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Game Board tabletop mold and other releases from Proline

Proline Concrete Tools has recently released several new products for the precast industry.

A Decorative Concrete Supply Store Dazzles With Its New Showroom

The front entrance of The Rental Branch has been transformed with decorative concrete.Mike Branch, owner of The Rental Branch in St. Joseph, Mich., had a vision to create the most concentrated display of decorative concrete anywhere. Mission accomplished. Mostly finished as of late 2010, it’s been nearly a year in the making, though it felt more like 10 years.

Two Types of Business Competitors and How to Beat Them Both

Business people competing in a foot race.Close your eyes. Think of your business. Imagine you operate in a world without competitors. Imagine you’re the only one that customers can hire to install decorative concrete. Visualize yourself winning bid after bid without anything or anyone to stand in your way. Now, open your eyes. Welcome back to reality.

Giving Your Concrete Business the Flexibility It Needs to Thrive

Contractor using a power trowel to finish a concrete slab.In the free enterprise system, competition selects out businesses that don’t adapt to change or events they can’t plan on. To thrive within this system, your decorative concrete business must maintain a high degree of flexibility.

Successful Email Marketing for Concrete Businesses

email marketing concrete businessesIn the world of email marketing, the “e-blast” can be a highly successful vehicle for connecting with your customers. But all too often, decorative concrete contractors underuse this vital marketing strategy.

Re-ignite Your Spark of Passion for Decorative Concrete

Decorative concrete aggregateThe fear that we may lose touch with the concrete artistry in our industry is a legitimate feeling. It seems like more and more projects require firm decisions and designs before they ever reach our eyes. Are we losing the chance to add our expertise, advice and artistic touch to decorative projects?

CIM College Program Graduates Can Land Good-Paying Construction Jobs

students working on a concrete block - Collaboration between industry and academia has created a mix of in-class learning and hands-on experience that is helping to solve an ongoing challenge for the concrete sector -- adding youth to the workforce.Collaboration between industry and academia has created a mix of in-class learning and hands-on experience that is helping to solve an ongoing challenge for the concrete sector — adding youth to the workforce.

Making and Keeping Great Hires in an Employee Drought

Finding and keeping good employees from Concrete Decor magazineIn desperation we post employment opportunities on social media sites, in local newspapers and on online job listing pages. We even purchase radio spots, hoping to pick up the one or two rock-star employees left looking for new employment. But the reality is, there truly is a labor shortage out there.

Nine Tips for Not Getting Lost in Translation

image of the earthToday’s global economy means companies are doing business all over the world, which often requires marketing materials or websites to be available in multiple languages and producing content in several languages may help attract clients who don’t speak English as their primary language.

New Ways to Sell Decorative Concrete

A sealed pool deck can be sold to a customer with a proper explanation of the process and outcome.As adults we learn to communicate using our words when we want and need something. The use of certain words can change the entire intention of what someone is trying to say. For those who sell and install decorative concrete, when was the last time you thought about how words influence your client's thought process regarding their decision to buy your products or services?

A concrete solution to climate change?

A better understanding of how carbon dioxide is absorbed by concreteA better understanding of how carbon dioxide is absorbed by concrete.

Concrete Calculator

Quickly calculate your concrete pours by entering the length, width and thickness or height to find the number of cubic feet, yards or meters or bags of concrete needed for your project.  You can also calculate home, column or round concrete footings as well as circular concrete slabs or tubes. Once you have your amounts, you can give them to your ready-mix provider or to the person purchasing your bags and you will be ready to pour!

Concrete Industry Offers Lucrative Career Path for Women

Concrete industry offers lucrative career path for womenWomen CEOs of concrete companies are smashing glass ceilings and bucking trends that have emerged for women in other nontraditional occupations. While women CEOs only comprise 2 percent in the basic and infrastructure sectors according to World Economic Forum and Bureau of Labor Statistics data.

Planning for Success in Polished Concrete

Planning for success in the future with a clock face.There are new profit opportunities in polished concrete for the decorative concrete contractor. This is a fact, and every decorative concrete contractor should look into polished concrete. However, nothing ever caused more people to go broke than too much optimism and too little planning.

