Healthy Vancouver Businesses Provide Better Workplace Morale

At Fresh + Fit, we choose to only work with local businesses that emphasize health and wellness, and we love it. All of our clients share the same intention as we do; that is, to provide or supply the Vancouver area with products and/or services that will ultimately increase our community’s health and well-being.

But looking further than that, what do Vancouver businesses that actively and mindfully cultivate an environment based on health and wellness do better than those that don’t?

Research says that these types of businesses actually produce better workplace morale:

“By creating a positive, safe and healthy environment for employees, you can increase workplace morale, improve your employees’ work-life balance and, in turn, positively impact your business.”[1] —Fit for Work

Here are 4 reasons why Vancouver businesses based on health and wellness are generally happier and produce better workplace morale than the other guys:

Health-Conscious Businesses Attract Employees Who Genuinely Care

When you feel taken care of, you want to take care of others (including your colleagues and co-workers). The workweek is 40 hours long, and doing your job alongside caring people who are excited about health and wellness makes for better days! Pair that with a healthy environment that is consistently interested in helping others be well, and you have a winning combination.

In fact, according to Harvard Health, ‘doing good and feeling good’ is a solid recipe for happiness in the workplace.[2]

Selling Health Translates to…Better Health! (For all.)

When you spend 40 hours a week thinking about health, the result is that you usually pick up healthier habits. To be a truly great salesperson, you have to love what you sell…that’s why so many businesses who do well, have their employees try their products and insist they familiarize themselves with them.

If your employees believe in what they sell, and they incorporate these particular products and services into their own lives, it’s easy for them to sell to others—they’re basically living and accessible examples of your business’ brand. And if employees are essentially living the brand, they’re going to adopt the healthy lifestyle that goes with it.

Taking a Vested Interest in the Health of Others Grounds and Humanizes Employees

Helping others become better versions of themselves is humbling. It’s working every day to improve other people’s lives—and that’s a powerful way to ground yourself and remember what you’re thankful for.

In reverse, it’s been proven that people who want to help others be healthy are often cut from the same cloth in regards to personality traits:

“Humility is one of the first personality traits to be linked to helping behavior, and that’s significant because personality traits are broad and far-reaching contributors to behavior, and tend to take precedence over other factors, such as time and social pressures.”[3] –Time Magazine

In other words, employees working in an environment of health and wellness probably share the same values and intentions among themselves, and this likely leads to a positive and healthy work culture.

Ergo, increased workplace morale.

Healthier Employees are More Productive—True Story.

Healthy living directly translates into better eating habits, better sleep, and in turn, better problem-solving and communication skills. People who eat well, are consistently active, and mindfully make time for rest generally don’t hit the proverbial wall throughout their day—and this makes them more productive at work.

Also? Healthier people take less sick days.

This means less stress on employers and co-workers to cover the sick person’s job, and that makes for better employee morale among everyone.

“Healthy workplaces are good for business. Healthy work environments improve productivity and reduce costs related to absenteeism, lost productivity, turnover, workers’ compensation, and medical and disability claims.”[4] – The Government of British Columbia

So there you have it! 4 reasons why, if you’re passionate about health and wellness, you should find a job whose business mission matches your own. Vancouver businesses that cultivate mindful health cultures are key to loving your job!

And if you love what you do, you’ll never have to work a day in your life.

References

[1] http://fitforwork.org/employer/benefits-of-a-healthy-workforce/

[2] http://www.health.harvard.edu/healthbeat/the-happiness-health-connection

[3] http://healthland.time.com/2012/01/02/humble-people-are-more-helpful/

[4] http://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/health/keeping-bc-healthy-safe/healthy-communities/healthy-workplaces


*If you’re interested in having your social managed, or fun, energetic, and informative blogs written for YOU by Fresh + Fit Vancouverwriters, click HERE.

What to Consider When Hiring a Vancouver Publicist or PR Agency

Long before Fresh + Fit even existed, I experienced my own trials and tribulations with hiring local publicists and PR agencies. As a health and wellness author published in the United States, it was my job to market myself and my book(s) in Canada, which is where I learned almost everything I know about finding the right fit when it comes to hiring a Vancouver publicist or PR agency.

