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Crystal Uncorked

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Are you ready to open up about all things business!? I’m Crystal Vilkaits, a curious entrepreneur who LOVES talking about business, especially over a glass of wine. I started Crystal Uncorked to share open and honest conversations about my journey, and talk to other entrepreneurs about their experiences. We pull back the curtain and talk about the highs…AND the lows. Wine isn’t required, but is recommended. This is Crystal Uncorked.🍷


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Are you ready to open up about all things business!? I’m Crystal Vilkaits, a curious entrepreneur who LOVES talking about business, especially over a glass of wine. I started Crystal Uncorked to share open and honest conversations about my journey, and talk to other entrepreneurs about their experiences. We pull back the curtain and talk about the highs…AND the lows. Wine isn’t required, but is recommended. This is Crystal Uncorked.🍷






My Decision Making Formula

Get ready for a super exciting announcement! But, before I get into that I want to back up and share some behind the scenes on how it all came to be and my formula and process for making decisions, like this. Recently I was taking part in a mastermind call, and the speaker was a producer of a ton of popular TV shows. And if you’re a listener, you know I have a dream to have my own show. After getting my chance to ask some questions, the speaker really dialed in on what it means to have success in a show. Consistent, well-known, audience-anticipated segments! Something your listeners and viewers looks forward to and come back for again and again because they just know they’re gonna get something good. This really got me thinking, and sparked my curiosity…so let's dive into my decision formula: Step 1 - Get curious and ask questions This is where I was really considering the future of the show, what I was looking for, and really what does a successful show look like? Step 2 - Research In my research, I found that podcasts that have the highest engagement are really specific niches….not really the direction I’ve taken with Crystal Uncorked. Step 3 - Niche Okay, if I were to pick a niche…where is my expertise? Where do I have the most potential to make an impact? Step 4 - Find my Perfect Customer Group (PCG!) What does my PCG need? What is their dream outcome? What are their obstacles? What are the solutions to those obstacles? And finally, I got to my decision….and my announcement…I’m launching a new podcast! Rooted in Retail is launching on March 5th with weekly episodes. I’ll be talking about all aspects of retail from marketing, to inventory to customer service AND I'll have guests with tons of experience and value to bring to other retailers! I know I can bring a ton of impact to my retail community with my experience and passion for this industry. I would love your support, so listen, leave a review, and reach out to me on social media! But don’t worry Crystal Uncorked is here to stay too. So….I’ll see you on the next CU. What’s Inside: Mentioned In This Episode: Register for EVOLVE 2023 and use code uncorked to save $400 Crystal Media Crystal on Instagram Crystal Media on Instagram Crystal Media Co - YouTube


Live From the Las Vegas Market: Inside Sales and Relationship Building with Dawn Grooters

We’re live at the Las Vegas Market. Dawn Grooters started her company Broken Vessel Sales in 2020 when she noticed a need between retailers and wholesalers, creating and working with inside sales and making connections. She works with wholesalers, vendors, and rep groups, and even helps retailers. As the expert in all things sales, Dawn offers some great tips for small businesses that might be experiencing slow and small conversions in traffic. All her advice really comes down to what she calls the top business strength of the year, Building Relationships. If you want to see more sales, start asking questions, call top customers, and get to know them. Questions like: What do you need? What's your usual budget? What categories are you drawn to? Can really go a long way. We all know that it's tough out here in this economy. Dawn’s advice? Stay focused on inventory but with a slightly different lens. Don’t let the recession scare you, you just need to tweak and add things by just looking at things with a new perspective. These times are when creativity and innovation can flourish if you let it. Broken Vessel Sales also provides a service of creating sales calls to small retailers for vendors and following up with leads. She has a special mission and drive to hire stay-at-home moms as her sales callers because of its remote and flexible nature. This really was a great chat! If you’re in the industry, be sure to check out Dawn’s podcast Broken Vessel Sales Solutions. See you on the next CU! What’s Inside: Mentioned In This Episode: Broken Vessel Sales Solutions, LLC. Podcast — Broken Vessel Sales Solutions, LLC. Dawn Grooters - Broken Vessel (@dawn_grooters) on Instagram Crystal Media Crystal on Instagram Crystal Media on Instagram Crystal Media Co - YouTube


Part 2: Top Trends and Predictions for Social Media and Digital Marketing in 2023

