An excellent graphic explanation by Local First

Local Business – The Key to ALL OUR SUCCESS

When I tell people, as I often do, that the focus of Caulfield-White Productions is to work with creatives and local businesses to raise their profile in their community and around the world, people generally understand why we want to work with artists and creatives, but don’t understand why local business is such a focus for us. “Would you do a project for [instert large multi-national corporation here] if they paid you $100,000? $1,000,000?” they say (I swear, multiple people have asked me this question).

Like many emerging creatives, Ryder and I have struggled with the idea of selling out. How can we create things that we are passionate about while still being able to feed ourselves? (Further discussion of the ‘Doing What You Love’ mantra in a future post) We are both fully aware that as young creatives with more gonads than experience, and no family connections or name recognition, that the idea of either of us being paid obscene sums of money to make projects that we absolutely LOVE is a lovely fantasy and not much more. So, we did what we usually do, we have a “meeting”. And by meeting I mean we cracked open our laptop and a bottle of wine, and discussed our dreams, goals, loves, loathes, watched music videos of our favourite bands from the ’00s, and generally solved all the worlds while looking something like this*:

Still from The Future directed by Miranda July. You should watch this movie. NOW. (or right when you're done reading this blog post)
Still from The Future directed by Miranda July. You should watch this movie. NOW. (or right when you’re done reading this blog post)

*Note(s): Neither of us have as awesome hair as Hamish Linklater or Miranda July. We are also unable to stop time or move things with our minds.

While this “meeting” dragged on a little bit – but really, what meetings don’t – we did come to a realization that moved us in the general direction that we (as a company) are headed: Filmmaking has always been a collaborative medium; a group of people who are working together to achieve a common goal. A goal that Ryder and I (and probably a lot of other people) share, is leaving the world a better place than we found it.  I swear I am going to get to the point, and I’m going to get to it right now:

There are many different ways to go about this, but one of the simplest ways is to start in your own community by supporting local events, non-profit groups, and businesses. Though globalization has allowed for the exchange of ideas and culture, it has also allowed us (as Western post-industrial societies) to exploit people living in emerging economies all so that we can have a $5 t-shirt that we don’t wear (or can’t wear) in a year. The devaluing of STUFF is really a devaluing of the work that goes into making STUFF. Yes, advances in technology mean that factories might need fewer workers and therefore have lower labour costs, but machines have to be purchased, and maintained, and upgraded, and replaced. A simple example:

In the 1920s shoes in cost $4-$5 while the average annual salary in Canada at that time was around $960and this would generally be supporting a household. So a pair of shoes was about .5% of all the money you would make in a year.

The average Canadian household income in 2011 is $76,000, meanwhile, you can pick up shoes for between $20-$100, or between .026% – .13% of what a household earns in a year.

So the next time you think that a $50 t-shirt is ridiculously priced, remember that if that $50 t-shirt is made locally your money is paying your neighbours who more than likely are spending it in your community, helping to make it a more vibrant and liveable place; while that $10 shirt is mostly profit for the retailer, and ‘middle-man’ management companies that oversee outsourced production.

An excellent graphic explanation by Local First
An excellent graphic explanation by Local First



5 easy steps to prepare your team for a promotional video

1. Don’t force/pressure anyone to appear in the video

If someone isn’t interested in being in front of the camera, that’s okay. Not everyone is comfortable in front of the camera, or wants their image all over the internet, and a less than enthusiastic participant can bring video production to a stand-still. Ensure everyone is aware that participation is voluntary and should be a fun experience for everyone involved.

2. Do screen tests

It isn’t as hard as it may sound. Set up a video camera in a quiet place and have team members, one at a time, stand in front of the camera and talk about your organization, product, or service (whatever it is your video is intending to promote/explain.) Review all the video and see which team members are more comfortable in front of the camera. If someone is fidgety or nervous it is best not to include them in the video – you likely don’t have the time and resources to devote to curing one individual of their performance anxiety.

