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Webinar: The Heart in Marketing

Join me on Tuesday March 21st at 1:00 PM (EST) for Heartfelt Marketing

Spend just 45 minutes with me as we explore key strategies for heartfelt marketing — connecting with your peeps or your tribe or people!!

Register below and I will send you the details!!




If you are like most small business owners that I know, then you find marketing to be one of your biggest challenges. HOW do you get more clients or customers? HOW do you stand out in the crowd of competitors?  HOW can your business succeed in this business environment?

You are NOT alone!! Tuesday we will spend some time exploring 6 strategies that can make a real difference to you!

I am sure that you are using some or maybe even all of these strategies, but are they working?  Are you getting new business leads?  Do you have ANY conversion?  Is it the strategy or is it HOW you are using it?  Is it making sense to your connections?

During the webinar we will be covering — yes, six strategies but we will also be looking at HOW to make them more heartfelt — more engaging.  Connecting with people — PEOPLE directly.

Reserve your seat and join me.  Can’t make it, sign up anyway!! I will get you the replay following the webinar!

Collaboration Plus Accountability Could Equal Magic

COLLABORATION

The Women’s Business Circle is designed to bring women business leaders together in a collaborative work space.

A Collaborative Circle means a space for people to come together and brainstorm ideas — creating something new or different from what they have already created.

Collaboration — is the bringing together of ideas that results in something new.  If you are a woman, then you know that when a group of women come together — and start working on a problem — magic happens.  There is brilliance that creates something incredible.  Imagine the potential of an INTENTIONAL collaboration space?  What could happen?  Now the idea starts to emerge and the group wants to see it happen….

ACCOUNTABILITY

Now we start seeing this natural accountability happen. People are asking — How’s it going?  What did you do to make it happen?  People are invested in your success!!  Now, that is powerful.

But there is more to accountability then just your collaborative solutions.  You have goals and dreams and visions that you have been working on. Maybe you’ve made progress and maybe you haven’t.  Now, you have a plan that lays it all out AND gives you a built in accountability system.

Imagine putting together a strategic plan that excites you, that is focused and doable, that creates the vision. THAT, is exactly what happens in the Women’s Business Circle with our Best Year Yet™ Planning system.  But it is more that the plan, because we gather together monthly to review the plans, the challenges, the successes and that makes each person more accountable then most have been for years.

Okay, think about it, you decide to join the Women’s Business Circle, we work together to get your plan just right and you tell everyone in the group about it.  Now, next month you come to the monthly circle and say, “oh, I didn’t do a thing on the plan.”  Could you? I couldn’t. I would be up til 4 AM getting everything done, even the night before the meeting if I hadn’t done anything. Why? Because of my pride. I said I would.  I told other people.

Accountability in a group can be powerful.

MAGIC


Magic?  Really?  Well, I think when women gather together in a collaborative space — that alone produces magic.  Everyone leaves excited, inspired, motivated.  That is magic.  Everyone starts accomplishing more than they expected and more than they had imagined.

Magic by definition is exciting and wonderful, it can create a move or change or a creation.

Can women together create magic?  Can they help each other create businesses that thrive and expand and prosper?

I think with the combination that the Women’s Business Circle has – training resources, collaboration space, strategic planning, accountability meetings — the ingredients for real magic are there.  They just need to be used to see the expansion.

Learn more about the Women’s Business Circle –>> HERE —>>

Working Towards A Socially Responsible Business

Being a Socially Responsible Business

Being socially responsible as a business has always been a goal and an important one.  But this year, I have taken it on even more consciously.  We are striving in a more dedicated way towards that goal. I interpret social responsibility as two fold — one is how we treat people  — pay fair wages, fair exchange for services, work with other socially responsible companies and secondly — is an environmental focus — how we operate and how that impacts the earth. We are taking actions in both of these areas and like most values and goals — we are striving but aren’t perfect (yet)!

Some of things that we are doing:

Building a list of resources here on the website for you
Working towards Green Business Certification with Green America
Reducing paper usage (I love printing reports out so this is BIG)
Contributing to organizations that support women in business
Talking about social responsibility
Moving our bank accounts to a Credit Union that invests in the local community and education and does NOT support investments in guns, big oil or other companies that are not within our guidelines.

