Wednesday, May 27, 2009

WOW Factor - Ways to Stand Out!

Personal Branding "Magic" - An Excellent Habit

The Power of Personal Notes and Cards - belonging to a Professional Referral Business group we are always learning proven methods to improve our skills.

This is a new photo of our BNI Richmond, BC Chapter where we learn the skills.

Very few people in business ever send hand-written notes and even fewer (and far between) do it on a regular basis.

The "Wow" Factor. We're constantly looking for extraordinary ways to WOW! the people around us -- to get their attention and appreciation -- at the same time discounting the most obvious and most effective tools.

A personal hand-written note is such a tool.

An Emotional Expression.

Isn't it nice when someone sends you a short note thanking you for your help on a project or for the wonderful dinner you shared?

Isn't it uplifting to receive a handwritten note from someone in your network recognizing one of your recent accomplishments?

Doesn't it make you feel good - even great? Sure it does.

Aren't you more likely to remember that nice salesperson who dropped you a note?

More likely to call him or her again?

And....Doesn't it feel good when YOU write a note and send it to someone? No doubt.

A Powerful Personal Success Weapon.

It literally takes only about three to five minutes to write a note, fold it, stick it in an envelope and mail it, but the power of it is awesome.

It is one of the ultimate success weapons.
People who send hand-written notes are thought of as gracious, well mannered -- and since so few people do it -- also a clear cut above the rest.

A Memorable Personal Branding Element.
You see, personal notes build relationships, the most important element in any business.
They demonstrate your commitment to your employees and your business contacts and to the service you provide.
Hand-written notes can be a memorable personal branding element.

Personal notes can be used to:
Show appreciation to someone who did something nice for you
Let someone know that you appreciate the special-effort service they gave to you
Recognize a great job on a work project or important task

Let someone know you observed them doing something nice for someone else
Recognize achievement -- personal achievement, the achievements of someone's children, etc.
Recognize a job promotion or a new job

Welcome someone new to the team
Share kind words during a time of family or personal illness or hardship
The power of personal notes is unquestionable.

Establishing the Habit
The KEY to making handwritten notes a PERSONAL HABIT is to deploy a system or process that MAKES IT EASY and CONVENIENT for you to write "custom" notes and cards that you send to your contact network.

A Couple of Ideas to Systematize the Note-Writing Process:
Keep a stack of "Specific" Thank You Note Cards on your desk, ready and available when you need them. A great idea, but also get some that are designed for specific situations, e.g., "Congratulations", "Great Job", "Thank You for the Business", etc.

This is something that our web based publishing system is well aware of. So they've prepared some wonderful templates that you can use with your own account. So besides the regular variety of Birthday, Baby, Wedding, Valentines, Christmas etc check out these other templates.

All will allow you to even personalize the cards with your own photos built right into the design. What an excellent way to stand out - why not put THEIR personal photo onto the card. It is doable.

You can also choose a font that resembles your own handwriting (or your fav), enter text boxes of your own words and have them mailed directly through your Heritage account Address Book. They print them, stuff them, address them and attach your return address all for a fee of $1 in Cda and .60 cents per envelope in USA.

Here are some previews and once loaded you can move your mouse over the card, and rotate, open and zoom to see. all sides and angles.

Here is a Thank You Card:
or long link

or long link

Here is a Friend Card
or long link

Here is a Congratulations Card:
or long link

Deploy the System
1) So take advantage by creating an account at; contact me for the best pricing of the cards $2.95 us to $1.87 us depending on volume and purchase your best package.

2) Add contacts to your Heritage Maker Address Book under My Account tab

3) Choose your favourite templates from the Template Gallery and customize them your way if you want to add more features (photos, art or text)

4) Either order cards in bulk to be shipped to you directly or order one at a time using the 'Direct Mail' service.

Now as your business contacts grow you can make a habit to add them routinely into your HM Address Book so when an occasion occurs you can simply spend 3-5 minutes and send out that personal card to them. WIN ! WOW !

There you have it! A user friendly way to put the WOW FACTOR into your outreach to friends, family and future business contacts.

Barb Ashcroft
Personal Publishing Consultant

We bring your stories to LIFE!

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Special Creations - One Step Further & Tons of Fun

Many of my newest friends are talented in the area of genealogy. It is such fun to play detective and discover new family members & new stories.
The proof picture shown above is an outline of the Title page of our Ashcroft Family coffee table book (red lines are just for aligning & will be cut off). I was able to google a map of England and save that as a jpeg image and then place a transparent tinted circle over the area the family came from. I was also able to highlight the names on the family list that pertained to our LIMB of the Ashcroft Family Tree.
Whether you have just started or are well on your way, I encourage you to create a coffee table book to share the discoveries. Imagine a compilation of all the family photo albums (& more) put together in one place. The photos can all be tagged with names and with stories.
Once you have done that I want to encourage you to go one step further. Summer is approaching and we are planning our first long weekend at the lake.
It is the time when families come together and PLAY.
How about taking those photos and stories and history tidbits and create 3 more things that end up being a Family History Game.
1) Our website has a template gallery to show you how you can turn a poster into a Family Game Board.
2) Our personalized decks of playing cards becomes the Family Fun Facts - variety in the Template Gallery. The sky is the limit on creating it your way.
3) Our Family Fold becomes the Rules for the Family Game.
Right now I am creating a Family Game Board based on my 86 year old Dad's life. It begins with a photo of him as a tiny child, and progresses along his 'happy trails' right up to today.
Email me for a preview and I'll show you how I'm doing that.
The deck of cards are alternating photos of the family shots that correspond to photos on the game board. Our HM team has created endless ideas for your own Family Board Games - so have fun this summer, create some fun and get those kids involved in a fun way to celebrate family and our heritage.
Best yet, the work has already been started with the creation of templates. All you have to do is personalize it with your own photos and words.
Your basic account on our website is free. So go ahead and get started today.
Barb Ashcroft
Personal Publishing Coach
Bringing Your Stories to Life!

Saturday, May 2, 2009

OMG An easy way to be paid for our FUN hobby

When I knew I had to be a Heritage Maker I jumped in with the Business Kit and invested $299.95 usd. It has been one of the best investments I have ever made. At the very least being compensated with the best pricing for my very own projects. Of course it has gone way beyond that and given me the opportunity to share in the precious life experiences of those who come across my path.

Just Announced!
May 1st, 2009 HM corporate announcement.
Business Kits are available on a short term basis for $199.95 AND include a publishing credit for a coffee table book 8.5 x 11.5 size (value $69.95).

So for a mere $130 net investment, women & men who have a passion to preserve special memories can receive a website, a business kit and the opportunity to BE PAID to create their own memories plus share the privilege to others.

It just doesn't get any better than this. When Oprah added us to her 'Top Ten All Time Favourite Gifts List' I thought we had reached the pinnacle, but this makes it available to everyone for the price of a good pair of shoes.

Is this you? Are you into design? Photography? Digital Scrapbooking? Self Publishing? Card making & sending?

Here's your chance to do just that and create an income stream at the same time.

Make a Living while you make a Difference!

Contact me right away for an overview packet.

Digital Design Diva,
Barb Ashcroft

Pleae help me get the word out. 29 days and counting. With all the folks financially hurting out there, this could be a huge opportunity for many.