Artisan Blog

Marketing Your Business

Wednesday, April 24, 2019

Marketing Your Business

We’re all entrepreneurs now. Whether you’re a creative professional or cultivating a side hustle, your path to consistent and satisfying success is to think of yourself as a business. This means that to get the clients and projects you want, you must master the basics of marketing on a budget.

When you understand the most important principles of marketing, and you're willing to put in the reasonable amount of effort required, you'll bring in new business, and you'll have time to focus on the work you really love.

As you grow your freelancing career, here are a few big marketing ideas to keep in mind.

Build Your Brand

Having a strong personal and professional brand means more than having a concise elevator pitch, although that's an essential part of it. You must know who you are, what you can do, what values you represent, and how to communicate your identity. When you put your mind and heart into developing your brand, it will pay massive dividends with the people and projects that come into your life.

Work Your Network

As a creative freelancer, some of the most effective marketing you can do is still old-fashioned word-of-mouth. When you provide value to others, attend networking events to engage with your community, and seek out the peers, collaborators, and mentors you wish to cultivate, new resources and opportunities will present themselves in ways you never anticipated.

Prioritize Product-Market Fit

Author Carolyn Tate describes the "four Ps of marketing" - product, pricing, placement, and promotion - and how they're always interrelated. In the new age of growth hacker marketing, running a business is a constant process of iteration, and great products are built through feedback loops and ongoing processes of community interaction. Remain curious and sensitive to the changing needs of your clients. Let your marketing efforts and your work feed into a constant refinement of improving each other.

Track Your Progress

To better allocate your resources and understand how your marketing is paying off, keep track of your progress and results over time. If you're not naturally comfortable with numbers, charts, and analytics, you can use one of the many free tools that are available.

Share Your Success

Whether you present your work in an online portfolio, create content to showcase your ideas, or engage with your clients and community through social media, don't be shy about sharing your best self with the world. It will inspire others, build your own confidence, and bring lots of new opportunities to your doorstep.

Turn Pro

When you start thinking of yourself as a serious professional, something magical happens. If you're struggling with that transition, or you're ready to take your creative career or small business to the next level, we can help! Contact Artisan Creative today to take your next step.

We hope you've enjoyed issue 518 of our a.blog.


Reducing Our Footprint at Work

Wednesday, April 17, 2019

Reducing Our Footprint at Work

We only have one earth, and all professionals and businesses share a responsibility to do what we can to take care of it. When we become more mindful of our environmental impact and make more efficient use of our resources, it’s good for the soul, good for the planet, and often good for the budget. We can take inspiration from some of the world’s largest companies and their efforts to be better global citizens. In celebration of Earth Day, here are a few tips for reducing our ecological footprint at work.

Cut the Commute

Whether it takes the form of encouraging ridesharing and mass transit or going partly or entirely remote, reducing time on the road is great for the environment, as well as for stress and spending levels. If you must commute to work, make responsible and productive use of your commuting time, and seek out the wealth of local transportation apps that provide the best options.

Do an Energy Audit

Account for the ways you use electricity in the workplace. Can you switch to more energy-efficient light bulbs? Do simply switch off lights when they’re not in use or leave it for someone else to take care of? Can you rely less on heating and air conditioning? Slight reductions in energy use make a big difference when we all do our part. And, cultivating a more mindful and responsible attitude toward energy can improve all aspects of your work…… awareness is key.

Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

Promote and participate in a workplace recycling program. Avoid buying new supplies until you’ve made full use of what you already have. Whenever you can, make do with less. Oftentimes the most familiar environmentalist wisdom remains the best.

Know Your Supply Chain

You know your business, and you know it doesn’t exist in a vacuum. How well do you understand the processes that surround it, and the full impacts they have? Sustainable procurement is an often-overlooked opportunity to build more environmental responsibility into the business processes that will impact our future.

Change Your Lunch Habits

It’s getting cooler, and easier, to go vegetarian or vegan. Some workplaces are implementing no-meat policies. With remarkable advances in meat substitutes, low-impact diets offer increasingly nutritious and delicious alternatives to fast food. Pay attention to improving what you eat on the job, and you’ll look better, feel better, and help reduce the burden on our species and our planet.

At Artisan Creative, we believe that great work springs from a holistic approach to building careers and lifestyles that serve our true desires. Contact us today to learn more.

We hope you’ve enjoyed the 517th issue of our a.blog.

 


Managing a Remote Team

Wednesday, April 10, 2019

Managing a Remote Team

Remote work is on the rise. Taking advantage of the increasingly robust connective and collaborative capabilities of digital technology has been statistically shown to reduce employee stress, improve employee engagement, and save time and money for companies.

It just requires an ever-so-slightly modified style of management.

Digital nomads will play increasingly important roles in the future of business. If you’re a manager, it’s time to prepare yourself to help foster success for employees and contractors who work mostly or entirely off-site. Here are some key tips for managing a happy and productive remote team.

Start With Onboarding

From your onboarding and training processes onward, make sure your expectations are clear and that remote work best practices are baked into the culture of your business and enthusiastically embraced and understood by your team.

