Connect with Millennials Consumers through Branded Audio Content

In our hyper-visual world, it seems counterintuitive to have an audio-only ad campaign. But on the contrary, your highly desired customer base (i.e. Millennials ) are listening more than ever. 

During my daily internet scavenging for useful information to share with all of you, I found a research study in partnership with Spotify for Brands and YPulse on Understanding millennials through music. The study surveyed 7000 millennials (individuals born between 1982 and 2000) from first world countries (United States, United Kingdom, and Australia). From the study, there were four key takeaways: 

  1. Music is the number one passion for Millennials. Music is a key a part of their lives. It defines who they are. Music sustains them through allthe  moments of their lives whether good, bad, happy or sad.
  2. Millennials stream music through their mobile devices and listen throughout the day. Streaming provides a soundtrack to their lives.
  3. Millennials gather social currency from discovering new sounds and sharing with their network.
  4. Music tribes no longer exist. With more access to music from around the world, Millennials are wide-ranging in the audio content they consume.

Okay. Millennials listen to music but how does that help me market my small business? The research demonstrates the ability of these kinds of media platforms to reach younger audiences. Audio has great potential and here are some ways to incorporate audio in your small business advertising strategy.

Create a Playlist



Creating a playlist, is an easy and free strategy to build relationships with your current consumer and cultivate new ones.  With a Spotify account, you can create a playlist to match the tone of your brand. Playlists are an excellent option if you have a brick and mortar location. During your business hours use your playlist to set the store ambiance.  Also help to build your playlist followership by encouraging your customers to follow on Spotify. If you’re a salon, your playlist might give your customers something they can bop their head to. If you’re a personal trainer, your playlist may be high energy helping your clients give it there all. Whatever you choose make sure the sound you curate matches your brand and places your business in a professional light.

“Spotify playlists are Kate’s mood ring, mirroring what she’s feeling at any given moment. Pop hits spin while she’s in spin class, international music stimulates her mental state throughout the work day and her pregame playlist gets her in the mood for a fun Friday night with friends. Whatever you’re feeling or doing, there’s a playlist for that.”

Business Podcast

Podcasting is an excellent way to connect with a mobile audience and could possibly be a supplement or even a replacement for your business blog. MasterCard has a podcast titled, “Fortune Favors the Bold.The show discusses how our relationship with money is evolving. A money podcast by a credit card provider is very on-brand for MasterCard.

You may have a smoothie bar, your podcast may be centered around, healthy living. You’re a restaurant you could have a food show like Blue Apron, focused on a type culinary cuisine or a commenting on food trends. A podcast is a great way to solidify your authority on a topic. This goes with saying, but the topic of your show should connect well with your brand. If you’re a novice podcaster, start-out on SoundCloud where audio files are free and easy to upload. Also don’t be afraid to ask loyal customers or local influencer in your area to be the voice of your podcast.
Spotify Ads (Now in Beta)

Lastly, we have the paid advertising on streaming platforms. Currently, there is not an active self-serve ad platform for streaming services but Spotify ads is currently in beta and I’m really excited about the potential. The Spotify Ad Studio will allow any business big or small the opportunity to advertise on the platform. Businesses can upload their audio files directly to the ad studio, segment their audience based on age, gender, location, activity, and music taste. You can even segment by device. Just set your desired budget and campaign dates and you’re good to go.

If you need further convincing to dip your toe into audio, I think spotify said it best: Audio stays with people all day long, reaching them where visual media can’t — from the car to the shower (really). So what are you waitng for? Create that playlist, start your podcast and draft your ad script and prepare to make long lasting customer relationships one listener at a time. 



Business Tool of the Month -HoursTracker

If you’re in a service profession, you most likely charge by the hour. Keeping track of time spent on billable hours is important when invoicing clients.  It can be a lot to manage as a freelancer juggling multiple projects at a time.

HoursTracker was a lifesaver for me. It is a mobile application available for download iOS and Android devices. I recommend, downloading the premium version for $4.99. This will give you the ability to host multiple projects on the application, helping you keep your business organized. If paying for mobile apps does not interest you, the free version limits you to one project at a time.  If you find yourself working on projects simultaneously, the premium version may be a better fit.

