The Magic of Having Clarity

Life can get so busy, with a million distractions every day.  These constant distractions can easily lead to a lack of clarity in our life, business and even relationships.

Each time I engage with a new client, my primary objective, despite their business or industry, solopreneur, author, minister or executive, is to help them find brand clarity.

What is Brand Clarity?

Brand clarity is the core values, feeling and purpose of your brand, whether it is your personal brand, business or organization. Once you are aware of your brand, your values, your purpose, your why… it is critical to make sure this is communicated throughout your brand consistently.

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Why is Clarity Needed?

Confidence. I am convinced, that true clarity equals confidence.  And when you have confidence, you also have courage.  Just imagine where your business or career would be if you had ultimate confidence in yourself, your business and your brand.  The things you would do, the people . you would approach and where you would network.  How big would you dream?  What would you go for?  The words you would say to yourself.  It would be the ultimate courage, right?

Storytelling.  Brand clarity is also needed to to tell your story to your clients and customers. Storytelling is the foundation of branding. Have you ever heard someone tell a story and get lost in the details, miss the punchline or critical points to the story.  You tune out, right?  The story becomes less interesting and the storyteller loses credibility.  You should know your story, connect your dots and tell it in a concise and interesting way.

Personality. You also need brand clarity because people buy from people. A buyer wants to fall in love with YOU.  Your brand needs a personality and style.  This comes out in your logo, your colors and even your content.  But when you are not sure of who you are and your core values, then you may communicate several different messages and voices.  You will talk too much, to too many people, in too many different ways.  This creates confusion.  When there is no clarity – people either do not buy or take longer to buy.  Let the personality and style of your brand shine.

Time & Money.  When you are clear in your branding (or any aspect of your life), you can easily make decisions. You know what to say “no” to and who to align with, which events to attend, where to invest your time and money.

Clarity is priceless. Take the time to find clarity with your brand, business, career, relationships and even your money. When you are clear, things change.

If you are struggling to find clarity,  consider a session with me.  Sometimes we are too close to our brand to see it clearly.  Feel free to contact me for a session.

 

Get Your Business Ready for Summer

Summer is almost here! Yay!

Time for vacations and to slow it down a little.  But hey, don’t slow it down too much. This is the time to build your pipeline so that you can finish strong in 2019.  Time to think about what you will offer and sell for the holidays.

So how do you build a pipeline?

Below are some quick tips on building your pipeline to create momentum in your business for the rest of the year.

1.) Focus on a Few.  You may have been doing mass marketing all year – social media, watts marketing challengespublic speaking, etc.  Who stood out during your efforts?  Were some potential clients more engaged than others?  If so, focus on those people for the rest of the year.  What do they need?  What services can you provide?

2.) Create Your Bag of Tricks.  What are those things of VALUE that you can offer to your customers or potential customers that don’t require a lot for you to create?  Perhaps its an audit or a top ten list.  Create 3-5 “trick” or value adds that you use to create more relationships with your current or new audience.

3.) Use Your Referrals.  Referrals are sooo important in growing your business.  Using your referrals is a brilliant marketing strategy.  Be sure to take time to put your referrals on your mailing list, check on them, talk to them, engage with them.  The more they trust you, the more they will talk about you.

Don’t let the summer pass you by!  If business is slow, that is the time to focus on marketing and growing your pipeline.

Podcast: How to Show Up for Yourself in Marketing and Branding

On today’s podcast, I offer three ways you can show up for yourself when marketing your brand. Marketing can be vulnerable. But there are ways to conquer it and do img_7842marketing with CONFIDENCE.   Check out today’s podcast and SHOW UP for yourself.

 

Podcast: Saving Marketing Dollars when Starting a Business

On today’s podcast, I discuss how to save marketing dollars, especially if you have a start-up or launching a new business, organization or even if you are an author.  Marketing find-work-online-fbudgets can spin out of control quickly, however, if you are strategic and focused, you can grow organically and save marketing dollars.

 

Are You REALLY Ready to Succeed?

