10 Marketing and Blog Ideas for July

via ThriveHive

July is here and we have some marketing and blog ideas to heat up your marketing efforts. Don’t just dip your toe in the marketing waters this summer—dive right in with some of these great ideas to promote your business!

1. Independence Day (July 4)

The biggest event this month is obviously the 4th of July. Almost any business can get in the spirit and show off their American pride. If you want to be patriotic, some ideas include:

  • Holiday discount: Many businesses hold special sales or promotions this time of year. Make sure you promote it as a July 4th special.
  • Blog about July 4th: If you run a regular blog on your business website, tie in the holiday to relevant posts. For example:
    • July 4th outfit ideas
    • BBQ and cookout recipes
    • Red white and blue desserts
    • Family friendly activities and venues
    • Firecracker safety tips
  • Participate in local events: Chances are, there are a ton of events in your community for the 4th of July. Whether it’s a parade or a town center fair, make an appearance and promote your business.
  • Show patriotism on social media: Don’t slack online! Keep up your social media accounts and post pictures of your store, employees, or customers celebrating our country.

2. Shark Week

Shark Week is a shark-based programming block for an entire week every summer. Shark Week has begun to be promoted heavily on social media, so get involved with the discussions and get in the summer spirit! Bakeries can sell shark shaped cookies, businesses can throw parties and show Jaws, and restaurants can offer Shark Week specials.

3. International Kissing Day (July 6)

February isn’t the only month for a romantic holiday—International Kissing Day is celebrated in July! Show your customers some love and offer a discount or prize to those who kiss and snap a selfie at your business. Dental offices can also mention this day as a way to promote better oral care—get creative and let us know how you can position this holiday with your business!

Related: The Ultimate Summer Marketing Kit

4. Get to Know Your Customers Day (July 19)

Although you should be making an effort every day to connect with your customers, there’s a specific day dedicated to doing just that! Also celebrated in January,  April, and October, this is a day to engage as much as possible with your customers. It’s important to always show your appreciation to those that consistently support your business.

Increase social media engagement with loyal customers by sharing their posts about your business or spotlighting them as a customer of the week. Make an effort to introduce yourself to customers in store and get to know them on a personal level!

5. National Ice Cream Day (July 16th)

We all scream for ice cream in July! In 1984, former President Ronald Reagan decided July was to be “National Ice Cream Month,” and the third Sunday, which is July 19th this year, to be“National Ice Cream Day.” This holiday is especially great for food establishments. If your business doesn’t sell food, you can still take advantage of the holiday:

  • Have an ice cream sundae party at your business and show the fun on social media.  Your delicious masterpieces are a perfect photo sharing opportunity. You can also bring in ice cream from a local store and give a shout out to business in the pictures you share by tagging them in it. This increases the reach of your post to engage with their customers.
  • Host a post ice cream sundae workout at your fitness center the next day (July 17th) to work off those delicious calories.

If your business does sell food, host a sale or promotion on National Ice Cream Day to show your love for the frozen treat. You can also feature special limited-edition flavors in honor of the month, or offer exclusive toppings and novelties.

6. National Grilling Month

July is National Grilling Month—summertime isn’t complete without a barbecue! July is a perfect time to host a company get together, grill up some delicacies, and share it on your blog or social media accounts.

Better yet, invite customers and allow them to get to know the people and personalities behind your business. If your store sells grilling supplies, have a sale on the essentials or create package deals. You could also give away a grill or grilling gift basket through an Instagram contest or giveaway.

7. Summer-themed Instagram Contest or Giveaway

Whether you give away a gift card or product from your store, Instagram giveaways are a great way to give your social media account a boost. Some examples of what to give away include a free personal training session, summer beach bag full of goodies (food or beauty products!), free salon or spa treatment, or a free cake order for July 4th. Use a hashtag in your contest so that it’s easily accessible on social media searches.

8. Traveling Contests

July is a big month for vacations. Many of your customers might be away, but don’t fear, you can utilize this to your advantage.

Either give away a prize or feature customers in a social media post if they travel and snap a picture of your products along the way. Similar to an Instagram contest, this can be advertised over social media and entered in a variety of ways that notifies your account. At the end of the contest, share all the submitted pictures over social media or in a blog post.

Another way to capitalize on traveling is to produce travel-related content relevant to your business. For example, personal trainers can post about how to get in a good workout without a gym, or financial advisors can offer tips about saving money on vacation.

9. Pinterest Board

Make a summer-related Pinterest board to market your business with ideas and plans for the season. This lets followers know that your business is in full swing for summer and promotes that mindset in store.

  • Preschools can pin fun outdoor activities for children or summer-themed crafts.
  • Fitness centers can pin outdoor exercise tips.
  • Salons can share heatless hairstyles that beat the summer humidity and frizz.
  • Bakeries can share special summer treats.

10. Hot Weather

It’s no secret that July is a scorcher, so market your products to the heat. People will be looking for handheld fans, hats, water bottles, beach necessities, flip flops, and cold drinks, so this is the best time to stock up on that merchandise!

You can also give away some of these essentials in gift with purchase promotions during the hotter days of the month to lure in more customers from the beach. Additionally, make sure to let customers know you have air conditioning to cool them off during the dog days of summer!

