with Jen Berson
Public Relations. A term that strikes fear into the hearts of even the most seasoned entrepreneur. The industry is shrouded in mystery, filled with buzzwords, and often considered to be too complex for the average person to understand.
In this episode, I’m joined by PR expert Jen Berson, as we lift the veil on it all and show you how to turn this into a powerful strategy for your own business.
We chatted about:
- Unraveling the limiting beliefs that hold entrepreneurs back from pitching with confidence
- Why “Pay to Play” PR is a dangerous game and how it can harm your reputation
- Cracking the code on getting your pitch noticed by the media
- Exploring the multifaceted world of PR and how to use it to boost your business
- Gazing into the crystal ball of PR trends for 2024, so you can stay ahead of the pack!
Forget needing celebrity status to land yourself in the media. All you need is a little know-how…and we’ve got you inside this episode. So let’s dive in!
Jen Berson is a former civil litigator turned strategic communications advisor who champions the PR agency model for ambitious women seeking a satisfying, high-powered career that doesn’t require the sacrifice of personal and family time to make a powerful impact.
You can connect with Jen:
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[00:00:22] Amanda: Jen, I’m so excited to have you on the Feminine Luminary Podcast!
[00:00:59] Jen: Welcome to the show.
[00:01:30] Amanda: think for me, it’s and that is what makes you and your work luminary?
[00:01:54] Jen: Ooh, I love this. I think that in the world of PR, we’re supporting a lot of [00:02:00] PR. Professionals and our industry has typically been very close to the vest. It’s kind of like my secrets give me an advantage. And if you know my secret sauce, then somehow it’s taking something away from me. And I operate outside of that scarcity mindset.
[00:02:20] Jen: And so I think that. Building this community that we’ve built of PR that we support through our programs and our content. It’s really about giving them flexibility and freedom in their work and helping women and women who are moms, have the kind of work life integration they want.
[00:02:39] Jen: And in order to have that, cause it’s served me so well, I have to share everything that I know because I know it works. And if it works for me, it can work for others. And so I think… That that shift in a more kind of community over competition and let’s collaborate and we have had women all over the world join our movement.
[00:03:02] Jen: And I think that shift in our industry, we’re kind of shifting that paradigm away from, you know, my secrets, my secret sauce to let’s all lift each other up. I think that has helped my work, make me
[00:03:22] Amanda: community of a to do behind closed doors [00:04:00] it And I cannot wait to share this and learn more about it.
[00:04:05] Jen: Yeah, it’s also been awesome for me because the kind of side effect of all of it was that bringing people into my world, they were open to sharing what they knew. With me and with other people in the community.
[00:04:17] Jen: So our coaching calls are epic. I mean, people are coming on and they have expertise that I don’t really know anything about, and they’re opening up to other members of the community and they’re forming their own partnerships and just everybody is getting more value. Out of the support that they get from everyone.
[00:04:36] Jen: So it’s like you give and you get, and it’s that kind of a vibe and anybody that’s not in that mindset, they just don’t really kind of fit into what we’re doing. So I love our coaching calls. I learned so much and half the time smart. This is
[00:05:01] Amanda: and both of our businesses Yeah. The ongoing relationships inside
[00:05:25] Jen: it.
[00:05:40] Amanda: civil litigation, civil litigator. Is that right?
[00:05:44] Jen: Yeah, that’s right. I was an attorney and I practiced civil litigation. I did that for four years. So four years of college, three years of law school, take the bar exam and then practice. I was at a big firm in LA for four ish years and [00:06:00] just realized that it was the wrong fit.
[00:06:02] Jen: I was just trying to fit a square peg into a round hole and just did not feel like me. It just didn’t feel like I was in role. It always felt like more of a job than a And I just, kind of knew what I wanted for the future at the time that I made the decision to leave. I had just started dating my husband, so we weren’t married.
[00:06:24] Jen: We didn’t have kids. But. I could see that we were on this path and I knew that I wanted to have kids at some point and I did not see any female role models at my law firm or really any of my friends from law school that had kind of figured that out. I saw a lot of women have kids, leave their law firm jobs and kind of not come back or they had kind of an abbreviated schedule and then they got like, eventually just kind of cut off from not making their billable hours.
[00:06:56] Jen: And I did not feel that that was a path I wanted to be on. And so I kind of got inspired by somebody that I knew that had just a super cool job and was working in PR and was going to fashion shows and, you know, working backstage with all the models and having her clients represent the hair brands and the makeup collections.
