Photography above by Abby Glenn Photography

College Courses and Research Projects

My advanced degrees in communication studies, psychology and education help me to understand what captures and keeps human attention, how we best learn and most importantly, what motivates us.  These are essential components of any successful marketing and business plans. I would dare to say, most marketing consultants were not trained from this perspective. 

The funnest, professional research study I have participated in thus far was completed at the University of California, Berkeley, where we literally examined videos and pictures of people's facial symmetry to test their likeability and attractiveness to others.  And, yes, you guessed it, the more symmetrical your face, the more attractive you seem to be to others.  This is important information for those of you using pictures and videos in your advertising/marketing strategies.

I have 192 credit hours of undergraduate and graduate level psychology and communication study courses and completed several research studies in these areas.  If you are really interested in my academic history, please click here for my vita. For brevity's sake, I have a Bachelor's of Arts in Communication Studies, a Bachelor's of Science in Psychology with an Honor's Thesis, and a Master's of Education in Curriculum, Instructional and Educational Psychology.  Post college, I continue to complete many self development and improvement courses as well as industrial/organizational and marketing classes related to business development and improvement.


Professional Experience

While working my way through college and post college, I mainly worked in social services and nonprofits organizations.  I was a social worker, mental health specialist, school psychologist, instructor, counselor, personal fitness trainer, manager of customer service, operations and human resources.  These roles have given me the unique ability to listen carefully to people's concerns, tune into their personality quickly and create cost effective solutions to problems. 

Coming from a blue collar family, I was the first generation to ever go to college and I even earned a graduate degree.  I have a very strong work ethic and I am extremely resourceful.  I am an educator and counselor at heart so it is important to me that each of my clients feel fully trained and empowered to continue implementing the plans we devise. 

My family are very important to me, so I spent several years working mainly at home until my children were both in elementary school.   And let me tell you, I was dying to get back to my career.  I wanted to work locally so I could still be involved in my children's schools and not have a long commuting time.    I consider myself blessed because God paved an unexpected path for me.  He led me to volunteer for the Political Action Committee to pass the bond to build the new high school in 2010. 

During the celebration party for the passing of the bond, God arranged for Dr. Gillespie and I to cross paths.  This is when my career path changed.  Dr. Thad Gillespie of Liberty Hill Dental, asked me to become his marketing director.   I thought he was crazy, but it turns out, my psychology and communication studies background made it a very natural transition. 

The Chamber of Commerce and Economic Development

My four years of experience as Dr. Gillespie's Marketing Director/Business Director morphed into four years of serving as the President/Director of the Liberty Hill Chamber of Commerce and a Director for the Liberty Hill Economic Development Corporation.  These in-depth experiences in supporting and promoting businesses of all industries allowed me to learn what it takes to start and operate a successful business.   I have found it to be quite rewarding to work FOR Profit, versus working in social services!  I love working with ambitious and passionate people who believe in themselves and achieving BIG things.  I regularly network with local and national business owners and leaders and attend and facilitate business related workshops, conferences, webinars, podcasts and live trainings.  All of these relationships and connections stemmed from my involvement in the Chamber.

Finally, Business Consulting

I have built an impressive portfolio of clients who will attest to my vitality and zeal.  I love what I do and I want you to as well.  You can achieve a balance between your work and play, if, you have the correct business plan and team in place.  You've taken the first step toward your success by reaching out to a consultant.  Now, you have to actually hire me and trust me.

Each of my clients is VERY important to me and I give them my full attention.  I need you to know that once you are my client, you are always my client.  When I come across information, events and programming that relates to you and your business, I make sure you get it, without charge.  And believe me, I am always looking and finding!  I am very connected to local resources, businesses, school districts and municipal key authority figures in the Liberty Hill, Georgetown, Leander and Burnet communities.   If I am not able to provide you with a service, I will direct you to someone I believe will give you the best service possible, at the best price.

It is my mission to stay up-to-date with relevant marketing, advertising and social media and business trends and to train your team on how to use them.
—Valerie Zapien, M.Ed.
Facebook Training by Facebook in Austin, Texas

Facebook Training by Facebook in Austin, Texas

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I would love to help your business thrive and help you achieve balance in your personal life at the same time.  For a full list of my services, click here.  To sign up for my free newsletters or to follow my blog, click here.

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