10 Marketing & Blog Ideas for June

via ThriveHive

June is upon us and we’ve got a new batch of 10 ways to promote your business through creative marketing and blog ideas. Round out the spring and welcome the summer with these great ideas!

1. Flip a Coin Day

The first day of June is Flip a Coin Day. Coin flipping might not be the most traditional marketing opportunity but with a little creativity, you can turn it into one! The holiday was made to create awareness about math. If math is relevant to your business, then this day is a no-brainer. For other industries, Flip a Coin Day translates into decision making or games of chance. Try out these coin flipping marketing ideas:

  • Flip a Coin discount: For each purchase, have customers flip a coin and call heads or tails. If the customer wins, they get a percentage discount based on the value of the coin. Quarter flips = 25% off, Dime flips = 10% off, and Nickel flips = 5%. discount
  • Blog about decision-making: Write a blog post about decision making in your industry with titles like:
    • “7 Signs You Need to Hire a Contractor” 
    • “Is This an Emergency? When to Call the Dentist/Doctor/Lawyer” 
    • DIY vs. Professional Marketing – What You Can DIY and What You Should Leave to the Pros

2. National Donut Day

As if you needed another reason to love Fridays or donuts, National Donut Day is held on the first Friday in June. This is a great day to shine for bakeries and donut shops. If you’re not in the industry of making round pastries, here are some other ideas:

  • Order donuts for your office and post on social media. Aside from being a delicious treat, pictures of donuts and people eating them are great photo opportunities for Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter. Search for relevant hashtags and use them to get your photos and your business found online.
  • Buy donuts from a local bakery and give them a shoutout on social media. Make sure to tag them on Facebook and Twitter to increase the organic reach of your post.
  • Host an after Donut Day workout at your fitness center. Donuts are delicious but not conducive to marketing a fitness center. Host or post a Day After Donut Day workout!

3. Flag Day

Hooray for the red, white, and blue! Flag Day celebrates the commemoration of the United States flag. Hang those flags and encourage customers to do the same. Participate in local Flag Day events or show off your flag swag on social media.

Related: The Ultimate Summer Marketing Kit

4.  Father’s Day

Promote your business through Father’s Day marketing. This is a no-brainer for businesses whose customers are men, but other types of businesses can join in the fun. Try out these ideas:

  • Father’s Day Gift Guide: Write a blog post with a Father’s Day gift guide with products that you offer or in your industry. Promote the blog post on Pinterest so that it links to your business site.
  • Father’s Day Gift Basket or Coupon Book: Put together a Father’s Day gift basket at your business to make it easy for kids and moms to shop for dad. Think outside of the standard tie box with:
    • Fitness class package – offer a deal on 10 classes just for Dads
    • Gift card for your restaurant with a bottle from a local distillery or winery
    • Gift basket of men’s grooming supplies at your spa or salons. Moms who come in to redeem their gift certificates for Mother’s Day massages and manicures will love the one-stop shopping!
  • Daddy and Me Workout: Fitness centers and gyms often have Mommy and Me yoga classes, but there’s no reason that you can’t do a Daddy and Me workout class too! Host a dad and child workout or soccer game at your fitness center or invite dads to attend their children’s classes at your martial arts studio!

5. Summer Solstice

Promote your business on the longest day of the summer with extended store hours. The extra hours of daylight mean that you can keep your business open for longer on this one day. Promote your extended hours on social media and, if you can, team up with other local businesses to stay open late. By teaming up with other local businesses, you can create more of a buzz together and encourage your community to shop at local businesses during these extended hours.

6.   LGBT Pride Month

Show your pride in June by letting the local Lesbian Gay Bisexual and Transgender community know that you are one of them and/or that you support them. Use social media to tweet about local LGBT events and attend your local Pride parade – hang a rainbow flag, dress up your pets, and show some love for love!

Contact local LGBT community organizations to let them know that you’re a supporter and encourage community members to shop at your LGBT-friendly business. Not all businesses are welcoming, so if you are, make it known to both the LGBT community and supporters to encourage people to use or shop at your business.

7. National Safety Month

Safety first always but especially in June. Promote your business through safety during the month by encouraging people to stay safe during the summer as well as in industry-specific situations such as:

  • Promote helmet safety for your bike shop or write a blog post on “Helmet Buying Tips for Kids” or “8 Things to Watch Out For When Riding Your Bike on the Open Road”
  • Hand out sunscreen samples at your doctor’s office
  • Blog about travel safety tips at your travel agency or bed and breakfast

8.  Insurance Awareness Day

It’s not hard to figure out who invented Insurance Awareness Day but you don’t have to be an insurance agent to use this day to promote your business.

  • Lawyers and accountants can blog about the benefits of insurance for individuals and business owners.
  • Doctors and dentists can use this day to encourage patients to check out their insurance coverage to make sure they have adequate coverage or provide tips for connecting with insurance companies about procedures.
  • Massage therapists, chiropractors, and fitness centers should encourage clients to check their insurance benefits—many insurance companies offer coverage for massage and chiropractic treatments or subscriber discounts for joining a fitness center or gym.
  • Travel agents, bed and breakfasts, and hotels can use this day to blog about the benefits of travel insurance.

9. End of School

School’s out for summer! Promote your business for an influx of children, college students, and families.

