Accounting

The Delightfully Short Guide to Social Media ROI (BufferSocial)

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If the concept of social media ROI feels rather enormous, you’re not alone. I am amazed—and sometimes astounded—at the breadth of the topic.So that’s made the exercise of writing a “delightfully short” guide to social media ROI all the more fun and challenging. I’ve given myself under 1,000 words to provide an overview of social media ROI and how to apply it to your social media marketing efforts. What Does Social Media ROI Look Like?ROI has its roots in business finance. Businesses use ROI to calculate the dollars-and-cents return on a dollars-and-cents investment.Social media ROI is what you get back from all the time, effort, and resources you commit to social. And it’s best calculated with dollar amounts.Of course, there are no dollar signs dangling from retweets or likes. Twitter, Facebook, and others are no-cost marketing channels to join, potentially a zero-dollar investment (which makes any return exponentially fantastic, right!). So in order to track ROI, the key elements would be:Identifying your monetary investment in social mediaAttaching a dollar amount to your social media goals.Difficult? Possibly.Possible? Definitely.View full article 
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Budgeting for Unpredictable Incomes

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A simple guide for budgeting as a freelancer with unpredictable income streams. Written by Tara Faircloth, freelance opera director based in Houston, Texas. Download the e-book for a very modest fee. (Fresh Arts gives this resource a thumbs up! It's worth a few dollars for sure.)
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Fresh Arts Development Finance and Operation Basics 2014

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THE PRESENTATION FROM THE WORKSHOP DESCRIBED IS EMBEDDED BELOW. Development Finance and Operation Basicsfor the Jack-of-All Arts Administrator(Gift Acceptance, Disclosure Rules & Basic Financial Reporting)For arts administrators of small to mid-sized nonprofitsWednesday, June 4th, 2014@ Fresh Arts, 2101 Winter Street, #B11, Houston, TX 77007PRESENTERS:Amy Lampi, Associate Director of Development, Alley TheatreJoanna Torok, Director of Advancement Operations, Houston Grand OperaAre you in charge of fundraising AND finance within a small organization? Do you struggle with creating a regular routine for acknowledging donations? Do you know how to present your financial position effectively to your board? Are you certain you’re in total compliance with the IRS when accepting gifts? Administrators can expect to walk away from this workshop better equipped to manage broad financial concerns along with a simple check-list of things to do each day to ensure you are staying in compliance.Topics will include: - Creating simple systems for fund development management and operations- Timing, rules, and language for donor receipts- Common mistakes in communicating the tax benefits of donations- How to determine Fair Market Value for special events, etc.- Basic financial reports- Forecasting revenues- Reconciling fundraising activities with greater financial goals Development finance & operation basics for nonprofits_Fresh Arts 2014 from Fresh Arts
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What Your Art Business Will Cost You

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When you own your own business, it’s important to look at expenses as well as income in order to remain profitable. I looked into various (not all – not even education or supplies and materials!) expenses for artists and thought it might be interesting to share the results. Feel free to add to our completely unscientific list in a comment on the Art Biz Blog. Studio Space These numbers are based on responses I received through Twitter and Facebook. (sf = square feet) Central Virginia (476sf): $355/month Key West, FL (750sf – 3 rooms): $1600 for studio + store front Ravenswood, Chicago, IL (600+ sf): $540/month Downtown Chicago, IL (sf n/a): $485/month Gages Lake, IL (1200sf): $500/month with utilities Albuquerque, NM (175sf): $200/mo in nonprofit art center, includes utilities, not air-conditioned Colorado Springs, CO (400sf): $455 includes utilities San Francisco, CA (154sf): $431/month and says most of her friends pay around $800 for an equivalent space San Diego, CA (185sf): $550/month is on the high side because it’s in a retail space and on the art walk path Los Angeles, CA (800sf, skylight, private bathroom, gated parking): $1050/month .... Read more
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SBA.Gov Online Courses for Financing Your Business

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 Online Courses for Financing Your BusinessKnowledge about the finances of your business is essential to its success. About These CoursesSeveral free online courses are offered by the SBA to help prospective and existing entrepreneurs understand basic finance and accounting principles. These self-paced courses are easy to use and understand. They will take about 30 minutes to complete. You can, however, exit a course at any time. Because most of the courses offer audio explanations, it is recommended that your computer speakers be turned on.Before entering a course, you will be prompted to complete an online registration form. The registration process is simple, asks only a couple of questions and will take less than a minute to complete. Available Free CoursesFinance Primer: Guide to SBA’s Loan Guaranty ProgramsHow to Prepare a Loan PackageIntroduction to Accounting   
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VIDEO: Bookkeeping & Taxes for Artists

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Steven Goldglit, Managing Partner of Goldglit & Company, speaks to students at the New York Academy of Artabout taxes, bookkeeping and good habits on accounting for artists.Taxes & Bookkeeping for Artists - Steven Goldglit from New York Academy of Art on Vimeo.
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IRS: Recordkeeping Tips for Barter Transactions

