Tag Archives: small business

Model Lily Cole – Paying with a “Thank you”

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Actress and model Lily Cole launches all-new BlackBerry Q10, at Selfridges on London’s Oxford Street. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Friday April 26, 2013.  Photo credit: Matt Crossick/PA

Nowadays it is almost impossible to think about a person or organization that works expecting only a “thank you” as payment. This concept, however, exists and it is not some sort of scam or slavery. On the contrary, impossible.com is a global community that aims to help each other out by sharing people’s time, skills, and objects; with the simple objective of boosting people’s profile by encouraging kind actions and work, using only the “thanks currency” in exchange.

The mind behind this innovative concept is Lily Cole, the English model, actress, and entrepreneur who has been also image of Vogue in several occasions. This idea came partly from Cole’s University of Cambridge thesis “Impossible utopias”. In her History of Art thesis, Cole meditates about momentary utopias in everyday reality, contributing to the possibility of making such utopias a reality; a concept somehow similar to the original term of utopia, first coined by the political philosopher Thomas Moore in his 1516 political fiction work of the same name.

In further analysis, Lily Cole wondered about the possibility of a website or platform where people could do things for one another without money being necessary as currency. In words of Lily Cole for Vogue “it just felt like quite a simple, obvious idea”, impossible.com was taking form in Cole’s mind.

The concept of impossible.com is simple and clearly reflected in its manifesto: having in mind there are only two things you can spend in this world, money and time; we all should be wondering what we are doing with these things, spending them or turning them into something impossible. Impossible.com is a group of people sharing knowledge, skills, and some time without expecting money in exchange.

Although Cole admits her model and actress profile has helped her idea to take off, the objective is that impossible.com can continue on its own. In the future people will realize that being helpful and selfless can bring enormous satisfaction as reward. Lily Cole is also demonstrating that the times we are living now need new business and economic models. Sustainable, equitable, and responsible business models also look for people well-being for nothing or little in exchange. Step by step social-engaged entrepreneurs like Lily Cole are making utopias coming true.

Hope you enjoyed the read!

Sponsored by: LIDER Marketing & The Sustainable Entrepreneur

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How I Knew I Was Ready to Become an Entrepreneur

 

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A friend of mine, who is an avid reader of my blog, asked me if I could write a post on when and how I knew was ready to start a business. Thinking back, I remember it started at the age of 19 when I was in college studying business. To keep afloat, I worked small part-time jobs in restaurants, bars and small offices. While I was enrolled in business classes I learnt that starting a business wasn’t as hard as it everyone said it was. I also realized that I would much prefer to work for myself than the employers who I had currently worked for. With that in mind, I made my first step into the world of entrepreneurship but before I took that important step I ran down these 6 points:

  • Was ready to start crafting my passion?:

When we start our careers we usually start in low entry jobs. These jobs generally entail tasks that are repetitive or soon become repetitive. It came to the point where I wasn’t pshcially capable of doing work I didn’t want to do anymore. I knew that by becoming my own boss and by stepping into the world of entrepreneurship I would be able to experience and practice a much broader line of skills. Entrepreneurship allows you to focus on the activities and passions you care most about or are most interested in. You can do this by finding ways to incorporate them into your business or forming your business around this concept.

  • I never received anything from the companies I worked for that was as valuable as the time I invested:

Building someone else’s dream is what we call a job, or even a career. If you have a job, it needs to bring something into your life. As for me, completing projects that brought an already wealthy person more money wasn’t filling in my achievement meter. I found the companies I worked for generally lacked a sense of community, meaningful goals and proper values. If you’re going to work for a company find one that you can admire and if you can’t find a non-materialistic value in them don’t work for them. Start your own projects, make a difference in the world and don’t submit to a greedy CEO. I decided that my time was best invested when it was towards my own dreams and passions.

