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  1. If you want to experience success you need to focus on where you aim. A good shot is someone who reviews and adjusts their aim constantly.  <blog_break>

    This piece of art is from Kettle Courtyard that you can find HERE on Etsy 

    Back to your aim, do you know exactly what you are aiming for?

    I think this can be really hard to get specific about your aims and targets. Your desires and aspirations are important and it can sometimes be hard to put the emotional side of how you want to feel into words. It takes time for reflection and examining where you are now and where you would ove to be. Maybe you have grown up not to expect every thing you want. 
    Remember being told "I want never gets" ? It can lead to feeling like you dare not decide or say what you really want or else it will never happen.

    You can get past this stage, you really can. Let's do it together.

  2. engaged!

    As part of my work with other businesses I spend a lot of time on social media. It is such a wonderful resource for the small business, to help them spread the word about their wonderful products. 

    For me social media is away a small business can be suddenly visible in a mass market world. So I have as passion for seeing small businesses use it to the best without spending their whole life posting.

    This last week I have seen far to many post from small businesses which just send their tribe to somewhere else, someone elses website! No it is true, people are posting links to other people website. Now I don't mind the sharing kind of post where people spread the word about another small business and maybe get a reciprocal mention. I mean the  post where I sent off to some big website somewhere else often selling the same product as the person that posted.

    Posting on social media can eat your time, but I would say you are better to post less often and post something that sends people to YOUR website than post everyday a post that does not serve you. 

    If you are finding this hard get some help. I am happy to help you create a content stream that sends people where YOU want the to go!

  3. I know my husband, my son, my postman, my optician are not people who are likely to buy my stamps. This is just the same as being at a business network. But they say the average person knows a 100 people. So every person you meet every day know a hundred other people who might buy what you sell.

    So am I saying every person you meet has to understand the minutest detail of what you do? of course not, but would be great if they know what you do in general terms and know how to contact you, have you made that easy?  

    I wrote the above post several years ago, but it is still true today. How can you make it easy for people to refer their friends to you. Do you always have business cards with you? on your personal Facebook page are you listed as working at your business page so people can click through easily? 

    Each person you meet every day may know someone who needs your help. On Saturday I was doing a quick dash for food in my local supermarket before going to a Macmillian Coffee morning. As I came out of the store I walked into a lovely group of people setting up a stand for  local support group for people with diabetes, I stopped to pick up some information and wondered why I didn't know all this when I was diagnosed. I came home and looked at their flyer, it wasn't brilliant. I put the food away with my son and we decided I could very quickly use the same words that they had used and just present them a whole lot better. So I went up to my office and did just that. I printed a 200 copies and trimmed them up, packed them in a box and took them back to the lovely man who had spoken to me earlier in the day. I had a buisness card for him so that he can ask me next time he needs a flyer. I am happy to donate a little time doing what I do daily to help a local group who are trying to support so many people. Watch this space because I am going to be shouting more about this group. Who could you easily help with your skills

  4. I know many of you struggle with the design side of your brnad. You know your brand values and your vision for the future, you know what colours you love but translate that into a visual website or product packaging and it starts to get more complicated. You love your business and you want to stay in control. 

    One option is to employ some one to help you translate what is in your head to a formal brand brief you can shar ewith your web designer and other professionals. If that appeal cheack out Vicki Nicholson at Branding therapy or Sally Roydhouse at Wicked Poppy Designs.

    If you, like me want to be more in control you may want to sign up to study with a professional like Vicky  or Sally. I have spent time with Sally and that really helped me with Oak House Studio. When I started to work on The Sparkling Business Club I wanted to go back to first principles, and as often happens in my life, Vicki, who I would have dreamed of working, with launch her wonderful Beautiful Brand Bootcamp I didn't hesitate this was a like a dream offer. I have never wanted to hand my brand over to an expert but I did need help.

    There's so much content to the course, but Vicki makes it so easy to follow and explains it all in a fun way.

    Vicki is so helpful, always on hand in our Facebook group and has given me lots of inspiration I can't wait to do more with it. 

    So, if you're looking to create your own brand, up your design skills and do it with a designer to check things over and give you hints and tips as you go, then go check this out. 







  5. For many years now I have been helping other women with their business. Not everyone has my years of history in a small business. I was born in to it. So as a small child when you you were possibly say in the kitchen with your Mum watching her cook, I was sat in a shop whatching my Mum buy and sell. It is little wonder it all comes so naturally to me. 

    My Mum was one of those wome who had taken on the mantle of work during the war, she went on to work in childrens homes until she married when she started to run. She was unusual for her age, she drove, she went out on her own and she knew how to make things happen. It made my mind set such that I knew I could make things happen.

    I have watched many capable women with huge passions struggle with the small stuff that happen every day in their business. I have thought for some time I wanted to help them more than I was managing to do part time. I have now committed to that for my main activity for the foreseeable future. 

    So if you are stuggling with social media and all the other things you need to fit into running a business to be visible, get in touch, maybe I can take the stress out of all that plate spinning.


  6. One of the things that I find has made huge diffrences in my buisinesses has been when I have been on the ball with planning ahead with my marketing. It is easy to forget how far ahead you need to think about marketing. 

    As I move into this new phase of my life I have turned to two great ladies I have followed for some years. 
    One is Sophie Jewry from Ladies that Plan and the other Claire Mitchell from The Girls mean Business. Both produce planners and both run Facebook groups. Both will help you with your planning for next year. 

    With all things planners you need to find what works for you and your business. 

    Check them out for yourself Sophie at Ladies That Plan

    or Claire at The Girls Mean Business 



  7. What are you going to do in 2017?

    As we approach the end of the year it is a natural time to reflect and plan.

    2017 sees Hull being the City of Culture and so many around me have big pans for the year. But will 2017 be your year to shine?

    Life at Oak House Studio starts to go quiet towards the end of November and I begin to plan next years designs, something else I have been doing in recent years is using fabulous workbook from the equally fabulous Leonie Dawson. They help me reflect and look forward.


    Designed for women who love to be creative and they really will make you think outside the box. Leonie does a life workbook and a business workbook.