How To Get Your Partner On Board With Your Business

This post comes to us via Katie Lee, a lifestyle designer and relationship expert who teaches small changes to help people go from daily grind to daily gratitude. She recently released a free ebook homeHAPPYhour so you can start your own ritual for better communication and deeper connection. Want to see how she does it daily? Follow along on Instagram.

get husband on board with business
So you’ve decided to finally start that business, write that book, take that next step you’ve been daydreaming about for years. You know it will be a little scary, a lot time consuming and probably crazy hard. You can’t enter this journey alone. In fact, the only way you’ll make it through – or even start – is if you have the support of your partner.

They have no idea what you’re talking about when you mention SEO, virtual assistants or guest posting so getting their full buy-in seems impossible.

Well, it’s not. Here are four steps you can take to ensure your partner supports you and is happy to do it. It involves some show & tell.

Tell first.

Tell them your why.
Are you creating a business so you can donate part of the proceeds to a cause that means something to you? Are you coaching others because it’s your natural gift? Do you eventually want to do something way bigger and this is a stepping stone?

Tell them that. Tell them your why so they can see that your side hustle isn’t just a “cute little hobby.” They’ll remember the powerful reason you’re doing what you’re doing and it will help them to support the long hours and singular focus.

Tell them how.
You’ve heard this before, but it’s definitely worth repeating “people aren’t mind readers” or “we teach people how to treat us.” Support is a really vague term and it means different things to different people. Saying “I need your support” is not enough. S-P-E-L-L it out.

“I need you to give me three hugs a day.”
“I need you to do the laundry during launch week.”
“I need you to turn the TV down on nights when I’m writing.”
“I need you to tell me I’m smart and awesome on a regular basis.”
“I need Oreos on-hand at all times.”

Whatever you need to succeed is valid, you just need to tell them what it is and how they can help.

Show them you’re serious.
It’s hard to support some one who is all talk and no action. Start taking steps towards your new goal so they can see you mean business. Most people have big dreams, but few follow through. You know that doesn’t describe you, but your partner may not. Start walking your talk on a regular basis, start by taking one big step forward. It will become easy to jump on your train when you’re moving full steam ahead.

Show them the path.
This is THE most important step, because this is where it clicks for them (and you!) Keep them posted both on your results and on the effectiveness of their support they’ve offered so far.

Show them the results of the steps you’ve taken… high and low. When your guest post gets published send them the link. When you get new subscribers or followers share that news with them. When you land your first big client share your excitement and the details with them.

Then – and this is key – show them the path of their support. Thank them for their support (in a memorable way. ;)) Then fine tune it for the future.

“This is one of those moments where I need a hug.”
“I need you to be really excited for this!”
“I need you to remind me why I’m doing this.”

Once they understand exactly how to support you, what happens when they do and the results of your work it becomes effortless to keep doing it.

Is your partner on board with your business? If they weren’t at first – how did you get them to take it seriously? I’d love to hear your stories in the comments!

P.S.  // cc

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8 blogger approved + endorsed articles just for you

internet
When I searched Etsy for internet-related items, the above print showed up, which I think is apropos.

Links I rounded up for you!

I haven’t used it myself, but I’ve been hearing great things about Asana “teamwork without email.” SIGN ME UP.

Should you repost your content on other sites? Could that hurt your SEO?

Real talk: there are very few short cuts to becoming successful, online or off. Stop asking me about your brand and start doing some work.
So this new quick hack of using social media and modern tech to build up your brand isn’t enough. It just isn’t. There is no substitute for honest hard work. You have to earn the privilege of building a “personal brand”, and the only way to do that is to actually execute.

Do you have a strategy for Pinterest? I super don’t. If you don’t either, let’s both read this.

I pay thousands every year in Paypal fees. Did you know if you switch to Paypal Business Payments you pay FIFTY CENT PER TRANSACTION? You could save hundreds or thousands of dollars a year!

