Your Story Matters

An Interview With

Beth Carr

 

This is an unedited transcript:

 

Blue  

Welcome to a path of her own. I’m Blue Russ. And I’m sitting down with women who are building success on their own terms, asking questions to get at the raw truth of the ups and downs of their journey. I hope that today’s interview sparked something within you.

Blue  

Design invites people in words, make them stay

Blue  

Welcome, I’m here with Beth Carr, and death, just like we just met recently, and I’m already just like, head over heels are this human like, she just exudes this warmth, then. She, I’m guessing she’s the kind of person that like, I think I saw something about this recently with another friend of mine where like, every time she gets an Uber, she leaves with like, the drivers life story, or something like this is, this is how I see back. Like, I think she just like draws that out. And it’s so perfect the work that she does in the world, because she’s all about storytelling, and how important that is to branding and business. And let me tell you, she has brought this to some really huge companies. And, you know, tiny little entrepreneurs like me. So she just like has, has his wealth of experience and knowledge and, and has truly stepped out on a path of her own. I’m sure in many ways I’m not even aware of yet. And we’ll we’ll discover today. But one of the ways she’s done that is she’s really stepped out of sort of the corporate scene of, you know, claw your way to the top. And she is someone who, you know, isn’t going to be in the good old boys club, because they intentionally exclude her as a woman of color. Right? So let’s just name that. And so she’s like, Guess what, I’m gonna make myself available to other people who are really going to value my expertise and the works that I bring in the knowledge and all the amazing things that make this uniquely magical. So welcome to a path of her own Beth.

Beth Carr  

Well, I’m so happy to be here. And boy, did you just call me out when it comes to the knowing the life story of the Uber driver of the passenger next to me. I I’ve made friends all over the world because of travels. And it’s all been because we open up with finding out about each other and me finding out more about their story. You know, we’ve heard it a lot. We don’t really know what’s really going on and people until you actually ask or find out. And yes, I’m honored to be here. I love also what you said. Yeah, I’m really my mission is about how do I lift all women, all women of color, all marginalized people to a different level where they also have their story heard, whether it’s their personal brand, whether it’s their story comes through in the product or their service that they are selling. In the teams they are leading in the specialty that they offer to others. I want to be able to really tap into their narrative and bring that forward because for so long, a women have been silenced. And women of color, any minorities have been silenced. So it’s really, I feel like it’s an incredible mission, that I have to just be able to be a messenger that taps into the inner monologue of others and elevates that in a way that everyone can understand through clarity, and then also be drawn in so that they understand Oh, this is how that company, that personal brand, that product that service will help me thrive and survive. Because ultimately, that’s what we’re all looking for. Right? How are you gonna help me thrive and survive? Are you seeing me? Are you hearing me? And do you understand me?

Blue  

Yes. Oh my gosh, yeah. So so many gems in what you just shared? Yeah, I just think about you know, that’s a huge intention I have with this podcast, too is right. Is is sharing stories that we don’t often hear right? I think more and more those stories were are getting out to more like um, bigger platforms and things like that, which is super inspiring. But they’re still Yeah, it’s it’s like we’re missing I think collectively There’s a real deficit, when we don’t hear those marginalized stories, like we’re just, there’s a whole wealth of experience and knowledge and perspective that it just more work as a culture we’re missing. And it’s best for us all.

And I actually think it is, it is my duty, actually as a, as a messenger as a marketer, who understands how to elevate brands to make sure that we’re tapping into those stories and revealing them. Because for so long, even amongst other women, there are times where it’s like, Oh, I’m just gonna ignore that story and know and go with what I know, or recreate the environment that makes me feel comfortable or feels familiar, and I think is really important. As a responsible marketer, and Brander, to actually bring forth the stories that are not being illustrated and told that don’t look like my immediate environment, right? That may not look like my family, right? To bring in those stories is really, really important.

Blue  

Can you would you give an example?

Yes. So. So I run this brand and marketing consultancy. And when I first opened, the shingle hung out the shingle last year, right before COVID. I was more come one come all and just invited clients to come work with me. And what I realized very quickly is there were certain clients that I worked with that just did not want to vary from what they defined as their world. One of which had a product where they were, they were helping homes be able to up their value through plumbing, I don’t want to be as specific because what happens, I might get called out, but I’ll be I hear Yeah. But it was interesting, because I had to go back and forth with this client, because the imagery when I was writing and designing her website, strategically to bring in new clients, which were predominantly in, in a very Latina X community, right. She did not want to express that any of the design or the website, she wanted to keep it within what her family looked like, it was really an implicit ignorance and bias. And so it was made me realize like, I don’t, I don’t want to serve clients that don’t want to realize that there are other stories to be told other communities you invite in that actually reflect the environment in which you truly serve. Right. And so now, when I work with brands, that’s one of the first questions I ask, it’s a I’m a, I’m redoing my own website, it’s, it’s going to be in part of my mission being fully and publicly stated, right, that you, you who work with me, want to continue to find ways to fully explore being anti racist and inclusive and diverse. Right? And because those are the values that I hold, and that I know is part of my duty as a marketer.