If you’re wondering where the first 9 trends in this list are…stop and go back to episode 70 to check out part 1! Let’s get to it. 10. ChatGPT (as seen in episode 69): an AI that provides ideas for copy and design, lists, assistance, and leverages technology to save time. 11. Influencer Marketing: becoming more popular among businesses, and it involves increasing usage by partnering with the right influencer in the right way. 12. Streaming Ads: available on TV and movie apps and music services, and they actually allow you to call out to your local community and target your audience with local parameters. 13. Facebook and Instagram Ads: still performing well when targeting a local audience. 14. Youtube: Continuing to be a platform that allows you to connect with your audience and drive traffic to your website. 15. LinkedIn: B2B platform with organic reach, where you can share videos, thought leadership articles, and ideas. 15. Data Privacy and Security: be sure to be abiding by the terms and conditions. 16. Chatbots: automate customer service and social media DMs (such as ManyChat), or check Tolstoy as an example on the Evolve page. 17. SEO in Apps: captions that are more helpful for discovery through the use of keywords and hashtags, as well as better search algorithms. 18. Virtual Reality: businesses can create an immersive experience for their customers with virtual and augmented reality. 19. Automation: using scheduled tools and repurposing content with tools such as DeliverIt or Later. 20. User-Generated Content: Utilize customer-created reviews and content as proof, and many times is more relatable and performs better. 21. Social Listening Tools: use surveys to monitor industry needs and wants. 22. Podcasts: an exploding industry and businesses can use them to build new audiences or even increase exposure by being a guest on shows. Now that I’ve finished my list, I hope you have some ideas for what tools and trends you see your business using this year. Maybe you even have a list running for the years to come! I can’t wait to hear how these work for you! See you on the next CU! What’s Inside: Mentioned In This Episode: ManyChat Tolstoy Register for EVOLVE 2023 Crystal Media Crystal on Instagram Crystal Media on Instagram Crystal Media Co - YouTube


A Whimsical Boutique and Business Wisdom with Grace Kang

After talking with Grace Kang, I can’t wait to check out her boutique Pink Olive at any of the amazing locations she shared about on the show today. Grace opened up Pink Olive at its first location in the East Village of Manhattan, New York 15 years ago. She now has another NYC location, as well as one in Cold Water, New York, and Little Rock, Arkansas. If you tune in, you’ll hear all about how she ended up in the adorable up-and-coming neighborhood of SoMa, Little Rock with her husband Matt. Not only does Grace share about her wonderfully curated stores where she maximizes her Zone of Genius, bringing products to life for its ideal customer, but she also has some pretty great business and life tips too. One of the many things we have in common is the “Brain Dump”, Grace says she uses this to beat the overwhelm and get all her ideas out of her head onto paper. From there she can sort and make sense of everything she's been thinking about instead of keeping it all up in her mind. Another thing I love that Grace recommends is “Happy Tuesday”. This is what she calls her dedicated inspiration day, where she has a special day to be happy, get inspired, and take care of her creative side. You’ll have to listen to the episode for more of her wisdom and the tips we share. Especially a really sweet piece of advice from her late father. You can check out more about Grace Olive and Pink Olive on their website and social media. Also, don’t forget I still have space for you at EVOLVE 2023, use the code UNCORKED when you register to save $400. See you on the next CU! What’s Inside: Mentioned In This Episode: Pink Olive Grace Kang (@pinkolive) on Instagram Pink Olive on Facebook Register for EVOLVE 2023 and use code uncorked to save $400 Crystal Media Crystal on Instagram Crystal Media on Instagram Crystal Media Co - YouTube


Part 1: Top Trends and Predictions for Social Media and Digital Marketing in 2023

In this part 1 episode I am sharing my 9 MUST DOs’ in the social media and digital marketing world. Some you might already be doing, some you might be on your list to try, and some might seem totally crazy… but I promise you businesses who are doing any of these 9 tips are going to see some success this year. So let’s dive in. Increase in video usage: Tiktok:Personalization through segmentation:Prioritizing customer engagement:Personal branding with authenticity:Storytelling:Social commerce:Real-time marketing:Customer Service:Okay, my challenge for you…consider these 9 trends and let me know which one you’re really going to focus on. Send me a DM or email and let me know, I can’t wait to hear about it! I’ll see you soon for part 2. See you on the next CU! What’s Inside: Mentioned In This Episode: Register for EVOLVE 2023 and use code uncorked to save $400 Crystal Media Crystal on Instagram Crystal Media on Instagram Crystal Media Co - YouTube