3. Ensure all participating team members understand the goals of the video

Once you’ve decided who is going to appear in the video, have a meeting where you share the goals you have in mind for this video. Is it to promote a particular product or service? Is it to showcase the organization to potential investors? Do you want to build community support and engagement for your organization? When your team is aware of what the end goal of the video is you can all brainstorm talking points and/or anecdotes that will clearly share your message. Handing out a list of points/ideas you want the video to convey will be helpful to everyone participating in the video to prepare themselves.

4. Have participating team members draft their own answers/dialogue

After team members understand the goals and format for the video, give them time to draft dialogue, or answer to questions they will be asked before a script for the project is assembled. When people are able to use their own words to express their ideas and values – instead of memorizing a script written by someone else – they are calmer and their answers are more believable.

5. Celebrate!

Okay, so this isn’t technically preparation. After the video is completed have a video launch party. It can be as simple as ordering some pizzas to the office after the day is done, or renting out a room at a restaurant and inviting family, friends, and clients to watch your video before it goes live online. Your team will feel appreciated for the work they’ve done and personal risks (it’s scary to be on camera) they’ve taken. It can also help launch a new product, service or campaign with your current and potential clients.

Getting the Most out of Performance Documentation

Ever since the introduction of the camcorder, performers have been able to easily make visual records of their shows. The age of streaming digital video has made the sharing of these videos online even easier, and as we become a more visual and multimedia culture, potential audience members and interested parties expect to be able to see part of your live event. And however we might feel about the sanctity of live performance, video documentation is becoming a more significant part of the experience, at least when it comes to marketing and promoting the show.

As mentioned at the beginning, the most basic form of performance documentation is to take your own video camera, stick it on a tripod, and shoot the whole stage. This method can yield useful results if you plan to use it as reference or for other internal use. However, if you intend to make the video available publicly or you want to use it as part of a portfolio, you will probably want to consider using professional video services (like ours!).

While Caulfield White Creative Industries employs a variety of techniques and strategies to craft a custom approach to every performance document, there are a few things you can do to make the videography go smoothly and to make the final product shine. There are many unique requirements in every new project, but we have found that clients who take some or all of the following actions have an easier and faster post-production process and a more satisfactory video.

Before even hiring a videographer, you should write out in detail your specific goals for the video. The ways you plan to use it will affect the way in which the production of the video is undertaken. Do you primarily need a long-form record of the performance to show producers, funding agencies, and to satisfy grant requirements? Or do you want to make a teaser video to promote your show online? Some multimedia performances may even need video taken at different stages of the process to incorporate into projections or other meta-stage elements of the production.

The next recommendation may seem obvious, but it often gets overlooked in the haste of rehearsals and meetings and other arrangements: consult your videographers early in the process. Alexandra and I love going to rehearsals (and we don’t charge extra for it). We have the capacity to document almost anything in an efficient and clean way on a moment’s notice but having seen at least the premise of the show before actually having to go shoot it will help us to create innovative custom strategies to get the most out of your show. Many past clients have also taken a simple video of the show for us so we can at least follow the action and plan our setups accordingly.

We don’t like to get too much into putting our technical preferences into the show, but one thing that comes up time and time again is that performers are staged too close to each other–it looks good to the audience, but can make getting a clean close-up shot of a performer very difficult. This is most often the case with music concerts where individuals remain in the same position for a long period of time.

Finally, it is always a good idea to brief your performers and technical staff on the goals of the video or at least on the fact that someone is coming to record the show. We have arrived at many jobs where only one person knew we were coming, and while we don’t desperately need recognition, your performers will feel more at ease if they aren’t surprised on opening night by a crew of strange people in black clothes hauling gear around their space. Making connections between the video team and the technical crew will also make last-minute questions easier and will allow us to solve problems without troubling you.

Obviously, these are just a few tips that have come in handy in the past. Your project will have its own unique requirements and we look forward to taking them on with you!


Should I hire actors for my Promotional Video?

When making a video to promote your organization, one of the first things you will have to decide is whether you will hire actors or feature actual board members/employees/clients. Both are valid choices and each has its benefits and drawbacks depending on your organization type and the purpose of your video. In general, if a video is intended to promote a specific product or service, having a polished actor who can deliver all the specifications in a clear and relaxed manner is to your benefit. On the other hand, if a video is meant to showcase your organization or a larger project in more general way, featuring people who are involved in the day-to-day may be preferable.