Blue  

Love that. That’s powerful.

Yeah, it’s it’s actually not hard. Just defining a thing. I’ve just drawn a very clear line in the sand. Yeah, that is very important. And will I hold to it?

Blue  

Yeah. Yeah. Awesome. Oh, yes. I feel the need to just share it. We were chatting before we started here. And I’ll just be totally open with everyone listening to that. I just made this choice today that I and it’s sort of something I’ve been dancing with and examining and sort of piecing apart but really looking at okay, how did I get trained in marketing, right, like there. Anyone who’s running a business is doing some marketing at some level, like we’re, there’s no escaping being involved, if you’re running a business, and so, just looking at my own way of doing that I You know, I’ve been in lots of trainings and really realized a lot of the things that are problematic about some of those trainings and, and then just today realized, again, from a recent launch of my own, that there are still things I’m doing that really don’t line. Like, where I thought I drew that line, right. It’s, like, sort of blurry, or something. Right. And so just going like, yeah, you know, I, I’m done with that. I’m just like, today’s the day I declare it, all right, you all have heard it. And, you know, instead of kind of forcing myself to have messaging, you know, I it’s not like real extreme, but I noticed these places where I’m still like, oh, I should say it this way. Or, I should have this certain email sequence, and it should have these like, trigger words in it. And it should, you know, like, even if I don’t implement those things, like it’s, it’s in, it’s running my training, you know, and so, I just am, like, really done with that. And I know, it’s gonna still be a journey, right? There’s gonna be ways I’m, I’m still blind to what I’m doing. But really bringing that intention and, and drawing that line wherever I can. And I imagine that’s something that you, you help your, your clients with?

Yes. You know, that’s why I really encourage and I love that what you were saying. So first of all, like to not shut on yourself is so super important for CEOs running our own businesses, right? Like, being an entrepreneur and a CEO and running our business it is is not for the weak, right? It really is, it takes a lot of courage and bravery every day to be like, Okay, here’s the next thing I’m going to do, or here’s the focus of the day. And what I encourage with my clients, or even just other fellow badass kick ass CEOs is, we get to also do it messily, like, there is no such thing as perfect. And even when I worked in corporate, it was so amazing. Once I was there, inside the marketing team, either leading the marketing team or the creative director, or even in doing the graphic design, when I first started my career, I remember when Oh, my gosh, this is such a hot mess. Like there’s so much behind the walls and behind the scenes that are really going on. And then there’s public face. And so I think, you know, as entrepreneurs and as CEOs of our own companies, we perhaps think, Oh, well, all these other corporations, even these big guys are small guys, they have it all, like locked down, and they’re doing it well. And they’re so good at it. But truthfully, I think if you peek under the hood, everyone has a pile of spaghetti somewhere somewhere in their business. And so what a really. So there’s no, there’s no need for sure, because the truth of it is, we’re all doing our best. And as long as we are keeping in the forefront of our mind is the activity that I’m doing. Is this revenue bearing activity. Is it moving me forward? Is it moving me closer to why I’m doing this? Is it aligned with my mission? Right? When we keep those things in the front of our mind, if we do it messily, the fact you’re like email, you’re like, well, I shouldn’t use these trigger words, but I don’t feel like it. Well, then don’t. That’s great. Yeah, fact is. And you’re like, but I am going to send out an email. Or maybe I’m not going to send out an email for the next three weeks. Because you know, I’m tired. I need a nap. I need a vacation. I need to rework my business model. I’m experimenting over here. What a great opportunity. Because what we don’t work for a bigger corporation.

Blue  

Right? Hmm, yeah. Yeah. Yeah. And I think like, the thing I hear under everything you just said is like, trust yourself, right? Like, there’s a reason that you have this because there’s an aspect of myself, there’s a reason I have this business. Yeah, there’s a reason I’m still in it. You know, I have like, fired and rehired myself many times. Which also reminds me of that choice, right? I keep choosing it. Like for a decade now I keep choosing it. So like, there’s a reason I’m here. And I can trust that I can trust that. I’m going to show up. I’m going to move forward. I’m going to let it evolve and grow and be messy and fun and flow easily sometimes and be really freaking hard other times. I love what you said actually that like thing business is what did you call micro? Regular?

