eBusiness Blog

Small Business BC Awards Names eVision Media A Top 5 Finalist

Out of Hundreds of Applicants, eVision Media Wins Top 5 Recognition for the outstanding achievements of BC’s entrepreneurs in the “Best Company” category.

Wins Top 5 Recognition for the outstanding achievements of BC's entrepreneurs in the "Best Company" category 2018ABBOTSFORD, BC JANUARY 22, 2018 — eVision Media has been named a Top 5 finalist by the Small Business BC Awards.

The Small Business BC Awards is the largest small business awards competition in the province. These awards are a celebration of the contributions small business owners make to their local communities and to the global economy. It’s free to enter and open to all new and existing small businesses in BC.

Each year, Small Business BC Awards’ entrants span the spectrum, from a variety of categories including best company, employer, innovation, concept, apprentice training, community impact, marketer, international trade, immigrant enterprise, and people’s choice.

“I am super excited and extremely grateful that we are in the company of such deserving companies for this award.” said Susan Friesen, President of eVision Media.

The 2018 annual program was particularly hotly contested, with more than 600 entries from an impressive array of companies. The businesses with the highest number of votes in each award category were asked to complete an extended application, to decide the Top 5 finalists, who will then move on to face a panel of judges to determine the final winner.

For a full list of Best in Biz Awards 2018 Top 5 finalists, visit: https://sbbcawards.ca/top5s/

Winners will be announced on February 23rd. If the company wins, it will get a Small Business BC Awards trophy and $1,500 along with a one-year all-access pass to Small Business BC seminars.

About eVision Media

Founded in 2007, eVision Media is a full-service website development and digital marketing boutique firm offering website design, graphic design, branding, social media management and education, SEO/SEM marketing, copywriting and business mentoring.

While collaborating with entrepreneurs and business owners to create a professional & unique brand/website presence, Susan Friesen and her team strive to meet exceptional service and quality standards their referral-based business anticipates from them. From concept to completion and beyond, eVision Media is a “one stop” shop that cares deeply about their client’s success.

#sbbcawards #evisionmedia

eVision Media Shines in the Spotlight as a Business Excellence Award Winner 2016

eVision Media Shines in the Spotlight as a Business Excellence Award Winner 2016

ABBOTSFORD, BRITISH COLUMBIA – November 30, 2016 — eVision Media of Abbotsford, British Columbia was presented with the Business Excellence Award by the Abbotsford Chamber of Commerce in the Home-Based Business Category.

Over 500 guests came out to celebrate this year’s 21st Annual event that took place on November 24, 2016 at the Tradex Trade & Exhibition Centre in Abbotsford. The Business Excellence Award recognizes winners who are Leaders in their industry with a commitment to Customer Service, a concern for the Community, and a passion for Innovation.

This year, the Abbotsford Chamber presented awards for 12 categories including home-based-business, retailer, manufacturing and production, agricultural and agri-business, consumer services, business services, young entrepreneur of the year, non-profit organization of the year, new business of the year, and established business of the year and more.

“We are proud to be honoured with this special recognition'” said Susan Friesen, Owner of eVision Media. “We are excited to be among local business leaders who have displayed excellence in service and contributed so generously in our communities.”

The mission of the Abbotsford Chamber of Commerce is to represent, serve and connect their approximately 700 members to build and sustain a thriving business community.

Abbotsford Chamber President Josh Bach said, “Abbotsford is such a tremendous place in which to work and live. This year we received 90 nominations for the business excellence award, which were carefully considered by our panel of Board members to select winners for each of the categories.  We are excited for our members to continue to be “The Voice of Business” in Abbotsford.”

The recipients of the 2016 Business Excellence Awards are:

To find out more about the Abbotsford Business Excellence Awards visit the chamber website here: www.abbotsfordchamber.com/business-excellence-awards

To learn more about eVision Media’s services, visit their website at www.eVisionMedia.ca that includes an informative business and marketing blog providing tips and strategies for entrepreneurs and business owners.

About eVision Media

Founded in 1999, eVision Media is a full-service British Columbia web development and digital marketing boutique firm offering website design, graphic design, branding, social media, SEO/SEM marketing, copywriting and business mentoring.

Contact Information:
Susan Friesen
eVision Media
Phone: 604-855-4643
E-Mail: susan@evisionmedia.ca
Website: www.evisionmedia.ca

Joshua Bach
2015/17 President
Abbotsford Chamber of Commerce
Website: www.abbotsfordchamber.com

What it Takes to Create an Award-Winning Business

14 Strategies We Attribute to Our Recent Business Excellence Award

What it Takes to Create an Award-Winning Business

Out of the blue, I received an email from the Abbotsford Chamber of Commerce one day notifying me that eVision Media was nominated for a 2016 Business Excellence award.

