Hello, and welcome to this episode of the She Calls Her Shots Podcast. As always, I’m so excited that you’re here and that you’re spending time with me today. And I’m so excited because today on the podcast, I have a very special guest Brooke Jefferson. And today Brooke’s sharing four tips on how to increase your leads. And this is helpful not just if you’re a photographer, but really a creative entrepreneur in the online space.
Brooke is based out of Oklahoma, and she is a family and portrait photographer and a business coach. She is also a loving wife and a mama to two littles. And the thing I love about our conversation today is that she really understands the journey of creating a thriving photography business. She talks about how she went from being a broke teacher to transitioning into becoming a mom to then kind of falling into photography. And so I think you’ll really resonate whether you’re a photographer or not, with Brooke’s story and just hearing about how she fell into her passion and how she took messy action and how she made it into the business that it is today. So whether you’re a photographer, or you’re a creative entrepreneur in the online space, I know that you’re gonna love today’s episode. We’re really diving into four tips that you can use today to help you start to increase your leads, and start hopefully booking more clients. So without further ado, let’s go ahead and dive in.
Brooke, welcome to the podcast today. I’m so excited to have you as a guest.
Krista, I’m so excited to be here. I love podcasts. As two podcasters, this is always a good time. So thank you for asking me to come on your show.
Absolutely. And I’m excited about what we’re going to talk about today, specifically because this is just such an important topic for everyone. As business owners, we’re constantly wondering how we can get more exposure, how can we increase our leads, how we can book more clients, not only just to make more money and gain more experience, but to build those relationships and learn about our client journey. And I feel like we grow the most through experience. So I feel like this topic is just going to be so beneficial for anyone no matter what stage they’re in to really just help them grow. So thank you so much for being here today.
Getting to Know Brooke Jefferson
Awesome. Well, let’s go ahead and dive right in. So I’d love for you to tell us a little bit about who you are, what you do, where you live, all of those fun facts.
Awesome. Okay, well, my name is Brooke Jefferson. I am a photographer, a photography business coach and a podcaster. I’m a wife, a mom to two kids who are both full time in school right now. So thank the Lord for that right now. And we live in southwest Oklahoma in a really small cow town. So I have a lot of experience in building businesses in a small town. And that’s usually something that we get asked a lot is, well, how can I do that when I don’t have the resources or the leads or the clients that everybody else does. And so that’s kind of what sparked this whole topic for me, was sharing other people how I did it. And that’s what inspired me to start my business as well, after seeing how other people were doing
It’s so interesting how there’s different challenges. There’s the challenges of being in a very saturated market where there are a lot of people doing what we’re doing, where you have to stand out. And then there’s the challenge of how do I get seen when there aren’t a lot of people, when I am one of a handful of people who are growing their business, how do I differentiate myself and also showcase the value of what I provide. Because I think that’s one of the hard things is we have to educate our future clients on what it is that we do. So I totally get that.
Take us back to the beginning. How did you first get started in your business?
Brooke’s Entrepreneurial Journey
Yeah. So I am one of those typical mom togs that’s like, I accidentally fell into this. I had my daughter when I was 19 years old. And I wanted to take pictures of her. And I started taking pictures of her probably when she was maybe three or four months old. I’m sure I snapped some of my phone. But I went and I borrowed my mother in law’s camera, and was going to do a Valentine’s photoshoot. The more that I reminisce on this story, it’s like the more details that come back. And so I started with her, and then about a month later, my best friend asked me to take pictures of her and her daughter. And that picture actually resurfaced because April is when I got started eight years ago. And so I always get to see all of the memories there. But something just happened at that photo shoot with my best friend, and I was like, “Oh my gosh, I’m loving this, I’m obsessed with this. I blinked and six months later, I had clients coming out of the woodworks and I literally just had to learn how to piece together my business, and pave the way for myself. And I desperately was trying to pick up tips and see if other photographers that were in other towns wanted to help. And that was really hard, because nobody wanted to help me in any kind of way. I think I duct taped a lot of my business together until I finally found a mentor that was willing to do that, or a photography course that was willing to teach me a little bit. And so I felt like I took a lot of pieces of that and then took my own experience and molded it into my own. And started realizing, with my teaching background, that I wanted to teach other photographers. So about three years ago, I started my podcast, and then started doing one-on-one coaching. And now I have a signature program where I teach photographers how to build profitable and purposeful businesses, and that sounds like such a smooth story. But you guys, it’s a roller coaster.
