It's so hard to keep the energy up through the start up phase and on into the growth phase. And in truth, it's a sad sad day when someone as driven and motivated as Smicko Lady drops the ball for a little while. I did. Enjoyed some down time with my kids (the inspiration for all things creative around here anyways), just loving that I can take them outside, go to the park, push them on the swings, sit in the backyard pool (plastic, 4 inches, but we love it).
But that doesn't mean growth isn't afoot. If you check out the retailer section on the Smicko'z website www.smickoz.com you will see a new crop of fantastic retailers, both bricks and mortar and online. A huge congratulations to Marcia at Rolz and Sassy Baby Boutique in Kincardine Ontario for her new venture. If you are in the Kincardine area, make sure you get to the Rolz and Sassy Boutique grand opening! Rolz and Sassy are the makers of stunning baby slings, and I had the chance to meet them at the Today's Parent Babytime Show. (Which is also a great lesson for all of us, get OUT of your booth if you can, go meet other manufacturers and retailers, as you never know who's going to want to partner with you in the future). When I met Marcia, she was still in the idea phase, just a few short months ago, and here she and her partner are opening up a store featuring amazing products.
So back to energy renewed...... some big things coming up for Smicko'z. I'm investing the money and going down the PR road. I'm excited and nervous. When the campaign comes out I'll post it here so you can check it ou. Great PR firm that runs campaigns for groups of products, and they've had good results with market penetration (read, do your homework). Lots of companies have approached me in the past, and I just wasn't sold on the payoff for dollars invested. This particular company approached with a solid business plan, and results that were measurable.
The campaign kicks off in September, followed by a jam packed trade and consumer show roster of events. It feels like I'm in an investment phase, but am feeling pretty good about reinvesting what's come into the account in the last few months into the future of the company.
I've been fortunate enough to connect to some amazing mompreneur women who are kicking butt and working their own butts off to get themeselves launched. The most motivated of whom are finding different and interesting ways to get themselves noticed.
I want to share one, only because I know the founder is looking to pick up new subscribers all the time. It's free to join. The man's name is Peter Shankman (feel free to google him, you'll be impressed with his self launched career). You can visit his website at www.shankman.com and sign up for his service called "Help a Reporter Out". Again, free to join. Essentially, he sends out mass emails three times a day, with queries from reporters looking for experts to comment on pieces they are writing. If you have knowledge of any topic, you email the reporter/writer/blogger directly and in return you get a mention as does your company. It was pretty much started to appeal to PR professionals, but Shankman has found that more than just PR pros can "help a reporter out". The other side of the deal? If you don't truly have direct knowledge, DO NOT reply. I've replied to about 5 out of over 1000 sent my way. They are fast and easy to read. Most of the ones I've replied to are about small business ventures, startups, and mompreneur angles. I resist replying to the ones I have knowledge of in my personal life - I want my name and my company to be able to stand together.
So there's your hot tip for June. HARO.