Tune In and Turn On the Microsoft Small Business Show

Must-See TV is so 1990s. In this jargon-crazed Internet age, we’ve moved on to what you might call Must See TV, 2.0. Cultural reference jokes aside, if you’re a small business owner, Microsoft is airing a Web cast — in the form of a TV-style talk show — that you don’t want to miss. Welcome to the Microsoft Small Business Show.

The free, hour-long show will air live tomorrow, November 14 at 2 PM EST and 11 AM PST, and it will rerun again for the two hours following the live Web cast.

The event, according to Frederic DeWulf, Web director for Microsoft Small Business, will be styled after a TV talk show, where people can call or e-mail in with questions for the participants. “The main theme of this episode is marketing,” said DeWulf. “We’ve found through our traditional Web casts that marketing is a big mystery to most small business owners, especially when it comes to the Internet.”

Unlike traditional Web casts that typically feature speakers and a presentation, the Microsoft Small Business Show is designed more like a television talk show. The show will be helmed by Emmy award-winning host, Chris Cashman, and will be broken into 10-minute segments, each of which focuses on different small business owner. Each guest will talk about his or her own experience and offer tips on technology, marketing, best practices, getting a Web site up and running and selling your products over the Internet.

Microsoft’s targeting businesses with fewer than 50 employees, including home-based businesses and plans to air additional episodes in January and April 2008. “What’s notable about these Web casts is that no one from Microsoft will be on the show, just the host and small business owners,” said De Wulf. “You get to hear from your peers about how to build a successful business and how they used technology to help make it happen.”

Tune in to the Small Business Show on November 14 at 2 PM EST/11 AM PST to hear from the following small business owners:

  • Tom Douglas, a Northwest restaurateur, will discuss how to grow and market your unique skill set to turn it into a business.
  • Nicole Donnelly, founder of Baby Legs infant apparel company and Cause Haun, a mom turned baby-boot designer, will share their first steps to success and how their Web sites helped them launch worldwide businesses from their homes.
  • Mike Dillon, a former Disney ‘Imagineer,’ will discuss how discovering new markets for his unique products, a solid sales and marketing plan and Internet sales saved his company.
  • David Holcomb, an inventor of ergonomic kitchen gadgets who holds over 250 patents for his quirky kitchen collection, will discuss how to protect and secure your good ideas — and market and sell them over the Internet.
  • Me Ra Koh, a nationally renown wedding photographer will share advice on how her Web site ignited her business.
  • Rick Woodbury, a self-taught engineer, created The Tango, an automobile that is as wide as a motorcycle and as long as a couch, and tops out at 130 mph, talks about how to go from small scale to mass production.

Lauren Simonds is the managing editor of SmallBusinessComputing.com

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