Business Owners Are Their Own Worst Enemy
It really is. And it’s so interesting how in the beginning, when you’re just kind of learning, I feel like sometimes we can build off that momentum and excitement of, this feels really new and exciting. And so we can kind of push past some of those initial fears. But really when it starts kicking in when you’ve been doing it for a while and then all that I feel like I should be further along, what am I doing? I feel like every business owner in the beginning kind of goes through those similar motions. In the beginning we’re so excited and then we start to realize, “Wait, how do I learn this? How do I get to the next step? How do I advance from here?” But I think it’s so important to let yourself start when something feels right. I never knew that this is what I wanted to do. But this feels right at the moment. So I’m just gonna follow it and see where it takes me. Because I think sometimes we get really stuck in feeling like we need to know ahead of time. Have a plan and know what we’re going to do. But like every business owner, you just get that feeling, and you follow it and just see where this path leads.
And I will tell you too that when it comes to fear, I feel like we’re on one side of the fence or the other. We’re either the type that goes all in and if we just fall flat on our face, then oh, well, we’ll do something later. That’s me, I’ve always been more of the, “you only live once” type of person. A lot of that’s just due to my past. And so I’m one of those people, but then there’s other people who are so paralyzed in that fear that they never take a step forward. And that’s really when I think mentorship is incredibly important. There’s so much value there. Because that person can really be accountable and help you overcome that and believe in you. And I think our biggest obstacle as business owners, and I’m talking eight plus years in, but it is ourselves. We are the obstacle. And so you have to get over yourself all the time, in every season of your business.
The Benefits of Setting Boundaries as a Business Owner
Krista Marie: Totally, a lot of the time we are the thing that are holding ourselves back. And that’s so hard for us to hear. And it’s so hard for us to realize. So it takes that additional person to see the bigger picture and help us navigate out of it. I totally feel that.
So before we dive into our main topic today, after eight years of business, obviously we’re always still learning, we’re always still growing. There’s always something that we’re learning as we’re going. Was there anything that you’ve experienced recently in your business that was this big Aha moment? Sometimes for me, I might have learned something a while ago, but then it’s like I get a refresher but it shows up in a different way. Is there anything you’ve experienced recently that you’d love to share?
Brooke Jefferson: Okay, so this is a big one, and this is something that I’ve heard so many times. There’s people who literally have an entire career based on this one thing and it’s seriously learning to set up your boundaries and not having to be in work mode all of the time. And I will be the first to tell you that motherhood doesn’t come naturally to me, the marriage doesn’t really come naturally to me, but business, oh my gosh, that comes so naturally to me. And that’s where I want to live all the time. Because I feel like I’m in control. I feel like I am doing what I was created to do, even though I do have other responsibilities. And so I say that because you might be listening on the other side and you feel like motherhood, I got that down. It’s business that’s terrifying. And so I think we’re all prone to those things. And so those of us that hear about this hustle mentality, I just want you all know, I’ve been there, I did it the wrong way. I put my family on the back burner. I used to be in network marketing, and put them on the back burner really bad. And then I woke up one day wondering, why is my life such a mess. And I think my biggest aha moment, and something I am still learning to this day, is that I have to take intentional time out of my business every single day, every single week, and just turn it off. And yes, I’m still thinking about business when I walk away. But I’m not nose to laptop. And so I just want to encourage you, regardless, if you’re two days in your business, or you’re 20 years in, start taking time off of your work, and honestly watch your business succeed even more. Because when you come back, you show up better, you’re refreshed, your creativity is new, especially for those of you that are photographers, please hear me out. If you’re burnt out, you need to take time off of your business.
It’s so important because honestly, we always feel like we’ll get caught up. But there’s always something to do. It’s so hard. And I feel like I’m still learning that. Also very related to this, one of the recent aha moments I had was, sometimes I feel like we can either release a podcast episode or I’ve recorded and it’s going to be released. But sometimes on that same note we can get almost too strategic, try to be so focused on the strategy of, I need to perfect this, it needs to be great. But then sometimes when we take that step back, and we just show up as ourselves or non-strategic, that’s when we’ll actually see more traction and more momentum. And I think those two go hand in hand. Because there actually can be a downside to being so far into your business that everything else gets pushed away. So I think that’s such an important topic. And we’re always relearning it as as the business grows, and as time goes on,
Yeah, I couldn’t agree with you more. And I’m living that out right now, too. And that’s one of the changes that we’re making. I’m a five year planner, and I am such a type A person, where I just want to know exactly what’s happening for the next five years. Here’s the strategy we’re going by, but I’m allowing myself now, and I’ve told my team, let’s just stop with all the content we have. Let me just show up every day and if I give one piece of quality content a day, and if it’s just a podcast episode, let’s just let it be that because I’m in a season where I want to let go of the strategy, not all of it. But just a lot of what you just described, and just show up and see how we can do it differently and just be myself for a season. So I love that you said that.
