Content Is King. A ZERO BS guide to why that is.

 Content For Your Business

The most beneficial new years resolution any small business owner can make as they head into 2017 is to invest in quality content creation, marketing and analysis.

Content Is King.

This article will show why content should be your main focus and why that content needs of moderate or high quality. The results will prove themselves and I’m here to tell you why.

I’ve been creating content for a decade now and I can tell you with confidence that any small business that invests in quality content always sees more engagement, more leads, increased brand awareness and substantial business growth. 

Why is quality content important you might ask?

That’s an easy question to answer; quality content always shines over low quality and it reflects how people see, understand and ultimately interact with your brand.

Let’s be real for a second, if you think you can continue to grow your business without utilizing quality content marketing then you are doomed to fail. Does that frighten you? Good, it should. Now is the time to put your adult pants on and start taking content creation seriously.

1. Content Is King… Quality Content Is Rare

“Content is where I expect much of the real money will be made on the Internet, just as it was in broadcasting.” ~Bill Gates, 1996

Content is what the Internet is built on and this will never change. The most popular websites in the world are social networking sites such as blogs, Facebook, Twitter, Youtube, etc. The most powerful search engines are designed to source content first and foremost. The lower the quality of the content, the harder it is to be noticed, engaged with or otherwise found.

Competition is as high as ever and will only continue to get more intense, so the longer you wait on creating a content strategy, the longer it will take to make gains, grow your business and increase your leads, sales and revenue.

So, what do you do? Well, that’s a big question but luckily there are solutions you can be using right now. (like clicking here to hire me)

-Do Research
Look around at what your competitors are creating. Do you see any gaps? Is something missing? What are the interactions for their content looking like? Understand what is happening and you can see what will or could happen. Take time everyday to be informed and never stop learning what people are interest in. This approach will be your saviour when it comes to understanding why content is king. DOn’t want to do the research? Well, don’t complain when your business falls flat.

-Invest In Production and Stop Complaining About It
Did you know movies are made with budgets in the 100+ millions of dollars. These costs are upfront and require immense faith that the project will yield profit. The studios responsible for the production of the films know that investing in a production will produce results. Why would you believe that you’re any different? Sure, your budgets are smaller, but it takes the same amount of belief and faith that what you are producing is worth it, well researched and ultimately marketed properly. For every dollar you invest, you increase the results by a factor of ten.

 Need Content?

2. Quality Content Always Stands Out

Content is the ultimate thing every internet user is searching for. The content can take on many forms, such as video, blog posts, wikis, or social media. The form is secondary to the quality. While some forms have higher rates of interaction, such a video, which stands out as the best type of content, your mission is to create quality content that your target audience is looking for. This is best understood as seeing your audience for what they want, not what you think they want. Often times the content you create will not have anything to do with a product or service, but instead it will be about lifestyle or emotions. Start your research and get your head in the game, because while you hesitate your competition is kicking your ass into a ditch.

3. Planning, Production and Propagation

There are three basic steps to any type of content you want to create. These simple steps, when carefully taken, will show immense results and will catapult you into the realm of a professional, creating more distance between you and your nearest competitor.

This crucial stage will set the pace, tone and feel of the following steps. As mentioned above, take the time to do proper research, gather data and understand your audience and competitors. Write it all down, create mind maps, road maps and milestones to help you fully grasp where you are and fig you are hurting your goals and targets. Be ruthless. Your business is at stake so take it seriously by letting the professionals you hire do the work they know how to do.

Speaking of professionals. Since you have a business to run and probably don’t know how to create edit and showcase a great video, now is the time for me to tell you the truth. You must rely on the people you hire so shut up, get out of the way and stop creating chaos. The best intentions are ruined by entrepreneurs that thing they know everything and who constantly try to tell someone who they hired how to do the job they were hired to do. Here is some insight, you don’t know anything and need to let those who do, do the work they do with the skills they have refined over many years. Have trust and your content will be awesome. Failure to do this will not help you.

Marketing your new content is as important as creating it. There are many aspects to effective marketing, such as SEO, keyword choices, social media, paid exposure, growth hacking and virility. Let the professional do their work and your amazing content will reach your audience, grow and make your business look like the gold standard it deserves to be.

