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Connie Peters – Modern Mama Inc.

Connie Peters is an Elite Mompreneur member based out of Vancouver, BC. She is the CEO and Founder of Modern Mama Inc., where the goal is “getting moms out of the house” by offering services for expecting and new moms, and being a resource for moms in five major Canadian Cities through the first years of motherhood. We’re excited to share Connie’s Success Story!

mompreneur Connie Peters of Modern Mama Inc.


What inspired you to become an entrepreneur?
I had quit my job in software technology to be a stay-at-home mom, but within a few months I was looking for ways to use my creativity and get out and meet other moms in my new city at the time, Edmonton. I started hosting events for new moms in early 2008 and have since grown across Western Canada through licensing, print resource guides and our website.

What’s the best part about owning your own business?
I knew before I even started Modern Mama that my business had to be something I could do from home, because being at home around my girls and being able to be flexible around their schedules was my main priority. Nine years later, I still love being able to attend field trips, pick them up from school, and be here for them before and after their school day.

Can you describe a typical day?
While I get the girls ready for their day by making three school lunches, emptying the dishwasher, getting them breakfast, and feeding our three pets, I also quickly check in on my social channels and emails. After I get the girls off to school, I usually exercise and then sit down in the kitchen and tackle a few to-do’s like writing a blog post, coaching a new licensee or sending off sales emails. A few times a week I’ll have meetings or attend networking events out of the house. Continue reading Connie Peters – Modern Mama Inc.

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3 Ways to Increase Traffic to Your Website

By Ruth Ann Hogue

get your website noticed - small business tips from godaddy for mompreneurs

A website without traffic is like a knickknack on the shelf — pretty to look at, but otherwise nonfunctional except for collecting dust bunnies.

Now, imagine that same knickknack on a shelf with hundreds, thousands, even millions of other curiosities, each vying for attention. Which ones will get noticed, and which ones will be virtually invisible?

The simple answer is that it depends on who is looking, and what their purpose is in viewing the collection. A potential buyer who is focused on original Hummels will be able to spot them immediately, whereas someone else might be drawn to anything remotely shabby chic as inspiration for their next crafting project.

Much like in the world of collectibles, the traffic a website attracts will vary, based on a few simple factors. The good news is that there are some controllables, and despite the overwhelming competition for eyeballs, even small websites can boost performance by optimizing for search engines, using social media channels, and implementing a paid advertising strategy.

Be searchable

It all begins with Search Engine Optimization (SEO, which has always included having a good website, complete with an uncluttered, organized design and a sitemap to help search engines crawl and index your content. If the bots can’t find your content because spiders are blocked or pathways drop off suddenly in unexpected places, your-otherwise amazing site will likely fail to get the attention it deserves.

In 2017, effective SEO includes making your site user-friendly — especially for mobile. Because a high percentage of online buyers research their purchase using a smartphone, it makes sense to design eCommerce sites for mobile first, with desktop usability being secondary.

Other SEO tips include securing your site with a Secure Socket Layer Certificate (SSL). While the certificate itself provides a minimal boost, its presence can provide assurance to potential site visitors, making it less likely that they will avoid your site for security reasons. Continue reading 3 Ways to Increase Traffic to Your Website

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Erin Bouchard – Once Upon A Time Weddings

Erin Bouchard is an Elite Mompreneur member based out of Strathroy, Ontario. She is the owner of Once Upon a Time Weddings, where her bridal store is set up for the ultimate gown shopping experience! We are excited to share Erin’s Success Story!

mompreneur Erin Bouchard of Once Upon a Time Weddings in Strathroy, Ontario


What inspired you to become an entrepreneur?
From a young age my parents instilled in me a strong work ethic. I grew up knowing how to work hard whether it was delivering papers, helping my dad out, or babysitting. I learned what it took to complete a job and learned the importance of following through. I have a very dominant personality and so I always enjoyed being my own boss. I wanted to control my own destiny and my own pay cheque. I wanted to work in the bridal industry because I so enjoyed being a small part of a bride’s most important day. I’m a fairly creative person and wanted a job that was different each day.

