March Madness

There used to be a time when March meant the NCAA men’s basketball tournament to me… watching the games fervently through to the Final Four.  Now I’m more so into yoga and March is filled with all kinds of different yoga classes that fill my body and spirit and is way less hard on my body than the good ol’ days of b’ball!

March also includes new websites, two of which I am working on completing by the end of the week. Another, will be launched today and a fourth was completed over the weekend.  All built with WordPress, all for clients and organizations that I thoroughly enjoy: yoga, oysters, protecting PEI water and puppy products!

So, today I am grateful for the opportunity to do work I love for clients I pretty much love and will try to keep this frigid weather and obscene heating bill from getting me down.

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Mega Milestone is Marked: Marriage

by Rachel Peters

by Rachel Peters

I try to use fancy alliteration when I can, as in the title… and sometimes I drop the fact that I went to journalism school for a couple of years. (Actual reality: the athletic director got me in so I could play basketball and after two years, MVP and about 30 extra pounds from copious amounts of beer, I dropped out).

Back to facts and reality.  Dave and I were in Las Vegas and got married a couple of weeks ago.  It was A LOT of fun!!  We are planning on a big ol’ Island gathering to celebrate in the summer when our families can be here.

Here are the two photos we’ve received from Rachel Peters, wedding photographer extraordinaire, so far.  We raced around Nevada in our wedding finery, having an absolute blast with A LOT of giggles.   She liked our style, which was totally fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants, which flew in the face of any other wedding she had ever been involved with.  Examples:

Valley of Fire, Nevada  photo by Rachel Adams

photo by Rachel Adams

– after scouring second hand stores and a surreal, pawn-stars-like market, I said “Ummm, Rachel.  I don’t think we’ll be getting married tomorrow.”  And a big roar of laughter from Rachel saying she figured that and it was fine.

– upon learning that the officiant we hired the day before, was in fact an Elvis impersonator, Rachel and I laughed hysterically as we spotted him where we were meeting up.

– my new husband, when asked by the park officer why he was speeding through the Valley of Fire National Park, surreptitiously explained that we had a professional photographer with us and were trying to catch the sunset to which the park officer said “well, it’s going to take you even longer now” and he went back to his truck with the flashing lights.

All in all, it was a fantastic, memorable time, as one’s wedding should be!

Education 20/20 Round Table Discussion on Education and Preparedness

LearningA lot of discussions are going on about the state of education on PEI. Dr Glendenning was the founding president of Holland College and has put together a non-profit to try and do something about it, as he is very concerned but has hope that something can be done as long as the key stakeholders, parents especially, become more involved and engaged. One of the questions he asked me to consider when we met for coffee recently was “What do you expect from the school that you send your children to?”

If you’d like to get more involved, here’s a good place to start:

Education 20 20: Quality Education for All

You Are Invited to a
Presentation and Round Table Discussion on
(Storm date January 22, 2014)

“Education and Preparedness”

Monday, January 20, 2014 , 7:00 pm
Southport Room, Stratford Town Hall, Stratford, PEI

Agenda

. Opening remarks by D. Glendenning

. “Taking the Pulse of Island Youth” – a presentation by Steve McQuaid, Vice President, Community Foundation of Prince Edward Island and Katherine MacDonald, Researcher

C Facilitated Round-table Discussion: ;
The Report refers to “preparedness gaps in relation to both further study and entering the workforce. :
• Are there ways to close the gaps?
• Is there a role for Education 20/20?

D. Closing Comments: Bill Whelan

Coffee and Conversation to Follow

Education 20 20: Quality Education for All
Inform…. Engage… Encourage

Day 7: 7 Reasons I started The Techmobeel

1. I went to Indonesia and saw the technology that my brother was using in his grade 3 classroom, and I was blown away.

2. My friend back on PEI told me that her son went to the computer lab twice in grade five.

3. I found out there was an entire technology integration curriculum by the department of education that I didn’t feel was being adequately delivered after I went throughout the outcomes with my son and he knew less than 25% by the end of the school year.

4. Upon further research, I discovered that there was infinite free resources online for delivering education.

5. Dealing with the department of education and eastern school board was incredibly frustrating and disheartening, how incapable they were/are of giving straight answers.

