In less than 3 months, new owner/publisher of TAPinto Denville, Ferlanda Nixon, has nearly tripled the site's traffic and has made TAPinto Denville the go-to place to get original local news about the community. "Ferlanda is really rocking it in Denville. TAPinto Denville is experiencing incredible growth in such a short period of time since Ferlanda franchised TAPinto Denville." As a result of her outstanding work to date, Ferlanda Nixon is TAPinto's Featured Franchisee for the month of December:
Q. What are some of your business strengths? What’s something you would like to work on?
I began my professional career as a business attorney. I practiced corporate law for 18 years before branching out on my own as a leadership consultant. I have served as executive director and interim executive director of small nonprofit organizations, which often necessitated my being chief, cook, and bottlewasher to ensure smooth operations, much like what needs to be done with TAPinto Denville during its nascent phase. Notwithstanding the foregoing, I believe my experience as acting director of the Office of Communications at Rutgers University–Newark for 14 months and my role as journalist/publicist for the Morristown Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., are what give me the most direct, relevant experience I need to make TAPinto Denville successful.
As for something I would like to work on, I’m hoping to become a much better photographer.
Q. Why did you want to franchise with TAPinto? What made you want to choose Denville as your TAPinto site?
I’ve always wanted to live, work and play in the same community. With TAPinto I can do all three because I also am a Denville resident. I also wanted to do something that would allow me to remain active through my twilight years. I believe TAPinto will let me do so even if that means just managing the operations when I no longer have the stamina to cover a beat.
Q. Describe the TAPinto culture as a franchisee.
I have been impressed with how supportive everyone has been. I believe the saying, “a rising tide lifts all boats,” best depicts the TAPinto culture. The fact that new franchisees are assigned a mentor is indicative of the organization’s desire for everyone to succeed.
Q: How has your life changed now that you’re a part of the TAPinto community?
Before TAPinto, I had no social media footprint whatsoever, absolutely none. Now I’m garnering post and page likes on Facebook and tweeting every day. Also, I think I’m becoming more of a fixture in Denville. I’m still in the honeymoon phase right now, so when I show up, people are generally happy to see me. Let’s see if that holds up a year from now.
Q. What do you enjoy covering the most in your town?
While I’m not a sports writer by training, I love, love, love covering high school sports. It’s nostalgic for me and takes me back to the days when I was captain of the varsity cheerleading squad for basketball. I’m a huge sports fan and even have a fondness for curling.
Q. Is TAPinto full time for you?
TAPinto is a full-time endeavor for me, but I do work part-time as a public relations specialist at Rutgers University–Newark. I’ve been with Rutgers for 11 years come January. During that time, I have served as a public relations specialist, acting director of the Office of Communications, adjunct professor of a course on leadership and another on ethics, and interim director of fund development for the debate team. I also am a leadership consultant. In that capacity I work with individuals, businesses, and organizations to help them become more effective.
Q.TAPinto allows businesses and users to post content on our sites,either for free or for a small fee. How do you think they can best utilize your TAPinto sites? What sort of advantages do you have that other advertising platforms lack?
Obviously, TAPinto is a great opportunity for business advertisements and marketing. As such, I would encourage companies, consultants, and professionals to use TAPinto to help brand their businesses so that they are top of mind for their current and potential customers and clients, and to increase their ROI. TAPinto offers a variety of marketing options either through direct placement on the sites, sponsorships, electronic newsletters, and in email blasts. Moreover, on our Facebook pages, we can post links to the content that they publish on TAPinto, providing them with social media exposure. Finally, because TAPinto is a network of sites across New Jersey and beyond, businesses can capitalize on our network to expand their reach and gain exposure throughout the entire state and beyond if so desired.
Q. What are your goals at TAPinto? Any future plans for your TAPinto site?
I would like to have a staff that includes a sales professional and a multimedia journalist. As for the site itself, I hope to include video stories with a great degree of regularity.