marketing strategies

Hidden Story Types that Grow Your Business

Talking about your business with a complete stranger or someone you see infrequently can be petrifying for anyone. How much do you share? What exactly should you tell them so that you're not rambling or selling yourself short?

I have frozen in conversation so many times because I don't want to give a canned, 30-second elevator speech. I want to say something more heartfelt and interesting - something that feels real. Ideally, I want to share something that actually gives them a flavor of who I am and what I'm all about. So I started a quest to become better at storytelling and I voraciously studied everything I could find for about a year.

All of that studying is helping me and I want it to help you, so that you have this information available at your fingertips without having to do a ton of research. Today's vlog is the last of a series of three where I discuss the types of stories people are most interested in hearing from you - whether you're at a cocktail party, giving a large presentation, or sharing on social media. I hope you enjoy these final two story types. I would love to hear if you work these into your conversations and what kind of results you have.

Happy storytelling!

How to Plan for Ridiculous Amounts of Success

What Are Your Strategies? Today’s topic is marketing strategies. Things are about to get seriously exciting up in here!!

What’s the Difference Between Goals, Strategies, and Action Items? To start, let’s distinguish the difference between strategies and goals. Goals are what you want to achieve. Strategies are the methods and channels you will use to accomplish your goals.

A word of caution for all of you who want to run to the finish line before you finish tying your shoes. Slow down a second. Strategies are not actions. That comes next. Strategies are the big, overarching tools/methods you will use. Since my mind automatically gravitates toward marketing, if one of your goals is to increase exposure and expand your audience by XX% in XX days, think of strategies as: social media, email marketing, research on a specific topic, networking, writing on a topic, speaking on particular topics or to particular audiences (aka the channels you will use to achieve these goals).

How Many Strategies Should I Implement at One Time? I wouldn’t recommend implementing all of these at once – especially if you’re a lone ranger solopreneur like I am. Pick 1,2, or 3 strategies where you will laser-focus your time that you set aside to dedicate to reaching this particular goal. Otherwise, you’ll be spread too thin and will end up spinning your wheels and/or getting burned out. Not a recommended goal. Don’t go there, please!! There are several problems when you approach it this way. For one, you will get burned out because no one has time to do everything. For another reason, you won’t stand out if you’re only doing a little of this and a little of that. You want to go big in a few places.

Ideally, you want to identify a few methods where you can dive deep. Base these on your strengths, personality, and the type of business you have. I recommend implementing 2-3 strategies at a time.


Make sense? Ok, then. Moving on…

What are some examples of marketing strategies? I love to help my clients plan their success and focus on specific strategies to help them get there. We create a map together based on what makes the most sense for them and their business.

This is by no means an exhaustive list of marketing strategy examples, just a few to get the juices flowing in your brain to determine what is right for you. Here goes: social media channels, video, free giveaways, freebies/freemiums, blogs, guest blogs, networking groups, networking on social media, public speaking, writing a book, creating a book tour, email marketing, Facebook/Google/other social media ads, webinars, courses, podcasts. Phew! That’s a bunch. Write these down and start doing some brainstorming. Which are right for you? You might want to link a few of these together. What you choose will depend on your personality, business, and target audience.

How to Have Ridiculous Amounts of Success with Your Marketing Strategies. I recommend implementing a strategy for a minimum of 3-6 months before determining whether or not it will work for you. How many of you know someone who tries something once or 2-3 times and then decides it’s not right for them?

Everyone I know who has become truly successful says that it takes persistence and consistency. These are keys to your strategies. Once you determine what you will do, you repeat the process over and over. Humans like routine and consistency. I’m sure you’ve heard that when it comes to marketing and advertising, it takes 6-7 touches for someone to decide they trust you enough to work with you. If you only make 2-3 attempts, you’re never going to achieve the success you want – the success you see others have and it seems to come to them so easily.

Whether you realize it or not, people are watching you. They are watching the way you conduct yourself, the way you run your business, and the way you develop it. I can’t tell you how often people tell me that they notice I’m consistent with my blogs, my videos, my social media. This consistency translates to trust. They know that I’m not going anywhere, that I stay in one place long enough to dig deep. So, they trust me as an authority and someone they can trust. This is what I recommend to any business owner. Find your sweet spot and plant yourself.

This doesn’t mean that you should never try anything new or that you can’t experiment with new strategies to see if they work for you. I’m merely saying that once you try something new and decide that you want to jump on that band wagon, stick with it!

If you have any questions at all on strategies, please let me know in the comments below.

