Tamarah BlackSerial Founder | Strategist

Serial entrepreneur. 20+ Years Experience Building businesses from the ground up. 20+ years Nonprofit Organizational Leadership and fundraising.
Entrepreneurship, Leadership (not Management), Strategy, Public Speaking, Business English (American), Persuasion, Fundraising, Concept Development, Personal Brand Development and Community Engagement.

Recent Answers

I would be happy to walk through this with you. Feel free to give me a call. For starters... where are you based?

Hi! I'm coming at this from a slightly different perspective because the other Advisors have hit the "which & why" ad placement side of your question. My angle is based on nearly 10 years hands on experience in "lifestyle enhancement" brand related e-commerce and fine jewelry distribution.

This seems like a product that should sell itself with an enormous mass market appeal. I wanted to take a look at a few things that could be affecting your disappointing conversion rate that could continue to play out regardless of spend or channel.

Is it easy to find?
Does the "hype" match the experience of the user?
Is the price point within reach of the target audience?
How simple/hard is it to place the order?
Is it "share-worthy" and easy to do it?

Assessment: Based on about 10 min of quick research - it's easy to find but the tops two links both give the customer reasons to abandon purchase fairly quickly. First, your product reviews are troubling - at almost 50/50 love it / disappointed. Second, your website landing page doesn't drive "buying" it encourages "browsing." The copy is fine but unnecessarily wordy and muddy. On the plus side, you have nice clean images of your products and clear relevant descriptions but the visual DISPLAY of it all comes across as "made in my living room" as opposed to a fashion oriented "lifestyle enhancement" brand for a woman who wants to keep her cool without sacrificing her style or professional image. Compared to other products in the marketplace hot Girls Pearls retails at an avg of about 10X to other "cooling" related products readily available in the market. Shopify/Amazon as shopping carts make it easy to purchase. Good call on those. Sharability is good with the ability to "pin" and "love" via open sky but could be enhanced with a few more "standard" options.

Recommendations: Before you invest another penny in marketing, I'd recommend a 5 specific actions to take that that would yield results you can test and track to optimize your click to sale ratio and could be implemented within 5-10 business days for about $500 bucks or less depending on what you can do yourself/with your current staff and/or who you outsource it to.

1. Drown OUT the negative reviews on Amazon. Ask your "fans" to post a review & offer an incentive to do it "now" with a clickable link to the product page.

2. Create a YouTube Channel for your company. Link all the videos on the web that have featured your product to it. Should take about 2 hours or less.

3. Get some "real women" video testimonials/endorsements produced that you can place on your site and your YouTube channel.

3. Mini Makeover for your website landing page to convert "window shoppers" to "impulse buyers" that is smartphone / tablet friendly, allows for A/B testing and captures analytics.

4. Take it down a notch on pricing if your margins can handle it. I'd take it down 20-25% across the board.

5. Add the ability to share via facebook, twitter and tumbler.

I would be happy to hop on a quick call to discuss further and direct you to some specific resources to get it done if you need them, just let me know.

It's often easier to gain a new client by providing concepts or proofs up front (if you can afford the time and expense as a marketing cost) rather than attempting to explain what you "could do" for them. You do seem to have answered your own question in our explanation. If you've done it with success, why alter your approach? You have validation from your own experience.

Many creative-field freelancers use this technique to score new clients and gain referrals. A word of caution, however - public spaces like a hookah cafe are one thing. Private facilities are another. Expect at some point to have it demanded that you turn over the images or have someone refuse to allow you to "use" the image(s) in promoting your business if it includes their brand or IP in a manner they don't feel is consistent with their brand identity or implies an endorsement.

Feel free to reach out with any other growth hacks you're considering. I'll be happy to give you a quick thumbs up/thumbs down and why.

I'd recommend RecruiterBox as long as you can focus on filing one position at a time. It let's you accept up to 200 applicants for 1 position for free. http://recruiterbox.com/recruitment-software-pricing-with-free-signup/

Also, There are quite a few others out there most of which offer free 30 day trials or free access to their platforms with feature limits on them vs the company's paid offerings. Based on the way you phrased the question, this app should do the trick!

Side note - if you're making use off Google apps - just create a form for submissions. It's always free.

There's a functional difference in leading an organization and leading (managing) a team operationally. As a Founder, usually by necessity, you will have a greater chance of success in your venture if you can excel at a 50/50 split of strengths for both in the early days.

Without the ability to communicate your vision and build the team you need to launch your venture, you won't attract a team. Once you have them, you've got to execute which requires significant management skills with people and project management to produce and deliver your product or service.

As your organization and your team grows, it's important to really self-assess/get feedback on where your true strength lies - leading or managing. If you are strongest in the leadership role - narrow your lens and channel your energy in growing that strength for the good of your company. Partner or staff up with strong managers who live and breathe your people, systems, products/services, etc. If you're strongest at management - partner up with a demonstrated leader who shares your VISION and ultimate goal(s).

Seth Godin had a great video a bit back that got into the heart of this: http://youtu.be/Xx2SV2bYSfU

The thing that makes me curious about your question is how it connects to your work. Do you feel that if you can't bring 100% you won't be able to compete in a "global" marketplace?

There are a couple of key questions embedded in your decision that aren't addressed in your description that make this difficult to provide input:

What are you looking to gain with a partnership? (capital, connections, expertise, access to customer base)
How much and on what timeline?
To use for what specifically? (equipment, facilities, labor, marketing)
How will it enable you to grow? (efficiencies, new markets, additional revenue streams)
Is your objective incremental organic growth, "hockey stick" growth or other?
How urgent is the need? (Do you have working capital? Are you pre-revenue, break even or positive? Is it sustainable?)

Happy to discuss in detail once I have a bit more perspective on your situation.


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