Hello my lovely subscribers!

As you know I have launched the Creative Start-Up Academy Community and as part of being a member of the community, you get access to monthly live webinars. I have had two last week: Marketing Q&A and Branding Q&A. In case you have missed them, you can now watch the recordings of the webinars. Just log into the Creative Start-Up Academy Community (It is free to join if you haven’t already) and go to the ‘Free Webinars’ section to watch the recordings (Marketing Q&A and Branding Q&A).

Christine

Your Marketing and Creative Start-Up Coach

Have you ever thought about writing a non-fiction book? Do you wonder how a book might help you to market your business more effectively? You might have read in my previous blog post that I recently wrote my second book ‘The Marketing Formula – 6 steps that will make marketing easy’. Writing a book has become a popular way for business owners to build their business, especially among coaches, consultants, therapists who offer a service to their clients. If you’re wondering why this is and how to get started, then enjoy this month’s guest blog by Karen Williams, the Book Mentor from Librotas.

5 Ways That Writing A Book Will Help You To Market And Grow Your Business

Here are 5 ways that writing a book will help you to market and grow your business.

  1. You’ll get clearer on your message

With many of my clients, the act of sitting down to plan and write their book helps them to define their message and what they actually want to get known for. Writing a business building book is not about taking everything you know and putting it down on paper; it’s about being strategic with your book topic, helping your prospective readers with where they need your support.

  1. It builds your credibility and helps you to stand out

When there are many other people running a business similar to yours, being a published author helps you to stand out. When you write the right book that is aligned to your business, it will help to position you as an expert and thought leader. It gives you a tool to build your credibility in your field and become a go-to person in your area of expertise.

  1. It’s an easy way for people to get to know you and become a customer

If you’re running a service business, people often won’t experience you personally unless they sign up for your one-to-one services or a product that you sell. A book gives you a low cost and easy way for more people to get to know you. Simple strategies like encouraging your readers to sign up for your mailing list and adding more value via bonuses and additional information will help the right people to take the next step and become a client.

  1. You’ll learn to value your knowledge and charge what you’re worth

Many people forget the value of what they know. Often what you find easy is the thing that you need to teach others through your work, and also through your book. When I work with clients, we don’t just focus on their book – although this will be the end product that they create – we also work on how they value their expertise, package up their services, and charge what they’re worth.

  1. You’ll build your community of people who love what you do

When coupled with a strong launch plan, writing a book is a good way to build your community. By encouraging others to support you with your launch, you can reach more people than you can alone. You may choose to write guest blog posts like this, have people review your book, go down the crowdfunding route or seek PR for your book. There are many other things you can do to raise the profile of your business and your book.

Next steps

If you enjoyed this blog and would like to find out how you can build your business through your book, then get a copy of Karen’s new book, Book Marketing Made Simple, which is launching on Wednesday 7 June. To sign up for advance notice of the launch, go and register at www.bookmarketingmadesimple.com. When you buy her new book on this date you’ll get bonuses worth hundreds of pounds that will help you to write and market a book that builds your business.

About Karen Williams

Karen Williams is the Book Mentor at Librotas. She works with business experts who want to write a non-fiction book that grows their business, raises their credibility and attracts higher-paying clients. Karen helps them to overcome their fears, have the courage to share their wisdom, and ultimately change lives through their writing.

As well as running her own publishing company, Librotas Books, Karen is the author of 5 business books: Book Marketing Made Simple, The Mouse That Roars, Your Book is the HookHow to Stand Out in Your Business and the Amazon #1 bestseller The Secrets of Successful Coaches.

“Hello from Mexico” was the greeting sentence I think I used in every video I posted whilst I was in Mexico – for holidays and to write my next bookThe Marketing-Formula – 6 steps that will make marketing easy for you’. The plan for this 10-day holiday was to relax, unplug and write my book. In the past, I found that getting away from everything helps me to get super productive and get inspired to new things. And here are the reasons why.

  • Get out of your usual environment sparks your creativity.
  • Discovering new places, beaches and hotel rooms wil make you look at things differently.
  • Learning about new cultures, eating different food and talking to new peopole will open your mind.
  • Unplugging from your normal working life frees up your mind and makes space for new idea.

