Page 1

Akua Robinson

5 EASY STEPS TO DEVELOPING A MARKETING PLAN FOR YOUR #SMALLBIZ

HOW TO UPGRADE YOUR SOCIAL SKILLS THE ART OF STAYING CONNECTED

July/August 2020

Talks Beauty, Educating, and Her Next Big Project

7

BOSS QUALITIES TO HAVE NOW Rekindling Your Passion

How to Avoid Burnout

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Alpha D E S I G N E R

S U I T E S

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IMM

TABLE OF CONTENTS

07

Editor's Note

10

7 Boss Qualities to Have Now

10

by Cassie O. Lopez 13

5 Easy Steps to Developing a Marketing Plan

By Tania Marshall

11 13 14

14 IMM Exclusive Booked for Beauty with Akua Robinson MUA Artist & Educator 22

Plans Made Perfect

28

Rekindling Your Passion: How to

Aprill Brown's story on event planning in the Nation's Capitol

Avoid Burnout By Tiffany Davis 31

22

Developing Your Brand: The "Crawl Before You Walk" Stage By Derek Hough

35

How to Upgrade Your Social Skills by Emilio Cruz

35


A L L O R A AUTUMN '21 IN STORE NOW ALLORA.COM


IMM Editor-in-Chief  Matia Johnson-Buggs

Creative Director Executive Producer Contributing Editor Contributing Designer Senior Editor Design Editor Editorial Assistant Art Director Deputy Photo Editor Photo Assistants Staff Writers Contributing Photographer Contributing Illustrator

Dominic Guerrero Taylor Klein Marcus Daily Kelsey Carter Angela Mitchell Alma Myers Patti Lawrence Wesley Sherman Josephine Vasquez Gustavo Becker, Noah Scott Cassie O. Lopez, Tania Marshall, Tiffany Davis, Emilio Cruz, Derek Hough Jonah Denworth, Jeff Ho, Mariela Naplatanova, Jonah Marquese Santiago Holmes

EDITORIAL OFFICE P.O. Box 1565, Bowie, Maryland 20721 info@innovativemindsmedia.com IMM Magazine is published content created by Creative Expressions Group, Inc. www.innovativemindsmedia.com

IMM Magazine |    5


VITAMINFRESH.NET


editor's note When I first started with this vision of an entrepreneur magazine earlier in the year, I had no idea we would be enduring one of the hardest years I've ever experienced in my 33 years. 2020 has been nothing short of a series of unfortunate events; the passing of Kobe Bryant and his 13-year old daughter Gigi, and friends, the Coronavirus pandemic, and most recent, a series of racial injustice events which have sparked protests and riots across the nation. With such overwhelming odds, it would be easy to get uncertain about where society would go from here. However, as an entrepreneur, what I was very certain of is that we collect ourselves, we press on, and we march forward because we are resilient. In the words of famous televangelist Robert H. Schuller, "Tough times never last, but tough people do." Our team has gracefully adapted to the new norm as this second issue went digital, all while supporting our family members and communities, and staying uplifted. In this issue, IMM connects with our cover star, Akua Robinson, DC-based makeup artist and educator. You're in for a treat as she highlights her experience with reality TV shows and her Friends in Beauty podcast. We also dive into what it takes to develop a marketing plan, how to further develop your brand, and the steps to expanding your outer circle. There's something for everyone inside, and now more than ever, it is vital that we continue our mission to represent, support, and honor our family of Creatives. God bless you all as you move onward and upward. Be blessed,

Need some motivation? Check out our tips and tricks on digital marketing and branding at www.innovativemindsmedia.com. Don't forget to follow us on our social media handles: www.facebook.com/InnovativeMindsMedia/ www.instagram.com/innovativemindsmedia/

Matia Johnson-Buggs Editor-in-Chief Instagram: @MatiaBuggs E-mail: MJohnson@innovativemindsmedia.com IMM Magazine |    7


The Yellow Brick Road

swept across not only the U.S., but countries such as the Netherlands, Paris, and Tokyo. And amidst the outrage, pain, and pleas for justice,

OUR NATION'S CAPITOL SETS THE TONE FOR #BLM

Washington, DC has set the tone.

