Category Archive Blog Posts

Blogspiration – August

For this month’s Blogspiration, I am supposed to share what I have learned in terms of my business but this whole summer was entirely a learning experience, period. So this would be a great platform to share the things that I learned and give an update on my summer.

‘Be careful of what you wish for’ is a phrase I truly understand thanks to this summer. That’s because when I completed my semester all I wished was for summer to go by quickly so I can get school done and over with. Now it’s August and I am confused. Where did June and July go? Where are all my road trips I claimed that I was going to take? How am I still struggling to save? Why is school nearing and I am not even nearly organized? A lot of thoughts…

There were a lot of things that happened that wasn’t expected, which is something that ALWAYS happens to me, so I always need to have a plan a and b etc. There were so many things – financially, mentally, and physically – that it made it almost impossible to do what I exactly planned. So to all those I promised epic car rides and adventures to….. sorry. Maybe as a graduation celebration, I may consider it again since it is something that I want to highly do. Even all my landscape photoshops I wanted to do had to be reduced to local but it didn’t stop me from taking pictures this summer.

Another lesson I learned was that Word of Mouth is an actual thing. I wasn’t sure how well it worked because, in the past, it was hard to keep friendships just because I felt exhausted from being the one maintaining it and there were other things that happened that made me not want to socialize. There were some friends that still stuck around regardless of that whole thing and saw what I had worked on. When the opportunity came up, I became an option. That was exciting and also nerve-wracking because you want to do well for your friends. I haven’t graduated yet so I still consider this a beginning.

Lastly, it’s okay to be out of your comfort zone. In addition to trying to surround myself with like-minded people (which has been a goal this year), I tried going to some events to network, meet new people, and to support local events. There is this feeling about talking to people that have interests and goals in life that makes it more motivating to strive for your own goals. So through these interactions so far I have learned plenty of things related to business and have made possible future business relationships but only time will tell. If they don’t develop into solid business projects, it wouldn’t hurt because it could turn into something else or other connections can stem from it.

I think those are the main three lessons I have learned this summer. What lessons have you learned this summer? Has your summer been going as planned?

Let me know below!

Til Next Time,

Renée

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Resource Post – Apps I Use to Do Social Media Posts

Have you ever wondered how to get your post a certain way or look amazing? Here are some apps I use to edit my posts. Do note that I have an iPhone so apps may vary depending on your device.

1. Canva

Canva LogoCanva is an app that I am in love with at the moment. It can help with creating very appealing posts. I use this a lot with my blog announcements or any general announcements. Canva is also a site online so you can make your images on your desktop/laptop and access it through your phone. Through the online version, you may also have access to different documents like Infographics.

 

2. Later

Later Logo

Later is another app I love and works on desktop as well. With the recent updates, it is now possible to schedule and have your posts automatically. Which was my most favourite update just because I always missed notifications and posts always went up later than I wanted them to. It also saves on having to write a whole post. When I had to still post them through Later, all I had to do was direct it to where I wanted to post. By doing this, it gave me more time to actually interact with other Instagrammers and viewers.

 

3. PS Express & Lightroom

Lightroom LogoPS Express

I kind of use this interchangeably. I honestly don’t know why I just didn’t choose one and go from there but I think I got both to experiment with them. I believe I use PS Express because I was more familiar with Photoshop but Lightroom can do the same job when it comes to basic editing on the go. I also heard Lightroom charges now so PS Express may be the way to go.

4. Repost

Repost Logo

I use this when I want to repost other people’s items and give them the proper credit as all Instagrammers deserve. I believe I have the free version where it put the watermark and that’s exactly what I want. I wanted something that gave me the ability to clearly give the original poster credit. I also like this because it can give others a boost. Yes, I think of others even if they may already have a great following.

 

5. Pic Splitter

I used Pic Splitter to attempt the infamous insta grid photo. The cool thing about this is that you can split the images in any square or rectangular denomination.

6. Ripl

Ripl LogoWhen you want to give your Instagram some pizazz, Ripl is a great way to go. You can add text to images as well as make animations.

 

 

7. Layout

Layout Logo

 

I love this app for when I want to show more than one image on one image without having to do multiple images on Instagram.

 

 

8. Square Edit

Square Edit is the perfect app when you have those pesky pictures that you can’t get to fit for Instagram standards but don’t want to crop your image any smaller. I used to use INSTAFIT but there was a lot of confusion with the 2 apps they had and it crashed on me a lot. So I was happy that I found something that did what I wanted it to do, which was to have a border around the image so that it can fit Instagram, as well as allow me to save it to my phone for later uploads or post right away.