It sounds like we’re both in the same spot. And I know it can be terrifying, but also the feeling of relief that comes with not having one really set in stone strategy. So I’m glad that we’re both in that together. Awesome.
Simple But Effective Ways To Grow Your Leads
So let’s go ahead and dive in. So I know our main kind of thing that we’re going to chat about is increasing your leads. So I’d love to hear what are some of the best ways that you’ve seen to be able to increase your leads and grow your clients and grow your experience?
Yeah, so I have four ways to increase your leads. And every single one of these strategies, you can take it and dress it up however you want to. But these are the four things that I use in my business. This is what I teach. There’s so many ways too, but these are the main four.
How to Leverage Your Existing Network to Grow Leads For Your Business
Brooke Jefferson: And so the first one that I want to share is utilizing who you already know and or your past clients. So what I like to do is if I ever feel like I’m coming out of a slower season or sales seem to be in a slump or bookings or whatever that is in your business. I like to circle back to the people that already raised their hand and said, “Hey, I love you, Hey I have already paid you, I would love to share about you.” And I think a lot of times we think we’re being selfish in a way by circling back and asking our prior clients to do something for us. But really, they would probably be honored that you did circle back and that you loved working with them so much that you’re now going to offer them a giveaway or whatever that looks like for you. So for an example, you could run, I do this a lot, you can run a giveaway by asking your prior clients to leave you a review, so you could do that on a specific place, or utilizing social media. So for me, I’m a photographer, I’m just going to use this example. I asked my prior clients to share up to five of their favorite images I have personally taken of them, and then for their caption, to write about what the experience was like for them, and why they would recommend their friends or family to use me. And I’m telling you, this generates leads. I get bookings every time I do this. And so the incentive, if you just ask, you’ll probably have less than 10% of people just do it to just do it. And I’m just being very honest. As human beings, we love to be incentivized. So just make it easy for them. If you have a product-based business, then I would suggest giving a discount off of your store, whatever that looks like for you. But for me, I think I did $100 session credits. And people love that, right? Because it’s gonna go toward their next session with me or their service, or coaching or whatever. So that’s the first thing because if you can utilize your circle, they always say we’re all linked by five people, or whatever that is. And I truly believe that the world is very small. So if you’ll get the people that already are your past clients, that chose you, that said yes to you to start sharing with their circles, you will naturally get leads. But you also need to be ready for them. So that’s a whole nother strategy. But that’s the first one.
Tips For Reconnecting with Past Clients
Krista Marie: And that’s so important too, because I’ve even had calls with clients, where I’m in a similar situation of not booking any clients, or I feel like I’m in a slow season. And I remember asking a handful of them, do you have a spreadsheet or a tracker or some way where you’re capturing these email addresses, all these people you’ve worked with. And 99% of the time, the answer is no. And if you then have to go through or search through all your emails, all your galleries, make it as easy as possible for yourself to be able to check your spreadsheet and be like, I have all my previous people, I can so easily reach out to them and help build some of this momentum. But it’s definitely something that I think we don’t think about initially. We’re always going after new clients, new people. And like you said, I think sometimes we’re afraid like and just think, well, if they want to book with me, they will. But as any of us listening to this podcast can know, life moves at 1000 miles an hour. And we’ll have things that we want to do that just keep getting put off, keep getting put off. And so it’s not that they don’t necessarily want to work with you again, it’s just they might need that little extra nudge of like, “Hey, I’m offering this, if this is something that you love. And then half the time, they’ll be like, “Oh my gosh, I’m so glad you reached out to me. This is perfect. I would love something like this.”
