January 26, 2020
Sam Pollack - An Alternative to Bro Marketing

Sam is a copywriter who creates inspired email sequences for feminist business owners who want their marketing efforts to align with their beliefs & values—without sacrificing profitability. She found her calling after starti...


Sam is a copywriter who creates inspired email sequences for feminist business owners who want their marketing efforts to align with their beliefs & values—without sacrificing profitability.

She found her calling after starting out as a health and fitness coach, and realized the part she liked best about that job was all of the writing she was doing, and the accolades she would get from it.

After enduring training and immersion in the “bro marketing” world, Sam realized that what she really wanted to do was create and alternative to this approach, and started a business that could provide that for her clients and for herself.

Find Sam at  www.cultofpersonality.co

Full episode details at: https://realbusiness.stephaniehayes.biz/episode-16

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Transcript
Speaker 1:

Welcome to the real people real business show where we're talking with business owners who are in the trenches everyday, people who are working hard and have relevant and inspiring stories that you can relate to. Everyone we speak to is actively building and growing their business and is here to share their experiences, lessons, wisdom, and guidance so you can be inspired to take action towards your own goals. Today. I am so excited to welcome my friends and clients and all around amazing person, Sam Pollick. She creates inspired email sequences for feminist business owners who want their marketing efforts to align with their beliefs and values without sacrificing profitability. This is amazing, Sam, welcome to the show and thanks so much for taking the time to share your story today.

Speaker 2:

Hi, I am so excited to be doing this.

Speaker 1:

So you have this totally amazing business focus and it is one that I think is so much needed out there and you're really taking a stand and you want to change the way that we do things. So tell me a little bit about how you got here. How did you end up with this production

Speaker 2:

dealer focus ? Yeah, well , um , it's kind of a two parter. So how I got started writing full time , um, was I was floundering and bro , after relocating from Boston to Asheville in 2010 , um, at that time I had been working in the fitness industry for 10 plus years. And when I left the city, I had a coach , personal trainer job 401k, health insurance, the whole deal. Um, but when I got to Asheville, the whole industry is different. Job market's different, people's relationship to fitness and recreation is different. I basically had to start over from scratch, start my own personal training business. Um, and at that time I , uh , went to a nutrition school that promised to, to take me in and spit me out as a fully fledged health coach with my own business, with all these clients , um, and all these whew eating philosophies. Um, and so that was kind of my first taste of being a business owner, quote unquote , um, writing on the internet, et cetera. Um, I also started a blog when I moved to just kind of like catalog my experience and share what I was going through with that relocation. And that was kind of like my gateway drug to internet writing. Um, so that business was really kind of a shit show. Um, looking back now , um, I can kind of see that I really hated everything about it. Um , except the parts that involve writing on the internet, which, I mean , of course the whole business was on the internet, but all the writing parts, I was really into everything else about it not into , um, okay . The school that I had gone to was really steeped in diet culture positive thinking like Chez Minas . Um, and like I couldn't have articulated any of that at the time, but it makes sense now. I had such a hard time getting traction. Um, I often like to joke that that school is a cult. Um, but maybe it's not a joke. I don't know , um, along, so I really tried hard to make that business work, like beating my head against the wall for years. Um, I picked up a number of side gigs and part time jobs to like barely, barely pay the bills. Um, and I ended up in a local physical therapy clinic slash fitness center. Mmm , okay . And a few months into working there, I offered to head up their blog and most of their online marketing efforts because I'd had to teach myself how to do all of that stuff and my health coaching business and nobody was really doing it at the gym. So I took over and it was great. Um, so fast forward or slow forward I guess to 2015 after years of like really weird low paying Asheville jobs, which if you live in Asheville, you totally know what I'm talking about. But I have some stories. Um, and I was super frustrated at not having any money. I was having constant fights with my partner. Um, he was in grad school and just starting his career. So like we were extremely broke and it was frustrating. I finally decided like, I'm going to get a real job, like a job job. Um, but I have never actually had a real job, fun fact about me. Um, I spent like 15 years in the service industry and then 12 years in the fitness industry. And I felt like, you know, like, what do I even know how to do besides wear cute leggings and throw dumbbells around? Um, so I started like in 2015 I started with a like extensive, like skillset evaluation. I wrote down every single thing that I did at my job at the gym. And I actually came up with like a pretty impressive list and there was a lot of writing skills on there. Um, a lot of internet marketing skills. And one day I said to my soon to be husband , um, you know what I would really like to do, just write , just like write and get paid for it. And he said , um , yeah, you already do that. Which, and he was right. Um, so I had been publishing regular blog posts at that gym for like two years straight. I had also been hired to write a biweekly wellness column for a blog called the [inaudible] dot com. Um, which was a blog for child-free women. Um, so , um, this is still in like 2015 I started putting together writing samples, scouring the internet for job opportunities, internships, et cetera. And it was really like a month. It was all really fast. Um , right after I started doing that, I landed my first full time writing gig. Um, and that was for a company called abundant Yogi. Um, and they were like a coaching platform for yoga instructors, Bodyworkers , et cetera , um, to help them run their businesses. And they immersed me in like all the copyrighting things. Like I got to write every little kind of thing possible. And they sent me to all these trainings that they had, like all the big heavy hitter guru, bro marketers, Ryan Deiss, and Frank Kern, even pagan. I had maybe read this terrible book by Ryan holiday. Um, and that was kind of my first introduction into like what quote unquote copywriting is and how utterly like act out I felt by how misogynistic it felt to me. Um, and at the time I really didn't like follow that instinct because I was new in the game. And I had just made a huge career change and I was like so eager to learn and so happy that someone was just paying me to do it. And I was just enjoying that I was getting paid to write. So I just kind of took it all with a grain of salt and thought, well, I guess that's how it's done. I guess I'm just, I guess I'm just like naive or something. So I didn't really heat it, but it always really bugged me. I remember one of the first things I ever watched was Ryan dice on stage at like one of the digital marketer conferences, and he was comparing , um, marketing to being a pickup artist. Okay . Um , and just like, so gross. Uh, and I , I don't know, I just, it always had been very off putting . I definitely know how can like go back and articulate like the patriarchal origins of copywriting and all this stuff that I have learned along the way. But like at the time it was just like, Ugh. But then I just kept doing my work, you know, the way I wanted to do it. Um, anyway , um , I got laid off from that job, so, so I went out on my own because I got laid off from that job and then I got a second job, which was like even more bro copywriting and I got fired from that job in October, 2016. Um, and then I just started trucking. I just took my first client, I got fired in October, 2016 and then by the end of 2016 I had landed my first two retainer clients and just kind of like buried myself in client work for the next two and a half years. So yeah.

Speaker 1:

So, okay. So you, you had taken on these clients, when did it move from I'm just doing copywriting for whomever to , I'm doing copywriting for this very specific targeted audience in this very specific way.

Speaker 2:

[inaudible] um, it was pretty organic. It was like I did so much different work for so many different types of clients and I really got a feel for like some of the work and culture and like what people were doing in the world. I just, I found that I really didn't feel good if I was working. So, and selling my town basically too , help somebody make money who had a mission that I just couldn't really get behind. Like whether it's just people who make a lot of money, helping other people make a lot of money. So that's kind of like internet marketing businesses. Not that there's anything wrong with internet marketing. I mean, we all do it, you'll have to do it. Um, but there's a certain culture of it that is, is like people, there's a lot of , um, like marketing gurus especially who have language about like making the world a better place, but really what they're doing is just like selling $10,000 packages to other people to teach them how to sell $10,000 packages and all they're doing is marketing. Like they're not actually doing anything or making anything or helping anyone in a real way or helping change a harmful status quo. Yeah. Um , so I, and I also found over the years that I really excelled at writing emails more than anything else. Um , and emails give you a different vehicle, there's a different type of conversation that you're having with the reader than like a sales page, for example. Um, it's more of a conversation. So it lends itself to more like ideological concepts that are recrafted writing more stories. Mmm . Yeah. Yeah.

Speaker 1:

So when , when was that time that you kind of actually like committed to this being how you put yourself out in the world, right? What you call yourself that you work with, what you stand for?