Yup! An open letter to the lady who told me to look more “presentable”
Your worth, your expertise, your ability to succeed in LIFE and BUSINESS is not directly related to how pretty you are, where you live, how old you are, how much money you have, what your hair looks like, how many zits you have or how much you weigh.

It IS, however, DIRECTLY RELATED TO HOW MUCH OF A DAMN YOU GIVE ABOUT OTHER PEOPLE.

If you’ve ever equated your job to your value as a human, my friend Megan’s story will resonate with you. What happens after you get laid off from your dream job?

Do you have fake followers on Twitter and Instagram? (It’s okay – everyone does!) Get rid of ‘em.

And a few of my posts you might have missed: How to get more blog advertisers + 5 things to do before you launch your blog.

Have you read or written anything particularly great lately? Leave links in the comments!

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6 colorful, competitive blog post ideas to try now

blog post ideas
Oh, but it can be hard to come up with content day after day, year after year.

We can, of course, rely on the old standbys The Listicle and The How To. Goodness knows I do. Every once in a while it’s nice to try something completely new and different, but how does one even do that? Is there anything new on the internet?

I’d like to think so. In fact, I even have a feedly folder called “non-boring post inspiration.” Last summer I shared seven of my favorites and I’ve been squirreling away even more. Take a look!

1. Inspirational saying visual roundup

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Posted by: A little opulent
Why it works: We all love visuals and we love inspiring visuals even more. Each of these images is pin-able so this post is Pinterest catnip for well, just about everyone. If she wanted to be super strategic, Jen would also @mention the original creators on social media, so they could retweet the post if they wanted to.

Your spin on it: Could you collect inspiring quotes that relate to your topic? Quotes about business? Or travel? Or style? Or wellness? Make sure that you credit the original poster and add title tags to each image. (I actually used this idea last week!)

2. Imaginary conversations

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Posted by: Man repeller
Why it works: Imagined conversations and assigning human characteristics to non-human things are hilllllarious. In this case, Leandra imagines February is her totally annoying, unditchable friend. A funny, relatable blog post ensues.

Your spin on it: What conversations do you wish you could have? What would the inanimate objects in your field of expertise say? How would a conversation with your camera go? Your iphone? Your accounting software? Your WordPress site?

3. One room, three ways

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Posted by: Checks and spots
Why it works: We all love a good side by side comparison and each of these looks will appeal to a different reader. This was actually a sponsored post and I think Clare did a great job creating pretty, engaging, helpful content that worked for both readers and sponsor.

Your spin on it: What can you compare and contrast in your business? Two blog designs that are identical other than the colors? Two outfits that are similar except for the accessories? Several photographs with different filters?

4. Most memorable moments

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Posted by: Elise Joy
Why it works: It gives us insight into Elise’s day to day, something most blog readers love – at least I do! I  also like that Elise’s favorite moments are a mix of things we can all relate to (the extra hour of daylight savings), big, exciting moments (speaking in front of thousands), and stories she told in other blog posts (so she can link to them).

Your spin on it: Just write your own version! Of course, you could write it with a more business-related angle, but I bet your readers would like to learn a bit more about you as a human.

5. Goal-related link round up

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Posted by: Food 52
Why it works: Food 52 published this post on January 2nd, when we were all in the throes of resolution-making. They (very wisely) paired a fun, doable resolution to cook more and better with 20 archived posts. Smart, eh?

Your spin on it: Could you create a post that ties into common resolutions in your professional field? 10 social media resolutions + 10 of your archived posts that would be helpful. 10 style resolutions + 15 of your older posts that would help readers keep those resolutions. You get the idea!

 6. What’s in season? 

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Posted by: Cookie + Kate
Why it works: Kate’s post is super helpful for people (like me) who want to eat seasonally but will forget themselves and eat strawberries all year long. It’s also an opportunity to link to other bloggers’ related recipes and promote some of her own archived content.

Your spin on it: What’s seasonal in your business? Could you write a post highlighting the styles and trends that work in the spring? The cheapest travel destinations? Home improvement projects?

