You Mean Hashtags Actually Work? | Small Biz Marketing Specialist
You Mean Hashtags Actually Work?

You Mean Hashtags Actually Work?

“Small Business Stacey” shares why she’s wearing a shirt that says WTF and how you can leverage the power of hashtags in your marketing. #SmallBizMarketingSpecialist

Episode Summary:

Hello everybody. Welcome to the small biz life show. It’s Sunday. We’re going to talk what it’s really like in the life of a small business owner, going to share some small business marketing tips, along with a cup of coffee and some fun along the way. So, grab your cup of coffee and join me, Small Business Stacey, for some great marketing tips and let’s get started.

Today, I want to wish a happy birthday to my son, Stephen, who turned 21. And I made him this birthday card (it’s a big poster and the fill in words are candies). It says, “It’s a Whopper of a day. 21. We debated giving you a hundred grand, or a trip to Hershey, maybe even a shopping spree, but all of the money slipped through our Butterfingers. You’ve grown into such a Hot Tamale, but you’ll always be our little Goober, who Snickers, Good & Plenty, at us old Airheads. Of course, you’re such a Smartie. Wishing you a happy birthday, bigger than the Milky Way. Kisses and hugs, love Mom and Dad.”


I made this for Stephen. I know he’s going to be a little hungover today, but I wanted to do something sweet, pun intended. There’s a great marketing lesson that you can learn from this. People love getting candy and treats. When I bring a new client on board, I actually send them what I call a brownie in a box. They get a nice handwritten card from me and I include some little brownies in there that say, “Wishing sweet success as we work together.” Now, you can go to the dollar store and find this candy and very easily just tie something onto something that you want to do to wish your customers, clients, or patients, something sweet. Maybe it’s a shopping spree. Maybe it’s about being a Hot Tamale, or… You probably don’t want to call them Airheads, but you get the idea. So, I would love to hear from you how you’re going to incorporate candy, right. Something sweet that you can send to your customers, clients and patients, to stay friend of mine.

Now, I want to share with you a little bit about my past week. Sort of three letters would describe it, W-T-F. You’re probably wondering why I’m wearing this shirt, but it’s actually a really good thing. You see, my WTF was “With the Family”. Let me share my screen. I’m going to show you a picture. Lot of WTFs here, right? This was a family get-together at the beach last week to celebrate my dad’s 80th birthday. This is me and my family here. There’s Steven, he’s turned 21 today. Brandon and Digital Dave. My sister, Stephanie. My sister, Shelly. My mom and my nephews and Uncle Gary. We had a great week at the beach. WTF. There’s a great marketing lesson to be learned from this. Hashtags. You should be using hashtags in your marketing. Now I’m going to come back to live mode, so here I am again. One second. Learning this live stuff.


Okay. Before we get into hashtags, I want to talk about a few things that I learned while being away last week at the beach. One is, that is that it is so important to getaway. There’s probably nothing better than just putting your feet in the sand, letting the cool water splash up on your toes, and drinking a pina colada on the beach, really get your marketing mindset in the right place. Really helped me to just clear my mind, but also have a great time with family. Now, while I was away, I really focused on spending my dollars locally. I think it’s so important that when you travel, and certainly when you’re home, that you support your small and local businesses.

Sure, I could have gone to Starbucks to get a cup of coffee, but I didn’t. I went to the local coffee shop. I ate at local places. Some of the most famous ones are Dumster’s which is… well, it sounds like dumpsters, but it’s Dumster’s, known for their ice cream and Grotto’s for delicious pizza and chicken wings. And after eating so much fried food, I think we had everything fried, fried Oreos, fried cheesecake, fried funnel cakes, finally needed something healthy and we found a local smoothie shop that had delicious homemade smoothies. So, whenever you go out, make sure that you’re supporting those small and local businesses. You will find that they may have, and probably do have, some of the best products and services that you could ever take advantage of.

Now, I’m going to share my screen again because there was a great marketing lesson learned. Going down the boardwalk, there was this store. You can see very clearly, nothing over five dollars. Hmm. Nothing over five dollars, right? So you can get a shirt, a sweatshirt, all these things. It says nothing’s over five dollars, right? Yeah, what’s the catch, right? So we go in because we wanted to get some souvenirs and only to find out that it’s not really nothing over five dollars. The shirt starts at five dollars, but you cannot buy just a plain shirt. You have to buy a decal to go on the shirt. Okay, makes sense. How much is the decal? $15.00, for a decal, right? So, the shirts start at $20.00. This is really bad marketing. Don’t do this in your small business. If you are making false promises, false advertising, false claims, you’re just going to piss off your customers, clients, and patients, all right? So, if you have a sign that says nothing over five dollars, then that’s really what it should be.



Now, interestingly enough, we, of course, then left the store in a huff and a puff and went to some of the other vendors that were there. And you know what? Their shirts cost a little bit more but we happily paid it because we were not going to give our money to this store who was making false claims. All right, that’s your marketing lesson. Here I am.

Okay, looping back to the hashtag. WTF “With the Family”. That was really such a great time, and although I was sitting on the beach much of the week with pina colada in hand, I was also working. Because I had just brought on a brand new client and she knew that I was having family photos on the day that we were scheduled to talk, so when we did our video call, I was wearing the shirt. And she’s like, “I love that”. I want to have a WTF for my business.” Well, you know what? Every business should have their own branded hashtag. Mine is #smallbizmarketingwiz. So what could you come up with in your business for your own branded hashtag? This is how you really create awareness and visibility for your business. But even if you were to tap into well-known hashtags, like WTF, I’m helping this client now figure out what kind of words we’re going to use to help position her when she goes out and does video, or live streams. Because she sort of has this personality that is a little bit WTF. She does property management services so we’re toying around with “We’re the Foundation” for your real estate investing needs. She wants to get into helping, particularly women, learn how to invest in real estate and then she would manage the properties. The other option is WTF, “Want the Freedom”, because that’s a big reason why people do real estate investing.

So, I would love to hear from you, what is your branded hashtag going to be? And as we’re here, every Sunday, mine is #thesmallbizlife. So what did you think of today’s show? I’m here to help you share stories. You may hear me rant every once in a while, I want to share some marketing tips and tricks, but I’m here for you. So leave me a comment how I can help you become a #smallbizmarketingwiz.

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About the Author smallbizmarketing

Stacey Riska, aka "Small Business Stacey" is a serial entrepreneur who is passionate about saving small - and not so small - businesses one marketing plan at a time. She helps business owners become a #SmallBizMarketingWiz by teaching them marketing strategies that get MORE: MORE leads, MORE customers/clients/patients, MORE sales, and MORE profit. Stacey's in-demand "Small Biz Marketing Success Coaching and Mastermind Program" is transforming the businesses - and lives - of those who want wealth, freedom, and market domination. Her highly acclaimed book "Small Business Marketing Made EZ" lays out the 6-simple-step plan to get your marketing into ACTION - literally and figuratively. Stacey is also the creator of Cups To Gallons, the place where independent coffee, smoothie, juice bar, ice cream, dessert and snack shop owners go to learn how get into lucrative catering so they stop selling by the cup and start selling by the gallon. In this program she teaches from experience, as it was the key strategy that transformed her coffee and smoothie business from being $500K in debt to a 7-figure profitable business. When not saving the small business world, she enjoys sipping red wine, eating chocolate (who doesn't!) and spending time with her amazing husband.

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