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City Director’s Note

Shauna L. Weatherspoon Hello Chicago! Well Hello Ladies! I can not begin to tell you how excited I am to be featured and now be part of Today’s Innovative Woman as your new Chicago City Director! There are so many great things on the horizon & in store for us as entrepreneurs and women on the move. I hope that your year has started off in high gear as planned for your life & business. I started out my year with having a vision board party via Skype with one of my closest girlfriend’s and my Facebook family...that was actually a pretty cool idea! After framing my plans and having the hubby to hang it on my wall so it would be the first thing I saw every morning and the last thing I looked at before bedtime, I got confirmation for my plans by saying “2015 belongs to us!” I knew I had major moves ahead of me that I planned for months for my business plan this year (this being one of the, I might add-SMILE) and things are moving ahead at full speed in an awesome way. So as you learn more about me in this edition, I would love to know how your plans are coming along. Are you excited about it? If not, here’s the good news you have time to make adjustments, the year is just getting started darlings! Know you can do it. Believe in yourself. Put your plans in position, go for it and let nothing take you out of your lane. You are already well on your way. One of my greatest passions in life has always been to uplift and encourage women through empowerment, education & motivation. So as we continue to have opportunities to share & gain insight with one another, let’s do just that while celebrating every accomplishment along the way! Live out your passions on purpose & to the fullest... “Who’s dream did you BUILD today? Yours or somebody else’s?”

Shauna Subscribe for FREE at www.TodaysInnovativeWoman.com

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From The Publisher

S

pring is in the air. And while January was a time to start with our new goals and dreams, Spring can be a time to clean up, clean out, and make way for the new too.

Spring cleaning can include your office, your files, right down to the “head trash”. Maybe your new year’s resolutions didn’t stick – it can be a great time to renew them. Maybe you are well on your way to reaching your new year’s resolutions – then now might be a great time to make an additional one. This issue is full of great articles. It was fun to interview the Instagram girl, Sue B. Zimmerman! What a dynamic entrepreneur. Plan to get out from behind your computer and do more networking? The Tish Times article is for you. Joy Chudacoff has the first of a 2 part article with 5 of the 9 game changing tips for this year. Plus all the other articles with quick tips and implementable ideas for you which can really grow to your business. It’s critical we work ON our business as well as IN it. The articles here in Today’s Innovative Woman are to help you do just that. While I know some of you read this online, or on your mobile device – I challenge you to step away from your “computer” or desk or office and really absorb the content. In Bibi Goldstein’s article about opt-ins, analyze your process. Are you sending campaigns? Are you nurturing your leads? How about Debbie Saviano’s article about LinkedIn groups? How could you use those in your marketing efforts? Use this publication as your bi-monthly business training tool and work ON the biz! Be sure to check out our new City Directors – Shauna in Chicago, Lisa in Phoenix, Gail in Wichita. We are growing in a BIG way, expanding our reach globally. Hop on board for the ride – and get to know more women entrepreneurs around the world! Here’s to your SUCCESS!

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March/April 2015


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IN THIS ISSUE All About You 6 When Confidence Feels Like A Facade 14 Look Ahead! 32 What Are You Doing To Make Your Own “Holiday” Day

All About Success

10 Are LinkedIn Groups Worth Your Time and Energy? 12 3 Tips On How To Integrate Your Brand Into Your Business 16 Opt-in Strategies 22 The #1 Reason Your Marketing May Be Missing The Mark

18 Sue B. Zimmerman, Entrepreneur

24 Create Your Own Community and Grow More Than Massive Revenue

20 Shauna Weatherspoon, Innovative Woman

26 Tips For Business Owners To (Hopefully) Avoid An Audit

All About Business

28 6 Smart Tips For Amazing Networking Success

8 9 Game Changing Tips for 2015 - Part One of Two

30 If Emily Post Did Sales Etiquette

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All About You

When Confidence Feels Like a Facade by Tish Times

D

ictionary.com defines confidence as: belief in oneself and one’s powers or abilities; self-confidence; self-reliance; assurance.

So… how do you present yourself as a confident professional when it feels like you are merely pretending? So often, people confuse a confident person with someone who dresses well, has lots of friends, speaks articulately before crowds, or has no problem giving someone a piece of their mind. Although some of these characteristics may be synonymous with confidence, these traits, by no means, encapsulate confidence. I believe that having a full understanding of a thing or a topic makes it easy for you to confidently speak about it. You can’t eloquently express what you don’t know. •

So how does this relate to you as a professional who has to assertively market yourself at networking events?