Oh yeah, you have these micro doses of terror. Well, I have micro dose was of terror on a daily basis. Or just there I have like these single second moments where I’m like, oh my god, what the hell am I doing? And then I calmed down. I’m like, okay, one step forward. And I might actually have a few of those micro doses throughout the day. Right? Because if if these are past that, yeah, I have not had to cross or walk down fully in my authentic self before.

Blue  

Yeah. So good. Like, I just, I can almost like hear the size of relief of anyone listening who’s running a business. Oh, let’s all breathe like, great. We get to really be ourselves. We get to make mistakes and learn from them. We get to be messy. We got to, you know, I think there needs to be space for creativity, right? And how, how like, the more we’re constricted, the more we’re like should do this or have to be someone else to be successful. It’s like, just kills creativity. And creativity

is messy. Right? It comes from inspiration and thought and external stimuli and internal stimuli. And that’s the other thing when it’s messy. And let’s just say it does. Air quotes right now spill out, right? Or all of a sudden, the public can see the messy, let’s just say, right? Well, what a great opportunity to actually show a powerful, strong vulnerability in like, Hey, guys, I just send out this mass email, and I didn’t put the link in or guess what the links broken? Or, you know, I know y’all just bought this really incredible workshop I’m about to run. But guess what, the technology is not working or it didn’t air properly? Or Guess what? I don’t this workshop nobody signed up for so I’m actually going to shut it down.

Blue  

Right? Yep.

Those places where we spill out spill out messily actually are great opportunities to also work on our communication skills, our messaging, and our vulnerability. Because a lot of times too, we’re told, especially as women, be kind, be good, be perfect. manage all your things, manage raising the family, manage paying the bills, manage go grocery shopping, cleaning the house, holding down a job, do it all and do not complain, be the martyr to yourself, your life, your family. Know what happens if we’re like, oh, no, no. And oh, help. I actually can’t do that all on my own. And I’m actually going to start making incredible decisions. Rachael Rogers, one of our mentors, right. She’s like, make some million dollar decisions, hire that help, ask for help. Bring in the people who can actually do it for you. Because your time is so incredibly valuable. Your intellectual property that runs through that creative vein of yours is so valuable. What happens if you trade that, to hire someone else to do your laundry and a drop off laundry thing? Or to clean your house? Even if it’s every two weeks or once a month?

Blue  

Right? Oh, absolutely, absolutely. Yeah. And this, this is gonna sound funny, but one of the biggest things that Rachael Rogers was like, new bamboo silky sheets. Like I didn’t get them from her to be clear she did. But just this idea that like, yeah, really hot, like, what can you do to have what she calls million dollar mindset, right? It’s not son about the dollar bills. It’s like, are you thinking but are you able to imagine are able to create, are you able to expand? You know, and really trust yourself in that expansion. And there are many ways those million dollar decisions are ways that we can either reinforce or we can help that progress. So one of the things is like, what is your environment? You know, that’s like she calls it the broke guests mindset. What are you looking at are like, what’s for me? It was like, What is touching my skin every night? That make you makes me feel broke? And literally, for 20 years, I’ve had the same sheets that I got secondhand. When that’s all I could get. Right? And then I went, Oh, literally every night. I’m sleeping. I’m broke. I’m not in that place anymore. Right. Like, I could buy sheets and you know what? I didn’t even know how much sheets cost First, I didn’t know.

Yeah. And even if you are in that place where it’s like, I don’t have the budget to go buy new sheets, what are the things that like I loved what you were saying blue, like, in your environment where you are right now? Do you have a stack of papers and clutter that are like messy and in your way, that way you mentally down? Are you using, I don’t know, a pencil that you hate it the thing always breaks. And what you really want is a really nice time that’s just smooth when you write. I don’t know, are you drinking out of like a plastic cup that tastes like plastic? Like the water tastes like plastic? Well, what happens if you elevate to a tea cup, right? Or a glass? So it could be even those little adjustments that cost no money, but start to put you in that million dollar mindset instead of that broke ass mindset. Right? It’s those little shifts how you can as she says, Be her now?

Blue  

Hmm. Yeah, yeah. Have you? Have you used that, that trick in your life that like be be that person that you want to be in the future?

Every day. And when I have those micro doses of terror? That’s actually the that’s how I make poison into medicine is I say to myself, Okay, what’s the next decision to be her now? What’s the next decision where you can step into that? abundant mindset? What do you see on the horizon where her is in three years? Right where Beth is in three years?