Say what?

Once I got past my shock and disbelief that they must have the wrong Susan… it began to sink in that someone out there thought we were worthy enough of this nomination. Wow, what an honour!

Part of the nomination process consisted of a 30-minute interview in front of a 3-judge panel. Imagine being forced to actually brag about yourself for a half an hour!

Talk about squirming in my seat!

winning Abbotsford Chamber of Commerce business excellence award 2016Fast forward to last week where the awards ceremony took place. Much to my relief, our category was  up first so I could relax the rest of the evening.

To be honest, I wasn’t all that anxious – I knew the odds of winning was only 1 in 7 so I waited patiently for the winner’s name to be announced, not at all expecting it to be us.

But it was! eVision Media was declared the winner!


Shock and disbelief once again came over me as I took a moment to grasp what just happened. Walking to the stage was quite the blur but I managed to do it without tripping up the stairs to get our award. 🙂

In the aftermath of winning this wonderful recognition, I reflected some more about that judge’s interview and how they deemed us the winner from the other worthy nominees in our category.

With that in mind, I wanted to share some of the attributes I feel helped us win this prestigious award.  Without further ado, here’s what it took for us to create an award-winning business:

  1. Be Passionate About What You Do

    eVision Media is not the first business I’ve created; there’s been plenty others ranging from creating craft pieces to faux finish painting. But no matter what I did, I was very passionate about it.
    Don’t waste your time trying to run a business just to make money. You’re going to tire of it very quickly and it will be harder to make sales.
    But when you’re passionate about what you do, others will immediately see that and will be drawn to you like a magnet.

    When you’re passionate about what you do, others will see it and be drawn to you like a magnet.Click To Tweet
  2. Love Working With the People You Serve and Offer Exceptional Customer Service

    One of the truest joys I receive is the knowing how much we are able to help a new business owner get their online presence up and running. Being a part of their joy at seeing their dream materialize into something tangible gives me just as much joy.
    If you avoid answering the phone or responding to emails because you dread having to talk to a client, then you need to adjust your marketing so you attract the right people to work with.
    If you don’t love who you’re working with, then it’s hard to establish a successful business that needs to cater to your clients by making customer service a #1 priority. And that means answering the phone, responding to emails in a prompt manner, and treating every person as if they were your only client. And when you’re attracting your perfect ideal client, then this should be easy to do.
    Make your business about them, not you. Just remember, if you had no clients, then you’d have no business.

    Make your business about your clients, not you. If you have no clients, you have no business.Click To Tweet
  3. Know Your Stuff

    Before even thinking about starting a web development/digital marketing business, I ensured I got the education I needed first. I attended the Vancouver Film School in their Multi-Media program and then later earned a Bachelor of Business Administration degree with a concentration in Computer Information Systems (with an A+ GPA).
    Not to mention the countless online courses I’ve taken over the years to ensure my skills are kept up-to-date with this ever changing industry.
    Sadly, I see a lot of entrepreneurs wanting to start a business with not a lot of skills or experience under their belt and then they wonder why they’re struggling.
    Reading a book or taking one on-line course is probably not enough to reach award-winning status. But if you’re passionate about building a successful business, you’ll find a way to ensure you become as qualified as needed.

    Reading a book or taking one on-line course is probably not enough to reach award-winning status.Click To Tweet
  4. Be Committed

    Is working 15 hour days, 6-7 days a week committed enough? Yep, that’s what Daniel and I do every week. We have to in order to fulfil points 2 and 3 above.
    It takes a lot of time and effort to ensure your clients are taken care of properly. You also need a “do whatever it takes” level of commitment.
    You might not need to work such long hours as us and trust me, we’re continually working towards lessening that kind of volume but until then, we are willing to do whatever it takes to ensure our business is successful. Are you?

    Are you willing to do whatever it takes to ensure your business is successful?Click To Tweet
  5. Be Consistent

    Consistency shows up in many forms when running a successful business. For me, it’s being consistent with my message, my brand, my Social Media presence, my newsletters, my team management, and the level of quality we bring to our clients.
    Do I miss sometimes? Absolutely. But being consistent in these areas are very important to me, and I do what needs to be done in order to show up the best I can for my team and our clients.
    Without consistency, it’s hard to create brand ambassadors (such as the ones who nominate you for an award), loyal team members, and a steady flow of clients.
    Whatever you have decided to commit to, be consistent at it and you’ll be amazed at how things start to flow your way.