Benefits of working with actors:

  • Actors are trained professionals; they are comfortable in front of the camera and are able to deliver your message in a variety of styles, allowing you to choose which take suits your organization’s image best.
  • Hiring actors for your promotional video can make the shoot go much more quickly and smoothly than using non-actors.

Potential Drawbacks

  • Using professional actors adds a layer of complexity and cost to a video shoot – the process of casting itself can be long and frustrating if you’ve never done it before. There is a reason that almost every movie you’ve seen in your life has had a casting director – it takes skill and practice to recognize an actor who is good at cold reading and one who can bring what you’re looking for. (More on Casting in an upcoming post!)

Benefits of featuring your actual team:

  • There is no better recommendation for a product, business, or event than genuine passion and enthusiasm from someone associated with it.  People involved in your organization can share specific anecdotes about your work and institutional culture.
  • Featuring actual staff and/or clients allows for your personality to shine through and ensures your new video attracts the right people to your organization.
  • If your organization or group interacts directly with the public (health/wellness clinic, specialty retail outlet, community art centre, etc.), a video featuring the people with whom future clients will be interacting helps them connect more quickly once they’ve begun working with you.

Potential Drawbacks

  • The camera changes people. Even the most outgoing and gregarious people can feel self-conscious and awkward in front of a camera. (Coming next week, our post on preparing your team for a video shoot.)
  • Adjusting performance can be difficult. For non-actors, making changes to line delivery can be nearly impossible – if a team member is new to your organization, or doesn’t have a strong, visible passion for the work you are doing, it is probably best if they don’t appear in your video.

Here at Caulfield-White we can work to help you decide which option is best for you. One thing we do suggest is to float the idea of a video with your team – are they excited? Nervous? Uninterested? Your team’s attitude towards the video will be a major factor in the success (or failure) of your video. Not sure if a video is right for you, right now. Contact us and we’ll be happy to provide guidance on the most appropriate use of video for your organization.

Is video really worth it for Small Business?

Yes. And no. It depends. In this article I’m going to do my best to outline in what situations video(s) would be beneficial for a small business, and when you can take a pass.

When many people think about online videos for business they think about viral ad campaigns or those skippable things that precede your enjoyment of YouTube. But if that’s where your ideas for videos end, you’re missing out. While a lot of online content is silly and irreverent, you can use short videos on your website to show off your products, introduce your team, and help educate your customers (not necessarily to the exclusion of being silly, though). The idea is that you give what you can – that’s what the internet is about, engaging and sharing. Creating a group of loyal, repeat customers by becoming more than just a business in the eyes of your community will boost your stature and can help you stabilize your cash flow.

There are a few different styles of online videos that are most useful for business. While the application of video is as limitless as the numbers of them that appear on the web, most fit into one of these categories:

-Long form fixed-length: These videos are more like movies than advertisements, usually. Any time you publish a video that is over 2-3 minutes long, it needs to have some element of story or narrative that keeps the viewer engaged enough to watch to the end. Such long form videos might be a detailed look into the manufacturing process of one of your products or it might be a documentary-style story of how your company’s services or charity work has impacted someone else’s life. In order to be most effective, these videos should either provide something of value or utility to a customer (i.e. a tutorial on using your products), or they convey an emotional scenario or story. They will usually not be the first videos a potential customer or client will see, but on rare occasions a well-made long form video will go viral.

-Short form fixed length: Short form videos are more like ads. We usually produce them in the 30 second to 2 minute range, and they can show off all manner of different content. You can treat them more like a TV commercial spot, where your products and/or services get a quick overview. They can also show off a performance, functioning as a sort of “trailer” for a concert, dance show, or theatrical piece. Or you can use them in place of a blog post, where you provide a quick update on camera and cut in some other interesting shots. Short form videos are a good starting place for many businesses looking to reach new customers, since the time investment to both make them and watch them is not too high.