Have you seen (or written!) any particularly interesting blog posts? I’d love to see them! Share links in the comments.

photo by death to stock photo // cc

9 powerful, promising quotes your business will love

Has this ever happened to you?

You’re feeling all ‘should-y’ about your business or beleaguered by trolls or overwhelmed by juggling your day job + side hustle. So you talk (and talk and talk) with your friends and mentors about it and you feel somewhat better.

But not completely.

And then you see an inspirational quote on Twitter or a bumper sticker and allofasudden everything just slides into place and all is right with the world.

Yeah, that’s happened to me, too.

Why do those short, pithy quotes have such power over us? Why are they sometimes more effective than in-depth conversations? And where can I get a print of that quote to hang above my desk?

With that in mind, here are nine clever, succinct quotes that are helping me while I redesign Yes & Yes, plan a six-week road trip, and ghostwrite a book for a major publisher. And try to not lose my mind in the process.

(you can click on each of these and pin them if you have an inspiration board!)

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1c15cb2a5bc6374d61efcfd5333e777ac570159287276f88c7fbba5621dd9706fe21abb68f3727890143ded47953fc210c3f907116426742e593abd28e386b2ddreams
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What are your go-to quotes in times of stress? I’d love to hear them – leave them in the comments!

sources: 1 / 2 / 3 / 4 / 5 / 6 / 7 / 8 /

3 Things Clients Want In Their Dream VA

Susan Drumm spent over a decade teaching companies like L’Oreal, Viacom and Conde Nast how to lead their teams towards multi-million dollar growth. Now she uses those same skills to help entrepreneurs grow their businesses to seven figure success. Your success as an entrepreneur depends on your ability to hire, inspire and lead team. Get her free ebook on hiring your dream VA here

hire right

So you finally (finally!) feel like you’re getting this whole ‘self employment’ thing figured out. You can attend holiday dinners and discuss work with Nosy Aunt Ellen … and she might even understand what you do! You’ve got a nice roster of clients, a healthy profit margin, you’re even booked out a few months into the future. This is me, raising my glass to you.

What you don’t have a lot of?
Time.
Breathing space.
Wonderfully unscheduled afternoons for spontaneous coffee dates and reading in the park.

You need a virtual assistant.

I’ve helped hundreds of executives build sales-making, profit-multiplying, freetime-increasing teams, so I know a thing or three about hiring right.

If you’re ready to hire your first assistant – this post is for you.
If you’re interested in becoming a VA – this post is also for you!

Of course, every client and every job is different, but here are three things that will keep just about any client happy and just about any VA steadily booked.

1. Timely and honest communication

For clients
When you send your VA an email filled with instructions and tasks and a huge attachment, you want to make sure they actually, you know, received that email. You also want to know if they understood your request, have any follow up questions, or hit a snag.

When you’re interviewing candidates, rather than asking them how long it usually takes to respond to emails, ask them a more open ended question, like “what do you do when you receive an assignment?” and see what answer they volunteer. Do they mention that they confirm receipt and ask questions within 12 – 24 hours? You’ll get a more honest answer because they don’t know specifically what you are looking for and are more likely to tell you their true process/behavior. Follow up by asking them  what they’d do if a project was taking longer than they expected.

For VAs
Most clients will expect you to respond to their emails on the same day they send them (unless they send it after business hours.) Some clients don’t care – make sure you figure out which type your client is. If nothing else, most clients appreciate a “got it!” email with follow up questions in the next day or two.

Similarly, some clients would prefer that you spend an hour Googling a solution rather than asking them for help. Some want to know the minute you have a question. During your interview, ask your potential client about their communication ‘pet peeves.’

2. A basic grasp of 2-3 social media platforms and scheduling tools

For clients
Unless your business is completely offline, you’re probably on social media and you’re probably sick of spending hours writing tweets. You probably won’t find a VA who’s a bona fide expert in Facebook AND Twitter AND Pinterest AND Instagram AND Youtube (and if you do, they’ll probably be really expensive). It is, however, reasonable to expect your VA to have a good working knowledge of two or three platforms. They should understand how to schedule updates on those platforms and know some best practices associated with them.

