Better than a resolution.

Have you ever set a goal or resolution, only to completely forget about it?
(Like the time I set a goal to run a half marathon, only to get distracted… Later, a friend asked me over lunch whether I “finished my half.” I thought he was talking about dessert!)

One of the most valuable things I learned in 2017 was the difference between making resolutions (which is a lot like wishful thinking) and creating s system of daily habits that lead toward the outcome that you want.
What does that mean?
It means that if you have a desired outcome (I’ll use myself as an example… I’d like to make enough money to finally pay off my student loans this year) break the big task up into smaller bits and figure out what task you have to do every day to reach that goal.
I get most of my business through my email newsletters. So I will discipline myself to continue to write an email every day and find out what offers will be more attractive to the people on my list.
I haven’t set a dollar amount to the goal. I can’t control that… I can just control what I do with my time every day.
If you’ve set some goals for yourself this year, I encourage you to try this approach.
Sean Kaye explains the idea of working backward to achieve your goals in this Monster Mice podcast interview.

WAY too much traffic.

Last night we were driving up 285 toward Carlsbad, NM, (still on the Texas side) when we hit a pothole hard.

The air exploded out of our tire. My husband steered the van onto the shoulder of the road while a speeding semi bore down on us from behind.

We drove as far down into the shallow ditch as we could, dumped a dozen Christmas presents onto the dirt to get at the spare and got to work.

Meanwhile, tankers and other huge trucks continued to speed by… going 80, 90 miles per hour. This was insane!

The narrow two-lane road was in terrible shape, potholes everywhere and yet the drivers were treating it like it was a freeway.
There was just too much traffic.
The oil companies are clearly making lots of money, but the infrastructure is falling apart.
Most business owners have the opposite problem. Their products are ready to go, but they aren’t getting enough traffic to make consistent sales.
If this sounds familiar, we should talk.
I can write the kind of engaging content that will bring new customers to your site, engage your audience, give them a reason to sign up for your newsletter and buy from you.
If you want to get more traffic and make more sales in 2018, let’s get started now.

Another valuable blogging resource from Todd E. Jones.

This week I’m going to be interviewing Todd E. Jones on my podcast.

Todd is a content strategist, copywriter and web designer from Conway, Arkansas.

For the past 15 years, he has been building websites and helping companies develop the content for their websites.
I’m looking forward to hearing his advice on how entrepreneurs can get started on the right foot marketing their products and services.
While you wait for the episode to be ready, check out his e-book, “How To Never Struggle With Blog Topics,” by Todd E. Jones
This is going to be your year to write some great content for your blog that will drive traffic to your website and turn that traffic into sales.
If you want more information about Todd, his website is

Your blog will be AWESOME in 2018… here’s why.

Did you create the content that you planned to create?

Did your blog drive traffic to your website and did you turn that traffic into sales?

Whether you knocked it out of the park last year with your blog… or fell a little
short… chances are you want things to go even better next year.

And I have something that can help you reach your 2018 blogging goals. It’s my blog
brainstorming worksheet for content marketers.

Download it here.

And if you know anyone who wants to use content marketing to grow their business
next year, feel free to forward it to them. This is a free resource that
I put together to help marketers come up with profitable ideas.

Check out my new LinkedIn profile pic

Last fall, Mary Rose Maguire and I were both listening to Ann Handley’s brilliant talk about content marketing at AWAI’s boot camp.

Ann was explaining the folly of littering your LinkedIn profile with the “constellation of nope” … which is her term for the default cover photo in LinkedIn. When you leave the default photo there you’re missing out on a huge opportunity to tell people about who you are and what you do.

So when Mary Rose offered to make me a new cover photo for my LinkedIn profile, how could I resist?

Not only does Mary Rose know me, and she understands my business, but she also knows the value of having a great cover photo. She was offering me what I needed, just at the time when I needed it.

How about you?


Here is what she came up with.


