“Birth That Book” Professional Development Event

On Thursday, April 17th, NAWBO of South Jersey will be hosting a professional development event at The Mansion in Voorhees, NJ, “Hungry to Birth That Book” with Kelly Epperson.  Kelly Epperson is the author of When Life Stinks, It’s Time to Wash the Gym Clothes; 365 Days of Joy – How to be Happy Every Single Day; and JOY Droppings, Evidence That Joy Is Everywhere, Every Day, For All of Us, plus she has ghostwritten many books for others, including a New York Times best-seller that has sold over 3 million copies.  With her company, Birth That Book, Epperson coaches budding authors through the process of writing a book and helps them get published.

Lynn Bardowski, Director of Membership for NAWBO SJ and author of the #1 Amazon best-seller,Success Secrets of a Million Dollar Party Girl, understands the power of being a published author.  “If you want to be great and stand out in today’s market, you have to be able to tell a compelling story,” says Lynn.  “Whether your goal is to write a book, or connect with your customers on a higher level, it’s imperative that you get your story out there. Since writing my book my business has expanded beyond my imagination. I’m a sought-after expert, speaker and radio host – most recently interviewing Barbara Corcoran. We’re fortunate that NAWBO is able to connect SJ entrepreneurs with a world renowned expert like Kelly. I recommend you grab your ticket to Birth that Book today, and bring a friend along for the ride!”

NAWBO member, Danielle Kane, also knows the value of writing a book and is very excited to learn from Epperson.  “I recently co-authored a book called Get With The Program with my business partners and several other fitness professionals that went to the top of more than one Amazon best-sellers list,” Danielle explained. ”Before my partners and I were approached by the publishers for this opportunity, I had never even entertained the thought of writing a book.  I always thought that only ‘real’ authors and celebrities got published.  I thought it was out of my reach.  As it turns out, it’s not!  I can definitely attest to the value of being published.  It has given my partners and me a leg-up on our competition and has gone a long way to beginning to establish us as the go-to experts in our area.”

The “Hungry to Birth That Book” seminar will be held at The Mansion in Voorhees on April 17, 2014 from 11:30am – 3:00pm.  You can register and reserve your spot by clicking on the following link:http://www.eventbrite.com/e/hungry-to-birth-that-book-tic…

Women Business Owners Report by NAWBO & Web.com

Nearly nine out of 10 women business owners (87 percent) are optimistic about their business’ economic outlook this year, a 12 percent increase over 2013, finds the 2014 State of Women-Owned Businesses Report commissioned by the National Association of Women Business Owners (NAWBO), which boasts a local chapter in South Jersey, and Web.com Group, Inc.

The report, developed from an annual survey* of more than 600 women business owners (WBOs) from around the nation, also shows that while the state of the economy is the top concern for most (90 percent) WBOs, the majority (89 percent) are also optimistic about their overall business performance in 2014.

“Our report reveals that women business owners are optimistic about the future of their businesses and the opportunities that exist for other women to start up new businesses as well,” said Angela Venti, President of NAWBO South Jersey.  “At NAWBO, we work hard to ensure that the women business owners and professionals in our community have the skills, tools and support they need to achieve their goals.”

When asked about their biggest near-term concerns over the next six months, the top issue – cited by 90 percent of WBOs – was gaining new customers, and 81 percent are concerned about keeping their existing customers. To address these challenges, WBOs are emphasizing investments in customer service (69 percent) and marketing (62 percent) over enhancing their products (48 percent) or hiring (26 percent).

WBOs also place a higher priority on online marketing in 2014, with a larger focus on investing in their mobile presence (+13 percentage points from 2013), social media presence (+ eight percentage points), ecommerce (+ six percentage points) and website (+ three percentage points). Eighty-five percent of WBOs believe social media is important for creating and maintaining customer relationships, and 79 percent plan to invest in their social media presence in 2014.

The 2014 report also shows:

Taxes, access to health insurance and energy costs are top WBO worries.

In addition to their economic concerns, 80 percent of WBOs are worried about business tax issues, up 12 percent from 2013. As for other issues keeping WBOs up at night this year more than last, 71 percent say the cost and accessibility of health insurance is a significant issue (+ two percentage points); 61 percent cite having access to capital (+ six percentage points); and 51 percent say fuel and energy costs are a concern (+10 percentage points from 2013).

While social media marketing is a priority, WBOs lack confidence in their abilities and vastly underutilize these channels.

While 85 percent of respondents say social media is important for building customer relationships, only 67 percent of respondents currently use social media to connect with customers. That means a significant 18 percentage point gap between recognized importance and actual use of social, which leads to a tremendous missed opportunity. Just more than half (54 percent) of respondents are confident in their ability to build a social media presence for their business, and only a quarter of them are posting on social media at least once a day. Most WBOs (54 percent) are posting one to six times per week, and 23 percent rarely post at all. When they do use social media, WBOs’ preferred platforms are LinkedIn (25 percent), Facebook (21 percent) and YouTube (20 percent).

“Women small business owners recognize the importance of the web, mobile and social media to engage, capture and nurture customer relationships, and they are increasing investments in these resources to drive growth,” said David L. Brown, chairman, CEO and president of Web.com. “However, WBOs face unique challenges in social media, where they lack either the expertise or time to realize the full potential of this channel. Small business owners who prioritize the web and social media in their marketing mix – or find a partner to help them gain this expertise – will reap the benefits of increased customer engagement and satisfaction.”

To join your local South Jersey NAWBO chapter and receive the support you need to achieve success, visit http://nawbosouthjersey.org/.