After much thought and reflection I have made a big decision which affects my work/life balance.
I am stepping down as an Authorized Local Expert for Constant Contact. I will continue my role as a Business Solution Provider, working with small businesses here in Western Mass and I may hold smaller marketing workshops from time to time. I will miss working with great Western Mass organizations like SCORE, MSBDC, many Chambers of Commerce and other non-profit organizations. I love to teach and love to see small businesses succeed. It has been an honor to work with an unbelievable New England team for four years and I will miss them. Over the next few weeks I will be updating my website, various social media profiles, etc. to reflect this change.
One of my long time clients leads families through the "downsizing" process. She refers to the work as "rightsizing". I like that. It feels light.
I actually began making small changes in my work-life balance last year, letting go of working weekends (I know.) but the lightbulb really turned on when I was presenting at a WBOA social media workshop last fall. Our lunch speaker was talking about how to choose to do something, or to say "no". She advocated that instead of thinking about things as something we "should" or "shouldn't do, to remove the guilt feeling and ask yourself . . .
"Does it feel light or heavy?"
I used this question as I began the "rightsizing" exercise of my work-life balance and it has helped greatly. I have also asked my clients the same question when they are up against a marketing task that they feel they "should" do. If the task feels heavy the decision to outsource the work becomes a no-brainer. Often I hear that the decision to let something go has been replaced by more creativity and productive use of their time.
More changes are yet to come down the road, but I truly feel that the process of "rightsizing" will help me make good decisions.
Salesy gimmicks and product pushing have been replaced by creating and growing relationships built on brand recognition and trust.
Today's marketing is all about engagement.
Websites, social media channels, mailing lists and online placement are key components in this new landscape. You're posting, tweeting, blogging, emailing, networking - doing everything you can to grow your business. What else can you do?
Events provide the "wow" factor in the relationship engagement cycle.
They give people a reason to talk, to share, to follow you, to get to know you better. Events can be big or small, and can be tailored to showcase your expertise. You don't have to be a Powerpoint wiz or in your glory when standing in front of a room full of people. If you're worried about speaking in public, there are many ways to help you find more confidence. Join Toastmasters, support groups like WBOA (ladies only), a BNI group or other networking organization.
Recently, I was invited to be the keynote speaker for the Hartford/Springfield Speakers Network as they kicked off their fall season in Enfield, CT. The purpose of this group is to help members develop and grow their speaking business. I found the group to be very high energy, extremely welcoming and very professionally run. The brainchild of Bill Corbett, host of Cooperative Kids, the group is very energizing.
Many members are using speaking as part of their overall businesses, others are intending to become, or are professional speakers. The meeting started with casual networking followed by two spotlight speakers and the keynote speaker. I found the group to be very high energy, extremely welcoming and very professionally run. Speakers are taped and timed, great for learning. Attendees came from as far away as Boston and southern Connecticut.
Liz Provo, Mass Marketing Resources.