Investment Guides for Experts of All Levels

Come by June 10th and find out How to Conquer Email Marketing a Crash Course – Part 1. This is a small business series.

Join Connecting Atlanta on LinkedIn and Facebook.

As small to medium size business owners many times we are only thinking about investing in our businesses, our family and our fun, however, we truly need to diversify our income. When we are ready to slow down the pace during our best years we need to create ways to bring in various streams of income. Some of the ways we can do this is through real estate (rental properties), investments, affiliates, and other businesses you may invest in where you are the silent partner and others are responsible for making the business grow.

Here is a great guide for experts of all levels by Clark Howard.

Jacqueline H. Waller
Jacqueline

Jacqueline Waller, the ATL Connector is the Founder/President of Connecting Atlanta. Ms. Waller, a sales and marketing professional with nearly 20 years of experience, has assisted numerous businesses in meeting goals and objectives for their revenue, market share and profits. She also believes in the power of your ‘network is your net worth’, being a social butterfly, she has connected with hundreds of people whom she has brought into Connecting Atlanta where they have launched their businesses, moved from struggling into sustainability and provided opportunities for others to connect to build! Her background extends from collections, finance, underwriting, and information technology.

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LAST MINUTE FILING TIPS FOR 2016 TAX RETURNS

Come by April 29th and find out How to Turn your Contacts into Contracts, write up your own personalized sales script that fits your company and how to drive business from social media.

Any accounting, business or tax advice contained in this communication, including attachments and enclosures, is not intended as a thorough, in-depth analysis of specific issues, nor a substitute for a formal opinion, nor is it sufficient to avoid tax-related penalties. If desired, we would be pleased to perform the requisite research and provide you with a detailed written analysis. Such an engagement may be the subject of a separate engagement letter that would define the scope and limits of the desired consultation services.
Are you one of the millions of Americans who hasn’t filed (or even started) your taxes yet? With the April 18 tax filing deadline quickly approaching, here is some last minute tax advice for you.

1. Stop Procrastinating. Resist the temptation to put off your taxes until the very last minute. It takes time to prepare accurate returns and additional information may be needed from you to complete your tax return.

2. Include All Income. If you had a side job in addition to a regular job, you might have received a Form 1099-MISC. Make sure you include that income when you file your tax return because you may owe additional taxes on it. If you forget to include it you may be liable for penalties and interest on the unreported income.

3. File on Time or Request an Extension. This year’s tax deadline is April 18. If the clock runs out, you can get an automatic six-month extension, bringing the filing date to October 16, 2017. You should keep in mind, however, that filing the extension itself does not give you more time to pay any taxes due. You will still owe interest on any amount not paid by the April deadline, plus a late-payment penalty if you have not paid at least 90 percent of your total tax by that date.

4. Don’t Panic If You Can’t Pay. If you can’t immediately pay the taxes you owe, there are several alternatives. You can apply for an IRS installment agreement, suggesting your own monthly payment amount and due date, and getting a reduced late payment penalty rate. You also have various options for charging your balance on a credit card. There is no IRS fee for credit card payments, but processing companies generally charge a convenience fee. Electronic filers with a balance due can file early and authorize the government’s financial agent to take the money directly from their checking or savings account on the April due date, with no fee.

5. Don’t forget to check the box for healthcare coverage. Checking the box on line 61 of Form 1040 shows that you had healthcare for all 12 months during the tax year (2016). The IRS will still process your tax return if you forget to check the box but this applies ONLY to 2016 tax returns–and you’re not off the hook for any penalty you might owe.

6. Sign and Double Check Your Return. The IRS will not process tax returns that aren’t signed, so make sure that you sign and date your return. You should also double check your social security number, as well as any electronic payment or direct deposit numbers, and finally, make sure that your filing status is correct.

Remember: To avoid delays, get your tax documents to the office as soon as you can.

Written by Steve Julal of VAAS Professionals

Steve

VAAS Professionals, LLC
325 Edgewood Avenue, S.E
Atlanta, GA 30312
www.vaasprofessionals.com
(404)223-1058

25 Features Every Business Website Must Have in 2017 (Infographic)

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Even though online businesses are becoming more prevalent, they haven’t become any easier to launch.

To give your online business a greater chance to succeed, there are certain things you need to incorporate on its website. Of course, there are the simple things such as an easy domain name, a phone number and a logo, but it’s also vital to think about the content, links and navigation that will go onto your site.

When building your website, sometimes it’s helpful to think of its setup like that of a newspaper — organizing the most important content “above the fold,” and the less exciting material “below the fold.” In addition, having a strong call to action will help hook potential customers.

For the rest of the article, click here.

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Rose Leadem is an online editorial assistant at Entrepreneur Media Inc.

3 Ridiculously Easy Hacks to Get People to Sign Up to Your Email List

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Have you ever changed the oil in your car?

It’s a pretty basic skill that surprisingly few people actually know how to do. If you do, you’ll most likely have used a funnel before.

