I don’t know about you, but I am the ultimate dreamer. In fact, throughout my life, I’ve set several lofty goals for myself.
Land a leading role in a high school musical: Check.
Make the high school tennis team: Check.
Land a job as an advertising representative at the Massachusetts Daily Collegian: Check
Graduate Phi Beta Kappa: Check.
Receive a Masters Degree in Journalism from NYU: Check
Land a network TV PR job: Check
Find my soulmate and get married: Check
Give birth to two beautiful and fun loving children: Check
Publish two pretty funny books about motherhood: Check
Host inspring events for moms and launch an online parent blogger network: Check
Create an online magazine for parents: Check
Experience professional success beyond my wildest dreams…Still a work in progress.
While I’ve got the drive to succeed, I have to admit that I sometimes lack the direction. And that’s where Small Business Champion Tory Johnson comes in. Tory is a New York Times bestselling author whose new book Spark & Hustle: Launch and Grow Your Small Business Now is set to debut nationwide on June 5. Having worked closely with Tory over the past year, I have to say she is a force to be reckoned with. She’s driven, she’s a perfectionist and she’s the ultimate customer service cheerleader. I’ve never seen anyone more committed to small business owners and I’ve proudly watched as she has literally helped catapult many of them to overnight success.
Having attended Tory’s latest Spark & Hustle conference, I have to admit, I was totally in awe of her keynote speaker – Barbara Bradley — creator of my all time favorite summer handbags…Vera Bradley! Bradley shared the story of how she launched her multi-million dollar business without having a clue as to how to do it. She discovered the name of the fabric wholesaler that sold to the top department stores, walked right up to the owner and while he could have ignored her, he instead took her under his wing and helped her get Vera Bradley off the ground. What I love about Barbara Bradley is that she had guts and a bit of moxie. And that fearless attitude propelled her company to where it is today.
Check out an excerpt from Tory’s new book and then make sure you order a copy today.
Tory is currently touring the country as part of her nationwide Spark & Hustle conference tour. Bringing together successful entrepreneurs in each city, the conferences offer attendees a healthy dose of inspiration, motivation and real advice you can act upon right now so that you can turn your dream into reality. So what are you waiting for? Put a little Spark & Hustle in your step and there’s no telling what you can accomplish.
I recently got the opportunity to speak at Tory Johnson’s amazing Spark and Hustle conference in New York City along with Twitter master marketer Ted Rubin. The event brought together female business owners and entrepreneurs and offered tons of great information and advice that we can all apply to help our own businesses grow and flourish.
Our presentation focused on growing your business through social media and I tackled the topic of Twitter and Facebook.
While I have 1000’s of virtual followers/friends on Twitter, my immediate friends and professional colleagues have yet to dive in. Some just don’t get it, others don’t have time for it, while still more think that it’s another time sucking activity that they just don’t need. If you’re an entrepreneur, small business owner or writer and haven’t yet signed up for a Twitter account, it’s time to dive in.
Don’t worry about what to say in your first tweet – the key at first is to listen.
Here are some of tried and true tips for navigating Twitter and Facebook for your business or brand:
1. If you have a local business, search hashtags for your local area or your specialty and join the discussion. Many local cities do regular Tweet ups both online and in person – Twitter offers a great way to connect in real time with fellow entrepreneurs. The key is then connecting offline and solidifying the relationship. In fact, if you live in Westchester, NY you can join #WestChat on Thursdays at 9pm for a lively discussion with like-minded business owners, writers and residents. Visit www.tweetchat.com, enter the hashtag for your Twitter party and start tweeting!
2. Facebook should be utilized for your customers and fans. Create a fan page that people can not only like, but can share their experiences and opinions. My neighbor has a Facebook page called Kimberly’s Confections. Think Ace of Cakes in your own backyard. Every time Kim comes up with another amazing creation, she posts it on her Facebook Fan page and her customers and fans share comments. She has hundreds of comments from satisfied customers and the only problem she has now is not having enough time to keep up with all the orders!
3. Create a Facebook Group if you’d like to start an ongoing discussion or chat with friends or people in your field. You can select your group from your Facebook friends. Facebook groups enable you to streamline the discussion. Think of it as a virtual Board of Advisors and/or a focus group who can help you as you make important business decisions. Also – invest in Facebook Ads where you can target your demo – make sure you select the cost per click option rather than cost per impressions. That way, you know that people are actually visiting your website!
5. If you have a compelling story to tell, start blogging. Create a blog function on your site or blog right on Facebook and start sharing your story. Offer tips from your area of expertise, comment on other like-minded blogs and join online blogging communities where you can potentially contribute content and share your experience in a larger venue. If writing isn’t your thing – hire an experienced blogger and social media expert who can blog for your site and connect with your core demo via Facebook and Twitter.
Most importantly, don’t feel like you have to be all over the place – better to have a targeted approach with regard to social media than to spread yourself thin. Through blogging, listening and participating in discussions on Twitter and engaging your consumers and fans via Facebook, you’ll be surprised at how you can drive sales and exposure to your business and your brand.
If you haven’t followed us on Twitter yet, then now’s your chance, simply click on our @Rolemommy handle and follow us today! If you’re interested in joining our Project You Facebook group, we’ve got the link to that too.