So, for me, Friday’s seem to fall into one of two categories.

  1. I’m extremely motivated to get as much done as humanly possible before the weekend starts.
  2. Or, I’m so lazy and unmotivated that I pretend it’s already the weekend and don’t do a thing.

Do you have this problem? There never seems to be a happy medium on Friday. It’s always all or none for me. Right now I’m in limbo. My coffee hasn’t really kicked in yet and I’m leaning toward the slacking type of Friday.

However, I have a to-do list a mile long staring me in the face.

Blah.

On a bright note, one of my to-do items is to finalize the menu for my daughter’s upcoming birthday party. She will be three and we are celebrating princess-style. It should be fun.

Time to get motivated ….. Although I struggle at times, time management is an important component of running your business. We all always need more time than we have. So, make what time you do have productive. Focus on one to-do item at a time and before you know it you’ll have several crossed off!

Enjoy your weekend! Oh and by the way, February’s newsletter will be published latter today. If you’re not already on the list, sign up! We share some great insider-only info with our subscribers 😉

Have you read the 61 marketing tips for entrepreneurs yet over at TPE? If not, here is me telling you again that you should. As I was reading through them, again, this morning, I noticed a very evident recurring theme. Communication!

In everyday life communication is obviously very important. But, it’s also critical when it comes to marketing yourself and your business. How you present yourself and your company can and should leave a lasting impression on potential business partners and customers. A lasting, good impression that is.
Let’s look at some of the tips given::
  • Tip #9 – Talk to everyone! Aileen McDonough of

3am Writers says to talk to everyone, not just at networking events. How true! You might meet your next customer at the post office for instance. Effective communication, in this case just simply talking to them, might land you your next sale!

  • Sarah Shaw of Entreprenette gave tip #19 – Get others to spread the word! If you can get others to talk about your business and your great products you are earning some great, free advertising!
  • #22 – Show up. Colleen Taylor of Siretona Creative said that the old-fashioned face to face communication is still effective and sometimes overlooked! So, why not pay some previous customers a visit? You just might generate you a reorder!
  • Wendy Weiss of Weiss Communications left tip #47 – The neglected marketing tool. Who picks up the phone these days? Most people send an e-mail, an instant message or a tweet. Why not pick up the telephone and have an actual conversation?
  • Over and over, in these tips and many others, the tippers suggest speaking with people. Getting to know your potential customers, building that relationship is so important. There are obviously hundreds of ways to do that. Incorporate some variety! Don’t always use e-mail. Don’t always use the phone. Don’t always visit in person. Use technology, but use it sparingly. COMMUNICATE with your customers on all levels!

    I am a lover of unique things. That’s why Funky Finds is one of my favorite places on the web. It’s a great place to discover unique items, but it’s also a great place to advertise! Currently, Jessica and the folks at Funky Finds, are running a 25% off special on advertising! You can find their typical rates here.

    This means there are banner prices as low as $7.50/month {150×50} or $15/month {150×150}. There are many other sizes and options available. And, the more you purchase, the more you save! Discounts will be refunded via PayPal once payment has cleared.

    The options at Funky Finds are endless. They have a funky newsletter, offer recipricol links, giveaways, daily finds at their blog and much more! In fact, this is the perfect time to consider selling your products through http://funkyfinds.us/theshops/. Their current promotion offers users SIX FREE MONTHS with the purchase of one month (31 days). This means you can sell your products for seven months for as low as $1.99! There is no fee per sale or per upload. How great is that?!?

    Be sure to visit Funky Finds and let them know that Market Mommy sent you 🙂

    Who can’t use more marketing tips? The Toliet Paper Entrepreneur has put together a fantastic list of 61 tips on their blog today. You can check it out here. And, of course I’m sending you there for a reason! Market Mommy is lucky enough to be one of the featured contributors! There really is some fantastic advice given by some great entrepreneurs, so be sure to bookmark it!

    Kathleen Cuneo, Ph.D., is a psychologist and parent coach. She also operates Dinner Together, LLC, which focuses on helping families have more frequent, successful family meals and deal with the challenges of picky eaters. Dinner Together was launched in 2008.

    Cuneo has been working as a psychologist with children and families for over two decades and last year began offering parent coaching services. She offers her services to parents of young children to help them gain greater self-understanding and to understand and effectively communicate with their children. “My goal is to empower parents to find confidence in their parenting and to develop strong connections with their children,” she said.

    A mother herself, Cuneo has three children ages 8-12. As most mom entrepreneurs would say, she said that the amount of energy and time she’s’ devoted to her work over the years has varied according to her family’s development. “I recently came across a Zen quote that really resonated with me: “The center is not always the point of balance.” For me, finding balance is a constantly evolving and shifting enterprise,” she said.

    According to Cuneo, structure is important, but so is being flexible and adaptable. “Life goes best for me when I can really be present and attentive to the moment, whether that is with work or with family,” she added.

