Yeargan & Kert - February 2020



The line between technologies that are beneficial for large businesses and those beneficial for small businesses continues to blur. While the latest software programs were once only available to large companies that could afford them, some of these programs have also become available and profitable for small businesses to use. In an age of increasing connectivity, these are a few tech trends that small businesses should watch out for. COLLABORATION WITH ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE While it certainly shouldn’t replace every customer interaction, using AI software programs for small tasks — like email marketing, data entry, accounting, and some low-stress forms of customer service — is invaluable to small businesses. Delegating menial tasks to AI can free up time for you to focus on those more important face-to-face interactions with your customers. INCREASED USE OF DATA ANALYTICS “Big data” is intimidating. For years, sifting through customer data and extracting valuable information that can be used to grow businesses was something that only the largest companies had the time, funds, and expertise to do. However, more programs that reduce the upfront investment and expertise necessary to contextualize customer data

are popping up. If you can make use of your customers’ data, you can give them an experience with your business that they won’t find many other places. CONTINUED RELIANCE ON SOCIAL MEDIA Social media marketing remains an effective tool for attracting customers to your small business, even if the tools continue to change. While marketing on Facebook and Instagram might seem like old news, marketing on trendier apps, like TikTok, Pinterest, or Snapchat, can still work to your business’s benefit. A recent study showed that 45% of consumers head to social media when they have a question about something — are you going to be there to answer it? Keeping up with the latest and greatest tech trends in small-business management can be exhausting, but in an age where technological advancement is accelerating faster than ever, it’s necessary for the survival of businesses of all shapes and sizes.

Alternate Routes


CASUAL CARPOOLING Taking a cab or traditional ride-sharing might work for one- time situations, but these can get pricey if used to commute to work every day. That’s why more and more commuters are turning to “slugging” or “casual carpooling” with drivers offering to put together impromptu car pools for little more than gas money. Apps like Sameride have made these grassroot transportation alternatives easier to find and use than ever before. If you don’t have an option to put together a more traditional carpooling arrangement with coworkers, this can be a great substitute. Lacking a license is always going to be an inconvenience, but it doesn’t have to be the end of the world. These alternatives may not be perfect, but they can help you keep your obligations until you’re free to drive once again.

from work, school, and medical facilities. Not everyone is eligible for such a license however. The option exists for first-time and, in the case of DUIs, second-time offenders who can demonstrate that not having a license would genuinely threaten their livelihood, education, and/or heath. MARTA The Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority leaves much to be desired in terms of its reach to many commuters. Yet, depending on where you live, this can be an effective option. Compared to the price of gas, a long-term pass might even save you money along the way. Google Maps makes it easy and convenient to explore public transit routes in your area. Be sure to use the “Schedule Explorer” to see the widest range of times and transit options to chart your most convenient route.

As Jim mentions on the cover, a suspended license can cause major difficulties in your everyday life — and can tempt you into breaking the law. However, you don’t have to be stranded. There are ways you can reduce the hardships faced by a suspended license without risking arrest. APPLY FOR A HARDSHIP LICENSE The state of Georgia acknowledges that suspending a license can put you and your family in dire straits. Thus, it’s possible to apply for a limited-use permit that will allow you to do things like drive to and



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