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Balanced Body COREterly

Winter 2019

Movement Marketeer

The Top 3 Free Online Tools Every Business Entrepreneur Should Have

By: Ashlee Carignan

In this "Digital Media Business Resource Guide," I'm going to outline: What free tools are available to help get your business started, how do these tools apply to your business, and how would you properly set them up and/or find the resources to do so?

After owning my business for 11 years, I've learned how to operate with minimal mistakes & stresses, becoming one of LA's most successful Pilates Studios. I truly believe you learn the most from your experiences and mistakes. One of my favorite quotes states: "Failure is nothing more than the chance to revise your strategy." Without learning what NOT to do, you can't learn what is BEST to do!

Upon expanded my business in 2017, I created a business plan with 1st year, 5 year and 10 year goals. By setting realistic goals, big or small, it allowed me to work towards something attainable. After you've decided what you want your business to be and look like, have devised a plan/strategy & goals to get there — My 3 simple, yet effective tools will help your brand's visibility, conversion rates into new business, and authenticity.

  1. #1 Free Digital Platform — Google My Business
    How it Improves Your SEO (Search Engine Optimization):
    • This is a free service offered by Google but you need to register & verify your business in order to take FULL advantage of their free marketing. You can download their App to do the following:
      1. Post on it
      2. Have people put reviews on it — which increases your business/brands SEO
      3. You can build a free website. They provide templates where you can drag and drop your business info/content.
      4. It provides a breakdown of your business' insights — Organic vs. Direct Searches.
  2. Social Media & The Power of Hashtags:
    • We all know how valuable social media is in society today. Everything we look at from the news, to billboards, and magazines, it all revolves around some Social Media platform. Social Media is essentially "free marketing," so you want to make sure you have set up business accounts with the following: INSTAGRAM, FACEBOOK, TWITTER, SNAPCHAT, ETC.
      NOTE: Make sure they are set to Business, not Personal
    • Start by asking yourself: What are you trying to achieve? What are your "big picture" goals? It could be as simple as gaining more business, or increased branding, or becoming an IG influencer, or becoming a public figure — whatever you want but make them specific goals! You can't just write down "I want to be famous and a millionaire," that's not quite how it works.
    • Hashtags: Why are these important?
      Hashtags create great visibility for a campaign, and help you reach your target audience by using relevant hashtags that you know your audience is already following.

      Hashtags are EXTREMELY important for your business for the following reasons: Competition, Branding & Visibility, & of course Promotion. You want to ask yourself these four questions:
      • What is my product?
      • What audience do I want to attract? (Or, whom is my product designed for?)
      • What is my audience looking for?
      • And, how am I going to attract that audience?
  3. How Do You Find Your Audiences Hashtags:
    Once you've answered these questions, you can now dive into finding YOUR relevant hashtags through:
    • Stalking your followers — find out what tags their using to keep the same followers you eventually want.
    • What kind of content is your competition using to attract more followers? Use their highest engaging posts for reference.
    • Ask questions in your content OR use polls to ask your audience which posts/content they LOVE seeing on your page.

STAY TUNED. These topics and much more will be elaborated on in my upcoming Entrepreneur workshop and webinar series. You can find out more and stay in touch at pilateswithashlee.net or on Instagram at pilateswithashlee