Brooke Jefferson: Yeah, I don’t think I’ve ever had a client that doesn’t want me to reach out to them ever again, you know what I mean? Or they’ll say absolutely, and some still get busy. And guys, that’s okay. I also wanted to add a golden tip to that, because one of the biggest questions I get literally in my inbox almost on a daily basis about this strategy is, well, how do we reach out to them and my number one strategy is an email list. If you don’t have people’s emails, and you can’t just use their email because I get this too, the email that they book you with is not automatically them saying that you can email them. So you just need to make sure that they’re okay with being added to your list. But that’s the easiest way we’re talking about tracking people. I add all of my clients as long as they’ve said yes to a segment in my email marketing system. So that when I am ready to do these, it goes to clients only. So I don’t have to post for the world to know why they’re doing that. It’s more behind the scenes, and then they’re just naturally sharing about me with this private giveaway happening. So I just wanted to answer that because I know that’s gonna be a big question that I’m probably going to get in my DMs.
How to Add Scarcity and Urgency to Your Offers
Krista Marie: Yeah, that’s so important. I love that. So number one is reaching out to past leads and people that you have worked with, past clients, anyone that you’ve engaged with, of course, getting their permission and seeing if it’s okay for you to continue checking in, but love that. Okay, what about number two?
Brooke Jefferson: Okay, number two, this is a big one. And this is one that sometimes I’ll be like, Why does it feel like I am struggling this week with getting new clients or bookings or whatever the case may be. And it’s literally so simple and it’s, we need to add more urgency or scarcity to our offers. So naturally, I see things and I’m like, it’s a good sales page or as a photographer, it’s a really good session. I posted once about it, so I should be good, right? But again, back to we’re humans, we love incentives. We love having reasons to buy something right now. So yes, in your marketing and in your content, we should be hitting on pain points and all those good things. Yes, I think that’s important. But I think a lot of us just need to add this one little strategy in, which is just adding that urgency and scarcity.
So to give you an example of what that is, you could have a deadline to sign up for something. So maybe you sell something that has a deadline for it. So for example, Easter minis can’t really offer Easter minis after Easter, that doesn’t really make sense. So there’s a deadline to sign up for that. Another scarcity or urgency factor would be limited quantities of something, anybody across the board can do that: spots, quantities, limited time bonuses. Maybe you do coaching business so for a limited time, your normal package is two calls a month, but for this month, you’re gonna get a third bonus call, and that’s gonna go away. Okay, so those are examples. And then there’s this new idea that I’ve never really thought about, but it’s so true. So I want you to think about your inbox right now. And I want you to think about those one or two stores or online sites that you get emails from every single day, or at least several times a week. Have you noticed that there is something on sale almost every single week. Or you’ve had them on your email list for a year, now you know when their best sales are, and so you don’t buy anything until you wait for their sale. And that’s not to say people won’t buy from you, I’m just saying what those are called, are conversion events. It’s when you are running some type of limited time bonus, you’re just giving people a reason to convert, to book you, to buy your product, whatever that is. For example, you’re gonna see a lot of Mother’s Day, a lot of Memorial days, Fourth of July sales, things like that. So yes, holidays are great. But you can literally do this anytime that you want to. A conversion event could also look like a five day challenge. If we’re an online entrepreneur, there’s so many, there’s so many things here. But a lot of us don’t ever add anything special to our business. This is my offer, I sell this all year long, there’s nothing special in it, you can buy it at any time you want to. And that’s when your sales are a lot slower. And that’s something that I’ve had to learn the hard way.
Krista Marie: Yeah, it is really important. Sometimes we’re so in the weeds of the business, that we don’t take that step back to think of these things. That’s what I find happens a lot of the times. We get so used to just selling the thing and promoting it and talking about it that we forget that we’re allowed to take a step back and be like, “what promotion do I want to run? What’s something fun that I could do to mix this up a little bit. But I think we just get so into the weeds that we just forget that no one else is going to do that for us. And we have total permission that we can do that at any point in time. We don’t have to ask for permission. We can try things out, maybe it works, maybe it doesn’t work. But we at least get that knowledge and we can move forward knowing that ahead of time,
Brooke: For sure. And I agree with you, I think a lot of it is we’re so in the business, we don’t look at the bird’s eye view. And again, it goes back to you’ve got to take time out of your business. And there’s other tips to come. But all of this goes together. And the other thing too about adding urgency and scarcity, it doesn’t mean you’re running a discount every single time. So I don’t want you to think every month you’re gonna run a coupon code or 20% off. I wouldn’t become, I call that Bath and Bodyworks, don’t do that. No one pays full price there because stuff is always on sale. But like I said, there’s creative things you can do. Adding extra things or, you know, sliding in bonuses or whatever that is. Just know that we’re not asking you to discount your programs, your coaching or services, anything like that. But there are ways that you can add urgency. And the best one we all can do today is just put a deadline for a sign up, make something run out of time. That is the number one fear of humans. We all have this fear of missing out if we don’t get it and it’s not a manipulation tool. I hear that a lot. I’m not into manipulation strategies. I don’t believe in that. But we are human and we all run by a deadline. So there was there was a deadline to sign up to have the Easter eggs delivered into your yard, I waited until the last 24 hours, and I barely got my order in.
