Tag: marketing

Special COVID-19 Announcement

Special COVID-19 Announcement

I have been struggling writing this week’s blog. Not because what I had intended to discuss is difficult but because, right now, life is difficult. I’m struggling. And no, it most certainly is not similar in any way to some of the very difficult decisions my fellow business owners are being forced to make. But to pretend that everything is okay and write in such a way is something that I cannot do.

I simply cannot pretend that everything is okay, because it’s not. While my daily routine has not changed that significantly, my mindset has. And that has me struggling. I have not felt a depression this deep in a long time, but I am fighting it. I am fighting it because you are fighting. Because we all have something worth fighting for.

Ladies and gentlemen, your time to step up and show your community how much you care is here. It is your time to shine and each of you, in your individual ways are doing it. Those of us who can, are continuing to work from home, providing the services we need to keep things moving. Those of us who are needed on the front lines are out there, ensuring our quality of life. And those of you who have closed and will be closing during this time, you are helping lessen the curve.

So many of you are showing your community how much you care, and I am overwhelmed with love for you and for the wonderful community I live in. When I find myself pulling in and allowing the fear take over, I look at you and know that I am not alone. Because we are not. And I believe each of us on social media right now knows this to be true. Let’s be honest. It’s where we are.

Even if we have neglected our business pages, we are still on social media because it is how we can communicate right now. And I am seeing some very beautiful things. Just an incredible use of technology, I am in awe of what some of you are doing to bring some sunshine into our lives.

We are communicating more than ever and with this, we have the opportunity to help in so many simple ways that can make a huge impact. And with this, I am hoping that I may be able to give back to you the support you have given me.

Starting today and until further notice, the Symbiotic Marketing Facebook Page will host an AMA (Ask Me Anything). Come and ask your questions, from social media marketing and websites, to marketing in general. I will PM you with questions so I can fully understand your question and any details needed and then help you with find a resolution to your specific issue. Pick my brain. In addition to this, I will be addressing as many questions as I can in a general format to assist others who may also have a similar question. These will be specific posts because at times, answers can get lengthy.

I know you may be feeling very uncertain right now and probably downright scared, but I want you to know that you inspire me every day. I am incredibly honored to be a part of this wonderful group of crazy small business owners. Because we are crazy. And you are my people.

I sincerely love you all and we’ll come out of this better for having gone through it together. I firmly believe this.

See you on the other side, Ray.

Creating a Marketing Mindset

The statistics of owning a small business are not for the faint of heart. The Small Business Administration (SBA) states that 50% fail within the first five years, 66% in the first ten years, and only 25% make it fifteen years or more. While there are many reasons for this, marketing always seems to be in the top five. It’s a bit of an ambiguous term, that includes a wide range of activities from creating print materials such as brochures and business cards to how you present your business and yourself in public and online. Marketing can be closely tied to sales but is different from sales in the approach. While both are needed, you will want to be conscious of the two and how they differ so that you can set yourself apart from the crowd and raise your chances to come out on top.

A marketing mindset is one of growth and prosperity. While there are many things needed, such as a logo that represents your brand visually, you will also want to focus on your brand’s presence. Whether your business caters to the general public or businesses, to succeed, your business should present that it is successful and will be around in the next year or years. This can be incredible difficult to do when you are trying to make ends meet.

Are you creating a sense of prosperity or scarcity?

Often, many find themselves falling back on a sales mindset to offset this issue. Creating a fast turn around sale or discount can help bridge a gap in the budget or help those on the fence jump for your goods and services but you should only use this tactic sparingly. Additionally, pushing customers to engage with your product, such as continually asking for a meeting so you can sell them on what you do or sell can be off putting for the customer and present that there may be a reason why you are so pushy; a reason you are trying to counterbalance.