The Smarter Approach to Goal Setting

If you've been reading my blogs lately, you know I'm writing on the theme of marketing strategy and you've probably been wondering when I'm going to bring up goal setting. For some of you that means today is your lucky day and others of you are quietly moaning as you read this.

Goal setting might sound time consuming, intimidating, or like a way to bring disappointment into your life when you don't achieve your goals. Cheer up, Sugarplum! Goal setting can and should be a fun process that brings you hope, laser-sharp focus, with a path and a plan, not dread. If you stick with me, I will show you a smarter way to go about it that will make you excited, inspired and ready to get after it!


I have some gems that will help you think smarter about the way you set goals and make sure that you're setting the right goals for where you and your business are at right now. I could go on and on about the importance of goals but I bet you're here because you already know all that. So without further ado, here are my smart, strategic gems as you prepare to create your goals.

First, I want you to think about who you look up to in your industry? Who do you aspire to be like? Identify 2-3 individuals who are killing it doing whatever it is that you do or want to do. Google them, check out their websites, see how they market and sell themselves. What are they doing differently? What are they doing consistently? If you had to describe them in 3 words, what would those be? Ok, if I'm getting a little too excited here by giving you too much homework, just pick one of the above 3 questions to answer.

Second, think about what sets you apart from the others on the playground. What do you do differently? If you want to make it easier, or maybe harder, think of what 3 words describe you? Maybe it has to do with your passion, your background, the reason you got into this business in the first place?

If you are reeling off differentiators you thought of 4 years ago, check 'em to see if they're still accurate and relevant. What are you doing right now, today, that distinguishes you from others? Think about your strengths and the ways that you feel comfortable getting yourself in front of your target audience.

If you’re stuck here, I recommend doing some journaling or talking with a trusted friend, colleague, or coach who can listen to you, question you, and give you trusted feedback as your brainstorm. This is the fuel you will need as you create goals that will grow your business and help you differentiate yourself in the marketplace based on your strengths.

Now, if you’re working with me on your Marketing Strategy Roadmap where we get into both your core messaging and your goal setting (see the bottom for more info on this), then we’ve already discussed this before getting to this point. If you are doing this on your own, feel free to jump into this thought process right now or reach out to me for some help.

Third, you’re ready to create some amazing SMART goals tailored just for you, and yes I mean SMART as in (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, and Timebound). Don’t go overboard creating too many. You will want to focus on just a few (3-5 to be exact) that you can laser-focus to achieve in the next 60-90 days.

These should each hone in on one specific outcome you want to achieve. Here are some examples of what a goal isn't: posting a blog a certain number of times each month, starting a podcast, attending two networking events a week. These are strategies used to achieve goals and we'll get into these next time.

Examples of goals are:  increasing online sales by 10%, adding 2,000 more names to my email list, selling $5,000/month from speaking gigs. Your goals should be a stretch and a challenge but definitely doable to accomplish in the next 2-3 months.

Bonus tip: I cannot stress enough the help that having an accountability partner will do to help you accomplish these goals in your given timeframe. If you don't have one, find one or come to me and I'll help you.

Extra Bonus tip: First, when you're choosing an accountability partner, make sure they they won't let you off the hook easily when you aren't taking the needed steps to move your toward your goals. Second, make sure that they are both someone you trust and someone who you consider to have valuable insights to help you. Third, make sure they're a good listener and will draw out the reasons behind fears, distractions, or anything else getting in the way of accomplishing your goals. Soooo, you need to feel comfortable being vulnerable with this person.

What to do next: If this has been helpful and you would like to know more about how you can quickly develop your core messaging (mission, vision, values) and goal planning (goal setting, strategies, and action plans) then we really should connect. Surprisingly, when we work together, we can create all of this in only three sessions! I know, crazy, right?!

If you have questions or want to publicly declare your goals right here, I would love to hear all of it in the comments section. Thanks again for stopping by!

Biggest Marketing Frustration Ever...

Compass symbol

Hmm, I'll go with running in circles trying everything under the sun to build your business until you’re exhausted and burned out. If you've tried this and are now laying on the ground out of breath and panting, here's some help. Let's simplify by getting laser focused.

I hope you enjoyed the tips I offered in my series about overcoming business fears. This next series focuses on marketing strategies.

The first way I recommend you simplify is by creating a concise mission statement that speaks to the core of exactly what you do to help your clients. It should be specific and may be inspiring as well.

