Meet Dana Lardner of Words To Sweat By

December 12, 2011

Over the last 18 months, I’ve made some big changes in terms of exercise and health, and I’ve lost 40 lbs. I still don’t love exercise, so when I saw this fun line of exercise gear, I smiled.  It’s totally me.  I’m even buying a towel for myself to put in my own stocking.  Enjoy! – Michelle

Name: Dana Lardner

From: California

Education: B.A. in Comparative Literature

Professional Background (brief, please): 12 years in technology and consulting in a variety of roles: object-oriented programmer, business analyst, technical writer, instructional designer, and web development project manager.

What you wanted to be when you grew up: Anything that took me on an adventure to foreign lands.

What you are: Designer and manufacturer of motivational fitness and health products.

Brief Summary of your Start Up: Words to Sweat by™ are functional fitness and health accessories with mantras that motivate you to reach your health and fitness goals. Why workout with a boring, white gym towel when you can use Words to Sweat by™?

Company Website?

Products: http://www.wordstosweatby.com

Business blog: http://www.whimsicalwalney.com

What inspired you? Staring at the countdown on the elliptical machine or the treadmill is something almost everyone avoids by throwing their towels over the display. It’s those last five minutes that get the best of us and that’s when we need motivation most so I thought, why not add a mantra to the towel so that someone could focus on that instead?

How long have you been in business? Whimsical Walney, Inc. was founded in 2004 and launched with a line of outdoor blankets, shirts, and additional whimsical items for children.

Due to the requirements and costs associated with the passing of the CPSIA, I made the difficult decision to stop manufacturing products for children in May 2009. At the time, it appeared I would have to close the company, but the need to continue creating something lighthearted and useful was too great so I changed my focus to motivational fitness and health products for adults.

Do you have a Fairy Godmother (or Mentor)?

No, I currently do not have a mentor but there have been many people throughout my career whose lessons I still carry with me today.

Do you belong to any Business Organization or Networking Groups? I do not currently belong to any groups of this nature. Because mine is an online business, most of my networking is done online.

Current Business Challenge? It has been much more difficult than I thought it would be to find the quality of production resources that meets my needs.

What are you doing about it? I have been working with community organizations that can connect me with people who may not look for work in a conventional fashion (online, or want ads, etc.).

Favorite motivational quote: That one is tough because my business is comprised of motivational quotes! A friend recently reminded me of one she uses, “because I can,” and I have always liked that one. I think we should all remember to celebrate how capable we are of achieving our goals.

Favorite book? I enjoy reading too much to choose just one favorite, but The Count of Monte Cristo has always been at the top of the list.

What do you do to relax? Getting outside in almost any capacity helps me relax. One of my favorite things is playing outdoors among the redwoods; that always does the trick.

What do you want to change most about your world? I would like to feel more comfortable not being able to plan for certain aspects of owning a business. I accept a level of uncertainty, but with some things there’s just no telling what will happen no matter how much you try to plan and that always makes me nervous.

What are you most proud of? I am most proud of taking the lemons that CPSIA gave me and making a whole new kind of lemonade. A large part of starting my own business was to have an outlet for both my business and creative sides. Instead of living in the frustration, I stepped onto the treadmill to clear my head and think of how to use the materials I had on-hand to create something new. While I may not have come up with an idea that will help me work through my fabric stash, I came up with a business that I can build and grow.

What advice would you like to offer other Start Up Princesses? There are many paths that can bring your business to the same place therefore don’t be too concerned if the one you thought was “the answer” isn’t the path you take.

Favorite Magic Wand (tool/resource)? The internet is a powerful tool. I use it for everything.   I like the simplest of tools – taking a deep breath that fills the lungs.

If you could design a tiara, what precious stones would you use? Off the top of my head, my tiara wouldn’t use precious stones, but instead a mixture of tourmaline, smoky, and other quartz. I like the earthy nature it would create.

 

Meet Payal Kadakia of Classtivity.com

November 23, 2011

 

I love it when I hear about successful women who have impressive degrees and are using their book smarts, street smarts, hobbies and talents to build successful businesses!  Payal is impressive.  Take a minute to learn about her and learn some of her secrets to success!

Name: Payal Kadakia

Education: Bachelor of Science degree in Management Science, Operations Research from Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).

