Common marketing missteps waste time and money. These 5 fixes are GAME CHANGERS.

Say Yes to Free Press

Tacos El Huequito - Say Yes to Free Press - CarolynDaughters.com

This one might seem like a no-brainer, but, weirdly, in my experience it’s not. Get your name out there, and say yes to free press.

Ghosted by My Favorite Distillery

I periodically write for the GES Gazette, the local paper for the Globeville, Elyria, and Swansea neighborhoods of Denver. A few months back, I wrote about Tacos El Huequito, a local taqueria.

I hadn’t intended to write about Tacos El Huequito. Instead, I had pitched a story about my local distillery to my editor. Sure thing, he said. Now, this distillery has been my home away from home for the past two years. I’ve spent many COVID hours on the outdoor patio sipping Manhattans. I’ve met the owners, distillers, bartenders, and musicians who play on some evenings.

I tried to set up an interview with the distillery’s owners. I talked to a bartender, who said he would pass on my message and contact info. I called and left messages. I sent messages on Facebook. I met with the head distiller, who said their social media marketing team wasn’t good at keeping up with social media. (He actually said this.) He promised to pass on my handwritten note.

The key message I shared over and over again: We’re talking about free publicity here — as in all kinds of benefits for your business at zero cost to you.

Over the course of 14 days, I never received one call, text, email, or Facebook message in response.

Turned Away by a Neighborhood Restaurant

I had assumed that any business would say yes to free press. I was wrong. Color me confused, which just so happens to be the color of maraschino cherries bleached yellow in a solution of calcium chloride and sulfur dioxide and then marinated in vats of high fructose corn syrup and something called Red #4.

With two days left to submit a story, I reached out to a popular restaurant in Globeville. “We’re not interested,” the woman said. Convinced she didn’t understand what I was proposing, I reiterated that the business would receive valuable free press. “No thank you,” she said.

Say Yes to Free Press

Flummoxed, I called Tacos El Huequito next. According to their many fans far and wide, they serve some of the best authentic Mexican street food in Denver. I figured they were worth a shot.

I learned that the restaurant is run by Ramon Aguirre and Lorena Alvarez, a husband/wife team that makes great food, provides exceptional service, and values free publicity. Score!

Here’s the deal: Entrepreneurs may know a lot, but they don’t know what they don’t know. Free exposure? Don’t need it. Online backlinks and thousands of papers distributed throughout the area? No thanks. Social media marketing team that sucks at social media marketing? No big deal.

Running an in-house marketing effort is no small task. Neither is finding the right freelancers or agency. Entrepreneurs wear at least a dozen hats, many of them ugly and ill-fitting. Key marketing decisions — no-brainers — are being left to chance or to problematic decision-making.

You don’t have to go it alone. Get on the list, and I’ll tell you what to do and how to do it. I’ll share real-world marketing and communications advice once a week. All value, all the time. For real.

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