Small Business Spotlight: Kiah Twisselman, Coach Kiah and Burley & Barley

Small Business Spotlight: Kiah Twisselman, Coach Kiah and Burley & Barley

Hi there!


My name is Kiah Twisselman and I am a creative entrepreneur and life coach based out of San Luis Obispo, California. If you would have asked me what I was going to be when I was younger, I would have told you a teacher or a nurse. I knew that one day I wanted to help people, but I would have never guessed I’d be doing it with a paint brush and a computer.


I grew up on my family’s seventh generation rural California cattle ranch ( before heading north to attend college at the University of California, Davis. I took my first college chemistry class and quickly realized that medicine probably wasn’t the path for me. Thankfully, I chose an agriculture university and re-immersed myself into the industry, realizing my passion for ag never went away.


After a few changed majors, obtaining my college degree, and moving abroad to Germany for a year as part of a cultural ambassadorship program for young professionals, I landed my first “big kid” job the summer of 2015 at the Kentucky Beef Council as the Director of Consumer Affairs. It was the perfect job to blend my passion for agriculture and people into one, leading consumer communication campaigns on behalf of Kentucky’s 38,000 beef farmers.


From grilling steaks on the Capitol lawn with the Governor, to whipping up seasonal recipes on live morning television, hosting influencers on pasture-to-plate tours, and creating digital beef campaigns, working on behalf of the Beef Checkoff gave me so many opportunities to learn both personally and professionally. It was through my role with the Beef Council that I discovered more of my creative talents and realized the career opportunities that existed because of them.


In the summer of 2018, my boyfriend Brent and I started Burley & Barley (, a creative and editorial business. Our business name was a tip of the hat to our agriculture roots, Brent having been raised on a burley tobacco and grain farm and myself on a cattle ranch where we also grew barley. It began as a side-hustle while we both worked full-time jobs, and was a creative outlet for us to to support small businesses in agriculture, like the ones we both grew up in, with branding and marketing.


Fast forward to February 2019, Brent landed a job in my home county in California as the Executive Director of the San Luis Obispo County Farm Bureau. We packed up our bags, headed west, and I started my full-time role as a “solopreneur” with Burley & Barley. Most of my clients are small businesses all across the country, primarily in agriculture, that I help with logo design, custom watercolor illustration, photography, social media consulting, writing and more. While I learn something new with every project, lately, watercolor illustration has been what lights my heart on fire the most! I only started watercolor painting a little over a year ago, and it has been so fun to lean into my creativity to bring my clients’ big ideas to life.


While navigating running my own business, I also embarked on my journey to better health. After battling with weight my entire life, I finally decided to make a commitment to myself to figure it out no matter what it took. I promised myself I wouldn’t commit to anything I wasn’t willing to do for the rest of my life – no fad diets, no “magic” pills, just simple food and exercise
(and plenty of beef!). In just one year, I lost over 100 pounds and finally found what was missing every time I tried losing weight before: self-love and a mindset for success.

What I never expected was how showing up for myself would allow me to show up even more for the people I love around me. After several requests and a bit of soul searching, I decided to make the leap and become a life coach and weight loss coach in addition to my creative business. I officially launched Coach Kiah ( in August 2019 with a mission to empower others, especially women in rural America, to love themselves to health and happiness, too.


I might not be the teacher or nurse I imagined when I was younger, but I feel so fortunate to be creating my dream career from home and helping others along the way in ways I couldn’t have ever imagined.


Thanks so much to the K Rose team for the opportunity to share my story! You can find me on Instagram (@kiah_twisselman and @burleyandbarley) and over on Facebook (Coach Kiah and Burley & Barley). I would love to meet you! 



Comparing Social Media Platforms for Business Marketing

Comparing Social Media Platforms for Business Marketing

When you run a small business, social media is an incredible tool for marketing. Businesses can connect directly with their audience and instantly respond and update. 


It can be a challenge to know which social media platform is best for your specific marketing goals. From Facebook to Instagram to Twitter to Pinterest, and more, social media platforms have a wide range of benefits and limitations. Trying to master every single one all at once can quickly lead to burn out. 


We want to break down the top social media platforms so you can discover which ones are best for you to utilize. 




There are 1.5 billion daily Facebook users, allowing business owners to reach a high number of potential customers. 


Key Features 


There is an emphasis on visuals from the profile and cover photo to uploads on a page. Businesses can advertise to users who don’t follow their page. 




Businesses can post and advertise in front of very specific groups based on your own criteria. You can reach out to the exact demographic you are looking for. From special interests, location, gender, age, and more, you can tailor who will see your content. 




With Facebook Analytics, you can track conversion and measure engagement, which allows you to improve your future marketing tactics. 




