Opportunity for Visibility is Everywhere …

Article PR, Networking PR No Comments

frankie_nIf you are open to the idea of getting more visibility, you’ll find it everywhere — especially in your own backyard.

You may know that I run a hobby business called The Very Important Pup Hotel. It’s my ’empty nest’ project that brings happy vacationing pups to my home when their owners go on vacation. It’s a fun way to welcome wagging tails and happy paws into my life, now that my son is attending university.

Well, not long ago, one of my happy clients posted a favorable review about this service on a Facebook page for our neighborhood called NextDoor. Another neighbor saw the review, reached out, and asked if I could look after her French Bull Dog named ‘Frankie’ for a few days.

We met for a ‘meet and greet’ and decided to do business. While we were ditch-the-guesswork-cover-draft-2chatting, I asked her what she did for a living. She edits the Points Living Magazine that is distributed in the adjacent neighborhood to where we live. I asked for a copy, and she happened to have one in her car. In return, I shared a copy of my husband Steve’s recently released book, Ditch the Guesswork: Creating Reliable ROI for Time-Starved Investors.

Steve and I enjoyed looking after ‘Frankie’ over the weekend, and when the client returned from her trip, she said she loved Steve’s book, thought my business was a hoot, and asked if she could write a story about us for the magazine.

Within a few days, photos were taken and shared, answers to interview questions were provided, and the magazine layout was shared for our blessing. We managed to talk about all three of our businesses in the interview and inserts links in the text to make it easy for our neighbors to learn more about us. In a week or so, everyone in the neighborhood will receive a copy of the glossy magazine in their mailbox.

I can’t wait to see what happens next and hope this story about being open to opportunity can open your eyes to great ways to get more visible in your neighborhood so you can do more of what you love.

The magazine feature is below. Read it and grin!

pointslivingstoryaboutjuettens

 

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Networking Card — Do You Have One? And One Important Networking Blunder to Avoid

Networking PR No Comments

Networking at live events can lend powerful fuel to new business opportunities, referrals, and other ways to grow your influence, impact, and income.

One of the biggest networking blunders people make is collecting business cards at networking events and then entering the email addresses into their ezine lists without permission.  This is a sure fire way to annoy someone and invite an unsubscribe in record time.

If your priority is to grow your list, consider creating a card for networking events that showcases an irresistible benefit that people want.  Then, when they return to their office to practice the fine art of FOLLOW UP, they can take the initiative to opt-in because the offer noted is compelling enough to invite action.

Since I am traveling to Dallas to speak at the NSA Winter “Monetize Your Message” Conference the first week of February, I created a networking card that I can share with the wonderful people I meet who can one day become my referral partners, colleagues, and clients.

The front side of the card offers my name, phone number, email, and web address.  The back side of the card — featured here — showcases my photo, “visual credentials” that make me memorable,  and a call to action to enjoy a benefit that many mission-driven experts, speakers, authors, and consultants may find very compelling.   Those who love the call to action are likely going to opt-in to enjoy this “pink spoon” and become part of my community.  Then, it is up to me to share useful information through my ezine to add value to  so they will one day make the wise choice to do business with me.

Do you have a networking card?   If not, create one so you can invite more perfect people into your community and start building winning relationships that will be great for all.

 

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Life is Like a Box of Chocolates, You Never Know What You are Going to Get – Networking Success

Networking PR 2 Comments

In June, I hosted a Great Gals Gathering at my home to bring my favorite gals together with an equally great group of gals I had never met before.  The purpose was to help all of us expand our network of great gals with whom we could be friends, do business, and have fun.   Everyone was invited to bring a tasty treat or a bottle of wine to share, and we just let the magic happen.

I invited Kirsty Ellison and Jean Thompson to attend.  Jean is CEO of Seattle Chocolate Company, and Kirsty is VP of  Marketing.   My good friend Tammy Redmon invited her Great Gal Bri Seely to attend.   Tammy is a coach, and Bri is an up-and-coming fashion designer.   Well, one good thing led to another as these great gals gathered.