Relying heavily on sales and sales tactics or not having proper marketing techniques in place, will make people wary of purchasing your goods or services. It presents that your business may be in trouble or may not be in it for the long haul. But it does not need to be that way. What’s great about marketing is that it can be adjusted and changed at any time but there are a few things to keep in mind when changing your marketing strategy:

  1. Listen to Your Customers: Your customers will tell you what they want and need. Rather than complaining that you are not able to reach them, ask yourself what you can do to reach them. Sometimes what they are asking is not something you currently offer but could possibly in the future. Explore what your customers are asking for and see if you can work it in to your current strategy. Sometimes adding in a particular type of good or service can help build your business and brand in ways you did not foresee.
  2. It Takes Time: In any marketing endeavor, it will take time. Time for people to realize the change, time for people to learn about what you are doing, how you are doing it, and decide if it is right for them. We tell our clients that it takes a good 3 to 6 months before changes start to happen, and even then, they may be small changes and it can take 6 months to a year to see how those changes are reflected within your business.
  3. Small Steps Make For Big Changes: It’s the little things that matter so ensuring you are updating your digital presence including any social organizations you belong to make a big difference. If you are finding that your business is not forefront in your friends and family’s mind or they are not active on your digital footprint, ask yourself if you could be doing more. While it may seem like a little thing to do when you are looking at a bigger issue, remember that creating a sound structure to build on is key.
  4. Marketing Should Reflect Your Values: Everyone who chooses to go down this arduous path does so for a reason, and for many of us, it is following a dream. Sharing that dream with others builds on your brand and provides a plan for your structure. Ask yourself why you started your business and how can you show that in your marketing. This shows your intent, your reasons why you keep going, and builds trust in what you are doing.
  5. Be Where Your People Are: This may be different for every business, so listening to and understanding your customers is key. While most customers are online, you will also want to ensure you are present in person as well. This can include attending networking meetings, learning series, community and service groups. Any time you are in public, you are representing your brand so finding organizations that support what you are doing and actively engaging with those groups can be a great way to increase your awareness. Think outside of the box, perhaps there is an organization that you can support through volunteering.
  6. Marketing Does Not Need to be Expensive: This is a common misconception for many business owners. Hope is not a marketing strategy. You need a plan of action, but it does not mean that with it, you need to break the bank. The most valuable thing you have is your time. Using your time effectively, from ensuring your digital presence is updated to volunteering your time to sit on a board are all means of marketing your business without costing you a dime.
  7. Think Big and Allow Yourself to Dream: When you find yourself stuck or spinning your wheels, it’s hard to break free. Running a business is hard work. At times, it feels as if you have the proverbial quiet toddler and you are bracing yourself for the havoc that may ensue. If you are always on edge and waiting for the shoe to drop, it will. Remind yourself why you started this, reflect on your values, and be grateful for where you are right now, because you have come a long way no matter how young your business is. Ask yourself where to go from here, how you can improve what you already have built, and yes, allow yourself to dream about what could be.
  8. Plan Your Execution: This is imperative to a change in marketing because it all comes down to presentation. Yes, sometimes change comes at us hard and fast but it does not have to appear that way. Planning out the details needed to support your change helps build on what you already have and the improvements you want to implement. Having a plan not only gives you a time frame to work within but also provides smaller, achievable goals to help you feel more successful during the transition. This not only helps you feel more secure, but also makes others feel more secure when working with you.

    Set Yourself Apart From The Crowd

Maintaining a marketing mindset, one of abundance, growth and prosperity is not easy, especially when you are focused on the daily tasks needed to operate your business. But it is necessary to maintaining what you have built and project for the future. While a sales mindset can be tempting, sales are meant to be short-term and scarce. When you rely on sales too heavily, you present that your business may also be short-term, your funds may be scarce, and that your business may not beat the statistics. Additionally, too many changes in too short of a time frame, can also have the same effect. If you have found yourself struggling to find your footing in today’s fast paced world, ask yourself how you are presenting yourself and your business. You may have lost the marketing mindset in the details of day to day but you can change your mindset, your approach, and yes, your business’s success by shifting focus from what is to what could be.

Help!

