Houston tops small business optimism, Colorado rewards remote hires, immigration divides small businesses, business owners don’t have time for marketing.
Welcome to the Small Business Run Down. Each day, we bring you stories and trends that impact small business owners and their workforce.
Hello. Happy Monday. Here’s the rundown on small business optimism in Houston, remote workers in Colorado, differing opinions on the impact of immigration, and the struggle to market for many SBOs. Enjoy!
Houston tops nation for small business optimism
It’s always sunny in Houston…at least for small business owners. A recent survey found that Houston leads the nation in small business optimism. Across the country, only about half of entrepreneurs report a positive outlook for the future, while two-thirds of Houston’s SBOs report feeling hopeful for their business. Though this number fell from last year, Houston has lead the country in small business optimism for a number of years, most likely due to the diversification of their economy beyond the oil and gas industry.
The Number: 70%. In the event of a natural disaster, such as a flood or hurricane, 70% of Houston’s small business owners say they plan to keep their business operating as usual.
The Quote: “The growth in that diversity here has allowed us to become not only stable, but thrive in times where national diversity or national industry dips.”
Colorado rewards companies for hiring remote workers in rural locations
A new program in Colorado will pay companies to hire workers in remote locations. Designed to promote economic growth in areas beyond metro Denver and the Front Range, the program piggybacks on the state’s new Job Growth Incentive Tax Credit initiative. The money for the program will come from the state’s strategic fund.
The Number: 15. The program will provide a state tax credit of $5000 per employee to companies who have 15 or more qualified employees in remote locations.
The Quote: “Remote workers must make at least the median wage of the county they are living in and the local government where the workers are based must write a letter of support.”
Issues around immigration divide small business owners
A recent survey of SBOs indicates that, though the topic of immigration divides small business owners, immigrant and non-immigrant SBOs face similar challenges. While 38.7% of small business professional believe immigration is good for their business, 42% said that immigration negatively impacts their business. Both immigrant and non-immigrant small business owners list hiring and managing employees and establishing a customer base as their top two concerns.
The Number: 73%. While business owners are divided when it comes to the impact of immigration on business, when it comes to immigrants who own their own small business, a full 73% of them are optimistic about the future.
The Quote: “It’s clear from both groups’ rankings of these challenges that, while sentiment may be split about immigration’s impact, the everyday challenges of business owners can be strikingly similar.”
Over half of SBOs spend less than 5 hours a week on marketing
With concerns about hiring taking up their time and attention, many small business owners are unable to devote more than 5 hours per week to marketing their business. While business owners who report spending time on their marketing report a growth in revenue, many company heads are not trained in marketing practices and find that they don’t have the staff or resources to expand their marketing reach.
The Number: 58%. Marketing often takes a backseat when it comes to SBO priorities, with 58% of business owners spending only 5 hours or less per week on their marketing efforts and 54% of companies spending 5% or less of their revenue on marketing efforts.
The Quote: “There are now numerous technologies to help small businesses automate their marketing, but even those take a weekly commitment that small business owners just don’t have time for.”