Marketing is important, regardless of the industry you are in. After all, you became a WBN member, didn’t you?

And presumably, you joined this organization to meet other like-minded women, and to find the support and resources needed for your business, among others. And I’m pretty sure you joined so you could make contacts and possibly find business referrals.

Putting on my WBN Marketing Chair hat, I’m here to tell you that marketing is simply telling the world about your business. It’s spreading the word. It’s tooting your horn. It’s shaking the trees.

Regardless of what you call it or how you do it, marketing is crucial to growing your business and driving sales. But the most important marketing wisdom I can share with you is this:

Marketing is a contact sport.

That means that you, yes, YOU, get to be involved. You have to do the work. You have to get out to events. You have to connect with other members. That’s right, it’s YOUR job. Fortunately, WBN is a wonderful, friendly and welcoming place to be. You just have to check out Twitter (@WBN_Ottawa) to connect with some of our wonderful members and make friends as well as business connections.

I recently heard a story that blew my mind. I heard that “Jane” had left the organization. According to Jane, WBN hadn’t notified her of any changes to her membership, or updated her website profile (not our job, by the way) or marketed Jane’s company to the online community. Jane didn’t even have a valid email address she could be reached at. When I heard this, I nearly fell over.

As businesswomen, it is up to us to promote ourselves. As a member, it is MY job to update my profile and do the above-mentioned things. Joining a networking organization doesn’t mean you hand over your marketing to them; it means you’ve opened the door for networking opportunities and making connections. Which you must act on.

How can you make the most of the marketing opportunities offered by WBN? Below is a list of things you can do at your leisure; you don’t have to do everything at once; simply doing one per week is sure to raise your profile and make you new connections:

  • update your profile on the WBN website: go to https://womensbusinessnetwork.ca (you must log in to your account) and then click on “MY PROFILE” on the second line of the links.
  • make sure to include your logo in your profile
  • if you’re active in social media, make sure to include that contact info so we can connect with you
  • go to WBN’s Facebook page once in a while; connect with others, share your stories, let us know your accomplishments so we can add you to the Brag Box!
  • if your company is sponsoring an event, send us your ad (jpg or pdf) so we can promote it
  • are you a blogger? then share your expertise with us right here!
  • register for an event. We have at least 2 monthly events sure to suit your needs
  • join a committee that appeals to you-and get to know the members

I’ve had the privilege of meeting amazing women and making great business connections through WBN. But that happened because I got involved, and I decided to make the most of my membership. So I’m going to say it one more time:

Marketing is a contact sport.  

If you would like help on how to make the most of your WBN marketing opportunities, please feel free to email me. I’m always happy to answer your questions and to help you get started.

Loreto Cheyne
loreto@loladesign.ca