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Creatives Meet Business

Listen in on what industry experts had to say at the latest Creatives Meet Business event. Host Ashland Viscosi curates and shares the best content and tips from the live events to help creatives and artists transition into creative entrepreneurs.
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Dec 13, 2016

Hi there folks!

Creatives Meet Business is an event and podcast series based out of Austin, Texas for creatives of ALL disciplines to get from zero to one in thinking of themselves as business owners (in the creative sector).

This episode features Alyssa Scavetta with Masonry. You'll find that she leaves no stone unturned when it comes to website admin. Topics include: domains, hosting,  SSL certificates, 301 and 404 error messages and more. If website lingo confused you before this episode, you'll walk away with a spring in your step and a better vocabulary for chatting about the web. Because there's so so much that's exciting about this episode - let's hop in and hear what Alyssa has to say!

  • 0:00 to 1:55 - Ashland Opening Remarks and Intro of Alyssa Scavetta
  • 1:59 to 4:01 - Anecdote about aiding a brand after their original domain included the number 1 at the end of it (name wasn't on brand)
    • Google Domains - find alternative domains and search misspells 
    • Domains - roughly $10 to $12 a year
    • SEMrush - finding misspellings - shows what people are searching for when looking for your brand or site so you can see how they're misspelling it
  • 4:02 to 4:36 - Domains and Hosting
    • Domain - basically the address
      • Roughly $10 to $12 a year, unless it's unavailable and someone else owns it
    • Hosting - basically the house - server space you buy so the domain can live there
  • 4:37 to 5:40 - HTTP vs HTTPS
    • HTTPS - ALWAYS use with e-commerce. Necessary if you're collecting other people's personal, private data. 
    • Technically, Google favors HTTPS sites (but it's not going to hugely increase your site traffic)
    • It's a certificate that talks to browsers and says the site is secure
    • You'll see a green lock next to the domain
    • Usually purchased on a one year or three to five year basis. Usually $100.
  • 5:41 to 6:11- Security Updates
    • Look for updates once a month
    • Save the current version of your website before the update in case something isn't compatible
    • Wordpress automatically updates sites
  • 6:12 to 7:30 - 301 and 404 Messages
    • 301 - Permanent redirect 
      • When building a new website based on old site, you'll want to redirect all of your old links
      • Masonry uses reroute module in Craft CMS
        • Keeps SEO value, visitors going to the right place
        • Put new link in as related content 
    • 404 - Page not found
      • Put a landing page, decreases bounce rate
        • Customize your landing page to be on brand
  • 7:31 to 9:08 - Domain Authority
    • Scale from zero to 100 that grades your website based off of backlinks that it has (and internal links it has). Based on the quality of the content.
    • Research your domain authority and your competitors as well
    • Hard to influence your domain authority, taking these actions can influence your domain authority:
      • Install Google Search Console tools - take snippet of code and it tells you where your errors are being received by the crawling bot, 301s / 404s and more
      • Getting rid of 301s and redirecting old or missing content to content that's alive
      • Mitigate 404s that you find in your crawl report
  • 9:09 to 10:24 - Ashland Closing Remarks

If you like what you hear, share the podcast with your friends, rate and review. To stay in the loop - follow us on TwitterFacebook or subscribe to the newsletter.

We'll be sticking around the world of websites for just a couple more weeks and have some pros that we can't wait to introduce you to. After websites, we'll be moving over to PR, so start getting excited. Stay tuned for more!

Thanks!

Ashland, Creatives Meet Business

Nov 22, 2016

Hi there folks!

Creatives Meet Business is an event and podcast series based out of Austin, Texas for creatives of ALL disciplines to get from zero to one in thinking of themselves as business owners (in the creative sector).

This episode features Jeremy Cox, Digital Director at McGarrah Jessee. He shares so so much about branding - brand positioning, brand personality, branding elements, what makes a brand unique and distinctive, pitfalls and more. Because there's so so much that's exciting about this episode - let's hop in and hear what Jeremy has to say!