The interface is very user-friendly. To add a new project press the plus sign (+). You will then be brought to a new screen where you can enter your project details such a name, and hourly rate. You can also set automatic breaks, allow overtime and set up your pay period. 


When you’re ready to start working, select the project, and push the “Clock In Now” button. When you’re finished just, clock out. If you ever forget to clock in or clock out,  you can edit your time in the job details. My favorite thing about the HoursTracker is the ability to export your time as an excel file. After I have received payment for my work, I export the timesheet as a CSV file and save to my G. Drive for my records. I then,  clear out the time for the client or delete the project completely if there is no further work. This feature can come in handy if there is ever a billing dispute.

I have found much success with this mobile application especially because it is so accessible.  Whenever I have the inspiration to work on a project, I pull out my phone and presto! I encourage you to try it out and let me know your thoughts.

Wix, Squarespace, and WordPress – Which website host is right for your small business.

Choosing the right service to create your website can be a daunting task. A website is a digital home for your business and it should fit the size and function of your operation. Consider this,  a family of five wouldn’t need the same kind of home as a recent college graduate and an entrepreneur wouldn’t have the same website demands as a fortune 500 company. The success of your digital home is contingent on choosing the right service for your business needs. I have picked out the apartments, the condos and single homes your business will be ready to move in to.

Your First Apartment – Wix

Similar, to a first apartment Wix websites are move-in ready, efficient and have everything you need to get started. With Wix, you have the ability to customize templates to your business’ needs.  By using the editor, you can add photos, rearrange page elements and change the color pallet, simply with a click of a button. 

This is my go-to site anytime I need a new website. My favorite thing about Wix is it’s FREE. That’s right Free. I’m all about saving where I can especially when starting a new business. Wix offers a free plan where you receive a subdomain at no cost, based off of your email address (If you’re then your domain will be

There are hundreds of templates to choose from and even blank templates if creative juices are really flowing.  There are options for every website need. Just search for by business type such as retail, consulting or blog. Wix is perfect for the new entrepreneur because it gives you the opportunity to really hone in on your brand and messaging. The Wix editor lets you play with colors, change fonts,  add images, switch up the layout, without knowing anything about code. 

Wix does have its limitations, interactive features are slow to load and mobile editor is not user-friendly and the ADI editor very problematic. Even still, the positives outweigh the negatives and Wix provides a great value for any budding business. 
The Luxury Condo – Squarespace

Wix is for the new business while Squarespace is for the established brand. This brand knows it’s customer base, it’s messaging and wants a mature look to its site. Squarespace is the luxury condo of websites. Through this service  you’ll receive a sleek website right out of the box. There are plenty there are many templates to choose from and most have a minimalist aesthetic.

If you’re willing to pay, Squarespace is a great value. A personal plan is $12/month when billed annually. Unlike Wix, Squarespace lacks a drag and drop editor so templates are not completely customizable when it comes to layout. However, you could team up with a web developer to create a custom site for Squarespace. 

The third best about Squarespace is, if you’re confused, there are plenty of knowledgeable people who are happy to share their expertise. Your Squarespace membership includes  24/7 customer support and Squarespace hosts a series of workshops and webinars to answer any common platform questions.

The Single Family Home – WordPress

I describe WordPress as a single family because when home shopping you have the option to either purchase land and build a house from scratch or purchase a house already constructed, At WordPress, it’s the same premise. You can code your site from scratch pay for a hosting service with or you can have a free account with and have them host your site for you at no additional cost. 

If you opt-in to use the best thing is you will have complete control over your website’s design and functionality. You will have opportunity upload custom themes to your account giving your website a major wow factor. The downside to if you need some understanding of website development or you will need to pay someone with that expertise. Building your site will be a major overhaul and it will cost you time and money but remember this will be your business’ forever home so the investment will be well worth it.

Now, if this does not interest you, is where you should turn you attention. It is similar to Squarespace with a library of templates where you can customize the site to make it your own.  The free account does come with a free custom domain. Your site URL will look something like this: The free versions come with some limitations so I recommend purchasing the premium plan tailored for entrepreneurs and freelancers. The plan is $8/month and is billed yearly. The plan provides you with a custom domain, access to premium themes, advanced design customizations with CSS.

