Thursday, March 31, 2011

Say Bye-Bye to Vacation Weight Gain

A couple of other tips & tricks from Monique Hollowell at LaFemme Mobile Gym (yes, it's a plug, but maybe nachos with all the trimings for lunch every day wasn't the best idea).

1. Go Fitness First. When choosing a place to stay, make sure the facility has a fitness center or free passes to a local nearby gym. This will keep you accountable to work out while on vacation.

2. BYO Snack. Pack your own snacks or stop at a grocery store to stock up on healthy snack foods in between meals. This will prevent eating candy, chips, sodas and extra calories.

3. Refrigerator and Microwave Please! Make sure you have a refrigerator in your hotel room to store fruits and vegetables, healthy snacks and any meal leftovers.

4. Menu Savvy. Always choose healthy and low calorie first! Leave the extra calories for any desserts or alcoholic beverages you may consume.

5. Your Daily Flush! Consume at least 64 oz. of water a day. While on vacation we tend to dehydrate fast from the air travel, high sodium food and increase in alcoholic beverages. Water helps your digestive system and energy levels stay on the right track.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Bad Videos Strike Again

In addition to the very special video I posted below, and by special I mean it belongs in the special file (a.k.a., garbage can), I have seen multiple bad You Tube videos where people are using them to promote their business or obtain speaking gigs. Although depending on the subject matter, I would really have to insist that professional is really only the way to go here. If you insist on doing the You Tube shoot in the meantime, take a close look at what frame is frozen on the front of your video. If you in any way, shape or form look remotely ridiculous - I can guarantee your video will not be watched.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011


Hi M Com Blog Followers ... I would like to hear your exact thoughts on this video. Click here.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Top Tips for Business Owners

Here are a couple of must-do's that we practice at M Communications on a daily/weekly basis.

1. Do one form of business development every day. This can be following up on leads, sending out proposals or playing on social media. Caution on the social media front -posting you are scrambling eggs is not a business development strategy.

2. Attend and event and network. Networking = new business. You are not going to be an effective business owner if you are staying at home and hiding behind your computer. Even though it is quite tempting when it is storming outside.

3. Have fun. Why take business too seriously?

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Why You Should Blog

More often than not I hear people whining about not wanted to blog for their company and I usually tell them to hire someone if you do not have time to do it. Below are two really good reasons why you should be blogging.

1. You will increase traffic to your website and you will move up in the rankings on the search engines as a result. This is pretty cool especially if you do not want to pay for expensive SEO.

2. A blog is a great way to build a following and launch a product/service. Popular blogs tend to gain attention and you will find that people will start subscribing to your blog and posting comments. You will have to watch out for the lamos who self-promote their own product/service, but the beauty of being the creator is that you can delete unwanted comments.

Questions? Send an email to:

Friday, March 25, 2011

Let Sleeping Dogs Sleep?

Ok - this is way to cute not to share ... no idea where she is now. Hopefully not sleeping on my bed.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Get Fit Not Fat On Vacation

Well, since I ate about a gallon of guacamole on my last vacation from M Communications, I thought I would share a couple of tips from La Femme Mobile Gym on what you should be doing to be healthy on vacation.

1. If you're on a cruise limit your eating to 3 main meals and 2 small snacks a day. This will keep your food cravings under control.

2. Drink more water and less alcohol. Drink 8 oz. of water for every alcoholic drink
you have! This will help you re-hydrate and consume less calories while your
having your vacation spirits!

3. Try new, but eat healthy. Always eat a healthy salad or a plate of green veggies before you eat your main meal. New food can sometimes cause tummy
irritation, which healthy veggies will balance out!

4. Walk at least 5,000 steps per day. Don't sit around! While on vacation, walk as much as possible to burn calories and enjoy the sites.

5. Schedule a physical activity. Whether you travel to the sun or snow always schedule a calorie burning activity! This will guarantee you to exercise and have fun at the same time!

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Dear Day Care ...

This post is for all of the parents out there who fork out a good chunk of change for day care on a weekly basis. Here is a short letter I would like to write, but probably will not because I have other things to write about that have to do with M Communications and business.

Dear Day Care:

I wholeheartedly appreciate the fabulous education you are giving my son. His vocabulary has increased quite extensively and I have been wondering for quite awhile now why his requests during meals have been a bit strange and I need to address the following.

1. Goldfish. Goldfish are crackers and are not a "meal", but a snack food. Please stop confusing the children - I am sure other parents are experiencing similar requests during dinner/all other mealtimes.

2. Marshmallows. Is this a good snack? I think not. During snack time, could you maybe switch it up and consider the possibility of fruits or vegetables? Just a thought.

3. Cupcakes and frosting. This is absolutely the worst thing to teach children to make during cooking class. Not only are you abandoning the whole "healthy" aspect again, most children insist on eating what they made a school when they get home - usually for dinner. The special thing about cupcakes is that most of it gets on the floor. The ants in my neighborhood had a field day. Please consider something else to teach.


A concerned Parent

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

How Sassy Sells Yourself

Every time I send out the M-Dash, the marketing and public relations newsletter for M Communications -the feedback is always positive and completely entertaining. I wanted to share today on how to do a electronic newsletter the right way and create a buzz, as well as a following.

1. Don't be a salesperson. The worst thing you can do is send out a newsletter that is full of sales, specials and my favorite "for today only you can get this 5K program for 25$ ..." um, no. If you are sending out something that is sales only you are going to lose the people you have networked with, unless your audience is extremely targeted and buys your product on a consistent basis. For example, I open every White House Black Market newsletter - I am a huge fan and buy their clothing often.

