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This week on the show we have the one, the only, soon-to-be New York Times Bestselling author, Laura F*ing Belgray!When I thought of who I would want to help ring in my 100th episode, my mentor, my friend, Laura Belgray catapulted to mind first.She has a long list of accolades which you can learn more about on her Talking Shrimp well as learn why her company is named after a chatty crustacean to begin with.A bonafide celebrity and icon in the copywriting world, she's about to launch her first book, aptly named, "Tough Titties: On Living Your Best Life When You're the F-ing Worst".  The book comes out June 13th, but you can pre-order it here.  I read it cover-to-cover in under four days...a joyous respite between the job, the kids, and the MBA program that currently (happily) rule my life.  😍In this episode, Laura tells us how she went from wandering through life to earning $1,000,000+ annually (I could have just typed 7-figures but damn, $1,000,000 is more fun) by chucking the standard rules of copywriting out the window and letting her personality shine through. We unwrap what exactly goes into the traditional publishing process, even when what you're publishing isn't traditional - why would a copywriting expert write a book about her life's trials and tribulations instead of how to write emails that sell your product but not your soul? Because. She's Laura F*ing Belgray.Connect with Laura on her website (linked above), Instagram, and LinkedIn (although she spends most of her time on IG).
Episode #99!  Wow. When I first started this podcast I just wanted to connect entrepreneurs so we could inspire and learn from each other. What a journey it's been.  As we catapult to episode #100, I thought I'd highlight the top 5 episodes so far (by downloads), introduce what's next with the podcast...and let you know who the special guest for episode #100 is (hint - she's a celeb in the copywriting world and about to launch her first book...sure to be a NY Times Best Seller).Top 5 episodes so far:The 4 Critical Steps to Starting a Business10 Free Resources for CopywritingSix Ways to Set Boundaries for Business GrowthHere's My Exact Email Writing ProcessHow to Create Super Clickable CTAWhat's next for the podcast? CLOVER. I'm beyond excited for this series.Who's my special guest for episode #100? I'll give you a hint. She met one of her business partners at Crunch Fitness in NY...back in the Crunch Fitness heyday.
I'll be honest - the mere thought of artificial anything, when it comes to creating the written word makes me cringe. It goes against every fiber of my being because for me, the point of writing is to put pen to paper or finger to keyboard to create something genuine. Even if it's fiction, it's supposed to come from a place of organic creativity. So when I heard artificial intelligence, I was like, oh here we go. But I'm not one to blindly shut something down. So I did take a deeper look. And AI is here to stay. We'd be silly to ignore it and hope it goes away. And actually, it's been pretty cool. So, as such, how do we as writers leverage it to our liking? Ultimately, when it comes to writing, is AI a friend or a foe? So turns out, it can be both.  I'm committed to using the technology for good. And I'm seeing AI as a friend.  I like to joke, maybe it's more like you keep your friends close, but your enemies closer. ;)Listen in on how to leverage AI for good!
Maura Kelpy, founder of Veggies & Vodka and Maura K Creative, joins the show this week! Maura runs her own successful graphic design business (in addition to her wellness community under the Veggies & Vodka umbrella) and shares with us specific actions to take when crafting your own visual brand. You know, the look and feel of your business where customers can recognize you in an instant.Here's an excerpt:"So when I take on a branding project for a client, I often start with a  Google questionnaire. I ask a lot of questions about the person themselves if it's a personal brand or more about their company as a whole and their values. I do a deep dive into what they're trying to express through their logo first, and who their audiences are that we're trying to attract. Your visual brand really encompasses so much more than just a logo, right? It's also your colors, your typography, and even your imagery - how you use your photos, or how you take photos of yourself. You really want this whole consistent look between all of these elements, because it creates this reliable and solid experience for your customers as they start to know and understand what to expect from you. That way, when they see your brand everywhere they will start to recognize you, and that builds trust."Connect with Maura on her website for Maura K Creative or her wellness community, Veggies & Vodka.
Hiring. A critical piece to scale your business. But how do you know it's time to grow your team? What role do you hire for first...or next? How do you make sure you don't hire a jerk that will torpedo your business to the ground? (dramatic? maybe...but maybe not!) What are the pros and cons of hiring a full-time employee vs. a subcontractor? If you hire someone that's not working out, how do you let them go?Sandra Booker, the founder of Any Old Task, joins the show this week. She answers these questions and more to help you hire the right person for the right role at the right time. Having helped multiple entrepreneurs grow their businesses to multi-six figures and beyond, you're gonna want to write down all the insight she shares during this episode.For starters, so many business owners assume they need help in a certain area (I need someone to help with social media! I have no time!) but when they analyze where their time is actually going, are shocked. Rather than needing help with social media, they may discover that their personal life (Kids! Aging parents!) is what is monopolizing their time...and they need a personal assistant instead.Listen in and improve your hiring strategy with these proven tactics.Connect with Sandra on her website, Instagram, and YouTube.