  • I desired to live my life to its fullest and was ready to create the time to do so:

When you’re employed you will always have schedules, mannerisms and goals to follow. You’ll have deadlines to follow, a boss to follow, a contract to follow – you’ll be following something constantly. To me, becoming an entrepreneur was my entry way to following my own schedule and creating my own rules. I know, many people who put up with unjustified behavior and treatment at their jobs because they enjoy the comforts of their stability within their jobs. Something they don’t realize is that their quality of life has declined for all the wrong reasons and reasons that are not worth it.

Maintaining a free schedule that allows you to stay disciplined is important. Being able to freely decide on what they are doing, when they are doing it, how they’re doing it and who you are dealing with is what I define as true freedom.

  • I wanted to do make decisions and felt entitled to my opinion and beliefs:

I am a free soul who bases everything I do off of my vision, morals and values. Within a job, often times employers make you operate on their terms. They force you to see from their perspectives with the bribery of money which will eventually corrupt the soul. You have to always remember that you can be your own leader and develop your own methods of business even if they are not as prosperous as other solutions. For example, I am completely against non-environmentally friendly production so I do my best to find dealers who are socially and environmentally friendly.

When you give yourself the freedom to navigate your operations the way you desire – you’ll notice immediately the inspiration that will fill your mind with good.

  • I had the will power to minimize my life in the mission to maximize it.

Almost every self-made business owner knows the struggle of starting their own business with no support other than our own two hands. We have less money, time, social life and romance all for the sake of our start-up. Building a business from the ground up is like having a new born baby – you invest everything into its growth. You have to give up the expensive life style that included your fancy meals – unless it’s for potential business, reduce the amount of times you go out, limit your unnecessary shopping, etc. This sounds depressing but it’s actually so empowering. I’ve become a minimalistic through these strict practices and I do not not feel as if anything in my life is missing. I believe it is because I am working towards something that I believe is far greater than materialistic things.

  • I felt uncomfortable staying in something I didn’t believe in:

This point is my finishing point – it is also the most important. This doesn’t just apply to work or business – it applies to everything in life. As individuals, we have so much power and groups we have even more. When you are in a situation that makes you feel uncomfortable or feels wrong you must take action. For me, I simply didn’t agree with  my past employmers which is why I took a step in my own direction. You should do the same.

I hope you enjoyed this read and please share your experiences and thoughts in the comment board!

Sponsored by :Lider Marketing & The Sustainable Entrepreneur (TSE) Project

9 Vintage Black and White Business Photos

Black and white identified as a symbolic trait of our history. I’ve always gathered inspiration through B&W photos because they arouse our curiosity or interest. Here are a nine (9) of my most favored black and white photos that I’ve came across during different moments of browsing and they all relate to businesses, inventors and owners:

Sponsored by :Lider Marketing & The Sustainable Entrepreneur (TSE) Project

How to Start Your Day Productively

Being productive in the morning is a challenging thing. Productivity takes discipline, dedication and thinking. Many people know what their distractions are but need some set stone steps to get them started. To help, I’ve listed 5 steps on how to start your day productively:

1. Hit up the cafe up your street 30 minute before your usually departure time:

Working at cafe

I used to walk up the street and grab a coffee at the cafe up my street where I would then sit and plan my day. The cafe didn’t have internet which meant I had no distractions while using  my tablet.

By planning your day just before it starts you’ll feel more clear minded and have a higher chance of completing all of your tasks. Make sure to create a check list so you can keep track of what you have to do, what is done and what is left.

2. Work on the hardest and most dreaded tasks first :

Hard work

The hardest task is the task that you may end up stressing over because it usually gets pushed aside due to its level of difficulty. This will often times cause you to procrastinate with the smaller and easier business affairs. This is because you may start to feel overwhelmed with the fact that one thing (most of the time an important thing) isn’t done and this will generally cause the rest of your list to fall behind schedule thus preoccupying your mind resulting in no productivity.

My advice is to start with the hardest affairs and go down to the smaller affairs so that you stay focused and feel motivated as well as accomplished throughout the day.