Speaker 2:

Gosh, I mean, you know, it's funny. It , it's relatively recent. Um, it was a long time coming because I was scared about it. Um, I think I had the F I first had the idea to start niching. Mmm . Probably around like early 2018. Um, I was scared of niching. I was scared. If I say I only write emails that I wouldn't be able to have a sustainable business from that. Um, I was, it wasn't just fear. I also didn't really know how to articulate like who I wanted to work with and why. Um, and so that was kind of an evolution. Working with you over that past year, like helped a lot in me like narrowing it down and really standing firm. And then also , um, I think it was around that time too. I came across a writer named Kelly deals . Um, and she is a feminist writer and for a while , I think she's transitioning out of this now, but one of her main things that she taught was this feminist copywriter framework. And so a lot of her writing is like dismantling what typical copywriting methods are doing and , um, sharing a new way to do it that doesn't participate in those. I can give you some examples if that would be helpful. But so reading her work has really helped me like articulate why I felt act out four years ago, watching that Ryan Deiss presentation and like why I have always felt a little, I don't know , out of alignment with what most people expect from a copywriter. Um, and so that really helped me too. And so that bio that you read from at the beginning, I think I wrote that in like June of last year. So yeah, it's been, it's just been in the last year that I've been like, boom, this is who I am, this is what's up and not apologizing for it.

Speaker 1:

Yeah. Amazing. And I think that a lot of people get to that place, so I think what would be really helpful for them is that they understand if our listeners understand a little bit more about like what, what finally got you there? Like what was that thinking and what did you realize? Because clearly niching down and being more specific about who you're serving and what you do has not hurt you. [inaudible] got a pretty, you've got a pretty healthy business now and you're working, you seem to be working with people that you really want .

Speaker 2:

[inaudible] yeah. Um, yeah. You know, it's a little bit of a challenging question to answer and not that I'm trying to Dodge it, but it's like there wasn't like one moment that happened that I could be like, this happened. And then from then on I was like, I only write emails for socially driven people. Um , it's more like, you know, it's really like what you don't want. That's what, that's what it is. I think the last thing that I can remember happening is I decided to niche down to emails. That decision was a little easier because everyone needs emails and they need lots of emails. So as far as niches go, there are scarier ones. Um , but so that felt good to me. Um, and then I landed this big fish money. Uh, Oh God, he was so sorry. We could speak freely on this podcast. Right. Um, I landed this client who was such a jerk, like he was so pompous and arrogant and shiny suits. He had this, he was like a private equity investor, like guy, which is so outside of anything that I remotely care about or know about. Um, which that in itself isn't a bad thing, but like his personality was just so horrible. Um, and I think working with him and I, and I cut it off. Like I had signed him for like a huge retainer. He was going to pay me so much money. Um, and I bailed halfway through the month because I just couldn't like handle him. Um, and I didn't agree with what he was doing. I didn't like how he talked to me. He was super sexist. Um, and I think that was the time where I was like, I am not like it . There's nothing wrong with taking a client that isn't your exact ideal because everyone needs to pay the bills. And it's kind of like a little bit of a fantasy that we could only always work with like hundred and 10% perfect clients. But like at that time I was like, I felt like a sellout working with him and it felt like it was taking time away from other clients, maybe who needed me more and respected me more. And also like we're doing cooler things. Like it's not interesting to write about real estate investment. Um, but it is interesting to write about like disrupting the pain management industry and getting people off opiates and like curing your own chronic pain. Like that's radical. So

Speaker 1:

yeah. So this is, so who are you working with now? Like, wait, what, what did you figure out? Like, I know that you, you don't always work with people who are exactly in that target audience, but what is it that is sort of deal breaker about the people that you do work with?