Hey! You got egg yolks all over my mattress!

My husband and I want to get each other a new mattress for Christmas because we’ve had our mattress long enough that it’s starting to gross us out.

(One way to sell a mattress is to talk about all the horrible skin cells and dust mites that build up over the years… barf!)

And now I’m getting all kinds of mattress commercials in my news feed and on my YouTube channel.

My favorites are the ones by Purple.

I like these commercials because they find a dramatic way to demonstrate the benefits of the bed. They break raw eggs on the bad mattresses and show that the purple mattress can support a raw egg even when a lot of weight is dropped on it.

It’s entertaining and fun to watch. The “how-to” makes you think you’re going to learn something (and you do) and it’s so off the wall that you don’t mind that you’re being sold a mattress.

… have you tried this mattress?

How to weave stories through your marketing.

Once upon a time, as snow fell softly on the roof of a little cabin in rural Arkansas, Todd E. Jones learned his most important business skill at the feet of his two grandpas… how to tell a story.


As a digital marketer, Todd uses his storytelling to entrepreneurs and B2B companies improve their SEO rankings, engage their customer base and make a steady stream of sales. And in this podcast, he shares his tips on how to use weave compelling stories into your marketing mix. Check him out at



Do you have the perfect Christmas gift?

When I was pregnant and living in a small apartment in NYC, mother in law gave me the perfect gift.

A month’s worth of house cleaning.
I loved it, because I was getting huge and being pregnant is exhausting and my sense of smell was a million times stronger than before.
Again, I loved it.
Now that I have a couple of businesses, I’m thinking of ways to promote the gift-worthiness of what I sell.
Just this morning I got a message from one of my laundry customers. He bought 10 loads of laundry as a gift for his son. So today I’m going to promote the laundry gift cards.

I’ve done a couple of successful holiday promotions for my marketing customers. Karen Wray had a lot of new customers come in because they saw an article that I published. And The Pig + Fig got some great feedback and some sales off this email that I wrote for them.

What about you?

Are you promoting your products and services as gifts during the holiday season? (Sometimes it takes a little imagination… but I think anything can be a gift).
I’m here to help.

How Karen achieves a consistent online presence

On Tuesday morning I stopped by the Karen Wray Gallery to take some pictures of Karen painting.
I’ll also be sure to use the pictures in upcoming articles about her art classes and exhibits, in her newsletters and on her Facebook page.
I have been working with Karen for several years. I enjoy getting to know all the artists in her gallery and telling the stories of their creative lives.
Karen wrote a testimonial for my website recently. Here is what she had to say about the experience working with me.
“Mandy is my publicist. She writes articles for the magazine and the local papers and also posts articles on social media. It’s well worth the money, and it gets rid of the headache of ‘I have to write this article.’ Mandy takes care of it.

Since I hired Mandy, I have more of a continuous presence online and locally. People are aware of my gallery, see the articles and appear to read them, and they come in as a result. I have seen an increase in people saying they found me through articles and Facebook.

As a business owner, I was thinking of saving time over saving money before hiring Mandy. For someone who knows how to write well, knows how to place them… it’s invaluable.
I would absolutely recommend Mandy to other people. She works very hard to satisfy [the] business owner. She’s very creative with the placement of articles. Recently, I had someone from Santa Fe come up after reading an article about us. I didn’t put it there!”
I have some openings for new clients in 2018. If you would like to hear more about my services and see if I could help your business, sign up for a free 15 minute meeting where we can go over your marketing needs.

Do you need someone to plow your parking lot or driveway?

A couple of weeks ago, I was asked to make a brochure for a group of men who have a local snow plowing business.
Here’s how it turned out.
Don't get snowed in, front (high quality)
brochure rear, high quality
If you’re in Los Alamos, call Valente Yoder at 505-692-8422 or Luis Ontiveros at 505-695-0083.
They do residential and commercial snow removal.