Let’s Talk About Tradeoffs


Podcast
Tagged: , , , ,
business tradeoffs

After dinner most nights of my childhood, my dad would ceremoniously pull a box of Whitman’s Sampler chocolates out of the fridge and solemnly open the box.

My brother, sister, and I would crowd around, eyeballing the treasures within and poring over the list of their flavors and placements on the inside of the lid.

Then, one at a time, we’d be invited to make our selection.

“Pick your poison,” my mom would say theatrically.

We were allowed one, maybe two at most each night.

Of course, any formalities around chocolate were purely for dramatic effect, as dessert was always bountiful, if not essential, in our house.

The reference to “poison” was also a family joke, poking fun at the sugar-free craze that had the late 90’s in a chokehold.

Bread sports and other family traditions

(For context, another family tradition was “the bread toss”. My dad would pull fresh-out-of-the-oven bread rolls from their basket and throw them, overhand, at each of us kids.

We caught them… most of the time, tossing them hand to hand to cool them down. But when we missed, they’d fall to the carpet and become the night’s prize for our neurotic English Springer Spaniel, Zebedee.

So make of that what you will!)

This “pick your poison” decision was most difficult when the box was brand new, or almost empty.

When it was brand new, the selection was intimidating. Whoever chose first almost always went for the chocolate messenger boy in the middle, followed by the large, round chocolate with whipped mousse in the middle.

Life’s a box of chocolates, baby!

We had so many choices, we’d worry about making the wrong one, and end up enviously watching another family member eat the chocolate we knew we SHOULD have picked.

When it was almost empty, selection became a game of “avoid the fruitier fillings” for all of us.

In that instance, with so few available choices, we’d battle it out for the best of the worst — with the orange and coconut cream almost always the last two left.

And, while it’s been a long time since the family’s been all together and hovering over a Whitman’s Sampler box — the pick your poison concept stays with me.

Dealing with analysis paralysis

It’s the perfect tasty microcosm of the reality that there is always, always a risk and a tradeoff, whatever we choose to do.

The more choices we have, the more the overwhelming nature of those options can paralyze us.

The fewer we have, the more we feel their impact, similarly paralyzing us.

In the business world, I see this “pick your poison” ethos most conspicuously in the “build the business of your dreams!” mentality.

Because the truth is?

You can absolutely create your business and marketing strategy any way you see fit.

But that doesn’t mean it’s going to work out in exactly the way you plan.

There ARE no solutions; only tradeoffs

Don’t want to work with a ton of clients, but want to make a ton of money? High ticket offers, bb.

Hate promoting yourself on social media? Alrighty – start pounding the pavement of media interviews and knocking on doors to do workshops inside relevant communities.

Want to work 3 day weeks but still make a bajillion dollars? Focus on developing offers that don’t require you to run, a large audience/lead pipeline that wants to buy them, and support/team to cover fulfillment.

Buuuuuut! Each one of the options above comes with tradeoffs.

High ticket? You gotta make sure you’re speaking to, and attracting, the type of clients who can pay, and you’ll wanna watch your back for burnout.

No social media? You’re still gonna have a lot of labor on your hands pounding that pavement, (and social media is by far the easiest, most cost-effective way to find new clients and customers. AHEM!)

3 days a week? Building the type of offers, audience, and team you need is a long (loooong) game that also means you’re likely not gonna make a bajillion dollars from the jump.

The back end of the 4-hour workweek…

All of this to say — you deserve to have a business you enjoy running, and work in a way that doesn’t totally fry your motherboard.

BUT.

Every decision, like every chocolate in the Whitman’s Sampler box, comes with inherent reward and risk.

It’s a matter of priority… and picking your poison.

And this, I think, is what gets lost in the constant industry infighting between the “GET IT DONE!” crowd, and the “DON’T DO ANYTHING YOU DON’T WANNA DO!” crowd.

While most folk exist in between the two, depending where your values lie, there will always, always be places you see massive payoff, and places you’ll need to readjust expectations.