I recently attended a leadership luncheon for women entrepreneurs.  It was great to see so many female entrepreneurs from all different types of backgrounds and talents.

The question was posed: “Why is that so many female entrepreneurs make less money than male entrepreneurs and their businesses fail faster?”  Many hands raised with various answers.  The majority of people landed with the belief that often women don’t support each others businesses enough. Really?? That’s why we are not succeeding at the same rates?

I completely disagreed with this being the reason why we are not succeeding in our businesses.

From my experience with clients and others that I encounter, many people don’t understand the numbers for their business.  Often, women come up with a great idea or a beautiful dream, with lots of great talent.  However, they have NOT done the numbers to make sure it is a profitable business.  Many times, we don’t know our bottom line numbers, our profit margins, our items per transaction, our customer acquisition rate, or revenue percentages.

It is so important for business owners to understand the numbers of their business.

BUSINESS IS A NUMBERS GAME.

Do you know your numbers?

As we go into 2019, let that be your goal.  Let’s know our number and how that can translate into profit for our companies.

Stay tuned for seminar on January on how to learn your business numbers!

In the meantime, keep connecting those dots!

Lee

P.S.  If you are not following me on IG or Facebook, be sure to click the link and follow me to stay updated!

How to Practice Intentional Marketing

How intentional are you?  Intentional is about knowing why you are doing what you are doing and making a decision to go in a specific direction.  It always comes back to our WHY.  Are you intentional with your business?  Intentional in your relationships?  Intentional in your finances?

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Intentional living defines your life before circumstances destroy it.

The quality of our lives should not be an accident or a mystery.  When we live an intentional life, specifically with our businesses, we don’t get as distracted with mishaps or detours.  We realize that we have been so intentional and clear on our WHY and DIRECTION, we know that we are still on the right path.  We treasure our moments and are energized with even the mundane activities.

As we begin looking at the end of the year, I want to encourage you to be intentional with your time, with your business and your marketing.

Below are some quick tips on being more intentional:

    • Set daily, monthly and quarterly goals
    • Use a calendar
    • Know what you want (many of us don’t know what we really want)
    • Write it out
    • Change your mindset
    • Practice Gratitude
    • Declutter your life
    • Master your mornings
    • Make an appointment with Lee Watts 🙂 

If you need clarity, have questions on how to be intentional with your marketing or want to set new goals for your business, email me. I’d love to help you!

Strategies for Making Time for Marketing

Woman with touch screen watchOne of the most common complaints I hear from entrepreneurs and brand owners is the lack of time they have for marketing and branding.  Marketing is so voluminous – I believe that many people get overwhelmed with the many aspects and options in marketing and its easier to become paralyzed and resort to inactivity, than to take one small step at a time.

Or we don’t understand what marketing truly entails and believe we don’t have time for “advertising” or “social media.”  However,  marketing is anything that grows your business or raises your profile.  This includes properly maintaining your referrals and building relationships with existing clients and customers.  This should be treated as a strategy for growing your business.

Yes, marketing takes time, however, it is absolutely necessary if you want to grow your business, create a brand and fill your pipeline.

Below are five points for making more time for marketing:

1.) Know what’s most important:  There are so many ways to market, brand and reach your clients. It’s important for you to be extremely clear on what works best for YOUR industry and market.  Advertising is not best for every industry; nor is social media, or events or cold-calling.  Do the research and know what works best for what you want to do and how your industry makes buying decisions.  This will eliminate random acts of marketing (i.e., being busy with marketing, but accomplishing nothing).

2.) Know what you want to communicate:  Marketing is about storytelling.  Your brand is the story and marketing is how you tell that story.  What is the story you want your audience to know about your company or organization.  What are the key points, value propositions that are important for your clients or customers.  This is not just what you want to tell or sell, but also what is important for your audience.  What are their pain points and how can you provide solutions.  Once you are very clear on this, it will save time on how you market your business.  You will be very clear on your message.