Now, when approached by clients to execute PR on their behalf, I have some great working knowledge on the subject of hiring these professionals. As someone who has actually hired publicists before (several times), I know what Fresh + Fit can do for my clients and be sure to use what I’ve learned in my past experiences.

So what do I think all wellness businesses should do before hiring a Vancouver publicist or PR agency? Here are 5 things:

Find Someone Who Truly Believes in Your Business

This is so critical, because here’s the deal: if you honestly love something, whether it be a product, person, idea, or intention behind any of those things, you’ll automatically sell it, without even trying.

For example, you could be a vacuum salesperson and sell Electrolux vacuums. But let’s pretend your home is all hard wood and you never vacuum. Plus, you’ve always just hated vacuuming. Do you think you’ll do well selling those vacuums if you don’t use them and don’t like them?

Nope.

But let’s say you have carpet and a hairy Golden Retriever and you vacuum all the time. You’ve had mediocre vacuums before, but the first Electrolux you buy, you LOVE. You’ll rave to all of your friends about it, and actually even enjoy vacuuming because it does such a great job. So now if you start selling those machines, you’ll do really well, because you honestly love the product, right?

It’s the same with a publicist. He or she needs to really love what you’re doing to be able to do a stellar job selling you and your business to the public. That’s the only way to maximize what a publicist can do for you!

So find someone who loves and believes in what you do, and their job will be easy.

social media tools

Find Out Exactly What the Vancouver Publicist or PR Agency Will Do to Help You Promote Your Business

This is another hot tip: don’t assume the Vancouver publicist or PR agency will do anything specific. Unless it’s discussed prior to signing a contract, it might not happen. Just be very clear about what you expect, and what you definitely want done.

As always in business, clarity and communication are key.

Don’t be Afraid to Ask A LOT of Questions and Offer Your Own Ideas

If this is the first time you’ll be hiring a publicist, that’s 1) really exciting for you, and 2) a great opportunity to find out everything you’ve ever wanted to know about why a great publicist is worth their weight in gold. If the publicist/PR agency you’re interviewing is good at what they do, they should have no problem answering every single question (small or big!) that you throw at them.

Similarly, don’t be afraid to bring your own ideas to the table. Your publicist should have enough grace to take your ideas into consideration and execute on them accordingly (even if that means they don’t get actually done, but are actually discussed).

Also, new and fresh ideas are a publicist’s dream—so your contributions could be very helpful.

Compare Prices, But Remember That Typically, You Get What You Pay For

There are a lot of Vancouver publicists and PR agencies. Like, a lot. And the price scale is equally as diverse as the agencies and the clients they represent. Be sure that you ask for prices and compare with other agencies.

Most publicists will ask for a minimum 3-month contract; some will insist on a year. Depending on what you want or think you need, prices will vary. But it’s important to remember that generally you get what you pay for (though not all the time—I have a personal story about this), and there’s a lot of work that goes into a PR agency’s job. Typical examples are:

  • Pitching both print and digital publications
  • Helping your brand stand out by doing their homework and comparing you to the next guy
  • Tons of writing
  • Many personal meetings
  • Calendar coordination
  • Event promotion/coordination
  • Aligning with others on your team, such as your general manager (this may be you!), social media manager, content writer, and in-house photographer
  • Analyzing, measuring, and creating data about your business
  • Networking
  • General communication on your behalf to media

And more! So again, you (typically) get what you pay for.

Check References!

This is also incredibly important. Ask for a list of past and present clients (both), and actually connect and communicate with them. Ask questions about how well the Vancouver publicist or PR agency helped to boost your brand, and, if they are no longer clients of that particular person or company, if they’d hire them again.

Real and honest feedback about this is valuable information, and most of the time, those clients will be happy to chat about the person or company you’re considering hiring.

And that’s it! If you have any questions about anything I may have left out of this blog post, please don’t hesitate to ask us. At Fresh + Fit, we pride ourselves on knowing what we do well, and what we prefer to refer out. But if you have a health and wellness business in Vancouver, we’d love to help you promote it.