The main age range of Facebook users is over the age of 35. If your target market is younger than this, you might not be able to reach as many potential customers as you could on another platform. Facebook has become more of a pay-to-play platform, where businesses need to purchase ads to be seen. Recent changes to the newsfeed make it harder to reach followers without promoted content. 




Twitter has more than 300 million monthly users and is a popular spot for small business owners. 



Facebook is great for online advertising, while Twitter excels in its ability to allow direct communication. 




Many users go to Twitter to get news and share opinions. People can connect and build relationships with specific people based on their interests. 




Through Twitter, small business owners can build relationships with potential customers, network with professionals and improve their customer’s experience. 




Twitter doesn’t offer the vast targeting potential that Facebook does. You can create targeted ad campaigns, but you’re limited to the 140 character limit post. 




Instagram continues to grow in popularity with 600 million+ visitors per month. It is fully integrated with Facebook and Twitter with unlimited photo uploads.  

To check out our instagram account, be sure to follow @krosecompany on IG




Instagram is owned by Facebook and offers similar targeting abilities to reach the correct audience. 




Instagrammers are nearly 60 times as likely to share an Insta-post than one from Facebook and 120 times more likely than a Twitter post. Advertising on Instagram is far more likely to get the “word-of-mouth” shares that can spread your ad. 


Brand Awareness 


You can hone in on your brand’s voice on Instagram. Images make more lasting impressions than text. You’ve heard the phrase “a picture is worth 1000 words.” The specific word count is arbitrary, but it’s true that images tend to stick with us more than words alone. 




Nearly opposite to Facebook, Instagrammers are mainly 15-35 year olds. If your demographic is older than this, you’re less likely to reach them. Posts and messages through Instagram don’t support clickable links, which means you need to make sure everything is easy for users to copy and paste or simply remember.




There are more than 290 million monthly users on Pinterest. This number is less impressive than Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram, but there are some key benefits to this lesser used platform. Pinterest users are much more likely to purchase based on what they find on the platform. Often they are looking to Pinterest for a specific purchase. 


Web Traffic 


Images uploaded to Pinterest automatically hyperlink their source. This makes it much easier to drive traffic from Pinterest to your website. 




You can increase brand awareness with promoted pins. Tracking performance and analytics is helpful as you develop your brand further. 




Most of Pinterest users are female, which means if your demographic is more male, you’re less likely to reach them on this platform. 


As a small business owner, you are going to want to sit down and decide which platforms you should put time into. We hope this helped you decide which ones are better for your demographic. 


Small Business Spotlight: Jessica Hanson, JRock Jewelry

Small Business Spotlight: Jessica Hanson, JRock Jewelry

 Jessica Hanson is an incredibly talented jewelry maker that has refined her skills to bring people pieces of jewelry that speak to them. It was SO hard for me not to want to buy every little piece. I saw a lot of her work on instagram and knew we had to collaborate because pieces like these need to be seen! Check out Jessica’s story below! 

From Jessica Hanson, JRock Jewelry :

So my story starts back in highschool when I took a jewelry class from an amazing person that helped me decide which path I was going to take towards my future.  Granted, I took a little bit of a scenic route to get to where I am now, but here I am. I confided in my teacher one day that I felt like I had to make one of two choices. Go to school to be an X-Ray tech like my family hoped I would for a stable career path or face my fear of telling them I wanted to go for Goldsmithing and jewelry design. Her answer was simple and I still remember it to this day.  

She said I could take the road where I knew I would be financially set and risk wondering whether I would be happy with my choice or I could take a chance to do something I was passionate about and not be certain of what kind of living I would make from it. After that i knew what I had to do. Fast forward to 2 years ago and several odd jobs that paid the bills, I left a stable career in a high end jewelry store that I had been at for several years. My husband was offered an opportunity we couldn’t refuse and I was going to be able to stay home with our two small children. After months of being at home I knew it was time to start my own business. I was tired of scrolling through social media and seeing all of these people I followed that were living out their truths and creating these amazing pieces. It was literally eating away at me that I wasn’t creating or using my talents I so enjoyed. I had loved my job at the jewelry store for several reasons but I still felt like a part of me was missing. When I started making my own jewelry again, the love and support of the responses I received just baffled me. I can honestly say the last year of my life has been the most trying yet transformative I have had.  

I can’t explain the feeling of creating something for someone and seeing the joy it brings them. Every day I am inspired more and more to show my two little girls that they can make their own way in life and enjoy every moment along the way. All I want for them from this life is to be able to make a life for themselves that brings joy and passion to them. The love and support my family and friends have shown me so far has been tremendous and I could never thank them enough. I hope I can continue to create, learn, and grow until it is no longer a possibility. It’s a cliche but life really is so short and why wouldn’t I try to be the happiest while doing it.


