Tag Archives: Christmas

Tips for Holiday Marketing on Social Media


Kelly Farrell - Teach Me Social -headshot (2)

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas! Social media is all a-twitter with holiday promotions, holiday party selfies and businesses competing for your business and spreading holiday joy! The social media world can become a very noisy place during the holidays, but here are a few ways you can ensure your small business can stay ahead of the crowd.


Using holiday trending hashtags can keep your business visible among your target audience. Choose hashtags that your target market is already using or might be following. By providing content that aligns with the current conversations on social media you can ensure that your brand will not be forgotten when people create their holiday wish lists.

Seasonal trends

Stay tuned to what’s trending this season and share content that shows your brand is in-the-know when it comes to what people are talking about.

Visual aids

Getting noticed is all about standing out. Create captivating graphics for your social media posts and blogs that are sure to grab people’s attention and make them want to click. (lighting, graphics, design, colours)

Ads / promotions

Social media ads are the most effective way to grab the attention of potential customers. You can create custom audiences of people who may have already visited your site or may already be on your mailing list. This allows you to focus directly on an audience who is already familiar with your brand and thus more likely to follow through with a sale.

Use email

Email is still the most effective way to follow up with customers and potential customers. Many email clients can connect with your online store to help you follow up with website visitors who may have “window-shopped” without finishing their order.  Try sending exclusive coupon codes to your email list for special holiday offers.

Above all, remember that there are real people on the other side of the network who are just as busy as you are this time of year. Present them with solutions to solve their problems and make their life easier. Stay social and engage with your audience online through relatable, interesting and engaging posts and make sure to take time to answer back!

To learn more about how to maximise the effectiveness of your Facebook marketing efforts, schedule a complimentary consultation with Teach Me Social. Teach Me Social owner Kelly Farrell has been helping empower Canadian Small Businesses through social media since 2012. Teach Me Social offers effective social media services which include training sessions and consulting as well as full-service social media account management.

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Creating “C.O.R.I.” Content



Much has been written (by me, for CSBW, never mind from all those other experts!) about creating great website content and how to blog for business. Today, I would like to add to the narrative by sharing my short and simple acronym for creating meaningful content that works.  It’s “C.O.R.I.”  When writing about your business in any capacity and particularly when creating content for your website, make sure that it’s Current, Original, Relevant and Interesting.

Social Media encourages, to some degree, a tendency to “over share.” I attended a networking event recently where a person told me they shared to Facebook 7 or 8 times per day!!! I am not sure when they were getting any work done but unless you are actually in the business of Social Media, providing this as a service to clients as part of their business strategy, this is probably a little too often. It also begs the question are you sharing relevant information or just re-posting randomly? So unless you’ve hired an expert like my good friend Kelly Farrell at Teach Me Social, stick to the C.O.R.I. principle.

Your website content should always be current.  Create a schedule where you build time into your business to regularly refresh and update.  There is nothing worse than searching for something on the web and coming across a Christmas special at Easter. Your product or service may not necessarily change but you can tweak the wording, offer a seasonal special or post a blog all of which could help your rankings if a search engine like Google thinks you are posting new content.

Make sure your content is original. First and foremost if it isn’t that’s plagiarism and we all remember the consequences of that from school. Secondly, if you are posting and sharing excessively, from other sites, again your rankings could be affected because Google sees it as duplicated content. Besides, your website is about you, your product and/or your service so it SHOULD be original.

Relevancy is a big one for me. This is not so much about your website content because it is assumed if you are describing your service, the content is relevant to your business! However, when sharing information across your other social media platforms it is imperative that you share content that is related to your business. Sharing stories about cute kittens or babies sucking on a lemon is not only irrelevant but frankly, might just annoy your potential clients and see you placed on their “blocked senders” list.

Finally, when it comes to content, do your best to make sure that it is also interesting. Provide tips and tools that your potential clients can actually use.  Share a news story that is current, interesting and related to your industry. Perhaps, offer a little known “fun fact” about your product that people might not already know. Post something regularly that engages your audience without inundating them.

