Work smarter, not harder. We'll show you how.
Business Camp was built for the experienced creative business owner, taking into consideration new challenges you face as you surpass the start-up phase.
Streamline Your Operations.
Business Camp provides actionable solutions to help you grow, strengthen and operate your creative small business more efficiently. We're talking about the business side of your business:
Is Business Camp for Me?
The topics at Business Camp are tailored towards entrepreneurs with at least three years in their business. You know what you're selling, you know how you want to take it to market, but you need a little help getting your house in order.
Business Camp is for product makers AND service providers. We had wedding planners, candle makers, stationery designers, web developers and even tax accountants at the conference. We're all united by the challenges of running a small business.
Business Camp is for you if you want to grow, scale and run your business more smoothly. If you believe there is always more to learn, this is for you. If hearing other people's stories, advice and warnings can help your business, enroll in this course.
8 Hours of Video. 30 Page Workbook. Community.
Flexible. Actionable. Motivating. You'll finish this course feeling confident, energized and armed with concrete information to refine your business systems. Plus, the online format lets you jump around to the topics that are most relevant to you, when you need them.
I never thought I’d hire someone, due to the intimidation of taxes, paychecks, and the responsibility for having employees. But at Business Camp, I learned that hiring someone full time isn’t my only option; there are lots of ways to bring people onto your team with flexible arrangements and without spending a ton of money. I’m feel confident bringing on my first hire now!
- Marie Chang, Marie Chang Designs
Beth Penn majorly schooled my brain about how I’ve been treating e-mail in my day-to-day. Based on her suggestions, I'm not letting e-mail be my to do list for the day or derail what I'm in the middle of doing. It's pretty much the greatest change I could make. E-mail has been a source of stress and guilt for me for years, and it doesn't have to be!
- Sara McNally, Constellation & Co.
Our speakers have been where you are now, and thrived.
Perception is Reality: Positioning For Success.
Tara Gentile, Business Strategist
You can tell your story or you can let others tell it for you. Businesses that succeed intentionally craft every detail of their stories. They leverage those stories to stand out in crowded markets, attract fiercely loyal customers, and garner praise from influencers. Learn how to craft the perception of your business from the inside out with Tara Gentile.
Building a Brand + Surviving Business Growth.
Jen Gotch, Ban.do
Creative Director and Founder of Ban.do, Jen Gotch, will share her story of building a multi-million dollar accessories company which got its start in her living room. She'll describe the ups, downs and sometimes sideways path she took to grow this business and offer tips for managing through the growing pains.
Hiring is Not One Size Fits All
Panel: Chelsea Shukov (Sugar Paper), Ellen Bennett (Hedley & Bennett), Katie Hunt (TSBC)
Moderator: Carina Murray (Crow & Canary)
Bringing in help for your company can be a game changer, and there are several ways to do it. The panel will discuss how we utilize different types of employees including full time, part time, independent contractors, virtual assistants and temp support in different roles. We’ll discuss interviewing, training, firing and how we knew it was time to bring in more support.
Product Differentiation: Stand Out In the Market
Craig Hetzer, Knock Knock
It takes more than one good idea or product to have a successful business. You need creativity, innovation and you need to know your market. Craig Hetzer, publisher at Knock Knock and formerly with Chronicle books, will talk about creating products with a unique point of view and how to stay relevant in the market place.
Mixing Marketing Strategies
Allyson VanHouten, MailChimp
Effective marketing plans include a mix of strategies that compliment each other. Allyson Van Houten of MailChimp will walk us through successful marketing tactics with a focus on newsletter marketing, blogs, social media and time saving tips on how you can repurpose content for email campaigns.
Master Your Tax Game + Find Hidden Savings
Hayley Tumanjan, Tumanjan & Co.
Oh small business taxes… Hayley Tumanjan will walk us through common income and expense items and discuss how to best address each on your tax return. She’ll focus on finding unexpected savings, deadlines to keep and translating what’s happening in your business into what’s happening on your tax bill.
Planning for Retirement as an Entrepreneur
Paul Leach, Merrill Lynch
Retirement savings is often the last thing on an entrepreneur’s mind, but saving for retirement early on will help you save money in the long and short run. Paul Leach, will discuss the best retirement plans for self-employed and small business owners, including SEP, 401k, Traditional and ROTH IRAs outlining contribution limits, benefits and rules.
DIY PR: Work the Media
Emily Wilson-Sawyer, Allison + Partners
PR is essential to getting the word out about your product / services, but not everyone has the funds to enlist a PR agency. Emily Wilson-Sawyer, VP at Allison + Partners will share insider tips based on her 15 + years of agency experience. She’ll talk about cyber stalking target journalists, friending social influencers, writing convincing pitch letters to break through the clutter, and even a super-secret tip for subject line labeling to get media to read your emails.
Building Your Team of Sales Reps
Carina Murray, Crow + Canary
Working with sales reps can expand your business in many ways. But, how does it work, how much do they charge, how do you know if you’re ready for reps? Carina Murray, principal sales rep at Crow & Canary will answer these questions and more about the benefits and logistics of working with reps.
Website Platforms + Plugins
Cathy Olson, Love Inspired
It’s easy to feel information overload with the plethora of web and shopsite platforms and plugins available. Cathy Olson from the website design studio Love-Inspired, will walk you through some of the best choices available right now. We’ll explore both WordPress & Shopify, and how to fully extend these platforms to really do the heavy lifting for you. Together we’ll identify both the best fit for your business now, and for future growth.
Manufacturing Overseas: Is it Right For You?
Elyse Tepper, Knock Knock
Your business is growing, production is increasing and you’re wondering if it might be time to explore manufacturing overseas. Elyse Tepper, Manufacturing Director from Knock Knock will break down the process – how it works logistically, when it makes sense financially, pitfalls to avoid and how to find trusted vendors. Program will include Q&A time.
Productivity Tools: Zero Inbox Email
Elizabeth Penn, BNeato Bar
Email doesn’t (and shouldn’t) have to be the biggest chore of your day. Beth Penn from BNeato Bar will walk us through strategies for managing email including setting up systems, filters and time saving apps, so we can get to zero inbox!
My biggest revelation of the entire Business Camp experience was during Jen Gotch’s presentation branding isn’t just some concept that I need to wrap my head around. Branding, and the growth of my brand is personal. And it’s personal because as small businesses our brand is us an amazing, inspired group of small business owners convinced that what we have to offer the world has value, and is fun, and that others can and will agree with us.
- Sarah Almond, Shed Letterpress
The DIY PR workshop was filled with really great, useful and practical information that I definitely plan on using in my own business moving forward. I now know how to develop a great list of press contacts both locally and nationally as well as a pitch calendar based on media lead times.
- Shayna Norwood, Steel Petal Press
I had a lot of “a-ha” moments throughout Tara Gentile's talk and found myself with so many great take-aways that I was able to incorporate into my business. I've hit the ground running!
- Debbie Lee, Penelope Press
As a designer, creator and business owner, the information I learned at Business Camp was invaluable.
- Caroline Hull, Caroline Creates