Too Cute Tuesday: Snow Globes

Too Cute Tuesday: Snow Globes

Too Cute Tuesday is a weekly event that involves a craft, a cocktail, and a friendly get together. Join us each week for a different inexpensive craft. Currently there are TCT chapters in Bar Harbor, Maine and Saint Louis, Missouri. If you want to join in on the fun, check out Facebook or contact Nicole.

Sometimes, you just know you are going to need to do something easy. Enter this week's Too Cute Tuesday,inspired by ReadyMade magazine's snow globes. (Click through to see their cute end products!)

What better craft to not only salute our blustery couple of weeks but to finally do a craft involving glitter? Add a snowy cocktail and we've got ourselves a night!

What happens when you recycle an old salsa jar and an old Christmas ornament and add glitter? You have yourself a snow globe. Shake it, Sue!

Marketing Monday: Next Step Chocolate Fest And Silent Auction

Marketing Monday: Next Step Chocolate Fest And Silent Auction

Most of the time, I try not to use this blog to promote anything in particular but I do want to let people know about an event that's coming up. (Full disclosure: I am on the board of this organization.) Domestic violence is an issue close to my heart and answering the phone line for a couple years only solidified this belief.

Next Step Domestic Violence Project is holding their annual Chocolate Festival and Silent Auction on February 13. It's the organization's biggest fundraiser and every year, Next Step looks to tweak it to make it better. This year is the first time they are using social media to promote the event. (Gee, I wonder which board member pushed that one...)

Here are a few things NS is doing to promote this event, both online and off.

All the board members are contacting businesses for donations, and I've noticed a much higher success rate via email.
If you have a lot of information to give someone, it feels like you completely and blindly attack them when it's over the phone:

"Hi my name is Nicole Ouellette and I'm a board member of the Next Step Domestic Violence Project. We're soliciting donations for our annual Chocolate Festival and Silent Auction fundraiser on Feb. 13. Is your business interested in making a donation?"

Could I make that any shorter? No. If you were listening to that on the other end, would you feel overwhelmed? I sure would!

In each email, I shared the Next Step's website address and Facebook page so that those I would solicit would understand the legitimacy of the organization. So if you're an organization that's hesitating to get a website, there's a compelling reason to finally do it.

The Next Step Facebook page has been very active, which has grown the fan base.
The Next Step Facebook page has recieved more fans since beginning its daily posting of a domestic violence fact. And building a lot of fans on your Facebook business page is not only a good way to make you feel popular but when you do have an event or idea, you suddenly have a much larger, more engaged group of people to share it with.

We created an event associated with the page, and invited our friends.
Nothing like using a little social media peer pressure. In creating an event and getting people to RSVP, as an organization we can have an idea of who is and isn't coming

I made a web-sized 'ad' that people could share on their websites or Facebook pages.
If something is already created and formatted correctly, people are much more likely to share it. Events are no exception.

Creating a small text ad that is 450 pixels wide and putting it on my Facebook page made it easy for other board members and fans of the cause to share the event with their friends, on their Facebook page or on their blogs.

Since Facebook is such a visual interface, taking advantage of a 'photo' along with the event listing seemed like a good idea.

http://www.facebook.com/username

Too Cute Tuesday: Sock Puppets

Too Cute Tuesday: Sock Puppets

Too Cute Tuesday is a weekly event that involves a craft, a cocktail, and a friendly get together. Join us each week for a different inexpensive craft. Currently there are TCT chapters in Bar Harbor, Maine and Saint Louis, Missouri. If you want to join in on the fun, check out Facebook or contact Nicole.

What? Does my puppet actually look good? I'm as surprised as you are!

The Saint Louis branch of our club was making sock puppets so we thought it'd be fun to do the same.

And since last week, I processed 30 pounds of organic blueberries, we thought the cocktail should involve them. Tasty antioxidants and a silly craft. Could we have more fun?

Marketing Monday: Buying In Bulk, Social Media Style

Marketing Monday: Buying In Bulk, Social Media Style

Marketing Monday is a weekly feature that showcases a cool company, individual, or application of internet marketing. Got an idea? Send it to me!

So a completely serendipidous and slightly odd opportunity came over my Facebook feed this week. A couple who happen to be my friends own Barkwheats, a Maine-based organic grain-free dog biscuit company. Their newest flavor treat involves blueberries so they had an opportunity to buy bulk organic Maine blueberries at $2/pound. The price, however, would be even lower if more boxes would be bought so he passed on the opportunity to his Facebook friends.

The catch? The berries came in 30 pound boxes. Mission still accomplished. We bought enough so the price ended up being $1.75/pound. But how?

The world is my freezer, well, in January anyway. What to do with all these berries?

This Week In Business: The Roll With The Punches Edition

This Week In Business: The Roll With The Punches Edition

There are some weeks where it seems that you get a lot done but it all seems like small and unrelated things keep coming up for you to deal with? That was this week at Breaking Even Communications. Good news is it was all pretty manageable.

Here are a few things that happened this week:

Forgetting to do something finally made me try Basecamp project management software.

Project management is one of those things you always mean to do, like cleaning your bathtub. All it takes is one metaphorical slip to finally make you get on your hands and knees. Yup, I finally forgot to do something so it was finally time to manage the details of these different projects at BEC.

I've tried a few different free or cheap project management software options only to find something missing. I finally decided to try out Basecamp, which is one of if not the most popular project management software online that will end up costing me around $50 a month if I decide I like it.

Too Cute Tuesday: Pour Candles

Too Cute Tuesday: Pour Candles

Too Cute Tuesday (TCT) is a weekly event on the Breaking Even blog that involves friends, crafting, and a cocktail. Every week it's a different, inexpensive craft to make and a different, fun cocktail to keep things social. If you have an idea for a craft or otherwise want to participate, contact Nicole.

Today, there was a huge snowstorm. Being that I work from home and didn't have to go anywhere, I just got to hear about it all over the internet. Sure enough, I went to walk to the gym and found almost a foot of snow on my front step.

Most of the Too Cute Tuesday crew went home after work to get off the roads and shovel the snow away from their respective residences. This TCT, I spent some quality time with myself, some special hot chocolate and with an easy project. Ahhh, Nicoleitude...Like solitude, only better.

Solitude? Not so much. I prefer to think of it as Nicoleitude when I craft alone...