-Short form looping, ultra-short, and social media: As more social media platforms become video-capable, businesses and advertisers are realizing the benefits of creating custom content to fit the way users share media on those platforms. In some cases, producing videos for Instagram, Twitter, Vine, and Facebook is as simple as it is for an individual user: point your phone at something relevant to your business or group (a rehearsal, demonstrating a product at a craft fair, one of your employees dancing around the office like a loveable lunatic) and share it. In other cases, these videos can be crafted a little more finely by using a computer to edit a video from different sources – one of our local breweries in BC, Steel & Oak Brewing, uses old concert footage cut in with shots of their beer to create wonderful Instagram videos. This technique also gives you more control over the audio in the final product. But since these videos will almost never be viewed on a screen larger than a few inches wide, it is important to be bold – don’t get bogged down in the details. Ultra-short videos follow the same sort of rules. They are usually under 15 seconds and are comprised of only one or two shots. These videos are usually used as a part of some larger campaign as they typically only provide enough information for a viewer to get a brief taste of what you’re all about.

Your business or organization might be able to use one, two, or all of these types of videos, and the extent to which you use them can vary according to your current goals and campaigns. For example, a new business may do well for a time with a brief introductory video, but may find a long-form video useful as client feedback comes in. One thing is sure, though, and that is that the world is becoming more of a “viewing culture”, and people expect to be able to see, not just read, what you’re all about. In some cases photographs can suffice, but a video, since it has duration, is more likely to hold the viewer’s attention until the message is received. The average North American adult spends five and a half hours watching video content every day…you might as well make it yours!



Marketing your art with Video

When you are starting out as a visual artist, trying to sell your work directly to your audience, you need to access the full scope of your network. Your inner ring of friends and family may be a useful initial market, but it is finite and soon you are going to have to reach out to people you may only have a passing familiarity with and beyond. It is important to remember that the outer reaches of your network don’t have the same connection with you as your inner network. They don’t know why you make the work that you do and don’t necessarily have a personal loyalty to you and your art, yet.

Hands down, galleries are the best tools for selling your art. People who go into a gallery already have an intention of experiencing art and purchasing the right piece at the right price for them. The problem with galleries is that they only exist in a single space, and shows only happen for a limited time; not everyone who has an interest in your work will be able to attend your next show. Rather obviously, the internet is the next logical place to take your work – it’s available 24/7 to people all around the world who may be looking for exactly what you have to offer. But the internet is a crowded place and if you want to stand out among the crowd of Tumblrs and portfolio sites, you have to show something different, something more personal, something that makes a connection with your audience. There are all kinds of SEO (search engine optimization) tips and tricks lists out there, and they are always changing as search engines like Google update their algorithms. One thing that remains constant is that a variety of content media (text, images and videos) helps your page rank well, and video content hosted on Youtube will rank well on Google in particular.

Art buyers and enthusiasts are more eager to follow and acquire your work when they feel like they know who you are and what you stand for; a profile video, therefore, can tell your story and introduce you alongside your art. Video also allows the work to breathe in a way that still images never can, particularly with three dimensional works where the different planes of a piece can be examined in a more fluid and natural way. A video can also incorporate music which is an effective tool for communicating an emotion with an audience. When used skillfully, music can mask the cold veneer of technology and draw the viewer into an emotional relationship with your art. If you take commissions, a video showcasing how you work with your clients to create the perfect work of art for them will instill confidence in potential clients, potentially earning you a meeting.




American Bank Note Company, Ottawa. [Public domain]

Why Hire a Crowdfunding Manager?

Some of the services we offer at Caulfield White Creative Industries are based around crowdfunding. It is a medium we are really passionate about as it has helped democratize art-making to a degree, we would never have been able to make the Canadian Frame(lines) project or our documentary film Come Home without crowdfunding. Over the past 5 years we have done countless hours or research, managed our own crowdfunding endeavours, as well as managing and consulting on the campaigns of others. While we learn new things with every project, we learned the most on our first attempt at crowdfunding where we only raised 21% of our goal  – in other words, we learned from a HUGE FAILURE. We were fortunate in that we had enough to get started on our project, and held other fundraising events, and a year later, another SUCCESSFUL crowdfunding campaign.

