What’s My Why

What is it that I love to do, that makes time disappear? How did I find and harness my passion? What creative ways can I think of to monetise it online? I made a long list of all the activities that I love to do. Then I explored each one. People engage in diverse hobbies and interests. It could literally be starring me in the face and I wouldn’t even know it! I needed to find that niche.

Taking the time to clarify what you want to achieve imprints positive imagery into your subconscious in order to kick some serious butt and make it happen. Here’s some of the things I’ve identified that I love to do.

  • Write high quality content and design crisp clean images for social media accounts, blogs and websites, maintaining a consistent element focus across all touch points. Do not deviate from your business focus, no matter how tempting.
  • Encourage community input to reap the benefits of including everyone in the process.
  • Instil pride and encouragement into the team I work with.
  • Help businesses strategize marketing plans and assist in their implementation.
  • Develop good data collection processes and provide useful data cleansing services.
  • Implement database marketing methods and use them effectively to engage authentically with each audience member.
  • Work with other business service providers to form a collective alliance, collaborate for the benefit of everyone.
  • Make myself available, feel useful and appreciated,
  • Develop multiple lines of income via retail, tourism and industry.

My story is complex and like a roller coaster ride, with many ups and downs, emotions and experiences. As a teenager, I knew everything…of course. I was a nerdy student who took 3 units of economics and worked in a family business in her spare time. By the time I was in Business School at University I had developed a computerised inventory system using a database program. This might not sound like much, but we’re back in 1984 remember.

After University, I took a trip overseas to Canada and lived and worked in Whistler. This was the best time of my life. I was free in an atmosphere of vibrance, freshness and vigour. I felt alive and in awe of the beauty of the mountains. Forever wishing I’d never left.

By 31, I was a married mother of 3 girls and running a successful 3rd generation family business, awarded for excellent customer service and record sales within the industry. I endured nine store relocations and futile negotiation drama with large corporations, and whilst I am proud of my achievements and efforts, it was all in vain. There are many lessons I have learned, and things I would do differently had I the opportunity.

Personal assets and material things came and went. I suffered depression, melanoma and breast cancer in the years to follow. Some of which I still manage today. In my down time, I read, read, read. I take in over thirty business books each year and enrol in courses, attend workshops and have always been learning, knowing one day I would find my passion.

I choose not to look back, only forward. Looking back only does my head in! I promise authenticity always, and make no apologies for my weaknesses, as they are what makes me stronger in the end. Did I also mention I’m deaf? Yes, I struggle everyday to maintain a level of concentration most people don’t need to attain. That’s probably why I prefer to communicate online or with the written word, I have much more confidence and control over those situations.

I started an Instagram page early in 2016, and made a decision to change my life. I need to be surrounded by my tribe. Those of us who find great strength in being in the mountains, facing life everyday with gusto and determination, happiness and purpose. My page has expanded to other social platforms now, and it makes me happy. My decision to live and breathe mountain air has changed my life.


Social Media Mistakes

Dos and Don’ts of Social Media

Ignoring comments vs being authentic and real.

To ignore comments is to ignore your customers. Who does that?  It’s just bad form. Every comment is an opportunity to create or keep a customer and build loyalty. Your customers have a voice, make sure you’re hearing it.

Positive engagement can bring about positive impressions of your business brand. Commenting actively and with genuine interest allows your customers to see you business and yourself as being truly authentic.

Be true to yourself, your business values and ethics. Take your customers by the hand, show them what you’e about. Active and regular engagement leads to your business earning a good reputation.

Not sharing content from others.

It’s only fair to share

The content you share, if related and relevant, will demonstrate your broad knowledge of industry related information, giving you credibility and earning you respect for your expertise. It promotes interest in your business and demonstrates your proactive nature.

On occasion you may even share your customers content, which will not only flatter them, but helps to build your relationship with them, making it stronger, as you accept them as part of your tribe.

Bad grammar & spelling.

This just has negativity written all over it. It’s distracting to the reader when little things are wrong. They are unable to focus on the purpose of the communication, and instead you become discredited because your can’t spell properly.

Dos and don’ts is an especially unusual exception. The apostrophe in the contraction don’t seems to make people want to use an apostrophe to make do plural (do’s and don’ts), but then to be consistent, you’d also have to use an apostrophe to make don’t plural, which becomes downright ugly (do’s and don’t’s).

What Should You Do?

Unless your editor wishes otherwise, if you write books, spell it dos and don’ts; and if you write for newspapers, magazines, or the Web, spell it do’s and don’ts. If you’re writing for yourself, spell it any way you want.

A lonely and neglected page.

Nothing speaks louder than an ignored page. It’s just not a good look, at all. Potential clients may even get the impression that you’ve gone out of business.

