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Are you in the mood for tea?

In this news:

  1. Welcome, everyone – specially for the new news subscribers, welcome!
    Empiro (Teas.com.au) is the Australian leaf tea specialist with a mission to help tea businesses to sell tea profitably, in their own style.
    We wholesale tea in bulk, custom blend as well as in private label tea packs. Buying quality tea in Australia is no longer difficult. We import and manufacture over 150 teas. If your mission is to sell quality tea, you are in the right place.
    Shortcuts to mood tea, functional teas: check out our teas.com.au website top header under the logo – look for the words like “Mood“, “Most Wanted
  2. Tea recipes – are you tea curious, maybe the chef in the kitchen who dares to try exotic ingredients?
    This year, our Australian Tea Guide is featuring Tea and Food – there will be about 12 tea recipes. We will talk about tea cooking, as well as tea and food matching. It will be a blast!
    If you have a tea recipe that you think got the stuff, c’mon, shoot it over, and if we feature it in our upcoming Tea Guide, you will get credited in the Australian Tea Guide and of course some free Tea Guides
  3. Biggest Tea Selling Challenge – for some of us, tea selling is a labour of love, while others are planning to dominate the tea kingdom. Each and everyone of us is different in the way we are selling tea.
    After being in the tea industry for 10 years selling leaf tea, we have seen and learned many tea business success and failures.
    What is your biggest tea selling challenge? Drop it in the comment box in this news and let’s work them out so you can become that happy tea seller you truly want to be 😉
listen to news

Click to listen to news 27 April 2014

 

Reminders

  • Blend to order herbals take 3-5 days to dispatch (product code starts with BT, and the product shot blend to order banner)
  • we are madly busy with custom blends and packing enquiries. Sorry if we have made you wait. We will reply soon!
  • Flamingo – phase in Strawberry fruit infusion to replace Strawberry Patch
  • Tea for One 300ml Teapot ETA Early May – ORDER NOW
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Survival Lessons from Company Collapses

business decisions

95% of new businesses die in the first year.

Life is pretty tough and crazy as a business owners.

Yet the reward is great.

I look back after running the tea business for 10 years and I would almost be happy to show you my battle scars and pretty willing to keep charging forth.

This is the magic in owning a business, yet, to run a business is not easy. It is also a continuum. Just because you have gigantic turnarounds annually and been around for decade, you could collapse.

The lessons in this article in Smart Company is pretty profound.

My favourite lessons takaways –

  • Time your expansion
  • Don’t sell yourself short
  • Be realistic about expansion

 

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Part 1 Bonus – Publicity for Profits

Many think playing with PR (publicity) is reserved for the big companies with zillion dollar budgets. I used think like that too.

Then I went to a half day session learning how to create publicity for profits from Sue Papadoulis. This is a game changer.

I discovered, business owners who are ready to talk to journalists become journalists’ resources.

Because of the internet, we can access journalists far more easily than ever.

When we present ourselves as the topic experts directly to the TV, Radio, magazines etc, we become the journalists’ best friend, we are saying to the media that we are available to help your audience / readers to solve a problem they have.  

Starting with writing a good press release based on a tested and successful format, business owners can get a fair chance to get publicity and media exposure without the employing a PR agency.

Today, I am in a room with 11 others to expand our businesses using publicity, learning how to write press release and more.

Here are some key takeaways –

Target Market

  • Be clear – paint them in as much details as possible – break it down as much as you can.

My Target Market

  • how to delight them
  • what to do to solve their problems

Journalist concerns

  • spend a lot of time on this story?
  • someone available to comment right now
  • improve ratings / circulation

Warning

  • no one cares you move office, hire Jo Bloggs (doesn’t solve anyone’s problem)
  • press release in conversational style, like talking to a 12 year old, in 3rd person

Writing a press release is just the BAIT to get journalist to connect with you, so you can be interviewed and then they will write the articles.

Press release is a way to start the connection.

  1. A good headline is a good start (most important message)
  2. Snappy opening line
  3. Who, when, what, how, why
  4. Write like a news article – skinny columns, 1 idea per sentence, skip a line, then another sentence, and so on.
  5. Use bold and bullets for how to
  6. add quotes fairly high in the press release. Quote yourself in 3rd person with salutation in short quotes, something interesting.
  7. can include expert quotes (get expert approval) or testimonials towards end of press release.
  8. include statistics such abs.gov.au
  9. Write “ENDS” once the information that may be quoted has finished.
  10. CALL TO ACTION: write “Media Contact” CONTACT DETAILS with some relevant details
  11. include small image (mention high res press ready images available upon request) and mention open to be photographed
  12. Sentence case, 0-9 in words, about that in numbers

Target journalists from

  • news.com.au
  • crikey.com.au
  • sunrise (media organisations online)
  • smh.com.au
  • skynews.com.au (the bloggers in this site like columnists)
  • mamamia.com.au
  • hoopla.com.au
  • essentialbaby.com.au

Find other blogs in portals like bloghub.com.au, technorati.com

Explore which media sites link out – if they don’t (eg government, ABC) then it is typically less beneficial to pitch for publicity.

