Archive for the ‘Marketing’ Category

Planting Seeds in Your Own Backyard

Published by Suzanne Evans   |   July 30, 2015   |   No Comments

Recently, a very good friend of ours came to visit my husband, Kevin and I in our home in Oregon. Our town is known for a jet boat experience called “Hellgate Jet Boat Excursions”. Kevin and I did the ride about 10 years ago when we first starting coming up to Grants Pass, but it wasn’t until we had a tourist to take on it did we do it again. It is a 4 hour experience like no other — we did the dinner excursion — 19 miles down river to a beautiful lodge with a sit down dinner — then 19 miles back to Grants Pass all along the Rogue River. I loved when the boat captain said, “This is not a train ride, it is a jet boat ride and you are going to get wet.” That was an understatement as the boat captains raced each other, slammed on the brakes and sent water covering all 58 of us on the boat about 6 times on the ride back.

I thanked our friend as we got off the boat for coming to town so we could have such a fun time. I said to him “We wouldn’t have done this if you hadn’t come.” His response was “It is in your own backyard, why not?”

That got me thinking. What are you not doing in regards to marketing your business in your own backyard? Most people say “I can work with people around the world.” That’s great but what opportunities are you missing in your own city or town?Untitled

Most, if not all, entrepreneurs who do best in their local markets are masters of effectively marketing themselves. Here are some tips to help you market yourself in your own backyard:

• Define your geographical market— What is in a 1-mile radius of your business? Is there a community center? A yoga studio? A library?
• Be visible— Identify opportunities to get “seen” especially when events allow for many people to be in the same place at the same time. Go where your ideal clients gather in numbers.
• Get involved— Join associations or groups of business owners in your area. Ask them to be your referral partners especially if they are already service your ideal client
• Ask clients for referrals— After working with your clients successfully for a period of time, ask them for a testimonial and referrals.
• Promote your business — Create a gift certificate for a complimentary session (or free sample or your product) to share with local businesses where your ideal clients hang out.

There are no short cuts to establishing yourself and building a local following. Make calls, have meetings, and spend time in all the right places and in front of your ideal clients. Remember over time, the seeds you plant will grow to great success in your own backyard AND you may have just as much fun as we did on the jet boat ride.

 

Cathi Harley, Sr. Vice President 

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Color Palettes and Comic Sans

Published by Suzanne Evans   |   July 16, 2015   |   1 Comment

If you’ve had a VIP day at Hell Yeah Studios in the past year or so, you’ve most likely had a conversation over the phone with some asshole who hounded you about why color palettes are important and why using comic sans throughout your videos is probably a bad idea. I am that asshole.ColorPalette

Most people know–at least in an academic sense–that the way they present themselves is important, but, a shockingly high percentage of the time, business owners unknowingly lace their video marketing with visual detritus that makes every designer on the planet cringe simultaneously. If you have the opportunity, I urge you to meet with a branding expert. In the meantime, I’m going to give you a few basic tenants of video design choice that will make your editors’ lives easier and lead you to more clickthroughs.

1. Don’t just pick your favorite colors.

Entrepreneurs wildly misunderstand color choice in relation to their brand. A good color scheme should always serve a purpose. It should tell the audience something without them even noticing. The colors should complement each other seamlessly. I guess what I’m saying is the next time a client sends me a color palette that was assumedly scraped together from some personal favorite colors, I’m going to kick every puppy I can find.

Unless you’re a Christmas-focused company, it’s best to not even touch bright green and red. If you’re dealing with a particularly emotional subject, soft hues might be the bill of fare. The colors should complement each other so that they look great when used in graphics.You get the gist. Check out these color selections taken from Converse:Screen Shot 2015-07-16 at 9.16.46 AM

That is the Indiana Jones of color schemes. It’s straightforward. It’s rugged. My girlfriend thinks about it while we’re having sex.

2. Fancy fonts are not better fonts

Like your color selections, your fonts send a message about your business. First of all, you should only use a couple different fonts. If you can find a compelling argument as to why your brand needs a cursive font, a big blocky headline font, and a slanted “fun” font, I will give you every dollar I made this year. Secondly, don’t assume that a font comes off as high-class or interesting just because it looks hand-written. And finally, for the love of all that is holy, please understand that Comic Sans should only be used by drunk, blind squids planning the world’s worst party.

3. Bigger is better

If I had a quarter for every time a client has sent over a file labeled “logo” that, when opened, turns out to be a 200×200 screenshot, I would have like six dollars. When sending materials to an editor or designer, a vector graphic is ideal. Essentially, a vector graphic allows the image to be enlarged without losing image quality. You should be able to get such a file from your designer. If, for some reason. you are not able to obtain a vector file. It is crucial that you supply the biggest image you can find. When a client asks me what size I need in order to us it in a video, I always respond, “As big as you can find.” A good key to remember is that you can always make an image smaller, but you can’t make it bigger.

