Carolyn Browne Tamler

has helped hundreds of businesses and organizations with her thoughtful facilitation and research services. She also writes colorful and compelling articles about new business initiatives! Would this help you? Call Carolyn today!

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    p:| 360.222.6820
    c:| 425.351.7531

    f:| 360.222.6820

    2055 Pheasant Farm Lane
    Freeland, WA 98249

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    11-16-17 Whether it’s a local person or a tourist, making a person feel welcome as they come into your business is your most important job

    Have you ever walked into a business…

    … and waited to be noticed while the person in the store intently stared at a computer screen...

    ….or, waited while two of the employees were engaged in an intense discussion…

    ….or, the person barely noticed you and had a distant or irritated look on their face.

    Some people may be OK and forgiving if they are treated like an invisible being when they enter a business, but I am not.  I want to be noticed immediately, and I want a smile and a friendly greeting. If someone is engaged in something that is drawing their attention away from me, I want them to tell me so, apologize for not helping me immediately, and let me know when they’ll be able to respond to my needs.

    It’s my belief that having a successful business begins with making every customer you come in contact with feel that they are the focus of your attention; that you are very important to them.

    Even if you’re not feeling well or you’re in a negative mood, greeting people in a way that makes them feel good will make you feel good too. It’s a classic win-win situation.

    And, it will certainly play a major role in attracting more people to your business and having them feel like they want to do business with you (and tell their friends about your positive and responsive service, as well).


    11-9-17 Commitment, an essential quality for a successful business

    There are lots of marketing tools that can help build a business, but, in my opinion, nothing is as important as having a true commitment to the value of what you’re offering. It also helps if a business owner maintains a passion about the business to which they are committed.

    One of the best local examples of commitment is Moonraker Books in Langley. Josh Hauser, and her husband, Glenn opened Moonraker Books at 209 First Street 45 years ago.

    I asked Josh what created the commitment to this business and she quickly responded, “I love people and I love books, and when I can have them together in one spot, I’m in heaven.”

    Josh has also benefited from a turn-around in people wanting to have a real, paper book they can hold while they read. There was a fear a few years ago that technology was going to make old-fashioned books obsolete. Fortunately, for Josh and us book lovers on South Whidbey, that didn’t happen.

    For the current story about Josh and Moonraker Books, see the story on the Business Spotlight of Whidbey Local.



    11-2-17 Outcast Productions Follies in Concert blends entertainment and art

    Outcast Productions presents Follies in Concert for three weekends, from November 3rd. to the 18th. The show features the music of Stephen Sondheim and includes 15 performers.

    Today, I attended a one-hour lecture by Eileen Soskin, the Musical Director of the show. She did a brilliant job of explaining the difference between entertainment and art. Sondheim’s music, as she pointed out, is entertaining, but is truly art. She noted that as many times as she has played the music from Sondheim’s shows, she keeps finding new ways to interpret what she is hearing.

    Some of Sondheim’s best known shows include A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum, A Little Night Music, Sweeney Todd, Sunday in the Park with George, and my personal favorite, Into the Woods.

    As Soskin spoke and performed some piano excerpts, she pointed out the nuances in the rhythms and the melodies. As she talked, I realized what an emotional punch I have often gotten listening to Sondheim music. She provided examples of how the emotions and thoughts of the characters are conveyed in the way that the music is written.

    I don’t usually make recommendations in this marketing blog, but hearing the lecture today made me want to share my enthusiasm for Outcast Productions and my excitement about seeing this show.

    If you want tickets, you can go to the Outcast website for information: You can purchase tickets through Brown Paper Tickets or send a request for a reservation to


    10-26-17 Can a cat take over your business?

    Although I am officially retired I, like many other seniors, do not want to stop working and doing something that I feel has value in our community.

    In my case, when I moved on from my marketing research and public involvement consulting business that had been my work identity for more than 40 years, I morphed into becoming a business writer.

    I enjoy doing interviews and composing stories. When the time comes to write the stories, I am at my computer.

    We have a rescue cat who came with the name of Dash. Once he was convinced we were not going to return him to the Cat Cottage, he became our buddy, rarely more than six feet away from one of us.

    As those who have cats know, you really don’t own a cat because he (or she) believes you are there to serve them.

    Recently, I was at my computer finishing another “Business Spotlight” story when Dash showed up and sat down on my computer, right in front of me. I am pretty sure he was simply saying, “Notice me.” Several times I said, “Dash get off of there”….and he refused to budge. I finally had to push him off.

    He wasn’t happy that I didn’t understand his cat speak.




    10-19-17 Social media can boost the power of your marketing efforts

    For five years I have been writing weekly business stories for Whidbey Local. I am officially the “Business Spotlight” (

    A couple of weeks after each story appears I get the tabulations for how many people have looked at the article. It has amazed me that the numbers vary from as little as 14 to over 800.

    I’d like to think I had a few hundred regular readers for my stories, but the reality is that the stories get read when they are promoted on peoples’ Facebook pages and/or other social media sites. The numbers grow as more people share the stories with their friends and contacts, who then share them with others.

    When you have a good marketing story to tell, or when someone writes a good marketing story about your business, be sure to share the article in every way that you can.