January 12, 2016

Things I want to learn in 2016

Filed under: Creativity — lidia @ 5:54 pm

Dollarphotoclub_67102223

Every year, I make a list of things I want to learn rather than New Year’s resolutions.

I’ve managed to check off a few things on last year’s list (make an awesome green smoothie) though some still remain elusive (will I ever master my DSLR camera?)

Things I want to learn in 2016

  1. Video and YouTube marketing
  2. PPC (pay-per-click) advertising
  3. How to play guitar again (it’s been awhile)
  4. A digital illustration style that I can use for my children’s book ideas
  5. A more efficient bookkeeping system
What do you want to learn in 2016?

December 31, 2012

Things I want to learn in 2013

Filed under: Marketing & Promotion — Tags: , , — lidia @ 11:07 am
2013 greeting card by Laura Berger

2013 greeting card by my friend Laura Berger. Buy in her etsy shop! 

So, at the beginning of every year I make a list of things I want to learn. Apparently, I skipped 2012’s list—but I was already busy learning how to be a new mom! (see 2011’s list here).

Things I want to learn in 2013

  • How to create an eBook in Adobe InDesign
  • How to use Google Analytics effectively (admittedly, this has been on my list for several years!)
  • How to narrow down all of my personal creative projects
  • QuickBooks
  • Recipes for my slow cooker
  • Fitting in exercise into my biz mama schedule
  • A fun DIY holiday gift for friends
  • Sewing

What do you want to learn in 2013?

 

January 6, 2017

10-Minute Marketing: Make a list of things to learn

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

10-Minute Marketing: Make a list of things to learn

Instead of making New Year resolutions every year, I make a list of things I want to learn. I find it to be less intimidating and more practical than making resolutions. My list usually involves both personal and work-related purusits (as they often cross over) and sometimes (OK, always) I carry over things from past years

This week’s 10-Minute Marketing task:

Make a list of things to learn this year.

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

 

January 1, 2015

What I want to learn in 2015

Filed under: Creativity — lidia @ 10:00 am

15 from typography in the city

Here it is, my annual list of things I want to learn in the new year. Yes, I admit there are a few stragglers from last year’s list (when, oh when, will I finally learn how to properly use my camera?!)

Things I want to learn in 2015

  • Digital publishing: apps, eBooks
  • Making the most of my DSLR camera
  • Using Google Analytics effectively
  • An illustration technique for my children’s book ideas
  • How to make a “best-of” video from my library of clips
  • Video marketing
  • An awesome green smoothie recipe

Happy New Year!

 

December 30, 2013

What I want to learn in 2014

Filed under: Small Business — lidia @ 10:25 am
Laura Berger 2014 calendar

My friend Laura Berger’s awesome 2014 calendar. Click to order in her Etsy shop.

I’m continuing in my tradition of listing things I want to learn in the new year instead of resolutions. Admittedly, there are a few holdovers from years past, but I’m all the more determined to check them off!

Things I want to learn in 2013

  • Digital publishing: apps, eBooks, etc.
  • Making the most of my DSLR camera
  • Using Google Analytics effectively
  • Advanced screenprinting techniques
  • Streamlining my paperwork and bookkeeping
  • Crowdfunding
  • Facebook marketing and advertising
  • Baking (how to be better at it!)

Here’s wishes for a happy, prosperous and enlightening New Year!

September 6, 2012

All I really need to know in small business, I learned from my baby. [@foundingmom guest post] #bizmama

Filed under: Biz Mama,Small Business — Tags: — lidia @ 2:49 pm

A few more things my son taught me: Take frequent art breaks. Always make time for fun.

Being a small business owner for almost 12 years, I’ve been accustomed to running my graphic design studio in a very organized, methodical way. When my baby boy arrived, things quickly changed in my home and business life.

Now, a year later, I realize the many things he taught me that can also be applied to running a small business successfully.

Lose your preconceived notions.  

When I first had my son, I wanted to be a babywearing mama. After multiple attempts (and baby carriers), I realized: This boy doesn’t like being in a baby carrier.

In business, the same rule applies. We sometimes approach our businesses with preconceived notions, only to be disappointed when they aren’t working. It’s okay to change your focus, client base or marketing strategy if it isn’t getting the results you want. In fact, it’s a good thing.

Read the rest of my post on the Founding Moms blog.

December 27, 2010

What do you want to learn in 2011?

Filed under: Time Management — lidia @ 9:06 am

Print by Laura Berger on etsy

At the start of 2010, instead of making a list of goals as I usually do, I made a list of things I want to learn (both business and personal).

After doing an end-of-year review of this year’s list, I’m pleased to see that I accomplished some items (learned how to increase traffic to my website, new ways to market my design biz) however I’m still working on others (how to really use Google Analytics, re-learning how to play guitar).

So, here’s this year’s list:

Things I want to learn in 2011

  • Best techniques for promoting my online greeting card shop
  • Creating a mobile app
  • Making the most of Google Analytics
  • Keeping my email inbox tidy
  • Effectively using my marketing calendar
  • Creating eBooks and forms in Adobe InDesign
  • Baking bread
  • Tricks for growing hibiscus

What do you want to learn in 2011?