2. Creative content. In general, keep your newsletter informative - give out free information about your industry. People will read your newsletter weekly for this and you will develop customers when a need comes up. Let your personality show here too. For example, I use my humor and wicked sarcasm ... marketing & public relations is not the most exciting thing in the world. (Well, who am I kidding ... for me it is.)

3. Track results. Use a service like Constant Contact that will track results. Obviously, you are going to want to track what is working for you in the sense of how much time you spend on your newsletter and business generated as a result. Constant contact will track opens per newsletter, forwards and clicks thrus to other websites you are trying to drive traffic to.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Why You Should Tell People What You Need

Dealing with tech issues is never fun (see lack of blogging) and although I have made a lot of new friends at the local Starbucks, who have my Zen green tea order memorized, I am missing the days of rolling out of my bed in my pajamas (when I do not have meetings for M Communications of course) and starting work. Anyway, after several days of zero Internet being down the field tech is the only one who seems to know what he is doing, figured out my phone service is connected to someone else’s. This other person happened to order a service that cancelled mine. Now still in the middle of IT problem land, this very nice technician gave me his log on info so I could do some very much needed catch up Sunday night? My point? Never be afraid to ask for what you want business-wise or explain if you are having a problem. People surprisingly able to stand up and help out when you least expect it.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

My Favorite Resource for Business Travel

At M Communications, I travel quite a bit and certain cities are a little more spendy than others. San Francisco is one of them. And, to make matters worse I do not know how to park my own vehicle, so I always have to park in the hotel parking lot (valet anyway) and always have to pay the over sized vehicle fee (LAME). When I worked for corporate, I remember whenever I had business in the city I would pay at least $300 for a night (thank goodness for expense reports). Now, I am sure this is a combo of people not traveling due to the economy but I have found that Priceline has the best mid-week deals. I have even paid on occasion $75 for a 4 star hotel. You have to love it. I know there a bunch of other travel discount sites out there and every swears by one of then, but if you are traveling to San Francisco I would like to give a big shout out for Priceline.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Why you should hire a naming specialist

Last week, I attended a great networking event where the speaker spoke about the importance of naming your business. I loved it - very interesting and very on point. She even brought up one of my favorite company names of all time Pen Island. I stumbled upon this website when I was looking for a company to order pens from and found: Are you laughing yet? Even funnier is that I spoke with the speaker afterwards and we chatted about media relations and she told me about her friend who was writing a book that she named. The book is about a really mean mom who hangs up on people among other things and she named the book Mother Fucker. I really do not remember the last time I 1. Laughed so hard and 2. Thought, can I have that project pretty pretty please? Me likey. If you have are struggling coming with something creative and keep in mind you need to be memorable. Hire someone.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

There Isn't Competition ... Period

There is one thing I come across at most events when I am networking for M Communications and that is people who are seriously worried about their competition. Here is my philosophy (and, actually a shared one by the successful) and that is: there is no competition. Even though my company offers graphics, websites, public relations and publishing many others do the same. People work with who they want to work with. It is very similar to working with a business coach - there are a ton and you work with who clicks with you. Last, worried about what the competition is doing is a complete waste of time. Understand different services and what similar companies offer, but do not sit and stress yourself out because there are two webmasters in the very same room. Last (for real this time), find out what services your competition offers ... because maybe you can partner up. I am personally collaborating with another publicist ... so again, there is no competition.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Healthy Tips for a Healthy Vacation

Here is a couple of tips and tricks to have a healthy vacation (not that I exactly followed all of this on my trip - shhhh, don't tell my trainer).

1. Buffett = Bad. Most people tend to overeat at these bad boys. Stick to cereal/fruit for breakfast. Lunch? Salads are awesome - avoid the creamy dressings. And, do not put guacamole on everything. (Again ... shhh).

2. Pool Bar. Avoid the blended mix drinks. Pina Colodas are the worst of the horrible blending concoctions. You should avoid anything that is 3 colors as well.

3. Tennis shoes. Bring them and use them. Do not be a lazy A$$ because the gym equipment is not functional. Walking on the beach is a great way to excercise as sand provides resistance.

P.S. Snorkeling is not real exercise either.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

The Potential Unknown PR Recipient

As a fabulous Public Relations gal at M Communications, I know PR in and out to a point I have been interviewed regionally, nationally and even now by colleges? Go figure. Anyway, I always have to educate clients who do not understand the process and that is fine. I don’t mind explaining because what is permanently ingrained in my brain it not in anyone else’s. Perfect example: I called my parents to tell them this stellar deal I scored on a PR database and their non – response was the perfect example of “I have no idea what my daughter does for a living, except travel around the country and go to parties.” Here is the classic response I received today: I forwarded an email from a national reporter who is still reviewing one of my client’s projects (mind you this Editor-in-chief receives hundreds of queries per day). The response from my client was that he is taking his sweet time and when is his going to be done. Um, here is the deal … and mind you I have followed up with Mr. Editor-in-chief multiple times which is borderline no-no, but I have developed a pretty good relationship so lucky me. If you have a national reporter’s attention be thankful … period. Need I explain more? Chances are you are going to get coverage despite silly question. The bottom line: this person received a full article in a National Magazine

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Play Nice in the Playground

I do not really understand why people do not play nice especially in the same networking group. First of all, if you have an ongoing attitude problem with one person or several people word tends to spread, after all gossip tends to spread more quickly than good news. Also, if you are the playground bully you are just making yourself look unprofessional and people will keep that as a mental note on why not to work with you. My advice? Play nice people.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Vacations That Rock

There is nothing better than a beach and a great view to decompress. Introducing my office from last week (see photo). Sign up for the M-Dash at M Communications for marketing lessons learned from Mexico.