Blue  

I love that. Yeah. Yeah, that’s something I do with my clients a lot that I learned to call where I learned it’s future pacing. So you just it’s it like you can you can really go as deep as you like, but really lean into that future that you see for yourself as best that you can see that this moment, and, and then reflect on like, what does she have to say to you with this moment with this problem with this situation? And yeah, I feel like she’s been my best guide. That woman in the future.

Yeah, it’s amazing. Yeah. Yeah. I love that.

Blue  

So Beth, um, hi. I would love to hear more of like your story.

Yeah, so um, so first of all, I was I was raised by an incredible single mom, who was a nurse who worked three jobs to support me and my sister. And, and she was, and is she still alive? But growing up, she was that woman I just talked about where you just didn’t complain, you just did what you had to do. My mom, although a nurse was like this repressed creative, so she would find incredible ways to create fun, and exploration of thought and expression with little to no money. So things like shrinky dinks on the weekend, or we’re in San Francisco. So let’s go to Golden Gate Park and make daisy chains and pretend we’re in a fairy forest. Right? So she would create lots of things that have nothing. But there are a lot of messaging messages innately in that when I was growing up. And I first thought the way to express my creativity was to be a performer. So I did the whole route of getting a degree in acting from Boston University, and from there straight to New York’s New York City. And being a fabulously failed Broadway actor, and deciding that that life was really hard as a female, and also a minority female. And where there really was no place for me, like I was always told I was too ethnic, to be cast in certain places, which, especially now on the other side of what we really understand to be just a systemic problem in our society. It’s really actually it’s even hard to talk about, right? But I decided, okay, well, where is the next please, for me if I’m not fully invited in here, and I thought it was corporate America. And so I tied my identity to to being a designer, which I was trained on the side as a side hustle between shows in New York City. I was training us to be a graphic designer. And so all of a sudden I was working in financial firms like Merrill Lynch and JP Morgan and creating their graphics so that they can pitch to these other big corporations. And, and, and I have what I found was a lot of joy in being able to find those messages first through a visual story. And through the years as I would create these visual stories, I’d also would create the headlines, and you know, the little blurb underneath. And what would happen is they’d be like, Oh, who wrote that, let’s keep it and I’m like, wow, I am innately a copywriter. And no one has to give me permission to do that. I’m just going to claim it. Because it is, and it’s been proven out over and over again. So I just say to all people listening like you don’t need, like certification is great degrees are great. There are certain things like if you’re going to go, if you’re going to be a doctor, you need the training, absolutely. But there are other things where you can claim it, and walk into that, and practice it. And then if you still want to get certification, go do it. But own it own the talents that you’ve been given, if it really gives you joy, and excites you,

Blue  

I just want to Can I just pause you right there. I just want to highlight and like put neon sign or just want to because I just was having this very conversation with a group of clients yesterday, who are launching new things in their businesses, and it came up, you know, one of them was like, Well, I don’t have like a certification or a degree in this and, and what she was talking about was refurbishing furniture and selling it. And she wanted to teach other people that skill set, you know, and I, you know, and it’s it’s an interesting thing, right? Because I’m like, well, if I’m going to learn how to refurbish furniture, do I want to learn from someone who has already successfully done that? And is earning an income doing that? Or do I want to learn from someone who like, studied in a class and read some books about it? And then someone decided because of a paper that says they’re qualified, right? Like, there are so many, like most things in life, I think that where we could use some guidance and support and it’s like, there’s no, sometimes there’s no degree for it. There’s nothing anyway. And, you know, I’m all for I think I have like 10 certifications. So I’m, like, I love to learn and being courses. And so nothing gets that. And, of course, there are realms in which that actually is important. Like, you don’t want to be giving legal or medical advice, right? Training those things. But outside of that, you know, that kind of profession where you’re, you know, you could be risking your life or, or your, you know, legal status. Outside of that, yeah, it’s really like experience is equally if not more valuable than a sort of traditional learning of it.

Yes. And you know what, I love certifications and degrees as well. But I believe if that is the obstacle that is blocking you from taking a risk and stepping in or out of what of your comfort zone, then just go experiment. Don’t let that hold you back. So I love I love that you just talked about refurbishing furniture. Which is so interesting, because my husband is a high end craftsman and woodworker and cabinet maker and furniture maker. Oh, awesome. If you didn’t receive a degree in this, this was something that was innately has talent, right? And so I think like to step into, I’m going to do it. And I’m gonna keep focusing on doing it really well because it brings me joy, and it fills me, right. Or I’m gonna step into it. You know what I realized? I don’t really like it that much. So move on. Right,

