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Meet Lyndsay Clements of Ellen Grace Marketing in Flagstaff & Arcadia/Phoenix

Today we’d like to introduce you to Lyndsay Clements.

Lyndsay, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
Prior to starting this business in 2015, I worked for larger retailers (Nordstrom, Harry & David, DFS Galleria, and Leslie’s Pool Supplies) and really learned the ins and out of retail. Large companies are smart in how they look at their marketing and sales data, often times daily, to help them make strategic decisions.

About four years ago, I started to realize – mostly through conversations with friends who had either opened up a retail store or were selling products and services online – that there was an opportunity. Most of these smaller business owners were brilliant at sourcing products and really passionate about understanding their customers need but sometimes neglected their marketing or analyzing sales data because they wore so many hats.

It was then I decided to go out on my own and to bring the corporate way of going-to-market I had learned into the hands of smaller businesses, primarily retailers. This also gave me the opportunity to be more flexible and present with our family. My husband and I have two daughters whose middle names are Ellen and Grace, hence the name of the company. I wanted to create a business that gave me the flexibility to work hard while still being present for those valuable moments that I saw myself missing while working in a corporate office. With my husband’s support at home with the girls, I’ve been able to launch and grow the business to where it is today.

Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
Of course, the road has not been smooth. To extend the analogy… leaving a corporate job at a big company to become an entrepreneur is like driving your car off the city streets to begin an off-road adventure. It can be scary, but also a lot of fun! There have been bumps in the road, but I knew what I was signing up for, and I felt that I had the right tools to keep making progress along the way. As with many small businesses you learn so much as you go and we have taken many pivots to better support our client’s needs. That being said, our mission from day one has never changed – to help small businesses scale by giving them the resources and tools be successful.

The biggest lesson I’ve learned so far is how much better things are when you build a team so you don’t have to wear every hat yourself. Things started to really improve when I got to the point in my business where I could expand, and build a team. I’ve brought on some great people who have mostly been helping me part-time as independent contractors who also enjoy working from home in different parts of the country. Every day I’m grateful that I am able to work with such wonderful people who care about our customers and make our services better. We use a tool called Basecamp to keep all of us connected and streamline tasks across multiple clients.

I’m really excited about the newest addition to the team. My brother, Craig Peters is now working with me. The two of us combined, have over 30 years of corporate retail and sales experience. His background is specifically in Ecommerce, Supply Chain/Logistics, and Manufacturing. He has already made an immediate impact, and as he grows into his new role as Partner with Ellen Grace, I’m confident that he will add many new layers to what we can offer. We have always worked very well together and he is super smart, hard-working, a great leader and full of positive energy.

Please tell us about Ellen Grace Marketing.
Our goal at Ellen Grace Marketing is to help business with fewer resources work smarter and think like those larger retailers. Most small and medium-sized business owners have so much on their plate and either look at data – from financial documents to engagement metrics on social platforms – in a siloed fashion or not at all. And without the data in hand, they are at a disadvantage. By collecting data from across their business, and then packaging that data into a concise overview, we are helping businesses see their opportunities to grow and achieve their financial goals.

What is most exciting to me is the advantage that these smaller businesses enjoy over the larger ones – they can adapt and change quickly based on the results. Often times decisions are made on the spot, and the ROI impact is seen immediately. While bigger companies often discover opportunities to grow sales, it is more challenging and costly to adjust and there are layers of decisions makers to work through.

Regardless of how we support our clients and their teams, setting goals and consistently looking at the data is fundamental to our services. Our primary service is for business owners who are tired of just “winging it” and are ready to embrace the CEO role of their company. We teach them how to look at their financial and marketing data so they can make smarter decisions that impact the health and future of their growing company.

Annually, we help them set forecasts and then each month, we look at their data and trends from different areas of their business and share valuable insights into where they are winning and where there are opportunities. In most cases our clients are able to take these insights back to their team to impact marketing campaigns, buying decisions, staffing, etc.

In some cases, a business may not have the team in house to execute some of the things the data is telling them to do. In this case, we can also provide a support team. This is an additional service that we provide as part of our full-service package. This may include a cohesive content strategy across multiple digital platforms or driving email and social media campaigns. Or we will focus on back-end processes such as formalizing operating procedures, performing SKU rationalization, etc.

Is there a quality or characteristic that has played an outsized role in your success?
We know that our success is only as good as the results we are providing for the clients we are serving. At the end of the day, it’s not about checking boxes or merely pulling numbers. The heart of what we are about is supporting talented business owners in a way that makes them the experts of their businesses. It’s about providing them with actionable insights and plans based on concrete data that drives their long-term profitability.

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Image Credit:
Hannah Rose Gray

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