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 International Nanny Association
Visit Our Website | 2013-2015 INA Board of Directors December 2013
In This Issue
  • President's Message
  • 2014 Annual Conference
  • Holiday Ideas
  • Calling All Conference Sponsors!
  • Out With The Old: New Marketing Strategies For Your Nanny Agency

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INAVision is a publication of the International Nanny Association (INA). All rights reserved. The editors reserve the right to edit articles as submitted and reserve the right to publish material accepted for INAVision  on our website or in any other official INA publication in virtual space or otherwise. Photos, letters, arts and story ideas are welcome.

The articles published in this newsletter do not necessarily reflect the views of the INA as a whole; rather, they reflect the opinions of the authors who have written them. This publication is intended to serve those interested in in-home child care by providing a forum for different views on relevant subjects, as well as INA information. The advertisements in this newsletter do not imply endorsement by INA of any particular product or service and INA does not assume responsibility for advertising content.

Copyright 2013 INA
 
This newsletter may be shared in its entirety.

 

 

 
 
 
 
 

President's Message
By Susan Tokayer, INA president

Susan TokayerFinding Balance During the Holidays

As we enter, what is a traditionally a busy time of year, I hope that everyone can find the balance in their lives to enjoy the beauty of the season, while also finding the time to finish that holiday to-do list!

For those of us in the in-home childcare industry, I believe that we can easily feel overwhelmed during the holiday season.  For caregivers, the stress of working long hours, perhaps trying to give your employers extra assistance, trying to finish your own personal tasks and finding time to spend with family and friends can make for one stressed-out individual!  Business owners may have an increase in business demand for baby-sitters and holiday helpers, and may be working with a smaller staff, if some people take time off.   Of course they have their own personal to-do list too!

My husband can vouch that I am no expert on balance, because I do often take on a little too much.  But I have learned that some of the things I traditionally did during the holidays can easily be out-sourced, which can help create more balance and marital harmony!  I will share a couple of the things I am doing this year.  I hope this inspires you to come up with some time saving shortcuts of your own. 

One service I am trying for the first time, and which I didn’t know even existed, is having a Christmas tree delivered.  I ordered the tree with a Groupon, so the cost was the same as purchasing a tree from a store or a tree lot. 

Many of us enjoy cooking and baking this time of year, but again, you may want some help in this area.  When I have guests over I now purchase a dish or two from a bakery or grocery store, or ask some of the guests to bring their favorite holiday dish. 

I know a housekeeper that takes on a little extra work this time of year, so that she can afford to hire someone to clean her apartment for her.  She found that coming home to a clean house lifted a huge psychological burden and reduced stress. 

Hopefully these ideas start all of us thinking of creative ways to free up some valuable time and make the holidays more enjoyable.  The holidays are such a wonderful time to spend with family and friends and having the time to appreciate them is what it’s all about.  So, from me to you, and my family to your family, may your holidays be filled with love, friendship, happiness and joy!

 

2014 Annual Conference - Los Angeles, CA
March 27th - 30th

Conference excitement is building!

2014 Annual Conf Logo/Hotel

Speakers are lined up and the program is being finalized – speaker announcements begin December 16th and will go out every week on the INA’s Weekly Brief.  Get more details to the 29th Annual Conference and subscribe to INA's Weekly Brief at:

http://nannyassociation.org/ina-conference-early-details/

Holiday Ideas 
By Joanne Barrow, 2013 INA Nanny of the Year

Joanne Barrow'Tis better to give than receive, yes? So if you’re anything like me during this season to be jolly, you’ve been wracking your brains on what to do for your charges and employers. I thought I’d take this December INAvision opportunity to share some more ‘untraditional’ ideas I’ve had in the past that my families have always appreciated.

  • Share a holiday tradition from your own family. In England, we wrote our wish lists to Father Christmas (aka Santa) on Christmas Eve.  Once signed and sealed, we delivered it via the fireplace and up the chimney where we believed it magically came back together in the hands of the big guy himself at the North Pole in time for the next morning. You’ve got to get them while their young to convince them of this from a logistical standpoint, but its fun to watch them marvel at the magic.
  • Make a coupon book for Mom and Dad and include some extra nights of babysitting, perhaps a voucher for something you ordinarily dislike doing, for me that’s ironing. They get a kick out of it just knowing I detest it. Make it fun with whatever ideas work for you. Cleaning the family car, sorting a disorganized closet, a household chore you know the parents are struggling to get around to. Little things mean a lot, and noticing where parents need an extra hand shows you care.
  • Share a special recipe you enjoyed as a child at the holidays and make it with the kids. If you’re from a different culture, try a traditional dish. I grew up eating Christmas pudding so I make that and have the kids stir the customary foil wrapped nickles (5 pence pieces) into the mix. They love seeing if they got one in their serving. Safety disclaimer: make sure you know how many you put in and exactly upon whose plate they end up! 
  • Write a heartfelt card. My current boss is the king of this thoughtful gesture and I’ve learnt the meaning of a well written card through him. Take your time and speak from the heart about the growth you and the children have shared in the past year. It’s a wonderful time to acknowledge that big acts weren’t taken for granted and small ones didn’t go unnoticed, or share special moments you recall with the children.  Just be genuine and you can’t go wrong.
  • Give your charges a book that you read and loved at their age or a board game you played with your own siblings around the holiday.
  • Bake holiday cookies, have the kids decorate them, bag them up and take them round to all their neighbors or to a local nursing home to hand out.

