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SDH167: Trusting Your Intuition & Going for It with Sarah Ashley Schiear, Founder of Salt House Mkt

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How do you plan on submersing your audience with your brand? Is that even on the agenda?

When today's guest, Sarah Schiear, first started the e-commerce site Salt House Market in 2014, all she knew was that she loved throwing dinner parties and wanted to sell custom designed aprons. Now, Salt House Market includes kitchen and home products like fondue sets, cookware, coffee tables, stools, chandeliers, and so much more! Plus it acts as a lifestyle guide featuring cooking recipes like Coconut Eggnog Brulee French Toast and Sarah's morning coffee. Also, she has tips on entertaining with how-to's on throwing, 'The Ultimate Rose Dinner Party' and a 'DIY Soba Noodle Bar' party.

Her newest business venture includes translating her website into a brick-and-mortar store, but she desires to still include the site's interactive and lifestyle elements. Her plan is for her store to be a hybrid of a retail store, concept studio, and event space so it can connect consumers to influencers and brands. She plans to do so with in-house cooking classes, multiple demo sites, events centered around influencers in the home and food realm, and anything else that gives consumers a richer shopping experience and tells the stories behind brands and products.

Sarah's love for the food and entertainment industry began when she graduated college and started cooking for her then boyfriend and hosting dinner parties. Ignited by her innovative recipes, her friends and peers wanted to know how she put them to together and managed these large home events. She soon started a food blog that showcased these recipes and featured how-to videos on YouTube.

What took her to the next level in her food career was when she decided to apply for the ABC show, the Taste. The show was a cooking competition that had cooks across various experience levels proving who could cook the best tasting food. Sarah made it to third place in the finale, and from that experience, she learned how to work in a professional kitchen and where the food industry could take her.

From there, she opened a pop-up restaurant in New York with a fellow contestant that combined fine dining with a relaxed dinner party atmosphere. The restaurant was a success and through a contact of her partner's, she landed a job as a caterer for the Olson twins for various events, amongst other A-list clients.

Relax, and let Sarah tell you all about where she sees Salt House Market going in the future and how it all came to be!

In this episode you will...

  • Learn how to grow an e-commerce business
  • Know which area of your market fits you the most and how you could combine some fields with your brand
  • Figure out how to transition your brand from an e-commerce site to a brick and mortar
  • Learn to trust your gut and not be influenced by others
  • Understand how to balance and prioritize your ideas if you are a creative person
  • Find out how to allocate your energy so you don't wear yourself down


INSIGHTS

"Everybody's got opinions..[but] nobody actually knows anything. This is mostly true if you're doing something that is obviously new and never existed...Yes, these people can give you great advice. Yes, there's many things to learn from their breadth of experience...[but] the fake it 'til you make it is very much a thing." -Sarah Schiear

"If you're a creative or someone who's an idea person...you kind of have to say, these ideas are great and just because I'm not doing this one right now doesn't mean it's never going to happen...stick it in your idea parking lot for another time and just [be] really diligent about that." -Sarah Schiear

"If you happen to be an over achiever...which is great because you love what you do and you're passionate about it so it doesn't feel like work...then it's really easy to try and do too many things at once....you don't realize how much energy goes into all that stuff." -Sarah Schiear

RESOURCES

Sarah Ashley Schiear LinkedIn

Salt House Market Website

Salt House Market Facebook

Salt House Market Instagram

Salt House Market Twitter

The Alchemist by Paul Coalhoe

A Return to Love by Marianne Williamson

 

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SDH166: How to Find Your Brand's Voice and Aesthetic with Tracy Nour, Founder of She Just Knows

How do you cultivate a significant following for your social media? Are you spreading yourself too thin across platforms? Is the quality in your posts showing so? Is the message and aesthetic across your account consistent?

Tracy Nour, founder of She Just Knows, takes all of this off of fashion brands and budding entrepreneurs hands with her social media managing business.  Her services range across all social media platforms, but her specialty is posting and engaging audiences on Instagram.

She said a common mistake that a lot of brands make is having multiple social media platforms, because a lot of brand's are taught that they need to be accessible at every point of contact. By doing so, Tracy said she sees the content depreciating, and useless platforms that don't match a brand's objective and are empty. She said a brand should find a social media platform that reaches their audience quickly, effectively, and in the most visually stimulating way. Right now, she said Instagram is the best way for brand's to share their products and for entrepreneurs to showcase themselves.

Once a brand has landed on their key social media accounts, she said they should do their research on the voice of their target follower and consumer, and replicate that with their posts, aesthetics, and images. After that's been determined, they should choose one person to be in charge of a social media account. This allows a brand to create a consistent voice, because followers can tell differences in writing styles.

Next is developing a cohesive photo style, especially if a brand has chosen Instagram as a platform. She first asks her clients to send her the links to five other brand's social media accounts that they like and carry similar products. She then tries to replicate their photos using a combination of their aesthetics to see what fits her client's brand and if it makes their products look appealing.

When using filters for your photos, she said to avoid using Instagram's filters, andto use an outside program, like VSCO instead. Instagram filters lower the resolution on what could have been a clear photo, and makes photos look cheesy.

 Tracy also said to only choose one filter and use it for all of your photos with minor adjustments to brightness and contrast. This allows a brand's photo to not look so edited and create a cohesive account. By practicing this, she said that it creates a signature look and feel as well, and allows followers to know an image belongs to a specific brand without them even seeing the name.

After all these steps have been taken, the most important thing for a brand to do is to keep up with their posting. Tracy said this is key to stimulating engagement and should ideally be done once a day. Brand's should also open their posts up for comments to create interaction amongst followers.