By creating content that is current, original, relevant and interesting you will create an audience that comes looking for you rather than you having to seek them out! Be an original. Share responsibly, not randomly.

As Owner and Principal partner of “Writing Right For You” Sheralyn is a Communications Strategist – working together with entrepreneurs to maximize profit through effective use of the written word. Looking for web content that works, blog articles that engage or communications strategies that help you get noticed?  Contact Sheralyn today. Sheralyn is also the mother of two children now entering the “terrible and terrific teens” and spends her free time volunteering for several non-profit organizations.

Sheralyn Roman B.A., B.Ed.

Writing Right For You

Communications Strategies that help you GET TO THE POINT!

416-420-9415 Cell/Business


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Each year as the Christmas season nears, the advertisements’ get hot and heavy for anything and everything that a person can shop and purchase as a gift for Christmas. Turn on the TV and you see ads that basically say you don’t love your girl if you don’t buy her diamonds. Flip through a magazine and it’s loaded with more advertisements than content. Sign online and no doubt you will find tons of ads that scream BUY, BUY, BUY!

We all like to get gifts, that’s a given. But have we become so material oriented that we’ve forgotten about the greatest gift of all? The gift of love, of giving of oneself, far outweighs any amount of money that could be spent and any material things money could buy. The old saying that money can’t buy love hasn’t changed.

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Many folks in today’s world are in such a hurry. We have instant oatmeal, instant coffee, instant messaging, microwave dinners, etc. We are in such a hurry to get somewhere that we fail to stop and see the beauty of where we are right now. It’s go, go, go, and don’t slow down for anything. While we are in such a hurry, we forget to take time and enjoy life. We often spend outrageous sums of money buying things for the people we love, yet deny them the greatest gift of all… ourselves. Come January we find ourselves in a perpetual state of debt again!

There is one perfect holiday gift. It’s a gift that can be shared and used throughout the entire year. It never gets overused. It never runs out of battery power. It never needs to get replaced. It’s the one thing you can never have too much of. That perfect gift is YOU!

Instead of spending a load of money for Christmas and going deeper into debt, wrap up something new and different this year. Wrap up a nice note that gives the gift of your time to those you love and that love you. Rather than trying to buy loads of stuff for your friends, kids, spouse, and loved ones, give the best gift there is, the gift of your time.

For instance this year, my family and I (6 of us including my husband, child, parents, father-in-law, sister and I) are each contributing $50 and buying a Christmas for a less fortunate family, including Turkey and all the trimmings and a gift for each child.

The most memorable Christmas gifts won’t be the ones that you spent hundreds of dollars on. It’ll be the gift where you gave yourself, when you spent time with the people that love you and that you love.

With this message in mind, I hope you give the most memorable gift to those you love and also receive the same from those that love you.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

To your Wealth!


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Four People Entrepreneurs Should Thank At Christmas


Christmas is the time to be thankful for the year that passed and look forward to the year ahead. As an entrepreneur you have many people that help and assist you in both your professional and personal life. It’s important to show your appreciation to those that support you. Here are 4 people entrepreneurs should thank at Christmas :

  1. Clients 

You wouldn’t be in business without your clients so show them you appreciate their business. A card wishing them well for the holiday season and thanking them for their business is a nice gesture. Sending a handwritten card as opposed to a generic printed card is better as it adds a more personal touch. If you wish you can send your clients a corporate gift such as a calendar, paperweight or even chocolates with your company logo on them. Make sure your gift is addressed to your client and try to avoid non-addressed generic messages.


  1. Your team

Most entrepreneurs don’t go it alone, there’s always a few people you rely on to make your business work. Whether it’s your web designer or your intern you still have people to thank for helping you run your business. Thanking your team by sending a card or gift will show them you appreciate the work that they do and help strengthen your business relationship. If you work very closely with your team on a daily basis you can opt for a more personal gift such as a favourite bottle of wine or some home baked cookies, the important thing is to let them know they are valued.