What actions can you take that would improve your organizations operations and feel good for you and your team?

Being socially responsible can feel really good.  When you increase your giving and outreach into the community it feels good.

There are many ways to achieve this.

–>>Create a volunteer day for your staff to help out in the community.
–>>Take on interns within your organization
–>>Give to organizations locally — food banks, homeless shelters, domestic violence shelters… whatever organization is a good fit for you and your company.
–>>Let your team know that you are giving and supporting the community.

You can also write a press release about your giving, but that shouldn’t be the WHY of the giving, just a side affect.

Involve your team in making giving decisions.

You could have team members submit ideas for organizations to support and pick one organization each month or each quarter that you support.  Have them share WHY that organization is important to them.  Include their WHY in your company newsletter.

Participate as a company in events — create a running team or cycling team or other team that can participate in events that raise money for a charity.  Now you are achieving multiple things at the same time.  You are accomplishing some fundraising and charity work, you are getting your team working together, and they are doing something that is healthy!  It is a true win-win-win strategy.

However you decide to increase your company’s social responsibility – start today with one action and grow from there.

There are so many ways to improve. Here are a few more ideas.

1. Recycling
2. Eliminating Styrofoam
3. Adding solar power
4. Reducing your carbon footprint
5. Buying only recycled paper and paper products
6. Using earth friendly cleaning products

Of course, there are many, many ways to improve your operations and make them more earth friendly, sustainable and socially responsible.

So, what are the things that you are doing in your company?  How do your values impact your operations? Do you feel that it is important or valuable to operate in socially responsible ways — why or why not??

LEAVE YOUR COMMENTS BELOW!!

Using Instagram Video Ads

How to create your first Instagram video advertisement?

Over the past few years, there has been considerable growth in the Instagram user base, making it a perfect place for marketers to showcase their brands.  Over 600 million people are hanging around Instagram, and people from 18-35 years old are higher in numbers.

Instagram ads basically work like other social media channels with an advertising feature. It’s easy to understand the flow and set up an advertising campaign, but before you begin, here are some key points to remember.

  • You must have an active Facebook page and Facebook ad account.
  • You must set a Call to action
  • You must set a budget before starting
  • Most importantly, you need visual content, such as a square image, landscape image and a 60 second long video.

Join the Instagram ad bandwagon by following the steps below to create your first Instagram video ad.

instagram video adsStep 1: Link your Instagram account to your Facebook page

Before starting, you need to connect your Instagram account to your Facebook page. This will allow you to create ads through the Facebook power editor.  To get started, go to your Facebook page and click on Settings in the top-right corner. In the left column, click Instagram Ads, and then click the Add an Account button on the right.

If you already have an Instagram account then, select the existing account, enter the user id and password and click confirm.

If you don’t have an Instagram account, you can create one from within Facebook. Select Create a New Account, enter a username for the Instagram account and type in your email address. When you’re finished, click Confirm.

Once you’ve finished all the steps, your Instagram account will be connected to your Facebook page.

Step 2: Know which types of ads you can run on Instagram

For Instagram ads, there are three objectives of ads: clicks to your website, mobile app installs and video views.  These three objectives will hold three key ad units within them: image, video and carousel ads.

Image ads are standard photos with a button driving users to click upon them. Video ads are the same as image ads, but consist of video in place of the image. Carousel ads are a series of images that users can browse.

Step 3: Target the right audience

Just like Facebook ad targeting, you can also target your Instagram ads. Not all targeting options are available in Instagram. The only targeting options required are location, age and gender. The rest of the targeting options can be used if you want more control over who can see your ads.

Step 4: Use attention-grabbing visuals

People are highly attracted toward visual content, and Instagram is full of rich visual content, whether it be video or images.  If you want to drive high results, make use of compelling videos and images that draw user attention. Try and avoid using stock images, because people viewing the ad can easily recognize them.

Step 5: Include a call to action

A call to action in a post increases the click rate. In Instagram, there are no stipulations about the amount of text that can be used with images. This provides marketers with the opportunity to create ads with heavy text and complex stories. Also, you can directly use a call-to-action in your video and photos.

