Two B’s That Stand for Business


The front view of a new restaurant you can conduct business meetings in Lincoln Park. Great food, amazing customer service, and perfect atmosphere to do business.

I am a mobile professional. My office is in Palatine. I live in Wicker Park. In the city is where I conduct most of my business. For the past couple of months, I have had discussions with entrepreneurs, salespeople, business owners, and other professionals that share the same experience. We share the best places to work while you are in between appointments, if you have calls to make, and/or you need a place to meet a prospect or networking partner. That created, yet another, idea. In the blog, I will start highlighting my experiences, reviews, and recommendations for restaurants, coffee shops, co-working spots and all the other places that people, like us, can work from.

Batter and Berries Open for Business

The first restaurant to get the honor, is the new breakfast and lunch spot in Lincoln Park called Batter & Berries. The SBAC (Small Business Advocacy Council) has been searching for a new home to host the breakfast networking meetings in Lincoln Park since Topics closed down, earlier this month. It is safe to say, we found it. Batter & Berries is an outstanding choice. We arrived on Tuesday morning, promptly at 8am. The staff was ready for us. We had roughly 13 people there, give or take. We all sat and the waiter gave us a few minutes to chat. Then we began our meeting agenda. Everyone who attended began to go around the table to share what they did, how they helped people and who are good introductions. At the end, as we were wrapping up, my mind started to wonder. The inner dialogue was around the place we just spent an hour and half of our morning in. There were three areas of the restaurant that stood out. It is very rare when you find an establishment that has all three. Even the, so-called, five-star restaurants rarely possess all three. Let’s see what they are…

1. Service

2. Food

3. Management

Service That Leaves You with a Smile

Personally, I was very impressed by the staff. They were friendly and extremely customer orientated. The waiter was engaging with all the us. I have an eye for that because I am a student of performance, speaking, presenting, and selling and that is really the skills of a great waiter. The B&B waiter did not disappoint.

I quit my job at a fancy downtown restaurant where I was getting paid over $150,000, to open a restaurant for y’all. – Derek Rylon, Owner and Chef of Batter and Berries

The group of professionals networking, learning, and referring business at Batter and Berries in Lincoln Park Chicago, IL.

Food That Makes You Say, “WOW!”

The food was incredible. As I have stated in many of my previous posts, perception is everything. That could not be further from the truth with Batter & Berries. Honestly, it does not look like much from the outside. The place looks like a typical breakfast joint. However, the food is amazing. I had two eggs over easy with a side of hash browns and chicken sausage. Because I choice to watch my salt intake, I leave salt out and use hot sauce. When asking the waitress for the hot sauce, her  response was, “Tangy or sweet?” I loved the sound of that. They make their own hot sauce. It was just as good as everything else. The chicken sausage had a sweet taste to it and was flatten to a patty. The food presentation is equally impressive, as all the other attributes of the business. The plates are clear and rectangular. Transparent plates for a transparent business. After talking with the owner and chef, Derek Rylon, he said, “We did that, so you can see the tables.” You can see the tables in the picture and on their Facebook Page.

The Management That Makes Sacrifices 

During our meeting, we had the pleasure to meet Derek Rylon the Chef and Owner of Batter & Berries. Derek was very nice. He talked about the restaurant. The new small business owner stated, if we have any comments good or bad, his door is always open. He actually encourages feedback. Derek said, “I quit my job at a fancy downtown restaurant where I was getting paid over $150,000 to open a restaurant for y’all. We took normal, everyday food and gave it spin.” Derek continued to explain, “The food looks like regular breakfast food, but when you taste it, it taste like nothing you have every had before. We freshly shred the potatoes every morning for the hash browns.” And how good they were. It’s making my mouth water while I am writing this. Derek is such as nice and caring person that it shines through in the restaurant.

Business at a Restaurant

The next time you are thinking about a good place to take a prospect or meet a strategic partner or host a group meeting, think Batter & Berries. You will not go wrong with the friendly service, the sensational food, and the customer first mentality of management. Batter & Berries is more than a local establishment, it is open for business. The business of serving the professional community.

What is your favorite restaurant or other establishment to do business?

