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I’m an international marketing coach, top-ranking podcast host, speaker, interiors lover and black coffee drinker.
Do you have an overly complicated website with multiple offerings?
Do you feel pressured to have so many programs, courses and services listed just to keep up with the competition?
There are so many parts of running a business that can be challenging, but some of the most common complaints I hear are when business owners feel like they’re drowning in offerings, using pushy sales methods, and completely lost on how to plan for the future.
It’s so important to make sure you’re selling your product or service in a way that feels authentic and in alignment with you and your brand, while also making it super easy for potential clients to understand and engage with what you have to offer.
LET’S TAKE A CLOSER LOOK WITH A CASE STUDY
Today’s episode is a case study exploring how Michelle Johns has created a simple business that fits in around her life. Michelle is a leadership coach who supports women to become confident and empowered to successfully lead a team for the first time through a mix of coaching, training and mentoring.
INTRODUCING MICHELLE JOHNS
Michelle has more than 20 years of experience as a leader in the corporate world and has an extensive background in change management, qualifications in organisational psychology and leadership, and is passionate about bringing more feminine energy into the boardroom.
I’ve been working with Michelle in The Modern Marketing Collective and on my retreats and I’m absolutely thrilled to be bringing all of her sage advice and experience to you today to help you simplify your business, structure your offers and find the best way of selling that feels good for you.
THE NITTY GRITTY
Michelle takes us through how she structures her program, private coaching, group mentoring sessions, and networking. Michelle explains what brings many of her clients to her business. Quite often it comes down to the environment they’re working in, many in male dominated industries, and they’re not being heard. Michelle will work together with them to find different strategies to manage those situations.
SIMPLIFY YOUR BUSINESS
I know that the process of simplifying a business is not always easy. It may require you to let go of non-essential products or services or rethink your marketing and sales strategies. You may also need to shift your mindset, as many business owners feel huge pressure to constantly add more features, products, or services in order to keep up with the competition.
Michelle takes us through how she simplified her program structure, her overcomplicated website, and her offerings into a much simpler way of doing business and she feels far lighter now. She takes us through her marketing, lead magnets, experimenting, building credibility, and how she makes her business work around everything she enjoys in life.
I recommend focusing on what truly matters to your ideal client and what fills you up with light and passion. By simplifying your business, you can create a much better customer experience for everyone involved and sell your products in your own way without feeling pushy or salesy.
Listen in to hear Michelle’s journey and how she has built a business she absolutely loves through simplifying, selling her way and using strategic focus to plan for the future.
Where to find Michelle Johns:
[00:00:00] Emily: In this week’s episode, you are in for a treat because this is a case study in creating a simple business around your life. I’m joined by Michelle Johns, who is a leadership coach who supports women to become confident to lead a team for the first time. and to feel and be seen as a leader in their organization by providing a mix of coaching, training, and mentoring. Michelle is on a mission to balance up the boardrooms with more feminine energy and get more women into the leadership positions that make the decisions that impact. All of us in our daily lives. Michelle has more than 20 years of experience leading corporate teams. She has a background in change management and she brings qualifications in organizational psychology and leadership into our mentoring programs and workshops. I’ve had the absolute pleasure of working with Michelle in the Modern marketing Collective and through my retreats to help her really. Continue to grow her business and make it work for her. And in this episode, we are discussing how Michelle has done that by simplifying her business and what she offers, finding a way to sell that feels really good to her. And having strategic focus with what exactly it is that she’s working on at any one time. It was an absolute delight to chat with Michelle for this episode, as I always find speaking with her, and I know you’re going to adore this episode. So without further ado, let’s hear from Michelle. Johns. Michelle, thank you so much for joining me today.
[00:02:26] Michelle: Thanks, Emily. I’m really excited to be on your podcast. I’ve been listening for a while, so I’m really excited to be a a guest.
[00:02:32] Emily: Oh, so good to hear. Well, we better get started with a little bit of a introduction to exactly what your business is and what it offers. Give us an overview of what it is that you do.
[00:02:42] Michelle: I’m, a coach for first time leaders. I focus on women because I’ve had that experience myself being a time leader in male dominated industries. So I provide Mentoring and coaching and some training for first time leaders so they can build their skills and also their confidence.
[00:03:01] Emily: Brilliant. What are the different offerings you have in your business, Michelle, if someone was looking to work with you in what different ways? Give us bit of an overview of the different offerings that you have.
[00:03:09] Michelle: So I offer private coaching so that I can tailor it to what they need. At the moment. So what their problem is, what they’re struggling with. But I also have a group mentoring program that I run with a small group now as like an introductory. So come along to that experience my coaching and mentoring, and then they can invest in the private coaching if they’re interested in that. so that’s what I’m offering at the moment.