Speaker 2:

I mean, this is cheesy, but the first word that comes to my mind is kindness like I have. So some of the people that I've worked with recently are , um, I just finished a project that was a website, but I still do those sometimes. Um, I just finished a website for a counselor, a mental health counselor based in Colorado who works from a body trust body liberation framework. And it's like dismantling the pathology model of mental health , um, and diet and a diet culture. She's, she works with people with , um, like binge eating disorders and stuff, and she believes that social justice work as part of her job as a therapist. So that was like full on, like a hundred percent Sams perfect client. Um, but I also have a client , um, that I've worked with on and off who's , uh , a physician, doctor anesthesiologists . You can, you can tell where my, you can tell where my expertise lies. He's an anesthesiologist. Um, and he , uh, he teaches other medical professionals how to invest in real estate, which is funny because I just told that horror story of that guy is like parallel business. But this guy , um, his mission is different and more altruistic. Like it's, it's not about altruism necessarily, but he is helping all of these medical professionals that graduate from school and have these expectations of what their lives are going to be like. And then instead they have six figure student loan debt and they don't understand how to run a practice. No one's taught them how to do that. And they , uh, they don't understand money because they just thought they were going to be rich when they were doctor. He's helping those people get, take more control of their lives. You know, live a healthier lifestyle, spend more time with their families. It's not like, you know, changing the world. It's not saving us from climate change, but it doesn't feel, you know, shitty for me to help him do that. And the working relationship is good too. I mean, that's really what it comes down to also.

Speaker 1:

So this is about having people who are, you know, human good humans, right? Find good humans that are doing something to better the world in some way, right? This doesn't have to be like save the whales or something , something on a really grandiose scheme. But what I'm hearing from you is that you need some type of contribution, right? That is , that's essential in the people that you're working with. And what's super, what's also doubly interesting to me is that you have niche down, not just with the people that you work with, but the work that you do, right? You went, you, you now pretty much primarily focus on emails and, and this isn't necessarily just conversion copy. This is like nurture, storytelling , um, really high integrity copy, right? So you've double niched , which a lot of people are really afraid to do. But in , in my , from my perspective, this is actually really helped you. Would it, you know, would you say that this is, this should be a scary thing to , to niche down and find that thing that's really, really you?

Speaker 2:

Well

Speaker 1:

[inaudible]

Speaker 2:

I mean the reality is it's scary. Any transition that you make in your business is scary. Um, and I feel like I'm the last person to tell somebody like, don't be scared, just go for it. It's great. But I would tell someone, and in fact I just did tell someone , um, to think more about the kind of work that you like doing and the type of person you want to work with because they kind of go together. Like if you, if I like to write emails the best and , and it's a specific kind of email, I like to write the best. And so specializing in emails means I don't always get to write like beautifully flowy stories. One goes into the next and there's like surprise and things . I'm like a fiction writer at heart. So like that stuff is really easy and fun for me. But you know, I also write launch emails and if I had to pick, I would pick the former, but it doesn't mean that I won't do the other kind. But even those like, I mean that's a whole, sorry I just went off on a tangent, but even launch emails, that's particularly a culture where it's very aggressive urgency selling, selling, selling. And there is a way to do that with integrity. And there is something to be said for , uh , the balance between like not annoying the shit out of somebody and just like piercing through all of the noise and just like straight up letting them know that there's a thing they can buy and it expires in 24 hours when they have 47 unread emails in their inbox, you know, to , to me it might seem ridiculous to send them five emails in one day, but in their reality, if they see your name five times amongst 47, they'll probably opened one of those emails, you know? But there's a, there's a way to bring in more integrity into that culture. So yeah, I'm working on that. So what in that sort of copywriting space in the , the industry, so to speak is [inaudible] . He's like, what's wrong with the way things have been done traditionally? Well, it's, it depends on how you define wrong, I guess because people have made a lot of money and built really successful businesses using those techniques. Um, I can tell you what a, I could tell you what I don't like about it and , um , what I'm doing instead. Um, and I'm not just trying to be, you know, I'm not like diplomatic just for the sake of being diplomatic. Um, I just like, I don't want to shit on people who are doing regular copywriting or mainstream copywriting, you know, somebody has to I guess. Um, but , uh, so there are a couple of distinctive factors , um, in traditional copywriting that , um, and listen, if you, if, if you listeners are interested in this, I definitely encourage you to explore Kelly deals his work because she articulates this way better than I can and she's like a really good researcher. So she has all these facts to back her up. So I'm just going to do my best to approximate it. Um, basically , um, there's a couple of things. There's the manufactured false sense of urgency. Um , there is the playing up the pain points and um , insecurities of the reader. Um, so everybody, like most people know that copywriting is like an emotional journey, selling and buying. It's an emotional decision. Um, and there , and there's a lot if you look at like , um, neuro linguistic programming that is all real like , um, manipulative I guess is the word. Um, in a, in a way. I mean, every piece of writing in some way manipulates the reader. If you feel something, I mean, even just a piece of fiction does it. Um, but there's a particular, I don't know, there's a certain malevolence to it where it feels like you're tricking somebody into buying something they don't need. Um, and there's, so there's a lot of that. There's a lot of like playing on insecurity is on fear. Um , um , yeah . And Shane , there's also a lot of shame built into certain copywriting. So some of that you can see in language of like language around investing certain money in yourself. If you don't have, like if you straight up don't have $2,000 to invest in this course, then you should not spend $2,000 on this course no matter what you think it's going to get you. But there's a lot of sales and copywriting and conversion copywriting that that treats that as like just an objection to be overcome and not as like someone's actual actual financial reality. I just almost dropped an F-bomb. I'm not sure if we're allowed to do that. Um, their actual fucking financial reality is that they can't afford this class. And so it's like disrespectful in a way. Um , and so in a feminist framework, you start with shared value. So instead of starting with pain points, you start with a shared value. Like for example, all, all, everyone should feel safe in the body that they have. And that's something we can all agree on. And by we all, I mean like you're talking audience, right? Then you would go into like the , the things that are in the way of us living that shared value. Like you could talk about the harmful paradigms of like , um, therapy, the therapy models. You could talk about diet culture, you're talking about fat shaming, detox teas or whatever, say, but these things are, you know, standing in the way of us doing that. And then you talk about what you're proposing to do instead and then you just ask for the sale. Like it's very transparent. Um, you can see this and you can see market are starting to do this. Like a lot of marketers now are starting their newsletter, their nurture email by just being like, here's all the things I'm doing with links. Like they're not trying to bury the fact that they're selling you something. Um, so that's one of the defining characteristics of it is that it's just more honest. Um , and honestly it's easier to write when you're just being straight and not like leading them to some, you told them this whole story and then boom, by the way, by this thing, and it is the somewhat dependent though on, on who you're selling to. Like there are, there are audiences where that sort of more traditional approach really resonates, right? 100%. And it also depends on what you're offering. Yeah. Yeah. And so you're , so these, these, these folks you're working with, are they true ? Are they sort of traditionally service-based or are they selling products? Yeah, I have a couple product based clients. Um, but yeah, mostly it's like service providers. Um, coach is, I worked with the natural path last year. Um, even like this dr money guy, like it's all very, and there's a lot of, there's a bunch bigger trust barrier. Um , you're going to spend a lot of time with that person or they're going to , you're gonna share something like with what you do. Like if it's no joke to like get into all the shit that comes up when you're like restructuring your business. There's a lot of personal things come up and I'm not gonna a plunk down all that money and like be vulnerable unless I already trust you enough at least to feel safe doing that. And so the content leading up to that point is, it's different than if you were just like, I don't know , selling my treasures . Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. There's a lot of umbrellas that we sell up here. It's raining. You need that shit. It's minus 17 today. So funny enough, one of my product people does sell umbrellas. [inaudible]

Speaker 1:

so I want to talk a little bit about your business now because we talked a lot about kind of the work that you do and to me your positioning in your, you know, watching you, you know, we've , we've been working together for almost two years now and the, watching you, having made this shift and really committing to it has been so fascinating. And like from my perspective, I see how much it's worked for you, but you know, you're running a business, you're a business owner. So I want to talk a little bit about what growth has meant to you. Like, how have you gone from, you know, that sort of tentative place you were, you made have been like, we all are to where are your , where you are now, where you know you've got some consistency and you've, you're a lot more confident with your business and you've got like, I think you're booked out for a few months now. Right? [inaudible] yeah, yeah. Growth has been a really interesting thing for you because it's been very specific.

Speaker 2:

Yeah. So do you mean more like my mindset and offerings and stuff or do you mean like how completely disorganized I was at the beginning and how, how I've overcome that?

