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bella in your business

Episode 48: Social Media & Faith In Your Business With Heather Heuman

On this episode Bella speaks with Heather Heuman,  CEO/Founder of Sweet Tea Social Marketing, Elizabethtown Family and the
Founder of Sweet Tea Social Marketing Academy.

Heather Heuman

Heather Heuman

Bella and Heather discuss:

  • What social media can do for your business
  • What steps you should take to make social media work for you
  • What effects bringing her faith into her business had on it.
Heather is the CEO/Founder of Sweet Tea Social Marketing, Elizabethtown Family and the founder of Sweet Tea Social Marketing Academy. She is a social media speaker, strategist and trainer that specializes in helping Christian business owners and entrepreneurs, discover how to grow in today’s noisy social marketplace. Heather has corporate and locally-based client experience and enjoyed speaking at Social Media Marketing World earlier this year. She’s a proud wife and mother of three kiddos under 12 and is excited about her new podcast Business, Jesus and Sweet Tea is launching June 2017
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Bella in your business pet sitting podcast

Episode 46: Website Copy, SEO, Blogging, & FB Live With Jen Phillips April

On this episode of “Bella in your Business” Bella speaks with Jen Phillips April, an SEO copywriter and social media trainer. They discuss different ways of impacting the traffic you get from search engines.

Jen Phillips April

Jen Phillips April

Specifically they discuss:

  • Website copy (the words on your website) and how you need to rewrite so people can find your page more easily when searching
  • The wide range of searches user are doing these days
  • How consistent blogging can affect your SEO
  • The importance of Facebook Live to attract customers.

Jen Phillips April’s online marketing journey started way back in 2005 with a dog treat recipe site. Using content and the best practices of SEO, she grew that site to 87, 500 visitors/month. These days, she works with clients like pet sitters and dog trainers. She writes their website copy so it gets found by Google (and their target market) and she also offers training on social media and SEO. When she is not working with her clients, she is usually reading a novel, practicing her Down Dog or cooking up a delicious meal.

Check out Jen’s free 5 day email course on “How To Gain MASSIVE Visibility with Facebook Live in Only 5 Minutes a Day — Even if You’ve Never “Done” Video Before.” 

You can find out more at www.jenphillipsapril.com

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Bella in your business pet sitting podcast

Episode 42: How To Use Facebook Groups and Video In Your Pet Sitting Business

On this episode Bella speaks with Maureen McCarthy, owner of Love and Kisses Pet Sitting. Bella has found Maureen’s use of Facebook groups, social media, and video to be an awesome example of how to market.  Bella gets the scoop from Maureen, about how Facebook groups can be a great way to connect and expand your reach as a business. Maureen started a group for her own community called What’s Up Indiana Trail and it has grown like wild fire. Through it, she has been able to get more people engaged on her own facebook page and grown her business.

They also discuss Facebook Live videos – which if you’ve been listening to me for awhile, you know that I consider video as a MUST HAVE in your business. Maureen discusses with Bella how exactly she started doing Facebook Live videos with both her and her staff and the direct effect they’ve had on her business revenue.

She talks with Maureen about:

Maureen McCarthy, owner of Love and Kisses Pet Sitting

Maureen McCarthy

  • The Facebook group she started.
  • Why she started the group
  • How much work is involved
  • How successful it has been
  • How she got into doing videos


Her facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/IndianTrailPetSitter/

 

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pet sitter facebook groups

What Makes Up Good Pet Sitter Facebook Groups?

Facebook groups are quickly becoming a premiere way to make meaningful connections and expand your network. There is seriously a Facebook group for EVERYTHING. As pet sitting business owners, many of you may be a part of (or are interested in joining) a pet sitter Facebook group. So, today we’re going to talk about what exactly makes pet sitter Facebook groups worth joining.

What Makes Up Good Pet Sitter Facebook Groups?

pet sitter facebook groups

Screening Process

When joining a Facebook group, it’s definitely important to determine whether or not the group “screens” the incoming members. Generally, it is better that the group HAS a screening process than not. This ensures that the right types of people fit the group.

