Weekly Small Biz Chat Helps Aspiring Entrepreneurs Live American Dream


By: Malika Bennett

This week I had the opportunity to participate in a phenomenal #Smallbizchat on Twitter hosted and created by entrepreneur and small business coach Melinda Emerson.

The #Smallbizchat takes place every Wednesday from 8-9PM ET and features experts in small business and more.  According to Emerson’s website, noted guests have included best-selling authors and small business experts Michael Gerber, Anita Campbell, Alan Weiss, David Allen and Peter Shankman.

The #Smallbizchat hit Twitter-land in April of 2009 and began as a peer-to-peer mentoring program to help business owners get answers to their small business questions. The chat is said to have a reach of about 1.5 million readers weekly and is designed to coach those who really want to live the American Dream.

This was my first Twitter Chat and found it was a clever new way to network with other business-minded people who have knowledge and similar desires to own and operate their own businesses. It was impressive that the chat had a strong loyal following of mostly women which for me, was empowering and encouraging.

I liked the chat because people need help. Business is not easy but it can be rewarding and fun if you have a solid plan to make it successful. In the words of Emerson or Small Biz Lady, “everybody has good ideas but people get in trouble with the business of running a business.”  This is a very accurate observation. The reality is, many people want to be their own boss but running a business can be tricky and it’s important to have a network of experts to help you get the knowledge you need to put together solid business plans and strategies that will propel your idea into a  profitable business venture.

Participation in the #Smallbizchat is easy. Users simply login to Twitter or a third party Twitter chat service like TweetChat and enter the hashtag #Smallbizchat. Hashtags identify specific topics and those hashtags allow services like TweetChat to connect you with people talking about similar things.

Amazingly after I participated in the chat, I read up on Emerson and remembered that she was someone I meet three years ago in passing at a Joyce Meyer conference in Hershey, Pa. Go figure. Small world, right! And guess how I remembered her. She was memorable because when I met her she introduced herself as “Small Biz Lady” a name that follows her today on Twitter. At the time we met she was working on a new book and now look she has an award winning book “Become Your Own Boss in 12 Months” and a huge following on her blog and Twitter account.

It just goes to show the power of personal branding and that a good idea, business plan, hashtag, and Twitter or social media knowledge can help make your business dreams come true.

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