This week’s blog focuses on our colleague and friend, Lyndsay Clements of Ellen Grace Marketing. We have worked with Lyndsay on countless projects, some remodels, some ground up builds – and we’ve enjoyed every minute of it! We know you’ll enjoy hearing about how she moved from the corporate marketing world to building her own company.

Tell me a little about you – Where did you grow up? What inspires you?

women in blazer and denim shirt looks up smiling from computer ellen grace marketing


I grew up in Scottsdale and then went went to college in Northern CA (Santa Clara University).  I ended up in San Francisco for 10 years working mostly in corporate retail and then getting my MBA in Marketing before I relocated back to Phoenix for a job promotion.  I am inspired to help small business owners grow faster and more efficiently.  I have a business partner (Craig) who is also my brother.  Combined we bring over 30 years of corporate retail experience to our clients and are passionate about helping them accelerate their growth and increase profitability.

Why did you decide to start Ellen Grace Marketing?


Prior to starting this business in 2015, I worked for larger retailers and really learned the ins and out of retail.  Large companies are smart in how they look at their marketing and sales data, to help them make strategic decisions.

About 4 years ago, I started to realize – mostly through conversations with friends who had either opened up a retail store or were selling products and services online – that there was an opportunity.  Most smaller business owners were brilliant at sourcing products and really passionate about understanding their customers’ needs but sometimes neglected their marketing or analyzing sales data because they wore so many hats.

It was then that I decided to go out on my own and bring the corporate way of going-to-market I had learned into the hands of smaller businesses, primarily retailers.  This also gave me the opportunity to be more flexible and present with our family.  My husband and I have two daughters whose middle names are Ellen and Grace, hence the name of the company.  I wanted to create a business that gave me the flexibility to work hard while still being present for those valuable moments that I saw myself missing while working in a corporate office.

What is unique about your style and product offering?


While we are a marketing company at the core, we are hyper-focused on driving profits for our clients.  Marketing can bring customers in the door and drive sales, but at the end of the day there are so many factors that contribute to our clients’ bottom line.  Our reporting and data analytics encompass key figures that a typical marketer would not normally unveil.  These areas include profit margins, churn rates, customer lifetime value, customer & product segmentation, as well as taking a deeper dive into the Financials/P&L statements and helping businesses develop sales tracking and forecasting.

What advice would you give other women business owners?

Don’t be afraid of your business numbers and data.  It’s so empowering to know what’s working.  At the end of the day we only have so much bandwidth to execute our plans and having visibility to what’s working will help you stay focused on the right marketing efforts, make smarter decisions and ultimately increase sales & profits.

Contact Lyndsay at:

www.ellengracemarketing.com

@ellengracemarketing

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salmon color block "what is SEO" in white lettering Hammermsith Support

You’ve certainly heard the term SEO thrown around – especially when it comes to your business website. But you may have been left thinking, “What is SEO and why do I need it?”.

The Breakdown

SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization – so think Google, Bing, Yahoo – any site you would go to for searching information. These engines crawl through all of the websites on the internet and rank them in order to deliver the searcher the best, most accurate results for their query. Search engine optimization means the organic or natural return of a website based on a query – i.e. without advertising or other paid for processes.

Why It’s Important

So why is it important to have natural or organic results from a search engine? In a word, good SEO is free. It means without paying for advertising, boosts or anything else, your website will be in the search results of a query. Of course you could pay for these returns, but if your site is naturally appearing, it’s more likely that your site will get a look from the searcher because it most closely matches what they are looking for. And a happy searcher is just good for business. Plus, you’ll save on your bottom line.

How to Improve SEO

To improve your site’s search engine optimization, start first by enrolling in Google Search Console. This free app will show you how Google is analyzing your site and pinpoint any areas of the site that are possibly not being categorized correctly by a search engine. Second, give search engines lots of fresh information to crawl through. Search engines won’t continually re-analyze a site, so creating new content to be evaluated is key. Update product information, add a blog, video blog, and or new images often to keep the crawlers working. Lastly, make sure all your videos and image information are completed – alt text, caption, description and title are all analyzed by search engines, so don’t miss an opportunity to give more important information.

We absolutely love working with Jena and Blush Cactus. Jena’s vision for branding and marketing focuses on not only stunning visuals but also loads of other creative resources, as well as strategy planning for your business. Being like-minded women entrepreneurs, Hammersmith Support and Blush Cactus make the perfect team. We hope you enjoy learning about Jena and her company as much as we have.

Tell me a little about you – Where did you grow up? What inspires you?

I’m the owner and creative force behind Blush Cactus Boutique Design Studio. Like many people here in the greater Phoenix area, I’m a transplant. I grew up in a small town in South Dakota, went to college at the University of North Dakota in Grand Forks, and eventually settled here in AZ a little over 8 years ago.

As a business owner, I’ve learned the importance of personal development and it’s a big source of my inspiration and what keeps me going. I love listening to podcasts and reading books about business and self-development and I’m passionate about helping other creatives like myself navigate starting their own businesses or work it in supplementing their full time job with freelance. I love what I do, and I love helping others succeed doing what they love, too.

Why did you decide to start Blush Cactus?

I’ve been a graphic designer for over 12 years and a business owner for 5 of them. Originally my business started with my name on the door – Design by Jena. I know, so creative! But as my business has grown, I realized the need to scale my business and it isn’t just me doing all the work any more! I love being able to collaborate with other creatives to provide my clients with a variety of services I couldn’t do by myself, and also do it with the best of the best talent in their industries.

Soon we’ll be offering an online course that will help other creatives start their own businesses, coaching them how to get clients as well as the money they deserve. My hope and goal is to also create a community where creatives can find support and guidance from other people who are doing what they do. It can get lonely being a business owner and wearing all the hats, so having a community to lean into will help others feel like they’re not alone and have support. I’m super excited about that!

What is unique about your style and product offering?

I have a passion for making things beautiful and delivering an end result that the client didn’t even know they wanted or needed. Our team helps clients brand their businesses from the inside out, and create the all the supporting design assets to go along with it. A brand is so much more than a logo: it’s knowing who your customers are and how you want them to feel that makes a big difference. I care deeply about the success of my clients and operate by a set of values that is never compromised. It’s our secret sauce for creating loyal customers for life.

What advice would you give other women business owners?

Never stop learning! Find a mentor who you look up to – whether it’s books, influencers in your space, or even someone in-person who’s further along than you. Surround yourself with people who are doing big things and learn from them. Keep your eyes open for opportunity, but also learn the art of saying “no” when it’s appropriate. Take time to care for yourself and fill your own cup – as business owners we can get a little carried away working ALL the time (because we love it, duh!), but it’s just as important to take time off and regroup. Your creativity depends on it! Remember community over competition – it’s more important to be supportive than to try and compete to be the best. And remember that people will never forget the experience they had with your brand, so lead with that.

Follow and Connect with Jena and Blush Cactus:

www.cactusblush.com

@blush.cactus

https://www.facebook.com/blushcactus/

e.jena@cactusblush.com

p.480.540.7794