In pet sitter Facebook groups, you’ll see a lot of non-pet sitters try to join them. This is because some people will join groups in mass to promote their own product/service. So, once there’s too many of these kinds of people, the integrity of the group is lost. It’s now just become a self-promotion page.

For example, in the “I Own A Pet Sitting Company W/Staff” Facebook group (sponsored by yours truly), we message every single person who wants to join the group. Why? Because we want to cultivate a certain type of community. And because we feel that quality is much more important than quantity.

Free Resources For Pet Sitter Facebook Groups

Many pet sitter Facebook groups actually offer group members free resources. You’ll typically see this in groups sponsored by pet business coaches or pet businesses themselves. Some of the free resources we offer in our pet sitter Facebook groups include a pet sitter networking guide, a 20 minute coaching session, and a pet sitting software comparison chart, just to name a few.

Number Of Moderators

Pet sitter Facebook groups usually either have one moderator or a number of them. Typically the moderator is either a pet industry veteran or a pet business coach.

It’s usually better to have a group of moderators in order to ensure the group runs smoothly. Multiple moderators screening incoming members, reading and answering posts, and posting content can all be beneficial to the group.

With a large group, it can be difficult for one moderator to keep up on all of the posts. Multiple moderators help manage what type of content is allowed. This can in turn benefit the overall quality of the group.

The True Benefit Of Pet Sitter Facebook Groups

The ultimate resource of being in these pet sitter Facebook groups is that you can network. Pet business owners can connect with other pet business owners around the country. These groups provide a platform where you can get valuable insider advice and answers to your burning questions. It’s a great way to not feel ALONE in your business – which is really important.

Pet Sitter Facebook Groups

pet sitting facebook group

Episode 35: Identifying and Overcoming Challenges As A Small Business Owner

On this episode of “Bella in Your Business” Bella spends time with Heather Dopson, Community Builder at GoDaddy.

Heather Dopson

Heather Dopson, Community Builder at GoDaddy

Heather has a passion for digital trends and innovation along with a deep understanding of social networks, consumers and branding. As a Community Builder at GoDaddy, she leverages her skills as a connector and her drive to help small businesses succeed. Her mission in life is to help people lose their J-O-B and find their J-O-Y.

They discuss:

  • How Heather got to this position of Community Builder
  • Some challenges she sees happen in small businesses and freelance communities
  • How small business should owners determine what they work on themselves or what they outsource/delegate
  • The biggest opportunities she sees people overlook when it comes to driving awareness and driving revenue
  • “Beyond the Domain” a Facebook live series of videos she is doing for GoDaddy.
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Why Your Staff Should Use Facebook Live For Your Pet Sitting Business Page

Technology is ever changing. And with new technology comes new ways for your business to connect with your clients. One of these ways is Facebook Live – a feature on Facebook where you can broadcast yourself LIVE to your Facebook friends. Cool, right? While blogging is still really popular, video is becoming where it’s AT! Using Facebook Live for pet sitting is a great way that you and your staff can really connect with your audience. So today, we’re going to talk about why having your staff use Facebook Live is a good idea and how you can begin to implement it into your business.

Why Your Staff Should Use Facebook Live On Your Pet Sitting Business Page:

facebook live for pet sitting

Your Clients Will LOVE It!

Live video is so much more personal than pre-recorded, professional video. Clients will love getting to see an inside look of what it’s like to be a pet sitter for your company. It can also help them feel more safe and secure since they’ll have an inside perspective on what your pet sitters do at homes.

But, it’s important to note that you don’t want to just throw your staff into this new task. There is a couple different ways you can go about it:

  1. Hold an official training so ALL of your pet sitters can learn how to use Facebook Live for pet sitting to your standards.
  2. Only allow your “veteran” employees who really understand your brand to take part in it.

Whichever you choose, you want to make sure that you add an additional section in your training manual so that you have all policies and procedures documented in writing.

Your Sitters Will LOVE Doing it!

It’s no secret that your pet sitters love pets! So what better way for them to show off their love for animals by using Facebook Live for pet sitting on your business page? They will feel a sense of pride and importance once asked to be one of the many faces of your business.

Giving your sitters extra responsibility will make them feel appreciated. It will also help you promote your business through content creation. Your job, however, is to give them all the tools they need to succeed.