A Chat AI That Will Help You Save Time and Stand Out

Have you heard about Chat GPT? I am coming to you from Salt Lake City, Utah for an Outdoor Retailer Snow Show. Paula and I are spending some time between the show getting really focused on branding and messaging for this year, and some special goals and projects we’ve got in the works. But I had to come on here and talk to you about this powerful new tool, Chat GPT. Chat GPT is an AI that can answer questions, write essays, articles, blogs, scripts, poems, emails…you name it. It is an incredibly diverse bot that can even narrow and drill down its writing based on various prompts and requests. I’ve seen people have Chat GPT write grocery lists so specific that it plans out diet-specific meals for each day of the week. But how can you use this in business? 1. Emails - Do you have a hard-to-write email at the end of the day that needs to address an employee's behavior? Do you want to send out a mass email about a super exciting event? Give the details to Chat GPT and leave it to them. 2. Blogs- Chat GPT can actually write articles based on topics relevant to your business like the top 10 tips for new dog owners 3. Social Media - In a creative content rut? Have Chat GPT write up your next 10 social posts with a specific content focus. Too long? Ask GPT to shorten them. Need only captions, tell Chat GPT it's for Instagram. 4. Content - The uses are endless: ask for content ideas, generate a script to read on video, and so much more. 5. Procedures and Documents - Chat GPT can write down important information surrounding procedures or other documents for your business. These simple prompts are just ideas but putting them to use can dramatically save time and even help you stand out creatively by utilizing formats you might not feel comfortable with normally. Now I know for a lot of people, AI and technology like this can feel scary…or like the newest thing to learn, and you might not feel ready for it. But I am asking you to keep an open mind because the impact of Chat GPT is going to be incredible. At the time of this recording, I still have some tickets available to Evolve where we are going to be talking all about Chat GPT and so much more! You are not going to want to miss this event, so hurry up before they sell out! See you on the next CU. What’s Inside: Mentioned In This Episode: EVOLVE 2023 in Denver, CO - Crystal Media Crystal Media Crystal on Instagram Crystal Media on Instagram Crystal Media Co - YouTube


A First Class Experience with Texas Charm with Eva Horton

Just outside the city of Austin, Texas sits the beautiful property of Flat Creek Estate. Eva Horton the owner of this winery and entertainment property joins me to share her inspiration and vision for this incredible place. Flat Creek sits on 80 acres of beautiful vineyards, gardens, outdoor patios, and curated spaces. The winery features a tasting room and a 5-star restaurant, with plans to build lodging to extend the visitor's experience. When you hear Eva talk about this place, you can’t help but get swept away. Italian flavors and feelings culminate in the vibe of Flat Creek. The Texas winery scope is growing, but Flat Creek still stands out, with Italian varietals grown on sight and perfectly paired with menu items prepared by a Michelin-starred chef. Whether you’re enjoying a tasting, a fun brunch, a date, or a day out with the family, Eva has curated an experience for you. With a focus on world-class wines and experiences, Flat Creek will have you wanting to come back again and again. Visiting the Butterfly Garden, picking up a picnic basket, listening to live music, or participating in a Sip'N Shop… Flat Creek Estate continues to create unique events to drive traffic and ensure a perfect and lasting experience for every visitor. I hope listening to Eva talk about this amazing destination with first-class experiences and Texas charm has swept you away. I urge you to check out their website and plan your trip. I can’t wait to get there myself! See you on the next CU! What’s Inside: Mentioned In This Episode: About - Flat Creek Estate Super Texan, 2017 2020 Spotlight Pinot Noir EVOLVE 2023 in Denver, CO - Crystal Media Crystal Media Crystal on Instagram Crystal Media on Instagram Crystal Media Co - YouTube


A Ritual for Accountability and Your Best New Year Yet

Happy New Year! It's 2023, and after what felt like a long, long December it is finally the new year! I hope you had a great holiday season with family, and friends, and doing what you love to do! If you're anything like me though, you're ready to start the new year with big goals, and important changes, and ready to see success. I am sharing a few rituals, one old and one new, that are helping me plan and attain my goals for 2023. Annual New Year Ritual: Word of the Year Every year I like to choose a word, it may be aspirational or descriptive, but it explains how I am going to work, live, and reach my goals. This year I chose two! One Professional and one personal. Ease: This year my business hit 10 years and I really feel like we have a strong foundation and our client base and messaging are strong. So why make it complicated? I want everything to feel easy. I want ease to be the lens and filter in which my team and I do all our work this year! Content: I have such an internal hole to fill with content creation. This year for my personal word, I want to create habits and practices that fuel my creativity and allow me to create stellar content. This goes for the podcast, social media, and hopefully some other great stuff. New Habit: Best Year Blue Print If you haven't heard of the Best Year Blue Print from Jenn Gottlieb you need to check it out. I learned about it in a masterclass and kind of did my own take! Step 1: Reflection – Take all of your wins this year…big, small, simple, elaborate. Look back, remember, and write down all of those wins and accomplishments. Step 2: Gratitude – While you're looking back, think of everything you're thankful for...people, moments, events, accomplishments. Find a place of gratitude and abundance for everything you've experienced and shared this past year. Step 3: Create a List – Use these first two steps to help you decide how you want to feel in the new year. Goals, ambitions, feelings, success…what do you want from 2023? Step 4: Letter to Self – Take all of that and write yourself a letter. Fill it with all the things you want to do, the changes you're going to be accountable for making, how you want to feel, the concrete goals…. and the next step is the best part. Step 5: READ IT EVERY DAY — Read your letter every day…morning or night…build it into your routine. Use this letter to inspire you and remind you of the things you need to do to reach your goals. I've already started reading mine and those words… "Dear beautiful badass me…" each day is already proving to be so important… I can't wait to get to the end of next year and say "I did it!". If you're not committing to some kind of accountability or practice to help you reach those goals and ambitions you're setting for the new year, you cannot be frustrated or surprised when you blink and December is over, only to realize daily life got the best of you. So, what are your new year habits? How are you going to reach YOUR goals? Shoot me a DM or an email, I'd love to hear about it! What’s Inside: Happy New Year, 2023! What is the Word of the Year and how can it drive your goals and success? Crystal’s take on Jen Gottlieb’s “Best Year Blue Print”. Reflection and Gratitude on the big and little wins, moments, people, and events from 2022. Habits and rituals to create achievement and success in the New Year. Mentioned In This Episode: EVOLVE 2023 in Denver, CO - Crystal Media Crystal Media Crystal on Instagram Crystal Media on Instagram C


