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Small Business Tech Roundup: Intuit Launches An Advertising Network

By July 30, 2023No Comments

Here are five things in tech that happened this week and how they affect your business. Did you miss them?

(This column originally appeared in Forbes)

1 -Intuit launches media network for small businesses.

Software company Intuit is launching a media network for the small business community. The network — “SMB Labs” — will give advertisers new ways to reach Mailchimp and QuickBooks customers who outnumber those of other email marketing platforms according to the latest stats. Prospective content of SMB Labs will include digital and social media. (Source: Adweek)

Why this is important for your business:

Ever walk through a retail store and see monitors feeding ads to you? You’ve probably experienced this while pumping gas. If you’re a QuickBooks or Mailchimp user then guess what? It’s your turn! Will this negatively impact your experience? I guess time will tell. This of course benefits Intuit but just as important it benefits any business looking to sell to small businesses.

2 TikTok is launching an e-commerce business in the U.S. to sell made-in-China goods to consumers.

TikTok is upping its e-commerce game plan. The Wall Street Journal reported the company is in the process of structuring its own marketplace on par with Amazon’s “Sold by Amazon”. TikTok Shop Shopping Center intends to bring a multitude of products to online consumers into one place. (Source: The Wall Street Journal)

Why this is important for your business:

Sick of selling on Amazon? Looking for cheaper products for your business? Now TikTok is entering the mix with its own products exclusively made in China (along with other lines) and hopes to capitalize. As reported in the article, “TikTok aims to quadruple the gross merchandise value, or the total transaction amount of goods on the platform, to $20 billion this year globally…”

3 — AI technology is unlikely to fully replace financial advisors: Morningstar

As speculation (and fear) continues to mount as to whether AI will obliterate numerous jobs done by humans — one profession that might be AI-proof: financial advisor. Eric Revel of Fox Business delved into the role of financial advisors with respect to generative AI and cited commentary made by Danny Noonan of financial services firm, Morningstar. Noonan perceives AI’s role as more ancillary than essential. “…clients are kind of expecting a data-driven, hyper-personalized advice delivery ecosystem but still with a human connection…There’s going to be a role for financial advisors in that context.” (Source: Fox Business)

Why this is important for your business:

The conclusion by Morningstar’s team members is that they don’t foresee AI taking over the most important aspect of their jobs: advising clients on life-preserving matters such as their financial security. Do you agree? AI isn’t going to replace the good financial advisors, it will only make them better.

4 — Amazon warns Prime members not to be duped by recent scam tactics.

Amazon has alerted its Prime customers of another threat by scammers looking to capitalize on Prime-related transactions. (Source: HotHardware)

Why this is important for your business:

The company dispatched a mass email detailing specific red flags to be aware of: “Unexpected calls/texts/emails that refer to a costly membership fee.” And “emails, texts or phone calls” warning of membership cancellation. Paul Lilly who reported the story after receiving an alert correctly notes the uncanny timing as Amazon just held its “biggest ever Prime Day” in the company’s history. Unsurprisingly, the grifters are trying to cash in.

5 — Traveling soon? These are the best travel VPNs to safely surf on the go.

ZDNet published a good summary of the best VPNs if you’re planning a trip. Among ZDNet’s recommendations are ExpressVPN for its extensive network in over 150 countries; IPVanishVPN because it gives the user to choose an optimal server based on their location. NordVPN is their first choice for its speed, reliability, and second layer of encryption. (Source: ZDNet)

Why this is important for your business:

Virtual Private Networks are specifically programmed to protect your data from potential threats on a public WiFi — such as using your laptop in an airport terminal. If you or your employees are travelling they should always be using a VPN when connected to a public router.

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