Creating the Workshop: A Story of Overwhelm
“I try to stay on top of marketing and promoting my business but I just feel like there is never enough time! Plus, everything I try doesn’t seem to move the needle.”
This was a direct quote from a girl friend of mine that ran her own small business. We had just stepped out of a local marketing summit hosted by a renowned agency in the area and she was frustrated.
“I just feel more overwhelmed than anything else,” she said of the experience.
I realized that while the summit provided great topics and experts – it didn’t actually provide any tangible next steps for business owners that were in attendance. That fact was made abundantly clear by my girl friend’s reaction while we walked out of the venue.
As a marketing professional myself, my mind started swirling.
So, I asked her – “would you go to a marketing workshop that actually taught you how to create your marketing strategy for the year?”
Her eyes lit up and she said, “oh my God, of course – who’s hosting one?”
And I said… “me.”
That’s truly how the Curves Ahead Co. Marketing Workshops began and in December 2022, I hosted my first one in which I promised attendees would, “Learn the Power of Storytelling for your Business & Plan your 2023 Marketing Strategy.”
The workshop was held at the Boonsboro Library to a room full of small business owners with a myriad of different types of businesses.
What I quickly found out was that that everyone in the room felt just like my girl friend did – overwhelmed with marketing their business and trying desperately to stay on top of best practices or trends.
I started out the workshop by saying, “I totally get that marketing your business is overwhelming, so I want to give you permission to stop trying to ‘do it all’ and just focus first on creating a marketing strategy that will promote your biggest money maker. ”
And with that, we were off to the races.
Three Key Takeaways from the December Workshop:
1. Create a Strategy Around your Biggest Money Maker: Listen, I get it. After working in award-winning marketing agencies for 12 years, I heard it from clients and leaders of huge brands all the time – “what’s the ROI (return on investment) on this marketing plan!?” They didn’t want to waste their time or resources and neither should you! It only makes sense as a small business owner to focus your strategy essentially on paying yourself. Start there and get your highest ticketed item selling before you move on to promoting any other product, service or project.
2. Figure Out the Best Tactics To Use, Do Them Consistently & Track it All: Let me say it again, STOP throwing spaghetti at the wall. You know what works in marketing your business! And if you’re scratching your head, let me spell it out: social media, email and content marketing. Those three tactics should always be on your marketing strategy. At the workshop more than one small business owner confessed that those areas definitely needed some work. The real trick is coming up with a game plan for these areas and doing it consistently. Until you have real data you won’t know what is actually capturing your audience’s attention. Ask yourself which emails are getting clicked on, which blog posts are being read and what Facebook posts are most engaged with, so you can market your business more effectively.
3. Tell the Origin Story of your Business and Tell it Often: Ah, the Power of Storytelling. We talked about this a lot at the workshop and you will hear it over and over again if you listen to any of my marketing lessons. I shared an entire workbook full of thoughtful questions for small business owners to answer – and then share with their audience. The biggest one being “how did your business get started?” Seems simple, right? It is. The biggest misconception that small business owners have is that customers don’t care about the back story – well, you couldn’t be more wrong! Your target audience wants to feel like they are part of your journey and will connect with your business or brand 10x more if they learn about YOU.. the business owner. It’s time to open up, be vulnerable and let your customers get to know you. TRUST ME.
Alright, alright, if you’re reading this and you are new to Curves Ahead Co, you may need a little more persuasion in trusting that I know what I am talking about… check out what attendees had to say about the December Workshop below.
Testimonials from Business Owners that were there:
“I attended Melissa’s work shop and gained tons of insight on how to improve my marketing strategies. Class was relaxed and interactive. She’s super funny too!”– Gwenn Leatherman
“I attended my very first workshop for my small business and learned so much about marketing in just 2 hours that I can’t wait to take ALL the workshops with Curves Ahead Co. Melissa has an amazing passion and presence about her and I could listen to her talk all day! I can’t wait for our 1:1 session so I can learn even more for my small business. Thanks Melissa!”– Kim Herrell
“I went to a recent workshop and she packed those two hrs with Marketing Gold! She is real and funny and she made the content easy and doable. Her workbook is filled with great material as well. Thanks Melissa. Looking forward to more to come.”– Tina Taylor
After such a fantastic turnout and wonderful feedback from attendees, I decided to continue providing the Curves Ahead Co. Marketing Workshops for all entrepreneurs.
I am on a mission to help small business owners
get their hands around marketing their business and doing it successfully! I am passionate about this and really feel like its my purpose after all of these years in the tough marketing world.