Professional Background: I’ve been student of dance since age three…and I guess I have always been a “dancetrepreneur.” It was my passion for dance and entrepreneurship that led to the founding of Classtivity.com. As a student at MIT, my commitment to dance merged with my entrepreneurial spirit when I started an Indian Fusion Dance Troupe. Flash forward to life in New York City, where I founded the nationally-acclaimed Sa Dance Company in 2009. I quickly led the company to achieve tremendous community support, sold out performances, celebrity endorsements and positive reviews in The New York Times and prominent South Asian media. Prior to founding Classtivity, I worked as a consultant at Bain & Company and in Warner Music Group’s Digital Strategy and Business Development Group. Today, I am the CEO and co-founder of Classtivity.com.

What you wanted to be when you grew up: On Broadway! Or, something performance related.  When I was in 3rd grade and was asked to create something that resembled who I was, I created a popsicle stick dome that had a stage and ice skating rink called “Payal’s Palace of the Arts.”

What you are: A daughter, sister, aunt, dancer, lover of life and CEO of Classtivity.com.

Brief Summary of your Start Up: Classtivity is a free, one-stop marketplace and the most comprehensive online hub for classes and activities, Classtivity offers thousands of experiences, from spinning and martial arts, to golf and trapeze lessons. Classtivity eliminates the frustration of surfing multiple websites, which typically results in abandoned searches and unmet challenges. As a central hub for classes, Classtivity helps consumers take the first steps in discovering or rediscovering their hobbies and passions, based on key factors that are important to them, including neighborhood, time, class difficulty and descriptions.

Where you are located: New York City, in the heart of Times Square.

Company Website: www.classtivity.com (Don’t forget to sign-up for a beta invitation here: www.classtivity.com. Why?  Because finding a class shouldn’t be harder than taking one.)

What inspired you?  I’ve always had a drive to change the things I saw could be improved and one of the biggest things in my life I’ve felt lucky for was having a passion.  I want other people to never give up their hobbies and the things they love outside of their jobs, families, careers.  Whether its pursuing an old passion like singing or music, or finding something new, it shouldn’t be hard to do.

How long have you been in business? I founded Classtivity in February 2011, shortly after leaving my corporate job and taking a two-week rejuvenation trip to Argentina!

How did you fund it? Bootstrapping and some great friends and family!

Do you have a Fairy Godmother (or Mentor)? My dance teacher, Usha Patel.  She’s always been like a second mom.

Do you belong to any Business Organization or Networking Groups? No formal affiliations but very involved in women empowerment through organizations such as WIE (Women: Inspiration and Enterprise) and Women 2.0. I am also closely in touch with my professional and education networks at Bain & MIT.

Current Business Challenge? And what are you doing about it?  Recruiting exceptional tech talent.  We’ve been utilizing our deep network of contacts and posting jobs online thus far. Hoping to find the right fit soon.

Favorite motivational quote:  “The best day of your life is the one on which you decide your life is your own. No apologies or excuses. No one to lean on, rely on, or blame. The gift is yours – it is an amazing journey – and you alone are responsible for the quality of it. This is the day your life really begins.” Bob Moawad

Family?  I have two wonderful parents who dedicated their lives to me and my sister.  I also now have an adorable nephew who is the recent addition to my family.

If so, how do you balance family and business?   I come from a background where family is important and no matter what, it will always be a priority. I talk to my mom once a day – she is my support and inspiration on a daily basis.

Favorite book? Memoirs of a Geisha

What do you do to relax? Dance and listen to music, occasionally watch Seinfeld!

What do you want to change most about your world? I wish days were longer so I could do more things each day!

What are you most proud of?  Selling out three shows at The Ailey Citigroup Theater in New York City with acclaimed film director, Mira Nair, as our guest speaker and one of our most avid supporters …that’s a close second to starting Classtivity!

What advice would you like to offer other Start Up Princesses? Build a team of people who are as passionate about the business as you are and also who you trust. That is an ideal combination for success.

Favorite Magic Wand (tool/resource)?  My new MacBook Air.

If you could design a tiara, what precious stones would you use? Pearls, they were once only created by chance.





Meet Rochelle Boreland of Rochelle, Yanique Inc.

September 29, 2011

Long, short, natural, curly – Rochelle loves it all! Hair is her favorite accessory and the final touch on any look. After years of visiting hair salons and spending large amounts of money, Rochelle decided to compile her favorite affordable products and techniques to share with others. Rochelle Boreland is a renowned hair fanatic, innovator and mastermind!

Name: Rochelle Y. Boreland

Professional Background: Master of Public Administration, University of Miami and Bachelor of Arts in Political Science, University of Miami

What you wanted to be when you grew up: I always wanted to run for political office.

What you are: Legislative Analyst, Miami Dade County.