David Vance, Editor at Hell Yeah Studios

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Being Changed

Published by Suzanne Evans   |   June 25, 2015   |   No Comments

My first day at Suzanne Evans Coaching was day 1 of the Be The Change Event in Orlando, Florida. Talk about a baptism by fire! The energy and enthusiasm was pervasive and contagious. The sessions were fantastic, the breakout sessions were illuminating, the Run, Walk, Cheer event was inspiring. But did I come away changed?

The critical thing about this event, is spelled out in the name – BE THE CHANGE. It’s very easy to go to an event and fully expect to be radically transformed, but change doesn’t work that way. There is a moment in time when change is affected in a person’s life; that moment of inspiration, of frustration or even hitting rock bottom. But that has to be just the beginning. Real change (for most) doesn’t just happen in an instant. Excellence, as they say, is a habit. A series of decisions, which over time, develop into a habit. Being the change is more than a slogan or a slick title. It’s something far more profound.bethechangeevent2015

So how effective is the event? I have seen first hand people whose lives and businesses have been transformed. They aren’t doing what they’ve always done. They’ve honed in on their “why” and are using this new focus to improve their personal and professional lives. For some of you this is old hat. You’ve been to the event and you’ve seen and experienced the change. For me, being new to the event and new to the company, it was eye-opening and inspiring (in equal measure). Part of what is fascinating is to see veterans of the 10k Club and Be the Change Event providing leadership and inspiration to newer folks. Individuals who were struggling last year, are now providing mentoring and leadership. As Brian Stark, Vice President of Coaching, says, “To every 3rd grader, a 4th grader is a hero.” You don’t have to be very high in your climb up the ladder of success to realize that there are people following in your shadow.

Take Aways

Aside from the obvious, gosh this is a high-energy group of folks, there were a few key takeaways that I gleaned from the event:

  • Don’t let fear (alone) dictate your actions – Fear can motivate, or it can debilitate. You’ve got to get past your fears: Fear of failure. Fear of not being liked. Fear of the what ifs.
  • Indecision is decision – By putting off making a decision you’re not delaying the inevitable, you’re eliminating the possible. Opportunity can be a very perishable. Competitors can seize the very opportunity you’re considering. Market conditions can rapidly change leaving you with nothing.
  • Believe you’re worthy of success – what you have to offer is worth something. You’re worthy of  being paid for your time and effort. You’re worthy of being successful, so act like it.
  • Being hated isn’t the worst thing that can happen to you – What’s worse than being hated? Being ignored. Being irrelevant. As Winston Churchill famously said, “ You have enemies? Good! That means you’ve stood for something.” Nothing breeds contempt like a little success.

What were your takeaways? I’d love to hear away your thoughts and the valuable lessons you gained from this year’s Be the Change Event.

Frank Geric, Director of Digital Marketing

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My Experience With Customer Service

Published by Suzanne Evans   |   June 18, 2015   |   1 Comment

The phrase customer experience is what everyone is talking about these days. It’s all about how the company interacted with the customer, whether it be online or offline.

While on my way to see my brother and his family a few months ago, my car broke down on the side of I-95 in the middle of the night. We were stranded without out AAA or any kind of roadside assistance. At this point I was a wreck. Then my partner had the grand idea to call AAA and see if we could get same day service if we signed up with them, and sure enough, they allowed us to sign up right then and get a tow truck out to us. A few hours later we were picked up, the car was taken to the service center and we were taken to the nearest hotel. Then we hit a snag, the tow truck driver only took cash and we didn’t have any on us, he then went on to say that he would drive us to the nearest ATM at no extra cost. He was our hero that night! Going forward to the next day, we received a call from the service center saying that since my car was under warranty and there was a Hyundai dealership right beside them they would drive the car over there and not charge us for the work they did to figure out what happened. Another stand up person! Within 30 minutes of us getting to the dealership they called Enterprise and had us in a rental car.

However with all of the great customer service that we received, I did have to help push the process. What I didn’t explain in the previous paragraph is that we waited 2 hours before leaving our hotel and walking in the rain to the dealership to find out what was going on with my car. The car was at the dealership, but we received no notification.

So why am I explaining all of this to you? To show you that even with great customer service the customer still has to take action to get the results they want. So think back to whenever you’ve had good customer service with out taking action yourself and comment on when and with who this has happened.

Sarah Herbaugh, Marketing Manager 

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Lessons Learned from Suzanne Evans!

Published by Suzanne Evans   |   June 11, 2015   |   3 Comments

Have you ever attended a conference, heard some brilliant statements and neglected to write them down – let alone actually GET the lesson? I see that happen all the time to many entrepreneurs. It all comes down to goals, intentions and habits. My specialty!

