Maura Webster of LilaBlu Strategies. Photo by Raya On Assignment

The team at the Cooperative Venture Workspace recently opened its doors to the public as they launched the first workshop in the new series, Lunch and Learn.

While lunch came from Portsmouth’s own Googie’s Sandwich Shoppe, the learning came from Maura Webster, founder and CEO at LillaBlu Strategies.

Maura, a Workspace member, is the chief strategist for her marketing company that focuses on creating real and meaningful marketing. She has built her company on helping companies align their strategies and give them the tools for needed for success.

Being an expert in her field, Maura collaborated with the Cooperative Venture Workspace for this first Lunch and Learn. She shared some insight into how best to prepare a strategy for 2017 in her presentation entitled “Get On It!”

The subtitle for the presentation was “Must-Dos to Kickstart an Amazing 2017″ but the 15 people who attended the workshop were treated to three bonus ideas on how to develop their marketing plan for the new year.

Participants of the workshop included a wide variety of professionals. Current workspace members, small business owners, real estate agents, photographers, and more were all included on the guest list.

Among the pieces of advice that Maura offered was to map out the first three months of the year and determine in the first quarter how best to engage your audience. Within those three months, use a calendar to map out some key dates with key events. “I’m a very visual person,” said Maura. “Make it just enough to get your mind thinking then set it aside.”


She encouraged participants to think of themselves as problem solvers with an ability to prioritize how best to help solve a problem. She also encouraged them to block time for themselves for writing, social media engagement, and creative thinking.

One of the bonus point that Maura made was to plan, but also recognize that business is in a constant ebb and flow. “Thirty percent of the time your marketing initiative won’t work, so be prepared to tweak it,” she said.

Of particular note to many in the audience was the bullet point – and ensuing discussion – about social media channels and how they can be incorporated into a marketing strategy.

“Social media tools – there are so many out there, and they’re all great in their own way,” said Maura.

Discussion during the question-and-answer session focused on how different social media channels might be used differently, but as a single comprehensive approach to marketing. For example, a business might have a Facebook page that it used as its professional persona, but the business owner might use an Instagram account to show the more personal side.

The Lunch and Learn workshop gave the Workspace an opportunity to showcase its presentation capabilities. The cafe area was used for the buffet lunch. Two adjoining conference rooms opened up into a large space with Maura’s presentation on display on a high-definition screen.

The workshop was also an opportunity to showcase to first-time visitors the Workspace itself, which, in her opening remarks, Maura touted as a “really cool place.”

Stay tuned. More Lunch and Learn workshops at the Workspace will be scheduled.


Participants taking notes on the presentation. Photo by Raya On Assignment