So if you are feeling stuck and need to get things done or need inspiration for new ventures, get away from everything. Whilst I was in Mexico, I have not only relaxed a lot and finished writing my book but also got fantastic new ideas for my next book and another online course! So stay tuned for updates 🙂 If you are interested in getting a copy of my new book, you can get it here.

Here are a few pictures from Mexico that migt inspire you to go there to unplug. Enjoy!

Your Marketing and Creative Start-Up Coach Christine

 

 

work life balance blog

 

The last few blogposts were dealing with the topics co-working, digital nomads, workcation and remote working. I believe all this leads to a great work-life-balance. So here are some trends about work-life-balance and how to achieve it.

Trends for work-life-balance

  • A recent survey conducted by MindMetre in which 64 percent of U.S. employees are happier with their jobs today than they were two years ago because of the increased flexibility and shift towards a clearer work/life balance. (http://www.fastcompany.com/3004788/future-coworking-and-why-it-will-give-your-business-huge-edge)
  • Work/life balance is seen more important than financial reward (http://www.kcom.com/workplaces/infographic)
  • People are now taking the matter of work-life balance into their own hands. One in seven workers in the UK has chosen self-employment as the most effective means to take control (http://www.theguardian.com/women-in-leadership/2015/sep/23/goodbye-nine-to-five-hello-work-life-balance)
  • 52% of contractors mentioned that they hoped to achieve an improved work-life balance through working abroad (http://www.cxcglobal.co.uk/component/newsarticles/article/193?Itemid=109)
  • Generation X (1965-80) and Y (after 1980) enjoy better work-life-balance than the Baby Boomer generation (1945-64) (http://www.slideshare.net/REGUSmedia/13097-work-lifebalanceagencyv5)

Achieving work-life-balance

  • Flexible working is a way of improving work-life-balance
  • Commuting, particularly in big cities, is one of the biggest factors in work-life-balance. It is often the activity workers don’t look forward to. Trying to reduce time spent on commuting is one key drivers for organisations introducing flexible working. (http://www.slideshare.net/REGUSmedia/13097-work-lifebalanceagencyv5)
  • 72% of the employers surveyed believed that implementing flexible working practices had a positive impact on staff engagement and 73% felt that it had a positive impact on employee motivation (http://www.acas.org.uk/media/pdf/j/m/Flexible-working-and-work-life-balance.pdf)
  • Allowing for a good work/life balance is a cultural shift in an organisation. It is not about allowing people the ABILITY to fit their work around their lives through technology, it is about allowing employees the OPPORTUNITY to do so. (http://www.vineresources.com/blog/remote-working-worklife-balance-myth)

 

 

 

In August I have gone away to Italy again. By now you might know that I am really in love with Italy. The language, the food, the people – everything. I spent 10 days in Sicily. But I wouldn’t be myself if I didn’t set myself a goal going there. In fact, I have set myself 3 goals before I went:

  • Improve my Italian
  • Continue writing my book that I have started years ago
  • Relax

And you know what? I did all of the above 🙂

Improve my Italian

Approx. 10 years ago my obsession for Italy started. I don’t really know why but I started to learn Italian with books and took some beginners classes. After my apprenticeship in Marketing and Advertising I decided it was time to go on a journey. Leaving Germany for three months to backpack through Italy. One of the best trips of my life! It was also the first one that I did all by myself. After that I was quite good in Italian. But it was 9 years ago now and if you don’t continue with speaking a language you will forget most. I always came back to Italian and visiting Italy but I never pursued it properly.

Every year I take 4 things of my bucket list and create a bucket list for the year. This year Italian was on it again. I was determined to get conversational fluent in Italian by the end of 2016. I started using apps, reading Italian articles, doing exercises, listening to Italian music and taking private lessons via Skype with my friend in Sicily who owns the Pachamama Centre. I was on track. But it wasn’t enough. I went to the Pachamama Centre and had 2-4 hours a day Italian lessons with Angelo. We started to only talk to each other in Italian. I immersed myself in the language. Now I feel much more confident to have conversations in Italian. Of course I am not amazing yet but I still have a few months before the year is over 🙂 Getting away and fully immerse myself in my goal and the language helped me to make a massive step forward.