 

Tell Them The Rules Of The Game:

What do I mean by that? Every week you should have some type of discussion like, “Hey ____, this week on Facebook Live the topic is going to be one reason why you love working for the company.” You want to make sure you give your staff some direction. That way, they won’t have to think on the spot to come up with something to say. Also have some specific guidelines in place such as:

  • How long the video should be
  • What time of day is optimal for posting
  • Only use Facebook Live for dogs/pets that they feel completely comfortable with.

You’ll 100% Set Yourself Apart From The Competition!

We don’t have to be the only people that are the face of our company. In fact, your sitters are the main reason why your clients will come back again and again. Keeping up with the newest trends and technology allows your business to grow and prosper. Stay relevant, engaged, and in-tune with how people want to view content. If you make it EASY for people to see what you’re all about, the sky’s the limit!

pet sitting facebook group

 

Episode 30: Proven Social Media Marketing Methods

Britney Young, Social Media Marketing Manager

Britney Young, Social Media Marketing Manager

In this episode, Bella talks to Britney Young. Britney is a digital marketing professional and social media enthusiast. Her day-to-day life as a social media marketing manager includes: finding/curating relevant content to post to social channels, analyzing post data and post performance to see key trends or spikes in engagement, looking for relevant industry influencers to connect with, and responding to customer inquires, etc.

They discuss:

  • What a social marketing manager does
  • The pros and cons of using automatic republishers like Meet Edgar
  • How often should you post
  • What should you be posting
  • What you should be doing with all of those pet pictures you post
  • Their favorite apps for doctoring up pictures
  • The differences in the social media channels and a good workflow for pushing one post through many of them.
  • Focusing your efforts on a few selected channels.
  • Knowing your audience and finding out what channel works best for them.

    Apps mentioned:
    – Canva
    – Abobe Spark
    – Pixaby

For more information about Britney Young, you can find her on LinkedIn at http://www.linkedin.com/in/britneynyoung/

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Episode 21: How One Pet Lover Took Her Passion For Pets and United An Entire State with Woofalong

Darcy Graham, creator of WOOFALONG.COM

Darcy Graham, creator of WOOFALONG.COM

In this episode of “Bella In Your Business”, Bella talks with Darcy Graham,  creator of WOOFALONG.com. The site, which shows you the dog-friendly restaurants, stores, parks, trails and events in Colorado, was launched earlier this year and is already looking to expand.

Bella and Darcy discuss:

  • The frustration that was the impetus for the site.
  • How Darcy compiled the list of locations.
  • What types of publicity Darcy has managed to get for the site already and how she did it.
  • The engagements her site has gathered so far and how she has gotten it to grow.
  • Her extensive use of social media.
  • What she has planned for the upcoming version 2 of the site.
  • The plans for expansion to other cities.
  • The potential opportunities on WOOFALONG.COM for business owners.

You can find more information about WOOFALONG.COM at, where else, http://www.woofalong.com.

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Episode 18: How to Get More Pet Sitting and Dog Walking Clients

bella-pet-sitting-industry-podcast-album-cover

 

In this episode of “Bella In Your Business”, Bella is joined once again by Kate McQuillan from PawsomeMedia. They discuss the timeless question they always get, “How do I get more pet sitting and dog walking clients?”

More-clients-pet-sitting-dog-walking

 

List All The Services You Offer On Your Website:


In order to get more pet sitting and dog walking clients, Bella notes that people search for many different terms. For instance, she says that  if you are dog groomer and you want to groom small dogs or even cats, make sure you list that. Someone looking to get a cat groomed likely won’t search for a dog groomer first. Make sure you are putting all the services you offer, along with descriptions, on your website. Kate notes you should really review your website periodically and make sure what you want out there is very clear.

fb-group

Promote Yourself On Facebook:

Kate mentions that people often get caught up sharing pet pics, memes and news, but should not forget to put out something everyday about what you do. Images, articles you have written and tips are all good ways to do that. Also, make sure you have filled out all the about sections in Facebook, especially the contact information. Also make  sure your banner clearly says what you do. Facebook pages get Googled and so having all of that information in there may actually help you show up more often in Google searches. For those who feel such promotion is too “salesy” Bella recommends you check out “Gary V” (Gary Vaynerchuk ) who has a book called Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook: How to tell your story in a noisy social world. He writes that it is about giving value, value, value, and then a sale. Bella says it’s ok to keep sharing valuable items, but don’t forget the “right hook”!

