As the founder of Rembrandt Communications®, LLC, www.rembrandtwrites.com, Melanie is one of the country's top, public-relations consultants, an SEO copywriter and a published writer with over 20 years of extensive experience and an excellent track-record for success.
She specializes in helping entrepreneurs get the attention and credibility they need via targeted public-relations and SEO copywriting efforts (including Web site copy that sells, newsletters, eReports, social media, blogs, SEO press releases, e-mail auto responders, direct marketing, and more!).
Melanie offers tips and insights via her blogs and monthly newsletter, "Rembrandt Writes Insights®." And she provides in-depth training presentations to various businesses and organizations nationwide.
Melanie is also the author of "Secrets of Becoming a Publicist," published by American Writers & Artists, Inc., "Simple Publicity," published by 1WinPress, StartupNation's "7 Steps to Successful Public Relations," and the host of the SmallBiz America Radio Channel, "PR and SEO Quick Tips with Melanie Rembrandt."
A magna cum laude graduate of the prestigious UCLA School of Theater,Film and Television, Melanie is the official small-business PR expert for StartupNation and Pink Magazine Online. She’s open to your questions, comments and suggestions at email@example.com and @rembrandtwrites on Twitter.
And you can also sign-up to receive her e-newsletter and reports packed with great information at: http://www.startupnation.com/steps/77/steps-successful-public-relations.htm.
Do you have an idea for a great, niche product or service but think it’s already available? You may be able to start a great business with your idea. Check out this interview with Tasha Golden who helped to create “The Hymn Project,” www.thehymnprojectCDs.com.
What is The Hymn Project?
“The Hymn Project” is a 7-CD collection of 200 hymns performed on solo piano in traditional hymnal style.
Why is The Hymn Project unique, and why did you decide to create it?
“The Hymn Project” is the only CD compilation to offer an extensive selection of instrumental hymns, professionally recorded on solo piano, with easy-to-identify intros and verses, making it easy to sing along to.
Its music was taken straight from the hymnal in an effort to both simplify the accompaniment experience and to preserve the traditional hymn sound. It is also the first hymn CD product to offer tutorials and extensive additional resources, which help our customers create play-lists using iTunes, coordinate our CDs with their hymnals, and even arrange their hymn selections by musical key.
We created “The Hymn Project” as an accompaniment solution for Christian gatherings. We heard from many small churches, military chaplains, nursing homes, and funeral homes that they were often left without a pianist, and they desperately needed something they could sing with in their services.
Previous, instrumental hymn CDs featured full orchestras and stylistic embellishments that were too awkward for these smaller settings (imagine a handful of soldiers trying to sing to an emphatic, orchestral version of “Amazing Grace.”) so we wanted to provide something professional, beautiful, and easy to use.
We also created “The Hymn Project” as an archive of traditional American faith music. We were the first to record simple, hymn music to music-industry standards: from the performance and engineering all the way to the mastering (by a Grammy-nominated engineer). It’s also the first hymn collection to boast custom artwork and design that embodies the music’s long legacy among American Christians.
How can other entrepreneurs find a niche and fill it with a valuable product or service?
I’d recommend seeing how you can create an improved version of something that’s already available. The idea for “The Hymn Project” came to us when a couple small churches asked one of our founders to record hymns on the piano. We thought for sure that if we looked, we’d find hymns already recorded on CD. But everything we found was either poorly done or far too “big” (full orchestras, etc) to work for these churches, so we set out to make our own product, and to make it better than anyone else could.
How are you marketing The Hymn Project?
We’re mainly marketing through our Web site, www.thehymnprojectCDs.com. We’ve done extensive work with Search Engine Optimization, and we use Google Adwords so that customers can easily find us online.
We’ve increased our Web presence with a Facebook profile, which allows customers and interested “fans” to easily spread the word. We run ads through Facebook to promote the profile, and these ads have greatly increased traffic to our official site.
We’ve also reached out to (and received reviews in) Christian media such as “Your Church Magazine” and “Christianity Today International,” to expose our story and product to potential customers. We continue to pursue publications whose readers would be interested in traditional music, offering discounted prices and free downloads to their readers/members.
And finally, we regularly reach out to movers and shakers in the church leadership world; people whose recommendation of our product would be highly valued.
It wasn’t that no one else was meeting the need for church accompaniment, it’s just that no one else was doing it THIS way. I think this can apply to a lot of industries. Look at what’s out there, and see if you can create a brand new version of it that’s specifically appealing to a demographic you understand — one that you know is looking for something different, more, or better.
Thanks Tasha! For more tips and information from Tasha on her business success, check back on Thursday.
In the meantime, feel free to contact me here or at www.rembrandtwrites.com with any questions or comments you may have about public relations or SEO copywriting. Thanks!