Step 6: Leverage popular hashtags

Instagram is highly driven by the use of the hashtag. Make use of 2-3 relevant hashtags, which will allow your ad to be found easily. The strategic use of a hashtag allows businesses to improve their brand visibility quicker compared to other social media channels. #smallbusinessmarketing #smallbusinesssuccess #publishedauthor #keynotespeakerin

Instagram Video Ads

instagram video adsHow to create your first Instagram video advertisement?

Instagram Video Ads:

Over the past few years, there has been considerable growth in the Instagram user base, making it a perfect place for marketers to showcase their brands.  Over 600 million people are hanging around Instagram, and people from 18-35 years old are higher in numbers.

Instagram ads basically work like other social media channels with an advertising feature. It’s easy to understand the flow and set up an advertising campaign, but before you begin, here are some key points to remember.

  • You must have an active Facebook page and Facebook ad account.
  • You must set a Call to action
  • You must set a budget before starting
  • Most importantly, you need visual content, such as a square image, landscape image and a 60 second long video.

Join the Instagram ad bandwagon by following the steps below to create your first Instagram video ad.

Step 1: Link your Instagram account to your Facebook page

Before starting, you need to connect your Instagram account to your Facebook page. This will allow you to create ads through the Facebook power editor.  To get started, go to your Facebook page and click on Settings in the top-right corner. In the left column, click Instagram Ads, and then click the Add an Account button on the right.

If you already have an Instagram account then, select the existing account, enter the user id and password and click confirm.

If you don’t have an Instagram account, you can create one from within Facebook. Select Create a New Account, enter a username for the Instagram account and type in your email address. When you’re finished, click Confirm.

Once you’ve finished all the steps, your Instagram account will be connected to your Facebook page.

Step 2: Know which types of ads you can run on Instagram

For Instagram ads, there are three objectives of ads: clicks to your website, mobile app installs and video views.  These three objectives will hold three key ad units within them: image, video and carousel ads.

Image ads are standard photos with a button driving users to click upon them. Video ads are the same as image ads, but consist of video in place of the image. Carousel ads are a series of images that users can browse.

Step 3: Target the right audience

Just like Facebook ad targeting, you can also target your Instagram ads. Not all targeting options are available in Instagram. The only targeting options required are location, age and gender. The rest of the targeting options can be used if you want more control over who can see your ads.

Step 4: Use attention-grabbing visuals

People are highly attracted toward visual content, and Instagram is full of rich visual content, whether it be video or images.  If you want to drive high results, make use of compelling videos and images that draw user attention. Try and avoid using stock images, because people viewing the ad can easily recognize them.

Step 5: Include a call to action

A call to action in a post increases the click rate. In Instagram, there are no stipulations about the amount of text that can be used with images. This provides marketers with the opportunity to create ads with heavy text and complex stories. Also, you can directly use a call-to-action in your video and photos.

Step 6: Leverage popular hashtags

Instagram is highly driven by the use of the hashtag. Make use of 2-3 relevant hashtags, which will allow your ad to be found easily. The strategic use of a hashtag allows businesses to improve their brand visibility quicker compared to other social media channels. #smallbusinessmarketing, #businesscoach, #marketingstrategies

Instagram ADS Increase Your Brand Visibility

Tips to increase brand visibility with Instagram ads

According to eMarketer,

The number of companies leveraging Instagram for advertising has steadily increased year over year, and this number is likely to surpass other social channels like Twitter in 2017”.

instagram adsSince visual content is far more useful for engaging audiences compared to traditional marketing and advertising methods, this has made Instagram one of the top social media channels for marketers to advertise their brand. Instagram Ads can help your brand when done correctly.

With over 500 million active Instagram users, it has become one of the most powerful platforms for marketers to showcase their brand. Visual content, whether it be images or videos, grabs user attention quickly compared to text. Instagram Ads fit right into this strategy, because you are staying visual with your ad.

Instagram is all about visual content, so the chances of grabbing the audience’s attention are higher than other social media networks. These tips will be helpful to improve your brand visibility and increase your followers:

  • Have a killer hashtag strategy:

Instagram is highly driven by the use of the hashtag. Make use of 2-3 relevant hashtags, which allow your ad to be found easily. Strategic use of a hashtag allows businesses to improve their brand visibility quicker compared to other social media channels.