What does it mean for you if you have to make presentations to your leadership team every week?

How can this premise help you to stand firmly in your power instead of constantly making the assumption that everyone in the room is more polished, more experienced and comes across as better than you?

The knowledge = confidence principle is the same. When you are clear on your value, it is easier to express yourself in a way that has a magnetizing effect on your listeners; be it one or hundreds. The questions you have to answer are: •

Who am I really? (not what my resume says, but who am I at my core?)

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What do others see in me that I can’t seem to see in myself?

Do I value who I am and what I have to offer enough to boldly express it to my potential clients?

You CAN be a confident, self-assured individual without pretending. Are you ready to make the shift? Let’s chat! Email us at info@tishtimes.com to schedule a discovery session today!

Tish Times, founder and CEO of HireTimes Career & Coaching Group, Tish uses a unique approach to networking in order to help companies increase employee engagement, improve camaraderie, minimize silos and create cross training programs in the workplace. Tish also coaches entrepreneurs to amplify their business and increase profits with unparalleled networking strategies. Please visit www.TishTimes.com to get your complimentary video series “From Connections to Cash”. For coaching or speaking engagements contact info@tishtimes.com

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All About Business

9 Game Changing Tips for 2015 Part One of Two by Joy Chudacoff

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ere are my top nine timely tips for women entrepreneurs who are ready to catapult their business to new heights in 2015: 1. Make Decisions – Set a goal to become a quick decision maker. Remember, money likes speed, so your ability to make quick decisions will serve you well in business. Do your research, decide and coursecorrect along the way. 2. Exercise Empathy – If you have a dream of making a difference in the world or desire a leadership role, empathy is a valuable tool that you’ll need along the way. As the great leader Stephen Covey said, “Seek first to understand.” Understanding and acknowledging someone else’s situation is the foundation to change. 3. Say NO More Often – Determine what beliefs or principles you stand for in your life and business and stick to them. Say NO to what feels “OK” and create the space for the glorious YES! You can’t be available 24/7 for your family and clients and remain effective in helping people achieve the result you deliver.

4. Nurture Relationships – Creating solid connections with people you care about both personally and professionally is key to making a

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life worth living. I count my success by the friendships I’ve made along the way in life. Remember to be there for others when they need you because one day, you’ll need them too. 5. Practice Solitude – In our wired world, if you aren’t careful, you can be “on” all the time. Technology has certainly made our lives a lot easier but it’s essential that you not allow these time-saving tools to control your life. Spending time alone is one of the best gifts you can give yourself. Start small by taking a long walk alone (cell phone off), or set your alarm to wake up for some quiet time before the busy-ness of your day takes over. I highly recommend taking an overnight trip alone to a favorite spa or hotel at least once a year.

March/April 2015


If you implement just one of these nine game-changing tips over the next 30 days, I can guarantee you positive change will begin to show up in your life. 2015 is going to be a banner year for women entrepreneurs who are armed and ready to accept the challenge. I’m ready. Are you? Look for part two in the next issue! Joy Chudacoff is Heralded as “The Coach for Women” in the millennium, Joy Chudacoff has x-ray vision when it comes to helping women discover their Big Ideas, Dreams and Goals! Joy draws on both her personal life and entrepreneurial experiences to support women in achieving better ways of living. It’s her passion, her purpose and her business. She is a Professional Certified Coach, highly skilled group leader, motivational speaker and a gifted communicator. Visit Joy’s website, SmartWomenSolutions.com, where you’ll find more articles plus information about her Women’s Success Circles, Smart Women Smart Solutions Coach Certification Programs, Speaking engagements, teleclasses and upcoming events for women. Joy can be reached at 310-454-2005 or by email, Joy@SmartWomenSolutions.com.

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All About Business

Are LinkedIn Groups Worth Your Time& Energy? by Debbie Saviano

C

an you relate?

• • •

You belong to 50 LinkedIn groups You are unsure of how to determine the effectiveness of those groups You want the time invested to have a productive impact!

Are you aware of how to measure the success of LinkedIn groups? LinkedIn allows each professional to be a part of 50 Groups. Do you know if being part of the groups is worthy of your time? The great news is, LinkedIn makes it quite easy! LinkedIn does a most effective job of providing professionals with “Insights and Data” on the effectiveness of each group. All you have to do is to ANALYZE the Information. In the spirit of updating and organizing life in 2015, here are the simple steps to evaluate a LinkedIn group. 1. 2. 3. 4.

