35 Books for Creative Solopreneurs

35 Books for Creative Solopreneurs

I love to read, and because I don't have much time for my favorite hobby, I also love to listen to audiobooks. Gotta get my fix in somehow!

I don't love listening to self-help/nonfiction though, or at least I used to find the idea abhorrent. The idea of listening to someone talk on and on about how to "up your game," or become "more focused," ...blah, blah, blah... could have easily been a form of punishment for me.

That is, until I read a couple of business books (of my own free will, I might add!) this past fall. (I got sucked in, okay?!) They opened my eyes to a whole new genre which I can actually tolerate, as it turns out, and some of which I really (REALLY) enjoyed reading/listening to.

So, as with most things I get excited about, I dove in head first and created a list of books I want to read in this genre. And since I went to all that effort, I figured I should share the wealth of knowledge with you too!

Where You Can Get Fee-Free Business Banking for your Start-up

Where You Can Get Fee-Free Business Banking for your Start-up

Running a legit business means you're going to need a bank account for that business, and how you go about doing that is up to you. Many banks charge fees to even have the account, have a minimum amount you must deposit to open the account, or penalties if you dip below a certain amount month-to-month.

Sometimes small, local banks can offer better options, but with a smaller bank you also have some potential drawbacks. For example, my bank didn't have an app for years, which I found very inconvenient, even though I'm overall very happy with my choice of bank for my personal account.

Of course, some banks are worse than others, so you definitely should do your own research before opening an account. After all, I am not a financial advisor or an accountant, etc., and I am not giving you financial advice here.

So, what if you could avoid those monthly banking fees, transaction fees, money transfer fees, and still have some of the perks of using a larger banking company?

Today I'm going to present a feature list for a new company called Azlo, which does just that.

7 Podcasts Every Female Entrepreneur Should Be Listening To

7 Podcasts Every Female Entrepreneur Should Be Listening To

I admit it. I've never been a podcast listener, until recently.

To the point that podcasts weren't even on my radar; like they didn't exist at all. When I'd hear something like, "subscribe to my podcast," I'd roll my eyes and think 'pshhh, like I need something else to keep up with.'

Turns out I was wrong. I started listening to one, and I loved it so much that I went looking for more to add to my library, and I loved those too, so I went looking for even more. Now I have 20 different podcasts in my library, and I listen to all of them fairly regularly, some more often than others. 

My husband even got into it, around the time I did, via the British History Podcast (more on that further down).

There's nothing to "keep up with" as it turns out, these podcasts are a little like books; you can pick them up and stop whenever you want. They're always available whenever you have free time to listen.

Today I'm listing my favorite business podcasts that every female entrepreneur (or small business owner) should be listening to + 1 extra (non-business related podcast) just for fun!

Use Trello to Save Your Bookmarks

Use Trello to Save Your Bookmarks

Last year my laptop was running a little slower than I wanted, so I backed up everything onto an external hard drive, uninstalled & removed all my software, and wiped my computer. Started over, fresh.

It was a lot of work, but that made things so much better. I reinstalled the operating system, put most of my files and software back onto my computer, and I was ready to move on.

I opened my internet browser and realized I had never backed up my bookmarks!! Who would remember to do that? I hope you would, but for whatever reason, I didn't even think about it, even though I tediously went through the entire contents of my laptop to make sure I had everything else, including old emails.

I had a few years worth of bookmarks saved, before I wiped my computer. I frantically logged into my Firefox account, and then Chrome... but they weren't there. I hadn't turned on the native backup so they'd be stored in my account. CRAP.

Months later, after building up important bookmarks again (and this time they are backed up) that major loss of info from before led me to also put my bookmarks in a new location. One that I can access anywhere, any time, from any device.

That's why I chose to use Trello to save my browser bookmarks.

PLUS: grab a copy of my Bookmarks Trello Board, and add it to your own Trello account! Includes all the lists, cards, links, and more!

4 reasons why you should be hiring a Graphic Designer

4 reasons why you should be hiring a Graphic Designer

Ever see a new business pop up, get let down when you see their branding and think 'what the...? Where did they get that done??'

Yep, happens to me all the time, and ya know what's definitely not socially acceptable? For a designer to contact that business and be all, "hey, I see you clearly need some serious help redesigning your logo; I can totes help with that!"

I'm sure 90% of those businesses have a reason for doing things the way they have, and that's fine if they're also fine with mediocrity, right? 

Bad branding usually happens because...

How to start using Pinterest for Business

How to start using Pinterest for Business

If you're a business owner (big or small), an entrepreneur, a solopreneur, a freelancer, or just consider yourself someone with a side-hustle, you're probably trying to figure out all the ways to to drive traffic to your online home base: your website.