Written by Tiffany Davis

June 5 was a day for history books. D.C. Mayor Muriel

2020 has been one heck of a year. Among celebrity deaths and COVID-19, this year has been like tumbling down a rabbit hole in Alice's Adventures in Wonderland.

But there's one notable

recent event that has shifted the cosmic balance. On May 25, 2020, Minneapolis, MN police officers arrested George Floyd, a 46-year-old black man, after a convenience store employee called 911 and told the police that Mr. Floyd had bought cigarettes with a counterfeit $20 bill. Shortly after the arrest was made, Floyd laid in the middle of the street unconscious and pinned down by officers as his life slipped away from

Bowser had commissioned eight artists to paint a mural spelling out “Black Lives Matter� across two blocks of the street leading to the White House, 35foot-tall (11 m) yellow capital letters on 16th Street NW

on

the

north

of

Lafayette

Square,

part

of President's Park, with the assistance of the Murals DC program of the DC Department of Public Works, with the DC flag accompanying the text.

Since the

mural, more than 19 cities have followed suit with their

own

version

in

a

show

of

support

for

demonstrators participating in protests. It's a sight to see, and for some it's a symbol of retribution....and possibly hope. >>

him. A horrific scene, and somehow an all too familiar feeling for the black community. In the weeks passing after Floyd's death, Black Lives Matter protests have

For more information on how you can join the movement and take action, visit https://blacklivesmatter.com/.


EXCLUSIVE

7

Boss Qualities to Have Now Everyone wants to be a leader,

#1. Share Their Vision

but maintaining great leadership

A leader with vision has a clear idea

qualities is not for the faint of heart.

of what they need to be doing, where

As well as good communications,

they are going, how to get there and

confidence, commitment, and work

what success might look like. Be sure

ethic, entrepreneurs need to have

to articulate your vision clearly and

just a little bit more gusto under

passionately when working with your

WRITTEN BY CASSIE O. LOPEZ

their belt. Ready to suit up? Check

clients.

PHOTOS BY JONAH DENWORTH

out these seven leadership qualities

understands the company's vision, by

every entrepreneur should snag.

conveying it in a clear and cut way.

Great leaders all have specific traits that they display consistently. Boost your boss-ometer and find out what they are.

IMM Magazine |   10

Ensure

that

your

team


#2. Lead By Example

#5. Make Difficult Decisions

As a leader, the best way to build credibility and gain the

To be an effective leader, the ability to make fast, difficult

respect of others is to set the right examples. Working

decisions with limited information is crucial to your business.

around the clock? Don't do that.  Leave time for yourself

When facing a tough decision, start by determining different

to decompress. Paying attention to quality customer

outcomes. Consider the likely consequences of your decision

service? Do that.  By placing your clients first, you lead by

and any available alternatives. Make your final decision with

example, which is also highlighting great values to what

conviction, take responsibility for it and follow it through.

your brand is really invested in. #6. Recognize Success #3. Demonstrate Integrity

For people to stretch themselves and contribute their best

A leader with integrity draws on their values to guide their

efforts, they need to know their work will be valued and

decisions, behavior, and dealings with others. They have a

appreciated. Find ways to celebrate the achievements of your

strong sense of character, keep their promises, and

people, even if it’s through a simple ‘well done,' or

communicate honestly and openly, as well as honestly and

remembering a birthday and sending flowers to someone who

directly with others.

is having a hard time. As well as boosting morale, it will also strengthen their motivation to continue giving their best.

#4. Communicate Effectively Know what you mean, and mean what you say. Try to be as

#7. Empower Others

clean cut as possible, without beating around the bush.

