Author: smrtpopups

When it comes to creating content, I see soooo many entrepreneurs fall into this time trap.


If you're coming up with new content every single time...hate to tell you this, but you're wasting your valuable time.


Here's a secret for you...creating consistent content that is irresistible to your dream clients shouldn't be a time suck!

content time hack


I'm so excited to share with you a super simple system that'll make it easy for you to:

  • have no end of content - all at your finger tips
  • show up consistently without it taking over your whole life
  • add value for your dream customers without wasting your valuable time

Thinking this sounds too good to be true? That it must be some weird thing that costs a lot of money? Think again!


All you need is a content bank.


What the heck is a content bank?


A content bank is a database of prewritten/pre-used content that you just keep recycling. The truth is: unless your content is tied to a specific date or trend, it never "goes bad." And repetition is good: firstly, a lot of your audience won't see it the first time around; secondly, with all the content we consume, no one remembers seeing it before or minds seeing it again.


When you are planning your content for the week / 2 weeks / month (whatever the time period you plan for), pull content from your bank. Any new content you create, make sure to add it to the bank to be used again at a later time/date.


Each week, about 75% of my content is recycled from my bank, and 25% is new (which keeps it super fresh and allows me to keep building up my bank).


I keep my bank organized by content themes so that it's easy to find things and so that I can easily keep my content varied and relevant for my audience.



I’m all about the DIY and frugal approach to things. I sign up for freebies and free courses. I use google for a lot lot lot of things. I listen to podcasts and have a meditation app.


But at one point, you realize that you can only go so far alone (even with Siri by your side).


You can’t learn everything you need to know from google. At least not in this life time. You won’t bust through all my mindset blocks on your own. You’re not going to get super awesome at new things through pure osmosis from listening to podcasts.


If you want to go far and go fast, you need to invest in yourself. You need to invest in your business and your dreams.


what to invest in for your business


Investing in your business can feel scary. Especially when you're not yet making a ton of money, spending money can put us on EDGE and feel like it's a bad idea.


But, when done right and strategically, investing in your business can SAVE you money, save you TIME, totally change your relationship with things you HATE in your business, and actually MAKE you money.


I have invested in my business at various stages throughout the years, and believe me - each time it was scary (I am frugal and DIY AF). I wanted to share my big investments and the impacts they had on my business.


#1 My first big investment was hiring an accountant to do my taxes.

I HATE doing taxes. They stress me tf out and make me hide in a netflix cocoon for days. Hiring an accountant not only freed me from SO MUCH stress, it also saved me WAY MORE MONEY than I invest in it. The ROI is just nuts.


#2 Quickbooks - now that I have it, I canNOT imagine life without it.

But committing to that $40+ a month was so scary to do! I had so much resistance to investing in it. excel spreadsheets were kind of working fine...?? OMG QUICKBOOKS CHANGED EVERYTHING. I no longer hated bookkeeping. I actually DID my bookkeeping. It saves me a TON of time each year at tax time. AND I am now super on top of invoicing and paying my GST. QB has saved me time AND money.


#3 Advertising!

This one can be SO scary for businesses. Spending money to make money...we kind of believe it, but also the fear of spending money we feel we don't have really makes us not quite believe it. Advertising is one thing I have done since the beginning of my business and has been monumental to my success. From the start - before anyone knew whotf I was - I was selling out events because of my advertising. I can't say enough how essential this investment is to your business's bottom line.


Investing in yourself is the best investment you can make. You’re worth it. And your business goals are worth it. Go to that conference. Hire that coach. Sign up for that course.


If your biz is one that creates and sells products, you're going to have two types of business expenses to deal with.


Fixed costs are the ones that are always there - whether you sell a ton of products or sell none at all. These are costs like your internet, your equipment, your studio/office/store rental. Your fixed costs are important because you need to cover them month over month.


pricing products for profit formula


With product-based businesses, you also have another type of cost, which isn't as as simple to deal with. These are called variable costs. Your variable costs are those that vary depending on your production. They go up when production goes up and down when production goes down - they're the costs that are tied to creating and selling your actual products (materials, shipping, transaction charges, etc.). These can be a bit more complicated to deal with when setting your prices because, well, they're always changing!


To price your products, you need to know both your fixed costs (the expenses you have in your biz no matter how many products you are selling) and your variable costs for your products.


Your fixed costs will tell you the min $ you need to make per month to break even, which is the first part of your pricing formula. To cover these, you want to consider realistically how many items are you going to sell in a month and then divide your fixed costs by that. Any products you sell on top of those, that becomes profit (happy dance)!


And then your variable cost per item is the next part of your formula (since you want to cover costs of a product in the price as well).


Then sprinkle more on to turn that pretty profit.

This profit sprinkle can either be your time cost (the amount of time it takes you to make an item at the hourly rate you want to charge) or it can be a markup. A standard mark up is 50% (or a 100% increase on the costs).


A formula

product price = (fixed costs/number of products realistically sold in a month) + (variable costs - how much it costs to produce that item) + mark up or time cost


Let's look at an example:

fixed monthly costs = $250

cost to produce an item (materials and transaction fee) = $25

time it takes to produce the item = 3hour

hourly "rate" = $25/hour

realistic sales goal = 25 items/month


Pricing formula using time cost for profit:

($250/25)+$25+(3*$25) = ($10)+$25+($75) = $110


Pricing formula using 50% mark up for profit

(($250/25)+$25)*2 = ($10+$25)*2 = $70




Struggling with pricing your services?


You are SO not alone.


The thing is, pricing is a complex thing with many factors to consider. Especially when you're selling services - you might not know how much time a project might take or how to charge your client.


tips for pricing business services


The best way to price service-based projects is with a project fee (NOT an hourly fee). After all, no one wants to pay hourly for things since they don't know how many hours something will or should take.


So, how do you set your Project Fee?

✨The easiest formula is number of hours * rate per hour. Based on the number of hours you expect the project to take, use that number multiplied by your rate.

✨Use a different hourly rate for different parts of the project (project management vs. strategy vs. revisions)

✨When setting your hourly rate, consider your level of experience and the market price. Take a look at what competitors in your area are charging and then adjust for level of experience. Also consider what is a minimum per hour you want to get paid.


My general rule is if I am learning something new and spending time looking at youtube tutorials, etc. I don't charge for that time. If I have to redo a bunch of stuff because in my learning it I didn't get it quite right - I don't charge for that time either. Or, if it's mostly active work but a lot of learning along the way then sometimes I'll charge half my rate.


Let 2020 be the year where you know exactly what content to create to promote your business. Where you connect with your Dream Customers, grab their attention, and stand out in a busy busy market.


To get you there, you need a brand story!


what is a brand story

A brand story builds and shares the vision and purpose of your business. It brings to life the passion, the spark, the imaginative idea that’s at the heart of your business and gives it shape.


A story tells the beginning, middle, and happily ever after of your business – it tells clearly and beautifully:

  • why you started
  • where you’re going, and
  • how you’re going to get there.


Everything you do in your business goes back to your brand story. The products and services you choose to offer, the customers you focus on, how you market to your customers, the colours you use to bring your brand to life, the staff you hire, the writing on your website…all of this is rooted in and guided by your brand story.


Ready to write your brand story?
Enter the 5-Step Model to Build a Powerful Brand Story Challenge.

Over the course of 6 days, you’ll get video trainings, a workbook, daily challenge prompts, and mindset block busters all designed to walk you through creating your own compelling brand story.

The best part? It’s free! Like, totally completely free. And it starts on January 27!

free brand story challenge for businesses


You’ve got big goals, big plans, big dreams – and you just can’t kick that feel that you’re falling behind. It feels like no matter how much you’re working, you’re just not there yet.


If you’re feeling down on yourself for not having enough clients, not selling enough, not being further ahead, then this post is for you!



First things first...