What’s the best part about owning your own business? 

Honestly the best part of owning my own boss is knowing that I have created something to be proud of.  At the end of the day I can control my mindset, my salary and how my day goes.  I enjoy the ability to work hard and to see the rewards of that hard work.  I love that I am teaching my kids the value of hard work and that you can follow your dreams.

Can you describe a typical day?
In the bridal world, every day can be very different. For me, my day starts early. I start my day at 6:15am by reading and having some quiet time. Then I hit my big rocks; the things that will have the biggest impact on moving my business to success. Once my kids are up I put my mom hat on and get them ready for school and out to the bus. Then I continue my day with a walk and some stretching.  Then it’s on to my to-do lists. Some days I am working with staff, leading and guiding them. Some days I am coaching other bridal stores, holding them accountable and helping them reach their goals. Other days I’m tucked away in my office working on finances and strategical planning. I absolutely love what I do and that makes a huge difference. I try my hardest not to work late into the night as I know my best work gets done first thing in the morning, and I want to be refreshed and ready to tackle those tasks.

mompreneur Erin Bouchard of Once Upon a Time Weddings in Strathroy, Ontario

Who do you count on for help? Do you have a network of family that answer the call? 
I have a close friend who also happens to own a bridal store in the US. She is someone I can FaceTime when I’m struggling or when I need to vent. I also have a very close relationship with my mom {who also works for me} that I can rely on and count on for help either in my personal life or with my business.  Continue reading Erin Bouchard – Once Upon A Time Weddings

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Important Sleep Facts

The key aspects to a healthy lifestyle, as most of us know, include a healthy diet, daily exercise, and getting enough sleep so that your body is able to recover and restore itself effectively. Sleep is one of those things that many of us use as a crutch or even as an excuse, especially when it comes to our lives as entrepreneurs and/or as parents.

Having a late start to your day because you stayed up until 2am to complete some work on your desk? Taking the day off of work because your toddler had a nightmare and you didn’t get enough sleep? We’ve all been there, but it’s important to make sure that you consider your sleep habits to be as important as your positive eating, working, and healthy living habits.

sleep tips for mompreneurs and women in business

Thanks to Elite Mompreneur member Madelaine Golec of ECO Physio, we’re happy to share these 10 things you need to know about sleep:

No one’s sleep is broken. Unless you have a tumour in a very specific spot in the brain, everyone has the potential to improve their sleep

Treating sleep apnea is of utmost importance. If left untreated, it can result in an enlarged heart. When the airways close during the night, this causes your heart rate to slow down to conserve oxygen. The brain eventually detects a decrease in oxygen and causes your heart rate to increase. It is this increasing and decreasing of heart rate over time that causes the heart to enlarge. Why is this bad? Because it can cause irregular heartbeats resulting in heart attack, stroke or death.

How much sleep do we really need? About 7-9 hours daily. Each person can accumulate a certain amount of sleep debt, meaning the amount of sleep you can lose while remaining functional at the level you want. The amount of debt will depend on age, gender, genetics and medical conditions. It is important to note here that debts must be paid in order to maintain that optimal function.

What are the consequences of not sleeping? Decreased decision making, decreased memory, increased blood pressure, increased heart rate, increased stress, increased pain, slow reaction time, decreased sexual function, weight gain and more. All of this can be reversed by improving sleep. Continue reading Important Sleep Facts

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Win Customers With Your Blog

Your blog can be a valuable tool in engaging your customers, but it takes time to develop and maintain…

tips for a successful blog

If you are using a blog as a marketing strategy, you want to make sure that you are using it effectively. Here are some tips that will help you create a blog that actually brings customers through your door.

Content is key.

People are going to visit and revisit your blog because of its content.  If you post information that is useful and relevant to their lives, readers will flock to your blog.  Get to know your target audience and try to determine what motivates them.  Remember, you should be educating and entertaining at least 70% of the time and promoting your business no more than 30% of the time.

