eBusiness Blog

Building a Successful Guilt-Free Business

In today’s eTip I spoke with Yvonne Hogenes from Malary’s and Firmawear Energy Wear (among other things) while at the Woman of Worth event recently and I grabbed her to talk about the guilt we can feel as moms when we’re balancing parenting with running a business.

I let Yvonne takes the reigns so she could share her advice for every mother out there who may have concerns about the lifestyle of an entrepreneurial mom.

Yvonne has some great words of wisdom for all mothers running a business


Yvonne:

I remember when my boys were 9, 11, and 13 it was a busy time with them just getting into sports, and I decided I had to follow my dream which wound up being my store Malary’s.

I knew at the time it would take a lot of time and energy, although had I known the real amount demanded I may have been more hesitant.

It’s very important to have a plan.

I did the hard work and mapped out my five-year plan before I took the plunge.

Once I dove in it was all consuming. And it has to be for it to work.

I felt guilty as a mom. My kids would laugh because if I sat down for 3 minutes on the coach, I was asleep.

Years later… my boys are in the business with me!

My boys knew why I was tired and they learned by example that having a strong work ethic brings success.

That support was not limited to my kids. My husband, my family, and my friends and staff carried me through to where I am today.

But the guilt that comes with being a mother was still there.

Accept that if you’re doing what you love your kids will learn by watching. What they learn is probably more valuable than any book lesson.

When they needed someone at their games to watch them play their dad was always there.

By giving myself room to work on my business I was able to succeed and everyone around me was able to help by picking up any slack.

I embraced my working mom lifestyle while going through it and now that my kids are employees they thank me for it.

Business owner is a tough role but 20 years later I’m still finding the same level of support that makes it all work.


How to get in touch with Yvonne

The best way is malarys.com which has links to Firma (which is a fantastic product) and other local designers she works with.

She’s in Cloverdale in Fraser Valley and features lots of local, Canadian designers so she’s well worth checking out.

If you’re a working mom or a mom thinking about getting into entrepreneurship and business and need help, then please get in touch. I have helped many women both mothers and not get into business and I would love to mentor you through the process of starting your own business.

If you liked what you saw here, please subscribe to our YouTube channel and newsletter so you can get updates and videos for small business entrepreneurs every week!

Until next time,
Susan Friesen

P.S. Are you ready to take your business to the next level? Our “All Under One Roof” boutique web development and digital marketing firm can help you make your vision a reality.

› CONTACT US TODAY

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".

Embracing Your Personal Branding Uniqueness for Business Success

Today’s eTip is about how important it is to let your personal brand shine so you show off the real you and the best you!

The value of letting your personal brand shine

Building a personal brand is important and you put a lot of work into it so don’t by shy about who you are. Too often as women in business we’re told the expectation is to be demure and reserved but there is a lot to be said about simply being yourself if your business and brand are built around who you are.

When building up your personal and business brands you should have taken the key step of defining your ideal client so with that in mind you should remember that your deal client wants you! If you restrict yourself you’re actually doing yourself a disservice.

It may even mean potential clients outside the spectrum of your ideal client are put off but that’s totally okay because what you really want for both your business and peace of mind are the clients you’ve defined as best suited to you and your business.

Be confident in your personal brand and own who you are. 

Do you swear a lot? Hiding that from the offset of client interaction creates the expectation that you will consistently hide it and eventually the client will get to know the real you. When that happens and you’ve presented a false version of yourself it can create issues that would have been avoided had you showed the real you at the start.

While it’s not for me personally and does not align with my personal branding there are many examples of successful people who curse!

Promote what makes you unique

The more unique you are the more likely you will stand out to potential clients.

Let your personality shine through so everyone knows what you’re about. In saying that you should also keep in mind that your accomplishments should be worn on your sleeve. Never shy away from telling people about what you’ve accomplished in the past.

This doesn’t mean telling people that you think you’re great or what you think you’re great at; tell them why you feel that way and what you’ve done that has instilled confidence in you in your skill set or product.

Use key terms like ‘I accomplished’, ‘I generated’, ‘I completed’ and follow up with something genuine that you’ve done that makes you confident in yourself.

