Changing times

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By now, you’ve probably noticed the changes at SBN. A few are minor redesign issues — retooling our contents page, adapting a new typeface and shuffling placement of stories.

Others are more significant, such as changing our company name to Smart Business Network and launching SBN Online, Cleveland’s premier business information hub.

We aggressively and consistently touch base with our readers and advertisers to discern what they’re looking for. Based on their feedback and our own forward-looking ideas, we’ve made numerous alterations so that our publication — and business — is better able to meet your needs. Here’s what’s happening.

New name

It’s been a gradual change that began in early 1999, when we shortened our name from Small Business News to SBN Magazine. Today, the SBN stands for Smart Business Network.

The Smart Business Network is the combined strength of our print publication, Web site, live events and corporate research. SBN remains committed to providing business owners and senior decision-makers in the middle market with smart ideas and useful information.

New look

We recognize the enormous time constraints busy executives have, so we’ve redesigned our print publication to make it easier to read and to find the types of articles you need. We’ve renamed our Managing Your Business section Smart Ideas, and segmented it into nine topics we’ll write about each month.

Among those are Accounting & Consulting, Banking & Finance, Manufacturing, Technology, Real Estate & Construction and Health Care. These are clearly labeled within the Smart Ideas section.

SBN Online

In November, we launched SBN Online (www.sbnonline.com) by retooling our existing Web site and adding new features including daily local news. We provide local business news stories each day, making us the premier source of local daily business news online.

We also provide more than 20 segmented industry news feeds, dozens of speeches and presentations from Northeast Ohio’s top business leaders, quarterly reports on industries such as telecommunication, staffing and the economy, an extensive business events calendar and even more smart ideas than appear in our monthly print publication. Our goal is to entice you to make SBN Online your home page.

More live events

Last year, we introduced the SBN Live Luncheon Series at the Watermark to provide our readers with face-to-face interaction with the people we write about. Among the speakers in 2001 were University Hospitals CEO Farah Walters and Locality.com CEO Dennis Barba Jr.

In March, we’ll present the inaugural eVolution in Manufacturing Conference in conjunction with CAMP Inc., where we’ll honor manufacturers for their e-business solutions.

Later this year, SBN will help present Ernst & Young’s Entrepreneur Of The Year Awards, which honor the region’s top entrepreneurs. In September, we’ll hold the Innovation in Business Conference, which has become one of the premier business events in Cleveland and a can’t miss for regional executives. In December, we’ll wrap up with our fifth annual Pillar Award for Community Service.

There’s a lot going on. Drop us a line and let us know what you think. Dustin Klein ([email protected]) is editor of SBN.