The Barn Antiques and Specialty Shops

Interview with The Barn Antiques and Specialty Shops owner Catherine Haigh

Catherine HaighThe Barn Antiques and Specialty Shops is located in the heart of downtown Castle Rock, Colorado. Catherine Haigh is the owner and is a perfect example of a Small Business Superhero that has taken on the responsibility of being the cornerstone of her community.

Today, there is no shortage of antique shops in most every community across the United States. But in 1997, antiques shops were not as common as you see today. Catherine had reached a point in her life that her children were getting older and she decided that it was time for her to find a passion in her life outside of being a mother and wife. Catherine had always loved antiques, and since Ebay was very new, she wound a perfect relationship with selling antiques online.

A short time later, Catherine decided to open her first antique shop in an industrial area. While that was exciting, it wasn’t exactly what Catherine was looking for, so she continued her search for a better location. In May 1998, Catherine opened a 12,000 sq foot Barn that she named The Barn Antiques and Specialty Shops.

You might be thinking, “What qualifies Catherine as a Small Business Superhero?” Up to this point her story resembles the start of many Small Business Owners. There are thre things that stuck out to me when I met Catherine that uniquely define her as a superhero:

  1. Her commitment and passion to her community. Listen to the recording of the interview I had with Catherine and you will immediately hear her passion and commitment to being the pulse of Castle Rock’s community.
  2. Her willingness to stretch herself. Catherine possesses a “super-hero-like” power to face her fears and ignore her trepidation towards doing something she’s never done before. Catherine shares her go-for-it attitude she had when she was first introduced to social media marketing.
  3. Lastly, her dedication to providing a magical experience to those who visit The Barn. As I mentioned, there is no shortage of antique shops today but Catherine has separated The Barn from the rest by creating a memorable shopping experience. People from all over the world travel to be part of the magical experience Catherine and the shops at The Barn take pride in creating and providing.

Catherine attributes much of the expansion and growth of The Barn to her small (but powerful) Social Media efforts. While she may not have had an elaborate social media strategy or plan, Catherine has done a great job just sharing bits and pieces of the magic that hundreds of shoppers experience each day. The fans of The Barn then share and help spread the magic with people all over the world.

So, if you are ever passing through the little town of Castle Rock, CO be sure to stop by and experience the magic for yourself. For more information about The Barn Antiques and Specialty Shops go to www.thebarncastlerock.com or become a fan on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/TheBarnAntiquesAndSpecialtyShops.

To listen to the full interview with Catherine Haigh LISTEN BELOW

 

Using Vine to Market Your Small Business

Using Vine to Market Your Small Business

Video has emerged as one of the most effective mediums to connect with consumers as you communicate your marketing message. Forbes wrote and article in 2013 on why online video is vital to your content marketing objectives, highlighting the response rate of video over other formats. Head on over to your Facebook page today and you’ll see your news feed flooded with video.

While many small businesses would agree that video offers considerable benefits, many businesses lack the resources and/or budget to create video content…until now.

Vine is a video sharing mobile app that allows you to create short, looping videos in a simple and fun way to share with friends, family, and even your target audience! The videos are usually 6 seconds or less long and complied of clips of random things. The short clips create a stop-motion-effect video. The most popular and vital videos are one’s that are funny.

So, how can a small business use an app like this in marketing? Here’s a few things vine offers the intelligent marketer:

    • It requires no skill to create a video (ok, so maybe you have to be a little creative)…but to make the video itself requires no skill.
    • There is no major publication process. You don’t need to be a videoographer to edit…just shoot and share!
    • It’s free! Businesses can create video’s for their target audience that are funny, informative or useful.
        • Check out how Lowe’s has created useful vines to connect to their audience.
        • Check out how GAP has used Vine to tell the story of their 1969 jean.

Follow these three steps to create your first vine:

    • Download the app on your iPhone or Android 
    • Decide on your idea. Are you going to create something that is funny, informative or useful?
    • Create your vine:
        • Create your vine by holding your finger on the screen, and then let go when you want to stop recording.
        • Your vine must be a minimum of 6 seconds.
        • Once your vine is created you can create a message and upload it to Vine, Twitter, and Facebook.