Accept praise with grace

This is a personal fault of my own. It’s sometimes tough to respond to a compliment but I highly recommend you take a moment and accept it. Thank them and let them know you appreciate it. Never deflect or reject praise.

Now the goal is to surround yourself with your target market so when you are being yourself you’re around the right people for it.

Not everyone appeals to everyone so put yourself in places where your ideal clients will be present. Mixing water with oil will just cause you unnecessary problems.

By placing yourself in the right setting and letting yourself shine with a strong personal brand you will lead yourself to your ideal clients so you have a much better time working with with people who like who you are and what you do.

Trying to be all things to all people can lead to hurdles that are best avoided while you build out your client roster with people who fit well with you.

That’s it for today’s eTip and don’t forget that if you liked what you saw here please subscribe to our Youtube channel or newsletter so you can get updates and videos for small business entrepreneurs every week!

Until next time,
Susan Friesen

P.S. Are you ready to take your business to the next level? Our “All Under One Roof” boutique web development and digital marketing firm can help you make your vision a reality.

› CONTACT US TODAY

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".

Why Defining Your Ideal Client Attracts More Paying Customers

Today’s eTip is all about the most important step you should take when starting your business.

 

Define your ideal client

I’ve talked a lot about this in the past and the reason myself and many others hammer this point home is that after you’ve experienced initial success from your business you’ll hit a very familiar wall.

When your established connections have finished congratulating you, the phone may not ring as much or not at all. You had a blockbuster opening full of encouraging sentiments and then suddenly…reality sets in and you now have to start finding ways to bring new people in to see what you sell or do.

So now it’s time to ask yourself: who do I want to work with?

Do you need to target local, national, or international? If you want to target international you need to be specific about where and really think this through.

Types of ideal clients

What income level will you be after? It’s important to make all groups distinct in your marketing since each group will have different reasons for agreeing to buy from or work with you.

For example: If you offer a weight loss program don’t just look for people who know they’re overweight. Look for people who have symptoms of being overweight but don’t even know it. Focus on the symptoms they’ve identified and target users who have them.

Bad knees or trouble with mobility? Those users may need what you offer but are out looking for patches for the symptoms of their real problem. They don’t know their problems stem from their core issue (their weight problem).

Target them by offering a solution to their problems.

As mentioned, income level is a big factor too. Ask yourself if the target you set can even afford what you offer. There is no sense marketing to a demographic who can’t afford your product or service.

Think about the case of a business who’s target (they think) is a young mother. If you’re after that market take into account that the children come first so any income they bring in is likely spent on themselves last. That makes it much more difficult for anyone to market to them. So is that demographic going to produce enough business?

Focus on bigger picture goals and not just leads who may turn into one off customers. Referrals are much better.

Look for clients who will refer people to you. eVision Media has grown based on referral business so take into account the opportunities some potential clients may offer in the way of referrals.

90-95% of our business comes from referrals!

Once I get a referral I analyze how it came about. What value did we provide that was good enough for us to be referred to our client’s friend or associate? We work towards building more connections like that when we do our marketing and when picking who we target.

Are all your ideal clients the same?

Assess your strengths and understand that while you may have a great product it may not seem that way too all generations. How old is your market and if it is younger, what makes those leads distinct?

What kind of message will you need to come up with in order to establish trust with your potential client? Building trust from one generation to another is not easy so make sure you really pay attention to the details.

So BEFORE you create your logo, business cards, or hire a professional web developer you should sit down and define your ideal client(s).

This analysis acts as the blueprint for all the marketing from the logo to the website and all other creative and marketing components.

Before you invest anything, get to know your market and get a clear indication that you have a market out there. It’s not worth wasting your time and money on something without a market for it!

If you have any questions about finding the ideal client please comment below and if you liked what you saw here please subscribe to our Youtube channel or newsletter so you can get updates and videos for small business entrepreneurs every week!

Until next time,
Susan Friesen

P.S. Are you ready to take your business to the next level? Our “All Under One Roof” boutique web development and digital marketing firm can help you make your vision a reality.

› CONTACT US TODAY

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".