You probably already know there is thing platform called Pinterest, and everyone is on it, but what are they doing with it? How does it work? Where on earth do you start??

Maybe you have a brand new account and you don't know how to grow a following, or if you should even grow a following?! (Do followers even matter on Pinterest??)

Maybe you have an old account, but you aren't sure what to do with it, or how to make it work for you.

Whatever the case, if you're not utilizing Pinterest for Business, you're missing out on a huge traffic driver, second only to Google (for me). In fact, Google & Pinterest alternate between 1st and 2nd in the largest traffic driving sources for my own website. 

So, on that note, let's talk about how to start using Pinterest for your business.

5 Not So Obvious Squarespace Tips

5 Not So Obvious Squarespace Tips

When a website project is complete and I hand over ownership to the client, he/she can choose whether to add me as an Admin on their site in case they need any hands-on help while they're learning to use Squarespace. Basically, that just allows me to use my own login to view & edit their site on an as-needed basis, if they ever need any help.

My Admin status can be removed at any point, whenever my client feels comfortable enough with the platform, and can be reinstated if help is ever needed again.

Because I'm an Admin for a growing list of my client's Squarespace sites, I get questions now and then about how to do simple things that aren't so obvious. So today, I'm going to walk you through 5 not so obvious Squarespace tip & tricks.

How to Organize Your Life with Trello

How to Organize Your Life with Trello

I was an absolute mess! I had physical AND digital sticky notes, notes on legal pads and in notebooks. Notes in documents on my computer and in the cloud, notes in Google Drive and in Dropbox. Plus I love stationery, but rarely end up using it, so I have a couple planners where I intended to put notes but never actually did... that...

I thought I was organized, until I realized I wasn't.

🙌🏻   Then I found Trello. 🙌🏻  
(it really deserves a standing ovation!)

Now before you say, "ugh... not another paid app to download." Nope!

This is FREE! 

As in: you-can-use-99%-of-what-they-have-available-without-ever-having-to-upgrade. Yeah, that kind of free.

Never heard of Trello before? It's okay, I hadn't either! I'd heard of Asana, and I tried it but, ...I didn't really like it so I never actually used it = ineffective.

You can use Trello to plan for pretty much anything going on in your life, whether that's for home or business related tasks. You can view those tasks in both a visual list view and in a calendar mode, so you can see which tasks in your board overlap with each other. You can also attach stuff, comment, tag and the whole system is drag-and-drop friendly too.

Does any of that sound good??? Awesome. Then you better keep on reading, because Trello could change your life! 😉

How I use Dubsado for my Client Onboarding process

How I use Dubsado for my Client Onboarding process

Getting started (or even just knowing where to start) with client onboarding can be tricky. I know this, because I've been there! My old process was cumbersome, unorganized and complicated, because I didn't really have one... at all. 🙈

I'd miss steps during client onboarding simply because I didn't have a system, or even worse, maybe I was so excited to get started on the project that I just bypassed all that "stuff." 

Luckily for me, I have wonderful clients and no problems ever came up because of my previous lack of onboarding organization. BUT I knew then, as I know now, that wouldn't last. Not that my wonderful clients would suddenly become something other than wonderful. No, no, no.

I'm saying my obvious lack of organization would eventually lead to an error SOMEWHERE, whether that was accidentally missing a client's deadline, or not getting paid on time because I had to manually set up invoices in PayPal and send them (or soooo many other possible scenarios).

As I mentioned (in detail) here, in Why Dubsado is My Favorite App, ...it's my favorite business app! I have many others on the list (I 💚  you too, Trello).

But in case you missed that (HINT: go back & read it too!), Dubsado is FREE to try, with no time limit on your trial; it just caps you at 3 clients before you'll have to upgrade.

SO WHAT THE HECK ARE YOU WAITING FOR??? 
LET'S GET STARTED!

How to help your client 'Unearth Their Brand'

How to help your client 'Unearth Their Brand'

My last post was a reader survey, because I wanted to know what kinds of specific things you wanted to hear from me, so I can serve you better!

Several of you mentioned that you needed help with your client's branding & processes, so today I'm tackling one of those things!

I've got an example, sample questions to ask, and of course,...

+ Don't forget to grab the free client workbook:
'Unearthing Your Brand'

I want to hear from you!

I want to hear from you!

I want to hear from you!

Today, I wanted to check in with my readers and see what kinds of things you need help with, or want me to discuss.

I want to know how I can serve you better! My #1 goal for this blog is to be a resource with tons of helpful, actionable information, and I want to be on the right track!

Whether it's a Squarespace tutorial, some topic about how I run my business, how to do something specific in Adobe, how to interact with designers, or even something simple like creating your own GIF, I want to know.