Krista Marie: Oh totally, even on things we want and want to do, we just need to have that deadline. How many times do we procrastinate doing things? I mean, it’s just humans, I think that’s our nature. So absolutely
Why You Should Never Leave Money on The Table
All right. So the third strategy is to ask for the next booking or sale with the clients that are already using you. So this one is called leaving money on the table. And it’s as simple as that. If you are selling something, if your business model is set up to where you only have one product, or one service never to be used again, you are going to work three times harder than the person who already knows the next buy, what the next step is in that process. And you’ll hear me say this a lot, I try to run a very simple niched down business model as much as possible. But not having like 12,000 options either. And so I’m not saying you need to have 12 options. But what I’m saying is, if you don’t have an opportunity for someone to come back and use you again, or refill their products, or whatever that looks like for your business, you’re leaving money on the table. And what this is called, is called the lifecycle of a client. So this works for any business model, anything out there. For photography, this is how I teach this, let’s say that you are a maternity and newborn photographer. Okay. So you have to decide the starting point is the maternity session, and then you’re trying to get them to come see you again, for a newborn session. Well, what do you do after that? Because now you’re going back to strategy one, which is getting them to get their other pregnant friends to come use you. And that’s fine. And that works, too. But one thing you could do is for your clients only, have them come back a year later and get pictures as a family. And now you’ve just secured three sales with one client. So that’s essentially what I’m talking about here. Same thing for products. Are there phases of what you teach? Is there phase one, phase two, phase three, what does that look like? So always lead your person to the next booking or sale. And then one more example that popped up in my head that I just feel I’d like to share. Another photography example is if you have already taken their images, and you’re not an IPS model, I’m not an IPS model, the next natural step is you hired me to take the photos. Now let’s turn those photos into wall art or into prints and products. And so I have an online shop and there’s a natural process that encourages them to book and go that next step so that we’re not leaving money on the table. So hopefully, those were a lot of examples to get your head spinning.
Yeah, and it is so important. The two things that come to mind for that, because I know for a lot of wedding photographers, this is actually me, I do family sessions, but nobody really knows that because I don’t market that, I don’t put that on my page, and you don’t really see that. However, all of my clients that I do their wedding, of course, I’m gonna want to do maternity photos. So for anyone who’s niched down into a specific market and doesn’t want to offer this to everybody, you don’t have to. And that’s the great thing about it, is that you can just do it for the people that you work with. And you don’t have to always be posting about it and sharing about it. Because even if you just are a photographer, you might think, “oh, people come to me for any kind of session.” But people are really coming to you based on what you’re sharing. So if you’re not really sharing that, no one’s gonna just assume that you do it. So a great way to stay niched down, but like you said, still secure more because that’s someone you’ve already built a relationship with. I love those family sessions, because we know each other so well, the relationships already built up. They’re just easy and it’s just like a fun place to be. And I was gonna say something else too, about what you just said, having things set up and in place for… I also don’t do any sort of in person sales. And I know some people really love that. And they thrive off of that but that’s not really me. But I think, again, having email set up so that you can create templates that are like, Hey, here’s how you access your images. This is what the wall art looks like, this is the pricing, and just having those in place. Because again, sometimes you need to just remind people. You can tell them once that you offer albums and wall art but chances are they’re going to forget that. They’re so excited to get their photos or their product or whatever it is that they forget that there’s additional things that they can still purchase. So just remembering like you said to ask for that and have things set up that make it easier for you.
