Post-Show Seminar Throwback Series: SEO & Blogging

As we head into the summer, we’re doing one, final throwback to the education you received at the 2016 CHA Conference & Trade Show in Anaheim in January.

Over the past several weeks, we’ve been featuring your favorite seminar speakers to remind you of the knowledge you learned and why it is important for your creative business.

This week, our final throwback is Ann Butler’s and Theresa Cifali’s seminar: SEO & Blogging – What the Heck is Google Looking For? Watch their recap video here and get a refresh on seven of the key indicators that influence your business’s post rank in Google’s algorithm.

How to Schedule Your Week in Social Media


by Theresa Cifali, Mixed Media Artist & Craft Designer, CHA Designer Council Member

Someone once said to me, “You can’t manage time. You can only manage yourself.” How profound…and true! As business owners, we often find ourselves talking and thinking about how to manage our time better. Let’s face it though…we are just not going to have more time. However, we can make better use of the time we do have.

When it comes to social media, time is definitely a huge issue. How much time we spend in those platforms can greatly effect other areas of our business. You know you do it! You go into Facebook to just put up one post and before you know it, an hour is gone….just like that.

It’s no different for me. Being a small business, there is a lot to do with few people to do it. So, in my own quest to “manage myself” better, I’ve put certain systems in place. More importantly, I utilize tools to help me better control my social media efforts. Does it take time to work in these tools? Sure, but the benefits are huge! One such benefit is that I can work inside of the tool rather than inside of the social media platform. This prevents me from getting all distracted by pretty, shiny things. Another plus is it forces me to focus and plan what I want to do and say. The combination of these factors free up other times of the day. I love that.

As a creative business owner, I feel very it is important to help other creative businesses…especially when it comes to social media management. Whether you are a manufacturer, a retailer, a professional crafter or a designer, you need to make social media work for you and fit into you marketing plan. It is really important. Not doing it simply because you “don’t have time”, is not a good enough excuse. Believe me, I get it. How many more hats can we all wear?

I’m here to tell you that you have the time! What you need are the tools. I know which tools will work for you…and I can show you how to use them.

On May 20, 2013, I will be presenting a seminar called How to Schedule Your Week in Social Media. This is just one of the many wonderful seminars the Craft and Hobby Association will host during their Creative Conference this spring. The Creative Conference will run in conjunction with The National Stationery Show, which is held at the Jacob Javits Center in NYC.

If you are attending the show, I invite you to join me for this powerful seminar. You will learn how to leverage specific web-based tools for scheduling, organizing, and more. These tools are designed to help YOU manage yourself better. I look forward to seeing you there!


Theresa Cifali hails from Westchester County, NY and is the sole proprietor of TheresaCifali™ with nearly 20 years of experience working with consumers, manufacturers and retail businesses in the crafting industry.  Theresa is a seasoned designer with her own private studio where she maintains her business, instructs classes and continually experiments with new designs, techniques and class concepts. Theresa is also well versed in social media and emerging digital platforms, actively using these platforms to build genuine, dynamic communities where she can interact with individuals and promote her business.  Theresa consults businesses on best practices in social media and provides management and social strategy services in addition to her already vast repertoire of business services.

CHA Designers Team Up to Produce Free Digital Craft Industry Magazine

By Carol Heppner,

We rarely discuss one of the great advantages of being a CHA member and the wonderful relationships that form when attending the trade shows.   If you volunteer and support our organization, relationships deepen and initiate opportunities.

Such is the case with Ann Butler and me.  Ann and I were on Google + catching up on some CHA Designer-Section business when our discussion turned to our individual companies.   As craft-design business owners, we are constantly working with manufacturers and seeking to have the manufacturers’ products published.

During this conversation, Ann uttered those fateful words, “I wish we could develop our own publication.”   I looked at Ann and said, “We can.”   After a minute of thinking about it, Ann responded with, “But it has to be free to the reader.”   It was during these first few minutes that Bella Crafts Quarterly was born and our business model started to develop.


We knew that we wanted to bring quality projects and topical craft-industry columns to readers who craft for business and for pleasure.   We wanted to inspire readers to craft, which would help the entire craft industry.   To that end, and in keeping with our belief, the first project in all our quarterly issues is always a project showing readers that they can reconnect with crafting by making the project within minutes.

Creating a quarterly publication, while still running our individual companies, would be no easy feat and we would need help.  An undertaking this size needed individuals who are hard working, talented and craft-industry savvy.   Having worked with Lisa Rojas and Theresa Cifali on previous projects, they immediately came to mind as fitting the bill.

Although the four of us have our individual companies, we joined forces to work on this project.  Each designer brings unique skills that allow us to produce a bella-creative-teamquality publication to inspire crafters of all levels.  What is uniquely special is how well we work together.   In a competitive business world, where companies are looking to be one-step in front of their competition, it is rare that companies can come together and create a joint product.  Our ability to work well together may come from the many volunteer projects on which we worked for the CHA Designer Section.  Volunteering to help make CHA a better organization helps develop business relationships that are rewarding.

So, what is Bella Crafts Quarterly™?  It is the #1, free downloadable craft magazine published by four of the craft-industry’s top professional craft designers.  We create quality projects and are the bridge between manufacturers and the crafting public.  Our preview Halloween issue of Bella Crafts Quarterly™ ranked #8 on Magcloud’s Top 15 Popular Magazine

What will you find in Bella Crafts Quarterly™?

