Etsy Contest ! Win $5,000 and a Small Shop Owner Wins $5,000 too!

Etsy contest ! When you win, a small business wins, too! One small purchase, one big ripple effect. Each and every sale means the world to Etsy sellers Each week during the month of August, when you shop on Etsy and pay with your Mastercard®, you have a chance to win $5,000.* What’s better than that? They’re also giving $5,000 to the Etsy seller you purchased from. To be entered for a chance to win, just pay with your Mastercard for your next Etsy find. Yep, it’s that easy! Find out more information here

Women Entrepreneurs : How This Female Founder Never Lost Herself When Starting a Successful Business

Women Entrepreneurs: How This Female Founder Never Lost Herself When Starting a Successful Business Sarah Pendrick Entrepreneur Leadership Network Writer Women empowering women is more than a hashtag. It is a mission I am on to bring about change and lead every person to believe they have what it takes to follow their passions. We can help one another in so many ways. One of them is to support each other’s dreams and give support without expectation or attachment. The more you connect authentically to those around you and grow in your relationships, the more women will heal and change the world. So when I meet other women doing the same thing, it fills me with a sense of joy that needs to be shared.  One of these beautiful women is Heather Sanders. Heather Sanders is the founder of the fashion label Sorella Boutique, a company that has grown from a 10-product online-only store to opening up shop right on Melrose Avenue in Los Angeles. She has gone on to create a movement that encourages strong, working, and independent women of all ages, colors, and sizes to be confident and empowered to have a vision. Through all of this growth, what inspires me most is how Sanders never stopped being true to herself. In fact, her success is largely due to her staying herself. Success and authenticity can thrive together.  As I connect with more and more beautifully strong and talented women all around the world, I see many entrepreneurs who struggle with holding on to who they are in the process of building a business. Please know that who you are is the most powerful thing you can offer the world. During our interview, Heather shared with me about being a strong black woman, navigating success, and building something from the ground up in the city of Los Angeles. Heather spoke about five powerful takeaways to building an authentic business that I am so honored to share with you. 1. Focus on your business, not your competitors “Continue pushing the limits and making yourself original. It’s going to drive you crazy, especially when you’ve dedicated your time and effort into something, but get used to it — it means you’re doing something right. Once you run into that, realize you are now setting the bar.”  2. Support others in their missions “I come from a place where I didn’t really know that pursuing my dreams was even possible. If I can help the next generation understand that it is actually very possible, I want to do that. Share the tools and knowledge that you’ve gained. We are in a weird social era where people feel like sharing knowledge and helping the next person will in some way hinder their growth. I say, share that information; there is enough success for everyone out there.” 3. Use your fears to help you improve “It’s going to get hard, but whatever you do, don’t give up. And don’t be afraid to ask for help or constructive criticism. The objective is to gain as much knowledge as you can to grow. I didn’t go to school for business, so I’m self-taught—everything I’ve learned along the way, I’ve learned on my own and with the help of my team. It was a struggle, but doing so has made me more confident as a business owner. There’ve been times when I wanted to give up, and literally, shortly after pushing forward is when I leveled up.” 4. Be determined to stay the course “Every single day I do something for Sorella, whether it be learning something new, being involved with my team, taking a photo for Instagram, creating new ideas, etc. Every day, I make sure to do something for my brand growth. You must be fearless, be consistent, and know that if you didn’t try you’ve already failed.” 5. Never forget who you are — or who you’re doing it for “I’ve succeeded by being myself. really. I’m a genuine person, and I think people gravitate toward that. I haven’t had to pay my way to the top — all of Sorella’s clientele and support are 100 percent organic. Be yourself, unapologetically. It’s what makes you unique. For example, becoming a mother has helped shaped me. It’s given me a totally different spark that I’ve never had, a new reason to hustle even harder. I have to leave a legacy for my babies, it’s so important to me. No matter where you are in your life or what level you are in business, know that who you are is the most important thing.” Choose to shine in your authenticity and walk boldly with women all around you toward your dreams. Together we can accomplish anything! Reposted using the creative commons licensing, to see the original article, go here

