10 Reasons Why Branding Yourself May Strengthen Your Business

10 Reasons Why Branding Yourself May Strengthen Your Business

Sometimes you have to stand up for what you believe in, even if it may put heat and pressure on you as a business owner. As a business owner, creating the following petition helps brand me as a person who cares and is actively involved in my children’s lives and my community.  I walk the walk.

There is much research indicating the more PE time our kids have in school, the better their academic performance, self esteem and discipline will be.  Therefore, I believe it is critical for our schools to implement PE everyday.  I also believe that parents should play an active partnership role in decision-making in the health programming of our schools.  

I recently created a petition urging our schools to not reduce PE from 5 to 3 days in our elementary schools.  Besides the obviously problem of reducing PE, is the underlying problem that the schools did not allow parents to be a part of conversation when determining they needed to reduce PE time.  Even more disturbing than that, parents were not made aware of the safety issues due to overcrowding in the schools in the first place. 

All Texas schools are mandated to have a Student Health Advisory Council (SHAC), made of a majority of parent representatives, which participate in health related curriculum decisions. I am a SHAC member and SHAC was not informed of any upcoming changes or issues in our schools prior to this petition. Texas mandates parental involvement for two reasons:  to hold schools accountable and to ensure that community values are instilled in school health and wellness programming.

By taking this risk and initiating this petition many positive results occurred.  1).  It prompted our school administrators to have a parent meeting.  2).  Administrators got creative and initiated other forms of structured play and movement in the classrooms to substitute for the deleted PE minutes.  3).  The petition gained publicity from the local newspaper, which interviewed the school administrators and some of us parents on the issue and allowed further communication to occur.  4).  The petition brought parents together who approached the School Board of Trustees regarding the issue.  This made the board aware of the issue and educated them on SHAC and it’s responsibilities.  5). The petition prompted the SHAC Executive Board to immediately and actively solicit parent members.  6).  SHAC immediately scheduled regularly occurring SHAC meetings for the next upcoming year, in advance.  7).  SHAC immediately solicited parental and community involvement in the planning process for the 2nd Liberty Fit Festival (a community wide event).  8).  This petition also created a platform for the School Superintendent to write an article for the newspaper explaining the future building of an additional elementary school 9). The petition also created an opportunity for the  Superintendent to launch a campaign proposing an election bond to fund the new school. 10).  Most importantly, it made parents realize they need to be actively involved in their children’s education and it created a unified voice for them to stand up for future issues!

I would describe this petition as success!  As a result of my calculated business and personal risk, our children will maintain their good health because parents stood up for their best interest.  Parent involvement and communication has been opened and hopefully, administration and teachers will see that parent and school collaboration is a good, healthy process! 

As a business owner, this petition helps brand me as a person who cares and is actively involved in my children’s lives and my community.  I walk the walk. Therefore, you can trust that as my future client, I will do what is right for you too. 

You should become a parent representative for SHAC too!

To download a SHAC member application, click here.


All meetings will be held at the new LHISD Administration Building, 301 Forrest St., from 6:30 pm until 8 pm.

SHAC Mandatory Orientation Meetings (You must attend one of the following meetings Only, if you plan to become an official SHAC member.)

Tuesday, July 14

Thursday, July 23

Regular SHAC Meeting

Wednesday, August 19th - REGULAR SHAC Meeting

Liberty Fit Festival Planning Committee Meetings

Wednesday, September 23rd - Physical Education

Wednesday, November 18th - Child Nutrition

Wednesday, February 17th - School Safety

Wednesday, April 20th - Health and Wellness

If you are interested in forming a parent advocacy group for Liberty Hill, please sign up at the bottom of page

3 Critical Questions to Ask and Answer Before Marketing Your Business


A great consultant and/or business owner will ask and answer three questions before they begin implementing an effective marketing strategy. 

1.  What are your goals?  More specifically, what do you hope to accomplish with an effective and comprehensive marketing plan?


To increase your client/customer base

CONCERNS:  Is your business going to be able to effectively handle the added workload? 

a.      Can you afford the staff?

b.     Can you afford to buy additional product?

c.      Do you have customer service policies in place to handle these new clients/customers needs?


To increase sales

CONCERNS:  Who is going to be the salesperson?  If you are a small business owner, more than likely it will need to be you or an existing staff member. 

a.      Do you have time to produce more new content, new products and manage your personnel and sale your product?

b.     Do you or any of your staff have a marketing background or marketing experience?

c.      Does your staff want to sell or market for you?

d.      Is your staff good at selling?

Do you want to take the chance of bringing in new clients if you are going to neglect and potentially lose your current clients? 

Do you want your current clients to negatively review you because you are not serving them well? 

Do you want to invest your time and money in an ineffective marketing plan due to inexperienced or unmotivated staff? 

Do you want to commit yourself to this additional workload? 

2.  How big can your business get while still allowing you to balance your personal life? 

CONCERN:  Balance

As a psychologist, I am very concerned with business owners and their ability to balance their priorities in life.  Businesses usually do not thrive if they do not have the full attention of their owners, as families tend to disconnect with overly worked parents. 

So, it is imperative that business owners choose which is their first priority.  If it is family, you will need to make sure staff members are going to give your business their full attention.  Bottom line is, someone has to do it.

Are you willing to sacrifice .........? 

How long are you willing to sacrifice........? 

Will you enjoy doing the specific tasks involved with the marketing and the increase in clients and/or sales long term? 

Will you trust someone else to do those tasks for you? 

Who else is negatively effected by your decision?

3.  Are your staff and family going to support you with this growth and commitment?

CONCERN:  Support

Your business is less likely to achieve and sustain success if you do not have a VERY strong support system in place.  In fact, almost every endeavor in life fails, if you do not have a support system in place.  Let’s face it, we are not able to accomplish things on our own.  We need help.  It takes a community.

I realize these are tough questions and they are not fun to think about, but they are critical nonetheless.

If you are ready to increase your sales and client/customer base, call me, I want to help.  If you need to get some systems in place in order to create a support system at home and at work, call me, I want to help.  If you need help creating a trustworthy, trained and motivated staff, call me, I want to help.


Valerie Zapien, M.Ed.

The Best Marketing Tool is....

Business owners might hope that there is a special app or social media platform or consultant they can hire that will magically and successfully market your business.  However, the key to growing your business is revealed in this article.