or entire folders with anyone. You can share a document with just one co-worker, or make it accessible to an entire group. You can also set editing rights and choose whether others can view, edit, or comment on your stuff.
  4. Work simultaneously on the same document with colleagues, and see changes appear as they happen. Use the Comments feature in documents, spreadsheets, and presentations to add notes and discuss content with your collaborators. In documents, you can even chat about a file in real-time.
  5. Set up offline access using Chrome, so you can continue working in Google Drive even when your computer isn’t connected to the internet. This way, if you’re on the go and find yourself without wifi, you can still view documents and spreadsheets, move folders around, and make edits to documents. When you reconnect to the internet, your changes will automatically sync to all your devices.
To get started with Google Drive, visit drive.google.com/start. Looking for even more tips about Google Drive? Check out the Help Center, the Google Apps Learning Center, or Drive’s Google+ page.

SMB Hangouts on Air: Is My Ad Showing?

AdWords Specialists hosted a Hangout on Air yesterday as the first of two installments of the SMB Frequently Asked Questions Hangouts On Air series.

During the Hangout, we talked about how you’ll want to use the Ad Preview and Diagnosis tool to see if your ad is running. We also gave you some common reasons why your ad might not be showing: budget, ad rank, location targeting, and approval statuses.

Here's the full 25-minute Hangout on Air, from the Google Business YouTube channel:

 

To learn more about how to get started with AdWords, visit our Help Center, check out the AdWords Community forum, or call us at 866-2-GOOGLE if you already have an AdWords account.

And remember to tune in to the live stream of our next Hangout on Air at 11 a.m. PDT, November 15th, when we discuss how to diagnoses causes of performance fluctuation in your AdWords account.

Stay tuned!

The Business November 7th 2012, The "Roseanne Barr Victory Party" Edition

Monday, November 5, 2012
We did it everybody! We made it through another election cycle as a docile populace unwilling to topple our overlords!

No matter how you feel about the election results, you should come to The Business to celebrate/mourn. We have invited Kevin O’Shea, a friend of The Business and one of our favorite guests to join us.

Established in 1984 following the mergers of Steven and Cathy O’Shea, Kevin O’Shea has been one of San Francisco’s leading manufactures of mirth, laughter, hilarity and all around good ti

mes! Kevin has been commonly described as clever, absurd, awkward but in a funny way and too smart for his own good. He has been seen on the Independent Film Chanel and ComedyCentral.com. He is a favorite of comedy festivals such as: The SF Sketch Fest and the Bridgetown Comedy Festival. Go see him now as his 4th quarter productivity has never been higher!

We will miss Bucky Sinister this week, but the rest of your regulars will be there. All defenders of democracy, all proudly wearing “I Voted!” stickers (probably just cause we’ll be wearing the same shirts we wore on Tuesday. AMERICA).

As always, the show is just $5 American. If you want to bring a friend, bring em for free!! Don't forget to grab your 2-for-1 coupon at the top of this page!
 
BYOBurrito. Carnitas 2016.

Help Desk Hangouts: Get Your Business Online

Friday, November 2, 2012
Editor’s note: Each week on the Google+ Your Business page, we’re putting you in touch with Googlers and users who can help you as a business owner get the most out of our products and features.

In our latest Help Desk Hangout On Air, we chatted with the Get Your Business online team. We talked about how important it is for businesses to have online presences, and the team highlighted a special promotion. U.S. businesses can set up a free website for a year with Get Your Business online with just a Google account. The team also walked us through how businesses can accelerate their online presences after making this website.

Miss the event? You can watch the whole thing on the Google and Your Business YouTube channel.





Check out the video description on the YouTube page for a minute-by-minute breakdown.

Some of the questions we answered during the Hangout:

What is Get Your Business Online?
Get Your Business Online was designed to make it easy, free, and fast to for any business to get online. We think that small businesses are vital for the future, and we want to see small businesses connecting with customers using modern technologies. Get Your Business Online gives small businesses the opportunity to grow through creating an online presence.

How can I get my business online?
Just visit http://gybo.com in the United States and get started right there. We’re offering a free domain name and hosting for a year, so all you need’s a Google account. You can use the Intuit site builder to make your business’ website, so there’s no HTML knowledge required. Don’t forget to publish your website after building it!

Can you share some tips for jumpstarting your online presence?