3.) Evaluate Your Tools:  So there are two schools here… either those of you who are not using enough tools and those who are using too many tools.  In this digital era, there are platforms, apps and tools for everything. Evaluate what you are using and notice if it can do more than what you are using it for; if you can eliminate a tool or combine it with something else.  Make your marketing tools work for you.

4.) Limit Your Social Media:  What?!? Yes, I said it.  At least limit how many social media platforms you focus on.  If you are giving equal amount of energy and time to more than 3, you are doing too many.  Go back to my first point.  And my second point.  Know what is most important and what is producing the best results for you.

5.) Use Your Timer:  There is something magical about hearing your timer go off and time to put your pencils down.  With some of your marketing tasks, set a timer for how much time you will devote to that task or initiative for that day.  Not only is this good for your moral and mental health, it also helps you focus.  Focus is a powerful thing.  Anything that can help us focus on the task at hand, is essential for your marketing strategy.

If you are interested in learning more about time management and marketing, please contact me directly for an upcoming course on strategies for increasing your marketing productivity.

 

Making Magic 9-5 and 5-9

The balance of employee vs. entrepreneur

I come across people every week that are trying to balance between launching their dreams and still working as a good employee.  How does one balance it all?  Do you abandon your dreams and stick with your 9-5? Do you quit your full-time job and go for it?

It is difficult to move the needle with your side hustle and still produce outstanding work for your employer.  But its possible.

Below are some practical tips on how to manage both:

Make the Most of Your Time:  If your primary job is from “9-5” – without question, youAfrican female executive at work must make the most of your mornings and evenings.  Most people will advise that you discover if you are a morning or evening person.  However, if you are an entrepreneur and an employee, it really doesn’t matter which time of day you prefer.  Early mornings are not optional; it is a must.  It sets the tone for your day and helps you to establish clarity.  Mornings give you the additional time and clarity to get work and strategy done for your passions and get a head start on your 9-5.  But evenings are important too.  Burning the candle at both ends may not be everyday – but at least commit to being an early riser or putting in an evening shift (weekends too) at least a few times a week or month.

Automate, automate, automate:  As much as you can, automate your life.  Anything that you can possibly automate, consider doing it.  This ranges from having your coffee brewing when you wake up, to your emails being sent throughout the day or social media posts.  Take inventory of your life.  Anything that you can remove from thinking too much about or having to manually do, try to automate.  I am a big user of Buffer and Acuity Scheduling.  Both help me to automate my life.

Calendar It:  This kinda goes without saying, but I am surprised by how many people do not use a calendar.  Or worse – they use too many calendars and have things spread out everywhere.  Figure out the best calendar for your personality: online vs. written, day view vs. monthly view, etc. Don’t rely on just your memory or your inbox.  Take that pressure off of yourself and use that extra mental energy for your work.

Write it Down:  Using a calendar is very different from having a “to-do” list.  It is important to create a to-do list each day.  I used to separate my lists from corporate job vs. side gig.  But now, I don’t.  For me, it doesn’t matter.  What needs to get done – must get done.  I put it all on a list and then prioritize my list.  Some things on my side hustle are top priority that day and requires me to take a moment out of my day or get up extra early to return a call or email, etc.  Get into a habit of writing your “to-do” list each day.

Get clear on your Why:  You will get tired and frustrated and wonder “why am I doing this?”  You must be very clear on your why.  Remember why you started and what you are passionate about.  If you don’t have a good why – then it will be very difficult to continue during difficult times.

Know Your Brand:   When you know your brand, not just your company brand, but your personal brand, it is much easier to know what to accept and deny in your professional and personal life.  When you know what YOU the product is focused on – you will have a better vision of where to spend your time and how to promote yourself and your business.  Knowing your personal brand brings clarity in all areas of your life.

If you need assistance with your personal branding or want more information on balancing your career and your business, contact me for a complimentary session to discuss more.

 

Client Service + Marketing Strategy

Great client service is what separates a good business and an amazing company.

Let’s face it.  Great marketing may get the people to your business or organization, but great client service is what keeps them coming back and telling others about you.