If you’ve just started out or you’re in your first year of your business, take a deep breath. It’s so exciting to start a business and we want everything NOW. But building a business and a brand and an audience – like anything worth having – takes time. We don’t suddenly have a six pack the first time we do crunches and we don’t suddenly have six figures when we just start our businesses either. Great things take time! Focus on the momentum you’re building and the progress you’re seeing. Celebrate going from zero to one without setting the bar at going from zero to 100.


Stop comparing yourself!

I know, I know – easier said than done. We all fall in the trap of looking around us in our circle, our community, the whole of Instagram and think – how is that person so far ahead when I’m doing the same things and I’m NOT that far ahead! You are your own person, your own business, and you’re probably at a very different place in your business journey that they are. Make goals for yourself and track them for yourself.


Keep your eye on your Why.

Profit and the number of clients you have are important to your business. But so is your Why – the meaning you want to get, the impact you want to have. When it’s feeling tough and like you’re not getting traction, go back to your Why – are you aligned with it? Are you actually living it and fulfilling it? Because if so, then you ARE getting traction and moving forward even if it feels slow.


Marketing is full of buzzwords and all of the shiny new things. It’s all fun and games and awesome ROI if you know what it all means, but if you don’t it’s really just a recipe for overwhelm. We’re going to tackle one of the BIGGEST marketing buzzwords and demystify it: Google Ads – or, Search Engine Marketing.


When a business talks to me about Digital Marketing, they 99% of the time ask about Google Ads. But, when they’re asking, they more often than not…in fact maybe never…actually know what that even is.


Google Ads ARE a very powerful tool for digital marketing. In fact, they have one of the highest conversion rates. So, let’s talk about them and demystify what they are and how to use them effectively.


What exactly is Google Ads?

First things first…Google Ads is actually a whole bunch of things. It’s Display marketing, remarketing, and Search Engine Marketing. Today we’re going to talk about Search Engine Marketing, since that’s normally what people mean when they ask about Google Ads.


Calling it Google Ads is like calling tissues Kleenex, so we are going to call it by its actual name: Search Engine Marketing – often shortened into SEM because BUZZWORDS!!!!


Search Engine Marketing is the PAID placement of text-based ads that are initiated by words and phrases people are searching for on search engines. They are pay-per-click, which means that you only PAY if someone clicks on them.


What’s amazing about them is that, like SEO, only prospects that are ACTIVELY searching for something will come across them. That means that you are reaching people who are already interested in what you are offering.


SEM tends to have one of the lowest costs per conversion among paid tactics. This means that as far as getting your prospect to complete an action – whether a sale or contact or signup – it is one of the most effective and least expensive.


You can do SEM on Yahoo, Bing, or Google. Google is the main one and dominates as the search engine of choice for users. Within Google SEM, you can choose to appear on their search partners, which would give you a bit more reach.  We often focus on JUST Google when we are doing SEM campaigns – particularly when we have a more limited budget.


How to use Google Ads effectively

SEM is not the easiest tactic to use. It requires a LOT of management in order to be effective and a comfort in looking regularly at data and statistics. There are a few parts to SEM:

Keyword selection

You need to choose the right keywords for your business and your customer. Think in terms of how prospects and customers actually search for what your service or product is. Think about what language they would use.

You also need to ensure that you are not being too general or people who are not looking for you will see your ad, which can lead to wasted spend or a poor ranking of your ads.

Bid management

For any chosen keyword, there will be a number of brands and companies competing to have their ad shown and to have their ad shown FIRST. You need to decide on how much you want to bid on a keyword.



A well written ad is essential to get users to click on it AND to get the SEM platform to rank you higher. You will want different ads for different groups of keywords so that you can include those keywords in your ad to be more effective.


Landing pages

Search Engines are all about the end user. They want to make sure that wherever they send a user, that person has a GREAT experience and it was just what they were looking for. Think of it as when you refer a friend to a business or restaurant. You want to have faith in your recommendation!

When a search engine sends someone to a page, if that person has a GREAT user experience, then the Search Engine will rank that page higher and want to send more people there. If they have a bad experience, the opposite happens.

You want to make sure your landing page for an ad has the right keywords on it and is relevant to what the searched keyword and the ad are about.

Testing, measuring, and tweaking

A BIG part of SEM is data and analytics. You need to be on top of always checking your keywords, your ads, and what happens when a user lands on your page to tweak and optimize your campaign.

Make sure you have a measure for conversion – whether that is a purchase made online or a contact made with you to complete a purchase offline. This data can be pulled INTO SEM platforms and can help you hone and tweak your campaign to be more effective. This is also an essential part of measuring your ROI.


What can I expect Google Ads to cost me?

A benchmark cost per click – or per visit to your website from an ad – is $1. It can be more or less depending on the popularity of your keyword. A MINIMUM amount to spend per day is $10. A better amount to start with is $20 per day.


If you choose to hire someone to set up and manage your campaign for you, the cost would start at $200-$300 for set up and $300 per month for management. Some agencies charge upward of $1000 per month for management.


While this definitely can feel high, remember that when used effectively, SEM can have one of the lowest conversion cost since it’s targeting people who are warm leads and already searching for something that you are selling. Because of the cost, I recommend using SEM for targeted and shorter-term campaigns rather than year-round.


A big BIG mistake I see when it comes to branding, is businesses thinking that once they have a logo they are all set. But, in truth, branding is so much more than a logo. In fact, a logo is the last piece of the branding puzzle, and with a strong brand, many businesses could get by without one.



A brand is your business’s personality. It is who your business IS. How others – including your potential customers and customers themselves – see you and relate to you. A brand is something that shows up in everything you do – from your packaging to your website to your tone of “voice” in emails and social media to the types of visuals and photos you use. A brand is all encompassing.


And, importantly, your business’s brand – its personality – isn’t always YOUR personality. It can often be a challenge for an entrepreneur – especially when they ARE the whole business – to separate themselves from their business brand.


A common mistake entrepreneurs make is to assume their tone, their favourite colours, and their personal style choices and to give those to their brand.


A better way to look at it is that your business brand may – and likely does – have ELEMENTS of YOU. Elements that are suited for what you want to put forward for your business and what you want the world to see. Also, elements that are suited for the type of business you run and the customer you want.


Let’s look at some of the building blocks of building a killer brand.

One: Think of your Audience

While your brand is a reflection of YOUR business personality and self, it also needs to be one that speaks to your AUDIENCE. After all, your audience is who you want to speak to! Your audience is who you want to build a relationship with, evoke feelings in, and who you want to be engaged with your brand. When selecting images, think about ones that would appeal to your audience. What would grab their attention? What would they find meaningful and interesting?


Two: Brand colours

Your colour palette is a key part of expressing your brand’s personality to your audience.


Colours offer a lot of opportunity for customization but also the potential to be used incorrectly. Mistakes often made include using too many colours, using colour combinations that don’t go together, or using colours that don’t fit your brand.


We often have the temptation to use colours we like without much thought as to whether they are the right colours for our business or brand. The RIGHT colours are key in sending the right message about your business to your audience. Beyond what looks GOOD and NOT GOOD together, different colours and fonts say different things about your brand.


From a colour palette standpoint, ask yourself what your colour choice is saying about your brand, and whether that is what you want to be saying.


Three: Selecting the right fonts

Much like your colours, your font choice will say a lot about your brand. When choosing fonts, it is helpful to ask yourself if your fonts will appeal to your audience and whether they’re a good fit for your brand and business.


Because there are SO MANY fonts out there, finding the right one can be more challenging than finding the right colours. Understanding the traits or personality you want your brand to put forward will help you pick the right fonts. Is your brand modern or traditional? Is it bold and loud or gentle and harmonious? These are questions to ask when thinking about what font would best express your brand.


Four: Consistency

Branding is all about consistency. Once you have an established what your brand looks like and what its personality is, you want to make sure you stick to it. When you design content for social media, flyers for your business, and even your website, use the colour palette and fonts to guide the design. When writing for your blog or website or social media, make sure the voice reflects your brand’s voice. When put together, all your business collateral – or marketing pieces – will help to establish and show your brand to the world.