4. There Really Are Guaranteed Results With Quality Content

Yes, the dreaded word: Guaranteed… whenever I see that word a shiver moves up my spine engulfs my brain and renders me mute as i tremble on the ground seeking solace in the shining light of my life… well, not that dramatic but pretty close. The truth is that there are actual guaranteed results that can be understood from quality content. Your quality content will see more views, more comments, more likes/follows, more engagements and more conversions. It’s the way of things with quality content, and you’ll be proud to see that your hard work, investment and faith was well deserved… but wait, here’s the caveat… None of that means anything if you lack the ability to follow up, close the deal and deliver your promise. 

What is the point of great content if the only result is an increase of numbers (likes, comments, followers) on a screen? It means nothing without he ability to convert that number into something tangible such as sales, revenue or client growth. 

My solution: Design your pipeline to the end and make it stick. The pipeline is defined as the total start-to-end design of the campaign/system being created. If your content gets everything you wanted but you fail to close the deal, then what was the point? Think about it.

 Proven Results. The Red Rabbit

5. If A Tree Falls In The Woods And No One Is Listening… 

Yep, you’ve heard that saying before. I’m not going to waste valuable time by repeating it. So, to the point; without proper marketing strategies your content is useless and a complete waste of resources. Take the time needed to create a powerful marketing system for the content. Videos, blog posts, social media content… they all require a level of marketing to truly leverage them. If no one is listening then that’s your fault, no theirs.

6. Be An Expert, Be A Voice, Be Known

How long have you been doing what you do? Chances are that you’re about as an expert as anyone and probably know more than most about your particular business. If not, well, I can’t help you with this article. As an example, I’ve been doing design and digital marketing for over 10 years. Your reading this article aren’t you? You arrived here didn’t you? I mean seriously, this is the middle of the article… ok, what I mean is that clearly I know what “Im saying. I’ve worked hard and so have you. Own it. You know what you’re doing and the world needs to know about it. Let go of the fear and anxiety that we all feel and step into the universe of your own creation. Let your content reflect that idea. DOn’t be afraid to say what you know if the truth… 

7. Proof Positive

You’ve come this far. You’ve been working hard, building a business, growing your knowledge base and developing the skills needed to be a voice in your industry. If all this work is amounting to anything, it’s the ability to create high quality content that your target demographic can consume and relate to. The results will speak for themselves. If you sound like a jerk, people will pick up on that, fi you know your stuff, people will pick up on that… be diligent, ignore the haters and you’ll soon get the results you’ve always wanted… quality will be your mark. Ignore it to your own peril. Embrace it be a lightning bolt of awesomeness.

Quality Content Is King.

Looking for quality content prodcution? That's what I'm here for.

A Kick-Ass Digital Marketing Guide

 Your Guide To Digital Marketing

Digital marketing is vital for entrepreneurs to use at every stage of their business. It’s important to remember that your competitors will be actively looking for ways of utilizing digital marketing to help their business stay ahead. This means you’ll have to be doing the same. 

The main issue is that if you’re a small business owner digital marketing can seem intimidating, even prohibitive. Below, I’ve listed of six steps you can take to help simplify the  digital marketing process for you. 

With practice, the ability to adapt and a willingness to change, you’ll see growth, success and the attainment of your goals.

1. Setting The Right Goal

Digital marketing works effectively with the right goals. Understanding the right goal to choose is the most important aspect of starting your campaign. Ask yourself a series of questions: What you you looking to accomplish with the campaign? Are you seeking more clients, brand awareness, crowd funding, social media connections? Whatever you decide is your goal, your entire digital marketing campaign will be built around it. This is why your initial goal will set the tone and probability of success. Digital marketing is a powerful tool for small businesses to prosper, but seeing a goal that is at odds with the design of the campaign will spell disinter and prove a waste of your resources. Spend time researching, understanding and choosing the right goal for your business, it’ll be the best way to spend those resources.

2. Design a Marketing Funnel

Successful digital marketing campaigns are built around a well understood and researched marketing funnel. A marketing funnel is when you design a road map of your target’s  journey from start to finish. The start is when the target receives the initial message and call-to-action, tracing the actions taken through the ‘funnel’, knowing what steps are being taken and where those actions lead to. You can think of a marketing funnel in five parts: Awareness, Interest, Action, Follow Through and Closure.