  • 0:00 to 1:55 - Ashland Opening Remarks and Intro of Jeremy Cox
  • 2:00 to 3:58 - Branding Your Site - Consistency in Tone and Appearance
    • Branding is vastly important
    • Branding - what does it mean. Jeremy's definition:
      • It's not - just a name, logo or a couple of colors
      • It is - the public facing manifestation of who you are
        • Also includes people's perception of what you've put out there
  • 3:59 to 4:40 - What is a Well-Architected Brand
    • Unique - therefore own-able
    • Easily recognizable
    • Consistent - everywhere
  • 4:41 to 6:45 - Brand Positioning and Brand Personality
    • Brand Positioning: A statement - a single sentence - that says what you do and do well that the competition can't do and can't touch and that people actually want
    • Brand Personality: A layer / filter to brand positioning - how do you do what you do?  Is it serious? Whimsical?
  • 6:46 to - 12:41 Branding Elements
    • Name - one of the first things people experience
    • Logo - visual counterpart to your or company's name
      • Do these fit through filter of brand positioning and brand personality?
      • Visual anchors
    • Copy - great opportunity for you to exercise your brand through words
      • Ex - Choice of tense - 1st person is conversational, personal; 3rd person expresses size, it's bigger than just me
    • Micro-level interactions on your site - confirmation page as a place to add personality through a purchase made through website
    • Color - apply with thought to user experience 
    • Typography - More choices available now online
      • Use caution - use legible copy in the body text but one that's a compliment to the personality of your main typeface
    • Visuals - don't say things with words when an image would be much better, don't say things with an image when a video would be much better
    • Structure of a site - are you allowing the user to digest it the right way?
    • Interactions and Animations within site 
  • 12:42 to 14:57 - Pitfalls 
    • Just like your brand shouldn't be all things to all people, your website shouldn't be. Don't be afraid to make decisions that focus you towards your audience and the purpose of what your business is meant to do
    • Don't get too intricate / too fancy. Take it one step at a time when building up your brand online
    • Don't think of your brand as static, it's not a static brand
    • Be cautious with templates (WordPress, Wix, Squarespace) - put the time in to craft it and make it your own. They have customizable ways to personalize it
    • Be careful not to lean too heavily on trends and assume that's what your brand is. Trends change more frequently than your brand should
  • 15:02 to 16:20 - Ashland Closing Remarks

If you like what you hear, share the podcast with your friends, rate and review. To stay in the loop - follow us on TwitterFacebook or subscribe to the newsletter.

We'll be sticking around the world of websites for a few weeks and have some pros that we can't wait to introduce you to. Stay tuned for more!

Thanks!

Ashland, Creatives Meet Business

Nov 8, 2016

Hi there folks!

Creatives Meet Business is an event and podcast series based out of Austin, Texas for creatives of ALL disciplines to get from zero to one in thinking of themselves as business owners (in the creative sector).

This episode features Alex O'Neal, an Austin-based UX Consultant with UXtraordinary and Instructor at General Assembly Austin. She shares so so much about testing, metrics, analytics and more. Alex begins with the reasons WHY we test and moves into metrics and analytics. She also walks us through a great alternative to AB tests for smaller sites - before and after snapshots. One of the coolest we things we learned about was POP - Prototyping on Paper (check it out, it's awesome). Without further adieu, here's Alex...

  • 0:00 to 3:18 - Ashland Opening Remarks and Intro of Alex O'Neal
  • 3:20 to 5:12 - Why Do We Test?
    • Two big questions of User Experience 
      • Who is on the other end of the screen?
      • What are they doing?
  • 5:15 to 7:59 - Analytics for Websites
    • Some hosting services offer their own metrics 
    • Conversion - Does the customer do what you wanted them to do
    • Device (Desktop or Phone) Used to Visit Site
    • Google Analytics - free service - uses a snippet of code that you embed on pages of your site
    • Exit - someone comes to site, looks around at a few pages and then leaves
    • Bounce rate - lands on site and doesn't explore other pages (not applicable with one page sites)
  • 8:00 to 9:05 - Behave.org
    • Formerly whichtestwon
    • They gather tests from large and small companies from all over the world and organize them by type of page (homepage, landing page, e-newsletter, etc) and vertical (type of industry or field)
    • They provide AB tests and analysis on which test worked and why
  • 9:06 to 10:53 -  Before and After Snapshots
    • When AB tests aren't an option, use before and after snapshots
    • Two versions of a page (original and new version you want to test)
    • Measure metrics for a specific period of time - Sunday through Saturday (for example)
    • Make the changes you're interested in testing and measure during the same time frame (Sunday through Saturday, for example)
    • Be mindful of federal holidays when selecting time frames to review
    • Transformation test - testing two very different looks and feels, helps with things like testing a site refresh
  • 10:54 to 13:34 - Example of Importance of Metrics and Analytics
  • 13:35 to 17:05 - User Testing or Usability Testing
    • Essentially you're putting a potential user in front of your site with a goal
    • It's very important to set tasks and goals
      • Ex. Ask them "Where would you go to sign up for an event?"
    • Jakob Nielsen suggests that when getting a group together for user testing no more than 6 people are needed. They'll find 90% of the issues on the website
    • Paper sketches - Prototyping on Paper (POP) 
  • 17:06 to 18:42 - Ashland Closing Remarks

Wanting to learn more about metrics? Here's a bit of bonus content - 11 Analytics That Are Actionable.

If you like what you hear, share the podcast with your friends, rate and review. To stay in the loop - follow us on Twitter, Facebook or subscribe to the newsletter.