January 4, 2014

2014 word for the year: focus

Filed under: Creativity,Small Business — lidia @ 8:45 am

focus

I don’t usually make New Year resolutions, making instead a list of things I want to learn (see this year’s list here). But this year, I also decided to choose a word for the year: FOCUS.

Choosing a word for the year can be powerful. It can help guide your decisions and keep you on track, both personally and professionally. I chose focus because I want to focus on working on specific areas of my businesses—as well as being fully present in time spent with my son. I also want to narrow down my list of creative side projects (and believe me, there are a lot!)

Alternatively, some people choose a phrase or theme for the year, like “Think big.” Get your family or friends involved too. For example, I chose a word for my toddler: learn (though since he is 2 years old, maybe it should have been “patience”!)

See Gretchen Rubin’s tips for choosing a word for the year here.

What’s your word (or phrase) for the year?

 

January 6, 2010

Happy New Year!

Filed under: Small Business,Time Management — Tags: , , , — lidia @ 4:44 am

Here we are in the first week of 2010. A new year. 365 new days to achieve your goals. Sounds daunting, yes? I have always started off the new year by writing a list of goals. However, this year I’m taking a new approach. Instead of making a list of what I must do, I’ve decided to make a list of what I want to learn.

For example, here are a few things I want to learn in 2010:

  • Ways to increase traffic to my (and my clients’) website
  • New ways to market my design business
  • How to actually use Google Analytics
  • How to best integrate my contacts/calendar with my new Droid phone
  • Flamenco
  • Guitar (or should I say, relearn what I have forgotten)

So… what do you want to learn in 2010?

November 27, 2017

Recap: Digital Summit Chicago 2017

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , — lidia @ 10:00 am

The Digital Summit series made its inaugural stop in Chicago this year. The 2-day digital marketing conference was filled with insights on digital, email and content marketing. Here are a few of my top takeaways.

Deep thoughts by Ann Handley…

The conference kicked off with an inspiring and entertaining keynote by content queen, Ann Handley of MarketingProfs, who encouraged us to be bigger, braver and bolder with our digital content. Ann talked about the importance of data, used in conjunction with listening and instinct. Your brand should be in a place where your customers or clients will say “They get us!”

She also emphasized that your story is the start of what sets you apart. She challenged us: what is the story everyone tells in your industry and how can you tell it differently?

Lastly, she suggested that we be braver in our perspective and tone of voice. Think about how you sound vs. how you look. How can you make the ordinary (about pages, landing pages, email confirmation pages) extraordinary?

Email is still king—but keep it simple

Nora Snoddy of Emma told us that ROI of email is double of all other channels, (so yes, you should be sending out those regular email campaigns). She said that including video and GIFs can lead to higher CTRs. And she also advised not to give people too many options, stick to a single call to action (using first-person, action verbs) and tell people exactly what you want them to do.

She encouraged us to use automated email campaigns, as well as using reminder emails as a way to increase sales.

A few of her recommendations were to monitor CTR increases between campaigns, as well as subscriber growth over a year. And, split test those subject lines!

Don’t create new content—reuse what’cha got!

One of my favorite sessions was from Ginger Shimp of SAP. The visual learner in me loved the content map she presented, as well as her easy system of creating and repurposing content.

Ginger recommended starting your content creation with the end product, say a whitepaper, and then versioning it into various other content pieces: blog, cast study, podcast, video, eBook, microsite, presentation, infographic, web documentary, just to name a few.

She also brought up the idea of creating a video whitepaper (Is anyone doing this already? Please share, I would love to see!) One of her recomendatons is

Make search work for you

Shana Sullivan of Vertical Measures spoke about how to make search work in this ever-changing time. A few things to avoid are:

  • Duplicate content
  • Slow page load times
  • HTML problems such as missing metadata or title tags
  • Bad (or not enough) backlinks
  • Poorly optimized images and videos
  • Thin content (too short blog posts)
  • Not being mobile-friendly

She also told us what people are actually searching for:

  • Cost/price comparisons
  • Problems/issues
  • Comparisons
  • Reviews
  • Best of/Top posts
  • Resources

And she recommended using Google Suggests and Keyword Tool to get keyword ideas before you start writing your content.

Prepare for the skim

Lorraine Goldberg of Allrecipes.com spoke about being data-informed, not data-driven when doing email marketing. Look at and analyze trends, web analytics, news, social intelligence, SEO as well as top subject line performers.

She emphasized preparing for “the skim” and creating content that stands out. She also encouraged thinking at the little things in people’s lives—what are their day-to-day challenges and how can you help. And most of all, stand for something!

Take it from The Onion…

One of the most entertaining sessions was from Joe Fullman of The Onion. In addition to sharing classic Onion moments, he spoke about the 3 Ds of content: design, distribute, develop.

He suggested to continually measure reach of each content type by network, make sure content is format-driven, and develop content to be derivative and modular, easily targeted to each audience.

Now, time to put it all to work!

Overall, my takeaways at Digital Summit were to make a plan with concrete goals, be bold and tell a unique story, create content that can easily be repurposed—and most importantly, stand for something.

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