Contact us for more information! We look forward to hearing from you.

*Written by Jennifer Browne

*If you’re interested in having your social managed, or fun, energetic, and informative blogs written for YOU by Fresh + Fit Vancouver writers, click HERE.

 

Your Vancouver Social Media Manager Needs to Be a Great Writer

A Great Vancouver Social Media Manager

Coming up with clever ways to convey messages in 140 characters or less while accompanied with really great images doesn’t seem overly difficult. But if you want people to take a genuine interest in what you’re putting out there, the message needs to be creative and unique.

Content marketing is not just about spreading or sharing information. It’s about telling people why that information will help their businesses, or change their lives for the better. Which is why to be a great Vancouver social media manager, you need to excel at writing.

Here are 3 reasons why incredible writing results in better engagement, and why if you’re in the market for a great Vancouver social media manager, you should do your homework on your potential hire’s writing skills:

Great Writing Evokes Emotion

If you’re trying to build a brand that tells a story—one that your targeted audience can relate to and understand and feel a connection with—you need to not only be able to do that in a couple of sentences; you must also convey emotion while doing so.

Simply put, people take interest in brands that they can share an emotional connection with. Think of your favourite Twitter account or Facebook page. What is it about this particular brand that draws you in? Is it the look and design? The content? The trustworthiness or klout that comes with their products or services?

It’s probably a combination of all three.

But it’s also the feelings of excitement or whimsy or inspiration that tug at your heart strings while absorbing the brand’s message. And design and klout can’t stand on their own—they need the fab content in order to grow and convey the intended message about the brand.

Great Writing is Clever

Clever writing compels people to want to read posts and status updates, then share that information with others. As social media managers, it’s our job to hook our clients’ target demo with words. If the writing is boring, it won’t get read, and it won’t receive any engagement. If that happens, what are our clients paying for? Either way, it’s a lose-lose situation.

You must write well to sell!

Great Writing Lends Klout

When businesses hire great writers to help convey their brand’s image and message, that’s a sign of the type of importance those businesses place on their brand’s online profiles. As Vancouver social media managers who are fully immersed in the land of digital content marketing and constantly reading tweets, snaps, Instagram blurbs, and status updates on Facebook, we totally judge businesses by the grammar, punctuation, and general content of their social updates all the time.

We even judge images!

So when it’s obvious that a business has made the effort to offer educated and relevant information to their customers and clients by hiring a social media manager who can write well, we’re impressed. For us, it immediately gives that business klout, which increases their brand trustworthiness and makes us want to buy from them or use their services.

So what about you? Are you in the market for a great Vancouver social media manager? At Fresh + Fit, we’re not only Vancouver social media managers, we’re also great writers. Contact us today to find out how we can help your wellness business succeed in digital marketing.


*If you’re interested in having fun, energetic, and informative blogs written for YOU by Fresh + Fit Vancouver writers, click HERE.

Ernest Hemingway Used a Standing Desk

Let’s face it: desk jobs are hard on your body. Sitting all day has extensive negative ramifications on your back, spine, shoulders, and neck. But that’s not it. Here’s how sitting all day can affect your body and compromise your health, and why a standing desk might be the best solution:

You Gain Weight

Sitting all day at your job is a surefire way to gain weight. You burn significantly less calories sitting than you do standing (according to Shape Magazine, 30 less calories an hour!), and your tummy is typically hit the hardest. This type of weight gain increases your risk of heart disease and high cholesterol.

You Lose Muscle Mass

When you don’t use it, you lose it. Being sedentary means that you’re not using your muscles, and lost muscle mass is hard to get back! Combat muscle atrophy by moving your body whenever you can. Performing just one minute of squats and/or lunges at your desk periodically is a great way to work your major muscle groups regularly!

Your Body Gets Tight—and Not in a Good Way

Your hips, back, neck, and shoulders get tight and cranky when you sit for extended periods throughout the day. A great way to help keep them loose is to mindfully stretch for 30 seconds, every 30 minutes or so.