So, you’re ready to take your side hustle or your passion full time and you’re trying to figure out how exactly it’s going to make you money. Or maybe you’re currently running a business and are looking to explore new income streams to boost your profit.


When it comes to building a profitable business, deciding what you’re selling is a key piece of the puzzle.


There are so many ways to turn your passions and skill into a business offering.


Today we’re talking all about finding the right business idea for you. This might be a product or a service or a way that you deliver your expertise.


Female entrepreneurs figuring out what business to start


For an example, a fitness coach could do individual sessions, group programs, or multi-session one-on-one packages to name three options. All three of those are different ways to package and sell their skills. They could focus on new moms looking to get fit again or specialize in runners who want to prevent injuries and up their game. Those are two very different businesses and offerings.


If you’re selling hand-crafted pottery, you could sell wholesale through stores, online to individuals, hold your own pop-up shops, or sell at craft fairs. You could sell a particular style or really focus on mugs or tea pots or jewellery. Or maybe you might even want to explore hosting DIY pottery events.


So, upside - There are so many options. Downside – all the options can be a bit overwhelming and knowing exactly where to focus your efforts can be a challenge. We can find ourselves splitting our time and trying to do all the things at once, which generally just leads to not doing any one thing really well.


Our brand stands out when we’re really good at one thing. When we have a specific signature style or service or special way we do something. That’s when people take notice.


Not nailing down our business offering can also mean that we might find ourselves pursuing a business model or style that isn’t a good fit for us and that leaves us feeling unfulfilled or burnt out.


You want to create a business offering that will be something you enjoy doing and that fits with what you want out of your business and in a way that will make you the most profit.


The goal is to be profitable while also being sustainable – after all, profit is not that great if you hate every minute of making it.


There are a few ways to help uncover the perfect business product or service or package for you and your dream customer. I’m going to share one way to do so in this post.


We’re going to cover three key things to consider when trying to come up with your business offering. What we’re looking for is where these three things come together. So, where the overlap is.


If you’re testing some ideas you’re kicking around, then the same thing – you want it to be a checkmark in all three boxes.


Is there a market for it?

This is where our audience research comes in handy – does our dream customer want/need what we’re selling? Does it solve a problem/pain point they are having? Does it make their life better or easier or happier?


Is there a business fit for you?

Will you enjoy doing this day in and day out? Will it help you achieve what success means and looks like to you? Will it allow you to live the lifestyle you want?


Is there profit to be had?

When you look at the hard costs and the time costs – so the amount of time you need to put in – is it the most profitable thing you could offer? The most profitable way you can package your skills and passions and put them up for sale. This is where you need to really evaluate costs and how much time things will take you. You don’t have to be 100% here but you need to have a good idea. So, make some calls or send some emails to get some costs where needed and really think through how long things will take – and add at least 10% to that. The time part is really interesting and important because time is our truly limited resource. We could theoretically get more money, but we can’t magic up more time in our lives or our day.



If you’re still trying to figure out some business ideas for your skills and passion and don’t have any yet, add the word “where” in front of the first question.

So: where is there a market? Where is there a business fit? Where is there profit?


If you’re testing a few ideas, run each one through these questions and one will likely emerge as the winner.


You might have a lot of ideas that do very well in one or two of the areas, but that don’t do great in all three. To be profitable and sustainable, you need to find the magic that happens when you have a “yes” to all three questions.


I want to tell you a quick story. A story that could really be a modern day business fable actually…

It is the story of the business owner who builds a website – spending a ton of time doing it themselves or money to pay an expert to do it for them.


And they launch this beautiful website into the world and….nothing happens.

They wait and wait and wait

And …crickets.

No one goes to the site. And they have no idea why and they wonder whether websites are even needed nowadays.




Get your website found on google with SEO

First thing – yes you DO need a website. Your website is pretty much the only place you have total 100% control over how your brand is shown to your audience in the digital world.  Social media is incredibly important as well. But it’s a different channel with a different use and does not readily or intuitively communicate your full brand and business message in one easy way.


With a website, you can showcase your elevator pitch, who you are, what your services are, and your portfolio all in one place that is designed to do just that.


So yes, you need a website.


But your website also needs an audience.


The mistake so many business owners make is believing that if they build it, their dream clients will come.


But it’s not like a café or store that you might walk by and think “hey that looks like it’s for me!” and walk in.  It lives in a digital suburb no one is driving to unless they are trying to get there.


If you want your dream audience to come visit you at your website, you have to tell them about it and get found by them by hanging out where they hang out.


There are a few ways to do this, and they work best in combination.


The first few ones are all related to something you have probably heard of. You might even have said it out loud, but you may still not be 100% on what those letters mean. I’m talking SEO. Search Engine Optimization.


A site that is optimized for search engines, will show up in the search results of google, yahoo, etc. when someone types in the right keywords.


So, if you are looking to attract customers looking to buy high end shoes, you want your website to show up on search engines when people are SEARCHING for high end shoes. A website that does this has great SEO.


There are ways to set up your website so it shows up in search results. First, feel reassured that no BRAND NEW website is going to rank high on search engines RIGHT AWAY. Let that take some pressure off.


Think about it this way: when you refer a café or store or restaurant to a friend, you don’t do it lightly. You first make sure that you’ve checked it out, that you know they are solid and that your friend is going to have a good experience.


Search engines act the same way. They want to make sure they are sending their users somewhere GOOD. Somewhere that meets their needs. Somewhere where high end shoe buyers are going to find high end shoes.


Establishing that relationship with a search engine takes time. Building that credibility takes time. But there are some things you can do to build that credibility faster and to get search engines to take notice! We’re going to talk about five ways to do this.


My 5 tips for getting your website found on Google

Size matters

But in this case bigger isn’t better. It’s worst. So much worst.


Large image files on your website take a long time to load. It may only be 3-5 seconds, but in the digital world that is EONS. Between slow load times and a pull on data for mobile devices, search engines don’t like those large websites. It’s important to make sure all your images and files are optimized for web. This is a bit of a line to walk now as people also have larger screens and you don’t want grainy images showing up for them. There are online tools to help you test you site speed; the best call is to play with image sizes and speed and try to find a balance.


Name your images

If you’re uploading photos and images with filenames like IMG001.jpg you are MISSING OUT BABE!


Search engines don’t see images. They see file names and alt text (or the text that loads in place of an image when it doesn’t load or when someone is using an accessibility device to view your site).


Put keywords in your file names and use descriptive alt text – not just for the SEO but because, really, it is a much better experience for those who are using accessibility devices.


Instead of IMG001.jpg how about highendredheels.jpg!


Hierarchy! Aka OUTLINE!

Think about all the times you scan text – whether an email, an article, a website. We allll do it! YES you want people to read every last word, but most people are first looking for relevance or something to catch their eye before they dive in and commit time to reading.


Also, breaking up your website like this makes it MORE READABLE – less just one solid block of text. Search engines like this, too.


For these people you want a bit of an outline on your web pages with some hierarchy – meaning that the more important, the closer to a headline something is, the larger it is.


There are even headline TAGS to use in your website – all the way from H1 for the biggest and more important headline to H5 for the sub sub sub sub headings.


Change it up

If you build one or two pages on your website and forget it, search engines are not going to notice you or find your site particularly engaging for its users.


More content means more places for keywords to live.

More content also means more for a reader to see.

Regularly adding content means that you regularly have new and interesting things for people to see.


Now all these things are easy to accomplish if you have a blog or if you have an online store. But if you don’t have a blog and you don’t feel a blog is right for your audience or is a tactic you want to spend time on, then that’s ok too. You can achieve a good amount of relevant content with key web pages – your about page, services page, home page, and key landing pages. You might find you have tools or new freebies to add as you build and promote your business, and those can all live on your website and help give you a boost with search engines.


Tell people about your website

A lot of business owners launch a website, post once about it on social media and then…that’s it! Tell people regularly about it. Whether it’s showcasing new products and linking to your site, sharing new blog posts, adding it to your email signature, reminding people in your email marketing about it, and so on.