On the navigation bar, click on Interests and Select Groups A page appears listing all your groups Begin by selecting 1 of the groups Look to the right side of the page and click on the “I”

5.

Under “ABOUT” – Choose “Group Statistics”

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6.

Here is the SUMMARY of the Activity.

7.

As you can see, the group “Social Media Marketing Networking Club” is VERY Active. 8. The Members engaged in excess of 200 conversations in 30 discussions demonstrating a high level of activity. 9. Upon evaluating the engagement of each group, it is easy to determine if a group is worthy of your time. 10. LinkedIn also provides more in-depth information for the group; demographics – growth and activity. If you are “Knocking and No One is Answering”, it means no one is home and it’s time to #MOVEON to the Groups where there is involvement, discussions and engagement. LinkedIn has thousands of groups and there are plenty who will provide a community that is active and values the conversations you are interested in. #LetTheConversationsContinue! Debbie Saviano is a solopreneur whose daily mantra is to “help professionals take action and create an online presence by developing, nurturing and maintaining relationships.” Debbie utilizes social media to connect, network and engage with others. She is an advocate for “continuing the conversations”. Thanks to the internet highway, borders are no more; people can interact and communicate around the globe. Professionals from across the country call Debbie for her unique skill set in designing LinkedIn profiles & Pinterest platforms aimed at engagement and retention toward a target market. Debbie also provides business solutions to small businesses who seek to utilize social media to enhance their brand, improve skills of their employees, expand social proof and establish an online presence. www.DebbieSaviano.com.

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All About Business

3 Tips On How To Integrate Your Brand Into Your Business by Linda Cotter

A

As you know, branding yourself and your company is essential to distinguishing yourself from other people who do what you do. Your brand must have a consistent, recognizable look that makes you immediately identifiable to your target audience.

Once you have established your brand, it’s important to carry the brand through all aspects of your business, from your website and social media, to print and event materials. Here are three helpful tips: 1. Get your brand guidelines from your designer. It is a good idea to get your graphic standards from your designer to make sure your branding is consistent throughout all of your marketing and communication. Graphics standards or brand guidelines show the fonts, colors and versions of the logo that should be used in each aspect of your media to ensure proper placement and colors. 2. Be consistent. Consistency is the key to a successful brand. Your social media, website, print materials, business cards, event collateral, speaker sheet, blog and PR materials all need to be in line with your branding. This helps your potential clients to associate you with value and provides a cohesive platform so you can be remembered and differentiated from other businesses. 3. Communicate your brand. As you have heard before, communication is the key. Your brand is more than just colors. Communication is part of your brand as well. It is important to have a clear, consistent message, which conveys your company’s values when you speak, as well as in the things you write. When talking to clients, or going to networking events, think about how you present yourself. Are you

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using the same voice and message that you are using in your website and other materials? Your brand is only as good as the people behind it. Make sure you take the time to effectively build a culture in your company that mirrors the values of your brand. This will help you strengthen your brand equity and position your company for even greater success. Linda Cotter is a graphic designer and web developer who is known for her fresh, simple and elegant designs. Linda’s goal is to help her clients produce better results through great design and creative solutions while using imaginative and innovative development methods. Whether it is a logo, business card, website or brand development, she incorporates each client’s unique personality and style into the design with an eye-catching flair and business sensibility. This creates the opportunity for them to attract the desired clients and results they are looking for. Visit Linda’s website at www. LindaCotterDesigns.com. She can be reached at (310) 486-3108 or by email at Linda@LindaCotterDesigns.com.

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All About You

Look Ahead! by Nafissa Shireen

S

ometimes the “go-go-go” and daily “urgent” matters can take up so much of our time that we can forget what’s important. That’s why it’s so important to occasionally take a “time out” of your business and getaway from the daily grind to spend some time strategically planning as well as creating a plan to focus on what’s important, not just urgent. The urgent things can be so time and energy consuming because they need immediate attention, and are right in front of us. However, when we are so busy focusing on what is right in front of us, we can forget to look farther out at what’s ahead of us. I remember when I learned to drive, SO many years ago, my instructor told me to always look as far ahead on the road as possible. At first, I was stunned and asked him, “but what about what’s right in front of me?” and he said, “If you look far

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ahead of you, what’s in front of you will still be visible and you can deal with it. But if you only focus at what’s right in front of you, you aren’t seeing the whole picture, and you may miss something big coming at you from ahead, and crash”. It’s the same in our business. While taking it one step, and day at a time is important, we also need to look at our business in the big picture. If we are too transactionally focused, we aren’t growth-focused, and we end up playing small. When you play small, you miss opportunities and your income stays small.