Great leaders understand that for people to give their best,

Sometimes you just have to "keep it real." Communication

they must have a sense of ownership over their work and

involves more than just listening attentively to others and

believe that what they’re doing is meaningful. Communicate

responding appropriately. It also includes sharing valuable

clear goals and deadlines to your team, and then give them

information, listening, and not always talking, and asking

the autonomy and authority to decide how the work gets

intelligent questions.

done. >> IMM Magazine  |   11


5 Easy Steps To Developing a Marketing Plan For Your #SmallBiz Written by Tania Marshall Everyone knows you need a business plan, yet many entrepreneurs don't realize a marketing plan is just as vital. Unlike a business plan, a marketing plan focuses on winning and keeping customers. Snag these five steps below to ensure your new effective marketing strategy. DEFINE YOUR POSITION Before jumping into a full blown strategy, define your company and its products or services, then list the benefits you provide that sets you apart from your competition. DEFINE YOUR TARGET AUDIENCE You can define your target audience based on who you are appealing to, or their type of business, age, sex, family composition, job title, size of business, or georaphic location. LIST YOUR MARKETING GOALS What do you want your marketing plan to achieve? For example, are you hoping for a 10% increase in sales, or are you looking to broaden your audience? List them in SMART format (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, and Time-Bound). Make these clear and specific. SET YOUR BUDGET & KEEP IT SET This may mean using newly acquired funding, borrowing, or self-financing. Just bear in mind that marketing is essential towards your business, and good marketing ain't free! CREATE YOUR CAMPAIGNS This can mean a major product launch to increasing web traffic, or collaborating with a new partner. Whatever the ending result may be, always make sure you plan ahead! >> IMM Magazine  |   13


EXCLUSIVE

COVER STORY with Akua Robinson


BOOKED FOR BEAUTY AN INTERVIEW WITH ENTREPRENEUR, AKUA ROBINSON

The term "Creative" does no justice for this

Lipstick is also one of the first makeup items that I

entrepreneur.

DC based with a love for all things

wore as a kid. My sister used to always try different

beauty, Akua Robinson is a salon owner, educator, and

lipstick colors on me and tell me how I could pull off

makeup artist who has worked on various projects all

any color because I had the perfect complexion.

the way from The Real Housewives of Potomac to Broadway musicals. Vibrant, Vivacious, and with a

IMM: Imagine a customer asked you for a makeup

heart of pure gold, she is a force to be reckoned with.

style that was unsuitable for them. How do you

Find out what’s next in store for Akua below:

handle it?

IMM: Tell

us

about

your

first

entrepreneurial

experience as a kid. AR: My first entrepreneurial experience as a kid that first comes to mind is when my school used to have something called a "Kwanzaa Calabash." The students that participated were encouraged to sell items that they created with their own hands. I used to sell

AR: I actually had this happen before with a bride and I politely explained to her that the silver lipstick that she wanted for her wedding wouldn't be flattering. However, she already had her mind made up and that's what she wanted. So, of course, I delivered. I just untag myself in her photos whenever she posts because I don't want credit for that!

seasoned popcorn, jewelry, ring holders, crochet hats and earrings. That used to be so much fun and so rewarding to have my own money.

IMM: What systems have you set up in your business to help it grow? AR: A system that I have set up in my business to help

IMM: What is your favorite cosmetic and why? AR: My favorite cosmetic is lipstick. I love lipstick! I personally feel like I have too many but it's probably not as much as some real makeup junkies. I love lipstick because it's an easy way to tone down a look or spice it up - just by changing a lip color. I tend to keep my

it grow is creating a mailing list. With social media changing day by day, accounts getting stolen, and algorithm changes I always wanted a way to be able to stay connected with my audience. My email list is the perfect system to do that because I get to deliver content directly to the people who want to see it.

makeup pretty simple and natural so wearing lipstick allows me to express myself. And I love bold colors.