The focus of your mission statement shouldn’t be about creating pretty, fluffy verbiage that looks good on your website. You should be able to hold it up to every action you take with your business to make sure everything you do is moving your business forward in its mission. If not, either you shouldn’t do it or you should consider rethinking your mission statement. It is a vital and powerful tool that should be every business owner’s compass.

If you remove all of the fluffy language and boil down your wording to only the key phrases that tell the crux of what you do, you have the making of a potent mission statement.

As an example, here's mine: I help clients overcome fears, create successful marketing strategies, and tell stories that sell.

Everything I do in my business reflects these and if it doesn’t, then I shouldn’t do it. You may need to update your mission statement from time to time. It may change as the scope of what you do changes.

It should be action-oriented, explain your company's purpose.

Here are some examples of other mission statements.

"The mission of Trader Joe's is to give our customers the best food and beverage values that they can find anywhere and to provide them with the information required to make informed buying decisions. We provide these with a dedication to the highest quality of customer satisfaction delivered with a sense of warmth, friendliness, fun, individual pride, and company spirit."

“Warby Parker was founded with a rebellious spirit and a lofty objective: to offer designer eyewear at a revolutionary price, while leading the way for socially-conscious businesses.”

“Google's mission is to organize the world's information and make it universally accessible and useful.”

I would love for you to leave me a comment below and let me know your company’s mission statement or where you’re stuck in writing your mission statement.

A Great Fear Killer

overcome fear and grow your business

It’s no secret that many things in life are beyond our control. While we cannot control what happens to us and the situations where we find ourselves, we can control how we respond to them. Positivity is a great fear killer. One could say that we do have some control over the situations where we find ourselves because often it’s based on our responses to past situations.

If you already know that 99% of life is mental, then there must be quite a bit that we are able to control. One of the most powerful ways you can walk through fear and be successful in all realms of life is by exercising positivity in the way you frame your thoughts and responses to situations.

According to the Mayo Clinic, researchers report the health benefits that positive thinking may provide include:

  • increased life span
  • lower rates of depression
  • lower levels of distress
  • greater resistance to the common cold
  • better psychological and physical well-being
  • reduced risk of death from cardiovascular disease
  • better coping skills during hardships and times of stress

There is an exercise I have seen many times. One person asks the other person to hold their arms outstretched and keep them strong and firm. Then, the person is asked to think of a happy memory. The person who asks tries to push down the person’s outstretched arms. This is difficult. Next, the same person is asked to think of a sad memory while keeping their arms outstretched. Again, the first tries to push down the others’ arms. This time it is much easier. There is little resistance. It really is amazing the way our thoughts so powerfully affect us – even physically!

Aside from physical health benefits, postivity can make an enormous difference to the level of success you experience. Here are a few pieces of Shawn Achor’s article in the Harvard Business Review titled Positive Intelligence that I want to highlight for you.

“Research shows that when people work with a positive mind-set, performance on nearly every level—productivity, creativity, engagement—improves.”

“Yet happiness is perhaps the most misunderstood driver of performance. For one, most people believe that success precedes happiness. In fact, it works the other way around: People who cultivate a positive mind-set perform better in the face of challenge.”

“Another common misconception is that our genetics, our environment, or a combination of the two determines how happy we are. To be sure, both factors have an impact. But one’s general sense of well-being is surprisingly malleable. The habits you cultivate, the way you interact with coworkers, how you think about stress—all these can be managed to increase your happiness and your chances of success.”

“Training your brain to be positive is not so different from training your muscles at the gym. Recent research on neuroplasticity—the ability of the brain to change even in adulthood—reveals that as you develop new habits, you rewire the brain.”

The other day, I was thinking about some ways that I want to grow my business online. My mind became so wrapped up with the incredible pace that online marketing and social media trends constantly change and I quickly became overwhelmed and felt like I was trying to run a marathon at a sprint pace. I had to remind myself how far I’ve already grown in a short period of time and that my pace will continue to quicken the longer I continue. Changing my thoughts calmed me down, gave me strength, and hope. However, this isn’t unique to me.

Keep this in mind as you go about your day. The next time you find yourself in an uncomfortable, upsetting, or annoying situation or simply battling negative thoughts in your head, think about how you can change negative self-talk to transform a situation and grow your business by shifting your perspective. I would love for you to share in the comments section telling how your thoughts have affected your business, positively or negatively.

Also, check out today’s 1-minute video and download a free ebook about overcoming fear on my homepage to learn how you can become a more positive person and lead a more successful life.

Here are links to the above-mentioned articles.