Along with handling other brand's social media accounts, she has developed herself into a fashion influencer with her own social media. Once a month, she posts a trend forecaster featuring her knowledge on the retail fields of home, beauty, and fashion.

Get cozy and listen to more about how Tracy ended up as social media manager, and other tips to cultivating a significant social media following!

In this episode you will...

  • Learn how to tailor you business venture based off of of the needs of your market
  • Find out how to stimulate engagement with you social media account
  • Know how to choose and use filters for your Instagram pictures
  • Figure out what social media accounts work best for your business and only nourish a few of them
  • Understand how to create a consistant voice and cohesive aethetic with your social media platforms
  • Know what organization methods and work tactics suit your business the best

INSIGHTS

"You could have a really good idea but if nobody is doing it or wants it, it doesn't really matter. You have to listen to the feedback that you're getting." - Tracy Nour

"I think that it's important to treat people with respect and to not forget that everybody is still figuring stuff out...most people want to help and I want to help others also." -Tracy Nour

"[Keep] doors open...and be confident in what you do...The more confident you are in talking about what you do, people aren't going to question you." -Tracy Nour

"I think you have to be really postive in your own head and not let yourself get down about mishaps and setbacks that happen in your business." -Tracy Nour

RESOURCES

She Just Knows Website

Tracy Nour LinkedIn

She Just Knows Instagram

She Just Knows Facebook

She Just Knows Pinterest

VSCO

The Universe has your Back by Gabrielle Bernstein

The Game of Life and How to Play it by Florence Scovel Shin

GIVEAWAY ALERT

We are giving away two products from LaBellaFigura! All you have to do is sign-up for our weekly newsletter - we send them ONLY twice a week (Wednesday's blog post and Friday's Weekly RoundUp)

Giveaway runs from 12:00am Monday, June 19th - 11:59pm, Friday, June 23rd.

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SDH165: How to Stop Getting Ready to Get Ready and Just Start with Shayna Rattler

As a growing business, it goes without saying that you need funds to do so. But how do you gain sponsors? Better yet, how do gain corporate sponsors? Is your business even attractive to corporate sponsors? What does that entail?

Well Shayna Rattler has the answers to all of those questions with her business, Corporate Attraction, where she coaches businesses on how to land corporate sponsors and teaches business owners how to be productive, effective, and efficient.

When Corporate Attraction started in 2009, her clientele consisted of individual buyers and small businesses. Unfortunately, she found that her services and products weren't in their price range. This caused her business to start sinking and she found herself on the verge of foreclosure on her home and almost having to file bankruptcy.

However, Shayna didn't consider quitting her business as an option and instead shifted her customer base. She decided to market towards management and corporations because they had the money to pay her. The only problem was that there was no one to tell her how to take on such a task; but Shayna figured it out on her own through trial and error.

She developed a three step system to attracting corporate sponsors: Position, Package and Pitch.

The first step has to do with determining your company and brand's position in the marketplace. If your presence isn't known, a corporation won't care about your proposal or sales script.

She evaluates your position and determines your company's package through a 360 Degree Activation assessment. This consists of finding all the ways online and offline you're engaging your target market throughout the year, and how you are able to package these platforms for a corporation's access and profitability. If you are able to show corporations how many ways you are able to market their business, and your status in those platforms, you are seen as a more attractive candidate.

If you want to reach out to a corporation, she suggests you find the person in charge of the department that correlates to the direction of your business and reach out to them. In that initial contact, you should let them know you have noticed the audience they've been trying to reach, you have access to that audience and their trust, and you connect with them in unique and successful ways.  Then simply suggest that you should "support one another" and leave discussion of a partnership for when it's been decided that this is a fruitful collaboration.

This aspect is extremely powerful because Influencer Marketing has become the best way to advertise and reach consumers in this new generation. If you show that you have access to their target audience and that the audience trusts what you tell them it let's corporations know that consumer is more likely to buy from them based on your recommendation. Also, you can give them direct access and engagement to this audience.

Get comfortable and soak up as much as Shayna Rattler has to say about obtaining corporate dollars in today's episode!

In this episode you will...

  • Know if changing your target customer will change the success of your business
  • Learn how to establish yourself in a marketplace to create a notable presence
  • Figure out how to increase the visibility of your brand in order to appear more attractive to corporate sponsors
  • Find a price point that reflects your quality of service and demands that your business be taken seriously
  • Understand how to build a personal relationship with someone in a corporation you'd like to sponsor your business
  • Know how to make your clients feel special and set your business to a higher standard

INSIGHTS

"I really just became committed to how [I would] teach other small business owners, especially women, [on] how to change the trajectory of their businesses in their lives by going after those big boys who have those big checks." -Shayna Rattler

"You can actually reach out to people that are in your backyard tomorrow...that's still going to be a revenue stream that you didn't have access to and give you the confidence and the past performance to go after the Coca-Colas in six to nine months" -Shayna Rattler

"Don't worry about your proposal and your deck until you know that this is a sound business case to be made...stop proposing products and services and solutions until people tell you what they want and need" -Shayna Rattler

"As women we need to stop telling ourselves that we're too small...that we haven't been in business long enough, we don't have it all figured out. So what, just start. Stop getting ready to get ready and just start." -Shayna Rattler

"The biggest thing I have learned in my eight years is that I have to keep going even when I don't feel like it and even though what I know I've been promised and what I know is possible is not actually evidence that I see right now." -Shayna Rattler

RESOURCES

Corporate Attraction's Website

Corporate Attraction Facebook

Shayna Rattler Twitter

Shayna Rattler LinkedIn

Yes Magnet by Shayna Rattler

SPIN Selling by Neil Rackham

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