LBC CLIENTS CELEBRATE A PROFITABLE + PRODUCTIVE 2018

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My clients made *big* money moves in 2018 and I’m so stinkin’ proud of their courage, tenacity, and smarts!  I’ve noticed that many of us are “head down” and eyeball-deep in the hustle, and we rarely surface to celebrate the wins. Celebrate client wins is one of my most favorite things to do, and as one of my final blogs of 2018, I wanted to pop a cork and celebrate the tremendous strides we’ve made both individually and collectively.

 

Celebrating Big Client Wins of 2018

 

I could be here all day tooting the horns of the Lucky Break community, but I’ve pulled together a handful of my favorite client wins from the year to share. I hope you find them as inspiring as I do!

 

Christy Rose of KBShimmer in  Terre Haute, IN also rocked a major rebrand this year, seriously up-leveling her collection of nail polishes. In the process, she expanded her team to include 3 full-time staff (in addition to Christy and her husband, who both work at KBShimmer). Even better? She hit her dream sales mark as of October 30, secured three international wholesale stockists to expand the brand reach, and grew her FB fan group by a respectable 28%.  Woooohooo!

How have we worked with Christy? LBU Graduate, member of the Alumni Coaching Community, Price-O-Matic software, Brick House Branding graduate, my GMP class, Wholesale Matchmaker member, VIP Line Sheet Design.

 

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Kara Brook of Waxing Kara in Owing Mills, MD enjoyed a phenomenal year in the press. Among the highlights: She scored an 8-page (!) spread in the autumn issue of Danny Seo’s magazine, Naturally Danny Seo. Her artisan honey was also in the NYTimes, resulting in hundreds of orders and scads of new fans.  And her Haute Cocoa gift set took top honors in the IBN Artisan Awards for the “Bath + Body” product category, too.

How have we worked with Kara? LBU Graduate, member of the Alumni Coaching Community, VIP Line Sheet Design, both my GMP + Spa Market classes, and private strategy sessions.

 

Sara Runser of LILY DE MAI in NY launched her brand and enjoyed a delicious round of press, including NY Magazine, Shape, Coastal Living, US Weekly and Style Caster.

How have we worked with Sara? LBU graduate, member of the Alumni Coaching Community, Price-O-Matic software, member of Wholesale Matchmaker, VIP Line Sheet Design, and private strategy sessions.

 

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Michelle Smith of MamaSuds in recently underwent a major rebrand and all of that hard work has reaped some rich rewards this year.  Sales are up 40% versus 2017 figures.  She took home an accolade from the IBN Artisan Awards, too, in the form of top honors for the “Lifestyle + Home” category for her Laundry Soap.

How have we worked with Michelle? LBU Graduate, member of the Alumni Coaching Community, Price-O-Matic software, Brick House Branding graduate, Wholesale Matchmaker member, and private strategy sessions.

 

Renan Kennedy of Sans Skincare has doubled her revenue in 2018, in addition to being honored several times throughout the year. She was named one of SCORE’s American Small Business Championship winners of 2018. As part of that competition, Renan was flown to Reno, NV for a celebration and intensive business workshops with industry professionals. She also pitched and was accepted by Home Shopping Network to participate in their intensive business incubator program. That meant another trip to Tampa, FL to attend an amazing week of business workshops put on by HSN.

How have we worked with Renan? LBU Graduate, member of the Alumni Coaching Community, Price-O-Matic software, my GMP class + spa market classes, Wholesale Matchmaker member, and private strategy sessions.

 

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Angie Chua of bobo design studio in San Jose, CA  won the Indie Source competition at the MAGIC tradeshow in Las Vegas after a live pitch event. That accolade was accompanied by a $5,000 prize to help bring a new product to fruition. Angie’s also been recognized by local community officials, who awarded her a pop-up shop in downtown San Jose for six solid months! And that storefront is paying big dividends… Angie recently enjoyed the biggest sales day in the history of her company on Small Business Saturday this year.

How have we worked with Angie? Brick House Branding graduate, member of the Alumni Coaching Community, Price-O-Matic software, and private strategy sessions.

 

Stacia Guzzo of SmartyPits in Tehachapi, CA had a banner year all the way round! She raised over $18,000 for City of Hope’s breast cancer research program through the sales of her priobiotic deodorant collection , and the SmartyPits team participated in their annual Walk for Hope. The brand expanded its retail reach from 150 to 900+ (1) stores while adding four teammates and a forklift to their lineup.

How have we worked with Stacia? LBU graduate, Brick House Branding graduate, member of the Alumni Coaching Community, Price-O-Matic software, my GMP class, line sheet design, and private strategy sessions.