What it Means to Niche Down (and how to do it]
Brooke Jefferson: Yeah, for sure. Okay, so I want to give a golden tip off of what you said earlier about the niching. So if you guys come listen to my podcast, you will hear me literally encourage you to niche over and over and over again. And I get another question of, okay, “Brooke. So you know, I know that you offer XYZ, but you’re telling us to niche down.” Okay, here is where this comes in. Okay, I already did the hard work of niching. I became known as a family photographer for years and years. But naturally, people were still drawn to my style to the way people raved about me. And so of course, I’m now shooting some senior sessions and some other things that fell out of my niche. I will never tell you to turn that stuff down. That’s not the point. The point of niching is so that you become known for a specialty. And you’re going to have a forward facing marketing strategy. But that doesn’t mean you can’t offer things in the back end. For example, restaurant menus, if you’ve ever gone to a fancier restaurant, or really not even fancy, here’s what you probably have never thought about before, you get a menu of what that restaurant is really known for, and what they order over and over again. But I promise you, if you ask for something else, they can probably make it or they have a special menu that they don’t give out to everyone. A bar is s a bad example, but a good one. You get a drink menu. But if you ask that bartender, hey, I took a vacation in so and so. And here’s what was in the drink. And they’re like, oh, yeah, I can make that for you. So you ultimately get to be your bartender in your business, you don’t have to have a list of everything you offer. So I want to give you guys freedom in that. But the whole thing with niching has a lot to do with your marketing, your forward facing marketing. That’s how you get leads and clients in the door. Then you do whatever you want to on the back end of your business to get more sales and more bookings and things like that. So I just wanted to clarify that because I know that’s really confusing for some people. But it’s really meant to help you gain momentum in your business, gain that authority and allow you to become a go-to in your industry. Okay, rant over.
Krista Marie: Niching down is something that is a big topic that I speak a lot to also because it can feel overwhelming or people are like, I don’t know what my niche is. But it’s not like this thing that you have to choose. And then you can never change it or move forward from it. No one’s ever going to be like, “Oh, at this point, you were doing this and now you’re doing this. If you change, it is totally fine. But it’s like trying something out. And then like you said, you can still do things on the back end to see, does this feel like the thing I want to do all the time? Or do I want to tweak it? Do I want to change it? But it’s really just about that messaging? What are you putting forward and what are you telling people that you do? And it’s just getting really clear on that. Because like you said, it’s really hard to market to people if you’re marketing to everybody. So just pick something that feels like it’s the right thing for you to do and see where it goes. And continue to experiment on the back end. But that clarity will work so much more for getting new leads. Absolutely. Yes,
Increasing Leads Starts with Having a Solid and Consistent Marketing Strategy
Brooke Jefferson: Man, welcome to our marketing workshop, which actually leads us into my final and fourth strategy for today, which is a solid and consistent marketing strategy. I promise you 90% of us are lowering our chins to the ground thinking, Yep, this is where I struggle. And I get it. Marketing is a beast, it is always changing. It can be actually really hard. But marketing is really simple once you figure it out. But in the beginning until you figure it out. It is time consuming. It’s overwhelming. It’s hard. And I get it, I’ve been there. And there are still seasons that I’m like, Oh my gosh, someone else please just do this for me. Because this is a lot and it does. It takes a lot of mental energy. But what I will tell you is, especially right now, social media is shifting, like I said, it always is, but it is at an all time low, probably than most of us have seen in over a decade. I mean, even the gurus are talking about how low it is. So if you feel like, “man, I am just throwing all this content and only two people see it, is that even worth it?” So I’m not going to tell you to throw away social media. I think there’s very solid strategies to use social media. However, I want to encourage you to do what Krista and I are doing and that is to get you a podcast or get you a YouTube channel going, something that’s going to live beyond a day on social media. So the whole point of social media is to push what you’re already doing for long form content. If you have a product-based business, there is no reason you can’t have a YouTube channel. Show us how to use your products. It’s that simple. I’m not asking you to have 100 videos, but if you can have something to point people to, something to generate leads. My podcast is my number one way to generate leads in my business. I’m sure Krista probably has some stats for you guys too on hers. And then if you are going to use social media, if you’re going to build it on Facebook, build a community on Facebook, have that Facebook group where you can foster these people, which is like an island of your own. You can do the same thing over on Instagram and your stories. Think of your stories as your community, your DMS are where you guys have two way conversations. But your stories is where you’re like pulling back the curtain. Here’s a little bit about me, here’s my authenticity, here’s a little bit of sprinkling, some selling, and some serving, and all of that. So if you don’t have a solid and consistent marketing strategy, you need to get one. And you can pick whatever you want that to look like so.