We'll be sticking around the world of websites for a few weeks and have some pros that we can't wait to introduce you to. Stay tuned for more!

Thanks!

Ashland, Creatives Meet Business

Oct 25, 2016

Hi there folks!

Creatives Meet Business is an event and podcast series based out of Austin, Texas for creatives of ALL disciplines to get from zero to one in thinking of themselves as business owners (in the creative sector).

This episode features Paul Glantz, an Austin-based CPA, who owns Launch Consulting, Inc. Launch Consulting, Inc. assists clients throughout the business process - from business consulting to entity selection to bookkeeping to tax preparation. In case you missed it, Paul was featured in the previous episode which answered questions like: What is a CPA and when do I need one, plus he strolled us through the World of Taxes and shared about deductions, estimated taxes and more. You see why we brought him back for business structures (like LLCs) and advice for getting started, right?  

0:00 to 1:03 - Ashland Opening Remarks and Intro of Paul Glantz, CPA

1:04 to 4:10 - Advice for Getting Started

  1. Set up an entity
  2. Get an EIN (pretty much the social security number for your business)
    1. This is free to file! Takes about 10 minutes
  3. Open a bank account
    1. Keep a separate business bank account and credit card, keep it separated from personal.
    2. Keeping it separate helps for several reasons: 1) easier to keep track of your expenses and you'll know what's a business expense, 2) if you're ever audited, the IRS will ask for your bank statements. There'll be more scrutiny if funds are "commingled", aka if expenses are mixed between business and personal accounts.
  4. Partnership Agreements (if you have a business partner)
    1. Have a written agreement! Have a lawyer help you draft this!

4:11 to 4:52 - Ashland Interruption

4:53 to 6:39 - What is an LLC + Entity Selection

  • An LLC is a Limited Liability Company. From a legal standpoint, this means your exposure is limited
  • A sole proprietor / DBA has unlimited liability which means your assets are exposed 
  • Entities that provide some sort of limited liability / limits your exposure are: LLCs, Corporations, Limited Partnerships and Limited Liability Partnerships
  • Which entity is right for you? Depends on your goals for growth, revenue and raising funds
  • Your choice of entity affects your taxes, day to day operations, how you grow / scale

6:40 to 7:13 - Are There Benefits to Being a Sole Proprietor?

  • The cost for starting is low, there's a filing fee for an assumed name certificate
  • Reminder: On the legal side, you have unlimited liability and on the tax side you pay the self-employment tax

7:14 to 8:46 - Choosing a Business Entity 

  • Consider liability
  • Consider your goals for growth and funding
  • Breakdown of entity types 

8:48 to 10:44 - Misconceptions about LLCs

  • LLC is the most common type for small business
  • LLCs are governed by state statute
  • LLCs with one member as the sole owner (by default) is a separate entity for legal purposes but disregarded for federal taxes
  • LLCs with two or more members (by default) is a partnership
  • No LLC is a corporation or S corporation by default, you have to make an election to be taxed as such
  • If you have an LLC and didn't make an election to treat it as anything other than its default treatment, there's no separate business tax return to file - it's reported on your individual income tax return

10:45 to 11:28 - Get Your Team Together

  • Gather your lawyer, CPA and financial advisor - the three of them will help you make the best financial decisions possible

11:34 to 12:35 - Ashland Closing Remarks

If you like what you hear, share the podcast with your friends, rate and review. To stay in the loop - follow us on Twitter, Facebook or subscribe to the newsletter.

In the next several episodes, we'll be shifting directions into the world of websites and have some pros that we can't wait to introduce you to. Stay tuned!

Thanks!

Ashland, Creatives Meet Business

Sep 20, 2016

Hi there folks!

Creatives Meet Business is an event and podcast series based out of Austin, Texas for creatives of ALL disciplines to get from zero to one in thinking of themselves as business owners (in the creative sector).

This episode features Paul Glantz, an Austin-based CPA, who owns Launch Consulting, Inc. Launch Consulting, Inc. assists clients throughout the business process - from business consulting to entity selection to bookkeeping to tax preparation. For all of these reasons, Paul will be back for the next couple of episodes as we tackle LLC and Business Structures and a mystery episode. Without further adieu, let's tackle taxes!

0:00 to 2:08 - Ashland Opening Remarks and Intro of Paul Glantz, CPA

2:14 to 3:51 - What IS a CPA

  • CPAs can focus in certain spaces like: Public Accounting, Taxes, Industry / Private Practice 
  • CPAs in taxes help with compliance and filings and more

3:53 to 6:22 - Taxes and Who Can Prepare Them

  • Taxes can be prepared by a tax service provider (like H&R Block), an Enrolled Agent, or a CPA 
  • CPA - has a vested interest in clients and looks for opportunities to save client money. Benefit in a CPA lies in the long-term relationship.