    Whatever you decide to commit to, be consistent and you’ll be amazed at how things flow your way.Click To Tweet
  6. Surround Yourself With a Dedicated and Knowledgeable Team

    I started off as a one-woman show. Because of my educational background, I was able to do the design, build and marketing of a website quite easily. I’m what you would call a “generalist”, someone who knows a lot of about a lot of things and is a specialist in a few areas.
    But my one-woman show was not going to create a successful business. Especially in this technologically-driven industry. It quickly became apparent my skillset was only going to get me so far.
    So my first hire was someone who could offset my biggest weakness. Warren was a student at UFV and applied for my part time programmer position. He was a perfect complement to eVision Media and the moment he came on board, I was relieved of having to do all the site builds myself. I could then take that time and focus on building the business instead.
    It’s tough to try and do everything yourself when it comes to running a business. Sure, there are expenses involved in hiring but if you hire smart, keep an eye on your bottom line, and know when to let go of those that aren’t serving you best, your business will escalate far quicker than if you try to struggle with everything yourself.
    This topic is worthy of a whole article itself so I encourage you to read How to Take a Solo-Entrepreneurship to the Next Level for more.

    It’s tough to try and do everything yourself when it comes to running a business.Click To Tweet
  7. Have Honesty, Authenticity and Gratitude be a Part of Your Daily Life

    It’s sad I even need to list this as an attribute but I’ve been in business long enough to know not everyone adheres to these principles.
    To me, this is a no-brainer – I’m not certain I could live any other way?
    But judging from the stories I hear from new clients about how they were treated by their previous web developer, it sounds like many people need to be reminded of this.
    No business will thrive without honesty and integrity. And a little secret: gratitude will not only make your business thrive, but your whole life too. Give it a try and see what I mean.

    No business will thrive without honesty and integrity. Plus the secret sauce: gratitudeClick To Tweet
  8. Persevere

    Every business, including ours, has its ups and downs. The key to success is to not let those “downs” overcome your enthusiasm. Pick yourself back up, learn from whatever lesson there was to be learned, and keep moving forward.
    If we had quit when we only had $20 credit left on our credit cards at Christmas time just a handful of years ago, we wouldn’t be award winners now!

    The key to business success is to not let your 'downs' overcome your enthusiasm.Click To Tweet
  9. Invest in Your Business

  10. Building eVision Media has been one investment after another. It never ends really.
    There’s always something that needs to be worked on. Here’s a short list of my recommendations on where you need to invest in your business:

    1. Branding & Website
    2. Marketing
    3. Education
    4. Building a Team
    Building your business means investing in it continuallyClick To Tweet
  11. Understand You’re Running a Business, Not a Hobby.

    I think this is an important distinction to make and one many entrepreneurs aren’t differentiating.
    I’ve always looked at eVision Media as a business and that’s mostly due to my business mind and having a business degree.
    But for those that simply are passionate about something and have a dream to make money off of it, it’s hard to know exactly HOW to turn that dream into a business.
    They end up blindly doing what they think they should be doing, all by themselves, in order to save money (or not spend money they don’t have) and hope for the best.
    If this sounds familiar, I’m adding another business investment to consider as your top priority: A business coach or mentor. ASAP. Otherwise, you’ll probably end up just running a hobby.

    Entrepreneurs: It's important to differentiate if you're running a business or a hobbyClick To Tweet
  12. Set up a Systemized Business Structure

    I’ve worked with a lot of clients over the years. Some amaze me at how organized and systemized they are. And others, well, not so much.
    Having a systemized business structure in place is the only reason I haven’t gone insane with my daily workload.
    Here’s the tools we use to be more organized, efficient and less stressed.

    Having a systemized business structure in place will keep you sane.Click To Tweet
  13. Get Comfortable With Sales

    Sales. It’s a dirty word for many entrepreneurs and business owners alike. Me too. I hate to think of myself as a “sales person” but at the end of the day, if we’re not selling our wares, we don’t have a business.
    Now that’s not to say you need to become a pushy, in-your-face predator. Far from it.
    Remember attribute #1 about being passionate? That’s what you need. People will trust your passion and will respond to it. But be careful, sometimes passion can be too intense and will turn people away.
    Find your sweet spot as to what resonates with your ideal clients and keep working at it. But do embrace the fact you’re selling your wares and learn some strategies that fit with your personality and comfort level that will work.