Krista Marie: And I think one of the beautiful things that I learned from podcasting, and I don’t know if you felt the same, but in the beginning, I had to overcome this belief that I had to share an entire encyclopedia’s worth of knowledge in each episode. And I think I also had similar feelings about social media where every post has to be this huge thing that someone walks away with. And then one, you just learn that’s not sustainable. Two, also when I listen to a podcast, I’m actually overwhelmed if I feel like I’m going through a whole lesson of all these things, and so I want these quick tips, four tips. Okay, I can walk away and remember the four tips that we talked about today. But we don’t have to delve into the entire marketing concept of how to do all this stuff. And I think one of the beautiful things is doing that, of trying something new, where you’re kind of forced to create consistent content, is it helps you create content more easily and more sustainably, which I think has been a huge shift. So definitely recommend that. Even if someone’s like, I don’t really know if I want to start a podcast, it’s like, starting to share enough in whatever space that it is that you want to share because when you have to show up all the time you realize, Okay, I don’t need to have a million things that I’m sharing every single day. Earlier, you said if I can show up and share one valuable piece of content each day, you’re like, great, this is awesome. Very similar to that.
How to Generate Topics Ideas For YouTube or Podcasts
Brooke Jefferson: Yeah. So and something else is I just really think everyone needs to pick podcasts or YouTube at this point. Because both of them generate SEO, both of them have very loyal people that love either platform. I use both, but I’m more visual. So if you have a business where you feel like you’d need to be more visual, you think you’re gonna get your point across, maybe you’re teaching something that is a lot more visual, maybe it’s in the arts or something like that, then I would do a YouTube channel. People are, I mean my kids, we’ve had to take YouTube away so many times because I’m like, Who are these people that you’re watching? What are they doing? People watch this and they get paid for it. So anyway, I just say that to say that you don’t have to be the most interesting person. And a really good way to get started in podcasting or YouTube topics is go back and look at what was your best Instagram story? What were your best actual posts that you’ve done? What’s your top five in the last year? There you go, you’ve got your first five episodes for what you’re going to create. And the reason I tell you that is because, again, we don’t want you to live in a hustle culture. I don’t want you to feel like, “oh my gosh, all I do is work. All I do is write content all the time. And that’s the beauty of podcasting. And you said one more thing, and then I’ll leave it at that. But in the beginning, you talked about, I felt like I needed to have an hour long episode and walk people A to Z on how to do something. So did I and what you’ll notice is in the first two years there are longer styled episodes. And then in the last year and a half, you’ll see that I completely changed it. And now it’s like 14 quick minute episodes. Because when I listen to podcasts, I’m either driving, folding laundry, or cleaning my house, that’s it. Those are the only times that I’m listening to podcasts. And I listen to podcasts probably like three to four times a week. So your people get into grooves and they learn how to listen to you in their routines. And I never in a million years thought that when I started with an audience of zero, that it would grow to what it has today and people are still listening. Like my voice has been played in so many countries, it’s insane. But I mean that’s how we built relationships too. So I just would rather you guys put your energy and your effort into a long form marketing strategy. Once a week is all you have to show up for guys on a podcast. I mean it really is and that’s it, one and done.
Krista Marie: And the thing that I love about it too is from one episode you can create two other pieces of content, you can easily create a simple blog post from it. You can easily create an Instagram post, which takes time but you’re not having to come up with all of this new stuff. You’re literally just taking one piece and like utilizing it in other places, which is just so much easier. I love those. Those were all so, so helpful. And so I’d love to wrap that up, for anyone who’s in their first one to two years of business, do you have any quick tips around best practices? I feel like we’ve already given so much: give yourself space, priorities, boundaries, practice these things. But is there anything that you feel looking back on your first couple of years, you’re like, Oh, I really wish someone would have told me that?
Don’t Compare Yourself
Brooke Jefferson: My two tips are this. And yes, we have already touched on them, which I love. Because it’s like sure are your four ways to get leads. And then here’s your two takeaways from the episode. So first of all, it’s to stay committed and literally stay in your own lane. You after listening to this, I know your head is spinning. I know we’re talking about simple, easy to listen to episodes, I’m sorry, but this one you can just listen to in segments if you have to. But anyway, um, but the first one is like really just staying in your own lane, you are probably going to feel shiny object syndrome, which means you’re going to be like, oh, yeah, let me start a podcast. Oh, I gotta run a giveaway. Oh, I’ve got to add in a conversion, five day challenge next month. Start with one, start with one, and then don’t look up, like doing, like, plan it out, and then fulfill it and then actually get through it and then go on to the next one real, like you guys are busy for the rest of the year from this one episode. Oh, absolutely. I’m gonna listen to this back and be like, Okay, let’s take your own advice anyway. But that’s the biggest thing, don’t compare yourself. It does not matter what your best friend in the industry is doing or your direct competition. If you look up, you will get discouraged. And you will set yourself back. So that’s tip number one is I just wish somebody would have said, your success is not going to be found in her strategy, it’s going to be found in yours. So that’s the first one.