6:25 to 8:25 - Just Getting Started? Finding the Right CPA

  • Main factors for choosing a CPA:
    1. Price - Find someone in your budget, but don't cut corners
    2. Familiarity with your industry - Tax is broad, you want them to be familiar with your industry and the deductions available for you
    3. Are you a more aggressive or conservative tax payer? Make sure they're comfortable with your style and vice versa.

8:27 to 10:25 - How do you minimize your bill with your CPA?

  • Ask your CPA up front and have a conversation about it!
  • Keep clean records
  • Separate business from personal - have a business banking account and credit card

10:27 to 13:30 - What do you give your CPA (from your business) at the end of the year?

  • Profit & loss statement, a balance sheet, general ledger 
  • If you aren't using accounting software and are tracking for yourself, categorize your expenses on an annual basis
  • Benefits of accounting software

13:32 to 14:30 - When's the Best Time to Hire a CPA?

  • Best time to hire a CPA - during the year, beginning of the year or before the year-end.

14:32 - Getting More Advanced - Conversation Shifting to Taxes

15:03 to 17:10 - What's Deductible?

  • General answer - anything ordinary and necessary to produce income or operate your business is a deductible expense
  • If you're soliciting your business over: meals / drinks / tickets to a game / etc - 50% is deductible 
  • Clothing is never deductible - unless it's a uniform

17:12 to 18:33 - What Does The IRS Want??

  • The IRS wants their cut! 
  • Self employment tax

18:35 to 19:20 - Keep Your Receipts!

19:22 to 22:18 - How Do You Calculate Estimated Taxes?

22:20 to 23:20 - How do Estimated Taxes work with Expenses?

  • IRS has worksheets that can help you
  • Form you file - Form 1040-ES
  • IRS Direct Pay link

23:24 to 24:27 - Ashland's Closing Remarks

If you like what you hear, share the podcast with your friends, like and comment. To stay in the loop - follow us on Twitter, Facebook or subscribe to the newsletter.

Stay tuned for more, we'll be posting another episode featuring Paul in the next couple of weeks. This next one will be all about LLCs and Business Structures and some solid business advice for getting started.

Thanks!

Ashland, Creatives Meet Business

Aug 30, 2016

Hi there folks!

Creatives Meet Business is an event and podcast series based out of Austin, Texas for creatives of ALL disciplines to get from zero to one in thinking of themselves as business owners (in the creative sector). We recorded the content for this podcast at our live event on Social Media in June.

This episode features Hailey Whidden, Account Coordinator with Social Distillery. Her episode on "How to Plan an Engaging Content Calendar & Curation Tips" goes into three types of content: original, consumer generated and repurposed content. Hailey shares excellent tips on setting up listening streams to share relevant content to your audience and how to leverage social media holidays to work into your existing content. Some of our favorites here at CMB include: Hug Your Cat Day (June 4th), Maple Syrup Day (December 17th), National Potato Chip Day (March 14th), No Dishes Day (May 18th), and Ask a Stupid Question Day (September 28th).

:15 to 1:04 - Introduction

1:05 to 1:37 - Three types of content

  • Content creation takes a long time!
  • Three types of content: original, consumer generated and repurposed original content.

1:40 to 3:42 - Original Content

  • Content that you create - blog post, shared article that shows thought leadership
  • Stay up to date with industry news, create google alerts and set up listening streams
  • Hootsuite, a free listening platform that searches for relevant hashtags and follows certain accounts
  • Take the time to brainstorm before you build out your content
  • Utilize social media holidays that are relevant for your industry, research about two to three months out
  • Social Media Holiday Calendar - Downloadable Google Calendar with 2,346 holidays

3:43 to 5:06 - Consumer generated content

  • Repurpose what people are saying about your brand, it's organic and also saves you time
  • Guest blog posts - connects you to your community, shows your connections and thought leadership
    • Share guidelines with guest bloggers

5:07 to 5:43 - Repurposed Content

  • Look for ways to repurpose your content, brochures, information on your website, past blogs.
  • With long form content, you can break it up into chunks and share. Create a mini video series from snippets from your blogs.

5:44 to 6:41 - Videos

  • Videos are expensive to produce and time consuming
  • Prediction - 70% of social media will be video based by 2017
  • Take classes on Skillshare or lynda.com to learn more about making video
  • Utilize apps like Boomerang to make videos

6:46 - Closing Notes

  • Course on Lynda.com to help make better videos - How Can I Shoot Better Video on an iPhone from Video Gear Weekly.
  • Review and rate this podcast if you like what you hear
  • Advice column! If you want to ask a question, go to our website and submit through the comments section. We work with past speakers to get the best answer possible AND make it fun to read.


If you like what you hear, share the podcast with your friends, like and comment. To stay in the loop - follow us on Twitter, Facebook or subscribe to the newsletter.