The more people go to your website and check it out, the more search engines are going to know people like going to your website. Plus, search engines aside, this is a great way to get your site in front of your dream clients!


Building a website is exciting, a bit exhausting, and a really fantastic step for your business. Once it’s out there in the world, you want to make sure that all your dream clients are seeing it, visiting it, and finding it often. So, make sure to get in front of your dream clients where they are already and especially when they are looking for what it is that you are offering. Don’t be discouraged if immediately you don’t have a ton of people coming by. Like any and all of your marketing, it is something that requires ongoing work to help it shine.


I've created a free SEO checklist that has steps you can take while writing your blog posts and after it's published to improve their chances of getting seen and drawing your ideal customers to your site.

free download blog checklist for seo


There is so much out there telling us entrepreneurs to build our business online and find our Dream Customer online. And that is a great idea that works for some people. But – BUT – growing a strong brand and customer base locally in your community can be a great move for your business.


As a marketing and design company, we wanted to work with clients who didn’t want to do the same old thing – place some ads and hope their message got across. We believed in engaging audiences and in providing experiences that provoked conversation and dialogue and moved people to action. So, we began to hold events that did just that. Our brand and business became known for those events, and clients would seek us out to achieve the same results for their projects.


When we launched SMRT WOMEN, we wanted help female entrepreneurs build the skills, support, and connections they need for them and their business to thrive - whatever stage that business is at. We again turned to events as a way to do this and build this community. While SMRT WOMEN is now also online, the events are still an important and super fun part of it!


Events are a great marketing tool because they provide an EXPERIENCE for your audience – something really tangible to engage with. They aren’t to replace your other marketing tactics, but to act in concert with them to round out your strategy.


My top four tips to ensure that your event is a success.

Because if you’re going to do an event, you want to do it right!


Set a goal for your event

Understand what you’re trying to achieve with your event and why you are hosting it. This is SO IMPORTANT. A lot of people have events without a clear goal, which makes it hard to plan it but also really hard to know if it was a success.


Know who your event is for

You event is not for everyone. It’s not for your Facebook Friends (seriously, stop inviting all your Facebook friends to all your events – that’s a topic for another time). Your event is for your audience. Maybe a particular segment of your audience. Get really clear on this. It will help you plan the EXPERIENCE part of your event – so that is really creates an awesome experience for your audience – and it is also a big part of marketing your event effectively.


Create an experience

Ok so I’ve mentioned an experience a couple of times – what the heck am I talking about, right?


When you’re thinking about your event, think about it as more than just the specific skills or thing you are sharing. The amazing thing about a live event is the potential to have many touch points and different things that collectively make the event memorable and that communicate your brand to your audience.


Let me tell you about one event that SMRT POP UPS did with the Yukon Transportation Museum. A blues band was coming up and there was going to be live music. That’s pretty cool in and of itself as it was a pretty cool band. Layer of an awesome unconventional space – the museum, it’s already gone from a live show to an experience. I mean, who wouldn’t want to have a dance party in a museum?


But we knew we could make it even more memorable for people. So, we brought in some blues dancers to do a mini lesson before the music started so people could dance blues to the blues. And we had a scavenger hunt and a photo booth with period costumes. And then there was a pop-up donut shop for a food vendor and a specialty cocktail courtesy of the awesome Yukon Brewing.


Promote your event

Now that your awesome event is all planned and the stage is set to create a memorable brand experience for your Dream Customer, don’t forget to tell them about it! Your event needs a marketing plan – use numbers 1-3 (goals, audience, and experience features) to create an event elevator pitch and content.


  • Create a consistent look for all your marketing outputs for the event – it should look like your brand but all the pieces should also clearly be connected and about this event.
  • Promote it consistently and pepper it in with your other awesome brand content.
  • Download my free event marketing workflow to get your audience out to your event!


So, there you have it – the why, what, and how of using events to build your brand and your business. Online is awesome, but there is something so wonderful about reaching your local audiences in person. And it’s something that will stand out for them as well. It gives you and your brand a chance to shine in a real and tangible way.


event marketing checklist download buton


Running a business is so much more than offering the service or product that you offer. That is likely the part you’re really passionate about - the reason you started a business. But – and you’ve probably already figured this out if you’re along your business journey – it’s only one PART of your business.


Running a business is a lot of admin work, book keeping, marketing – all the behind the scenes stuff that actually makes a business a success. Now large businesses have departments and hired staff for all that. There is often a marketing department and a bookkeeping/finance department. There is often at least one office manager or administrative staff keeping things scheduled and on track.


But when you’re the CEO of your own business, you’re likely also the CMO, CFO, and so on. You’re all the things!!


You need tools and systems that help you wear all the hats without the headache.


A time tracking app

If you’re running a service based business, when you’re pricing your services and putting out quotes or estimates, you want to make sure that you’re pricing them right – meaning you want to make sure that the time you’re putting into a project is what you’re getting paid for. This is super hard for many of us, and it’s something that tends to cause a lot of unnecessary stress.


There is actually a psychological phenomenon called the Planning Fallacy where people underestimate how long a task will take them. If you’re working for yourself, this can really mess with your action plans and flow. But it can also mean that you’re not getting paid what you should be getting paid.


To help me solve that business problem and take the stress out of the “how long will this take” question, I use Paymo, a time tracking tool.


I use it to track everything I do and I break the projects down into task types. And then I use that data for future projects so that I know how long a project will take me. I then use that data the next time I am creating a quote or deciding when I am available to take on a project that comes up – or if I even have the availability.


If you’re running a product based business, knowing how long tasks take you is equally important. If your product takes you 20 hours to make and you’re only charging $100 um…you need to know that so you can increase your prices RIGHT NOW.


Quickbooks: the book keeper of your dreams

Let me share with you one of the most embarrassing things that I have done in my business because of how much I hate bookkeeping admin. I have not billed clients – more than once. I’ve finished the project, they’ve been ready to pay me, and I just ghost them. Like never sent them an invoice and then ignored all their emails and never spoke to them again because I was so embarrassed.


Bookkeeping is one of the most annoying business admin things that we need to do as an entrepreneur. Tracking expenses, remembering which clients have paid and which haven’t, following up with the right ones, billing billable expenses to clients, categorizing everything, reconciling bank accounts and blah blah bleh.


When I work with clients on their businesses, bookkeeping is something that comes up a lot.


I am so excited to tell you that there is a better way. I use Quickbooks. I love Quickbooks. It has taken like 90% of my bookkeeping stress away. It means that I actually DO my bookkeeping, which is an amazing win in and of itself.


Yes, it costs money. I pay about $40 a month. Something to know about me is that I am capital F Frugal. I don’t like spending money on things. I hate subscription products. And I’ll usually put in 8 hours of time finding workarounds on a free product rather than pay. But for me a good bookkeeping software is SO worth it. Plus it saves me money because:

  • I record my expenses, which means I can report them for tax time
  • I can track my invoices to ensure I'm getting paid
  • I no longer pay late fees for being late on my GST


A social media scheduler

When I lead social media workshops or work with clients on their social media strategies, I’m often asked about scheduling. Hey, I get it, you can’t always be at the ready to post on social media. Even when you’ve planned it all out and batch created your content and are good to go - stuff comes up.


There are a whole whack of scheduling tools out there to try out. I use Hootsuite. The free version lets you have three social media profiles connected so you can schedule your posts, tweets, grams, ahead of time. So, you can schedule to your Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn and so on. If you’re looking to stay on top of your content strategy and put out consistent content, you’ll want to check out HootSuite.



This one I’m about to share is a game changer. It’s my absolute favourite tool. It’s actually a system.


It’s not only going to save you a ton of time and make you feel like the most organized on-top-of-all-the-balls CEO ever, but it’s also going to eliminate a lot of human error that can cost you money or lead to things not going as smoothly as they could go.




Workflows are like having a project manager on your team. It’s like having a full time executive administrator making your life easier and watching out for all the small details that you with the millions of things on your plate might miss.