  • Host an End of School Year sale to clear out old merchandise
  • Write a blog featuring things to do in your town during the summer—make sure to include your business in the list
  • If your town is quiet in the summer, get involved with a summer school or camp to host events for students and campers

10. Graduation

Celebrate the end of the school year with specials geared toward new grads with things like:

  • Discounts for graduates with your moving company to encourage new customers to use your company
  • Special discounts for graduates who post a picture of themselves at your restaurant wearing their cap and gown
  • Sponsor or attend the local high school or college graduation

May Marketing and Blog Ideas

1. National Small Business Week

First and foremost, National Small Business Week is the first week of May! Dedicated to raising awareness about small businesses and celebrating the hard working owners behind them, this week will be packed with ample marketing opportunities. Here are some ways to make the best of National Small Business Week:

  • Run a deal-a-day for the week, promoting different products/services each day.
  • Get return customers: Give out coupons with purchases this week, that can only be redeemed on an upcoming holiday or on the last day of Small Business Week.
  • Get more leads: Offer a downloadable, small business-themed piece of content that is of value to your target audience in exchange for their email addresses.
  • Increase your exposure: Use #NationalSmallBusinessWeek and other relevant hashtags in your social media posts and promotions.
  • Run an Instagram giveaway for a free product or service. Entrants post a photo to Instagram of themselves at your business, using a custom hashtag. Announce the winner at the end of the week.
  • Don’t forget that educating yourself about small business and networking with other small business owners is important for your marketing success as well. Attend local events, SBA events, or follow along via live streams.
  • Build community and expand your reach: Team up with other complimentary small businesses and create an event.
  • Make an extra effort to give back to your community by shopping at, posting reviews, and engaging in social media with other small businesses during the week.

2. Kentucky Derby (May 6)

Use the Kentucky Derby in your May marketing efforts. Get creative with derby fashion or horse-themed decorations, promotions, contests, and events. For example,

  • Change up your storefront with a derby theme to grab attention and attract customers.
  • Blog about derby fashion and outfits for men and women.
  • Throw a derby party with derby hat contests and mint juleps.
  • Host a cooking or cocktail-making class.
  • Run a derby hat contest on Instagram or Facebook.
  • Use derby hashtags such as #kyderby, or your own custom hashtag (like #derbyatjoes) so that people can find you and follow along.

3. Cinco de Mayo (May 5)

Cinco de Mayo falls on a Friday this year, which makes it all the more fun. There are many ways to infuse a Mexican-American spirit into your marketing. For example:

  • Food or fitness businesses can post recipes or videos of recipes on social media.
  • Give out coupons the day before or a few days before, redeemable on Cinco de Mayo.
  • Share a festive discount “code word” on social media, customers who mention the code in-store get 15% off.
  • Use a triumph or underdog theme. This holiday comes from Mexico’s unlikely victory over the French in the Battle of Puebla. Give your customers the victory over high prices, long lines, slow service, and more with particular deals.
  • Use the number 5 in your promotions, such as get the fifth one free, $5 specials, 5% off, 5 for 5, etc.
  • Throw a party or cooking class revolving around Mexican food and culture.

4. Teacher Appreciation Day (May 2)

May 2 is Teacher Appreciation Day—a perfect time for preschools to market themselves to new parents in anticipation of the new school year.

  • Throw a party for teachers or have students write thank you letters to show off on your blog, in email newsletters to parents, or on social media.
  • Update your website content with new teacher bios and pictures.
  • Did anyone receive a new degree or have a teacher accomplishment to share? This is the perfect time to showcase them in an “About Us” page on your website. Doing so not only highlights your teaching staff, but it also can improve your SEO.

5. Mother’s Day (May 14)

Mother’s Day is prime time for any business, not just the flower shops, salons, and spas (although it is advantageous!).

  • Flower shops and bakeries can offer special Mother’s Day products, and discounts for Mother’s Day gift givers, either on this day or the day before as well.
  • Salons and spas can create Mother’s Day themed gift certificates, or offer 2 for 1 deals for mothers and daughters celebrating together.
  • Combine products and/or services into attractive gift packages that make gift-giving easy.
  • Businesses that get a spike in traffic on Mother’s Day can hand out coupons with purchases that are redeemable at a later time (ideally a time when business typically gets slow).
  • Preschools can have their little ones create Mother’s Day cards or crafts to send home. Make sure to post the pictures on social media or follow up with a blog post or email newsletter to communicate with parents!

6. Memorial Day (May 29)

Here are some ways to show your patriotism and love for the good ol’ USA through your business marketing on Memorial Day.

  • Red, white, and blue themed recipes, outfits, flower arrangements, etc. and promote on Pinterestand Instagram.
  • Host a BBQ or picnic for your community, and give out branded swag  like sunglasses or water bottles.
  • Participate in or sponsor a local event.
  • Use quotes, images, and other posts on social media to show your support for those who have lost their lives for our country.

7. Warm Weather

Take advantage of the warmer weather and provide information and helpful tips to your customers in accordance with your business.

  • Contractors, landscaping companies, and painters should boost their May marketing efforts to get new clients for the spring and summer months.
  • Now’s the time to run that gutter cleaning sale or post pictures on Facebook of your most recent outdoor paint job. Increase your SEO with blog posts about seasonal maintenance
  • Create success stories of successful jobs and promote them on your website and social media
  • Word of mouth marketing is important in these industries – offer existing clients a discount or incentive for each new client they refer who becomes a paying customer.

