Tracy Petrucci: Marketing Ideas Into Action: The Final Small Business Spotlight of 2015

Monday, December 7, 2015

The Final Small Business Spotlight of 2015

By Leesa King

Congratulations, readers!
We made it through another year. And what an exciting one 2015 was!

To wrap up this year of the Small Business Spotlight, I decided to interview someone very close to my heart - our own Tracy Petrucci! I am constantly inspired by her creativity, dedication to hard work, and ability to adapt with the changes that being a small business owner tends to bring. As a writer, photographer, and nutrition enthusiast myself, I am always begging Tracy for career advice  and business ideas, and after attending her workshops and webinars, I get closer to reaching my personal and professional goals. So I think it's about time we give her a little spotlight of her own!



Leesa: When you decided to start a small business, what was your original strategy? How did this change over the course of your first few years in business?
Tracy: This is an easy answer! I actually never meant to start a business, which has been a blessing and a challenge. I studied Global Business and Traditional Marketing in college when social media and online marketing was almost non-existent. We mostly studied "big business" strategy, superbowl ads, billboards, and so forth. I started applying the concepts I learned to my mom’s small business, playing with blogging and email marketing. Other businesses starting coming out of the woodwork asking me to help them send newsletters or create a Facebook page. I started getting more and more clients over the years, learning more, figuring out what I’m good at, and what I’m not, and honing in on my services. After having my sweet baby girl, (who is now 5 years old!) I took everything more seriously -- and that’s when my business really grew! Only in the last couple years have I made the time to meet with a strategist (the wonderful Siliva Mah) and actually begin to create long-term plans.




L: What is the niche that you decided to focus on marketing for? What is your favorite part of this group?

T: I have focused completely on the small business market, which is not too niche I know, but it's where my heart is. It’s definitely challenging to run a business while wearing so many hats and worrying about increasing sales, trying new things, using social media, paying the bills, and so forth, so I like to be supportive in this one area at least. However my favorite part of working with small business owners is hearing their story, and seeing them do what they love. 

It’s amazing to me, that something you might think is complicated, or boring, or uninteresting, someone else is just OOZING with passion over. Honestly this must be what makes the world go round, the fact we all have such different “things” and we find a way to make a living with that thing. I respect this group because of the dedication it takes to run a business, and the fact you have to put up with all the negative things that come along with making a business out of your passion. There are pros and cons of being a business owner, and there are pro and cons of working for someone else. You just have to find which one you are more comfortable with, neither one is easy.


"Honestly this must be what makes the world go round, the fact we all have such different ' things '..."


L: Wrapping up 2015, what improvements have you made, and what would you like to change for the new year?

T: Phew, if I’m being honest, I am blown away with what I’ve accomplished this year. Sometimes I don’t understand how I’m doing it, and then I think “well yeah, I just keep my head down and I work work work work and this is the result.” This year I’ve hired two amazing people (the person conducting this interview of course is one of them!!)  which has freed me up to do more of the things I really love, which includes more consulting, strategy, speaking, and of course my all time favorite task, Facebook ads.  


I moved into a private office in February, which was really scary - but literally tripled my business. I’m able to see my clients whenever they/or I want, without having to book a room or meet somewhere impersonal, like a coffee shop.

I’m starting to develop an in depth online course for people to learn to do Facebook ads, which has been my biggest challenge this year. Finding the time to work on it, while Facebook ads constantly change, has been a bit chaotic. But I know it will be great when I finally get it out there!

Improvement wise, I still need more time to do a better job with my assistants, track expenses better, and figure out a way to do some exercise and have some fun. I haven’t done much of that for the last few years.

L:  Looking into 2016, how do you expect to expand and grow your services?

T: I want to have at least two full time employees by the end of next year. I’m not sure if I am looking to expand my services just yet however. The things I dabble with expanding are possibly getting a web designer, since I won’t touch that stuff, and everyone always wants me to do it. I might possibly start adding photography packages, since that’s a huge part of what I do and what you need for good marketing.

The most exciting thing I’m launching next month is Lab Hours! This is my way of helping the community work on new marketing ideas without having to shell out tons of money. If you want to read more about it, click here.



L: How have you grown personally throughout this journey? What experiences would you like to share with others wanting to open a small business? How do you connect with your work on a daily basis and continue to be inspired?

T: Personally oh my goodness, I have become a project management machine. I think I had 24 clients in November, and 5 years ago I would have never imagined I could have had a handle on that many projects at one time. Of course I can NOT do all that work on my own, so that’s why having reliable and talented help is so crucial.

I have really acquired a skill for picking up on different personalities and how people will want to work with me, and their communication style. If I’m being honest, I have clients where I can stop and say, “Hang on, I need to put on some deodorant” and they won’t think twice, and I have clients where never in a million years would I dream of doing that!

Being open but professional all at the same time has been something that has worked well for me. I think my clients trust what I have to say, and that is very important to me. It’s also important to me, that I do not sell people things they don’t need, or take advantage of their confusion over what they are supposed to be doing. This industry is full of upselling and I’ve never been a part of that.

I think it’s easy for me to stay inspired because I’m always out in the business community doing workshops and presentations and hearing what people are up to. I am constantly inspired by those trying to do a better job at something they are unfamiliar with, or people who are there to just “absorb information” or continue learning. That’s amazing. 

Well, there you have it! 
Turns out some of the most important lessons in networking and business growth are to keep your eyes and ears open, and learn from each other. Keep expanding your creativity and challenging your limits. And for now - we're onto another year. Bring it on, 2016!


For more information about how to be featured on the Small Business Spotlight, direct inquiries below.

Leesa King
Writer|Photographer 
KeesaLing@gmail.com
LeesaKing.com

3 comments:

  1. Great interview and great SUBJECT! Tracy has helped me in my small business marketing strategies on and off for a few years. She is unique. Her last response in this interview is exactly why she is my girl. I trust her. She's real and honest. And she knows her stuff. So happy that Tracy's business is growing. Good for her and good for us small businesses she helps!!

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  2. What a helpful and inspiring interview! I sometime get overwhelmed with the internet marketing and I love how Tracy in her free class with Constant Contact helped me figure out what to start with, and to get one thing going well before going on to another form of internet marketing.

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  3. Thanks for your amazing business suggestions. You may also take help from the free advertising sites as it can help you in reaching your customers with ease that can eventually help you in gaining some profit.

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