Vermont Shortbread Company Wins Marketing Makeover

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Small business owner and entrepreneur Ann Zuccardy is transforming her Vermont-based business, Vermont Shortbread Company, after winning a 'marketing makeover' in a national contest run by nationally acclaimed author and coach, Suzanne Falter-Barns. Zuccardy is 'paying it forward' by sharing what she learns during the makeover with other entrepreneurs and small businesses through postings on her blog.

Ann Zuccardy may soon say good-bye to running her small business, Vermont Shortbread Company, in a small way. As the winner of a national contest, the Vermont resident will receive a complete 'marketing makeover' - the advice and assistance of a team of renowned marketing experts who will personally help Zuccardy grow her business. The prize is valued at over $4,500.

Zuccardy established Vermont Shortbread Company nine years ago to earn extra money while raising her toddler daughter. After a divorce in 1998 forced Zuccardy to return to her career as a technical writer, the shortbread company took a backseat to her career. But Zuccardy says she never lost her passion for the little company that grew to have a small, loyal following locally and nationally.

She says, "The marketing makeover couldn't have come at a better time. For years, juggling full-time work and single parenting left me little time or money to develop my shortbread business. Now I have an amazing opportunity to expand my company on a national level."

The contest was run by nationally acclaimed author and coach Suzanne Falter-Barns through her website, the 'Self Help Salon,' which is also referred to as 'Get Known Now.' Falter-Barns says, "I chose Ann as a finalist because her site needed a huge amount of work, her intentions were great and her company was clearly something needed by the marketplace. The product has heart, and is bound to be successful with better marketing."

Falter-Barns adds that after the contest, she was delighted to learn about Zuccardy's background. "Little did I know that Ann also worked a full-time job and ran this company from her kitchen," says Falter-Barns. "This is a great inspirational story about living your dreams, which is the focus of my own work."

Some of the prizes Zuccardy won include: professional coaching from nationally renowned branding, marketing and publicity experts; a web site renovation; virtual assistance support; small business coaching and consulting; custom-designed graphics; article submission and distribution; and a host of resources including marketing books, ebooks, CDs and cassettes, and a blogging seminar.

In fact, Zuccardy has already started a blog to track her progress. She says, "This is a great way for me to share in the joys of building my business, and to exchange marketing wisdom, resources and insights with other small business owners who wish to overhaul their own marketing plans."

For more information about Vermont Shortbread Company, visit http://www.vermontshortbread.com. To visit Zuccardy's blog, go to http://annzuccardy.typepad.com/vermont_shortbread_mmm/ (photo of Zuccardy is available on blog). For more information about the Self Help Salon, visit http://www.getknownnow.com.

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Tracey Paradiso