Stay tuned for more, we'll be posting another episode featuring one of the pros from the Social Media edition in two weeks.

Thanks!

Ashland, Creatives Meet Business

Aug 8, 2016

Hi there folks!

Creatives Meet Business is an event and podcast series based out of Austin, Texas for creatives of ALL disciplines to get from zero to one in thinking of themselves as business owners (in the creative sector). We recorded the content for this podcast at our live event in June.

This episode features Alejandra Cos, a Strategic Account Manager with Facebook. Her episode on "Paid Strategies for the SMB" goes into Facebook's algorithm for serving ads and what you can do to best position your ads for success. The discussion ranges from the type of content that performs best on Facebook to what does best on Instagram to bids and budgets and custom lists and lookalike audiences to relevance scores and so so much in between. This episode will knock your socks off (unless you're already sock-less).

:15 to 3:30 - Introduction

3:36 to 5:10 - Why Facebook?

5:12 to 6:27 - Difference between the social media platforms, what to advertise where

  • Facebook - stories from friends, family, loved ones
  • People scroll through things that they value in life, the best way to stand out as an ad is to blend into timelines / scroll
  • Instagram - a platform where people go to get inspired (not necessarily by friends)
  • Sometimes the platforms aren't used for the same purpose, be mindful of this when creating your ad creative

6:30 to 8:06 - Understanding your objective

  • Know your business objective and match it with what's available on Facebook
  • Like campaign example - if you choose this as your objective, Facebook will use its algorithm to find people who like
  • Conversion campaign example - if you choose this as your objective, Facebook will use its algorithm to find people who take action (complete a lead form, sign up for an event, sign up for a newsletter)

8:07 to 9:13 - Know what audience you're wanting to reach

9:15 to 10:08 - Creating Creative!

  • Most of the real estate is the image
  • You have a second or so to capture someone's attention as they scroll, the image has the most stopping motion
  • Ensure a good timeline experience

10:08 to 12:05 - The Good, The Bad and The Delivery (of Ads)

  • X'ing out an ad affects how the ad is delivered (delivery slows and loses the auction more and more)
  • Captivating Ads win more auctions
  • Relevance Score (1 to 10) - how these work. A 6 or above is recommended

12:06 to 13:15 - Testing!

  • Look at signals from reporting & metrics and make your campaigns even more relevant
  • A/B Test - Test with one variable, otherwise it's hard to track which variable contributed to the better performance
  • One example of testing is to keep the content the same but add multiple images and see how each image performs separately 

13:16 to 15:05 - What About When Your Ad Isn't Performing...?

  • Tips to combating under-delivery - your budget wasn't reached in ad delivery
    • Review your bid - amount you're willing to pay for the desired action
      • Keep within your budget, but its recommended to pay toward the higher end of the funnel for the bid
    • Budget - how much the campaign will spend per day or in its lifetime
  • Facebook auction process
  • Be mindful about audience overlap - don't compete against yourself for an audience

15:06 to 16:20 - Frequency 

  • If you like a page, you can see 3 ads tops per day
  • If you don't like a page, the maximum you can see is 2 ads per day
  • Audience overlap example with frequency

16:26 to 19:11 - Closing Time (Tools and Helpful Bits)

  • Facebook Business (FAQ that includes pretty much anything you could imagine)
  • Link to FAQ about my inquiry about which creative serves best for Facebook or Instagram 
  • Link to event on 8/16 (Taxes & Accounting)
  • Announcing... the launch of the CMB advice column! Go to the comment section of the website and send us your questions!

If you like what you hear, share the podcast with your friends, like and comment. To stay in the loop - follow us on Twitter, Facebook or subscribe to the newsletter.

Stay tuned for next week, we'll be posting another episode featuring one of the pros from the Social Media edition.

Thanks!

Ashland, Creatives Meet Business

Aug 2, 2016

Hi there folks!

Creatives Meet Business is an event and podcast series based out of Austin, Texas for creatives of ALL disciplines to get from zero to one in thinking of themselves as business owners (in the creative sector). We recorded the content for this podcast at our live event in June.

This episode features Ryan Johnston, Director of Content at Social Distillery. His episode on "Storytelling for the Nimble Marketer" goes into the "why" of social media and how social media platforms exist as places to tell our stories. With the human attention span  dropping from 12 to 8 seconds, using story in your social media posts to captivate your audience is more vital than ever. Oh, and he's hilarious.