The only thing that matters is how you choose to move through and with that reality.

Which is exactly what Margo and I are digging into on this episode of #HAMYAW.

Back to reality!

Because honestly, much like the idea of “having it all”, the concept that you can have a booming gazillion-dollar business while barely working or promoting yourself isn’t real.

And, when you DO see people kicking back and taking a break and still succeeding, they’ve also usually spent years front-loading the labor to do so.

So the question becomes: … what IS real?

And as you seek to build the business of your dreams, what tradeoffs can you really expect?

And where are places where there can also be a spectrum of experience and options to choose from that you might be dismissing?

Come find out… and pick your poison with us right now.

And let us know in the comments:

What are some tradeoffs YOU’VE made in your business — in the name of rest, creativity, income levels, etc?

Was the poison worth the picking?

We want to know, so head right here to spill your guts.

Catch you over there in a sec.

Your “life is like a box of chocolates” friend,

H

Episode Transcript

Okay wait, I have a really important question.

Yeah.

How are we feeling about this updo, because I’m into it, but I am so stiff because I’m afraid of it falling down.

(both laughing)

(upbeat music)

Welcome back marketing nerds of the world. It’s time for another episode of HAMYAW. And today we want to talk about trade-offs.

AKA the middle bit between “you must do all the things, hustle, hustle, hustle, just work harder”, and “you don’t have to do anything that you don’t want to”.

The fact is folks, neither of these things are true because business is hard and sometimes a giant pain in the ass, but the key is to figure out what lies in between pushing yourself to do a million things that you have no interest in, and giving up because you have no interest in a certain thing that is the only thing someone has told you will work.

That’s what we want to talk about today. And we’re gonna talk about a little bit in the context of social media, a little bit in the context of sales.

I think we’re gonna start there today, but I see this a lot in my work as a coach. I do, as I mentioned, positioning coaching, that also involves offer development, framework development, and strategy development for visibility. And I have clients come to me who say things like, “you know, I don’t necessarily want to do a whole bunch of sales calls. I don’t want to work with a whole bunch of clients. What do I do?”

Or, you know, similarly, “I don’t want to be on social media that much”, or “I have no interest in being on social media at all. But people are telling me, this is the only way to get ahead. What do I do?”

And the reality is that there are workarounds for everything in business. You just have to get creative. But what we’re seeing is a lot of people either giving up completely or not knowing what the trade-off is. So we want to explore some of those today, but before I get any further Margo, talk to me about your trade-offs.

I really feel this conversation, because in addition, I would say the people who struggle with this the most are like good people.

Yeah.

Like I would say those of us who have ethical backbones, who feel like there are morally ambiguous levels. Like I get this a lot. So we’re running a coffee workshop right now. And a lot of people are like, “I don’t want to be on social media and I don’t want to do sales.”

You know what? You don’t have to do things you don’t want to do, but to not do them, and then assume there are no consequences for that.

Yeah.

Is the problem, so yes, you don’t have to do it. No, there’s not no consequences.

Yeah, yup. I think that’s exactly right.

And also like, no generalizations, y’all. Let’s start here. What is your specific situation?

I got off social media. Right, got off, air quotes.

We’re still on YouTube, but you know, there’s a trial separation going on. They’re living in two different houses. They’re going to dinner, but it’s happening. They’re test driving, Margo’s test-driving her social media, separation.

Still having sex. But think about this. Like I knew that awareness was gonna suffer. And so I had to think creatively about what was going to take the place of it. Like, what was the role social media was playing, why did I not want to be on it, what was it taking away, and where can I get those benefits somewhere else?

“And so I think often what I hear behind, I don’t want to do XYZ”, is someone just wanting to opt-out of hard work. And I think that is really different from a sincere discomfort or allergy to a certain way of business because both are true. Like there have been times where people have heard me talk about this on the show that, like I said, “I’m not doing consulting work anymore”.