Blue  

right. Information to

Yes. And I love that you brought that up blue, because here’s the thing, at least I’m aware of this. And this was one of those messages because my mom was such a powerhouse when she was a nurse and could just like run a whole entire medical department and also know just as much or even a little bit more than the doctors in the room. And yet, because of her generational programming, she was told she couldn’t. Right. And that that was that was her role, right? Always to be like number two or like the second in the room. And so her identity was very tied into the pride she had as a nurse but also also as a mom. And so the message I had being in corporate was very much my identity was tied to my title, my role, my responsibilities, and fast forward After 17 years of this incredible career where I got to work at incredible places, like Nestle to startups, almost all male dominated by the way, I found that I was always promised more, but never given it, but I was supposed to prove myself through the work. And when in 2019, the last startup I worked at, where I helped them, raise $32 million, and helping them rebrand and position. And being immediately laid off within three weeks after them raising that money in front of my whole entire marketing team. With my marketing team on Zoom. I, well, I realized how much my identity was tied into my position and my title. And for that to be stripped away, and to have to refined, okay, wait, where is my authentic joy? And who am I as a person? First? And how do I step into creating something where I can show up authentically, and then also help others at the same time, which was huge. So to be able to redefine the definition of myself was a really big kind of new launch into my life, right before the pandemic.

Blue  

Hello, flipping life around.

Yes. But to be in that place, right at the edge of the beginning of the pandemic was also a gift. Because a lot of the clients that initially had come to me, a lot of them were losing their identity, because a lot of them were brick and mortar stores. Or they their business changed because of the pandemic. And so they were coming to me saying, Help me figure out how to create a whole new revenue stream and a whole new rebrand and how I should remark it, because what I was doing no longer works in this world where we are sheltered in place, or more virtual, or are moving around the country and, you know, living elsewhere. So it was a gift to because here I was finding my new identity as I was helping other clients step into theirs.

Blue  

Yeah, yeah, it’s not, it’s not amazing. But if somehow we could see, like, do a show of hands. Like how many of us have, you know, feel really called to teach what we most need to learn or be the provider of medicine that we also need? Yeah. And that’s how it works. Yeah. Yeah. Wow. So how has it been going since then?

It’s been gangbusters. And I’ve had some an incredible breadth of clients from solopreneurs, to micro companies, to small companies, to even some big, big commercial companies. And in all of that, the the core request always is, how can I get even more clear in reaching and connecting with my audience? And how do I make my marketing more magnetic where I’m inviting people in to want to connect with us? People don’t want to be just talked at, they want to be invited into the story.

Blue  

Awesome. Would you would you be willing to share I know there’s a lot of business owners who listen to you be willing to share. And it’s okay, you know, whatever you want, what do you feel comfortable sharing, but, like, maybe like, what’s one of the first steps or like a key piece of that process? You walk people through?

Okay, so this is one that’s kind of the invisible aura that you step into before you get to the threshold of rebranding. And I know it sounds simple, but it’s amazing. Even when clients first engage with me, the step that is initially missed, and that is, Are you truly ready. Being really truly ready, in mindset and in physical presence to to enter a space with me and my strategic consultancy and team to really delve into the asset that’s in the inventory of where you stand now. Because I always love digging where you stand, let’s dig where you stand. Where do we don’t have to throw things out right away? Let’s look at everything. Let’s assess what’s working, what’s not working? Well, let’s a fully 360 everything that’s going on right now. And you have a snapshot of the past 12 months, what brought you to this moment where we’re having this conversation? So that to me, is always skipped? Because it is like a it’s a step zero. Right, it is the place to begin.

Blue  

So if I’m understanding correctly, it’s, it’s really like, are you ready to really get real about where you are right now? Like, just kind of assessing like, what is? Yeah. And then I think I hear also in that, like, are you really ready to make changes, those could be big, right? Not necessarily,

really big. And that even includes letting go of any kind of ego that you’ve associated with the things that you’ve created, as well as the investment that you’re willing to make in time in mental calories that we’re going to burn because we want to burn those mental calories so that your audience doesn’t have to figure out what you want them to do or how they’re going to buy from you. Right? And then also just that investment, right? It’s amazing how there are there are so many CEOs that are like, Yeah, I’m making six figures, seven figures, I’m making money, but then it’s so hard for them to give to themselves to invest in their company to invest back into their company. Even though there’s so many proof points that I could show like this work will 10x your revenue in 18 months.

Blue  

Yeah, yeah. Yeah, I think that’s like we can all identify whatever level business we’re at. Right? It’s like, yeah, it is those. We really I don’t know of a business that can grow without investment of money, specifically. And then yeah, what will what is that investment? And what what is the need the leverage point, the support point that’s really going to help that sometimes that, that takes some discernment for sure, but, but always, it’s, there’s an investment to be made.