 

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Sarah Villafranco of Osmia Organics in Carbondale, CO launched a new initiative on Earth Day in 2018, vowing to plant one tree for every order they receive. In just over six months, she and her team have planted 12,609 trees! She hosted one hell of a Cyber Monday sale, planting 1,584 trees on that day alone. She also launched her limited edition “Craft Series” products as a way to indulge her creative side and play with some deliciously exotic ingredients. Each of those runs of products has sold out, sometimes in as little as a few hours. The icing on the cake? Sarah’s gorgeous soaps made the NYTimes Gift Guide!

How have we worked with Sarah? My GMP class and private strategy sessions.

 

Tamiko Blake of Sweet & True Sugaring in Walnut Creek, CA has seen a huge surge in revenue in 2018.  In fact, it’s up 250% (!!!) versus 2017 and she’s on the verge of launching an exciting new facial collection under a separate brand umbrella.

How have we worked with Tammy? LBU graduate, Brick House Branding gradate, Member of the Alumni Coaching Community, Price-O-Matic software, both my GMP + spa market classes, and private strategy sessions.

 

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Zandra Cunningham of Zandra Beauty in Buffalo, NY had a banner year in terms of both exposure and support. She graced the pages of magazines and the airwaves of major television networks, from The Today Show to Entrepreneur Magazine. She pitched Shark Tank and the executives at Sephora offered to support the line, too. Zandra graduated high school in 2018 and bought her first car in cash. Huzzah!

How have we worked with Zandra? LBU graduate, Brick House Branding graduate, Member of the Alumni Coaching Community, Price-O-Matic software, my GMP class, and private strategy sessions.

 

Aubrey Miller of REDBUDSUDS in Canton, OH landed an interesting deal with NuCamp, makers of teardrop trailers. She’s been supplying them her multipurpose soap bars for several years now, as NuCamp gifts a bar to each new trailer owner. But in keeping with Audrey’s mission to live simply and get outside, NuCamp offered her a custom trailer for a year and sponsored a nationwide pop-up tour for REDBUDSUDS. Pretty amazing, eh? And just wait until you see the custom trailer!  She was also accepted into the Skip Yowell Future Leadership Academy, a business training put on by the Outdoor Industry Association. It’s a 6-month training program in manufacturing, sustainability, and environmental advocacy as well as personal growth and development and Aubrey is honored to be one of only 35 people selected to participate.

How have we worked with Aubrey? LBU graduate, Brick House Branding graduate, Member of the Alumni Coaching Community, Price-O-Matic software, and private strategy sessions.

 

Holly Marshmueller of Marshmeuller in Astoria, OR hit the trifecta of launches: relaunching her brand, launching a new website theme for her retail site, and revamping her wholesale website (including some Google-Fu level coding)! She was also accepted into Crafty Wonderland for the fifth consecutive year and the popular “Scary Mommy” blog opened an official shop which carries Holly’s line.

How have we worked with Holly? LBU graduate, member of the Alumni Coaching Community, Price-O-Matic software, member of Wholesale Matchmaker.

 

BRINGING HOME THE ACCOLADES

Several members of the Lucky Break community scooped some handsome awards, including…

  • Becky Bluh of Bluh Alchemy netted a record-breaking FOUR nominations in the Indie Beauty Expo Awards. She’s a BHB graduated who’s launching her rebrand in January pf 2019, alongside the announcement that she’s landed her dream stockists, though we can’t spill the beans just yet!
  • Ebru Karuzoglu of AveSeena was also nominated in the Indie Beauty Expo Awards.
  • Molly Beane and her From Molly with Love brand received a nomination in the Indie Beauty Expo Awards.
  • Stacia Guzzo of SmartyPits garnered a nod, too, via the Indie Beauty Expo Awards.
  • Heather Lux of True North captured an honorable mention title in the IBN Awards.
  • Lisa Kennally of Wild Air Skincare received an honorable mention in the IBN Awards as well.

 

NATIONAL DISTRIBUTION DEALS

I was particularly excited to see several members of our community land national distribution deals. An especially robust high-five goes out to…

  • Gwen Jimmere of Naturalicious launched into Sally Beauty Supply stores nationwide.
  • Iyanla Vanzant of MasterPeace Body Therapy landed a multi-appearance deal with HSN.
  • Pamela Jenkins of Koils by Nature shimmied onto the shelves of Target.

 

Sharing that news with you makes me grin from ear-to-ear! I salute the hard work of each you and I’m privileged to have a front row seat to much of this growth. Did you enjoy a win in 2018? I hope you’ll leave a comment below to shout it out.  I’d love to celebrate with you!

 

The 2018 Holiday Gift Guide: Artisan Gifts from Makers + Product Designers

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We were coming off the heels of a big election cycle in America as I sat down to design our 2018 Holiday Gift Guide. After a year that saw an tremendous divide come to light in this country, many months of side-eye as increasingly acrimonious political ads blared across our screens, and wave after wave of hurricanes and wildfires seemed to wash over us… I was ready to submerge myself in a happy bubble by curating some of my favorite products from among the Lucky Break client community.

