March 2017 - Kara Lambert

Monthly Archives: March 2017

When being in business has you questioning your awesomeness

Well hello sucky stuckedness (surely it’s a word)! Oh the life of an entrepreneur (ugh, I need a better term than that or business owner) where you ride the rollercoaster of awesomeness. You know, you’re waiting in line, brewing the idea, you get to the front of the line, strap yourself in, launch yourself forward with a jolt, and off you go bumping and jolting up the hill. There are twists and turns along the way and quite honestly you even feel like you’ve done a big loop, then all of a sudden you go over the edge and plummet downwards. Sometimes you’re left rocking at the bottom, sometimes you bounce back, sometimes you breeze through it, and then there are those times when you have no idea when to go next as you’ve come to a complete stop or dead end and you’re just sitting there, waiting, in silence.

Clunk

That was me this past month I have been stuck swinging between ‘I rock’ and ‘I suck’. In the main I muddled through sticking one foot in front of the other knowing that if I just kept on keeping on that I would get through the other side. And it worked, sort of. I did get out the other side but I still felt stuck.

Sound familiar?

I kept on plodding, all the while searching for solutions, desperately seeking my awesomeness. Full moon, I do suck; Equinox, I’m just getting used to changes in my personal life; planets in retrograde, I just need to be gentle on myself. Yes, I do believe in woo woo and I think that’s also something I’m coming to terms with but it doesn’t have much to do with how I feel about my lack of awesomeness. It didn't explain this deep seated ache that I wasn't good enough.

You see, people shook me.

I took on a client and while they were great, they weren’t aligned with me. I know. I know. Even I’m learning. They said all the right things, kept telling me that they believed in me. But at the centre, they didn’t believe in themselves enough. And that was my problem, it stirred the feeling of inadequacy that I fight so hard to keep in check.

Failure is familiar

You see, I don’t fear failure, it’s familiar. It’s success and my awesomeness that shocks me. I work hard pushing and striving and achieving and when a client applauds me, I hide. I become bashful. I shy away. I retreat into my comfortable place of suckedness.

But it doesn’t help

So I started searching for solutions. I have such big plans for the future. I mean, I’m headed to Cairns to meet with clients 6 months ahead of schedule. I’m off to the US for a conference, as planned. And my business is paying for every cent of it. No credit card debt or sponsorship or working for others, I am doing it off of my own back. I forgot that these were goals I'd set and achieved but somehow seemed totally inconsequential given how stuck I feel? Then I remembered...

I do rock and I can do this!

So what did I find? I found an interview between Gary Vaynerchuk and Tony Robbins where they both attributed a modicum of their success to the habit of gratitude. Now, I do this with my children, but not with myself. I practice it weekly in my group, but not daily with myself. I want to achieve more but I sit swinging between lack and lustre mindsets. I know that our minds create what we believe (Read More) and so I shall be starting a daily habit of gratitude. I always said that I wasn’t a journal-er. I need to change my mindset. By daily reinforcement of my gratitude and achievements, I WILL retrain my brain to see all the good I do – each and every day.

And I know it works

I kept looking. Sorry Gary & Tony, but you just weren't enough to get me out of this rut. I even threw myself into work. So much so that I was a whole day ahead of myself. This day, Tuesday 28th March 2017. I rarely write and publish my weekly blog post on a Tuesday. I generally have too much work to do. Something got into me and most of it was done into he wee hours of Sunday morning. So today I was left looking for ways to change my mindset to an abundance one (carrying on from my gratitude video, thanks gents). And I came across a string of TED talks. Now I love TED talks, but none stuck. I watched 5 minutes into a number of them & then I found it... 5 minutes to finding you life's purpose. Cheesy I know but, I sat through the 10 minutes and I got it...

I will be true

I am going to stay true to my intention and my values. I will not let a lack mentality have me serving a client who does not 100% back me and my beliefs. I deserve more than that and there are more than enough clients out there who align with my vision of leveraging psychology in business.

I’ve got this

I am also trusting my intuition. Those little prickles that race up my neck and down my arms that tells me I’m on track (yes, I have had them writing this). That’s when I know that I am in the zone, I’m aligned, I’m working in my genius – I’ve got this. I will grow and develop this. I will use periods of quiet to tap into it and I will follow this.

I will not settle

I’m grateful

I’m abundant

I will succeed

People need what I have to offer and deserve me at my best.

And as are you and deserve the same. xx

How wanting more Facebook Likes is like chasing unicorns

I’ve been going through some old posts and I came across one about the habit of posting  “Like if you see this post” blah blah blah. Facebook Likes are still hot topics among small business and I thought it was time I addressed this.