Brief Summary of your Start Up: Coaching programs: My company, Rochelle Yanique, Inc. was developed to educate and provide women with cost effective solutions to styling their hair. I offer a wide range of protective styling techniques that are ideal for the woman on the go. Accessories offered through Rochelle Yanique, Inc. range from hand sewn custom wigs to clip in pieces. Through the online blog, women are taught maintenance tips that help in procuring healthy hair growth.

Company Website: www.iamrochelle.com

What inspired you: As a graduate student in college, I was forced to find more economical ways to keep up with current trends. Because money was limited, I researched “do-it-yourself” techniques and became proficient in various hair styling techniques. I was inspired by the need to do more with less.

How long have you been in business? Incorporated for 4 months; Building my brand since September 2010.

How did you fund it? Through money received from my services and my current employment.

Do you have a Fairy Godmother or Mentor? An old co-worker– She is a well known financial guru and has been mentoring me since graduating high school. When I decided to start my business, she guided me in the right direction and lent her support wherever it was needed.

Do you belong to any Business Organization or Networking Groups? Not Currently.

Current Business Challenge: Money! Start up can be difficult for a new business. I am struggling most with introducing my line of products and making my brand one that is well known.

What are you doing about it: I have hired a publicist to connect me to key media outlets that are within my target group. I’ve also used social networks like Twitter and Facebook to stay connected to my audience.

Favorite motivational quote: “Hard work beats talent when talent fails to work hard”

Family: Not married.

Favorite book? The Millionaire Next Door by Thomas J. Stanley

What do you do to relax? I love to lay poolside and do absolutely nothing! Still, that never lasts too long. Before you know it, I’m thinking up another topic for my blog.

What do you want to change most about your world? I’d adjust my level of patience. I come up with a thousand ideas a day, and I want to see all of them come to fruition all at once. I’ve got to learn to pursue ideas one at a time and in order to give them adequate focus.

What are you most proud of? Achieving my Masters degree and becoming a business owner by age 22!

What advice would you like to offer other Start Up Princesses? Always remain passionate about your ideas. Never become discouraged. You are the best advocate for your business or service– Consumers thrive off of your passion!

Favorite Magic Wand? Online small business communities and forums. There are tons of people with the same questions as I do. I love logging on to different business forums and learning from other owners who face the same challenges as I do.

If you could design a tiara, what precious stones would you use? Diamonds of course!

 

Thanks, Rochelle!

Highlights of #StartupChat “Sales Channel Discussion”

September 7, 2011

 

#StartupChat is a twitter event we host weekly to help startups grow. Join us every Wed 2pm EST on Twitter with hashtag #startupchat!

Recently we discussed online sales channels with guests who sell on eBay, Etsy, independent shops and more. Guests included @PlumDistrict, @sarahjanestudio, @ecoglominerals, @creativethurs, @mom4lifecom

Here’s highlights of the conversation:

When deciding how to sell your product or services, what should you consider?

Plum District: Consider your cost, time, and the value of a new customer. Are you interested in unloading product or obtaining new customers?

creativethurs: Choose a product that you love & inspires you that is also commercially viable

ecoglominerals: Find out who your target market is!

sarahjanestudio: Help the consumer visualize the product use. Photography & Presentation is key!

startupprincess Does your target audience (you’ve got one, right?!) want what you sell & are they willing to pay for it.

 

What benefits have you experienced from selling online vs off?

ecoglominerals: Huge benefits! I can be a work-at-home mom by selling online only. You can gain customers from around the world!

mom4lifecom: Online you are not limited by local demographics

creativethurs: Ease & privacy of selling online outweighs standing in retail space-love hearing from customers once they’ve made decision

sarahjanestudio: Selling online allows production on demand. Less $$ upfront

 

Why did you choose your specific sales channel(s)?

mom4lifecom: I stared on eBay, this allowed me to begin with a low startup cost, as business grew, I moved to a website

ecoglominerals: I’m not a fan of the fees that etsy or eBay charge, esp. when I can make my own website and cart that I like. More freedom! eBay and Etsy are great to start with as they can get you a lot of traffic! Gain a customer base first.

lepapierstudio: The more platforms you sell the better.

creativethurs: Important to remember that any online venue you choose to sell through brings exposure as well as possible sales

 

Tell us about the benefits of your sales channel(s)?