Consumer research has shown that most people investigate their purchases online before they buy. If the information on your page is out of date, or missing all together, they will be deterred from trusting and respecting your business as experts, and will likely not want to do business with you.

Don’t be a robot.

Stay away from automated responses & generic comments. Be patient & human, it’s the best way. There is a time and place for automation, but primarily consumer touch points aren’t one of them. Interaction on a personal level goes a long way to building genuine trust and authenticity.

Taking on too much.

Focus on the right platforms for your business. Depending on the nature of your business, different social media platforms will serve you well while are best left alone.

If you employ too many different platforms, you run the risk of doing a lot badly rather than a few well. Do what you do well, or not at all.

Creative Apps for Social Media

Around every corner there are new apps and systems in place to help you produce your work. Social groups are another good way to ask about what’s out there. In this new world of sharing, there are others only to happy to fill you in on what you want to know.

First I learned to set bold goals. Then I learned to ask for help.

Charlotte Austin – Adventure Writer, Mountain Guide

I’ve used a bunch of image editing apps, learning a little from each as I grew.

PhotoGrid was among the first. I find it particularly handy for stitching pics together, either side by side (horizontal) or one on top of the other (vertical). It also has some great grid arrangements for multiple images on the one page. It’s video creation function saves up to 50 images in a 15 second video sequence for Instagram or anywhere else for that matter. It differs from Flipogram as it will accept the same photo more than once in a sequence. However Flipogram allows for creation of more than 50 images and in lengths ranging from 5 seconds to 3 minutes.

Apps for writing text over images are plentiful, and my favourites have changed multiple times. WordSwag and Typorama are up there as my top on the move picks. I just discovered another one which animates the text onto the image called Ripl but it’s still limited as to the fonts you can choose from only offering ten different ones. Background images on WordSwag and Typorama both come from Pixabay, so there’s plenty of free quality images to choose from. Canva‘s mobile app is brilliant. They also offer a range of free images, but have a huge range of $1 images to use as well. Canva is really a fantastic suite of multiple marketing materials. Design templates include Social Media Posts and Headers specifically sized for each platform, Documents including magazines and resumes, Blogging and e-Book designs such as Blog Titles, BlogGraphics and Desktop Wallpaper, Marketing Materials like Gift Certificates, Posters and Menus, Event material like Wedding Invitation, Postcards and Photo Collages, and an array of Advertisements for IAB standard sized material such as Leaderboards, Wide Skyscraper and medium and large Rectangles. All in all there are 17 different design categories in Canva, enough to satisfy a busy marketing exec. Creations can also be saved print ready with bleed….Yay!





Marketing is Broken

It’s made us stressed, broke, and sad. Fat, lonely and stressed. It’s made a society where more is believed to be better, to have over have not. The more we own, the more we desire. It’s caused us to live unhappy complex lives. Basically, we are living a monumental lie. I delight in enlightening you, there IS enough to go around, there is NO great urgency, and NO you don’t really need it.

The challenge is for the graphic designer [marketer] to turn data into information and information into messages of meaning.

Katherine McCoy

Consumers [who invented that word anyway?] are victims of unconscious binge marketing. Just think about it, companies messages screaming at you through the radio or TV, adding to the ad noise already over the airwaves, trying to convince you in some obnoxious way to buy something you don’t really need because it is $5 cheaper than it was yesterday. Seriously? And we fall for it. Dumbass.

Authentic and conscious behaviour will reward genuine businesses with purpose. They will attract true and loyal fans who hold genuine interest and need for their products. Don’t force it. Stay true to your brand, be yourself and be authentic. The rewards will be worth it. You will live a life of purpose, true to yourself and your colleagues. Stop polluting and start behaving honestly and ethically, and with integrity. Aspire to operate and behave like your mentors, but never allow yourself to be threatened. Create a unique approach to business that you can be proud of. Find your passion, that thing you do that causes you to lose time, that engrosses your concentration until you discover that hours have passed at the speed of light.

There is no denying that advertising is created for the sole purpose of manipulation. It uses every trick in the book to convince you to buy something you may or may not need. But making sure your message is meaningful, ethical and honest, presented with integrity and oozes your true self isn’t easy, but it can be done. Humans are born with creativity beyond measure, it just takes a little effort and courage to use it for good.

21st Century Marketing Paradigm

The 21st Century marketing paradigm reflects a customer centric mindset that turns marketers into healers where our role is to cue, restore health, soundness and spiritual wholeness.

Guest speaker, Raj Sidodia at the launch of Conscious capitalism Australia, brought on many a ha moments for his disenchanted old school marketing audience. Dissatisfied with plugging products for the greedy and senseless. There must be more, we can’t continue to consume like we have been, just buying and selling ourselves silly. Things must change for the sustainable future for the very existence of our children’s children et all.

