As a woman entrepreneur who runs an online business, I know that being an entrepreneur can prove to be a challenge every day.
But it doesn’t have to be that way.
That’s why I brought business coach and speaker Rob Fortier on this week’s episode of the 7 Days to Amazing Podcast with Sharon Haver to help you find the magic in your business.
Become a Successful Entrepreneur with these 6 key ways to add some magic to your marketing mix.
It takes a certain type of personality to run your own show and with the right kind of magic and focus you can turn struggles into triumphs.
Perhaps these common struggles sound way too familiar…
As a woman entrepreneur or small business owner, you struggle with finding the path to succeeding and owning a profitable business that you love exactly the way that you want it.
Love what you do.
Make it fun.
As a small business owner, it’s best to learn how to embrace and enjoy the business part of the business as well a the creative side, so you can conquer the difficulties faced by many.
SPECIAL LIVE ‘AFTER THE SHOW’ Q&A…
[HEAD’S UP] LIVE Q&A – Friday, July 28, 3pm, EST / 12pm PST
Rob Fortier and I have gotten so many great questions from our podcast that we’ve decided to do a LIVE Q&A on the Sharon Haver – Focusonstyle.com Facebook page.
HERE’S WHAT YOU SHOULD DO:
– Mark the time in your calendar now so you don’t miss it.
– Like the Sharon Haver – Focusonstyle.com page
– Be sure notifications are turned on for the page so you get a Facebook reminder when we are LIVE.
— LISTEN to the Podcast episode.
— Bring your questions or post them below in the comments.
“Marketing Can Really Bog You Down”
You can get held down and tied up if you focus too seriously on the technicals of marketing.
The art of marketing escapism is the key to finding an interesting and novel way of freeing yourself to design your business the way you want.
Super interesting technique!
When it comes to marketing, you have to show up with consistency in the world of business.
Pay attention to your numbers, promote, and know how to sell (yucky for some and key for others).
It can sound very pressuring if you find yourself floundering and piecing it together rather than learning and executing the process.
The part more people need to realize is that really selling is about solving problems.
6 Key Ways That Separate You From Other Entrepreneurs…
You’re personality, behavior, and habits influence your business.
They make you unique!
Bring a part of your lifestyle into your business.
Here are 6 factors that separate you from the rest:
- What you bring to the table
- Your sensibilities
- Your sense of humor
- Your style
- Your knowledge
- The way you look at people (the things you choose to highlight)
I will tell you exactly how to overcome this.
In this fun and informative episode, you will learn how to make your life, business, and style even more amazing.
My friend and colleague Rob is delighted to share his tips and tricks so you can be successful in what you choose to pursue.
Rob Fortier is known as the known as the marketing escape artist!
He is an entrepreneur, writer, speaker, and coach… and has great style!
On this episode of the 7 Days to Amazing podcast:
— Rob reveal his powerful methods so you can also be a marketing escape artist.
— He teaches us how to challenge our assumptions
— Rob discloses the main problems entrepreneurs face.
Want more cool stuff to help you be the best at being you?
Hop over here and claim your free Star Power Flash Kit to help you and your business get out there so you can create a personal brand that attracts high-level clients and opportunities.
More Social Shares Below Transcript
Announcer: Welcome to the Seven Days to Amazing Podcast where you learn how to make your life, business and style even more amazing in the next week! Now your host, Sharon Haver of FocusOnStyle.com.
Sharon Haver: Hello chicsters, I am Sharon Haver and you are really about to be amazed today. I have a very super cool guest on today’s episode of Seven Days to Amazing podcast. Rob Fortier is the marketing escape artist; Rob uses his innovative and humorous approach to conquer the challenges faced by entrepreneurs and small companies so they can find the path to succeeding and owning a profitable business that they love exactly the way that they want it. While most entrepreneurs waste months or even years trying tactics or tricks that just don’t fit Rob shows them how to use his strengths to tap into a mass of money that surrounds them right now.
And he even knows a few good magic tricks for you, so you can see your business in a whole new light. Rob has revealed his powerful method for his clients and on stages all over the country, including The Be The Change event, Build Your Speaking Boot camp and the National Stationary Show among many others.
