The cavnessHR podcast – Samantha Hartley of Enlightened Marketing
The cavnessHR Podcast can be found at the following places or you can just type in cavnessHR on the respective site.
iTunes: https://cavnesshr.co/theca54f53 Google Play: https://cavnesshr.co/googl6be3a
Pocket Casts: https://cavnesshr.co/pocke97daa Stitcher: https://cavnesshr.co/thecae7de3
Breaker: https://cavnesshr.co/breakb93d8 Spotify: https://cavnesshr.co/theca9811a
Castbox: https://cavnesshr.co/theca97b36 Anchor: https://anchor.fm/cavnesshr
Social Media links for Samantha!!
Cool free thing: http://the9xyesformula.com
My FB group Profitable Joyful Consulting
FB page: http://www.facebook.com/EnlightenedMarketingCom
Samantha’s Book Recommendations!!!
“Atomic Habits: An Easy & Proven Way to Build Good Habits & Break Bad Ones” By James Clear
Link to purchase is below
I have a case study of a client that I worked with who couldn't get anybody to buy her twenty two thousand dollars training. She finally sold that same offer in for almost $200,000. This is a case study about how we did that. It's called "The 9x YES! Formula" So you can just go to this domain.
Jason: Hello and welcome the cavnessHR podcast. Our guest today is Samantha Hartley. Samantha are you ready to be great today?
Samantha: I am.
Jason: Samantha Hartley of Enlightened Marketing works with overwhelmed women consultants who are too busy to grow. Spending too much time with clients or engagements, too small and u under-earning relative to their value. She helps them double sometimes quintuple their businesses. Without exhaustion by attracting perfect clients and making 100000 plus offers. As a result, they become more profitable joyful business owners. Before starting this business, Samantha worked in international marketing for the Coca-Cola company in Russia and its Atlanta headquarters. She lives on Martha's Vineyard with her husband and two big dogs. Samantha thank you very much for being today. I really appreciate it. What are you focusing on right now?
Samantha: I'm focused on honing in on working with women consultants. I've worked with a variety of small business owners and I've worked with some larger businesses and I just find that. You know 18 years into my business what I really really want to do is help consultants. Specifically, because I don't want to work with those big companies. I don't want to work with anybody larger than 10 million dollars and so I affect change in organizations that size and larger through my clients who work who do work with those.
Jason: So Samantha so this is kind of a two-part question. So, the first part is you decide to only work with woman consultants and go even further. Only women who do HR, Finance and Wellness. Can you talk about the process of how you niched so far down?
Samantha: I have always encouraged people to be even more specific. One of the examples I use I had a client, he was a guy I worked with him several years ago. But he worked with HR in hospitals to develop leaders. I always felt like it was the easiest referral to give. If I ever ran into anyone in my networking who was a hospital administrator or a CEO and I did have people who were in my network. Who did X I was part of the leadership of my town that I lived in then. When you're in leadership or you're on in the Chamber and places like that I always thought. It's the easiest referral to give. People, issues, HR hospitals like Doug. I had always done consultants some were B2B to some were B2C and some of them were also actual service businesses. It got too amorphous. I really started to do experts and consultants and then within the last few months, I've just said I really want to work with specifical consultants.
Samantha: I enjoy more working now with women consultants than I ever did before or with women business owners than I ever did before. I think I'm at a point in my career when that's why I want to lift up. I think when women rise everyone rises and it's not that men are any less. I do see a lot of arguments about this on LinkedIn anytime they talk about you know we need to get more women CEOs. Then the men will chime in and say it should not be gender specific it should be about the best person for the job. I feel like, yeah it's easy it's easy to argue that. What if we got more women CEOs and we got to the point where nobody noticed gender or nobody noticed race or diversity didn't have to be an initiative. So we're not close to that.
Jason: So how do you go about qualifying your customers.
Samantha: Well brand new, I don't work with anybody who's brand new. They've been in business for at least one year have had at least three clients and have made at least $100K. The reason I don't work with smaller than that is because if you've only been in business for one year or if you're brand new. I don't even know if you're going to be able to make it as a business consultant. You really need to have kind of scrambled through the first year to know if self-employment is for you. There's a ton of just it's business one 101 and kind of mindset 101 and that's great. But this is the thing I teach my clients you really need to work. If there's Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs, you need to work with the people who are the highest that you can work with. I find I'm working with clients who are doing between 1 and 2 million and I'm helping them get to the next level. That is a very different level of work then people who are brand new. It's not to say that this is nobler or better or anything like that. It's you know are college students better than kindergartners. No, they're not inherently better. But they are working on things that a different level and This is really the best application of my skills. Again, what I teach my clients is you need to work at the highest possible level. So if you look around and you feel like I could be doing more advanced work with more advanced people. That is who your people are. I will disqualify anyone in those categories. The other thing is if they've only had one client then really what they've had is a job. So if you have people who feel like I'm a contractor and I've been working with this one client for all this time. I'd like to get more clients. I'm like go get more clients and come back and talk to me. Because again that kind of skill of getting more clients I have tons and tons of free training I can offer them. It's not that I'm saying get out there and good luck. I have tons of stuff I can give them. But for me to work one on one with someone they have to fit those other qualifications. Then I would just say people need to be positive. They need to have a blend of they want to. They need to be able to look at their business in both kind of like marketing and business in concrete terms and also feel that their business is a spiritual path or a calling. They're following a mission to do this work and it's not an option for them. They couldn't go and do something else. So when somebody says there isn't a day job that could offer me something. That would get me away from this work. That's a good client for me.