The main idea behind a funnel is to cast a wide net that you can pour the viscous liquid into it without spilling it all over the engine block. The oil flows through the wide top end of the funnel and is neatly deposited into the narrow bottom end, filling your engine up so that the car runs smoothly.

In the internet marketing world, we also have funnels. Their purpose is to cast a wide net and find people across the web who might be interested in our material, then get those people to neatly file themselves into our email database so that we can provide them with valuable content, market to them and eventually make some money.

Getting people to opt-in.

Once a member of your audience has interacted with your content, it’s time to get them on your email list. This might seem challenging at first, but think about your own inbox. How many newsletters are you subscribed to?

The average person subscribes to anywhere between 20 and 30 free newsletters from a variety of businesses. Anything from a department store doing a semi-annual sale, to the Nissan dealership giving away insane deals on the 2018 Altima, to content-based emails about things that interest you.

At one point you weren’t receiving emails from that business…and now you are. How the hell does that happen?

In most cases, it people sign up to an email newsletter to get something for free. This is called an “opt-in,” and it’s your bread and butter if you want to build an online business — especially one that’s based on information products.

For the rest of the article, click here.

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Daniel DiPiazza is the founder of Rich20Something, where he teaches young people how to start businesses that they care about and live happier lives.

Vincent Hill Talks about the Steve McNair Case and others on Connecting Atlanta Radio

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Check Out Entrepreneur Podcasts at Blog Talk Radio with Connecting in Atlanta on BlogTalkRadio

We have been looking forward in interviewing this young man and hear about his accomplishments and life fighting for justice as a Police Officer, Private Investigator and now as a Journalist.

In July of 2009, Vincent realized his true passion through the tragic death of NFL Quarterback Steve McNair.  As an outspoken critic of the investigation, Vincent began appearing on local media and radio.  In September of 2009 Vincent received the call to appear on Dateline NBC.  It was at that point Vincent realized his passion for journalism.  After appearing on Dateline, Vincent self-published a book fittingly entitled Playbook to a Murder in 2010.  In June of 2014, Vincent released the highly anticipated follow up book titled Incomplete Pass.  Incomplete Pass has received several five star ratings.

Please follow him and get more information on his books at:

Incomplete Pass

YouTube

Playbook to a Murder

YouTube

4 Ways To Create More Cash for Your Business

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We have spoken about ways to create more cash flow for you personally, now that you have that together, what about for your business?

Found a great article in Inc.com Magazine.
Meeting payroll is a badge of honor among most business owners. You know that you are helping each of your employees, and their families, get by. To do this successfully, you need to understand how your business works. More specifically, you need to understand its cash flow cycle. Yes, revenue and profitability are important, but in the end it’s all about cash flow.

Understanding how to manage cash flow can help you run your business better, increase your availability of debt, and allow you to manage your business instead of having it manage you.

  1. Manage payables
  2. Manage receivables
  3. Turn inventory
  4. Consider real estate carefully

For a break down of all these please visit the article online athttp://www.inc.com/ed-powers/four-ways-to-create-more-cash-for-your-business.html

 

Jacqueline H. Waller
Connecting Atlanta
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3 Super Simple Ways to Fatten Your Piggy Bank

piggy bank

I normally don’t like it when an article tries to entice unsuspecting readers by claiming that something is super simple. Millennials already have a bad reputation for being impatient and demanding and these “click bait” article titles tend to reinforce those stereotypes.  The last thing I want to do is perpetuate that. But in this case, I just could not resist.

If you have followed any of my blogs over the past two months then you have been properly introduced to the doom and gloom that is the future of every Millennial. Normally, I am talking about how student loan debt is at a gazillion dollars or how Millennials won’t be able to retire until we are 90, if then. But this time, I bring a message of hope! This article outlines how you can make three small lifestyle changes to seriously beef up your savings, plan for the future, pay down debt or whatever! But knowing you, you’ll probably just go on another vacay! And if you know me, you know I could NEVER fault you for that!

Anyway, rather than letting me tell you that these steps are simple, put your thinking cap on, adjust the setting to “pretty easy read” and decide for yourself if these steps are actionable and useful to your everyday life! Then, comment so we can debate about it!  J

Stop Funding the Starbucks Empire

Starbucks coffee

 

If you are looking to save some money you should start with your morning cup of coffee. Starbucks is a great company, but I am much more concerned with your bottom line than theirs.

As a non-coffee drinker, I cannot empathize or feel your struggle. Not even a little bit. Objectively, spending $4 on coffee per day seems like a poor decision for someone who is not already a millionaire.  I understand that coffee is addictive and that Starbucks has the best fix, but you need to find a cheaper alternative. Like Folgers… or something.

Action: Hide that Starbucks loyalty card! Instead, find your favorite mug or thermos and start making your own version of gourmet coffee delights right from home.

