Smile files, intrinsic marketing, and fall 🍏

Pilot the dog with apples

Hello there!

Happy fall! I sure hope you’re doing well out there.

I love this time of year—the shadows are lengthening, the apples on our tree are ripe, and early morning dog walks require a jacket.

Work and life have been busy lately, keeping me preoccupied with day-to-day tasks and deliverables instead of newsletters and social media and even my own website updates.

Marketing my business has never been entirely within my comfort zone, even though I know that simple, authentic, and consistent marketing helps keep a business going. What’s more, marketing helps me reiterate my business intentions to myself: what I’m doing, who and how I’m helping, why it matters, and where I want to go next.

All this to say, I’ve been remiss in sharing something that came across my desk from a local colleague a while back. It’s a reminder about the importance of testimonials and case studies in business marketing by Deborah Finestone who runs Finestone Marketing Solutions. You can see it here.

Deborah and I have volunteered for a local nonprofit for several years together. Through her business, she offers strategy and support for those of us running small businesses and nonprofits who may struggle with (aka dread) our marketing. Check out her Instagram for helpful marketing nudges too.

Before my freelance design life, I worked in environmental planning for UC Davis. I remember my wonderful boss once told me to print out my professional reviews and any kind words people sent me and put them in a folder that he referred to as a “Smile File.” He said that when work got difficult or if I had a bad day, I could open that folder to cheer myself up.

I still do a form of this—I copy any kind words that come in and paste them into a folder on my computer. Every once in a while, I even look through the folder to reflect on what I’m doing, who and how I’m helping, why it matters, and where I want to go next.

In her post, Deborah will tell you more about the benefits of testimonials for marketing your business, as well as tips for gathering them. I just wanted to touch on the point that sometimes marketing can help us intrinsically too. And now that I’ve done that, you may not hear from me for a while 😜.

Wishing you a lovely fall,

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