#BlkWomeninBiz: Tyler Townsend

Tyler Townsend is a 26 years old Cincinnati Ohio native and mother of two. She is also the proud owner of Cincy Sweet Pot. Cincy Sweet Pot provides hemp and cbd infused edibles, oils, soaps and ingredients geared to improve the quality of life.

Tyler has been in the medical field as a lab technician and a phlebotomist for the past 6 years. In 2015, she realized she wanted to be her own boss, but she wanted to make sure that whatever she did, helped others.

She began reading and researching the different ways people use cannabis. When she discovered the different foods that can be made with cannabis, she felt it was perfect fit as she was already an avid cooker; so she began creating her own edibles!

One of the first steps she took to truly explore this new venture, was attending the Mortar Cincinnati Entrepreneur program in 2016. During that program she was able to make connections and learn how to start her own business. From there things seemed to take off!

After Tyler completed the program, she had all the tools and knowledge to turn her business into reality. She got her LLC, a lawyer, a vendors license and a social media page. Many people are unaware that medical Marijuana became legal in the state of Ohio in September of 2016, so at this point she was a step above the competition.

Once it was considered legal, she began traveling to California to meet entrepreneurs and business owners in the cannabis industry. She gained hands on experience and was able to create her own products.

Producing products became easy, but the negative connotation that surrounds cannabis created some hard moments. Tyler had to really educate her peers on the benefits and the components of cannabis. The more she educated others on cannabis, the more the negative connotations subsided.

One of her business goals is to be a WOSB (Women-Owned Small Business). The cannabis industry will be new to Ohio and she’s aiming to be one of the First Leading women in the Industry.

Tyler, thank you for taking the leap to become a leading woman in this new and vastly growing industry. Welcome to our tribe of #BlkWomeninBiz

Visit www.cincysweetpot.com to learn more about Tyler and her business!

Spring Clean Your Website

When was the last time you looked at your website? Or did you forget you have a website? It is so important that you keep up with trends in SEO (search engine optimizations), Google’s algorithm, updates within your industry, and transfer that knowledge into updating your website at least once per quarter.

Spring is here and it’s time to clean house! We briefly touched on the significance of updating your website in 3 Things You Can Do Today to Polish Your Digital Presence, but now it’s time to dive deeper. Follow these 5 steps to begin optimizing your website today.

1. Remove or hide unused pages.

If you have pages on your site that no longer fit your brand goals or serve a purpose, remove or hide them from your website navigation. There’s no reason for you to have pages on your website that don’t make sense for your business or that you don’t plan to update.

2. Update your website content.

Make some updates to your homepage or about us content, add more blog posts, put your pictures in your gallery, or add new testimonials. Every page on your website should have a purpose and a clear call to action. Put yourself in the customers shoes and think, “if someone landed on this page, would they understand what I want them to do?” If the answer is no, it’s time to make some changes.

3. Add your favicon.

This may seem trivial, but this simple fix is all about the customer experience. Not only does it help website visitors know they’re in the right place, it allows them to browse the web and easily get back to your site if they have multiple tabs open. Your favicon should be simple – preferably your logo. The space is limited so choose wisely. See below for examples of favicons from Facebook, MailChimp, WordPress, and yours truly.

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4. Make it pretty.

We have all left a website because of aesthetics. If your pictures are blurry, fonts are hard to read, colors too loud, you are increasing your chances to have a low site time and a higher bounce rate. I am a stickler for ugly websites. When I see a website that is not up to par, I assume this person doesn’t care about their brand image. If a business doesn’t I’m trying to work with doesn’t care how about how they look, how can I expect them to care about me?! Whether you’re completely coding your website, or using a platform with built-in templates, pay attention to readability and be mindful of the customer experience.

5. If you can’t do it right, find someone who does.

There are some things we just have to leave to experts; website development should be one of them. If you’re unable to make the necessary updates to your site to make it beautiful, functional, and SEO friendly, then you may want to pay someone who does. There’s nothing wrong with outsourcing the work. I always use the example, “would you fix your own roof?” I would hope not! If the changes you want to make are too difficult to make on your own, there’s are tons of people out there who can help.

We put a lot into building our websites and they should return the favor! Shannon Mattern, your WordPress BFF, helps people build their website, build their audience, and build their income. We will have the pleasure of hearing from her on April 26th to discuss how to begin monetizing our websites. Grab your ticket today and visit her website to learn more.

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Make Your Seat Unique

I had a conversation with a friend recently about her business idea and she was feeling discouraged because there are so many people doing what she wants to do. I have seen other people have this same complaint.

“I can’t do ____ because _____ is already doing that!”