In my own personal life, I have always taken the stance that it is always best to learn from the mistakes and missteps of others whenever possible. And with most projects, if you are considering crowdfunding, you probably don’t have the time and energy to fail, and fail again. The biggest benefits of working on your campaign with an outside crowdfunding expert are 1. the experience this person has from past campaigns, 2. fresh eyes can see problems/concerns that are easily missed by someone who is too close to the project. Now that I’ve talked about why you might want outside help on your crowdfunding campaign, let me share with you the different kinds of ‘help’ that are available.

Campaign Consultant

Initial Consultation
Ideally, as a campaign consultant, I will begin working with you 6-8 weeks before you intend to launch your campaign. I will review all relevant materials about your project and any materials you have already prepared for your campaign. After a thorough review I will sit down for a 2-hour meeting with you (and your team if you have one) and lay out some crowdfunding basics and a campaign management and promotional strategy complete with content suggestions that play to your unique strengths.

Pre-Launch Meetings
In the weeks before you launch, I will review your campaign page, press kit, press release, and any other promotional materials you have assembled and I will provide feedback and answer any questions you have.

Weekly Progress Meetings
Throughout your campaign I will review your progress and meet with you to suggest strategic changes that may need to be made, types of updates/contests/releases that will draw more attention, and how to make the most of whatever is happening in your campaign.

Campaign Management

Campaign Management is really Campaign Co-Management, you will be heavily involved in defining how your campaign is marketed and will be the public face and voice of your project – it is YOUR PROJECT after all. 

Initial Consultation
As with Campaign Consulting, I would ideally begin working with you at least 6-8 weeks before you intend to launch your campaign. After reviewing all relevant materials about your project, your budget, and your timeline, I will put together a comprehensive crowdfunding strategy tailored specifically to your project. During our 2 hour initial consultation I will lay out this plan for you, answer any questions you have about it, let you know what I will need from you as we work your campaign, and get approval from you to move forward.

Leading up to the launch
In the weeks leading up to the campaign launch I will help you design (and obtain) perks, build your Campaign Page, Press Kit, Press Releases, social media presence, and other highly effective reach-out tools. I will help you arrange media production (photos, videos, website design etc.) – Caulfield White Creative Industries offers many of these services, I also work with other creative companies, and can advise you on producing your own media if you choose to do so.

The Campaign
During the campaign is when all our planning and hard work get put into action. I will make regular updates to your campaign and social media platforms, manage media releases, administer contests and other activities to enhance campaign donation and engagement. We will be in touch and working together on a daily basis while the campaign is active.

Emergency Campaign Management

(First, I just want to say that I really hope you never land yourself in a situation where you need emergency campaign management, but if you do – I am here to help!) Emergency Campaign Management is for you if you’ve already launched your campaign and it is not going as well as you had hoped.

Initial Consultation
Since we don’t have the luxury of time, I guarantee to meet with you in person within 48-hours of receiving content to review, or have a telephone/skype/facetime consultation within 24-hours if needed. During our consultation I will brief you on the ways you can improve your campaign, and outline a plan of action for the remainder of your campaign.

Emergency Management
I will get straight to work raising the profile of your campaign and attracting new donors. During the emergency management of a campaign, I am available to you 24/7.


1 word that can make your crowdfunding campaign a success

If you’re thinking about using crowdfunding to fund your creative venture, your first thoughts are probably about how much money you will need to accomplish your goals and how you will be able to raise it. While I don’t have a secret trick that will guarantee success, I can tell you how to drastically increase your chance of success with one word – and that word is community.

Now before you write this off as some kind of feel good post, I promise you that while working in community is a beautiful thing, it is also a lot of work. Below I have 3 strategies that you can use to bring as many people to your campaign as possible.

Your Current Community -> Mobilize them first

Well in advance of launching you campaign you need to make sure that everyone in your immediate network (aka friends, family, & close business relationships) understand your project and your plan to raise money through crowdfunding. You should be constantly talking about what your project is and why it is important to you. If you don’t think this sounds like fun or something you will be comfortable with you will probably find crowdfunding difficult and exhausting. The good news is that there are a few things you can do to combat this. The first, and perhaps most difficult, is to practice, practice, practice until you do feel comfortable.