Ok, so let me start with a story. I admit, I grew a page with a collaborative contest. It was one of those ‘like the page to enter’ jobs where the ten or so of us got together and we shared and people shared and entrants shared and we got likes. In fact, I grew the page to over 4000 fans very quickly. Take another story of a business I grew from 100 to 1000 fans in 12 months with no like campaigns. Then consider a client who bought a thousand or so followers or another who ran like campaigns so they looked as popular as their competitor.

I’ll come back to these later.

Why do we care about Facebook Likes?

So remember my articles on the brain’s response to social media? In a nutshell our brain fires off two chemicals when we receive a page like: dopamine & oxytocin. Dopamine is triggered when we are rewarded, needed, or do something enjoyable and oxytocin is the love chemical. So when someone likes our page or post on Facebook our brain fires off these happy friendly love drugs to flood our brain and body. They’re addictive. In fact, dopamine is one of the chemicals in addiction and oxytocin is known to help mothers and babies bond. It’s no wonder you’re addicted to Facebook Likes, your body is hardwired for them!

And guess what, Facebook’s psychologists know this.

What do Facebook Likes do for us?

Well, we think the more likes we have the more popular we are and that goes to prove our worth as a business. Right? I mean it worked in the playground, the kid with the most friends was the popular one. They were the ones with the most likes. They were happy. They were successful. They were the ones everyone wanted to be. Right? Surely because they had the most friends they were the friendliest, nicest, best at school or sport. Were they really? Are they now? Yes, it matters how you define success in any instance but success in business is pretty straightforward – longevity and profitability.

Facebook Likes do not come into either of these things.

Remember the client who bought likes? He’s a tradesman and they’re all overseas fans. These likes actually make him look popular but they will never be his clients. In fact, only about 10% of his fans are actually likely to be clients and will contribute to his bottom line.

Remember my competition? Doing it grew my Facebook page to over 4000 fans, well seems Facebook went through and wiped 700-odd of them off as being fake profiles, used for entering competitions, and the other part of the 1000 I lost were only following my page to win the competition. They never bought from me.

But what about my clients, surely they care about my Facebook Likes?

Um, no, no they don’t. See, each year Sensis does a report on social media use in Australia and 49% of respondents said that they are NOT more likely to trust a brand because they have a large number of followers. To show you the difference, 30% said yes it mattered. Nearly half of Australians don’t trust you more because you have more likes. Likes do not equal trust and when people buy from businesses they like, know, & trust this is key.

Facebook Likes don’t matter to customers, they don’t trust you more because of the number of fans you have. Perhaps it’s because we realise that the popular kid at school wasn’t necessarily the best friend. Or the fact is that they pay more attention to the content you post on Facebook than how many likes you have. I don’t know anything more than the number of Likes you have on Facebook don’t actually matter.

So stop doing the ‘Promote your Page’ Ads, you’re wasting your money. Stop worrying about how many fans your competitors have. Just concentrate on putting out good, engaging, informative, entertaining content to your followers. Show them who you are and what you stand for. I honestly believe that we are past the age of Facebook being about the technology and we are set for a renaissance of its true intention – to connect people.

Connect to your followers with meaning and give them meaning. Be more than just an advertorial clogging up their Newsfeed between the recipe videos and photos of their friend’s new baby. Because we deserve to be more than just a number, more than just a trophy to be collected and displayed. Fans deserved to be honoured and praised and treated like the crucial part of your business that they truly are.

Want to learn more about how to connect more meaningfully with your fans online, then book a call with me.

When trolls, haters, and keyboard warriors attack

It’s funny, I’ve actually never written about trolls and keyboard warriors. It’s not because I’ve never experienced them either! I had my first troll encounter within my first 6 months of business. It shook me to my core. Not to mention keyboard warriors and people who round their posse to have a swipe at your public page. It’s sickening and I have seen many a grown woman and man brought to tears by their cruelty. So why do trolls and keyboard warriors effect us so?

Question our ability

This is the one I get shaken on the most. I like to keep people happy. I like to over deliver. So when a troll rears up, they have me instantly wondering if I was actually wrong with what I wrote.

This was my first instance of trolling. I had written an article and a grammar fiend jumped in on it. I was so embarrassed and changed the image 3 times before I realised that they were just being dicks. From there on I questioned every sentence I wrote and checked (I was providing proof-reading services at the time). They had won, they had shaken my confidence and had me questioning my ability.

They take our power. Our mojo. They swipe the rug out from underneath our feet. We think we have it together and then ‘Whoosh! Gone!’, we’re flat on our butts with a bruised ego and confidence.

Question our self-worth

In the main, we like to be liked. So when someone attacks us in this way it makes us question who we are and why we deserve it. Perhaps we feel that we deserve it. Perhaps it takes us back to the school yard bully. Perhaps they dog our Achilles heel.