 

What are some apps you use for your social media? Do you use any of the ones listed? Share below!

 

Til Next Time,

Ren

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June Blogspiration – Best Practices for Business Networking Online

Have your elevator pitch ready, dress for the connections you want, and practice your handshake. You’ve probably heard this advice when it comes to networking for your business. In fact, at times, we put so much emphasis on the above three that we forget the rules are different when we’re networking online for a SaaS (Software as a Service) or e-commerce business.

When you’re networking online, having an elevator pitch ready might mean ensuring your website is up-to-date; dressing for the connections you want may mean your social media profiles are consistent; and, practising your handshake could look a bit more like getting the right endorsements from the right sources.

Let’s take a closer look at how we can become better networkers as online business owners.

Say Hello!

When we’re trying to make a connection with a business we admire, we might be tempted to go through social media and ‘like’ or ‘favourite’ every post we see. This can be seen as making the first move when it comes to networking, but in actuality, we want to be doing less ‘liking’ and more thoughtful, strategic engaging — that is, we want to start saying ‘hello’.

Reaching out to businesses and saying ‘hello’ first allows you, as an entrepreneur, to break the ice effectively. However, this isn’t the time to give your elevator pitch. Saying hi and initiating conversation simply opens up a dialogue between your business and theirs. Developing a genuine interest in the other business’ operations will allow a more natural connection in the long run.

Join Online Groups

Many relevant industry groups and organizations have an online counterpart. Even if you aren’t going to in-person meetups, it’s very important to join these groups online and make your presence known. This is a great place to practise your elevator pitch. Business owners in the same industry as you can be great supporters when you’re starting out in e-commerce. Genuinely reaching out and forming these connections in a professional setting will bolster your confidence and give you those first few connections.

Keep an Updated Online Profile

This may be the most obvious way to network online, but keeping an up-to-date online profile, including your website and social media, is imperative to successful branding. In an ideal scenario, all your social media handles will be consistent with your website’s address, but if you’re in a position where your handles are all a little different, having the exact same copy and images on your profiles will tie your branding together for new connections and customers. Consistency is a passive way to network online, but it ends up being one of the most important factors in online recognition.

Networking online has its own challenges apart from in-person networking. You can’t always use face value to form a bond with another person, but by following a few simple practices, you can put your best foot forward when presenting yourself and your business to others.

 

Guest Blogger: Louisa Atto

Louisa is a freelance writer, digital marketing professional, and author. Check out her portfolio here.

 

 

 

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Blogspiration – April

For this Blogspiration, you would get a tour of where I work on KyeWik Services/ReneeBritt Media.

Through the video, you can tell I can pretty much work anywhere when it comes to my business. I can work at home, a coffee shop, studios and the outdoors. I wanted to get more studio shots but we are in the middle of exams so filming would be difficult.  I get to work on my business from anywhere with my laptop.  I can explore different places and let creativity flow.

Where do you like to get your work done? Let me know in the comments below!

Til’ Next Time,

Renée

Edited By: April Waddell

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Resource Post – Not Really Making Much But Want to Keep Your Finances Separate

This post is for entrepreneurs that are REALLY just starting out. If you start making enough money to support having a business account at a physical bank then go for it because, in the long run, it helps a lot with your business. When starting out, I wanted a way that I could keep personal and business transactions separate. Tax people around me suggested it was a good thing to do.  It’s easier to keep track of how much money I used and I could control the money coming in and going out. I felt the best option was using a prepaid credit card because you can keep track of how much you are spending and you can use it for purchases from online vendors.

Bank Prepaid Credit Cards

I started off using my bank’s prepaid credit card because it came with monthly statements and it was somewhat easy to reconcile at the end of the month. What made it difficult was online vendors outside of Canada.  The conversion rates differed from the price you see vs. the currency rate. Also, foreign transaction fees were torture.

KOHO

I then moved on to Koho which I wasn’t purposely trying to use for business but some business purchases were made from it. This card also had some perks. This one is best for personal use because it has a cool feature where you can make a savings goal and it takes money out of your account based on how you set up your goal. If you wanted to keep finances separate while saving up money towards larger business expenses, this card can help with that. I also love how fast money transfers over. Depending on your bank and the time of day, e-transfer is amazing because it is super quick compared to bank transfer. It is also possible to attach this card to PayPal as a bank account which gives this card some bonus points. This card, however, is not great when it comes to foreign transaction fees either.