“I won’t succeed in ____ because there’s too many of those!”

Karl Benz created Mercedes-Benz in 1883, Henry Ford founded Ford in 1903, and Messrs Rolls and Royce came shortly after in 1906.

What if Toyota, Volkswagen, and Honda thought it was too late for them because three companies had already been established? See where I’m going with this?

There’s a seat for all of us at the table, you just have to determine what makes your seat unique. Here’s how to do it:

1. Who is your product for?
Sure, Ralph Lauren sells Sunglasses, and so does Oakley. It’s clear that their target audience is two very different people. Understand the WHO, so you can properly market the WHY!

2. Branding. BRANDING. Branding.
Yes, branding. If you don’t know by now, branding is EVERYTHING! Branding is the difference between something being high-fashion, and sold in your local Wal-Mart. Both can be equally great! However, you have to determine what image you want to put out into the world.

3. Get your marketing together!
The way you market your product, will determine who buys it. If you’re target audience are affluent persons, but you’re marketing is not on point, how can you expect those persons to purchase your product? From packaging, to product placement, and advertising, this all goes into what sets your brand apart from someone else’s.

Paint your seat gold, pink, or throw glitter on it! Whatever you do, make it unique and make it yours. There’s a sit at the table for all us to win!

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Content Planning: Why & How

2018 is here and it’s time for you to get your content strategy revamped and ready for the new year. If you do not plan out your content, you’re not giving yourself the opportunity to truly measure your success.
As a one-woman shop, we have two major roles to play: we have to work IN the business and ON the business. Planning out your content will give you more time to focus on other major tasks that are going to take your business to the next level.

What exactly is content?

Content is king. It is everything you see from a business including videos, blogs, posts on social media, eCourses, etc.

How do I plan my content?

  1. You need to decide what type of content you want to circulate and how you plan to disseminate every piece of content you produce. For example, if you decide to create videos and you plan to post them on social media, you need to remember you will have to create the blog content in addition to your social media content.
  2. Next, you should think about frequency. How often do you plan to produce content? Too much content may cause people to ignore you if it’s not of quality, not enough content may cause people to forget you. Find your happy medium.
  3. Find the right tools and resources that work for you. From scheduling tools, to editing tools, do your research and find out what works best for your brand, and your budget. There are a lot of free tools out there to help you get started. Keep in mind as you grow, you may want to start to investing in some platforms that will make sure life easier.
  4. Keep track of how long it takes you to work on each piece of content. This will help you understand which projects need to take priority, and which you can hold off on. As your business grows, you may want to start delegating some of these tasks to employees or third parties if it is taking up too much of your time.
  5. If you’re a visual person like me, you should create a content calendar so that you can keep track of which content is going out, and which platforms they are going to. I use a simple Excel Document that is color-coded for each platform I use. Join my mailing list to get your free content calendar template.

To be completely transparent, I fully understand how hard it is to plan your content in advance and sometimes, I don’t. However, when I do, it is completely life changing for my business and allows me to be able to put my time towards other things.

Download my template and get started on planning out the remainder of January and the first few weeks of February.

Happy Planning!

3 Reasons Why You Have to Keep Hustlin’

Monday I hosted my first TJE event titled, Respect the Hustle. The purpose of the event was to bring like-minded women together for an evening of wine and networking. 100 women entrepreneurs registered for this event and nearly 60% of attendees showed up. I’m still trying to wrap my brain around that.

The responses I’ve received thus far have reminded me WHY I need to keep the hustle alive and here’s why you should too:

1. You don’t know who’s watching. While you’re looking in the mirror thinking of all the things you could have done better, there’s someone watching you who believes in you. They believe in your dream and your hustle and they want to see you win!

2. You got shit to do. And goals to reach! You might be closer than you think to the finish line. Sure, there are going to be rough times. That is what builds our character. But you have to push past them and stay resilient to reap the rewards.

3. I need you. Watching the women I’ve build connections to succeed makes me feel like I’m winning, too. I love celebrating your wins! I need you to keep hustlin’ because you motivate me to do the same.

We’re in this together, girl! I know it get hurts but when you want to give up, think about these three things and remind yourself why you started. If you need an accountability, let’s connect and keep each other motivated.

I look forward to seeing you at the next TJE event! Until then, keep hustlin’!

Check out some pictures from the first #RespecttheHustlepictures by Jen Lyttle.