And it took me a really long time to get out of that, but the trade-off was, I literally had to take a huge financial hit for a while until I established a new business plan and figured out how to get products off the ground to stop consulting. You can do that, but to assume there’s not gonna be any fallout is to be naive.

Yeah, I saw that similarly to when I made my transition out of copywriting, and one thing that I’m very, very proud of is that I was able to separate completely from copywriting.

I don’t teach it anymore. I don’t talk about it on podcasts. I don’t sell stuff that involves copywriting or write emails about it anymore like I wanted to be done. You know, I don’t work with any other clients. And I was like, okay, well that trade-off is that one, this is gonna take me a lot longer than anyone thought it would, ’cause people would make fun of me. They’re like, “just do it, why are you taking so long?”

And I was like, “you don’t understand like I have to test those new offers, I have to make sure I’m good at this, I have to make sure I enjoy it, and then I’m gonna take the leap”. And when I took the leap, I was able to take it all at once and make a clean break. But that trade-off is that it was gonna take me more time because I had to literally build an entirely different brand focus into my messaging, for a while, people had to be prepared. 

So I think that’s what we mean by trade-offs too. And I think with social media, because I have a lot of clients who are like, “I don’t want to be on social media”, but what they mean, usually, is “I don’t want social media to be my life”.

Like “I don’t want to be attached to social media all the time”.

And there are so many ways to show up and maintain that visibility that do not require you to just sit on Instagram all day. Like for one example, hire it out, if you can afford it. Another example, just, you know, batch your posts, get some stuff done for the week and then just do a couple things on Stories everyday, if you can. Maybe one longer-term story every week, you know, but if you don’t want to be on social media at all, there are other ways. 

In Margo’s case, she partnered with a larger company to get out a really awesome course. In the cases of other of my clientele, they move within powerful communities, so their network is really strong. Their in-person network and their educator and connections are really strong. 

So you’re gonna have to do work in one way or another. It’s just a matter of deciding what kind of work that you want to do. If you don’t want to be on social media if you don’t want to be building your network, period, and teaching, if you’re just hoping that you’re not gonna be on social media and clients will find you, that’s where it gets a little tricky.

That’s not to say that there’s anything wrong with having a referral-based business. Almost all of my clients have that. But what there’s, as we talked about so many times in the show, there’s also a vulnerability there when you don’t have your own audience, and you don’t have your own platform or a way to get in front of people.

Like you are leaving yourself vulnerable if that referral network closes up for one reason or another.

I would also challenge, the, I “don’t want to be on social media” or “I don’t want to do this type of sales” with like, “what’s the real thing going on” because this is where I put the psych hat on, and I’m like, “all right, tell me what’s really going on”.

Because if you truly are feeling pulled into the social media, it’s like, bad for your mental health, then that’s, let’s talk about that.

Absolutely.

I would say 90%, myself included, are uncomfortable selling, right? And so if you’re uncomfortable selling, you don’t want to show up in a certain way on social media. That’s a different issue.

Yeah.

Right, if you get sucked into how you’re being perceived, there’s the type of, okay, “I don’t want to do this because it’s a boundary of mine. This is a boundary of mine that is important to me. I don’t want to show up in this way. That’s what I know. It comes from a place of a sincere expression of who I am.”

Cool. 

Awesome.

But if it’s a boundary because it’s fear-based or it is entitled or it’s self-righteous, which a lot of ours are. I am so guilty of this.

Extremely self-righteous.

Yeah. Fine, but trade-off right.

Yeah, yup.

Trade-off, so if you’re not gonna show up in XYZ way, then you have to be really going in eyes open to how you’re gonna overcompensate, and most of us, again, myself included, aren’t aware of the trade-off and we get hit in the head with it much later on.

Yeah, and I think also, it’s so all or nothing sometimes in the space because it’s harder to turn something into a Tweet or a meme that is nuanced, right? So it’s either like hustle, hustle, hustle every day, like get up at 4:00 AM or it’s like, you don’t have to do anything anybody tells you to. 

