About June 17th’s Guest Speaker – Sandy Smith

Times are changing as we evolve into the digital information age.  For the independent business owner, these changes can be exciting or overwhelming. When the digital workspace is used correctly, it can be a tool to achieve your business and financial goals.  It can serve as a place to share and celebrate your vision and genius zone or bring a new client base to your market or town.

Understanding some of the key concepts of the digital era is a valuable investment of your time.  As overwhelming as they can seem, understanding some of these critical concepts and how to use thems offer a new platform of opportunity to both brick and mortar as well as service-based businesses.  You have the means to connect with clients and customers that are seeking the genius zone you offer.  The collective is shifting away from what the masses valued twenty, or even ten years ago.  This emerging market values integrity and are seeking the unique offerings that you have poured your heart and soul into providing.

As with everything in life, there is a polarity to these opportunities this new marketplace provides.  It can be an opportunity, or it can be your nemesis and feel overwhelming to keep up.  Keeping up keeps you from spending your time in your genius zone.   You must adapt and embrace change to thrive in this digital information era.

The challenges so many identify and that I have myself experienced is to compete with the big box stores and online market you are expected to become an expert in or pay to hire an expert in these key concepts:

Web Design
SEO (can people EASILY find you online if they don’t know you exist)
Brand Identity
Social Media Marketing
Google My Business (you need this to thrive)
Content Creation Written or Imagery
Photography of online products and for content/web

In this online presentation, we are going to identify the challenges and opportunities within the information era.  We will discuss a brief overview of these key concepts of the digital workspace as well as the expectations of the modern customer.  I will help you understand what makes meaningful content and how/where to post it based on your brand. We will look at some of the strategies and checklists I help clients understand and implement to thrive in the current economic climate.  We will discuss the challenges of knowing what to do yourself and what to hire out.

About me: My name is Sandy, and like each one of you, I have a genius zone.  Mine is learning and processing information, which I often use to study animal and human behaviour and how that relates ethically to marketing and branding a business or service.   I share this with you as it is imperative to consider the source of any information, especially in this digital information age. We can balance being open-minded with being skeptical. For that reason, here is a bit about my background so you can make your own decision if what I offer resonates with you at this time.

My work history includes working for a restaurant chain as a marketing director then venturing into management and marketing in the service industry for 12 years.  Highlights of that adventure include management in the highest volume tourist destination restaurant in Canada and then as the Maitr’e d/Sommelier of a Four Diamond restaurant tasked with becoming one of six Five Diamond Restaurants in Canada.  Which we did become.  I consulted on service and even got paid to eat at the Michelin star restaurants in Paris!  After getting bored with only the restaurant industry, I ventured to independent marketing and service consulting for restaurants and other small businesses. I continued to study human behaviour, animal behaviour sciences and began coaching.  I also worked in media sales and as a sales manager, where I broke records across the country.  Sales is just human behaviour, as is marketing.   If you do either with integrity and consistently deliver results, then you will succeed.  I would never make a marketing plan for a client if I were not sure it would work for them.
I studied NLP, Neuroscience, Consciousness, Physics, Coaching, Leadership Development and Change Management.  I did this while everyone I knew was getting married and having children, but my enjoyment has always come from learning and practising what I learn to get results.  I love information and results.   I have now been self-employed for 12 years. I am also an expert in Neuro-Linguistic Programming, so I have wired my brain and nervous system to love change and try new things without fear.

Five years ago, I decided to hyper-focus on learning photography for marketing and as a creative outlet.  So I added commercial photography to my list of offerings and things I have fun doing.  I have been fortunate to have shot several national campaigns and sell stock images all over the world. I also do workshops or whatever else seems fun and that I know I can deliver results.

Around this time, I somewhat begrudgingly updated my decades of marketing and advertising knowledge to join the digital era when I tackled Social Media Marketing and E-Commerce in 2014. I have since launched four successful brands, helped dozens with their business or service and continue to learn new things for at least 3 hours per day, haha.  I have switched most of my executive coaching online as well as invented an organic SEO content strategy for small businesses in my consulting and content services.  I also predicted online before, during and after a project to learn SEO and reached 7 million views as a Google Influencer while telling people how they could do it themselves too. It is important to me to make sure I can do it all myself before I manage or coach others in doing anything.  We all have some genius zones, and I am happy when mine can help others experience or discover theirs.

Sandy Smith
Cameras and Canines
Capturing What Makes You Unique
Published , Award Winning Photographer, Portraiture, Commercial, Stock, PPA, PPOC, NPS
To join in on the discussion click on the link below at 7pm, June 17th.
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