The Experts’ Top 5 Reasons Why Cutting Prices Is A Bad Idea

The Experts’ top 5 reasons why cutting prices is a bad idea Bravo to Geoff Colvin , Fortune Author on an engaging article: Why slashing prices is usually a terrible idea! from where this except hails from, It spurred me onto doing a top 5 roundup of 5 great reasons as to why lowering prices, especially during an economic downturn seems to be a negative for small businesses. “Warren Buffett is an aggressive pricer. He mostly leaves the managers of Berkshire Hathaway’s portfolio companies alone, but when it comes to setting prices at companies including Candies and the Buffalo News, he has often liked to be involved. “The manager has just one business,” he once explained to Fortune. “His equation tells him that if he prices a little too low, it’s not that serious. But if he prices too high, he sees himself screwing up the only thing in his life.” Such excessive risk aversion leaves money on the table, Buffett figures, so he often pushes for higher prices. More often than not, he’s right. Even in a historic downturn, Buffett’s instinct is worth keeping in mind. Many managers underestimate the power of pricing, and the unanimous advice from pricing experts in this troubled economy is to price with courage and creativity. In businesses where demand has plunged, slashing prices may be a terrible idea—and it may not be necessary at all. In a few special cases—think hand sanitizer—the pandemic has turbocharged demand. Yet even here, managers need courage. It’s the courage to abstain from multiplying prices by five or 10 or 20, or whatever the market will bear. The winners will be those who think long-term, difficult as that is in a crisis. For the vast majority of businesses—those facing strapped customers and shrunken demand—the No. 1 imperative is to avoid cutting prices if at all possible, what experts in the field call “maintaining price integrity.” Read The rest of Colvin’s article HERE 1. When you cut your price, you can immediately decrease your reputation as a business with high-quality products and services. This means that your customers can think that you have lowered your prices because of the low quality that they will get from you [even if nothing has changed but the price] – Entrepreneurship In A Box 2. The Relationship Between Price and the Perceived Value of a Product:  Setting a certain price for your product isn’t just about making it affordable for customers. It also plays a crucial psychological role in the value of your product by consumers. The way you price your services or products is a direct communication to customers, telling them how much your products and your brand are worth. A perceived value for these is instantly created in the minds of consumers. If you decide to price your product or service lower than the competition, then you are sending a different kind of message depending on who is listening. To a value shopper, you are saying that your product or service is a bargain when compared with the competition. To a high-end shopper who is looking for a product or service that will make them feel like they are part of an exclusive club, you are saying that your product or service is of inferior quality. The fact that almost everyone can afford what you are selling makes it cheap (and trivial) to them, which scares them away from your shop. On the other hand, such a customer is likely to rush to buy your product or pay for your service if you price it high, simply because the message they are getting is that you offer an exclusive luxury good. – Small Business Chronicle 3. Price wars typically start when there is heavy competition and/or several comparable products available [think cloth face masks in the current pandemic]. Discounting has its place, but for small businesses, in particular, it can be an illusory competitive advantage. It doesn’t necessarily set the stage for a profitable pricing strategy. With companies like Amazon and Wal-Mart leading the price-cut charge, it’s tempting for small business owners to follow suit. After all, consumers and businesses alike are addicted to discounts. And it’s easy to simply reduce your product selling price [but in the long run that will not be advantageous or allow you to compete long term] -Small Business Rainmaker Further Disadvantages of a Price Reduction Strategy Customers come to expect it, especially if it’s a straightforward price decrease with no other components. It creates a disproportionate decrease in profits It’s more work for the business and it takes longer to recover from mistakes, exchanges, and refunds. It can lead to long-term loss of customers and a decline in sales. You start to attract the wrong kind of customer—the price shopper. It can create a lower perceived value (people think your product is simply worthless) It damages your brand. Customers who paid full price could resent your price cuts. Prospects perceive your product as less valuable. It’s not a band-aid for systemic problems. For instance, it won’t fix lousy customer service. Costs might go up. For instance, if you increase your volume, your miscellaneous variable costs might go up, negating the purpose of the price cut. Your competitors might respond with even more price cuts, which can lead to a price war. No one wins. 4.  Your small business can gain market share by setting prices lower than the competition, but you may not be able to sustain that practice. If you market yourself as having everyday low prices, you will encounter business problems that you have not anticipated. The constant struggle to make up for lower prices by selling higher volumes can strain your operation. Your competitors can lower their prices to beat yours, and you may find yourself in a battle to see who sells the cheapest and still makes a profit. Once you reach your absolute bottom price, you will lose your competitive edge if your competition can still beat your prices. [think Amazon and Walmart] – Your Business A to Z Central Reduced Profit Margins: If you cannot get low-enough prices from vendors, (or supplies if you’re a handmade business)  you may have to sell products at a price that does not leave you enough profit. You have to constantly monitor the volume of sales of greatly reduced products to see if you are getting your original investment back on those products. Perception of Poor Quality: Once you establish a reputation for having everyday low prices, you may find that customers suspect the quality of your products. You may find it difficult to introduce higher-priced and higher-quality lines of products, because customers who want higher quality may not believe you can offer exceptional goods. Inability to Have Sales: Once you advertise everyday low prices, you cannot put products on sale. You claim that you already offer the lowest prices, so offering a discount during a sale would indicate that your prices are higher than they need to be the rest of the time. This can present problems if you want to move items that do not sell well. Though you may be willing to sell products below cost to clear out inventory, your customers may mistakenly think that you have room to lower prices on other items. 5. Lowering Prices Could Anger Past Customers. Lowering the prices of your product or service could anger customers who have already purchased at a higher price. How would you feel if you bought a computer at Best Buy for $600, only to find out the next day that Best Buy lowered the price to $400? You’d probably feel ripped off. Amazon deals with this issue proactively. They issue refunds to all past customers of products when they lower the price, without the customers having to ask. In other words, if you buy a CD for $10 and they change the price to $5, Amazon will pay you $5 without prompting. There are ways to handle the customer relations issue, but it could cost money and take time and energy. Did you find this blog article on The Experts’ Top 5 Reasons Why Cutting Prices Is A Bad Idea helpful? Drop us a comment and let us know. We’d love to continue the conversation with you below! Follow us on Instagram.  Have you checked out the MamaPacifico Girl Gang yet?    