PlumDistrict: Daily deals offer a zero cost upfront marketing avenue for a business to reach a wide audience – for us moms

ecoglominerals: Freedom in webdesign, all aspects of a cart- you can choose the cart that works best for you. No fees besides normal hosting fees.

mom4lifecom: With our YouTube channel I have seen GREAT Google rankings from our videos within days of uploading them

creativethurs: New people find my work daily via @Etsy. It’s more than an online shop but a marketing opportunity as well

 

Expenses/fees to sell? When is it NOT worth it to pay fees to sell online?

mom4lifecom: If you are not able to measure results

ecoglominerals: When you are not making a nice profit or when gaining no sales/customers from specific channel

 

Any potential challenges for the consumer to purchase via your sales channel?

mom4lifecom: With my YouTube channel, customers need to be given a clear call to action 2 my website

ecoglominerals: Like all online sales, customer can’t see product in person so good photos are essential!

creativethurs: Not being able to see product in person b4 purchase. however once you build trust & relationship w/ customers = non-issue

PlumDistrict: One barrier is that we only offer our deals to registered users, although free, this can be an extra step for someone

 

What success stories have you experienced working with your sales channel?

creativethurs: I was able to make a full time living as an artist selling online

ecoglominerals: Being a work-at-home mom and working during naptimes and in the evenings when my hubby is home :). Very convenient!

PlumDistrict: We have seen powerful relationships between the biz and their community evolve as a result of running a deal on our site

lepapierstudio: I was able to Quit my Day Job from selling online.

 

What recommendations do you have to get the most out of your experience selling online?

ecoglominerals: Advertise your business through social media.

mom4lifecom: Find other companies to cross promote with

PlumDistrict: Know what your objs are before you run a daily deal. If it is long term engagement, then this could be a great venue 4 your biz

startupprincess: I recommend impeccable branding, strong products & solid messaging for online sales

creativethurs: All the same advice for any business owner especially = be willing to be more transparent and be yourself

mom4lifecom: Use social media to connect w/ and get feedback from your customers

 

What secret to success is using a blog with your sales channel?

ecoglominerals: Keep it updated. It is a constant reminder that you are around and always improving your biz

creativethurs: Starting a blog was key in building my online business = a channel to share my art & let my customers get to know me

mom4lifecom: Having a blog has allowed me to put fresh content in front of our customers regularly while also helping google ranking

lepapierstudio: Having a blog allowed me to share my story and built a community. I would have never made it without it

 

Any other tips on How to ROCK Online Sales?

startupprincess: Be sure to offer a ‘freemium’ for people to sign up for newsletter

ecoglominerals: I am a big fan of social media. USE IT a lot. Do sales, giveaways (I do a lot!), have a newsletter, they all help!

creativethurs: Last but not least, try not to lose sight of why you created the product {you love} & started a business in the first place

 

You can see and hear more from @mom4lifecom and @sarahjanestudio at Touchpoint September 15-16! Join us! Use code ‘startupchat’ for $50 OFF

 

August 31st #StartupChat: Sales Channel Discussion

August 29, 2011

Join us on August 31st 12pm MDT/2pm EST for our next Twitter #StartupChat on sales channels with guests in business from eBay to Etsy, and more!

We will also be giving away a ticket to our 5th Annual Conference for Women Entrepreneurs (TOUCHPOINT), so you will definitely want to be there!

Not sure what #StartupChat is or how to participate? We’ve got you covered with this post!

Highlights of #StartupChat with Linda and Richard Eyre, The Entitlement Trap

August 29, 2011

 

#StartupChat is a twitter event we host weekly to help startups grow. Join us every Wed 2pm EST on Twitter with hash tag #startupchat!

This past Wednesday, national best selling authors Richard and Linda Eyre (@entitlementtrap and @richardeyre) chatted with us about their new book “The Entitlement Trap” and parenting tips. Linda and Richard Eyre raised 9 children, ran election campaigns, authored best sellers, and speak GLOBALLY!

Thank you to all who participated and to Linda and Richard for the great tips!

 

Here’s highlights of the conversation:

What’s your #1 tip for success for LIFE?

michelledoodads: Time management. Successful people plan, organize their days and prioritize tasks.

cynthiaschame: Never Assume! Ask questions of everyone, as often as you can!

momsinbusiness: Get support from other #momsinbusiness They really get what you’re going through -www.mibn.org

ifredborg: Take full responsibility.

 

Your latest parenting book is @entitlementtrap – why is NOW the time for this message?

richardeyre: 65% of parents today say entitlement attitudes are biggest challenge, something we must overcome.

richardeyre: Begins to get serious about 7 and that is time to start emphasizing.

entitlementtrap: Every parent to talk to is affected by entitlment. Even if they’re kids aren’t, their friends are!

richardeyre: Kids get entitlement attitudes from government, from media, unfortunately, from parents too.