Rob Fortier I am so thrilled to have you here with us today and I know we are going to have a blast.
Rob Fortier: Excellent, Thank you for having me Sharon. I am really honored to be here today.
Sharon Haver: thank you so much, for most of you that don’t know, Rob and I met at some speaker training events and business events, he really is a lot of fun, and I want to learn a little bit about how you became a marketing escape artist. My degree, I don’t know if many people realize that, my degree is in marketing and I really love marketing. At the same time marketing can really bog you down and mess you up if you take it a little too, I don’t want to say too seriously, but it can hold you down and tie you up. Rob is really great at finding an interesting and novel way of freeing yourself to design your business that you really love and he also knows a few good tricks with handcuffs and what else do you have in your, no top hat but a bowtie.
Rob Fortier: A bow tie and some magic rings too.
Sharon Haver: I guess the magic rings I was translating that as hand cuffs, I don’t know, my mind was in the gutter.
Rob Fortier: I have handcuffs too, so I have all of that.
Sharon Haver: Oh you’ve got everything; you are a lot of fun. So Fifty Shades of Not Marketing.
Rob Fortier: Exactly!
Sharon Haver: Tell everyone a little bit of how you got involved in this, I know you had a really successful stationary business and you decided to make the big leap over.
Rob Fortier: I had my own stationary company for 10 years; I had built up a core of independent sales reps that worked for me. It got to the point where I still liked doing it but I wanted to do more, I think I can more of an impact on other entrepreneurs.
I used to get a lot of questions from other people, How did you do this? How did you make this happen? How are you promoting your business?
So I started wanting to help other entrepreneurs, first off on the stationary and greeting card world. One of my sales reps and I got together and we wrote a book, How to Work With Sales Reps, as it is a huge problem for a lot of very small companies to recruit reps and have them sell for them, so we sort of created the one and only handbook that I know of for the greeting card industry on how to work with reps. It really took of for us, it lead to coaching people, we started getting speaking engagements all because of this book and I realized that this was a great path for me to travel down, I really wanted to take everything I learnt from my own business and spread it out into the world to help other entrepreneurs that is really how I got into running the business and the whole aspect of marketing in this.
Really from a want to help and do more for others and really taking all of the knowledge that I have used and started writing and teaching and coaching.
It really just took on a life of its own, so my writing partner, one of my former reps turned me one day and said “ You need to shut down your stationary company”. I was like “ You are crazy, I cant do that, I am doing all of these things”. She was like “No, you really need to shut it down!”
He was right I couldn’t give the coaching, the writing and the other stuff the attention that it needed so I shut down the stationary company and switched into doing this full time.
Sharon Haver: That is interesting as that is similar as to what I have been, and I how I restructured, rebranded, regenerated my business as well. I was a stylist for 15 years, on photo shoots even though it was my own business, I was really a freelancer, then I started Focusonstyle.com back in 1999. People don’t realize that is a long time to be online; I have seen all sorts of weird web iterations out there.
What people don’t realize it is a business and to have a boot strapping business you are running it as an entrepreneur, whether it is in stationary or style, I don’t know, stethoscopes, if I can say that right, or whatever it is, whatever thing your business is, it is a business and you are an entrepreneur if you running it yourself.
I have also felt that business came easy to me as style and I realized that was something that didn’t work well with other entrepreneurs, so I got into the act of teaching them how to run their own business, just the same as you have. Watt I have done to stay afloat and be successful for this many years. It is really interesting I think you really need to walk your walk and live your life before you can teach others.
That is something that you are really fantastic at doing, you are not just someone who came out of the blue and said, “This is how you should run your business” and I am running a business teaching people to run a business, you actually ran a successful business in a very competitive industry like stationary and greeting cards, that is a really hard industry especially these days.
Rob Fortier: Yes it is tough, you make a really good point Sharon, you being a creative person, being in style and fashion and also being a business persona and that is something that a lot of entrepreneurs or would be entrepreneurs, who dream of being entrepreneurs, that is something they don’t always realize from the get-go, is that you have to love what you do, it is not about passion as that is a messy word sometimes, but it is about having the desire to really almost need to do what you are good at, all of the time.