Websites are most often the first impression customers will see your businesses so picking the right platform is crucial. I hope the information is the guide helped to provide some clarity helped you make that first step in making your entrepreneurial dreams a reality.

How to Use Visual Forecasting to Create Instagram Content Worthy of the Double Tap.


Is your Instagram a snooze fest? Do your followers scroll past your content without even a single tap, let alone two? Well, allow me to let you in on a little secret. Your “smiling businessman” and “young woman drinking coffee”stock photos aren’t cutting it anymore. The strategy is outdated and in desperate need of an upgrade. Lucky for you, I have five trends redefining visual storytelling. I’ll break down the trends into actions items to take your business’ Instagram account to the next level.

  1. Fluid Self 

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Whats our group name?

A post shared by AmbersCloset (@amberscloset) on


The problem with the usual Google search image is the lack of diversity of race, gender, and other identifiers. Go ahead search for “people drinking coffee” I’ll use the following as an example.


The image isn’t the worst as it does feature people of different ethnic backgrounds but Fluid Self takes it to the next level by celebrating diversity rather than using it as an accessory. Now, look at this Instagram post from Adorned by Chi. Can you see the difference?

The difference is it is different. The fluid self trend is all about shining positive light on what makes us unique. Placing emphasis on the fluid self trend in visuals is a good way of positioning your business as a progressive, socially-conscious brand. If you are a clothing retailer and you carry sizes for the very small to the very large then your social post should feature models of all sizes wearing your clothing. If you believe in LGBTQIA rights than feature people in that community in your posts.

  1. Multilocalism

Multilocalism is a must have if your business or brand is related to anything multicultural. Whether you have an Asian cuisine restaurant or sell fair trade clothing your customers should be transported abroad not only when they use your product but through your Instagram as well.

Travel Noire, a travel company whose mission is to encourage people of color to travel whether it be locally, domestically or internationally. Their feed is filled with vibrant images of faraway lands. The travelers are immersed in the cultured, draped in traditional clothing and interact with locals. There Instagram is a perfect example of the use of Multilocalism.

Multilocalism also celebrates heritage. Due to the accessibility of global travel and immigration, countries that may have been ethnically uniform now have diverse citizens who mesh the cultures from their old country with the cultures of their new home.

Let’s say you have a pizza shop and your pies are made from a family recipe going all the way back to Sicily . Your restaurant has a traditional Italian atmosphere so why not bring that same feel to your Instagram. Photos of dough being tossed or a short video of a pizza being assembled with a Italian accordion playing in the background.

3. Touch and Tactility 

This trend is all about triggering our four senses with our sense of sight. Think of it this way…have you ever seen an image of food that made you hungry or saw a photo of a blanket and thought, that looks cozy. This is the touch and tactility trend at work.

Take this image from Shameless Maya. The post itself is about creating Instagram feeds but what really caught my eye was the fuzzy rug. The goal of the post may not be to sell rugs but the texture snagged my attention and sometimes that’s all you need. 

  1. Silence and Solitude

Silence and solitude connect well with mental health and self-care. Taking time to care for oneself may it be through healthy eating, meditation or experiencing the outdoors. Self-care is becoming more and more important and with that comes the need for visuals that show it’s okay to put yourself first.

This trend can work for just about any business. If you’re hospitality focused show a guest at peace on the beach. If you’re a yogi why post a pic of the class in savasana if you’re in retail how about a model at home in some cozy lounge pants. This trend is about taking time to do what makes you feel good.

  1. Creative Reality

This trend is all about having fun escaping to a more exciting place. Images that match the creative reality trend represent worlds we wish existed in our reality.

Take Millie’s Homemade Ice Cream Based in Pittsburgh, PA. They may just be an ice cream Shop but their Instagram selling a  fun vibrant experience. The colors are bright, the treats sweet and covered in sprinkles (jimmies if you’re from the ‘burgh).

For a memorable Instagram feed, I recommend you pick one of these trends to focus your Instagram strategy around.  This will help solidify your voice on the platform and provide continuity for your followers.  That’s all for now.

Featured Brands: Amber’s Closet, Adorned By Chi, Travel Noire, Shameless Maya, Hey Fran Hey, Millies Homemade Ice Cream