March/April 2015


A great way to start being strategic is to take a day for yourself, even change locations, away from what’s right in front of you, to work on what’s ahead of you!

Nafissa Shireen is an award winning Master Coach, International Speaker and Business Mentor She has a gift for empowering and propelling people to their highest potential. With 25 years’ experience leading 6-figure to 9-figure companies, she strategically partners with entrepreneurs to help them focus on sustainable & scalable business growth, so they can create a highly profitable and luxurious business and life. Passionate about helping women earn what they are worth and build their wealth, so that they can realize all of their dreams and desires. She brings together her vast business knowledge with the deep inner work needed to help entrepreneurs identify blocks, step out of fear and overwhelm, raise their wealth consciousness, and move forward towards their goals with measurable, tangible results.

Let me help you create a

Highly Profitable & Luxurious business and life.

www.theprofitabilityexpert.com 1-844-5-THRIVE (584-7483)

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All About Business

OPT-IN STRATEGY by Bibi Goldstein

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hat makes you want what someone has to offer? This is the first question I encourage everyone to ask themselves when they strategize their opt-in(s) on their website. There’s a trend in December and January where most people overuse the unsubscribe links in the emails they receive thinking this will de-clutter their inboxes. Then, by February and March they have the need to fill the void and start looking for the new candy they want to sample. I have heard many terms when it comes to opt-ins: freebie, cotton candy, irresistible offer, etc. Whatever you want to call it, just make sure you offer it. Why? Because this is how you nurture and educate your subscribers, and that’s the know and trust factors for your marketing. There are a lot of marketing gurus and business coaches out there that will tell you what your opt-in offer should be; my only rule is: keep it simple and relevant to what your tribe is hungry for. Where most people drop the ball is, once someone opts-in they send them the offer and then send them their monthly newsletter or whatever emails they have going out. That isn’t enough to keep them coming back for more. My recommendation is to always have an auto responder series (that means more than one email folks) to your opt-in. Yes, give them the free audio, but offer a plus (+) my 10 tip video series on.... Set up a series of emails that go out every day, every other day or every week after they get the free audio with high value; short and simple content along with a call to action at the bottom will have you converting those subscribers to paying customers. Lastly, if they don’t convert during your email series, then have a long term nurture sequence that continues for at least the next year. Again, keeping it simple with high value and a call to action will continue to keep you top of mind when they are ready and need to work with you. Bibi started Buying Time with a friend to give everyone the opportunity to have access to support and assistance with any task. With over 22 years in the transportation/ logistics industry Bibi has specific experience in space and time efficiencies through Six Sigma training for warehouses from 1,000 to 30,000+ square feet. This provided her the ability to visualize the final outcome even when the client cannot. Bibi recently co-authored “Get Organized Today” with other organizing experts hoping to reach out and help more people. Bibi can be reached at www.buyingtimellc.com.

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All About Success

Sue B. Zimmerman by Cathy Alessandra

Entrepreneur

I

nsta-Gal? Insta-success? Insta-yes! Sue B. Zimmerman has had 18 successful businesses, but her journey of entrepreneurship began while watching her dad run his auto parts store. She learned the ins and out of selling, but more importantly, customer service. She started her first business at age 13 when she decided to try her hand at entrepreneurship – and began hand-painting barrettes with model paint. Fast forward through college, after graduating with a degree in nutrition, her job out of college fell through. The artist in her took over and she started hand-painting clothing and selling them at a push cart at the waterside in Virginia Beach. She waitressed at night, worked her cart during the day and quickly realized her “hot seller” was hand-painted boxer shorts. She re-named her company Boxer Rebellion, started attending wholesale shows in California, New York and Dallas, and in her first year in business at 22 years old, she did a million dollars in sales!

