About Bob Gentle

I work with businesses of all sizes on digital marketing, host the Amplify digital marketing entrepreneur podcast and work with entrepreneurs to help them amplify their business online.

Overview

Visibility is a clear precursor to success online. On social media this means showing up. For some people being outgoing and the centre of attention is easy. For others it's actually very challenging if not downright painful, especially online. Does that mean it's ok to leave social media for those who are less introverted? Of course not.

This week my guest is Susanna Reay. Susanna works with business owners, introverts in particular, to help them take their traditional businesses online. We talk about tips and tricks for overcoming the fear, why you need ( like really need ) a framework and why over thinking will kill your business faster than anything ( and how to fix it. ).

About Susanna

Susanna Reay is an introverted coach & mentor who specialises in supporting service-based like-minded entrepreneurs create an online business that is authentic and aligned with who they are, to empower them to turn up the dial on their talents so they can change the world from their living rooms.

Links and mentions

Thanks for listening!

It means a lot to me and to the guests. If you enjoyed listening then please do take a second to rate the show on iTunes.  Every podcaster will tell you that iTunes reviews drive listeners to our shows so please let me know what you thought and make sure you subscribe using your favourite player using the links below.

Automatic Audio Transcription

[00:01:46.470]
So, Susanna, welcome to the show.

[00:01:48.180]
Thank you, Bob. It's a pleasure to be here. So, yeah, thanks for your questions. Who I am? Well, my name is Susanna Reay and I do business online, the introvert way, which for myself that what that means is that I look and help introverted coaches, consultants, healers, creatives, how they bring their business online so they can share their knowledge in a way that is aligned to how they want their businesses to run.

[00:02:25.110]
And as an introvert, what this tends to mean is we've got to be a little bit more careful about where we spend our energies because we can get burnt out more easily. So it's very much focused on doing the right things in the right order and bringing strategy into that business where probably before they hadn't really thought about that.

[00:02:46.350]
So when you talk about bringing businesses online, instinctively, I see sort of two two areas of work there. One is the processes around bringing your business online. So that might be where you transacted in the real world previously. You now need to transact online. So there's a transactional question there bringing your products and your services online. But then there's also discovering and finding new markets where you may be networked in the real world previously need only to find new ways to do that online.

[00:03:20.700]
Which of those areas do you focus on or is it typically a blend of the two? Absolutely.

[00:03:25.770]
That there are those two areas. And I do find I blend them in the sense that some people, as you say, they have. Well, most of my clients, in fact, do have experience in what they would call the real world. They've probably got over 20 years experience and knowledge behind them. And now they're looking at doing the transactional piece online. Absolutely. So they might be thinking of doing things like setting up online courses and memberships or even just a one on one sort of high value coaching program.

[00:04:01.590]
And they want help to understand how do I set up things like an online course platform or taking payments online even? What should I be saying on my website? So it's then creating that niche, which is the second part, and helping them discover the communities and the places online that are in sync with what their message is, but also how they want to bring themselves outwards on in the online sort of social scape.

[00:04:30.390]
And I'm looking at I will confess to being a raging introvert. It's I think I remember I did a survey on Twitter a while back, and the survey was very simple. It was are you an introvert or an extrovert? And 95 percent of the responses were, I'm an introvert. And I think that what that tells me is either Twitter users are all introverts, which I don't, or a lot of people misidentify as an introvert because they may be shy shyness and introversion, they don't necessarily go hand in hand.

[00:05:07.630]
Now, you you spend your time focusing specifically on introverts. You know, that's probably better than I do. What's your perspective on that?

[00:05:16.800]
Absolutely. I'm always sort of doing some myth busting here that absolutely you can be a shy, extrovert or shy introvert.

[00:05:27.810]
But introversion is really more about the fact that you like to spend time feeling and thinking inwardly rather than naturally talking about things. And this is why it's based on your energies and is really interesting with your Twitter side of things, because this is what I realized and I moved into this space about five years ago. And the online business space is absolutely perfect for those of us who are more introverted because of the fact we do a lot of thinking on our own.

[00:06:01.890]
We're very good at sending up independently run businesses. So, yes, we can work with teams, but actually we're very self-motivated. So it goes between then understanding where should I show up and when? Say, for instance, we're doing this podcast and we've both chosen as introverts. Actually, this is a great way of doing it because we can record we can have a conversation. And then at the end, we turn off that recording and we can relax and we don't have to be on show anymore in the same way, whereas an extrovert really wants to go off to the coffee house to work, for instance, was not so many introverts would choose to go to a coffee house because that's kind of like socializing whilst they are trying to work.

[00:06:48.680]
And introverts more tend to be really sort of focused on what they're doing one thing at a time and deep dive. So in this balance, you do find a lot of introverted personalities online, but you might not necessarily recognize because of the fact there's this myth that introverts aren't meant to be sociable, they're not conversationalists, that they're shy, I don't know, and all those sort of negative connotations, whereas in fact, it's more about how we actually use our energies and what we want to do in our downtime.

[00:07:29.000]
So if we've spent a day talking to lots of people, even if it's online, more likely to be pretty exhausted at the end of the day and not wanting to do anything else, whereas our extroverted companions are more likely in more normal times than the point we're recording now. Be up for going out to the pub, having a drink, and it's a very different way how our energies are managed.

[00:07:54.200]
So if we look at the typical client for you, they've had a traditional business and I know we met properly just as Lockton was becoming a thing. And I know your business has really I'm not sure if it's changed quite a lot, but certainly you seem to have hit your stride through Lockton because lots of people are turning to. They're looking for solutions because they haven't been able to do things the way they've done them before. What what sort of typical scenarios are you finding when people present to you at the moment, say, my clients, when they come towards me, they're quite often in the space of.

[00:08:41.070]
They've been thinking probably actually for pre lockdown as well, before everything changed. They were beginning to think that there must be a better way of sharing their knowledge because they've kind of hit an income ceiling of trading time for money because most of them are in service based industries where really it's the limit of the hours in the week and they've begun to go, well, I don't really want to spend, you know, 45, 50 hour weeks any more working on my business.

[00:09:16.560]
But how can I create the same income by moving online? And obviously at the moment, a lot of that's been due to the fact as well that maybe they couldn't run the business in the old way. So they approach me and go, well, you know, this is what I'm doing in my business right now. What elements can I actually move and bring online?

[00:09:40.020]
And a lot of my clients are very much in the 40 to 60 year old sort of age range who have had a good 20 years experience plus behind them working.

[00:09:52.650]
So they do have an expertise in the area. It's not like a frivolous oh, let's try this for a change. It's far more about how can I sort of make the next stage that growth in my business so I can really scale and have a bigger impact? Because quite often the coaches and consultants, as I've mentioned before, and they just really want to share the message to a wider audience and have realized that when you work online, there is this possibility to scale.

[00:10:28.980]
So listening to that demographic you work with, it's largely female.

[00:10:35.310]
I'm assuming it is mainly because my network is naturally more female based, but I have worked with a few male clients as well.

[00:10:45.060]
I think where I'm coming to is it's female, it's 40 to 60 years old. It's typically going to be non digital native introverts. That's a lot of challenge.

[00:10:57.030]
It is. And you're right, it is very much about gentle handholding and making the tech non scary. And this is something that also most of my clients actually have at some point before they come to me, have been part of some of these really large online group training programs by big names. And they felt completely lost, unseen, unheard, because their natural way of being isn't to raise their hand, get on the hot seat and have their questions answered, because they normally have about, you know, 100 questions in their head at one time.

[00:11:41.070]
And a lot of those big group programs, they say, just bring one question and we'll do it in ten minutes. And you're on a deadline. And that kind of scares us as introverts. It's not that we don't have to say. We just don't like that tight time constraint or so to say it. And so I'm very much about holding the space. And the programs I run are really about small group coaching pods as well that I don't do the let's get this out to the masses.

[00:12:10.740]
When I'm doing the live training, I have self led programs where many people can run through. But when people connect with me, they do it because they want that personal connection and to be seen and heard.

[00:12:23.790]
So what's going through my head, as you're speaking, is a lot of different things. And I think one thing with introverts is. They are very good at holding often opposing views at the same time. That's something that I've often struggled with as I can. I can see this as true and I can see this as true. And they're actually quite contradictory. And I think that often leads to an awful lot of indecision and inaction. I'm not sure where I'm going with this question, but I guess so.

[00:12:59.390]
It's about giving direction and guidance is actually quite key. I mean, from what you were saying, whether, as you say, we do tend to have both arguments and our head and lots of solutions. So it's helping speed up that process quite often by giving clarity and focus and bringing people to take the action that they need to grow their business.

[00:13:24.920]
I think that's a good answer to the question I should have asked. One thing that's always troubled me a little bit, and you probably have a good perspective on this is introverts can often use introversion as an excuse, saying I'm an introvert so I can't do all the things the extroverts do, something that's often bugged me, especially on social media and LinkedIn in particular.

[00:13:50.150]
As you see all these people and I've got a big brush and I'm painting the wall here saying all these people quite obviously extroverts with strong opinions. They're not necessarily the smartest cookies. A lot of the time they're not necessarily skilled them. They're not necessarily even that knowledgeable. And you can I have a really big brush here. But what they do have is an opinion. And then they express that opinion on a certain number of people will rally around that opinion and go, yeah, you're right.

[00:14:21.620]
And yet the introvert, I mean, is raging. And yet I let that happen. And I because I'm an introvert, I don't show up online now. I've worked very hard on this. Obviously, I can't use those excuses anymore. But I see so many people with great potential, great opinions, great businesses. They don't show up online because there's this barrier of I'm an introvert. How do you help people cross that threshold into showing up online and expressing their value?

[00:14:53.870]
Because at the end of the day, business is a value exchange. And if you can't express your value, nobody's going to buy it from you. It doesn't matter how you package or productize it.

[00:15:01.670]
Absolutely. I'm like nodding along here. You can't see me because we're just doing this audio. But I.

[00:15:10.100]
I was exactly that as well. And this is why it is one of the areas I do support my clients because I struggle to two.

[00:15:19.160]
And one of the main areas that we can then have that confidence to show up is about having belief in what you do and your service and how to talk about it. So a lot of my work, because I deal with clients who might have quite an intangible service. And one way, if you're thinking about life coaches and transformation, is to help them create very unique frameworks to hang their methods on so they can start rather than needing to talk about themselves, talk about the methods, frameworks and how they sort of create that transformation.

[00:16:01.100]
Because many introverts, myself included and gosh, the number of times I must have started to write a comment on some of these opinionated articles, as you say, on LinkedIn, and then you delete it and then you go, oh, start again.

[00:16:17.120]
And you realize I've written a paragraph and then I'm like, I'm I'm not sure what I should say it that way, because I think we tend to think quite a lot about, well, how are people perceiving us, whereas extroverts tend to speak first and then wait for the reaction to see how they've been perceived.

[00:16:35.900]
So a lot of the crux of all this is around your messaging on how you show up and your belief in your message and your services. So that's a huge area that I work on, is helping people really define one of these elements is I have a mini course, which is called the Big Message Master Class. And this is just three sentences that when they put together, people really understand how they can reach out and talk to their clients and attract the people who like what they have.

[00:17:12.530]
And once you become confident in your message, it becomes a lot easier to show up online because you have that focus and clarity.

[00:17:21.350]
And so this big message format is that's something that's quite easy to quickly explain to me, or is that something that would need a bit more time?

[00:17:31.190]
It's relatively simple in the. Basic concept in the fact that when you put together it's a bit like an opening for a networking event, that you want to start with something that's a bit of a hook that makes people understand the problem that the people you work with have. And then in the second stage, we say, well, actually, this is the solution I give, which is very unique to you and your business. And then the third sentence focuses on what is actually the end result.

[00:18:06.680]
But the secret with it is to make sure that it's interconnected as well.

[00:18:12.170]
So it's not three separate sentences, something that really pulls together in a nice, simple way that people can memorize and something I imagine has a bit of an emotional punch as well.

[00:18:23.660]
Yes. Yeah, absolutely. You want to bring in some of the emotion, actually, in the and one of the great phrases to start this big message would be saying most people who you work with, because you then also normalize that the issues that your audience are having. So for myself, like most female entrepreneurs, struggle with the overwhelm of where to start with their business online. So you're making it normal as well with what that struggle is, because a lot of people are very fearful of reaching out to experts and gaining expert help because they're afraid, particularly as introverts, afraid of actually seeming a bit stupid, like I should know this already, because introverts by our very nature are huge researchers.

[00:19:17.810]
We are the ones that even if we were going to work with an accountant, we probably research what an accountant does before rather than just handing it over blindly.

[00:19:26.840]
So there's this fear that you need to sort of get across in this message, in the first sentence to help your clients know that, hey, what you're feeling and what you're looking for, that's normal for where you're at at this point in your business.

[00:19:43.460]
I really like that because I think when people think about marketing in any shape, whether it's digital or offline, traditional business is a value exchange. And in marketing, they always talk about these seven P's sometimes, but they talk about five. Sometimes they talk about seven. The last one is always promotion. And when anybody ever comes to marketing, they jump straight to the end and go with promotion, promote, promote, promote. The first of these is product.

[00:20:11.060]
And for your clients, they are the product. So they need to be able to express what that value is efficiently in a way that cuts through that. They don't have to do any explanations. There's no big storytelling. There's just who are you? I'm this person. I do this wow job done. And I think you're sort of your your pick message format there will work really, really strongly on that. Something you mentioned earlier was framework's, and that's something I've been thinking about quite a lot recently because I have a bit of a framework and it's something that's come up with my own clients again and again.

[00:20:51.110]
Is that as part of this, what is your product? What is the value that you are sort of offering? The framework walks you through the journey to the transformation, whatever that is. It doesn't matter if you're a mechanic or a crystal healer. There's a transformation somewhere. So how do you help people on this journey towards developing a framework? Because that I think really gets to the guts of how can I communicate my value and get people to engage on that journey?

[00:21:21.140]
Yeah. Yeah. So how I help is I'm actually a very visual and creative thinker as well. In fact, my background started with art and design. I went to college before I moved into the business world.

[00:21:36.140]
So I have quite a unique way that when I'm talking with clients and I'll be asking lots of questions about how they work and move, but at the same time is visual frameworks in terms of whether you're talking about roadmaps, pyramid spirals or even there's all sorts of like moon orbiting planets, that there's different frameworks that come to me through this series of questioning that can then connect to the people to make them go. I understand.

[00:22:10.490]
Or maybe they're linking it through the seasons in the year because I find many of my clients really some form of visual element that also then obviously helps in terms of website and social media and things that they can talk about.

[00:22:27.110]
But it's through a series of deep dive questions where I really get.

[00:22:33.850]
The essence of what they do and we move forward and this is why it's so important being in that sort of small closed space of only a few people, because only by diving deep can people begin to really understand and believe in what they've been doing, even if they've been doing it for 10, 15 years.

[00:22:55.360]
I find this that they haven't really been aware of what it is they do because they've been working one to one on the whole and in very much sort of private sessions where they'll use their intuition to lead them in the right direction and use certain methods.

[00:23:12.490]
They've never actually put this into a more containable framework, which is really what we need when we're marketing online is to help people see this is the journey. I'm going to go on with this person and what does that look like? And it can take many different forms.

[00:23:31.400]
I can totally see that. I think the visual element of it is really quite important. And I guess like a lot of things, nothing in the world is new. And I think if you want to develop a framework, the best place to start is to probably, obviously ask these questions, but also research other frameworks that are out there and adapt one of those obviously not copy, not ripoff. But like I said, everything is inspired by something somewhere.

[00:23:57.530]
Yeah, absolutely.

[00:23:59.010]
That there's an amazing sort of world hive mind where we all sort of ricochet off each other and see different things. But what is even if we take a traditional roadmap as a framework where you might say it's five steps to lead to a destination, each individual person, even though you're using that as a similar framework, you will have different elements in there. And one of the most important things when you're creating these sort of steps or sharing the transformation is at every stage to make sure you say why that's important.

[00:24:38.230]
That's quite key. And a lot of people forget about that. They just focus on how they do something opposed to why and what the result is as to why they're doing that part of their business.

[00:24:52.300]
And I can really see as well how this can help with the product ization, because in the real world, you meet somebody, you have a conversation, you explain your services, you build rapport and you deepen that over time. And eventually people become a customer online. That's far harder to do. So you really need shortcuts to understanding and something that's very visual, like a framework diagram as effectively it's like a pictogram. It allows you to communicate very, very efficiently, often quite complicated ideas in a way that your ideal customer can go, wow, yeah, I get that.

[00:25:36.040]
So yeah, I really like I'm going to have to go and do a very visual framework. Mine isn't very visual. Yeah, absolutely.

[00:25:41.440]
And you can have great fun with this. I'm, I'm a huge, huge advocate of just big pieces of paper and lots of colourful pens too.

[00:25:51.220]
I'm when I'm people are brainstorming like mind mapping is a great place to start when people are trying to work out what it is I do and what makes me unique.

[00:26:02.530]
And when you start just using pen and paper, sometimes things can be too digital and have it in front of you. So it's probably something you'd work on over a period of days or even weeks as well.

[00:26:16.390]
But the advantage of this being on pen and paper on the desk is every time you came into that space, you might just add another little comment or a note which would build the framework to work with what you need, because many of us, it's very hard to do that form of brain dump and creation in one setting.

[00:26:37.330]
It takes time, I think, as well.

[00:26:40.240]
Bring other people in on it, because I remember at one point I had a framework that covered three whiteboards. For me, it was just it was like the master key to the universe, but nobody else really got it. So you need to crystallize and simplify and other people will help you do that. Oh, absolutely.

[00:27:00.850]
And as you say, if you're covering three white boards, it's then pulling out. Well, what are the main elements? And quite often the way our brains work, we do like things in terms of like three, four, five and seven. For some reason, the human brain really connects. So if you create a three parts framework of four parts, five or seven, it tends to flow more nicely. So as you say from your big three whiteboard experience, I bet there were some key elements in the.

[00:27:34.040]
You were going there the probably the milestones of the transformation that you provide to your client, to your clients and customers.

[00:27:43.760]
I love the three, four, five and seven. I've never heard that before. I've heard sort of the one or the other often. But as a three, four, five and seven. Never heard that before. I've written it down. It's great.

[00:27:54.110]
Yeah. And I do find that a lot of the frameworks I collate and connect with clients, they are based in that area.

[00:28:02.460]
So people who are more more structured quite like, you know, the sort of matrix aspect of when you've got a full base thing because it can be shown as a two by two. And there's a lot of business frameworks that are based on a two by two matrix as well. So it does depend where you're coming from, whereas the more intuitive coaches, creatives, healers really seem to like the three five seven link and they sort of sit naturally.

[00:28:32.210]
So I find it quite interesting as well, seeing which personalities draw to the different levels.

[00:28:38.330]
So we've spoken a bit about product. You know, I quite like to maybe shift back to the introverts journey. One thing with introverts and again, my big brush out and if there's lots of introverts listening, thinking, that's not me, I'm not talking about you. A lot of introverts overthink on the one hand and they're perfectionists on the other. And those two things will often conspire either individually or collectively to prevent you taking any action of any kind.

[00:29:08.660]
How do you help people either shortcut work around hack, but move past these challenges, which are huge assets a lot of the time towards actually taking action, particularly around showing up online, because that's where we often struggle the most.