 Digital Marketing Services

The first stage is the method used to gain the attention of your target. They may be a stranger, established client or someone in your social media network. The ‘awareness’ method used could be anything from email to social media posts to a Youtube video. At this stage your goal is to grab the target’s attention and compels them to participate in the medium being presented. A powerful message helps cut through the massive amount of noise they encounter on the intent and helps ensure you’ve intrigued them to your product or service.

This is where many digital marketing funnels fall flat. If your target isn’t interested in your product or service, then why would they interact with it beyond the initial awareness stage? At this crucial stage your awareness stage has given the target a choice to go further or not. It’s really that binary and simple. Will the target continue or stop? At the stage your goal should be to provide more information and further incentives for continuing along the funnel. What can you offer them beyond the basic awareness pitch?

This stage is when you’re able going to turn your target into a lead or conversion. You’ve attracted their attention, given them valuable information, touched on their needs, and shown them that you are worth their effort and energy . Now is the big moment you’ve wanted them to be in, the moment they click the button, fill out the form or otherwise perform the ever crucial call-to-action.

Follow Through:
This stage follows quickly on the heels of the ‘action’ stage. Once they’;ev completed the call-to-action, you still run the risk that they stop interacting and move onto something else that interests them. This stage provides you the opportunity to send them a thank you message or additional prompt towards something more meaningful, like a video, phone call or email. Don’t waste this stage, let them know you care and truly value them as a client.

Here you are. Now you’ve got them, so what do you do? Don’t hesitate to send your new client an email thanking them again, keep them informed and treat them with respect. Push the idea of your value and why they will benefit from connecting with you. This stage has no end, it is ongoing and requires constant updates follow up and care to maintain. Your ability to close is the difference between success and failure.

3. Developing A Call-To-Action (CTA)

The third part of the funnel is referred to as a call-to-action. A call-to-action (CTA) is a strong component of your campaign and can be an image, button, phrase or video… even a combination of these can be effective. CTAs could direct people to landing pages, encourage the press of a button, fill out a form or click a link. The best way to figure out what the CTA should be is to ask yourself this: Why would someone do this action and does the awareness stage fit with the CTA?

 Powerful Call-To-Action

4. Creating Awareness

When you produce content such as blogs, social media posts, or videos, you are creating something that can be consumed and interacted with. Sometimes this happens through organic search queries and sometimes through paid advertising. The key for creating awareness falls to a few simple ideas: Consistency, Production, and Knowledge. 

Posting once a month or less is not consistent enough to ensure a stable following or high engagement rates. You must be creating awareness as much as possible on as a regular basis as possible. Start with as much as you can and increase from there. Dedicate time and resources and you will see more awareness.

Nothing is free in this world, especially with digital marketing. You will need to put a degree of production value into your awareness campaigns. This means finding something that fits with your budget and skills. As an alternative, you may want to seek out services that can supply content for you.

Talk about what you know, not about what you don’t know. Anyone can make up nonsense. Don’t be that person. Express what you know and people will listen. Be genuine and focused. If you know sports, then talk sports, not carpentry. Basically, your knowledge should be connected with your service or product, that’s why anyone is listening to you in the first place.

5. Driving Traffic

In order for there to be people to drive into your marketing funnel, there first has to be traffic on your website. There a variety of ways you can drive traffic to your website. Here are a few of the ones I recommend:

 Drive Traffic with The Red Rabbit

Quality Content:
Quality content can fall under one of several types; video, articles, tweets, stories, or video, with video being the best of the best. A great video will catapult your brand into outer space. Content strategy is how you catch the attention of your potential clients in today’s digital world. Focus on quality and the message will be clear.

Keyword Strategy:
Using keywords to gain traction from people using search engines is vital to driving traffic. The complexities of keyword usage isn’t something to be taken lightly. I recommend finding books, websites and agencies that can deliver keyword services so you get the most for your efforts. Without proper keywords, your website will be buried in the endless nature of the internet, never to be found by anyone.

Website Optimization:
Optimizing your content for search engines is a powerful practice. There are a few key areas to make sure are optimized; images, titles, labels and meta data. You’ll need to refresh your knowledge on these or find someone who understands how to do this toy your website. It’s a potent tool in driving traffic to your website.