    When it comes to sales, people will trust your passion and respond to it.Click To Tweet
  14. Give Back

    Giving back is an imperative attribute to have when building a successful business. We give back in several ways, here’s some ideas to consider that we do:

    • Offer discounted prices for non-profits
    • Volunteer your services to community groups
    • Send cash donations to worthy charities you believe in
    • Make purchases that support worthy causes
    • Donate door prizes and/or silent auction items for fund raising activities
    • And support your own clients whenever you can


    Giving back is an imperative attribute to have when building a successful business.Click To Tweet
  15. Be Accessible

    When new clients approach me due to being disenchanted with their existing web developer or marketer, the most often complaint I hear is they can never get a hold of the person. Either they take forever to respond to an email or never answer their phone.
    I think I’m going to write a book on how NOT to run a successful business based on this alone. It boggles my mind when I consistently hear stories like this. How are these people keeping a business going with such poor service and accessibility?
    I have a policy to answer emails within a day of receipt. I often exceed that policy but sometimes the volume is too much and I get delayed in responding. Same thing with the phone. If we’re available to answer, we do so. If we’re not, we’ll call the person back right away.
    Being accessible provides peace of mind to our clients; they know we care enough about them to take care of their needs in a timely manner. ‘nuff said.

    Being accessible brings client peace of mind; it shows you care about them and their needs.Click To Tweet

There you have it. My honest take on what created eVision Media to be an award-winning business. Maybe I need to write a book about this because, honestly, I could have added more but, it’s coming into the 15th hour on this Sunday night of working so I’ll leave it at that.

What about you? What would you add to the list? Please leave a comment below, I’d love to hear from you!

To your success,

P.S. If you found this article helpful, please share it with your Twitter followers:

Here's What it Takes to Create an Award-Winning BusinessClick To Tweet

About the Author, Susan Friesen

Susan Friesen offering 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum ResultsSusan Friesen, founder of the award-winning web development and digital marketing firm eVision Media, is a Web Specialist, Business & Marketing Consultant, and Social Media Advisor. She works with entrepreneurs who struggle with having the lack of knowledge, skill and support needed to create their online business presence.

As a result of working with Susan and her team, clients feel confident and relieved knowing their online marketing is in trustworthy and caring hands so they can focus on building their business with peace of mind at having a perfect support system in place to guide them every step of the way.

Visit www.ultimatewebsiteguide.ca and download your FREE "Ultimate Guide to Improving Your Website's Profitability - 10 Critical Questions You Must Ask to Get Maximum Results".

New site launch for Southwest Hearing Clinic

Southwest Hearing ClinicI am happy to announce a new site launch for The Southwest Hearing Clinic located in Surrey, BC. This is their first website for the clinic since founded in 1977 and we are thrilled in being a helping hand in bringing their presence to the Internet!

Peter Slobin is dedicated to ensuring you have good hearing. As a registered audiologist, Peter opened the Southwest Hearing clinic, located in Surrey BC, to help others with a wide variety of hearing services. If you’re in the lower mainland area of BC, go get your hearing tested by Peter!

We designed and hand-built built their website for optimal SEO performance.


New Site Launch: Stephan Baker Stock Fotos

Stephan Baker Stock FotosStephan Baker is a talented nature photographer whose photos are in high demand. After receiving repeated requests for certain photos, he decided to offer them on-line to the general public as stock photos that can be used for personal or commercial purposes. Choose from a large selection of royalty-free images through a wide variety of categories such as Animals, Architecture & Buildings, Boats, Locations, People, Nature, and Transportation.

We custom programmed this on-line e-commerce, membership-orientated, application.

Bells ‘n Whistles – membership creation and management, credit purchase commerce application, back-end administration area for custom reporting, photo management and stat logs. Check it out at: www.sbstockfotos.com

New Site Launch: With Flair… Home Staging & Redesign

With Flair... Home Staging and RedesignCheryl Grattan has the “it” factor when it comes to staging and redesign. According to her clients, she has that special ability to see how a room can be arranged to showcase it to its optimal advantage – whether for selling or for living. Her services include Real Estate Staging, Redesign for Living and Moving In Assistance throughout the Richmond BC area.

Cheryl is a graduate of the PRES Professional Real Estate Staging program offered by another eVision Media client, Dana J. Smithers.

We designed her logo, business cards, promotional brochure, letterhead/envelope and flyer as well as designed and built her website. Bells ‘n Whistles – On-line photo gallery showcasing her before and after pictures.  Check it out at: www.withflair.ca

New Site Launch: Green Apple Staging & Spaces

Green Apple Staging and SpacesDeena offers home owners and real estate professionals staging and redesign services throughout Calgary, Alberta. Her talents as a stager are evident in her portfolio gallery where she is also able to showcase her photography talents. Her photography services are an excellent additional service to take advantage of when you want to showcase your home listing as best possible though professionally taken photos… after your home has been staged of course!

Deena is a graduate of the PRES Professional Real Estate Staging program offered by another eVision Media client, Dana J. Smithers.

We  designed and built her website. Bells ‘n Whistles – On-line photo gallery showcasing her before and after pictures. Check it out at:  www.greenapplestaging.com