Sharon Haver: Absolutely, passion can become very trite especially when people say I have a passion for fashion; it is like “Oi”.
Rob Fortier: It rhyme’s.
Sharon Haver: Yes it rhyme’s there you go, it could be a Meme. It has to be something that you really wake up in the morning and love doing, it is part of your life, it is not necessarily a passion it is what you are really good at, I am passionate about travelling but I am not really good at travelling and travelling every day and I am certainly not a travel writer.
This is the difference, you bring up a really good point on that, you have got to really know what you are doing.
Rob Fortier: Yes and for you and for me, there is creative aspects of our businesses that we love, we also have learned to embrace and enjoy the business part of the business, they call it running a business for a reason, there is work involved. There are ways to make that fun and enjoyable especially when you move to your marketing and promoting, but you still have to show up with consistency, you still have to pay attention to the numbers, you still have to promote and you still have to know how to sell.
Even if someday you have a whole staff of people that sell for you, as an entrepreneur you are your best sales person, it doesn’t have to be, you can learn that easily, but it is something that you have to be willing to learn to be a successful entrepreneur.
Sharon Haver: I hate the word sales; I am really like, “Ohhh”. But I love helping people through my knowledge, that is a way of “Selling”.
Unto itself as if it is something that you really know. You are not selling something a cheesy bag of goods that is the marketing tactic of the week, whatever the BS thing of the week is, your really teaching someone something that you know, you are not selling to them, you are sharing you are helping them, actually giving them knowledge, that is what it makes it a different way.
I know that a lot of times, I find, and maybe you have the same problem, maybe other creative do and you can help out a bit, I know that one of the things that really bugs me is when you get someone who, we lives in a visual world and in less than 7 seconds you make a first impression. We have heard all of that stuff, you are the face of your brand as an entrepreneur, people see you on Facebook or wherever and you go down the feed and the same feed as celebrities if you don’t have your own star power, if you don’t have your own charisma, Yada yada yada, I could sell you on how important it is to look on brand and look on message,
When you get someone who is so far removed from that who is critical pair for a sclumpadump and they are saying “I am the best at carburetors” and maybe you are right on carburetors as you loom like you came out from fixing one. Then they are like, “What do you know, it is just fashion, poop poop poop”.
Can I strangle you, “What do you mean I have a fashion business, yeah for 3 decades baby”, I have been online since 1999, that is a big chunk on that, maybe you want to respect me as a business person too as style is my beat.
Paradoxically, you get someone who is an artist who makes these beautiful little mugs with pretty pictures; they are just going to sell themselves, No. You might be the mug artist of the week, but you still need to get out there and have other people enjoy their morning coffee in your pretty little mug.
How do you deal with someone who doesn’t appreciate a creative business and needs to learn a business or someone who has a creative business and doesn’t understand that nobody is going to understand their product or their expertise unless they figure out how to get it out there, that is called business.
Rob Fortier: Well the thing that a lot of entrepreneurs come to me with is just that problem, I think some creative businesses are not respected because the owners themselves don’t treat them like businesses, they treat them like hobbies. Very expensive hobbies.
For the ones that really want to have a business, it is about evolving the ideas of what selling is and what marketing is, you and I are of the age where telemarketing calls still exist, before the internet, before emails and all that stuff, it was all about sales calls or sales people knocking on your door asking you to buy things or give them money. A lot of people have grown up with the hugely negative connotation about what sales is, they think it is slimy, they think of used car salesmen in the commercials in the movies. Really selling is about solving problems; you are helping people get what they want, even if the case of the example that you gave somebody who makes fantastic mugs, we are not solving world peace, people need mugs to drink their coffee out of, that is a problem, if you don’t have any mugs you are not going to drink your coffee out of your soup bowls, you need mugs.
Or it also solves the problem where you need a gift for their cousin that is hard to buy for, give them a fun mug that makes them laugh, that is solving a problem. I try to help people retool their vision of what selling is, if you are being helpful you are getting people to know your products, to know you, to like them, and when the opportunity arises and they have a problem that you can solve, you step in with the solution, that is really, people buy stuff, people spend money on stuff that they want, they don’t spend money on stuff that someone tries to convince them that they need. I think that is the huge take for you and I when you are working with business people too, in the whole issue of style, it is all a perception of the whole business, from what you see from the product to the person, to how they represent themselves in the written word, the spoken word and on their website, on everything they put out, it all goes together.