The executives from Seattle Chocolate Company engaged Bri Seely to create a suite of one-of-a-kind gowns to match the contemporary packaging of their most popular and delicious truffle bars.  Yesterday, I visited the new retail store for Seattle Chocolates at their Tukwila, WA headquarters and saw the dresses for the first time.  I couldn’t stop myself from posing for a photo with the hot pink dress, contemporary art, and the Extreme Dark Chocolate Truffle Bar for which the dress was made to match.

All this is to say that you never know who you are going to meet at the next networking event or what magic might manifest, so show up at your best and be prepared for something delightful and unexpected.   If you live in the Seattle area, be sure to visit the new retail store for Seattle Chocolate Company.

And, consider hosting a Great Gals Gathering of your own.   It’s a delicious way to bring abundance of all kinds into your life.

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One Great Story Leads to Speaking Gig and More

Networking PR 1 Comment

That great story in the Reflections Magazine compelled several influential people to connect with me by email, resulting  so far in at least one speaking invitation to a very influential audience, one invitation to an exclusive holiday celebration, and several very warm compliments from people I like, trust and respect.

And, I attended Ali Brown’s SHINE – Discover Your True Wealth event in Las Vegas this past week with color article reprints and other support materials in hand. As luck and timing would have it, I met up with two more very influential business owners who lead a large, international organization.   The conversation went something like this:

  • What are you up to?
  • What does your new book deliver for readers?
  • What is YOUR story?
  • What is your business model?
  • What topics do you typically speak about?
  • Do you own your content?
  • What are your affiliate/joint venture arrangements?

In short order, I was able to share a reprint of the Reflections Magazine story, a schematic of my business model, a gift copy of Bye-Bye Boring Bio, my affiliate joint venture arrangements, and a compelling description of the topic I speak about most often — “Transform your boring bio from wallpaper to wow to attract clients, speaking gigs, and media interviews now.”  As a direct result, I’ve been invited to do a success series interview, and there is strong interest in advocating for Bye-Bye Boring Bio to the entire membership in a joint venture arrangement.

Being prepared plays a big part in being able to respond to opportunities that show up when you least expect them.  Boy oh boy, was I glad to have been prepared for this chance encounter, and I can’t wait to see what happens next.

Speaking of SHINE, here are a couple fun photos taken with me and my SHINE buddies shown from left to right — Gina O’Daniel, me,  Kammie Lisenby, Diane Bridgwater, Stacy Karacostas (wearing the blue top) and one more fabulous gal whose name I didn’t catch.   Those round bubbles on the SHINE sign represent the big intentions every SHINE guest shared for the big things she intends to achieve in her business in the coming year.  What a wonderful way to seal a great event with bubbles of inspired possibilities for each and every guest!  I loved every minute and will write more about my “aha” moments in the days to come.

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Connect for Relationship and See What Magic Manifests, Plus Tips to Help YOUR Book Invite Attention

Networking PR No Comments

A funny thing happened over the weekend.  I got a “Google Alert” with Bye-Bye Boring Bio in the title.  When I visited the link, neither my name nor my book were mentioned.   I decided to call the blogger to introduce myself and explore ways to start a relationship.

Mary Ellen Merrigan of ProfitMeister blogged about our conversation, and you can read her post right here.   I feel great to have reached out to connect because now I have a new friend and colleague who can help me guide others to banish boring bios forever.   There are new friends for all of us to be made in our own backyards and well beyond, and picking up the phone to start a conversation is a great way to start.

In related news, a few weeks ago, I posted my book as available for review on BloggerLinkUp.  This wonderful review debuted today on the Entrepreneur and Self Employed Business Journal.  If you have a book that is available for review, post it to www.bloggerlinkup.com and see who raises their hand to read and review YOUR book.  You can also make your submission to Dan Poynter’s Para Publishing Ezine, which enjoys readership of 41,000 authors is some stage of book creation and marketing.   You can view his most recent ezine by clicking on this PDF file:  http://parapub.com/files/newsletter/PPM-November%202010.pdf.

A post I submitted to Dan’s ezine debuted in today’s ezine, and two influential bloggers have already gotten in touch to review my book.   Just imagine what can happen for your books and other offerings when you do the same!

It sure has been rewarding to serve as my own best client as I share the news about Bye-Bye Boring Bio to the right audiences.   If ever there was a case study for the impact DIY publicity is having to guide my own company and product offerings to get seen, heard, celebrated, and compensated, what I’ve got brewing for this book is delivering the goods.