Trolls and keyboard warriors make us question ourselves. Our self-worth is where most of us feel most vulnerable. You see, putting yourself up online is an act of vulnerability. We say ‘here we are, this is what I do, and I hope you love it as much as I do’. Trolls cut straight through this and tell us ‘no’. That reinforces why we were afraid to put ourselves out there in the first place.

Question if they’re not the only ones who think this way

So we now believe our stuff is useless, we’re useless and surely with all the people there are out there on the internet, this one person couldn’t be the only one who thinks we’re crap! Right?

Look, sometimes they even prove to us that they’re not the only ones who think we’re awful by having their friends comment on our work, back their position up, continue to tear us down. Then the battle lines are drawn or sometimes your fans, for fear of being abused, back off and the balance of power tips and the troll wins.

This is where we start to spiral. They put into question the core of what we do and how we see ourselves and surely they’re not alone. I mean we have so many fans and clients, there’s bound to be a good proportion who equally hate us.

So now the troll has broken us, now what?

I’m not going to talk about what to say, how to address them, because honestly I can’t advise you. This is your business and your troll and they have their own particular pattern of warts that they wear. What I can do is the following, as a gesture of hand holding, friendship, and support…

They are in the minority

I can count on one hand how many trolls I have had in my 6 years in business. I might be fortunate and some might say it’s because I don’t have a high enough presence. The thing is, even looking at friends who run large pages – trolls are in the minority. There are many more people who love you and need your work than there are trolls.

It’s actually about them

My trolls are threatened by me. I know that. They talk to my friends who they believe are allies and it gets back to me. They are insecure. So the stronger I get, the weaker they feel, the more they troll, and the stronger I get realising that I am making my mark.

This is probably my most powerful tool against them. I realise that the more they attack, the more I am winning – not them. Every attack is like a big thumbs up to me to keep going, to build a stronger business, and to stay the course – because they hate it!

Fantastic!!!!!

So we actually have the upper hand and like we were told at school or tell our kids, don’t let the bullies beat us. Keep going! You get up on your patch of dirt and you carry on. Why? Because you’re a winner, you’re beating them. You actually have them on the back foot. They’re trying to put knives in your back because it’s the only place they can reach – because they’re behind you.

So you don’t forget, share this to Facebook, pin it on Pinterest, stick it around, share it with a friend, print the images so you can be reminded that it is you who has the upper hand – not the troll. And when things seem dark, email me or message me and I will remind you. x

When is the best time to post on social media

WARNING: This is not your average post on this topic. “Kara, when’s the best time to post on social media?” Oh for a dollar for every time I’m asked that question. (Perhaps I should set up a paypal.me) I get it, you want to make sure your message is in front of your clients at the right time. Your time is precious and you want to make sure you get the biggest bang for your buck. You spend enough time online and you want to spend more time on/with xyz. So when IS the best time to post on social media, Kara?!

You should know me by now! There is no simple and standard answer to this. In fact, you should know that I hate that kind of stuff. It’s not me! There is no one size fits all when it comes to attracting a customer. Otherwise, we’d all be successful and we’d be saturated and to be honest we’d be looking for a different/better way.

So, how do you work out the best time to post on social media for YOUR client and YOUR business. Note: I put your client FIRST!

There are three things you need to consider when working this out. And don’t freak out, I will share some shortcuts.

WHY

Why are your clients on social media? This is key to what you will post and when.

I often say that people use social media to be educated, entertained, or inspired. This is a why. It is the basis of the types of content you need to post.

People also use social media to fill their boredom. So this could be while the ads are on. It could be during soccer or dance practice. (Mums & Dads, you are entitled to be bored and mindlessly take time out for you and scroll through social media)

People check their social media to find out what they have missed since they were last online, be that overnight, since lunchtime etc.

People use social media to escape just for a bit and to connect to a world outside their own.

Thing is, they have a finite amount of time to do these and depending on how relaxed they are and the amount of time they have, determines how long they spend and how invested they are in what they see.

HOW

How do people use social media? Outside of what it gives them there is the consideration of what they are looking on.

Mobile devices are the most common way for people to access social media. The only exception to this is the over-60s. Australia has one of the highest rates of mobile phone ownership, we are some of the earliest adopters of technology, and as an island nation we can feel isolated. It’s no wonder that most of us check our social media on our phones!

So why does this matter? You then need to consider how big something is to download so it doesn’t chew up all our data.  You also need to consider what it would look like on a mobile vs a computer.

Loading up videos? Do you add captioning for hearing impaired or for those who watch videos in be while their partner sleeps. You might laugh, but you’d be surprised just how many do this and don’t want to use headphones.