Frederike Harms, founder of Katalyst Ventures, joins the show this week to dive into how to design a truly scalable offer. Growing up with entrepreneur parents, Frederike remembers that her family went on vacation once and only once. Her parents simply could not step back from their business to enjoy extra time with their family.Having a front-row seat to that type of schedule and lifestyle, she decided she wanted to work with entrepreneurs, founders, and business owners to create scalable businesses that didn't solely depend upon their daily direction to thrive.At the core of a scalable business is a scalable service or product. Listen in to learn tactics behind this strategy to leverage a scalable offer and grow a business beyond your own expertise, one that allows you to live a full life not chained to your phone or laptop.Connect with Frederike on Instagram.
Dan Mott joins the show this week! You might remember that Dan and I, along with Claire Davis and Matt Zaun hosted a weekly live show for entrepreneurs and business leaders called Power Hour. It ran for just about a year or so and we had a blast! So cool to reunite with Dan here.In this episode, Dan runs us through the 5 principles he's developed for LinkedIn social selling. Here's a quick excerpt:"You are organically finding them through content and conversation. And now we're no longer strangers on the internet. I like to use the metaphor of LinkedIn as an in-person event. You just came out of a session and you're walking up to the bar to grab a drink, and you see a person next to you ordering the same beer, and you make a comment on that. And then 10 minutes later, you're down to a discussion about how you two are in the same industry and how you could potentially work together. So it's all about this certain aspect of serendipity."Listen in as Dan gives specifics on how to reach out to potential connections and prospects via LinkedIn tools and tactics.Connect with Dan on LinkedIn!
This week on the show I welcome launch strategist and copywriter, Brenna McGowan. We discuss the aspect of an offer that many entrepreneurs skip over: pre-launch.It seems so much easier to skip right to the promotion of the sale, rather than warming an audience up, doing our due diligence, and testing the market... Alas, those who skip the pre-launch are leaving money (and a loyal audience) on the table.Putting the right offer in front of the right audience with the right messaging is key. Obvious? You'd be surprised as to how many business owners place a lot of incorrect assumptions within this step.The market research component is huge. Brenna is actually teaching a workshop where she goes through and validates the offers of her students. From there, they have a true understanding of who their customer is. Per Brenna, pre-launch is about selling your process, and not your program.  For six weeks during a pre-launch, she suggests thinking through what is the buy-in your ideal customer has to have before they decide to buy your solution.Listen in as we dive deep into these topics and more.Connect with Brenna at her website and grab her free Pre-Launch Plan Cheat Sheet.
"And I discovered that as a journalist if you don't have a pitch or a story to share with the big boss on Monday morning, you didn't have a job. What's important for entrepreneurs to realize is that journalists aren't just helping you with your business, you are helping them keep their job. Because if you don't pitch your story, they don't have anything to tell their boss on a Monday morning." - Adela HussainThat's one of my favorite pieces of insight from my discussion with Adela, founder of Startups & Co and my guest this week on the show. The first thing that Adela teaches her students in her course, Pitch to Press, is that you as an entrepreneur are keeping journalists/podcasters, etc in their jobs - they need your stories and expertise!The second thing she teaches her students is that when they're pitching to anyone, they have to lead with the story and not their ego. Mention what you've noticed or learned from their work and why your specific topic would be of interest to their readers/listeners. Tune in for the full scoop of how to pitch your business to press!  Connect with Adela on her website and Instagram.
Sami Miles, founder of Catchiest Copy and creator of Automatically Funny AF in Four Weeks, talks all things funny in copywriting.When working with clients, she found that the funnest time was when they were joking around, when she could bring that humor out of them and onto paper.  A former stand-up comic who has opened for some of the biggest names in the biz, Sami knows exactly how to inject humor into copy in just the right way. Whether it's punching up copywriting assets,  speeches, or presentations, Sami tells us how to bridge the gap for our audience through humor. One of the tips she shares is she has her clients watch the opening jokes of their favorite comics. From there, they workshop everything from signature talks, guest teaching, webinars - even podcasts. All messaging is curated as well - launch emails, welcome sequences...they all go through her process to increase connection through laughter.Head over here to grab Sami's '10 tips to Grab Your Audience by the Funny Bone'.
Email tags. A simple yet powerful tool that way too many business owners don't use to their full potential.Cheryl Rerick guests on the show this week and goes over how email tags can be:a simple and intuitive way to sort your contacts based on their interests, preferences, and any special attributes that set them apart from each other used to trigger automationa functional tool, as well as give you information about your subscribers We chat about the difference between (and strategies/tactics around) segmentation and tags as well as Cheryl's three favorite uses for tags. Toss me a note and let me know how you use tags, or a tactic you discovered from this episode.Connect with Cheryl at her website here and on Instagram here.