[00:07:17] Jen: And I thought, that’s what I want to do. That seems super cool. And I didn’t even what that was. Like, what are you, what do you And when I realized that was public relations, I really only thought of PR as like celebrities and they get in trouble and you have to bail them out and tell a story and get them on all the talk shows to, yes, exactly.
[00:07:40] Jen: Like you did something bad. And how are we going to turn your scandal around? I don’t work in that realm at all. I don’t represent any celebrities or personalities. I represent all brands. And so I get to work with brands that I really love. And for me, it’s like very natural to. Want to share things that I love.
[00:07:56] Jen: It’s like why I share all of my know how [00:08:00] and. Pitching the media, what we’re going to get into talking today. and sharing how to run an agency with all of our PR pro, community members. And for me, it’s just like, Oh, this is great. And I love it. I have to tell everyone. So it’s like the complete opposite of gatekeeping.
[00:08:13] Jen: It’s like open the floodgates and tell everyone everything. So if I have a brand I love, I’m like, Oh my God, you guys let’s, you know, it’s so natural for me to want to tell their story and explain why it’s better than other things on the market. So. I started doing that on the side unpaid for a beauty brand that I really loved and got some initial traction.
[00:08:32] Jen: And I just loved the work so much. And it felt like almost an immediate, like instant gratification. Whereas litigation, my other career experience was very drawn out and long and protracted. And it was all about spending money and exhausting resources and like fighting all the time. And here in PR, I was able to build up a business I loved and create outcomes that made the businesses money and expose their products and their brand to more people.
[00:09:01] Jen: And that felt like such a better fit for my personality. So I just took the leap and I gave myself six months and said, we’ll see what I can do and if it doesn’t work, I can always go back and no harm, no foul. But, I had that runway and I had the support of my now husband, but he looked at me and he said, I, you’re, you just, you know, do what you have to do.
[00:09:23] Jen: Like, it’ll be amazing to watch you and I believe in you and I’ll bet I’ll bet on you any day of the week. And that just gave me that confidence to say, okay, if I’m really just betting on myself, I know I’m going to put in the work. I know I’m going to figure it out and I’ll take that bet. Any day of the week too.
[00:09:39] Jen: So that’s what I did. And I initially found a client and we were profitable. Pretty much right out of the gate because I, we run lean and mean and didn’t have a lot of expenses and said to myself, okay, never going back. And I’ve never looked back.[00:10:00]
[00:10:08] Amanda: if you look So fulfilled doing.
[00:10:38] Amanda: So I love shift straight away
[00:10:41] Jen: rather than sitting. Yeah. And I think also just having that contrast, you know, maybe I wouldn’t realize how good I have it. And maybe I wouldn’t realize how much I truly love what I’m doing and what a great fit it is for me if I didn’t have that other path that wasn’t right and having that contrast.
[00:11:00] Jen: So I feel really grateful for the path. You know, nonlinear path that my career took and I loved law school. I made a lot of great friends. I learned critical thinking and really, you know, good writing skills and, and, persuasive writing skills. And I think all of that’s really helpful. Plus, I know how to collect.
[00:11:16] Jen: So if people don’t pay me, I know how to ruffle some feathers and get them to pay their bills. Yeah, it, it, it translates. But I think having that contrast of a career that just wasn’t the right fit. It’s like trying on a pair of shoes and being like, these are not comfortable, they don’t look good on me, this isn’t right.
[00:11:35] Jen: And then you just like your Cinderella, you put on your glass slipper and it’s just perfect and you’re like, I know that this is it because this is
[00:11:46] Amanda: too different to what it was [00:12:00] you, and then moving into something that you love. It’s like, oh yeah,
[00:12:04] Jen: I know this is it. This is it. Feels like a warm
[00:12:27] Amanda: different, in two different you can’t away a really Yeah. six months profitable and
[00:12:59] Jen: Yeah. I
[00:13:09] Amanda: know as goes, that says, as being one of my
[00:13:21] Jen: marketing strategies. Where do I love this Let’s go. We’re going to talk about all the things. Oh my gosh, let’s go. There are so many, so many, the first thing I’m going to say is it’s a, it’s a mindset, right?
[00:13:36] Jen: It’s like knowing that you have something of value to share. Your journey, like whatever you, like the story I just shared with you about how I went from a lot of PR. I’ve Magazine on Business Insider, Forbes, Yahoo, Huffington Post, just sharing that. How did I do it? How did I go from this to that?
[00:13:58] Jen: So career transformation, [00:14:00] your journey, if it’s inspiring, if it’s helpful to somebody, if you get people results and you can share your unique process for doing that. All of that adds value. So if you’re pitching the media and you have something like that to share about yourself, the media wants to hear from you.
