FPC Client of the Week: MobCraft Beer

Here at Fine Point Consulting, we like to pride ourselves on the fact that we have a wide range of clients. This variety of clients allows us to be experts in many areas and help a wide range of businesses succeed. One of our newest clients, MobCraft Beer, is one of the most innovative breweries in the Madison area. They are growing fast, and making a name for themselves based upon their unique and uncanny flavors that are voted upon online by fans and customers.

MobCraft Beer has a wide range of beers that are sure to attract any beer drinker. Their most recent brew is inspired from a popular drink found in Madison; the Old Fashioned Berliner Weisse is concocted using elements of an Old Fashioned (Cherries, Oranges and spices), and then aged in either Brandy or Whiskey barrels. In addition to this brew Mobcraft has recently launched a raspberry chocolate porter, Candy for Breakfast which is a chocolate peanut butter coffee porter, and BatShit Crazy which won the silver at the 2014 Great American Beer Festival in the coffee beer category.

MobCraft Beer got its start when Henry, Giotto and Andrew’s (the third founder) twin brother all went to college together in Whitewater and were home brewing in their spare time between business classes. In 2012 the dream came alive in a business incubator. The three founders then decided to start MobCraft and start out brewing batches of beer suggested by family and friends in 5 gallon increments. From there their business only grew. They are currently brewing their specially crafted beers at House of Brews in Madison, and are only anticipating growing more from here. MobCraft is the first completely crowd-sourced brewery and is getting a lot of attention, including a spot in the Rise of the Rest tour where they had a chance to pitch Steve Case last month.

We are super excited to be able to follow them on their journey! Visit their website here to join the mob and view all of their innovative brews. You can view recipes, vote for the next brew, or even pre order your own 4 pack!

FPC Client of the Week: Dibbr

Have you ever been looking for leads or a specific market to contact? Have you ever been frustrated not knowing where to look for this information or the results not being useful? Well look no further… our newest client Dibbr now offers solutions these problems!

Dibbr provides customers with verified and validated business email address. First, the team at Dibbr figures out who the customer wants to get in contact with. They then find the email address that match what you requested and send you a spreadsheet listing out these contacts with information including first name, last name, current company, current title, LinkedIn URL and of course their email address. With all the information provided, it then sets up the customer with all the information needed to connect. In addition to providing this information Dibbr goes the extra mile to ensure that all emails provided are validated. They have a test process implemented to ensure that the emails will be received by the server and goes directly to the said individual.

Dibbr offers a few different packages to meet the needs of all requests. There is the monthly fee of $300 which provides customers with 100 emails ($3 per email), there’s the A La Carte which is $100 per batch which provides customers with 25 emails ($4 per email) and there is the sourcing option which allows customers to get a minimum 50 which is ($5 per email).

The awesome tool was created by Steve Kroll, the co-founder and CEO, as he was doing some sales and marketing consulting. He noticed that a common pain point for all these companies was that it was too expensive and inefficient to get in touch with the people they wanted to, and he just knew that there had to be a better way to go about doing this. So, one weekend he went home and put together a prototype. As Steve did work testing and refining, he soon realized how helpful the tool really was. At this point he then decided to share the wealth and commercialize the technology and Dibbr was born!

Check out the website to sign up or learn more here!

Video: The Benefits of Outsourced Accounting

Get in touch with a financial consultant at Fine Point Consulting today by clicking here.

Video Transcript

Title Slide: The Benefits of Outsourced Accounting | With Luella Schmidt, Jen Hildahl, and Leah Shales

Leah Shales: There are so many benefits of outsourced accounting, one of which being that here, we have different levels of people with different skills and expertise. So, for example if a client needs a part-time bookkeeper one month and the next month realizes that they need to have an external audit done.

So that requires them to have internal controls documented, implemented. We have people here with experience doing both bookkeeping and working with external auditors, so that’s really great because it cuts down on the cost and time that it would take for the client to hire a bookkeeper and external audit experience. 

Jen Hildahl: When you work in an outsourced firm, you have multiple levels of accounting services. You can have your bookkeeper, your accounting manager, your controller, your oversight CFO role  for a reasonable cost. Whereas if you wanted those inhouse, you’d have to hire three or four different individuals which is obviously very costly.

