So now that turkey day is gone, and the last of the leftover stuffing has been consumed, I really need to get serious about figuring out what to give my clients. Decisions, decisions. In my last blog post, I mentioned things that have worked for me in the past. Here’s what I’m considering this year.
**A ready-to-plant amaryllis bulb in a festive pot
**Funky business card holders (either for the purse or desk)
**Super cute desk/office supplies (I love the ones from seejanework.com)
**Dancing Deer cookies (dancingdeer.com). I love the ones in the shape of the house… they benefit the homeless too!
**Gourmet hot chocolate. I’ve given this before, but this year I’m thinking of including homemade gourmet marshmallows and some artisanal chocolates from the woman-owned shop in my neighborhood.
**I’m also contemplating donating on my editors’ behalf to my new favorite charity, kiva.org. Your donation actually becomes a micro-loan to assist a disadvantaged entrepreneur in the U.S. or around the world.
I’ll keep you posted on my decision. In the meantime, I’m going out this week to pick out the perfect card. My PictureIt Postage stamps have arrived. Check out how cute they are.
If you order using the coupon code MOTHERHOOD, you’ll get $4 off an order of custom stamps and be entered to win a $500 prize http://pictureitpostage.com/
Rules are detailed here http://www.themotherhood.com/post/show/id/483184
I’ll let you know when I make my decision, and send you a pic when I’ve got everything “wrapped up.”
I wanted to take the opportunity to let you know about my next free call!
I’ve been using LinkedIn successfully for a long time, and teaching my private clients and the students in my Social Media Take Action Group Coaching Program how to get big results with it as well. However, lately I’ve been hearing more and more that business owners KNOW they should have a presence there (and many already do), but they’re just not sure how to REALLY use it effectively. In fact, most of them see it as one big mystery!
Well, you’re in luck!
On this call, I’ll be sharing all about how to make it work for you AND busting through some common myths that I see persisting about this super-important business network. (And if you have been on my calls before, you KNOW I always over-deliver when it comes to actionable content!)
You can register here: Free LinkedIn Call
Hope you can join us!
Make sure you continue:
It’s a little tongue-in-cheek but, honestly, unless you simplify and decide what’s most important to your family, you will wonder where the time went.
Can’t believe the holidays are almost here…how did they get here so fast. I’m not ready…are you?
Every year around this time, I try to find new and creative ways to show my appreciation to the editors who keep me so busy writing all year long. Though I don’t give gifts to everyone I’ve ever worked with, I do send something to the special people who hire me consistently throughout the year. These are usually editors with whom I’ve built solid relationships with over time. The rest of my business contacts get holiday cards, and I admit spending WAY too much time picking out just the right design that will make people remember me!
I’ve been doing the holiday card and gift thing for over 20 years as a homebased writer/mompreneur. Here are some of the festive tricks I’ve learned along the way.
Don’t Go Overboard on Gifts. I recently heard one of my favorite editors say that she thinks it’s weird if writers give her something extravagant. And if someone she’s only worked with occasionally sends something, she thinks they’re sucking up. The moral? It’s not necessary to shower everyone you’ve ever worked with (or want to work with) with presents. But do be sure to show your appreciation to clients that hire you most often.
Keep Gifts Small and Sweet. Boxes of artisanal chocolates, brownies, cookies, or small fruit baskets will always be greatly appreciated. It’s even better if the treat benefits some kind of good cause (check out cookiesforkidscancer.org). I also try to pay attention to what clients like when we’re out for lunch or coffee. For example, I once bought my tea-loving editor a gourmet sampler tied to a handmade tea caddy. She loved it! I gave handmade floral notecards to another editor who had mentioned she missed letter writing. They were a big hit.
Slip Something in the Card. If you’ve got a lot of gifts to send, you might try slipping a Starbucks or Sephora gift card into the envelope (I still have the very cool eye liner bought with the gift certificate my iVillage editor sent me years ago!) Sure you could email these, but there’s still something wonderful about actually getting a mailed card to open—especially in this high-tech, impersonal age. I’ve also received many cards where the sender has made a contribution to a charity in my name—a great way to have your gift do some good!
Personalize Your Postage. Did you know that you can actually make postage stamps with your company logo? The PictureItPostage peeps just gave me the chance to try it out for free, and I have to tell you…it’s very very cool! It works like this: Go to http://pictureitpostage.com/business/ and design a stamp using a jpeg logo from your photo file. I used a picture of our red-headed Mompreneur character from the homepage, and then adjusted the postage part of the stamp to match the teal background. Pretty cute! I’m going to go make one with her in her Santa hat too! The .44 stamps are 18.95 for a package of 20; and PictureItPostage is offering our community a coupon to get $4 off your order. Go to http://pictureitpostage.com/business/ and use Coupon Code: MOTHERHOOD .
When’s the last time you met other mom entrepreneurs face to face? Or met your clients and customers personally? I was lucky enough to be featured as a keynote speaker at last week’s Super Mom Entrepreneur Conference, in NYC, and was reminded once again about how important it is to get out from behind your computer to network in person. Yes, it takes time. Yes, you have to put on professional clothes. And yes, you sometimes have to shell out carfare or a conference fee to do it. And then there’s the part about lining up someone to take care of the kids. But when you do all that, the payback is well worth it. You’ll return home inspired and ready to kick butt, with fresh ideas, business leads, and renewed self-confidence.
At the end of the conference we all held hands in a circle and shared one word that described how we felt about the day. We heard words like, “renewed,” “ready,” “connected,” and “empowered.” I said, “energized.” Pat said “community.”
The handholding seems a perfect metaphor for what happens in our MompreneursOnline.com forums every day. Newbie and veteran mompreneurs come together to share, support and challenge each other.
Now I want you to vow to get out of your home office, as well, and meet someone face to face at least once in the next month. Maybe have coffee with a client or customer. Join a local networking group. I belong to a local group of writers; Janene on our message boards organizes a local group of women business owners; and our Florida and California Mompreneurs® Live networking groups are flourishing. The business group I taught last year meets monthly for dinner to keep each other accountable.
So how will you network face-to-face in the next month? Write your intentions here. It’s a way of saying, “Let’s do this thing!”