Creating workflows for your business is all about taking those big tasks you do and turning it into a sequence of events. It:

  • captures all the details and it captures when things need to happen and in what order so that you can stay on track and not forget anything.
  • anticipates any questions or issues that might come up and acts as a preventative measure.
  • breaks down big overwhelming tasks into step-by-step action plans.
  • Plus, if it is a task you do more than once, it saves a ton of time because you don’t need to reinvent the wheel every single time.


One workflow that I teach in my Content Marketing workshops is all about streamlining how you create content. For an example of a super simplified workflow for this...

  1. Looking at the month, fill in any important dates (sales you’re having, holidays, events you’re hosting, “national days”, and so on.)
  2. Using placeholders, map out which content pillars you are sharing when
  3. Map out where your “sell” messages will go
  4. Brainstorm ideas for content for each of the placeholders
  5. Write the content
  6. Find visuals
  7. Proofread
  8. Schedule all your content for the month

You can use workflows for client onboarding, you can use them for when you’re training new staff, you can use them for your monthly book keeping or quarterly business evaluation. Any task that you do somewhat regularly and you want to streamline, you can use a workflow for.


I teach how to use and create workflows in detail and much more fully in the Business Foundations Bootcamp. Plus, in that program, I share a bunch of my workflows so you get full access to project systems you can copy and paste for your business.


If you’ve been reading, listening, viewing – whatever – anything business, you’ve probably heard a million people telling you to NICHE. To really focus on one specific audience, one specific service area, and so on.


This can be a scary thing, and is something MANY entrepreneurs struggle with.

Why you need a business niche



There are a lot of fears and limiting beliefs that underlie niching, and that make it such a struggle for entrepreneurs.


There can be a fear or concern about limiting one’s income. We fall into the trap of thinking that if we are choosing to niche our audience, we are limiting our audience. If we choose to just talk to and create products and services for women, well aren’t we just cutting out 50% of the market and our potential income?


Another fear that underlies this struggle is one of limiting ourselves. By committing to a niche, we can feel that we are trapping ourselves in a box. Sure, we may want to offer life coaching now, but what if we want to teach yoga later? We often have many passions and skills, and choosing to focus those can feel scary.


So yes, niching can feel scary! It can be scary and daunting to feel like you’re saying no to potential customers. It can be scary to feel like you’re limiting YOURSELF and your passions.


But, niching is a game changer for your business.


When you niche, you choose your audience. You choose the people you are most passionate and excited about helping. And they will see that you choose them. Think about when you get a service or product: do you want something that is trying to please everyone and anyone? That’s general and vague? Or, do you want a business that specializes in you? That is skilled and experienced and focused on solving your problem and meeting your specific needs?


When you niche, you get to become really good at working with audiences that you are really excited about. And, what’s great is that there are enough of them. When you build your niche based on research, you can feel confident that there is a big enough audience for you to make your business sustainable and scalable.


Niching isn’t about limiting yourself or your business, it’s about clarity. It’s about getting really incredibly beautifully CLEAR on your business and your audience. This clarity will make it easy to build a brand you love and one that feels RIGHT. It will make it easy to build a website, to create content, to choose what services and products to offer. Being this CLEAR is essential if you want to be able to build something meaningful and successful and not get bogged down in overwhelm and the inability to make decisions.


Let me repeat that one more time: Niching is NOT limiting yourself or your business. It’s setting the stage for success.


And the amazing thing about having a business is that it is always growing and changing. Throughout the business lifecycle, you will constantly be measuring and tweaking your services, products, and approaches. This means that as your business grows and scales up, you may expand into new audiences and have new products and services.


Niching isn’t about limiting yourself. It is about focusing your efforts for success and pivoting and tweaking as you learn and grow.


Find your niche with these three questions

Ask yourself these questions to figure out your niche – or where you should focus your efforts. Download the free worksheet.

What do you love doing?

Like love so much that you are happy to make it your whole life – learn about it, wake up and read about it, talk about it all the time, and do day in and day out.


I always use this example when I am recommending my financial advisor to people – which I do a lot because he is awesome. Feel free to PM me if you want to know who he is.


He literally wakes up in the morning and reads about finances. THAT’S HOW MUCH HE LOVES IT.


You aren’t going to love what you do all the time, but if you’re building a business that you’re passionate about, you want to make sure that you are incredibly interested in it and want to learn about it and do it all the time.


What are you doing when you feel the happiest and most fulfilled?

Are you creating? Are you helping people feel healthier? Are you creating fitness plans or are you motivating in person a group of people and watching them get stronger every week?


I still remember my one yoga instructor who so clearly loved teaching a group of students, correcting their form, watching them be transformed through the class. I went back every time I could and I still miss him years later after moving because it was so obvious how much he loved it. I’ve also been to yoga classes where the teacher did not seem to love it. I’m sure they loved yoga but it felt like they didn’t really love teaching a class of people doing yoga – they weren’t modifying anything or checking alignment or helping any of us get better. Teaching classes probably was NOT a great focus for them.


What is the thing that makes YOU feel happy and fulfilled? Think back to jobs and projects that you have LOVED and ask why you loved them so much.


Who do you love working with? Who would you feel jazzed to work with day in and day out?

For example, if you’re a fitness coach, do you love helping young athletes excel and get to the point where they are competing? Do you love helping body builders compete? Do you love working with people who want to be healthier?


I was working with a coaching client in the fitness industry around this very thing. Once she realized that what really excited her was working with women who wanted to be healthy and were motivated to follow through but wanted her expertise and her motivating abilities to get them there, we could focus her services and her marketing.


That is the power of this question.


Really visualize who you enjoy working with and how you enjoy working with them. What is it that you’re helping them with? How are you making their life better?



  1. Niching isn’t about limiting your potential; it’s about focusing your efforts for success.
  2. Niching is a game changer for your business.
  3. Niching will help you to cut through overwhelm and indecision.
  4. Ask yourself three questions to help find your niche!



For many female entrepreneurs, visibility is a struggle. It is a challenge to put ourselves and our business out there. Whether on social media or at networking events, standing up and showing up can be something that we instinctually run from.


As women, we have been conditioned to be humble and to not take risks. When we take charge, we're told we are controlling or bossy.


All of this can result in a struggle to believe in ourselves, our abilities as CEO, and our vision. You might also struggle to self-promote, share your wins and successes and proudly tell the world about your special talents.


So, what can you do?



Hack limiting beliefs

Be your own devil’s advocate. What story are you telling yourself? What is at the root of that anxiety that arises when you think about being visible. Describe it in detail.


Now that you have uncovered the there truth in it? What do you assume to be true? What part of the story makes you feel stuck every time? What do you really believe? Can you disprove the story you are telling yourself and give it less power?


Let yourself shine

Look back at the past year and think of three times you felt really good and proud about how a project went or how you helped a client with your business. Write out a statement describing each time and write out in detail the difference you made for that client or customer and how it made you feel.


Overcome self doubt with strategy

Ask your fans, your past clients, and your audience what they want to learn about from you. Use those questions and ideas to guide your content. When you focus on what your clients need, you can create content with more confidence.


If you are ready to tackle the mindset demons that are holding you and your business back, we're here to help you build an action plan and a strategy to put those unhelpful blocks on, well, the chopping block! Get in touch today for a discovery call!



The power of audience targeting

The ability for refined and niche targeting is a huge part of what makes Facebook Ads so powerful and what can help to stretch a small budget a long way.


One of the biggest mistakes business owners make is trying to reach everyone instead of focusing on a specific target audience.


The thing is, when you try to talk to everyone, you’re effectively talking to no one. Plus, you’re wasting your money. Why try to sell to people who will never be your customer? Or to people who you don’t want to be your customer.


With Facebook Ads, you can find your customers and serve ads just to them. This is really quite possibly single handily the most powerful part of Facebook Ads. You can create highly defined and custom audiences in Facebook Ads so that you can manage who is seeing what ads and when.

women at computer facebook ad targeting


There is really no end to the targeting you can do in Facebook Ads.


We are going to share three of our favourite super powerful targeting strategies to use with Facebook Ads.