[00:03:38] Emily: Cool. So group coaching, private coaching. What does the group coaching look like with you? Is that kind of a step by step, program over a set number of weeks? How does that one work?
[00:03:47] Michelle: Yeah, that’s four weeks and we have four focus areas for those four weeks, so I provide training for four weeks. And we also have group mentoring session and networking with the other women who are just like them. So it’s like a way get introduced to what my style is like, but they also get to build their confidence, build their personal brand, and get some practical tips for how to communicate with their team and with their.
[00:04:17] Emily: And what type of people do you find work with you? Who, what type of people are joining that program and, and looking for some help in that way?
[00:04:27] Michelle: What I’m finding at the moment is it’s people who are just really. Busy and they don’t have a lot of time to invest in a longer term project. and they want to get something quickly so that they can feel confident at work. So they’ll be either in a role for maybe six months and they’re finding that they’re not getting the friction. They, they would, and then they are looking to get some help. So they’re usually at that point where, they in real need of like what I need now to solve this problem
[00:05:00] Emily: Excellent. So then you have the private coaching, and how does that one work?
[00:05:04] Michelle: That works with a 15 minute. Free call with me to discover what the problem is. And then I usually give some tips there so they what I can bring and then I work with them over how many sessions sessions we need and, how we can work better to, create their leadership style or, build some of their skills. So some practical things like leadership development and also some-
[00:05:28] Emily: cool
[00:05:29] Michelle: – areas if they want to, build their confidence. And it’s about mindset as well. Yeah.
[00:05:33] Emily: And what do you find, Michelle, with people coming to across both of those offerings? And perhaps it’s slightly different with the private coaching as well, but what’s their biggest problem? And then once they’ve worked with you, what are you seeing some of the results that they are having at the end of it?
[00:05:47] Michelle: It’s often a confidence thing, so, they avoid having difficult conversations with their team or they, don’t know where to start as a new leader. So over time with me, they often, they’re team motivated. Other times it’s, they’ll, be seen more as a leader in their organization because they’ll, speak more like a leader. They’ll feel like a leader. All of those sort of things. Sometimes it’s as simple as doing something really practical, like asking for a promotion because maybe they were put into that position without the appropriate pay rise. And just that sort of starts to help them sort of progress as a leader being able to have those negotiation skills as well.
[00:06:29] Emily: And I know a few people that’s kind of happened to you. They’re like, well, hang on a minute. I’ve taken on this role that’s really above me, but the pay hasn’t changed, so this isn’t really fair. And, it’s a matter of, I guess, having that confidence or knowing how to approach those conversations to get what they deserve and to not be taken advantage of and that type of.
[00:06:48] Michelle: And sometimes it it comes down to the environment they’re in. So a lot of the people that come to me are also in male dominate industries, So it’s just sometimes it’s those awareness moments, so they’ll have an aha about. What’s happening in the room and why they’re not being heard. And then then, we work together to find different strategies to manage those situations. And I’ve had people leave coaching with me saying, maybe they’re not the loudest person in the room, but they speak up and they’re heard now because they’ll speak up when it’s necessary. And just knowing about the dynamics. Where they maybe didn’t push up against that gender problem in early in their career, it was more, equal if you like, in numbers. And then as you climb up, your less and less people in the room who look like you, sound like you and so on. And so that is when they hit up against that. So we all know about it, but we often go, oh, it doesn’t happen where I work, doesn’t happen to me, but then when you hit up against it, as you climb the ladder if you like, then you notice the difference.
[00:07:53] Emily: And I can see, Michelle, that you would be such a valued mentor and sounding board and someone that, your clients can have that confidential conversation with. and have the support from, and their guidance from when they’re in the organization. And perhaps they’re looking around and there’s like, well, there’s no one really here to mentor me. There’s no one that looks like me or sounds like me or has been in this situation before. And so having someone like you that they can turn to and have those discussions with and have that support from, I know has their back and is there to help them and have their best interests at heart is just in.
[00:08:26] Michelle: I like to call myself like the time cheerleader, although it’s a bit of a mouthful, but that’s what I, how myself, , myself, as that cheerleader because often we look for a mentor in the in the organization and we get a lot lot out of it but sometimes you need someone objective and also someone that you can trust because yeah, it takes a bit to find the right mentor for you. So yeah, it’s good to have someone who has been where you’ve been as well. So I’ve definitely been there.
