Happy Tuesday!

This is one of those weeks of the year where you’re half in, mostly out – and hopefully spending time with those you care about, and those who care about you. I know I am! And, I feel blessed to have friends, family and a community who have a special place in my heart.

This will be the last Robin’s Rainmakers for 2014! Can you believe this year is almost over? I can’t help but feel that we all probably have one leg in the old, one leg in the New Year. This Robin’s Rainmakers will reflect that feeling with one article that looks ahead to 2015, one article to hopefully inspire you to work on your website as it did for me and one article to help you prepare for things when they’re not so great (aka, a crisis of some sort perhaps an opportunity in disguise).

First up, the article 7 Public Relations Trends To Watch in 2015 by Brian Greene for PRNews, highlights seven trends to watch. You and I both know ‘predicting’ anything is just that – predicting – yet it might help you focus in the first few months of 2015. I especially like the ‘real-time marketing’ and ‘more visual content’ (keep a look out for my videos)!

If you’re going to do anything work related this winter break (if you’re so lucky to get one), read this article 6 ‘About Us’ Pages That Are Probably Better Than Yours by Sonja Jacob for HubSpot and evaluate your own ‘About Me’ page. This might be a great time to get a fresh new page up on your site to start 2015 of with a bang. I love the ideas in this piece and love to be inspired!

Last but not least, Fight or Flight: Responding to a PR Crisis by Stacey Hood for SpinSucks discusses how to respond (because you can’t – or shouldn’t ignore an online crisis) in a negative PR situation. Use the lessons here to build a social policy and as my Dad always told me, “Robin, make lemonade out of those lemons”.

I hope you’ll be enjoying your holidays with family and friends. I wish you magical days, rest and relaxation, and of course a Happy New Year!

I’m not the most active networker in the world, but I love to keep in touch with my colleagues and friends during the holidays. And, being a long standing member of a few groups, I especially like to reconnect and see a familiar face (or ten) when there’s no pressure – just to have a good time.

Last night, I had the pleasure of going to one of my Boston networking Holiday parties where I’ve been a member of years. Colleagues I haven’t seen in some time approached me saying things like:

“I read your newsletter all the time and want to talk the first week of January about a new project.”

“Your Cyber Monday promotion was a great idea and I should have taken advantage of it. Can I get feedback on a couple of ideas?

“I’m so glad you’re joining my group and your workshop idea is perfect for our members.  Maybe you can be on my advisory board?”

Not only was I having a great time, learning a couple of new dance steps (I’m rusty on that one), I also took the initiative and approached a new rum company with an amazing product and talked about representing his brand in the marketplace (after a sample or two).

The point is, business and pleasure can be mixed and when you’re not looking for the next ‘big thing’, doors open and conversations begin. Opportunities present themselves all the time, and it’s our attitude and openness that welcome them.

How will you welcome new business this Holiday Season?

I hope with a smile, handshake and for the chosen few, a meaningful hug.

PS – Lots going on in the Partner Promotions world. And so looking forward to a fun and prosperous 2015! How ‘bout you?  Share your thoughts and let me know why…

The holiday season is upon us, really upon us, and if you own a business, you’ve been strategizing and planning your marketing since, say August, right?
If that just shocked you, have no fear. There are plenty of (last minute) marketing techniques and tactics you can apply to have a rockin’ holiday season. It’s never too late!

I’ve rounded up several articles about holiday marketing and all of the articles include easy-to-implement ideas and tactics you can use to move your business forward this season, all the way into the New Year!

Check out Mandy Edwards article ‘Blending social media marketing with your traditional marketing this holiday season’.  She touches on four important points, one stating you should reserve some of your best content and information (and pricing) for your exclusive social community. Pretty smart!

Rapid Advance came out with a great infographic I’d like you to see called ‘Wrapping Up Your Holiday Marketing Plans’ It gives a great timeline overview for you to double check to make sure you’ve got everything covered! See it by clicking here.

Next up is an excellent piece by Constant Contact. They give us 30 creative holiday email marketing examples! What’s not to love about that since we all know email marketing is a vey effective tool in your marketing toolbox. Click here to get the 30 new ideas and to get excited about your holiday email marketing!

Last but not least, and I truly believe this — the holidays are a great time to have F-U-N! What’s more fun than a contest? How about a photo contest?! Here’s a piece from Facebook that gives us 20 holiday photo contest ideas anyone can run!