So…what is the alternative to a conventional desk?

A Standing Desk

Seriously—the best decision we’ve ever made. (Ernest Hemingway apparently used one waaayyy before they were all the rage!) A standing desk is an adjustable desk that can be both sitting or standing, so you can stand for a couple of hours, then sit for 30 minutes, then stand again. It’s amazing.

The Smithsonian listed the following 5 benefits to using a standing desk over a conventional one:

  • Reduced risk of obesity
  • Reduced risk of type 2 diabetes
  • Lower long-term mortality risk
  • Reduced risk of cardiovascular disease
  • Reduced risk of cancer

Standing desks are becoming more and more popular, as science uncovers the health hazards of sitting all day at work. Consider investing in one, and remember: if Hemingway did it, it’s cooler than it sounds.

Right?!


 

*If you’re interested in having fun, energetic, and informative blogs written for YOU by Fresh + Fit Vancouver writers, click HERE.

What Does a Social Media Manager Do?

Since we’re in the business of providing social media management, we thought we’d answer the obvious question: what does a social media manager do?

The answer? Way more than you probably think.

Here are 6 jobs that social media managers often find themselves doing for a client:

Managing Socials

This is the obvious one—it’s in the title. The very basic idea behind social media management is to take a load off our clients. It’s hard to build a business and maintain socials at the same time—social media is time consuming! (As if you haven’t already noticed.)

We leverage our expertise in digital marketing to find your target demo and bring those people to your social platform. From there, there’s a call to action that prompts your current and future customers to visit your website and learn more about you and your business.

The happy end result is more traffic being driven to your website, and the increased exposure leads to higher sales for YOU.

Writing

You need to be a great writer to offer great online content—bottom line. Great content is what attracts potential customers to your social platform, and ultimately, to your website and contact page.

By offering intelligent and thoughtful content, we can offer you a better service than the other guys—which is why we emphasize our writing. Our writers are published and familiar with the world of wellness—let us work on your wellness business, one tweet at a time.

Photography

Most social media managers take photos, whether they use a high-end camera or a smart phone. With all of the amazing apps available nowadays to make quality pics look incredible (check out Snapseed!), even an amateur photographer can lend plenty of value to their clients’ digital exposure through basic photography.

Public Relations

Not surprisingly, social media management has quickly evolved to include a little PR from time to time. When we want primary media for social posts, we tend to arrange events and situations that will make for interesting content—and that’s when we put on our public relations hat.

Whether it’s pitching to online or traditional media, we try and place our clients in amazing situations that will increase their public platforms. Why? Because our job is show your target demo that you are everywhere and loved by everyone. We want you in the spotlight, because it makes for great conversation and engagement.

Because isn’t that what social media is all about?

Creative Design

Design happens. Period. Recycling the same images over and over again can get boring, but when primary media sources are low, what’s a social media manager to do?

We get creative. Like, literally.

We use a variety of apps and software to create cool and personalized images to share on your social. We want you to look professional and interesting, and in order to accomplish this, sometimes we take a day (or two!) to get our design on.

Event Coordination

Not unlike the random PR hats we occasionally pull out, event coordination happens, too. Part of being a great social media manager is knowing that our clients are busy—that’s why they hired us in the first place!

We like to create situations in which our clients can show off their business, products, and themselves. At Fresh + Fit, we strongly believe that opportunities don’t just come knocking—we need to create them!

So we do.

I guess what we’re trying to say, is social media managers definitely earn their keep. Our modest title often organically falls into other categories of work; work that we deem necessary to be able to do our job properly. Next time you hum and haw over hiring a social media manager, remember that you’ll probably get more than you bargained for—and that’s a good deal.

So hire a social media manager from Fresh + Fit today! And if you’re still not convinced, watch this video:

 

The New Hottest Space to Cowork in Vancouver

Coworking (sometimes called work sharing, although there’s another meaning to that phrase) is a great solution for freelancers who don’t like to work at home 24/7. While Vancouver is home to many popular cowork spaces, a new and attractive venue has just recently come to our attention, and we think it deserves some kudos.