 

At what age should we worry the most about entitlement issues/potential?

startupprincess: I know with my own kids I see that they show entitlement issues when they compare themselves to other kids

richardeyre: About 7 or 8 kids actually like responsibility, give jobs and chances to earn OWN money.

richardeyre: Set up “family economy” where kids keep track of task completion & get paid accordingly wkly from family bank.

richardeyre: Once they perceive ownership of their earned money, pride transfers to what they buy with it. One of the great things about getting kids to perceive EARNED ownership is that it is the antidote to Entitlement.

 

What’s the antidote for entitlement issues?

richardeyre: FAMILY ECONOMY!

 

How do you recommend we monitor/control our children’s spending/goals?

richardeyre: Be very careful to set up the family economy very carefully and to tell kids that just those things trigger PAY. Let them earn their own money.

richardeyre: Once kids feel ownership of money, you can move to ownership of goals, of grades, of conflicts, of values, of choices! What you are trying to do is make your household a michrochosm of the real world to prepare them for being on their own.

richardeyre: The more mistakes kids make in the family economy, the better, because consequences are small when they are young. They also, once they have their OWN money, are empowered to give….to church, to charity, to a world need they see on TV.

 

What can parents do to set their family up for success when they work at home? Outside home?

richardeyre: A family economy is like an infrastructure….or an auto pilot….so you can work and still monitor the family economy.

richardeyre: And parents who work have to have certain time blocks that are JUST for the kids.

richardeyre: Want you to think about this: OWNERSHIP IS THE ANTITOTE TO ENTITLEMENT AND THE PREREQUISITE OF RESPONSIBILITY. The world works on rewards…..and kids can understand that there is a big reason (love and loyalty) and a small reason–money.

richardeyre: Once they have own earned money, and say they want something, your answer is always “Yes, did you bring your checkbook?

 

How do you prioritize your children when you have a job/business?

entitlementtrap: When we were gone a lot we kept reminding them that they are ALWAYS first priority. Their calls came first!

richardeyre: It’s actually easier to prioritize kids when you have a business….the business is to support the kids, not vice versa.

richardeyre: We like the 10-20-70 formula…..Kids get paid at payday, and first write a check for 10% to charity, then one 20% for savings

richardeyre: Family economy leads to great discussions about delayed gratification, value for money, discipline, percentages…so many good!

 

Any other parenting tips we haven’t covered yet you want to share with us?

richardeyre: It really does all come down to OWNERSHIP….just hold that thought…..think about what you want them to OWN.

richardeyre: With real ownership comes initiative, creativity and motivation to do one’s best.

 

You can visit Linda and Richard Eyre at www.valuesparenging.com. If you preorder the book, “The Entitlement Trap” you get a free download and a chance to win prizes!

 

 

August 24th #StartupChat: Linda and Richard Eyre, National Best Selling Authors

August 23, 2011

Join us for our next Twitter #StartupChat on Wednesday, August 24 with Linda and Richard Eyre, National Best Selling Authors of many family and parenting books. Learn more about them here: ValuesParenting.com.

We will be discussing work and family life, as well as their new book, “The Entitlement Trap“!

Kids’ sense of entitlement is the biggest problem today’s parents face.  Children seem to think they should have whatever they want, and whatever their friends have right now, and without working for it.  The reason entitlement is a trap is that it destroys motivation, incentive, creativity and work ethic.  It takes away from our children everything we want to give them.  We have come to believe that the antidote to entitlement (and the prerequisite to responsibility) is to help children feel “earned ownership” of their spending money, their “stuff”, their education and grades, their values and goals, and their decisions and choices.  This is a book on how to give them all of that!

The Entitlement Trap gives parents a detailed blueprint of how to establish a “family economy” wherein kids earn, budget, save, and give money and where they buy their own things and become truly responsible for them.  It involves an interest-paying family bank complete with checkbooks and a pegboard or on-line system of keeping track of task accomplishment.

You can pre-order “The Entitlement Trap” now and get a 33% discount and a free download for your child!  See details at www.valuesparenting.com

To join the discussion, follow the hash tag #StartupChat – See you there!

Highlights of #StartupChat “Do-It-Yourself PR”

August 22, 2011

 

On August 17th our #StartupChat (every Wed 2pm EST) topic was Do-It-Yourself PR. Guests included PR experts: @newspapergrl @newspapergrl and @prtini! We also included some of our participants tweets here who added great value. Thanks everyone! Fun topic.

Here’s highlights of the conversation:

 

How do you know you’re ready for press?

LibbyDowd: When you have a story to chat about, dig into the background of your pitch, find the interesting piece of news and expand it.