 

Continue writing my book

A few years back, it must be at least 3 by now, I started writing a book – actually I started it in Sardinia. It was about the 6 steps to start your own business, a programme I developed. I was really determined to finish it back then and publish it. I did a course on self-publishing and all. But then life happened. And I didn’t finish it. I think that is what sometimes happen in life and it is ok. You have to accept that not everything is always going to plan.

This year though, the second thing on my bucket list was to finish the book and publish it. So I prepared everything before I left for Sicily, took my laptop and continued writing. You know what? I finished the book in no time! Being away form everything, having no distractions and focussing on that one thing that you want to get done in a different environment, made me so much more productive. The beuatiful setting and weather helped of course 🙂

If you want to know more about my book, click here.

 

Relax

Well, the Pachamama Centre is the perfect place to relax. I knew that because I went there last year for a workwaway. Even though learning a different language is tiring and writing a book is too, I had enough time to relax and dip into the Italian way of life. An afternoon nap, meditation, sunbathing and reading a book recharged my batteries for coming back to the UK.

If you have a goal that you have been procrastinating due to different reasons, I can only recommend going abroad. Get away from everything. Just you and your goal. It will be worth it.

Have a look below for some pictures of my trip to Sicily.

Your marketing and creative start-up Coach Christine

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We all have our up and downs in our lives. And sometimes we have just too much on and are stressed. I have been quite stressed recently delivering a lot of different projects and launching my new platform for online courses. What I needed is two weekends away from everything and just do nothing. So I did.

First weekend away: Cock n Bull festival

This was an amazing festival on Lenton Farm near Bath. The money went to Jamie’s Farm (a charity that helps underprivileged kids).  It was a three day festival and the fancy dress theme for Saturday night was ‘famous vegetable’. So I dressed up as a broccoli. Some of you might know Olivier Brocc – the broccoli and lawyer.

There was yummy food, yoga in the morning, massages, playing games, the farmer’s olympics, excellent music from all over the world and fantastic people. We were very lucky with the weather too – sunny and warm. No one took themselves too seriously and everyone was just having fun. I felt extremely refreshed despite the lack of showering and uplifted after that weekend. My head full of new ideas and motivation.

Second weekend away: World Yoga festival

Now this festival was totally different to the Cock n Bull festival – alcohol free, only vegetarian meals and lots of workshops during the day. Every day for me started with a yoga lesson. I tried a new form of yoga – Iyengar Yoga and I enjoyed it a lot. I have also learned about the 5 elements and how you need to balance them when doing yoga. Laughter yoga was a lot of fun.  During the days I attended some workshop about ‘Inner resolution’,  the ‘Path to happiness’ and others. At one day I tried a Gong Meditation class and I have to say I have never meditated that deeply! It was amazing!

The evenings were filled with excellent live music by artists I have never heard of and interesting conversations. The people I have met at this festival very incredibly inspiring and fascinating. I have met someone that designs trolleys for airplanes, someone that works in hospitals for suicidal people, a probation officer, a wilderness therapist, yoga teachers, musicians and many more. It is one of these festivals where you say hello to your lunch or tent neighbor and end up having a great 2 hour conversation.

All this in combination of the beautiful settings of Beale Park in Reading, made me feel extremely relaxed and my creativity seem to have been reawakened. When I was younger (about  12 years old) I wrote a lot of poems – but never since. At the World Yoga Festival I wrote 4 new poems! I am really getting back into that. So watch this space 🙂

My conclusion: Sometimes it is good to get away and just do nothing. You will feel relaxed and motivated again. And who knows what skills will be reawakened.

Enjoy the pics.

Your marketing and creative start-up Coach Christine

Cock N Bull Festival

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This guest blog post is written by the fantastic Maggi Blankson! She has invented a new generation of ‘milkshakes’ that are dairy free and taste fantastic! She is currently running a crowdfunding campaign to launch the product and there is three more days left to donate. Donations start from £1 – every little helps. So if you can spare a pound or two, please donate.

To find out more about Maggi and her company Bettermylk doing

Instagram: the_bettermylk_co

Email: thebettermylkco@gmail.com

Crowdfunding campaing: https://spsr.me/Kwu3

Here is her guest blog. Enjoy!

