Tuesday, February 24, 2009

"Business Networking That Doesn't Suck"

I just wanted to drop a quick note about a social networking site I've been a member of for the past year. Biznik has been a great way to network with others in the business community, as well as a good resource for a wide range of articles on all kinds of business topics. While I am a member of other social networking sites, like facebook and linkedin, I have found Biznik has been the best resource for business networking. I highly recommend checking it out, especially if you are a business owner or manager. Here's a little more information, directly from Biznik:

About Biznik
Biznik is based on a simple idea: connecting small businesses to each other for mutual business benefit.Biznik combines powerful social networking technology with face-to-face meetings and education, in a community that serves the unique needs of entrepreneurs and personal businesses. Biznik is a free service with opportunities for members to pay for enhanced features and more visibility. Membership levels include Supporting, Active and Basic. Biznik offers a variety of services for each member at each membership level, with new programs and resources being added regularly.

Check it out: www.biznik.com! Let me know what you think. And be sure to visit my profile!

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Guerilla Marketing: The F.U. Lesson

For the past few weeks, I've been meeting with a guerilla marketing coach, who has helped me focus on the marketing plan and tactics for Kalico Design. During the course of my work day I get so caught up in producing eye-catching and effective graphic design to help others portray their marketing message, that my own marketing kind of gets put on the back burner. Not anymore! I meet once a week with my coach, and take an hour or two out of the week to work on my own marketing with focused intentionality and determination. While I am not permitted to share the specific guerilla worksheets, verbiage and lessons; I'd like to share some of the (very simple!) actions I've taken in the past few weeks which have yielded results. I plan to hit on one or two topics each week, in the hopes that some of these my help others out as well.

My first "field work" assignment was relatively simple (I've found that most of the guerilla marketing tactics are actually extremely simple, and I often think to myself "Duh. Why HAVEN'T I been doing that?"). Anyway, my first task was simple — follow up, or F.U., as one of my networking buddies has coined! I actually thought I had been doing a relatively good job at this. I follow up consistently with clients during the course of a particular job, and often soon after the job as well. What I hadn't been doing was following-up with clients on a regular, scheduled basis. I would just send a follow-up email or give a client a quick phone call when I had the time or when it popped in my head, which resulted in putting the follow-up on the back burner, or sometimes forgetting for weeks or months on end.

So, last week, I followed up with the majority of my past clients, just by sending a quick email. And guess what!? I had an 80% response rate, which immediately resulted in new projects for 40% of those I had contacted, with several more potential projects in the future for others. All by just sending a quick email! I now have also scheduled a semi-annual F.U. session on the Kalico calendar, so I will be sure to follow through on the whole follow-up!

Are you doing consistent and effective follow-up with your existing clients? If not, try it out and let me know what results you get. Send and email, or make a phone call—whatever works best for YOU and your business! Be sure to make it a habit and designate certain F.U. days on your calendar to help you remember!

Also, if you'd like more information on guerilla marketing, please visit their website or check out the guerilla blog for more marketing suggestions!

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Valentine's Day Promo

Happy Valentine's Day! I apologize for the delay in posting, it's been a busy two weeks on the Kalico home front. I managed to send out my first client gift and promo last week—a Valentine's Day promo thanking all my clients. While it was just a simple treat, a tin of M&M's, labeled with my name and a V-Day greeting, as well as a few extra chocolates, it seemed to be a big hit with all my clients! I don't think they were expecting it! I had originally intended to send out a Christmas gift, but then I figured, why not send it out at a different time? Stand out amongst the slew of Christmas/New Year's holiday promos, and I think it did the trick! Plus, I get to eat all the left over candies!

Monday, February 2, 2009

Green Yet Logo Gets Recognition!

I was just notified that the Green Yet? logo has recently been selected to be published in the upcoming book, The Big Book of Green Design. The book will be 384 pages of design examples of earth-friendly designs. It will be printed on FSC certified paper, and broken into three sections, including: 1. Retail and B2B Products that portray a green image; 2. Companies that have 'gone green' and 3.Individual Green-ness (examples of graphic designers who have 'gone green').

The book will be produced by Crescent Hill Books, creators of books such as "The Big Book of Logos" series, the Creativity series and American Corporate Identity book series. No word on when the book will be available in stores, but I will be sure to keep you updated.