  1. Suppliers

Suppliers provide you with products or services that help you run your business. Christmas is a good time to thank them for their services. Although you are a customer to them, finding suppliers that provide top quality products and services isn’t always easy so you should show your appreciation of their work. This will encourage them to continue to provide you with good quality products and services. Suppliers will also remember you and be more willing to go the extra mile for you if you’ve shown your appreciation. As an entrepreneur you should always strive to maintain a good relationship with your suppliers.


  1. Supporters

Every entrepreneur has supporters that provide encouragement and motivate you to keep going. Supporters are people who are not directly affiliated with your business but are a part of your network. They can be friends, mentors, former teachers or even family members. As an entrepreneur you should show appreciation for the people that keep you going throughout the year. Opt for a more personal gift for your supporters and make it clear that your are thankful for their encouragement of your entrepreneurial endeavours.


Praveeni Perera is the CEO and co-founder of Professional Edge Consulting a corporate training company based in Ottawa offering training and coaching services to clients around the world.  She can be reached via WebsiteTwitterFacebook or her Blog.

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Christmas is The Time for Reflecting


Our home is full of Christmas!  The tree is decorated with beautiful loving ornaments chosen with love from all our family and friends.  As I place each ornament on the tree I remember the story behind the gift.  The final two ornaments in hand and they are the most special of all.  They are handmade and over 25 years old.  My children made them for me when they were in kindergarten.  They are the most simple and yet most precious gifts I have ever received.

Each year I reflect on what I have completed and where I want to go.  I look back on my year on a business and personal level. I look at the great accomplishments of my year.  I begin to analyze my business in all respects.  The hardest part is being objective.  Taking out the emotions is the most difficult part of being a business owner.

What is your business doing? Are you being successful?  Are you actually making money?

Here are some ideas to ponder when looking at your business plan for the upcoming year:

  1.  Take a look at all your revenue streams.  Which have made you money? What are you going to do about those revenue streams that lost money?
  2. Take a look at your marketing/promotions and advertising.  Which methods worked?
  3. Take a look at the sales targets you set for the previous year and even more importantly take a look at the actual data.  Have you been successful??? Do you see a trend?

Setting the plan for the upcoming year is a great way to ensure your success.  Take the time to see what has and has not worked and focus on the business plan you have revised.

On a personal note I want to thank you all for reading my notes.  I hope that I have informed you or given you some reason to reflect.


Anna Ottaviani is a Board Certified NLP Master Practitioner & Master Coach, Board Certified Master Hypnotherapist,Creating Your Future® , Time Line® Therapist Practitioner and Reiki Master. Her methods are unique and tailored to each individual client. She can be reached at www.sucessfullyyou.ca or by phone at 289-221-5772. You can follow her on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/successfullyyou?ref=ts&fref=ts

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Gabriella Mammone – Canadian Small Business Woman of the Month of October 2013


“One of the greatest goals I ever achieved was learning how to make myself cry of laughter”, says Gabriella Mammone.  Gabriella has faced that awkward moment of laughing hysterically and unable to control her authentic sobbing.

Gabriella is a devoted wife, a loving mother, a serial event planner, a public speaker, a motivational ambassador and an active volunteer.  She has a zest for life and appreciates the small things that life has to offer – hot apple cider, an orange gerbera daisy and a warm blanket.

Gabriella lives daily with multiple sclerosis.  She experiences extreme lethargy, cognitive issues, numbness, loss of balance, weakness and extensive itching/tingling.  She has over 16 lesions in her brain and 2 in her spinal cord.  Despite her innumerable daily challenges, she attacks each day with a smile and successfully reached her goal of inspiring others.