NewspaperGrl: When you have something to say besides ‘buy from me.’ You have an interesting angle or story.

prtini: If you have an interesting story to tell that will help your start-up achieve goals, be proactive in telling it.

startupprincess: Businesses are ready for press when branding, website, services/product is done, they have compelling story to tell. STORY is key! being polished is essential.

 

What are the benefits/dangers of do it yourself PR?

NewspaperGrl: Benefit of DIY PR: You know your brand best & are its most passionate spokesperson. Danger of DIY PR: You blow opportunities or look bad because you’re not prepared.

prtini: DIY PR pros: Can save $$; you know the product/service better than anyone else; build relationships w reporter w/o middle man.

startupprincess: Benefits: low cost/risk Dangers: looks small, might not come off polished, etc.

LibbyDowd: The relationship building is most important in PR. know ur media and their audience first.

 

What types of press do you recommend a small biz should go after by themselves if they lack budget to hire someone?

NewspaperGrl: Start local – local bloggers, reporters, news stations, magazines, etc. Local stories can turn into national stories. Position yourself as a local expert. Tips on how here –> http://t.co/A2lLWQp

prtini: Identify your target audience. What media outlets (online & offline) are they reading/watching? Start there.

startupprincess: I highly recommend a blog for every business owner if they can keep it updated weekly- a free form of PR!

 

What types of news is press release worthy?

startupprincess: Launch of a new product/service, new executive, new partnership, charity support, events.

NewspaperGrl: I use press releases both for media & online exposure. Send a press release to share tips, events, milestones, trends, etc.

prtini: If you’re pitching a trend story, send a short pitch, not a release. Bullet key facts.

LibbyDowd: Press worthy release is new, different, timely, any and all of the above.

 

What press release distribution sites do you recommend?

NewspaperGrl: Free sites: have had good success with @Smallbiztrends press release service for SEO. We have a list of over 140 sites with notes about links/features/cost breakdown at www.PublicitySpark.com

startupprincess: I always at least hire someone to distribute our press releases because distribution lists are KEY

prtini: @Pitchengine is helpful for creating a social media release, but it’s not a distribution channel. Helpful tool, though.

 

Advice on working with local news? local TV?

prtini: Local media needs a local hook. Who can you offer as an interview that gives story local connection?

startupprincess: Ask for editorial calendars and then customize your pitches for TV/print.

NewspaperGrl: Offering insight into trends that are big or how you were affected by larger news story can be very effective.

startupprincess: When you’re asked to be on a TV show be SURE to practice speaking in sound bites.

 

How can video be a form of PR when done well?

prtini: Video is powerful. Wear your journalist hat & think about how to convey emotion & tell a story.

NewspaperGrl: Ex of using video: I filmed a local bank closing. Posted it on YouTube, CNN’s ireport & tweeted, etc. Got a call back.

startupprincess: Video builds trust when done well and you an demo your product/service beautifully.

IAmAmeerah: Since YouTube is the #2 search engine behind Google, video is great for SEO.

 

How do you get national media to look at a story?

prtini: For nat’l media coverage, position your biz as part of a larger trend, instead of pitching a company-focused story.

NewspaperGrl: If the reporter has a blog read it, comment. If they are on Twitter, follow them. Get to know what they cover.

KaraKennedy: Relate it to current hot topics….that are happening in the media at the national level.

 

What do you recommend doing before press hits/airs?

startupprincess: Before PR hits, be SURE you have CALL TO ACTION, easy to navigate website, email capture, all products IN HOUSE

michelledoodads: Make sure your infrastructure is in place, website, phone calls, etc. How will you handle further questions and inquiries.

entbootcamp: Be prepared for customer questions after news hits the media. Planning after getting leads is worst thing

 

What do you recommend doing after Press hits?

startupprincess: Be sure to create a Press page on your website, link all interviews there, great for credibility & to get MORE.

entbootcamp: Use a lead management software to better follow ups. After all this handwork is to get good quality leads.

 

Thanks for the wonderful tips and insight into Do-It-Yourself PR!

For FREE PR, create a video to enter our Video Marketing Competition for Touchpoint! Create a compelling marketing video for a competition AND use that video to promote your business online!

Highlights of #StartupChat “Fall Fashion Trends”

August 19, 2011

 

One of our latest #startupchats (every Wed 2pm EST on Twitter) was about Fall fashion trends for women in business featuring stylists and designers! Guests included: @lsquaredstyle @polishedimage @MarisaSwystun1 and sponsored by TJMaxx and Marshalls @hdueitt tweeted in behalf of TJMAXX and Marshalls. We also included some of our participants tweets here who added great value. Thanks everyone! Fun topic.