[00:29:26.420]
Yeah, absolutely. And I'm chuckling here because all there's so many of us who are perfectionists, like the AI style students, and then we overthink everything like crazy, because as you mentioned earlier, we see both sides of the coin say, like, I could do that, I could do that.

[00:29:46.070]
But ultimately, at the end of the day, you do need to just take a few basic actions to get started, because it's really easy when we're introverted and we go, oh, but my website's got to be perfect before I start talking about my business. I can't set up my social media or I can't do this or how on earth am I going to get my first clients? And so as a result of this, I actually created what I call my OVERTHINKS action plan.

[00:30:16.790]
That really does just tell you those first critical steps that everyone who wants to work online needs to do and take. And just to do it, it wouldn't take more than a couple of hours in total. And if you do this is you done you sort it and at some point you kind of just got to bite the bullet and say, OK, I'll do that. And then you going. And once you're going, you can refine and you can iterate to the sort of perfectionism that you're questing.

[00:30:51.620]
I think done is better than perfect, is very easy to hear. But for a lot of people, it's very, very difficult that everything needs to be perfect, especially if if you're a designer or you're a creative, because everything not only has to be correct now, it has to be visually gorgeous. And if you're not a designer, nothing's ever good enough. And if you are a designer, even then, nothing's ever good enough. So, yeah, it can really cause a lot of barriers.

[00:31:20.180]
And I think that's why a lot of people as well then do look to experts to obviously help them because they realize they've been going round in circles on something. And it's not because they don't necessarily have the intelligence to do it themselves. It's just about getting things done. At the end of the day, you have to accept that you can't be Superwoman, Superman and run around doing everything.

[00:31:48.590]
So it's about focusing on the most important areas to create the biggest impact. I like that.

[00:31:56.330]
And I think also that will change over time because for me, I remember two years ago the thing that was going to make the biggest impact was the podcast. Everything else that I do now would have been Mission Impossible, but it's by taking a little bit of action, you learn, and the next step suddenly is possible.

[00:32:15.410]
And then that unlocks the next step you learn when you take action. You don't learn by thinking about taking action.

[00:32:21.620]
It's it sounds very simple, but it's very, very powerful as well as small action leads to a small win. It doesn't matter how small it is.

[00:32:30.080]
Yeah, absolutely. Every little step. Absolutely through the air and when you look back and if you've taken those little steps each week, it's amazing when you look back and think how far you've come. And I know even when I look at my own journey and I think, gosh, yeah, like, well, four years ago, I wouldn't have been seen dead, sort of going live and doing videos and various things because again, hey, I'm introverted.

[00:32:59.700]
I'm worried about what people are thinking. But then I actually went to a great video coach who coached me through it and just made me take those actions. And now I much prefer going live and doing that on video than sitting down and writing a written content piece.

[00:33:20.010]
So it's kind of changed even the way I operate. And this is where I realized in terms of my own energies going live and talking about something, I can get sort of knowledge and information and inspiration all compiled in sort of five, ten minutes. Whereas if I was writing that, I would take days perfecting it because I'd be like, oh, I'll just rewrite this bit. And then before you know it, you've also lost your natural voice in the piece.

[00:33:50.850]
So now I start with a video and then I have a transcription which are just tidy up and then that goes out as part of my marketing, whether it's on social or my website. So we also learn how different methods can manage and promote our own voice in different ways.

[00:34:07.980]
So you mentioned your own journey and it's obviously not finished. I think you probably have a while to go before you're at the end of your journey. Do we ever get to the end?

[00:34:18.690]
That's what I want. Yeah, but what do you personally struggle with now? I mean. Everybody struggles with something, even those people that we see online that look like they've got it all nailed down, they have their own struggles. So in terms of your business, what are your struggles right now?

[00:34:36.650]
I think personally, some of my biggest struggles is still fighting that inner perfectionism in terms of going, OK, I need to show up. And then how that shows as a challenge is maybe I know I'm not following up as much as I necessarily need to because I don't want to be a nuisance, I think is how it sort of comes out that I feel like, oh, well, if I contact them again, maybe I'll be a nuisance. I've never actually had any negative feedback from following up, but I know it's still a challenge within myself to keep.

[00:35:18.680]
And this is kind of going against my introvert nature because I kind of feel like, well, hey, people will just come to me and actually with online business know we need to keep showing up and reaching out. So we do stay top of mind. So I know what I want to say, but I do still struggle with that. That's definitely a challenge with for me personally, it's against that logical and emotional side. Logically, I know what I do, but emotionally I'm still going.

[00:35:50.150]
Yeah, but do I have to. Yeah, no.

[00:35:53.690]
I think in an ideal world for me people would just come to me because I'm the best option for them. That would be fantastic. The world just doesn't work like that. Unfortunately, Suzanne, I'm looking at the time and we should probably look at wrapping things up soon. But I always try to end with one question. That's my signature question, if you like. And normally I give people a warning, but I forgot. What's one thing you do now that you wish you'd started five years ago, I would say.

[00:36:23.750]
It's having the confidence to talk more about what I do in my business, because now I have the confidence and I go out and this is being involved in positive communities and networking groups, which I just ran scared of. And I'm not sure whether if I had done this five years ago, I would have had the same success, because I do believe there is a time and a place when you know in yourself and you're ready.

[00:36:56.600]
So I guess it was probably more to have that belief and maybe signing up at that point and sooner to a businessman to who would have helped give me that belief myself sooner and faster. So I felt that confidence to able to show up more.

[00:37:14.810]
I can definitely relate to that. Suzanna, if people want to get in touch with you, if they want to go further with you, how can they do that?

[00:37:22.220]
The best way is to take a look at my website, which is Suzanna Ray dot com. I'm sure my name will be written. So you know how to spell that. And if you add members own in front of these ray dot coms and members own dot Susanna Ray dot com, you will find that actually there as well. If it intrigued you, the OVERTHINKS action plan, that's a free download.

[00:37:48.440]
You can sample and see a lot more about what I do and what I'm about and those places I'll put links to both of those in the children's book. Susannah Ray, thank you very much for your time. You've been a great guest. I've had some time. I learned a lot about my condition. I can't wait to see you again soon. Thanks very much for having me. It's been a great conversation. Taking action online doesn't have to be complicated or planned out in ridiculous detail in advance.

[00:38:18.490]
Focus on the next step, take that step and discover what the next new step is. I love a plan. And if there's one thing I know, it's that the moment I take action, the plan will probably change, have a solid goal and an outline of a plan. But above all, take action before I go. Just a quick reminder to subscribe. And if you haven't already to join our Facebook group, you'll find a link in the show, notes or just visit Amplify me, dot EFM forward slash insiders and you'll be taken right there.

[00:38:50.770]
I would love for you to connect with me on social media. Follow me wherever you hang out. You'll find me at Bob Gentle. And if you do message me, let me know and I can follow you back. If you've enjoyed the show, then I would love, like, literally love for you to review it on iTunes and particularly iTunes, because iTunes is really the place where most people discover this show and it helps me reach more subscribers.

[00:39:18.130]
My name is Bob Chandler. Thanks again to Susanna for giving us her time this week and to you for listening. See you next week.

Overview

Having a plan for your business sounds so simple. In reality, it's often an overcomplicated, stressful mess. People respond to extreme situations in very different ways. That's true for all kinds of disaster situations and for many the COVID -19 situation is just that.

This week my guest is Roger Edwards. Rodger had built his career on three words. Keeping - marketing - simple.

In this episode we talk about why pivoting should really just be an adjustment to what your customers want, how the content creator lifestyle can support you through the tough times and going big on personal branding can help you stand out during lockdown - and beyond.

Links and mentions

Thanks for listening!

It means a lot to me and to the guests. If you enjoyed listening then please do take a second to rate the show on iTunes.  Every podcaster will tell you that iTunes reviews drive listeners to our shows so please let me know what you thought and make sure you subscribe using your favourite player using the links below.

Automatic Audio Transcription

Having a plan for your business sounds so simple in reality, it's often an overcomplicated, stressful mess. People respond to extreme situations in very different ways, and that's true for all kinds of disaster situations. And for many, the covid-19 situation is just that. This week, my guest is Roger Edwards. And Roger has built his career on a three magic words keeping marketing simple. In this episode, we talk about why pivoting should really just be an adjustment to what your customers want and how the content creator lifestyle can support you through.

The tough times are going big on personal branding can help you stand out during lock down and beyond. And we talk about much, much more. Hi there and welcome back to Amplify the Digital Marketing Entrepreneur podcast. I'm Bob Gentle and every week I'm joined by amazing people who share what makes their business work. If you're new to the show, then take a second right now to subscribe so you don't miss new episodes and you can grab some older ones when you're done with this one.

Don't forget as well, you can join my Facebook community, just visit, amplify me to form forward slash insiders and you'll be taken right there. So welcome along. And let's meet Roger. So this week, I'm delighted to welcome back to the show, Roger Edwards. Roger, I think you were one of my very first guests back in 2013, something like that. And I remember that because I was super nervous. I was very new to podcasting.

And I have I think we've kind of kept up a bit. We've met each other a few times and you've got some really exciting news. So I was really keen to have you back on the show to talk about lots of different things. But for the listener who hasn't listened to virtually every single episode and why haven't you why don't you just tell us a little bit about who you are, where you are and the kind of work you do?

Yeah, great. Thanks, Bob, for having me back. Absolutely delighted to be back on the show. And yeah, as you say, we have kept in touch with we've met just a few conferences, although I guess since covid came along, those haven't been in person, which is a real shame.

Well, um, Roger Roger Edwards and I live in Edinburgh, have lived in Edinburgh for 27 years, obviously not from Edinburgh. I'm originally from Blackpool.

I've spent the majority of my career in marketing and originally within the financial services industry working for a fairly big brands, to be perfectly honest.

And I worked my way up from marketing assistant to eventually being marketing director of a couple of big financial services brands, even ended up being the M.D. of one of the brands for a while.

And that was probably a promotion too far, to be honest.

But all the way through my career, I've always had this issue with complexity, and perhaps that is as a result of having worked in financial services for so long, because UK financial services by default are by definition a very complicated industry. And I got the opportunity in 2012 to leave big corporate, as I call it, big corporate in inverted commas, and to start working as a consultant with smaller businesses that are perhaps a little bit more nimble, a little bit more interested in doing new stuff, especially with digital becoming so much more accessible around that time.

And so I left big corporate. And since then I've been enjoying working with smaller businesses as a consultant and also as a as a as a marketing speaker, helping people to put together simple marketing strategies.

And really, that's what I've been about.

I think one of the things I really love about you is your consistency. There are lots of people dabble, they try things. But you've been a podcast her for a lot longer. And I've been a broadcaster. You have a YouTube channel that actually does really quite well. You're doing virtual speaking, virtual training, that kind of thing, as, I guess, an evolution of the speaking that you've been doing consistently. Mm hmm. And I'm curious to hear from you again.

Maybe this is something that can go into a little more deeply later on. But what did that look like for you at the beginning of that journey back in 2012? And how has that consistency in your own digital output in particular? Yeah. How has your business evolved and how is your experience of doing that changed over time?

This is a really interesting question, Bob, and I'm trying to think back. There was a point in time when I was still working in big corporate and I was probably working on an advertising campaign and I had a conversation. I can't remember it now unless whether it was my boss or whether it was the head of the agency that we were working with. But I remember we'd been working on this campaign for a long time and it was quite successful and it brought business in.

And we were having a meeting with the agency and the idea was, we want you to effectively go away and come up with something completely different.

And it was either my boss or the agency says, no, no, no, no, no. Actually, we stick with this and we probably stick with this for at least another two years, maybe three years.

And the reason why we're going to do that is because it's working and you're the only person who's sick of it and wants to move on because, you know, you have devoted a fair proportion of your work time over the last 18 months to this. But the vast majority, if not all of the target audience, won't have spent anywhere near as much time on that or seeing that advertising campaign. And therefore, they're not sick of it. It's working for them.

So carry on doing it.

And I think he he drew an allusion to or an analogy with the smash advert at the time, you know, for Marchette get SMERSH. And apparently it's quite a while ago, apparently a.

A similar thing had happened, you know, we should dump this thing that we've been using for ages and the agency said, no, no, no, don't, because this resonates with the consumer.

And I think that as I headed out of big corporate in 2012, and I'll be perfectly honest, one of the main reasons I headed out a big corporate was they were frightened of using all this new digital technology that we were we were getting used to. They were scared of Twitter. They were scared of video. They were scared of other social media. They liked to do the old traditional marketing. And I think that one of the downsides potentially of digital is that it gives us opportunities to change what we're doing in the blink of an eye.

And it becomes so much easier to say. Do you know what? I've done seven episodes of this podcast. It's not working. I'm going to go and do a video and then seven episodes of video later. Do you know what? This video isn't working.

I'm going to go and do something else. And everything's become so fast and easy to change that we've lost the sight of the fact that something successful and something consistent actually has long term advantages. And if you do stick with it, then it's so much more powerful than going from one spot to the other, from one shiny toy to the other. But the pressure these days, Bob, and you'll know this as well, from some of the conversations you've had with people, one person seen and I know you've got to be doing email and another person says, no, no, no, you should be doing Facebook and whatever it might be.

And the tendency is, oh, I'm going to change to something. I'm going to go and play with this or the shiny toy. But the power of consistency, you should never underestimate it, whether you're living in a print world, whether you're living in a TV advertising only world or whether you're living in a digital world, consistency is likely to be more powerful than any of the shiny toys you've got your hands on for a couple of weeks or a couple of months.

So be consistent and keep doing the same things. Obviously, if they're working, if they if they aren't working, then you've got to change it. But sometimes it takes time for something to work. I can't remember. Was it Mark Schaefer who said it's a minimum of 30 months when you start something to become known for it? Well, that's quite a long time when it's easy to say, right. That's it. I've done seven episodes. I'm going to go over here and do something else.

I didn't know he'd said that, but that kind of rings true. And it kind of leads me to what was going to be. My next question still is, and that's when you started your podcast, like a lot of people who probably felt like a bit of a waste of time, a bit of a vanity exercise for quite a long time. At what point in your broadcasting career sticking with the podcast specifically? For the moment, yeah. Did you realize actually there's something happening here, this is starting to have an impact on my business?

Yeah.

I mean, I'll bet I have to admit it did start off almost like a vanity thing when I left big corporate I when I was in big corporate, I was doing a lot of PR work. I was the marketing director, but I was also the main spokesperson for the company.

And I did have quite a big profile within the industry. And when I left, I thought, I'm going to have to do something, even though I'm not working for a big corporate anymore.

I'm going to have to do something to keep that profile up.

So the original idea of the podcast was just to make sure people still heard from me quite regularly. And that was all it was for, to be perfectly honest. And I also remember at the time people who were becoming established as podcasts, as people like Marcus Sheridan and a guy called Ryan Hundley were always quoting this. You know, if you make it past seven episodes, you're doing well. You know, most podcast don't get past seven episodes. And I remember getting past seven episodes and thinking, yeah, I'm enjoying this.

You know, that the the early days was just like doing podcasting. It's you know, you not it's like it's just nice to talk to people in an interview situation. You know, you learn as much from your guests as you hope your audience is going to learn as well. And then you said, oh, I'm at episode 50 now. I'm going to have to celebrate that success. And then you get to episode 100 and you're going to have to celebrate that success even more.

But, Bob, it wasn't until Episode 33, which is just shy of a year, that I can honestly say I got a piece of paid work out of it. And I know for a fact that it was an article for a magazine. And I think I earned two hundred and fifty quid.

And so somebody would say, so you did 33 episodes of a podcast before you got two hundred and fifty quid back.

And yes, I guess that's the. But by the time Episode 88 had come, I got a five figure sum, so over 10 grand in consultancy as a direct result of somebody hearing me on the podcast.

And for a while the podcast became my main source of new business of new clients.

In fairness, it's sort of it's not fizzled out. It's gone down.

Since that gone since covid, I think a lot of podcasters have found that their download numbers have either plateaued or gone down slightly because people haven't actually had more time on their hands. Maybe the illusion is that they have. But a lot of people have been busy. But for a long time, the podcast was my main source of income and a way of getting speaking engagements and and and moving into consultancy situations.

And I think there is the direct benefit of the tangible opportunity that comes as an obvious outcome. So the sales inquiry, somebody said, I listen to your podcast. I'd like to speak to you about a commercial opportunity. But then there are the other, less tangible things like your network has changed and you're moving in slightly different circles and those circles bring opportunities. Mm hmm.

So and it's repeating those key messages. You know, you said it before. I've been talking the simplicity thing in my career for 20 odd years. I've been talking about it in my podcast. Now I constantly repeat the same things. And I'll sometimes sit there thinking, oh, Roger, your audience genuinely don't want to hear that again.

But actually, that's fine. It's like the theme music to EastEnders or the theme music to Coronation Street. It becomes part of what you do and people remember it for that very reason. It's part of your script. And and again, I think that consistency, it starts to call an earworm, don't they? It's something that buries itself into your ears and you can't stop humming it.

Well, you know, people start to associate simplicity with Roger Edwards. He's the he's the guy who does marketing simple engage, don't engage that sort of thing. And that's why I'm such a big fan of of that consistency message.

Yeah. Something I heard Matthew Kimberle say the other day was, if you want to be remembered for something, you better be repetitive.

Yes, absolutely right.

So I want to ask you about YouTube before we come onto the program, because I will watch your YouTube videos occasionally. And there are a bit of a puzzle to me. They're really, really well made and you kind of roam across a lot of different topics.

What would you say the if you were to explain a YouTube channel to someone, how would you explain it? It's a very difficult one.

And I, I think that my my YouTube is more of an experimental platform, to be perfectly honest.

I'm probably break if you if you go on to YouTube and watch the so-called YouTube experts, they will say you've got to pick a topic, a niche down into that specific topic, annihilate the hell out of keywords around that topic and, you know, do your SEO, do your search optimization and all of that sort of thing and make sure that that is your focus and therefore you will build this great big audience.

Now, I'm sure that strategy works. You know, there's a there's a lady up in following an American lady called Annie recently, and she's gone from something like 2000 subscribers to about 48000 subscribers simply by doing videos that teach people how to do videos. It's, you know, it's nuts.

But she's following this this sort of focused rule that the YouTube have.

I I have three types of video I do on YouTube. The first is I call it Rodge Vlog.

And that's really just my behind the scenes life of me being a speaker and a marketing consultant.

And as you would expect, until lockdown, the Roger blog tended to be me travelling to London to do a speech at European Summit or me going to Belgrade to do a speech at a conference in Serbia.

The blogs have changed a little bit since because I've not been on a plane or a train or a bus to six months. But that was more. This is Roger behind the scenes. I then sort of do these videos, which are called Marketing Made Simple, which are really three or four minutes of me just picking up on a particular marketing issue. Could be consistency, for example. And I just say this is about consistency. This is why you should you should be.

System, blah, blah, blah, then call to action, so it's sharp and then it's snappy and it finishes quickly. And I guess that the YouTube experts would say to me, well, just stop all that Rochfort stuff that you need to do or you just need to do the marketing need simple time and time and time and time and time again. But I'm not in this for multi million followers and this, that and the other. OK, you might get a revenue out of it, I guess, but that's not what motivates me.

What motivates me more about YouTube is testing things out and playing with things, learning how to do video, because the world we're in now, a lot of these online conferences are looking for people to really stand out in their online presentations. And a lot of those online presentations can be pre-recorded. And I'm sort of thinking a lot of these things are going to look more like mini television productions. So I'm trying to use the video, the YouTube experience, to learn how to put together a really well made video.