For VAs
If you’re only proficient in Facebook, take some time to learn at least one other platform and definitely learn Hootsuite, Buffer, or Tweetdeck. If you’ve done social media work in the past, pull your analytics (average clicks per tweet, how much you grew a client’s profile, etc) and include that information in your resume.

3. A willingness to learn (like, really)

For clients
We all say we want to hire people who express a “willingness to learn” but when you’re working online it’s particularly important. Five years ago, Instagram wasn’t even a thing and seven years ago, blogging was a totally different animal. You’ll probably need your VA to learn new platforms and acquire skills that don’t even exist right now! When you’re interviewing VAs, ask them about the skills that they’ve learned in the last six months and what skills they plan to develop over the next six months? This way you’ll get a specific answer and get a good idea of where they’re all with these newly-acquired skills.

For VAs
Show potential clients that you’re serious about learning and improving; take classes, read trade journals and websites. Find a way to work this information about yourself into your interview!

The right VA (or the right client) can totally change your career. Hopefully, these tips will help you get a bit closer to finding one!

Have your ever hired a VA? Or worked as one? In the comments, I’d love to hear how you found your VA or your client!

Edited to add: this post was originally titled ‘3 things bosses look for in their dream VA’ but as many commenters validly pointed out, the relationship is much more client/vendor than boss/employee. Susan and I apologize for the ruffled feathers!

photo by jeff sheldon // via unsplash // cc

What to do when you feel ‘should-y’ about your business

what should i do with my business

I wish I could begin this post by telling you that I’m a human who is immune to jealousy, self-doubt, or second thoughts.

When I see someone with less experience than me charging twice my rates, I think “Cheers to them for having that much chutzpah!”

When I see someone launch a wildly successful online course in my own area of expertise I meditate on the ‘There’s enough success for everyone’ mantra and send them a congratulatory email.

When I read about creating a scale-able business or leading a mastermind group or creating in-depth, hands-on ecourses, I calmly think “That’s not for me.” AND THEN I NEVER THINK ABOUT IT AGAIN.

Just to be clear, none of the above statements are true.  

Like everyone else ever, I want my business to thrive. I read lots of business and blogging books and do my best to implement the tips that are the right fit for me + my business. I try my hardest to make decisions that will support a day-to-day life that looks and feels the way I want.

And yet.

That doesn’t stop me from struggling with ye olde “I see what they’re doing and it’s bringing them a lot of success and I know I could do it to and be good at it, I totally don’t want to do it but I know I theoretically could do it” neuroses.*

If you’ve never encountered this feeling – you are an amazing human and I’d like to be your friend.

If you have encountered it, you know what it looks like and how it feels.

It’s thinking you should publish new blog posts every day – even if you don’t like writing.

It’s thinking you should attend tons of conferences – even if you’re introverted, hate traveling, and have made tons of friends on Twitter.

It’s thinking you should launch a mastermind group – even if you prefer one-on-one client work and hate managing logistics.

If this sounds familiar, welcome to the club. I brought a cheese plate.

I brought this conundrum to my friend Laura and if it’s possible to cure someone of The Shoulds, I think she did.

Laura wisely pointed out that when we come down with a case of The Shoulds, we’re usually enamored of someone’s end result:  30,000 Instagram followers, a six-figure income, a book deal, a partnership with the big-name brand.

If you’re struggling with Shoulds (particularly Shoulds you know aren’t right for your) simply direct your gaze a few feet to the left, adjust your focus, and imagine the behind-the-scenes and day-to-day that went into creating those end results. Would you want to do the things necessary to get them?

Feel like you should be chasing a book deal? 
Imagine the weeks (or months!) that go into crafting the perfect proposal. Now imagine piles of unanswered queries or template rejection letters. Imagine getting your book deal and realizing that your hourly rate for this book would break down to about $2.