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The Essential Guide to the New Search


Google. Bing. Yahoo. Ask. Facebook. Twitter. LinkedIn. Google+. Pinterest. YouTube. Tumblr. WordPress. Blogger. Yelp. Salesforce. Data.com. And I could go on. These are all sites that offer search capabilities. Some of them generate over a billion search queries a month. Others possess more members than a few continents. They all share social search capabilities. The new world order of search is social search.

There is so much “noise” on the internet that it can cause anyone a headache. Shit, sometimes you can go on the web to look for a new bicycle at 6pm. The next thing you know you are shaking off an internet blackout and two hours have past, you are on YouTube watching a clip of your friend’s kid hitting him in the private area with a bat. You ask yourself, “How did I get here?” I digress.

With all the noise and all the information, we are also using different platforms to search for what we need. Those platforms are the social mediums we have been using for years to interact with friends and family. Facebook has created a partnership with Bing to allow you to chat with your friends as you search. You can ask them their opinion, what their experience has been, and if they have any recommendations. Google has created Google +. If your business does not have a Google + page, you are losing valuable search points. In this day and age, social search is going to quickly take over for search engine marketing. The focus will change and already has.

Do you use social platforms for search?

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3 Easy Ways to Stand Out on LinkedIn


Today, you need all the help you can get to stand out and separate yourself (or your business) from the competition. The internet has produced a very well-educated and informed customer, who knows more about the product or service than ever before. What the internet has also allowed us to do, is to touch the prospect multiple times in a number of different ways. With as much information and tools there are out there, it is not a difficult choice, nor task to stand out, especially on LinkedIn, provided you follow these 3 easy steps.

1. Create a powerful professional headline. Think of this as your 5 second elevator speech. Tell people what you do and how you do it in a unique and simplistic way.

2. Construct your summary with an entertaining story. People love stories and everyone has one. The summary section allows you to use 2,000 characters, use them all. Start with your background. The middle section is the meat of the story and is also your Why. Finish the summary with a call to action. Who are you looking to connect with and why? What does a strategic partner look like and what does a prospect look like? Each are equally important.

3. Apps. LinkedIn has some powerful apps. The standard apps include the skills section, volunteer sections, and the publication sections. If you are a reader, add the Amazon Reader List. If you have visual pieces to display such as Power Point Presentations, sales collateral, and videos, then use either Slide Share or Creative Profile Display.

The world has become a place of information overload. There are the pros and there are the cons. There are challenges that stand ahead of all of us, as professionals. No matter if it is the internet or in the real world. It is how we choice to overcome those challenges, that will define us.

Are you standing out on LinkedIn?

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Must Follow: Organizations That Help You Grow Your Business


This week’s Must Follow segment highlight’s some of the most outstanding organizations in the Chicagoland area. If you are looking to expand your business development efforts or learn about entrepreneurship or get tapped into the technology community, these are the organizations you need to start with. By the way, it is Tim Jahn from Entrepreneurs Unpluggd.

Here are all the links you need to get started:

Small Business Advocacy Council@SmalBusAdvocacy

Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce@ChicagolandCmbr

Entrepreneurs Unpluggd

Creative Mornings@CreativeMorning

Tech Cocktail@TechCocktail

What do you think of these organizations?

Posted in Brand, Brand Awareness, Branding, Business Development, Businesses, Connecting, Entrepreneur, Entrepreneurs, Events, Lead Generation, Marketing, Must Follow, Networking, NFP, Non for profits, Nonprofits, Organizations, Personal Branding, Quality Introductions, Referrals, Relationship Building, Sales, Service Launch, Small Business, Small Businesses | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Providing Content Curation: Scoop.it


How do you provide relevant content to your audience? Curate it. The hottest topic in the marketing world is content curation. The hottest site for content curation is Scoop.it. Twitter is essentially a content curation site. Even Tumblr is a form of content curation. You curate content all the time. When you are sitting around with friends or colleagues discussing the news, a hot topic, or a new trend. At that point, you are curating content.