  • 0:00 to 2:47 - Introduction 
  • 2:47 - What's Storytelling 
    • Social media created to tell personal stories
  • 3:22 - Personal Storytelling on Facebook
    • Selective life story - baby photos, political beliefs, vacations
  • 4:11 - Micro story of your vacation
    • Check-in at the airport, panoramic selfie, foodstagram 
  • 5:02 - Why do brands tell a story?
    • Because the alternative is direct product and service sales
    • Stories touch people in a direct way
  • 5:25 - Science! (And Why Brands Tell Stories)
    • When people hear facts the language part of their brain lights up.
    • When people hear or read stories - parts of their brain fire like they were actually there. They're more likely to remember what you're saying, be brand loyal, etc.
  • 6:02 - Brands on Social & Putting the Customer in the Hero's Spot
    • Gain awareness, sales
    • "Star Wars" Analogy by Ben Cecil with UPG Video 
    • Customer journey - You can't put the product in the pilot's seat of the Millennium Falcon, that's where the customer goes!
    • Building brand ambassadors through storytelling
  • 8:24 - Human attention span
    • Dropped from 12 to 8 seconds - eek! Less than a goldfish.
    • Think about how fast you scroll through social media feeds and how hard it is for something to stand out...
  • 9:20 - Story needs to be relevant and make sense (even if it's seen in the middle of the story)
    • Break it into bite sized pieces
    • Fill in the gaps with micro sites or landing sites that provide the bigger story
  • 10:00 - Paid Owned and Earned
    • Owned - social media channels, website, micro sites that you own as a brand
    • Paid - ads on social media. Paid element needed for content to be seen
    • Earned - Word of mouth marketing. 
  • 11:25 - How do you get people to tell the story of your brand for you?
    • Spike Jones (Austin marketer) says people share content for three reasons: Ego, Info & Emo
    • Ego - Posts that feed your ego (when you post the sandwich you made that morning)
    • Info - Sharing the latest information with your friends
    • Emo (Emotions) - People share emotionally out of delight or disgust
  • 12:50 - Continue the learning journey on Lynda.com
  • 13:36 - Next event in Austin


If you like what you hear, share the podcast with your friends, like and comment. To stay in the loop - follow us on Twitter, Facebook or subscribe to the newsletter.

Stay tuned for next week, we'll be posting another episode featuring one of the pros from the Social Media edition.

Thanks!

Ashland, Creatives Meet Business

Jul 18, 2016

Hi there folks!

Creatives Meet Business is an event and podcast series based out of Austin, Texas for creatives of ALL disciplines to get from zero to one in thinking of themselves as business owners (in the creative sector). We record the content for this podcast at our live events.

This episode features Meredith Gonsalves, instructor at General Assembly Austin and Digital and Social Content Strategist at Deloitte.

Her episode on "Social Media Strategy Mapping" walks you through the six (6) main aspects that you'll need to keep in mind for getting started with new social media channels OR if you're about to tackle a new campaign. The topics she discusses are applicable to anyone who wants to make the most out of their social media marketing.

  • 0:00 to 3:28 - Introduction & Supplemental Materials
  • 3:30 - Meredith Introduces Self
  • 3:55 - 6 Tips for Social Media Strategy Mapping - whether it be for a new social media channel or for a new campaign, put strategy and measurements behind your new idea before you put out any new content
    1. 4:45 - Position Your Brand
      • Have a deep understanding of how people view your brand - on and off social. How do people engage with your content? 
    2. 5:44 - Understand Your Target Audience
      • Are you reaching the community you really want to be talking to?
      • Know basic demographics, but also find out the other brands they follow and where they consume content
    3. 7:04 - Know Your Competitors 
      • Direct Competitor - Selling exactly what you're selling 
      • Indirect Competitor - Selling something similar or a portion of what you sell, could become a partner
      • It's good to understand your indirect competitors but REALLY have a better understanding of your direct competitors. Know their content and campaigns.
      • Share of Voice - How much of the conversation does your brand occupy in a conversation about your field or discipline (how much of the pie is your brand getting in the conversation)
    4. 8:48 - Social Media Strategy Mapping (with a real map)
      • Prioritize and map out your goals, find your business "why." Why are you on social media? 
      • Your tactics should link back to the "why" you're on social media
      • Example of a strategy map (goals, tactics and measurement)
      • Be able to measure your goals!
    5. 11:10 - Map Out Your Resources
      • Hootsuite or Buffer to schedule social media posts
      • Graphic designer to help with graphics
      • Create a content calendar (you can even do it in Excel)
    6. 12:00  - Measure and Optimize
      • Measure and understand if your tactics are helping you meet your goals
  • 13:27 - Lynda.com - online video tutorials for business, creative, and technology skills

If you like what you hear, share the podcast with your friends, like and comment. If you're in Austin, come and join us for an event! The next one is August 16th. To stay in the loop - follow us on TwitterFacebook or subscribe to the newsletter.

Stay tuned for next week, we'll be posting another episode featuring one of the pros from the Social Media edition.

Ashland, Creatives Meet Business

Jul 10, 2016

Hi there folks!

Creatives Meet Business is an event and podcast series based out of Austin, Texas for creatives of ALL disciplines to get from zero to one in thinking of themselves as business owners (in the creative sector). We record the content for this podcast at our live events.

