This week I attended the WBON Burlington Chapter Luncheon at the always gracious Windjammer Conference Center in South Burlington. Most luncheon topics are one of the gals in the group giving a presentation on their area of expertise which members decide is either useful or not to their business and attend. This month was a bit different where members were all invited to give a brief speech and the topic I chose was to share some pieces of advice I got in the past that have been invaluable to my success in running my Vermont public relations business.
1.) In high school my mom said, "You are loud and you are assertive. People will either love you or hate you. You are not beige - beige is forgettable and you my dear, are not forgettable." Thanks Mom. This has helped me keep a level head and not take things personally and understand that dislike often stems from jealousy. This lesson has also been instrumental in marketing. You need to know who you are and how others perceive you - both as a person and as a product. This also streams into my number one marketing rule for any business - If you Try to Be Everything to Everyone, You are Nothing to No one.
2.) When preparing to leave my job working for The Man and tossing around the idea of starting a business or what else I might want to do, a very wise co-worker said to me, "Make a little time for networking and letting people know what you want and what you are looking for every day." I have done that every day ever since. Thanks lady!
3.) My traditional public relations background dating back to my undergraduate days at Marist College taught me the 80/20 rule - to spend 80% of my time on 20% of my media contacts. I have also learned this is true (thanks to mentors such as Mary Beth Quinn, The Growth Coach of Vermont) in getting business - 80% of time on 20% of prospects. Now that I am well into my third year of business, I have learned there is also an 80/80 rule - spend 80% of my time on where 80% of the money comes from.
4.) And because much of my success comes from my own mistakes along the way and I have not been following any sort of "how-to-run-your-own-business" manual along the way, I offer advice I learned for myself - you MUST say no and you MUST let it go.
Tenth grade attempt at being beige...
Peace Peeps! And don't forget to Fan me at Facebook and Follow me on Twitter!