[00:08:56] Emily: Yeah. Oh, well, I would love to actually hear about that, Michelle, and hear where your business came from. Why did you get into this work? How did it start?
[00:09:06] Michelle: I could say it started a long time ago, but it was more of an unconscious thing. So I used to people like for 20 years, like in my career, always mentoring people and didn’t realize that there was a job in that. Just kept
[00:09:21] Emily: It’s often the things that we love to do, isn’t it? And then it’s like, oh wow, maybe I could actually turn this into something.
[00:09:27] Michelle: Yeah, so my career started off in, the corporate world as an accountant. So it was very corporate focused and it was a completely different career. And throughout my career I Found that that wasn’t lighting me up. So I was doing a lot leadership things, so I was mentoring my team or mentoring other people, doing all of that. I don’t wanna make it too long a story, but I changed careers into a more people focused role. So I did a lot of, you know, organizational psychology and a lot of, things that are focused more in the leadership development area and organizational change and so on, and ended up changing my career and then, I don’t know how it happened. I just said, I think I’m gonna move into coaching and mentoring people and I wanna make it more practical for people, and make it training and mentoring and coaching altogether together. And when Covid hit three years ago, I just delved into it and started creating this business. And I started with people that I knew and I started online that gives you a gives you a history about it. it. Yeah.
[00:10:27] Emily: It does, and one of my favorite things to hear is, What your business look like at the start and then the iterations of it over time. Could you give us a little overview, because I think it’s super interesting, the way that businesses can evolve and take shape and what we learn and also for listeners to know as well that what they start out with is most likely not gonna be what their business looks like in a year or two years, or three years from now until you have that permission to change as well.
[00:10:52] Michelle: Definitely look a lot different. You’re making me laugh because hate talking about Covid I guess, but when whole payment came about. I was given an opportunity to have three months off what I was doing at the time and decided this is the time this is the time to build a business. And I offered everything. And in fact, I built a whole program, then I had every single solution that anybody might ever need.
[00:11:17] Emily: Talk to people what you mean by that. Cuz I know what you mean. I’ve, we’ve had discussions, but what does that actually look like in the business?
[00:11:22] Michelle: So I had like this big leadership program, which was my kind of signature program, which would take people from the start of their journey as a leader all the way to being a resilient leader and being able to do all the things. So that had everything in it. And then I offered one-to-one coaching started a membership else was doing? Oh, I was starting all these little courses, like a mini course, like how to get into a leadership role, what to do in your first knocky days, what to do after that. and I just had everything, but I had no. Audience, I guess, or no one to sell to? and my website was so confusing.
[00:11:57] Michelle: It was just over the top. If I spoke to someone, I didn’t really know it was going to offer them and I had too many things to offer. So I think it was really hard to really make an impact or have an But it was such a great learning for me, so that’s why I say, I am the sort of person who goes with the flow everything. And in the time I actually did So much work, got this going and yeah, today it looks nothing like that. and I even had a membership with small group of people in there. But I didn’t have much of an audience to sort of build that for the people that were in the membership as well.
[00:12:33] Emily: And what was the catalyst to change? Because I guess at the time you’re like, well, this is what I’m gonna do. What was the reason that you have changed the current business model?
[00:12:40] Michelle: I think we all know the answer to that coming along and meeting you. because I did pair that back a little over the two years before I joined the Modern Marketing Collective.
