Our daily blend of the latest news, trends and tips for the small business community.

What’s going ‘on’:

U.S. manufacturing jumped even more that expected in March. (Dario Pignatelli/BLOOMBERG)

Manufacturing picks up the pace: American manufacturing expanded at a faster pace in March, driven by gains in employment and production. The Institute for Supply Management’s factory index climbed from 52.4 in February to 53.4, eclipsing a Bloomberg forecast that called for a gain to 53.

Construction spending dips unexpectedly: Construction spending in the United States unexpectedly fell 1.1 percent in February, reflecting broad-based declines and marking the biggest dip in seven months. The Commerce Department also revised lower its previous report, now showing an even larger retreat (0.8 percent) in January.

Keep an eye ‘on’:

Local entrepreneurs launch a ‘Facebook for veterans’: A pair of locals recently pulled the curtain back on Veteran Central, a social network that aims to connect veterans to health resources, job postings and networking opportunities. Over time, the founders say they hope the site will become a type of “social support network” for those returning home from war.

Helpful advice ‘on’:

How to keep doctors off financial life support (OSB)

How a moving start-up story drives business (WSJ)

How to start using location-based marketing (Entrepreneur)

How to build more engaging presentations (Fast Company)

How to increase your mail response rate (Denver Biz Journal)