Jason: Samantha, there's a lot of people out there doing what you do. Suppose one is out there and they want to work with a consultant. What advice you have for them to pick the right consultant for them.
Samantha: I think it's really important that you have shared values and that person is holding a vision for you that is larger than what you can hold for yourself. That they are as dedicated to your success as you are. But they can't be more dedicated because that's really about us like taking responsibility for our success. For example, I had a woman come to me recently and you know I talk a lot about high ticket offers like putting together Engagements at that much higher level. Doing more deep and more transformational work. She said that her coach was saying to her. He was a good business coach but he was saying things like. I can't imagine anybody paying fifty thousand dollars for something that you do. It just really doesn't seem like oh I don't know I just don't understand this kind of work. He had come from a different industry and he just didn't have insights into basically consulting and into selling services. I think he came from software or something. So he didn't have insights into selling services at that high level. I feel like if you're the person that you're looking to work with can't look higher than you can see them. They're not a fit for you and I've had this experience myself with one of my coaches. I guess one coach back that I was working within a group.
Samantha: I said I'm really trying to price this VIP day what do you think I should charge. So it's a one day someone comes in and works with me and we do this deep intensive dive. I was kind of tossing around the idea of $12000 for that day. But I hadn't told him that and I said what do you think you if you were just a kind of gut reaction what do you think for a VIP day. He said $5,000. It's not about things being expensive or not expensive it's about I need people to see the level that I work on. By the way, that particular VIP day that client left by adding four hundred thousand dollars before. We left the meeting together she had added $400,000 to her business. She's a woman consultant who has done nearly a million.
Jason: That's a nice return right there. Are you only local or are your nationwide?
Samantha: I work nationwide. A few years ago, we moved to an island and we're on Martha's Vineyard and I thought it's basically a hospitality. You know it's like any tourist town. It's Like Vegas or Hot Springs in Arkansas where I come from. This isn't my industry like there are not consultants here necessarily that I know of. I actually did end up having a local client. But everyone else, my whole team is virtual. I have nine core team members that I work with and about five outside of that. All my clients are all across the country.
Jason: Samantha, how do customers find you. Do you have a marketing plan you use or is it word of mouth? How do how do you go bringing in new customers?
Samantha: I create a lot of content. Then I put that content out there and that content is on Facebook and it's on LinkedIn. One of the things that I teach and one of the things that I did when I was in a local market. When I lived in Atlanta, I lived in a town called Conway, Arkansas which is in Arkansas. I lived before we moved here. We lived there for about 10 years. Finding clients, I would go to a networking event. I would go to a Chamber meeting. I would just leave the house and basically go somewhere and I would find clients. I think a lot of us are returning to that because a lot of online marketing isn't working as well. But if you know how to articulate what you do. So that if somebody says Hey what do you do. You can answer to that to be able go wow that's interesting tell me more. Once you've got that piece done you should go and be everywhere and run into people. There's nothing more powerful than that one on one in-person connection. So since That isn't super easy for me because to go to see people in person I kind of have to travel. I tend to do LinkedIn and Facebook. I have an email newsletter. I have a Web site and I do a lot of direct outreach. Which means that I will write a note to someone that I've met on Facebook or LinkedIn and say hey I'd like to have a conversation with you. That has created referrals for me and I get clients that way.
Jason: Samantha, have you had a situation where you are working with a client and you literally say you know what this person really is not listening to me. I need to break out of a relationship. Has that ever happened to you?
Samantha: Fire a client, absolutely. If people are not coachable I had a client who would not show up for meetings. I don't know what the deal was but that seemed OK. It was kind of the way he ran his business. I began to realize and I was just like well this isn't going to work. In that situation, you can say this isn't working and I'm not the person to help you. I do think you need help but I'm not that person. So I think we should stop working and then we did.
Jason: Samantha for your virtual team. Can you talk a little bit about the pros and cons of that?