Getting strategic for extra publicity juice – 

Create more relatable content on your website to attract the journalists to use it to add more content

On website, it could be expansion of the original press release that was sent –

  • tweak header
  • tweak opening paragraph
  • more bullets than initial lot in press release

Publicity Workflow

  1. Press Release
  2. Call to Action – make sure website and email are there
  3. Interview – link to website
  4. Visit Website
  5. Opt in
  6. Stay in touch (news etc)

Media Contact

  • ask reception for email address for X in Y media company
  • Margaret Gee’s Australian Media Guide
  • Sourcebottle.com.au – sign up as expert (ask what show/magazine/ blog for, and just briefly how you can help – answer the brief)
  • search under the advertising section on a newspaper website, or speak to journalist work on advertising features, eg special reports in business reviews – check upcoming topics and if you can fit that topic, send them a press release

Pitch

  • create a list of journalists who regularly reports on your topic – can ask receptionist in media company for X topic reported
  • create database! touch them regularly
  • email them (calling not a good idea) –
    • headline as subject line,
    • personalised greeting,
    • benefits you’re providing,
    • press release copied into body of email,
    • low res image (150kb) attached
  • must follow up – wait a day after email then call
    • call before lunch (newspaper)
    • community paper (call thurs / fri after publish)
    • call after bulletin been on (after last deadline)
    • resend press release over the phone if not received
  • what do you think of the story?
  • I can help with the photos, I can help you find visuals (supporting images / videos)
  • if not interested – ask why, “so I will get it right for you next time…”
  • book review: ask for the book editor, email, then send the book with intro letter
  • once a month catch up (everything is on the record)

Well, there you have it. The juicy bit. I can’t recommend this workshop more on DIY PR, Selfies! 😉

ps: Sue Papadoulis runs workshops nationwide. If you are interested in the half day session, please drop me an email and I can make the connection for you.

pps: This is part of my course note from going to the workshop. In no way this can replace your actual participation of the PR workshop. But you are my “tribe”, so I want to give back something special to you. Thank you for your support 🙂
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Building Ecommerce Website 101

I was told recently there are 10 website for every person on Earth!

That means while it is super easy to create a website, it is not as easy to find the RIGHT eyeballs to YOUR site.

Here are some basic and easy to understand tips to how to create a good website for your small business from GoDaddy.

I have heard mixed reviews of their services but my dealings with them have been all of high standard. Can’t complain. (we are not affiliated with them)

3 MUST HAVES

1) What is your site about

2) Who is it for

3) What do you want your customers (viewers) to do

More from GoDaddy small business page – click here.

My 3 (technical) tips for you

We have been running teas.com.au online business for 10 years and we have built 4 teas.com.au websites so far. We certainly learned much along the way, and there are still a lot of unknown territory out there, especially now mobile computing is pretty mainstream, and to build a site looks good in tiny phone screen as well as large TV / computer screen is quite a challenge 😉

1) Find an experienced ecommerce website developer who understand business. It is easy to find a web developer who understand only technicality and have no clue on business. Or a web developer who has built pretty sites and doesn’t understand the intricacies of an ecommerce site. We have battle scars to show. Don’t do it. Don’t fall love with look, you need functions, as it is a ecommerce site. Think of it like buying a calculator, does it really matter if it is pink or black?

2) Achieve as much clarity as possible in every tiny stupid details. It is uncommon to have common sense. If you think the space to write address should be longer than the space for your name, SPELL IT out. I know this is unbelievably painful, but this will save a lot of tweaking later. Developers often do wire frame – ie sketching out what they understand what you want. Make sure everything is as spot on as possible at this stage. Once they start fleshing it out with pretty stuff, it’s too late and expensive to fix.

3) Get your friends, family and their dogs and goldfish to test. Yes, if I were you, I would NOT go live without giving your tribe at least 1 month to test every single bit of the site. Simple things like always have the continue checkout button on bottom right could be easily missed in the site creation phase but your goldfish friend will point it out.

websites

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Audio News – March

Protect those private parts

In this audio news:

  • New Privacy Law – have you got an opt out button in your news
  • What is the mood – detoxing, indulging, or?
  • School bell rang – video tea class – like? feedback?
  listen to news

Click to listen to news 16 Match 2014

Tailor made with care 

Private label tea is hot and
In this audio news:

  • new videos about Private label tea and new tea business
  • empiroteas.com.au.au trade info site for the above
  • find tea groups by flavour, mood, origins
  • 10g Sachets and Tea for One Teapot – accept preship orders
  • new Tea for One 300ml – tiny bit bigger than 275ml previously
  listen to news

Click to listen to news 2 Match 2014

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