Changes in Marketing for Small Business

In the 9 years I’ve been involved in graphic design and marketing, so much has changed. So, so much. A definite shift in strategy has become apparent, simple ads are no longer enough for consumers to want to buy your product. The power of mobile, internet, and social media marketing has turned to the forefront of advertising.

What do I think about this? I think it’s great! The days of paying hundreds of $$ for 1/8 page ads and a spot in the yellow pages are long gone. Okay maybe not long gone, but there are more affordable and efficient ways to market your business in addition to those “old-school” methods.

Let’s focus on the typical start-up business that I’ve been seeing lately. A company that is in its early stages of establishment is looking to plant their feet deep in their industry, have a little bit of money to invest, but doesn’t have lots of start-up capital. They ask what is the best form of marketing for their business. My first answer is always social media.

But before you go online and search for every possible social media outlet there is so you can plaster your business’s logo all over your profile page, do your research. Ask yourself a few questions:

  1. What do you want to achieve with your social media campaign?
  2. Do you want to be solely professional or personal too?
  3. How many media outlets can you manage to make sure there is always interesting content?

Something to realize is not every social media outlet is right for every business. If you create a blog, are you going to regularly post in it? Do you have a passion to write, to spread your voice, to really sit down and share what you know on a regular basis? If not, then maybe a blog isn’t for your business model.

The point of social media is already sited in its name: social. The goal is to captivate an audience/community and talk – create conversations. Being genuine, honest about your business model, and personal is at the heart of what successful social media is all about. In my opinion, it’s the only way you’ll see success. Talk about topics relevant to your business, engage your followers/friends in the conversation, welcome critique, and most importantly, HAVE FUN WITH IT!

Alright peeps, you ready? Let’s jump into the online world and start socializing!

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1 Year Since My MTH2010 Experience

Side note: Please excuse the still, I look like an idiot lol!

It’s something I fight with every day. Wishing I was someone else, being envious of others’ possessions, feeling like others worked harder and I don’t work hard enough, and not to mention the ever-popular feeling of letting everyone down. I told myself 1 year ago that I would need to put all that behind me, and I should always show the best of myself and continuing to grow in all aspects of my life. But bottom line, I need to be me AND be

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happy with who that is.

As I approach

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the 1 year anniversary of my life-changing MTH experience I look back and see that the transformation is happening. I compare myself to the person I was and am so proud of my progress, change, and accomplishments. Thanks to my husband, family, friends, and the grace of God I am continuing to push myself so that I can live a life of happiness, success, and contentment.

Do I still doubt myself? Of course.
Am I still scared? Without a doubt.
Do I think I’ll fail? I know I will.
But none of those things will hold me back because I made the conscious decision to change for the better.

Today, I sit here and can say that I’ve made baby steps to be better and that’s okay with me. I don’t need to make leaps and bounds of progress to be happy. Today, I’m just thankful to the Lord for being alive and doing work that I love to do.

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The Day Before the Launch & 1 Month After Our Wedding

I’m sitting here thinking to myself, “Today begins the first day of the rest of my life.” But then again I’ve been saying that every day for the past 30 days.

1 month ago today, Charlie and I experienced the best day of our lives to date. In front of 200 of our closest friends and family we said the 2 words that would intertwine us for a lifetime – I DO. That day was a truly blessed day. I knew that my life had changed forever and for the better.

Prior to the wedding, Charlie and I had many talks about our life after Oct. 8, 2011. What were we going to do? What were the things we were going to change? What did we need to become better individually and as a couple? Well, one thing was for sure. We wanted a challenge.

That’s exactly what CO is for us. It’s us being ourselves, being true to what we know and learning more along the way. We decided to take the best out of our 2 businesses and combine them under one name. It’s the future of our lives mimicked in business form. Today I realize, it’s just like our marriage. 2 people, becoming one. 2 businesses, becoming one.

Tomorrow, CO (Charlie Ortega/Carissa Ortega) Creative Cartel will open it’s online doors. We’ll be providing 2 different sides to our business: Event Styling and Business Solutions. Our Event Styling division will offer event services with a specialty in stationery and custom design accessories for centerpieces, room decor, and ambiant lighting. Our Business Solutions will be geared toward graphic design and printing services for small and large business as well as retail storefront design and social media management.

I’m so excited for tomorrow. We’ve worked so hard, planned so much, and wished on so many stars for this. It not only signifies the day we launch our business, no, it means so much more.

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