 

Blog About What You Do:

 

Bella says to blog and talk about what you do. Discuss things like “How much does dog grooming cost?”, “Should I get my cat groomed?”, “How do I train my dog?”.  She says to take every question people ask you, use the exact question as the title of your blog post, and then answer it. She says it’s not only good for SEO (getting higher placement  in Google results), but also gives you an “arsenal” to use when people call with questions. Ask them for their email address and send them the blog post that answers that question. Kate points out that you also need to SHARE your blog post (see tip #2)! And don’t forget to reshare things you wrote months and years ago.  Keep sharing it for those who may not have seen it the first time. And revisit them periodically to “tidy” them up and make them more current.

 

 

Make Free Downloads For Your Site:

Kate suggests that you offer things on your site like free EBooks you create or checklists (like one on things to do before your next vacation), cleaning tips, etc. It doesn’t always have to be about the services you offer, just things that are useful to your customers.

 

 

Create and use “Bark Cards”

When you are out performing mobile services (grooming, pet sitting, dog walking) and you (dog) hear barking at a neighbor’s house, your worker can leave one of these bark cards. Bark cards are small postcards with a picture of a barking dog you get made up that say “BARK, BARK, BARK, BARK, BARK”. On the back leave the top half blank and on the bottom put your branding, list of services, and contact info. In the blank area, take a pen and write something like. “I think I heard a small dog and they were saying ‘Come groom me! Come groom me!’.  I was in the neighborhood and if you call me for more information I would like to offer you….” Bella says these cards are shocking and attention grabbing. They also target your demographic. Personalization in key with these cards.

 

newsletter_image

Email Marketing:

Kate said to make better use of the email addresses you have collected through newsletter sign ups, or people opting in to your free downloads. Send information periodically to ensure people remember who you are and what you offer.  Bella suggests it could be a “drip campaign” where you have a series of say 5 emails go out over a period of time or it could be a short periodic newsletter.  Kate notes that email is important because not everybody is on Facebook or checking out your website, but they may likely be checking email.

classes-vet-referrals

 

Talk To Vets

Bella says a lot of pet business owners just walk into a vet’s office, drop their cards and leave.  More than likely the cards get dropped in the trash. So Bella recommends that you build a relationship with the vet’s office manager. People rarely ask the vet about pet sitting or grooming services, but they do ask the front office staff or call in with that kind of question.

 

 

Start A Facebook Group:

Kate says that you start a private Facebook group not to sell services but to allow customers and members of the group to get to know you personally.  Members get to know each other, build relationships, talk about pets, etc., and build a good community.

 

logo_dog_walking 4

 

Start A Dog Walking Club!

Bella says that by starting these clubs you will have a micro area of people all interested in the same thing. Do it with your existing customers to build up brand loyalty or expose them to other services you offer. You can encourage them to bring a friend. You could start one at an apartment complex and have the complex promote the club as an activity. Kate suggests you could combine that with the private Facebook group as well.

 

 

Create Competition

 

Kate recommends that you create competition events as they are a good way to get new clients. But do it right! Don’t just do a like and share campaign. Really plan it out.  Kate has more information about doing so in her online marketing academy which Bella says is awesome!

 

Listen To The Full Podcast Below and Don’t Forget To Subscribe!

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Here Are 5 Important Things To Do After You Publish A Blog Plus 3 Bonuses!

Did you know there are certain steps you should take AFTER you publish an article from your blog?

Yeah. Really!

And what you choose to do can help determine how far and wide your message is spread. After all, you are wanting to publish to a room full of people, right? Not just in the bathroom to yourself?

Haha. Ok get the image?

We spend all this time writing the articles and then hope that somehow, somewhere, there are people out there just following our website waiting for new content to come out.

But that isn’t reasonable.

We want lots of people reading what we write. It shows google that you are an authority on the subject matter. It can drive a lot of people to your website. Like the day I got 1700 hits in one day! So while your competition that is out there sitting dead in the water with their static 5 page website that hardly gets much traffic… you are out there being the popular kid that everyone is attracted to!