Embracing “JOMO”

Are you guilty of scheduling and planning things more because you're afraid to miss them than because they’re actually something you need or want to do? I know I am. I get caught up in FOMO. But recently when I had a full schedule and cancellations were bringing me so much relief, I was reminded of JOMO, The Joy of Missing Out. Too often we get caught up in our schedules and places we think we should be and things we think we should do. We get tied to our obligations and responsibilities even in times we should be taking for ourselves. I recently saw a study of a group of employees in which 70% admitted they do not disconnect from work during their vacation. VACATION!! We need to make the things that really matter a priority and stop wasting our time on things based on fear of missing out and instead embrace the JOY of missing out. Six Tips for Embracing JOMO (Psychology Today) -Be Intentional with your time -Give permission to live in the present -Embrace tech-free time -Practice saying “No” -Experience REAL life, not just social media life -Slow Down I have my own way of implementing these tips that work for me but there are so many ways you can make these work for your life. Embracing the JOMO can make room for self-care, improve creativity, and allow time for the things you are truly passionate about. How do you embrace the JOMO? Send me a DM and let me know! See you on the next CU! What’s Inside: Mentioned In This Episode: JOMO: The Joy of Missing Out | Psychology Today EVOLVE 2023 in Denver, CO - Crystal Media Crystal Media Crystal on Instagram Crystal Media on Instagram Crystal Media Co - YouTube


Leveraging Your Business with LinkedIn with Viveka von Rosen

Whether you think you need to be using LinkedIn or not… Viveka Von Rosen says, you do. Viveka is the CVO of Vengreso. Vengreso started out with sales prospecting training programs and has now created an incredible text expander software for business owners and entrepreneurs, FlyMSG. So many people are not using LinkedIn the way they should be, I’m guilty of this too. But Viveka brings up something so important, something she calls “Google Juice”. If a prospective client or business relationship googles you or your business, what are they gonna see? Is your old, outdated, unappealing LinkedIn page going to appear and make you seem unprofessional or uncommitted? It doesn’t matter if you’re B2B or B2C, Viveka makes the point that it’s all human to human in business and LinkedIn can help make those connections. If you want a safe place for prospective connections to land from Google, Viveka shares some things to consider for your page. -An appealing background image with your business name, logo, or other relevant images. -A clear professional profile photo of you NOT your logo -A meaningful headline including your tagline or motto These are just the basics but there are many more free, simple features on a base-level LinkedIn page that can seriously up your game. The good news too is that you likely won’t have to create these elements from scratch, you can recycle images and content from your other social media! This isn’t all when it comes to LinkedIn and Viveka has been so generous to include a FREE digital copy of her book, 101 Ways to Rock LinkedIn for my listeners! Now about that text expander… Viveka is on a mission to save time for the 1 billion knowledge workers around the world. 1 hour or more DAILY in fact. If you’ve ever had to sift through old emails to copy and paste a response, save info in a document to use in emails and messages, or reference your website for critical data like phone numbers or mailing addresses to send then Viveka is about to change your life. Viveka’s company Vengreso developed FlyMSG, a text expander that allows quick and easy shorthand to drop in a pre-dictated text relevant to you and your business, saving you an insane amount of time and even headspace. This is such an awesome episode where Viveka not only shares some really great tips you can use on LinkedIn but a lesson in pivoting, learning and trying new things in business. And don’t forget to check out the Ebook and FlyMSG for free!! See you on the next CU! What’s Inside: Mentioned In This Episode: 2018 Spotlight Cabernet Sauvignon Vengreso Free eBook: 101 Ways to Rock LinkedIn Viveka von Rosen on LinkedIn Invest in Vengreso Inc. EVOLVE 2023 in Denver, CO - Crystal Media Crystal Media Crystal on Instagram Crystal Media on Instagram Crystal Media Co - YouTube