1. Location Targeting

If you have an event or workshop you are trying to promote, or if you want to build up your local customer base, location targeting is a great tool to use. To take this targeting feature one step further, you can select three criteria for the location of your audience:

  • Your audience lives in the location you are targeting;
  • Your audience is visiting the location you are targeting; or
  • Your audience was recently in the location you are targeting.

The default setting for location targeting is all three. But, if you are a business whose dream customers are tourists to your city or town, then you may only want your ads to be shown to tourists. And if you're running a workshop and trying to build your brand in your community, then you may only want to target residents rather than spending money to get your ads in front of people who won't be around for very long.


2. Life Events Targeting

If you are selling products or services for new parents, for weddings, or to help people celebrate a key milestone in life, then you definitely want to take advantage of the life event targeting feature in Facebook Ads. You can build audiences of people who are at a key milestone and show them ads that tell them why your business is the perfect fit to help them celebrate and rock that life event.


3. Interest Targeting

When we talk marketing, we often talk about three kinds of audiences: those who buy your product or service already, those who never would, and those who don't yet but could be easily sold to. The thing is, don't waste your time or money selling to people who will never be your customer. Frankly, even if you could sell to them, you wouldn't really want to because they aren't your dream customer!

Interest targeting let's us put our money and effort into only getting ads in front of people who will buy or who are likely to buy by building audiences that have interests that our brand and business caters to. If you are a wellness business, target those who are interested in health and wellness. If you are a travel company, target those who like to travel. And so on.


Using these targeting features to create audiences that really align with your Dream Customer will help you serve the right ads to the right people so that you can crush your marketing and business goals.



free facebook ads class


It’s goal setting season. Spring is here, the sun is out, and it’s time to get out of hibernation mode and chart the summer for your biz. We invited one of our favourite local entrepreneurs, Astrid Grawehr, partner and Director of Operations at Kryotek Arctic Innovation Inc. , into the studio to talk about business success and how the goal post for achievement may not always be what you think.


Astrid joined Kryotek seven years ago when mining was booming in the Yukon and “success” was easy to come by. But a shift in the market and a restructure later and her and her business partner were asking themselves “is that all there is?”. We talk to Astrid about having the courage to slow down, reset, and rechart the course to success that feeds all of ourselves.

Have a listen to our convo below and let us know how you set courageous goals.


Check it all out below.

Ep 5 – Courageous Goal Setting

Our Goal Setting Takeaways

Rolling with it is cool until it’s not.

Rolling with the punches is how many of us get our business off the ground. We have an idea or see an opportunity, we set things in motion and things get rolling. We run our business by responding to what’s happening instead of leady by creating what we want to create. This can totally work for some folks  - and for many others you will eventually hit a wall where you find some piece of what you have created is not fitting - it's hurting instead of helping. That wall can hit you pretty hard if you are rolling fast. Hitting the breaks every so often is not a bad thing. Ask yourself if you are rolling in the direction you want to go or if you need to change course and you just might get where you want to go.


How do you know when it’s not working? Pay attention to the friction.
Where are you finding friction instead of flow? Are you feeling a tightness in your body, are you feeling sick all the time, are you constantly bumping into frustration and annoyance. Friction is a clue to let you know that something is not fitting or working. Follow the friction to find what’s not working and lean into your truest desires to get real about what will.


Setting Good Goals Means Being Really Honest with Yourself - and it might hurt.
When you are looking back and what is working and what is not it can be easy to fall into the trap of false motivation. By that I mean it can be easy to feel or see reward that is driven by what you THINK success should be. Other people’s idea of what success should look like. It can feel comfortable to be making a certain amount of money, or to be seen a certain way by you community. But if those things are not leaving you happy and feeling rewarded. If your health is suffering then are they good metrics for success for you? Questioning these things goes deep - into our values and motivations and our mindset. Your ego may get a little bruised in the process - but true reward and fulfillment are on the other side of hard questions.


Your fit and needs will evolve over time.
Goals and metrics that fit one day may not fit the next. Be open to your values and vision shifting. Allow those goals and ideas of success that no longer fit to float away and welcome in those that now feel like they do.


It takes courage to slow down and make space for reflection. It takes courage to ask yourself the hard questions and be honest. It takes courage to change your day to day activities towards a new goal. It all takes vulnerability and courage. The deeper we lean into that the more success - whatever that means to us - we can find.

Recent Posts and Freebies for Your Business

Whether you are pitching your idea to an investor, creating a sales video, sharing on a conference panel, or launching a keynote your ability to speak with comfort and confidence about your business or organization is an important skill to have.


In episode 4 of the SMRT Women podcast we sit down with Colette Acheson, local management consultant to talk all things public speaking. Colette is a business owner and non-profit manager several times over. She has honed her public speaking skills in the trenches and in Toastmasters meetings.


Check it all out below.

Ep 5 – Courageous Goal Setting

Just do it

The only way to get better is to just do it. Practice in front of a mirror, video tape yourself, practice for your friends - but know that no amount of practice except the actual act of speaking in public will be practice to get you more comfortable and more experienced. Welcome and invite any opportunity no matter how small to flex your public speaking muscles. Pick one thing you want to work on - removing your ums and ahs, working with your voice, figuring out how to hold your hands - and focus on it. Take every failure as a learning opportunity.


It’s a whole body project

When you speak your whole body is communicating. Take the time to explore how you stand and gesture with your body to communicate emphasis, but also pay attention to your voice and your jaw. Give them a proper warm up before you ask them to run a marathon.


Embrace the Pause

Take a deep breath before you begin. Slow your body down. Take a deep breath between parts of your speech - give your audience a moment to catch up - to let your words sink in. It feels like a million years up there when all eyes are on you, but it’s a short second for the audience and a welcome one.


It’s always about the audience

What does your audience need to feel and connect with to believe your credibility? Do they want to be entertained? How can you work with voice, presence and posture, language and storytelling to convey that and get the message across. Are you connecting? It’s important to learn to listen and observe as you speak so you can shift and pivot to keep the audience’s attention as you work through your presentation.

Recent Posts and Freebies for Your Business

Networking serves such an important role in our business because it’s all about relationship building. Whether you are connecting with potential clients, mentors and business besties, or partners networking is a great way to meet new people and expand your business. But it can be daunting. Especially if you are introverted, don’t love big social events, or just feel awkward saying hi to new folks.


This week on the SMRT Women podcast we sit down with Patti Balsillie, a tourism, strategy, and engagement specialist. Patti has lived in the Yukon for over 30 years. She is the past Chair of the Arctic Inspiration Prize and currently sits on the boards of Destination Canada, Yukonstruct Society and Chief Isaac Companies. She is also a rock star networker so we brought her on to talk about how to networking well and how you can make it your friend - or at least your frenemy.


Check it all out below.

Ep 5 – Courageous Goal Setting

There are so many ways to network - pick one that fits your style

Networking can happen in so many different ways. You can go to a traditional mixer event, you can volunteer or serve on a board, you can connect with brands and people you love on social media, you can grab a coffee with someone you haven’t seen a while or want to get to know better- the bottom line is networking is about putting yourself in situations where you will meet new people. So pick a style that suits you best and run with it.


Go with a Goal

There’s nothing worse than heading to a networking event only to skulk in the corner all night, not talk to a single person, and then go home and mope about it. Ok - there’s a lot of things worse than that, but it still doesn’t make you feel good. Go with a goal in mind, a mission that you want to accomplish and you are much more likely to reach out of your bubble. Your mission may be to talk to three new people, learn something new, ask a question to some key people who you think will be at the event or even - dare i say it - have fun.


Bring a Buddy

Buddy system rules. Just make sure you don’t end up talking to each other all night instead of reaching out to new people. Use the fact that there is two of you to get brave and approach people. Try introducing each other so you don’t have to feel like you are self-promoting. Know each other’s goals and go for it.