Facilitate Transparency

When employers, managers, and professional collaborators can’t hold regular in-person meetings, clear systems for accountability and transparency are crucial. Make it easy for remote team members to track and report on their work and to reach out to others for help as soon as they need it.

Use Technology and Stay Connected

Even if different members of your team live in different time zones, they need to be able to communicate with each other, as everyone must feel connected. For example, Zoom and slack can help you hold weekly video meetings, even if they’re simply status check-ins. Use the most appropriate project management software to track responsibilities and accomplishments and to enhance off-site collaboration. Build a strong company culture, encourage your team to support each other and take pride in what they do together.

Hire People You Can Trust, and Trust Them

The people who are best suited to remote work are generally highly motivated self-starters. They take responsibility without too much guidance or external discipline. They communicate clearly, sincerely, and consistently.

Take extra care to only bring in those who can contribute their best efforts to your team without peer pressure, micromanagement, and constant attention. Then, let them work. When managing a remote team, instead of being a taskmaster or a disciplinarian, be free to serve as a resource and a positive example of how people can work closely together without the need for geographic proximity, cubicles, or Casual Fridays.

Artisan Creative runs on the efforts of a tightly bonded and highly successful remote team. We have been a remote workforce since 2009 and understand better than most, the unique challenges of managing a remote team and how the right approach can set you up for success. We’d love to share our expertise with you. Contact Artisan Creative today to learn more.

 

We hope you've enjoyed our 516th a.blog.

 


The California Job Market

Wednesday, April 03, 2019

The California Job Market

California is home to the world's fifth-largest economy, worth nearly $3 trillion per year. Much of its economic activity is based around Greater Los Angeles (the entertainment capital of the world) and the San Francisco Bay Area (home base of the tech industry).

If you're building your career in design, technology, or a creative field - or you're launching or expanding a business of your own - which of these two world-class cultural nodes is a better fit for your skills, goals, and temperament?

San Francisco: All Hands on Tech

The Bay Area served as the cradle for the personal computing revolution of the 1970s, the popularization of the World Wide Web in the '90s, and the current dominance of giant Silicon Valley corporations such as Google, Apple, and Facebook in global commerce, communication, and culture. It's the place where engineers and entrepreneurs first fully embraced the world-shifting potential of connected gadgets.

With record-low unemployment and plenty of San Francisco open jobs, designers, developers, marketers, and other tech-savvy creatives are still feeling the love in SF, even as the city deals with staggeringly expensive... well, everything, especially housing. The city has its problems, and it will need its best minds to put their heads together and think up unprecedented solutions - and that’s what the Bay does best.

Fresh opportunities arise at the intersections of tech with other emerging fields, and the tight-knit cultural communities of SF are ideal for the formation of these sorts of symbiotic relationships.

"The Bay Area has a history of bohemianism and sophistication that is now melding with a technology-driven culture," says author and economic geographer Michael Storper, in conversation with urban studies theorist Richard Florida. "One hopes that the Bay Area will not become a one-horse town, but will retain the mix of culture, criticism, eccentricity, and hard-driving entrepreneurship that has made it so dynamic for so long."

Los Angeles: The Show Must Grow On

Since the beginnings of film, LA has led the world in entertainment. Now, that's creating new opportunities in technology and content as tools change, economic power shifts, and showbiz dramatically evolves.

“We’re going through a renaissance at the moment because of the growth of entertainment and content,” says CBRE vice chairman Jeff Pion, in a Curbed exploration of LA's growth in tech. “There’s a merging of tech and entertainment, and content is king at the moment. The potential for harnessing the existing entertainment workforce in LA immediately is incredible... Five years ago, a founder who wanted to keep their company in LA would get a lot of questions. Today, it’s like, why do I need to be anywhere else?”

Bay Area beasts such as Google and Facebook have bustling offices in Silicon Beach, as well. And SoCal is home to its own thriving breed of tech unicorns. With its deliberate and widely supported efforts to improve mass transit, build more affordable housing, and mitigate the stifling effects of its legendary urban sprawl, LA city is rising to the challenges of changing times. Los Angeles open jobs are more interesting and diverse than ever before.

"LA has had some hard economic times, but there is no doubt that it is an increasingly worldly city with an effervescent artistic and intellectual culture," says Storper. What LA needs is to harness these advantages to better fundamentals: better and denser leadership structures, more connectedness among economic communities, more employment density, better basic education, and a focus on skills."

Golden State of Mind

Los Angeles and San Francisco are both changing landscapes. Creative professionals and business leaders in both cities are defying outmoded stereotypes to nurture new ideas, build new communities, and help determine the futures of the places they love.

There's much more to LA than great food and warm weather. And SF isn't just for hippies and geeks.

Artisan Creative has many years of experience in the San Francisco and Los Angeles markets. We're immersed in their communities, we pay attention to changes, and we see new opportunities as they emerge. Contact us today to start building your own California dream.

We hope you've enjoyed our 515th a.blog.



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