As an active volunteer with the MS Society, Gabriella helps with the MS Walks, golf tournaments and other fundraising initiatives.  She is also an Ambassador with the MS Society of Canada, advocating on behalf of people living with MS.  Annually she visits Queen’s Park to raise awareness with decision makers about select priority issues for people living with chronic conditions and disabilities.

Gabriella is a serial philanthropist and event planner.  She is the Event Director of Family Jingle & Mingle, a shared Christmas celebration for companies and families in support of The Children’s Wish Foundation of Canada.  www.jingleandmingle.ca

An entrepreneur, Gabriella is the Passionate Owner and Gift Guru of Occasion Giftware, www.occasiongiftware.com, an online gift store catering to weddings, showers, and religious events including baptisms, first holy communions and confirmations.

Gabriella is also the Managing Partner at Senso 3C, www.senso3c.com, an organization that helps companies source, develop and retain their people.  Gabriella actively develops their business resources division assisting companies with training, development and the planning of their corporate events.  She also provides operational support to the talent division that assists companies find staff for their organizations.

She was featured on CBC’s hit TV show, Dragons’ Den and although she didn’t expect the unfavourable outcome, she quickly bounced back and has become an excellent guest speaker.

Talk about an inspiring woman!  Gabriella continues to motivate people and is truly an inspirational presenter and keynote speaker.  She believes that volunteering adds to her life.   In 2013, she earned a Community Civic Award, presented by Mayor Hazel McCallion and members of council for her positive contributions to the City of Mississauga, ON.

Is she a busy gal?  Yes she is.  Gabriella’s passion is built on her personal experience of living with MS and finding the humour in her ‘interesting’ life.  She is enthusiastic and relentless in her message that success if available to anyone, even for those that have an illness or disease.   We will encounter many defeats in our lives, but Gabriella strives to never be defeated.  She encourages you to find the humour in your situations and sends you this message:  “make yourself cry of laughter”.

Our Q & A with Gabriella Mammone

What inspires you?

There is nothing like positive thinking to get me psyched!  I am inspired by my son’s mind – he’s only 5 and yet he is completely logical in his own passions and interests.  I am inspired by the progression of people – I very much enjoy spending time with colleagues and seeing them grow as their confidence increases.  I am inspired by driven and passionate people – seeing others achieve their goals empowers me.  I am inspired by people that have strong ethics and go out of their way to make a positive impact in the lives of others.  I am inspired by volunteers that selflessly donate their time and exemplify the spirit of giving back.  I respect and honour my inspiration for I am grateful that I am able to make changes, not excuses.  Here’s to inspiration!

As a small business owner, what achievements make you most proud?

I remain strong in the face of adversity.  I am not afraid of a challenge and have an uncanny ability to bounce back after a setback.  I was on the television show Dragon’s Den, for example, and truly felt humiliated by one of the Dragons.  Looking back at the video, I felt that I handled the situation with grace and professionalism and didn’t let the comments bring me down.  I was grateful for the opportunity and thankful that it opened new doors for me…new doors that I created.  I am most proud of the leadership that I provide to the MS Society of Canada and those affected by illnesses.

What advice would you give to other aspiring small business owners?

Make an action plan to achieve your goals.  In business, we make action plans for marketing campaigns and projects.  Why not create a detailed step-by-step plan for achieving your own personal goals?  The steps that you take will help you keep focused on achieving your goals.  ‘Action planning’ your goals will help you focus on your ideas and decide what steps you need to take to achieve your milestones.   Each step you take is a journey and will create new priorities and keep you organized.  As you achieve your personal goals, the passion and success will translate into your business and objectives.

What new things can we look forward to from your business in the upcoming year?

Family Jingle & Mingle 2013 will have an awesome silent auction and fun surprises in store.  Next year we will work with another charity to help them raise valuable funds.  I personally plan to do more public speaking and motivate those faced with adversity.   I am working on a book and am excited to learn more about the publishing process.

Contact Gabriella (aka Gaby) at:







YouTube: Gabriella Mammone 

LinkedIn:  Gabriella Mammone 

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