Business Cards for #BlogHer’11 are on their way!

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Ordered from Zazzle.com

Countdown to BlogHer’11: My to-do list, roommate and thoughts on leaving my family.

Thanks to Calley, the Eco-Chic, for pressuring me…ahem…encouraging me to write a to-do list.  BlogHer ’11 is fast approaching and I am a little scared, a little nervous and a LOT excited!  I haven’t flown on a plane since before 9-11 and that alone has me a bit freaked out.  Oh and I’ve never left my kids or husband before for more than a night…let alone to go across the country!

One exciting tidbit is this, my roommate at BlogHer will be….Kim of Dirty Diaper Laundry!  I’m looking forward to getting to know Kim a little better.

So what crazy last minute things do I have in the works? (I do work better under pressure, and at the last minute, so I’ve learned to cope with the fact that there’s always a lot to be done in practically no time at all.)

  • Advocacy! Get my super cute advocacy buttons that I’ve custom ordered from FunkyLindsay on Etsy!  She makes the cutest buttons and I’ve ordered a ton of them to take with me and hand out!  Maybe if there are some left then I’ll give them away on my blog after BlogHer!  There will be Knickernappies buttons, Cloth Diaper Geek Buttons and more!
  • Shop for clothes! Yes I work at home, this means I wear the same pair of jeans virtually every day, and a couple random tank tops, and flip flops…So. I definitely need to beef up my wardrobe and quick.  However, I am cheap and always on a budget, but that’s ok because I love shopping at Thrift Stores.  So between now and then I need to get some new, err…new-to-me clothes.
  • Order business cards! I’ve been hearing a lot about zazzle.com, or if you all have any good, quick and inexpensive places were I can order last minute business cards please let me know!  That’s definitely on my to-do list.
  • Print tickets! With all this electronic fanciness I have no paper copies of anything.  I need to print plane tickets?  Can I do that?  Do I do that?  It’s been so long that I have no clue.  I also need to print my ticket to get in to BlogHer, my Hotel reservations, etc.
  • What do I do with my hair!? About a month ago I went pink, but first I bleached it all out.  Now it’s faded pink, I have roots, I need a haircut.  I need to decide, do I whether I want to re-do the pink, re-bleach my roots….Ah, the decisions.
  • My elevator pitch? Apparently I need a pitch, a brief description of myself, my job, my blog(s), what I do and why.  I am assuming I wouldn’t need this if I wasn’t going to get asked, possibly in front of a room of people…which the thought of makes me break out in a cold sweat.  At BlogHer though networking with other bloggers is the name of the game so I better come up with something good, and fast.
  • Map out some Geocaches! Yes, I love Geocaching and truth be told, I don’t have a whole lot of opportunities to geocache out of state and so I am not going to leave San Diego until I find at least one.  Geocaching in the different places you visit and on different trips is kind of like taking or leaving a souvenir and a great way to remember all the places you’ve been.
  • Netbook! Check!  I got a great deal on an Acer One Aspire, let’s just hope my kids don’t break it before my trip!
  • Personal goals! My personal blogging goals are to be able to continue to grow my FaceBook Fans and Twitter Followers between now and my trip.  With the help of my new netbook I hope to continue to blog while on my trip.  I’m really looking forward to meeting some fellow cloth diapering and mommy bloggers while at BlogHer and I can’t wait to report back to you all and perhaps turn you all on to some great new blogs and the moms behind them.

I know I have to be leaving some things out, not sure what, but so far, my above checklist should serve as an idea of where I’m at and what’s left on my things to accomplish.

For the last few years I have longed for the opportunity to go to BlogHer but I never tried or even let myself entertain the idea of it being a possibility.  This year I decided I was going to do it and make it happen.  I hope it inspires some of you who hope to attend in the future, set your sites and never stop believing that you can make it happen if you really want to.

Thanks for reading!  Love ya!

Julie, Cloth Diaper Geek

Auto-Tweets, Are they bad for business?

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New updates, improvements and automations are announced daily regarding social media networks and their relationships with each other.  Most seem to be a huge blessing, a much needed improvement that has arrived to make your life easier.  Set them up and you’ll be on the fast track to growing your business with a lot less effort on your part, or will you?

The question at hand…Should you rush in to automating tweets?