Do what you love and the money will follow. Currently, she runs a seasonal summer brick and mortar business on Cape Cod – Sue B Do. During the winter months, she dove into social media and realized it could become an amazing marketing tool. Once she understood the tools, she realized she could turn that into a business during the off season. She started by teaching around her kitchen table, but soon noticed her kids scrolling on Insta-gram all day and knew that was the place she needed to be.

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In under 2 years, she has earned multiple 6 figures teaching her online course and speaking, has over 20,000 followers on Instagram and is writing a book. In her many years as an entrepreneur, she has always had success. “Success is doing what I love, being a great role model for my 3 daughters, having the flexibility to work when I want and waking up and doing what I love”, said Sue. “Now, I’m making a difference in other people’s lives - all over the world. I get messages from people all over the globe as to how I’m changing their lives. And that to me is success.” What’s the one thing she wished she knew when she began? “Progress not perfection. I don’t claim to be perfect at anything but I do strive to actually make things happen one way or another!” Her biggest challenge? Embezzlement. While having her head down working on the business, $1000’s of dollars were stolen from her by her roommate/bookkeeper. A definite wake-up call, she now heavily screens all employees.

Progress not perfection. When asked what makes her an innovative woman, Sue said, “Being extremely nimble and opportunistic with what’s in front of me, being a master at connecting to the right people and leading with giving – always giving first and not wanting anything other than to give and see other people experience success.” You can follow Sue B. Zimmerman on Insta-gram at theinstagramexpert. Or visit her websites at www. suebzimmerman.com or www.suebdo.com for her store.

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All About Success

Shauna Weatherspoon

Innovative Woman

1. How/why did you begin your business? The “lightbulb” went off for me when I was in my late 20’s and working very hard to climb the corporate ladder. I have always been in some form of a sales and management role, and as we all know, it can be very demanding and deadline driven at all times ( which I thrive from most of the time). At this particular time, this major corporation I represented was kicking off their biggest annual sales campaign and unfortunately at the same time, my youngest child was sick, I had just found out I had to have a hysterectomy and my close friend’s mother died of cancer. I was not approved to take off for the funeral because my friend’s mother was not immediate family. I could not get time off to take my daughter to the doctor, due to this “major” campaign and they were not pleased that I needed time off to have surgery. I politely told my manager whose job was her life, I would return back to work after attending the funeral. I left out for my surgery shortly after that knowing I had no plans of returning. I put my plan together and became a real estate broker through a home self-study program while out on sick leave an became a certified speaker and trainer as well during the interim. I vowed to never allow any job to determine my life or those I love again...I would create my own path. 2. What has been your biggest challenge and how did you overcome it? My biggest challenge to date has been having to help make the decision to remove my brother from life support and bury him in 2009. We lost my Grandfather to Alzheimer’s disease on the same day, less than 3 hours later. Our family was left devastated and I was angry that he had been taken away from us at such a young age. It truly took all my desires out of life away for an extended period of time. I felt like the “walking dead” and from what my loved ones tell me, evidently I looked like it too. I had lost my passion for living. My relationship with God soon became stronger and closer than ever through my darkest days. Through much love and support from my closest family and friends, I decided to close my real estate business, which no one in a million years could have ever told me that would happen and venture into life insurance & financial services. I found that by helping educate others (primarily women) on the importance of protecting their futures & businesses, in turn helped me to start living again and find my new found passion.

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3. How do you define SUCCESS? Defining success throughout the years has changed for me after having success in many areas and many failures in some business endeavors. These days, I would like to believe I am more wiser in all areas of my life both professionally and personally, so I truly believe success starts within. To me, it means you have joy, peace and balance in your life. You truly enjoy the work that you do and that meaningful work allows you to help others grow and develop in their areas of expertise. To wake up everyday and do what you love for a living and are passionate about defines success. Most importantly, I define success by having a great relationship with my husband and our family something as simple as hearing laughter in our home on a regular basis confirms for me we are right on track.. No matter how busy I am, I always make quality time for my family and friends. Guiding my children through their high school & college years for me personally has been one of my greatest successes- shaping them into great individuals is my #1 priority. I am building LEADING LADIES who will help build up the next generations of leading ladies! That’s WINNING in my book! 4. If there was one thing you wish you knew before you began your business, what would that be? The one thing I wish I understood earlier on when I began my business is to not allow your mistakes to defeat nor define you. Mistakes and past failures is where we learn our greatest lessons. Your challenges are designed in life period to help prepare you for what’s next. Be very clear about your expectations of yourself and others from the start, but don’t get so consumed in all the details of your business that you are no longer enjoying it or life anymore. You are either running your business. Or your business is running you! As women, we are responsible for so many things, but never lose sight that you, your health and well-being should be at the top of your priority list too at all times. Know your worth, find your balance and don’t compromise it once you achieve it. Get rid of the “microwave mentality” in thinking how we want everything in our business to happen for us like yesterday! Our businesses are truly our “babies”, so understand the time and attention it will take through the years to grow, nurture and sustain it. 5. What makes you an innovative woman? I am always reinventing myself. I stay surrounded by great and like-minded people who continue to push me to new heights and I am not afraid to take risks. The work I do with motivating professional women through speaking and training engagements as well as empowering our young ladies, keeps me on my toes at all times! I want to continue to grow in knowledge while exploring opportunities I am passionate about. I thrive off being in the “thick of things” and I never allow others to define for me my limits of success or in my abilities, I can have it all - not just at the same time! You can reach Shauna at shauna@ theweatherspoongroup.com or by phone at 414.507.7653