Yes, there’s an investment to be made and a leveling up. And so if you really want to level up, you, you level up everything, right. So actually, so that’s step zero. And then step one is, let’s get into what? Now if you understand the audience, that’s part of that assessment, right? And we actually like, let’s, let’s draw out your personas, like who you serve, and what are their personalities? And now, what is your brand personality? Right? If you’re, if your brand was a person, how would they sound feel, look, dress, and make people feel? And so in? So in that, we start to clarify your message, but really first lean into what is the transformation and success look like on the other side of your product or your service? When you clarify that? It’s almost like a flare gun in the middle of a dark night. It sends a signal to your audience like, wait, you just caught my attention, because you’ve just talked about my transformation and my success. This is what I’ve been yearning for. Right? For example, if I am, I run a CPA or a bookkeeping company, right? If you tell me in the headline of your website, financial peace of mind, in my headline, and then the subhead is, you know, at Acme tax company, we take the headache out of all your taxes and bookkeeping. You’ve told me everything. And then there’s a big button that says, schedule a call. I know exactly all the things you need me to do on your website without even having to scroll down more if I choose not to. And so what I’ve also just done is clarified transformation and success just in those two little lines. So we delve into that. And when you get really clear on how you the owner, and your company is the guide, and the audience that you serve is the hero. You’re the guide all along the way. Never once does the Sherpa turn around to the person that they’re guiding up the mountain. Hey, can you hold this for a minute my back hurts and also wanted to figure out where we’re going

Blue  

Oh, I Yes. Oh my gosh, I love this like, yes. Our, our clients are the heroes, our customers are the heroes. I love this, this language that you’re using to because yeah, like one of the things I’ve really been looking at and noticing when I’m receiving marketing, right is where I’m being told as the consumer of that marketing that I am broken, or I’ll have a deficit without this thing, which is so manipulative and

you’re being so nice blue, it’s slimy. I mean, you can have really great marketing that is empowering, and what we call empathy, marketing or story marketing, and not be slimy and make people feel less than because they don’t have your product or your service.

Blue  

Yes. And I interviewed Elijah Selby, I think she was the first podcast episode. So we want to go back in here. You know, her, her whole company is about feminist business marketing, and she likes to use the word skeevy. Like, it’s like patriarchal, skeevy marketing, like, let’s just, I think I think that it I feel that shifting, or maybe in my bubble, it’s shifting. Or, you know, it’s being called out more, or things like that. But I love that, like, idea that it’s, I guess the way I would phrase it is like, where are you opening possibility for people that they desire? Right? Like, you’re not sort of creating a thing, like a new desire that isn’t? It’s like, you’re manipulating people into wanting something, right? It’s like, really just like, hey, here, is this a thing that you have desired? And then here’s, here’s, like, exactly how you can get it.

That’s right. And so painting that picture through words and through design, digitally, as well as in print. That’s everything. Right? If I want to go on a vacation, and I’m trying to figure it out, if you paint the picture of what my life will look like, once I’m there, that destination. If you say, you know, relax, unwind and unplug. I’d be like, Oh, what did you just say? Where do I sign up?

Blue  

Yeah, and also in your examples, I’ve heard you, like, you just zero in on language, right? Like we’re like, in, it’s concise to write, it’s not a whole, like, I gotta follow along this whole story and figure out what it’s about and what’s in it for me, those brain calories I love. But it’s really just like, make it so accessible, so easy for me to understand very quickly, if it’s for me, or it isn’t.

Right. And that’s the thing, you cannot sacrifice clarity for cuteness, people will get lost. Ironically, I did get a certification and copywriting right before the pandemic hit. And the teacher, my teacher was Donald Miller and he wrote this incredible book called Building a story brand. And, and it really is about how you create this concise way of telling a story for your marketing. It improves your marketing. And it all starts with clarity, right? Because he always says if you confuse you lose hmm. And and we know this you could have a lineup of five different life coaches. But if that one life coach actually has also their voice shines through their personality shines through. They’re already going to stand out from like, we use innovative tactical, blah, blah, blah, whatever it is, right? That sounds like everybody else versus and I actually worked with this incredible life coach and helped her rebrand right where she’s just like us today in the fucking face. Let’s cut the bullshit. You also get a flavor of what her life coaching is going to be all about.