Grow Your Community

Before you start your crowdfunding campaign you want your network to be as large as possible and as connected to you as possible. The more people who actually care about your success the more likely you are to succeed.

Use social media platforms to engage in meaningful dialogue with people in your industry and target audience – I personally love Twitter for this, but whatever network you are the most comfortable on may be best for you.

That being said, you also have to get off the internet and connect with people in real life. If you have locally based internet friends, meet them for a coffee, go to networking events, that party you were invited to, or even just go hang out at a coffee shop by yourself. It doesn’t matter where you meet them, but you have to meet and connect with new people.

Don’t be a snob about it – just because someone is a plumber and you are directing an art house film doesn’t mean you should blow them off while you search for another ‘creative’ person to talk to. Aside from the basic level of all beings having value and insight, you have no idea what this person’s passions might be, maybe they are a weekly patron of art galleries and independent theatres, maybe they wanted to be an actor before deciding on a different career or maybe they are are old friends with a now high-profile producer who grew up around here. The fact is you never know what role someone can play in your life until you ask them.

Build your team

Your team is different from your community. Your community supports you, likes, shares, and donates to your campaign; your team helps you bring your campaign to life. Find 3 or 4 people who are willing to help you run your campaign – they could already be involved in your project in some way, or just internet and marketing savvy friends and family members. Crowdfunding is a full time job, the more dedicated help you have the lighter the load, the larger your reach, and the more likely you are to succeed.

Alternatively, you can work with a crowdfunding consultant or campaign manager. even crowdfunders with some previous experience can get myopic about a campaign and often miss avenues to advance the project. A Crowdfunding  Consultant or Campaign Manager has experience and insight that will help you succeed when failure is not an option.


Promoting your small, local business ONLINE

It can be difficult as a small, local business owner, to figure out where best to utilize your limited resources (time/money/energy/creativity) to promote your business. It can also be stressful. In the past, the Yellow Pages was the go-to option. It cost a few hundred dollars to run a large ad for a month, but everyone had one at home and several at work. You only had to think about it once a year. But times have changed and they’ve changed quickly. To illustrate this point, one of our clients who tracks how all their new customers find them went from having ~20 new customers/month who heard of them through a Yellow Pages ad in 2007 to only ~1/month in 2013 (they quickly dropped the expensive Yellow Pages ad after that).  Small businesses are now scrambling to figure out social media strategies, which is hard because big businesses have been at it for a while and benefit greatly from Facebook and Twitter’s strategies to keep their sites free for individual users – they can spend the savings on paying a social media team. At this point, in order to stay effective, it’s going to cost you to have an effective online presence. This is why I believe that whatever social media outlets you choose to use, the corner stone of your online presence needs to be a website.

Self-Host (pay) Sites v. Free Hosted Sites

The easiest way for me to explain the difference is:

Self-Host =

Free Hosted Sites = or

In my opinion, self-hosted sites are the way to go. They appear more professional, and you can get a great custom email address (eg., and the costs aren’t that high to maintain the site if you are using a self-hosted WordPress template.  The start-up costs can also be very low if you can set that site up yourself. Here is a WordPress set up tutorial that I actually used an older version of a few years back when we built our first websites. The guy who put this tutorial together pitches hard for Bluehost as a hosting service – I also love Bluehost and we use them for all the WordPress websites we’ve worked with. While you can find slightly lower prices from other hosting websites, you usually end up losing out on customer service which, if you don’t have your own IT department, you really need.

What do I put on my website?

The great news is, your website doesn’t have to be complicated in order to be valuable – actually, it shouldn’t be! Here are 5 things you MUST have on your website.

1. Location: If you are a brick and mortar business you need to have your address, a map, a list of the nearest transit stops, where parking is, anything that will help a new customer find you easier. People like easy.

2. Contact Info: Email/Telephone/Fax/Carrier Pigeon put them all up there, with one caveat – List all the ways you want your new and potential clients to contact you – and omit the ones you don’t. Only list methods of contact where you can guarantee prompt, professional attention will be given to a new/potential client – you only get one chance to make a first impression.

