Small Business/Entrepreneur Course Information

The following classes are offered on a regular basis most terms. Find currently offered classes here »

Practical (Low-Cost/No-Cost) Marketing Strategies EESB142

Calling all entrepreneurs, retail or service providers that are looking to develop a marketing plan but are overwhelmed by the choices. Join Rachel North, Marketing Director for Traverse Magazine in this review of options (free or low-cost). Review options for ads, press releases, and emails. Discover free and easy blog options and discover how to photograph your key products or services. Explore how to collect email addresses and find inexpensive ways to promote and sell online. You’ll also get resources to help you get through the research step and right into the doing.

Starting a Business in Northern Michigan EESB102

Starting a business can be exciting, but it can also be challenging and daunting. Explore the essential parts of starting a business including how a new business fits into your own personal situation and assessing all of the risks and costs involved. Recognize the requirements needed to start a new business, from knowing if your concept is viable, to developing a thorough written business plan, to finding appropriate sources of funding. Using practical examples of small business success, this fast-paced course considers all of the issues facing a first time entrepreneur.

Financing the Start-Up Business EESB139

Recent challenges in the economy have made lending sources for small businesses somewhat of a mystery. If you have a new business concept that is trying to acquire startup money or an established company looking to grow, join Chris Wendel, Commercial Lender for Northern Initiatives, as he shares dozens of relevant funding resources. Review many of the traditional sources of capital as well as new sources of funding often unknown. Get a clear overview of bank financing in addition to federal, state, and local loan and grant programs. Several lending institutions will have representatives available to address recent changes.

Starting an Online Business EESB112

Learn the essentials of starting an online business or of adding online selling to your existing enterprise. Find out about setting up a webstore, marketing an online business, selecting products to sell, managing inventory, accepting payment, communicating with customers, and other important aspects of online selling in this crash course. Discover the tremendous opportunities of the internet and explore the pitfalls that online sellers commonly encounter. Leave with a roadmap to develop your own successful online business.

Tools for Selling Online EESB147

There are lots of ways to sell products online from basic free platforms like Craigslist to auction sites like eBay and Etsy to stock do-it-yourself platforms like Yola and Weebly to full-featured selling platforms like Volusion and Magento. What platform should you pick? What are the similarities and differences between the various options? Explore the full range of choices available to you, paying special attention to the costs, benefits, and limitations of each.

Making Google Analytics Work for You EESB148

Do you manage a website, blog, or ecommerce store? Want to better understand who is visiting your website, how they are using it, and how they came to find you in the first place? Google’s powerful, yet free, tools can help you better understand virtually every aspect of your website’s performance. To get the most out of them, however, it is important to understand how they work and what they are measuring. Discover Google Analytics and Google Webmaster Tools and learn how these tools can help you better understand visitor traffic, content goals, and ecommerce metrics.

Bookkeeping for Small Business EESB104

Learn basic accounting principles for record keeping, terminology, and how to prepare financial statements. Discover how to summarize the activities of a business through journal entries and understand how these activities lead to the preparation of income statements and balance sheets. This class is helpful prior to learning accounting software like QuickBooks or Quicken. Required text, “Bookkeeping Made Simple”, is available at NMC Bookstore (995-1285).

Payroll Taxes, Record Keeping, and Reporting EESB106

Designed for small business owners and bookkeepers and those who have never prepared payroll tax returns or need assistance with the process. Learn to prepare all the required federal and state quarterly and annual payroll tax forms, payroll tax registrations, deposit requirements, and record keeping systems. Bring a calculator.

How to Read and Interpret Financial Statements EEBU288

Financial statements can answer many questions—if you know what to ask. In clear language, we’ll explain the information different financial reports contain, what analyses you can use to bring it out, and how to relate the information to the overall health of the business. You’ll learn to view financial statements in the context of external economic conditions; read and interpret balance sheets, income statements, and statements of cash flow from a management perspective; and apply the right type of analysis — ratio, vertical, or horizontal — to the right statement, to uncover the information you need.

Essentials of Customer Service: Managing for Excellence EEBU835

Designed for managers and entrepreneurs wanting to create excellence in customer service. Expand and reinforce customer satisfaction with fresh insights, ideas, and ready-to-use tools. You’ll explore customer perceptions, the three elements of the “WOW” factor, and how to retain your most valuable customers. Learn to enhance skills of front-line staff and create service improvement throughout the organization. Improve your coaching skills around customer service performance. Materials included. Class breaks for lunch on your own.

Facebook for Business: Creating a Fan Page EEBU929

Your business has to be on Facebook and it needs to be positioned properly for search engines and social search. You will learn:

  • How to set up or rebrand your fan page
  • Basic navigation of the page
  • Posting techniques that will get you noticed
  • Where critical keywords for your business need to be placed
  • How to integrate Twitter, YouTube & Pinterest to your page
  • How to create a “look” for your social brand
  • And posting techniques that will get your business extra exposure

This course is great for businesses that already have a page as well as businesses that need to build one. Bring your Facebook username and password.

Pinterest for Business EEBU930

Pinterest came out of nowhere and it is now the big rage. People LOVE photos! Retail businesses who adopt this tool early have a unique opportunity to explode sales. You will learn:

  • What Pinterest is
  • The Pinterest demographic
  • How to set up your account for highest visibility to search engines, as well as social search (SEO)
  • Basic navigation of the site
  • How to connect Pinterest to your Facebook fan page and your website
  • How to market your products on Pinterest

This course is tailored for retail businesses. Bring your Pinterest username and password.

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