Help, from the Beatles to Papa Roach, bands have sung about it. As business owners, help is certainly something we need. From supportive relationships to genuine help with running our businesses, we cannot thrive without it. I talk to a lot of business owners about how we can help them because that is what this business is built for, to help.

A little over a year ago, I knew I needed help with my business. I knew I do not possess the ability to photograph individuals well. Give me a landscape or a product and I can make my camera see what I want others to see but when it comes to photographing people, I have a hard time creating the same power. So, I reached out for help from a dear friend.

Around the same time, I was looking for help with bookkeeping needs because putting receipts into Quickbooks was something I loathed. I knew it was important and necessary to running the business, but doing it? Oh, I could put that off for an entire month and then scrambled to get caught up. I had several people who offered suggestions, particularly devoting time to it each week but yet, I struggled to do it. So, I reached out to another friend and she helps me with my bookkeeping and helps me focus on it once a week.

Earlier this year, I knew I needed help yet again, this time with managing everything I needed to do for the business and maintaining a presence away from my computer screen. This was a big one for me, because I know that no matter how much I would prefer to stay home and work, I needed to get out and talk to others to maintain the growth of my business. Again, I reached out to friends to see if they knew of anyone who would be willing to take on the challenge.

Help is something we all need and as a business owner, it is integral to the growth and success of our businesses. At Symbiotic Marketing, we are here to help, particularly small businesses. When I started this business, it was my goal to help the small business owner. While there are resources available to help, but when it comes to actually getting the work done, that’s on the owner or comes at a cost many are not able to afford. Let’s be honest, running a business is hard work and often we are left prioritizing what we do over what needs to be done to maintain a successful business.

With the goal of creating marketing services that small businesses can afford, Symbiotic Marketing has grown into what it is today, and I couldn’t be more proud of where we are right now. We wouldn’t be here if it weren’t for the help I received along the way. With that help, this year we have been able to help business owners build brand awareness on social media outlets and increase audience size and quality, build and update websites, create one sheets and other promotional materials, create logos and assist with purchasing promotional products to match the brand, write and post blogs and newsletters, and offer marketing ideas and assistance.

I am excited to see what the next year brings because of the help I have received along the way. I’d love to hear from you, what help have you received? We’re all in this together, let’s help one another along the way.

Your Website and Social Media – How Does It Work?

Your website is up and ready for potential clients to visit! You also have a Facebook page up and have invited friends and family to like your page. Now what? How do you make these things work to build your business? Much like other marketing devices, it’s all about the relationship!

To understand the relationship, we first need to have a general understanding of a sales funnel. Everyone you meet or who sees your page or website, fall in your sales funnel.  A sales funnel runs from cold (new to learning about you) to hot (ready to purchase). While all fall in a sales funnel, this does not mean that everyone is going to have a need for your product or service. Having an “always on” sales attitude breaks down the opportunity to build relationships.

We’ve all had that person on our newsfeed that is always pushing their gig, always. Always be selling pushes people away, but you want to get the word out about the awesome stuff you offer! Following the 80/20 rule (give more than you ask) is a great way to build you audience and move them along the sales funnel.

Your Social Media

Your social media should be a means of directing traffic to your website but also as a means of getting to know about your business. This is where your audience gets to know you, but what to post? Here are some tips to build your audience, engage you audience, and build your business with social media:

  • Like other pages as your page
  • Tag other businesses in your posts when applicable
  • Share other business posts to your page when applicable
  • Share any blogs from your website onto your page
  • Create visual posts such as pictures or videos especially for holidays
  • Create informative posts that relate to your business

 

When looking at what to write on your social media page, think of individuals who are on the cooler side of your sales funnel. Keep posts short and simple, if your text is too long, people are less likely to read what you have to say. Longer posts may be better suited for a blog or a Note on Facebook, and should be focused more on a warmer audience, those who already know about you and are looking to learn more.