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My name is Maggi and my business is called The Bettermylk Co. We produce a line of dairy free mylkshake that are 100% lactose free but with all the great taste and creamy deliciousness of a dairy shake. I later plan to expand the line to include Bettermylk yoghurts, ice creams, protein shakes and a whole catalogue dairy treats otherwise inaccessible to those who can’t consume milk.

I got the idea for the business in May 2015, but I would say I actively started working on the business at the start of 2016.

Although I’m neither vegan nor lactose intolerant, my mum and my brother suffer with this intolerance severely, so naturally when it came to grocery shopping trips, for convenience my mum would always buy dairy free products to save the stress. I suffered as the available dairy free products weren’t great substitutes, and was honestly not that enjoyable to consume… I would go in search of other dairy free products apart from dairy free milk and juice/water and I found that there was not a lot of real choice for this category of people so, I started making my own.

I love having the chance to bring my own creative ideas to life and get credit for them. When you work for someone else you might be able to contribute your ideas, but on the outside, you don’t get credit for it… the company or person who you are working for does.

One of the biggest challenges I am facing is funding! Honestly funding is so essential when you’re trying to take a project like this off the ground. I am currently crowdfunding on Click, the university of Essex’ crowdfunding platform and have so far raised £2180 out of our £5000 target. This is amazing but we still have a way to go and only 3 days left to make it happen. So please support us by contributing as little as £1!

The story behind the product is probably what makes me different. It was a part of my life that I never thought would inspire me to start a business so it’s pretty cool that I have made a healthy tasty solution to an everyday inconvenience.

remote working blog

 

You might have read my blog posts about co-working, digital nomads and workcation? Well this time I will keep it a bit broader and it includes the above: remote working.

Definition of remote work (also called telecommuting)

It as work completed in an environment other than the employer workplace.  This can include working from a home office for employees & contractors and/or working from any other imaginable environment (hotel, beach, in transit, etc.). (http://northcarolinadeportal.com/remotework/what-is-remote-work)

Who is remote working?

  • Most companies on the list of 100% distributed/remote organizations are small, young, and technology centric (http://scottberkun.com/2015/why-isnt-remote-work-more-popular/)
  • The average homeworker in the UK is over 40 (http://stats.cesi.org.uk/WBejournal/WorkingBrief230winter2013.pdf)

Trends for remote working

Remote work continues to trend upward, with 2014 posting a 26% increase in open remote job postings over 2013. (http://fortune.com/2015/02/12/lessons-learned-from-3-companies-that-have-long-embraced-remote-work)

Remote work, defined as working somewhere other than the office one day a week or more, has been on the rise for years and continues to rise. (http://scottberkun.com/2015/why-isnt-remote-work-more-popular/)

94% of UK organisations apparently now offer staff some form of flexible working, while 73% of managers say that their organisation is largely supportive of it (http://www.virgin.com/entrepreneur/the-false-promise-of-remote-working)

The total number for remote working has grown (2014) by 1.3m since 2008, and the proportion of workers who work remotely has grown by 2.8 percentage points. (http://realbusiness.co.uk/article/26870-remote-working-at-highest-level-on-record)

What are the benefits of remote working?

Here are a few of the benefits of remote working:

  • There’s less stress in the office and the workplace — people feel empowered to work in a way that suits them and suits the business (http://www.techrepublic.com/blog/10-things/10-good-reasons-why-working-remotely-makes-sense)
  • Less commuting means a smaller carbon footprint 
  • expand talent pool (http://fortune.com/2015/02/12/lessons-learned-from-3-companies-that-have-long-embraced-remote-work/)
  • improve retention (http://fortune.com/2015/02/12/lessons-learned-from-3-companies-that-have-long-embraced-remote-work/)
  • increase productivity (http://fortune.com/2015/02/12/lessons-learned-from-3-companies-that-have-long-embraced-remote-work/)
  • reduce office space costs (http://fortune.com/2015/02/12/lessons-learned-from-3-companies-that-have-long-embraced-remote-work/)

Free webinar

Get prepared by attending one of my free webinars about the ‘6 steps to become your own marketing expert’. There are multiple dates available. Looking forward to seeing you there!

Free webinar

 

 

workcation blog

The last two blog posts were about co-working and Digital Nomads. I would now like to talk a bit about the term ‘Workcation‘.