Now, if my pitch to the New York Times today results in an interview, you can bet your bottom dollar that I’ll be telling you how that came to pass.  It started first by replying to a query posted to ProfNet.com. The query for today reads as follows:

For a small-business story in The New York Times, I’m looking for businesses run by one person (solopreneurs) who use technology, tools, tips, tricks to run their business as if it was a bigger operation than it is. How do you manage all the things that need managing, and what have you found that works really well and enables you to grow without losing your sanity?

This sure sounds like me, so we’ll see what happens.  I saw the opportunity, and I jumped on it.  Now, I wait with high hopes and equally high expectations.

Do you make it a habit of jumping on the right opportunities in time to meet the stated deadlines?  It sure has been working for me! Try it and share your DIY publicity successes as they unfold.  Can’t wait to hear all about them.

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If You Believe the Rising Tide Lifts All Boats, Check out www.SeattleAccelerator.com

Networking PR No Comments

Accelerator, an Entrepreneurs’ Organization program, is the catalyst that enables first-stage entrepreneurs to catapult your business to the next level.  The mission is to empower you with the tools you need to grow your business to more than US$1 million in sales and provide you with the skills to make yourself a better entrepreneur and leader.

Along with structured educational content focused on the core areas of first-stage businesses, the Accelerator Program affords you the unique experience of learning from and connecting with the world’s most influential entrepreneurs. If the business organization to which you belong isn’t lifting you higher and you meet the membership qualifications, apply.

Oh, by the way, I’ve been invited to host a workshop tomorrow for members to guide them to creating fabulous, 50-word bios that make clear what makes them memorable, remarkable, and successful.   I can’t wait.

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What Single Thing Can You Do This Week to Advance a New Business Connection?

Networking PR 1 Comment

Berry Zimmerman, a Profit Mastery® workshop facilitator and owner of BizEnrich, conducts workshops in the Pacific Northwest and provides strategic business development guidance for small- and medium-sized businesses. He purchased a Authentic Visibility Publicity eToolkit before midnight last night, so he will soon be sipping tea from his very own Prosperi-Tea cup as my special gift.  And, since he lives and works in Bellevue, I am delivering his gift to him personally as we sip tea and ponder how to enrich our businesses and our lives.  How is that for personal service?

Speaking of which, while attending the sold-out  Total Networking event organized by Score More Sales’ Lori Richardson and friends at Qwest Field last Friday night, I was heartened to learn that my concern over how disconnected we all have become is not my concern alone.  Gayle Hallgren-Rezac & Judy Thomson — co-authors of ‘Work the Pond’ — brought this point alive while describing a situation not uncommon among business travelers today. They said that between noise canceling headphones, ear buds, and other technology, airline passengers often travel across the country and the world without speaking a word, while sitting shoulder-to-shoulder and sometimes on overnight flights.  They said we’ve taken being connected to the extreme, and we are missing out on quality personal connections that are literally within reach.

That’s why I really look forward to connecting personally with Berry Zimmerman over a really good cup of tea.  We’ve met each other briefly at a couple of networking events, and how he serves the marketplace has my interest in a big way.  Visit his website to learn if engaging a Profit Mastery workshop facilitator is what your business needs to enrich its bottom line.

This leads me to issue a networking challenge for this week.

  • What single thing can you do this week to advance a new business connection?
  • Can you call someone on the phone to thank them for their business or offer a tip from which they can certainly profit?
  • Can you send a hand-written card to acknowledge someone’s birthday?
  • Can you forward by email a HARO lead that is perfect to showcase one of your best vendors, colleagues, or co-collaborators?
  • Can you spend a bit more time than your client was expecting to deliver even more impact for the investment made through your work together?
  • Can you talk to the person on your next airline flight and find out the single thing that gave the “wow” to their week?   (This tip comes from Savvy Networker Zita Gustin).

If you continue to keep others at arm’s length, you just might find that your boldest intentions for your business will remain well beyond your grasp.  That is certainly food for thought in challenging economic times such as these.

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High Tech at the Expense of High Touch? Absolutely Not!