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Courtesy of IRS.gov. In today’s economy, small business owners sometimes look to the oldest form of commerce — the exchange of goods and services, or bartering. The Internal Revenue Service wants to remind small business owners that bartering transactions generally have associated tax reporting, accounting and recordkeeping responsibilities. Bartering is the trading of one product or service for another. Usually there is no swap of cash. Barter may take place on an informal direct one-on-one basis between businesses and individuals, suppliers, customers, distributors, partners, contract labor, and employees, or it can take place on a third party basis through a modern Internet barter exchange. Bartering is an exchange of one taxpayer's property or services for another taxpayer's property or services. The fair market value of property or services received through barter is taxable income. Recordkeeping TipOnce you have agreed to barter transactions with a vendor or customer, you must enter the transaction accurately in your accounting and tax records. Whether you maintain your books and records manually or use one of the many accounting and tax software packages on the market today, you need to keep and record some basic information about your barter transactions.Clearly mark or file all barter income and expense documents as “bartering,” and retain all original source documents pertaining to your barter transactions:Sales receipts and invoicesBarter exchange statements and Forms 1099-B, Proceeds From Broker and Barter Exchange Transactions Bartering Products or ServicesThe most important barter tax accounting concept is that the IRS treats bartering as income received, whether you use accrual-basis or cash-basis accounting. Direct Barter TransactionsIf you engage in the direct barter of products or services with an individual or a business you will generally not receive a Form 1099-B, but the transaction must be accounted for in your books and records just the same. Think of a barter transaction as just another sales transaction of your business goods or services you must include in your income at the time received. Accurate accounting and recordkeeping can help you manage barter transactions.For example, if a doctor agrees to give an accountant a personal medical exam in exchange for personal tax return preparation, the fair market value of the medical exam is taxable to the accountant, and the fair market value of the tax return preparation is taxable to the doctor.For simplicity sake, let’s assume the fair market value of both services is equal to say, $200. Note that all pieces of the transaction should be clearly marked as a bartering transaction in the books and records of both the doctor and the accountant. With the fair market value of both services being equal, both the doctor and the accountant must include $200 in their income as a result of the bartering transaction. Recordkeeping TipYou may need to configure your accounting software to accept bartering transactions. Barter Exchange TransactionsExchanges occurring through a barter exchange are reported to IRS on Form 1099-B and show the value of cash, property, services, credits or scrip added to your account by the barter exchange.Recordkeeping and accounting for barter exchange transactions is basically the same as for direct barter transactions except that you are taxed on the value of the credit units added to your account even though you may not actually receive goods or services from other exchange members until a later year. You will have additional help in determining the taxable bartering amount by information reporting from the barter exchange . . .  read more at IRS.gov
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Artist Accounting 101: Easy Invoices

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Courtesy of PerformingArtsConvention.org. We've mentioned on past blog postings how individual artists often need to operate as small business entrepreneurs.  If you're just getting started with bookkeeping, free and easy-to-use resources are crucial because A) if we wanted to be accounts, we would have been accounts, and B) we're not getting paid much so free is very good. Sounds like the creators of Billable understand this situation.  Their new online invoice creator couldn't be any easier to us.  Need to invoice someone for arts or freelance work?  It's even easier than the pre-baked templates found in Word or Excel.  Simply go to the website, fill out the form, and either print or save as a PDF.  From their website: We didn't like invoicing and couldn't find anyone who did. So we created Billable... Billable: Billing Made Simple. Period. Billable is currently in beta and we've got a lot of plans for the future. We're doing this for the creators, for the people who are trying to make something great, but have to pay for noodles in the meantime. Give it a try at http://billable.me, then get back to making more art!
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Mint.com

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Your financial life, all in one place.Mint pulls all your financial accounts into one place. Set a budget, track your goals and do morewith your money, for free! Makes your life easierAt Mint, we believe money is for living. So we make everything simple and streamlined. Sign up takes less than five minutes.Then Mint automatically pulls all your financial information into one place, so you can finally get the entire picture.Stay on top of your finances. See what's happening with all your accounts–checking, savings, investments, retirement–at any moment of the day. And our free mobile apps mean you can track your money on-the-go.
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Glossary of Bank & Credit Terms

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A to Z Glossary of Bank & Credit Terms courtesy of the Center for Responsible Lending.  # | A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O |P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | X | Y | Z  AAbility to repay A borrower's ability to make timely loan payments as required, both short-term and long-term. Projected ability to repay is based on factors such as income, existing debt, and the length of the loan period. Legitimate lenders assess the ability of borrowers to repay their loans; predatory lenders often do not. In fact, payday lenders cultivate a base of borrowers who will have difficulty repaying, as these borrowers are easily flipped into new loans. ACH debit authorization See: debit authorization Adjustable rate mortgage (ARM) A mortgage with an interest rate that can change periodically based on a specified index, such as interest rates published by the U.S. Treasury Department or the Federal Home Loan Bank. ARMs (also called variable rate mortgages) make consumers vulnerable to payment shock as their rate increases, and as a result ARMs generally have a higher rate of delinquency and foreclosure than fixed-rate mortgages.See also: index, payment shock, foreclosure Amortization The gradual repayment of a mortgage loan by making regular payments over time. To be "fully amortizing," payments must cover both the principal amount and interest due on the loan for the given period. An amortization schedule is an established timetable for making payments.See also: negative amortization Annual percentage rate (APR) The percentage of a loan's principal that would be paid in finance charges if the loan were carried for one year. APR includes both interest costs and fees charged on a loan. When lenders disclose the APR of loans, borrowers can better understand the cost of the credit.See also: principal, finance charge, interest 
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