Related: Summer Marketing Guide

8. Flowers

April showers bring May flowers. If you own a flower shop, May marketing is your time to shine! (If you don’t, there are still opportunities!)

  • Host that flower arranging workshop you’ve been thinking about.
  • Start a Pinterest board to see if Pinterest is right for your business, or grow your Pinterest followingwith your creations linked to your online store or blog.
  • You don’t have to be a florist to use flowers in your marketing. Spruce up your office, restaurant, or store front with flowers. Nothing says “spring” like fresh-cut flowers that add a pop of color to your business space.
  • Buy flowers from a local florist and introduce yourself. Supporting other small business owners is the first step to getting more word of mouth referrals.

9. Weddings

May is the start of wedding season and a perfect time to market your business to new people who are in town.

  • Caterers, event planners, DJs, photographers, bakeries, and other wedding friendly services: Use social media to engage customers as much as possible. Whether you’re hosting the bachelorette party at your restaurant or baking their wedding cupcakes at your bakery, take pictures and share them on Facebook and other social media platforms.
  • Many couples ask guests to use custom hashtags on social media so that pictures of the events can be easily searched. For example, the soon-to-be Mr. and Mrs. Burns might use the tag #BurnsInLove2015. Ask if you can use their hashtag to make your photos easily discoverable by wedding guests and the people in their social media networks.
  • Landscapers can capitalize on wedding venue owners looking to perfect their landscapes.
  • Fitness and nutrition businesses can provide workouts, recipes, blog posts, and tips on getting to your healthiest and best version of yourself in time for these heavily photographed events.

10. Final tips for Your May Marketing Events

Make the most of your May marketing events with these final tips:

  • Recap your events, promotions, and festivities in your next email newsletter or blog post so that those who missed out will want to join in the fun next year!
  • Send thank you and follow-up emails to any new leads for your business.
  • Encourage customers to use your custom event hashtag to follow along and/or to help promote it.
  • Post real-time photos of your event through Snapchat or Instagram Stories.

April Social Media Content Ideas

Spring is in full swing giving you plenty of great opportunities for interesting social media posts (even if we are all quarantined). If you’re looking April marketing ideas—in particular, April Facebook posts, look no further. Let’s get right to it!

The Masters

April 6 through 12 – Unfortunately, The Masters has been postponed this year, but that shouldn't stop us from sharing in the tradition of this historic event and great priced (and simple) foods! Offer to-go orders for lunch with things like pimento cheese sandwiches or grilled chicken sandwich, maybe even the iconic ice-cream sandwich (or recipes for customers to make them on their own, at home).

National Siblings Day

April 10 – Celebrate the bond of siblinghood by inviting brothers and sisters into your shop for a sibling date! Think about running a two for one promotion or snapping pics of all the siblings that come to your shop and posting to social!

National Grilled Cheese Day

April 12 – Holidays that celebrate our favorite foods get quite a bit of social media clout since food is something we all can bond over. For #nationalgrilledcheeseday think about to-go orders for lunch and snapping a photo of your cheesy dish or take the opportunity to cross-promote with another local business.

Tax Day Moved to July 15th!

As the deadline for filing your taxes is looming, try to make light of it! Perhaps you post useful tips for tax season or if you’re lucky enough to have a product or service that coincides with the almighty dollar, use it to your advantage!

Get to Know Your Customer Day

April 16 – Get to Know Your Customer Day is a great opportunity for interacting with your customers. Post questions on Facebook that engage them in a conversation. Ask for their opinions to help improve your services, what they like about your business, etc.

Air Five Day (stay 6 feet away please)

April 16 – High Five Day We'll call this Air-Five Day this year, leaves a lot of room for some good clean fun. We love the idea of asking customers to high five your staff for photo ops to post on social that they’re likely to share if you ask their permission to tag them. Up your Facebook following by inviting customers to tag people they’d like to give a virtual air-five.

Or give your own virtual air-five as a thank you or special shout out to customers, vendors or even a cause you support.

If you’re up for it, think about running a promo that coincides with the number five…it doesn’t all have to be about a literal high five!

Denim Day

April 29 – Denim Day is associated with one of the causes for the month of April, Sexual Assault Awareness. Take a break from self-promotion and educate your followers on the history of the holiday.

Or show your support for victims of sexual assault by asking employees to wear denim to work on this day.

Prom Season

Speaking of the awareness causes for this month… It would have been Prom Season! Virtually every type of business can figure out a post to tap into the prom season frenzy. Getting customers to share their past prom photos seems appropriate for this year!

National Child Abuse Prevention Month

Show your support for National Child Abuse Prevention Month by posting a blue pinwheel gif which is the national symbol for the cause.

Or plant a pinwheel garden at your place of business and share it with your followers in hopes of raising awareness.

February Marketing and Blog Ideas

via ThriveHive

It’s the start of a new month and we’ve got some fresh marketing ideas for you to promote your business. There’s more to February than just hearts and candy! Here’s a list of 10 marketing and blog ideas for February.