That is part of getting people to get to know you and you getting to know them and being a resource, that is a huge part of selling and being an entrepreneur, that is why I think you do a great thing with helping people look the part because that is part of, it all comes together in all of those little elements, you cant have a successful business with just a great product or a great service because there are thousands of people who do that, the ones that succeed the ones that thrive are the ones that have a particular point of view, a particular look, that particular feeling, that potential customers can identify with, and want to get to know more about.
Sharon Haver: And also something that is a little aspirational, I think every business owner, the internet has just made it, you might be a marketing escape artist but there is no escaping being seen online, I know from myself people say “ oh you are in style”, yeah I might know how to wear a good market, find high end and low end and mix it up and not think about it, but when I was a stylist I was n the other end of the camera, I was making the polyester sweats look so good that you want to buy them, I was putting all of those million dollars of jewels on a magazine cover so that some rich woman would come and buy the jewels from the jeweler, it was still selling, I was selling a product, the product was either the illusion of what it was or was the physical piece of clothing, cosmetics or whatever it was, but you are still selling.
You are putting it out there, what the person is wearing, the composition of the photo, the model chosen, the background, the hair and the makeup, that is a very visual sales tool. I am really good at that, but I was on the other side as a stylist, I was working with the art directors, I was working with the photographers, I was working with hair and makeup, I was on the other side of the camera. I want me Sharon the product I was creating the product so when I go on the front side, as I am promoting me as a business owner, I am as scared as anyone else in the sense that I am in the front line, if you are looking at me, when I have decided that I am helping you with your business I am now my product, I am not the pretty dress that you want to buy, you are buying me and it is very scary, I know that but I know it well and I share with people so it is a normal reaction even if you know it, but what happens when someone is hiding, they are afraid, they are hiding behind their brand, they are hiding behind their school year book photo, or they are hiding behind an ugly website or a bad presentation. How do you get their magic rings undone for that one?
Some people, I find that all of that ugliness in the front end is hiding a lot of fear on the back end.
Rob Fortier: Yeah, because they are. It is funny that you use the word hiding as that is really what it is, the people who hesitate to step out, it is like they don’t understand what they want their product to do to be the star, and that makes sense. However they do go hand in hand, you can’t be a success and have nobody know about you, it just doesn’t work that way.
Part of one of the things that entrepreneurs need to work on is you don’t need to be, you face doesn’t need to be on the cover of your products or the cover of everything but you have to be a presence, in this day and age with the internet there is so much more information available, so I don’t want to know just about what you can sell me, I want to know about the culture behind what you are doing. Why do you choose to help people like the way you do or sell what you sell or offer this product or service, that is why a lot of commercials these days is about the lifestyle of the people who may use these products or services have or create, people want to know the company culture, look at companies like Zappo, Amazon and Apple, where you know a lot about what happens behind the scenes, or with the employees, it is not just about the products, yes the product is what you ultimately get too, but what separates one stylist from another, or one business coach from another is what the person behind it brings to the table, their sensibilities, their sense of humor, their style, their knowledge, the way they look at people and really the things that they choose to highlight as a business owner.
I try to work with people in the fact, I have one client that does video work, and one of the problems that eh is having right now is separating himself, what separates him from the guy down the street who can do your video with his iPhone, and what separates him from the other person is the knowledge he brings of how to make videos for people who are not necessarily actors, how to use video to specifically market your business as opposed to just taking video and putting it on the internet, how to solve business problems and video becomes the tool as opposed to just making videos, that is what really separates him, all the business knowledge he brings, of how you to really use those tools, everybody wants to be online, everybody wants to do video, the ones that really figure out, what do they really want to get from this, what is our end result that we are looking for? Those are the ones who are successful and that is what my client does, now I just need him to talk about it in that fashion.