Be strategic.

You need to be clear with yourself about what you are trying to achieve with your blog.  Are you building your brand?  Are you engaging your customers?  Are you establishing expertise?  While these goals may all sound good to you, your social media strategy will be more effective if you zero in on one or two goals at a time and have a clear plan for how each post will contribute to it.

Engage.

Social media is supposed to be about people, so make it human.  Respond to comments and comment on other blogs.  Post pictures and allow your readers to see the person behind the voice in the blog.

Be consistent.

As you begin to build a following, readers will start to anticipate your next blog.  If you have a regular schedule for posting, you make your blog a lot more reader friendly.  You can post every day, every other day, or on set days of the week.  The key is to be consistent with it so that your readers know what to expect.

Make it attractive.

Blogs succeed or fail based on the way that they look.  If a blog is not visually appealing, most people will just click past it.  Allow for enough white space and include pictures in your blog.  Blogs with photos tend to get a lot more hits than those without them.  If you’re not sure about how your blog looks, solicit feedback from people in your network. Continue reading Win Customers With Your Blog

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Mother’s Day Giveaway!

benefits for a mompreneur having kids

We know how hard moms work, and when you throw entrepreneurship in the mix, we know things can get even crazier! This Mother’s Day, we wanted to do a little something to let our members know that we appreciate them…

Thanks to our partners at Coca-Cola Canada, we are excited to be able to offer Admit-One passes to Cineplex Theatres to Mompreneur members across Canada!

With such a vast network of over 17,000 women entrepreneurs, and a limited number of passes available, we’ve selected members randomly, each of whom will receive a special card in the mail hand-written by our Founder & CEO, Maria Locker containing an Admit-One pass — whether you go solo, with family, or with friends, we’re excited to be able to “take you to the movies”!

But wait, there’s more!

We’ve put together a Mother’s Day Package for one lucky Mompreneur worth over $200, which includes:

  • 4 x Admit-One passes to Cineplex Theatres
  • a 1-year subscription to Mompreneur Magazine
  • a selection of 4 business books from previous speakers at the Mompreneurs Conference
  • a beautiful pashmina scarf
  • a “Mompreneur – #OurTribe” t-shirt


CONGRATULATIONS TO Michelle Watterson of Cat Nap Cottages Inc. – our winner of the Mother’s Day Giveaway!



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Business Grants & Financing Programs

There are many opportunities for women entrepreneurs to gain access to capital through business grants and financing programs, though we have to admit – it’s often very tricky to actually hear about these opportunities, or find them easily online! We’ve compiled a quick and easy breakdown of the key links to help you explore options for your own business.


(If you know of any other opportunities that you feel should be added to this list, please let us know by emailing info@themompreneur.com)


Canada Small Business Financing Program

The Canada Small Business Financing Program makes it easier for small businesses to get loans from financial institutions by sharing the risk with lenders, through Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada. This is not a grant program.

List of Lenders — find out which banks and credit unions are affiliated with this program

Guidelines for Loans — find out what loans can be used for, and whether you are eligible


Canada Business Network — Grant Search Tool

Explore opportunities to receive public funds to help propel your business – certain opportunities apply to businesses in all provinces and territories, and others apply only to businesses in a specific region.

Grants, Contributions and Financial Assistance


Canada Business Network — Private Sector Financing

Private Sector Lenders and investors offer various types of financing in order to earn a return on their money, ultimately deciding whether to provide you and your company with financing after assessing the risks and potential rewards of doing business with you.

Types of Private Sector Financing — a great breakdown of opportunities and helpful links, from Angel Investors, Venture Capital, Business Incubators, Crowdfunding, and more.


Need More Info?

Looking for other organizations and groups to further support your journey in entrepreneurship?

Visit the HELPFUL LINKS page for a comprehensive list of organizations across Canada ready to help you take your business to the next level!


 

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SAVE at The Art of Leadership for Women

The Art of Leadership for Women returns to Toronto on June 13th, 2017, bringing together a collection of five world renowned bestselling authors, thought leaders and visionaries.