Your Website

Your website should be more focused on transitioning a warmer audience into a hot audience. Individuals who seek out your page are there to learn about your specific business. Some choose to use blogs on websites to build a client base. Here are some tips to build a blog on your website:

  • Blogs should be between 200-500 words. If they are longer, use subtitles to differentiate the portions of your blog
  • Use tags – this helps with SEO and brings individuals looking for a specific topic to your site
  • Categories – this helps define what your blog is about, this is very helpful when writing on multiple subject matters
  • Check SEO settings – every builder is different, but all offer some SEO settings on for your blog
  • You are the expert, write what you know!
  • Download Grammerly – you can easily use the free edition to capture any misspellings and grammatical errors

 

Social media is meant to drive traffic to your website and gather an audience who may be interested in what you have to offer. Websites are dedicated to what you are offering and are a platform to sell your goods, to give individuals more information about what you offer, and to motivate the individual to reach out to your business. By understanding the sales funnel and how it works, you’ll be better equipped to handle both digital platforms well and build your business. As always, we are here to help, no matter where you are in your marketing journey.

Branding – Why it is important

Traveling to an appointment this week, I passed a black truck towing a black trailer that on the back door stated, “Quality Lawn Care” with a phone number. This chance encounter started me thinking about branding and why it is so important for a business.

Branding itself is multi-faceted and should grow as your business grows and for a startup, branding is necessary. It shows that you, the owner, care about the appearance of your business. People are more likely to do business with someone who has taken the time to not only know their trade, but invest in in. These investments may be carrying insurance and being bonded or having quality equipment. Your branding is also an investment. This investment may include having quality business cards, having a professionally designed logo, a fully functioning website, and so much more.

Why is branding so important?

It all comes down to assumptions and expectations. When you take the time to invest in your branding, people are more likely to assume you provide quality goods or services. However, if you are running on a shoestring budget and it shows through your lack of branding, people are less likely to frequent your business. Your lack of branding may be giving the expectation that you will not be in business long term or you do not carry the proper coverage on your business should something unexpected happen.

Proper branding shows that you as the business owner have taken the time to care about how your business appears to the general public. It gives a sense of permanence to your specific brand. Depending on your specific business, you may need to employ different branding techniques but that does not mean you need to spend a small fortune doing so.

Here are a few tips to help you with your branding:

  • Have a high-quality business card printed from a professional print shop. While you can create and print business cards from home, they lack in paper quality, print quality, and the perforation marks show. Business cards do not need to be expensive. While many choose to purchase from online print shops, there are also local shops that can print high quality cards at a low cost. We highly recommend Occupational Services Inc. for printing needs.
  • Spend time on creating a website for your business. The days of passing cards and expecting a call are over. In today’s fast changing world, a business needs to be online for long term success. This is more than just reviews and recommendations. Individuals look online to see what you do and how you do it before making a decision. Websites should have different pages that showcase your business, what you do, who you are, and how to contact you. Other pages may include testimonials, shopping, and your list of services.
  • Create a logo for your business. A logo is a visual representation of your business. It does not need to be overly complex, but it shows a sense of permanence and should be on all of your branded materials.
  • Use social media networks that target your audience. Social media is huge and those who are not on a network of some sort are a very slim minority. Take the time to learn about your audience and then post on the network they are more likely to spend their time on. Start with one network and once you are receiving a return on your investment or you are feeling comfortable with posting on that network, move onto the next. You do not need to be on all of the networks, as there are a lot. Just focus on those that your target audience is on. If you need help with Facebook specifically, click here.

 

Taking time to invest in your branding gives people the opportunity to find you and when done well, helps your business grow. As for the truck I passed, I did not take a picture to remember the phone number or write it down as I was driving, but I did search online. I found a lot of landscapers in the area, and one with that specific name. If you were looking for a landscaper, who would you choose? The one without any reviews or website or the ones below it with reviews and a website? I know who I would contact first.