    Whether its Christmas, Hannukah or Kwanza in your house, it’s the thought and sentiment that counts the most, not the cost. So don’t get caught in thinking you have to ‘match’ what your families might do or have done for you in the past. Genuine heartfelt ‘actions’ are a great way to teach kids the real meaning of giving at the holiday season.

 Enjoy and Happy Holidays!


 

Calling All Conference Sponsors!

2014 Conf Proud Sponsor

There are still some awesome opportunities to sponsor our 29th Annual Conference in Los Angeles. Learn how you can become a proud sponsor of the INA's Annual Conference in the eStore on the Conference Sponsorship and Advertising tab. 

Once you have made your purchase successfully, please submit a copy of your confirmation e-mail along with your completed sponsorship form to admin@nanny.org at your earliest convenience. For questions, please contact the INA Member Services Office at 1-888-878-1477 or admin@nanny.org.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 Out With The Old: New Marketing Strategies For Your Nanny Agency 

 

In an article designed to help entrepreneurs with their businesses, Forbes contributing writer Dave Lavinsky discusses traditional marketing efforts. “[These] methods of marketing typically involve advertising through newspapers, magazines, telephone books, radio, and TV.  These ads are placed for a fee which corresponds to the size of the ad, as well as the medium in which it is published.” While it’s fair to say that some success results from marketing dollars allocated to these media, it’s important to recognize the Internet as today’s most cost effective means to advertise your product or service.

Here are some tips for targeting the Web as a key tool in your marketing program: Marketing Toolkit boy with toolbox

Define your audience

First, identify your customer and use marketing tools that attract your most lucrative prospects.  Traditional marketing casts a wide net; staying focused on the audience that is most likely to need what your business provides will help you reach your goals faster.

Alliances

Align your Nanny Agency with another business that complements, not competes, with yours. Referrals back and forth between businesses will help drive sales.

Think about local opportunities that attract people who would benefit from knowing about your nanny agency: sponsor a Little League team, reach out to local news outlets or ask to be interviewed about part-time jobs by a local college newspaper.

Social Media

Social media channels allow you to position your nanny agency to a vertical audience . This is where social media and the power of the Internet can really benefit your agency. The key to social media is consistency- you want to deliver relevant, interesting information on a regular basis. Create content that takes a broader approach; become an expert by weighing in on topics related to your industry- not just in your industry- and you instantly become a meaningful voice that others listen to. Introduce your business to other industry bloggers and ask to be reviewed; this will establish instant credibility to interested consumers.

Which social media platforms are the best for your business? If your business provides a service, Twitter and Facebook are ideal for information sharing. A product-driven business will also benefit from Pinterest and Instagram by delivering instant gratification (i.e. photos and samples) to customers that are researching that specific product.

Blogging as a marketing tool

Blogging can serve to add additional pages to your blog or website; and the more articles you have on your platform, the easier it is for search engines like Google to find your site and your business.  Start out by committing yourself to one post a week. Once you get the hang of it, try to add a second post each week- or ask a trusted employee if they would like the opportunity to become a thought leader. Research has shown that the more you post, the better results you get. Avoid being promotional; there’s plenty of time to show your customer why your product or service is the best choice.

Your online community

Another way to cyber-partner with businesses who may be talking to the same target is to join in the conversations they’re having on their own blogs and forums.  For example, if there is a popular mommy blog in your area, join in on discussions about child-rearing, the best nursery school and the best prices on baby food as an interested community participant. Be sure not to sell your products or the blog owner can kick you out forever.  Just having your name, followed by your email (which includes your nanny agency name, of course) can secure a position as an objective advisor, and build confidence in the perspective you provide.

If your business gets mentioned by a writer or another business, repost it. It’s a small way to show appreciation, but more importantly it adds to your reputation as a formidable industry thought leader. Respond to any critiques or problems that you’re hearing from your consumers and address them directly. All businesses encounter problems from time to time; addressing and correcting the concerns of your customers in a public forum offers transparency and builds trust.

What we’ve learned is that spending your marketing dollars on traditional means is not enough. In order to keep up with (and beat!) your competitors, you must incorporate the best tools that the Internet provides. If you would like to read more about the best marketing strategies you implement immediately, download our INA Agency Marketing Toolkit.

I Want the INA Agency Marketing Toolkit!

 



 

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