 

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This project became cathartic in some sense, and as I started pulling together beautiful collections of design-centric products made with heart by some of the best small businesses I know, I was once again reminded of how incredibly grateful I am for artisans. For small businesses. For communities. And for courage. The Lucky Break roster of clients has all of that in spades. It drips from our pores and its’s what drives us when we’re on our eleventh work hour of the day.

 

As I dug deeper, this project evolved from the Holiday Gift Guide to the Holiday Gift Encyclopedia Britannica. What began as an idea to recommend 48 gifts ballooned into 55 page catalog featuring 230+ suggestions. Forgive me… for I have a hard time editing myself when it comes to singing my clients’ praises.  I was again reminded of the magic we make together and I’m incredibly inspired by how many of these brands have moved the ball forward this year in big, big ways. You peeps have been busy!

 

Open the 2018 Holiday Gift Guide to discover hundreds of unique offerings from some of the amazing small businesses I have the privilege of working alongside. Whether I’ve helped them nail down their pricing strategy, or get their work into more shops, or dig deeper into their brand to better communicate the value they deliver, I’m honored to help amplify their voices.

 

The Holiday Gift Guide for Makers + Product Designers

 

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Lucky Break is hiring! ISO a Skilled Graphic Designer

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We’re on the hunt for our newest teammate: a graphic designer with excellent communication skills, a killer work ethic, and a mastery of design software. Sound like you? If so, we hope you’ll read on!

 

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This is a remote, part-time position open to those in within the United States, averaging 3-4 hours per week. You’ll be working from the comfort of your living room, communicating a few times per week via email + Slack (and occasionally by phone) with other members of the Lucky Break team.

 

You’ll need to have access to Adobe Creative Cloud software including: Adobe InDesign, Illustrator, Photoshop, and Acrobat Pro.

 

HERE’S WHAT YOUR WORK WILL LOOK LIKE…

 

You’ll need to have a very strong working knowledge of Adobe InDesign for editing and creating the following types of assets:

  • Workbooks, worksheets, and linked resource lists (including applying and editing headers and footers using Master pages), including exporting to PDF
  • Downloadable documents and e-books, including an understanding of saving optimized PDF files for web
  • Web-based graphics, such as promotional and social media graphics
  • Printed marketing collateral, signage, and print-ready documents (ex. the ability to design for proper bleeds, margins, and other press requirements)
  • Creating and editing tables within InDesign to create custom order forms or worksheets

 

We’re looking for a strong understanding of Adobe Acrobat Pro, including:

  • Creating fillable PDF forms from PDF documents
  • Editing and organizing pages
  • Creating PDFs from multiple documents

 

Must have a strong understanding of Adobe Illustrator.

 

Must have a strong working knowledge of Photoshop, including:

  • Designing webpage mockups for a developer
  • Working in organized layers and groups
  • Exporting optimized images for web use

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The Lucky Break Consulting Calendar – October 2018

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October is here and the Lucky Break team is officially in one of the busiest months of the year for my team. As you’re ramping up for the holiday season, we’re ramping up for 2019. This month we’ll spend a lot of team time planning what’s coming next for the Lucky Break community, and it’s one of my most favorite activities of the year. I hope you set some time over the next few months to dream about what 2019 might hold for you and your business, too.

 

If 2019 is the year you’re digging deep into your brand, then don’t miss enrollment for my Winter 2019 semester of BHB. Class kicks off in mid-January, but enrollment is happening now through Oct 12. My Operations Manager Melissa and I will also be over on Facebook Live today answering your branding questions, so be sure to stop by!

 

Whatever you’re working on, know that I’m cheering you on!

 

October 2018 Calendar

Click to download + print the October 2018 Lucky Break Calendar

PAGING ATLANTA-AREA PHOTOGRAPHERS!

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I’m in need of an Atlanta area photographer for a one-day shoot in the famed Serenbe community just south of Atlanta. Here are the details…

 

 

WHEN: A one-day shoot on October 24 or 25, 2018.

 

WHERE: The uber-gorgeous penthouse of the Textile Lofts at Serenbe. My team will be staying in that same apartment for our annual retreat. We plan to shoot inside and outside on the private rooftop, and potentially at other spots within Serenbe. This often-photographed community is 35 minutes south of Atlanta.

 

WHO: I’m a business strategist that helps creative, product-based companies dive deeper into their brand development, price their products more strategically, and get them onto store shelves. I work with jewelers, stationery designers, artisan soap + candle makers, ceramicists, apparel designers, etc.

 

WHY: My small-but mighty team of 4 will be publishing a new website soon and we need some fresh imagery! I envision individual headshots, and shots of us gathered around a table, huddled over a computer screen, stuffing our mouths with doughnuts (we’re really good at that!), etc.

 

 

If you’re interested and available on those dates, then I invite you to send us a message with a link to your portfolio!