 

MOGO

Currently, I use Mogo only because of the foreign transaction fee. At the moment, they do not charge a fee which is a plus when your vendors are outside of the country. This is a big factor in why I use it. Other than that it’s okay for personal use as it allows you to get your credit score for free, take out loans and mortgages and more recently, bitcoin investments. There is also a goal feature that helps promote spending less. This card doesn’t have e-transfer so you have to plan ahead and decide how much money you will put on it as bank transfers can take up to 5 days.

PAYPAL

I also suggest setting a business PayPal account. I find with personal accounts they may not be as secure and/or if there is too much money coming in you can get blocked or suspended. I planned to use this as a temporary ‘bank account’ until flow comes in steadily just to have to avoid paying the monthly charges. I like this way because you can easily transfer the money to your account if needed otherwise I believe you can have the funds stay there for other purchases for your business without touching your own funds.

I have tried looking to see if there were other cards like Koho or Moho but haven’t come across any.  How do you keep track of your business transactions? Do you keep them separate? What are your experiences with business finances? Let me know.

Til’ Next Time

Renée Harty

 

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Resource Post – Resources to Find Out How to Start Your Business or Helped My Business

Hey! So this post will simply be a resource post of links to sites that I have used to learn and get information on how, in general, to start and run my business. I believe this could be helpful no matter what industry you are considering getting into. These will most likely be Canadian based but it could provide you with ideas of what to look for if you are not in Canada or even Ontario. I did that with SkillCrush. While they were based on the current US standards, it gave me an idea of what to look for as a Canadian equivalent.

This link, I feel is like the Almighty guide because it gives you steps on how to register; social media tips; marketing & PR, Finance and Finances etc. – http://www.canadaone.com/tools/startingabusiness.html

This link provides checklists based on the industry that you are going into so you can make sure you are getting everything done. – https://canadabusiness.ca/starting/checklists-and-guides-for-starting-a-business/

This link can help you build your business plan as an interactive guide. Desjardin also has an interactive business plan creator as well. – https://www.futurpreneur.ca/en/resources/start-up-business-planning/tips-tools/business-plan-writer/

This is the link to register your business in Ontario. This link should also be provided in the CanadaOne link as well. – https://www.ibsa.serviceontario.ca/ibsa/servlet/com.visionmax.servlet.CommandServlet?command=screenflownoscript&screenid=26&_ga=1.118637641.192799098.1450713978

This link is mostly for Ontario but I am sure that there are other provinces as well. This has information about the tax-related tasks that you may need answered. – http://www.canadaone.com/tools/ontario_links.html

The last piece of advice is to look at the people around you. You never know what other people know when you tell them what you are trying to accomplish. So ask around! Start a conversation. See what they are doing. You just may be able to help that person with their goals as well! It’s great to have a group of like-minded people that you can share info with.

Let me know below what resources you use. What aspects of business are you curious about?

Til Next Time!

Renée Harty

Edited: April Waddell

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Blogspiration – March

I am approaching the end of second semester of school and I have not been paying attention to days at all! March 8th was International Women’s Day and March was also International Ideas Month.

 

Women that Inspired my Business

For this Blogspiration, I couldn’t really narrow it down to one woman or even a few in my industry or even the ones that give me the inspiration to work on my business. I can basically binge watch YouTube videos in one day or scroll through my Instagram and come across women that lifted my mood and inspire me to do better in my business. Below are a couple of women that inspired my business directly.

Shameless Maya

I tried to look back and see what video it was that got me inspired and which one got me to subscribe to her.  The first one was her Tech Talk on how to record videos for YouTube because at the time (and still to this day ), I was interested in doing YouTube videos but wondered how to do it without spending money on equipment. Her Tech Talk videos helped with that tremendously. There are some other videos she has of her talking about her experiences and sometimes it makes you feel like, ‘Hey, I am not alone’.

Talk Tech

How to Find Your Passion and Not Get Stuck

SkillCrush

Skill Crush is an online tech education company and was founded by Adda Birnir. I initially signed up for the bootcamp to refresh my memory in coding. It also had some good online seminars on tips and ways to be a freelancer. It kind of gave me the motivation to think that I can make freelancing into some sort of job.

March is Idea Month. What is my ‘idea’?

