Happy End of May Readers!

I can not believe tomorrow is June 1st and that I barely have any articles to share. I’m still half-way through the May issue of Inc Magazine, but I was behind on several magazines and am just catching up.

I also started reading a book that I’m really excited about, “Making Good” by Billy Parish and Dev Aujla. I’ll share my thoughts on it when I’m done. I just started and I can not wait to dig in, especially now that I’m almost caught up with my magazines (I’m a bit of a freak when it comes to stacks of magazines).

Anyhow, here are my suggestions for the month:

YOU

Are you an athlete or an artist? What about both? What am I? I’m kind of both. This is quite an interesting read.  http://www.women2.com/are-you-an-athlete-or-an-artist/?utm_source=email

Do you have these 10 competencies? Do I for that matter? I’m not sure, and I don’t know that I agree with all 10 of them, but they’re worth reading and acknowledging. http://www.women2.com/10-competencies-of-successful-women-entrepreneurs-in-developing-countries/?utm_source=email

BUSINESS GROWTH:

This article really got me. I love that it’s a female owned and run business; I love that it is all about natural and healthy foods for babies and I love that she talks about Social Responsibility in her business structure. She is a woman after my own heart! I hope you find inspiration behind her, too! http://www.nyreport.com/shazi_visram

Oh, Chris Guillebeau. Have I told you that I’m going to his World Domination Summit in Portland, Oregon this July? I’m so excited! It was one of the BEST last minute decisions I made in a long time. It cost me an arm and a leg, but I have a feeling it is going to be oh, so, worth it! Anyhow, Chris recently published a book that I have yet to ready (BUT WILL!), and he’s touring around the country and internationally on a book tour. I missed the NYC stop only because I had work to do, and figured I can make it up in July when I go to Portland. Anyhow, I’m rambling here, but my point is that you should read this article. It goes nicely with a personal article I posted earlier this month on debt (I get real about mine and who knows how many others debt) and how we all think we need so much more than we really do. That is the truth behind capitalism and the American Dream, not what the politicians have us fighting over. Chris knows the truth. Read on my friends, read on! http://chrisguillebeau.com/3×5/the-decision-to-go

I share this article from the April issue of Inc Magazine because it is good advice for small businesses, especially small Etsy businesses. Yes, we all want the views and the big sales, but what if we instead focused on being more local, more niched, more selective of the customers we take on, and get to know our good customers better and potentially view them as employees? The five stories in this article hit upon each of those points and it helps me focus on my strategy. http://www.inc.com/magazine/201204/jennifer-alsever/fast-growth-in-a-slow-economy-5-case-studies.html

In business, we talk a lot about finding your target market. We want the customers that are going to pay for our items and we’re told in target market discovery assessments to envision who we consider our target markets, down to what they look like. But what if you can’t say what they look like because you want the same level of customers from all ethnic backgrounds to buy your stuff? No, I don’t mean having pricing points for all these people, I mean making sure your high quality product attracts not just the high quality loving blonde woman with disposable income, but the hard working, brown stone owning black family from Harlem who also loves high quality and has some disposable income.  This article does a great job of discussing what are the points for marketing to a multicultural society. I think it’s an important thing to consider when figuring out not just growth, but your markets. http://www.delivermagazine.com/2012/05/multicultural-marketing-roundtable/

SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY:

Okay, so I have a confession, Dr. Bronner’s is in my rotation of soaps, but I don’t love their soap for my body-it dries my skin out, actually. However, I love the company and after reading this amazing profile of where they are now and their kooky, but deep history, I’m quite proud to be a customer of theirs. I love how the company is balanced and how it’s roots of activism are stronger than ever now. Go Dr. Bronner’s! Lead the way! http://www.inc.com/magazine/201204/tom-foster/the-undiluted-genius-of-dr-bronners.html

Lastly, as 2012 has proven to be quite a year of change already, I’ll be in and out of the blog this month. I am behind on posts and hope to get on a better schedule in June, but I have quite a few things going on and will be posting as I can.  Don’t leave. Just hang on. I promise I’ll be back. I just have some changes to deal with.

Oh and share some of your favorite business articles below if you can/want to. I’m interested in knowing what good articles you’re digging.

More articles in June. Stay tuned!