OPEN Forum

Aug 19

Why Brands Are Having a Bit of a ’90s Moment

Nostalgia for the not-so-distant 1990s seems to be everywhere you turn these days. From Kate Moss’ little sister appearing in her own Calvin Klein ads to the Disney Channel’s spin off “Girl Meets World” following up where “Boys Meets World” left off more than a decade ago, brands are creating ads and products that are decidedly ’90s inspired.

But why?

Brands are focusing on the ’90s, because they know they need to tap into the spending power of the biggest and most diverse generation that’s ever existed: the millennials. Many of these young adults grew up in the 1990s and are now entering their peak earning and spending years. Ignoring them would be a bad business move.

And research backs them up. Apparently when we feel nostalgic, we’re more willing to part with our dollars. 

From OPEN Forum’s “They Love the ’90s: Using Nostalgia to Woo Millennials

Weird Job Titles That Probably Didn’t Exist 10 Years Ago

(Ok, the last two are from Google, where nearly everything is far from the status quo.) Read on for more crazy employee titles that made us do a double take on OPEN Forum.

This Is How Pet Lovers Spent Their Money Last Year

Apparently, Americans will do almost anything to keep their furry (and not-so-furry) friends happy, healthy and pampered.

Read on for more weird pet economy facts.

Aug 18

This Is Why Your Sales Pitch Fell Flat

"The reason for a sale gone bad is seldom as simple as the service or product exceeding the target’s budget. It’s also often about how the sale is presented and whether your team is truly collaborating to the best effect."

But you can bounce back from a bad sales pitch with these three tips

Flickr user: Engin Erdogan

8 Common Customer Service Complaints You Can Actually Fix

Building a company culture that prides itself on offering great customer service does more than keep your business from being the butt of a viral joke… it improves your bottom line. When customers complain, it’s a good opportunity to improve your business procedures. For example, if a customer says, ”No one ever calls me back”:

Determine which ways customers reach out to your company, and monitor each of these channels with enough staff to respond in an appropriate amount of time. Email should be responded to within 12 hours, while tweets need to be answered in 15 minutes.

Read on for seven more customer service complaints you can solve quickly.

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Aug 15

How to Become a Master Small Talker

So… it’s pretty hot out, huh?

Come on: There are way more interesting topics out there than the weather. Mastering the art of small talk not only makes you a more desirable person to bump into at a networking event; it can also make you smarter, according to a study at the University of Michigan, and open the doors for future business opportunities.

One trick?

Before you head to your next networking event, come up with topic points you can chat about. Have at least three things to talk about depending on the event you’re going to.

Read on for four more tips on how to become better at small talk.

Flickr user: David Goehring

Women Launch 1,200 New Businesses a Day

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You guys. 1,200 new businesses a day? That’s up from an average of 740 a day in 2013! This is just one of the many statistics that have us excited about the state of women entrepreneurs:

For more insights into the State of Women-Owned Businesses, read our report.

This Piece of Advice Will Change The Way You Work

Seriously. It did for us, anyway:

Scrap your “to-do” list. Instead, move those tasks to your calendar by scheduling short blocks of time to focus on them. This creates a more realistic view of your available time and will also help track how you are actually spending your days. 

Read on for 18 more so-simple-why-didn’t-I-think-of-it productivity hacks on OPEN Forum.

Aug 14

Got some handcrafted goods you’re ready to share with the masses? This infographic breaks out the 13 things every successful Etsy shop needs to have.

Got some handcrafted goods you’re ready to share with the masses? This infographic breaks out the 13 things every successful Etsy shop needs to have.