IMM Magazine |   15


IMM: What was it like being an MUA on several

possible so that people know that I'm a real person

different reality shows? Have you ever met a reality

and I have challenges just like everyone else. They're

star that was hard to work with and if so, how did you

just levels to the challenges.

overcome the drama? AR: It was a really cool experience being a MUA on

IMM: What does success look like to you?

several different reality shows. Reality TV is my guilty

AR: Success for me is pure joy, happiness, being

pleasure so being able to work with some of the cast

mentally and spiritually aligned, having great health,

from some of my favorite shows was a lot of fun. Also

being physically fit, having the time and freedom to

being able to meet other Makeup Artists and Hair

travel as much as I want, whenever I want, and being

Stylists on set was great because I've maintained the

financially able to assist family, if needed.

majority of those relationships over the years. Luckily, I've never worked with a reality star that was hard to

IMM: How do you think being an entrepreneur has

work with. I've worked with some that were very

turned you into a better person?

particular about how things looked, but I have no

AR: I always tell people that being an entrepreneur is

problem adjusting things when needed. After all it's

a big self-development journey. I am not the same

their image and my name in the credits so I want It to

person I was seven years ago. Being a successful

look good too.

entrepreneur will force you to become a better person. A person that is capable and deserving of

IMM: What’s your biggest fear as an entrepreneur?

reaping the benefits of the work you put in. Being an

AR: My biggest fear as an entrepreneur is not being

entrepreneur has made me tougher because I used to

relevant anymore and not being relatable to my

be super sensitive.

audience. That's why I do my best to be as authentic as

IMM Magazine |   17


(Clockwise, from Left to Right: Akua gives insight on New Year's beauty tips at her first live segment on WUSA9; Akua attends the Ultimate Boss Babe Mixer at Harlot in DC, among other panelists; Friends in Beauty, the podcast, is in session.)

It's also made me strengthen my mindset and just

AR: I actually have no secret sauce for my Instagram. If I

always be in learning mode.

don't feel like posting for one week, I don't post. When I feel like I have something valuable to share that will

IMM: 2020 has been one heck of a year. Has the

contribute to the space, then I post. I don't let the app run

Coronavirus affected your business in any way?

my life. I keep my followers engaged by posting things

AR: The Coronavirus has defintely affected my

that are educational and uplifting. I don't have any secret

business! When those jobs started cancelling and

digital hacks other than authentically engaging with

people started to ask for those deposits back hunty!!!!

people and using good hashtags. I currently have three

It was a mess, but on the flip side, because I had time, I

Instagram pages for all of my ventures and I'm secretly

was able to start a couple of projects that I kept putting

waiting for someone to rescue me and take over at least

off. I launched the Friends in Beauty Podcast as well as

two of them!

my apparel line SKIN QUEEN Revolution. So, it hasn't been all bad. I always try to find the good in situations

IMM: So, what’s next in store for Akua?

anyway.

AR: Right now I'm focusing on growing the Friends in Beauty Podcast and continuing my journey as a Beauty

IMM: Talk about your Instagram fan base. How do you

Educator. I have lots of classes and courses coming soon.

keep your followers engaged? Do you have any secret

So keep an eye out for that. Also, I'm continuing to work

digital hacks?

on becoming the best version of myself that I can be so that I can continue to pour into others and help them

IMM Magazine |   18

grow. >>


Do You Want to be Featured?

#IMMFEATURE Use the hashtag above on Instagram for a chance to be featured in the magazine for Creatives, by Creatives.

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French Connection C'EST LA VIE, MON CHERIE | FRENCHCONNECTION.COM | MONMACARONS


PLANS MADE PERFECT with Aprill Brown IMM Magazine |    22


Not many entrepreneurs are led to one dream while

AB: Early on, I knew that my ultimate goal was to start

pursuing another, but Aprill Brown is cut from a different

my own business. In order to prepare for that, I made a

cloth. CEO of Tulle & Tinsel in DC, she found her way to

conscious decision to learn as much as I could from

event planning by being a dance teacher. After spending

established members of the event industry. Mentorship

years working on intimate dinners, galas, and all other

was a huge part of me learning the ropes. I’m so

things extravagant, she gives her story on how running

grateful for all of the people that have given me

her business has become the perfect dance number.

