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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    1-8-15 Starting the New Year with the three simplest marketing concepts

    When you’re looking for the best ways to use your marketing and promotion dollars, remember these three guidelines:

     1)      It is always easiest to sell more to those who are already satisfied customers buying your product or service;

    2)      You are more likely to sell to new customers who are much like the customers you already have or have been referred to you by current customers; and

    3)      It is hardest to sell to new people about whom you have little information.

    Item 1 assumes that you do everything to keep your customers happy so they’ll want to keep coming back to you.

    Item 2 is based on the idea that the kinds of people who really appreciate you, what you sell, and how you do business are likely to want to do business with you, once they know who you are….and especially if they have heard good things about your from their friends.

    Item 3 means it can be very expensive to simply place an advertisement without knowing details about the audience that will see the advertisement.

    The most cost effective way to promote your business is to continue to be sure your current customers are satisfied customers and let them know how much you appreciate their business and having them refer you to others.

    Remember….a satisfied customer may tell several people; a dissatisfied customer tells everyone they encounter.



    12-18-14 When it comes to business, the bottom line isn't the only line

    The theme for my Blog this week came from Ron Nelson, the Executive Director of the Island County Economic Development Council.

    When we think of marketing a business, it’s sometimes easy to focus only on how many sales we do and how much money we make.

    Having a business on South Whidbey also involves having a personal stake in this community.  And being involved plays a major role in the concept of “doing business” here.

    Anyone who has been on Whidbey for a while realizes that there are an incredible number of non-profits doing great work here.  As someone associated with an organization recently said, “The definition of a non-profit is that we always need money.”

    Because of the generosity of many businesses on the island, as well as the people who live here, an amazing number of non-profits continue to be able to do good work.

    This holiday season, remember to buy local, and please make contributions to local organizations that are making a positive difference.

    I’m on the Board of the Whidbey Children’s Theater, and here’s my pitch for contributing to the great work this organization does for young people on the island:



    12-11-14 Remember to relax and have fun during the holidays

    A lot of businesses depend on big sales during the holidays.

    And, in our culture, we tend to stress out a lot during the holidays hoping to find the right gift for every person.

    But, the real purpose of the holidays, whatever your personal beliefs, is to enjoy family, friends and community.

    Having a successful business is certainly important if you are a business person.

    Making someone happy with a loving gift can add to your happiness.

    But, by far, the greatest value I see in the holidays is to be grateful for all of the goodness in your life.


    12-4-14 A customer-friendly dog can be a great attraction for a retail business 

    I went into Vino Amore in Freeland to purchase a couple bottles of wine the other day.  While I am always satisfied with my purchase, I think I got even more pleasure out of being greeted by the two shop dogs.  As you walk in the door and up to the counter, a beautiful large golden retriever named Koa jumps up and puts his paws on the counter and says hello, as only a friendly dog can do.  When you peak over the counter, you notice a new fur friend that has joined the greeting committee: Buddy, who is a pug.


    Gail Liston, who owns Vino Amore with her husband, Brian Plebanek, agrees that the dogs bring in customers.  Many of the regulars stop by to say “Hello” to the fur fellows, give the dogs a pet….and buy a bottle of wine.

    When Gail first began bringing Koa with her to work it was to keep her company.  Soon, she discovered that the dog was a natural greeter. She definitely likes having the company of Koa and Buddy when she is on duty by herself (and Brian appreciates the company when he’s there, as well), and she is the first to admit that they have definitely been as great a draw for the business as their excellent selection of wine and beer.


    (A special note for cat lovers: While there are several businesses that have dog greeters, there are cat greeters, as well.)


    11-27-14 Being thankful and grateful are essential elements to a successful and happy life

    Usually in this blog I provide tools and ideas for building a successful business.  Since I’m writing this on Thanksgiving Day, I thought it was also appropriate to share the wisdom of being thankful and appreciative for what you have.

    I subscribe to a great quarterly magazine: “Yes” Magazine (website: ) that is a wonderful way to learn to be more thankful, appreciative and happy. It’s a non-profit, subscriber supported quarterly publication.

    They recently published a book on “Sustainable Happiness.”  For this special day, I’d like to share the “10 Things Science Says Will Make You Happy” by Jen Angel (the book details each of these items):

    1. Savor everyday moments
    2. Avoid comparisons
    3. Put money low on the list
    4. Have meaningful goals
    5. Take initiative at work
    6. Make friends; treasure family
    7. Smile even when you don’t feel like it
    8. Say “Thank you” like you mean it
    9. Get out and exercise
    10. Give it away now!