Sharon Haver: Absolutely and the thing to, he is selling his product which is his video expertise. That means that he needs to look like a pro, he still needs to look on brand, but if he is selling something that is him, even you, you are selling your coaching, you are selling you, if you are physically selling the expertise as you being the body, not the products, in other words if I am selling Sharon Haver, Sharon Haver has to show up because I am selling me, f I am selling focusonstyle.com when I used to have a team of expert contributors it could be anybody as that is the contributors breadth of knowledge, then it becomes a bigger brand, but when it is a personal brand and it is a personality driven brand and it is a person, you still need to show up looking like the leader.
You need to show up looking the way people expect you to look, at the same time being lifestyley and letting people see a little bit of what is behind the scenes, which can be very scary, I know I just did a quick tip on that, sharing how much person information online without being creepy and TMI, but enough that people see who you are and they get to know, like and trust that of you being the person you are hiring.
Rob Fortier: Because that already comes through, even if we never saw your face on your website or on anything, it comes through in your podcast as we talk today, it comes through in your writing, it comes through every place, so then the visual component is just one more really great piece of the whole puzzle of being a business owner and running a business, I think.
Sharon Haver: I do too, and for the people that can’t see Rob right now, besides the fact that he is just adorable ok, Rob has his signature bow tie and I know a lot of people say, Oh that is my signature style, I only wear pink shoes or blue dresses, I don’t know, green bows in their hair and it gets a little odd, I think for a guy I think to have something that makes you stand out in a crowd, and for him he wears this beautiful bow toes, he is not trying too hard, they are not novelty, they are just, you did have that sequined jacket on that one day, a Dickens jacket, that was cool, it could be a good disco jacket, you never know, maybe we could do the hustle one day.
It is still very much on brand and on style, how do you help people that are getting stuck in what makes them amazing, they are getting stuck in their own self. You have created that on your own and you have the smarts and ability to create it on your own, but a lot of people don’t, How do you help them find their own amazing?
Rob Fortier: One of the things that I help people do Sharon is to really start challenging their assumptions of the way their world works and this is applicable to whether you are running a business, to your relationships, to your life. Is to start challenging the ways that you see things, start challenging all of the assumptions.
You mentioned that I do magic tricks and I do a few in my presentations, the reason that magic works is because when you are watching it as an audience member you make a lot of assumptions, you assume that the magician is telling you the truth, you assume I have got the cards, you make an assumption that they are regular playing cards, we sort of buy into the illusion from what we assume.
We function on our day-to-day basis because of our assumptions, when you walk up a flight of stairs you assume that the step is going to be there if you put your foot in the right place, or when you go to the water faucet and turn it on, you assume that water is going to come out, the problem is that when we live like that constantly we miss a lot of stuff, we decide that there are things, “Oh my business is too small, I couldn’t possibly do that much marketing or do that social media, or write that many articles, we limit ourselves and make ourselves very small, also there are things that we should be doing that we have to do as business owners and that might not necessarily be the case, but someone along the line told them as a business owner you must do X,Y and Z.
Maybe not, that might be right for your business that you have to do things a certain way, that is one of the ways that I start with people is really challenging their ideas about what they can probably let go of and what they think they are not capable of because chances are they probably are, they just need to retool the way they are approaching it, come at it from a different direction, then it opens up a world of opportunities, it really is sort of magical.
That is why I use that term of being a marketing escape artist, to help people to escape from all the things that they are supposed to be doing, it just might not be right for them.
Sharon Haver: Wow that is great, can you help us here, if you are going to help us, teach us, share with us, three ways that someone can be more amazing this week that they can escape from the chains that is holding them down in their business and they can break their assumptions to just be them to be seen the way that will not just be profitable, but will make them feel great about their business. Give us three of how to be amazing in your business take homes?
Rob Fortier: okay for one I would start with, What is something that you are doing in your business that is not working, that you can let go of? If you have been doing something for a year, and you are not getting the results that you want, how about letting it go and make room for something else, we have a tendency as human beings to get into patterns and habits of doing stuff and we are just going to hold onto it, until we get it right.
So pick something that is not working for you that you have been doing for a while and just say” I am going to let this go and try something else”, that will open up a world of space for brain, for your creativity to get into things that work.
