I’m a man on a mission today. As you may know, I’m a business blog consultant. The very first blog I developed was for a jeweler in my hometown of Tupelo, Mississippi, Patti Thompson, owner of Way-fil Jewelry. Patti is an expert jeweler and jewelry appraiser, as well as a wonderful writer. She was intriqued by the notion of blogging and agreed to let me design a blog for her.
On November 1st, just at the beginning of the holiday sales season (a time crucial to jewelers), her store caught fire and was literally gutted. You can only imagine how devastated she and her husband Stephen must have felt. A store she has owned for years, her livelyhood, now burned to the ground.
But, Patti and Stephen are courageous people. They have made the best of a bad situation and are reopened in a temporary location – a room in an adjacent building owned by a tire shop! In fact, before Patti moved in it was a storage room for tires. The tire shop owner graciously moved the tires to another location and made the room available for Patti and Steve. They have worked long and hard over the past few weeks to make it presentable and have now reopened.
Here’s the kicker – Patti is blogging the entire story! In fact, the very day following the fire she talked about it on her blog and is keeping readers up-to-date chronicling the rebuilding process via the blog, DiamondDivaOnline. To me, this represents not only one key way blogs can be used effectively as a communications medium, but also represents the highest ideals to which we bloggers aspire, that of transparency, honesty and authenticity.
I have a two-fold request of you. First, help Patti tell her story. If you are a small business owner with a blog, let me ask you to write a post about this event and link to her. Second, if buying jewelry is on your radar as a Christmas gift, consider shopping with Patti. Just think how wonderful it would be if people all over this country placed orders. She runs an eBay store and you can contact her directly to place an order.
Patti has maintained a wonderful sense of humor throughout this event. She says this gives new meaning to the phrase “fire sale!” She is an upbeat person at heart anyway and confesses the tragic occurance has only served to strengthen her faith.
I owe Patti and Steve a great deal. Not only was theirs the first blog I developed (I might mention they have since redeveloped the blog and gone with a more basic design.), but they gave me invaluable business advice and enormous moral support. I might not be in business today were it not for their help and encouragement. This is just one small way I can repay their kindness.
This is a season for giving, so contribute a blog post to the “Diamond Diva” and perhaps do a little business with her too! You’ll feel better for having done so, and be helping them rebuild their business in the process. You never know when it might be you that needs help down the road. When and if that time comes, I know you can count on Patti to be there. We small business bloggers have to stick together you know.