And you kindly said that they do look well made. So I guess that experience is rubbing off. But, yeah, I I'm probably breaking the established rules for being a successful YouTube. Having said that, I have noticed my subscription rate has crept up more recently than it has done in the past. So maybe I have touched a few of the right buttons recently as well.

I think that there are two reasons to use YouTube or there are two, maybe two, two approaches to it. There's I want to build my YouTube subscriber base in order that I can become YouTube famous for something. Yeah, others, I want to use YouTube as a platform to express myself and connect with people. Yes. And I think that's what you do really, really well. You don't you're not sort of just turning one face to the world and being really, really quite sterile.

But when you visit your YouTube channel, you get to know Roger. Yeah. And that's actually what I think is so special about it.

Mm hmm. And again, I think you can put an act on you know, you can have a stage persona and a lot of actors do that obviously have stage personas. I guess some comedians do have that sort of thing as well.

But I guess I've always just liked being me again.

I can remember one of the early days of of doing speaking.

I was presenting at a conference in London. And a lot of people came up to me. So your speech was the best of the day, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. And one person says, do you know why you stood out so well?

It's because you've got a northern accent rather than everybody else, sort of having the sort of BBC polished sort of newsreader style approach.

You just stood out because you talk like normal people and, you know, yes, you can put a facade on, but eventually the facade will slip and somebody will see into the real you. So why not be the real you straight from the beginning? So let's talk about covid, because that's kind of it's caused you problems. It's caused me problems. It's caused everybody problems in one way or another. We don't really want to talk anymore about the problems that have come out of covid, but where have you found potentially glimmers of lights or you've learned new ways of approaching opportunities you hadn't really seen before?

Or what have been the positive things that have happened in your world?

Yes, I think I think the big thing that the penny dropped for me quite early on and again, I was I was looking at a lot of the the sort of what I would call global marketing gurus. And I always say guru with an advert with big inverted commas and a lot of that. We've had this conversation before.

But marketing isn't just about communications. It's not just about social media and advertising and email and promotion. It's also about understanding your customer, developing a product or a service that meets the need of the customer. And once you've done that and thrown a few goals and then you can go away and start doing the communication. But early on in CoverGirl, the global marketing gurus coming in with these, you know, you need to pivot your business. You need to shift everything online.

You need to focus on this.

And I'm thinking, well, you might need to do those things. But everybody's different. Every business is different. Every individual is different. And the only way you can know for certain whether you need to pivot or whether you need to focus online or whether you need to go all in on Facebook ads is to do what marketers should always do, and that is look at what their customers needs are. And it's very possible. And indeed it did not possibly it was the fact a lot of people's needs changed because of covid.

And therefore you change your model, you change your product, you change your service to fit that new customer need, and then you go and you communicate it. And right early on that are made out, just the penny dropped. You've just got to you can't pivot until you know where you're going.

And I got quite cross early on with some of those bigger more famous is perhaps not the right word, but, you know, high profile marketers who were just using it as a as a way to run Facebook ads down people's throats or you must pivot this that in the other.

Yeah. And a lot of the work that I was doing, Bob was speaking at events and they all got cancelled doing workshops, going travelling across the UK in Europe to visit people and do workshops. All of that got cancelled. Now, the immediate response to all of that would have been, you know, following the advice of those gurus is pivot become online, totally online and not know.

I had to understand what the customers were wanting. And and unfortunately, a lot of those people who had booked me to go and do workshops in person in their offices were now in a bit of trouble themselves.

You know, they were having to work out whether to furlough their staff or whether to lay their staff off, whether they to make the offices, you know, completely sterile for when we ever came back or moved to working from home permanently. And actually marketing on what I do was totally and utterly off the agenda for them.

So even if I did pivot to be an online provide, those particular customers that I was well in with just weren't interested anymore.

So it wasn't just a question of saying, I need to go online, I just need to actually review who my actual customers are. Now, in fairness, things to start those particular customers, I ironed out a few of their problems and are starting to look back at marketing again and it's coming together. But you can't just assume that because everybody says go online that that's the thing to do. Having said that, there's one event that I am involved with as de facto marketing director, and it's a big in-person conference which takes place in a prestigious London hotel in July.

Now, that obviously never went ahead. We postponed it until December, thinking that everything would be back to normal. By December, and it's not going to go ahead in December now, as you would expect, but what we did do in July was a sort of mini online event.

But rather than just saying, oh, we'll just go on to zoom like everybody else is doing, or will just get some webinar software, go to webinar or whatever it might be, and do a webinar, will actually ask people what they want.

And a lot of people said, you know, we're suffering from Zoome fatigue here. And the last thing we want to do is sit in front of a computer for an entire day listening to really long speeches on Zoome. So we thought, fine, no zoom, no webinar, we're going to do it on YouTube. Pre-record Seven talks, each lasting seven minutes, followed by 25 minutes of live debate. And we broadcast that live over YouTube. I think it lasted an hour and a half, all told.

And within that sector of the industry, it blew everybody away because they thought, wow, this is fantastic. It's so well produced. It looks and feels snappy. OnPoint, it's hard hitting and fast. And actually, people sent us messages saying it went by in a flash. And you change the speaker so often that we never got our attention span, never, never went away. And I think that, you know, it was it was a total reinvention of of of what was happening in that particular sector in the financial services sector.

So that was that has been the biggest lesson for me is don't listen to the the people with the biggest egos and the biggest profiles. Go back to the basics of marketing, talk to your customers and work out what it is that they need and then build your service and product around that need.

Yeah, I think I do not like the word pivot because it implies a degree of permanence. And that one thing I've been encouraging my clients to keep in mind is that you should never approach a short term problem with a change in your long term strategy. Absolutely. And that has worked out quite well. But that doesn't mean you you can't adjust. You have to accommodate the current situation. You have to adapt and but still keep. What was the initial goal?

That goal hasn't changed. So you really just have to go around a mountain rather than through it.

And who knows where we're going to be? You know, conferences, live conferences may not come back in a I certainly can't see a social media marketing world happening in the next 12 months. Maybe we'll get back to smaller events with with social distancing. And I know that human beings me as much as anybody.

I do crave that live interaction with people in a room, you know, in that discussion in the pub afterwards, you can't beat that. But for the time being, it's not going to happen. So we need to be mindful of that.

So one thing that you have done during covid is your new joint venture podcast with Pascha Antonet. Yeah. Which looks like an awful lot of fun because knowing you both, you have a lot in common. Yeah. And it really boils out in this podcast, which is hugely entertaining. So how did that come about and. Yeah. What are your plans for that and or I guess for the for the for the one or two listeners that might not have listened to it, what can they expect.

Right.

Well, it's called Two Geeks and a marketing podcast, so it's a bit of an off the wall title now.

Plus Kalfin Tony, I met Pascal atter you Proner event probably about five years ago, and he was doing a speech about how to be better at using video. And I had a really long conversation with him the night before in the bar, which went on into the early hours. And then I saw his presentation the following day and we kept in touch after that. And I loved what he was saying about framing shots and scripting and storytelling. And I immediately went out and started putting that into practice.

And I guess he really appreciated the fact that I'd learnt stuff from him and was was so keen to follow it up.

So we became really good friends and we would often find ourselves either go into conferences or or just meeting up in Newcastle or Edinburgh and sitting in a coffee shop or in a bar drinking wine, having the sorts of conversations that we have on this podcast. And at the end of the end of the session, whether it was coffee and we were both climbing the walls because of caffeine or at the end of the session in the pub when we've probably had too much to drink, we said, you know what, we should have recorded that conversation because we got into some really interesting material about Mark.

And about strategy and this went on, honestly, Bob, for about two years, and every time we finished these sessions, we tell we should have recorded that, shouldn't we? So we made a pact that we would actually try doing it one day and actually recording it. And that was really when the idea of the podcast came about. Let's have it as a as a show which has got the segment. So we start off with the in the news, which is simply news that's caught our attention over the last week, could be a, you know, asked to launch a new pricing campaign or something.

Then we have a segment which is all about focusing on a piece of content that's really caught our attention. And that's usually a podcast episode or an article in Marketing Week or something like that. We go into that in quite a bit of detail. And, you know, why is the person written it like this? What's the angle? What's the implications for people? Then there's a section about tech where we what's our favorite app of the week or our favorite platform of the week?

Then we talk about this week in history, marketing in history, you know, the launch of Sputnik, this, that and the other, whatever it might be.

Then we do content spotlights where we shout out names of people who are doing great things. And I think you got a shout out last week, Bob, for your podcast.

I did was a surprise and then I shouldn't have been a surprise at all. And then the final section, which is definitely the most off the wall, is called Film Marketing, because Pascal and I are both geeks were both science fiction geeks. Predominantly, we just pick a film and we talk about that film from the just from the point of view of the film that we love, but also how was it marketed originally or what could be the lessons that you can learn from that film?

And we've done and we've only done 11 episodes, but we've we've talked about films from Flash Gordon. We talked about On Her Majesty's Secret Service that George Lazenby James Bond film, because Diana sadly died that week. I think we even did Mamma Mia one week.

And here's the film.

Here's what we like about it. But these are the marketing lessons that you can you can get from it, from how they marketed the film originally or just the you know, if it's a 25 year old film, how it's become part of the, you know, the fabric of pop culture.

So I think going forward, the biggest the biggest danger is that we love it so much that the episodes have been getting longer and longer and we are trying to pull it back.

But we do we do get carried away. And we did say, well, let's let's just see how it goes, who won't edit it?

So, you know, we'll probably carry on until people say for the love of God, do shorter episodes or something like that.

Yeah, I think maybe at some point the platforms are going to catch on that they have to put in some kind of chapter for us. And if people don't like it, they won't listen. And certainly anybody that does love film and wants to learn about great marketing using the the metaphors and and the stories of these films, it's a great lesson. So you have written a book. Yes. And I know you've been working on this for a long time.

And I saw the other day that it was nearly ready. Yeah. And I know yesterday or today you got your printing proofs. Yes, I did. I've got it here in my hands. And honestly, Bob, it's such an amazing feeling to actually have a printed book. I know that most people don't reprinted books these days and in fact, they probably buy them on Kindle. But the printed so it's got not for resale and sort of Drapht splattered across the front.

So it definitely isn't the copy that people who buy it will get. But yeah, it's in my hand. I can use all the pages and yeah, it's, it should have come out earlier in the year. But the main aim of the book is almost like a big calling card for me to use for my speaking engagements and my consultancy. And given that most of that business effectively disappeared at the start of the year, it just didn't seem to me to be a priority to get the book out.

And in fact, again, I spoke to a few people. You know, on the one hand they were saying no, because all these people on furlough who've got all this time on their hands, it's a great time to get a book out there. But they're not. The people were saying, you know what, I've never been busier or I've got the kids to look after. I have not got time to read a book. So I thought, I'm actually going to just delay it.

So it's got to come out soon. But obviously it's a bit later than I'd planned.

And is that did you delay it because you had other things to do or was it a more proactive. No, no. I'm going to slow down on this.

No, it was definitely a decision to slow down. I mean, at the start of the year, I had a lot of events in my diary and the idea was that the book would be part of the deal and.

They would be allowed to sell copies or at least highlight it, and when all of those disappeared, I just thought I could I could carry on doing it, but I just felt that I would have to spend more time and potentially money on actually marketing it to an audience who was probably busy with other things or worry about other things.

I just thought it is just doesn't it just I need to feel that the market for speaking and consultancy is in my knee is coming back.

And in reality it probably hasn't come back enough yet. But I, I thought the autumn is the time to do it. So it's nearly here.

It's nearly here. And the cover that the book's called Cat Smarts and Marketing Plans, which is it's a little bit of a weird title, but I didn't want it to be marketing for dummies or marketing made simple or anything like that. It it reflects one of the key segments I've been doing in my talks for years.

It's quite a it's quite a vivid cover design by Col Gray, who I think was on on your show quite recently as well. Coulston, a fab job on it. So I'm really excited about about that. And the visual is is very important to me. So, yeah, it's great to get here.

So what can the reader expect?

Consistent messages for thing that we've said already. It's pretty much in there.

It's all about the two main things mean on the front of the cover. It says how to build a simple marketing strategy and avoid complexity as your business grows. And that's really the two things that I'm about. A strategy is important by strategy. I mean what we said earlier in the show. It's not just about communications, Bob. It's about identifying your customer, the customer need and building the product to service that need. That's the strategy bit. But as you know, academia and and the Internet and certainly big corporate can make strategy incredibly complicated.

So the book really is aimed at people who haven't got a marketing background and perhaps find themselves in charge of marketing. It's almost like a simple guide to how to do the whole lot. And then the second part is once you've got it in, their new business starts to become more successful.

And as you grow, how do you avoid complexity creeping into your business as it often does as companies get bigger? So it's really a it's really a bit of two halves. It's put the strategy together, start to become successful, but then stop yourself from becoming complicated and bureaucratic as time goes by.

I think actually it would probably suit a lot of people who are in marketing roles and do have a marketing background as well, because I think there's definitely a trend where I don't know if it's a trend or if it's what it is, but a lot of people will either jump straight to tactics. Yes. Or they will not really understand what strategy is. Now, anybody listening from a marketing background, don't be insulted. You're not that guy. But I do find a lot of people don't really understand what a marketing strategy is and they confuse it with a tactical yes choice.

Yes. And I know having seen you speak the painting, this picture between this is a strategy and these are the tactics you're going to need to deliver that strategy. There are two different sets of decision altogether. And if if more people got a hold of that, even when they're in marketing roles, because they're trained in complexity, not in simplicity, yeah, it's not their fault.

But a simple plan executed well will trump a complicated plan, poorly implemented every single time.

Absolutely right. And I like stories, as you know, Bob. And one of the joys of being able to write this book is to use stories that have actually been real, things that have happened to me throughout the years. You know, so I tell the story way back of, you know, one of the reasons I became so obsessed with complexity was because I remember being involved in a strategic away week where we all went off to some country house and they'd employed some consultant from a gigantic global consultancy.

And he was the stereotypical person who opened his mouth and just management speak, flowed out over everybody. It was almost like he was spraying management speak across the room. And we spent that week putting Post-it notes on walls and rearranging the Post-it notes and doing SWOT analysis and pest analysis.

And I'm not knocking it from the from the point of view of it was a good. Exercise, but it was the complicated end of the spectrum, and I just remember, you know, so many of the people were getting frustrated by this and just didn't know what they were doing there. And the upshot of it was all we were really doing was saying, who's the customer, what's their problem and how do we fix that problem better than our competitors?

That was really what we were doing.

And the book tells stories like that as to how this sort of simplicity thing became that earworm that will just not come out of my brain. And I've been repeating year upon year and hopefully that that message will will help people who might be starting to feel that their lives are just as complicated as that.

I think one thing that you really embody is I'm sure I've heard this from both Chris Tucker and Gary Vaynerchuk. And I think Chris puts it in in the in the terms of every business should embrace actually becoming part media company or every personal brand. Business needs to embrace being a media company. Yeah, and Gary Vaynerchuk quantified it a little bit more firmly, saying every business should be 80 percent, whatever it is they do for money and 20 percent media company.

And you really embody that in a way that very few marketers do in your world in particular. But in the world in general, especially in the U.K., this almost creator lifestyle is something that I think so many people should embrace. And I guess I would sort of ask you for your reflection on that if you were if you met somebody in the street and said, I discovered it's tough, I can't network, I can't see the people I used to see.

I can't do all the things that I used to do. And then they're they're looking at YouTube and podcasting and thinking, this looks like a very long road. Yeah. What would you say to them?

Wow. If it's a it's an interesting one. I'm, you know, just just picking up on the media company thing.

After we did that, that online conference I mentioned before, seven talks with seven minutes, I was talking to the CEO of that business and this was completely unprompted from him. And this is I've been sitting here reflecting upon what we've just done. And he said, you know, for the last 15 years we've been a conference company. We put on a conference once a year. He says, do you know what? We're not that anymore. We're a media company.

And I thought, oh, yes, there you go. Somebody the penny's dropped for somebody. And he's absolutely right.

And this this is a bit of a conundrum for me, because I think if you'll think about generations, I am Gen X now. A lot of Gen X people and I've seen Mark Sheridan write this recently, you know, people probably in their 40s to early 50s.

A lot of them are actually technophobic or they don't like digital. You know, they're a little bit nervous with video, probably a bit suspicious of social media. And that that is certainly my experience with within the financial services industry.

And one of the reasons why I got out of big corporate and I've often wondered why I'm a Gen X person that seems to have embraced all of this stuff and hasn't been fazed by it.

And as Gen, I mean, I sit there sometimes think, gee, I wish I'd had YouTube when I was in my twenties, you know, I would, you know, just love to have had access to YouTube when I was in my twenties and all these cameras and recording equipment, you know, when I was the first time I ever appeared on a video, it cost the company about 40 grand to get a film crew in to come and film us and edit the videotape.

I think what I would say to people is that covid has taught us that the world can change and it doesn't necessarily have to go back to the where where it was.

Now, an example is I spent a lot of time travelling all the way around the UK because a lot of the people I do business with who just would not have Zoome meetings. I've been using Zoome for my podcast, like you have for many, many, many years.

Five years maybe.

And yeah, I've had a lot of resistance from clients for to have meetings over Zoome. So that meant I've spent a lot of my time on planes or on trains, travelling to meet people and to have meetings with people.

But now Kovács come along and all Zoom's the best thing since sliced bread and they all suddenly realise that they can save money on travel expenses and this, that and the other. But then you hear the government saying, oh, but we've all got to get back to the office because otherwise the coffee shops will close and the city centre shops will be. Now, that's true. But has the world changed to suggest that actually what we should.

Doing is reinvestigating the city centers, so, yes, maybe those coffee shops and supermarkets can't be supported by the working population, but what happens if all those empty offices get revisited in visitors as homes or flats or whatever it is, just change the landscape and.

You know, those people who may find it a little bit difficult because they're networking meetings have stopped or they're no longer meeting up with our colleagues, that we may never go back to the way it was, because this is this is, for better or for worse, a new way of working.

And the best way, you know, going back to the marketing lessons that we were talking about, the best way to get ahead is to stand out in a way that doesn't annoy people and that engages people.

And now that's a marketing view. But from an individual point of view, embrace the new technology, become comfortable with it. And you can still tap into your network, you can still tap into your colleagues, you can still tap into the things you like, the things that, you know, motivate you and stimulate you is just a different way of doing it. And it's almost that. Don't wait for it to go back to the way it was because it might not.

And and I know that's not easy, but that's a Genex are talking who doesn't understand how he got into this position where he's comfortable with all this snazzy technology?

Roger, I am looking at the time we have been talking for a long time, and we should probably bring things to a close soon. But there is one question I really want to ask you, OK, which is a bit of a flip away from what we were talking about just now. OK, and that is when you are doing video content, something you do. And when I see people do this, I really admire it because I currently do not.

And I know I would find it really difficult. And that's why you're filming out in public sometimes. How do you do that? I've got to ask you.

Oh, well, let me just start by saying you only ever see the completed video and honestly, going around walking around town, I mean, I use a loo mix DLR camera, which isn't the biggest you can get, but it's it's not not small and compact like an iPhone.

And I've also got a great big directional mike on top of it. And I often have a sort of tripod stand.