Social Media:
It’s not enough to simply post content on your various social media accounts, you must be social. One of the most powerful ways to increase traffic to your website is to use social media channels as your brand, not just as yourself. Each platform has it’s own methods for proper usage. It will be important to find the platforms that are best suited for your brand and to use them relentlessly.

 Data Analysis The Red Rabbit

6. Analyze, Adapt/Change, Re-Engage.

Digital marketing is the most measurable form of marketing on today’s marketing arena. Proper review of the analytics data that will pour in from your campaigns will ensure you are adapting to your target audience. You’ll quickly find out if the funnel you’ve designed is working or not and the areas where it fell short. Use this data well and you’ll soon be gathering the attention of everyone you set out to make aware of your product or service. 

Failure to look at the data will be the downfall of your goals and ideas.

Would you like help to adopt a more adaptable digital marketing strategy for your business? Then get in touch with me. I’ve been helping client for over 10 years grow their businesses. Now it’s your turn. Contact Jason here

Attention Entrepreneurs! 2017 is almost here.

Well, 2016 has been a crazy year, full of hard work, success and disappointment. With a few days to go before 2017, I’ve put together a to-do list for entrepreneurs to use as a guide.

Attention Entrepreneurs! 2017 is almost here.

As 2017 rolls around, you'll return to your world of ideas, development and business deals. Taking a few key moments to create something that can help you more effectively or efficiently is vital for your new year. Now is a great time to reflect on on your business, how you’ve arrived there, where you want to go and then how to plan to achieve it all.

1. Focus on your clients

Focus on taking better care of your clients for the year ahead. Keeping clients happy is not only important financially, but it also influences overall business growth and development. If your clients feel they looked after and that their needs are met, they will stay with you and continue to seek you out for solutions.

Ask your clients where they see their business in the coming year and what you can to accommodate their goals and ideas. Maybe they need to asses their website or marketing direction, or maybe they are looking to rebrand into something more attractive to their target audience. Additionally, re-evaluate your own approach to how you communicate with your clients.

Client needs and wants continuously change over time. Your company’s product or service might be on target right now in terms of customer demand, but don’t get too comfortable. This new year, make it your goal to engage with your clients more and reach for new ones on novel and unique ways. Part of this goal would be to start more one-on-one conversations, create events and groups. Send out surveys using email and social media to better understanding what people are thinking and what they are interested in for their business.

Taking the time to understand your clients deeper by asking questions and providing solutions will ensure you are on their minds when it’s time for them develop their own ideas.

 The Red Rabbit Studio:

2. Evaluate your stress levels

As an entrepreneur, you are always on the move, finding solutions, meeting clients and building your network. This constant work effort will have a negative effect on your personal well-being over time if you do not regularly monitor your health and wellbeing. Each day, take time to evaluate your stress levels, physical health and mantel state. As a preventive measure, find ways of releasing your stress daily or as needed so you can stay focused, passionate and ambitious.

As an entrepreneur there is rarely a time when you are not working, thinking about work or considering some new idea to pursue. By devoting time to exercise,  family and friends and making sure you do not become stressed by suffering burn out, you will have a more positive attitude, a clearer vision of what you want while maintaining a cool exterior so remain approachable and friendly.

3. Financial Planning

Planning your finances can seem so overwhelming and confusing, especially for entrepreneurs who have multiple revenue streams, investments and ideas being developed. If you're not sure where to start then start by finding advice and consultation from someone who knows what you need to do. Research and find the best match for your business, someone with a track record. The time you spend finding the right solution for the future of your finances the sooner you can move forward to other ideas, your clients and your own business growth.

4. Let apps do the hard work.

What's taking up your limited time? Find out what you need to save time on, there's probably an app for it. Let the app do the tedious, repetitive work for you so you can focus on your clients, yourself and your goals. Given the extent to which social media and digital marketing have become in our lives, finding time saving solutions is imperative for your success. Find solutions to automate your Twitter or find software to help you schedule posts for you, keeping your profiles active even when you’re not able to. 

The best thing you can do is find ways to automate, in part, your social presence. Save time, save money and best of all stay active.

 Rabbit Message: Low Cost Twitter Automation Solutions

5. Clean up your office/work space 

It's time for a deep clean of your work space so you can start the new year with a clear mind and fresh approach. This deep clean includes your online calendar, social profiles, email list and computer. Go through your calendar and delete or disconnect any coming events that you know you are not going to. Respond to those social invites with certainty and clear out the noise. You’ll be able to focus on the events that are important while avoiding those that are not.