Getting Down and Dirty With Sales

Sales. Oh, that dirty word, it’s a necessary evil to running a business. Or is it? Every business owner will tell you that it is needed but no one likes to talk about it. The term has two definitions in running a business, the first and foremost, it’s how business owners can ideally make ends meet and second, the act of sales which leaves many with a gross taste in their mouths. As sales should be related to your marketing, this week we’re going to talk all about that nasty, gross feeling thing and I hope you come out on the other end feeling a little better about that necessary business process.

Marketing should be closely tied to your sales funnel. A sales funnel is where your audience lies in their awareness of what you offer. To keep it simple, a sales funnel typically associates your audience along a pipeline of cold to hot. This means if someone is in your sales funnel and they are cold, they are just learning about what you do. They are not ready to buy. The more interested they are in what you offer, they move along the sales funnel to warm. These individuals may be interested in what you offer but need more information to be able to take the leap or are unable to afford your goods or services yet. As individuals progress along the funnel, they move to hot or ready to buy.

Now while that’s a bit oversimplified, it’s important to understand where your clients fall within this funnel and to know that while some will move through your sales funnel, some will not. There are times when an individual may not ever make a purchase from you but want to support you in your venture. By being aware of your audience and where they fall within your sales funnel, you are better able to refine your marketing to target those who are more likely to purchase your goods or services.

I like to think of running a business like a football game. Your goods or services, the financials, all the stuff that you do every day that relates to your business are the players in the game. The goal is to get points through a touchdown primarily (although a field goal or safety will work too). The main part of the game is trying to get those points, or in the world of running a business, make sales. Sometimes it’s easy, other times you get sacked, but keep getting back up and playing the game. Whether it’s fourth down and ten or you’re on the line of scrimmage ready to make the play, keep going. You won’t always make the point, but if you are learning while you go that is what’s important. And those that may not buy your goods or services but want to support you, those are your fans, so show them why they should cheer for you and keep coming back to watch you play.

Let’s Get Social

Social Media marketing, it sounds easy enough. Just put your stuff out there and people will buy it. But it’s not that easy. This week’s questions have focused on social media marketing, particularly Facebook. I discussed marketing tools a bit in the blog post “What is Marketing” this week, I’m going to dive in deeper and that 80/20 Rule is going to make a comeback. So if you haven’t read it, I highly recommend starting there before reading more.

At Symbiotic Marketing, we highly recommend when starting out to have a Facebook page or website, preferably both. The purpose of your Facebook page (assuming you have one) is to drive business to your website and to make people aware of what you offer. Social media is meant to be just that, social. It’s to give individuals an idea of who you are, what you do and how you do it. Your social media page should be informative for both individuals who are just learning about your business as well as those who may be interested in purchasing your goods or services.

That’s a lot to cover! So how does one do this? We start with the basics. Take a look at your page as a visitor. Go into your Facebook page and click on the three dots beside the “Share” button. This opens a secondary menu where you can view your page as a visitor. By selecting this, you can see your page as someone visiting your page will see, or like any other business page that you are not associated with looks like. Take a good look at your page and how it is set up and ask yourself, if you were visiting this business page, would you be able to find the information you would want? If you feel stuck, check out other business pages that may be similar to yours to see how their pages are set up. Most cosmetic changes (such as layout and page tabs) can be changed in the Settings tab.

Once that is to your liking, look at your posts. We find that most businesses perform well with 2-3 posts a week. Here is where the 80/20 Rule comes into play again. We aim for less than 20% of those posts to be asking for something (that’s a sly way of saying “buy my stuff”): asking individuals to purchase your goods or services and asking to come to an event you are hosting or attending. This includes your sales posts: coupons, BO-GOs, Flash Sales, etc. The remaining 80% of your posts should be more telling about you, your business, your story.