Trust the Process and Trust Yourself

Let’s get real…I haven’t been trusting myself. This year I’ve invested a lot in myself, $57,000 to be honest…no small chunk of change for me. I’ve joined masterminds, professional development, programs, live events, you name it. And time and time again…I’m hearing the same information. And I know that I’ve learned things that are priceless and things that I might not see a return on right away. But when I’m hearing things I already know, I have to ask: What am I doing with this? How am I using this knowledge? The truth is I’ve been consuming and consuming and consuming content to stay busy. It’s procrastination. I’ve been so focused on other people's stories, successes, and results that I just looked up and realized I'm in the wrong car on the wrong road to the wrong place. I’m realizing now that I have been so occupied with these training sessions that I haven't made time and allowed myself to go inward and decide what I really want and get creative with my thinking. So what am I doing about this? For me, I really need a Content Detox. I’m not listening to podcasts on my walks or in the car, I’m taking a break from the content I’ve been consuming. I’m listening to music and letting my mind wander. It’s amazing when you make the space to think, the questions and ideas that will come to you! If you’re like me and always wanted to know where your path leads, what’s going to happen, and what your results are going to look like…I urge you to slow down. Go inward. Trust the process. Trust yourself! Thank you from the bottom of my heart for listening, I will be back in December after the Thanksgiving holiday! What’s Inside: Mentioned In This Episode: Embracing What Makes You “YOU” Get Listed Now - Crystal Media EVOLVE 2023 in Denver, CO - Crystal Media Crystal Media Crystal on Instagram Crystal Media on Instagram Crystal Media Co - YouTube


Creating a Business and a Life You Love with Susan Negen

Susan Negen is the other half of WhizBang! Retail Training and my dear friend and industry partner. I previously had her other half Bob Negen on the show for episode 43. As WhizBang! Celebrating 23 years, Susan shares some great tips and lessons on creating both a business and a life that you love. Not only does Susan run an incredible business, but she also does it with her spouse! She shares how they don’t just make it work, they thrive together. For partners working together, it’s important that they be aligned with their thinking and plan to grow in the same direction. If you both don’t have the same goals for your business, you can expect problems. That doesn’t mean you won’t have differences, but Susan highlights the importance of making time to discuss your visions and blend them where they don’t match up. She also says defined roles are key! Both partners should have a specific job and own it. For Susan and Bob, she is the actionary, getting shit done and Bob is the dreamer and visionary! Susan has a lot to share about visioning and converting that vision into focused action. Your outcomes and dreams can be planned and actualized if you just take the time to think and make your vision clear. She uses a great analogy about going out on a hike and you get to a beautiful peak but your campsite isn't there…the view may be beautiful but it was not what you wanted and you'll need to go back out and hike some more to get to the right peak. It’s so much easier when you reach your desired destination the first time, if you do the work and you plan the vision, and you read the “map” you can get there. One thing I love about WhizBang! is their team, every event it's the same team. Susan and Bob are such great leaders that they have incredible employee retention and great culture. One thing that can cause failure in leadership and employee turnover is burnout! In today’s business world this is a big problem and a hot topic. Susan says the key is active rest…and not feeling guilty. We talk about active rest versus fake rest and the importance of giving yourself grace to do the most important thing for yourself and your business: make time for you! With 23 years in business, Susan’s biggest takeaway from her journey is to take risks and go all in. WhizBang! is always working to provide an ever-increasing positive impact for the independent retail community. You can find out more about WhizBang! Retail Training on their website and social media! What’s Inside: Mentioned In This Episode: 2018 EMPATHY RED 2019 Dreamville Blend 75 Episode 43: Mindfulness and Business Success with Bob Negen of WhizBang! Retail Training WhizBang! Retail Training WhizBang! Retail Training (@whizbangtraining) on Instagram WhizBang! Retail Training on Facebook Get Listed Now - Crystal Media EVOLVE 2023 in Denver, CO - Crystal Media Crystal Media Crystal on Instagram Crystal Media on Instagram Crystal Media Co - YouTube