City Side Winery is the newest addition to Vancouver’s wine scene, opening its doors this past February. The concept is simple: the space is intended to act as an extension of the homes in Olympic Village. It’s comfortable, expansive, and centrally located, with cityscape views and most importantly?

Very good WiFi.

Also, you don’t actually have to drink wine to hang out here, because during the day, the winery doubles as The Wellness Room! Powered by Commodity Juicery and officially launching this month, you can sit on a comfortable chair and get your work done while sipping on a fresh pressed juice from Commodity, a wellness tea from Amoda Tea and/or Featherlight Teas, or snack on vegan goodies by Eightfold Eats.

So if you’re looking for a cool space to relax, get some work done, and get hopped up on health all at the same time, consider City Side Winery at 328 West 2nd Ave, Vancouver.

And the very best part? Because this venue is so awesome and you won’t want to leave after rocking your work day, you can stay and enjoy the winery’s lively night scene, which includes food and wine pairings, live music, and a full house.

Give it a try and let us know your thoughts about City Side Winery on Twitter, @FreshFitVan.


 

*If you’re interested in having fun, energetic, and informative blogs written for YOU by Fresh + Fit Vancouver writers, click HERE.

Spring Clean Your Social

It’s about that time of year when we all get up, shake off the dust, tip our heads to the sky and breathe in sunshine and warmth and vitamin D and the smell of cherry blossoms.

(And a lot of pollen, so if you have hayfever, maybe sip a little nettle tea, first.)

Springtime means getting our lazy, winter butts in gear and putting extra emphasis on productivity. Since social media plays a huge part in any businesses’ digital marketing strategy, consider spring cleaning your social—not just your office.

(But do that, too—cleaner offices inspire increased productivity in your employees. True story.)

Here are 5 ways to spring clean your social:

Purge Those Extra Accounts

We all have them—for Fresh + Fit, it’s Pinterest. We’ll totally admit it. We are NEVER on Pinterest. Like, ever. So why do we even have a Pinterest account?

Good question.

Remember this: your business does not need to be on Pinterest and Facebook and Twitter and Instagram and Snapchat and Google+ and Reddit. Choose 2-3 social forums and rock them. You cannot be efficient and productive by trying to manage a million social media accounts.

For most businesses, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram are the biggies. Choose a couple, and let the rest go.

Create an Editorial Calendar

Are you still flying by the seat of your pants? Why? Life is easier with a plan, right? You don’t have to come up with great content and blog ideas on the spot—you’ll have already planned it all out!

A good rule of thumb is to create a new calendar each month. Keep the next 3 months or so in the background, and fill in events and other things as you go. By the end of each month, the following month will be almost done!

WAY easier, guys. Honestly.

Update Your Info + Images

When’s the last time you edited your social info and updated your profile pics and headers? If you’re using stale media, change it! In the last few months, we’ve had clients do the following:

  • Move locations
  • Add a phone number
  • Change an email address
  • Re-brand
  • Get trademarked
  • Merge with another business
  • Get new pro photos taken

These are all things that affect your profile on social! So make sure you’re up-to-date, and you’ll stay more relevant and easier to find for your clients.

Edit Who You’re Following

It’s a good idea to go through who you’re following once a year and make some changes. Many of us follow people or organizations or businesses that don’t make sense or have anything to do with what your business is about.

Remember, potential clients, customers, and other businesses frequently check social forums to see who you deem important enough to follow. If you’re spamming your own news feed by following accounts that don’t make sense, cut them out!

Stop it.

Be Specific + Focused

Don’t just post for the sake of posting. Why? Because you’ll be missing out on posting content that’s actually valuable to your audience. By spring cleaning your social, you’re removing what doesn’t work and focusing on what does—and being specific and focus works.

(Being random is soooo 2010.)

This month (April) is the perfect time of year to clear your social clutter, and get on track for being productive, efficient, and brilliant at what you do. What’s that old adage? Work smart, not hard?

Yeah, do that.