Share any Vine video (on Twitter, Facebook, your Blog, wherever!). Follow these steps to quickly embed and share your Vine video:

    • Share on Twitter or Facebook, simply find the video you wish to share and copy the video’s URL; then paste the URL where you wish to share it with the rest of your message.
    • Embed the Vine video in your blog by selecting “Embed” in the top right corner of your vine, on the left side of the screen select the size you would like your vine to be displayed (in pixels) and then copy the HTML code. Paste the HTML code on your WordPress blog page. Once you paste it you will be able to view the video directly from the editor. It will look like this:

Have fun creating funny, informational, and inspiring videos to help you market your small business!

Useful Marketing (i.e. YOUtility)

Useful Marketing (i.e. YOUtility) the Best Marketing Strategy Today!

Hey there! The concept of YOUtility was has been around (and effective) for a long time but within the last few years Jay Baer, (author of the book YOUtility) perfectly explains why taking the approach to being useful in marketing is the BEST approach to marketing your business in today’s competitive environment.

I have personally experienced the success of taking this approach in marketing my business. I believe that the concept of taking a “useful” strategy in marketing is the best approach for small businesses to compete with.

In this webinar I share with you:

  • What is “Useful Marketing” (i.e. YOUtulity)
  • Why is it important
  • States you must know
  • Examples of businesses using this strategy and having success
  • And an 8 Step Formula you can apply to become useful too!

RESOURCES shared in this video are:

I hope that you too will adopt this strategy, philosophy, and belief system to marketing your small business and see the success that many businesses are seeing as a result. Here’s to GIVING first and being USEFUL!

I’d love to hear your thoughts! Share your comments below.

Content Marketing Facts in 2014

content marketing

Content marketing is a Small Business Owners best friend (and yet also their worst nightmare).

Long gone are the days of push marketing (advertising a one way message out to a targeted audience) and waiting for the floodgates to open. Small Business Owners / Marketers are scrambling to develop their own pull marketing strategies to connect with their audiences.

Content marketing includes: SEO (Search Engine Optimization), email marketing, social media, and of course the creation of content that will connect and add value to a targeted audience.

Content creation is the future of connecting with your targeted audience, capturing leads, and turning those leads into fans, followers, and customers. Here are some stats that might help Small Business Owners determine how much focus they should put in this area of marketing their business as they look to grow:

  • $135 billion will be spent on new digital marketing collateral (content) in 2014
  • 78% of CMO’s think custom content is the future of marketing
  • Internet advertising will make up 25% of the entire ad spend by 2015
  • Social media marketing budgets will double over the next 5 years
  • Email with social sharing buttons increase click through rates by 158%
  • Nearly 50% of companies have content marketing strategies
  • 33% of traffic from Google’s organic search engine results go to the first item listed
  • 67% of B2B content marketers consider event marketing essential
  • 73% of reporters think press releases should contain images
  • 72% of “Pay per Click” marketers plan to increase their budget in 2014
  • 52% of all marketers have found a customer via Facebook in 2013
  • B2B companies that blog generate 67% more leads
  • 43% of all marketers found a customer via LinkedIn
  • 55% of marketers worldwide increased  digital marketing budgets in 2013
  • Customer testimonials have the highest effectiveness for content marketers at 89%
  • Videos on landing pages increase conversions by 86%
  • 65% of your audience are visual learners
  • Marketers will use dynamic content to deliver highly personalized experiences to the right audiences at the right time
  • Inbound marketing delivers 54% more leads than traditional outbound marketing
  • Visual data is processed 60,000 times faster by the brain than text.

20-Captivating-Content-Marketing-Facts-and-Figures-in-2014

Vacation and Still Grow Your Small Business

You started your business because you wanted more time, flexibility, control of your life and maybe earn more income…am I right? Yet you rarely take time for yourself, on a family vacation, or even set time aside to work ON your business rather than just IN your business…am I right, again?

I don’t intent to beat you over the head…but hopefully encourage you to “own your summer”. You see, with a little bit of planning you can set up an automated machine that can run on its own while you take your much deserved break. You initial dream of having it all is not too far out of reach. Believe it or not, you CAN grow (even while on vacation).

All you have to do is get your small business sales and marketing software in place. It will help you get organized, grow sales, and save you time! View a demonstration on how you can begin to “own your summer” again.

While you do that I’ll be crusin’ the California cost for the next week enjoying time with the family, catching up on some reading, and taking a little “me time”. I hope you will join me soon!