[00:12:51] Emily: To talk about
[00:12:53] Michelle: I still sort of kept holding onto it all and leaving it on the website, so on. And so when I heard from other people were in business and was able to bounce the ideas off other people, then I realized, oh, I can just simplify things and I can leave these things. and I also, you know, had some people saying, put that off. You don’t have to never do it again. Just put it off next year. Address it next year and that sort of thing. So yeah, it was just, it was really having other people’s input And I was very much doing it on my own, if you like. So yeah, it was having other people
[00:13:29] Emily: Yeah. to have those discussion with and also as well to know that we, because this is something I think we could all struggle with, is like, we wanna do it all and we wanna do it all now. And understanding perhaps there’s not one right way, there’s no single way to do things, but there can be kind of a bit of a process that can, really help us along the way. I guess. What have you found as a result of simplifying what you offer in your business you’ve kind of removed for now some of the different offerings on your website. What have you done? And what have you found has been the result of simplifying
[00:14:02] Michelle: Mainly, I feel feel lighter even have this little way of like putting everything to the end of the year and or a particular month month and I can look at that later. So I have a little ideas book, but I also have like a sauna and I just keep everything in a review folder
[00:14:21] Emily: That is awesome, Michelle. So it’s kind of like, okay, I can come back to this. This is for later. It doesn’t have to happen now. I have something similar perhaps in my trello and it’s like pipeline tasks and it’s like these are things that can, or you know, I’ve got different labels like important right now, , things that can be considered down the track ideas for the future as entrepreneurs, we have so many ideas, but it’s having that discernment to know what is our focus, what is the most important thing for the business right now? And then taking action on those things and knowing that the other things can
[00:14:53] Michelle: Yes. I have ideas all the time, so, oh, I could do this and I could do I could and I could do a t-shirt with a podcast on it and I can do, oh gosh, I have so many things. So I just, yeah. I park them. and I look at them at the planning time, like like annual planning time now. So yes, three years in, it took me two and a half years to get to that point, and that’s okay cuz I was learning and everything. But now what I I do is a strategy day and sometimes I get to do it with other people and then I do it a little bit on my own And, I need to trust myself to to the plan now, so I create a plan and I do very detailed for a quarter, and I just have a rough plan for the rest of the year. And then each quarter I it and I stick to it. because I love planning and strategy. So that helps cuz that’s, that’s in my zone of genius, if you like. So, I enjoy it. And also I was getting that shiny object syndrome where I would something new, something someone was doing, or something I got excited about and I would throw it in and then I always get really overwhelmed. So, yeah, keeping it simple, just having the, offers and I have some offers for corporates as well. and then just, stick to it. And so I you asked me what outcome of that is. I’m getting so much more inquiries, I’m get more conversations happening. I’m really feeling, like I’m really helping people it’s in that flow now, And so I feel like if I keep going that way, I can really have an impact and help get more women into those leadership roles which is the main reason I’m running this business?
[00:16:26] Emily: Exactly. Awesome, Michelle. That’s like just well done to you for taking that action as well and figuring it out as you go. no one’s ever gonna be perfect in business and I think it only took you two and a half years. That’s not a long time. You’re like, oh my gosh, it took me two and a half years to kind of reshuffle things around. But, it’s all learning, isn’t it? And the fact that you have learned how. Already creates some online leveraged offers like membership, like courses. That’s all gonna be so helpful if and when you want to introduce that. And is that, I kind of know that may be the plan in the future. Do you wanna share what you are thinking in terms of what the business might look like going forward as well?
[00:17:01] Michelle: Like most people, I have a real vision for where I want the business to go in the long term. this year, as I said, I’m focusing where people are at right now, which they’re very busy and they, they want something, help with them. Right now, I’m hoping that, into 2024, I can bring to life and reshape my leadership program, which gives people that, end-to-end sort of experience. And that’s where I wanna take my next year. And again, I’ll look at it next year and say, is that the right time? And all of those things. And I’ll be be less, connected with it, having to be then you could be a bit further out. So in the meantime I’m focusing on, building, I guess credibility and visibility and referrals. And so on at the moment. Yeah.
[00:17:52] Emily: That’s great Michelle, and I think that leads really well into what are you actually doing for that? Let’s talk about your marketing and what you are doing to build an audience, make connections, create referrals. Talk to us a little bit about, an overview of the different marketing things that you do.
[00:18:05] Michelle: Yes. so the thing that I’ve found is working is, and I started this three years ago, is having a lead magnet I give away something free that’s connected to my ideal client would find useful and then I, don’t stop there. I then invite them into a workshop and sometimes I was inviting them directly to a call with me. Just depended what my end product is. So, yeah, so I have a lead magnet and. I invite them to meet me so that they can get to know who I am. What I was doing early was leaving it there and then all the people that just downloaded a link magnet, they didn’t have any, any other way of like connecting. And then eventually I started a newsletter. So now the people that downloaded, the people that down London, them to leave Magna. I have a really lovely, nurture series of that go and they just, give value and give a really good customer experience and I’m improving that every day. So that’s where I work on my marketing all the time. It’s just experiment with different things with that.
[00:19:10] Emily: For those listing, it’s kinda like a sales funnel if people have heard of the word sales funnel before, or nurture funnel and that type of thing. And Michelle, what Michelle is saying is that people, may have a freebie set up on their website. What’s yours, by the way, Michelle? What’s your lead magnet at the moment?
