Marketing Automation - the missing piece in your small business marketing toolbox Featured

Marketing Automation - the missing piece in your small business marketing toolbox

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Small businesses are often heavily reliant on their marketing - particularly in the early stages - for generating interest, reaching out to potential leads, and keeping your message in front of their eyes.

As many small businesses do not have their own marketing team, or necessarily the time to follow through with every potential lead, having some of the key tasks automated can make a huge difference not only to the time spent, but also on conversion rate and ultimately, sales.

Until recently, Marketing Automation (the process of setting up systems which automate many of the processes within your marketing workflow and nurture leads with 'drip flow' marketing techniques) has been the domain of those with deep pockets - mainly owing to the high prices charged by the key suppliers in the market.  In November 2014, Mautic changed that.  The tables are turning, and now Marketing Automation is within reach of all businesses, large or small.  The missing tool from your toolbox has arrived, and now you need to learn how it could help you grow your business!

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My new wheels! Featured

Life is better with wheels!

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Being British has it's advantages. Tea, for one thing, is something I really miss when I'm travelling the world ... good old fashioned tea the way my mum makes it just can't be found! And hobnob biscuits ... mmmmm!

There are some tendencies which aren't so great though, one of which is carrying on in the face of adversity, pushing through difficult times, and coming out the other side better for it. I say this isn't so great, because what happens if the other side never comes?

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Have the courage to be fierce with reality

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Today's quote from 'Meditations for women who do too much' is:

"You need to claim the events of your life to make yourself yours.  When you truly possess all you have been and done, which may take some time, you are fierce with reality."
~ Flonda Scott Maxwell

We often find at some point in our lives the need to take stock, look back on our life and review who we are and what we have done with our lives.  The effect can be quite strong, and for me it has led to an ongoing reflective process, through which I'm working on really being in the moment and seeing that I am at this point in time as a result of the conditions that arose in the past, and that where I go in the future is dependant on conditions yet to arise.  

Through this process, I've found it's all too easy to get into the habit of beating myself up about all the bad decisions I made and the times when things didn't go so well.  I've definitely been in this place many times (it's a recurring theme!), and I regularly get mini 'flash-backs' of memories where I did or said something really awful, which I often feel great regret (and often embarrasment!) about.  

I do also sometimes slip toward the opposite end of the spectrum, patting myself on the back for all the great things I have done and the way I have lead my life - less so than the negative end but sometimes it can be more destructive. 

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Meditations for women who do too much!

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A while ago, a good friend of mine gave me a lovely book of hers, slightly in jest but also out of compassion, at my busyness and tendency to do too much, called 'Meditations for women who do too much' by Anne Wilson Schaef.  Ironically, it's mostly sat on my bookshelf (you guessed it, because I've been too busy!) however today I was reminded of this book in an evening on friendship and thought I would dig it out and revisit some of the reflections.

I retrieved it, dusted it down, and I'm going to make the effort to reflect on each day's meditation, and post a blog each day with the reflection or meditation of the day.  I may not manage every day, but I'll see what I can do!

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When did you last stop to sharpen your blade?

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Today is my first day back from the winter break, probably the longest proper time off that hasn't involved chasing kids around the mountains for DofE or being on retreat since I started running the business full time three years ago. It's also the first time I have returned to work from a vacation and felt like I had truly had the chance to kick back and rest.

Yesterday a thread started in one of the local business networks I contribute to expressing surprise that business owners who had no necessity to close down until today (necessities were suggested as having children who didn't start back at school until today, for example) had kept their businesses closed. It made me wonder just how hard we sometimes push ourselves when we are running - or indeed working in - small and medium sized businesses without thinking about the consequences of not taking the time to properly rest and recover.

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