[00:14:19] Jen: As long as you align your idea for the story or how they can use you and your expertise, you align that with the kind of content that they typically run in the same kind of format. The, the audience that is their typical readership, that the, the reader’s going to get value out of that as well, and that the timing of the story is right.
[00:14:40] Jen: Is it targeted? Is it timely? Is it relevant? And you might not get a yes right away, but you have to kind of stick with it and know that maybe it’s, I don’t want to say like a numbers game, and it’s all about volume because I like to go quality. Over quantity, but if you follow up enough times and, and that might mean one follow up on the same pitch with the same editor, and maybe the next follow up is with a different editor with the same pitch, or you go back to the original editor with a slightly different pitch, but just keep at it and where I like to tell people to start is when you are listening to a podcast or you are.
[00:15:20] Jen: Reading some publication that you really love or watching a show or wherever you’re consuming your content and you get that hit of clarity like I should be, I should be on this or that. Oh, I love this writers always covering topics that I really connect with. And I think that what I know will resonate with their audience pay attention to that.
[00:15:44] Jen: And I try to tell people just starting them from feeling overwhelmed. Focus on two, three, five, whatever feels doable, those publications where you feel you [00:16:00] are the right fit. You can either contribute something of value like your how to or your, your success path could inspire somebody that is their typical reader.
[00:16:10] Jen: And start to make note of that and then dive into their content and really look back. Into, you know, archives and kind of like what a certain writer wrote, something you really love go deep on that publication and that writer and really look, okay, this is the kind of thing they cover. I think that I can add value here and then check into their social media, see how they’re sharing their to engage with it so that they can see, you know, see that you’re a fan and a reader.
[00:16:41] Jen: I think once they start to see that you’re engaging. You’re sharing their content. Maybe you share it on your social media and you tag them and you say like, I love this article by so and so tip number three really resonated because I’ve actually done this and it had a tremendous impact on my business or whatever.
[00:17:00] Jen: If you do that for a little bit, I mean like a week or two, or just kind of consistently make it like, you know, half an hour of your week to. Focus on a few publications and a few writers and start to engage. Then, when you pitch them, you will be recognized. You will be seen as somebody who really has a their readership, their content.
[00:17:24] Jen: It’ll appear that you are making a real connection and it’s not spray and pray, right? You’re not just throwing spaghetti on the wall to see what sticks, but you’re actually Sending something that is the right fit for that reader writer, the right content for their readership, even, you know, just because you want to be on entrepreneur magazine.
[00:17:46] Jen: every writer and entrepreneur would cover you. They’re not all covering the same stuff. So find somebody that, you know, shares female voices or, startups or, you know, coaching [00:18:00] expertise. That’s women centric something along those lines where. That’s the one who wants to hear from me and the read, the outreach should be very short and sweet, get their attention and you’re sharing two to three bullet points on what your ideas are for how they can incorporate you into what they’re writing about.
[00:18:20] Jen: Either you’re an on call expert for them, your go startups, or, you know, how people can leverage for me, let’s say how they can leverage the media. For expertise and visibility and to grow their audience, and just offer yourself as a source or let them know that you have a story and a process for how you transform people from point A to point B.
[00:18:46] Jen: That’s very unique to you and you would love to share it with their readers. And how about I write that up for you and we’ll go from there. You give them a strong call to action at the end of that pitch. Like, what’s the next step? What do they have to do
[00:19:19] Amanda: stand beside days is the ones who do tend to reach out, they’re actually to be in
[00:19:43] Jen: there.
[00:19:43] Jen: Yeah. Yes. Yeah. Oh yeah, the pay to play. You know, I, it’s funny. I get a lot of these pay to play people reaching out to me and they’re like, PR, you know, you shouldn’t have to pay a retainer. And I’m like, okay, I run a retainer agency, but [00:20:00] So what they’re basically selling is like wholesale spots that could eventually They’re, sometimes, contributors that are like wholesaling off their column. And putting a markup on it. And so they say, well, we only get paid if something runs. happens is they are, they’re going against their contract with these publications as contributors. And so what they’ll do is they’ll cancel the entire vertical.
[00:20:30] Jen: So you’ve paid for this content that has now been deleted or worse than that. You can be seen as somebody who is not really worthy of coverage. And you’re only. you know, valuable to like a pay and play situation and legit articles, legit editors, even contributors that follow the rules, they’ll look at you like you’re toxic and they’ll say, no, they’re in this pay to play realm.