WHEN

If you are talking to a 25-35 year old, then they will be checking their social media many times through the day. They will check when they get up, they will check at lunch, they will check at night.
Mothers of small children will check at nap times and when they are up feeding through the night.
Parents of school-aged kids will check while they are waiting to pick their kids up from school, during sport/after school activities.
Most of us will check during the ads of our favourite TV show each night.
Some people check the first thing of a morning before they get out of bed.

OVERALL

So when do you should you post on social media?

Different times match with how much attention you will receive. The more time someone has to invest on social media, the more they will spend, the longer you can hold them, and the more likely they are to do what you need them to do.

You need to consider who it is you are wanting to influence. An office worker on their lunch break generally has less time at 1pm than a parent who has just put Little Jenny down for their afternoon nap. Someone on their 7am train ride to work has more time than someone just opening their eyes and scrolling through for a catch up. The one time most of us come together is the 8-9pm ad break check, with the exception of it being a finale of our favourite show!

So, you are going to have to understand how your client uses social media and post accordingly. You can find that in your user insights, which are available on your social media account. Look at the largest demographic for you, look at when they are online, and consider these with what I’ve written above.

Try, test, analyse, and try again. Over time you will learn how and when your followers best receive your message. And if you’re looking for further direction for your platforms, I offer this as part of my consultation services.

4

How to persevere when you start a business

It’s hard when you start a business, I know because I’m still there. You feel like you are constantly pushing, battling, grinding, hustling. You feel like no one is listening and everyone wants you to prove your worth before they are willing to part with their money for what you have to offer. Granted, there are seemingly overnight success stories and there are the actual ones. But you need to persevere.

In this blog post I will explain why you need to keep going, where your focus needs to be in the early days, & some ways to get through it.

There’s this thing called the Roger’s Adoption Curve. While it’s generally used for the adoption of technology, I believe it can be applied to any business.

Chances are your clients are in the first 2 categories of Innovators & Early Adopters. This means that they will be people who enjoy new and novel things. The problem most of us encounter is that the people who we generally market to and get the most resistance from are in the last two categories. Don’t waste your time!

I have seen this chart drawn with what is called ‘Moore’s Chasm’, it is a gap between the Early Adopters and Early Majority. It’s a no man’s land where you have exhausted the Adopters and are yet to have enough traction to sway the Early Majority.

So how do we get to the majority in the middle?

People go through 5 steps to adopt an innovation (Rogers, E. (1995) Diffusion of Innovations https://web.stanford.edu/class/symbsys205/Diffusion%20of%20Innovations.htm): Knowledge, Persuasion, Decision, Implementation, Confirmation.

Knowledge is awareness you exist and how you/your product works, Persuasion is when they form their attitudes towards it, Decision is their choice to purchase (or not), Implementation is putting you/product to use, and Confirmation is evaluation of their results.

In the beginning your innovators and early adopters will move quickly through these stages. It is these people you need to work hard at gathering data about Decisions & Confirmation. Why or why not someone purchases and how it makes them feel are powerful data to assist the majority on moving through. You need to persevere. 

So, how do we get you there?

KEEP GOING

The biggest hurdle is the knock your confidence takes in the early days. It’s hard getting up each morning and dealing with knock back emails and zero sales.

Remember why you started, remember that fire in your belly, remember what your goals are, remember your values.

Now start telling your story! You need to persevere.

GET OUT THERE

Remember that the first hurdles are knowledge, persuasion, and decision. This is where you need to get out there and tell them who you are and why you’re needed.

Some hints though: quality, reliability & service are all minimum expectations these days. They will not sell your stuff. It’s just not enough!

Market your wares. Talk to new people. Go to new areas. Let people know that you are trying to spread the word.

Try different social media platforms, live stream, do something crazy! You need to persevere.

RESEARCH

Talk to your clients and talk to those yet to buy from you.

Find out why they love you. Find out what they are looking for before they buy from you. Find out what frustrates them about your industry.

At the end of the day you are asking them to part with their money and so you have to meet their needs – not yours.

The data you gather here will help you to persuade and make a decision to purchase. You need to persevere.

ASK

You need to ask for testimonials.

The loudest and squeakiest wheels are those of the late majority. They want facts and figures on how you can help them. Chances are that they won’t believe your word for it either.

The best way to combat this is with a wide range of data from a number of sources. Get reviews and testimonials from people. Have them on ALL of your marketing material because you do not know where a potential client is on this curve.

Do not leave this valuable information languishing on a web page or review tab on facebook. Push it out to people. Educate them. Show them how popular you are and how they’re missing out! You need to persevere.

Starting out a business is a courageous effort and I applaud you, but with this knowledge in hand – you’ve got this!