Why Speaking Engagements Don’t Have to Be Nail-Biting

Why Speaking Engagements Don’t Have to Be Nail-Biting

So, you’ve finally launched your website. (check)
You’ve got a decent social media campaign going – you figure. (check)
You’ve got business coming in. (check?)

And now you’re ready for the next big thing: THE STAGE.

You know you need to add “speaking engagements” to your annual marketing calendar and you’re not sure where to start. Yes, nail-biting, isn’t it?

Well, if you picture yourself on-stage “a la Oprah” and your knees start shaking, not to fear…. It doesn’t have to start that way. In fact, I can guarantee you it didn’t start that way for Oprah either.

Speaking engagements can simply mean this: you speak one-to-many vs. one-to-one. What you may say to one person, you now say to more than one at the same time.

You don’t even have to stand up.

In fact, I did a speaking engagement recently where I got to sit down the whole time. It was a very casual presentation to a group of about a dozen female entrepreneurs in a pub. It was casual, it was fun, it definitely wasn’t intimidating, but it definitely was a speaking engagement.

I had to write an intro about myself, they promoted me to their membership, and I spoke in front of people with my prepared text. That was a speaking engagement.

So, if you are just starting out in your business and you do not yet have a line outside your door of people clamouring to hear you speak.

Here’s a “how-to-guide” to launching that line-up and securing that first speaking engagement:

  1. Write your signature talk

    Honestly, this is probably the hardest part. What are you going to say? I would recommend developing a relatively short, 20 – 30 minute presentation where you speak about the core of your business.

    The goal? To generate interest in you and your business. I definitely don’t recommend selling from the stage at this point, your whole goal will be to generate interest in you and your business by providing value in a 20-30 minute presentation.

    You want people to walk away feeling that talk was a good use of their time and for them to consider contacting you in the future for possible work opportunities.

    At the early stages of talk-giving, you are asking your audience for important collateral – their time — in exchange for your time and knowledge. It’s important to make you worth their time.

  2. Know your target audience

    Who do you want to have hire you? Once you narrow down your target audience and your ideal customer, you can start sourcing where they hang out and what they might want to hear in a short, 20-30 minute snippet of information delivery.

    The better you understand your people, the more value you can deliver in a presentation you prepare.

  3. Identify where your target audience gathers.

    There are groups everywhere these days who gather in the name of networking, promoting their business and learning about topics related to their business or personal growth.

    Identify where these groups are and identify the best ones for you to connect with. Check out meet-ups, networking organizations in your area, and eventually conferences and gatherings where participants pay to hear a number of speakers talk.

    Aligning yourself with organizations who already have a following of your ideal customer, will provide endorsement of you and give you a leg-up before you’ve even hit the proverbial stage.

  4. Introduce yourself to the group organizer

    Arrange a coffee date or meeting with the lead of the organizations you identify. Find out what they’re all about to determine if there is a fit for you to either join the organization yourself and/or become someone they would have come speak to their regular meeting.

    Be ready with #5 (below) if they are interested.

  5. Prepare your “sell sheet” or promotional bio

    You will need this to both promote yourself to be invited to speak and as well to promote to the membership of the organization, so members are enticed to come out to hear you speak.

    It should include your photo, a brief bio about you and why you are someone with something they want to hear.

  6. Let your networks know you are speaking

    Now that you have secured your first speaking engagement, let your networks know you are speaking. You will undoubtedly get a “I didn’t know you gave presentations! Good for you! I know another group who you could really help.” And then the word-of-mouth promotional chain begins and lo and behold, speaking engagement #2 is right around the corner.

After you have gotten a taste for how your Signature Talk is received, you can tweak and amend it to ensure you reach your ideal client and serve them in a way that turns into new business for you.

And, once the requests start rolling in for you to speak, and your time becomes more valuable, you can start charging for that talk. Look out Oprah!

About the Author, Susan Elford

Kathryn Wilking

Susan Elford, PR Strategist & Leadership Coach, works with start-ups and seasoned entrepreneurs to help them get real about their strengths and celebrate them so they get more of what they want; clients, exposure and success, while living a life of balance.

Visit Susan at www.elfordcommunications.com for traditional PR support and www.susanelford.com for a look into how she works with her coaching clients.