Have an intro and an exit strategy

It’s totally ok to go with a few canned questions you want to try out on people - whether it’s talking about the latest community news, asking people their story, or discussing something that happened at the conference or event you are attending - go with a few questions in mind.


That being said, its very easy to get stuck in a convo that’s no clicking or going anywhere. Don’t be afraid to cut your losses and move on. Have a canned exit strategy (I’m hungry, need to go to the washroom, see someone I know…) and get outta there.


Know how you can serve and what you are looking for

Relationships are built on exchange. Go ready to share your story and tell people how you are excited to serve, share advice or info that you have online in groups if it’s helpful, and don’t be afraid to ask questions and let people know what you need - people are happy to tell you how they can help.


Recent Posts and Freebies for Your Business

You’ve worked hard to birth your business and now you are thinking about birthing a baby. What’s a gal to do. There's lots to think about, no one way to do it, and - as I experienced - a fair amount of fear. I’m not quite through maternity leave yet - baby is eight months - but I’m creating my back to work plan and thought it was time to share some things I’ve learned so far.

Tip #1 - There is such a thing as Special EI for the Self-Employed - Sign Up for It NOW!!

When I was in the stages of asking myself how this whole maternity thing would work I was panicked because I thought I would be on my own. This meant somehow squirrelling away an extra 30K BEFORE having baby. HA!. Thankfully I ran into a friend who learned the hard way that there IS such a thing. The catch is that you must sign up for and pay into special EI for 12 months BEFORE the baby arrives.

So if having a baby is on the table. Get your ass covered. Also, special EI covers things like needing to take time off work to caregive for loved ones and other special circumstances. So it’s worth it.

Get all the details here


Tip #2 - Figure out what you plan to do with the ranch (a.k.a your biz)

Turns out it’s not super easy to shut-down and restart a business - depending on what you do and how far into it you are. For me, I have a host of subscriptions that run my business every month and while I would barely use them over the course of my mat leave - shutting down my Quickbooks account and my CRM just didn’t make sense. That meant when we did the money planning for maternity for our family we had to calculate what my ongoing business expenses would be even though I was not making any revenue. I paired down everything I could, and we budgeted for it.

Make sure to ask yourself...

  • Which services or expenses can I cancel during my maternity leave?
  • Which services or expenses will I need access to?
  • What is the cost of shutting everything down and starting back up on the other side
  • Will I be continuing to process income while on leave or am I not planning on making any money at all?

The rules shift regularly so make sure you talk to Canada Revenue Agency and the EI office but it is possible to make some income to cover your expenses. If you make a profit they will deduct your EI earnings dollar for dollar.

I personally shut down. I wrapped up all my contracts about a month before baby came. And I’m now at about 8 months trying to lay the groundwork for getting back to work. This means doing some grant writing now and other things to make sure there is revenue waiting for me when the EI tap turns off. In an ideal world, I would also have some savings to tide me over.


Tip #3 - Plan for the worst - make the best of the good days

You never know what the world post-baby will look like. In my mind, I pictured mostly blissful days with a brood of kids playing house and not really going back to work until they were all at school. Turns out though you don’t do a lot of crafting and playing house with babies under 1. So while I so enjoy my cuddle and floor time I actually spend more time out of the house working on my business than anticipated - with many thanks to regular visits from grandma and grandpa.


That being said my wee struggled with reflux for a long time and we weren’t “out of the woods” till about 5 months or so. Some of us have babies who sleep all day, others don’t. If you plan to be on your butt with a baby sleeping or nursing on you 24 hours a day and it’s less than that YAY you can celebrate and relax or if you are neurotic like me - get shit done.


Some weeks you will have so much spaciousness to get things done, and some days you will be holding a crying baby all day. When you are prepared for the worst a good day is a blessing that you can roll with. I didn't think I would work on my biz this much but doing so allows me social time, a baby break, a connection to me and things I love doing and a sense of personal worth - because some days you are in tears at the thought that your only use in this world is changing diapers and doing laundry.


Tip# 4 - Let Yourself and your Business be Flexible

You already know it - this is such a moment of transition and change. You can’t make decisions for future you - so don’t try to. This is a moment to rest, to digest and to let yourself and your business evolve. On the other side of delivery, I find I am really struggling with work that has hardcore deadlines - because inevitably the week I have to get that grant application in its the week we are teething, going through a developmental leap or just clingy.


My inner elastic band - you know the one I could stretch and stretch and stretch when I did things last minute is now no longer so elastic. I am WAY more attuned to how that low level worry in the back of my mind about if I am going to get something done is not so low level. It actually works as a tensor that shortens my elastic even more. The result is that I am quicker to anger, more prone to frustration and way less empathic of my child’s tears. I become the mommy I don’t like being. I think things I don’t want to think - my mental health goes out the window in a heartbeat.


The beautiful thing about owning a business is you get to make it what it is. Take this time to readjust to what is truly important to you. Rethink your business goals, maybe even rethink your passion, and allow yourself the space to change it all, or keep the course. It's yours to mould and create. 


Tip #5 - Run your business from your phone

You will spend countless hours in the dark in the rocking chair scrolling through Facebook. If you can run your business from your phone you will be one kick-ass mama. Moments of inspiration will channel through google docs on your phone as you lie in the dark with a baby on the breast. Or you can look at cat videos to relieve your stress and fatigue. You do you girl.  


The bottom line is you can’t predict any of it. Motherhood is a hardcore lesson in humility and going with the flow. So allow yourself to be surprised where it takes you - trying to control everything, as I have learned, only results in tears.

Much love

Sofia and Baby Mira

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When Self-Doubt rears its head

Being an entrepreneur requires non-stop belief in yourself. While every one of us had to find enough of that belief to even take the leap to start our own business, sometimes it can feel like that fountain of belief is wavering, sputtering, or even has a block.


It’s totally common that at times you’re going to doubt yourself. And when it comes to promoting yourself and your business, that self doubt can feel overwhelming.


This shows up in a lot of small ways - ways that you might not recognize. It might seem that suddenly you can’t find even a spare moment to create a social media post. Or like suddenly you’re procrastinating nonstop and just NOT planning your launch event or building your website or emailing those suppliers who were interested in your product.

Overcoming Self Doubt so you can Rock Your Business

This self doubt and the anxiety that goes with it are big culprits in keeping you from achieving your business dreams - whether that’s to launch a business, promote it, or grow it.


Very few entrepreneurs are living their lives free of this. But, that doesn’t meet that you can’t overcome it and rock your business and rock your marketing of your business. How you overcome it is by really knowing your business and your audience.


When you are prepared with this knowledge, it can be used to quiet self doubt while also helping you to create and promote a business is a better more meaningful way.


This knowledge can take you from feeling like you don’t know what you’re doing to being confident in what you’re doing and how you’re doing it.


Here are the three areas of knowledge that you need to shed self doubt and move forward with confidence:


  1. Understand that you are solving a problem
    What a great and successful business DOES is SOLVE A PROBLEM. You are offering something that makes your customers’ lives easier. Something that eliminates a problem that they have.When you nail down the problem you are solving, and how you are doing it in a way that no one else is doing it, you can feel confident in that knowledge.
  2. Know your audience
    Knowing the problem you are solving and feeling that confidence in your business offering and marketing starts with really knowing your audience.Using your audience as a guide will also help you to stop comparing yourself to other businesses - a big cause of self-doubt. With your rock solid knowledge of your audience guiding your business decisions, it won’t matter what other businesses are doing because you will know that what YOU are doing is right for YOUR audience.
  3. Know your why
    Being clear on your vision for your business will help guide you through moments of doubt. A clear vision allows you to focus your energy and quiet the distractions. A clear vision is the foundation. It helps ground you when self doubt starts to set in and you are feeling lost.


Self doubt is an inevitable part of being an entrepreneur. When it gets overwhelming, and when it starts to have a paralyzing effect, just know that you are not alone and go back to your vision, audience, and business problem to overcome the doubt.