Here’s highlights of the conversation:

Share with us your definition of style

lsquaredstyle: For me, style is the one way we communicate to others who we are and what we’re about.
polishedimage: Style is an individual expression of who you are without talking. Clothes speak for you!
hdueitt: Style is effortless & shouldn’t cost you a fortune!

 

What makes a woman look ‘put together’?

TJMaxx: A woman looks ‘put together’ when she walks with self-respect and confidence. Accessories help a woman look “put together”, and a smile is the best accessory! :)
BeChicMag: when she walks with self-respect and confidence
MarisaSwystun1: A woman should bravely wear her heart on her sleeve. If she does it well, she will always look put together.
polished image:  I tell all moms that they need to fight for their right to be stylish and functional. As a mom of 3 I understand.

 

How does looking polished/fashion forward build trust in life/business?

BeChicMag: They see that you’re serious thus making you appear trustworthy and responsible
polishedimage: It let’s people know that you mean business and you have self respect. If you want to be successful dress like it!
IHBrands: If you take pride in the way you present yourself you most likely take pride in your work – people notice
hdueitt: Looking polished and paying attn. to small details can show your client you will pay attention to their needs/ details.

 

What’s the difference in your wardrobe if you’re working at home or going to an office?

startupprincess: Huge! I advise my clients with home office to get dressed in business casual everyday. If a client calls you and needs you immediately, you need to be ready!
lsquaredstyle: You put yourself in a different mindset when you take the time and effort to get dressed. It’s just respect for yourself!
ConvertingME: I keep a couple of “outfits” for every occasion ready in my closet for last minute meetings and get togethers

 

How do dress standards range between industries?

lsquaredstyle: Dress standards can very drastically from industry to industry. It’s up to each of us to be appropriately informed.
It’s a good idea to speak with someone in the organization- whether it be a future colleague , manager or HR specialist.
polishedimage: You have to respect industry! Some people that have a more Classic sense of style have to work to be more artistic if they work in a creative industry while other who are more artistic have to work to be more classic in a conservative industry. Industry dictates dress!
MarisaSwystun1: I dress the same at home/work/out – it’s more fun and I inspire myself that way.

 

What fall 2011 trends are going to be hot?

polishedimage: Red, Tailored Looks, Pencil Skirts with a twist, Blazers, Wide leg pants, Stacked pumps with detail.
hdueitt: Details, detail, details. Look for fur trim, bows, ruffles, lace, sparkled and embellished tops!

 

What colors should we look for in fall fashion?

polishedimage: Red, Camel, Green, Blush Pinks (make sure your rocking the right shades for your skin tone).
MarisaSwystun1: Violet, mustard, emerald ….
lsquaredstyle: I think a fall jacket in a really bold colour is a fun trend. It brings attention to your face!

 

How does someone stay current but not get carried away by trends?

MarisaSwystun1: Trend is just suggestion and every season has TONS of trends packed in each. Choose one that work for your known fit.
lsquaredstyle: By incorporating trendy pieces into your current wardrobe, you’ll still be able to pay the mortgage and feel stylish!
polishedimage: Invest in a quality basic wardrobe in neutrals that flatter you. Then each season pick trends that are appropriate for u! Trends are meant to update your look for the season. I never advise anyone dress in head to toe trends.

 

If you were only going to spend $150 to update your fall wardrobe, what would you add?

lsquaredstyle: Understand the gaps in your wardrobe. Once you’ve identified gap #1, invest in that (e.g. a trendy fall blouse)!

 

To Register for TOUCHPOINT and learn more about Fall fashion for women in business, please see http://t.co/Y5j4zGl

 

Meet Cherie Burton, Purpose and Presentation Coach

August 19, 2011

 

Cherie Burton is a Mom and Purpose & Presentation Coach who has a passion for empowering women to step forward and do what they were born to do.  She holds a degree in Psychology and has held group therapist positions at a psychiatric hospital, a residential treatment facility for teen boys, a birth mother support group, and an addiction recovery center.  She was crowned Mrs. Utah 2004 and is the author of, Where Depression Ends and You Begin and the upcoming book, She Was Made Whole: 7 Steps of Restoring Order to a Woman’s Soul.  As an Essential Oils and Wellness Educator, Cherie is on a worldwide mission to educate other mothers to self-nurture and become healers in their own homes.