Have you sent an email newsletter in a while? Maybe you should, say hi, clean out the emails that no longer work and generally check in with your lists. How many files are on your desktop? Is it cluttered? Take an hour or so to create folders so all that noise can be sorted. A clean desktop is soothing to look at.

 Digital Marketing:

You still have a few days to set the right pace for 2017. I recommend that you complete outstanding projects, establish new goals, reflect on accomplishments, get organized and tie up loose ends–among other things. 

Now is the time, every moment counts.

Entrepreneurs Are Daredevils

Entrepreneurs Are Daredevils: Risk Takers And World Shakers.

Daredevils. They risk life and limb to achieve great heights of fame, wealth and insight into life. They inspire us to become more than the sum of our fears, reminding us that 'it's all in our heads' and that, with time, nearly anyone can be a daredevil. This can be said about entrepreneurs, though they may not risk their life and limbs (or maybe they do), they certainly inspire and show that pretty much anything is possible. In the arena of risk taking, entrepreneurs are daredevils.

Choosing to risk your personal finances, time and relationships for your entrepreneurial ideas is the biggest risk any of us may ever take. Far beyond climbing a mountain or crossing a desert, entrepreneurship has no definable end. It is a life choice and a commitment that will remain with you long after the choice is made. Like daredevils, entrepreneurs need to be active, adaptive, bold and slightly more than a little crazy. But not too crazy... unless you're inventing time travel, in which case be as crazy as you see fit.

Now, here is a little secret.. the risks you take for your idea don't have to be an 'all in' notion. As an entrepreneur you have the power to control, understand and ultimately mitigate the risks that will lead you to success. First you have to do one thing and only one thing: You have give yourself permission to take risks. Permission will never come from anyone else. Ever.

So, now that' you've learned the 'big secret' for taking risks, here is another secret... risks can be broken down into constitute parts, analyzed and studied, the foundation of understanding for all things. This process will quickly show you that mosts risks are a matter of timing, preparation and action. With those tools in your utility belt you can enter action with boldness, confidence, and energy, knowing that as things change you can manoeuvre like a daredevil and reach the goals to desire. Nothing lost, everything gained.

Before you go, here is a quick list for you:

  • -There are no true risks, only lack of preparedness.
  • -No one will ever give you permission to take risks, only you can.
  • -Be bold. Be daring and most of all, be informed.

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About The Author:

JP Hilton is the founder and creative mind behind The Red Rabbit Studio. After 10 years of entrepreneurship, ideas and small business building The Red Rabbit has established it's self at the forefront of for helping grow ideas from napkin to VC and beyond.

Contact The Red Rabbit Studio:
Vancouver, Canada
studio #: 1.778.786.1209

Order your cool business cards today!

Everything You Know About Networking Is Wrong, Here's Why.

The Red Rabbit Studio: Looking to Network, with you. Lego Styles.

Many of us assume that the idea of networking is going out into the world to meet new people who can potentially help our our ideas grow. Now, while that may be more or less an apt description of networking, it's not what makes networking effective. That description is only topical and misses the ways networking can actually serve us and lays out why Everything You Know About Networking Is Wrong.

Let me explain why.

Networking is certainly about meeting new people, but to make that network work for you is an entirely different beast, a beast with an appetite that needs to be fed.

Here is what YOU MUST DO in order to actually be 'networking'.

Care for your established network, no matter what.

This is so crucial that Im often surprised when people neglect their established network for something new. There are few rules that you will need to obsessively follow in order to make the most of your network.

> Stay In Contact.

When was the last time you called the people on your network to say hi or to ask about their business? Probably not much. That is a huge problem. People can easily feel neglected when 6 months or a year go by without so much as a word from you. This will kill any chance you had at service discounts, free work or even future partnerships. Why should someone help you when you clearly can't take a very small amount of time to see how someone is doing? No one wants to feel like they are being used. You must work to keep this feeling from creeping into your network, or don't be surprised when doors begin closing.

> Refer, Refer, Refer

This idea is simple: You should be spending time referring work to people in your network. Passing along contact info and even following up with that person to see if they made the effort to contact the person you referred to them. So many people forget this and lose out on one of most potent systems of growing your business. When someone knows you've referred a person to them, they will know you're a team player and will always be eager to help you. That's referrals works and effective networkers know this.