As always, I’d love to know how I can help and support you or your campaigns this holiday season. If you need a boost in promoting your special or another set of eyes in strategizing for the New Year, just give me a call!

I was recently working in Durham, New Hampshire — hired by Comcast – to help them shine in the marketplace and promote their products. One of the initiatives of my team was to demo the iPad and its functionality with apps as well as showcase the ease and mobility of bringing television entertainment to a new level.

When we demo at a large event, we have a great time meeting people from all walks of life. It’s even more fun when someone owns an iPad. One group interested in our iPad demonstration was a group of firefighters from the University of New Hampshire area. As we explained the “how to’s” and listened to how they used our products, we heard a story of what I consider “going the extra mile.”

Kind of embarrassed, as the Captain listened in, two firefighters told us of a recent story where they were in the middle of a blazing fire. On their way out of the home, they noticed what looked like a tank of water. Wiping the “tank” covered in soot, they noticed a single fish swimming. As they looked at each other, without even thinking, they made a decision to carry the fish to safety.

It may sound crazy, “why save a fish?”, but these particular guys went for it. A fifty pound tank, not a gold fish bowl.

These fire fighters went the extra mile to save someone’s pet fish.

In our everyday world, we have the choice of going the “extra mile.” What does that mean to you, in your world?

In mine — to think beyond yourself. To check in and wish a client good luck before a big meeting or presentation when you yourself are running late. To send an unexpected card or gift in the mail to a special someone — who isn’t in the best of spirits. To text a funny message to a co-worker in distress, when you may be in distress yourself. To write a letter of recommendation so outstanding, that your heart sings while you’re writing it – and you know that the recipient will get the job/contract/position. To think of your team, and what they need — versus just getting the job “done”. To bring an elderly person flowers or cookies, or help them with their groceries. To take time to help someone in need, when they just can’t do it for themselves.

A little extra effort can make a difference or change someone’s thinking to get through a tough day.

That extra effort, could save a life. Even if it’s the life of a small pet fish.

Maybe it’s reflex, or just a knowingness when it “kicks in.”

Join me in saluting the people who go the extra mile, every day. Today, it’s the firefighters in Durham, NH.

“Play keeps us vital and alive. It gives us an enthusiasm for
life that is irreplaceable. Without it, life just doesn’t taste good”
Lucia Capocchione

It’s summer. Hot, sunny, beach weather. And you’ve heard from me a few times about taking yourself to a new level in your business, or personally. Maybe you have the impression that it’s time to throw yourself, heart and soul, into realizing those dreams of yours. Well, it is time for that . . . but that doesn’t mean drudgery. Hard work and focus are part of building a life you love, but they’re not everything.

It’s important to move away from black-and-white thinking. Working hard does not mean that you never take a break. In fact, it means the opposite, because if you’re working hard at realizing your dreams, a break is necessary. It gives your mind, body and soul a chance to rejuvenate, and often, it takes care of the latest roadblock. It doesn’t have to be two weeks in the tropics either (hmmm…though that would be nice). An afternoon away from your routine — a mini-break — may be just the thing.

When it came to naming her business, Kendra was completely stuck. She made lists, asked friends, wrote ideas on pretty colored post-it notes, but everything eventually sounded, well, wrong. Dumb. Uninspired. The whole thing left her feeling the same way — wrong. . .dumb. . .uninspired. I told her, “I want you to forget this for a day and do something you love to do, but haven’t done in a long time. I promise that if you do, things will flow more smoothly when you get back to work.”

Kendra took my advice, and took a break. She gathered with friends at an outdoor concert. They had a great time together, full of laughter, dancing and fun. A few days later, she had a name for her business that she loves — she says it’s perfect — and inspired!

Your dreams are important, and the world needs them! You have to balance your day-to-day responsibilities, your life’s mission and yes — play. Play is important — crucial, in fact. Without fun, laughter and relaxation, really, what’s the point?

After a round of dedicated hard work, get out there and get your happy on. Have fun with friends, visit a new place, eat delicious food and listen to excellent music. Surround yourself with places, scents, colors and people that bring you joy. Let your soul (and body!) dance, and open up to laughter and fun. Whether you dip your toes in the water, sink your teeth into deliciousness or breathe in some high mountain air, you’ll come back refreshed, relaxed and ready to take on the world.

Wishing you a joyful summer.