6. I was inspired by teachers and principals that I spoke with who were excited about the use of educational technology, as well by the work being done within the school system by Peter Rukavina.

7. After developing and running two afterschool technology programs, I decided to get my own computers because of how unreliable the computers and internet were in a lab at a school that was brand new, in an affluent community.

So, I crowdfunded enough money to buy 12 laptops from my network that extended to around the world. More people and companies contributed and came on board so that I am now offering programming, robotics, 3D design and tutoring! Techmobeel to the rescue!!

20130328-234210.jpg

Day 2 – Old

Sally the Saab, April '12

Sally the Saab, April ’12

 

It's been a rough winter.

It’s been a rough winter.

Two things I own that are old and I should probably get rid of:

1. A 2003 Saab 9/3 which is falling apart, literally, I bought a year ago for $5k.  It was pristine but after a year it amazingly has started to fall apart.  The stereo, turbo engine and heated seats make it a little hard to let go.  Reliability-wise, not so good.  I have to rent a car to get to Ottawa next weekend.

2. A 140+ year old renovated house over-looking the water.  I’ve been renting it out for five years and living closer to town and my sons’ schools.   It’s a beautiful property with a big garage and loft, covered deck and south facing windows that look upon fields and the bay.

 

 

Good Tidings to You!

I have been on the road a lot in the past month but have had the good fortune to spend the majority of time with loved ones over the holidays which was a real blessing.  It was one of the best holiday seasons of recent memory.

A lot of driving can give the opportunity of reflection and with that a few things stood out in 2012 to me that I consider worth sharing regarding my business:

– I expanded into Ottawa and the majority of my business is located there but I’m able to do the majority of work virtually;

October 2012

October 2012

– a highlight was presenting a two-hour workshop to the Atlantic Judges Education Conference in October regarding the relevancy of social media in 2012. Some of the feedback pictured on the right;

– having the 40th company go through my training program on social media for professional use;

– launching a non-profit organization called the Techmobeel, a mobile training lab bringing educational technology to children and communities.

– received close to $10,000 in sponsorships from around the world in a 16 day campaign;

And many personal accomplishments including raising two healthy, happy, awesome boys aged 10 and 13.

Some of my goals for this New Year:

– to be more constructive and efficient with my time spent on the internet and computer;

– live more efficiently and leave less of a footprint;

– gain more global awareness;

– read more;

– get a hybrid vehicle for my 21st Century Social Business. My Saab just ain’t gonna cut

Hope to address the Techmobeel's mobile issue soon.

Hope to address the Techmobeel’s mobile issue soon.

it;

and to practice more yoga.

I wish you a wonderful year filled with good health and good fortune.

Namaste, Maureen

It’s been a busy couple of weeks.

I’ve been preparing to launch an Indegogo campaign to raise money for a mobile learning lab to bring educational technology to students throughout our province.

I had the pleasure of presenting to 50 provincial judges at their annual education conference on the relevancy of social media last week.

An accounting firm hired me for a lunch and learn on how to benefit from using LinkedIn.

And off to Ottawa to present to a property development firm on using social media for branding, networking and promoting of their properties.

In the meantime, I’ve been working on a few websites and set-up of a blog for a professional who wants to establish himself as an expert in his industry and use the blog as a way to categorize photos and videos of his profession.

I’m in Ottawa right now but am heading back on Friday and was just asked to present to a junior high on PEI on the benefits of blogging, which of course is my passion… teaching kids about educational technologies.

All and all, things are going well.  I’m looking for more clients and am looking very forward to working with more companies and organizations and expanding into new markets.

 

 

Encouraging Support

I did an interview with a technology writer from San Diego this weekend and he sent

me a lovely note afterwards, along with links to great information.

Hello, Maureen

Yes, it was great (inspiring, really) to talk with you this morning, too.

I’ve been doing research on 3D printing in US schools for about a month now.

In that time, I’ve met many parents who work to get better technology introduced in their children’s schools, and some who jump in to help teach classes or after-school programs,  You’re the first person I’ve encountered, though, who has taken on the entire job of starting a technology learning opportunity from scratch.  I’m awed by the scope of the task and by the tenacity it must take to see it through without external resources.