Be sure to check out her Facebook page: JRock Jewelry and IG @jrockjewelry

She even gave us a discount code! Use code KROSE15 for 15% off!

Blog Recap 9/23-9/27

Blog Recap 9/23-9/27

Here’s what you missed this week on the blog! 



Monday: S.M.A.R.T Goals: What they are & how you can implement them 

  • Setting goals is much easier when you are able to MEASURE what you are striving for 
  • Specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound goals give you structure and direction on how you can achieve them! 


Tuesday: Email Funneling: Who, What, Where, and Why 

  • Narrowing down your target is so tough but without a purpose, what are you writing about?
  • Follow this guide to make sure you emails are conveying the right message and giving your audience what they want!


Wednesday: 5 Tips to Help you Unleash the power of Facebook for your Business 

  • 5 Easy Tips
  • You can start using them TODAY 
  • Let’s do it!



Thursday: How To Start & Gather Your Email List 

  • Step by step guide on how to start gathering for you email list 
  • It’s tough to navigate but with these easy tips you’ll be well on your way! 
  • Let’s get started


I hope you guys enjoyed this week’s content and are looking forward to a new line up next week!


What are S.M.A.R.T Goals and how can you implement them? 

What are S.M.A.R.T Goals and how can you implement them? 

S.M.A.R.T goals are easy to measure and seemingly easier to obtain. Setting goals is a crucial element in being a successful person — in business and in life. But simply writing down a goal isn’t enough. How many goals have you set this year, and how many have you actually accomplished?

Don’t beat yourself up for not knocking all your goals out of the park. If this is the case for you, you might not be setting S.M.A.R.T. goals. S.M.A.R.T goals bring structure and organization into your objectives. Often our goals can be vague and hard to monitor. When we aren’t setting goals intentionally, they’re very likely to fall to the wayside.

What are S.M.A.R.T goals? 

  • Specific (simple, sensible, significant) 
    • What are you trying to achieve? 
    • Ask yourself: 
      • What do I want to achieve exactly? 
      • When?
      • Where? 
      • How?
      • With whom? 
      • What are the limitations? 
      • Why do I want to reach this goal? Are there alternative ways to reach the same objective? 
  • Measurable (meaningful, motivating) 
    • This means you can identify exactly what it is you will feel, hear, and see when you reach your goal. You break down your goal into elements that can be measured and require concrete evidence.
  • Achievable (agreed, attainable). 
    • You must investigate whether a goal is realistic and acceptable for you. This means you need to weigh the time and effort your goal will require and if it fits into your profit and costs model. If you don’t have the time, resources, and skills to reach a goal, you’ll be pretty sad when it doesn’t go according to plan. It’s OK to let go of a goal if it genuinely can’t work out. Find a goal that is attainable and follow the other S.M.A.R.T suggestions.
  • Relevant (reasonable, realistic and resourced, results-based) 
    • Is the goal you set relevant or does it just sound good? You have to decide what is relevant to you, your business, your skillset, and personality type. If you currently lack the skills to achieve this goal, set smaller goals to develop your skills in this area. Ask yourself again why you want to reach this goal.
  • Time bound (time-based, time limited, timely) 
    • Make strict deadlines for yourself throughout your goal making process. Deadlines motivate us, but they’re only successful if properly followed. Tell your team and an accountability partner what your time frame is and have them check in with you. Be realistic with your schedule or you’ll fall to the same troubles as an unattainable goal. 

Setting goals is a multi-faceted process. One aspect aside from the S.M.A.R.T. requirements is your mindset. Check out our recent guest blog on Shaping Your Attitude Using Affirmations with Molly Painschab. 



What You Missed This Week

What You Missed This Week

Here’s what you missed this week on the blog! 

 Monday: Prioritization & Organization with Karen Lum 

  • Prioritization and Organization are CRUCIAL to business success 
  • So we brought in the expert, Karen Lum, to give her advice, tips, and tricks that she has learned through consulting
  • 3 Must have tools that she loves and implements everyday

Tuesday: Sending Your First Marketing Email 

  • Sending that first marketing email is SCARY! But we’ve got your back
  • Follow this guide to make sure you emails are conveying the right message and giving your audience what they want!

 Thursday: Why You Need to Ask For Testimonials on Facebook and Google My Business 

  • People want to know what the experience was for other people 
  • If you can provide them with that, they feel comfortable and they trust you 
  • Reputation is vital to small business success, so make sure you are asking for those testimonials


I hope you guys enjoyed this week’s content and are looking forward to a new line up next week! If you’re wanting some social media guidance, make sure to check out the social media tools we have in our Rural Business Resource shop!