So I call you out, those who refuse to acknowledge the need to change. What is your purpose? Why do you do what you do? Are you not creative enough to discover within yourself the incredible capacity to heal the world through new age marketing? Look inside, trust your instincts and be guided by your intuition. Do what is right for the world and its future. Develop products for need, find the sustainable alternative, make them last and be good, not disposable and irresponsible. Join forces if you will, with other companies and businesses as a way to create a much better life for generations to come. Before it’s too late.

Doing well is a result of doing good. That’s what capitalism is all about.

Ralph Waldo Emerson


The Importance of Social Media

To drive visitors to your site, it’s imperative that you be influential. This is most cost effectively achieved through social media.

The overall concept is to intrigue your potential customer, playing on their curious nature so you are able to entice them to visit your website and make a purchase. Trust is essential or no respect is earned, and without trust or respect, the chances of making a sale are slim. Gone are the days where”consumers” (I always hated that word) are sold to by screaming marketers with loud campaigns. Rather than turn up the volume and frequency of promotions to encourage unconscious binge like consumption, I encourage todays courageous leaders to really engage with people on a level that

Establishing credibility involves outlining your merits; stating those experiences and roles which have lead you to where you are today. I want to emphasise the importance and potential of real engagement as a form of promoting your business.

I want to apply conscious marketing to the small business community, a community of entrepreneurs who are brave enough in today’s world to make a real go of things, a community that really need and appreciate help, on that pulls together as a team for the greater good.

Finding the right level of authentic engagement is crucial, and is usually served best by real life authenticity, not forced or fake, but genuine. In doing this, the people on your team are your best asset. Finding those team members whose values and ethics line up with your own, finding a team that you are best able to nurture and nourish, finding a team that will provide authentic engagement every step of the way through every interaction with your customers is nothing but other than crucial, and will ensure the very best results for your business.

Social Media has given speed to the mighty power of word of mouth marketing, in a way no one could possibly have foreseen. It has turned the traditional advertising world on its head, and made way for a much more interactive method of delivering customer service and sales. From a business viewpoint, social media is the primary and most effective way to connect with your tribe and engage with them. It is not a passing trend that will come and go. It’s totally changed the communication landscape for the better, and thankfully it is here to stay.

In order to turn a profit, there must be sales. In order for there to be sales, there must be leads. These fundamentals haven’t changed. However, a more conscious and engaging approach is to draw a crowd, and let your influence push sales across the line. For this kind of power to be wielded responsibly, the basic principles of the outbound material needs to be within very specific parameters. Your social media must be used to raise awareness, provide inspiration and entertainment. It must never be salesy or pushy, and must not focus on price, features or specifications. It needs to be all about the end user. Show your product being used, display it’s benefits and provide advice and share information, don’t sell, but teach.

Marketing is no longer about the stuff that you make, but about the stories you tell.

Seth Godin





Authenticity and the Journey

As an aspiring online entrepreneur, my driving force is gratitude; I live and breathe appreciation. I use new rules in Marketing, based on consciousness and authenticity. Gone are selling and pitching, welcome the greater good!

Th number one key is to be myself. Being authentic and open minded, non-judgemental and free. Suffice to say I love it!

At the start of my new journey, a close friend gave me some wonderful advice…start small, stand tall. This was exactly what I needed to hear, and it become my tagline, so I would remember each day to keep moving forward with pride. I needed to stop procrastinating and overcome the need to be perfect, to stop waiting for the right moment. I needed to just put one foot in front of the other, start small and always keep my head held high with that pride and dignity I so often cower behind. But now, to let it be my strength, to follow it and use it to push forward, no matter what. To always follow my goals with that no matter what philosophy and make shit happen.

The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step.

Lao Tzu

So I stopped thinking that I woulda coulda shoulda and now think there is no try, only do … I should really quote Yoda there 🙂 Now I find ways to make my ideas become reality.

Life always has ways of testing you, throwing obstacles in your path. Fatigue has toppled me after a course of radiation therapy. Last year I had two breast cancer operations and then radio, so I know … more limitations, but hopefully I’ll see the end of it soon. It’s been months now, and while I’ve cleared up on the surface, I’m still extremely tired all the time. But, what’s not to like about an afternoon nap right? I definitely have ideas dancing around in my head when I’m resting, typical creative stir crazy stuff. Sometimes I feel like Patrick Jane [Simon Baker] from The Mentalist, lying on his very own work couch, thinking and solving cases from a horizontal position. It’s hardly timely when your brain starts to conjure the solution to problems from your subconscious, or what that persons name is (that you couldn’t remember before) or what you forgot to add to the shopping list.