[00:19:24] Michelle: I have have five to lead a team so it’s it’s called the Leadership
[00:19:30] Emily: Love a good roadmap. Very sexy . So Michelle has this on her website, people can opt in for that. They’ll give their email address to michelle and then once they’re on there, I’m assuming michelle, there’s a series of some emails perhaps that go out to that person inviting them to come along to your workshop. And that is just perfect cuz it’s a way for them to, have already received some value from you to see that, you know, stuff they’ve read your lead magnet, hopefully and then they can get to know you through a workshop, whether that’s live or record. And I believe at the moment you’re doing them live, which is excellent. People can come on there, get to meet you ask questions, what happens after that
[00:20:05] Michelle: Uh, then I have another But that’s, at the moment it’s not as automated because then I know a little bit about the person and I try to tailor it to them, and I think that’s important. A coach in the area I’m in as I’m building this business, because I haven’t picked out the patterns, once I’ve had lot of clients, I’ll have more of a pattern and that will help inform that program next year. So when I invite them into the workshop, I always ask two questions. What’s your current role and what are your current challenges? So then my nurture after the workshop, or if they didn’t turn up, I can address or talk to that challenge and really make it, feel for them. So that’s what I’m doing at moment. Yep.
[00:20:50] Emily: That is brilliant. And this type of, um, higher touch way of marketing as well is so effective and what people that perhaps have. 20,000 people registering for a workshop and 10,000 of them attending or whatever that might look like. There’s no way that they could then do that. So there’s such beauty in this phase of your business where you are really putting in the effort to know your audience to pick out, okay, what’s some patterns here? What are some roles that people seem to be falling into in the organizations? Maybe there’s certain industries, I’m not sure. And then what are some of those challenges and starting to look at those patterns. And then when you go ahead to put that program together and create the roadmap within the program and the different modules and process in there, it becomes from a really informed place of actual people versus the hypothetical.
[00:21:40] Michelle: Oh, good. I hope that’s useful well, I would just, Experimenting. And I came up with that because I realized people that didn’t turn up to the workshop, I now know nothing about them and And how can them? them? And on that, I that I’ve kind of, this is from the modern marketing collective, I’ve now created a nurture for people going the. the.
[00:22:04] Emily: Yeah
[00:22:05] Michelle: That turn up as well. And so I’m, I increased my turn up rate two 45% now to come to the workshops, which before I probably was just letting ’em ’em those Calendly messages. Not very personalized. So now I them personalized beforehand as well.
[00:22:22] Emily: And you I know that in your recent workshop you had, was it 50%
[00:22:25] Michelle: 50%
[00:22:26] Emily: Something like.
[00:22:27] Michelle: It was 45%. Yeah, it was a little under 50, but
[00:22:30] Emily: Yeah.
[00:22:31] Michelle: Higher than before,
[00:22:32] Emily: Which is brilliant. And those that have run workshops before, especially as you do start getting a larger audience, know that, well, I think that, who knows, industry average, they get thrown around. But some of the numbers thrown around is like 10%, 20% of a live show up rate sometimes. So, um, to have 45% is brilliant and a good slide that you’re doing things well. Do you wanna share a little bit around, at the end of the workshop, about what
[00:22:53] Michelle: Oh yes. So I have been experimenting what to the the end of a workshop, and sometimes in the past I would off my. Program And sometimes I would offer private coaching, so experimented, but recently I stopped doing that. I was doing it in the email afterwards to let them know is how you can work with me. So I am building into the end of the workshop again and yeah, you gave me some lovely tips on how to sort of say it in a way that really resonates with me. So just to throw in there, it’s really important if you are advice from people that you translate that advice or that, mentoring that you get so that it really suits you. But when you are lucky enough to find a mentor where what comes out of their mouth fits you, which is what happens when I to your coaching calls. Because just resonates with me so much. So I’ve basically now wrote down and have words to say at the end of my workshop that I feel comfortable offering to support and help people, with their next steps if because some people, this workshop is going to be enough and sometimes. Someone will need more and maybe they wanna get started today and work with me. So I will feel really comfortable offering it in that manner. And a lot of coaches probably feel this as well, is that you are there, you know, you see yourself as serving others and coaching others, but this is a business. so you also need to put your offer out there and sell, I guess. And I don’t see it as selling anymore. I it as, as offering something that someone really needs. and why wouldn’t I do that?
[00:24:33] Emily: Oh, Michelle. So good. And, um, I’ll, say it was kind of funny, I was joking with Michelle on a coaching call because I know it’s not just Michelle, by the way, this is like most of us, we’ve been through this, but I was, kinda saying, you know, they’re coming to your workshop and it’s about helping them with their confidence. And then at the end of the workshop you’re like, okay, good luck. Goodbye. That’s it, . But if they’re coming to the workshop because they, they want to, get some help with their leadership confidence and then you have something to offer them, but you don’t offer it. Like, that’s a bit rude. That’s not in service to them, so to say, look, for those of you that would love to get some help with this, I can help you with this and I’m just gonna take you through what that looks like. and we can get started if you’d like to get started. And it doesn’t have to be anything sleazy or pushy or really forceful or, or anything like that, but it’s actually a matter of letting people know that you can help them.