I think it’s important to truly understand the purpose of Twitter, how it can work for you, and how it can work against you.

The most benefits to be had are gained by making connections, not just spamming as many followers as you possibly can.  Connections are made by actually “connecting” with others.

What do I mean exactly when I say connecting?  I mean being present, reading your followers tweets, commenting back, re-tweeting when they ask, when you see a tweet worthy of sharing with others, or when you want to help another blogger or business owner out by sharing their link, etc.

When I say “present” I don’t mean that you have to be on twitter 24/7 in order to read and respond to everything, I mean checking your twitter acct just as you would your phone’s voicemail or your email.

Why is this important?  Well after FaceBoook gave you the ability to autotweet your facebook status updates or fan page posts, people who had a twitter acct but rarely used it, they just became a whole lot more active on twitter!  The problem…They aren’t actually on twitter.

Imagine this, you ask your facebook fans “I’m bored, what should I do?” or you ask “Do you have any suggestions for my website or ideas for future blog posts?”  You wait, you see comments on your FB Page and you respond.

But what about twitter?  I bet you forgot that those same questions are being asked, pretty much broadcast, to all your twitter followers as well.  They don’t know that you’ve asked it on FaceBook, they think you’ve asked them, on twitter.  So they respond, maybe out of courtesy or perhaps out of genuine interest, they may even be a past, present or future customer of yours.  Sometimes they respond with a question, sometimes just with an idea or comment that you’d normally respond to with a “thank you.”  But you know what?  They’re talking to you and you aren’t listening.

So, wrapping this up…  I am not saying auto-tweets aren’t convenient and can’t work to your advantage, but I am saying that you should realize that you might be “accidentally” engaging customers and followers in a seemingly one-sided conversation on Twitter.  Let this article serve as your friendly reminder, check your twitter account regularly and make sure that you are diligently responding to your replies and messages.

I hope you found this post informative! Let me know if you have any questions or comments.

Julie

About Me

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Welcome!

Thanks so much for visiting She Thinks Media. My name is Julie and I am a work-at-home mom to three crazy kids. My daughter is 7 and my twin sons are 4. In 2007 I opened my own retail website where I sold natural and eco-friendly items for moms and babies. I dealt primarily with online orders and since the start of my business I have had to learn how to take care of my own website and graphic design needs. Out of this I realized I have a passion for design and love helping other family owned businesses succeed. I believe that success online depends 100% on the product and business presentation through professional website design and marketing. Just as I wouldn’t shop for clothes inside a store that looked like a mess, I also wouldn’t shop online in a store that didn’t look like it took pride in it’s website and presentation.

There’s no job too small and no task too simple. Don’t be embarrassed to ask for help. I truly love helping small businesses achieve success and can customize any job to work within your budget, I even love bartering!

Why do I believe that supporting WAHM and Family run businesses is so important?

Not long after starting my business and creating my first website in 2007, I realized the importance of supporting other WAHM’S (work-at-home-moms) and other Small Businesses. The first few weeks, ok the first month, was really slow. The internet is a big place, they don’t call it the World Wide Web for nothing, and it takes a while for your site to start showing up in searches,etc. Many times a day I’d check my email, “refresh” -no emails, “refresh” -no emails, “refresh” -no emails. It was depressing, all those dreams and ideas, all the inspiration, it was hard to keep my chin up and keep on keeping on. And then it happened, “refresh” -“A New Order Has Been Placed.” My first order, it was as if the clouds had parted, the angels sang out. The amount of the order didn’t matter, it was the fact that someone visited my site, my store, my baby…and made a real purchase!

You know what? Many years later, I still check my email way too often, and I still get that giddy feeling when I see that someone’s placed an order. The difference is that now I know how it feels to struggle, to have a dream, to own a small business, and I want to support others who are in the same boat as I am. I want my order to give some other wahm that excited feeling, I want to imagine them packaging my order with care while holding their babe on their hip. I want my $10-20-30+ dollars going into their bank account and contributing to their success. I want their dreams to come true just as I imagine and hope for my own dreams to become a reality. So, I hope that you’ll remember my little story and imagine the small business owners appreciation of your business next time you’re shopping for a gift or looking to make a purchase. You could be making someone’s day and not even know it!
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