  • Use CTAs:

While creating Instagram ads, you can add a CTA button near the image. This button offers various choices when presenting the call-to-action. Make use of a relevant CTA for your advertising campaign. The main objective of including a CTA with the ad is to gain a wider reach and increase the number of desired actions.

  • Combine your social channels:

Instagram offers huge potential for brands, but what if the majority of your success comes from other social media channels? By cross promoting your account on other social media networks, you can promote traffic to your new Instagram channel. Alternatively, you can encourage your Instagram followers to check your other profiles.

  • Tell a story with image carousels

Instagram is a platform based on carousels. That is, it allows you to post more than one picture together. If you are looking forward to selling products using Instagram, craft a story with striking images related to your product. Make use of images that highlight your product and help connect with  your fans.

  • Include video in ads:

People love watching a video no matter how short or long it is. When videos were first introduced in Instagram, there were more than 5 million videos shared within the first 24 hours. Instagram is not only a collection of static images, but also includes various video content. Video are more engaging than static images posted and draws user attention quickly.

  • Don’t make your ad look like an ad:

The key to higher engagement and more clicks through is to not make your ad look like an ad. Audiences respond better to posts that appear natural, as opposed to the usual product promotional messages. Plan your ads carefully, so that your fans don’t feel like you are constantly trying to sell your product.

With higher user engagement than other social media networks, Instagram opens the way for brands to leverage their content to improve their brand visibility and increase followers.

Pick up our special report on using Instagram ADS –>>CLICK HERE

Interested in our full training course — learn more –>> CLICK HERE

Leading To Your Values

values alignmentValues Alignment

As a leader, the values of the organization need to be a focus.  When you lead to your values, then you are walking your talk, practicing what you preach, and living those values.

Doing a periodic values check is important. Are we in alignment with the values of the organization?  Do the values we have outlined still fit the organization? And, what do we need to do to be in alignment with the values of the organization?

Here at Compass Rose Consulting, we just recently been looking at our own values. But values alignment is something that has been important to me for a long time. It was included in my first business development program: Business Builders Intensive and is still a part of Bizology.Biz.  It is important to look at.

When you are out of alignment with your values — your staff notice and your customers notice.   Something doesn’t feel right. They know it and it impacts them.

Our alignment evaluation looks at:

What is the value? Name it:

How is it practiced across the organization?
Operations?
Products?
Marketing?
Leadership?
Staffing?
HR?
etc.

For instance, I worked with an organization that worked with youth and taught that you needed to get a college education so that you would be fairly paid. And we hired people with college degrees to work with the youth. BUT, we did not pay a fair wage for the work done.  The values were out of alignment with the practice.

Take a look at your values and how they are working in your business. Is there something that you need to shift or change?  Is there a way to practice them better?

Leave me your thoughts below and let me know how your business is doing.

Socially Responsible Business

Being a Socially Responsible Business is becoming more and more important.

Neilson recently talked about the impact of being a socially responsible business or company, and doing good beyond your products or services and the impact that has on your bottomline.

socially responsible business

Your Business Operations Can Impact Your Results

How do you change your business so that you are operating in a socially responsible way?

Consumers have said and have demonstrated that they will pay more for products that are Fair Trade, Organic, Socially Responsible in their production.

Your organizational values are one thing, but it is more about living those values publicly that is on the line.  People are observing HOW companies practice their values.  When companies take a stand that can have a direct impact on that bottom line, both positive and negative.

In the recent Neilson article, their observation is that social responsibility has moved beyond environmental issues to being a good corporate citizen.  This is critical.  It may be that while the new administration eases regulations, that people will demand they be observed anyway.  People do not want coal companies dumping waste into their water.  People do not want BIG banks investing in a pipeline that potentially can pollute waters.  People are making their voices heard through social media and through the effective use of hashtags on social media.

What is a Socially Responsible Business?