1. Valentine’s Day Promotions

There are countless Valentine’s Day promotions that you can do this month:

  • Fitness centers: Host a special Valentine’s Day class for couples or a post-Valentine’s Day workout to burn off calories from candy and chocolate!
  • Massage Therapists and Spas: Valentine’s Day is the perfect time to run a special offer on massage services. Couples massages, a day at the spa, and a chocolate facial can all be used for Valentine’s Day promotions.
  • Restaurants: Valentine’s Day is on a Saturday this month and is the perfect time for a couples cooking class! Come up with a special menu of aphrodisiacs foods to ignite some romance in your budding chefs!
  • Flower shops: This is your time to shine! Think outside of the bouquet and offer customers something other than overpriced, out of season roses.
  • Gift and retail stores: Come up with a Valentine’s Day gift guide – it’s the perfect time to promote some new merchandise. Post gift guides on your blog or in an email blast to give customers ideas for what to buy their sweetheart.

 

2. Valentine’s Day Graphics

February 14 is Valentine’s Day – show your social media and email marketing some love with Valentine’s Day themed graphics. Hearts, candy, and love are good things to use to catch attention from customers! Use holiday graphics to spruce up your Facebook marketing and Twitter profiles but they’re even more useful when combined with Valentine’s Day promotions.

3. Heart Disease Awareness Month

It makes sense that the month of Valentine’s Day is also Heart Disease Awareness Month. If your business is focused on health and wellness, this is a great marketing opportunity for you. Fitness centers and gyms can partner with a local health center for heart disease awareness or screenings.

Host special classes focusing on cardiovascular activity or write informative blog posts about heart health and risk factors. Use this time to market your business by educating your customers to help them lead healthy lives. Any business can sponsor a Valentine’s Day race – there are usually fun runs or 5Ks going on around the holiday and sponsoring one will get your business name out in the community.

4. Black History Month

February is Black History Month and the perfect opportunity to highlight prominent leaders in your industry. Black lawyers, politicians, scientists, artists, educators, and athletes have shaped American society. Take some time to reflect on those who have shaped your business industry.

5. Children’s Dental Health Month

Children’s Dental Health may sound like a boring topic but it can be a great month for marketing your small business. Dentists can certainly have a field day with this one, but other businesses can use this opportunity to teach parents and students about the importance of dental health. Daycares, fitness centers, and churches can host special classes with families about the importance of going to the dentist. Perhaps one of the parents is a dentist and would like to come to answer questions for kids.

This not only helps your business interact with the community, but it helps local dentists market themselves all while educating parents and children about dentistry. This is a word of mouthreferral marketing technique that will give you something to smile about!

6. Ice Cream for Breakfast Day

In the middle of Children’s Dental Health Month is Ice Cream for Breakfast day! Everyone loves ice cream! Use this quirky holiday to market your business. Held on the first Saturday of February, this Ice Cream for Breakfast Day can be a fun marketing promotion for your bakery, ice cream shop, or restaurant! Although it is supposed to be on a Saturday, you can do this any day of the week. Invite customers to come in to eat ice cream for breakfast – it’s a fun way to interact with families and do something new to promote your business.

7. Grammy Awards

The Grammy Awards are held in February. This is a great opportunity for engaging with your customers on social media. You’ve seen the video of a police officer singing Taylor Swift – get your employees together for your favorite Grammy nominated song and share it on social media!

8. Super Bowl

The Super Bowl is one of the most watched programs on television. Use your geographic location, recipes, or business colors to engage customers for the Super Bowl.

9. President’s Day

President’s Day is famous for sales so use it to your advantage. Most schools are off for President’s Day which makes it a great day to hold a family-friendly activity at your fitness center.

10. Mardi Gras

Mardi Gras marks the beginning of Lent but down in New Orleans it’s party time! Host a Fat Tuesday party or sale at your business. Get customers in on the fun by giving a discount to anyone who comes in wearing a mask or beads!

The Preppy 10 Commandments

1. Thou shalt embrace cocktail hour—anytime.

2. Thou shalt invoke your middle name(s)/initial(s) whenever possible.

3. Thou can never be in too many clubs or wear too many layers.

4. Thou shalt honor Ralph Lauren, Slim Aarons, the creator of the Southside cocktail, and C.Z. Guest.

5. Thou shalt not cheat on the golf course or the tennis court.

6. Thou shalt say “it's a pleasure to see you” the first time you meet someone rather than “it's a pleasure to meet you,” because you might have actually met that time at the Chicken Box and you just don't remember.

7. Thou shalt not covet your neighbor's country club, nor his tennis backhand, nor his boarding school alumni network, nor his Ivy League MBA, nor his limited-edition Barbour jacket, nor anything that is your neighbor's.

8. Thou shalt not steal your opponent's custom-made backgammon tournament board.

9. Thou shalt know the names of all of the bartenders and bouncers at Dorrian's Red Hand in New York City.

10. Thou shalt have the latest issue of T&C on your coffee table at all times.

On The Court: 23 Signs You’re A Serious Tennis Player

You only live once, but you get to serve twice.

1. You have an entire section of your closet dedicated to your tennis clothes.

2. Nothing will ruin your day quite like a double fault.

3. You're a member of the USTA.

4. After playing tennis outside, your tan lines are super awkward. There's nothing pretty about a tennis sock and polo shirt tan.