7 Strategies for Managing Working Capital in a Concrete Business

A purple ball point pen next to a blank check.When business is slow and credit is tight, you must do all you can do to preserve working capital, also referred to as operating capital. It’s an important financial metric calculated as current assets minus current liabilities. It’s the difference between the money you’ve been paid and the cash you owe.

Concrete's Structure is Now Known

Microscopic Cement StructureThe website Phys.org revealed new research into whether the structure that forms when water, gravel, sand and cement powder are combined is a continuous solid, like metal or stone, or an aggregate of small particles.

How to Use Samples, Mock-ups and Models to Your Best Advantage

Creating models of concrete jobs - Samples, mock-ups and models take the guesswork out of decorative concrete finishes and offer a sense of security for the owner, designer and contractor. They quickly get everyone on the same page before crews permanently place any concrete on the site.Samples, mock-ups and models take the guesswork out of decorative concrete finishes and offer a sense of security for the owner, designer and contractor. They quickly get everyone on the same page before crews permanently place any concrete on the site.

Why You Should Integrate Infographics Into Your Marketing

Lately, it seems that you can't read an online article or browse social media without coming across an infographic.Lately, it seems that you can’t read an online article or browse social media without coming across an infographic. Considered one of the most powerful marketing tools in use today, is it just a trend that will soon be on the way out or is there more than meets the eye to this form of visual media?

Marketing and Selling Concrete Countertops

Concrete countertops are countertops. They just happen to be made out of concrete.Concrete countertops are countertops. They just happen to be made out of concrete.

This should affect your marketing and selling techniques. If you understand how countertops are most commonly and most effectively marketed and sold, you will be much more successful at marketing and selling concrete countertops.

Why the Formula Approach for Polished Concrete Hurts Our Industry

A picture of a graphing calculatorThe weak economy does not have to make our industry buckle under price pressures. We've forgotten that polished concrete is already the best bargain in the flooring industry, and what's more, we've allowed the formulaic installation to become entrenched in specifications.

Your Next Client Is Shopping Online

Computer with a shopping cartYour business may have the upper hand in finding new projects, at least if you’re willing to step up to online marketing.

The way this decorative concrete contractor sees it, the only way to land more projects is to increase your number of strong leads. Let’s take a look at exactly how you can add more solid leads immediately.

New Formula for High-Strength Shotcrete to Protect Tunnels from Fires and Terrorist Attacks

Fire-proof shotcrete Concrete Decor Magazine Phys.org reported that the science magazine Rubin published research conducted by engineers at Germany's Ruhr-Universit├Ąt Bochum who have developed a shotcrete that can render tunnels, bridges and other structures more resistant against fires and explosions. The new formula enhances concrete with 140 kilograms of steel fibers per cubic meter, a figure that was thought to be impossible for shotcrete. The science magazine Rubin reports that engineers at Germany's Ruhr-Universität Bochum have developed a shotcrete that can render tunnels, bridges and other structures more resistant against fires and explosions.

The 2016 Inductees

2016 Decorative Concrete Hall of Fame winners from Bomanite, Butterfield Colors, GLC3 Concrete, and Couture Concrete.Dan Sieben, one of the founders of Bomanite, along with his Bomanite cohort, John “Jack” Dryden, are among the 2016 honorees. Joe Garceau of Butterfield Colors and George Lacker of GLC3 Concrete and Couture Concrete Systems round out this year’s selection. Sieben and Garceau were honored with plaques at a dinner Sept. 26 during the Concrete Decor Show events in San Diego. Lacker and Dryden were inducted posthumously.

International Decorative Concrete Industry Evolves

For those of us who work in the U.S., Canada and Western Europe, we take for granted the quality of our everyday materials, let alone how easy they are to obtain. In developing countries, the amount of time and cost involved in getting everything needed for a job can be staggering. But staggering to who?For those of us who work in the U.S., Canada and Western Europe, we take for granted the quality of our everyday materials, let alone how easy they are to obtain. In developing countries, the amount of time and cost involved in getting everything needed for a job can be staggering. But staggering to who?

Researchers File Patent for Fire-resistant Concrete

fire resistant concreteScientists at the Swiss Federal Laboratories for Materials Science and Technology (EMPA) have added polypropylene (PP) fiber to a concrete mix. The technique allows water vapor to escape, preventing pressure from building inside the concrete, making it more fire-proof.

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