Like the traditional strategies, they don’t work for everybody, so if they don’t work for you full stop, fine, shut the door, you know? And there’s so much in between that, and I think that, especially for something like social media, I think you hit the nail right on the head. Like, is it something that’s a part of the core of who you are, or are you just scared of selling and showing up consistently? ‘Cause you’re not sure people are gonna like you.

I’m not saying that’s illegitimate, that’s something that should be factored in. But I think that we forget in business that we can give ourselves space to change because you were like, “I hate selling”, and I was like, “I don’t”.

But it didn’t use to be that way, and you know what changed, was because I needed to build a whole new brand and I needed to get my offers in front of new people. And I needed to talk more about what I did. So I had to get comfortable selling. I didn’t have a choice. And I got really fortunate that Instagram was a platform that was a great fit for my personality. So I was like, all right, that’s the trade-off. We got to go hard on this one platform and see what happens.

I’m gonna caveat this because I don’t actually hate selling, and what I hated was the way I felt like I was supposed to show up on social platforms. That was quippy. I like sales calls, I like sitting down with people. I like being on podcasts, I love email. And I had no discomfort in any of those areas. I had discomfort on social media, and so I needed to address that. And there were a lot of other factors, which you can watch another episode ’cause we go deep on it.

But I think it’s more than just social, right? Like you brought up a really good point about the two prevailing narratives that people have to choose from, which are, I’ll use an example of being a parent. You were either told, “wake up at 4:00 AM, work 12 hours before your kids wake up, and then no fuckin’ excuses, like, get it done, get it done! Sleep when you’re dead, no complaining, don’t you complain!”

Like on one level you’re getting gaslit 

(Speakers talking over each other)

You either want to be a good parent or a good business owner, you pick, you know? It’s like, okay, well that’s one camp and then the other camp is like, how dare you? You don’t understand what it’s like to be a parent. You don’t understand what my day is like. You don’t understand how hard this is. I can’t do shit, and I’m like, okay, well my life exists somewhere in between these two.

Both of these are false!

I will concede like, it does feel like they’re in one camp one day or the other.

Yeah, totally.

That’s an illusion. That’s an illusion like real life exists in the middle. Real-life exists in, okay, we all have these constraints. Some of them are psychopathological. Some of them are trauma-based. Some of them are systemic. You know, all the different ways in which we have limitations and restrictions, which we have to fix systemically. That’s real across the board.

Yup, 100%.

As my therapist likes to remind me, we live in the real world. And so living in the world as it exists today, what are you gonna do now? Because as we work on this systemic change, which by God, keep fighting, please keep fighting. That’s why we need you to exist. That’s why we need you to succeed. That’s why we need you selling.

And be visible.

Because we need people like us to win! But until that win happens, we live in the world. So what are we gonna do?

And I know that for me, the trade-off has been, I remember when my kid was little and I was going to events and I was like, “I can’t handle missing bedtime when she’s like six weeks old, this is not okay for me”. And that I made a trade-off.

I was like, “I’m doing no night events for a while”. And I looked at what the consequence was. I turned out, I went to a lot of dumb events that weren’t worth my time, so there were no consequences, and it made me have better boundaries, but there are limitations.

Like now years later, where I would really like to do night events, I would really like to be doing more client management and things that could grow my business that I am not doing because of the constraint I have. The trade-off is I get to do one thing at a time, right? Limited hours in the day, I do one thing at a time.

So I’m not gonna lie and say there aren’t revenue consequences to this y’all. There are, and I think that’s the part we’re not talking about is that there are brain and cognitive consequences, right? My brain doesn’t even come to work every day. So that is a real constraint. Things take me longer.

That’s a real constraint, but I’m still in the fuckin’ game, and so I don’t like the victim mentality that people tell me where it’s like, I can’t do anything, well I’m like, no, no, I can still do things, but I can do things differently than you because we aren’t the same people. And we don’t have the same life, just because we both have children. I’m using the example of children, but I think across the board, the extreme rugged individualism, where you are the sole agency over everything in your life.

