Keeping up with every RSS feed item and tweet is hard enough for anybody, let alone someone trying to run a business. That's why every Friday, ReadWriteBiz rounds up the week's most important tech news and insights for small and medium-sized businesses.
On Monday, we covered some interesting research from American Express Open that showed that one third of small businesses are using social media to interact with their customers. We also took a look at Spreadable, a referral marketing tool that helps facilitate sharing via social media and email.
Speaking of which, do you ever get the feeling that in order to run a truly effective social marketing effort, you'd have to stretch yourself or your organization pretty thin? Small Business Trends had a thought-provoking post earlier this week running through the 4 Social Media Truths SMBs Can Finally Admit. Among these truths, writes Lisa Barone, is that SMBs using social media simply can't be everywhere at once or "always on", nor can they effectively please everyone. It's just a fact of small business life that time and resources are limited. Finally, she urges SMBs to remember that they're "in social media to sell," however buzz-worthy other stated objectives may be.
A trio of Web-based productivity tools for SMBs joined forces this week in the form of eKnife, a software bundle that combines online scheduling app Doodle, Web notebook Memonic and online storage service Wuala.
GigOm's WebWorkerDaily had a handy post on Wednesday rounding up 15 Very Useful Mobile Apps for Conferences. The post lists apps that make networking and exchanging contact info easier, as well as QR code readers, location-based social media apps and other tools to enhance the experience of attending conferences.
After months of delay, the much-hyped mobile credit card reader Square officially opened their doors Friday and announced they would resume shipping credit card readers to approved merchants. Square is potentially a huge deal for SMBs, because its one of a few emerging mobile payment systems that make accepting credit card payments a more affordable option for businesses.
Back here on ReadWriteBiz, we talked about the findings of Forrester Research report showing that 45% of companies are just getting started establishing their mobile strategy. Not surprisingly, small and medium-sized businesses made up a sizable percentage of the companies that are not yet active in the mobile space.
The week wraps up on Saturday at BizTechDay in San Francisco, an event for entrepreneurs and tech enthusiasts featuring speakers from Intuit, Yahoo!, Google, Mashable, Flowtown, Techcrunch and host of other companies. ReadWriteWeb will be there covering the event, so be sure to say hello if you're attending. There are still seats available, so it's not too late to sign up.