[00:20:59] Jen: They’re not quality and we’re not going to, so they’ll do a little due diligence and kind of see where you. Stand on that. So I think don’t touch that with a 10 foot pole. And also I’ve seen sometimes what they’ll do is they will issue a press release and which anybody can do that. It’s like, fine. And it gets picked up on the wire and then it gets distributed by, let’s say, an ABC affiliate in, Podunk, Iowa.
[00:21:23] Jen: I don’t know. That’s like an expression. We say here in the States. That’s like no man’s land and they’ll say I got you on ABC. See, I got you on that. And it’s like, well, it’s not really anything. It wasn’t like a feature. They weren’t sharing my expertise. It’s totally different. And also you start to see people, running those logos on their website and it’ll be like, I’ve been on this, this, this, and this, unless the publication is licensing those logos, you’re technically.
[00:21:49] Jen: Yeah. infringing on their trademark and their, you know, actual like visual, there’s usage. Requirements for that. And so people who [00:22:00] are like, I was on ABC and I’m going to put the logo on there. It’s like, you really weren’t. And now you’re infringing on their trademark and copyright and you’re going to get kind of in trouble for it because they have things that crawl the internet looking for it.
[00:22:13] Jen: So just stay away from all that. But I love what you said. Yeah. And, I love what you said about, just being the one to share your story. I really try to encourage entrepreneurs and coaches and experts Nobody can share your message or tell what you know or talk about your journey the way that you can.
[00:22:34] Jen: So don’t feel like you’re not qualified you don’t have a publicist or you’re not like quote unquote big enough. Says who? You know? Who says who? It, it, it takes one yes. To get featured and you will not get a yes, unless you put your, you throw your hat in the ring and you’re going to hear a lot of nose or you’ll hear a lot of nothing, but you will not get that unless you try and what’s the worst they can do is say no or ignore you.
[00:23:06] Jen: So it’s like, we’ve opened as entrepreneurs, we’ve busted open a lot of doors by just saying, I know that this is good and I know this is worth something and this will add value to somebody. So I’m going to just try.
[00:23:26] Amanda: best that can work as a result of that. So, upside
[00:23:40] Jen: is so much more. So huge, yeah. Right. Yeah. There’s really no downside.
[00:23:45] Jen: And the upside is also just reach, but you know, credibility and validation and it’s something, it’s an asset. You can leverage and you know, share on your social and maybe get invited back again and be a regular [00:24:00] contributor on these prestigious publications. But you just have to remember, the person on the other end is just a person.
[00:24:06] Jen: They’re a person that is overworked. And they are looking for good stories to tell. They just want to do a good job. They wanna find inspiring, that’s the mindset.
[00:24:28] Amanda: Just
[00:24:29] Amanda: humanize it. It’s it’s just that they probably didn’t see it.
[00:24:43] Jen: maybe another
[00:24:45] Amanda: writer within the like for public relations next year?
[00:25:00] Amanda: What should we be
[00:25:01] Jen: aware of as entrepreneurs? Yeah, we actually just, we do a trend report every year, so it’s like timely that you asked for this. We just released our 2024 trend report. We are definitely looking into AI quite a bit and really encouraging our community to embrace and not be afraid, you know, like robots are not coming to take our jobs.
[00:25:25] Jen: There still has to be a human that’s inputting. The queries and then you have to fact check it. You have to edit it. You cannot just take something and Pass it off as your own. So it’s a great starting place. And if you look at it As something that is going to save you time, you know and time is money or you can help create processes around the things that you’re doing in your business and in your pitching and create some sort of a short cutted process through A.
[00:25:53] Jen: I think that is going to be a helpful tool in the future and not, you know, something not [00:26:00] even the future. But now, like, check into it. Now we just released another, Like a little mini product called powerhouse prompts, because I think people kind of freeze at the ideas of what you can actually get through AI and we give them ideas for how to leverage these resources and get the most out of it without, you know, panicking, like, I don’t know what to put and, and you’ve sort of don’t let your mind wander to know, major time saving, support that they can offer to you.
[00:26:29] Jen: So definitely AI and, In the world of PR, as it relates to products, which is what we pitch a lot, any of your, your community that have products, and it could even be coaching products that they’re selling. Affiliate marketing is a major, major driver of editorial coverage. So even heritage publications, you know, typical publications that have been around forever, like print magazines, they have online versions.
[00:27:01] Jen: You’ll see everybody recommending products left and right, and it all links back to some affiliate platform, whether it’s being sold on Amazon or Target or Walmart or any other, major retailer that has a built in affiliate. Opportunity for these publications to earn revenue, or their site has share a sale or another commission junction or Rakuten or something plugged in that will also generate revenue.
