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The National Puerto Rican Chamber of Commerce Launches new Website

Providing tangible resources for minority small business to enhance economic development.

June 18, 2010, Washington, D.C. – The National Puerto Rican Chamber of Commerce, Inc., located in Washington, D.C., officially released its website to the public today.  The non-profit organization was incorporated in Washington, D.C. with a mission to „support the development of entrepreneurship and innovation for Puerto Ricans, Hispanics, and other minorities throughout Puerto Rico and the U.S. mainland by providing a comprehensive resource for incubating and growing business ideas as well as representing the interests of those businesses in [the] national government.‰

Amidst growing unemployment, especially within minority communities, The National Puerto Rican Chamber of Commerce intends to promote economic prosperity by implementing programs designed to assist in the development of small businesses and grow existing enterprises.  According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, unemployment for minorities in the U.S. currently stands above 15% compared to an estimated 9.5% for the entire U.S.  Puerto Rico‚s unemployment rate has reached a staggering 18%.

Programs expanding grant opportunities, microlending, and small business advice and advocacy will promote the mission of advancing economic freedom, a strategy which supports policy initiatives surrounding pro-entrepreneurial objectives.  By advocating for small business financing opportunities, as well as other policies surrounding energy, healthcare, and education, the organization will improve community standards and the economic standing of minorities.

The National Puerto Rican Chamber of CommerceŒs mission has already gained the attention of community and business leaders, policy advocates, and local and federal officials across the country by presenting ideas for microeconomic development that incorporates grassroots and independent donor initiatives.

Please support the Chamber‚s efforts and make a donation at or contact the Chamber‚s Public Relations Department at 866-572-5222, ext. 4 / Email:



Another bill is being touted, this time by Sen. Joe Lieberman, which could potentially harm your business if passed.  The Protecting Cyberspace as a National Asset Act would give the president “absolute power” to shut down the entire Internet in the case of a “national emergency.”

What brings cause for concern is the idea that the national government could shut down online speech or business activity under the auspice of whatever they define as a “national security” issue.  Even more concerning is that the President, who has already expressed his interest in controlling online information and has even said that there is “too much information” available, may abuse this power and inhibit economic activity. Read the rest of this entry »

This posting was published by on June 7th at:

When it comes to putting your brand on products, most businesses aren’t very original! They tend to either go too “cheap and cheerful” with useless products like stress-balls and car antennas, or they attempt to woo clients with insanely expensive gift baskets and sports tickets!

As with all your company-marketing strategies, businesses should try to be more original with their marketing products. The following list represents my personal top-five small business marketing products and ideas that could prove to be far more effective for a small business marketing strategy:
1.) Sponsor the Uniform of a Local Sports Teamschool_team

Instead of merely getting t-shirts printed with your business name on, go a step further and find out if a local sports club would like to have their uniforms sponsored by your business! In my experience, local sports teams and organizations struggle to pay for things like sports uniforms and often appreciate it when local businesses can front the cost and replacement/addition of new sports kits.

When I lived in San Diego, I sponsored the local girls soccer team that my daughter was playing for. It was great for business. I became the first company choice for all the parents and friends of the “San Diego Gazelles U 14’s”.  Just as these parents were loyal to their team, they were also loyal to my business for supporting their team! I also got an incredibly valuable link from their “.org” website out of the deal!
The kits cost me $500 to initially buy and print and it cost me a further couple of hundred dollars within the next few years to pay for the up-keep of the team uniform. It was easily worth it to have a running, jumping, and scoring set of billboards with my businesses name on it! Also, it gave me the added bonus of doing something to benefit my local community!
2.) The Trusty Pen 

Now. I know what you’re thinking; “Is he really telling us that a pen is an original marketing product?”

The answer to that is, no! However, I can tell you that I don’t think that businesses use pens very effectively as a marketing product! Most businesses simply give them out as freebies! This is not the best way to use a pen as a marketing tool.
The best way to utilize pens is to create custom pens with your company logo and website on them and distribute them at banks, restaurants, ATM check deposit machines, (i.e. Schools First and other credit union machines at your local supermarkets), and anywhere else where pens are frequently used (and swiped)
When I first started out in business, I used this technique often to try to generate business. It worked too! I got a few calls from people who had picked up my pen!