> Care, Because You Actually Do.

In the small business world, many of us depend on other small business to ensure survival. This idea can be compared to herd mentality. If a small business offers services to other small businesses, it equates to a live and die situation if those small businesses collapse. Do you see that?

Competition is healthy for a stable and growing economy, and will help your business reach new heights, but doing so in the face of your network collapsing is ridiculous. Do everything in your power to ensure the survival of your network, it will strengthen it, making it the perfect place to find support for your future ideas.

In conclusion: Networking = Maintenance + Care

Do these things make sense to you?

Those three concepts are what networking actually is and why we've all been doing it (mostly) wrong. It is surprisingly easy to meet new people, and if you've prepared yourself (that will be a future blog post, so stay tuned) then meeting new people will be easy, or at least not as stressful as it is made out to be. The real opportunity you have with networking is making that network a solid foundation for both your future and the future of your business and ideas.

Enjoy this article? Spread the word with a simple click :)

About The Author:

JP Hilton is the founder and creative mind behind The Red Rabbit Studio. After 10 years of entrepreneurship, ideas and small business building The Red Rabbit has established it's self at the forefront of for helping grow ideas from napkin to VC and beyond.

Contact The Red Rabbit Studio:
Vancouver, Canada
studio #: 1.778.786.1209

Order your cool business cards today!

The Red Rabbit Interviews: Honeypot CEO and Founder Dan Nedelko

Dan Nedelko of Honeypot

As part of The Red Rabbit Studio's exploration of entrepreneurship, I interviewed the founder and CEO of Honeypot, Dan Nedelko. If you're interested in entrepreneurship and want to learn from the pro's, then this interview will inspire you to make your ideas into something real.

Before we begin, let's learn a little about Honeypot.

The following is an excerpt from Honeypot's talented content developer Courtney Cassel.

"Honeypot Marketing is a hub of curiosity, brainstorming, and constant learning.

These digital marketers can be found working passionately in Waterloo, Toronto, and Costa Rica with a myriad of clients, both big and small.

CEO and Founder Dan Nedelko makes it his personal mission to instill the importance of collaboration in his team. He and the Honeypot crew work side-by-side with their clients to connect modern tools and tech to traditional advertising and marketing campaigns.

Well versed in the ups and downs that face both start-ups and established corporations, the Humans of Honeypot get excited when they hear about the next business idea. They’re always itching to use new marketing techniques, like growth hacking, so that they’re not speaking to everybody – just the right people."

I was excited to hear the wisdom of a serial entrepreneur like Dan, who has worked hard at making something from nothing. I'm even more excited to share his insight with all of you as you too strive to grow your ideas and businesses.

Red Rabbit: What ignited the spark in you to start Honeypot?

Dan Nedelko: I’ve always been an entrepreneur at heart. I owned my first business when I was 21 years old and I haven’t ever looked back on “doing my own thing”.

Honeypot specifically came from my software engineering background. I was involved for many years in the development of software and became frustrated with the way that business and marketing interacted with the end customer (not giving them what they truly wanted) and the lack of knowledge they had about the problem being solved.

It was then that I was motivated to get into the Marketing of these projects directly. Of course, there’s always the story of the name of Honeypot Marketing which is a great example of the spark being ignited. :)

RR: How did you find people to bring into Honeypot that truly care about the organization the way you do?

DN: That’s an interesting question. Over the years there have been many people involved with Honeypot Marketing at many different levels. Fundamentally we always look for

Building Blocks For Entrepreneurs: The Comic #3

Contact The Red Rabbit Studio for a free chat:
Vancouver, Canada
studio #: 1.778.786.1209

3 Reasons Entrepreneurship Is Scary & Not Scary.

Entrepreneurship is scary. It's also not scary. I guess it depends on your state of mind and the reasons anyone is an entrepreneur in the first place. The lists are potentially endless; financial uncertainty, the wrong partners, the wrong direction, the wrong marketing… many of these are common place as fears amongst entrepreneurs, both new and veteran.

I recently explored the things about entrepreneurship that are most scary and not so scary by polling some of the wonderful people I've had the privilege to work with. I'd like to introduce to them, then proceed into their wise words.