[00:27:29] Jen: That is a major driver in who they are covering, and SEO plays into that really well also because they’re looking for opportunities where they can write content that will align with what people are searching for. So they’re looking for like a high search volume, you know, 50 to 100, 000 searches a month, but a low return on results.
[00:27:54] Jen: And can they find that little sweet spot where they write an article? that points to a certain product that will [00:28:00] change your life and make everything that you, all your hopes and dreams come true. If you’re looking for a solution for taking your coffee on the road with you, you know, does this particular coffee mug serve that need very specifically that nothing else does.
[00:28:15] Jen: And they write that article that serves the need that people are searching for and then recommend a product. That is, reasonably priced and has a lot of, a lot of reviews. That’s another thing is like, get those reviews, even for coaches and people that are, sharing information, try to get as many bits of feedback from your community as possible and leverage them all over on your social media channels and your sales pages, your, you know, Any, anything you’re facing outward that would bring in new customers. That social proof is very powerful. People are running ads with that social proof. So we got our clients in, Allure and Cosmo magazine, and we will leverage those, press wins and then run paid social around that. So we see a lot of alignment with paid social earned media. That’s what PR is called when you pitch a publication and.
[00:29:11] Jen: They write about you that’s earned what you mentioned to me of like pay to play like advertising. Basically. It’s not traditional. Yeah, so they’re aligning really well. So it’s like the cross between the opportunity for a publication to earn affiliate revenue because advertising is not what it used to be and that used to keep the lights on.
[00:29:32] Jen: So now it’s like, how much money can this article earn an affiliate revenue? Where are the gaps in SEO and then the, feature that that brand or product or your clients or your community as experts and, coaches can leverage that in a paid ad. And it all, it’s like all worlds collide. It’s like [00:30:00]
[00:30:04] Amanda: 2024 to be such to sort of pillars and how do they actually all interact and how do they work together?
[00:30:33] Jen: Oh my gosh, I love this so much because when I realized that this is how my business grew and what went into it and that it’s very easy to replicate, it just clicked for me. And I was like, Oh my God, this is it. It’s like so simple, but the four pillars are, I call my path to profitability. It’s not like a revolutionary name.
[00:30:53] Jen: Cause I know a lot of other people have that, but The way that it’s structured, it just makes so much sense for any service kind of business or digital agency or coaching business. It’s strategy, sales, service, and then scale. And I look at it like the way that we put it out into the world. It’s like a circle with like four quadrants and our program that centers around, it’s called the agency accelerator.
[00:31:19] Jen: It centers around. Running your agency from nothing all the way to scaling and, you know, seven figure agency, it has like three sort of areas to focus on in each quadrant. But I see it as like almost a spiral staircase where you ascend as you go around the circle. So you start with strategy and it’s like, what is your niche?
[00:31:39] Jen: Who do you want to serve? How do you serve them? Niche can be, who do you serve? But it’s also, what do you do for them? That’s a niche also. And we get people coming in and they’re like, I do this and I do that. And I do ads and I, and it’s like so many things. And it’s a recipe for burnout. It’s like, be the best at the thing you do.
[00:31:56] Jen: And don’t try to cater to everyone because when you niche down, [00:32:00] you can charge way more and your dream clients come to you because they want the best. And if you’re the go to authority in that thing, they’re going to come to you. And whatever you charge. They will pay a premium and they won’t even have to haggle.
[00:32:14] Jen: Right. So then also when we focus on strategy, it’s like your financial goals and really thinking about what is it going to take to reach them. And when you niche down and you can charge more, you work a lot less and you get a higher caliber client. I know, you know this cause it’s like somehow universal across the board, you know, and so you can achieve those goals with a lot less.
[00:32:36] Jen: You know, running around with your hair on fire because you are working with high quality clients that have the resources to support you. They are not going to be breathing down your neck because they’re spending every last dollar and you have to be successful like yesterday. They’re going to say, yeah, you’re the expert.
[00:32:52] Jen: You do your thing. We’re here for it. So It’s like niching down to really. Bring in the better, higher quality clients and knowing who you serve, how you serve them and doing it in a way where in 18 years, you’re going to still love your business, right? Like, I’ve been doing this for so long and I niched down and I focused on baby and kids brands and beauty and cosmetics.
[00:33:14] Jen: And I love those industries for like various reasons. So it’s still fun for me to run my business and then sales, you know, it’s like filling your pipeline with the right kinds of clients, leveraging the results you’ve gotten for other clients to really draw in the same kind of clients, like a magnet, you know, you’re showing them like, look what I did for these other clients in your industry, and they’re not competitive to you, but they show you that if I can do it for them and we’re talking to similar contacts.