  • Artist to Artist – Interviews with our industry’s creative professionals
  • Blog Star – Creative bloggers share their experiences
  • Craft Projects – Craft projects designed to inspire
  • – A quick craft project to help crafters reconnect with crafting
  • Photo Talk™ – Taking your photographs to the next level
  • Lessons with Lisa™ – Crafting advice to make a difference in the crafter’s life
  • Live Links – Our digital versions contain live links to send readers to products used in projects
  • Socially Sensible™ – Social Media advice to help your business
  • Sponsored Craft Projects – Craft projects brought to you by the industry’s manufacturers
  • Trending Thoughts – Trend and topical advice from CHA professional craft designers

winter-journey-cover-smallBella Crafts Quarterly™ is can be downloaded free on our website, and you can read it free online at  The print version is also available through Magcloud for a fee.

We are able to provide the free digital version of Bella Crafts Quarterly™ to readers by project sponsorship from manufacturers.  If you are Manufacturer and like more information, contact us at

Wishing you very successful CHA 2013 Winter Show.

~ Carol

Become an official CHA Blog Guest Blogger!

The CHA Blog is currently seeking guest bloggers and blog posts. Any CHA member can submit a post! Basically, a blog post consists of either a video or photo of an event or experience and a short blurb. We want you to tell your story: what current trends do we need to know about? What is the one thing you look forward to the most at CHA shows? What crafty community service project are you involved with? If you’re interested, please submit your post idea, blog post, name and contact information to

All guest blog posts are the sole responsibility of the authors. They do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of the Craft & Hobby Association (CHA), its staff members, sponsors or exhibitors. The inclusion of a link or reference does not imply the endorsement of the linked site by the Craft & Hobby Association (CHA).


In a news release issued by CHA, dozens of craft celebs will be attending the CHA Summer Show in Rosemont, Illinois next week.  See the complete release below.



The Craft & Hobby Association (CHA) announces a star-studded line-up of internationally recognized crafting celebrities, including Terri O, Tim Holtz, Claudine Hellmuth, Margot Potter, Cathie Filian, Steve Piacenza, Theresa Cifali and Kathy Cano-Murillo, among many others, who are scheduled to attend CHA’s 2011 Summer Conference & Trade Show.  Dozens of the craft industry’s most loved and respected stars will be on hand highlighting “Craft Fusion – The Selling Power of Mixed Media,” at Donald E. Stephens Convention Center in Rosemont, Ill., July 18-21, 2011.  CHA has provided a short list of just a few of the many celebrities coming to the Show so attendees can plan to meet their favorite celebrity.


Terri O

Terri O, CHA’s national spokesperson, two-time Emmy Award winner and PBS-TV host of Super Simple with Terri O, will help judge CHA’s Innovations Sneak Peek Media & Buyer Event on Monday, July 18 at 3:30 p.m.  Terri O will also judge CHA’s Innovations Product Awards at 5 p.m. and the daily Minute-to-Craft-It Challenges July 19 through July 21 at 2 p.m.  Terri O will make several additional appearances at various locations across the Show floor and is scheduled to appear on WGN-TV during the Mid-Day Show Monday, July 18.

Tim Holtz

Tim Holtz

Tim Holtz, creative director for Ranger Industries, plays an integral part in development and design of cutting-edge paper crafting products.  Tim will make daily appearances at the Show hosting workshops and demonstrations.  Tuesday, July 19 through Thursday, July 21, Tim will be at the Sizzix/Ellison booth 1014 at 10 a.m., the Avantus Corp booth 931 at 11 a.m. and Ranger Industries, Inc. booth 731 at 2 p.m.



Claudine Hellmuth, collage artist, author, illustrator and developer of the Claudine Hellmuth Studio, will be demonstrating in the Ranger Industries, Inc. booth 731 Tuesday, July 19 through Thursday, July 21 at 11 a.m.


Jewel School & Margot Potter

Jewel School & Margot Potter


Margot Potter, TV host, designer, author and industry expert, has designed and consulted for some of the biggest companies in the craft industry and recently joined Jewelry Television as resident jewelry-making guru.  Potter will be signing her book “New Dimensions in Bead and Wire Jewelry” on Tuesday, July 19 and Thursday, July 21 at 11 a.m. at the Beadalon booth 1031.

Cathie Filian and Steve Piacenza, Emmy-nominated television personalities, best-selling authors, and designers, will be at the Plaid booth 607 daily.

Theresa Cifali, mixed-media artist and owner of The Altered Canvas, will be a CHA Minute-to-Craft-It judge on Tuesday, July 19 at noon and Wednesday, July 20 at 5 p.m. in the Craft Fusion Center booth 1223.

Kathy Cano-Murillo, The Crafty Chica, an award-winning blogger, artist, novelist and developer through iLovetoCreate, will participate in a panel discussion on Monday, July 18 and will also be at the iLoveToCreate booth 1123 daily.

Other celebrities and industry notables, including Wendy Russell, Wendy Senger, Ana Araujo, Maria Nerius and many others, are also scheduled to attend the Show.  For more information about the Show, including hours, workshop classes and must-see events, please visit