[00:25:20] Michelle: That’s exactly it. And yeah, the way you say it is definitely fits on me, so I feel really comfortable to do that in the next workshop that’s coming up in March.
[00:25:31] Emily: So Michelle, circling back to any other marketing that you are doing that you’re finding is getting some traction or that’s worked well. for you, what else is there?
[00:25:38] Michelle: For me, it’s this lead magnet. And I do that through Facebook and Instagram ads and I just have that as going and then I’ve got a pipeline coming through and you’ll get the odd person who wants to have a call you, wants to go to to the workshop and of that. The other one I find that works is don’t wanna do it, but it’s sort referrals and just letting everyone know that you close, that you’re already connected with what you do and who you help. And if you’re really clear with what you do and who you help, then you’ll get referrals. I start to do my coaching. I did start by offering, free sessions just to build my skills in the. Part of the role, I guess, and people would send their friends over or they’d get a whole bunch of people at their workplace that would monitor coach. So I did that and then some of those people became ongoing clients and then they tell other people. So referrals work for me as well. Referrals worked for the corporate area that are go into as well. I’ve been asked to go and do leader. Programs in workplaces and so on. And that’s been through referrals. And you’ve had those referrals, then have that experience, that organization you can put on your website and all of that. So referrals and having a lead Other two things for me. While I build my credibility in other ways, and visibility in other ways as well.
[00:27:02] Emily: And what are you doing for that, Michelle?
[00:27:04] Michelle: Yeah, I think it’s really important to build your credibility, especially in these spaces. It’s a very crowded marketplace. Do you get yourself seen, yourself seen, as the expert or as someone, you know? For me it’s like if someone thought, first time leader, they think, you know, Braveheart, who you think
[00:27:19] Emily: That’s what I think it’s funny, Michelle, because for you it’s crowded probably cuz for me, my industry is more crowded cuz I kind of, come across the people that are doing similar to you, but in your industry. I’m like, oh, but it’s you. You’re the person.
[00:27:31] Michelle: That’s very true. And that’s what you need to remember is it might seem crowded, but you are the only person who does it your way or you are the only person is you and and so on, Which asked me years ago and I would’ve been making sure I wasn’t looking at all the other leadership coaches because I’m not as experienced as them or as good as they are now I realize great and I can be too. But I’ve done is, things like media. So I’ll write articles and then send ’em off. done some speeches. I often, turn up and do some workshops for people and so on. So, the articles are good because then you can like, that. on your website and have it inking out to an article that you’ve written, and you can also, yeah, show that you are credible because you’ve been published. so I’ve been doing that.
[00:28:14] Emily: Alrighty. So we’ve chatted about the marketing. I’d love to hear, and you’ve been really generous in sharing the learnings that you’ve had. Are there any other challenges you wanted to touch on?
[00:28:21] Michelle: I’ve found with me, because with the ideas and everything else. Another thing around that is just having so much content that you wanna give to people. And so I found challenges in Overing and it really overwhelming people. So the challenge for me is making that content really relevant and simple for people to consume. So I found my early lead magnets may have been a bit overwhelming. Maybe people downloaded them, but. I never heard from them again or something. So when you are in your business, you think everyone already knows a lot, but but it’s simplifying your content. the other challenges I guess I overcome were, was and so on, So I was doing consulting and advisory work and keeping on doing that and trying to build your business found that challenging until I really put boundaries around it and said, I really need to have a couple of days to work on my business, so I’m going to limit that. Now. I know we all do that. but whatever you can. Time blocking some time and so on to, yeah, to spend the quality time on your business business as well, because it’s not just time, It’s energy. You spend all this time. in the other work that doing and you you, run out of energy or what you wanna be working on. So they were challenges for me. I could talk about that a lot. and also, think I said to you before about selling as well,
[00:29:49] Emily: But I think that’s something that everyone pretty much goes through in terms of, okay, well I might have this job, but I really want to have. A business, there’s something here that I know I can offer and just how do I go about doing that? How do I go about making that transition? And it’s gonna be personal and unique for everyone depending on their situation. Whether it is, okay, I’ll scale back at my job so that I can put more time into the business. Is it okay? That’s not gonna work. I, really have to build up the business while I’m full-time. For you, Michelle? Cause think it’s, so true what you said. It’s not just having the time, it’s then having the energy. So you might get home at the end of the day and it’s all very well to say, okay, then work on your business. But there might be life and other things to attend to. And then you are exhausted. And it’s so important as well to have the thinking time on your business. Not just the doing time, but the thinking where you are coming up with some of those ideas for lead magnets or your messaging and all that type of thing. when you started your business how did you make that happen there? And then I guess as you’ve grown your business and scaled back a little bit, some of the other work, could you, I’d love you just to even share even more how you made that work for you.
