July 16, 2014

Chronicle Books Friends & Family Sale: 35% off!

Filed under: Round-up — lidia @ 4:40 pm

Chronicle Books / MyChronicleBooks

This is an affiliate link. I wholeheartedly support Chronicle Books!

July 11, 2014

10-Minute Marketing: create an editorial calendar

Filed under: 10-Minute Marketing — lidia @ 10:00 am

Create an editorial calendarI know, the words “editorial calendar” can make you shudder. But with so many places to share content nowadays, having an organized plan is really useful. And it can help you stay on track with your content marketing.

My simple editorial calendar includes the following: month, topic, call to action and release date. I mainly use it to plan my email newsletter, but it can be expanded to include all of your social media outreach.

This week’s 10-Minute Marketing task:

Simple editorial calendarCreate a simple editorial calendar. Download our template for reference (Excel).



10-Minute Marketing is a weekly series featuring short, easy-to-accomplish marketing tasks. Follow along with past posts here.

July 10, 2014

Typography in the City blog featured on HOWDesign.com

Filed under: Featured Design Project — Tags: , , , — lidia @ 10:00 am

HOW Design Top 10 Websites for Designers July 2014

Typography in the City blog


While randomly browsing the HOW Design website today, I was excited to see a familiar sight: my blog Typography in the City on their July list of Top 10 Websites for Designers!

I started Typography in the City in 2011 as a way to document the interesting typography I came across on walks around my neighborhood. It’s turned into a fun project, as well as a source of constant inspiration for design projects—not to mention wall art for my son’s room and even a children’s book I’m working on.

Follow Typography in the City on tumblr and on twitter at #typeinthecity. Also follow @lsvdesign on Instagram for #typeinthecity updates!

July 2, 2014

Why I love Trader Joe’s flyers

Filed under: Marketing & Promotion — lidia @ 2:28 pm

Trader Joe's  Fearless Flyer

As I was staring at a recent Trader Joe’s “Fearless Flyer” (ie their mailer with featured products), I wondered: Why am I (a visually-driven person) so engrossed in this when there are hardly any images? Answer: it’s the writing!

Through their stories, colorful descriptions and unique pairings, the Trader Joe’s writers manage to capture the unique and “buyable” qualities of every product—basically, making you want to run to the store and buy it without even seeing it. I find this to be a great example of effective copywriting (and a useful case study for small business owners).

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m off to Trader Joe’s…

June 30, 2014

Featured Biz Mama: Sheri Kiss of Wonderland Press

Filed under: Biz Mama — lidia @ 10:00 am

Featured biz mama: Sheri Kiss

Sheri Kiss is a published author of both children’s and adult books. Dream Write is the first in a series of four books that offers kids the opportunity to face any emotional and physical challenge using the power of their imagination and writing/self-expression. The next in the Dream Write series is Feel Write. Each of the four books in the Dream Write series includes a writing prompt.

Past biz mama Rachel Teichman of OOGIAH told me about Sheri and her book. Since I’ve been working on my own children’s book ideas, I was excited to meet Sheri and feature her on the Biz Mama blog.

Sheri’s books are available on Amazon.com.

Tell us a little about your business/job responsibilities.

Wonderland Press is a small publishing company that Dr. Suzanne Mouton-Odum and I created after growing disenchanted with the traditional route of publication. Our non-fiction book, Out of the Rabbit Hole (under my pen name Bloom), offers tools and inspiration for tackling the common yet often unspoken anxiety disorder, OCD. Out of the Rabbit Hole has won first place by both the OCD Foundation in Texas and most recently by Indie Reader (1st place in the self-help category). Our publishing company is geared to offer readers books that inspire, engage and we hope empower people of all ages.

There are many hats one wears as a writer and business entrepreneur: marketer, publicist, accountant, editor, creator, secretary and entertainer (I typically perform a puppet show based on Dream Write and give speeches and TV/radio interviews for Out of the Rabbit Hole).

What are the ages/genders of your children?

Our oldest son, Aden is turning eleven this July and entering middle school (How did THAT happen??) in the fall. Our youngest, Elie (short for Elliot) will be a second grader this coming academic year.

Did you start your business before or after having children?

I started Wonderland Press after I had children. Writing was something I did all along. When I landed my first and then second literary agent, I naively thought “I’ve arrived!” Little did I know that this was just the first in a series of many literary hurtles. Wonderland Press is the figurative “baby” Dr. Mouton-Odum and I gave birth to once our kids were in elementary school, a natural manifestation of our growing desire to gain more control of our work.

How did your business life change after having children?

Before I had children I worked as a middle school English and theatre teacher. I was fully committed to this career but can still recall the hours upon hours of grading 125+ papers on a regular basis. I also continued to work in theatre (on stage) both in NY and then continuing to do so in Houston. Once the kids arrived, time morphed for me. Sleep-deprivation does that, I suppose! I still managed to squeeze in a theatre production here or there, but it was nothing like before children. My primary focus and priority became (and still is!) about our children. Still, I always tried to make sure that I carved out some kind of creative time for me. Writing offers a wonderful opportunity to retain our inner muse: the hours are flexible and our imagination is limitless.

Describe a typical workday.

Drop the kids off at camp (currently) or school. Feed the dog, clean the kitchen, feed myself. Pop in the never-ending load of laundry. Check email. Then write, write, write. This can be anywhere from twenty minutes to three hours–depending on what the day allows. Exercise (typically 20-30 minutes) and then it’s back to Domestic Land: food shopping, carpool, homework, dinner, kids’ shower/bath, snuggle/read time and bed time.