Speaker 1:

I think the interesting story for me with you is about , um, how you've really chosen what growth is gonna look like for you. Like this is not about piling hand over fist money, money, money. You've been very specific about how's this business needs to grow.

Speaker 2:

Yeah. So thank you that that is clarifying . So I think the biggest, okay through line of all of the growth that I've experienced has been this slow but steady growth toward , um, myself and like growth toward, I'm building the business that I want to have and there's been a lot that I've had to overcome and I'm still working on , um, in, in the sense that , um, the culture of online business is very much tailored to like super high energy, extroverted, hustling, positive, positive, positive , um, people six figure launches, blah, blah, blah. It's very exhausting and it , and it's not necessarily tailored toward highly sensitive people who need a lot of downtime , um , and get burnt out very easily and take a certain amount of time to do the quality of work that they do. And I guess by may, I mean me , um , and you know, it's, I would love to tell you that, like, I have been like this punk rock outsider the whole time and been like, fuck you, I'm not listening to any of that. And it's like, great, that would be great. But like the reality is I've often felt like, like I don't belong or , uh , I don't have what it takes to like make it, make the big bucks, make, make you know, real success, whatever that even looks like. Um, I've often struggled with that and I still do. I mean, you know, my imposter syndrome is real. Um, and so when I think about the growth that I've had, I feel a lot. It's like all this time I never knew that I could just do things however I wanted and like however I want to do them is fine and good and right. You know? And it's like, it's, it sounds simple. I mean, it sounds almost rudimentary to say that out loud, but , um, in the culture that we live in with all of these external messages coming at us, I mean, you spend 10 minutes scrolling your Instagram feed and you can leave there, just feel like shit. And it's not even because people are posting good stuff on there. It's just [inaudible] you look at it and it's like some, some people have a personality that is like really in line with being awesome at Instagram. Right? And you can look at that and be like, God, I'm never going to be like that and therefore I'm not going to have, you know, success. And it's vague, but , um, you know, there's all these practical things. Like I learned how to use a sauna and I learned how to budget my money and have a plan and not overbooked myself. Like that all is part of it though too. Like that's all part of taking my business seriously and respecting it as sort of an entity outside myself. But also it's one thing to say that, but like the reality is there is only one person who works with that business and it's me. So , um, I, you know, got to take care of myself and not just by like taking baths and getting massages and stuff. I mean, I can't, I can't, I'm not a machine. I'm not a factory. I can't just crank out seven emails a day and pretend that, I mean I can't do that at all, but if I did, four of them would be crap. Um, yeah. So I think it's, it's helped me okay . Book better projects because my, I'm better, I'm more honest about the timeline , um , how long it's going to take me to do something. Um, yeah. And just like remembering that, you know, the way that I do things is a legit way to do things even though it might not be how everyone else does things. And probably there's a lot more people like me that it seems like because people like me aren't out there. Blair, they're hard about it.

Speaker 1:

A million thousand percent . And to me, you are a poster child for alignment, right. For , for this, this whole platform that I stand on, which is like start with you, right? You've got to start with you. And I use you, I use you, I use you as an example a lot that you can have this, like you've got a profitable , um , business that actually feels good for you. And yeah, there's like, but that , you know, the transition you've made from, you know, this kind of overwhelmed too . You're very in control of your business now and like, yeah, of course there's always shit that comes up, but [inaudible] you're a poster child for , for forcing the alignment and being really clear on what you want. Right.

Speaker 2:

Thank you. I don't know if I'd ever been the poster child for anything, so that's exciting. Well, he might be. In my world, you are. Yay.