You are powerful!

That’s dumb and naive, and then like the, you’re a victim and everything must come to you easily, and you must manifest it as equally naive. There has to be this middle ground, and I believe the middle ground is one, just being fucking honest about your (audio cuts out) and your limitations and your (audio cuts out) and also being able to go, what is the trade-off?

Because again, to quote my favorite therapist when I was complaining, I didn’t think it was complaining. I viewed this as legitimate transgressions. And she was like, “Okay, those are all legitimate, but also what are you willing to give up, to get what you want?”

Yep. Yep.

And I was like, “none of the things”, and she was like, “what do you mean? This is not how that works, this is not how that works”, and I was like, “don’t you tell me how this works. I can have all the things, I read the books. They said I could have all the things!” And she was like leaning in.

Therapist lady!

What I love that you raised around at this point too, is it’s also when we talk about trade-offs, it’s also okay to adjust your expectations for the outcome. And Margo, when you and I were talking about this before the call started, we were talking about it in the context of like, I want six-pack abs, but I don’t want to go to the gym, I don’t want to do cardio, I don’t want to lift weights, I don’t want to change my eating habits.

Like I want to sit in bed and smoke weed and just watch reruns of The Circle, Circle sends messages. Anyway, sorry. I’m just so obsessed with that show. So basically like, if you don’t want to do all those things, but you want the six-pack abs, you have to start rethinking do you want the six-pack abs after all?

Maybe you adjust your expectations. Maybe you just want to feel better. Maybe you want to have a consistent movement practice where you start by walking every day. If you have certain goals in business, there are certain tools that can get you there. But if you’re not comfortable with the tools or the trade-offs, you need to get that it’s totally okay. But you need to reconsider your goal result.

So for example, if you want to make quarter million dollars a year and you want to work with 10 clients at 25K, but you don’t want to do any self-promotion on social media, you don’t really want to do a content strategy at all. You don’t necessarily want to be teaching. You don’t necessarily want to be networking. Like you just kind of want to chill.

No.

Not such an extreme example, and I don’t think there are a lot of people wandering around like having that type of goal.

Do though, sorry, you go!

I’m trying to be nice, Margo, leave me alone.

And this is, I think where a lot of the critique about like, not every business needs

to get to six figures. I think it makes sense. I think it’s like, yeah, absolutely. You can have a great life just working with clients, having a referral-based business, not doing any kind of self-promo. If you don’t want to become like a personal brand, that’s all great.

But if the things that you don’t want to do are actually the things that are gonna help you get to the result that you want, then you have to rethink the result.

Yes, yes. I love this so much, I love this so much.

So the point that I was pushing you on is that I’m like having ghosts of the client’s past come up in my head. And I definitely remember two that were really talented, smart, smart human beings who had this vision of thought leadership. They had the chops, you know like they could get stage and they could do the things, but they were so staunch in the way the academy raised you to be, to like, it’s below me to care about sales and they would get so stuck in their own way, and they’re like, I’m not doing sales, I’m not doing self-promotion, or the way they would approach sales and self-promotion would be so cumbersome and laborious that it was like, you are just not, you are not getting this.

When I say pitch yourself for the speaker. I don’t mean to tell people your credentials. I mean, tell them what’s in it for them and shut up. Like really being able to take a  generous, other posture, other facing posture of what do my clients need, what’s in it for them?

Instead, they just focus me, me, me, me, me, me, me, me, me. That is where I do think a lot of people are misguided. Really, really misguided on what it takes to succeed. Like I actually, of all people (mumbles) said that someone told him when he was like, how do I become a speaker? And someone was like, have something to talk about, like do something worth talking about.

And I was like, I love that. I love that because I think so many people get in love with the idea of being a thought leader, a love with the idea of being a speaker, and highly sought out after as a personal brand. But like, what did you do? What are you thinking about?

I do think these are two sides of the same coin because we get confused about what hustle means. We get confused about what hard work means. We get confused about the trade-offs because we think, and we are sold an idea that it’s easy on one hand, right? 