Get a Coach/Accountability Partner
And then the second one, I would shout this from the rooftops, you heard me earlier talk about how I duct taped my business together. I went through the trenches for way too long, until I finally was like, let me just try and see if I can work with somebody that’s already done this. My biggest thing is to invest in a mentor or a program that is going to get you there faster than you can and that also gives you accountability in what you’re doing. Because you’re gonna get lost, you will second guess yourself. I will tell you, even though you would think I’m at such a high level in my business. Yeah, well, I still need accountability, or I don’t show up to the best of my ability. I literally just hired another coach this morning. And it’s been a couple of months since I’ve had one. And so I get to have her for the next several weeks just to hold me accountable. Because I know that I will fall back into habits of not doing it, procrastinating, looking at my competition, you know. And so those are the biggest things. And I know investing before you’re making a lot of money is scary, investing if you’ve never done it is scary. But guys, if you trust that person, you should do it. If you’ve already gotten value, especially from their free stuff like I would never tell you to go hire someone blindly. If you like the way that they show up in their life, you love the behind the scenes that you’re seeing, you love their podcast, then you should jump in and you should definitely work with him because that’s someone you can trust. So those are the top two things. And really those top two if they did nothing else will absolutely lead them to success in their business.
Yes. And I think they’re so related to mine because I have a coach. And you joked about, I’m going to listen to this and take my own advice. I joke about that all the time, too. Because even with my clients, I’m telling them these things that I know and I’m not doing all of those things, because sometimes those things aren’t a priority for me. There could be a million reasons why I’m not focusing on one thing or another. But sometimes we just need that person again, who can take that step back and be like, Okay, you already know what you need to do. So let’s help you actually do it. When’s your deadline? When’s this happening? And sometimes it’s that, sometimes it’s someone who can actually give you clarity around if you’re not sure what to do, but those things go hand in hand because they help you stay in your lane. They help you not try and focus on a million things or at least a good coach will help you do that. So it’s really important to find someone who will help you. So I love those. I resonate with that so much.
Brooke’s Go-to Self-Improvement Resource
Awesome. Well, last question before we kind of dive into where we can find you. Do you have a favorite book or a resource or something that you’ve consumed that you feel like you love recommending to other business owners.
I’m actually going to recommend one of my prior business coaches just because she has a podcast. And if you really are just desiring to have a well rounded, balanced life, true balance, you’re never gonna find that. But just a way to show up in all the areas and feel confident and secure in who you are. Stephanie Gas is my former podcast and business coach, and hers is the Stephanie Gas Show. There’s just anything that I could tell you that I’ve learned from her, it’s on her podcast, and there’s just so many good ones. And it’s really good for people that are in their first one to three years of business. That’s just my go-to resource. I’ve read a lot of books, but I don’t think that there’s, without sounding cliche, I get a lot of my advice from the Bible. I know it’s cliche, but I do love business books, but there’s nothing off the top of my head that I’m like, that was a game changer. So there’s bits and pieces, but she by far, is probably my biggest game changer. And every time she releases an episode, it’s always amazing.
I find books are great. But you don’t build a relationship as quickly as you do with something like a podcast, you get to know someone so quickly, when listening to their podcast, I feel like it just hits more than when you read a book or when you’re reading all this information. Well, thank you so much. This was filled with so many amazing things. Like you said, literally you could listen to this episode and have the next seven, eight months of your year strategy planned out.
So where can we find you? Where can we connect with you and learn more?
Brooke Jefferson: Yeah, so my website is Brookejefferson.com. There is a freebie on there. I mean, it is directed toward photographers. But I think the prompts will give you guys a really good starting point, if you’re struggling on things to say, or you’re just completely lost on social media, there’s 10 free social media prompts there. So feel free to grab those if you want to, photographer or not. And then come to my podcast. So if you really love this conversation, you can find lots of episodes very similar to this. On The Book More Clients Photography Podcast. Yes, it’s directed towards photographers, but I have so many messages that people are like, Hey, I’m not a photographer. But I used episodes one, two and five in my business. And so it’s really great if you love conversations like this. So yeah, that’s where you can find me.
Krista Marie: Great. Well, thank you so much. This was so great. And it was just wonderful to have you on the podcast today. So thanks again.
Brooke Jefferson: Thank you.