So it's fairly noticeable. So honestly, Bob, there is many times when I've said to my wife, I'm just popping down to the harbour, I'm going into into Edinburgh to do a video, and I've got there and I've wandered around and I thought, you know what? There are too many people around here. I'm not gonna chicken out and a bottle it. And you never see any of that. I'm really glad, you know, you don't see any of that or there'll be you know, I was down at the harbor doing a video yesterday, and it was a glorious day, absolutely glorious day.

And I was down early and there was nobody about.

And I absolutely nailed this take almost in one. I think I just I to restart one bit towards the end. And just as I was about to finish, some woman came right up behind me on a bike and stopped to ask me something.

And it totally and utterly ruined the entire shot. But I'd been careful to go down to the harbour early because I knew there wouldn't be that many people around. But I can guarantee if I'd have gone down in the afternoon, had been busy, I would have.

I would have. But having said that, if you are out and about, the main thing to remember is that most people might glance at you and think, oh, that guy's got a big camera. Oh, that microphone looks a bit phallic or whatever it might be.

But then they'll go on to thinking about whatever else it was that was worrying them, whether they're going to be late for a meeting or whether they're going to get home in time for tea or whether they're going to miss Coronation Street or whatever, they'll they might give you an instantaneous thought. They may even think you look like a prat, but they'll only think it for a microsecond. They don't care. And if you can get that into your head, then, you know, who cares?

Just do it. Just do it. No, nobody really minds.

So that's what it boils down to, is to suck it up, buttercup. I think so. I think so, yeah. I mean, let's face I said to you I'd wish that had access to video when I was in my twenties and I had hair. And, you know, nowadays I sometimes look at myself, I've got great big round face, bald and everything like that.

You know, in my early fifties, I'm saying, you know, this is not a pleasant thing to look at. You know, I'm not I'm not. I'm not.

You know, Bruce Bruce Willis in his twenties or Pierce Brosnan in his twenties. You know, this is me.

But, you know, there are a lot of people out there who just will relate to somebody who has got a message and has got some enthusiasm. And, you know, you just have to overcome that. Some people don't like the sound of their own voice.

Some people don't like how they look. And if that is you, you just have to try and find a way of overcoming it.

I think the answer is repetition. Yeah, you can become accustomed to that quite quickly, but it is quite visceral when you're new to it. Mm hmm. Roger, we should bring things to a close. Yeah. And I have become accustomed to asking all my guests the same question towards the end of the interview. Yeah. And that's what's one thing you do now that you wish you had started five years ago. And normally I give them a little bit of warning for the listener.

I haven't given Roger any warning.

Yeah, I do know one of the things that does annoy annoy me a lot at the moment is this as a podcast host. And I'm sure you get this all the. Time you probably get approached by podcast guest agencies and they'll say Burt Smith from New Zealand is a great fit for your podcast and are triggering me right now.

I'll read this email and I'll think Burt Smith is absolutely nowhere, nowhere near what I need from our podcast.

And this agency hasn't done any any research on a my podcast or be my audience. And I usually ignore the email.

And then the following day or two days later, I'll get the gist circling back to see what you think about or just bobbling this to the top of your inbox. Or what did you think of Burt for your podcast? And in the end, I'll just probably write something.

I'm sorry, but Bert's not not very suitable for my podcast, but thanks for thinking. I don't like to be rude to people, but thanks for thinking me anyway.

And on the one hand, that annoys me, Bob. It really does.

But one of the failings that I have had and still have to a certain extent, is that as a marketer, I guess I'm not a salesperson and I'll often send a proposal and never hear anything.

And I might send a reminder once, rarely, twice, because I don't want to be that pushy person who circles back or who tries to bubble things to the top of inboxes. But you know what?

I think in this busy world, the reason that they do it is because in the blink of the eye, it can be gone. And I think that sometimes going back, I might have got a bit more business early on as a consultant if I'd just been a little bit more pushy, but without being too annoying about it.

Yeah, that's a really good answer. I think we could all do with being slightly more tenacious from time to time, some of us maybe less so if the podcast agencies are listening. Yes. Roger Edwards, you've been a fantastic guest. If people want to get in touch with you and in particular if they want to find out when your book is going to be available and be how they can get it, how would you like them to do those things?

Right. My website is Roger Edwards dot com UK. There is going to be a dedicated page for the book by the time this podcast comes out, and that will be Roger Edward Stocco UK Forward Slash book. Just to keep it simple, I am on Twitter a lot.

So at Roger Underscore Edwards, if you want to hit me on Twitter, that would be absolutely fine. Always happy to have a chat.

Roger Roger Edwards, thank you very much for your time on the show. Hopefully I can have you back again some time. Once the book's been out for a while, you can tell us how it's going. But for now, thank you very much for your time. Fantastic. Bob, always a pleasure to speak to you. Make thanks. Embracing the media company or creating a culture isn't about looking for a tactical advantage. It's a long term play, which, if you're doing it right, becomes part of who you are, part of your lifestyle.

It doesn't just position you differently in the market, although it does. It positions you differently in life. It's a hard thing to explain, but if you're listening, you can pick that up from guest after guest after guest. I'm with Roger. This really stood out. Before I go, just a quick reminder to subscribe. And if you haven't then joined my Facebook group, you'll find a link in the show, notes or visit, amplify me dot com forward slash insiders.

I would love to connect with you on social media. Follow me wherever you hang out. Just search at Bobby Gentle. And if you do connect with me, let me know. That way I can follow you back. If you enjoyed the show that I would love for you to review on iTunes. It means a lot to me and it's the very best way to help me reach more subscribers. My name is Bob Gentil. Thanks again to Roger for giving us his time this week and to you for listening and see you next week.

Overview

When you visit a sales page or read an email what is it that moves you to take action? If you're like most people then it's because the website or email did two things. First - it made you aware of a burning need. Secondly - it moved you to act. That, right there is a magical thing. Every single business is essentially very simple. It's a value exchange.

In this week's show I'm talking to Amisha Shrimanker about sales page and funnel copy. Often seen as a dark art Amisha will walk us through how to connect and sell online with integrity.

About Amisha

Amisha Shrimanker is a conversion copywriter and a launch strategist. 

She writes personality-based launch copy for course creators, coaches, and membership site creators. 

She’s made her clients mid to high six-figures in a single weekend with her launch copy. 

Amisha specializes in sales page copywriting and has a digital product that teaches non-copywriters how to write sales copy

https://roi.thecopycrew.com/roi

When she’s not writing copy for her clients, she’s busy playing mom to her two kids, biking in the park, and adding exotic destinations to her travel bucket list. 

Thanks for listening!

It means a lot to me and to the guests. If you enjoyed listening then please do take a second to rate the show on iTunes.  Every podcaster will tell you that iTunes reviews drive listeners to our shows so please let me know what you thought and make sure you subscribe using your favourite player using the links below.

Automatic Audio Transcription

When you visit a sales page or read an email, what is it that moves you to take action if you're like most people? Then is because the website or email did a couple of things first and made you aware of a burning need. Secondly, it moved you to act that right there is a magical thing. Every single business is essentially very simple. It's a value exchange. In this week's show, I'm talking to Omeish from Manka about sales pitches and funnel copy.

Often seen as a dark art, Amisha will walk us through how to connect and sell online with integrity. Hi there and welcome back to Amplify the Digital Marketing Entrepreneur podcast. I'm Bob Gentle and every week I'm joined by amazing people who share what makes their business work. So if you're new to the show, take a second right now to subscribe and your player so you don't miss new episodes and you can grab some older ones when you're done with this one.

Don't forget as well to join my Facebook community, just visit, amplify me forward, slash insiders, and you'll be taken right there. So welcome along. And let's meet Amisha. So this week, I am delighted to welcome Amisha, Sri Lanka, to the show. Hi, Michel. Why don't you start by telling us a little bit about who you are, where you are and the kind of work you do? Absolutely. I'm a conversion copywriter in Philadelphia.

That's Pennsylvania, and I work for my beautiful formal dining room sometimes, which doubles as my home office. And I'm going into my third year of business as a copywriter. I've been in the online space a little longer than that, mostly dabbling in different things until I found my sweet spot, which is writing launch copy. And I run a micro copywriting agency called the Copy Crew and work with digital marketers who need done for you copy for their launches, whether that's a digital course or if they're launching a coaching program or a membership site.

I do a little bit of due diligence before I say yes to people coming on the podcast. And when you say you found your sweet spot, you're not joking. I've had a look at some of your work and it really is some of the most engaging sales copy I've ever seen a lot of the time sales copies, really almost KDDI. But yours is really lively, engaging, exciting, good fun. And that's really important because people buy from people and people buy from people they like.

And sales copy needs to reflect that. So, yeah, I really applaud the way that you approach. I thought you must have been doing it for much longer than that. Oh, thank you.

Yeah, it's. Well, here's the thing. I mean, we have to roll with the times and people's attention spans are getting shorter and you want to make your copy lively and engaging. It has to be backed by research because you can't put up anything in there in the in the sake for the sake of being creative. But it also needs to hold their attention long enough for them to click on the button. And that's what we care about. At the end of the day, it's all about the clicks.

So when you have a new client, I'm going to jump straight into it. When you have a new client and they've probably had to go themselves and they've had a failed launch or they've run lots of money ads and it's all gone up in smoke. How do you rebuild that confidence? What is what that first conversation often look like?

Well, typically, the clients that I work with, either they have never launched before. They kind of they've taken a lot of courses. And those are my favorite kind of people because I know what that's like. They take a lot of courses. They try to figure things out themselves. They piecemeal all the information and they try to launch and they feel that, you know, that's not really the reason of genius. Like writing copy is not their zone of genius.

They're you know, they they they need to build out their information, their course. That's where they're best at. Or they need to be promoting, but doing everything else. And there's a lot of copywriting when you're doing a launch, you know, there's emails, sales copy, landing pages, depending on if you're doing a webinar or not. So they try to do everything and then the results are kind of lackluster. Or I have the other kind of clients who are making a killing with their courses or evergreen funnels.

But they you know, their conversion rates are still low. And they'd like to bump that up, they think, and rightly so. They think if they used the right copy or, you know, it's optimized, they will get those conversion rates. So wherever they are starting with on their journey, when we when we take on a new client, that's one of the first things we ask them that they've launched it before. And what were their results like?

What were their conversions, how much sales they made? We get all that information and that is good. I'd rather work with someone who's had a failed launch because then we have the data to look look it up and then we go kind of digging deep into the holes of like. Have they missed the mark on their ideal client avatar? What are people actually saying about their product? It's it kind of baffles me that even if they have had a successful product or not, they they take very little time into, you know, into researching who their avatar is, even if it means getting people on the phone, 10, 20 people on the phone and say, hey, I realize you bought this for me.

What did you like about it? What did you not like about it? And really getting that feedback from them. And I love doing that. In fact, we had we worked on a client's sales page a couple of months ago, and she's making a killing in the mommy market. And her clients loved her. They the love the digital product that they've bought. But she was hovering around the one percent conversion mark and she would have loved to increase that.

So when I stepped in to optimize her copy, she got the framework right, like, you know, sales pages. I mean, there is a certain framework, you know, she had her testimonials, she had her fake U.S., she had all the goods, but somewhere she was missing the conversion marks. And I think that's because she wasn't speaking directly to her client or she wasn't. She was she was holding back her personality. And these are a couple of things which I love doing.

I my thing is you should not be holding back on your personality, go fall for it and also kind of meet where your client is. She had never spoken to any of her clients on the phone. She had no idea why they loved her so much. She did not know what they looked at when they looked at her sales page. And what was the exact thing that she said on the page that made them buy? So I went in to do all this research.

I got people on the phone. I asked them what they liked about the sales page. What was the exact word or phrase that said, like, yes, I'm going to buy? We looked at heat maps. So there is a lot of research involved and a lot of people don't see that. They think it's all just creative brilliance on the page. But really, it's a lot of research that you do. We take all that research. We kind of match the messaging kind of match where the people are in the, you know, the client journey.

And then the last bit is adding the personality of the client, and that kind of shines through on the page. So I know that's a long winded answer, but it's really it all comes down to doing the research. Where have they missed the mark and all that good stuff?

I think the long winded answer is important because it it's very easy to look at great sales copy and think, well, they're just great writing. That's a natural talent. But it actually goes much deeper than that. There are some core principles to persuasion. And the first thing you need to know, as you said, is who is it for? And then the other thing is, well, what actually is the value and how do you communicate that value to that avatar?

And busy people, busy, successful people, they've got a million things to do and they're already doing quite well. So it's quite natural to to lose focus on the avatar when everything is just rolling along. Exactly. Because it's very easy to start believing your own hype. Yeah. And lose sight of what was that essential mission and who was that mission for before? My focus was exclusively digital marketing. I used to work on a lot of websites.

And I worked on websites for all different kinds of businesses, everything from, yeah, engineering through to vacations and Internet stuff and telecoms and what I found pretty universally, and this is sort of drifting away from traditional conversion focused sales copy, but it isn't really if you take the average business, let's say telecoms, the way the website was usually produced, be produced as the client will speak to the web designer who will look at other Web, other telecoms companies websites, pull together a mock up and say, do you like this?

The client will go, Yeah, I like that. They'll build it. And then the customer, the web designer will say, Client, can I have some copy to shove in your website, please? And the client will go, Yeah, OK. Someone in the marketing department to write some copy, which will be garbage and that's where it ends. Do you ever see these really sort of tried and tested copywriting principles that we're accustomed to in the online entrepreneurial space being applied in a traditional business sense?

Have you any experience of that?

You mean where everything is laid out and you just need to shove some copy in just for the sake of it?

The opposite, actually, where a business that would normally be expected to do that actually goes the extra step to bring someone like you into a business where the kind of business where you wouldn't. I guess what the question is, I'm I'm I would naturally see you working with, of course, creators or online entrepreneurs, that kind of business. And I know you do a lot of that. But if you take those principles and you apply them to something like a telecoms company or a printing company, what could that what kind of difference would that make you mean what kind of process would I engage in to write the copy for them?

Yeah, yeah, I guess so. I didn't really know what the question was rambling around and hoping a question would come.

No, you got it. Well, if I have to write, let's say if I had to write copy for a printing company, anything with copy, all kinds of copy, it would start with the research, you know, really understanding who's their ideal client avatar. Even if I had to go back three years and I would even ask them, have you done any surveys or have you done any, you know, customer feedback forms? Have you had any sort of interaction, life transcript, live chat transcripts?

Can I look at that? You know, those transcripts can tell you a lot of things. What are your customers asking you? You know, if you have a customer, if you have a customer service department where a lot of people are calling because they're having problems or they they can figure something out, all those call records, I would really go into that to understand who is this person? Who is this company speaking to? Who is that one avatar that they speak to?

It could be maybe multiple personas, but typically 80 percent of your business is done with one kind of customer. So I would understand who their customer is. What have they really bought? Why do they buy from this particular company? What is their unique value proposition, which is very important in writing copy. You need to know what's your hook, what's your what's unique about you? Why printing company X instead of printing company wide? Because if you look at if I open up.

Websites of these, you know, printing companies, they all kind of sound the same. So you want to kind of you want to absolutely differentiate yourself. So I would go snooping around in what their competitors are doing, which I love. I typically look up at least three to five competitors in the same space to see what they're doing. What have they got on their website? What aren't they telling or what are they saying or what aren't they claiming?

Does their copy sound generic? Does it sound like blind that they can speak to everybody? So these are the things that I would go around looking into and kind of arriving at a unique value proposition. What is that one thing that I can shine a light on and I can blow it up on someone's homepage? That's where I would start. And obviously, you know who their ideal avatar is and kind of make the copy more interesting, user friendly, have more personality because, you know, I don't know a lot of printing companies that have personality, but you want to have a little bit of that edge.

And that's that that's the kind of copy that I do. Right. I like that the people that I write for, I have their personality kind of shine on their website, too. So these are kind of mix and match kind of things that I would do. I don't know if this answers your question, but hopefully. Yeah, it does.

It really, really does, because I think what you're talking about there is a is like a quantum shift from what actually happens on most traditional business websites. And it it really is the kind of copy that's going to start a conversation. And one of the things that I often see is people, designers, clients, they think people are browsing websites in a very conscious, very rational way when that's not the case at all. People are browsing in a semi-conscious, almost reptile way.

And what I like about the kind of content that you write is it's obviously not written for reptile's, but it's written in a way that you get this pattern interrupt. You're woken up and you have to pay attention. And not all sales pages are like that. So when you're creating copy, I don't know. I mean, many creative people and you are a creative person. Yes, there's some research, but there's also an element of creativity, a lot of that creativity, sometimes unconscious.

But how conscious are you of working with the unconscious of the browser or the visitor?

Um, that's a very good question, I think. And again, it's going to sound boring. I, I try to think from I try to put myself in their shoes, like, for instance, when I was talking to the moms who I was writing a sales page for, I let them have at it, I assume, cause I'm like, OK, what is what do you love about educating or teaching your preschooler at home? These are difficult times.

So some moms, they give me some really interesting answers. They said, you know, I'm I'm trying to do everything else. I'm trying to keep my toddler alive. And and, you know, I have a busy morning and there are toys all around. So it's really kind of taking what they're literally saying, like, you know, copywriting is yes, it's research. Yes. It's got a little bit of creative flair. And I can tell you where I put the creativity on a page, but it's literally 90 percent of it is really what your clients are telling you.

It's as simple as that. And if you can just take verbatim what they're saying and just put it on the page, that would resonate more, because those are the people who are reading your copy and they're like, oh, my gosh, that sounds like me. She must have been in my brain because that's exactly how my morning starts. My child is asking for my cell phone to keep himself entertained or he's asking me to watch Daniel Tiger. It's a very popular show here, cartoon for a lot of preschoolers or, you know, he wants to, I don't know, make a mess and not listen to me because he doesn't think I'm his teacher.

So these are things that moms were telling me on and on again. And there was this repeated pattern. And I'm like, OK, how can I just take that and put it onto the page and kind of, you know, make it a little bit funny. You know, obviously, then there's a copywriting thing where you're doing some alliteration, working in persuasion, kind of adding personality, maybe adding a pop culture reference here to kind of make it funny, have a little bit of chuckle.

So those are things that I do and it just kind of keeps the copy more engaged because it's it's the way I look at copy. It's more conversational. It's like I'm talking to a friend and they're telling me exactly what's on their mind. And I kind of take that language and I put it on the page and somewhere here and there, I have a little bit of a wicked humor or and it really depends on the course, on the on the person I'm writing copy for, if it's a person who's a minimalist, is elegant.

Doesn't use pop culture references, I would not put that on their page. Obviously, I would be very conscious of that. But on the other hand, if I'm writing for a person who has. How to explain it appreciates humor or maybe has a sarcastic sense of humor or maybe likes to make fun of things, I kind of try to bring that element into it. And a lot of this is kind of like, you know, undiscovered on the kickoff call with the client when I asked them to send me.

All right, send me a favorite gif and they kind of like, look at me confused. Like, why does she want to know why? What's my favorite gif? But them just telling me and I said, anything, anything that's your favorite. A meme or a gif. Just just send that to me. It kind of gives me an idea what their personalities like or I ask them, what's your favorite adventure or what's your favorite movie or what Netflix show you like to watch?

A lot of these things kind of give me an insight as to who this person is, and I'd like to bring that into the copy.

So even when you're reading their bio on a sales page, the About Me section, it's not like, oh, I've got like, you know, I made a million dollars in sales in three months and I was featured on I have a TED talk know that that's all great.