For my idea portion of this Blogspiration, I didn’t really have much of an idea of what to provide that is new but rather a rebranding. While being in Media Communications, I’ve learned more about how I want to form and present my brand. It has made me want to try out new things and revamp things after learning how to do certain tasks better. So in the next few months, you will see this brand transition from KyeWik Services to ReneeBritt Media. In the end, I decided to somewhat use my name and focus on presenting me, Renee.  This way I feel like I can be more of myself and not hold back. More about my rebranding will be coming in the next month.

Let me know in the comments who has inspired you and what new ideas you have for your goals!

’Til Next Time

Renée Harty

Edited By: April Waddell

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Resource Post – Things I Wish I Knew When Starting My Business

When I started my online business, I didn’t really think much of it. I just thought I would establish creating a business and the rest would follow. That wasn’t the case. Had I  avoided these things, I would have realized when was better to begin.

Here are the things I wish I knew or had avoided when starting out:

  • Rushing into purchasing utilities right off the bat.

I thought it was viable to have a separate phone number so that I could identify who was calling and what it was related to. In the end, I realized that I do the same thing that I do with my normal phone line – that is – screen all my calls anyway. I could have saved myself at least $100 as it was running for almost a year without me actively calling people or regularly receiving  calls.

Also without doing any research first, I had decided to use wix.com to host my business site. I wasn’t looking in the future and realized afterwards I could have saved a huge amount of money. A Wix site cost a bit over $200.  That included the site, domain, and email.  Again which I didn’t really need at the time. When I decided to do more with my hobby blog, I realized I should have just started with WordPress and my own server. The server was cheaper than Wix and the emails I was able to attach to my gmail account. More money that I could have saved. Also, in the long run, I wouldn’t have to pay more than $50 for a site because I have already a server.

  • Learning More About My Trade

There is nothing wrong with learning on the job as it is beneficial and the only way to grow. My situation was that I had really basic knowledge of web design from Music Business, Office Admin and WordPress was from what I had learned on my own. It also wasn’t enough classes to help provide portfolio items to show.  It didn’t really give me the confidence to openly say, ‘I am great at this! Hire Me.’ The more you know about your trade, the more confident you will be to offer it. The more passionate you are makes you want to talk about your trade with the world. I went back to school because I personally needed the reinforcement. I have no self discipline when it comes to self teaching  and it definitely takes a lot to do. The program, Media Communications, offers more than one class on Web Design, Social Media, Photography, etc. It also allows me to practice and have items to show. It has made me feel more passionate about what I am providing to others.

  • Not to Be Afraid of Marketing Yourself

Nowadays, it still feel weirds to outright shout to the world, ‘Hire Me! I do great work!’. Today I display work that I am working on in hopes to gain traction and so that it isn’t too much in your face. I also had the guts to reach out to people and let them know how I can help them. Marketing yourself can really be a simple act of showing your work on Instagram or Facebook. If I had focused on practicing my trade and created items to show when I first started, I could have had a lot more material to promote.

  • Never Stop Learning

When I had my full time job, I believed that was it. I had my foot in the door. I am done. For a couple of years, I didn’t do any coding, I never tried getting more into photography, I didn’t do anything creative to improve on the skills that I did while is the Music Business Program. The only thing I did was re-introduce writing back into my life. My stopping made me forget how to code. It made me get behind on the latest news in the tech industry. Though I had an interest in photo, video, and design; at the end of the day I never tried to increase my knowledge. Which is what lead me to go back to school and make this highly needed change.

These were the four major items that I felt strongly about starting out my business. Now that I am in school I feel a bit more confident in what I can provide. I’ll definitely make a part two if more comes up. I am sure more will as I am still learning as I go.

Til the next time,

Ren

Edited: April Waddell

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Blogspiration – February

THIS POST IS LATE! But I’m not letting it deter me from my goal and that is to continue writing blog posts, regardless if I am on time or not. Why? I have to build consistency some how. I also need to learn not to stop when I fail to reach my expectation. It’s so easy to say, ‘I missed this month so I’ll start again next month.” This is exactly what happened last year so this year,  it doesn’t matter, I am writing them regardless. As this post is for February, this month is to be about love. For this Blogspiration, I wanted to share why (even though, I’m only in my second semester) I love the program I am currently in, Media Communications.

For quite some time, I had a feeling I wouldn’t stay in the same job or field for the my whole life. I was always interested in different things and always bounced around doing different things. I wasn’t great at drawing but I do love making random sketches. I love writing stories and songs. I used to make up choreography and mimic choreography from music videos. As you can see a lot of different things.  However since I was only confident in administrative work, I never really branched far from there.