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All About Business

The #1 Reason That Your Marketing May Be Missing the Mark by Kimberly Pitts

L

ack of clarity. That is the simplest way I can state this. Lack of clarity in your marketing, in how you position yourself in your market, in your messaging and in your brand overall can cause your ideal clients to be confused and uninterested in what you have to offer. This all leads to you feeling frustrated because your activities are not yielding the desired results you planned for. I’ve learned that an important part of having clarity in your brand and in your messaging lies in knowing who you are, and knowing who you are not. You see, the core purpose of marketing is to illicit a response from those you are targeting. If your marketing is not generating the response you desire, look at your messaging, activities and how you are positioning your brand. Let’s look at a couple of examples. Example 1: If people view your marketing materials and they are asking you many questions to gain a clearer understanding of what you do and offer, that is a sign that your marketing is NOT clear. However, this does not mean they are not interested. The key here is to structure your marketing content so that you are addressing their questions and objections. Why? So that when they contact you, they are in a place of yes, and not in a place of lack of clarity. Example 2: If you are attending several networking functions a week, contacting those you connected with, and you are not getting a response, consider evaluating how you are articulating what you do. Are you sharing too much or too little? Are you clearly stating what you do in a differentiated way? Are you trying to connect or trying to sell?

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On a personal note, the clearer I became about my brand and its messaging, the more confident I became in sharing what I do. The more confident I became, the more comfortable I became in communicating the value and expertise I have. The end result was that I attracted clients that felt safe and confident in working with me. Kimberly Pitts, is a Branding & Marketing Strategist. She is also Founder of UImpact, LLC. Kimberly is dedicated to helping women entrepreneurs all over the world learn how to use authentic business building tools, marketing and branding strategies to attract raving fans, attract more clients, and enjoy more income and freedom in their business. Kimberly helps women entrepreneurs through Thrive Academy, UImpact’s premier training based mastermind program. If you want to make an impact in the lives of others through business you can begin today. All you need to know is where to start. Kimberly can help you create the business you desire to have. Whether you are in the start-up stages of your business, ready to grow and up level your business or you are looking for coaching and strategy to really expand your reach...Kimberly is here to provide expert coaching and mentoring to up level your business. www.uimpact. net

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All About Business

Community

Create Your Own and Grow More Than Massive Revenue by Caterina Rando, MA, MCC

Y

our business can do so much more than serve your clients. Your business can connect your clients and cultivate them into a community. An incredible community of like-minded people provides massive value to your clients that you alone cannot deliver. When you create and foster connection and camaraderie through community, your clients will love you and stick around forever. Belonging is a basic human need. Isolation kills dreams, promotes depression and can make it difficult to stay positive and keep hope alive. Community is the solution for many reasons. Humans feel safe and comfortable and accepted when they are with people similar to them. When we convene with others in a similar situation, it feels good and tells us we are not alone and we now have a place to ask questions, gain support and share ideas.

to help everyone become healthier, to eliminate clutter or improve relationships, whatever it may be. Get Clear on Who Your Community is Intended to Serve People want to gather with people like them. Create a community to attract and serve your clients and ideal potential clients. Many people can benefit from your value, however a group that is aligned with your work will serve you and the people in it.

Pick a Purpose For Your Community

Give Your Community A Name That Can Encompass All Of The Ways You Serve

Your purpose will match how you serve your clients: to grow businesses,

You can include the word community in the name to make it extra clear

Follow these ideas to get you started:

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DIVORCE you don’t have to do it alone!