Curating is the act of taking a topic and expressing your opinion about it to position yourself as the thought leader and expert. Right now, I am curating content. No longer can you use the excuse that you have nothing to talk about. There are hundreds of thousands of pieces of information about your topic of expertise being talked about on the internet. Where are you? Start curating today.

What has your experience with content curation?

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Charity of the Month: A Silver Lining Foundation


For the month of July, DoughMarket.com will be recognizing A Silver Lining Foundation as the charity of the month. As a society we have to do social good. In the blog, we discuss social media and social media marketing. With social media comes a social responsibility or social good. Help us with our social responsibility by raising awareness for A Silver Lining Foundation.

Founded in 2002 by Dr. Sandy Goldberg the mission of A Silver Lining Foundation a 501(c3) is to ensure dignified, respectful and equal access to quality cancer education and services for all, by creating meaningful partnerships with community, advocacy and healthcare organizations. A Silver Lining Foundation’s Vision is to ensure that socioeconomic status does not affect an individual’s ability to obtain information, timely cancer screening and diagnosis.

You can visit ASilverLiningFoundation.org for more information on the organization.

Upcoming Events:

July 13th – A day at the Ballpark with Dr. Sandy & the Schaumburg Boomers

The month of July – Signature Room is donating proceeds for the month to the ASLF

Support A Silver Lining Foundation here

Posted in Brand Awareness, Branding, Charity of the Month, Connecting, Entrepreneur, Entrepreneurs, Events, Giving Back, Networking, NFP, Non for profits, Nonprofits, Small Business, Small Businesses, Social Good, Social Media Marketing, Social Responsibility | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Activity. Goals. More activities and more goals.


Independence day has come and gone. The smoke has cleared. All the fireworks are mere pieces of paper being recycled. We realize that the second half of the year is beginning. We, commonly, think consciously or unconsciously, “How are we going to make the end of 2012 a huge success?” It is very simple. Activity. Goals. More activities and more goals. No matter your “official” role in your company, we are all salespeople and walking, talking billboards. We must take those responsibilities seriously. That is why I propose we take ownership of our Mid Year Resolution.

The proven equation for achieving success looks like this:

Goals + Activities = Accomplishments

Everyone’s definition of success is different, which is a beautiful thing. That is what makes this country so special. The one determining factor that we have a tendency to forget about, is our strategy. A strategy includes our plan, our goals, and what activities will get us to OUR finish line. Chris Brogan wrote a powerful piece titled Independence Isn’t Freedom, in which he discusses overcoming obstacles that stand in our way to reaching our goals. The Future Founders program shows us that even inner city students can overcome some of the most challenging obstacles. If these amazing students can do it without their own resources. Why can’t people who have laptops, money, mentors, connections and number of other resources at our disposable, do it? The answer…they can. As Stevie said, “We can accomplish anything we put our minds to.” You are right, Stevie.

What are we waiting for?

Posted in Branding, Business Development, Businesses, Entrepreneur, Entrepreneurs, Goals, Lead Generation, Marketing, Networking, Personal Branding, Plan, Planning, Quality Introductions, Relationship Building, Sales, Sales Process, Small Business, Small Businesses, Strategy | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Must Follow: Chicago Women in Technology


Everyone, at least who is on Twitter, knows what #followfridays is. For the non-tweeters out there, I’ll explain. Someone, like a genius, had the idea to start a chat on Twitter called follow Fridays. On that day, everyone tweets out … Continue reading

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Twitter Not LinkedIn, Google + Events, & UStream It – Part II


http://youtu.be/pMLPDE3_mho?hd=1 Continue reading

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Twitter Not LinkedIn, Google + Events, & UStream It – Part I


In the world of social media, there are two huge recent stories. One, Twitter dumps LinkedIn. Number two, Google + launches Events. Because there is so much discuss on both topics, plus I included a short piece on UStream, I had to cut the video into two parts. I feel like the Quentin Tarantino of the social media video blog world. Ha!

This one gives you the scoop on the major news. Here are the links on the sources of each story, even though I found both of the links via Twitter and LinkedIn. Big surprise! The next post is Part II, that I talk about UStream.tv

Twitter Drops LinkedIn Partnership

Google Intros Google+ Events, Tablet App

Let me know your thoughts. Boom!

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