5. You subscribe to the Tennis Channel and actually enjoy watching it.

6. If you're in a rut on the court you ask yourself “What would Serena do?”, and conquer on.

7. There are loose tennis balls in your car, all over your home, and in your backyard.

8. Breaking a string is like a mini epiphany that you're playing a strong game.

9. You actually have a preference on court surface. Personally, I'm on team #hardcourt.

10. The US Open is your version of the Oscars.

11. You know you're not supposed to slam your raquet, but damn it feels good when you do.

12. You have a name for your strong go-to shot, mine is the “Mikiller cross court forehand”.

13. There's no better smell in the world than a fresh can of new tennis balls.

14. Your hands are covered in callouses, and you actually think it's kind of sexy.

15. Being in “the zone” on the court is the ultimate high.

16. You'd rather spend your Friday night playing “Queen of the Court” than going out.

17. There is nothing more annoying than playing against a “pusher” or “marshmallow hitter” AKA that opponent that gets EVERYTHING back.

18. You know the term “bagels” doesn't refer to a breakfast item, but beating someone 6-0, 6-0.

19. You're a brand loyalist when it comes to what kind of racket you use, and you'll never change.

20. You have a mini anxiety attack just hearing the words tiebreaker.

21. There is no greater pressure than the feeling during match point.

22. You are superstitious when it comes to how many times you bounce the ball before you serve.

23. You know all the stats of the top 10 female and male players on the professional circuit.

10 Creative Marketing Ideas for January

Via ThriveHive

It’s a new year! Whether you’re making New Year’s resolutions or just need some motivation to amp up your marketing, January is a great time to get started with fresh marketing and blog ideas. Here are some ways to get the word out about your business.

1. Update Your Google Presence

If consumers near you perform a search for your products and services on Google, does your business show up? Your top priority for the new year is to make sure you have maximum visibility in local search. To do this, head to your Google My Business profile and make sure all of your contact information is accurate.

You’ll also want to make sure you populate the Reviews, Q&A, and Posts sections, as having a robust profile will also boost your rank in search results. Getting these sections completed are longer-term goals you can tackle throughout the month.

2. Create and Share New Year’s Resolutions

Start the New Year off right by making and posting your resolutions for 2020 – and ask your followers to post theirs! This is a great way to engage customers on social media. For example:

  • Fitness centers can have a weekly accountability post to create a support community
  • Restaurants and catering services can write blog or Facebook posts with healthy recipes
  • Daycares can blog about toy organization ideas for playrooms and toy areas

3. Write Holiday Roundup Posts

Just because the holidays are over doesn’t mean that they’re not ripe for being part of your marketing strategy! Customers and companies may have been busy or traveling over the holidays and not as active on social media.

  • Did your catering company work a holiday party? Post pictures or recipes!
  • Cleaning services can provide post-holiday cleaning or Christmas tree disposal tips.

You can also take advantage of #tbt (Throwback Thursday) on Twitter and Instagram and post pictures from just a couple of weeks ago to share with your followers. Show off the holiday party that you had or the New Year’s Eve festivities just last week.

4. Announce Upcoming Events

Market your business both online and offline by highlighting upcoming events for 2020. Some upcoming holidays include President’s Day, Valentine’s Day, Mardi Gras, and St. Patrick’s Day. If you have anything planned for these events, like upcoming Valentine’s Day deals at your spa or a special Valentine’s menu at your restaurant, let customers know!

5. Honor Martin Luther King, Jr.

January 19th is a national holiday to celebrate Martin Luther King, Jr.’s birthday and commemorate his Nobel Peace Prize for his Civil Rights leadership. Many communities participate in a day of service to create a positive impact on the world.

Take part in a community day of service with your customers or employees. Create a buzz on social media and invite other small businesses to get involved. Banding together with others to better your local community is a great way to give back to your community while fostering a good business reputation.

6. Save Lives by Donating Blood

January is National Blood Donor Month. Donating blood, volunteering at a blood drive, or hosting one is a great way to get involved in charitable organizations in your community. Getting involved in community organization is an effective way to market your small business offline. So get out there and donate a pint or hand out cookies to those donating!

7. Compliment Day (January 24)

Take the time to say something nice on Compliment Day. What goes around comes around, especially in marketing! You may even want to show another small business some love on their social media or Yelp page. They may return the favor by writing some positive reviews for you as well.

8. Start a Customer Loyalty or Referral Program

Building customer loyalty is important to small business because loyal customers create return business and are more likely to refer other customers. Increase sales and attract more clients through referrals by starting a customer loyalty program.  How you do it is up to you but consider offering a free product or service discount for customers who come back a certain number of times. Offer current customers a discount on their next service if they refer a new customer. For more ideas on customer loyalty and retention programs, check out this blog post.

How do you set up a customer loyalty or referral program? Start by taking your list of hot leads and send the information to them via email. If you don’t have a list of hot leads, you can start with the list of people who you sent Holiday or New Year cards to or just send an email about the program out to your entire contact list.

Facebook is also a great way to advertise a loyal customer or referral program. Read about Facebook marketing here.