    Cuneo is offering a free teleseminar this week with MomsEmpoweringMoms.org, on Feb. 24 at 1 p.m. EST. “The 3 Keys of Empowered Parenting: How to Raise Self-Confident, Compassionate Children” is the topic. For more information, click here.



    Mommy Monday is a regular feature on Market Mommy:: The Blog. Do you know a mom entrepreneur who should be featured here? E-mail Dawn and put Mommy Monday in the subject line!

    Thanks to everyone who participated, attended, donated and promoted the Etsy Blog Party!! It was great to see some new faces! I hope everyone had as much fun as I did! We had some really great moms featured, some very awesome prizes, and some extremely thoughtful comments, so thanks again! Stay tuned for our next party!

    Here are the winners from last week. Congratulations ladies!!

    Custom printable set from The Paperista:: Tracy
    Two bath bombs in Seductive from Main Element:Love:: Megan
    An Emma style hat in deep blue with a cream flower from Oodles of Yarn:: KatyShops
    Custom necklace from I Sew Cute:: Anne
    $30 gift certificate from Heavenly Flower:: Tricia
    3 $10 gift certificates from Heavenly Flower:: HeidiJane, Marci, Holley
    Candy Tuft Tutu in winner’s choice of 2 colors from Second Star Designs:: Courtney
    A piece of fruit, winners choice, from Foxglove Studio:: Leilani
    3 pocket mirrors from Dusty Stepper:: Paula, Lace, Joy
    $50 gift certificate to Market Mommy:: Angela

    If you haven’t already, you all will be receiving e-mail notifications with details about your prizes shortly!

    Who:: Caryn Stockwell @ Second Star Designs She also operates Neverland Patterns and an Artfire shop.
    Business Established:: Second Star Designs began in February 2008 as a means to an income after the closure of the company for which I worked. With the success of my first fashion show, Second Star Designs became my passion and the drive to see its fruition into a success.
    What she does:: Using a variety of colors and textures, each item is carefully hand-crafted with attention to quality and detail; creating collections that are timeless and without a specific season. How she finds balance:: Wow. I ask that myself at least once a week. I am a mother to 3 children aged 7, 6 and 5 – two of whom are in school. I work a full time job. I attend art school 3/4 time in pursuit of a bachelor’s degree. And I own two businesses: one that is primarily dotcom and the other one which is dotcom half the time and participating in fairs/shows/festivals the other half of the time. And I have a significant other who appreciates the time we are able to share with each other.

    What I have found is that if you are passionate about your business and are building it in the event that your safety net disappears, everything else has a way of fitting in around it. My days start at 6 a.m. and go until 11 or 12 at night. I get up, go to work, come home, spend a few hours with the kids [homework, playing, reading, etc] before bedtime at 9, spend a couple hours on either homework or building inventory, then bed – only to do it all over the next day. Weekends not spent at shows are used for family time or building inventory. Two nights a week, there is no homework, so I share that evening time with my SO. And, I am blessed with an affordable babysitter for Friday nights – this allows uninterrupted time to get important stuff done.
    Her best advice:: Always make sure to reward yourself [or your family] in some small fashion for the sacrifices that are made – even it’s something as average as a bubble bath at 10 p.m. with nothing but you and the bubbles. Having a limited income and investing every spare dime into the growth of the business, I often overlook treating myself to such things as new clothes, shoes, etc. After a successful show last week, I treated myself to the clearance rack at a local department store. You cannot imagine what level of happiness a $7 sweater can bring!!!

    Also remember that familial support goes both ways. I am fortunate that my SO supports my passion unconditionally. He is there for the triumphs and the defeats. Involving your immediate family allows them to be a part of your dream and helps them to feel as if they matter during those times when the bulk of your concentration is elsewhere.
    Get it now:: 20% discount off of entire purchase from our Artfire store. Enter MOM2010 at checkout to receive discount. Good thru 5/09/2010.
    What they are giving away:: Candy-Tuft Tutu in winner’s choice of 2 colors. Available in two sizes: small [nb-2T], large [3-6]. Amazing for photos, dress up, or pretend play.

    Play and win:: What is your favorite product from the site?
    To register for THIS prize, comment on THIS post with the answer to the play and win question above.

    Extra Credit:: You can earn an extra entry each day by doing any of the following and then leaving a comment {with link} about it. Follow us on twitter, tweet about the blog party, blog about the party, follow this blog, grab our blog’s button, or sign up for the Market Mommy newsletter. All comments on this post close at 11:59 p.m. EST on Friday, Feb. 19.