Speaker 1:

The important thing about that is that other people can learn. You identify as a highly sensitive person as an HSP, you identify a little bit as an introvert and this, this is a scary place. Business is a scary place because for people like that, because all the messages that we hear about business are that you have to hustle. You have to be like this really extroverted, know , highly energetic person. And I don't think that that's true. Mmm . I don't think it's true that you need to be this like crazy person to be a very successful entrepreneur. I don't believe that you have to have the extroverted hustle and grind mentality. You have this lovely business that that is like a L and you're totally on top of everything that's going on and we no longer get to the place where you're like, Oh my gosh, a client is ending. I've got to have a rush, rush, rush, rush, rush, and get a whole bunch of Murdoch . Clinton , no , we know exactly how many clients you need. And you have this very like methodical way of kind of just filling that gap when you, and you know where it's going to come from. So tell me like, what's been that, what's been the most sort of pivotal moment for you or like realization for you over the past however many years you've been in business now for five years, that you would say has really shifted things for you and put you in the place where you really want to be?

Speaker 2:

There've been a few, I think early in my writing career , um, the feedback that I got about the work that I was doing was so positive. Um, and that is a good antidote for imposter syndrome. I mean, you , you need a steady dose of it, but it does help when someone else is like, this is amazing. You're amazing. It's so good. You're so good. I'm like, please give me all of that that you can , um, those moments have, every time that happens. It is a pivotal moment. I mean, it, it, it's very reassuring that I'm on the right track doing what I'm meant to be doing. Um, I would also say [inaudible] . Mmm . I think, you know, so this is kind of a left field answer, but , um, this past summer I had the dry dry spell that I've ever had since I started , uh, my business. Um, and it was pretty bleak and, and I, our finances were very low. Um, and during that time , uh, I had a friend who was going through a similar time with her business and her experience was like questioning her whole business and like pivoting and changing everything. And is she doing the right things? Did she have the right offering? Does she done it? Ah , and my experience while similar in the financial sense, I did not have any of those questions. Mmm . You know, she was like, should I get a job? And like I've been there. I was there when the whole time I had my health coaching business. Um Hmm . But I never have felt that way since I started my writing business, not even once. And this summer when like I , I mean I really didn't know what I was going to do if I didn't get an influx of clients. Uh, but I didn't, I didn't for a second, like think that I should change, change my offering or change my, you know , structure. Like I knew I knew what the problem was. The problem was that I had not built up a marketing habit at all and had just been relying on these longterm retainers that I have for a really long time and just hadn't built up my pipeline. You know, it wasn't a problem of anything else. And I felt clear on that. And you know, to be fair and like a lot of that is because of the work that I was doing with you , um, that I had that clarity. But um, yeah, I think that was like a pivotal moment because [inaudible] it , it was interesting to like observe that, like to be the and be like, huh, not really. I'm not really that worried about that . And I , I feel like I sh another version of me would be like super worried about this, but I'm really not. And you know, it was a low key pivotal moment, but I'm low key

Speaker 1:

[inaudible] I love it. And I have a lot of clients like you too who would like, they want to do good business, they want to build businesses that are successful in their own definition of what success is, but they don't want to have to be out there like re , you know, in crop tops and you know, [inaudible] and being like really showy and like there's, there's absolutely a way to have the business that you want and you're making the money that you want. I mean, we can always all make more , but you're making the money when you're doing the work that you want. You are so much more like confident and less overwhelmed and like this is all possible. And that's what I really want people to learn from listening to your story is that you've been determined to not let those other kinds of business models become yours because they don't work for you. You have stood your ground. And that's been really important because if you haven't had it , you would've ended up in a different place. Um, so let me, let me ask you , um, what do you wish you knew before you got started?

Speaker 2:

Well, I think, yeah, just what we've been talking about. I wish that I had known, I think about imposter syndrome really. I mean, I think, I wish I would've known that like I was right. I guess I , all those feelings that I had , uh , about bro marketing and, and like that crazy content like dumping, like just dumping content on people. That's like how, how the mainstream used to do it and I guess still kind of does, like my resistance to all of that was right. You know, and that, that when you have an experience like that, when you're like, welcome to this industry, here's capital H how it works, and you're like, Oh, I don't like that . Like that right there is gold. And if you feel that way, like you should, that you should listen to it and like follow that rabbit hole instead of , uh , not trusting. I mean, I think that's part of, not to get on a soap box , but like, I think that's part of like the patriarchal conditioning of women's relationships with their own instincts is like everything about it is, is telling us we can't trust ourselves. Um, and so I think that's , that , you know, there's definitely like a gender situation happening there. But yeah, I , I was very much like kept myself small and quiet, even though all inside I was like, I hate this. I hate how it feels. Um, and I wish I would have known to listen to that more. And it kinda ties into imposter syndrome too. Like everybody feels like they don't belong. Everyone else knows what they're doing and I don't know what I'm doing. Uh, like they're going to find out, I don't have what it takes. I'm going to lose everything. That's just like standard issue, imposter syndrome and every creative has it. And I didn't really understand that. I mean, I still have it, but , uh, I at least I know that it's like a thing. It's not that special. You know, everybody has it.

