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From Karen Saunders

Your Branding, Marketing & Self-Publishing Coach



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May 27th, 2017 | By: Karen Saunders

Keep a Website Safe from Hackers by Using an SSL Certificate

With the recent surge in website hacking, many small businesses are asking how to keep a website safe from hackers. For many small businesses their website is their most important marketing tool, and it’s essential that their website remains live and working well! Lauren Klopfenstein, of Lauren Graphics, Inc. has a few good tips on how to keep a website safe from hackers. Her team builds and maintains websites for many of my clients. Did you know Google or your host company may take your website down if they see it has been hacked? They have an automated sensor that can tell…

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April 27th, 2017 | By: Karen Saunders

How to destroy a brand! The importance of maintaining a good company brand

Never underestimate the importance of maintaining a good company brand. The recent horrific event that took place on United Airlines illustrates this point, and shows how company policy and procedures can interfere with and destroy a company’s brand. When Dr. David Dao was assaulted and dragged unconscious off the aircraft for refusing to give up his paid-for seat, it showed total lack of customer care, compassion, and ethics. The incident happened after United flight attendants could not find any takers for an $800 travel voucher credit due to an overbooked flight. The management followed company policy which involved selecting four…

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March 27th, 2017 | By: Karen Saunders

10 Deadly Book Production Mistakes Made by Self-Publishers

At the top of the list of the most common book production mistakes is: 1. The book was not edited! You should ALWAYS hire a professional book editor to edit your book. Find someone who specializes in your genre. Don’t ask your child’s English teacher! An expert editor will comb through your manuscript and will let you know if you should hire her for content editing, copy editing or both. To learn the difference, click this link to go to my blog post that explains the distinction. 2. The book does not have a professional cover design. Your book deserves an eye-catching cover…

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February 26th, 2017 | By: Karen Saunders

Professional Book Design: How to carry a graphic theme throughout the book

One of the hallmarks of a professionally published book is the attention to the details. When my team designer Kerrie Lian designed the interior of my client’s book, she used several elements related to airplane pilots to carry a graphic theme throughout the book. The title of the book was: If the Customer’s the Copilot, You’re in the Wrong Seat. My client, Brian Dennis used a pilot metaphor when he wrote and self-published this book on customer service. Marty Petersen, our team illustrator created the stunning cover illustration of the interior of an airplane cockpit. Here is the front cover: This is the first chapter’s title page….

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December 29th, 2016 | By: Karen Saunders

Change client testimonials? YES! Edit to polish and add value.

Have you heard this advice: “Never edit or change client testimonials.” Not true! You SHOULD edit testimonials so they’re professional and add value. You can polish and edit client testimonials with a light touch. Just be careful not to change the meaning. This article is from one of my team members, Patrice Rhoades-Baum. As a marketing consultant and branding expert, she guides solopreneurs – such as professional speakers, corporate consultants, and business coaches – to create a clear brand, strategic website, and polished one sheet brochure. Patrice has a 35-year marketing background: 25 years in high-tech corporate marketing + 10 years as a business owner. She specializes…

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November 29th, 2016 | By: Karen Saunders

Branding and Publishing for Speaker Launching His Business

Our team recently provided branding and publishing for speaker Brian Dennis. We guided Brian through the process of self-publishing his second book while at the same time created his brand, built his website and designed his marketing toolkit within a 4 month period. The expedited schedule was precipitated on an important upcoming speaking opportunity for Brian. My publishing team members edited his book, designed the book interior, finished the cover, converted it into an ebook and uploaded the files to Kindle, Barnes & Noble and Apple within 3 months. Meanwhile, other members of my team created his brand and marketing toolkit with a new…

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October 29th, 2016 | By: Karen Saunders

DIVI Theme Website Looks Custom Designed But Costs Less

My team is always finding ways we can cut costs and time yet retain high quality in website design. Recently I’ve been telling my clients and prospects, “A DIVI Theme Website Looks Custom But Costs Less.” Most websites are built in WordPress now, and my website design team found a third party template called DIVI by Elegant Themes that integrates very well with WordPress. We’ve found it has the robust capability and features to deliver on this promise. It is very flexible and responsive with lots of premade layouts and content elements, saving hundreds of hours of laborious coding. The flexibility allows us…

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August 29th, 2016 | By: Karen Saunders

Self Publishers Can Use Media Mail to Save on Shipping Costs

Self Publishers Can Use Media Mail to ship books to their customers and save over 50% on postage costs. This is a special low rate the United States Postal Service offers for shipping books, CDs, DVDs, videotapes, printed music and sound recordings weighing 70 pounds or less in the USA. Computer drives, video games, or digital drives do NOT qualify for Media Mail rates. The delivery time is anywhere from 2 to 8 business days. The US Postal service reserves the right to open these packages to verify they qualify for media mail. Including a price sheet for your books is allowed, however, inserting a…

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July 28th, 2016 | By: Karen Saunders

Why Use Active Verbs Instead of Passive?

Why Use Active Verbs Instead of Passive? This is part 3 of a 3-part series by my team editor Barbara McNichol on communicating clearly and writing like a pro. During the summer months of June, July and August, I’ll post a 3-part series on helpful writing tips by Barbara.  You’ve probably been urged to use active verbs when you write but do you know why? Because sentences written with active verbs: Clearly spell out the action being performed and who is doing it. Convey the ideas more quickly and directly than passive sentences. Frequently require fewer words than passive sentences when space is limited. Two clues help you identify “passive” use…

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