    Who:: Stacy Smith @ Foxglove Studios She’s also on Artfire!
    Business Established:: Fall of 2007
    What she does:: I make needle felted wool soft sculptures created with Swiss cheese (lots of holes!) fingers. Foxglove Studios is my creative outlet. I am a primarily self-taught artist, crafter and closet geek. My incredibly supportive husband, Jason, helps out behind the scenes.
    How she finds balance:: My family won’t allow me to neglect them. 🙂 After everyone else is taken care of, out comes the wool and needles.
    Her best advice:: Take care of yourself! If you fall apart, who’s going to look after everyone else? Hmmm?
    Get it now:: 20% off your entire order – just enter “marketmommy” during checkout (note to seller) on Etsy or as the coupon code on Artfire. Offer is good through March 31, 2010.
    What they are giving away:: A single piece of fruit, winners choice. Valued at $22.
    Play and win:: Name one product, besides fruit, found at Foxglove Studios.

     

     

    To register for THIS prize, comment on THIS post with the answer to the play and win question above.

    Extra Credit:: You can earn an extra entry each day by doing any of the following and then leaving a comment {with link} about it. Follow us on twitter, tweet about the blog party, blog about the party, follow this blog, grab our blog’s button, or sign up for the Market Mommy newsletter. All comments on this post close at 11:59 p.m. EST on Friday, Feb. 19.

     

    Who:: Leilani @ Heavenly Flower

    Business Established:: Heavenly Flower, the jewelry company was founded in 2002. I opened the Etsy shop to test the waters of online selling full time in 2008; but didn’t really actively promote it until January of 2009.
    What she does:: My “thing” is custom jewelry. Most of the pieces I list on Etsy are often made up of left over materials (beads, mostly gemstone beads) from custom projects. These pieces are priced significantly lower than what I would normally charge for custom work.
    How she finds balance:: By being flexible and realizing that some days I just am not going to get done everything I want to accomplish. With two small children who are age two and under, it is impossible to follow a set schedule. I prefer to follow a daily “rhythm” and tackle work and chores as we as a family are inspired to do them. I have found setting weekly or even monthly goals make the most sense for me right now.
    Her best advice:: Regardless of how busy you become, don’t forget to take care of yourself. Even if there are orders to fill or new products to develop, I almost always have a nap in the afternoon with my children. Not being sleep deprived It makes me think clearer and be less cranky with my children! I am more efficient and organized to get things done, and also have much more energy to keep up with my work, household and children. I find if I allow myself to be tired my creativity and mood suffers. I think we all need to be creative in order to juggle the many hats we have as mothers and business owners. Not to mention proper rest and low stress means less illness. Once we become sick everything grinds to a halt!
    Get it now:: 20% off all orders simply type “MARKETMOMMY” in the “note to seller” at Etsy checkout.
    What they are giving away:: $30 gift certificate for my Etsy shop; and 3 $10 gift certificates for my Etsy Shop.
    Play and win:: Which Heavenly Flower bracelet is your favorite? Why?

    To register for THESE prizes, comment on THIS post with the answer to the play and win question above.

    Extra Credit:: You can earn an extra entry each day by doing any of the following and then leaving a comment {with link} about it. Follow us on twitter, tweet about the blog party, blog about the party, follow this blog, grab our blog’s button, or sign up for the Market Mommy newsletter. All comments on this post close at 11:59 p.m. EST on Friday, Feb. 19.

    Who:: Kathy Kilgallon @ Dusty Stepper

    Business Established:: Although I joined Etsy back in September 2009 , I just started listing pocket mirrors and such in January of this year.
    What she does:: I offer 2 1/4″ pocket mirrors made with fabric coverings or fun craft paper coverings. I also have 1″ pins and just recently added bookmarks! My PageSavers are origami corner bookmarks decorated with 1″ buttons! All of the above make great inexpensive gifts or any occasion! I can also do bulk orders for party favors!
    How she finds balance:: I work full time and have 2 children but still am able to fit in some craft time! My children are older now, so at night while they finish homework I create one or two items to post. I check orders in the morning while making breakfast and stop at the post office on the way into my “day” job.
    Her best advice:: Do what you love! I really enjoy shopping for craft paper and stickers! It is fun for me to pick out a cute pattern and see it come together as a pocket mirror, pin or bookmark!
    Get it now:: My pocket mirrors are on sale right now for $3.00 each! These are great for Easter or Mother’s Day gifts!
    What they are giving away:: 3 pocket mirrors! Three readers will be chosen by you at random for this giveaway and can pick whichever pocket mirror they would like to receive from my shop!
    Play and win:: Which pocket mirror from the Dusty Stepper shops collection is your favorite?

    To register for THIS prize, comment on THIS post with the answer to the play and win question above.

    Extra Credit:: You can earn an extra entry each day by doing any of the following and then leaving a comment {with link} about it. Follow us on twitter, tweet about the blog party, blog about the party, follow this blog, grab our blog’s button, or sign up for the Market Mommy newsletter. All comments on this post close at 11:59 p.m. EST on Friday, Feb. 19.