Was I texting you or Shannon when I was watching the Halston mini-series?

Oh my god, you watch Halston and didn’t tell me? Sorry, go on.

I mean, I love Ewan McGregor. Fantastic, but I was getting–

Friend of the show. Imaginary friend of the show, continue.

Come by anytime, my friend. It’s fantastic, you should watch it. We should do an episode on it, but the part that made me angry was this trope of the brilliant creative who generates demand by existing. 

Yes.

Everyone wants their attention. And I actually think this is what’s fucking us up is that we all think like, well, “I just am the brilliant hat maker, and Jackie O wore my hats and now Neiman Marcus is like die or was it Bloomie’s like dying to get a hold of me, and they just want me to produce more art. But I can’t because I’m a diva.” 

Like, stop it. No, no, no, no, shame on you Halston, or producers of the show because that’s just not, that’s just not how it is. There is no diva in the history of the world that is doing well without doing sales.

Yes, and doing well without putting their fucking back into it. I mean, maybe there’s like a once in a generation talent, but even like, well you look at Prince and look at Beyonce. 

Rest in peace, Prince.

There’s a saying in the music industry that you’re not in the music industry until you’ve been fired by Prince. Like that’s how hard that man was to work with. Same thing for Beyonce, like very, very tight avail, like, oh, workaholic, super focused, like very particular.

And to your point, I think this is a hazard of influencer culture and this isn’t even the thing, a fuckin’ influencer, so we’re like, yeah, these people make so much money just to like sit and take pictures, no. Do you have any idea how long it takes to create content of that caliber and how much time and money? Sit down.

Out here defending the influencers. I want to be one of you, please. (mumbles) YouTube makes us relevant. I think it’s just, it’s honestly a result of the backlash against hustle culture. I think that’s part of it, where people are like, okay, well I don’t want to do this, so I don’t have to, and that’s true to a point, but what we also forget, and this is why we’re just very anti dogma anything here on the show period, is that everything in business, in particular, strategy, it exists on a spectrum.

If you’re on social media, you don’t have to be glued to your phone or telling people your deepest, darkest secrets. If you want to be a thought leader, you don’t necessarily need, as a matter of fact, you know, you don’t necessarily need to be spending a fortune on ads, everything sort of within a spectrum, but this is the trade-off.

So in my case, I wanted to make a certain amount of money. I don’t want to be working with 50 billion clients. So I set up my pricing structure as well as the way I deliver my service to allow me to work with a limited number of clients and make a certain amount of money that I want to make, because I have a really high value offer. 

Like that is also the trade-off. It took me forever to perfect, and it took me tens of thousands of dollars in training, tens of thousands of hours building up my skill set so that I could ultimately do this. Do I think you have to take as long as I did and do as many things? No, not everybody wants to do the most, but it’s just in my personality.

Like this is important too, nuance, like nuance matters. You could do this because of the industry you’re in. I’ll remind people of our episode with Peter, where he discovered there was an upper limit to what he could charge for certain types of products.

And so he couldn’t do this really high-end. Well, he can with his styling business, but he couldn’t with products. Like in the way that you can with business products, business products, you could do a $2,000, $5,000 course. You couldn’t do that with an ordinary guy’s fashion. You’re not gonna get that. You will get it in the niche that he did one on one, but you’re not gonna get it with…

So just understanding the constraints of your channel and flexing.

Industry, focus, like what you want to sell and the way you want to sell it. Yeah.

And I think the more important point that you brought up so nicely is the shifting goalposts of what you want. I think most of us, and myself included here, really lie to ourselves about what we want. Confuse what we think we should have with what we want. And sometimes you don’t even figure it out until you do it.

That’s why you see so many people being like, I have a best-selling book and I made $12 million last year and I’m unhappy. It’s like because you had to go through that. Most of us could be like, yeah, we could have told you that, but you have to go through it to get the lesson because we all learn lessons differently.