But what else? What makes you human. Right. What are what are your pitfalls? What are the things that maybe, you know, you screw up and maybe kind of we can make it a little bit more fun and relatable that that's what I'm looking for. So that's where all these questions that I asked during our kickoff call, they come into play and the client does not see it at the time when we start working together and they're like, how did you know?

I'm like, oh, OK. Yes, I told you that was my favorite show and you somehow made it in the copy. It always surprises them, but I love it.

I can already tell you what my favorite gif is. I'll send you a letter. Please do. I'd love to see I'm a gift queen.

That's that's from what you're describing there, the the work. And when you're working with personal brands, it makes so much sense because the voice is really important and drawing out what is that voice in order that you can extrapolate that into all these different funnel elements really makes sense and we'll make that funnel relatable. One thing I'm curious about is if you take a podcast, for example, or somebody that's built a YouTube channel or a blog or anybody that's invested in a platform in long term built an audience, they need to build that funnel for the first time because they they don't have lots of experience of the online business because they've been focused on building the brand, serving the audience.

But there comes a point where that has to be turned into a business. And this is where a lot of people fall down. There are so many bear traps. There are so many gurus. And I'd be interested to hear from you as somebody who is brought in to work on these various funnel elements. How should they cross that bridge from content creator to business owner with a functional funnel?

That's a very good question. And it is it is sort of loaded to it depends what their goals are. I mean, so let me give an example of a client that I worked with last year.

He created a lot of content on his Instagram channel, and he also had a YouTube channel where he taught people how to run an Amazon wholesale business. And he was terrific. He modeled his content on Gary V like kind of like, you know, detailing his life story, how he got started. And he has a huge following. And both these channels on Instagram and YouTube. And he produced a lot of content, a lot of videos, educational fun, kind of behind the scenes.

But he never had anything to sell.

So when we started working together, he he he had an idea what he wanted to do. He wanted to launch a digital course, a high end digital course, like in the forefingers. And the great thing was he already had a very strong following on social media. He just hadn't sold them anything. And he said, you know, I have already started creating my course because I know exactly what my clients want. This is the these are the questions they keep asking me.

And I've taken all that information and I've developed a course which I think was great because he was very in tune with what his audience was telling him. And I'm like, that's, you know, 50 percent, 60 percent job right there done because you're not creating something in a vacuum, which is super important because we can do that. Sometimes we like our work so much, we start creating in a vacuum without really understanding it. There's a market for that thing that you want to create.

So he had that. What he didn't have was a strategy or a launch, simple launch process where he could say, you know what, the course is ready, here's a sales pitch and go buy it. And he wanted to do this without spending any money on ads or any any of that sort. So what we did, what I like to call it, was it was through an email launch. It was really an email launch. And it was just content written in his emails, his launch emails that he reached.

And put it on his Instagram account, you know, make captions, make graphics and got people very interested. He had bonuses and announced bonuses that made his launch even more exciting because, you know, midweek bonuses like, hey, if you haven't bought into this course yet, here's why you would love to reconsider, because I'm also giving you this bonus, which I know was one of your biggest objections. All in all, it was a three week email launch.

He only launched to a very warm list and a very hot audience on both these channels. And he I think it was a very successful launch. He made close to eight hundred and thirty K in sales when we opened card for a week.

Yes. And was all done via email. He had a very good following. So it was not like we were doing a lot of things like building his email list and, you know, getting people to like him. We didn't have to do any of that. He had the audience. He just didn't have the launch mechanism or a framework, if you will, to kind of like, you know, or funnel in this case to kind of let people interested in what he was offering, get them on that wait list and kind of say, here's the doors have opened to this academy that I'm launching.

So that's where I came in, wrote a sales page, Rhoda's emails, and that's it.

So. That all makes perfect sense, and I think where there's a product, that mechanism of connecting the person who needs it with the product, a lot of the time it can actually be very simple, but. If you use the wrong words, if the story is not well told, if the value isn't well communicated, then it can all fall flat. So, yeah, I totally get that. And that's an amazing result. Thank you. One other question, I guess, is what's your perspective on how would I put that, what you would almost call contrived urgency?

Like, you will often see things like countdown's on a sales page or some like some tools that will almost change the price if you come back an hour later, things like that. Do those things work?

No, that's the shortest answer I can give. You know, they don't are the audience is way smarter than we think, especially now. I mean, this is not the early 2000s where you could get away with things like that. People don't like fake urgency. And I tell this to my clients, too, like if those are the tactics that you want to employ in this launch, then I'm very upfront. I'm not the copywriter for you. It's not like, you know, if you don't enroll in this course or a membership, you're a loser.

And that's that's kind of it's a very broad marketing. And I think we've all been like we've seen a lot of that before. Like, you know, you've got to if you nod, if you you know, if you don't do this now, then your your life's going to suck or blah, blah, blah. I don't think people like that anymore. People don't respond to that. And there have been times when well-known names out there have put things out like that and they say, you know what, this is the final call and this is ending and we're not taking any more students after this.

And lo and behold, maybe like a couple of days later, like, hey, you know what? There was a glitch in our system and we have decided to reopen this. And I have seen that. And that kind of like makes me lose respect for such marketers. And I'm like, you know, you are way better than that. You don't have to do that. So those are those are just icky marketing tactics. In one simple word, I would say, don't do that.

Really don't. I think if you've nurtured your prospects well enough in the pre launch phase, you know your prospect well, you know, your avatar, your audience, well, you've nurtured them at least three to four weeks before you've even opened cards to your offer. Then I think I think you're on the right track. And people who've made up their minds to be there, they're going to be there. They're going to come with you for the right if they haven't and for some reason they haven't, I don't think you should make them feel bad.

There's always a next time. Maybe they pay a high price. And this is something that you need to spell out in your copy that, hey, I'm not kidding. This is a beta right now. But the next time I open this, it may not be as cheap. You can be honest about that. But saying to someone, if you're not in right now and because you're not serious about making a big life change, then I think that that's that's not good.

And also, the other thing I don't like employing this tactic of like, you know, if you can't afford this right now, you should take on credit card debt to participate in my program. I think that's that's something that I don't stand for either. So these are the two things that I tell clients or prospects who want me to write their copy, that I'm not going to write something that tells people that it's OK to go into credit card debt and no fake urgency, because that really doesn't work anymore.

And people talk. I mean, people do talk. People talk about it on social media and on Facebook. So word gets around and yeah, you can't keep up doing these things anymore. I kind of went on a rant. I'm really glad you said that, I think the. Well, no, not at all. These things are important for people to hear. And I think the credit card debt for me is a big one as well.

I don't own a credit card. I wouldn't let my kids have credit cards. They're evil. And anybody that thinks they need to go into credit card debt to buy a product which is going to change their life. It won't. It just won't. You have a bigger issues if if you're looking at a product thinking you need to go into credit card debt in order to afford that, it's the wrong product. Guaranteed. Speaking of things, you can't afford good sales pitch copywriters.

I think they're a little bit like international assassins. Really good ones are very well high paid, very highly paid. So for the average small business owner, that's not quite there yet. What should they be doing to look on their own website as a little bit of a self-help of any really solid tips that, you know, you can pretty much point at any website and they're going to need to do these things? What was the question?

Again, if it's a small business owner, what they need on their Web site for the average business owner, if they can't afford to hire someone like you? What should they be looking at on their own website from a self-help perspective?

Uh, well, there are two ways. I think I understand how basic copywriting works. Let's talk about we more emphasis on you, because really it is about your ideal client. End of the day, I see a lot of copy where it's a lot of we talk. And I think that needs to change who you talk. Nobody reads mission statements. And this is just, you know, a home page copy. Nobody reads mission statements. Those are boring.

They don't care unless you can make it fun and enjoyable, which I've seen very few people do. Yeah, I would I would go I would go. Really ruthless with the Weese. Change that to you. You copy give people a chance to opt in if whatever it is you have like continue that conversation. I think every page on a website is a is a place where you can make a sale. It does not have to be people giving you money, but it's either, you know, have them join a list or have them get on a call.

These things need to be obvious because if you're not doing that, then there is no point of having a website. Your website can be a very awesome funnel, but only if you give people that chance to opt in and kind of somehow connect with you and take that conversation further. Definitely remove the wheat from the copy, make it more you centric, even your about you about us page is and I think a lot of people know the about US page is not really about you.

There is a little bit of you, but it's more about what you can do for your clients and how you can help them. And so those are my two couple of two tips right there. If you're doing this on your own, however, if you are someone you know or if you can work with a coach or work with a copywriting coach, or enroll yourself in a group program where a copywriter can be your guide and help you write copy.

And actually, as a matter of fact, that's what I'm going to be unveiling soon. It's my upcoming offer. It's done with you copyright's program. Yeah, I don't have a name for it yet. It's still in the beta phases. I'm creating this. The other thing, I don't like to create things or offers in a vacuum. I think strongly you should reach out to your audience and, you know, kind of like get their interest to see if there is any interest in there.

So it's very exciting. I'm launching it to my email list and it's primarily service providers, people like me or who also are non copywriters and also business coaches because they don't have the time to write copy, but they really want to learn how to do it. And that's where I'm taking them. It's a closed container. I'm not I don't have more than ten to twelve people who are going to participate in this first round. I understand what their business is about and kind of help them write their copy.

So whether it's for a homepage or a sales page, I will take them through that process. So yeah. Yeah. So either get into a coaching program where you can learn or yeah. At least do the first two things, remove the key from the copy and make it more union friendly.

I think it's very easy to underestimate how important this is because in terms of digital marketing or building a business online, it's actually very simple. You have traffic on the one hand and you have conversion on the other. And if you have traffic and conversion, you have money. Simple. Absolutely. And so many people underestimate this conversion piece of that. If that simple equation, the traffic plus conversion equals money and the conversion all happens at this point of dialogue, a relationship which usually happens either on a website or in email, those are the two main.

And if you get those right a lot of the time, you don't need to spend a lot of money on ads or CEO because you already have traffic, but most people never converted. So what you're describing there and as a product from from that that you're delivering is potentially a game changing for poor business owners. So, yeah, I'm I'm excited by that. Oh, thank you, Peter.

So so I'd like to look at your own marketing, your own sort of personal brand, that kind of thing. Obviously, you've been you pivoted into the conversion copy space a little while ago. What does your own digital marketing look like? How do you go about making sure people all know about Amisha, Sri Lanka? How does that work?

Well, first of all, I try to land on podcasts like Bob's well, my own digital marketing.

I I'm part of a very high level mastermind. And it's all it's a digital and marketing mastermind. So a lot of my clients have come from word of mouth referral based marketing, which I really believe in, and those are relationships that I've formed and nurtured. Relationship marketing is very important to me. So whether it's building relationships with podcasters, peers in the business, you know, like yourself, Bob, because you're interested in the same space as I am.

So this is this is what it looks like for me right now. I do have at least a couple of funnels that are in launch mode. They're not completely optimized. You know, no one will ever is completely optimized where people can opt in to my freebie and my website and they kind of enter this. I think they become a subscriber. I start sending them offers. You know, there are two or three ways to work with me. One is if you want to write the copy yourself and you're sort of sort of a go getter.

I have a digital course. It's a low ticket offer. When I say low, take it offer, it's not a four figure price tag that I put on my services. It's a 37 dollar course where you can learn how to write the sales copy yourself. It's a digital course. And a lot of people who find me on my website when they join and become a subscriber onto my email list, I eventually send them. They're saying, hey, if you want to write your copy, this is a digital course and it's only thirty seven dollars.

It's a no brainer price. So that's one way. The next level to work with me would be this done with you group coaching program that is, you know, which I'm very excited about because dun dun for you is great. One on one copy is great and I'm not retiring from that anytime soon because I am working on bigger launch packages. But I realize that there needs to be a mid level of people who can't, like you said, can't exactly afford hiring a professional copywriter to write all their copy.

So that's where I thought, you know what? Why not? I create this mid-level offer where I do done with you. Take my service. I have a sales page, product, my service. Take that and take them through that and get them the same results. It will be a four to six week process. And yeah, so that that's my mid-level offer. And obviously, if you want something which is custom bespoke, which is, you know, down to T.

that's where my higher one on one offering comes into place. So these are three different ways that you can work with me and mostly where I get my clients as Instagram. I'm very active there. I have a content writer who writes blog posts for us because that's something that I can't do anymore. I just don't have the time. And he's SEO savvy, so we're kind of like doubling down our efforts on to that, you know, doing podcasts like these, appearing as a guest on podcasts.

If you can become if you can join a mastermind, if that's possible for you, that would be great, because that's where a lot of your leads come from or another coaching program or another membership site where you have where there are people either in your space or a space which is complimentary to you. And, you know, you can partner up with someone, collaborate. Those ventures are also profitable. So that's that's really what it comes down to for me right now.

But it's if you if I had to really put one word, it's it's all about relationships. I mean, this is where I form relationships and get my clients this way. Would it look different maybe a couple of years down the line? What I do Facebook ads maybe, but I just don't know that right now. I don't see that as a possibility. Right now. It's it's yeah. It's just referral based in word by word of mouth marketing, I think for this place you're in.

Makes perfect sense, and if you don't have to spend the money on ads. Don't spend the money on ads. That's exactly. It's quite inspiring to listen to that. I really I love the way that you're going about that. I mean, if people do want to take things further with you, if people want to reach out to you, how would you like them to do that?

That's very simple. Go to my website if you want to get a start. You know, get a taste of who I am. The copy is sort of engaging. If I say so myself. You can. And if you have trouble coming up with writing your sales pages, I have a fantastic freebie for you. It's called the five compelling hooks and headlines to use that you can help you start writing your sales pitch. You can opt in for that and you will be onto my email list and I email my list at least a couple of times a month, two or three times a month.

And that's where you can get started to, you know, get on my list and get to know me that way. And the other thing, if you are interested in working with me and getting your sales copy done, I am going to be launching my Done with you program. It's going to start October 1st. And if this is of something of interest to you, send me an email, my emails, Amisha at the copy crew dot com, or you can find me on Instagram.

It's the same handle the copy girl. Just send me a direct message. Well worth following on Instagram.

You're good value. Oh, thank you. I mean, so what's one thing that you do now that you wish you'd started five years ago? That's a good question.

What is the one thing that I do now that I wish I started five years ago? Hmm.

I don't give too much warning on these questions. I like it. It's kind of like how I have these questions on my kick off called. The clients are stumped. What's the one thing that I would, I wish had asked for help earlier, much earlier than rather trying to do everything on my own. I remember when I built my first passive income funnel. It was a nightmare. I am not a tech person and if I had outsourced that from the very beginning, I would have had, you know, increase my productivity, my efficiency.

I would have been a happier person. I was not fun to live with those for six months when I was launching a funnel. The tech stuff really got to me and I can understand that, yeah, I was being very scrappy in my mind. I thought, like, no, you know, I have to keep costs down, but you know what I mean. There are plenty of people out there who loves that sort of work and they would be happy to do it for you.

I know better now. So I do have a tech visa and I wouldn't have I wish I had hired someone earlier, much earlier in the process.

I mean, you've been a fantastic guest. I have learned so much. And I need to go away and do some homework now. But yeah. Thank you very much for your time and look forward to meeting you in person sometime. Yeah, I would love to. And thank you for having me. This has been wonderful. I'd love to come and see you out in Scotland. It's on my bucket list for sure. After this crazy madness ends is well worth it.

Thank you. Thank you. If the words on your website were an afterthought, then think on this, you know you're special. If I ask you, are you the same as everyone else who does what you do, you'll say, of course not. You'll have a really clear story. You'll know why. But you may want to tell your website and your sales copy and your email before I go. Just a quick reminder to subscribe, but if you haven't already join our Facebook group, you'll find a link in the show, notes or visit, amplify me forward slash insiders.

I would love for you to connect with me wherever you hang out. You'll find me at Bob Gentle. And if you do, message me whichever platform you're on so I can follow you back. If you enjoyed the show, then as always, I would love for you to review on iTunes. It means a lot to me and it's the very best way to help me reach more subscribers. My name's Bob Gentile. Thanks again to our mission for giving us her time this week and to you for listening.

And I'll see you next week.


Overview

Playing bigger as an entrepreneur or as a content creator is a continuous process. Wether it's in your marketing, your business or the impact your'e having on an audience. If you're not growing and challenging yourself then you are not going to move forward. This is as true of learning new tactics and strategies as it is embracing your personal bran challenges and simply showing up on ever bigger staged.

There comes a time when showing up asks more of us and this week my guest is verbal communication and story coach, Helen Peckham. Helen helps people show up and play bigger both online and on stages and in this episode she's going to walk us through exactly how she does that.

If being a podcast guest, live streaming, being a guest expert or delivering in person or even virtual keynotes leaves you feeling frozen with fear - grab a coffee - chill out and get ready for a breakthrough.

Links and mentions

Thanks for listening!

It means a lot to me and to the guests. If you enjoyed listening then please do take a second to rate the show on iTunes.  Every podcaster will tell you that iTunes reviews drive listeners to our shows so please let me know what you thought and make sure you subscribe using your favourite player using the links below.

Automatic Audio Transcription

Playing bigger as an entrepreneur, a content creator, is a continuous process, whether it's in your marketing, your business or the impact you're having on an audience, if you like growing and challenging yourself, then you're not going to move forward. This is as true of learning new tactics and strategies as it is embracing your personal brand challenges and simply showing up on ever bigger stages. There comes a time when showing up asks more of us. And this week my guest is verbal communication and story coach Helen Peckham.

Helen helps people show up and play bigger, both online and on physical stages. And in this episode, she's going to walk us through exactly how she does that of being a podcast guest, live streaming, being a guest per hour, delivering in person or even in virtual keynotes leaves you feeling frozen with fear. Grab a coffee, chill out and get ready for a breakthrough. Hi there. And welcome back to Amplify the Digital Marketing Entrepreneur podcast. I'm Bob Gentle.

And every week I'm joined by amazing people who share what makes their business work. So if you're new to the show, take a second right now to subscribe so you don't miss new episodes and you can grab some older ones when you're done with this one. Don't forget as well to join our Facebook community, just visit, amplify me to have forward slash insiders and you'll be taken right there. So welcome along. And let's meet Helen. So this week, I'm delighted to welcome Helen Peckham to the show.

Helen, welcome to the show. Thank you so much for having me, Bob.

I am really excited to speak to you because for your particular specialism, I have many, many questions. But for the listener, why don't you start by telling us a little bit about who you are, where you are and the kind of work you do.

Yeah, thank you so much. So, as Bob said, I'm Helen Packham and I am a verbal communications strategist. That is the official term. But essentially I help entrepreneurs, business leaders and business owners who are ten times the impact of their communication, presentations, briefings, meetings or public speaking, which is my big thing.

I think the public speaking is the big thing, because for a lot of people it's a big thing, either because it's very, very effective and they love doing it or because it's a big thing in their head that they can't quite bring themselves to do. Where do you find when you start working with people, particularly in the public speaking side of things, have to they have some experience or is it they just know they need to do something?

It varies, I guess, depending on who I'm working with. If it's within the entrepreneurial market, as in coaches, consultants, people like that, often they don't have much experience. They may have done it a few times, but they have a burning desire. They know that they're meant to do it. They just are not sure how to do it, you know, to be confidently, to do it articulately and all of those things, which is why they come to me.

And I guess the public speaking side of things, when I look back through your LinkedIn resume, which is really all I have to touch, which is probably very limited and curated, I'm curious to know at what point to the verbal communications become your thing because it isn't immediately apparent.