This one-day conference will help you lead more effectively, adapt to the challenges of today’s rapidly changing business environment and provide your organization with a sustainable competitive edge.

This conference will sell out! Register today and SAVE up to $100 per pass with our special Mompreneurs offer!

The Art of Leadership for women in Toronto - Mompreneurs

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Jennifer Hook – Cherish Time Concierge Inc.

Jennifer Hook is an Elite Mompreneur member based out of Halton Region in Ontario, and she is the “Chief Time Manager” at Cherish Time Concierge Inc., where she helps clients manage their time and live a life that has a little less stress and a little more time for what or who they love. We are excited to share Jennifer’s Success Story!

mompreneur Jennifer Hook of Cherish Time Concierge Inc


What inspired you to become an entrepreneur?
I wanted to spend more quality time with my family, especially my children. I would go to work, having seen my daughter for all of 20 minutes in the morning, and I would have pick up duty at night. She was often very cranky at that point as she was tired from a long day. We would get home and I would quickly make dinner. After eating and bath, she’d be off to bed. I never got to spend any quality time with her. I know that owning your own business is not a walk in the park, and most days you work more hours than you would in the office. However, I wanted to choose when I worked and this allows me the flexibility, to a certain degree, to do so. I also wanted to feel like I was contributing more to the world than I was at my previous job. After losing my mother, as well as being sick myself, it gave me the drive to follow my passion.

What’s the best part about owning your own business?  
The best part about owning my own business is that I know I’m giving back to the world in the way that I have wanted to, but had not been doing. I’m giving back to my clients by relieving stress and giving them time to do what’s important to them. I’m giving back to my family by being able to be there when they need me. I’m giving back to myself by focusing on what’s important in my life and in turn giving the world (and my family) the best version of me. I’m dedicating time to giving back with my business so I can make a difference to those in need as well.

mompreneur Jennifer Hook of Cherish Time Concierge Inc - family Continue reading Jennifer Hook – Cherish Time Concierge Inc.

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How to Identify Your Style Personality

Written by Christina Proctor

how to identify your style personality - written by mompreneur Christina Proctor

Personality types can be divided into five unique styles: classic, creative, dramatic, natural and romantic. To determine where you lie, read the descriptions below and take a tour in your closet. Can you see any trends in your purchases? Which category do they fit into?

You may find your style personality falls into several different types. You are a unique individual with a diverse lifestyle. Your style personality will reflect this and may change depending on the environment. For example, your style for work may differ from your style for play. Further, you may find your style has changed as you aged, as you changed careers, or as you altered your lifestyle in some other way (e.g. by having children). Determining your preferences will help you narrow in on the person you are and who you want to be, so you are better able to dress for yourself. Now that’s a beautiful thing!

“The Classic”

This style is traditional, elegant, and timeless, with items in tailored cuts. You may find an abundance of structured suits, jackets, pencil skirts and trousers in your closet, in classic colours like black, cream, brown, beige. Fabrics such as light wools, fine cotton, and silks make up the majority of your wardrobe and are easily mixed and matched. Accessories are made of traditional materials like gold, silver, and pearls, with simple designs. You choose a timeless hairstyle, accompanied by a safe and predictable makeup routine. Quality is valued over quantity and investment buying is preferred. Your style is best described as “understated,” “refined,” and “sophisticated.”

“The Creative”

This style values uniqueness and trend-setting above all else. Interested in runway looks, but always adding a twist, you combine interesting colours, textures, and themes into your outfits. You may find unusual silhouettes in your closet, with garments from a collection of different decades. Fabrics are glittered or shined, with exotic or geometric prints. With this style, you aim to stand out, as the dressing is considered a true art form. Jewelry is bold, costumed, and eye-catching. Your hairstyle is often long and curled, or short and dramatic, which is combined with an experimental and ever-changing makeup routine. Your style is best described as “eclectic,” “unpredictable,” and “one-of-a-kind.” Continue reading How to Identify Your Style Personality