Samantha: I think it's everything good. I mean I'm in the sunroom of my home and the vineyard is not an easy place to get to. It takes a boat or a plane to get here because there's no bridges. So it's not super feasible to actually have people come and work with me in my office. I love having a virtual team. Here's what I was just telling someone the other day. When I had a team of 30 when I worked at Coke in Russia. I was much younger and I was not very sophisticated in my use of let's say leadership or power. I would be kind of more telling people what to do. I don't know maybe more threatening of like do this or else. Ways that I would never manage someone. I think the belief is when people are stuck working here for this paycheck they have to tolerate whatever I say and do. Now it's many years later I noticed and I talked to a lot of people who want to hire someone full time. The idea is that then that person would be committed to me and dedicated to me and they wouldn't just take off.
Samantha: That's a fictional belief. Like that is not the case at all. I'm sure you've seen this article recently that people don't officially quit their jobs anymore they just stop showing up. My virtual team has been working with me for many years and I'll tell you what I think is the key to success. I mean the downside of a virtual team is I can't just access them at any second. But they're very responsive and I hire for responsiveness. I message them through our project management software. I can email them and if I really need someone I can call or text. But the beauty of this is I hire for a specific specialty so. If I have nine people that means a person is doing project management and only project management. She doesn't go into the CRM and send emails. My person who does do emails does emails and she does billing like all of the stripe and all of those kind of thing. Now I have somebody who does social media and she also designs images for social media like uses canvas makes things pretty like PowerPoint and things like that.
Samantha: So that's her gift. I have a writer and he writes. She does a little bit of marketing planning as well. But his is someone who writes for us ghostwriting for me and for my clients. I really like for people to work on the thing that they're like. If I could do nothing all day long but this is what I would love to do. So I ask them that when I hire them. Then I give them that to do. If there are new jobs, I'll know tasks that need to be done I will ask my team do any of you want to do this. Is there anything that you're doing that you don't want to be doing that I can maybe give to somebody else who would prefer to do that and I can give you something else instead. I want people to be in what I call their joy and genius zone. Joy means they're having fun all the time and they're genius on me. I'm so good at this. It's like almost not work. That's what I want consultants to do. So, if you're in your join genius zone you're always profitable right you're always making tons and tons of money because you're doing the work that you love to be doing.
Jason: I think there's some people who say you know what remote teams can't work because you can't build a great culture, a great team. What would your response be to that?
Samantha: Oh my gosh we have a great culture you can. I mean I know a lot of people use Slack. I don't use Slack, but you can bring create a lot of great and positive energy through slack and one of my colleagues does that and we have everyone on Basecamp. I can bring them together on a zoom call like this or we can all see each other and feel connected to each other. But they're connected to the mission of my business and they have other clients. All of my team has other clients that they're working with. I feel like if they're working with other companies that they feel excited about. I hope that they feel super excited about mine and that they're always giving their best work. Beyond that, I only need so much culture. I want them to feel like this is a thing that I want to be associated with and I want to be a part of and they're being paid.
Jason: Samantha, talk about a success in your past. What you learned from your success and what we can learn.
Samantha: One thing that comes to mind is there were a couple of times there were two times. So, it's the same thing that happened in two different situations. I was in a taxi one time in Russia. I shared a taxi with another American who was there and we got to talking and that turned into one of my first jobs. In Russia and then flash forward. I was working for the local Coke representation there in Moscow and the Chief Marketing Officer does this big tour, world tour with his entourage and things like that. I got in a situation where I ended up having a lot of one on one time with the Chief Marketing Officer. That got me a call to come to Atlanta. So I got promoted to move to the Atlanta headquarters. In both cases what happened for me is. I was calm. I was myself. I was authentic. The thing that I would encourage is you know they always say that luck is preparation plus timing. It would be very easy for me to say I don't know how it happened. I just ended up here and I just ended up there. I think what really happened is I'm very comfortable in those situations. I don't get starstruck or like oh here's a big boss. When people ask me even back then when I was in my twenties if people ask me what do you how could you help or what could you do for us or you know say something.
Samantha: I can come up with in those moments. I think astute comments. What I would share with others is. I think it's important to always be prepared for your moment like you never know when you're gonna end up in the elevator with, Oh my God that's a guy I've been trying to get a hold of all this time. You might do an outreach email on LinkedIn and the person might say yes and then you get into a conversation like this. I have been in conversations where I can tell that this is a big deal for the person who's talking to me and they've done some preparation and some work for it. I've also been in conversations where I can tell they're they're so intimidated they can't make the most of this moment. I don't have advice for not being intimidated. But I do think that what we can do in those moments is think about what that person wants. I was also once at a very big very important dinner with literally the CEO of the Coca-Cola Company because when you're in Russia everybody comes up there. I'm sitting next to him. So we're people who got sat at the boss's table.