Feel like you should be creating an app like I did
Imagine 7 gajillion emails between your developer, you, and your designer and imagine you don’t understand the technical language in most of those emails. Imagine writing hundreds of short, inspiring snippets till your internal well runs so dry you look around your office thinking “Today, say yes to …. potted plants. calendars. lamp.”

Feel like you should be curating a beautiful, branded Instagram feed?
Imagine having a heart-to-heart conversation with a friend and stopping her mid-sentence so you can take a photo of your steaming soup. Imagine taking a sweet, meaningful photo of your travels but feeling like you can’t post it because the colors clash with your branding. Imagine strangers making snide comments about your hair/dog/choice of bedding.

I would never, ever dissuade you from going after something you truly want, something you know – in the marrow of your bones – is right for you. And the day-to-day reality of chasing any goal – even those we’re really excited about – is rarely glamorous.

But if you’re struggling to get past those should-y suggestions that leave you cold, take a minute to consider all the hard work you’d have to put into pursuing something you don’t even want.

Cured? Me, too.

Do you struggle with The Shoulds? I really feel like I ‘should’ be creating a course or a group offering, that I’m losing money by only offering one-on-one work. But I like one-on-one work! I don’t want to lead group calls or manage a Facebook group. What ‘shoulds’ are wrong for you? 

* Catchy name for a neuroses, right?

photo by Mike Lewinski // cc

7 things your business requests that you read, post haste.

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This Instagram pillow is adorable. Are we friends over there?

If you’re a blogger who offers sponsorship spots, this post is helpful and insightful.
The main thing I keep in mind with sponsorship is that, as a blogger, I have a responsibility to readers to remember that I’m vouching for each person whose blog I share. If I begin to share people and products who aren’t a good fit, the trust that I’ve established with readers begins to crack. I’ll stop being a source for quality posts and recommendations and risk losing readers’ interest and support.

Could changing your password change your life?

More life-changing happening in this post: The one simple habit that changed my entire business and life

Reading too many lifestyle blogs almost prevented Kyla from making money online. Are you struggling with the same thing?
By building on what my audience responded to I built a craft and lifestyle blog that got 40-50 comments per post, around 2000 views a day, monthly advertisers, and was publishing five days a week. Sounds successful, right? As a blog reader, I would have thought it was a booming, successful blog. At the time I was thrilled. But was also never going to make me a living.

Everything Quicksprout publishes is ridiculously helpful. This post about content creation strategies is no exception.

Yup. Your blog is your resume.

You’ve probably already read this. I have. I feel like I need to read it once a week for the rest of my life.
You Are Here: Blogging Advice.
Over and over, women sat down in front of my table – weary eyes with a single, fading spark – and said, “I want to be here, at X, but I just heard that I should be arriving here, at Y. What do you think?”
Run from the Y, I’d say. Run far, and fast, in the opposite direction of the should. Because the should – the Y – is a path that is not yours. It is a path for someone else, a path that very likely offers reward, but it is not your own. You found your own when you said “I want to be here, at X,” and isn’t that half the battle?

And a few posts you might have missed: How to create a style guide for your blog + 4 ways to reboot your business after a break. 

If you’ve recently read or written anything particularly helpful, leave links in the comments!

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What should I blog about? (Disclaimer: this is not a copy-and-paste list)

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Have you already read a million blog posts about blog posts? Copy and paste, SEO-friendly lists of ideas?

Me, too. Here are three good, helpful posts like that:
32 of the most popular blog post ideas
New year blog post ideas
70+ ideas for any blog’s editorial calendar

This post will not give you copy and paste titles. This is not where I suggest starting a meme-worthy post series like “what’s in your purse?”
(Not because I don’t want to know what’s in your purse because I totally do. What’s your stance on those round chapstick ball things?)

These are more start-of-the-brainstorming-session, open-to-your-interpretation suggestions. They’re a great place to start when you’re sitting down to plan out next month’s content.

With that said, here are five questions to ask yourself when you’re filling in that editorial calendar.