No, no. It's been a very interesting journey and it's not something I ever had set my sights on. So my background is in corporate leadership development. I spent 15 years coaching and training leaders within the corporate world on how to be more effective leaders. And in that time, just it just naturally started to happen. People would gravitate towards me if they needed help with that communication. So, for example, an introverted leader who was very technically skilled but didn't necessarily have natural people skills.

So communicating, you know, standing up and in front of all their people and trying to engage them was something that felt very uncomfortable to them. So more and more leaders seemed quite senior leaders within financial services organizations in particular would come to me for help with those types of things. And so along the way, I picked up some tools. I studied heavily in specialized within psychometric development. So personality development so I could work with the leader on their personality to to make it authentic.

So I didn't have to be someone else when they were presenting or speaking. And then we also I picked up a tool which I still use very much daku storytelling. And what I found was that storytelling is an innate human skill that everybody has. And when you use storytelling, it lifts your your talks, it raises your confidence and it heightens the impact on your audience. And so I tested out storytelling on these leaders and with really great effect. And then I had a baby and lost the plot and I left the corporate world.

I ran away and I hid. I never developed an anxiety disorder. And the thought of standing off in front of a roomful of anybody, maybe physically sick. And I vowed that I would never do that again. And that lasted about four years. And I didn't really see anybody. I didn't do anything. And I was very limited. And, you know, communication was not my strong point at all. But a lot of things happened to me to come out of that story for another day.

And I set myself on a journey to regain those skills and to use them again. And I set myself a goal to do a TED talk because I thought, what's the best way I can prove to myself that I do have these skills and I can stand up in front of a room full of people. And so I set my sights on that, put it on my vision board, and eight months later that came true. So for the first time in four years, I stood up in front of a roomful of fifteen hundred people at the Broughton Dome and told my story.

And that was a very, very pivotal moment for me. I proved to myself that the skills I thought I'd lost were not lost, that I could I could verbally communicate in front of a roomful of people and everything changed after that. People kept coming up to. And saying they were contacting me and saying, how did you do that, given that you've been a hermit for four years? And so I pulled up. I pulled on my corporate expertise to do that.

And it was a natural thing. So I launched a speaker program and that sold out. And then I ran various other courses all around speaking and communicating and storytelling. And then I put on my first conference in Brighton all around speaking and leadership. And then I did a virtual conference and another conference. And it's really just gone from there. And I think it was about 18 months ago, I finally opened it. I stepped into this nation, said, yes, this is my thing.

This is my thing. It's built up all over the years. It wasn't something that I planned to do, but the various things that have happened in my life have led me here. And that's where I am today.

And how has obviously anybody listening to this as it's published would be very well aware of the covid situation at the moment. How has that impacted, I guess, your business and also your clients and and what their aspirations are?

Well, personally, in March, I had a lot of face to face, corporate work booked in for the rest of the year.

And in March, that was all cancelled. And luckily, I don't just rely on that in my business. I have an online element of my business as well that I have had for six years. But it was it did have a big impact. And so what I did was I pulled my virtual speaking and training experience together and I put two courses out there.

And in speaking to my clients and people within my audience, of course, people were concerned that any type of Face-To-Face delivery, whether it be public speaking or training or whatever it might be, obviously wasn't going to happen.

And but rather than that be it, of course, you know, there was opportunity. Now, I'm also a curator for today. I'm a curator at the lead curator for Mosley. And our event was meant to be happening in October and we decided to move it to next year. And so, you know, what's happening. What we're seeing is there's three things happening. So any type of face to face, it won't be a conference or a TED event or whatever it might be, either moving or they're moving online.

So a lot of face to face events moving online in different forms, which is fantastic. I'll give you an example. The a conference, I believe that where I met you.

Yes. Yes.

The Open Air Conference. So a fantastic conference over two days. Four hundred people is now being turned into a two day virtual event with breakouts and facilitation and mastermind's and really creative ways of delivering it virtually. And not just only this is happening. New events are being created. It's absolutely exploding now. Virtual events are exploding. Online festivals are now a thing. Five day events where you have campfire chats and, you know, all sorts of things going on virtually.

And I am absolutely loving seeing what's happening. So now there's actually even more opportunity for people to speak. It may not be on a stage, but the skills are still transferable hugely to the virtual space.

I think also that it's almost like the playing field is being reset because nobody can do in-person events. There's so much new opportunity for everybody. Yeah, there's a real leveling going on at the moment, which is why I think a service like yours is potentially so useful. I think what I was thinking about actually is everybody's familiar with the idea of digital. You need to show up, but there are degrees of show up, Ignace, and it kind of becomes a little bit worthwhile.

You need to post something on social media and. Well, you need to you need to write a blog post or you need to do some video or you need to do a podcast. But then at each stage of show up, there are personal challenges and thresholds to cross. And for most people, they don't push themselves beyond the content creator show up, but put to push into the public speaking, show up or into the author or show up.

There are two different, I guess, fields of play that are very yeah, they're big leagues and most people never really overcome themselves to go in there. And I put my hand up, that's me right now, which is why I'm so keen to speak to you. But now is a great time to do this because there's just so much opportunity. So what advice would you have for anybody listening? That's thinking I need to play a little bit bigger, but I really don't know where to begin.

It might be they don't know. It's one of these things, I think, where. If people know you're willing to do it, they'll ask you if they don't know you're willing to do it. They won't ask you. So how do you crack that nut, first of all? I guess.

So I think with that, particularly in a virtual space, it's about to think is what is my next what is the next step? And the great thing about virtual speaking, as you as you said, in terms of show up, think this is there's actually six of the six platforms for virtual speaking.

So there's podcasts like this, which is a fantastic platform for speaking because of the reach, because of the leveraging of audiences, because of the promotion of self and non promotion a way, and because it's a conversation. But to think about it strategically and in a focused way can really have huge, huge results. So I think it's to say, what's the next step? First of all, what are you going to talk about? What is your topic?

What is your area of expertise and why is it hot right now? Because we can talk about lots of different things.

But if we don't know what we're going to talk about right now, then we don't know who we're going to target in terms of how are we going to get ourselves out there. So what do you what's your area of expertise and what's hot right now in terms of what you want to talk about? I mean, we're talking about something that's hot right now because we're in the middle of a pandemic and the need for virtual delivery has hugely increased. And so what's that for you in terms of your area of expertise?

And the next thing you think is, you know, where is it? For example, podcasts, interviews. There's live streams. You know, people got sick of live streams, but they're still a tool that can be hugely leveraged to get yourself out there in a verbal way, to start to tell your story, to teach people something to connect with your audience emotionally. So livestream is actually is a speaking platform that you're in charge of. So that could be a next step if you're not sure or there's guest expert sessions.

Guest expectations are a fantastic way of increasing your visibility and reach and generating leads. And all you have to do is find a colleague who's running a program or a membership community, go in and deliver a guest expert session on your area of expertise or the resume, and you get to tell your story and you get to deliver value.

There's obviously things like virtual keynotes, which some people might think that is a huge leap, but it's not. And I really want to encourage people to believe that because if you know you're passionate about something and you have an area of expertise or you have a message that goes left, I talk about the messages that go left where everybody else is going right. Messages that have an opinion around them or a story around them, then you can do a virtual keynote.

There's just a few skills you need in order to deliver one effectively. But you can absolutely do that. It's possible for you. There's training workshops, of course, in the virtual space. So in terms of the corporate market, you can actually get paid very well for those types of things. And there's webinars as well. So there's really a whole plethora of virtual speaking opportunities for people.

I think if you if people are scared about it or they're worried about, you know, pushing themselves past their current comfort zone, it's what is the next step for you? Currently, you like posting on Facebook. Could you do a live stream? What would that be like if you're comfortable with live streams? What about focusing on podcast interviews, just as an example?

Hmm. I think that's a really good perspective. I think something that I found and you'll probably resonate with this as well as confidence is a bit of a muscle. And the more you stretch it, the more you train, the more quickly you can improve your fitness. I used to do an awful lot of oh, well, I go there.

No, I won't. I'm quite accustomed to understanding how fitness works and knowing exactly how what you need to do to build fitness. And I think with getting over these sort of confidence challenges around showing up, it's exactly the same. And I guess, yeah, it's a really difficult thing to explain until you've done it. But live streaming, for example, I was terrified of live streaming. And you just take me two months back and I wouldn't have really done a live stream.

I did a live stream. Suddenly I'm happy with live streaming. I'll tell you a secret. I got approved for LinkedIn live today. I'm so excited.

Excited. Very exciting. Congratulations. I know.

And I'm going to go nuts with that because it's really where my audience is. But I could never have said that with enthusiasm even a month ago showing up in other people's audiences. That's a little bit intimidating for me. But I understand the. It's just a case of once you do it, it won't be intimidating anymore and you are the expert. Yes. However, this is my next question. Many experts are experts on lots of different things. And Helen Peckham is an expert in verbal communication.

So when you're choosing to show up, how do you avoid the complete works of digital marketing, according to Bob, or verbal communication by Helen? Were you how do you choose what to hone in on to what to focus on?

Yeah, really great question. So there's two main ways of helping you with that. So the first the first is always, always starting with your absolute area of expertise. So within digital marketing, the best thing that is your thing. And there may be a number of things within that. How to narrow that down is to go back to a few things and look at your story, the core story of your business, and have a look at that and see how that may have evolved.

Now, a lot of people, they don't have a core story, so I help them to get that together. But a lot of the time we evolve, we evolve and our expertise evolves. And so it's really important to cast back and think, OK, how have I got here and what are the things the things that I can really hang my hat on. And secondly is is the thing that makes you unique in terms of your expertise. Generally speaking, we can we can find our uniqueness within our story because nobody else can have your story.

We can also find our uniqueness in a method we may have created or a framework we may have put together within that particular area of expertise. Those are just a couple of things. There are obviously more. But you can you can start to look within that, I think. Okay, well, I've got a thing. I've got a thing.

It's a framework or it's a process out of working with this many people or working with this many digital marketing strategies or whatever it might be. I've got this thing that you can talk about. That's your thing. The other thing to think about in terms of what do you talk about is I go back to what's hot right now and then look at the market, look at the industry, look at the audience, look at what's happening and take a pulse on that and think about topics that are really important to be discussing that are in line with your area of expertise, because particularly if you're going to do a keynote or a podcast interview, for example, the topic has to be hot, as in it's relevant to the wider world is in the wider world within that particular industry or the audience that you're talking to.

What do they need to know about that? You know, about that they might not know about? What do they need to start thinking about in terms of being ahead of the curve? These types of topics are always going to go down. Well, if you're doing a guest expert session, then you're probably going to be pointing towards an offer. So it's about thinking, what topic can I talk about that is aligned with an offer that I'm promoting?

So it could be a special offer that you put together. It could be a program or a course or workshop, whatever that that is.

Then you can track back and think, OK, so what's the problem that I'm solving? Just thought you might do if you were doing a launch marketing terms and you want to do a webinar live training, you would focus it on a problem that you can solve your clients in your program. Just the same with speaking. Think about a problem that they need that you can give value to by telling them about it that would naturally lead into promoting and offer the help that does.

That's really, really useful. What do they need to know? This is, I guess, is bringing mission into it a little bit.

It's a nobody really wants to come to a talk and be hustled, but what they want to see is somebody that's on fire. And where's that going to come from? It's going to come from somebody that almost evangelical who needs to communicate. This is what you need to know. So that's really very helpful because the last thing anybody wants, I remember. Oh, my God, I went to what was it? It was the Society of Petroleum Engineers.

Oh, I thought this was a good idea. I went to one of their public events and there was this very knowledgeable geophysicist giving and giving a talk.

And I swear to God, I just wanted to sleep. He was transmitting what was obviously really incredibly valuable information, but he was transmitting information. He wasn't communicating. And he went on for about an hour and a half. Yeah, I never went back to them.

So this is this is where so as you said, transmitting and communicating, presenting and speaking very, very different things. Also, experts need to understand that they can't talk within their own language. And so this is where storytelling comes in. So any expert, any type of technical expert or an audience have no idea what they're talking about, even if it was a completely different audience. You can use storytelling in various various different forms to communicate an idea, to articulate something, no matter how dull or dry or boring or complex, so that it can actually hit home and be heard with intrigue, inspiration and delight.

I found quite a big claim, but it's true and a lot of the time people won't even remember what you said.

They just remember how you made them feel. Yes. And they might remember an idea. Yes. But that's about it.

That's what you want. That's where they talk with a keynote speech. You don't want to be people don't need to learn anything that's training with a talk. It's the golden nugget. What golden nugget can that person in the audience take away? How do you want to make them feel? What do you want to make them think? What are they going to take away and what do you want them to do as a result of you speaking to them?

So for the listener, that's maybe thinking, OK, I have established some credibility online, I have some emerging expert status. I'd like to take this next step into being a podcast guest doing guest expert sessions, maybe virtual keynotes or webinars, webinars, potentially not because you can own the webinar. You can there's nothing in the way there. You're not depending on a new relationship to make it happen.

But for the person who doesn't have the credentials to demonstrate or they've been doing this for a long time, they're reliable. They're legit. Obviously, they're a no brainer. How do you communicate? I'm somebody who should take a chance on me.

Really great question. So there's a number of ways that you can do it, depending on whether that person is cold, as in you've never had any type of connection with that person, whether they are warm as anything you may have heard of each other or whether they are hot. So you have a good relationship with that person. Maybe I should focus on the cold because a lot of people might find themselves in that situation. Now, I have always been a fan of the I call it the back door method.

So it's how I landed my TED talk and in my various programs and Ted course and I've got various other courses where I help people pitch for things and land gigs and whatever gig it might might be. The backdoor method is is a really great approach. And essentially what it involves is there being a some type of connection with that person. So, for example, if you want to get on a podcast and it's a really great podcast you listen to already that you are a fan of, then you would show the podcast host that you are a fan and that you.

Really value their work first and foremost, and that could be as simple as sharing things on social media. It can be simple, sending them an email and just thanking them for a particular episode, always genuine. I will have to say this always has to come from a genuine place and then that can lead into more content sharing. Maybe they might have a book that you've read that you can share an article about. This is a very great way of building a relationship with someone.

And then when you feel it is the right time, you would send the email showing them what you're made of and why it would be great for them to have you on their show for their audiences benefit always. See, I'm a curator, so I curated events. And when I get emails from people saying I'd like to be a speaker in your lineup, that doesn't give me any information about them or how their talk can help my audience. So it's always really good to think what is the audience?

How can your subject help them and why would it be a benefit to them? That's essentially, in a nutshell, my back door method. It's build relationships first.

Yeah, I guess that sounds like common sense. But one thing I'm also taking away from that is you need to have decided what's the value you want to bring before you go asking? Absolutely. Yeah, that's that's really, really helpful.

Even if you don't use the back door method and you go straight in for the pitch, which is I've done I've done as well, it's about really thinking and considering what's the hot right now topic. How is that aligned with your expertise? What is the audience? What do they need to hear? And so you have to know that to do your research, it really doesn't take long to find out, to listen to podcast episodes, to look at someone's audience, to tap yourself into what's happening and then make a really considered pitch that explains those things.

I think people think, oh, so not a lot of effort, but it's the thing that will get you the results.

Well, that's exactly true. I think if I look at I I saw Pat Flynn this morning on Instagram and he just made like a really short video and he was using his hands as a clock. And for anybody that's not familiar with an empire, Flynn but Flynn in the online world is as close to God as you get. And he was just doing a very funny image with his hands showing the amount of time people pay attention online. And he just put his hand up at the top of.

Right. A street above him as a as a minute hand and his social media posts, you'll get like maybe a minute YouTube video, maybe three minutes or whatever else it was. Again, you're talking minutes with podcasts, seminars, workshops. You're up towards an hour. It's quite unique. So it's worth the investment because if you want people's attention, you're going to need to show up where people pay attention. And a lot of the time that's not social media, that's not YouTube.

So it's the gateway to other things.

That's what I see social media as, something I do help people with content marketing in terms of storytelling and impact in their verbal communication, but also written communication. But it's the gateway to the podcast episode. And you think about the reach the podcast episode can give you over. Now, you know, saturated social media feed is. Yeah, I love that. I'm going to go look up that video because I wholeheartedly agree.

Just I had never thought of it in those terms before. But when you when you watch him doing that sort of little comedy gesture, you think, well, obviously. So looking at you and your own content marketing, I know you're quite busy with Instagram and LinkedIn, but you also have a radio show. How did that happen? Well, you co-host a radio show. Yes.

So the story behind that is I, I somehow managed to get a guest, a guest again, not a guest expert, a guest slot on BBC Radio Sussex. So every month I would go in I think it started because I was promoting my conference and she liked the banter that we had. So I came in every month. I read the newspapers, I picked the stories and I chatted with the presenter about stories and it went really, really well.

And pretty much the only person that tuned in to listen to me with my beloved dad.

And he would listen and my and my stepmom I know my mum did as well, but it was a very few amount of people that did. And my dad would always say, after listening to each month thing, you should do this, Helen. You've got a fantastic voice for radio. You should pursue this. And I never really thought too much of it. But then I lost him last May, and it was something that I really wanted to pursue because he said that.

And so I enrolled on a radio course.

Presenting course, and I thought, oh, my God, it's really tricky because of all the channels and the dials and the jingles and the oh my goodness, but I did. And then out of that came an opportunity to host the Brighton Business Show on Radio Reverb, which is a local community radio station in Brighton. We've got about 80000 listenership. It's extending. We're getting new masts up in different places. But it is a small radio station. It's volunteer run.

And I got the opportunity to host the show with my my colleague and friend Lisa Moore, and I jumped at the chance. And so we've been doing that since November last year, every month. And I absolutely love it. And obviously, we can't go in the studio at the moment, which was the most amazing experience. But yeah, we love it.

Living the Alan Partridge Dream. Aha. Sorry for the US audience. You'll need to Google it. So what else does how intentional are you about marketing the Helen Peckham brand?

I'd say I'm I'm quite intentional now. I'd say maybe within the last three years I've become much more focused in on that since I rebranded in the last 18 months and particularly stepped into the speaking niche. I've been very, very focused in on it and I have quite a specific strategy around it. And I'm developing all the time.

And it's the one thing that I guess over the years I really had to learn in order to get myself out there.

And I think your Instagram is really on point. I really enjoy your Instagram because, yeah, you you are very consistent in your visual storytelling, which a lot of people aren't. And it comes back to showing up. A lot of people use Instagram to point out to look out. What you managed to do quite well is take people with you, which is really surprisingly rare. But what I mean by that is I used to be guilty of this a lot, that you would take pictures of stuff, but you would never appear in your own social media, where we're quite accustomed to people in the online world taking selfies all the time.

But the truth is, that's quite rare. It's a very tiny proportion of people who actually show up in their own social media. Most people are busy showing other people stuff. Yeah, and you do that very well. How do you handle LinkedIn? Because I think I know you're you're active on LinkedIn, but I find LinkedIn really noisy would be the way to put it.

Very different, very different strategy. So I'd say Instagram really is only been the last year that I've been able to kind of get a handle on it and understand of using stories on Instagram has been huge for me, really interacting and showing the behind the scenes to build relationships with people. I'd say that's probably my most successful strategy on Instagram, but on LinkedIn, I'd say it's been really the last six, only the last six months that I've really, really focused in on.

On it now, again, I'd say that the the main strategy that works on LinkedIn is the building relationships through DMS. I do broadcast content, but I must say that I need to do a much better job of engaging with other people's content on LinkedIn. It's just a tiny factor in terms of time spent. But the most successful strategy has been writing articles and sharing those with people through DMS.