When I attended Suzanne’s 6th annual ‘Be the Change’ event in Orlando last week, I made note of many of her one line statements that are not only inspirational but can easily be turned into action steps.  Time is precious. I value it. I value wisdom, too.

The intention with this article is to share some of the great one-liners and give my take on them when it comes to growing your business, growing YOU and creating your best life.  I like to keep things simple so that’s exactly what you can expect.

Rather than getting your pen and notebook out, just print off this article and keep it handy. You can create your own goals and move them right on into your calendar – and then let me know how you are doing and what support I can offer you.

 #1 – “NO ONE STANDS AT AN EMPTY FOUNTAIN AND THROWS IN COINS”.

People often ask why I attend these types of conferences and events. The answer is simple – it is to fill ME up! Many of YOU are running on empty. As a business coach and speaker, I am always giving, giving, and giving some more. My fountain needs to be filled up too – it makes me a better business person and a stronger individual. I know that one of the major excuses that I hear is ‘I can’t afford it’ – well, quite honestly, you can’t afford NOT to be attending events like this.

Action Step: start your own search for events that you should be attending for personal and professional development. Get registered and mark them on your calendar. I attend 3 Christian-based conferences a year (Leadercast, the Global Leadership Summit, and Women of Faith) – and 3 professional conferences (Be the Change, Wealth Makers Toronto…..of course! …..and research a new one each year).

#2 –”DO NOT CONFUSE YOUR CIRCUMSTANCES WITH YOUR POTENTIAL”.

Love this one! Again, it goes back to your self-talk, your beliefs about what is possible for you and for your business and your habits – and I find that excuses are simply a bad habit (and one that many of you have mastered!). There is so much information available these days that it is impossible, really, to stay stuck in your circumstances. That’s a decision you are making. Get unstuck. Make a decision to live your best day – leading to living your best life. Your circumstances can be changed and often it just takes one first step – ASK for help.

Action Step: Take a look at your current circumstances and make a list of what’s holding you back from reaching your goals, your dreams. What items on that list are within your control and which ones are not. Work with the list that you control and, where necessary, ask for help to make some changes. Get out of your own way.

#3 –”IT’S NOT A DECISION UNTIL YOU TAKE ACTION. INDECISION IS A FORM OF SELF-ABUSE”.

AfricaOh, ouch! How is this one hitting you? Many entrepreneurs spend their time wishing and hoping that things will change. Nothing changes until you make a decision – and then, again, nothing changes until you take action on that decision. (That’s why I am adding ACTION STEPS in here, LOL!) Indecision IS a form of self-abuse. We have all the opportunities in the world available to us. At Suzanne’s event last week, Sindi travelled over 8,800 miles to come from Zimbabwe. It was his first time on an airplane! Can you imagine? It was his first time at such an event. I met him on my 2 trips to Africa where we mentor the women entrepreneurs from the market and teach them marketing and sales skills. Suzanne hosted a fund-raising walk/run for these women and $60,000 was generated – WOW. (Actually, it was $30,000 and Suzanne generously matched the donation.) But that’s only part of the story.

Sindi was sitting in every sessions at this event – taking notes like crazy. When Suzanne presented the opportunity for members in the audience to join her coaching program, Sindi was up at the microphone in a flash. He couldn’t hold back. Coming from South Africa and living a very meagre life, he KNEW an opportunity when he heard one. He joined the coaching program! He has NO idea how he will make this happen – but he recognized that it all begins with a decision – and then action. He practically ran to the microphone with his questions – and then his decision.

say YesInspiring?! Holy cow – you have NO idea!

Action Step: Get serious about your business and life goals. What DO you want to have happen? This is not a dress rehearsal. Where are you letting excuses get in your way? Commit to one thing you can do TODAY to move forward and create the business and the life that you really want to live? (print Sindi’s photo and keep it in front of your face for when you are feeling fear or weakness)

#4 –”NO ONE EVER GETS EXHAUSTED FROM WORKING HARD – THEY GET EXHAUSTED FROM WORKING HARD WITH NO RESULTS!”

That’s food for thought, isn’t it? This one really caught my attention. It really had me thinking. Where can I improve on some of the goals I have and the results I am creating. We all want results. They don’t happen overnight but they certainly can happen strategically – with great results. That’s one of the reasons I have 2 coaches – one for my business and one for my professional speaking. Where are you working hard? In isolation? Feeling frustrated with where you’re at?

Action Step: GET.A.COACH! No one can do this alone. No one. Contact me today and let’s discuss how I can support you – or refer you. If you are exhausted from working hard with no results, then something must change – you must make a decision and take different action.

There is NO magic in any of these statements. NONE! The magic is in YOU.

What one-liner really resonated with you?

Please share your thoughts!

 

Written by Pat Mussieux
http://patmussieux.com/ 

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