Sponsors:

Wine on Highhttp://www.wineonhigh.com

Stella & Dot by Michelle Vroomhttp://www.stelladot.com/sites/MichelleVroom

Damsel in Defense by Trina D. Harrishttp://www.youdeservesafety.com

Fulciohttps://www.fulcio.life/

Dalisay is Pure – dalisayispure@gmail.com

Bonbons by Linda – bonbonsbylinda@gmail.com

Pure Romance by Tonnisha – pureromance.com/tonnishaenglish

Email marketing has the larger ROI than any other form of marketing. Register today for the first TJE webinar and learn how you can boost for business for nearly, free! Click here to learn more. 

To boost, or not to boost?

To boost, or not to boost? That is the question.

Whether it’s a page or a post, boosting on Facebook and Instagram can help you reach a greater audience, increase likes on your page, or encourage people to take some sort of action.

Before you decide to boost, there are some questions you need to ask yourself.

Who is my target audience?

This is the first and most important question you need to ask yourself. If you’re unsure, don’t spend money advertising to people who will not be interested in your product or service. Take the time to think about who you want to reach and come up with a campaign to reach those people. 

What am I going to boost?

You’re able to boost pages as well as posts you make. Be sure you follow all the boosting guidelines to ensure a successful campaign.

Why do I want to boost?

What are you hoping the end result will be? Are you looking for engagement or are you looking for reach and impressions. Understand the difference between those things and create a campaign that will give you the desired end result. 

How will I measure success? And then what?

Again, are you hoping to have 100 views or 100 likes? Once your campaign has ended, what do you plan on doing with that data? You should have your next steps prepared before the campaign has ended to keep the momentum going. 

Boosting is a simple and cost efficient way to increase brand awareness. If you think strategically and understand your goals clearly, you can run a successful campaign that will give you the desired outcome.

At TJE Communications, increasing brand awareness is a specialty. Want a consultation on how to increase your brand awareness? Email: tje@tjecommunications.com 

Practice What You Preach

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If I told you that people who wore yellow in the rain were more likely to get struck by lighting than others, but then you saw me moments later in a yellow shirt during a thunderstorm, would you still believe my theory? Probably not.

I attended a webinar recently where the company hosting did not have ONE employee live tweeting along with the viewers. I instantly became disengaged because it was clear to me that the people of that organization did not find the information that was being shared valuable. So why should I?

This made me think about a simple saying I learned as a child, “Practice what you preach.” If the saying isn’t already self explanatory, it simply means that if you talk the talk, you better walk the walk, too.

As a business owner, you should embody all that it is you are selling. You cannot expect your customers to believe in your brand if you or your employees clearly display that you don’t.

Speaking of employees, as the boss, you have to remain on your A-game at all times to keep the morale of your team up. If your team sees the boss slacking, missing deadlines, showing up late to meetings, your team will do the same. Eventually you will get to the point of no return because your word no longer holds value.

This is the same for your customers. Due to this sole experience I had with this company I will probably never register for any upcoming events.

No one is perfect. I can recount multiple instances where I have had opportunities slip right through my finger tips because I was talking, but I surely was not walking the walk. The important part is that you learn from your mistakes and apply them to your plan moving forward.

For more information about the services and packages TJE Communications has to offer, email me. Also, don’t forget to subscribe to my emails.

 

What your business can learn from #OscarsSoWhite

The Internet is uproar about the #OscarsSoWhite issue. Even SNL did a very funny skit about it. See here

Many celebrities have spoken out about the lack of representation of African Americans and minorities alike including Jada Pinkett Smith, Matt Damon, and Wesley Snipes. Some are even calling for a boycott of the Oscars this year. 

While I wholeheartedly agree that there is a lack of representation of minorities this year and years past, I also believe that you should celebrate where you’re accepted and continue to break the mold. 

As an African American woman and aspiring entrepreneur, I believe that if I want to obtain a level of success, I should also support small, woman owned businesses. 

That means as a small business owner and entrepreneur yourself, you should be looking to support those who share that same title or mission. 

How can I expect to be respected in my said industry if I don’t lift up and support other African American women in my industry?

If small business owners across the globe supported one another, imagine what that kind of growth could look like. Not only for a company’s finances and assets, but for the small business owner community as a whole. 

I hope at this point you’re wondering, how can I begin to support small businesses? Glad you’ve asked! 

Here’s how:

1. Get to know the small business owners in your area

Join a small business club or group. If there is not one, start one yourself!

2. Shop small businesses often

Not just on small business Saturday but everyday! Even when going to major stores, be aware of the products being sold at that establishment that are those of small companies. 

3. Spread the word

If you have a great experience shopping at a small business then spread the word. The company will more than likely thank you and do the same in return. 

So many of us, no matter what our industry, are constantly begging to be accepted by those who may never be able to appreciate our talents. Instead of fighting to be apart of it, support those who support you and continue to break the mold.