Brittany Diego, Celebrity Stylist Seizes Opportunity opportunity to serve millennials in need of career development

Brittany Diego, Celebrity Stylist</font color> Brittany Diego is a fashion stylist based in Los Angeles with extensive experience working with a diverse range of A-list celebrities and companies including JustFab, MTV, Fox Studios, The CW, and more. However, it wasn’t until she established herself as a stylist, that she seized an opportunity to serve millennials in need of career development. Check out this fascinating podcast featuring Brittany and discover the instrumental steps she took which turned her career around in such a meaningful way with such positive success. The fascinating podcast is in the I amCEO podcast series,   (Specifically, Season 3, Episode 7) If you’re not a subscriber, I highly suggest you add it to your list today. So many rising stars on captured there and you’ll find so many tips and interesting interviews as well. Tune in here: IAM704- Fashion Stylist Serves Millennials to Lead Successful Careers The article first appeared on the I AM CEO Community. > Be sure to : Follow Brittany on Instagram By applying the same proven strategies Brittany used to get hired at top fashion companies, this rising star, Brittany Diego provides recent college graduates and career changers with the resources they need today to land their dream job in the fashion industry. Listen to Brittany’s career journey here *At these critical crossroads of the American story, MamaPacifico is proud to promote, share and advertise black-owned, and female entrepreneurs absolutely free of charge. Be sure to contact us here to arrange a feature blog post. MamaPacifico wishes to do all we can to be an ally and positive element to our black and brown sisters and brothers during this long-coming period of change in our country’s history.