What is one tip you can share with other Biz Mamas?

Follow your bliss. Life is too short to fill it with shoulds. We moms tend to allow our dreams to percolate but often don’t act on them. A dear friend once told me: “We underestimate how much we can do in ten years and overestimate how much we can do in five.” Baby steps, five minutes here, five minutes there, add up to the manifestation of our vocational dreams.

Wonderland Press

Houston, TX
Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/permalink.php?story_fbid=532860293467605&id=128238773929761
Blog: http://houstonpsychologists.com/features/dr-suzanne-mouton-odum-blog/

June 13, 2014

10-Minute Marketing: Write down a success story

Filed under: 10-Minute Marketing — lidia @ 5:01 pm

10-Minute Marketing: Write down a success storyI make it a practice to write down the good things that happen in my business, or what I like to call my “success stories.”

Why do I do this? For several reasons. One, so I can let clients or prospects know what has been successful for me or my clients (helping to build my credibility). Two, so I have “shareable” details at the ready when I’m contacted by a reporter, editor or blogger. And lastly, so I have important project details handy when I’m writing case studies or website copy.

Added bonus: reading “success stories” is a great pick-me-up on a not-so-great day!

This week’s 10-Minute Marketing task:

Write down a success story. Include as many details as possible.

 10-Minute Marketing is a weekly series featuring short, easy-to-accomplish marketing tasks. Follow along with past posts here.

June 6, 2014

10-Minute Marketing: write a fan letter

Filed under: 10-Minute Marketing — lidia @ 10:00 am

10-Minute Marketing: write a fan letterThis week’s 10-Minute Marketing task is something I personally love doing: writing a fan letter.

Here’s an example. You go to a conference and hear a great speaker who makes a real impact on your life or business. Why not write them an email to express your gratitude? (or even better, a handwritten thank you note) Everyone likes to hear a “thank you” and who knows, a relationship may even form out of it.

I’ve personally done this several times and made meaningful connections—and friendships.

Other ideas for “fan letters”:

  1. Author of a book you loved
  2. Editor of a blog you adore
  3. Speaker or host of a great networking event

This week’s 10-Minute Marketing task:

Write a fan letter.

10-Minute Marketing is a weekly series featuring short, easy-to-accomplish marketing tasks. Follow along with past posts here.

June 5, 2014

Book review: Issue 21 of UPPERCASE Magazine

Filed under: Book review — Tags: , , — lidia @ 10:00 am
UPPERCASE 21 and my patterns

Issue 21 of UPPERCASE and a pattern I recently printed

OK, a few things: UPPERCASE is technically a magazine, not a book. However, I believe the quality of content and creativity in each issue qualifies it as a book. Second, I haven’t even read the whole issue yet. But I saw that the new issue is underway, so I wanted to make sure people could get their hands on this one!

UPPERCASE is an amazing magazine, full of design and art inspiration (not to mention created and published by a small staff). Having just taken a screenprinting on fabric class that developed my obsession for patterns, Issue 21 and its included Surface Pattern Design Guide made it a must-buy.


If you are a pattern lover, hurry and get this issue now!

Buying info | Issue 21 of UPPERCASE, Spring 2014


June 4, 2014

Creatives inspiring each other: the Creatives’ Cupboard MyNote

Filed under: Creativity — lidia @ 11:00 am

Creatives' Cupboard MyNote

CREatives Cupboard MyNoteI was thrilled to be included in the MyNote, a “creative journal” by Crystal Reynolds of Crystal Ink Design and Creatives’ Cupboard in Calgary, Canada.

Crystal and I met through the HOW Design Conference several years ago and she is a past Featured Biz Mama.

The MyNote features advice and inspiration from creative solopreneurs: designers, publishers (Janine Vangool of the fabulous UPPERCASE Magazine!), and business coaches from across the globe. The back section of the book includes lined pages for readers to jot their own notes and ideas.

It includes an article called “Typing up her own rules” that talks about how my graphic design business inspires my kids clothing line typebaby—and vice versa.

Read more about the MyNote here.

Order your copy here.

June 3, 2014

Round-up: kicking LinkedIn up a notch

Filed under: Marketing & Promotion,Networking,Round-up — Tags: , , — lidia @ 10:00 am

This week’s round-up features my latest obsession: LinkedIn. I never thought much about my profile, however after talking with a marketing coach, I decided to revamp mine and use it more actively—and found lots of great resources along the way.

  1. 10 Insights: How to Use LinkedIn to Build Business Success Faster than Your Competitors [Jeffbullas's Blog]
  2. How to Use LinkedIn as an Effective Prospecting Tool [Smarter Freelancing Podcast]
  3. How to Attract Great Clients With LinkedIn [Smarter Freelancing Podcast]
  4. How I Used LinkedIn to Get a 41 percent Response Rate and 6 New Clients [biznik]
  5. How to Create a Compelling & Optimized LinkedIn Profile [Top Dog Social Media]
  6. Build a Killer LinkedIn Profile | Think-n-Drink, Chicago – LIVE EVENT TONIGHT 6/3

Have you found ways to maximize LinkedIn? Share your success stories.

Our Round-Up features useful business tidbits we’ve collected. See past Round-Ups here.

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