Jennifer McIntosh, MA, RRP, RCC, MCVP
J. McIntosh Consulting & Counselling

Christian Honetschlager
Draft Dodger Designs

Phil Saunders
Green Groves Bc

Seth Mennie 
Monkey Tree Services

Eric Halstrom
Neurological Wellness Association

Many of the these insightful and hard working people had similar ideas about what scares them or doesn't scare them about entrepreneurship.

Boo! Entrepreneurship Sacred You

Scary No.1:

Jennifer McIntosh:
"You really can be your own worst enemy when self-employed; everything you do comes down to your name, your drive, and your commitment to the products and services that you offer your clients. Creating a healthy work environment and healthy work boundaries are paramount and it's easy to over due it sometimes."

Christian Honetschlager:
"Unknowns. I find an exterior confidence is easy; I've lead and managed large teams in a corporate environment for years - you never let those that work for you know the unknowns. When it's just you however, there's no withholding information."

Phil Saunders:
"You have to learn from your own mistakes because each individual's experience differs."

Seth Mennie:
"Did I make the right choice? Is all this work worth it? It becomes a battle with yourself and your goals. Never easy, always scary."

Eric Halstrom:
"Having one foot out the door on the way to success while having the other soaking in a bucket of potential failure."

Scary No.2: 

Collectively, finances ranked high on entrepreneur's list. This seems to be the single unifying 'scary part' of entrepreneurship. Here's what they had to say:

Jennifer McIntosh:
"Not knowing when my referral sources will pay me can be anxiety inducing. Most are generally good, and payment is received within 1 month or so of invoicing, however it is not as cut and dry as being a salaried employee."

Christian Honetschlager:
"A steady pay check - When you have your bi-weekly direct deposit you know when and where you can use your money. Personally, the reward isn't always satisfactory knowing that as long as you show up and make an effort, $XX will be in your account every other Friday. Not knowing when or where the next buck will come from presents huge fears. You can't pay rent on hard work if you're not making money."

Phil Saunders:
"Entrepreneurship is scary because it is a new fiscal experience that has many unknown factors."

Seth Mennie:
"Financially, it comes down to dept management, and understanding how to dept can work for you. There are two kinds of debt, positive and negative. Knowing which is which will be the difference between success and failure, from an economical perspective. Dept is the risk you take to expand your business."

Eric Halstrom:
"Being responsible for the financial well being of yourself, family, and employees."

Scary No.3:

Building Blocks For Entrepreneurs: The Comic #2

Online Solutions for Small Business

Contact The Red Rabbit Studio for a free chat:
Vancouver, Canada
studio #: 1.778.786.1209

Building Blocks For Entrepreneurs: The Comic #1

Online Solutions for Small Business
Contact The Red Rabbit Studio for a free chat:
Vancouver, Canada
studio #: 1.778.786.1209

Moving Big Rocks: 5 Kick-Ass Tips For Conquering 'The Big Idea'

Big Ideas, The Red Rabbit Studio

I'd like to talk about how to move big rocks. First of all, they have a lot of deterrents for moving them; They can weigh thousands of tons, seemingly immovable, while calmly mocking our inability to move it. Completing a big idea that acts as a boulder can cause most people to want to give up.

When it comes to taking on big ideas, the real issue faced by people is their perceived gravity of the idea. The capacity to create and understand the meaning of ideas is considered to be an essential and defining feature of human beings. It seems that everyone has ideas and wants to share them with the world.

Below, are 5 kick-ass tips for changing your perception so you can conquer the big tasks and find greater success in your goals.

1. Divide and Conquer.

There is no doubt you have have heard this before but I tell you with certainty, that you must break your idea down into smaller, manageable milestones.

Look as objectively as you can at the breadth of your idea. Is there a way you can break it down into smaller, more manageable parts? Are there any common elements that can be done easier if certain other elements are completed first?

By finding a way to segment your big idea you can get a clearer picture of how close to be completed it is and what areas need attention. Segmenting can also give you insight into new ways to understand the process and benefit from idea development.