Samantha: There's a few moments where they try to engage him. He is, by the way, is an ISTJ. So, he's incredibly incredibly shy. But he's also the boss. So, he comes across as very intimidating. So the whole table is like this for a minute. Then they start to talk amongst themselves which is probably the answer to his dreams. Because he didn't want a small talk with anybody. But, I feel bad for that person in that situation. So instead of thinking. Oh my God, it's the boss what if I say something wrong. I think, oh I feel bad for him. So this is the time to think about the other person that you're going to meet with and like how can I add value to that person. So, I'm sitting in the taxi with an American in Russia who doesn't speak Russian. I can be helpful to him. So, I did. He was having some trouble with work and I went in and helped him with that stuff and that ended it. Led to a job or the Chief Marketing Officer who was there by the way. We were doing a market tour and I was able to answer questions for him and show him what he needed on location there. I would talk to him when nobody else would because everyone else was too shy.
Jason: Then at that dinner, the CEO was probably thinking. How am I going to talk to each and every one of these people?
Samantha: Exactly. Exactly. No. I think he was like please get me out of here. How soon can this thing be over?
Jason: Follow question talk about something you failed. What you learned from this failure and what we can learn from this.
Samantha: I would probably use the example of a program I created. We did a bunch of elaborate stuff and then we did the launch of it. No one bought it. So many people have that experience so many people have got that kind of a story to tell. My easy version of that is to sell it before you buy it. Which means before you create the whole entire thing and you go through all of the process of building out the thing you have to sell it. This actually applies to services. People are coming to me and they're like I want to I want to grow my consulting business. Right now, we're doing this but I want to kind of move into this. I'm like go sell that. But how do I sell it? Go describe it to some people until they say we want that. Then we can scramble and we can create the thing on the fly and then you're being paid to create it. I find that people do way too much custom work. Consultants do way too much custom work for their clients. They're like well they called me in and they wanted to do this. Do you feel like there's a market for that for other people? Or do you feel like it's just this one client needs this? Do you want to be in this business? Do you want to be doing this all the time? So all of us have had the experience of having a thing that we're excited about but nobody else wants. I've had that with services. I've had it with products and programs and e-learning and courses and all kinds of stuff. Like this is what everybody needs but it's not what they want. It's not what they end up buying. First, we call it validating it would be the official term first try to sell it to someone and when they say I would buy that. I would have them say and here's some money towards that. l
Jason: Samantha, I understand you have a book to recommend.
Samantha: I always have books to recommend and the one I'm reading right now is by James Clear and it's called "Atomic Habits". I almost never read marketing books. I almost always read neuroscience and brain science and behavioral economics and especially habits books I super love habits books. You were talking earlier about marketing planning. I do often do a plan. Kind of has an idea of what I want to do for the year. But what I turn that into for myself and for my clients is habits. What are we going to do every month, every week, every day? Those are the things that we focus on. So in "Atomic Habits". It's atomic because they're small like atoms. I really love that idea and also you have this wonderful pun of atomic and so little things you can do that make a really big difference in your life.
Jason: Samantha, I understand you have something else for listeners.
Samantha: A lot of people ask me how do you go from selling low ticket things to something that's much much larger. I have a case study of a client that I worked with who couldn't get anybody to buy her twenty two thousand dollars training. She finally sold that same offer in for almost $200,000. So this is a case study about how we did that. It's called "The 9x YES! Formula" So you can just go to that domain.
Jason: Samantha, can you give us your social media links, so people can reach out to you?
Samantha: I'm on Linkedin. Samantha Hartley so you can just search for me there. I'm not sure if there are any other ones there. But Samantha Hartley enlightened marketing there's only one of those. Then you're welcome to friend me on Facebook and then I have a free group on Facebook for consultants called Profitable Joyful consulting. Because that's what I'm all about. Profitable joyful consulting and you can just ask to join us. That's the place where I'm giving free advice. I'm doing free webinars and trainings and answering questions and things like that.
Jason: To our listeners, we will have the links to her social media links and book recommendations and resources on the show notes. You can find the show notes at www.cavnessHRblog.com Samantha, we are coming to the end of our talk. Any last minute wisdom or vice on any subject you want to talk about.
Samantha: I would say to remember that everything that you're doing can be joyful. So when you're in a situation and you feel like it's joyful, but not profitable. Or profitable but not joyful never never compromise. Remember it can be both and I want you to set that as a goal for yourself to make sure that all the work you're doing is both profitable and joyful.
Jason: Samantha thank you for your time, I really appreciate it. You are a busy person doing great things. Thank you very much.
Samantha: Thanks for having me I appreciate getting to share with and your audience
Jason: To our listeners, thank you for your time as well and remember it to be great every day.