When I started my business it was actually because of a group of friends that wanted to start a business.  They basically needed an online presence. What they needed was something that I was interested in and was thinking that they would be great for portfolio stuff even if they weren’t able to pay me. They needed a website, social media, and images taken of their products.  I wanted to do that for them and then I thought why couldn’t I do this for someone else too.  So I decided that I wanted to make an official business out of it. I didn’t think it would have been so hard to promote when I didn’t have that much experience and didn’t feel confident. Even the company I had been working with didn’t seem to making much of a move and time just wasn’t on our side.

Since I didn’t feel the motivation to work on my own after a day of working full time, I made the jump to go back to school full time. When I was at work, I was debating on whether to just find a new job or to go back to school. I knew I wanted something that allowed me to work with photography, videography, graphic design, web design, and social media. At the time, it would be hard to get hired doing those jobs because of my experience level. While searching, I came across Humber College’s Media Communications. From my knowledge, it was still fairly a new program which was why I had never came across it before but also it may have been that I was just really interested in taking Music Business at the time. When I saw the courses it had, I thought this was perfect. It had basically had all the courses that related to what I wanted my business to have even though they were different services.

While the strike did have an impact on our studies, I was very driven not drop out. I knew that after first semester would be better because we would have a lot more hands on items to work on that we can use in the real world. I also knew the courses would be more focused on my program. Six or seven weeks in, we have already worked on two short videos, 3 different photo shoots, assignments to help brand ourselves and a lot more. This semester I will focus more on my brand and content to show on Instagram or Facebook. It had me really thinking what my brand should be. It has been awhile since I had felt satisfied by the work I was making and making me more confident. I can confidently say that I am a lot better at using a DSLR camera. I can positively say that I am more confident in the terminology used when doing video shoot or photo shoot. I love seeing things I create come to life. I love Media Communications because it brought back my love for creativity.

Til the next time!

Ren

Edited: April Waddell

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Resource Spot – Motivation

To start off my resource posts, I decided to start off with Motivation. Why? Because we kind of need to see things through and keep on track. I can’t imagine how many times I felt unmotivated and depressed because of certain situations and complete disregard my own needs and my goals. When you are feeling burnt out or at your limit, it’s okay if you have a day or two that are unproductive. I find people that somehow push through without showing the hard times are robots and I just feel that not everybody is the same.

So as a beginner to another beginner, here are things that can help boost motivation.

  • Find things that help picks up your mood:
    • Activities – hobbies you like doing. For me, that’s dance but I have become so lazy so 2018, I made it a goal.
    • Watch YouTube – I feel that there are a lot of influential people on YouTube. I like watching people that I either find influential or funny or even just to hear them sing. Some of my favs are Shameless Maya for influence, David So for comedy and influence, LuanLegacy was active a few years ago, not sure what he is doing now but I can’t not watch his videos without crying with laughter. I hope he is doing well. Bubz as well for entertainment and influence. There are just to many.
    • Instagram pages – some have some amazing quotes that I like to post when they definitely strike a cord with me. Check out my video to see some of my favs. If motivation isn’t your thing but like to laugh there is actually an un-inspirational page and it’s quite hilarious. I would follow it for the laughs.
    • Certain people around you – Pay attention around you. There may be people that share a lot inspirational thoughts that you may not have thought of and just be a positive force to be around.
  • Make sure you have a clear vision of what you want. I don’t think my vision is a hundred percent clear but I know what I don’t want in my life. You can have a picture frame that looks like a dream board. I have a physical dream board in my room but it’s done in a frame just because it looks nicer.
  • It is okay to relax for a few days. Just do it. You have no idea how refreshed you will feel the next day.
  • Figure out the good stress from the bad stress. When it’s bad stress, it wears you out tremendously and puts you in a bad mood. Good stress, you feel stressed but at the end it makes you more energized. That was completely in my words and not researched but thats how I feel when doing something I love.
  • Music – Make a playlist that gets you energized or your favourite artist.
  • Exercise – I personally don’t like the gym so I love dancing and taking walks to clear my head. It all counts.

This is my list that has gotten me through so far! What are some of your ways or that you stay motivated. I actually want to know because I wanted to know what I can incorporate into my daily life. Maybe there will be a part two to this!

Much Love,

Renée

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