Now I'm going to sort of just nibble into this a little bit because I get random DMS from Hustler's every day.

How do you sidestep that?

You know, obviously there is a lot of noise in the DMS on LinkedIn and as I say, I'm quite new to this, so I'm definitely not an expert in terms of giving advice. Maybe I just I guess I've just got to share what works for me. I have found that obviously. Yes. You know, I'm making contact connection requests and I am sending out my article to quite a few people. Of course, there's going to be a lot of people that ignore it.

That's fine. There's going to be a lot of people that say thank you for sharing. I'll take a read. And then there's a small percentage of people that engage. And what I found is from that percentage of people that engage, you get results because it leads to a business development conversation about what's happening within the organization.

And I literally have literally just before this podcast, I sent an article to Dan and the lady had asked for a call. She's an H.R. director for a large organization. And I'm putting forward a proposal for four pieces of work tomorrow night.

Yeah, so it works.

I guess Fortune favors the bold, but I guess as long as you're able to come back to content at the end of the day, if you're going with what do they need to know rather than what can I get exactly? You're going to be received quite different.

That's it for the article. I guess what's hot right now at the moment in terms of organizations, people are suffering from virtual fatigue. So I wrote an article nine Ways to Prevent Virtual Fatigue, and I view storytelling in there and loads of other tips and tricks on how people can communicate more effectively over their virtual meetings and briefings. So it's very aligned with my expertise, but it's covering a hot right now topic.

I think when it comes, I'm a big believer that the the word digital marketing expert or social media platform expert is a myth. Everything moves so quickly, so fluid. It's somebody who uncovered what's working right now and understands why is about as good as it gets. So you're saying I'm not an expert? Well, I would say right now you probably are in it's working. So another question I really like to ask frequently is anybody's business work will typically come to them in one of several ways.

It's either referral based or it's inbound opportunities as a result of content marketing or its paid ads. Is there a fourth way? I'm not sure. But how does that typically look for you?

Sorry, in terms of in terms of is your work coming through predominantly through referrals or as a result of your content marketing or as a result of outbound sales or prospecting?

I would say it is. The majority is coming through content marketing. That's really good.

You wouldn't understand how unusual the answer is. I ask it often and a lot of the time with the people who you would think they're very big on Facebook ads, for example, those people get all the work through referrals or when their social media experts, they most of the work comes through open sales activity. So that's really encouraging to hear that. And I think it's testament to the power of showing up on LinkedIn.

I guess content marketing is sending someone an article in a D.M. as well as broadcasting. That's how I guess I see. I'm writing content and I'm sharing it. So I may have targeted that person specifically, but I'm sharing content. So that's on LinkedIn with Facebook and Instagram. Yeah, it's it's putting out content and engaging with the audience.

I'm being a little bit courageous, I think. So I'm curious to know, I think you are quite accustomed to being uncomfortable, but where do you feel you struggle or you don't quite push where you know you should? Hmm.

Oh, gosh. And let me think about that. So, yeah, I know it's a challenging question I can answer, I can answer it. So this is going to be a bit of a vulnerable one, actually, because I think losing my dad, I will say that I've really dipped into periods. It's happened about three or four times where I've not wanted to show up at all, like because of, you know, understandably grief and all of these sorts of things.

And when you feel those feelings, you don't want to be visible. And so what's happened since he died and I would say definitely come out of that period. Now, I'm all guns blazing at the moment. But, you know, from May last year to the end of last year, there were some significant periods where I did not want to be online at all. And in that time, so I used to do live streams all the time.

I stopped doing night streams. I literally just had my content strategy of just writing content and then getting that scheduled out. And that's all I did. So I wasn't actually showing up at all for periods. And in that time, I guess I became more uncomfortable with showing up on a life which I used to do all the time.

And then there was just no way I wanted to do that. So I'd say probably now very much is pushing myself to speak in more situations that might be a bit more of an uncomfortable audience or get more visible on video. In general, I think now, because of what's happened over the last year, I've tend to slip into written content as comfort.

I think that's actually a really important thing for people to hear, because I recognize elements of it and myself that when your energy is high and you're feeling very positive, it's very easy to be courageous when you're feeling vulnerable and things aren't quite going your way. There's every reason not to try and pushing through that is really hard. But I think understanding and shining a light on it will actually, when you understand something, it's much easier to move past something when you can see the monster in the light, you know, it's just a pillow.

And that's that's really, really helpful. I love that.

It's so true. But when you're in it and you're in the depth of whatever you're feeling and you can't see a way out, it's very tricky. And so what I would say, Don Meredith always says about the minimum effective dose. So even when I was feeling like I did like I wanted just to hide away from the world, I had my minimum effective dose, which was the minimum amount of times I could show up on social media a week to to make sure that I was still consistently visible.

Yeah, and the minimum effective dose is great for maintenance, but it's not so great for growth. So you can't stay there for too long. And I think for a lot of people, the minimum effective dose is actually to go first.

So, Helen, I'm looking at the clock thinking we've been going for quite a while now. If people want to connect with people, if they want to go further with you, how would you like them to do that?

Well, actually, just from our conversation, a few things came up that I guess I didn't know where the conversation was going. And I guess the thing maybe that people might be needing help with now is really how to get themselves out visibly as a speaker on those virtual platforms. And I have put together something that can help with that. It's a low cost cause. I actually put out in lockdown that it's called virtual speaking pro, and it covers those six methods that I talk to you about.

And it also has modules on how to decide what your hot topic is and how to actually land the gigs.

I had a look at that earlier. Actually, you don't know that, but I have a good rummage around people's websites before we have interviews and it looks like a really great product. And for the cynical listener, I don't benefit when guests promote their stuff at all, but I genuinely think this looks like a brilliant course. Helen, I'm going to ask this question that the listeners know I'm getting quite good at remembering. And that's what's one thing you do now that you wish had started five years ago.

It's a really great question, I guess is a number of ways I could answer it, but I wish five years ago I could have stepped into the niche that I stepped into sooner because I was a really good one.

And in terms of what people need to know, I think this is a big one.

Also, just having the confidence to own it that that's been the thing that's delayed me. And I think probably to be the same for lots of people. You may have that thing, but you're scared to step into it because it will cancel out loads of other people or it will narrow you down too much and you won't get other business. But I can I just want to say that is not the case. More business will come to you when you step into your greatness and you own the thing that is your thing, 100 percent brilliant.

And if anybody listening wants to jump on Helen's course, what's your website address? Dr. Helen Packham dot com. And you can find links to all Helen's other stuff right there. Helen, thank you so much for your time. You've been a fantastic guest. Thank you so much for having me. Bob has been great. Ask yourself this, exactly what is it you're scared of right now if you're like most people? The answer is probably one of the things we just discussed.

And if that's how you reflect on that for a moment and just imagine what life could look like if you just got past it. It's pretty exciting. So before I go, just a quick reminder to subscribe. And if you haven't already join our Facebook group, you'll find a link in the show, notes or just visit, amplify me form forward slash inciters. I would love for you to connect with me on social media. A lot of people seem to prefer doing that on LinkedIn, which is amazing.

But wherever you hang out, just find me at Bob Gentle. I'm super easy to find. If you enjoyed the show, then I would love for you to review on iTunes or whichever platform you listen on. Sadly, on Spotify you can't yet. So go somewhere else where you can. It means a lot to me and it's the very best way to help me reach more subscribers. My name's Bob Gentle. Thanks again to Helen for giving us her time this week and to you for listening.

And I'll see you next week.

If you want to build your business online, to build your reach, impact or authority then at some point you need to graduate from posting on social media and become a creator of content. When it comes to content there are two formats which stand out.

Video and Audio

Why? Because they open the door to building relationships at scale. You can create marketing content, products, podcasts youtube channels and all of this ultimately leads to generating revenue.

A lot of people try to do this with a blog. And some succeed but the written word just doen’t connect or transport us in the same way as the moving picture or the spoken word. Blogging is great for lots of things but if we’re honest we’re lazy and prefer to consume TV and Radio.

So why is it that we all know the impact audio and video can have but so few make that step to take action?

Well a lot of people are uncomfortable with video. But if we dig into that a little it’s not the video side of things at all. Most people just can’t bear the sound of their voice when they hear it back. This is the very first barrier.

It’s very common for someone to film them selves and be fine with the process but the moment they hear themselves back – delete. Time for a coffee and some real work.

When I started my podcast this was a huge challenge. I understood because I’d done some research but even then it was a big issue. Editing myself was like hearing fingers on a blackboard. When I was a guest on other people’s podcasts I couldn’t listen. Over time this faded. I’m fine with hearing my voice now but it wasn’t easy.

So what’s happening here? First of all what you hear as your voice when you speak is not your voice. It”s only the version you hear. When other people hear your voice it’s transmitted through the air and the frequency range is wide. When you hear your voice it’s transmitted through bone with a low frequency range. It’s a totally different sound.

A second factor ( and there are a lot more ) is that there’s a part of our brain which reads emotional queues in voices. When we speak ourselves we don’t activate this part of the brain. But when we hear ourselves played back it activates and this causes a very strange emotional feedback loop which causes us to react so strongly.

Interestingly studies have shown that when your voice is played back and you don’t realise it’s your own you are likely to rate it higher than normal for attractiveness.

If you want to build your brand online then the voice barrier is one your going to need to push through. Once your get through it you’ll find all the reactions vanish and you can start enjoying things but you’ll only get through it with consistent action.

Try this 👉 Record yourself daily saying something short and listen back. This simple daily practise will desensitize you. What you say doesn’t matter. Just that you hear your voice back once per day.

Every body has this. Some stay trapped by it and never break through – other push through and those are the people you know through video and audio.

I’d love to know if you have any ‘hating your voice’ stories or your tips for getting over it. Let me know.

If setting up a podcast is on your list of marketing goals then you’ll quickly find there are a lot of moving parts. It can take weeks of trial and error to work out the right tools, tech and quirks. Never mind the requirements of Apple podcasts and Spotify.

So – sit back and chill as I walk you through it all.

And if you want to download the notes and links – they’re all here.

Overview

People try this every day. They make something at home and sell it online. But what needs to happen to turn that simple idea into a multimillion dollar business? What is that X Factor that makes one person success while another simply washes out?

For Jamie Cross from MIG Living the XFactor wasn't money or a great network. In this episode we explore how and why she built her business from the kitchen table, through farmers markets and into one of the fastest growing companies in America.

About Jamie

Jaime Cross is a wife, mother of four small boys (with a fifth on the way) & an eight figure entrepreneur. She founded her organic skincare company, MIG Living, after seeing a business plan in a dream ten years ago.

In 2019, Jaime also started The HER Effect® as a global movement to mobilize & empower women towards action & vision for impact, giving them all that is necessary to be successful in their families, businesses and in life.

Jaime’s been featured on top morning shows on NBC, FOX, ABC and CBS stations, as well as Life & Style Magazine, Forbes, USA Today, Red Tricycle, and more.

Links and mentions

Thanks for listening!

It means a lot to me and to the guests. If you enjoyed listening then please do take a second to rate the show on iTunes.  Every podcaster will tell you that iTunes reviews drive listeners to our shows so please let me know what you thought and make sure you subscribe using your favourite player using the links below.

Automatic Audio Transcription

People try this every time they make something at home and sell it on, like what needs to happen to turn that simple idea into a multimillion dollar business? What is that X Factor that makes one person a success while another simply washes out for Jamie Cross from make living? The X Factor wasn't money or a great network. In this episode, we explore how and why she built her business from the kitchen table through farmer's markets and into one of the fastest growing companies in America.

Hi there, and welcome back to Amplify the Digital Marketing Entrepreneur podcast. I'm Bob Chantal and every week I'm joined by amazing people who share what makes their business work. If you're new to the show, then take a second right now to subscribe so you don't miss new episodes and you can grab some older ones when you're done with this one. Don't forget as well, you can join our Facebook community, just visit, amplify meta form forward, slash insiders and I'll see you there.

So welcome along. And let's meet Jamie. So this week, I am delighted to welcome Jamie Cross to the show. Jamie runs Make Soap. Jamie, do you want me to start by introducing who you are, where you are and the kind of work that you do?

Yes, thank you. I am in Colorado Springs, Colorado. And I'm Jamie Cross. And I've been an entrepreneur for 10 years building a skincare company. And we also now have the effect where I'm teaching other women to do what I've done in building companies and being successful in the home and in entrepreneurship.

I think Colorado is pretty much the top of my U.S. bucket list. I've been to Florida twice. I think most tourists go to Florida once or twice. Yeah, but I really do want to venture past it at some point.

That's amazing. Colorado's amazing. You would love it here. Yeah, it's all mountain biking and skiing and snowboarding, and it's just exactly what I need help.

So tell me about milksop. First of all, I think one of the things that obviously a lot of people who come on the podcast, they're sourced by me. I hunt them down and I look at people that really intrigued me or inspire you. And I get contacted quite literally every single day by people wanting to come on the podcast. And I've said no to ninety nine point nine percent of them. But what really intrigued me with your business was from a foreign e-commerce business.

There's a strong personal brand there, which I really want to understand. And at the same time, I know lots of people who've tried to do what you do and not really done it very well. You've done it very, very well. And I really want to know, what have you done differently to build this business with. There's lots of places to go. But first off, tell me about mix up. What what was the genesis of that?

Yeah, for sure.

So it was 2010 and I was two and a half years into full time motherhood. I'd come out of, you know, corporate banking and just the whole corporate world and two and a half years into full time motherhood. And I just knew that there was more. And so I remember we were in this sort of I was in two positions. One is we were struggling financially because I had given up the salary. My husband was a full time teacher and wrestling coach and our take home pay was was laughable.

He's now the CEO of the company. So we worked together. But at the time, the financial struggle was really, you know, debit cards declining at the grocery store at checkout, you know, the utility companies calling. And but even more than that, I just in my own person, I knew that I knew I wanted to build something and create something and do something really powerful in the world. And so just one particular night, I just went to bed like bawling my eyes out.

And I asked God for a billion dollar idea so that I could change the world and leave a legacy for my family. And it wasn't too long after that I had a dream. So the dream was like a roadmap to this day. Here we are 10 years later, almost. And I remember every detail. And so I woke up from the dream, told my husband, I'm going to start a skincare company, and I did my research for a year.

I didn't know anything about chemistry or, you know, herbal alchemy or anything like that. And so I studied on my own nursing babies, you know, having a family, all of that, and then launched in 2011.

So no background in cosmetics, that kind of thing at all? None. No. Yeah, I signed up on a farm, so like as a farm girl and I understood the value of fresh and I had an early diagnosis for an autoimmune disorder. And so, like I was at a very young age, had a, you know, an appreciation for preserving health. And so there was that factor. But yeah, nothing regarding formulation or anything like that.

So what did they one look like? Obviously, you had this idea, you decided to launch it, but that that very simple thing of saying having an idea and launching it, there's a lot in there. It's true.

Yeah, good question. I always say that it always starts with our Yes first. And so getting really, you know, it doesn't always start with, like, this big idea or this dream or vision. A lot of times just starting is a very practical thing. And so for me, it's like, OK, I have this idea to start a skincare company. I decided that soap was going to be our first product. And so I went out that day and I found books on chemistry.

I remember studying old like 1930s medical journals on the skin. I was studying the human body and just herbal alchemy. And and I researched for a year before I formulated our first product and, you know, emulsion and stabilization and all these different.

Factors to bring it all together, but day one was just, OK, I need to learn how to how to create something powerful because and now looking back, I didn't really think about this early on, but we're in a saturated market. So in the beginning, it was like I just was really driven to create something very excellent that would create results for people.

And how long was it in between the having the idea then actually making your first dollar on a consistent basis, I guess.

Good. Yeah, that's a great question. So it was a little less than a year of, OK, I've got this finished bar of soap. I was passing it out to friends and family, so I got proof of concept, getting phone calls from people. You know, this is the best bar of soap I've ever tried. And from that point, it's like I don't have money for a website. I don't have money for labels and pretty packaging or, you know, logos.

So I have been in sales and bake banking. My very first job was at 16 years old. I was a telemarketer, so I understood, like, just get out there and hustle. And so I just started walking up and down the streets of Denver in Colorado Springs with my soaps and was walking into stores and talking to owners and buyers and making deals and then just grew. That first year was very rapid local growth here in Colorado. And so I would say from the time I got the idea to the time I launched the product, it was like that first day I went out onto the streets.

I was making sales.

See, I love that what's what's coming through there. And I think this is really where we're going to start to see what it was that separated you from the millions of other people to try and start small businesses. If I'm being crude is the hustle. It's just there and understanding that you need to do the hard work. Doesn't matter if you have a great product. You have to get that great product into the hands of people that can get it into the hands of people.

Yes, yeah. It's not about the one sale, but it's about that one person who can lead to dozens or hundreds of sales. Yes, exactly.

I think too many people want to cut corners or like get to the millions ASAP, you know, but it was a ten year journey or a seven year journey to that point that definitely just doing the work is so critical.

And at what point did you feel actually this is going to work when we're starting to see some traction? There's a business here.

That's a good question. So for me, starting out, I never started with this idea that it might work. I was like, OK, this is what I'm doing. How do I get this thing to be the best in the world? You know, how do I how do I make a splash? And so it was a year of just wholesale retail model doing the whole, like, store thing. And then I jumped into farmers markets. It did that for four years.

And that was where I would say we really created proof of concept on a whole new level. And we really started to develop a brand. I mean, there were situations like, you know, you talk to a thousand people in a week because we were six, seven days a week sometimes doing markets and and you'd get feedback or people would be like, hey, I've tried everything or I've tried every lotion and potion. I spent money on experts and where can you help me?

And so there was that like going back to the drawing board and getting clear on what kind of problems we were solving. And then it was just, you know, people coming to I remember there would be like three or four other so companies or skincare companies at these markets that would send spies to my table and they would start like copying me. And so I got I had to get really clear on who are we and what do we stand for.

And and that was a process for sure. But it was it at the farmers markets. I would say that I was like creating something very tangible that we could build from.

I think what you describe in there is is something that I see quite often, which is you have an idea, but then you start to react to what other people are doing and your own idea loses its central strength. And having that commitment, that sort of sense of mission that know this is what my product is, this is what my product is for, this is why my product is that's quite powerful. I really like that. Yes.

Well, and, you know, you've got people that would come to your table and they'd be like, this stuff doesn't work. And I'd be like, OK, why didn't it work? What didn't you like about it? And I learned so much about finicky people and which is what the majority like. Most people are finicky. So it's like I learned that people wanted texture and essence and they wanted efficacy without like this heavy feeling of skin care product.

And so I got really clear on how do I make something that is just so wonderful. For people to experience without getting offended in that perfection process and so I think too many people are so close to their work that they're that it's like an emotional offensive process to learn from the market. But you got to separate yourself in that way and be like, this is data. I'm just going to gather data here and then go back and make this thing the best.

Mm hmm.

And and in those early days, did you have any mentors or people that were sort of guiding you or helping you? I think it's often we instinctively think great people became great on their own great businesses. They're just great people, make great businesses. But a lot of the time, great businesses. There's a family around them. Was there anyone like that they're helping you?