Name: Cherie Burton

Location: Alpine, Utah

Education: Bachelor of Science, Psychology; Minor Degree, Sociology

Professional Background: Purpose & Presentation Coach, Mrs. Utah 2004, group therapist at a psychiatric hospital, a residential treatment facility for teen boys, a birth mother support group, and an addiction recovery center; Author of, Where Depression Ends and You Begin, and the upcoming book, She Was Made Whole: 7 Steps of Restoring Order to a Woman’s Soul; Essential Oils and Wellness Educator

What you wanted to be when you grew up: An author and a teacher

What you are: An author and a teacher!  Only not in the public school system :)

Brief Summary of your Start Up: Coaching programs: “Present Yourself with Power” (6 week group training in confidence, beauty, public speaking), “Find Your Life Mission in a Month” (guided course in defining your purpose) and “Breakthrough: Peace with Food, Peace with Your Body” (12 week weight loss e-Course), Image & Speaking Private Mentorships

Where you are located?  I run my business out of my home.

Company Website: www.CherieBurton.com

What inspired you: Beautiful and elegant women I’ve associated with in the pageant industry, who’ve “classed” it up with their integrity and eloquence

How long have you been in business? 6 years

How did you fund it? Self

Do you have a Fairy Godmother or Mentor? Yes, I have several!  My latest is my business coach, Kim Flynn.

Do you belong to any Business Organization or Networking Groups? Just starting to get into Biz Divas, the HUB and others.

Current Business Challenge: Locating clients who could benefit from my programs.

What are you doing about it: I’m looking into doing an affiliate launch and I’m getting a marketing funnel together that will provide lots of value –free- to those who frequent my site.

Favorite motivational quote:  “You have never met a mere mortal…every interaction is sacred.”  C.S. Lewis

Family: My primary role/responsibility is that of being a mom and I take it “mother bear” seriously.  I have 3 children, who, as of Summer ’11, are ages 10, 12 and 14.

How do you balance family and business? I try to listen to my heart in my moments.  The answers are always there and motherhood and your business/life mission are a beautiful dance.  It takes a lot of courage and surrender to stop what you’re doing and give a child your full attention.

Favorite book?   Fiction: Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte   Non-fiction:  Light in the Wilderness by M. Catherine Thomas

What do you do to relax? Read, go on movie dates with hubby.

What do you want to change most about your world? To master being a source of love and acceptance for others.

What are you most proud of? My two sons and daughter and the close bond we have.

What advice would you like to offer other Start Up Princesses? Keep your life in Divine Order (1.God, 2 Self, 3.Family, 4.Humanity, 5.Earth)… Your business is 4th on the happiness index :)

Favorite Magic Wand? Sacred Routine I do every day (study of Truth, connection to the Divine, meditation, soul stillness)

If you could design a tiara, what precious stones would you use? Rubies – biblical reference to a virtuous woman

Thanks, Cherie! Meet Cherie in real life at Touchpoint – our 5th Annual Conference for

Women Entrepeneurs. Register today!

Next Page »

Become A Startup Princess

Startup Princess is an international network committed to empowering Women Entrepreneurs by offering resources for women in business to support, mentor, collaborate, learn from, and inspire one another. In 2006, after struggling to raise funding for an initial startup business venture, Kelly King Anderson recognized an important market niche existed for reliable resources educating women desiring to start and grow successful businesses, thus Startup Princess was developed.

Successful women entrepreneurs understand that for every business venture, they are in charge of creating, organizing, developing, managing, and assuming all the risks associated with their enterprise. That can seem quite intimidating but as other women business owners will tell you, it’s a lot of work, but it’s worth it! Success is within your grasp and Startup Princess is here to help.

First, join as a member of Startup Princess and start building a solid foundation. Membership entitles you to a listing in the Startup Princess Online Directory where we list women owned businesses. You’ll also access exclusive content like articles, videos, and audio straight from your email inbox. Coupled with feature interviews, discounts on events, networking connections, and press opportunities, your Startup Princess membership will give any woman entrepreneur a great start for her business!

Then, take advantage of Touchpoint, our annual business conference for women entrepreneurs. Practical planning meets sky-high inspiration at this high-impact event for women business owners to network and develop their approach to business with wisdom and creative direction from other women entrepreneurs across the country.

Need a little help taking your business to the next step? Wish you had a fairy godmother like Cinderella offering you a helping hand? Now you can! Startup Princess is the home of Fairy Godmother Consulting, volunteer mentors sharing tips and insights to bless the lives of other women entrepreneurs.

Startup Princess can offer many benefits to women in business from future women business owners to successful women entrepreneurs. Please call or fill out our contact form with questions, concerns, or general interest and let us help you by giving you full access to everything Startup Princess has to offer!