As a parent myself, I’m familiar with the demands of helping out at school and how some parents always seem to be more dedicated than others.  Taking the initiative as you have in a small community, however, is pretty exceptional. And trying to tie the physical, financial, and curriculum resources all together is heroic.

Based on what I’ve found in my research, you’re charting new education territory. In the years ahead, I’m sure that a lot of PEI graduates will thank you for what you’ve done.

I’ll get back in touch with you after I’ve put some notes together, and I’ll follow up with whatever support resources I uncover.  In the meantime, however, you might want to check these links:

Thanks again!

Steve

Steve Murray Ink
www.stevemurrayink.com
www.linkedin.com/in/stevemurrayphd
858.442.3783

Fall training available

My group social media training program will start again in the fall.  I have delivered this program to over 40 organizations in the past year and a half.

Feel free to contact me: maureen@yourmarketingmavens.com for more information or read about it by clicking here.

If you know of any businesses who could use help with their marketing, please send them to this course!  Group program costs $1000 and one-on-one is $2000.  I offer a money back guarantee.

Interested in what others have said about it?  Click here or go to my LinkedIn profile and read the recommendations there.  Then connect with me there 🙂

I help organizations learn how to network with social media, how to develop content and disseminate it, thus more effectively marketing than ever before.  You just need to learn about the tools and their capabilities.

You can take my training either:

– one-on-one; or

– the group training in the fall.

Participate either in person or virtually.

Send your staff but I highly recommend that if you are a business owner, that you take the initial workshop which offers a baseline understanding and core information about doing business with social media.

A couple of my last clients, the Merchantman Pub and the Stanley Bridge Resort, (who  incidentally both are doing an excellent job with their tweeting & Facebook) had very positive things to say about the course here.

Recent and current clients include: organic farmer Raymond Loo of Springwillow Farms, the 5 Star Edenhurst Historic Inn in Charlottetown, Top Notch Lobster and Tuna Charters.  Rossignol Winery in Little Sands, and the Canadian Breast Cancer Network in Ottawa.

Position to be filled immediately!

Attention all communication connoisseurs!

UsedPEI.com is looking for a new promotions specialist! UsedPEI is one of the 50 Canadian-owned online classifieds sites that form the UsedEverywhere.com network and is our fastest growing platform. Here at Used, we are all about buying and selling used items and creating communities online and offline!

The promotions specialist for UsedPEI.com would be responsible for all aspects of:

Market Research – Have your thumb on the pulse of PEI/Halifax. You must be local and have a firm understanding of the various social cultures, communities and movements  within the province

Event Coordination – Identify events that would be appropriate for UsedPEI to participate in. With the support of the Marketing Coordinator (based in Victoria, B.C.), coordinate our presence at these events, meaning liaising with partners, organizers and the public. Attend these events and represent UsedPEI.

Street Promotion – Be creative and innovative with offline promotional strategies. We are open to all *legal* ideas!

Charitable Outreach – Keep your eyes and ears open for ways UsedPEI can help those in need within the PEI community/ies.

Media Relations – When appropriate and with the guidance of the Marketing Coordinator, be the face (and sometimes the voice) of UsedPEI when the media needs a spokesperson.

The promotional specialist for UsedPEI.com will have:

• 2-5 years educational or work experience within the Communications, Marketing, Public Relations or related field.

• A thorough understanding of the benefits and limitations of running an online business.

• A familiarity with the “major players” of the social commerce industry.

• Excellent written and verbal communications; a friendly and open demeanor with the public.

• An interest and firm understanding of multiple social media platforms, particularly Twitter and Facebook.

• The ability to work remotely and independently; a self-starter with a strong work ethic and sense of accountability.

• A business- and sales-oriented attitude combined with a commitment to your community and a desire to help those in need.

• A creative and FUN outlook on life and work! We are not interested in traditional promotional activities! Think outside the box!

• Your own vehicle, preferably something that can haul furniture when needed.

This is a part-time position of 10-12 hours per week $20/hour

Please send your resume and cover letter to Erin Richards, Marketing Coordinator for UsedEverywhere.com, at careers@usedeverywhere.com.