[00:33:42] Jen: It’s another reason why we love to niche down is because in the world of PR, you’re going to learn a whole industry tons of connections and the more clients you can serve with your know how and your contacts. The better off you’re going to be so you [00:34:00] don’t have to make a million great media contacts, but like 10 that will move the needle for all of your clients.
[00:34:06] Jen: And that’s that’s so valuable. So it’s like, there’s so many benefits. I just everyone that’s like, well, I want to Um, Yeah, focus. I promise you life will be so much better for you if you just do that. and then also part of, sales is like, we teach how to get on the phone and red flags to avoid, like, not, you don’t have to work with everybody. You know, you’re, you got to pay attention to that because there could be people that you’re like, if they’re like the string, the process where we’re pitching, what are they going to be like when they’ve actually paid me money?
[00:34:42] Jen: Not anything you want to get involved with. And then service. It’s like the mindset of keeping clients in the door so that you can continue to grow with them and you can over time add services and add value and increase their retainer. So that you’re earning more, but you’re not always in sales mode and you want happy clients, you want them to stick around for a long time.
[00:35:06] Jen: I don’t want short three month projects or contracts and you’re constantly in sales mode. It’s about happy clients, long term clients, and serving them so incredibly well, presenting your results in a way that are really impressive and you’re able to show them the value you’re, you’re tracking important KPIs and you have.
[00:35:27] Jen: Worked with your client. This is a huge one. It’s working with them right out of the gate, even on the sales call to set expectations and make sure that their expectations are aligned with reality. And that’s the number one source of client dissatisfaction is when they don’t really have a realistic idea of what.
[00:35:48] Jen: Things are going to happen and when and they think, Oh, you’re going to get me in Oprah magazine in the first week and I’m going to sell 10 billion worth of products. And if that doesn’t happen, I’m not going to be happy. [00:36:00] And that’s not realistic. So you have to get aligned with your clients right away and make sure that it’s clear.
[00:36:06] Jen: When you’re successful, that you guys are on the same page. Like this is a successful campaign because we did X, Y, Z. And they’re like, yeah, we’re happy. Cause I’ve had people in my community say, I crushed it for this client. I got this publication, this top tier, blah, blah, blah. All within the first 3 months and the client’s like, it’s not enough and I’m like, they’re never going to be happy.
[00:36:27] Jen: And you also clearly did not get on the same page out of the gate because they’re not satisfied and they’re not realistic. So that’s part of serving clients is really getting aligned with them on what is likely to happen and when and then you. Hope to exceed those expectations, but you certainly don’t want them to be like, Hmm, because you never told them what, how media works and you know, how your business works and how long things take.
[00:36:50] Jen: And then the last part of it is scale. So it’s like, you’ve got, you know, bigger retainers, you’re firing on all cylinders. You’ve got great results. You can leverage for visibility, you know, case study, share it on your website, share it on social media, put it on. in your capabilities deck that you’re sharing when you’re pitching, share it on LinkedIn and really like tease out and roll out this content so people can see, Oh, if they did that for these guys, they can probably do that for me.
[00:37:17] Jen: And when you have all of that working together, and you’re charging enough where you can bring in help and build out a team, because now you have the financial resources to support that because you’re. charging enough because you’ve niched down, then you can start to take the things off your plate that you don’t love and work really only in your zone of genius and things that light you up and Get out of the drudgery zone because there is someone out there if you don’t like spreadsheets, there are somebody that lives with their nose in a spreadsheet and they are so happy if you don’t like pitching, there’s somebody that is awesome at pitching and they will take care of that.
[00:37:54] Jen: So whatever you love to do, you can outsource the rest. And then when I say spiral staircase, it’s like, [00:38:00] okay, strategy, sales service scale. Now you’ve got a team. Let’s revisit our strategy again. Okay, maybe we need to increase our rates. Or maybe we did this work and we loved it so much that we should lean into that a bit more and do more of that.
[00:38:13] Jen: Or like that’s where we see the real value emerging for our clients. Let’s offer that as something really unique that only we do. So everybody has to come to us just for that thing. And now you’re kind of going back around and revisiting and filling the pipeline with clients
[00:38:37] Amanda: something in place oh my gosh, there’s such from what it was that I created before.
[00:38:54] Jen: move up to the the process and
[00:38:56] Amanda: then all of a these things are just all, and keep we can continue to evolve,
[00:39:12] Jen: rather done it, I’m finished.