This is where many become uncomfortable. Remember that growth does not come from a place of comfort. Post about things that resonate with you and your business. Share “ugly truths” such as I work from home and have two very loud dogs. To combat this, I have the television on in the background almost all the time. The background noise makes me feel less alone and keeps me from jumping out of my skin when the dogs see a squirrel, or a loud truck goes down the road. While I’d rather individuals not know the particulars of working at home, small ugly truths such as this meme posted on the Symbiotic Marketing Page. While the post is humorous, there’s certainly a ring of truth to it that many can relate to. If this does not resonate with your particular business, post about what you are currently working on and why it fills your heart with joy. Happiness is infectious so share the love!

Additionally, with this, share posts from other businesses that you support either through your business or yourself personally. Individuals are literally asking for recommendations on social media from where to get a lawn mower repaired to a new dentist and everything in between. Not only will you become a resource, you are also opening your page to another page’s audience that may not know what you offer. This grows your reach and can grow your specific audience.

Finally, Facebook allows pages to create a “Story” outside of the story that is only shown for 24 hours. This is your Why. Why you started, why you do what you do and why you keep doing it. Create a story for your audience. There’s a saying in the world of sales, “Facts tell, stories sell.” Tell others of your story, your why and they’ll be more likely to buy what you have. I have a water bottle that I love. I carry it with me everywhere I go and get many comments on it. I paid more for that water bottle than any other water bottle I own. I bought it and carry it because a mother in Florida runs this business out of her garage. She shares the good, the bad, and the ugly or running her business online. She’s relatable. I tell everyone who will listen where I purchased it and why. By her sharing her story, I continue to share through word of mouth. And as we know, word of mouth is the most powerful form of advertising.

Dreams – The Symbiotic Marketing Why

On my way to see a client this week, I noticed a store that seemed to be a staple in the area had closed. I don’t know why it closed and mentioned it to my client to see if they knew why it had closed. My client didn’t know, and I stated that this bothers me to my very core. If a business closes due to owners choosing to go on a different path, or a business has simply run its life and the owners are ready to retire, I can accept that and hope that they celebrate their time in business. But closing because they aren’t getting the traffic needed to keep afloat, that’s something that hurts me to my very core.

I’ve worked for more small businesses than corporations. I have been with individuals who have had to make those very difficult decisions and to see their dreams of what it could be diminish. Several years ago, I was working for a small restaurant. The location wasn’t great but the food that was prepared was ahead of its time in the area, healthy, fresh, and well prepared. At the time, more and more chain restaurants were coming to the area and they had lines out the door to get a seat while we were hoping for a few reservations for dinner to see if it warranted bringing in a second wait staff for the evening or cutting the early person’s shift.

As time progressed, the staff could see the writing on the wall, but we all stayed on until the last bittersweet night. Yes, we cried our last night being open but more importantly, we laughed and enjoyed our time together. What had been created in that small space was more than a restaurant ahead of its time at a less than ideal location, but a family and we still are family. Those who worked there fully understand that it was more than just a business. I am often reminded that “the phone goes both ways Stephy” when I say that we should spend more time together.

That’s what having a small business is, it’s creating a family of chosen individuals supporting a dream. When we patronize these businesses, we are supporting their dream. There are many reasons why a business may close but closing because they couldn’t make it hurts me to my very core. That’s why I started Symbiotic Marketing and that’s my overall goal. If I can help keep one business from that painful decision by assisting with marketing and getting the word out there about the amazing things that business has, I am living my dream.

All businesses have a why, because let’s be honest, leaving stable pay, benefits, all that good stuff is not easy, and many would say it’s foolish but there’s a reason behind that decision. This is my why. My son, years after the restaurant closed, mentioned to me while driving that he was concerned about another restaurant. He told me he was worried that he may close too and that he felt we don’t do enough for small businesses and that seven-year-old was right. We don’t, but I chose to try because in the end, that’s all we can do. Try to help as much as we can because small businesses are the backbone to our community but more importantly, it’s someone’s dream.

What is Marketing?

Marketing, it’s an ambiguous term and while not sales, it’s closely tied with sales. I have heard many misconceptions about marketing: it’s only meant for larger businesses, people will feel they are being “sold,” and “I’m not good at it, so I don’t need it.” That last one gets me to my very core. Why? Because marketing is for all businesses! So, what is marketing?