Yeah, my husband. I mean, everybody should meet Nathan. He was you know, he was the one saying, go, babe. You know, I would come to him crying like, I'm sorry I made a mistake or it's taking a long time for us to really, like, grow this thing. Mean my husband would teach, he would coach, he would start pulling in like these landscaping side jobs so that we could be Bioscope tank. And we were turning very little profit in the beginning because all of our money was going back into the company and we would have those hard discussions around, OK, you know, how much longer do we have to invest?

And we always came back to this idea of there's two prices to pay. You can pay the price of mediocrity or you can pay the price or pursuing vision. And, you know, it's like here we are ten years later. I'm so glad we had those hard discussions and that we did it together. But I was just talking to a friend the other day who's an entrepreneur. Like, there were a lot of people who could relate to, like, my journey or even give me a solid.

I had you know, we've had like financial advisors and mentors in that way. But like the every day, how do you do like how do you build a company? How do you create proof of concept? All those things I had to learn on my own and I was just hungry to learn. Everything I've done has been driven by this hunger to learn and this fear of mediocrity like I didn't want to be. Twenty years from now, looking back on my life and saying, what if I had only or what if I had just, you know, gone all in?

And so but that's kind of deviating from your question. But so my husband was the really the biggest cheerleader for sure.

There's another question that I feel I should ask, and it may come across as parent. And if you think it's important and we're going to go back and delete the question and this question could go the wrong way, in which case I will delete the question. But a lot of cynical people might have picked up on the the corporate banking experience that you've got and think, oh, she must have borrowed lots of money to make this work and got lucky.

Did you have to borrow much money or was this sort of all sort of naturally organic growth?

Yeah, we bootstrapped. I mean, we we were like posta without Soss. We were like, if we bought fruit, it was like bananas. And I'd have friends that were like, your kids are going to Odean bananas, you know, they're going to get too much potassium, you know. But no, it was all like you make the sale. And that was that was how you continue to grow the business. But no, there was no like banks and finances.

We we worked for everything.

I am so glad that that's the answer because I was really hoping that was going to be good, because it really makes for such a good story. I think there's such a culture. It's definitely in the US and UK. I'm sure it's in the US as well that great businesses don't exist without venture capital funding and bootstrapping is just too slow and you just have to get lucky and nobody wants to work that hard and buy to sell or build. Yeah.

Build to flip or whatever you would call it. Whereas what you're doing is a nice organic growth over time just by building a great product, sticking to your guns, knowing who your farm, what you're for. And I love that. So one of the things I look at as well with the soap products is it's not just a soap anymore. There's a whole ecosystem of products that that seems to be very thoughtfully put together. Tell me a little bit about that, because, again, that's quite unusual, it would seem.

Not that I'm a big cosmetic user, but.

Yeah, well, the the vision was one day to be able to dominate in home health and self. And so and this is something to that you learn in in your journey with people is like. Some of the best marketing is, gosh, you're using this product, the next follow on natural follow on product is like if you're going to use a soap, you're going to need lotion. And one of the things I did very early on was I created the Meji method, which is like for the body, for the face, for remedy for four men.

And I take people through this sort of experiential journey with product that because I believe to like, you know, you we have so many people talking about beautiful skin, but they're neglecting the gut or like all the internal health that's that's necessary or and even the soul, like our tagline is seed to soul. And so one of the things that I've really done over the last couple of years is connected all of our systems together with our products. So, you know, the emotional factor, the sole factor of inhaling essential oils and experiencing that along with, like, soft skin.

And then now we've got supplements that are wholefood base and they're addressing like the internal health. And when you bring all of the systems together, the idea is that we want to activate people so that they can become who they were born to be. And so we've taken skin care into like a total body, total person empowerment movement, you know?

Yeah, I, I really like that. I didn't realize you did men's stuff as well. I have to go and have a look.

Yeah. Yes. The man method. All right. That sounds really cool. One of the things that stands out within your marketing strategy, if you like, is the ambassador program. And I didn't really dig too deep into that because obviously it's it's not it's not very obvious to reverse engineer that. So at what point in the growth of the company did you introduce that and what part does that play in your your overall marketing strategy?

I love telling that story because it's so it's so like this is what we're doing and where we're going now. But it was last year and of course last year we were at about the nine year mark in our business. And we had already at that point done like three plus million in our year and a half of being online. And I just thought I was starting to feel restless and knowing that there was more impact I wanted to make and I wanted to I had started the her effect, which is a business that I sort of had this vision for back in twenty fifteen to help women do what I had done.

But I didn't know how I was going to tie this idea of activating and empowering women to build successful businesses with the soap company. And so last year after had been, I'd been told, years and for years and years and years. Jamie, you should start a social selling business model. And I was like, heck no, no way. I will never do that. And. Last year, I really in this sort of restless season of what's next and where are we going to go from here?

I felt really prompted to start studying that business model. And so I discover that it's the most powerful business model on the planet because everyone can win. And in order to, like, win, you have to help other people win. And it's a it's a business model that's been driven by ego and greed. And I thought, if I'm going to do this, I'm going to go into it knowing that my responsibility is to restore an industry and help build people.

And so it took us about a year of just putting the building blocks together. We found some amazing talent who put together a logistics team for us and just all the different pieces. You know, we make our own product. We ship our own boxes. We do our own tech. It was a lot like building, getting all the feedback from amazing field experts who are now our ambassadors who were like, this is what we want and a good comp plan.

And so I it was about a year. And then in April of this year, we launched. As a matter of fact, a lot of our data team has been around for 15, 20 years in the industry. And they said, gee, we don't know if you know this, but you broke you broke records and you were in the top 10 of all network marketing companies that launched in the history of network marketing. So we launched just like over two thousand ambassadors.

And just because we had done nine months of pre launch, it was just very intense, intensive building and connecting. And I traveled all over for all over the country just doing meetings and talking to people. And so we have a good foundation of and the whole idea is building people, serving people. What is their goal? And we're not here to like, tell you what, you know, you should be making millions or you should be out there hustling.

It's like. We've got people who have never, ever done it, a single they'd never sold anything in their life, their stay at home moms, and we've got people and experts who come from, you know, industries and we're serving all of that and giving them a place to call home.

I think something I really like about what I feel around your ambassador program is it doesn't feel like a top down network marketing model. It really feels like a grassroots movement that's that's grown up around a business. That's certainly how it looks from the outside.

Oh, I could virtual hug you. Yes. So what are your ambitions for that at the moment? It's really just a US thing, isn't it?

Right now it's us. Well, we will go global. I mean, like the vision in the beginning was we got to change the world. And I think wealth is one of the number one ways to create impact. And the conversations that Nathan and I are having, you know, the conversations we're having with our team, like what kind of things can we do? So being number one is like one of my goals. I want to five years from now to be dominating in home health and self and be the number one network marketing company on the planet.

And so aggressive goals. But I know we can do it. And so much of that comes from this place of just like we're talking about what country do we want to buy orphanages. And we do a lot of work with human trafficking. And, you know, I know there's some other philanthropy that we want to get involved with children and adoption and that kind of stuff. So there's just so much there's so much that needs to change in the world.

And I think wealth is one of the number one ways to do that.

If you don't have money, you really are kind of limited in what you can do. Yeah, if you can't pay your utility bills, it's impossible to change the world. That's true. Mhm.

So I would like to ask you a bit more about the marketing of the business, because obviously this is the digital marketing entrepreneurship. We've got to cover the entrepreneur a bit. But I want to look at your your marketing and what stands out for me is the personal brand element of the marketing. I mean, obviously as a as an e-commerce business, you will no doubt you'll be doing some advertising of some kind. But I'm curious to know, within the personal branding side of things how important you feel that's been in the success of the business, because I see a lot of e-commerce businesses that should be good.

But I kind of feel that if that if the business owners would appear in the business, it would just thrive that little bit more. How intentional was having your personal brand in that is my question making sense?

Yeah, it was it was not only intentional, but it was very like it was based out of necessity, you know. And it's funny, too, because in the farmers market days and in like all before online, I would always hide behind my products, like here's my products. They're the heroes. They're amazing. You know, I'd send samples out or people would rave about the product. Well, when you go online and I'm doing video marketing and I'm writing my own copy and now, of course, in the ambassador model like relationship is so important.

And so I kind of had to bring myself out behind the the curtain behind the table and just put myself out there. And, you know, you can go back to my early videos and they're awkward. And I wasn't great on camera and but I just was like, it's either that or or you just have a mediocre business. And so it was based on it was based on necessity. But now I realized like and this is where I think people people often think that building a business is just this external process of creating something external.

But if you really if you really embrace this process, you're becoming is just as important as building. And so so with that, like, I think I just recognized early on in my the digital marketing season of that was back in twenty seventeen, just I had to get out there and like connect and love on people just like I did at the markets, but now is like via video and then even in the way that we've the fortune is in the follow up, you know.

So we've got an amazing email sequence that we create and we connect with people on the social level. We don't just talk about skin care. We talk about becoming who you were born to be and what's stopping you from going after your dream. And and so I think that message that comes from my heart is what what people see. And so I agree with you. If more entrepreneurs would tap into their own personal vision for people and let that really shine in their brands, they would probably would they would probably grow like crazy.

I love what you said about.

The the process of becoming in order to build your business, you need to build your yourself as well. If you want your business to become amazing, you're kind of going to have to become amazing as well.

You have to embrace the process. One of my friends in the early stages said, Jamie, the hardest thing you'll ever do is businesses grow a backbone. And, you know, we talk about like in the like the entrepreneurial circle. It's like, man, if you if you stay the way you are and who you are, you'll never get to where you're supposed to go, because I've had to turn around and, like, annihilate the Jamy that got me here because the Jamy that got me here isn't going to get me there.

And so you're constantly having to choose change and transformation and evolution and growth and and most companies, I think probably the centredness in business comes from the lack of growth in the entrepreneur. They just stop being hungry. I think it's a tiring process. You've got to have fortitude in this journey.

You know, I think as well that that whole pushing against your own comfort and leaning in to the fact that success lives in discomfort. Yes, I is wholly underrated. And I think that's that's really why I'm glad that this was true for you, because it's very easy in some regards to buy yourself, buy your way out of having to do the hard work. It's easy if you borrow money, for example, to hire an agency to take care of the digital marketing, the wave, a magic wand and you could have an element of success.

Yeah, but do you feel you would have had the success you have now if you had had the money to spend on getting other people to do things early on?

No, and that's that's great that you mention that that is that was like a battle, too, because there were so many times I was like, I just should hire somebody to build my funnel for me or somebody else to come along and try to, like, do my copywriting. And then when it came down to it, it was like, well, not only is that expensive, but it's better if I it's so much better when you get to understand the like, especially in the beginning.

Like, I don't do all those things now. I've I've delegated, but in the very beginning to have an intimate knowledge of every aspect of your business. Like when I'm working with my copywriters, I'll give them like really key insights. And here's how I write copy. And this is what works. And because I've done it or when we're shipping boxes, I'm like, hey, guys, if you do it like this, you know, the box will come together faster, like I've done every part of the business.

And most people that start with capital, sadly, they end up just blowing that money in there. They're in debt. And it's so much better to develop things over time and learn as you go because you can become a faithful steward. I'm like, man, all the work that I've done to get where I am right now, like, there's no way I would never just take one hundred thousand dollars and blow it on marketing or blow it on this or that.

I like. I be very strategic because I understand every aspect of my business, like nothing's been short cutted.

I think the one thing I'd like to dig into a little bit is your YouTube channel. And this would broaden out into video marketing in general. But you mentioned your early videos were quite awkward, but they're not now. They're really very polished now. They come across as very professional. And it's important for people to understand that process, because a lot of people look at somebody like you, the YouTube confidence that you have now, not just you, your whole family, really, they've become accustomed to that.

They've become comfortable with it. Hmm. Mm hmm.

But what was that like in the beginning and how did you train yourself to. Yeah. What did that look like?

These are good questions. I love that question because it takes me back to one of the first videos that I did. OK, so here I was like doing the farmer's market thing. I'm going to go online and I find this digital marketing expert. So I start reading all of this material and I'm studying through his stuff and he's like, OK, everybody needs to do this. What's called the perfect webinar video format. If you do this every week for a year, you're going to make a million dollars.

And I thought, I believe this guy, he's he's done what I want to do and in digital marketing. So I'm going to, like, follow him. And so I thought, whatever it takes, I'm just going to do it. And so I remember the very first time I had created my script, which was really awkward to like my whole script was lame and it was a 30 minute video presentation to sell like a bar of soap, which nobody wants to sit for 30 minutes and watch you sell them a twenty five dollar product.

So I had to get that really condensed down. But I remember the first time, like I asked my husband, I'm like, can you take the kids and can you help me set up the lights? And I was in the kitchen and my palms are sweaty. My my heart was beating out of my chest and I could feel just like the get me out of here and get me through this. Like, I just need to hurry up through this presentation and just post it and just see what happens.

And sure enough, like 90 days of that, 90 days plus no sales, nobody was biting and at but I kept going back and watching my videos and thinking from the customer's perspective, if I'm going to listen to this girl here, what's my internal and external false beliefs?

And there's this whole framework that Russell runs and teaches about, like, you know, the new opportunity and what this framework is supposed to look like. So I was asking myself all these the right questions, and I was going back and doing these videos over and over and over again, tweaking and fixing. And until finally I remember I was September 10th of twenty seventeen. I had done the video, I think probably over a hundred times at that point, and I was like scrapping the script.

I had tweaked the script so many times. I think I was like I had the right format, the right message. I had practiced on video and that finally sent the script literally blew away in the wind. I threw it out.

I was sitting outside my house and I was like, just screw the script. I'm just going to speak from my heart. I had done the dang thing so many times. And so we did a thousand dollars that first day with that video and one hundred thirty thousand in that first six weeks. And we hit our first million in less than six months with that one video, which now has like 30 million plus views on it. So it was definitely a process of like, I totally suck at this, but I'm going to second it less the more I do it.

So, yeah, I just got to keep going.

And so what is your production process look like now? For example, I had a look at your farmer's market video. I think it's the newest one and it looks professionally produced. Oh, yeah.

I have a video team. Well, a video person who and then an editor at a editing team.

And so sometimes she does editing and how sometimes we outsource the editing. But just one girl who it's worth it to have a good creative team who can. And honestly, it's not it's not that necessary, especially in the beginning. Like most of the time, people convert better when you're just doing, like, selfie style with your phone. And so as we're building the brand, like I'm expanding. But if I ever had to go back to just selfie style, it would work and work really well.

But I think what I like about the video that you're doing, though, is it's not very far away from selfie style. Yeah, it's really very close, which is why I kind of thought you were probably doing it yourself. But no, I mean, in the business you're in, it makes total sense to have somebody taking care of that.

Yeah. It can become like a full time job uploading, downloading and editing and all those things. But but it's not necessary to be successful. I would say, as much as you can do in the beginning to hit that first million without delegating the better. You know, once you hit the first million, then start like figuring out where you can replace yourself in certain roles and how do you move into the confidence.

The I think doing it in your kitchen, for example, where there's nobody watching, most people can bring themselves to do that if they're forced. But walking around in public, having somebody filming, you talk to the camera, that takes a different level of confidence. How did you how did you move into that kind of work?

Yeah, that is just you kind of just get out of your own head and you I think some of the greatest success comes from not even really consider yourself or thinking about yourself. You're always thinking about, you know, your people, the people you're serving, the people you want to impact. So I'm always imagining, like I'm talking to a group of people right now. I'm not talking to a camera as this is going to be on YouTube. What does that person need to hear to give them hope for their day or to get them through whatever struggle they're facing?

And sometimes it's like a skin care tip or like, here's how you shop at a farmers market. But I know that. And we always tell our ambassadors our you know, soap is a gateway drug for giving hope. So, you know, that's really what we're doing here. So getting really just focused on the vision and what you're doing and get out of your own way and just get out there and do it for other people. That's the most important thing.

I think that is the most important thing. And it was your ambassadors that I was kind of thinking of that need to hear this the most, because I work with lots of different kinds of businesses. I work a lot with the kind of businesses that might be your ambassadors, micro businesses, solar partners. And a lot of the time this is their biggest issue. It's how do I get from here, which is self-conscious, awkward, kind of scared, scared of being visible to being out there, letting people see me because people buy from people.

And if you're on a mission, you want people to know that you want people to go on that journey with you. But it's just crossing that bridge is so hard for so many people. And that's kind of why I wanted to look at how did you get from where everybody else was to where you are now with the confident video marketing that we all see. And that's not for me. It's been very useful.

That's awesome. Yeah, you just got to keep doing it whether you're good at it or not, because you will be you'll get good if you practice.

And how does your family feel about it? Because I think for a lot of people, that's actually a big worry as well as what will my family think of me doing this?

Oh, like extended family. Well, I guess you're a close family first. You're sort of immediate family, but, yeah, your your wider family.

Yeah. Sometimes, like, the boys would be like not another video of you or Nathan if be like because I'll be like, oh babe, go get your camera. Like, you know, if we're going to do some selfie style stuff or hey, we need we're going to have our video girl come and do a shoot. And sometimes it's like, OK, we'll do another video. But one of the first things I did when our business started to grow is I hired my mom to help in the house.

And so, like I was said, I would take care of her. I've hired my brother. My husband's hired his sister. So we've actually got a lot of family who have watched us in this journey. And they're like now part of it. But I guess I never really think about them because I'm just like, they're not right in my paycheck. So, like, I'm more concerned about how how we're serving the people watching our stuff, you know?

Yeah, I think I think what you've summed up there is it's it's the mission that fuels everything. Exactly. And and you get the mission right. If you get the way right, everything else actually becomes doable. There's a reason. There's a motive. There's a reason to move.

Yes. And it can't just be about money. Yeah, no, you're quite right. So, Jamie, you've been really, really generous with your knowledge. It's been so useful and I'm very, very grateful. But I need to come up with a question that I'm becoming really good at remembering to ask everyone. And that's what's one thing you do now that you wish you'd started five years ago.

That's a really good question. It's actually being present. It's this idea that sometimes we think like, oh, man, I have to get this thing done. Now, if I don't get it done, like all this thing, all these things are going to happen. And so, like not living in the future so much as visionaries and entrepreneurs, we tend to live in the future. But if I could go back five years to Jamie, I'd be like, hey, girl, it's going to get done.

Everything's going to be OK. Like, enjoy this precious moment with your with your three year old or with your family and like be here with them. Don't be in some other world mentally building your business. You know, the present.

That's a great answer, Jimmy. If people want to get in touch with you, if they want to find out more about your business, your products are the ambassador program. How would you like them to do that?

Yeah, they can go to my G- living dot com and email us and we'll get your connected. We do have the YouTube channel, all that good stuff on the podcast. But I'm, I do living dotcom is the best place to start.

Thank you. Very much for your time. Thanks, Bob. So great. Make Living and Jamie are a fantastic role model for how an owner operated e-commerce business should be run. The X Factor is Jamie's commitment to personal growth and doing the hard things which make her stand out. These are the things which allow people to connect emotionally with her and her company and create relationships at scale. Relationships are her X Factor. Before I go, just a quick reminder to subscribe.

And if you haven't already join our Facebook group, you'll find a link in the show, notes or visit, amplify me from forward slash insiders. I would love for you to connect with me on social media. Follow me wherever you hang out. You'll find me at Bob Gentle. And if you do, let me know and I'll follow you back. If you enjoyed the show, then I would love for you to review it on iTunes. It's the very best way to help me reach more subscribers and it means a lot to me.

My name's Bob Gentile. Thanks again to Jamie for giving us a hard time this week and to you for listening. And I'll see you next week.

>