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Passion, Tenacity, Vision – and more

I was intrigued by the title of this recent Forbes article:  7 Qualities That Helped Me Go From Receptionist To Entrepreneur.   Nicole Smartt, vice president and co-owner of Star Staffing describes her transition from just going to work – day after day – as a receptionist.  Working for some one else’s company, she felt unappreciated.  She felt the people she worked for had no passion for their work.  That’s when she decided to use her experience and her ideas to start her own business.

Nicole describes all of the hard work, long hours and dedication that it took to really kick off a successful enterprise.  But what I really, really enjoyed about her article was her description of those 7 Qualities she attributes to her success:

  • Passion.  
  • Tenacity.
  • Learning ability
  • Vision.
  • Discipline.
  • Time management.

I especially love that she uses the term ‘information junkie’.  I think that term is great!  I consider myself to be an ‘information junkie’, as well.  (You can only imagine then, how much I love our technology these days –  a whole world of knowledge right in my purse !) AS my kids’ first grade teacher, Mrs. Schreiber, always told her students  – We strive to be Lifelong Learners.

Check out Nicole’s article, it is well-written, filled with passion and inspiration.

This is Great Stuff!

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Networking- Building a Support System

Just got back from our monthly meeting of the Women’s Business Network of SE MA (WBN)    A curious thing happens every month when I attend these meetings.  In just 2 hours I become re-invigorated and optimistic about the direction my business is taking.  I find I am surrounded by support, encouragement and wisdom.

Our icebreaker question for the ‘casual networking’ portion of the meeting was: “How did you get started in your current work?”  It was fascinating to listen to the different stories in the room.  How many of us started out in one thing – sales, corporate, teaching – and then, life took a turn of one sort or another and led us to where we are now.  And each one who told their story ended it with “And I love what I am doing now!”      A phys-ed teacher turned travel agent has visited places all over the entire world.  A sports psychologist turned special-ed attorney gains satisfaction from helping children receive services they need, the minister – who everyone in her life except herself knew she should be a minister – who now realizes that her ‘call’  – everyone’s ‘call’ is  “the place where your deep gladness and the world’s deep hunger meet.”   Well, I am not sure about the what the world’s deep hunger means….but maybe it’s our own individual world.  Maybe it’s that when each of us is fulfilled by the work we do, we are better able to support our families, friends and co-workers – our individual worlds.

My ‘call’, apparently, is to be a connector.  My friend, Lori, told me that years ago, right after she finished Malcolm Gladwell’s book, The Tipping Point.  She knew before I did that the role of connector should be the path I take bring me satisfaction in my professional life..  Tricia knew it too when she invited me to join her and other tech-savvy women for a ‘think-tank’ to share ideas on how to best utilize social media to grow our business.  It took a while for me to figure it out. YES!  I am a CONNECTOR !

Now, I get to spend my days helping business find their online presence by setting them up with online listings, social media strategies and contact management systems  to help them connect to and stay connected to their clients.

The WBN fulfills my need to connect people to services, resources and other people who will somehow help them in their personal or professional life.   In the hour or so that I’ve been back to my office since getting home from WBN, I have seen two of my members form a new friendship and sharing begin on Facebook.  One member was inspired by another icebreaker question:  “If you could be reincarnated as any person you actually know, who would that be?”  This member was moved to share a blog post about her how her mother’s strength, determination and love influenced her throughout her life.

The WBN has a focus on helping members get to know and support each other on both the personal and a professional levels.  Through initiatives such as the “Icebreaker Series”, “Rotating Lunch”, “Online Advisory Circle” and other “Break-Outs”, we are building platforms and bridges to finding new ways to market, administer and grow our business.

This is Great Stuff.

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5 Reasons to Use a Third-Party EMail Provider

Email marketing helps us create attractive email communications with a professional appearance.  It allows us to stay in touch and help build strong  relationships with customers.  In many ways it is better and much more effective than regular email.

1: Send personalized emails to as many contacts at one time as you would like:     Email providers such as Gmail, Yahoo and others may restrict how many emails we can send out at one time.  Most services do not have the capability of personalizing individual emails.  ( I know its automated, but I do still enjoy when the email I open starts with “Hi Susan” )

2: Boost customer communication:   Email newsletters are fast, inexpensive and attractive.  You can send them more regularly than paper ones.  Third party email marketing puts you in in-boxes more accurately than regular email. You will be able to avoid spam filters so that your message is seen by more people, allowing you to stay top-of-mind with folks who enjoy hearing from you.