Another thing is start looking, a lot of entrepreneurs think they need to find more things to help them when really a lot of times the resources that you need are right around you, I think I mentioned that my writing partner and I wrote a book, when we did this we were self publishing, still very new when we put the book out, we needed an editor, we needed a designer to lay it out, we started asking around, we thought this was going to cost us a couple of thousand dollars to do this book, which we couldn’t afford, we ended up putting it together for $300 because the resources we needed were already around us, we just needed to open our eyes to what was there.
Really take a look around and see what resources you have that you could already be using without saying I need one more class, one more session with somebody, one more this. They are right there, so start taking a look around you.
For the third one, I would just say, start challenging your own ideas, when you come up ideas for what your next step is, say is this a good idea, how can I do this differently or how can I do this better than what I have themed on before because you bring your as an entrepreneur everybody brings their own skills and talents and that is what makes entrepreneurs separate from each other is when you bring your unique skills to the table and use them as part of your business instead of leaving them at the door and just copy what everybody else is doing, so start really diving into the talents and things that you are good at, beyond your actual business, that you can bring to your marketing the way you do your business, your writing, everything you need to publicize it, start challenging your ideas, why cant you bring that into your business?
Sharon Haver: I know a lot of people do it who are very faith oriented and they bring it into their business as spirituality, they might be a business coach and bring that in, there are other people who I know who are into fitness and everything is in fitness, my business coach said to me even if I am talking about HTML, in code I am still looking at the style, still looking at the color the code is written in. It is whatever is personal to you, unique to you that is part of your DNA, it is part of who you are, it should be included in your business rather than cover it up as people don’t want to know that about you, I think it totally makes you stand out in a crowd, I love the idea of letting go. I just think that is so brilliant, for me I am slow to let go sometimes, the way I know when something, you know it in your gut, one day you feel it in your gut, this is not, I woke at 4am twice this week about it, there is handwriting on the wall I think that a lot of business owners need to forget about that and the resources around you, look in your own back yard, you would be amazed, with Facebook that is so easy for people.
Rob Fortier: Yeah, they are so close, and sometimes you already have them, you just discarded them as you assumed you couldn’t use them.
Sharon Haver: I think those are three great tips, let go of what doesn’t serve you, look at the resources around you and start challenging your own ideas and see how to bring out what we said before, bring a part of your lifestyle into your business be a human, don’t be a robot be a human, that is what makes you fun and creative.
Rob Fortier: And that is what sets you part form the other people, there are very few businesses in the world that are strictly unique, there is literally 10’s, or100’s, or 1000’s of people who do what you do, it is what you bring to the table that people identify with and want to work with that sets you apart from everybody else.
Sharon Haver: Absolutely and it is also a way for your audience to find you, they will really like Rob’s magic, I like what this guy has to say, he is not stuffy, he is smart.
Rob Fortier: Exactly!
Sharon Haver: So Rob I know you have a great freebie gift on your website, so tell us how people can connect with you and learn about you.
Rob Fortier: Yes if you go to my website it is Robfortier.com, on the home page you can get a copy of Twice The money, Twice the Fun business checklist, it is $97 value, you can get that for free, it has the seven keys to have a blast, break the bank, double your income and do exactly what you want. So get that at robfortier.com, you just have to give me your email address, I promise I wont share it and you can unsubscribe any time that you want.
I do a cool newsletter too and hopefully you will find that valuable as well.
Sharon Haver: And he will tell us how to do a few magic tricks on the side as well.
Rob Fortier: Possibly yes.
Sharon Haver: I’ve got a magic trick, I want to know how fit into a pair of size 2 jeans, you got that one?
Rob Fortier: I think I might need a few mirrors for that
Sharon Haver: I need some good mirrors right; I don’t think I was ever a size 2 in my life 4 maybe. Anyway thank you so much for being here today, I think it was great, everyone please go to robfortier.com, and I even memorized how to spell it.
Rob Fortier: It is French yes, Sharon thank you very much for having me, I really appreciate it
Sharon Haver: Thank you it was great having you here, you had some fantastic information, see you soon everybody. Thank you.
Announcer: That’s a wrap. Well, not so fast. Don’t forget to hop on over to FocusOnStyle.com for exclusive content to help you live your most amazing life with style and success. For even more great stuff that Sharon only shares by email, subscribe to her in the know list at www.FocusOnStyle.com/insiders.
See you next time.
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