opportunities to learn and grow along the way. I also

IMM: What made you want to be an event planner? AB: I’ve always enjoyed entertaining and decor, so planning events was a natural progression for me. I started out with planning my own personal parties at my home and also birthday parties for my students when I was a dance teacher years ago. I realized that I have a natural knack for logistics and design and decided to apply as an intern with a top wedding planner to learn more about the industry. I remember working my first event with this planner and just KNOWING that I finally found my calling. I still feel that same excitement and passion today! IMM: What steps did you take to open your business?

took advantage of as many business workshops and webinars as possible. The Maryland Small Business Bureau has wonderful programs for those that are interested in starting a business. IMM: Walk us through a day in the life. How many weddings/events do you plan on a daily basis? AB: In addition to answering a bunch of emails and phone calls, my weekdays are usually filled with planning meetings, venue tours, consultations, and vendor meetings. That’s why I love this job....I can never get bored because there are always new and exciting options to show my clients! At any given time, I’m usually working on about 12 separate events. IMM Magazine |   23


IMM: What is your definition of an authentic event?

the opportunity to work in over 70 event venues in my

AB: An authentic event is one that truly represents my

area and become acquainted with all of the top

client’s personality and style. I don’t want to produce

vendors. These skills allow me to work more efficiently

anything that could be labeled as “cookie-cutter”!

and negotiate contracts more effectively for my clients.

I really enjoy getting to know what makes my clients unique so that I can infuse those special elements into

IMM: What’s your favorite social media platform for

their events.

your business and why? AB: My favorite social media platform is definitely

IMM: Do you work alone, or with a team?

Instagram. Aesthetics is a huge part of my job, so being

AB: At this stage of my business development, I do the

able to share beautiful photos of my work is an

bulk of the actual planning myself. I do have a small

important way for me to attract potential clients. You

team that assists me with specific tasks and of course

would be surprised how many clients say Instagram

on event days. As my business continues to grow, I

when I ask how they found me!

look forward to adding associate planners to the team. IMM: You have one day to go wherever you want with IMM: What keeps you motivated?

whoever you want. How would you describe your

AB: It’s easy for me to stay motivated because I LOVE

perfect day?

my job! Having my own event planning business has

AB: I LOVE the beach, so I would go somewhere

been a dream of mine for so many years, that I just feel

tropical and relax in the sun with my wife & family. I

so lucky to have finally reached this goal after years of

actually planned a trip to Thailand in March for my

preparation. There are days that I literally wake up and

family, but we had to cancel due to Covid-19.

need to pinch myself to make sure it’s real. I feel

Hopefully we are able to make it there in the future!

incredibly blessed to be able to do what I love as my profession.

IMM: What are some of the key things you have learned as an entrepreneur?

IMM: What about your background or services set you

AB: One of the most important things I’ve learned as

apart from your competitors?

an entrepreneur is how to price my services

AB: The biggest thing that sets me apart from my

appropriately and to NOT do extra work for free. I feel

competitors is how well-rounded and extensive my

like a lot of new business owners struggle with this in

event knowledge is. I have worked for high-end

the beginning. When I first started out, I was so excited

planners, a top-tier catering company, and a venue.

to book clients that I was severely undercharging and

This means that I have a thorough knowledge of the

signing any and everything that came my way. As

inner-workings of all of the major components of a

business

successful event. I’m not only able to advise my clients

comfortable with walking away from clients that aren’t

on event logistics and design, but I can even help them

a good fit. Of course we love what we do, but it’s

create cohesive food & beverage menus to serve to

important to remember that the ultimate goal is to be

their guests. This invaluable experience has given me

profitable.