[00:30:58] Michelle: Guess it worked, but it work, if you like, so early on I just worked. Really long hours, like, as you said, it wasn’t always about doing, so I was working early mornings after work on the weekends And there were a lot of that didn’t get done, or sorry, I didn’t see people. Anything, but I did fit in exercise and so on. I think it was having a routine. because at the time I wanted this business so that I enjoyed doing it, and because I was already working those hours in, business or the advisory work, consulting work, because I already doing that. I was used to doing that at the same time, if you like. it was adding onto it and I wanted to do that. So it almost like my thing to do outside of work. It was almost like my hobby on, on steroids or something because I was doing it all the time and I loved doing it, but you can’t sustain that forever. I did get a bit, tired and, I didn’t see my friends as much or whatever it was, although we were in Covid at the time, so it wasn’t such a big deal. So I think it might have been different if wasn’t 2020 and 2021 to be fair. I’m really good at, other things like meditating or things that you can do between tasks so that you can reset your focus. So some of those things helped me. So I did kind of do a lot, but I wouldn’t advise in terms of, remember I said every single thing I just added. And I think that’s one thing if, if you could just focus on just a couple of things probably do. be able to fit it in more. So really focus on, one or two offers. Mac and marketing plan that works for you. If it’s just be consistent with it. If it’s only once a fortnight, once a fortnight, if it’s three posts a instead of five, that sort thing. So they were some of the that I rationalized. I also got some help, so because I was working full-time, uploaded some work to a VA for some of things like posting and so on. Like, you’re earning money in, then you can potentially send some money as well.
[00:33:07] Emily: So good. Thank you so much for sharing that, Michelle. Yeah. A lot of people, go through that and I just think it’s so valuable to hear different ways that people have made it work. I also wanna go back to or go to, I know for you as with so many of us, your lifestyle and what you do outside of work is really, really important. What is it that you enjoy and how do you make that work around your business?
[00:33:29] Michelle: Before 2020, I, would travel overseas, two, three, maybe four times a year, plus other. So yeah, I enjoy traveling. So this was one of the reasons I wanted to build an online business so that I could travel and work anywhere I want to. to. the things outside of work are usually around, Moving around, not in the one place so I designed it so that I could pick up and do it anywhere. So you can do these zoom calls that you have for You can do that anywhere. You can run group coaching programs anywhere. You can do one-to-one clients anywhere. so I made that happen. I also realized that I’ve always, Not really enjoyed the nine to five sort of timeframes. So I really wanted to look at how I wanna design my life and I like do certain things in the morning. like to maybe take, long lunch or an afternoon off or whatever it is. So for me, building a business around the way, My energy works or flows in and out, and I like variety as well, so I don’t necessarily wanna do the same things all the time. So being able to build that in and being able to schedule things between what’s important to me as well. I find that health and wellbeing is really important to me. So I wanna be able to do those things and be comfortable that I don’t have to do them, the morning gym and I can do it, at lunchtime or or 11 o’clock or something. So that’s what I’ve tried to create my business around as well. and I think it’s really important when you do that, although I don’t like, to be set. to Particular timeframes. I think it is important to sort of use some sort of scheduling, even if you only do it once a week and just look at the next week and go, Hey, what does the next week look like? sort of schedule that way. Have your plan for the month, but schedule each week I find that works me cuz it gives me enough variety. And change in my as well. so I find now my business is my passion. So things outside of work are more health and wellbeing, travel, friends, family and so
[00:35:38] Emily: Yeah, I can relate. I can relate. And I don’t think it’s a bad thing, but it’s like, oh, if I’ve got a bit of time, I’d love to just work on my business. So last couple questions, Michelle, I would love to hear what are some of your favorite moments or your proudest moments or biggest wins that you’ve had in your business that have been favorites of yours? So
[00:36:00] Michelle: Firstly it’s always the, when I’m coaching someone and someone has an aha moment, I just feel really energized and lit up by that, and I feel like I’m having an impact and I, it’s not just. because I know that’s about me. It’s like, oh, that gives me energy. But it’s also about seeing that person and then what they do with that aha moment. And, and I hear later um, they changed jobs, left this environment and got a pay rise or somebody got a promotion know, all of the outcomes that I see. That’s biggest win for me. and I love seeing, groups of women come together and create connections or they keep up their connections afterwards and they, that’s someone in their community now that they can talk to about things and confide in and so on. And then personally for me, I keep hesitating to say the word covid, so I’m really sorry about that for, the pandemic. Oh gosh. I try not to talk about it anymore, do we? But when that did happen, I got a podcast up and running, which I never would’ve done. Like I would’ve felt,
[00:37:00] Emily: The podcast. Yeah.