Am I working on any projects or offerings that I want to build buzz for? Can I give my readers a sneak peek of any upcoming stuff?
If you’re working on a brunch cookbook, write a post about the magic of brunch, link to your favorite brunchy recipes, tell people you’re working on the book, and tell them they can join your list so they’ll be the first to know when it comes out.

If you’re writing an ebook about getting over a break up, share a story about one of your breakups, what you learned from it, tell readers what you’re working on, and invite them to join your list. You get the idea!

Am I trying to grow my Twitter/Instagram/Pinterest followers this month?
Think about what you can write that pairs nicely with each of those platforms. If you’re trying to grow your Instagram following, do a roundup of Instagrammers you think people should follow (Kaelah does a nice job of this). @mention them so they know you’re talking about them and remind your readers that they can follow you.

If you’re trying to grow your Pinterest following, create content that relates to some of your best, most popular boards. Tell readers if they like this, then they’ll really love your Pinterest board on the same topic. (P.S. I have a whole board of blogging tips.) 

Is there anything happening this time of year that’s particularly important to my readers and clients?
Do your readers care that it’s tax season? That it’s New York Fashion Week? The shoulder travel season in Europe? Chinese New Year?

Think about the events that matter to your people and write content that helps them prepare and enjoy those events. During college graduation season I wrote about how to be a grown-ass woman and during the holiday shopping season I wrote about how to prepare your shop for a deluge of sales and customers.

Have there been any Big Deal developments in my industry or community that I should talk about?
What does it mean for your clients and readers when Facebook changes their policies? When gay marriage becomes legal? When there’s a polar vortex? When Apple releases a new phone? When New York makes Airbnb illegal?

I’m sure you stay up to date on the news and big developments in your industry and I’m sure you’ve got capital O Opinions. Share those with your readers! And if the developments are challenging or troubling, share any ideas about how to deal with them.

Have there been any big changes (good or bad, big or small) in my life that lead to epiphanies that would help my readers + clients?
Of course, if you blog exclusively about food it might be a bit weird to blog about your cat-ownership realizations. But most epiphanies aren’t industry-specific! I mean, I wrote about the business lessons I learned from creating a cat calendar.

Readers love to learn more about you and your life; they’ll probably enjoy hearing more about you while learning something useful.

What do you do when you’re drawing a blog post inspiration blank? I’d love to hear your solutions in the comments!

P.S. These are the questions I ask my clients for my new Blog In A Box offering. I’ve actually quietly been offering this for four months but it’s been so successful I only just now had the time to write the sales page!

photo via death to stock photo // cc

How To Host Your First Workshop

This post comes to us via Lauren Caselli,  a retreat and conference planner who works with creative entrepreneurs that want to get out from behind their computer screen and in front of their dream clients LIVE. If you want to host an event in 2015, she can help kickstart your planning process. Looking for some event-spiration? Follow along on Twitter and Instagram.

host-your-first-workshop
Hosting a workshop is a lot like hosting a well-planned dinner party. You want to get together with a heap of your best client pals, talk about The Things That You’re All Really Good At and Love to Do, and encourage each other on ways to become even better at your business and life.

But it all seems so overwhelming. Where do I start? Do I pick a date and then a space? How to I set up my agenda?

First things first.

Decide on your ‘Take Home’ idea

This is the most important step, and it’s the one that will set the tone for the rest of your event as well as the agenda.

Wanting your attendees to go home having set up their online mailing lists and gained each other as subscribers? You’ll probably want a creative studio with ample projection solutions, and WiFi to keep everyone working all day long.

Teaching a photography + styling workshop to brand-new photographers? You’ll want an open airy loft with lots of light, and lots of space to set different styling scenarios.

Hosting a mastermind style workshop where everyone gets to know each other’s businesses intimately? Think about a cozy hotel space or an inviting yoga studio during off hours.

Search for a venue

This is my super secret trick for finding unique, budget-friendly venues:

Google ‘Event Space + (your city)’. Google ‘Coworking Space + (your city)’ and see if they offer event rentals on weekends. Google ‘Best wedding venues + (your city)’.