Marketing at its core is your cheerleader. It lets people know about your business and what you have going on, and let’s be honest, you have some pretty cool stuff going on. Marketing includes all the different ways you get the word out about what you’re doing. This includes networking groups, advertising, social media, visual representations of your business and the core of this is your customer. What are you doing for your customer? How are you different from other individuals in the area who offer similar goods or services? Your mission and vision for your business should also be tied with your marketing.

Before discussing points your marketing should hit, I want to discuss sales. Yes, that dirty word, sales. Sales first and foremost does not need to be Glengarry Glen Ross style of dirty, whatever it takes, get it done, always be selling mentality. Just like how everyone poops, it’s necessary to running a business. Sales is tied to your rates and your budget as well as your client’s budget. Sales feeds your business; it’s how you make money. Sales comes from your marketing. Marketing may employ a sales tactic known as a call to action campaign. However, be careful to limit these. There’s only so many giveaways you can offer before it starts to diminish your value.

 

Here are some key points to help you with your marketing:

  • Your message should be clear and concise. From print materials to digital platforms, your overall message should be easily understood. Potential customers do not need to know or want to know every detail about your offering. If they want to know more, they’ll ask.
  • Know your audience. Who do you want to reach? Where are they located? Having an idea of who you want to reach with your marketing will help you in the long run. Otherwise, you may be throwing time and money at a wall to see what sticks.
  • Your message should have a sense of continuity across all advertising platforms. This includes your website, social media, print materials, and any advertising you do. Having a logo, slogan, or general message helps.
  • Be aware of color. The use of color color is an integral part of your marketing but can easily distract from your message. Would you use a florist whose primary colors are brown and black? Likewise, the overuse of color or patterns distracts the eye from text.
  • Follow the 80/20 Rule. In this, only 20% or less of your advertising should be an ask for sale. The majority of your time should be focused on getting the word out about what you do and how you help solve a problem.

 

As always, I hope this has helped you and I look forward to answering another question next week!

Pushing Outside of the Comfort Zone

I am not the best at talking about myself and I haven’t figured out why quite yet, but I know it’s an issue many small business owners struggle with. We have a tendency to diminish ourselves while promoting our businesses. This is one of the most counterintuitive things we can do because why we are in business for ourselves and why we are so passionate about what we do is closely tied with ourselves! You decided to start your own business for a reason. I know this because I started my business for a reason and it’s that reason that keeps me going. That passion deep inside me has and continues to keep me working even when times are tough and when I don’t know the answers. But yet, I still don’t like to talk about myself.

A dear friend of mine says that when we break out of our comfort zone, we are able to grow. I have grown as my business has grown, but I’m much happier talking about what my business is now doing and what we are working on. We have really exciting stuff happening at Symbiotic Marketing and I get ridiculously excited with each project, each goal achieved, each and every single business we assist. Seriously, incredibly, redonkulously excited.

That’s me, hiking in Colorado, one of my favorite places to visit!

Yet, I dismiss my own hand in this excitement. I tell myself that I’m just doing what I enjoy, because I really do enjoy every single minute of what I’m doing. I woke up this morning and decided I’m done waffling, I’m done thinking it over, I’m going to do this. I’ve known for months that I wanted to start a blog for Symbiotic Marketing, but oh gheez, where to start, what to write about, what if no one wants to read it, what if, what if, what if…fluttered around my head. Those months of thinking and wondering…hell, questioning myself, I’ve come to realize that I respond well to questions.

With this, I encourage you to ask your questions, about Symbiotic Marketing, about marketing in general, about sales, about the things that keep you up at night (because they probably keep me up at night too). I will be posting about two questions that I’ve responded to recently via social media: how our rate plans are put together and my diverse background. These two are in draft stages, so please look out for them and please ask your questions!

 

Stephanie

July 6, 2019

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