3. Log out of you social media accounts & close your browser:

Social Media

Most people love to start their mornings off by checking their Facebook, Youtube, Pinterest, Twitter and whatever – instead, just log out and don’t open them. If you do work with social media be sure to schedule your posts for the entire week at the END of your workload.

A large 68 percent of workers say they have been distracted from completing work by browsing the Web, engaging with social media and checking emails.This brings us to our next point:

4. Limit your email & text responses:

Work

Sure, you have to answer a few emails relating to potential or existing customers regarding their projects or status of their orders etc, however, if it is none of those it can wait for a response. Pick an hour in the day to respond to unimportant, non-urgent or non-priority emails. Focus on the tasks that will move your business forward.

5. Meet a like-minded friend for breakfast:

Networking

This is something that has always had an extremely positive outcome for me. My friends that own businesses or whom are students in university or professionals who are working hard and share the same ambitious as me are the best solutions to being productive in the morning. Pick a fantastic friend, pick a fantastic breakfast spot that has fantastic food and a fantastic ambiance and then have a fantastic conversation. This has never once failed me.

In the end, when you place yourself in a setting you love and admire nothing can stop you from your goal, objectives and your dreams. Be clear minded and don’t fall off track with all the distractions we have nowadays. I hope this blog post helped you! If you would also like to share some tips leave them in the comment board below!

Sponsored by :Lider Marketing & The Sustainable Entrepreneur (TSE) Project

Introduction to Content Marketing

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Content Marketing raising awareness and interest within a product or service through the distribution of educational, entertaining or informative material. The most Successful content marketers provide materials that are of high quality and helpful in solving problems people may have.
Content Marketing, when done correctly, can be your leading source of lead generation. There are hundreds of businesses who make all their sales through distributing information. The main function of Content Marketing is to have their material shared and published in places that will reach their target markets eyes. Many businesses create anything from news, video, infographics, white papers, e-books, case studies and static repots, how-to guides, question and answer articles, photos, etc.
Wiki had a great way of summing the definition of Content Marketing up by writing:
“the technique of creating and distributing relevant and valuable content to attract, acquire and engage a clearly defined target audience in order to drive profitable customer action”

Be sure to follow these steps to create material that will be successful :
1. You must fine tune your target market and
2. Study your market’s holes, know its flaws as well as missing knowledge and find solutions
for them
3. With those solutions create valuable and quality content
4. Research and build relationships with associations or site that are capable of distributing
your materials to the right audience.
5. Begin sharing your content. You can do so by submitting your material to sharing sites that
fit your content and type of business.
6. Analysts and measuring ROI and traffic

Here is another chart displaying a case study conducted by MarketingCharts displaying the success rate for each step when launching a content marketing campaign:

Content Marketing Performance
It shows the that the majority do have a generally positive experience when working with Content Marketing however the ”Business Results” shows that more than half were under preforming. These results are most likely due to lack of defining their own target market. People will not take interest in your product or services if your materials are complete irrelevant, your Content Marketing campaign will definitely fail for example: LIDER Marketing is currently working with Norn Pants on a content marketing project using an infographic. Norn Pants specialize in high-end male dress pants therefore the info-graphic we chose to do is on pants ONLY. Most info-graphics focused on an entire suit, however, if Norn were to create an infographic on a full suit anyone trailing back to their website through this infograpahic will be looking to buy full suits NOT just pants.

Keeping your content relevant and unique is key to creating brilliant sharable content for your business and projects. We hope you enjoyed this blog post and if you have any questions, comments or requests please leave them in the comment box below!

Sponsored by :Lider Marketing & The Sustainable Entrepreneur (TSE) Project

Montreal Business Owner – Dress Pants For Winter!

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Professional wardrobes that keep you warm in the winter are hard to find and to put together in the morning. Ideally, you would prefer to keep it as simple as your summer wardrobe but the cold will always protest against it. I would say the number one issue with winter wardrobes is finding a pair of dress pants that will keep you as warm as your winter jacket when outdoors and traveling.