[00:39:15] Jen: Yeah, and yeah, or you just get bored. You’re like, this is not fun anymore. And it’s because you’re not focusing your time and attention on the things that you really love. I mean, I’m in PR, I haven’t pitched in a decade. I just don’t. I can tell people how. I mean, I know how my team does. I train them. I have a whole program where I teach PR pros, the ins and outs of pitching the media.
[00:39:39] Jen: We stay on top of trends, but I’m not the one in my agent. I still run my PR firm. I’m doing strategy. I’m talking to the clients all the time. I’m building the business and bringing a new business. Turning on the tap when we need more clients, but I don’t love pitching. I just don’t like, it’s kind of tedious for me.
[00:39:57] Jen: It’s not really what I love to do. So I have [00:40:00] people that are awesome and way better than I am and they get great results and they’re so happy to not have to do the things that I love to do. And so it just like works really well. And I think that that’s the recipe for building a business that you can love over two decades, because you’re really doing the things that you’re great at.
[00:40:18] Jen: We’re taught you get in that flow state and time just passes. And, you know, you’re just like, I love what I’m doing. And you’re like, I don’t want to have to do reports. I don’t want to have to do, my husband does my invoicing. You know, it’s like the things that I’m just like, I don’t want to do it. You can outsource it and only
[00:41:10] Amanda: all until we get to a point where we can actually start outsourcing.
[00:41:14] Jen: Yeah, and you have to look at your time and how much you want to work and what your time is worth, what you want your income to be. And ultimately you realize, okay, if I want to make 250 an hour, whatever it is you want to make an hour. Would I spend 250 on a very poor web designer, which is what I would be, or like a very poor coder, graphic designer, SEO person, social media person.
[00:41:39] Jen: No, no way. It’s a poor use of my time. And if I just leverage that and gave somebody who’s really good, who can do it faster for less. That I’m actually saving my business money because I get to focus on income generating activities for my company and the things that I’m really good at and adding value to [00:42:00] the business.
[00:42:00] Jen: So, it’s like, when you rethink the sort of, like, I’m not going to sit every weekend for 7 months and do my taxes. I’ll pay somebody, you know, a day worth of their time to sit and do my taxes because I don’t want to do that and it’s not a good use of my time. So, we might get into this mindset of, like, I have to do it all.
[00:42:19] Jen: Or you look at it like this is really me losing money when I value my time. I think that’s what happens when you become a mom. You’re like, my time is so valuable Why two sides of my business? I have the coaching side and I have the agency side, I mean, they’re totally, they’re totally different. Um, all my agents coaching. I think really niching down on the audience that I serve when I tried to be really broad and like everything I know how to do can help so many people.
[00:43:10] Jen: It wasn’t resonating with anyone. And then once I really niched down, it works just like on the agency side, people really hear themselves and the things that I’m sharing and they just want to be a part of what we’re talking about because It’s like, they, they see what I’m up to and what I’m sharing and it’s exactly what they’re looking for.
[00:43:30] Jen: And they’re willing to just be a part of it. And they appreciate, I think in the coaching world, the more vulnerable and open and honest, and just yourself, it’s exhausting to kind of pretend that you’re something you’re not like, I’m not. This is it. Like, this is all it’s ever going to be. I’m not going to, like, be perfectly polished and have a professional studio.
[00:43:52] Jen: Like, I tried that and it was not awesome. And it did not, people did not connect with it. But as soon as I’m, you know, my kid was [00:44:00] coming in and I was shooing him away. I don’t know if you could see that. And my husband’s trying to fix the doorbell and the doorbell’s ringing. And that’s real. And I think people are like, I just texted a woman in my program and was like…
[00:44:10] Jen: Hey, I haven’t gotten back to you because that, that, that, that, that. And she was like, I love that. You can always just be so honest and keep it real. And that’s what I love about being in your world. You know, you, I see myself in everything you’re up to. And also you’re running a business you love and it’s, it’s profitable.
[00:44:26] Jen: And then I know that that’s possible for me too. So I think authenticity has been huge, and really sticking with one. Thing just the one thing that you do and just going forward, like making sure that the community really wants that, but then going full force on that thing until you pick up something else and try to and everything has to kind of work together.
[00:44:50] Jen: It shouldn’t be like a total 1 80 and departure. You know, that feels like you’re building a new audience and you’re building a new, funnel and all the things that lead them down the path to where they, you know, become customers and give you money for your thing. So it’s like, if they’re in for a 3, 000 agency accelerator, then a 97 a month membership that teaches them more about the service they want to offer that really plays into that, service pillar.