[00:37:02] Michelle: Oh, I would’ve used that term. Like, oh, I sound or this or that. But at that time it was my way of sort of and getting a message out there, and I just learned all the tech and all the things, and just did it. Suddenly kind of proud of for doing that and jumping in and doing it, and really putting out there because The first one you do, you always sound, and you can always get better and better and better as you go and you oh gosh, hope no one listens to that one. but there’s some in it.
[00:37:32] Emily: Exactly and people say, oh, Emily, I’m starting right at the beginning of your podcast. I’m like, oh God, please don’t. Please don’t
[00:37:38] Michelle: I did, I did that when I heard you on a I went back, yeah. Listened from the So yeah. don’t worry. It was awesome. So yeah, getting that podcast up and running a big win. Also, I guess, I think I mentioned earlier, getting to some corporations and getting to do their programs, that was just a huge win for me personally as well. And getting that first article published when I, went out and, um, sort of celebrated after one. So they’re probably my, biggest ones so, far.
[00:38:09] Emily: Absolutely. And there’ll be so many more to come. You’re just getting started. Really. because what has it been like three years or so?
[00:38:17] Michelle: Yeah. it was um, April, 2020 that I started the business. I was already of mentoring people doing some one-to-one And and doing all my certifications and so on before that. But that’s I decided, yep, this is the business started, Yep.
[00:38:32] Emily: What would you say to other people about some of your biggest learnings from the modern marketing collective
[00:38:36] Michelle: I guess the big thing for me was going to that retreat and just being, like I said before, just being around people who are also in this position and learning from them. on top of obviously learning from yourself, the marketing side, but from other peers, learning that I wasn’t alone, . you leave so much confidence because you’re like, everyone goes through these different things. also, that confirmation that if you, present your ideas that, others relate it or understand what you’re talking about and so on. So I would say the biggest learnings from from The modern marketing collective for me have been simplifying everything, which is, I know we about it at the start of this, but that’s where that came from was simplifying it it down. Not confusing people having good messaging now, And that’s enabling me to give a better experience to people as they come all my channels and so on. and also I think we talked about the visibility piece as well. So being more comfortable, visible and yeah, that’d be the biggest for me. All the content’s awesome. that’s where The bit about content and how to things has been really helpful to me because I was to lots of different advice and having to interpret but I find all the content in the modern marketing collective really feels good on me. I don’t know if it’s it’s, just me that feels that way or if everyone, don’t know. It’s a good community, so I think we are all just wanna build a really good business and don’t wanna be salesy and we don’t offer to people.
[00:40:04] Emily: I was working with someone at the minute to help on some of my sales copy, give a bit of a refresh, and I was trying to explain my ideal clients, and they really are like you, Michelle, and you just have such a good offer. You just genuinely want to help people. You’re pretty modest, very modest. You’re not showy and I don’t know. When it comes to the marketing and the sales, you really care about your audience and putting good quality content out there and building genuine relationships. And I think that it makes it such a pleasure to work with people like you and see the amazing work that you’re doing. And it’s just so rewarding for me. And I could chat with you all day and I said to you, oh, probably half an hour and we’ve been going an hour, so I’m sorry about that
[00:40:41] Michelle: Oops.
[00:40:42] Emily: Final question. Where can everyone go to find
[00:40:45] Michelle: Did everyone go to find I’ll give you Instagram because I have a of content there, so it helps people to get started with, what kind of kind of content I So that’s at Braveheart coach if you’re looking to connect more on LinkedIn, I’ve had to create my handle as Michelle John’s coach. There’s so Michelle Johns out there, so I’ve, make it easy for you to find me. So it’s Michelle John’s coach on LinkedIn and I always encourage people to get more connections on LinkedIn when you’re in the corporate world. So please feel free to connect with me there.
[00:41:18] Emily: Excellent. And we’ll put the direct links in the show notes, So if you scroll under the episode, you’ll find them. So you can just easily click and, connect with Michelle. So thank you so much, Michelle. I’ve loved chatting With you. and I look forward to chatting again soon.
[00:41:29] Michelle: Thank you. I really enjoyed it, Thanks for having on.