9. Snow Day Marketing

Much of the United States is covered in snow in January. Love it or hate it, you can’t stop it, so use it to your advantage! For example:

  • Daycares can by can provide safety tips for playing or dressing children in the snow.
  • Contractors, construction and snow removal companies can write about about winter hazards in the home – carbon monoxide detectors, salt versus sand for ice and snow, or how to winterize drafty windows.
  • Hair salons and spas can have a special deal when a big storm is predicted such as paying based on the inches fallen – $28 if it snows 28 inches is a great deal for both the customer and the quiet salon!

Keep your customers up to date on snow closings and delays on your social media pages!

10. Clean Out Your Inbox Week

Take advantage of Clean Out Your Inbox Week and go through old emails. Remember those emails you “starred” but likely never followed up on? If you’re like me, those are ideas that you sent to yourself while you were trying to fall asleep or names of people who you met and wanted to connect with at a later date.

Take the time to go through those emails – you could come across your next new customer or genius idea!

Most Luxurious Golf Course Homes in Texas

Everything is bigger and better in Texas and real estate is no exception. With lush landscapes, breath-taking views and acres of land, the possiblities are endless for property owners in the the Lone Star State.

In acending order, here are the most pricey golf course homes on the market right now:

6 Fleury Way The Woodlands, TX 77382

$5,150,000| 6 Beds | 6.5 Baths | 9,585 Sq. Ft.

Listed by Mariela Knapp Keller Williams Realty

Stunning, modern and sophisticated house in Carlton Woods. This house was remodeled by the exclusive firm. Situated on two lots totaling more that 3 acres, the house backs to the 16th hole of Jack Nicklaus Signature Course. Functional kitchen with two islands, two dishwashers, double oven, wine and beer coolers, ice maker. Four fire places, fully equipped and furnished media room, two bedrooms and study are located on the first floor. Beautiful venetian plaster walls and ceilings. Mosquito mist system Is installed throughout the whole property and generator covers all the house electric needs. The Woodlands highlights amenities: parks and trails, golf courses, community pools and community events to the Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion, also count with 124 parks with playground equipment, picnic pavilions, soccer fields, disc golf courses and even dog parks. The Woodlands also features nearly 200 miles of hike-and-bike trails, jogging tracks as well.

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1010 PR 5569 Prosper, TX 75078

$5,299,000 | — Beds | — Baths | — Sq. Ft.

Listed by Anastasia Riley Ebby Halliday, REALTORS

This picturesque tree-lined acreage with gorgeous rolling terrain is nestled in the most affluent suburb in N TX & surrounded by upscale Prosper communities -Whispering Farms, Gentle Creek, Christie Farms & Whitley Place. Almost 500ft of road frontage right across Gentle Creek Golf Course Country Club – one of the most iconic and recognizable Prosper landmarks, gives the property fantastic visibility, easy access, superior demographic & multitude of use possibilities. The prime acreage at the front is proposed for a much needed assisted living facility, private school, daycare, event center, church, office park or retail. The secluded tree-lined acreage tucked in the back is perfect for a residential development.

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6015 Glen Cove St Houston, TX 77007

$5,390,000 | 5 Beds | 5.5 Baths | 8,487 Sq. Ft.

Listed by Laura Bonck Nan & Company Properties

Enviably situated in the desirable area of Memorial Park, 6015 Glen Cove sits on half an acre of lush landscape and unobstructed views of the Hogg Bird Sanctuary and the notable River Oaks Golf Course. This masterpiece of rustic luxury boasts stunning cathedral beamed ceiling and natural stone accent walls in the formal living area. The gourmet kitchen, renovated in 2018, is outfitted with a full Viking stainless steel appliance package, separate Sub-Zero cabinet-front 3’ refrigerator and freezer, beamed ceilings, plenty of counter space/storage and views to the great room. Meticulous and extravagant details are thoughtfully placed throughout the 8,487 sq. ft. home such as a parlor with dual aquariums, unique theater room, oversized game room, and a fully equipped guest quarter. 5 full ensuite bedrooms feature tray ceilings, walk-in closets, and luxurious details.

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2300 Portofino Ridge Dr Austin, TX 78735

 

$5,500,000 | 7 Beds | 9 Baths | 9,579 Sq. Ft.

Listed by Sally Daneshjou  Daneshjou Properties, Inc.

Exquisite Classical Mediterranean masterpiece, with panoramic views of the Barton Creek Resort and Fazio Foothills Golf Course. Privately nestled into a large cul-de-sac lot. Beautiful design features throughout, including art niches, domes, barrel vault, sculptured stair railings for 2 slab marble stairs and Mariner Chandeliers. Other luxuriously designed interior and exterior detailing. Patterned marble tile, tile and wood floors throughout. Private Courtyard and fountains. Sq.ft. larger than TCAD.

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2104 Willow Bend Dr Plano, TX 75093

$5,699,000 | 7 Beds | 14 Baths | 14,702 Sq. Ft.
Listed by Cindy & Hollie O'Gorman Ebby Halliday, REALTOR
Exquisite 3 acre gated estate overlooking White Rock Creek AND Gleneagles Golf Course! Heavily treed backyard paradise with pool, spa, outdoor living, full sized tennis court, putting & chipping green with sand trap, walking trails, tree house and more! Whole house automation system! Gourmet kitchen has top notch finishes! Elegant master suite with fireplace, dual master baths, steam showers, coffee station and exercise room. An entertainers dream with media room, custom golf simulation room, large wet bars, and walls of windows throughout. Craft room, attached living quarters with private entrance, endless storage, 6 car garage- one with two car lifts. Extremely energy efficient home.