 

Savings: $1000* Annually

*I know you!! So, I added some cushion in for the occasional Starbucks Latte.

Stop Eating Out

dining-out

 

After you have tackled your morning cup of coffee, let’s talk about your lunch!
From my experience working with Millennials, there are few things that we enjoy more than lunching and dining with friends. But, this madness must stop! And it is delicious madness indeed!

Let’s pretend that you eat out 4 times per week for lunch and once for dinner. This would easily add up to $200 per week. I have clients who were spending upwards of $500 eating out in addition to their grocery bill! While I am in no position to dictate your financial decisions, I do wonder how satisfying devouring your retirement will be in the long run.

Whether you are a foodie or fancy yourself a budding chef, I am going to need you to take your culinary efforts to the kitchen where your groceries will cost much less. Not to mention you will save on drinks and transportation while eating better and healthier food.

Action: Create a grocery list that will allow you to eat healthy things that you love for lunch! After going shopping, prep lunch meals for the entire week. Make it simple like delicious sandwiches and inventive salads that are yummy and easy to travel with. Then, on Friday, plan lunch with a friend from work and treat yourself. You deserve it!

 Savings: Over $5,000 Annually

Cut Your Cable Cord!

Vintage Television

In the 21st century, are there still people who are actually paying for cable? If you are part of the #dreamchase movement you should be far too busy changing the world or doing what you love to watch TV. But, on that rare occasion that you do have an opportunity to watch TV, are you sure that basic cable will not suffice?

If your basic cable is not enough for you, there are other options! Hulu, Netlfix, and Roku practically eliminate the need for anyone to pay upwards of $100 for a cable bill. Instead, pay about $30 per month on Hulu and Netflix and move on with your life in the 21st century in a much more techno savvy and profitable manner.

Action: Pick up the phone right now and call your cable company. Tell them that you want to disconnect your cable. They will try to give you a special rate but it is a trap. Be strong and cut the cord!

 Savings: $600 Annually

So, rather than just taking my word for it, how about you tell me how simple these three action steps are. Do these changes disrupt your daily life too much? Are you willing to sacrifice today so that you can live better tomorrow? Just by following these steps you could easily  save $6,500 to pay down debt  or start investing.

Remember that the actions you take today will dictate the life you lead tomorrow. Carpe Diem!

For more great posts on Financial Health please visit Latasha Kinnard’s Blog at http://startyoungfinancial.com/blog-2/

Follow her on Facebook.

Jacqueline H. Waller
Connecting Atlanta
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Communicating Your Boundaries Clearly

#Communication is one way to be clear and concise with your boundaries.

When it comes to developing relationships, if you are honest with where you stand, who you are, and don’t allow your boundaries to be pushed then everyone will feel better about the relationship. If the person is unable to respect who you are, then you already know it isn’t met to grow.

You can’t be honest with others, until you are honest with yourself.

Jacqueline H. Waller

Connecting Atlanta
Facebook
#ExpandATL

Motivation – What Motivates You?

I was talking with a friend and he had asked me what motivates me and to be honest, as much as I have my vision board written out with pictures, I still had to stop, think and ask myself that question. What really motivates me right now? I think this is a question we should continuously ask ourselves and see what’s the answer we come up with. Comment below and let me know what motivates you?

I would love to say, being financially free so I don’t have to work for anyone else motivates me, but honestly it is helping others and making a difference. I love to see other people going after their dreams and goals.

#‎Motivation‬. If you see what you want, set your goals and go after it!
Connecting in Atlanta 

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#‎ExpandATL‬

 

How many of you are on a Work Conference call and can only think about having your own business? Here is a funny skit with how conference calls are at the J.O.B.

Have an amazing day!

Jacqueline

 

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DYu_bGbZiiQ&noredirect=1

Business Spotlight – The Value of Connecting over Networking

We had a chance to interview International Business Consultant, Ron Broussard. Many times when attending various networking events, we try and get as many business cards as possible to fill our virtual Rolodex, however, it is the quality of the connections that matters.

When Porter Gail, author of “Your Network is Your Network” was asked,

Why do you believe that you’re only worth as much as the size of your network? Should people be measured based on network or wealth?

Actually, I don’t believe it’s the size of the network that is important. I believe it is the quality of the relationships and your ability to make authentic connections that most greatly impacts your true worth. I believe that seeking out and working in collaboration with others who share your interests and values will provide a stronger foundation, enabling you to reach a higher level of success than you would on your own. Therefore, I believe that your “net worth” will be based not on the size of your portfolio or the size of your network but on your ability to define and stay true to your passions and values and that working with other people who share them will allow you to build a strong and enduring interpersonal safety net that will carry you through any financial calamity to greater output and personal fulfillment. Reference: http://www.forbes.com/sites/danschawbel/2013/06/04/porter-gale/

Take into consideration the value of the persons coming into your life, associates and clients and add the most value to those who are not empty pits.

 

Jacqueline H. Waller
http://www.connectingatlanta.net