I’ve created a space to: support you inspire you

what you are up to. Super tip: make sure the name is consistent with your brand and business offerings. Next, start inviting people to join your community and begin to provide massive value to the people you serve, and you will gain clients too.

P em ower you

There’s a different way to do divorce! Stephanie Jo Johnson

Don’t get even. Get

Happy.

www.thePOWERFULdivorce.com

Caterina Rando, MA, MCC, shows women entrepreneurs how to be loud and proud about the value they bring in order to massively monetize their mastery. Join her and other ambitious, positive and passionate women at one of her three two-day, live and in-person events: The Business Breakthrough Summit, www. bizbreakthrough.com, The Sought After Speaker Summit www.soughtafterspeaker. com or Enliven: How to Plan, Produce and Profit From a Women’s Retreat www. enlivenprogram.com. For a deep discount use code TIWMAG and get started catapulting your business today. Caterina can also be reached at cat@caterinarando.com and by phone at 415.668.4535.

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All About Business

Tips for Business Owners To (Hopefully) Avoid An Audit by Candy Messer

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ccording to the IRS, of the 230 million plus tax returns expected to be filed each year, about 16 million returns result in audits for small businesses and sole proprietorships. Many times an audit stems from what looks to be improper reporting of information on the income tax return. Incorrect reporting may be intentional or an honest mistake. Regardless, the IRS is still obligated to follow up on any suspicious reporting. In order to avoid an audit it is highly recommended that those who struggle with bookkeeping, or do not have time to keep track of expenses and income, hire a professional to assist with this task. An accountant or bookkeeper is less likely to overlook entries or make calculation errors. It is important to reconcile all accounts to make sure every transaction is captured in your bookkeeping, and that no duplicates exist. I’ve heard some say because their software auto loads transactions, that no reconciliation is required. However, this process helps you identify if anything is missing or entered more than once. Improper reporting of deductibles and losses is a huge red flag for the IRS. If you do claim deductions or losses, make sure that you do so correctly and that you have the documentation to support all expenses. Keep invoices, receipts and/or credit card statements to support deductions claimed on your return. Avoid waiting until the last minute to file your return. Have all necessary information to your bookkeeper early to allow your CPA enough time to process the information accurately.

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Reviewing the numbers and making sure everything seems reasonable before filing is always important, regardless of whether or not you hired a professional, as the one held accountable for the figures reported is the business owner. Candy Messer is President of Affordable Bookkeeping and Payroll Services and energizes business owners by removing the burden of the bookkeeping and payroll processing from their shoulders. With 15 years of experience, Candy understands the stresses business owners face and offers customized services to meet their varying needs, including bookkeeping, payroll, Quickbooks consulting, and bill pay services. Candy works with service based business owners who are overwhelmed with the paperwork required to stay in compliance for filings and frees them to focus on what they love to grow their businesses. Visit her website at www.abandp.com for more information.

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All About Business

6 Smart Tips for Amazing Networking Success! By Cynthia Bazin

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ne of the most effective ways to get yourself out there in the world is to network! We must get away from the computer and put ourselves out there in front of people. 6 ‘Smart’ Tips for Amazing Networking Success! 1. Be Approachable - Don’t have your head buried in your cellphone texting and not being present. Put the phone away, look friendly and make eye contact with people to capture their attention.

2. Be a Great Listener - Focus in on that other person you are meeting. First be really interested in what the other person has to say. 3. Focus on Quality Connections - Don’t be concerned with how many people you meet. It’s all about building quality relationships. 4. Write Down a Few Notes - Do what you can to jot a few notes down on the back of a person’s business card so you will keep details of that connection fresh on your mind. 5. Do Effective Follow-up - Do awesome follow-up. Send a really cool note, and if it’s someone you truly want to get to know better, invite that person out for a cup of coffee or lunch. Again, networking is about authentically keeping that connection going. 6. Keep Connected - Send a note once in a while to see how they’re doing. Send an article that might interest them. Keep the connection going!

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Effective networking takes time. But the tips I have outlined above are for long term connections, not just trying to get a quick acquaintance. What are some of the tips above that most resonate with you that you already do or are going to start doing during your next networking event? What are some other tips you have to effectively network? I’d love to hear from you!

I’d love to hear from you!