This episode features Kristen Sussman, President and Founder of Social Distillery  who will tell us all about "The Secret (SEO) Power of Social Media" and gives seven (7) stellar tips on how to get you started.

  • :58 - Superhero Origin Story - Peter Parker aka Spider-Man
  • 2:42 - Kristen's Superhero Origin Story
  • 5:20 - 7 Tips and Tricks for SEO
    1. Google's Keyword Planner
      • Make 2 lists - a 3 or 4 keyword list and a 20 keyword list
      • Use these keywords and be consistent across all of your social media platforms (About Us section) 
    2. Incorporate a blog on your website
      • Post once a week
        • Doesn't always have to be you writing - use guest blog writer, employees
        • When including links - be sure to set them to open in a new tab
    3. Understand Google Crawlers
      • Use simple and clear language in blog post titles
    4. Use a Good Content Mix
      • Videos, blogs, photos, GIFs, RSS feeds, social media
      • Tag appropriately and be specific with your titles 
    5. Include your Company in Local Listings
      • Yelp, Google Places, TripAdvisor 
      • Submit your company to relevant lists 
    6. Identify Link Building Opportunities
      • Comment on published articles, make sure your comments are relevant
        • Contribute with humor or with knowledge / information
    7. Use an Evergreen Strategy with Your Social Media
      • Content strategy for Creatives Meet Business event 
      • Content as spiderweb of stories - content, posts & links
      • Use original, high quality content

If you like what you hear, share the podcast with your friends, like and comment. If you're in Austin, come and join us for an event! The next one is August 16th. To stay in the loop - follow us on Twitter, Facebook or subscribe to the newsletter.

Stay tuned for next week, we'll be posting another episode featuring one of the pros from the Social Media edition.

Ashland, Creatives Meet Business

Jul 2, 2016

Hi there folks!

Creatives Meet Business is an event and podcast series based out of Austin, Texas for creatives of ALL disciplines to get from zero to one in thinking of themselves as business owners (in the creative sector). We record the content for this podcast at our live events.

This is our roadmap (aka - long trailer) for what to expect over the next 6 to 8 weeks as we release 6 episodes with our social media pros. These episodes are EPIC.

We hope this taste of what's to come gets you super energized for these episodes as they release.

  • 2:03 - Kristen Sussman, President and Founder - Social Distillery
    • The Secret (SEO) Power of Social Media & Tips to Get You Started
  • 2:53 - Ryan Johnston, Director of Content - Social Distillery
    • Paid, Owned and Earned: Storytelling & Content for the Nimble Marketer
  • 3:45 - Hailey Whidden, Account Coordinator - Social Distillery
    • How to Plan an Engaging Content Calendar & Curation Tips
  • 5:30 - Alejandra Cos, Strategic Account Manager - Facebook
    • Paid Strategies for the Small to Medium Business
  • 7:04 - Meredith Gonsalves, Instructor - General Assembly Austin
    • Social Media Strategy Mapping
  • 8:14 - Emilie Kopp, Founder and Managing Partner - Bonobo Interactive
    • How to Build a Community & Channel Definition

Already can't wait to hear the next episode and needing more content to tide you over? Check out Social Distillery's recap of the event.

We'll post the episode featuring Kristen Sussman next week. Stay tuned for more!

-Ashland, Creatives Meet Business

 

Jun 28, 2016

Hi there folks!

Creatives Meet Business is an event and podcast series based out of Austin, Texas for creatives of ALL disciplines to get from zero to one in thinking of themselves as business owners (in the creative sector). We record the content for this podcast at our live events.

This episode features five Financial Planners, all sharing insights into retirement and everything you always wanted to know about IRAs* (*but were afraid to ask):