Big Ideas equal Smaller Ideas

2. Knowledge is Power.

Being aware of all the individual parts allows you see the various actions needed to complete them. This gives you a wide array of knowledge about

7 Reasons Small Businesses Should Hire a Professional Designer.

Today, small business owners have many tools available to help them create their own fliers, brochures, postcards and even websites. So why would they want to use the services of a professional graphic designer? I am often asked this question by business owners looking to save money on the services I offer, which makes sense. Saving money is always a good thing but doing so at the expense of showcasing your business service/product to the world isn't.

I'd like to explain my seven reasons why small business owners are making a good decision by hiring a professional to create their graphics.

1. It's more expensive not to hire a professional.

Free software can be great, but it doesn't come with free skills and free knowledge on how to use it. As a designer, I've been using creative software for over 15 years, which means when you hire me, you're tapping into that experience and knowledge, often times for cheap. Why not utilize my skills?

2. You're wasting time you don’t have.

This the big one. As a small business owner you have 'many hats to wear'. This means that in addition to doing the paper work, billing, email writing, service/product promotion and actually supplying the product/service of your business, you are now going to take half a day to design, test and print a flyer. Hiring me as your designer means you can get that project done without draining the limited time you have in a day.

The Red Rabbit Studio: The Professional Choice
It's a scientific fact.

3. Fresh Ideas.

Creativity is the life blood of any designer. They train themselves both professionally and with experience over time to wield their creativeness like a sword. Not only am I creative, but I spend my time finding new and exciting ways to use my creativity for small businesses, everyday. Let me use that for your business.

4. Branding must be consistent.

Is our logo well designed? Do you know which typeface to use that is best suited for reading? Do you understand colour theory and the role it plays in branding? As an experienced designer, I know how to use those ideas to create powerful communication for your branded material.

5. Printed material requires preparation.

Understanding how a design will print is a crucial part of marketing process. Trouble shooting the print process is part of any professional designers tool chest. I've worked for print houses and have a deep understanding of how margin tolerance, coloured inks and paper stocks work. Tap into this experience, it'll save you a ton of headaches.

6. Uniquely branded businesses stand out.

Brand recognition is vital to the long term success of any small business. Most industries are highly competitive, so having unique marketing materials provide a way for your business to rise above those competitors while helping people remember you. I use a research based method to find designs that will make your brand shine.

7. Bragging rights.

Are you proud of your marketing materials? Do you hand them to people feeling a rush as they gaze at your slick presentation? You should be. Why hand someone a template design that they've probably seen before? I see this happen all the time, people actually apologize for their poorly design business card, flyers and brochures. Let me help you avoid that scenario.

To help drive home the idea of why small businesses should hire professional designers, this venn diagram is presented to you for your consideration.

The Red Rabbit Studio: Graphic Design

Let's talk about how I can help you. If you want to get started with a conversation about your project, you can email me. I'd also like to invite you to review my extensive portfolio to see how I can help you further.

Logo Design 101: A Great Logo is Never Cheap.

Logo Design: Done Right

Logo design a is vastly under valued service by many people who simply do not understand the importance of a professionally and well thought out logo design and what it can do for a business.

Many people approach having their logo designed thinking they can pay a few dollars and they'll get something that is professional and well done. This is almost never the case.

If a 'designer' tells you they can create an amazing logo for your business in only a few hours and for cheap, then you should take that as a red flag. Here are 3 reasons reasons why:
  1. The designer is probably using clip art and/or directly copying someone else's design. This is clearly not what a skilled designer does for a client they want to succeed. If this doesn't bother you, then it shouldn't bother you when the internet makes fun of your business for having a lame-ass logo.
  2. Designing a logo isn't only a matter of drawing. It also requires

Ideas Made Real. Part 1: 3 Easy First Steps for Progressing Your Ideas

The Red Rabbit Studio: Helping Entrepreneurs

This is the first of a 3 part post that will discuss progressive ways for developing your idea. The first part will keep it simple with 3 easy to do steps that rarely cost any significant money or time but will be foundational to the future success of your idea.

In the 12+ years that I have operating my studio to help people develop their ideas, I've come across many of the same obstacles over and overt again. My goal here is to help everyone get their ideas around these obstacles and into the world and to see a greater chance of success by developing them in a patient, concerted way.

Here are 3 of the first steps for you to take towards developing your idea:

1. List all the friends and family who may be willing to help get the ball rolling for your idea.

Friends and family can be both a positive source for progressing your ideas. They can help you find capital (money) for the first steps in getting your idea moving, such as
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