*If you’re interested in having fun, energetic, and informative blogs written for YOU by Fresh + Fit Vancouver writers, click HERE.

 

Marketing + Developing a Plant-Based Business

On Thursday March 24th, Jennifer Browne (director of Fresh + Fit) will be moderating a panel on the topic of marketing and developing a plant-based business. If you own such a business or are considering a start-up, you should totally attend!

Here’s the info:

Who

The Vegan Project is the force behind this event, and the four panelists include:

What

The topics will all focus on what our panelists feel are the best ways to market and promote a plant-based business. With collective (and successful!) experience that ranges from 2008 to present day, these business owners have plenty of success and advice, but also less-successful experiences and subsequent suggestions to offer.

Whether you’re seeking knowledge on digital media practices that might be more effective than yours, or have a specific question to ask one of the panelists, we’ll make sure everyone’s heard and leaves inspired and motivated to improve their business and/or business concept.

When + Where

The event will take place on Thursday, March 24th at 7pm, and will last approximately 90 minutes. The venue is The Juice Truck on 28 W 5th Avenue, Vancouver, BC.

We hope to see you there! For more information on this event, please leave a comment on our contact page, and we’ll be sure to get back to you right away.

Happy Sunday!

 

 

 

Measuring the Success of Your Social Media Strategy

Businesses who are active on social media definitely have a leg up on those who aren’t. But posting content is just one part of the two-prong strategy: you also have to measure how well those posts are doing. In other words, posting is great, but the goal is to attract your target demographic of people and engage them long enough to make an impact.

If your ideal audience isn’t reached or engagement doesn’t happen, then what’s the point?

Measuring the success of your social media strategy is completely necessary to understand whether or not your plan is working. (We’re assuming you have a plan, but if you don’t, maybe start HERE.)

Below are 4 easy ways to measure the impact your social media posts are having on the audience you’re trying to reach:

Track your total number of followers at the beginning of each month.

This sounds completely rudimentary, but one of the easiest ways to track how fast and effectively your business’ social media is growing, is to track actual numbers. Using a program like Excel to compare and contrast days, weeks, or months is a great way to have a concrete visual of what’s going on, and more importantly, what isn’t.

Most social media platforms also have built-in metrics tracking. Making a mindful point to access and use those tools will help you, and it requires almost no effort.

We know you’re busy, and that extra effort doesn’t come easy.

Keep an eye on how engaged your visitors are.

Are people actually seeing your posts? If so, are they liking them or commenting? Are your posts being shared? These are things that are important to track. Maybe you’ll discover that your foodie posts attract more Facebook visitors than your design posts. Or maybe bullet-point lists attract more engagement than paragraphs.

You won’t ever know until you track.

Notice the conversation (or lack thereof).

Are people talking about what you’re posting? If your posts are getting people excited and prompting shares and likes, then you’re on the right track. If not, then you need to re-evaluate.

Maybe your posts have great content, but your audience would respond better to questions or polls. Or perhaps your ‘hooks’ needs to be improved or tweaked.

See what time of day your posts garner the most views.

This is a super simple, but completely valuable tidbit of info: at the end of each month, go through your posts and make note of the ones that had the highest engagement. Then do the same for the ones that had the lowest engagement. Notice what time they were posted, what the topics were, and what kind of media was associated with each.

By doing this, you’ll find out a lot about what your audience likes and doesn’t—and that is information you can use.

By keeping actively aware of what’s doing well and what’s falling flat, you can save yourself a lot of time. Measuring performance is crucial to a great social media strategy, because without measuring, you have no idea how well you’re doing.

Tracking the outcome of your social media posts can also give you great insight as to whether or not you’re using the right platforms. Maybe your business should be on Instagram instead of Facebook. How will you know unless you pay attention?

So hopefully this post helps. For additional assistance, we suggest you give this one a read: 7 Social Media Mistakes Every Company Needs to Avoid.

Good luck, and get tracking!


*If you’re interested in having your social media managed, or fun, energetic, and informative blogs written for YOU by Fresh + Fit Vancouver writers, click HERE