Judy Crockett

Judy Crockett
Judy Crockett

Thursday, December 17, 2015

Manistee Effort to Collect Purses for Women in Shelters Spreads - Northern Michigan's News Leader

Manistee Effort to Collect Purses for Women in Shelters Spreads - Northern Michigan's News Leader

I love what this effort has morphed into across the state of Michigan. Women are good to other women. Women do care for other women. Women are generous with other women. The idea of filling a good purse with lovely personal items to make another woman feel special and loved has touched the hearts of those who give...and those who receive. Watch for more information on the project's Face Book  site  Christmas Carol Purse Project.

My heart is warmed by how this simple idea has moved so many to compassion.

Friday, December 11, 2015

Bringing Out The Best in Women Working With Women...Women Who Can Get it Done!

It started with an idea hatched during a semi-sleepless night. In three short weeks, it has grown into a brand. The Christmas Carol Purse Project was to provide about a dozen new or gently used purses, filled with lovely things a woman would love for Christmas, to a local Manistee area domestic violence shelter for distribution at Christmas.

As I write this, there are five local projects, reaching eight or more Michigan counties, with a total of nearly 700 beautifully wrapped and ready for gifting purses filled with scarves, lotions, personal care items, books, tea, chocolate, gloves, hats, jewelry, and so much more. That number continues to grow.

Carol Atkins was a powerhouse of a woman who spent her entire adult life fighting for women's rights - human rights to be sure. She was an author, a poet, a playwright, an activist, a wife, a mother, a friend.  Late in her life, she was inducted into the Michigan Women's Hall of Fame. She was a co-founder of CHOICE of Manistee, a domestic violence shelter in Manistee.

Kathy Lightbody, Brand Communications Director
 at Automotive News, Crain Communications in Detroit
delivers a load of purses donated to the Purse Project. Over
700 purses have been collected statewide in Michigan.
So it was natural to me to want to name this project after Carol when this idea hatched one night in late November. Carol inspired me in life - and she continues to influence me in the years since she passed from this life. When I met Carol in 2002, she was tiny, soft spoken, with fiery eyes, wit, a knowing smile, and a sharp mind. She fought long and hard in the early days for rights for women. I loved to listen to her, learn from her, and be present with her just to feel the strength her tiny frame could not contain. Carol would be proud to watch this project grow as women around the state and beyond are giving generously to help other women in need...continuing her tradition of caring for other women.

Learn more about the Christmas Carol Purse Project on Face Book. Next year, we will have a website and branded materials to help grow this exciting project in any community interested in coordinating. We are adding a project for men, too as we will begin collecting shaving kits for men for Christmas 2016.

We see a lot of pain on television and read many sad stories in the press. We hear about women unable to get along with other women. Here is a story that will warm your heart and reaffirm the generosity of Americans and the true spirit of women working together. Merry Christmas everyone...and hats off to you, Carol. You continue to inspire me. And to the many, many women working to make this such a awesome project: You have renewed my spirit and filled my heart!

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Charitable Giving and Our Youth

I have spent a great deal of time this past week contemplating charitable giving, sharing stories, talking about need in our community, and of course, donating time and dollars through 100 Women Who Care Manistee County.

This past week, both 100 Men and 100 Women Who Care held their quarterly meetings. The newly-founded men's group raised about $3,000 in one hour, the women in their second year raised about $6,000. PLUS: An anonymous donor at the women's meeting wrote a second personal check for $2,000 to assist one of the presenting organizations who did not receive funding from the group that night. Together, over $11,000 was raised through this efficient, effective process.

In addition, discussion has begun on forming 100 Youth Who Care Manistee County. It simply makes sense. Educating and engaging youth in discussions about the various nonprofit organizations in the county at an early age will prepare them to support and serve others in our community throughout their lives. Currently, YAC - - Youth Advisory Committee of the Manistee County Community Foundation does just that -- they are engaging our youth in the development of our communities in Manistee County.

100 Who Care not only raise dollars. These meetings are a place to raise awareness of the good work going on throughout Manistee County by tireless, generous volunteers. HATS OFF to each and every person giving time, energy, and money.

Just a day after our meeting, I had the opportunity to talk to the local director/mentor of Staircase Youth Services, a program that is dedicated to assisting at-risk, runaway, and/or homeless youth in West Michigan - - specifically this woman serves in Manistee County.

The cause for teens at-risk can stem from many sources including sexual, physical, and/or substance abuse, divorce, illness, pregnancy, and/or communication breakdown in the family. With early intervention, some of these problems can be prevented from becoming legal or even life-threatening issues. Learning more about the critical work of this agency, I could not help think how important it is that we care deeply and gently for our youth - - who often for reasons much beyond their control - - find themselves in situations of crisis.

I also learned that anonymous donors have contributed to Staircase in some of the most unusual, but beneficial ways: dollars of course, but also rolling suitcases, fresh, new blankets, hygiene and hair care products, movie theater passes, school supplies. Some folks have hired youth in this program to rake their lawns, etc. as they work to earn money to fund driver's education or pay to get a driver's license. (That in itself is a huge expense; but a license is important when trying to get a job or attend school.)

As you go about your week, I invite you to ponder our youth as both important contributors to Manistee County, as well as tender, fragile young people trying to make it in what can sometimes be very difficult situations. Also keep the program counselors and directors in your thoughts - their work with youth, the aging, and those in crisis too often goes unnoticed or is misunderstood.

There are so many ways you can help our youth in Manistee County - - check out www.staircaseyouthservices.org to learn more.

Tuesday, April 07, 2015

Building Consumer Confidence Every Day!

Check out these tips from experts on Building Consumer Confidence. Make it a habit to build some of these tips into your business -- to grow your business. 

