Tips on How to Launch What You’re Passionate About

When you launch a new business or nonprofit organization, there’s so much needed to get things going. From identifying the name and / or slogan of your company along with a mission statement, to building that online and offline presence. So many ask “where do I begin?”

I can elaborate in detail because after being in the branding business for over 20 years, I launched a nonprofit environmental organization in 2009, Frogs Are Green. It helps to be a designer and web specialist, because I was able to devote a portion of my time each day to building this organization and didn’t have to pay another for these services.

The most important factor is time management. Many want to launch a startup while they still have a fulltime job and need to find the time to do it. All I can say is to remember that a little bit goes a long way. Make a list of tasks and just tackle one each day. Before you know it, so much has been accomplished.

The Foundation

As the months and blog posts accumulated, so did the SEO on the Frogs Are Green website. Creating interesting and enjoyable content, some with video, and others with fascinating images, turned visitors into subscribers.

LinkedIn – Powerful and Growing Rapidly

Each time we’d publish a new post, I didn’t just blast it everywhere. I was very specific on where to share it. LinkedIn (the fastest growing social network today), was at the top of my list. If you look through the group section you can join particular groups that can help you share information with your “target audience.

I belong to a few environmental and nature type groups, so I‘d share the latest posts there first. (The same is true for my posts on branding, I share them with design groups, or social media posts with social groups.)

The reason is because you are bringing a target and like-minded group information they may find useful and then push forward.

Facebook – Sharing Correctly

Facebook is never going to work for your business unless you post and share correctly.

So many post using their personal profile and you may get likes and some comments, by these “friends” are not and may never be “your clients.”

You must post as your page. Post on your company or fan page wall and you can always tag yourself in the photo or post so it appears in both places and attracts more.

But only the page’s post is live to the public and is searchable on Google. Switch to using Facebook as your page, so you are liking other pages and commenting as your page.

The most important thing to remember is to update your website a minimum of once a week and post on social media every day.

Two Passions Come Together

Naturally Frogadelic - Earth Day - Frog Poster - Illustrated by Mary Ann Farley, Designed by Susan Newman

Naturally Frogadelic – Earth Day – Frog Poster – Illustrated by Mary Ann Farley, Designed by Susan Newman.

Since I first launched Frogs Are Green, I have collaborated with so many wonderful photographers and artists to create frog calendars, a curriculum book, earth day posters and frog t-shirts, all which somewhat help bring funds in. But it really is the consistency of blogging and social media sharing that has attracted guest bloggers, a few corporate sponsors for events and being invited to participate in many local (and quite visible) events as well.

I’m very driven in these two passions (branding and environmentalism) and it’s a great lesson in “brand visibility” to show you how to build the momentum of an organization.

Yes, I do believe Content is King. In 2009 most laughed at us… “Who cares about Frogs?” they said. Over the past 6 years we’ve had over a million visits and they aren’t just arriving at our homepage and leaving. (Bounce rate is consistently under 2%.) They are drawn by the over 300+ posts and the wide variety of content.

However, Branding is Queen. The other day, a woman I know in the neighborhood said to me, “You know, whenever I see you, I immediately think of frogs.”

People are always sharing frog photos with me on social media and on my birthday, so many frogs were posted, a client called me up saying, holy cow!

I can’t express to you how doing design work that gets people talking or thinking about the environment and frogs is so important to me. This is when you realize it isn’t work anymore.

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