Luella Schmidt: Certainly, when a company is smaller, what we see happen is, they need a little bit of  bookkeeping like transaction processing. They need a little bit of oversight, such as making sure internal controls are in place and that assets are being protected.

Then occasionally, they need things like guidance on making financial projections. So that massively different skillset is hard to find in one person or in even two people and so when companies are smaller it makes a lot of sense to do an outsourced model like ours because you can take slices out of each of those levels and get everything you need with one service.

Jen Hildahl: We work with many different businesses, many different clients. So we can gain efficiencies through that. We can see what works well for some clients and apply it to the next client. We also work a lot with other CPA’s, so we can learn from ours peers and learn from other clients. Whereas if you’re working in house, it’s great because they are always there, they’re down the hall, you just just pop in, but they’re really kind of in a bubble.

They are not learning from other CPAs if it’s a small firm and you only have one accountant. So I think there’s just efficiencies and really great learning opportunities when you’re working with multiple businesses.

Music: Plan Your Adventure from JewelBeat.com

4 Bootstrapping Tips To Fit Any Startup Budget

For entrepreneurs and small business owners confident they can start their business endeavor without outside help from investors or other outside sources, having the freedom to keep your earnings in full is a huge advantage if you know how to properly bootstrap.

What many don’t realize when they launch their business is just how difficult bootstrapping can be, especially for those who need to put each dollar they make directly back into the business.

For those who don’t want the financial stress and extra responsibility that comes with making personal financial sacrifices or giving part of your earnings back to investors, here are some steps you can take to make your business idea a reality all on your own.

If you need an office, look for shared space

Depending on the type of your business, you may not need an office space at all. Work that lends itself to more of a freelance style, even with a team of employees, can be accomplished through a virtual office and run from home. While this can mean a huge cut in expenses when everything involved with office upkeep is taken into account, it can quickly become isolating and detrimental to team collaboration if communication starts to wane.

Shared office space is the happy medium between going all-out with an office of your own and giving one up altogether. Try finding another company with office space to spare and make a deal to move in.

If you’re interested in getting even more out of a shared space, consider the many co-working spaces popping up specifically to give startups a place of professional community where entrepreneurs can get their business off the ground together. You’ll end up saving money and most likely meet valuable partners than can help your idea come to fruition.

Don’t overspend on a website right away

A professional-looking website with clear and easy functionality is essential for every business big and small today, but you don’t have to spend a fortune to create a great online presence right away. While agencies and design shops can customize a site to fit exactly what you’re looking for, the costs might not be worth it right away.

Instead, there are a whole variety of web services that provide small businesses and startups with inexpensive or even free website creation services that offer powerful tools and capabilities while maintaining a branded look. WordPress has emerged as a particularly popular tool for a number of DIY or template-based web design applications.

Use friends, partners and other connections to get discounts and second-hand supplies

Do you have friends in high places? Don’t be afraid to reach out through your network to see if you can get in on a great deal. Apple, for instance gives considerable discounts to their employees. Unless cutting edge technology is vital to your business, don’t be afraid to settle for hand-me-downs from other businesses who don’t mind lending you older equipment.

Avoid PR right away and get social instead

One of the hardest things for entrepreneurs with a brand new business to do it get their name out to the right people. Public relations and marketing are extremely useful for this, but there are alternatives if you simply can’t afford it on your bootstrapped budget.

Instead, put time aside to engage as much as possible through social media. There are a number of web tools around to help you manage and automate your social efforts which are cheap and sometimes free. When used effectively, social media can expose your idea, products, and services to huge groups of followers. The trick is to be seen and engaged by those that hold the key to the big audiences you need to see your idea.

If you’re a business owner and need to establish a bookkeeping system, give us a call. Our outsourced accounting and CFO services experts can help you navigate these waters.

5 Ways To Rebound Your Small Business From A Cash Flow Slump

In today’s turbulent business environment, businesses big and small are at risk for cash flow woes. We’ve discussed what it takes to keep a good balance of cash flow in the past, but for those who find their businesses pulling in drastically less earnings than the projected you’re probably searching for options to get your expenses balanced properly.

Stabilizing your business’s cash flow during a period of downturn or other unfortunate circumstances that affect your finances is something entrepreneurs and small business owners deal with every day, so don’t panic, there are plenty of options to choose from.

Let’s take a look at some options geared specifically to startups and small businesses in search of a plan to get back on track: (more…)