This is why I’m a big proponent of therapy. The quicker you can get them to that self-actualization of realizing what it is for you because what lights you up, isn’t gonna take away your fire. Like if anything, it ignites it. So like me and chasing the wrong end didn’t make me more business savvy. It made me burn out. 

Now I know that my time is better spent on podcasts than Instagram. I only learned that by going on podcasts and realizing what happened after.

Yeah, exactly. 

So I showed up and what it did to my energy and dah, dah, dah, dah, and also discovering that you know, maybe this one version of life I thought I wanted, I don’t know if I want it anymore because why would you want the thing you wanted ten years ago?

Yeah.

You have changed.

Yes.

And if you haven’t, crazy.

Yes, yes.

And this is just like, if you don’t want to shift your goal, then you’re still gonna have to put in the work. It’s just gonna have to happen somewhere else. And this is what we see a lot with them, for some reason like doing sales calls is no longer in Vogue. I can’t quit. 

Everyone’s trying to avoid doing sales calls. Why?

Anyway, I put up a question about sales calls and we’re gonna be doing an episode on this, on my Instagram, and of course, I was like, what do you think about taking payment on sales calls? And of course, I got the one DM and I love the girl who it’s from, and I think she watches the social. (Hi, I love you, you rock) but she was like, “or don’t do sales calls at all, and just close high figure clients like anyway”, smiley face.

And I was like, yes, and, you know, it’s not that those clients are magically just coming to you out of nowhere because you’re so awesome, and you know, you’re selling hats to Jackie O and inventing microsuede, like our friend Halston, but it’s that you’re doing webinars. Like you are actively getting in front of these new communities who can pay your fees and making the pitch. And then, they get into your DMS, they get into your email. Like this is long tail.

I had somebody when I made my post about LinkedIn that I know about proposals. Which I now regret, because now everyone was like, “aren’t you the anti-proposal lady?”

And I’m like, no, yes, no. I’m not anti proposals, y’all. I’m just a simple proposal lady. Anyway, let’s get it right, okay.

But I had somebody, some douche bro on LinkedIn who I don’t care about and don’t know, so he’s getting a douche bro label, was like, “well, you know, you can close calls, we close clients without any proposals at all and no sales calls and blah, blah, blah”

And I’m like, “how long is your sales process?”

Guess how long it was Margo. Guess how long the long tail sales process was for them to convert these clients.

Six months. 

Seven months! Yes, so I was like, okay. And like, you can wait seven months and just not do a sales call. Great, you know, I would rather just bring, get this money now.

Why are we oversimplifying?

Do sales calls if they work for your business, don’t do them if they don’t, you don’t like it don’t do it, but also don’t pretend like they’re not an important thing.

Yeah, don’t pretend that the work’s not gonna be going in elsewhere, and that’s the thing too. So another thing Margo, you were talking about how podcasts are a big list builder for you, and like a big audience builder, they’re not really for me.

Like I will bring people into my email list from a podcast and it’s great, maybe I just haven’t been on a big enough fancy enough podcast yet, which is very likely, but I like to do podcasts for friends. I like to do podcasts I find interesting. 

I don’t really care about audience size and I don’t think you do either, but I noticed that I was getting, you know, like most like 50 new signups to my email list from a podcast, which is great, but they were a little colder, they didn’t convert to buyers as quickly., whereas my Instagram following, it’s full of people who know me who see me every day, who’ve taken my content, who are a great fit for my offers because I’ve done that on purpose.

(speakers talking over each other)

Yeah. 

It grew my opportunities.

You know what, that’s fair, that’s actually really fair. That’s really fair. ‘Cause I’ve had stuff come in from there too. But I think I literally got a DM this morning from somebody who watches the show and also listened to a podcast I was on, so I’m going to eat my words.

But I was like for this particular goal of audience growth, podcasts didn’t really work for me that well. so I’m gonna stay doing what I’m doing because this is what’s working, and again, it’s all on a spectrum. Like I was actually messaging with a friend last night and she was like, I feel like I need to set up my Instagram brand and visuals. I just look at your stuff and it’s so good.