[00:45:19] Jen: That we teach in the other program. They’re like, I’m all in because I know how important that pillar is. So it’s like everything works together, but we don’t launch anything new unless we clear it with our community that they really want it, or they’re asking about it a lot. And the other thing is working in the background kind what we’ve already built. Yeah. And
[00:45:55] Amanda: than just having two things that are sitting side by side that aren’t
[00:45:58] Jen: really working for you. [00:46:00] Yeah, and you’re splitting the message and splitting the audience and they’re like, and we still have trouble.
[00:46:04] Jen: People are like, what’s the difference between this and this? And to me, it’s so clear, but it’s like, okay, you know, at least they know we have both things. And I get to explain to them how they both support each other. One is the service you’re providing in the business. And the other one is how do you run that actual business?
[00:46:20] Jen: One is and the other one is like, how do you make the money
[00:46:35] Amanda: We
[00:46:39] Jen: My website is generation Academy and we have a resources page. We have a lot of free content there. And then we also have a programs page and then.
[00:46:48] Jen: Kind of shows the success path. It’s almost like candy land. Like just follow the game board and get to the, but one thing I actually have that for the coaching community that would want to dive in to pitching themselves to the media. I know a lot of people go, well, like, how do I connect with the media?
[00:47:04] Jen: We have built out a peer curated, like a community curated. Media contacts database, and it’s super affordable, and if you’re feeling like you don’t know how to reach the right people, or like pulling up a search and figuring out the publications that might be a good fit for you, this is like under 300.
[00:47:24] Jen: I mean, I pay in my agency, like, 15 grand a year for a database. This is just down and dirty contacts. And we feel like we are boots on the ground in the PR world. So our community is going to say, Hey, you know, so and so just had a baby and they’re on mat leave, and this is the person in their place, or now they’re freelance when they’re writing for all these publications.
[00:47:46] Jen: We update it faster than even these large databases can. So we pride ourselves on something that is. It’s responsive. People are sharing the contacts that have converted pitches into stories for them. And we’re also [00:48:00] updating it. So that might be a huge time saver. If your community just wants to know, like, who do I pitch and how do I get ahold of them? That could be really helpful. I mean, just however, like we have so many things that’ll just like save you time. There’s another program called Media Magnet, which takes what we talked about and just expands it. And it’s like less than 50.
[00:48:34] Amanda: good, I really do appreciate taking the time parting message or anything like that that you’d love to leave my listeners with?
[00:48:58] Jen: Yeah. I mean, again, to reiterate, nobody knows your story, your journey, your transformation, your process, your results better than you.
[00:49:07] Jen: So don’t feel like if you don’t have a PR firm backing your pitch that you’re not going to be taken seriously. I think quite the opposite. publications want to hear from. Experts themselves and they, if you have something again, it’s timely, relevant, it’s really targeted, really take the time to make sure that these contacts know that this pitch is just for them and you’re not sending it to 100 people at the same time with a mail merge.
[00:49:35] Jen: They’ll start to pay attention to you. So the worst they can do is say no, or you won’t hear anything. And it’s like, just go for it. And you’ll learn along the way, like what resonates, what do people say to you? Oh my God, I can’t, that’s like the story from a lot of PR. That’s what people asked me about for so long.
[00:49:52] Jen: And when I pitched the media, they were interested in the same story. So start to think of what, people have always been,[00:50:00] excited to hear from you or like what comes really easily to you. Those steps that you specifically teach, that’s your secret sauce. You know, that’s what you have that’s unique to you to offer and the media would love to hear you.
[00:50:20] Amanda: sounds like you’ve a before.
[00:50:28] Amanda: Where Instagram? I know you’ve got a podcast as well.
[00:50:31] Jen: Yeah. Oh yeah, I do. I’m like, I do, I do. Yeah. Well
[00:50:34] Jen: I have a podcast called pitching powerhouse. I’m on Instagram at generation PR and we actually have another handle called generation Academy. About a year and a half ago, I acquired like our closest competitor. We kind of rolled their whole business into our company so we can serve. Our community even more and so we have like two sides So I have the agency at generation pr and that’s more where I hang out and then generation academy is going to be tons of tips Strategies, just free info on how you pitch the media.
[00:51:04] Jen: And then we have a Facebook group called Powerhouse Pros, and so much good stuff’s happening in there. People sharing, resources, asking for help, sharing ideas, collaborating, just like the happiest friendliest PR hangout
[00:51:30] Amanda: for being on the show and in wisdom
[00:51:34] Jen: Yay, Amanda, thank