Humor and Heart from Paul de la Garza

Paul de la Garza brings with him over 25 years of leadership experience. He is a dear family friend, my "adopted" father, and my business coach. He has a wealth of knowledge and a great sense of humor, both of which he lets shine in this episode. Paul and I discuss this great analogy for your various journeys, whether it be in life, business, relationships or all of the above. So often you find yourself needing to know the end goal or the final destination that you're not even on your way. For me, I was stuck in the car in the garage and I just needed to go. Too busy contemplating the future? Get on your way, tackle the path most likely, and move towards your future before you let it pass you by! It's also no secret that the last three years have been times of unprecedented crisis. Between the COVID pandemic, the economy in the United States, and the effects of international wars, it can be easy to become impaled by fear. Paul reminds us that while we cannot always be in control of what happens we can be in control of our response and the energy we bring with us! Healthy debate is an important part of communication, listening and understanding. Paul explains the "Gem Statement" and the debate process as described by David Brooks, a renowned New York Times Columnist. When two people in a debate can come to this process, they create unity, community, and communication. Paul encourages people to follow this process and become better listeners and to more often seek to understand rather than to be understood. This conversation with Paul filled me with hope for our world, community, and future. He leaves us with these beautiful words: "We are going through very interesting times, and it is very important to the power of one, that is us and wherever we stand we have the choice to become light or darkness…Have faith in yourself and the people around you." You can find out more about Paul de la Garza and his contact information by visiting his website, High Performance Business Solutions. What’s Inside: Mentioned In This Episode: 2020 L'Atelier du Sud High-Performance Business Solutions Get Listed Now - Crystal Media EVOLVE 2023 in Denver, CO - Crystal Media Crystal Media Crystal on Instagram Crystal Media on Instagram Crystal Media Co - YouTube


Embracing What Makes You "YOU"

I love talking about authenticity and people’s superpowers and their importance whether we’re marketing online or just simply showing up. I value creativity and I have never been the kind to stick to what everyone else is doing. Quick story: back in college, I went to a Halloween party with a friend of mine and everybody was in costumes. My friend dressed up as a cute sexy cat – there were a lot of sexy cats, nurses, and teachers at that party by the way - and there I was as a bag of jellybeans, covered in bright balloons stuffed in a clear trash bag. And honestly, I stood out and got so much attention. This story makes me think about how I like to have that uniqueness that makes me and my business different from other people. And what I’ve found and realized over the years of running my own business is when you are yourself and uniquely you – not faking it or trying to be anybody else; just YOU – that shines through and that is what people connect to. It can be scary to be ourselves and show who we really are but it’s important we push past the comfort and be comfortable in discomfort. A lot of the doubt we feel about ourselves really comes from comparing ourselves to someone else. This is more about you as a person and your personality versus your unique abilities, strengths and the things you’re good at. Yes, it’s easier said than done but I encourage you to let WHO YOU ARE shine through – your uniqueness, your characteristics & your true authentic self. Because there is nobody else on this planet who is exactly like you and that’s what people want to connect with. Go ahead and be scared but do it anyway, put yourself out there and be more vulnerable. The more you do it, the more confident you’ll be. In the words of my wise grandmother, “DO IT AFRAID.” What’s Inside: What it means to be comfortable in discomfort. Why letting WHO YOU ARE shine through is important in your business and personal life. You are uniquely you and you can leverage that. Vulnerability and putting yourself out there. Mentioned in the Episode: Be Bold! Boost Confidence and Spark It in Others EVOLVE 2023 in Denver, CO – Crystal Media Crystal Media Crystal on Instagram Crystal Media on Instagram Crystal Media Co – YouTube


Anything Is Possible with Vi Wickam

Vi Wickam has been my web guy for over a decade. He is a digital expert, an incredible fiddler, and a dear friend to me. Every time I have a crazy idea or question when it comes to my website, Vi is right behind it saying anything is possible. He believes you truly CAN do anything, as long as you are willing to put the time, effort, (and money) into it. Are you worried your website isn't getting the traffic you need to be successful? Vi explains that the majority of websites get a shockingly low rate of 10 visits per day. If you're getting that….you're right in the majority of other website owners. But how can you build that up and turn 10 visits into 10,000? Vi shares some tactical tips like how to increase your value to Google with links and citations…as well as blogging. That's right, blogging isn't dead. Blogging may look different than when the internet first started like a daily diary. Today, blogging is how business owners cover information and answer the questions that are relevant to their customers. Thoughtful, good blog posts will garner more and more visits over time. The more posts, the more visits. It's unlikely you'll write any one-post that will bring in 1,000+ views, but instead, patience and persistence with consistent good posts will bring that number up. Vi shares some great insights on how to improve your trust online. Google gets smarter year after year, at determining websites that are working for the benefit of the customer and when you are working for that too, your value online increases. Before we wrap this episode up, Vi talks about his life in the music world as a fiddler. He is actually a member of the GRAMMY's and you can check out some clips at one of his websites I've linked today! Between the great conversation, wine, and visits from my dogs this was a really fun episode, and I hope you're leaving just as inspired as I am. I’ll see you on the next CU. What’s Inside: Mentioned In This Episode: Cantina Zaccagnini Montepulciano d’Abruzzo Vi Wickam, Digital Marketing Expert Vi Wickam - Wizard of Ads Partners Vi Wickam Get Listed Now - Crystal Media EVOLVE 2023 in Denver, CO - Crystal Media Crystal Media Crystal on Instagram Crystal Media on Instagram Crystal Media Co - YouTube