As I’ve stated in videos and other blog posts, the essence and heart of marketing is about building and maintaining amazing relationships with your audience.  Great relationships lead to more business, more referrals and more work.

Below are 5 reasons why client service should be incorporated into your marketing strategy:

1.) Client Retention:  If you want to keep your current clients, the goal is to make it difficult for them to leave you. How invested are they into your company or organization?  Are you aware of their needs and other concerns outside of the work you are doing for them?  If not, ask questions and maintain some type of system or file on each client.  If you are aware of their interests, how are you supporting your GREAT clients in their outside interests and objectives.  Build real relationships with the clients that really matter.

2.) Competition:  When deciding to do business with either your company and another company, for most people, client service can be the deciding factor.  This is true even with nonprofits or ministries.  Competition in every industry is fierce.  Excellent client service can set you apart from the others.

3.) Setting Expectations:  One part of great marketing and client service is to set clear expectations of the services and products you offer.  The goal is to not allow your client/customer to get lost in the processes of your business.  Are they aware of next steps and how they will transition in and out of phases of the relationship?  How do things wrap up or begin in your business?  Clients need to feel secure in their transactions and business with you.  Are you making their lives easier or more difficult? This is good client service.

4.) Brand Identity:  The type of experience your clients have with team members or others in the company, contribute to the overall brand of the company.  We see this with Chick-fil-a. It is very rare that you will see a rude or unhelpful employee at Chick-fil-a.  It goes against their brand identity and their values.  Does that same type of client service permeate throughout your company?  What is your brand promise and identity?  Is this reflected in how your clients are treated?

These are just a few reasons why client service should be an integral part of your marketing strategy.  If you need assistance with incorporating client service into your marketing or branding strategy, contact me for a 15 minute consultation.  I would love to help you!

Marketing Challenges for Entrepreneurs

As an entrepreneur, we can get pulled in so many different directions. There are challenges that will distract you on this entrepreneurial journey.  In this article, I will highlight just a few marketing challenges for entrepreneurs and new business owners.

  1. Not knowing your audience: So many people start businesses based on their watts marketing challengespassions and strengths.  This is excellent!  However, we often are so focused on starting the business that we forget to pay attention to who we are selling to, including their needs, desires and burdens.  We sometimes stop at just describing the demographics of our target audience.  However, there is more to knowing your audience than their age or demographics.  How do they purchase?  What keeps them up at night?  Where do they consume information? What do they follow and like on social media? It is critically important to know your audience.
  2. The wrong marketing platforms:  Many new businesses have the wrong marketing platforms.  They hear about so many social media platforms or new apps or programs and they want to start all of them.  There is not careful consideration of which platforms work for your business, target audience or which of them “speak” or sync with each other.  It is important to do an audit of your programs and make sure they work for your business and marketing strategy.
  3. Inconsistency & Lack of Clarity:  One of the keys to branding is creating a consistent story and selling that narrative to your audience.  This requires managing a lot of moving pieces and being able to stand back from your company and brand and decide on a consistent message.  This can be challenging. Often, this is the importance of having a marketing or branding consultant, to have an objective eye to look at your messaging and challenge you on your strategy.  Inconsistent messaging can cause distrust and ultimately hurt your brand and selling opportunities.
  4. Not Knowing Your USP:  Knowing your Unique Selling Proposition is key to marketing and branding.  You must know what value you bring to the table.  What is your differentiator?  Why should your clients and customers purchase from you? When businesses are unclear on this, they stumble through their messaging and how to sell and package their products and services for their clients.  Know your value.
  5. Underestimating Content Marketing:  Most small businesses don’t have the time or staff to work on content for their social media, blogs or website.  However, content marketing is key to establishing your brand and identity.  It is what will set you apart as a thought leader in your industry. No matter what you are selling, work on establishing yourself as an expert in your industry.

All these issues can be overwhelming, however, every business owner faces marketing challenges.  For assistance with any of these marketing challenges, feel free to contact me.