SMRT Women is launching a podcast - eep! We will dish mindset, marketing and money tips and inspiration for your badass biz. Whether you are toying with an idea, just getting started, or a biz boss veteran you’ll find practical tools to demystify marketing, strategy and mindset to create the business of your dreams. Want to join us on a podcast? Get in touch and tell us your idea!


In our kick-off podcast we talk about idea overwhelm. If you are struggling with which business idea to pursue, drowning in marketing ideas you think you should try, or not sure which new program or product to launch, idea overwhelm can get us stuck - this one’s for you!


When we are stuck we don’t act. When we don’t act we don’t learn, we don’t grow, we don’t move our business forward. So how do we get unstuck?


Join Selene and Sofia as we talk about how to narrow your ideas, get clear on what matters to you, and clear the clutter so you can see success.


Ep 5 – Courageous Goal Setting

Let your strategy be your guide. Do the research, trust it, and always refer back to it

One of the best ways to sort out your ideas is to create a strategy that is your benchmark for yes and no.  Strategy research gives you a solid sense of…


  • Your customers and what they want and need
  • Your business vision and values,  what you want to achieve, and what feels good - what feels like success
  • Your business numbers, how much you want to make and your plan for doing it
  • The kind of social impact you want your business to have

Using these as your benchmark you can evaluate your ideas based on whether they will actually serve your audience, whether they will make you feel great and align with your values, and whether they will make you money or take your business in the direction you want to go.


This can help you clear the clutter, guide your creative mind, and stay focused.


Allow yourself to play, experiment, and fail.

No idea needs to be life or death. When we treat it that way we get locked into overwhelm and we don’t do anything. Take an experimental mindset. Try out the smallest version of the idea, observe what works and what doesn’t. If it fails, change it, scrap it, or  learn and make it better. You might just be surprised at what comes. We learn by doing, not by sitting in our office coming up with ideas.


Let go of everyone else’s expectations

It’s so easy to get distracted by the bombardment of well meaning ideas from friends, loved ones, and all the business experts trying to convince you what to do. Well meaning ideas that start with “you should do…” or “your competition is doing xyz you should try it”.


All of these ideas can be wonderful and they MAY be useful to your business. They also may not. We can get stuck in marketing strategy FOMO or overwhelmed with the million ideas we SHOULD be doing. So much so that we get stuck and do nothing. When this happens a great place to start is to come back to ourselves. When we get clear on what is most important to us, the ideas We have for our business and what matters to us, we can use this as a rudder to guide our choices.


It’s not always easy but giving ourselves permission to shed the shoulds and do what feels right for us is a critical business muscle to flex.


Start with one Idea at a time

You have a million ideas for your business, from better marketing tools, to money-making ventures, to how you want to make change in the world. Where to start? With one idea at a time. Develop an idea parking lot  - a place you can write down all your brilliant ideas.


Pick one - maybe the one that you are most excited about, the one that is easiest to implement, the one that will make you the most money or the one that is best related to your strategy.


Do it. You may get started and decide it doesn’t work. Then you get to move on to your other ideas, maybe it’s brilliant it goes amazingly and those other ideas that were bugging you fade into the background, or anything in between.


Have faith that each idea has its time, no idea will ever go stale or disappear if it’s important and you will learn and build on your ideas as you implement them.

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Ever felt like your business was running you instead of the other way around?


You know - like your working way more hours than you want to doing stuff that doesn't feel that fun sometimes, or like when you just feel like you are a hot mess all over the place.


Yeah - that's a thing.


We've got some help. Check out the video for a quick and dirty scheduling exercise designed to get you thinking about the life you want to live and how you can design your business to give you the freedom you crave. Cause that's part of why you started your own business in the first place no?



Before we forget, here is a FREE downloadable worksheet to walk you through the activity.


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Self-promotion is not a four-letter word


Do you struggle to describe to people exactly what you do? Does the thought of telling others about your accomplishments make you cringe? Do you worry that someone is going to pull back the curtain and reveal you as a fraud at any time?


You are not alone! Many many women struggle to self-promote effectively. It’s like we are allergic to it. So much so that it tops the list of career blocks for women across all industries.


And yet, self-promotion is a critical skill - in landing that great contract, in selling your product, in building a community of champions who are connected to what you do and the impact you are trying to make in the world. We have to be visible for our businesses to succeed. Customers can’t buy what they can’t see.


We've pulled together our four top tips for singing your own praises to promote yourself AND your business:

  1. Notice moments of pride and success. Did a client praise your work? Did you rock that contract? Collect these and save them...Make your own "I've SO got this!" scrapbook for a rainy self-doubt-y day!
  2. Focus on the facts - what are some of the awesome things you accomplished? Did you handle a difficult situation with tact and ease? Did you sell a bunch of your product? Did you help someone achieve their goals?
  3. Share your passion - speak to the why of your business. Do you love helping people feel healthier so they can have their best lives? Do you love feeding people delicious foods that light up their tastebuds? Do you love helping people tell their story through photos?
  4. Frame it in terms of what you did for your client. Were they super lost when it came to healthy eating and why they were so tired all the time, and with just some small manageable tweaks to their diet they are now waking up bright eyed every morning ready to take on life?!


Remember: People want to hear your story. They want to know what you're up to and what it is that energizes you. So tell them! There's no "ick" in owning the facts of what you did, what it achieved, and why you loved doing it!




How you schedule your day can make all the difference to your success - both in terms of productivity, and in how much you enjoy being your own boss. One of the amazing benefits of running your own business is the flexibility of creating a schedule that allows you to live the life you want. Today we are going to share our experiences and ideas for creating the ideal schedule.


One of the big aha moments for us was realizing that our schedules don't necessarily look the same every day. This is one of the great benefits of running your own business - the flexibility to go with the flow of your day-to-day.


Some days you're in the zone or running an event and work till 10pm or even 1am. Or maybe you'll need to run errands in the middle of the day. Or you might find that you work best and most productively when you stay up all night - but then you beat yourself up for not kicking your days off at 9am.


The trick is - pay attention to what you're doing not when you're doing it. If you're getting everything done, and you're meeting your deadlines, then don't beat yourself up for working an unconventional schedule.


It can be hard to shed the 9-5 mentality when you’ve done it for so long, but working for yourself means giving yourself permission to do just that.



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You’ve written a blog post - now what?


Imagine that you’ve just published your latest blog post, and you’re super excited to share it with your target audience.


Well unfortunately, just because it’s out there, doesn’t mean that people know about it, or that they are excited to spend their time reading it.


There are some steps you can take while writing your post to improve its chances of getting seen. And, what you do after publishing a blog post is just as important as the post itself when it comes to getting noticed and drawing your ideal customers to your site.


In this video, Selene is going to be walking you through 10 essential steps to follow before, during, and after every single blog post you write.


Before we forget, here is a FREE downloadable checklist that you can take with you as a reminder of these steps after watching this video.


free download blog checklist for seo


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When planning marketing activities for your business, it’s really helpful to understand what worked and what didn’t during the previous period. This type of review should most definitely be done at the end of each year, but is also very helpful to do each quarter - when planning for your business, creating your marketing roadmap on a quarterly (3 month) business can really help you break it down and properly prepare and plan what's to come.


This short video will help you evaluate your past year's activities so that you can focus the next year's efforts without wasting time, money, and energy. You can use the same system/process if you are doing a quarterly review or a mid-year review!



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This vid is all about one of our FAVOURITE tools when it comes to rocking your content marketing. It's going to help you pump out superstar social media content that's on point and on brand every. single. time.


One of the biggest challenges our small business clients talk to us about is struggling to create content for their blogs, newsletters, and social media channels. It can be incredibly difficult to consistently create content, let alone create quality content that connects with your audience.


In this video, Selene shares a tool that is a serious game changer when it comes to keeping your content flowing, on brand, and on point with your audience. It’s a tool that we use for all of our social media clients. It’s called a content calendar.


Watch the video to learn more about content calendars: what they are, WHY they are so AWESOME, and how to use them to rock YOUR content.


Oh and then download our FREE content calendar template so you can do your own after this mini tutorial.


Download Your Free Content Calendar Template Now

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