owners,

we

need

to

become

100%

IMM Magazine |   25


IMM: How do you communicate with your clients? AB: I make it a point to remain flexible and communicate in the way that is most convenient and comfortable for them. For most of my clients, this means frequent communication via email and phone calls. I do have clients that prefer to be contacted through text messages though, so that is a method that I occasionally use when it’s appropriate. IMM: Tulle and Tinsel is known for creating a stressfree environment and experience. What are some of the techniques you use for stressed-out brides or grooms? AB: The main way that I create a stress-free environment for my clients is by providing clear next steps. It’s as simple as that! I always make sure that my clients know exactly what our current priorities are so that they are never overwhelmed with a bunch of tasks or decisions at one time. IMM: How are you managing business during COVID19? AB: Covid-19 has forced the entire event industry to postpone their events to fall/winter 2020. Instead of viewing this newfound downtime as a detriment, I’m taking advantage of it by now offering micro-wedding packages and planning elopements. So far these services have been a BIG hit with couples that still would like to get married despite related restrictions. I was quickly able to fill-in many of my empty dates this summer and I discovered a new service to add to my tool belt! IMM: What’s one thing you want to leave us with to close out this interview? AB: That it IS 100% possible to be successful doing what you love! >>


Rekindling Your Passion HOW TO AVOID BURNOUT

By Tiffany Davis Photo by Mariela Naplatanova

IMM Magazine |   28

Starting a new business is like going on your honeymoon. You're elated and full of warm and fuzzy feelings. You can't hardly wait to tell all of your friends about your new venture and your new social media campaign to launch. But what happens when the thrill of the venture gets choked out by a lack of work/life balance? The fact of the matter is we are not robots. We can't wear 100 hats and expect our businesses to thrive and go far. Neither can we wear 100 hats and expect to expand in a way that's fruitful to our brands.

Unfortunately, being a small business owner isn’t always going to be dinner on rooftops with red roses and chocolate truffles. But like in any relationship, you can put in the hard work by rekindling the flames of passion....before you make a decision that you'll regret. But first, you have to recognize the signs of being burnt out: 1. Is it difficult to concentrate on small tasks? 2. Do you lack the energy to be consistently productive? 3. Have you become irritable with your staff or customers?


“We can't wear 100 hats and expect our business to thrive and go far.”

If you answered yes to any of the previous questions, it's time to evaluate your surroundings.

Get Some Help Busy being a CEO and don't have time to update your social media? No worries. Place an ad for a virtual intern in local colleges. Learn how to delegate assignments by hiring consultants to help further your business. Make sure you hire people with a knack for customer service, and remember, you can't do it all, and you shouldn't, be doing it all.

Reestablish Expectations When things become overwhelming and you're feeling like throwing the towel in, step back and reevaluate your expectations that you are putting on yourself and/or your team. Are you packing on the heat a little much? Reevaluate priorities and find a middle ground that works better.

Revisit the Reason Remember writing that notebook with all of your dreams and hopes in it? Remember creating that vision board that outlines the future of your business? Revisit it. We sometimes lose sight of why we're doing what we do. When we get back to the feeling, and the heart, of why we are in business, the vision becomes clearer. Besides, the goal is to not be perfect, but to make continuous progression.

Take a "Me" Day We all feel pressure to be perfect at times. Whether that pressure is real or perceived, it can come from within us, or sometimes from the people we trust the most. So why not take a breather from all of the noise and enjoy yourself? Go run a bubble bath and pour yourself a glass of wine. Turn off your cell phone if you need to. Self care is key, and should be so very important to maintaining your work/life balance. Remember, the relationship you have with yourself should be the most important one. >>

IMM Magazine |   29


Rest your body the yafana spa way.

Yafana WELLNESS SPA


DEVELOPING YOUR BRAND

The "Crawl Before You Walk" Stage Written by Derek Hough


"Always consider your branding when communicating with customers."

3. Be innovative, bold and daring - stand for

We all want to be entrepreneurs, but do we

4. Consider what is driving your business

have what it takes to birth this baby? Apart

Ask yourself a few pressing questions: What

from not working a 9-5, managing our own

does it believe in, what is its purpose and

day to day schedule, and reaping the

who are its brand heroes? These things can

benefits of a few tax write offs, we must pay

help establish your brand personality and

our dues before waging the creation of a

inform the identity and character for brand

business. Here are five tips on how to

communications.

something you believe in Big brands are encumbered by large layers of bureaucracy, preventing them from being flexible and reacting to the ever-changing needs of their customers. Those layers of decision-makers can make it hard for them to be daring with their branding.

successfully implement branding for your business.