Evoking True Freedom in Today’s Busy World

I’ve recently shared about my therapy journey and how helpful it has been and continues to be for me. In a session, my therapist asked me, “What does it feel like to feel free”? Closing my eyes I was instantly taken back to a childhood memory of riding my bike. Alone or with friends, happy, no weight of the adult world on my shoulders, completely detached from the world. A memory that brought me to tears; Will I ever have this true feeling of freedom again? Now as an adult my brain is rewired. I have adult pressures. I have a social media business. I’m constantly connected to the world online. Even if I go out and ride my bike to feel the wind on my face and leave my phone at home, it won’t be the same freedom I felt in that childhood moment. I’m different now, I’m older, and the people I know and love are older. It’s hard to see the people around you get older. It’s hard to see life-changing. Since that memory of when I was a child, we have experienced a lot of progression as a humanity. And beautiful things have come out of that but life will also never be the same, I think we just have to grieve and accept that. I now have a new sense of feelings and appreciation for those who feel left behind by technology. But are freedom and fun dead? No. In order to invite these feelings into your life, you have to understand what charges and frees your adult brain, what evokes that true freedom? What brings youthful fun to your life now? If you are not caring for yourself and making time for the things that bring you joy and make you feel free, you cannot perform the best in the other areas of your life. My Freedom List: Good Music Self-Care Open Day Camping Time with friends Karaoke I challenge you now to make your own freedom list. What recharges your battery? What things can you do to invite fun and freedom back into your life? DM me and let me know! I’ll CU on the next CU! What’s Inside: Mentioned In This Episode: Arndt Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon, 2017 EVOLVE 2023 in Denver, CO - Crystal Media Crystal Media Crystal on Instagram Crystal Media on Instagram Crystal Media Co - YouTube


Part 2: Thank You for Being Vulnerable

Oh my gosh! The shock of last week's episode!! Cheers! *decaf coffee in hand*. If you missed last week go back and check it out because I’m engaged!!! Leaving off from talking about my tearful company meeting and the appreciation of vulnerability I got from one of my employees. I’m just so thankful for the feedback I got from multiple employees in the subsequent hours and days after that meeting; so much support, appreciation, and meaningful connections. Personally, I don’t like the fluff, I’m a cut-to-the-chase open, honest, meaningful kinda girl. Which can be challenging, and that’s where I’ve been struggling. I don’t know about you but I tend to feel alone in my problems; like no one else has been going through whatever I’m going through. But I can’t stress enough how much you can benefit and impact others by being vulnerable and being open and sharing what you’re going through. Every single time I open up, I continuously get this outpouring of support, “me too’s”, mutual feelings, and common stories that just mean so much to me. Through all these moments and stories of vulnerability I’ve shared, I’ve seen how people, like me, are really letting fear, and the fear of what people think to hold them back. But when you just let go, you can be your authentic true self. So what if you were TRULY you? What if you let down your walls? Would you show up in work and life differently? I challenge you to move forward after listening to today’s episode ready to be vulnerable and ready to take down your walls. It might be scary, but I promise you can do it. When you commit, the world provides. Lemme know what happens, DM me on Instagram and share your story. I’ll see you on the next CU. What’s Inside: Mentioned In This Episode: ​​How to Launch a Podcast, Gain Real Confidence & Have Courage to Be Your True Self - It's Time to Podcast Series Cathy Heller Presents Don't Keep Your Day Job Part 1: Thank You For Being Vulnerable EVOLVE 2023 in Denver, CO - Crystal Media Crystal Media Crystal on Instagram Crystal Media on Instagram Crystal Media Co - YouTube


Part 1: Thank You for Being Vulnerable

Vulnerability is such an important quality but can be so challenging to reach. I'm at a place in my life and my business where it’s happening a lot more organically and I'm finding myself sharing and crying and opening up in a way that isn’t really typical of me. The feedback I'm getting for that….Thank you! Each time I'm vulnerable those listening have really truly listened and then thanked me for being vulnerable. Being vulnerable in a position of leadership is particularly difficult, especially because you can have this fear that it makes you look weak but that is just not the truth. I recently went to a 3-day conference and had the opportunity to take the “hot seat” and before I knew it I was there in front of everyone opening up and crying and being vulnerable. The coaching that came from that experience was truly helpful and I had so much support from the audience. That vulnerability was the key to pushing me to believe in myself and to give myself the courage to step into my vision. Believe it or not, even though we’ve just celebrated our 10-year milestone, the last 5 years have been really challenging for me in my business. I’ve experienced burnout and feelings of depression. I’ve felt trapped, confused, and unhappy. I really felt it was time to share that with my team, as I'm internally being called to speak more about that on the show. So again I got vulnerable on a company call and I'm so thankful I did. … And that is where I’m going to leave you until part two next week, because during this recording, speaking of vulnerability, something pretty amazing happened… I’m ENGAGED! Dustin proposed right here on the episode for all of my people to be a part of this incredibly special moment. I'm over the moon and will see you on the next CU. What’s Inside: Mentioned In This Episode: EVOLVE 2023 in Denver, CO - Crystal Media Crystal Media Crystal on Instagram Crystal Media on Instagram Crystal Media Co - YouTube


