When You Need to Take a Break From Business

Today's blog is a lot different from the usual topics on business insights and practices that I typically share. Instead, I am going to be a bit vulnerable and share with you why I have not blogged for quite some time. With that being said, let's get into this week's blog topic on knowing when you need to take a break from your business and focus on self investment. 

We've all heard the age-old ideology on never allowing your personal life affect your business, but let's be honest - that is almost impossible. In March, I went through a life changing event and the thought of blogging, posting to social media, creating beautiful brands and offering business advice seemed completely out of the question. While I wanted to persevere and throw myself into the day-to-day operations of my business, something always pulled me away. 

What I soon realized was that the sensation of being pulled away from my business was a calling to focus inwardly and allow myself to self invest. I accepted that I could not wholeheartedly benefit my clients or create great work for my business during those moments. Taking a barre class, saying "no" to things that I did not truly want to do, finally listening to that podcast I've been dying to hear, and just enjoying my personal time are just a few ways that I self invested. This new found investment granted me the time and space I greatly needed to focus internally and re-establish a passion for my business. Sure, I was criticized for my lack of social media and blog posts - but I knew that I could not contribute creatively with my clients and taking a break from business was best. 


The magic is in the mess
— Brene Brown

Taking this break from my business was not easy, and quite frankly it was scary. However, I knew that it was something that I had to do. I know I am now a much better business owner and consultant for it today! Setting such strict boundaries was the best practice I could have done. I can honestly say that after this brief hiatus from my business, I have become more inspired, motivated and driven than when I first launched Magnolia Media.  

If you are not feeling inspired or had a life changing event happen and need a break, know that it is okay to step back. You will not help anyone, if you don't help yourself first. Self investment is not for every person and requires it a lot of strength to step away from day-to-day tasks of your business. If you are interested in taking a break from you business and would like to know more on my self investment journey, please contact me! 

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Finding Your Creative Community

With collaborations on the rise, finding your own creative community is more important than ever to build connections and referrals. What's a creative community? It is a network of like-mind business professionals that you would enjoy working with, becoming inspired by, and would learn from. This new-age style of working with other leading industry professionals is THE modern way to network, and to say that we are big fans doesn't cover how much we love this movement! 

Now that you know what a creative community is, let's chat about how you can find fellow creatives that you (and your business!) would benefit from and how to benefit from those meetings! 

1 | Reach Out

Find someone in the same or similar work profession as you. This fellow creative would be someone you admire, view as a mentor and would enjoy collaborating with! Before you two are able to meet over coffee or cocktail, make it your prerogative to determine how you can help that person. You can do this by means referring them to a potential lead or even sending them a new podcast - whatever comes up during the meeting, see how you can help them. The next time you plan to meet with them, each of you bring another person that would fit in the group. Before you know it your tribe will grow! 


TIP: If your schedule does not allow of you to meet in-person as often as you'd like, find an online community! We love The Rising Tide Society and Meetup.com to help you get started. 


2 | Bring Something to the Table

What is your creative genius? What makes your business stand out? How can you help other business owners benefit? These are all great questions to ask yourself prior to meeting with your creative community! Having something to bring to the table enhances the experience for everyone in attendance and will help you become a strong opinion leader for the group. 

3 | Show Up! 

While this goes without saying, showing up to meetings is the only way to be engaged with your creative community! Always remember that you are doing this to benefit yourself and your business, so it is ever-important to pencil in your weekly (or monthly!) meetings with your group and show up! 

4 | Work Together

Once that you've cultivated a creative community, do something together outside of your standard meeting! From creating a styled shoot to taking a workshop, there are endless activities that you and your creative community can do to expand your collaborating to the field. 

Want to chat more about how you can find a creative community in your area? Contact Alyson today to learn more! 

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Avoiding Oversimplification of Content

This week's blog title may be a mouth full, but trust me when I say that this topic is an important one! There is a common assumption among business owners that customers cannot understand the complexity of a product or service, therefore they "dumb down" the context of their content. While their will always be a learning curve for customers to understand your company's unique jargon, oversimplifying the content on your website, social media posts, blog, and anything else you publish to the masses is a poor reflection on your business and you.  

Before we go any further, I do want to make note that there is a big difference in oversimplifying content to your customers and being detailed in your communication. Yes, this mean that there is a disconnect between the everyday person and the misunderstood customer, but this is not necessarily a bad thing. Instead of divulging statistics and pushing articles that could be deemed as condescending, smarten your content! This will lead to an appreciation from the qualified, current and prospective customers you want to reach!   

The millennial generation has grown up with more choices (oppose to ultimatums) than previous generations. This generation is educating themselves on products and services they desire or need before spending their hard-earned paycheck. Your goal should be to target your explanations to the right audience and begin treating your customers as business partners! 

Now that you've gotten a hang on this concept of avoiding oversimplified content, you have no accustomed yourself to one of the best, modern marketing tactics: content marketing

Content marketing is a strategic marketing approach focused on creating and distributing valuable, relevant, and consistent content to attract and retain a clearly-defined audience — and, ultimately, to drive profitable customer action.
— Content Marketing Institue

For more information on content marketing practices or to have a review of your current marketing campaign, please use the contact form below chat with us today! 

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Preparing for 2016: Reviewing Your Campaign

Do you want to give your campaign a makeover? Is it time to access your current strategies to determine if it is working? If your fiscal budget begins in the New Year than it is high-time to review your current marketing and advertising campaign. Today on the blog, I am giving you a guideline for reviewing your campaign to help answer the above questions and place your company on the right path toward success for 2016. 

1 | Define Your Goal

Surprisingly, many companies dive into a marketing and advertising campaign blind. By defining your goal for 2016 you should know the following: where your want your company to be present in the media, who you want to reach, where you want to focus and why. This will enable you to define your goal and create a start line for your campaign. 

2 | Determine Your Budget

Determining your budget is one of the most important things to consider in reviewing your campaign! Did your company suffer losses in 2015 and cutting back is necessary? Did your revenue increase to allow you to market in new areas? Whatever your situation maybe, your company's funds will weigh heavily in your marketing and advertising decisions for 2016.

3 | Audience

Consider who you want to sell your services and/or products to and how you will grab their attention. By deciding strategies that reach your intended audience you will have a successful campaign. The flip side of this is pushing marketing and advertising through random channels without a strategic action plan - a strategy I strongly discourage! Lastly, audiences are constantly changing the media they use and it is important to stay on top of marketing trends to keep afloat. 

4 | Communication Media 

Communication media refers to channels you send your message: billboards, radio, magazines, etc. The means by which you send your message to your target audience will make or break your campaign. If you do not chose the correct media to relay your message than it will be lost in translation. By reviewing your budget and audience, you are able to determine which media you can effectively reach your consumers and stay within your finical means. 

If you believe that your current campaign strategy needs to be revamped, contact me via the form below to decide the best ways to reach your key audience. 

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