23 Grand Regency Cir The Woodlands, TX 77382

$5,950,942 | 7 Beds | 11 Baths | 15,000 Sq. Ft.
Listed by Gary Tyner Keller Williams Realty-FM
This chic Woodlands estate nestled in the gated community of Carlton Woods will accommodate a luxurious lifestyle for everyday living, entertaining with all the amenities you could ever dream of. The home is situated on almost two acres and overlooks your own private golf course. The first floor encompasses an open living space that flows into the breakfast area and kitchen that is extensively equipped to service household gatherings or entertainment of any size. The second story beginning on the left wing features the master suite leading into a lavish closet equipped with two islands, custom cabinetry and even a small kitchen. The right wing has a two bedroom apartment perfect for staff or a guest quarters.

27 Grand Regency Cir The Woodlands, TX 77382

$6,075,000  | 6 Beds | 10 Baths | 14,811 Sq. Ft.
Listed by Diane Kink  Keller Williams Realty
Elegant style and detailing shows off over 15,000 square feet of luxury! Resting on the 8th hole of Carlton Wood’s Jack Nicklaus Golf Course, taking in views of Bear Branch Lake, this incredible estate is superbly designed offering unsurpassed craftsmanship. Inside highlights Crestron Home Automation; Enkeboll carved wood mouldings; beautiful lighting by Kalco and Fine Art Lamps; Cantera doors and garage doors; fully functional Elevator; 100KW Generator; Whole house vacuum system; commercial grade temperature controlled 600 bottle wine room and full entertaining bar; Walnut & Alder Hardwoods & Travertine flooring throughout; kitchen is designed and equipped to satisfy the needs of any professional or those who just love to cook! Master Suite affords 2000+ SF with private courtyard; 1st & 2nd floor utilities. Welcoming guest, children and secondary suites. Restful views and incredible grounds include pool, spa, 2500+SF of outdoor living/entertaining. Endless comforts & amenities!

11408 Musket Rim St Austin, TX 78738

$9,250,000 | 7 Beds | 9 Baths | 11,957 Sq. Ft.
Listed by Gary Dolch  Compass RE Texas, LLC
Sprawling French Country Estate on 10+ Acres with Barton Creek Frontage in the Golf Course Community of Spanish Oaks. Lush, flat land with meticulous landscaping, & thoughtful hardscape commanding views of the hill country & creek, making it the ideal location for this one-of-a-kind estate. Incredibly designed home with office, media & game rooms, elevator & more. Morton barn w/4 stalls, tack room, corrals/riding pens, sport court & pool overlooking the views. 2 bed Guest House (kitchen, living & office).

8106 Chalk Knoll Dr Austin, TX 78735

$9,450,000| 7 Beds | 11 Baths | 13,686 Sq. Ft.
Listed by Julie Mack  Kuper Sotheby's Itl Rlty
Built with a fabulous sense of style, & space, this estate is a pinnacle of Barton Creek living. The 3.9-acre property overlooks the Fazio Foothills golf course. The backyard was completely renovated in 2016 and includes a resort-style pool. boules court, dog run, room for a tennis court, fireplace & grill. The kitchen was completely transformed & features Miele appliances, multiple refrigerators, 2 DW, white custom cabinetry, & a full huge bar with booth seating. Check out the 3D tour for an inside look!

800 Wilpitz Rd Brookshire, TX 77423

 

$13,380,000 | 2 Beds | 2 Baths | 2,753 Sq. Ft.
Listed by Dana Speer  CENTURY 21 Western Realty
Unparalleled 297 UNRESTRICTED Acres 1/2 mile off I-10. Only 22 miles west of the Energy Corridor. ENDLESS POSSIBILITIES. Private owner or DEVELOPERS. YOU CAN’T BEAT THIS LOCATION! Perfect for a Golf Course Community, Sports, Events, Income producing. Once in a lifetime Equestrian Masterpiece! 4 immaculate Polo fields, 63,000 SF Covered Arena, home to Texas A & M Polo Team. That’s just for starters! Every aspect of this property was impeccably brought to life. Fun activities abound. New lighted Tennis court, Cabana, Lakeside beach & Dock, Zip line tower, Motocross park, and Skate park. Equestrians will love the gorgeous Spanish style 14 stall stable, 40 stalls attached to the Covered Arena, & 32 stall stable each has tack & feed rooms. Relax or entertain in the Texas Hill Country limestone Club House surrounded by graceful pecan orchards. Gourmet state of the art kitchen, open concept dining-living space overlooks the sparkling pool. 2nd house for Ranch Manager.

The 17 best resorts in the world, according to travelers

In the survey, 600,000 voters provided their thoughts on nearly 10,000 hotels, resorts, and global experiences. The resorts that ultimately made the final cut all share an air of luxury, but they span different price points and destinations.

Here are the top 17 resorts in the world. Safari-inspired travel seemed to be popular this year, with seven out of 17 resorts being African bush resorts. A couple of private islands in the Maldives made the cut, as did a handful of Irish castles. Only one US resort topped the list.

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