3: Get more referrals, more easily.  Third party providers make it easy to forward your emails to other people. This way, your engaged customers get to give their friends a risk-free introduction to your organization.  Then it’s easy for those new friends to sign up for your mailing list from a button on your website.  With regular and meaningful communications from you, these new prospects become your new loyal customers.

4: Track your open and click-through rates:   I love this part.  You get to see who opened your emails and who shared them with their friends and colleagues. I get a kick out of checking out who clicked which links in the emails.  That part helps me to understand what folks are really interested in reading about.  It helps me to tailor my content in order to get the best response.

5. Easy database management.  Most third-party email services offer tools to help you easily manage your contact database.  Their service automatically process opt-ins and opt-outs.  Your list can easily be segmented to allow for more targeted marketing.

Email is the lowest cost way to stay top-of-mind with clients, prospects and candidates.  Besides being cost-effective, it delivers immediate response and is highly trackable.

I have had experience with a number of email service providers: MailChimp, Constant Contact, iContact, Swiftpage.  Each has its pros and cons.  Which one to use?  Well, that’s a topic for another day.

If you are ready to get all of those business cards out of the boxes, drawers or Rolodex files and into an easy-to-use contact management system to send targeted emails, I will be happy to help !    Email ME !

This is Great Stuff!

Read more articles about Email Marketing.

making online connectionsView past issues of “Making Connections”

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constant contact email marketing  Let Me Help You Build Your Email Marketing

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New LinkedIn Company Pages

I think LinkedIn company pages are fantastic.  But now, they’re even better.

linkedin logo

Recently, LinkedIn Company Pages got a makeover – and I love it!   The pages still have basically the same functionality, but the look and feel of the pages has changed and, in my humble opinion, got way, way better.

Company Updates and the Products/Services sections of the page are more predominant. The Products/Services tab is my favorite tab in all of LinkedIn.  I just love how you can break down the elements of a company and add details, photos and videos. I think it is a great way for someone to grab a more in-depth understanding of your company.  This is a great place for your LinkedIn contacts to leave their recommendations, as well.  Haven’t set up your LinkedIn Company Page yet?  This Hubspot article may help.

Did you know?  LinkedIn now allows you to target the followers who you would like to see your company updates.  Read more about targeted updates

The new cover image that highlights your company/brand at the top of the page is another great opportunity to push out your company’s brand image and, perhaps, a message.

LinkedIn describes itself as ” the world’s largest professional network with over 175 million members and growing rapidly. LinkedIn connects you to your trusted contacts and helps you exchange knowledge, ideas, and opportunities with a broader network of professionals.” 

 This is Great Stuff!

Check it out….and remember to Link In with me while you’re at it.

 

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Page Post Targeting for Facebook

A recent article in Entrepreneur explains this newest feature available for Facebook marketing.  The Page Post feature is designed to allow page administrators to push their message to targeted community members. In a similar manner as with email marketing, users will be given the opportunity to segment their audience to deliver customized content to different groups.

Some Facebook Page admins can now target their posts based on the following criteria:

  • Gender
  • Relationship Status
  • Education
  • Interested In
  • Age
  • Location
  • Language

So… now what?

One of the interesting parts about these new features is that now, if you are working with a content management strategy, you could design a continuous stream of posts tailored to different demographics.

This is Great Stuff!

Want to learn more?  Here are just a few of the many of detailed articles available online with more information on the Page Post Targeting feature for Facebook.

 

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Never Ending Quest to Learn

One thing I have learned is that I always have more to learn.

And.. I love to learn new stuff.    I think that may be why I am so drawn to social media, blogging, and other online avenues.  There is ALWAYS more to learn !

HarborOne U in Mansfield has a very impressive autumn calendar of free workshops, seminars and classes for a wide variety of business and personal learning opportunities.
Topics include:

I am pretty excited about sitting in on many of these…. to keep learning new things, while being reminded of fun stuff I may have not been using lately. Let me know if you attend any of the HarborOneU classes, I would love to share notes.

I am always excited to bring new material and insights to my clients.

Stay tuned….I’ll fill you in on what I learn….

Peace,
Susan