Gregory Oganesian, like many Canadians, has experienced countless harsh winter days. He has endured the biting winds and blowing snow, and has faced the all too familiar daily dilemma: “Do I dress warm to get to work, or do I dress professionally?” Long johns were too bulky and trousers were too cold, so Gregory decided to take matters into his own hands. Unable to find pants that were both functional and fashionable, Gregory Oganesian invented his own, and founded NORN.

NORN creates professional trousers with a built-in thermal lining, designed to take you effortlessly from outdoors to the office. Made with a sharp polyester-wool blend exterior and a warm polyester lining, NORN trousers are built to last and are recongized high quality dress pant. For a small additional fee, they can even be custom tailored.

Norn Dress Pants

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Léandre Guimond, fashion blogger at Le Cahier says “It was -20°C when I wore them for the first time just to test them out, and believe me, they performed!”

Norn Dress PantsSource: http://lecahier.com/norn-des-pantalons-pour-contrer-le-froid/

If you have chosen not to decorate your pants, you can send back any damaged trousers within 10 days. If any defects in the product, NORN will repair or replace your trousers, but they must be returned no more than 3 months after you receive them.

Gregory Oganesian has turned his frustration into innovation, and his ideas into reality. Based in Montréal, he works hard to create high quality trousers, built for the busy professional, and the brave Canadian. For more information on NORN pants please visit their online store at: http://www.ebay.ca/usr/norn84?_trksid=p2047675.l2559
NORN Clothing also is constantly educating professionals and people with taste for quality clothing on how to wear, maintain and stay up to date on everything to do with dress pants. So visit the NORN Facebook page or blog to get all their latest update! Here’s an info graphic they created on how to wear men’s dress pants:

How to wear dress pants info graphic

 Thanks for reading!

Katie Raspberry Creative Business Blog 

Follow us on Instagram: katierasp

Sponsored by:
LIDER Marketing |  Montreal Marketing Boutique

Avocat Sebastien Dube |  Avocat Montreal

4 Reasons You Should Use Social Media To Market Your Business:

1. Our Generation:

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Photo credit: us.gmocloud.com

We know all about our generation and that we are currently obsessed with our phones, apps, and social networks. Why not use this to your business’ advantage? Humans nowadays want to connect through the internet and get the latest updates on the brands that fit their personalities and interests. Most people have an account on a social media platform so you should be taking advantage of this opportunity as a small business owner.

2. You Connect and Build Better:

Photo Credit: executivefinancialenterprises.org
Photo Credit: executivefinancialenterprises.org

Social media is a great way to build a loyal fan base or even client base. Because social media taps deep into your brands personality. Individuals feel as if they’ve gained a personal insight into your business and tend to feel like they can truly connect with your business brand. Social Media allows users to identify whether or not your brand truly fits them and their needs/interests. It also allows you to engage with your followers/fans/clients in a much more personal and satisfying manner thus creating strong relationships with them.

3. Low Cost:

www.debtadvisorycentre.co.uk
http://www.debtadvisorycentre.co.uk

Social media can be free but you have to have exceptional amounts of talent in content marketing or have an excellent sharing strategy. Social media marketing is one of the lowest costing marketing methods you could possibly invest in and use to market your business and brand. Learn how to promote your brand.

4. Scalability: 

Scalability

Running campaigns can be a difficult task due to the worry of an ineffective campaign that will amount to a loss on investment. Measuring performance and ROI is much more easy when using social media. With the insights recording most of your pages activity you can easily optimize and change your strategy to perform better according to the detailed. You also have the option of stopping any ads or employees if the results are not what your team projected.

I hope these pointers give all of you some insight into the benefits of maintaining a social media page! If you have a social media page you would like to share please paste the link into the comment board as an example!

 Thanks for reading!

Katie Raspberry Creative Business Blog 

Follow us on Instagram: katierasp

Sponsored by:
LIDER Marketing |  Montreal Marketing Boutique

Avocat Sebastien Dube |  Avocat Montreal