Cynthia Bazin is passionate about helping successful, smart women get out of feeling stuck and/or overwhelmed by using laser-focused strategies to gain clarity about their true mission. She gets women pumped up, inspired and focused on their life strategy plan moving ahead. Cynthia has over 20 years of experience working in the corporate world. She ran investigation units for large corporations, was a Private Investigator and has a Master’s Degree in Counseling Psychology. Cynthia is President of SmartChic. She works one-on-one mentoring women, does group programs, conducts workshops and is a motivational speaker. Learn more at www.smartchic.me.

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All About Business

If Emily Post Did Sales Etiquette by Debbie Mrazek Building a relationship with your clients is one of the most important elements of success. Your relationship should be based on trust and the understanding that you will do whatever it takes to keep your customer satisfied. If a client believes that you are not doing your best to ensure that the products or services they are in need of are of the highest quality, you may lose their business. To ensure that you are meeting the expectations of your existing clients and potential new clients, here are some helpful tips. •

Be Punctual – If you schedule a meeting or phone call with a client, it is critical to your business relationship that you keep that appointment. Being late may make your client feel unimportant, and that is not what you want.

Be Polite – In the business world it is important that you remember to treat everyone in the manner in which you would expect to be treated. Courtesy and respect can help demonstrate to your clients how important they are to you.

Be Prepared – When you show up for an appointment, it is critical that you have all of the information your client will need ready. Not only will this demonstrate your professionalism, it will also show that you take their business as seriously as they do.

Dress Properly – When you show up for an appointment with a client, or a potential new client it is extremely important that you wear the proper attire. This will show others that you take your job seriously and work in a professional manner.

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Follow Up – When you meet with a potential new client, it is extremely important that you follow up after your initial meeting. This will show that you are serious and interested. Debbie Mrazek is founder and president of The Sales Company, a Texasbased firm that is helping hundreds of entrepreneurs, individuals, and corporations better assess, understand and engage in practical purposeful selling. With “Mrazek Energy” (believed to be from another world since it is a constant flow of happiness and enthusiasm). Debbie Mrazek teaches the tools, techniques, and talents every individual possesses, and how to transform those into S-A-L-E-S. Mrazek has counseled, constructed, and completed sales programs, workshops, and individual and team coaching across the nation. She’s also a speaker, author of Field Guide To Sales and conference facilitator. Connect with Debbie at www.FieldGuidetoSales.com.

The human rolodex. The Sales Company knows people. Call us for referrals to help you blow away the bottom line. T H E

S A L E S

C O M P A N Y

Be the competition. Contact Debbie Mrazek

www.FieldGuideToSales.com

972 618 1880

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All About You

What Are you Doing to Make Your Own “Holiday” Day? Kathi Laughman

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es it is true. There is an official date on the calendar christened “Make Your Own Holiday”.

Since I love all things creative, I have a special affinity for this particular page of the calendar. Here we have an official declaration that a holiday is something beyond an occasion we all observe and celebrate for the same reason. It is the quintessential opportunity to celebrate the diversity that is us. So what will you celebrate? A person? An idea? A place? The sky is really the limit. Or perhaps more accurately, you are the limit. Isn’t that interesting? A day where we must acknowledge that the only person limiting how we define that day and what we do with it is us. But in truth, isn’t that every day? Isn’t that the ultimate definition of success? To do what we choose to do? To acknowledge (and celebrate) our own responsibility for the choices we make? March 26th is a date on the calendar where someone else gave us permission to define the purpose. Let’s choose this year, 2015 to make every date on the calendar one where we define the purpose. Let’s make every day a celebration of our life with a commitment to improve our world and the lives of those that share it with us. Live today like you want tomorrow to be. It’s powerful and purposeful. It’s an important truth because it is the only way we are going to build the future we want for ourselves, our children, grandchildren and every generation to come. Live well. Kathi Laughman is a life and business strategist, inspirational speaker and best-selling author. Referred to by her clients as the “Plan B to Z expert”, Kathi Laughman serves professionals committed to continuously creating new pathways to success and significance. Her philosophy and body of work demonstrates that there is more value in the “rest of the story” than we ever dreamed possible. After a successful 25+ year career as an executive working with business intelligence, Kathi founded The Mackenzie Circle, a life coaching and personal leadership company in order to champion entrepreneurs as their possibility partner, coach and mentor. Her personal mission is to inspire, facilitate and invest in the success of others.

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