Part 2: 10 Years in Business, Lessons Learned

We’re back with part two, Celebrating 10 years and finishing up my list of my top 10 tips and lessons learned in business. If you haven’t listened to last week's episode, Part 1, go back and listen for tips 1-5 and then come back to finish it up! Tip 6: Have a Support System This is not your work team but your personal support as an entrepreneur. You need someone there for advice or an ear and to bounce ideas off of. Reach out to this network of support through all the “swings of your pendulum” before involving your team. Tip 7: Know your Numbers For a while, in my first years, I didn’t really know my numbers and that can really be a problem. This year we are spending a lot more money investing in the growth of the business and it's really necessary to know your numbers and look at the big picture. When you know your stuff you can hit your goals. Tip 8: Be Human Be human with your marketing and with your business. Be who YOU are. If you are not doing this you’re not doing this you’re falling behind the competition, because others are really out there, putting a face to the name and showing up in their brand. Write your emails and posts from the heart, like you’re talking to your best friend. Tip 9: Know Your Strengths and Your Weaknesses Not only should you know your strengths and weaknesses but you should follow through by doing what you’re good at and not what you’re bad at. I’ve linked the CliftonStrengths Assessment anyone can take to assess their strengths, and talents, and maximize potential. How you use this information is so important for delegating out the things you don’t want to do so you have time to focus and succeed on your strengths and things you really want to be doing. Tip 10: Build a Team You cannot run a business alone. You may have heard the saying “hire before you’re ready”. This is true in some cases but you should definitely first get really clear on your vision of what you need your team members for and what success looks like for them. BONUS TIP: Celebrate and Reflect!! Pay attention to the things you’ve done and been through during your journey. Reflect on it and always celebrate it! If you’ve noticed I haven’t been filming and recording and putting out new episodes, I’ve missed you! I needed a break and if I’ve learned anything it’s that you have to listen to that. So I’m back, I’m excited, and I’ve got some great things coming! Cheers to 10 years! What’s Inside: Mentioned In This Episode: Crystal on Instagram EVOLVE 2023 in Denver, CO - Crystal Media StrengthsFinder 2.0 | EN - Gallup Burtech Family Vineyard Crystal Media


Part 1: 10 Years in Business, Lessons Learned

Can I get a WOOHOO!? *Pops Champagne* While I’m not drinking on today’s episode, I am certainly celebrating. We have reached 10 years in business at Crystal Media!! I am so proud and honored to reach this milestone along with my team. In honor of this exciting milestone, I am sharing my top ten tips and lessons learned in my last 10 years of business. Tip 1: Mentorship I wouldn't be where I am today without a mentor. In episode 4 I talk about mentorship and my personal mentor, Patricia Norins. I recommend a 1 on 1 mentor for sure as well as taking advantage of support from Masterminds! Tip 2: List Building I’m still working on this, even 10 years in! Use creative ways to build your email list. Email marketing is one of the top sales generators for Crystal Media, and I think we could be a lot more strategic in building the list. Tip 3: “Happy to Help” This has been the Crystal Media motto from the very beginning! This is a no-BS slogan, I genuinely mean it. People recognize it, they’re grateful, they give you their trust, and they become lifelong customers. Tip 4: Give Value Over the last 10 years, I’ve focused on over-delivering. I give away free info and high-value information during speaking events because it’s more important to me to REALLY help someone even if I don’t make a sale right then… because those clients will remember me and my content when they need me. Tip 5: Find Like-Minded Partners When you find partners that are at the same level as you and with the same expectations, you have an audience that is primed and ready to receive you! Big shout out to one of our partners, WhizBang! Training, who has been a huge asset for growing our speaking events and so fun to work with! Stay tuned for next week, where I pick up with part 2 and my last 5 tips of lessons learned during the last 10 years in business! What’s Inside: Mentioned In This Episode: Episode 34: The Burtech Family Vineyard Episode 4: 3 Entrepreneur Lessons for Next Level Business Growth WhizBang! Retail Training: Retail Training For Store Owners EVOLVE 2023 in Denver, CO - Crystal Media Crystal Media Crystal on Instagram Crystal Media on Instagram Crystal Media Co - YouTube