3) M&M Candy

If you go to the M&M website, you’ll notice that you can personalize your candy. I’ve enjoyed putting my business name and thank you messages on this candy and sending it to clients as a holiday greeting or just to say thanks for their support!

It’s such a novelty, and such a memorable gift that it can’t help but impress! I certainly haven’t received custom M&M’s from another company? Who doesn’t like M&M’s?

4) USB Drive

This has always been a highly practical and highly prized marketing product! However, it used to be really expensive to buy custom USB drives. Thanks to an ever-advancing digital world, it’s really not that expensive anymore! You can purchase a custom 64 MB drive with your logo on it for around $5, nowadays!

Now, I’m not suggesting that you get thousands of these printed, but if you can get 100 of these printed and be selective about giving them out, they will be really effective at putting you constantly in the mind of your client (you could even use a clever tagline on your memory cards; “We’re the best at what we do! Keep that in your memory”)
Because this product is going to be used regularly by your client, your client will also see your name and brand regularly! Also, by putting your logo on a USB drive, you’re presenting your business as a progressive and forward thinking business.
5) Bucket of Beer

While other companies send out really expensive baskets every year, during the holiday season, I prefer to send a bucket of beer. It usually works out at about $30.00 for each custom print bucket and shipping! So, it’s quite expensive! But it makes a really great impression on clients and makes a great alternative to the usual gift baskets that businesses send every year.

Of course, I save this gift for my very favorite customers, and I am always mindful that I’m not sending this to any customer who doesn’t appreciate a few brews!
This top 5 product list represents a few excellent products and strategies  that I’ve used in the past to promote my business. I have found them very useful when trying to impress major clients and potential customers. The key is to try to be original and to NOT put your brand on anything that you don’t think will benefit your business.

Yesterday afternoon Mayor Bloomberg opened the doors once again of Gracie Mansion to kick start the festivities around the largest parade in the nation, the National Puerto Rican Day Parade.

The Puerto Rican communities on the mainland and the one on Island have learned to set their differences aside, at least for a week, in order to celebrate our cultural pride and honor our leaders in front of a national audience.

To me, the parade is the largest Hispanic political power expression. The growth of the Hispanic community will continue to be a catalyst for change. In the year of the Census, we cannot forget the fact that even though Puerto Ricans have to catalog ourselves as Latino/Hispanic of Puerto Rican descent, Puerto Ricans are a beautiful "sofrito" mix of European, Black, and native Taino. It is this composition that folks on the mainland, especially members of the Congressional Black Caucus (CBC) forget.

Last March, the Parade took a bold move and decided to exercise its political power by saying YOU ARE NOT WELCOMED to DIAGEO (parent company of Johnny Walker and Captain Morgan). Diageo has decided to leave Puerto Rico and move its Captain Morgan operations to the US Visrgin Islands. This move will impact the federal funds that Puerto Rico receives to help support infrastructure, health and human services, and land preservation.

The Diageo/USVI deal has been extremely controversial and even corrupt in essence. Congress by ommision is allowing almost $2.7 billion to be given to Diageo and all in exchange for only 40-70 jobs. Both side of the political spectrum, not the Governor of the USVI, will have to explain to the American tax payer why they are allowing all this money to be given to a foreign owned company versus the American people that need it.

If you happen to be in NYC this Sunday, be sure to stop by and see the most colorful, prideful, and exciting parade of the year!  The 53rd annual Puerto Rican Day Parade is sure to entertain.

In a new report, the FTC has stated its concern for the “over-abundance” of information, including news-related content, that the average citizen comes across online.  In an apparent effort to allow government bureaucrats to dictate visible content online, the FTC has issued a report detailing the need for “independent” news sources funded by the government.  Of course, most people wonder how a news source could possibly be “independent” and unbiased if funded and controlled by the government.  Our [smart alec] comment is that maybe we should ask Hugo Chavez. . .

Lower taxes may help Puerto Rico recover a competitive advantage it lost when federal tax incentives expired, and thus, attract manufacturers. Fortuno said he was pinning hope on the defense industry for creating jobs in Puerto Rico and planning eight public-private partnerships to improve energy use and infrastructure on the island. He also said he would make up for some of the revenue lost to tax cuts by enforcing tax collection more rigorously.

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