  • 1:23 - Bill Simonet, Simonet Wealth Management 
    • Build up savings first
    • IRA (prioritize AFTER savings) - traditional or Roth, Simple or SEP
    • Once you start adding employees, then add in 401(k)s
    • Income matters for IRAs, Revenue matters for 401(k)s
    • Separate personal assets from professional, build savings for small business. Become "ramen profitable" - then start focusing on IRAs and 401(k)s
  • 7:26 - Chris Baum, Palermo Wealth Management
    • Vehicles for small business owners - SEP IRA, Simple IRA and Solo 401(k)
      • He's a huge fan of Solo 401(k)
    • Competition has made everything A-MAZING for the consumer, many custodians have similar fees, so it's really about finding the best fit for you.
    • Custodians - hold your money, open your account, facilitate the trade
    • Roth 401(k) - you don't get a tax break the year you make a contribution, but you take it out tax free
      • You can always get your contributions back out of a Roth IRA without a penalty (same rules don't apply to earnings)
    • Keep a separate "tinkering" account for investing in things like "water cooler" stocks
  • 14:35 - Sophia Bera, Gen Y Planning
    • 4 types of IRAs
      • IRA Rollover - moving a retirement account into your own plan
        • If you cash it out, you have to pay a 10% penalty AND taxes
      • Regular IRA - Up to $5.5K tax deduction for contributions made to IRA
      • Roth IRA - Pay taxes up front, but it grows tax free. In early stages of business it's very ideal as you're in a lower tax bracket then you will be in the future (fingers crossed for you)
      • SEP IRA - Tax deduction
    • Sophia's personal favorite for setting up a retirement account - Betterment.com
  • 19:19 - Philip Olson, The Art of Finance
    • Month by month approach - save for taxes and retirement when you get a paycheck 
      • Save 25% for taxes and another 10 to 15% for retirement 
    • Suggestions for fixed income and a mixture of fixed and variable
  • 22:22 - Keith Powell, Austin Divorce Planners
  • 24:00 - What Ashland is Focusing On This Week
    • Opened a business credit card and determines which card to use based on reward points for the transaction (5% for internet and cell phone with business card, versus 1% on personal card)

We hope you enjoy the many tips and tricks nestled into this episode about saving money on your taxes through IRAs.

If you like what you hear or want to give us some feedback, please leave a comment.

Thank you!

Ashland Viscosi, Creatives Meet Business

Jun 7, 2016

Hi there folks!

This is the final chapter in our two part "mini-series" on budgets. Be sure to check out "Budgets...What's in a Name?" if you want some more insights into creating a budget best suited for you and your lifestyle. 

Our podcast content is "filmed" in front of a live "studio" audience.  You may be (briefly) fooled into thinking that this audible chocolate was recorded in a studio. Alas, although oftentimes the vocals are clear, there will be evidence that our experts are recorded live at the events (with background noise to prove it).

This episode features five Financial Planners, all sharing tips and tricks you can use to stay on budget and tools that will help you along the way:

  • 1:42 - Chris Baum, Palermo Wealth Management
  • 7:42 - Megan Poore, Lucien Stirling and Gray Advisory Group
    • Accountability (to spreadsheets OR people!)
    • Recent study on motivation and what keeps folks accountable (for whatever priority they set for themselves)
  • 10:13 - Philip Olson, The Art of Finance 
    • Psychology of giving - save first and give generously
    • One month ahead goal
    • Baby steps to weather a financial storm: create your emergency fund from your one month ahead goal, pay off debt smallest to largest, then save more in the emergency fund
    • YNAB (You Need a Budget)
    • Live on last month's income philosophy
  • 15:24 - Sophia Bera, Gen Y Planning
    • Find the tracking system that works for you! App, spreadsheet, whatever works best
    • Mint.com (great for understanding past transactions)
    • Weekly spends versus monthly budget
  • Keith Powell, Austin Divorce Planners
    • Mint.com (create spending limits)
    • True Bill OR Trim for monitoring subscriptions on credit card statements

Alas, we must now bid adieu to budgets. We hope you enjoy the many tips and tricks nestled into this episode about how to prioritize your spending so that it works for you.

We still have a few more episodes featuring insights from these Financial Planners on savings, retirement and being a creative entrepreneur. We can't wait to share them with you.

If you like what you hear or want to give us some feedback, please leave a comment.

Thank you!

Ashland Viscosi, Creatives Meet Business

 

About Creatives Meet Business:

Creatives Meet Business is an event series based out of Austin, Texas for creatives of ALL disciplines to no longer think of themselves just as "artists" and "creatives" but also as "small business owners" and "entrepreneurs." 

 

 

May 20, 2016

Hi there!

Creatives Meet Business is an event series based out of Austin, Texas for creatives of ALL disciplines to no longer think of themselves just as "artists" and "creatives" but also as "small business owners" and "entrepreneurs." 

Podcast episodes feature experts who participated in the live event. Don't be fooled by the crystal clear vocals you'll oftentimes hear, our experts are recorded live at the events (and there will sometimes be background noise that proves it...). 

This episode features five Financial Planners, all sharing their insights on what a budget is and how you can make it work for you: 

  • 2:41 - Sophia Bera, Gen Y Planning
  • 5:06 - Philip Olson, The Art of Financing (there was something a bit off with the mic, sorry...)
  • 9:18 - Bill Simonet, Simonet Wealth Management
  • 14:39 - Chris Baum, Palermo Wealth Management
  • 20:43 - Megan Poore, Lucien, Stirling & Gray Advisory Group

There's something unique and magical about how each of these Financial Planners describes a budget. Sometimes it's as simple as removing the negative connotation of "budget" and rebranding it as a spending plan and other times it's about prioritizing and achieving your lighthouse goals. 

All this to say, budgets...what's in a name?

-Ashland Viscosi, Creatives Meet Business

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