Speaker 1:

Nevermind every creative , every business owner has this. I can tell you. Okay. So what's next for you?

Speaker 2:

Yeah, so very, very early stages. I am starting to work on putting together an online course because that's what service providers do when they get tired of doing client work. Um, I'm starting an online course to help , um, highly sensitive people slash creatives. I think that's kind of the same group of people , uh, be business owners in a way that , um, supports their needs and doesn't burn them out creatively , uh , protects their kind of little inner, you know, overstimulated self , um, and still functions. Um, in the business world, I

Speaker 1:

couldn't even tell you how much I adore this and I already knew about it.

Speaker 2:

Okay .

Speaker 1:

And I think this is so relevant and so important because we're , you and I are both on this mission to empower anybody to become an entrepreneur because of the benefits we get from doing that. And if there's some way that we can target highly sensitive people who just don't feel like maybe they can do it, this is all gold. And so what kind of support do you need in order to make that happen?

Speaker 2:

Well, what [inaudible] I really need right now is potential people who would be interested in something like that. Um, I would like to talk to some of those people. Um, and so like, you know , now that I've had all my growth , um, one of the things I'm doing differently is taking my time with this instead of just like slapping together a bunch of content and then being upset that nobody bought it. Um, I want to do some interviews first and figure out like what would really be helpful to people. I have a lot of ideas and I think since I'm basically the target market for this, like I think, and I've , and I've like done a lot of this work. I think I have good ideas, but you know, I would love to know like what somebody else would find helpful, especially like formatting because I don't want to make a bunch of HSPs sit on log phone calls. That's like the opposite of what they need. But then how are we going to talk? Yeah. So that would be a big help to me.

Speaker 1:

Awesome. So you're looking for other HSP identifying business owners who can just hop on a call with you and help you understand a little bit more about what they need. Yeah, it's like a half hour coffee chat. Awesome. We can just be friends. That's good too . Friends are good. Awesome. Okay. Well we'll put the call out there to the community and we'll um, ask them for their help and we'll do some advising . I know that they're out there and they're going to need you so you're , you know, be careful because your inbox might get flooded. Oh man . Alright . Okay, my dear, it's been so lovely talking to you. I love your business. I love you. I love where you've gotten to. Um, we are running out of time but I know that we could talk for another hour. Thank you so much. This has been such a great conversation. So make sure and go and check out Sam and her amazing work. And thank you for tuning in today to hear Sam's story. The episodes that you're listening to are all featuring members of my free private Facebook group called the real deal business coaching group where we have daily prompts to keep focused on building your business and sharing your everyday challenges. Biweekly virtual coffee chats, open coaching and member support from this incredible community. And now we are doing monthly pop up coaching sessions, which is so great. If you'd like to join our community or if you'd like to be featured on the show, I would love for you to come and hang out with us in the group links in the show notes or search up real deal, business coaching and Facebook to find us. And finally, I would love for you to come and join us for our next episode where we're going to be speaking to Nadine Manson, who has built a really interesting business. She creates active wear. That is, she's managed to figure out the trifecta of clothing manufacturing so that they're sustainable, ethical, and they look and feel amazing. So she's, she's developed this really interesting model within a traditional industry that just sucks . So I can't wait to talk to her. I have known her for years and worked with her on her business and it is such a great story. So thank you again for being here. And if you've enjoyed today's content, I'd love for you to give us a review on whatever platform you're on. This helps us share these stories with an even bigger audience. And Sam, thank you so much for your time today. Thank you. It was so great. And until next time, keep building, keep dreaming and keep being real.