According to Investopedia.com:

Social responsibility is the idea that businesses should balance profit-making activities with activities that benefit society; it involves developing businesses with a positive relationship to the society in which they operate. The International Organization for Standardization (ISO), emphasizes that the relationship to the society and environment in which businesses operate is “a critical factor in their ability to continue to operate effectively. It is also increasingly being used as a measure of their overall performance.”

How does this impact your small business?

This can have a tremendous affect both positive and negative on your business.  If your company is reaching out to the community and doing good in the community, people notice.  If at the same time, your company is polluting and dumping toxic waste, that is going to override all the “good” that the company is trying to do.  The two are out of alignment with each other.  You need to operate in alignment with your company values and those need to be in alignment with the good of the community and the world.

  1. Look at your company values and see if there are ways that you are out of alignment.  Values are typically an ideal that we strive for and that we do not always achieve successfully all the time. But now, it is time to do a check –> a values alignment check.
  2. Decide on a plan to improve your alignment and take it a step further.
  3. Can your company join thousands of others in a movement of social responsibility?  What would that look like for your company?  There are probably some quick things that you can do right away:
    1. Look at your operations — how can they be more sustainable, earth friendly — can you increase recycling programs, eliminate the use of styrofoam cups, eliminate the use of disposable cups for coffee, buy bio degradable disposables for your cafeteria, use recycled paper, decrease printing and use more digital….Join Green America and become a certified Green Business.
    2. Look at your banking — can you switch from a BIG bank to a credit union or community bank?
    3. Look at your employees — are you paying a fair wage, can you improve your workplace, what are your employees passionate about?
    4. Look at your business model — is there a way to incorporate your social causes into your business model?  Can you give one for one? Or can you set up a donation model? Can your customers participate in that model?  Choose a place for a portion of profits to be given?  Is there an organization that fits with your company mission?

    There are so many ways to change how your company operates and make more of a difference in your community and the world.

    Here are a couple of examples —

    There was the story of Rosa’s Pizza in Philadelphia that was giving away free slices of pizza to the homeless.  That story shared on Upworthy in 2015 had such an impact on people that it was shared over 800,000 times and increased their business and their giveaway tremendously.

    Recently, on CBS Sunday Morning — they shared a different business model in which a local brew pub opened as a non-profit and donates money from each brew served to one of six rotating charities. Customers get to choose which charity they are supporting with their purchase.

    And there are movements to change how companies operate.  Chocolate — largely harvested in African with child slave labor — women around the country have been campaigning for big chocolate companies to stop buying chocolate that is not Fair Trade, and they are having an impact.

    Much of the work that I have been doing over the past weeks has been to raise our social consciousness at Compass Rose Consulting and identify ways that we can improve operations as outlined above and make more of an impact on the community and the world.

    These changes while still very much under construction are improvements to a foundation that already existed and is being improved and revised as the year moves ahead.  I am adding resources for you that you can access — about operating in more socially responsible ways.

    We will be adding to these and sharing more each week on how to achieve these types of goals!

Social Entrepreneurship Action Plan

social entrepreneurship action planOur Social Entrepreneurship Action Plan:

As we move into the new year and new world order we are focused on social action and social entrepreneurship. Not a new idea to me or to the world, just more urgent feeling, at least for me.

I have been journaling for several weeks now and this is all emerging as a result of that work and a course on social entrepreneurship that I have been participating in.

Social Responsibility has always been on my values statement along with environment.  But I haven’t had a solid plan for how it happened or what it looked like. In reviewing my vision for Compass Rose Consulting and our direction this year, it had to focus on the world and being a catalyst for change and improvement in some way.

At the same time, I didn’t want to start a new business or create something totally different from what I have been doing.  Business coaching/consulting, work with non-profits, leadership development, marketing, meeting facilitation and team building — I am good at.  I wanted to take what I have and make it work for me and for clients in a new and inspiring way.

You can see that I have totally shifted my brand colors to Gold and Purple.  Very intentional.  They are colors that represented strong women throughout the Suffragist Movement for women’s right to vote.  They represent strength for me and commitment.  As I was putting together our strategies and model I also came up with this image.  It boils it down to simple.