(That last one is actually so I can get a list of hotels or unexpected venues that have ballrooms that might also have small, funky conference-style spaces).

I also always check out Evenues or Air BnB to see if those spaces are cheaper (and if your event isn’t going to be huge).

Once you get the venue sussed, you can set a date and start selling tickets!

Sort your budget

Once you’ve got your venue picked, you can suss your pricing structure. If the venue includes tables, chairs, and audio visual, I’d say that should be about 50% – 60% of your budget. Other things to make decisions on are:

Food: If people are there for longer than 2 hours, give ‘em a snack and some coffee. Longer than 4? Lunch would be so nice!

Swag: Treat your guests like gold with a little goody bag! Either use it as a way to brand yourself with pens, mugs (especially if you’re serving coffee at your event), a journal, and something pretty like a motivational art print or your favorite industry magazine.

(PRO TIP: You can also reach out to your community to see if they’d contribute swag as a form of sponsorship!)

Decor: If budget allows (and you’re up for it), a few fresh blooms in some mason jars are an instant space spiffer-upper. If the tables you’re using need a covering, consider renting or buying white table linens to make the space look clean and neat.

Host your event

Pretend you’re in school (but way more fun!). Take breaks often (every 60 minutes – 1.5 hours), leave plenty of space for chit chat, and don’t get too overwhelmed if people are asking more questions than you anticipated. It’s all a part of the process!

I highly recommend bringing a Hype Girl, aka a trusted friend who is a tiny bit Type A to help check people in when they arrive, call the space manager if the projector blows a bulb, and set out lunch for your guests while you’re wrapping up the morning session.

Have you ever hosted an event or workshop? I’d love to hear your tips in the comments!

P.S. How to blend the personal with the professional and How to get your customers to gossip about you.

photo by Juhan Sonin // cc

8 Things Your Business Wants You To Read

 

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Guys! I rounded up the best of the internet for you! Also, this awesome internet cat poster

Want to write an ebook? Here’s a 16-part (!) blog post series on just that – from writing to distribution to marketing. I’ve written three ebooks and now I realize how much more I could have done!

Related: an incredibly helpful post from Anna Watson who printed + published her own cookbook AND did a book tour AND all the promotion!
I reached out to the marketing department at Volkswagen on a whim, to see if they would be up for lending me a car for the trip. Amazingly, they said yes, and lent me a brand new silver Beetle Coupe. It was such a fun car to drive, and they let me just drop it off at LAX when I flew to Seattle. (I then flew back to NYC.) The whole trip lasted just under one month.

To help cover food costs, I reached out to Whole Foods (again, cold-calling the marketing department) and they agreed to cover the food and wine costs of the trip. GoPro also gave me a camera to document the trip – we got great footage, but I still have to learn to edit it so I can share it on my

Kyla rounds up a bunch of super helpful platforms and tools to help make your online business run more smoothly. I hadn’t heard of lots of these!

12 ways to get more people reading & sharing your blog from my girl Alex.

Do you have an auto-responder series?  It’s about half way down my internet to-do list. Here’s how to do it when we’re ready.

BOOKMARKBOOKMARKBOOKMARK. 23 Phrases Every Stressed Out, Strung Out, Well-Meaning (Yet Irritable) Business Owner Needs to Memorize TODAY.

“Though my hands are tied on this one, here’s what I can do:____________.”

“As a courtesy, I wanted to go ahead and send over my new rates for your records. (It’s such a blessing to be in demand.)”

“Thank you for the note, and the much-appreciated explanation regarding your position. Now let me help you understand a little bit about mine.”

Want to stay healthy while staring at a screen all day? These six stretches will help.

A cute home office is a productive home office, right? Here are 23 brilliant ideas to decorate and organize yours.

A couple posts you might have missed: 20 minutes to a (much) better business and Using Twitter lists for fame and fortune (or, you know, time-effective networking)

If you read/found/wrote anything awesome lately, leave the links in the comments!