Definition of Workcation

  • Blend of work and vacation (http://www.wordsense.eu/workcation)
  • A serendipitous and pleasurable business trip. Blend of work and vacation (http://www.yourdictionary.com/workcation)

Trends for Workcation

New technological innovations, like mobile video conferencing, enable knowledge workers to emerge beyond the four walls of their cubicle and enjoy a more flexible work environment, whether that is at home or abroad. (http://www.lifesize.com/video-conferencing-blog/a-surprising-new-phenomenon)

Workations increasingly act as a pillar for company culture at fledgling startups and existing SMBs (http://blog.pgi.com/2014/08/company-workations-latest-work-trends-for-virtual-teams)

Workcations are the “wave of the future” (http://madamenoire.com/542242/workcations)

Benefits of a Workcation

Here are some benefits of a workcation (http://www.theglobeandmail.com/report-on-business/careers/the-future-of-work/the-rise-of-the-workation-vacationers-pack-their-jobs-in-their-suitcase/article13531514/study by Regus 2013)

  • Boosted creativity from the exposure to different cultures as well as stress reduction for employees
  • Increased flexibility that technology offers to travel while continuing to work at their full-time jobs from the road

Free webinar

Get prepared by attending one of my free webinars about the ‘6 steps to become your own marketing expert’. There are multiple dates available. Looking forward to seeing you there!

Free webinar

 

 

 

digital nomads blog

Last time I spoke about co-working. Today I would like to write something about ‘Digital Nomads’. Here you go…

Definition of Digital Nomads

Again, there are lots of definitions. Here are two I think represent a great definition.

Digital nomads are individuals who use telecommunications technologies to perform their work duties and, more generally, conduct their life in a nomadic manner. Such workers typically work remotely—from home, coffee shops, public libraries, and even recreational vehicles—to accomplish tasks and goals that traditionally took place in a single, stationary workplace. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Digital_nomad)

A digital nomad is a person who works from a location of his choice and often sets his own schedule. (http://www.wisegeek.com/what-is-a-digital-nomad.htm#didyouknowout)

Who is a Digital Nomad?

Of the almost three quarters (74%) who made a change to be less tied to a physical workplace, 67% became a freelancer and 34% created a virtual business or team. (https://www.upwork.com/blog/2014/02/what-is-digital-nomad)

Digital nomads‘ work as freelance writers, artists, entrepreneurs, and more. (http://smallbiztrends.com/2015/04/digital-nomad-jobs-create-new-demand.html)

Many nomads are dual citizens or “third culture kids,” who have grown up with a notion of identity that’s not tied to nationalism or staying in one place. (http://www.theguardian.com/cities/2015/jun/16/digital-nomads-travel-world-search-fast-wi-fi)

Trends for Digital Nomads

In the not far off future working remotely will be the norm for most people and with that extra freedom people will inevitably travel more and take their work with them. (http://www.positivelyrewired.com/work-trends-in-2015-the-rise-of-the-digital-nomad)

Gone are the days of having one job from the time of graduation to retirement. Gaining different experiences within different environments is considered an advantage in today’s market, as it demonstrates flexibility and the ability to adapt. Job hopping is also a result of an increasingly connected world. (http://www.positivelyrewired.com/work-trends-in-2015-the-rise-of-the-digital-nomad)

Thanks to the growing prevalence of freelance livelihoods, a global sharing economy and myriad of digital tools, the number of people who are able to live this life is growing quickly. And in a rapidly urbanising world, where a major city in Asia increasingly offers the same amenities as one in Europe, many people are reaching the realisation they don’t need to stay in one place. (http://www.theguardian.com/cities/2015/jun/16/digital-nomads-travel-world-search-fast-wi-fi)

What are the benefits of being a Digital Nomad?

Here are a few benefits of being a Digital Nomad

  • When you’re living abroad as a digital nomad, your costs are as flexible.
  • Since becoming less tied to a physical workplace, 92% said they’re happier (vs. 6% no change and 2% slightly less happy). (https://www.upwork.com/blog/2014/02/what-is-digital-nomad)
  • Living costs can be less in other countries 

Free webinar

Get prepared by attending one of my free webinars about the ‘6 steps to become your own marketing expert’. There are multiple dates available. Looking forward to seeing you there!

Free webinar