I can't wait to read your responses! :)

Why I'm so excited to share my Absolute Favorite Freelancer App

Why I'm so excited to share my Absolute Favorite Freelancer App

Holy smokes, you guys! When something is this good, you don't keep it to yourself; you share it!

I don't know if I've been living under a rock, or what, but I'd never heard of this company until a few months ago. I'm scratching my head now, trying to figure out what the heck took me so long to move forward!?

How To Use Another Heading Font in Squarespace

How To Use Another Heading Font in Squarespace

Today, I'm going to walk you through how to use a new heading font in Squarespace. Whether you're new to SS, or you've been around a while, you've probably noticed there's only 3 Heading font options in your Text Block. I don't know about you, but sometimes I just need 1 more! And not just one more static option, but one that's changeable as needed.

Nowhere that I've ever seen, does the Style Editor offer you 1 more font choice for the headings, and even if it did, it would be a static choice that can't change per use, depending on where you want to use it. So how do you go about getting another one? You use the Markdown Block.

What is that, by the way? It's just another way of writing in more customized text. It's more customizeable than the Text Block and it does use a little code, but don't let that scare you away!

I'm going to paste it in here for you, and tell you which parts to edit. And if you're afraid you'll mess up your entire site by "coding it wrong," then don't worry! Anything you put in Markdown will not effect the rest of your site, it only effects what you put inside that block. So if you do it, and you don't like it, just delete that block, or erase the content inside that block's edit window, and start over. No harm, no foul!

TIP: Go ahead and open up a new document in Word (or Pages) so you can paste in the code I'm giving you. That way you can refer back to it easily later on, AND you can paste in your own Markdown language there to grab later. That will keep you from having to recreate it every time!

Why you shouldn't let your fear of failure stop you from moving forward

Why you shouldn't let your fear of failure stop you from moving forward

Today my advice is a little more personal. Today I want you to decide to stop letting your fear of failure get in the way of your success.

Look, I know. If you're reading this, you're probably thinking, "But I'm not afraid? I have real, legitimate struggles to overcome before I can do anything at all."

I wholeheartedly disagree, and here's why!

How to add more than one URL to your Instagram Bio

How to add more than one URL to your Instagram Bio

Having a good Instagram bio is so important, and for businesses, having a link in the bio is KEY.

As you go along throughout the year though, you may find that you are changing out your URL as needed, linking to a sales page for a new launch, or changing to your shop page when you have a sale, etc.

Here's why that's not productive:

When your audience gets nosey, and they likely will (I do!), they'll scroll through your whole gallery if they are really that interested (and have the time). What happens if they stumble upon a post from a year ago that refers to a URL "link in bio!" that is no longer there?? Oops!

Aside from that, in business it's always good to have more than 1 option available to you.

Today I'm going to teach you the simplest of How To's. A 5-minute step that will give you more control over that URL, and put more links in your Instagram Bio.

Oh, and did I mention it's FREE?

Invoicing, Contracts, Proposals, & Time Tracking

Invoicing, Contracts, Proposals, & Time Tracking

I should've written a blog about this months ago! It's my favorite advice to share, really.

As a freelancer myself, I know we're always looking for tools that will do everything we need, all in one place, without shaving off large chunks from our profit margin as we grow and scale our businesses.

So, when I came across a podcast about this free resource where several things could be handled all in one place, for less than $20/mo, my interest was piqued.

AND the best part? The company was formed by freelancers, FOR freelancers (of all kinds). They've also expanded since then, offering additional services now than they had available even just a few months ago!

How to get the most out of your Squarespace Style Editor

How to get the most out of your Squarespace Style Editor

Ever add a new element on your site, only to realize it doesn't match the style of your brand or your website? On Squarespace, HOW DO you make the most out of your Style Editor?? How do you catch those little things? And why didn't you see them before?

To get the most out of your Squarespace site, you’ve gotta really dig into that Style Editor page. But what you may not realize? The editor won't allow you to style some things that aren't on the page you’re viewing when you enter the Style Editor! 

So today’s Squarespace Tip will walk you through setting up a Style Guide page, to help you get the most out of your Style Editing!

Comparing Squarespace vs. Weebly

Comparing Squarespace vs. Weebly

If you follow me on Instagram or Facebook, you’ve probably seen some of my old KDD branding (Katelyn Dekle Designs) at the bottom of my gallery. It was simple, clean, and not really representative of me at all, except for the name (though I do love the color teal). 

So when I decided to rebrand as Studio1862 in November, I also looked into moving my website for various reasons, and decided to do it all at once.

Why did I want to switch platforms? Here’s my list of pros & cons for BOTH Squarespace & Weebly.