Lowell Naturalization and Citizenship Services
Class: 2013 Summer Accelerator
We offer assistance with filling the N-400 Naturalization Form AND a 10 set Civics Class to prepare you for the Interview/Naturalization Test. Legal Permanent Residents who have their green cards for 5 years or are married to U.S. Citizens for 3 years, are eligible to become American Citizens.
Met with my mentors Fred and Kamal before our evening session. It was brief but it was productive. We spoke about my website, Kamal has great ideas and is going to help me condense it to look it better. A better navigation site if you will.
Thank God, Kamal can help me with this, because I'm not good at it AT ALL!!!
We talked about clients and how to increase the flow to become steady clientele. They were not so enthused about postcards..shot in the dark...how many will actully bring??
I told them I have selected 39 churches to visit but I'm procrastinating.... No wonder Fred said, with that many!
Then we talked about people in the community whom I should talk to to so they can refer me to others in the community. I told them I had spoken with Connie Martin. She's big in Lowell.. Director @ Community Teamwork, active @ the governmnet level as school rep.. I gave her a bunch of cards, she actually asked me for them, but nothing really happened, no referrals.
Then Fred said something to me that it hit me like a ton of bricks! "You are asking Connie to be your salesperson." Kamal pitched in.. "She won't have your business card handy and give out to people wherever she goes".
Well, well, well......Isn't that the truth??? I need them to give me introductions to others so I CAN GO THERE MYSELF!!
So today an email was sent to Connie asking just that. Please give names of organizations and names of people to call. Keeping my fingers crossed she will reply with some referrals!
I spent a long time writing this blog only to lose everything because of instead of posting it I clicked public updates! ugh!!!!!
Now if I can remember all I wrote.
Our Social Media class on Tuesday was interesting. Social Media is something I am not sure is extremely important for me as much as it is for many other businesses. I don't know if my clients are going to "follow" me on twitter or see me on youtube.
I know that Facebook is important. Everyone is in Facebook so I do have a business page there. Maybe is sufficient for now.
Bobbi made a point to make us understand that we need to choose the correct social media to attract attention to our specific clientele.
for example: Linkdin is for professionals. Most of my clients aren't so maybe it's not important for me. I know, however, that many directors that work with immigrants have profiles in Linkdin. I'm connected with them through my personal which has info on my business.
SEO - big discussion in class today.
I started "googling' myself.
a- Lowell naturalization - 1st page top
b- Lowell citizenship - 1st page top
c- MV naturalization - 1st page bottom but @ the Sandbox website. page 2 top on my own.
d- MV citizenship - 1st page bottom @ the Sandbox website. Page 7 on my own
e- naturalization + Boston - nowhere
f- citizenship + Boston = nowhere
g- civics classe + Lowell = 1st page bottom
h - civics classes - merrimack valley - 1st page @ Sandbox website. page 6 my facebook page not website
i- civics classes + boston area - nowhere
j- civics tutoring in MA - nowhere
Food for thought........
7/2/2013 - Marketing - the 4Ps of Marketing
Stephanie Cauvet from MFA gave this class and WOW!! LOVED IT!
I personally believe that marketing is my worst part. I don't get it. Today I could name things for the first time in my life.
She put so many questions out there very clearly for me to understand. As her workshop went on, I found myself just answering the questions for myself and my business.
An example of why I thought this was so good was the level of detail.. Take for instance the question of PLACE.
-if they look in a store, what kind? A specialist boutique or in a supermarket, or both? Or online? or direct, via a catalogue?-
See for a "green person" like me , I need examples after what kind?? Now I know I am specialist boutique (immigrant stores can fall in this category too).
Anyway, I hope to talk more with her about other possible marketing tools.....postcard mailings, great thing she mentioned that I had not thought of.
I have made some goals for this session:
1- permanent space in Lowell - must move out from home based office
2- decide best marketing options for my business - immigrant newspaper, church basements vs high tech. Attract steady clientele
3- mprove website, be concise. Add 2 languages; Portuguese and Spanish
As each of us stated our goals we received feedback from our peers. I actually believed I got very good feedback. Brad Durbin of Ubersimple gave me a great idea. Coffee and Donuts get together! Why didn't I think of that????? This will be perfect for a chuch basement meeting like Erin Freeborn from JCRJD suggested. Erin mentioned that research into segment such as mine, revealed that a lot of advertising really is unnecessary. That most will actually come from world of mouth and from church basements where the element of TRUST is included. That much I know,(Trust factor) but I did not know there was a study about it.
Chavvy Sinuon from Style this Shinding suggested that in order to broad my geographical base I should call the Office of New Bostonians and offer my program. It's next on my list. David Parker believes that instead of sending blast text messages, I should call each person I have helped so far to see if they would be willing to refer more people to me.
A lot to do based on the above info because really they are all so good and appropriate for my business!
Thank you all.
6/25/2013 - Sidd Goyal and Testing Assumptions
Sidd is very enganging and excellent in how he delivers his lecture. Expanding on the Value Proposition, Channels and Customer Segment in very plain words, Sidd gave us a way to identify, break down our customer segment.
WHAT, WHY, THE JOB, THE PAIN, THE SOLUTION - for every customer segment
We should Hypothesyze, experiment and analyze in rapid succesion and be able to quantify our results.
His "shoe sale" example was quite interesting.