One of my favorite tips is included:

56. Say "YES" to Earn Confidence

Say YES! If you want to build consumer confidence, give your business a positive makeover. Remove signs posted (especially near the door) that have negative messages: "No Restrooms." "No Personal Checks." "No Soliciting."
Greet customers with a smile and answer phone calls with joy in your voice. Make me feel like you enjoy having me as a customer. When your customers ask a question, answer with a "Yes, we can do that!" style of an answer and then do it. You will earn their trust.
Thanks to: Judy Crockett of Interactive Mktg & Communication.
See all the tips by clicking on the link below.


Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Talking with Your Employees About Selling Your Business

The NFIB - - National Federation of Independent Business has tools you can use to grow a successful business. Consider the benefits of joining, and by all means, check out their web site to learn more.

When you make the decision to sell or close your business, you may have the tendency to want to share the details with your employees early on. After all, they have been there for you and you do care about their futures and the relationships you've developed over time with them.  But before you say too much too soon, read the article in the link below:


I hope you find this information useful as you move forward.

Judy Crockett
Interactive Marketing & Communication

Becoming Financially Fearless

In a recent article, I shared one habit my husband and I use when making a spending decision. That habit was among ten included in a recent article at learnvest.com titled "10 Habits of Financially Fearless People Across the County."

Read about these ten habits in the link below. I hope you enjoy - as well as learn something you can use.


Good luck!

Judy Crockett

First Time Home Buyers

I recently contributed to an article regarding First Time Home Buyers. My experience comes from being a licensed real estate agent and Realtor in Michigan during which time I earned a Residential Specialist designation. I have purchased several homes and I have sold a couple homes FSBO - - For Sale By Owner.

What I have learned is that many people, especially first-time buyers, come to the table not realizing the options they have in financing and negotiating the deal. Too often, buyers make decisions afraid that if they explore options, they might loose the deal. Before you get involved in buying - or selling - a home, learn strategies that will help you make the best decisions for yourself and your family... before you are so emotionally involved in the deal that you don't get your best deal.

Check out the article:


Interest rates are still so low - - and homes in many regions are still so affordable. Get smart. Then go out and get your best deal.

Judy Crockett

Monday, January 26, 2015

Get Control Over Your Inventory.

If you own a retail establishment, you know the importance of managing your inventory. Check out some of my tips in the Winter 2015 edition of Craft Business Insider on pages 14-17.

Let me know your thoughts.


Judy Crockett

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Is There Value is Writing Press Releases?

I have had several inquires recently questioning the value of sending press releases to the media. Is there value? Absolutely! Let me share a few reasons for incorporating carefully crafted press releases into your marketing mix:

1) I use press releases with all of my clients. While not everyone, especially the Y-Gen, read newspapers...there is still a huge segment of the population that do get information from printed and online news.

2) People talk. While my daughter may not read the paper, I do. And if I learn of something of interest to her going on through a press release, I will share it with her.

3) Press releases run/air for free. Why not take advantage of reaching a portion of your market for  free? Keep in mind they are free...and as such, you have no control over when, where, or if they run or air.
4) Press releases often trigger an interview or story from the media wanting to know more about the issue or event covered in the press release. If you are sending press releases regularly to the media, you are positioning yourself as the expert and they will come to you when they need information.

5) Press releases can get picked up and used and discussed in social media arenas that DO reach others.

I can think of plenty of valuable reasons to use carefully crafted press releases...so go ahead and take advantage of the opportunity.

Judy Crockett is a retail management consultant and owner of Manistee, Michigan- based Interactive Marketing & Communication. She can be reached at crockettjudy@gmail.com. Her blog is www.womensnetwork.blogspot.com

Sunday, January 18, 2015

The Y-Generation and How They Impact Your Workplace

The Matures, Baby Boomers, X-Generation, and now Y-Generation. Every generation has a name and we have all learned about the characteristics of each particular generation.  But for the first time in history, employees of all four generations are working side by side in many work environments. Both employers and employees are dealing with the challenges faced in a multi-generational workplace.

I have been devouring Jason Dorsey's book, Y-Size Your Business to gain a better understanding of the newest generation competing for jobs along side all of us. Late for work, always plugged in, and approaching every day with a sense of entitlement seems all to unprofessional; yet this is the next generation and like it or not, they are competing with us for jobs. As employers, we will most certainly have to hire them. If you stick around the workforce long enough, you may eventually be working for a Y.

Dorsey spells out some useful tools and strategies for understanding this next generation of employees/employers. Check out his web site and his books if you want to learn more.


And good luck...as soon as you figure out The Ys...the I-Generation will be entering the work force!

Judy Crockett
Interactive Marketing & Communication

Friday, January 09, 2015

Make Your Sales Soar in 2015

You've gone high tech. You've unwrapped, plugged in, charged uploaded, and anti-virused all your new electronic gadgets, software and hardware. Good for you!
Now - unplug and give your sales a boost in 2015. Here are three tips to make your sales soar:
1) Remain customer focused. Forget about what YOU have to SELL and think about what the CUSTOMER NEEDS. If you focus on solving their problems, you will become a trusted key player in their business and they will buy from you ... long term.
2) Exceed expectations. Deliver early, better and more than your customer expects. Do it every time. And do it with cheerfulness. Be your customer's bright spot in the day.
3) While we live in a high tech world, never forget you are still dealing with individuals, not machines. There is a live, busy, overworked often underpaid person with real-life issues on the receiving end of your emails and texts. When possible incorporate face-to-face meetings and live phone conversations into your relationships with current and potential clients. Building this type of relationship will bring long lasting business your way.

Judy Crockett is a retail management consultant and owner of Manistee, Michigan-based Interactive Marketing and Communication. Her blog is www.womensnetwork.blogspot.com. She can be reached at crockettjudy@gmail.com.