3. About Page: Now, your page doesn’t have to be called ‘About’ – it could just be on your home or landing page – but you do need to put up clear and concise information about who you are and what you do. For example, on the front page of we have a short video reel that shows off some examples of video and film work we have done in the past. We also have an ‘About Us’ page that briefly introduces our company (what type of work we do, and what industries we focus on) and the two key members (Ryder and me), our backgrounds and what our roles are at the company. This helps prospective clients know who they should be talking to.

4. Products/Services Page: If you sell specific products or services, it is good to describe what they are in detail on your site – if you have an e-commerce site this would be your store, or, if you sell through an outside site like Amazon, Ebay, or Etsy you would link to those pages.

5. Social Media: Most wordpress templates have widgets which will allow people visiting your website to share it through their social media accounts, and/or to like/follow your social media presence. USE THEM.

Should I have a blog?

Blogs are everywhere these days. Do they help? Do they hurt? What should I do? The answer is YES. To all of it. Blogs can be useful to people in all industries, but they can also be unhelpful time-sucks, or worse. Here are three questions to ask yourself to help you decide whether or not a blog is for you:

1. Do you like to write? If you hate writing, or are a slow typist, writing a blog is going to be tedious. Alternatively, if you don’t like to write, you can have a blog by delegating the task to an employee or by using a ghost writer. If someone on your team or in your staff writes well and knows the business well enough to write regular, relevant blog posts (perhaps with some topics/themes provided by you), then you should use that person’s skill and spend your time on other tasks you excel at. If you don’t like writing and aren’t lucky enough to have someone on your team who can take over for you, you might want to consider hiring a ghost writer. With a ghost writer you will need to provide blog post topics and important points to make if not a full outline. It can be time consuming and expensive, though.

2. Do you have enough to write about? An easy test is to quickly write down as many blog post topics as you can think of in 5 minutes. Don’t go into details about the blog, just jot down a one sentence topic. If you are still writing when time is up, WOW! you have a lot of ideas and are well on your way to writing a consistent blog. I would say that if you can’t come up with at least 10 blog post topics off the top of your head in 5 minutes, you probably don’t have enough to write about. This is not necessarily a bad thing…it really depends on the business you’re in.

3. Do you have the time? The most important thing you can do to make your blog successful is to provide consistent content. Whether you post every day, or twice a month, keep the days and times of your posts consistent. This will make it easier for you to build a following.  Most small business owners don’t have enough time to post a blog every day – we put out our blogs once a week. Sometimes we write them week by week, sometimes we will feel inspired and write three blog posts in a day and schedule them for later. The point is that we found a frequency that works with our schedule. Remember, you need to write your post, have it reviewed/edited by someone, take your own images or find royalty free ones online, and assemble it all into a nice package – don’t forget to post it!  You should be spending about two hours a week on your blog, plus responding to any comments left there.

If you said no to any of the above questions, then right now is probably not the time for you to start a blog – reevaluate in another 6 months or a year when you may be in a better position to do so. Having a bad blog (poorly written, barely maintained) is worse than no blog at all – it makes it look like you don’t care about your website, and if you don’t care about your website will a potential client/customer really believe that you will care about them? 


Welcome to Caulfield White Creative Industries Inc.

Hi! Welcome to Caulfield White Creative Industries Inc. (formerly Caulfield White Productions) More specifically, welcome to our blog. Now this isn’t your Grandma’s blog (although we do subscribe to it – she’s quite the spunky lady) we won’t be posting the daily ramblings of over-caffienated creative professionals here, you’ll have to check out our personal twitter accounts for those (@arcaulfield + @ryderwhite).

As we start out, we plan to only post to here about once a month (on the first Wednesday, and focus our energies on delivering high quality, relevant content for small businesses, creatives, and makers who want to use the internet to find new clients and better retain your existing ones. Tomorrow we will be sharing our first post “Promoting your small, local business ONLINE”.

We also share our own online marketing insights and those of people we respect via our Twitter and Pinterest accounts.

Thanks for visiting us! Drop us a question about the art of business or the business of the arts in the comments below and we’ll respond to you either in the comments, via email, or perhaps with a new blog post if we have a lot to say on the matter.

-Alexandra + Ryder