I was like, I have a team of people on this. I work with a team of five people and like a couple of those people also have their own teams, so like there’s many people behind me to make the thing work. But that’s not to say that you need a whole team to show up consistently, but you do need a plan that exists along the spectrum that honors your boundaries, honors how much you want to show up, should you choose to take this route.

This is just the trade-off and you have to know, and you have to be able to interrogate why you don’t want to do something as well. And be really honest with yourself, because, for me, I was like, I don’t wanna launch consistently. And I remember talking to a strategist at the time. I was like, I don’t know if I really wanna launch consistently with this new brand.

And she was like, well, how else are people..? Maybe this was you, Margo, you’re like, how else are people gonna know about your offers?

And I was like, you know…

And now I launch quarterly and it’s fine, ’cause again, I was like, if I’m gonna have to do this, because I know I can’t do it myself, I need to bring on people. I need to make the upfront investment maybe a little before I’m ready, so I’m prepared to do this. That’s how it works.

I want to wrap up a few things because this is a really big, and I think what we’re honing in on here y’all, as we talk about trade-offs, is intellectual honesty. Like being honest about what you’re doing, and then that self-awareness piece that goes with it.

Why don’t you wanna do something? ‘Cause it’s fine, but don’t act stupid, you’re not stupid. You know that if you don’t do something, there’s going to be, I mean, it’s physics, isn’t it? Like everything has an effect on the other.

Yes, every action has an equal and opposite reaction. Newton. Fig.

Also Limon Well.

(both laughing)

Another invisible friend of the show.

Y’all takeaways here, as we are sounding like we’re yelling at you, we’re really yelling at our younger selves and well I’ll (mumbles) 

But it is really frustrating to watch these two prevailing narratives where you can either be this individualist who takes complete agency over everything, which by the way, is a delusion, and then a complete victim of everything, and useless and unable to do anything.

Utterly disempowered because of one reason or another. And that’s not to say that there aren’t systemic obstacles. And sometimes it’s just not like, fuck, we get it. But, there is an element in some of these instances, like the parent thing where you don’t have to do anything ever ’cause parenting is too hard.

A little disempowering.

It is disempowering. I don’t like being told I can’t do it. Yes, I can, but there are trade-offs. I might have to miss bedtime, I might have to, whatever.

So anyway, I hope for y’all. I want to hear about the trade-offs you made deliberately, and I want to hear about the ones you made unintentionally, not realizing it was a trade-off. I want to get a discussion going on the difference between entitlement and trade-off because I think that’s where we get confused, is that we start feeling entitled to certain things, not realizing that you actually can have what you want at a cost.

And that sucks, and we wanna change this, but at this current juncture, that’s where we are.

So tell us what trade-offs you’ve made.

Tell us where you were lying to yourself.

I’ll share where I was lying with myself.

Probably when we promote this.

Yeah, this is gonna make for some interesting email content. Get excited everybody.

It’s a hard conversation, it’s a nuanced one. And I wish I could wrap it up in a bow for y’all and give you a quick takeaway, and I think that that is what is so great about this show for us is that we want to be honest with you. We want to be honest with ourselves more than anything. And I am so tired of being fed these two versions of oversimplifications about what it’s like to be in business. And I think that the more you can feel like you were in the driver’s seat of your life, but not be deluded to think that, that means you get everything you want, is important.

Yes. Let them know. Thank you, God bless America.

I’m talking to myself here as much as I’m talking to y’all.

And to me, yes, amen.

Projection! Anyway, we’re clearly having way too much fun here, so I will wrap things up. If y’all liked this episode, please hit that like button below, subscribe to our channel, and share it with your friends.

I am Margo Aaron.

And I’m Hillary Weiss.

And we will see you in two weeks.

Bye for now guys.

(mumbling)

Photo by Juliet Clare Warren

Like what you see?

Sign up and never miss another post (and get a crazy cool freebie)

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.