It starts with our programs — they focus on education for our clients — through our online portal — filled with resources on business development and for some that opt for more — coaching and consulting, collaboration and masterminding…. are added.  The program – The Women’s Business Circle is powerful and comprehensive.  Besides training it incorporates the rest of the plan…

Inspiration — my goal is to inspire our clients to create a Social Entrepreneurship Plan for their business.  We review several different models that they can adopt. Each business might do it differently.  Actually, they all will do it differently! And that is great.  Through our collaborative meetings, each member is inspired by the work that other members are doing.  As well as the impact that being a member is having on other entrepreneurs… because

Giving Support is our next strategy.  Compass Rose Consulting’s plan is to provide support via non-profits to women entrepreneur’s.  We are doing this in a couple of different ways — first is through a scholarship fund to the Women’s Business Circle, to support women in need on their entrepreneurial journey.  We have also identified three non-profits that work directly with women entrepreneurs that we will provide funding to, from our profits.  Social Entrepreneurship does not mean that you are not making money.  Developing a thriving business is a key to making it personally and then being able to support other people on their journey.  Our plan is to use part of our profits– money after expenses to support these different ventures.  Because I wanted a global reach — we are supporting micro-loan programs for women that provide loans in this country and internationally.

Outreach- Women’s Business Circle ties it all together really.  We will be doing outreach in several different ways.  First, through articles and press releases, we will be able to reach out beyond the Compass Rose Consulting community.  My next book will also focus on this — social entrepreneurship and its impact on the people doing it as well as the people it reaches.  We also plan to do retreats and service throughout the programs… more ways for people to be involved but more importantly is that they are ways for people to touch other people’s lives.  It is through this heart to heart connection that real change can happen, because it starts happening on a personal level for each person and then moves out from there.  Again, a cascade.

Outreach leads back to education and the cycle begins again.

compass rose consulting new logoYou also see the heart at the center of the compass.  This is a new part of our logo.  The center of the compass is called the compass rose.  Thus the name Compass Rose Consulting.  The compass rose is what is found on maps to help you orient the map. It is also the center of the compass — which helps you find your direction.  At the center of our compass I have added the heart because it is what should be guiding our direction.  We should move in business with heart, with compassion.  We have core values to help guide our decision making and they all matter, but at the center is our core purpose and the core of business — the heart.  The new rings around the compass are symbolic as well.  They represent the cascades of outreach. They are diverse in color, because the world is diverse. We treasure that diversity.  And the outer ring is the newest — green to represent the earth and our need for commitment to operating our businesses in earth loving ways.  I have also used the different colors in the to represent the different levels of service, so they each have multiple meanings and metaphors….

It is exciting to move Compass Rose Consulting forward in this new way.

Top 5 Ways to Boost Your Business by Becoming a Published Author

published-authorBecoming a published author is a great way to advance one’s professional career.

Published authors experience a heightened ability to influence other people, broaden their platform, connect with prospects, access opportunities and increase their income.

1. Growing influence

Publishing a book increases the author’s credibility, giving the author instant status as a leading authority, which leads to increased trust in the author’s expertise and heightened influence.

2. Broadened platform

Authors can use their published books to broaden their platform by creating workshops, training courses, videos, workbooks and consulting services around the solution provided in their book.

3. Connection with more prospects

A published book provides authors with the ability to attract more prospects with a taste of their expertise and to convert those prospects into hot leads.  Particularly when the book is available on major online retail sites such as Amazon, and if it is optimized for searches, the book can be found by thousands of people who might otherwise have never heard of the author.

4. Access to opportunities.

Having a published book gives the author a credential that gives him an edge in bidding opportunities, obtaining paid speaking engagements and media interviews, which further increases the author’s visibility and opens even more opportunities.

5. Increased income

Authors can receive revenue from their book sales as well as from derivative products created from their book, such as workbooks or group coaching.  With their elevated status as published authors, they can also charge higher consulting and speaking fees,

author-logoAre you interested in writing a book?  My colleague Judy Weintraub, founder of SkillBites, can help you get your book written and published.  I highly recommend
SkillBites’ book publishing platform.  To learn more about how SkillBites can help you attain these benefits, you can view the website at www.skillbites.net, or contact Judy at info@skillbites.net or call toll free 855-SKILLBITES.