Want to learn how to do this? Without spending a TON of time?

 

5 Things You Can Do The Next Time You Press Publish:

Here are actual things you can do to get traction on your blog articles. I think it is really important when you are trying to get it going and let people know that you are out there.

In addition to creating a killer title, and I don’t mean by keyword stuffing, you want to post in these places:

BOOST your post on Facebook

 

Spend $5 to boost your post and see what happens! It is superb results.

A boost is something that you pay for, after you post the blog to your facebook page. It will get in front of MORE than just what the Facebook algorithm normally would show and it is all to people who have already liked your page. Unlike advertising, it doesn’t show up as a “sponsored” post.

Facebook Business Page: 

Again, teasing an article by asking a question around it is always a good thing. Think of a way you can create some foreplay to your article. Ask thought provoking questions like “Have you ever thought about…” or “What would you do if…” then link to your article.

If your article mentions any other business or area of your city, feel free to find their interest pages and post there as well. If you think it is a valuable teaching article, why not find a reporter or newscaster who often reports on subjects close to it and post it on their wall with your own “pitch” or even message them the article?

Remember, don’t spam them. You message should be inciting, relevant, and helpful. Otherwise you will turn them off. Who knows? Maybe they will either use your article in a story or look towards you as a resource on the topic?

Personal Facebook Page: 

There is no harm in sharing your business postings on your personal page. Especially in the warm, cute, and fuzzy business of pet sitting! It helps keep you top of mind awareness in your own personal network. People that actually like and care about you!

Twitter 

This is one of my favorite ones! A quick 140 character message with hastags for your city, topic, or your business always work well. Follow me @Bellas_Pets to see what I mean! Be relevant or interesting enough and others will retweet you!

Email: 

How many of you have a email service where you can send mass emails out to your list? Even if you don’t, I am sure you have a client database either in excel or in your client management system, right? How about sending out a link to your article to them via email? Maybe every Friday?

The name of the game these days is 10 seconds or less! Let me get your message and SCAN (not read) though it while I am at a stop light. We are a stop light culture!

So if you send a quick email out every week or every two weeks, just basic text “Hey everyone! Wondering what to do this weekend? Here are 5 pet friendly dog patios in CITY, and they have super yummy food! Hope you are well!  LINK” 

See? Now your brand just smacked them in the face and you are now top of the mind awareness!

 

3 Bonuses For You!

It really isn’t that hard to promote your articles. You just have to take ten min and do it all! Here are two other quick tips you can do:
Tip #1: Your articles can be like weapons! You need to fire up your arsenal and prepare to strike and impress!  Sometimes you might find yourself on your blog, reading articles, finding them for posting on FB or to an email you are sending a client. When you are ON YOUR OWN BLOG, press the social media share links while you are there. Share it to Twitter, G+, FB  It can’t hurt you and you are already there!

Tip #2: Insert your blogs into your website under major categories. For example, if you are talking about puppy sitting or cat sitting, take some of your existing blogs and insert them into your services list. It gives your company more depth and allows your potential client to get a 360″ feel for the actual service other than you talking them to death and boring them! I mean come on, let’s STAND OUT from the rest! 🙂 Right?

List of services

List of services

 

Tip #3: When you are sending an email to a potential client about their new puppy, or cat that they don’t know if you “get it”, send them links to your blog via email that talk about what happens on a puppy sit, ideas for cheap puppy toys at home, or a commentary from one of your pet sitters about a cat sleeping on her head. Your articles can be like weapons! You need to fire up your arsenal and prepare to strike and impress!

“Your articles can be like weapons! You need to fire up your arsenal and prepare to strike and impress! “

Just because you have shared an article once on FB does mean that everyone who follows you has seen it. Use it over and over again. Let it GROW. Plant the seeds! Promote it! Each blog you write does you no good if you just publish it and then forget about it. They can have a HUGE impact on driving lots and lots of visitors to your website if you promote them correctly.

What do you currently do? How do you get your hard work out there to the world? Do you do any of the above? Does it help? Do you have any other ideas to share?