So many entrepreneurs are, as I've heard Marie Forleo describe it, 'multi-passionate'.  There's a school of thought out there that says as an entrepreneur you have to focus on one thing and one thing only.I call BS.Laura Scholes joins me on the show this week to explain how she launched another business from her core business. Some overlap between the two? Perhaps. But, she still started her second business essentially from scratch. Not knowing exactly how to manage two businesses at once, let alone launch it.Listen in as she describes the exact steps she took to explore another one of her passions enough to turn it into a business.Connect with Laura:The 24-Hour SiteStory House Creative
Monica Hollins, founder of OTBC (Outside The Box Consulting, LLC) has decades of experience building super-successful communities. From health clubs to master-planned communities, she has crafted impactful strategies to increase inclusion, engagement, connection...loyalty. These attributes are key during a normal business year, but post-pandemic, they are mission-critical.Tune in and learn ways to grow not just an audience, but a community clamoring for your brand and your mission.Connect with Monica at her website.
Rachel Simon, CEO and founder of Connect the Dots Digital, helps entrepreneurs of all backgrounds "look good on LinkedIn". LinkedIn is the top networking platform for corporate and entrepreneurial professionals, so ensuring your personal and company profiles are structured with the right information and messaged in a way that immediately connects with your target audience is paramount.Learn to craft your headline with a hook, exactly how to use that 'Featured Section', modern use of your 'About' copy, and more. We go through every section of the LinkedIn profile and spell out exactly how to use it to your advantage. Head over to Connect the Dots Digital to learn more about Rachel and ways you can work together.
My conversation with Nicole Rollender, founder of Strand Writing Services, was one that will make you want to take action immediately. My favorite entrepreneurs are those that leave it all on the table - they're open to sharing the minute details on each aspect of their business growth...the roses and the thorns of it.After being downsized from her six-figure salary executive editor-in-chief role, Nicole decided to go out on her own. Within less than a year she scaled her business to six-figures and has never fallen below that income. In this episode, she shares super specific insights and tactics on how to set the foundation to scale your business to a consistent six-figure income each a sustainable way. From how to structure your payment process and cash flow to showing up as a CEO rather than a victim, Nicole gives direct, valuable guidance - all substance, no sugar. Should clients pay you upfront? Which is better - a 3-month or 6-month retainer? Should you do test projects to introduce yourself to a new client?  What's the quickest way to get a set income every month? Should I zero in on a niche? Is LinkedIn worth it as a business growth tool? Listen in as we discuss all these questions and more.Want to connect with Nicole? Check out her website, STRAND Writing Services.
From clarifying your message with a reduction of words to how to use personal stories to get a professional point across...(including ways to use the emails you have sitting in your Inbox to improve your writing skills), these seven tips will have your copywriting take on a whole other level of expertise.
There are so many tools out there that look nice and shiny that you can buy to increase your skills at copywriting or an online business in general, but in this episode, I want to show you 10 FREE resources that you can use to help out your copywriting. I include some popular choices like Grammarly and Canva but also some that haven't gotten their full due yet such as  Read-able, WordCounter, and OneLook.Stream the episode and check these incredible FREE resources out below:GrammarlyReadability TestCharacter CountWordCounterMerriam-Webster and Thesaurus.comGoogle Docs and Google DriveGoogle Keyword PlannerOneLookRelated WordsUber Suggest
This week, I'm going over the call to action aka the CTA. There are a variety of things that go into creating a very clickable call to action. I'll go through some of the nuts and bolts with you on this episode. A CTA encourages your audience to take a specific action - it's really a conversion tool. It can help in converting members, subscribers, followers, get the idea. You must know exactly what you want your audience to do, before you even start to create your call to action. From how to guide your audience to take action to the color, shape, and placement of your CTA, this episode focuses on all things conversion by call-to-action.________Need some help with your copywriting? Customers not converting? Not okay! Let's take your copy from 'meh' to 'marvelous'.  Check out how you can work with me here.
Short and sweet, I'm walking you through the steps I take to write each email. From the two types of emails I create to how I edit, I go over it all. I share my strategy when creating email subject lines and if I batch process topics or take a more free-wheeling approach.Listen in!While you're at it, grab my free 'One Year of Email Subject Lines to Amp Up Your Open Rates & Accelerate Sales' guide!
We've all been there.That darn blinking cursor. It's like it's taunting you, "Look at this big, blank page. You'll never figure out what to write. Such a waste of time. Loser." RUDE.This week I go over 15 ways you to always know what to write. I'm finally recording this episode because one of the most common things I hear from people is that they have no idea what to write about, especially when it comes to their business. As well, you don't ALWAYS want to be strictly talking about your business, at least not in a way that it comes across that way.  Ideally, you'll make a connection to your audience... I always say to have an ongoing conversation with your audience - a copy as a conversation.You may be like, "Okay, great,  I know how to talk about my product. But what else do I talk about? I'll tell you! Listen in for a few ways (15 to be exact) to keep the writing topic ideas coming. If you need help with your copywriting, I have a bunch of different ways I can do that. One of them is my Copyedit Polish + Strategy service -  if you've written something and it's not performing for ya, not attracting engagement or sales and you need to get it to the next level to really engage and connect with your audience for that sale... you can send it to me and I'll give it a glow-up if you will, to really make it pop for you and engage those customers. I'll also look at all of your copy holistically and suggest strategic placement and perhaps additional copy to add to bring in more sales. Click here for more info!
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