Blue  

Oh, yeah. Yeah. I love that. Yeah, it’s like this. Really expressing yourself being who you are. I love this idea of that sort of branding is because I think I’m not alone in the sense of like, I still hear the word branding and a half to kinda like, oh, you know, I kind of, I don’t know, I have some like, physical contraction around here. Because it’s like, Oh, it sounds you know, very corporate painful like Not my jam. But when as you’re describing it, it’s like, oh, it’s it’s storytelling. It’s, it’s helping people be really clear on whether you’re a match for each other in terms of what you’re offering.

Yeah. And and you know, I love that you said that because brand branding has been kind of it has a lot of tire marks on its back. Really tired, you know? Because it does get confused. People are like, oh, yeah, I need branding. It’s like, actually, no, you need marketing. So my definition, very quick hit definition is, you know, branding, is how you make people feel when and what they say about you when you’re not in the room. It is an environmental, it’s like what is the atmosphere around your company, your brand or service, it’s atmospheric, that is built over time that is built through projection that is built through relationships, that is built in everywhere you that you show up in the public world, whether it’s in digital social media websites, on a podcast, in print, as people talk about you, as your teams walk around with their swag t shirt and their you know, Zippy vast in their backpack. Right? That’s all brand marketing, though, is, I’m going to tell you how I’m going to help transform you, after you’ve worked with me, or my product or my service. Marketing is pretty much telling you what to do and how to do it very easily to make your life easier. Right? It’s a way of communicating what is brought to market?

Blue  

All right, that’s such a helpful distinction. For those of us who are not in that world, like Yeah, and I

would also say when you’re a small business and a solopreneur, it’s more important that you get your marketing right first, before worrying about your brand. If your brand if worrying about your brand, like what should I name my company, what’s my logo, what’s my colors, if that’s blocking you from actually get into your first offering, drop it, just literally open a Word doc, and write the name of whatever you think your business is, and get that up on your website. And talk to a website designer, I think it is really important to invest in a designer. But there are plenty of first step platforms that you can go to and get a very inexpensive website at first and then later as you grow in revenue, then reinvest, so it doesn’t look. So first, you know, 1.0 release. Really focus on your marketing. And to me marketing is about a nurturing conversation with your audience. So get that right, and everything else will fall into place. Again, messy, right? be messy, and do your marketing first branding can come later branding is once you already have revenue. That’s where most of the clients I work with now, or they’ve already been in business for at least two years before we start to rebrand. Because to me, that’s not a great return on your investment when you’re just starting out.

Blue  

Yeah, absolutely. Oh, I see that happening all the time. I’m sure you do as well, where people like they start business and they’re like, I need to make a logo a step one. I’m like, no, no, no, don’t do that. Like, because you’re gonna change like that first year of business. I feel like especially like, I had no idea who I was like, I don’t in the marketplace. You know, I’m like, Yeah, I want to help people heal. I don’t know what that looks like, I tried a lot of different things. And I’m so glad I didn’t do a bunch of investing. I mean, we were talking about how it’s important to invest, right, but I’m so grateful I didn’t invest a bunch in, you know, making things look beautiful online for like a product I was done with next week.

Actually, it creates an invisible trap for you. Right, then you feel stuck and burdened by this thing that you invested. Let’s even say like $1,200 I invested on like creating this logo and all the bubble but right. It’s like, sometimes, if you don’t have that initial money to invest, please don’t invest. If they’re invested in your marketing, get a get a simple website up. hire a designer to have you do that. So you look at least buttoned up enough where people are like, press the button to pay you. Right. And then a 2.0 you can go back a

Blue  

little document with a PayPal link, like just do it.

Right. And we know this through Rachael Rogers book, we should all be millionaires as well as many other female CEOs. A lot of them have sold straight out of a Google Doc. There is no website. Yeah, yeah.

Blue  

Oh, even yours in it’s okay to do that. Yeah, especially doing something new. Like I was just, I was sharing with you earlier. Before we started recording, too, that I just came through this launch of a program I thought was so brilliant brand new idea, like super fun. People had so much fun and like the workshop to introduce it, and then one person enrolled. And what happened on the back end, which I didn’t, you know, publicly market or anything, anywhere was the same request over and over to do a different kind of a program. And so I’m, I’m doing that, and, and literally, like, it’s just by request, and i i It’s a Google doc based thing right now. There was like, demand is there. i It’s totally in my wheelhouse. I’m excited to do it. So why not? And just keep it simple. So so it’s okay, at any stage, right? It’s just, um, it doesn’t it’s not because I think that’s another thing we can get hung up on is like, well, you know, we’ve kind of mentioned the two year mark well, okay, once I’m two years of business, like I should have figured out, right, or I do branding once, and then it’s over, like,

yeah, no, like, dispel all that. That’s true. Right? It’s an evolution. It’s evolutionary just like us, right? We don’t approach the world the same way as we may have at seven or 12, or a 20.