5. Always consider your branding when communicating with customers

1. Start by defining your brand

Try offering more, rather than slashing

Do you know who you are? If not, spend a

prices. Do a couple of discounts. Do a couple

few brainstorming sessions figuring it out.

of raffles. Promotions are an opportunity to

Your brand character should promote your

reinforce your brand mission, and treat your

business, connect with your customer base

customers with that TLC they can all

and differentiate you in the market.

appreciate!

2. Do not copy the look of chains or big brands Now that you've gotten a sense of your identity, try not to copy and rip off images from big brands or chains. Remember, there is no such thing as an original idea! The best ideas are made from your own, and getting inspiration from others and putting a twist on it.

IMM Magazine |   32


Who's On Your Playlist? Written by Ellie Jane / photography by Jeff Ho

01 "Savage Remix" (feat. Beyonce) -

06 "I Love Me" - Demi Lovato

Megan Thee Stallion

07 "The Hype" - Twenty One Pilots

02 "Physical" - Dua Lipa

08 "Motivation" - Normani

03 "Everything I Wanted" - Billie Eilish

09 "Watermelon Sugar" - Harry Styles

04 "Yummy" - Justin Bieber

10 "Baby Powder" - Jenevieve

05 "Rockstar" (feat Roddy Rich) DaBaby


HOW TO UPGRADE YOUR SOCIAL SKILLS THE ART OF STAYING CONNECTED Long gone are the days of handwritten letters. Step up your social skills with these easy tips.

WRITTEN BY EMILIO CRUZ PHOTO BY JONAH MARQUESE

When was the last time you

opportunities within your city,

expanded your OUTER circle? A

whether if it's through joining a

part of building your brand is

www.meetup.com, or Instagram,

networking, as it is one of the

that can expand your little, black

most crucial skills any startup

business book. Check out these

entrepreneur can have. How else

five tips when networking and

will you meet the key clients and

you'll be on on your way to

contacts necessary to grow your

upgrading your outer circle, and

business? Take a few moments to

your social skills, in no time.

brush up on your business cards and look for a few networking

IMM Magazine |   35


1. Set a goal to meet five or more new people at each

5. Don't sit by people you know at networking

event, and follow up. Remember, deals don't get made

opportunities. Take a chance and begin a brand new

by just saying "Hi." Follow up personally by sending an

conversation with a complete stranger. Sounds bold,

email, text, or call.

huh? That's because, IT IS!

2. Try one or two new linkup groups per month.

Other ways of upgrading your social circle can include:

Bounce around until you find a circle of people that reflect your interests, or other creative industries you

1. Participating in your local, small business community

are interested in.

events.

3. Carry your business cards everywhere you go. Yeah,

2. Reaching out to former connections. Leave yourself

it's 2020, but there's nothing like having something

open to be introduced to new circles by old friends.

tangible! 3. Become a resource on social media (A great way to do 4. Don't be afraid to be an extrovert! Technology has

this is by holding interviews and highlighting other local

afforded us so many benefits, that we barely want to

entrepreneurs on your platform who are working in

hold decent conversations with people anymore. Step

your same line of business).

out of your tech bubble and spark up interesting conversations. You never know what could lead to a

4. Do some basic press outreach. Also keep in mind, a

collaboration opportunity, or your next business

strong professional network can help you achieve

partner!

things that you'd never accomplish on your own. Now

IMM Magazine |   36

go forth and do great things! >>


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Profile for Innovative Minds Media Magazine

IMM July/August 2020 Issue  

Our July/August 2020 issue is out June 25th! Akua Robinson, Washington, DC Makeup Artist graces the cover, and on the inside, How to Develop...

IMM July/August 2020 Issue  

Our July/August 2020 issue is out June 25th! Akua Robinson, Washington, DC Makeup Artist graces the cover, and on the inside, How to Develop...

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