Networking PR, Social Media Marketing 2 Comments

Have you noticed how Caller ID, email,  online social networks, and other filters you’ve set up in your life and business keep people at arm’s length?  Does anyone pick up the phone anymore?

Call me old fashioned, but I am deliberately picking up the phone more often to connect with clients and customers. People really appreciate it.  Many are even a bit surprised — and pleasantly so.   Even if you leave a phone message with an authentic, connecting message, you are demonstrating a refreshing approach to staying in touch in today’s tech savvy world.

Speaking of which, here is a rant for the day.  When I sign up to “follow” someone on Twitter who I know well and receive a programmed email reply that says, “Thanks for followng me. Please buy XYZ,” that turns me off in a big way.  That isn’t a real connection.  That’s a sales pitch.

Next time someone clicks to “follow” you on Twitter and you have a quick minute, visit his/her profile so you know a bit about those who have taken an interest in you.  Then, demonstrate what you learned when you send a tweet in return.  You’ll be a whole lot faster to really connecting as opposed to issuing a canned reply.  Everyone wants to be seen, heard, and celebrated.  It’s a great gift you can share with others that means the world to them.

And, the next time you sit down to write an email, ask if a phone call would deliver a higher impact, more meaningful connection to serve both parties.  If so, pick up the phone and say “hello” and see what magic manifests next.

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Plan Now to Attend Three Women’s Networking Events

Event Promotion, For Women Only, Networking PR 3 Comments

Abandon the isolation that can be part of owning your own business.  Here is your call to action to leave your office and connect with other business people to see what magic you can manifest for your business, your customers, and the marketplace.  Now more than ever is the time to make authentic, winning connections with others.  The good news is that in the Seattle area, several great opportunities to do exactly that are upcoming.

I’ll be among the panelists who are contributing to the Thriving in Challenging Economic Times event taking place on Sunday, March 22. I give the Sammamish Chamber props for making every panelist look like a rock star on their website.   Why not make plans now to attend, benefit from the lessons to be learned, and connect with some fabulous people?   Below are the convenient links, the dates, and the admission fees.  Choose the event that works best for your schedule, needs, and budget.

In related news, on Monday night, about 60 great folks came to The Village Bellevue to learn a few tips about social networking, DIY publicity, sales, and managing money.  Betsy Talbot, the Women in Business Blogger for Examiner.com, posted a good summary of the event highlights, and you can read it here. Just for grins, my 11 1/2 year old son gets a shout out in Betsy’s blog post.  He actually solved his Rubik’s Cube puzzle during the event.  As someone who has never figured out how to do that in my lifetime, I would consider that an “alert the media” moment for sure.  Kyle credits the how-to video he found on YouTube for showing him the way.  Isn’t that something?

When I attend these events, I don’t think first about what I can sell.  I think about what I can give to others to support their success.  I met some pretty remarkable people, and I’ve already made some powerful introductions to help them connect with the right people with whom they can do business and add value.

As for my own “wins” so far, I am pretty pleased.  Since Monday night’s contribution at The Village Bellevue, I’ve received fan mail about my 15-minute do-it-yourself publicity talk.  One person posted a public compliment to LinkedIn, and another posted a public compliment at BizNik.  I received dozens of new ezine subscriptions, a new invitation to speak to a group, and four new event registrations for upcoming Publici-Tea™ Workshops. Those are fabulous results for showing up and taking an interest in others.

If you could use results like these, make plans now to attend the events noted above.  Great connections and other great things await.  I’ll be at the Thriving in Challenging Economic Times event, sponsored by the Sammamish Chamber of Commerce.  I hope to meet you there.

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Have You Hosted a Great Gals Gathering? It’s a Very Good Thing!

Networking PR 4 Comments

When “Get Booked on Oprah” Expert Susan Harrow was in town, I wanted to make sure I introduced her to all the fabulous business owners I know who are worthy of both Susan’s and Oprah’s attention.  I hosted a Great Gals Gathering at my home, and a great time was had by all.   Here is a fun blog post one of my Great Gal Guests posted today — complete with photos — and tips to help you host a similar gathering of your own.

And if you love fun photos, check this one out from the Grande Sized Publici-Tea.  There is something rather compelling about just the right visual aid.  Doesn’t it make you want to know the back story? Or perhaps the lack of a back story?

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