Blue  

Totally. Hopefully,

hopefully. And if and if you are, well, I also hope you have a really great therapist that’s helping you.

Blue  

Oh, well, that’s I. It’s such a delight. And this has been such a fun, like sort of business jam session.

I love it. I love talking to you. Oh,

Blue  

I love talking to you. And I love talking about business, which you would have asked me 10 years ago, if I would even be in business or love talking about it, I would have said you are out of your mind. Here I am. You never know where your path is gonna go? How do you I just want to ask you one, maybe two other questions is How would you define success for yourself?

Hmm. Well, that that is for me constantly changing

Blue  

today, this morning. Yay. Maybe later?

Yes, for today? Well, part of success for me is acknowledging the milestones and the little wins when they happen, because I also have, I’ve been working on it, but I will blow off like these little successes like oh, yeah, that was nice, but I won’t really acknowledge it. So acknowledging that is a big success, these little milestones about ultimate success, I do want to continue to build my consultancy, to over seven figures, not because not only because I want to be a millionaire, but it’s really because I want to use the revenue to reinvest in communities that need it, to invest in other incredible entrepreneurs that are making a difference and a change in the world and creating this much more inclusive world that I truly am striving to create and see and really affect change on a on a bigger scale. And honestly, we as we’ve seen six figures doesn’t have enough economic power anymore. Which is so crazy to say to me success is really scaling over the next couple of years to be able to bring more people along and and help them level up as I level up

Blue  

hmm beautiful. I love that and it’s true right i There is just so much evidence that women invest in our communities like the the wealth when we have more than we need that money goes to people in our world that need it. Yes. Yes. So good. So good. Oh, I can’t wait for you to be a millionaire. Yeah, and maybe like last question and then let’s definitely share where where people can find you. Is you mentioned and I love this because it is so important and it’s easy like you said like your mom, like you like I think a lot of us can identify With this, where we just don’t really celebrate our successes, especially the small ones, especially the things that we sort of, might take for granted that we just do, like, there’s so many things we’re taking care of, and tracking and people were helping and you know, just it’s easy to, to just gloss over that and focus on sort of what we didn’t get to in the to do list right or something like that. So for you what is what is the recent success and let us celebrate it with you?

Well, honestly, being on this podcast with you, and also being interviewed for another podcast that’s about to be released through the story brand organization called Marketing made simple, is a very big deal. It’s a success for me. And the, the action that I took then and I will take also, with our opportunity together is just letting you know, putting it on my channels like that’s huge to actually say, Hey, I just had the honour of speaking with blue. Like, that’s a very big deal instead of glossing it over like, Okay, what’s next on the to do list? Like taking a moment? Yeah, moment of reverence like, wow, look at this. Yeah, you milestone that you just hit?

Blue  

Yes. Yeah. And I would like to acknowledge you for reaching out and saying, I’d like to be a guest on your pod. Yes. So I, I sort of put this out in a community that we share. And because I know there’s so many badass women in there and said, Hey, here’s kind of what I’m looking for. Send me a message. If this is you. Basically, like, if you’re a badass, contact me, and that was like, contacting me. So I love it. All right, so where in the internet world can people find you?

Um, so my website is fortified branding, and so are my handles on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook. And also, and maybe we can put the link in the notes if you wish. Otherwise, on my website, there is a link that is a downloadable elevator pitch, which would be kind of the the second really big step in in bettering your marketing is to really have what is your very short, concise statement that makes people want to say, Where do I give you money, or where’s your business card, right. And so there’s a worksheet that I give freely, which really just helps you develop that on your own. Because when you are armed with the words, you are armed with confidence, and you can walk into any room anywhere, and when somebody says what do you do for you to be able to just smoothly and concisely say what you do and how you solve their problems. It makes it changes the way you grow and build your business.

Blue  

It really does. I like to think of it as like, claim it without attachment. Hmm. Like just, this is what I’m up to, and then let go of what anyone else thinks about that.

Blue that is a poster and a T shirt from your organization to cash in on that spine right now.

Blue  

A lot of your branding rain, okay, you can find a path of her own.com We will have all the links and places and spaces, as many as we can find where you can go and keep connecting with Beth, if you’ve enjoyed this conversation today. Thank you for listening. And thank you, Beth, so much for being here.

Thank you so much.

Blue  

Thanks for listening to a path of her own today. I’d love to connect. To be in the loop on upcoming events, tips and inspiration, please visit www dot blue rocks.com And subscribe to my mailing list.