Why I Will Not "Fake It 'till I Make It"...
I received an interesting email from a very well-meaning lady, and she really got me thinking…
She was concerned about an email a couple of years ago where I mentioned that I have not yet broken six figures in my business (which I have SINCE broken, in 2018 - woot!).
It brought up a lot of advice and concerns for my business:
- I shouldn’t mention that I’m not making six figures and because it is not inspiring and will make people NOT want to buy from me because they don’t see the value if I don’t know how to do it.
- My marketing and brand comes off as beginner.
- I sound like someone who’s been in business quite a while and haven’t figured it out.
- It would be a good idea for me to hire a photographer or someone to brand me and my business to a more professional standard to create a more colourful, visually appealing look.
- Being transparent is good, but too transparent is likely to hurt my business.
- I should focus more on what I’ve figured out and less on the struggle of it all.
There was actually a LOT of advice in the email, this is the highlights of it. I don’t remember speaking with this lady previously but she took the time to offer me a pretty detailed email and suggested I take what I like from it and leave the rest.
While I don’t necessarily agree with the not mentioning not making six figures yet, I DO agree with a LOT of the email so I’m going to break it down at bit and really clarify some things about why I share my struggles AND my successes with you:
Don’t Mention the Six-Figure Barrier
The goal to six-figures is a BIG one. There are many brands of businesses based just around teaching people to get to six figures. There are even more brands of people PRETENDING to be high-earners who are earning little to no money. It’s the truth.
You can look at a brand. It could be super sharp. The pro pics are all over. The color and branding is PERFECT. The business process is immaculate. And you’ll think because you see all that that the business is making WELL over six figures. Maybe they are, maybe they aren’t. You literally don’t know who to trust just by looking at their brand.
One thing I will NEVER do… is “Fake it til I make it.”
YES… I’d love to have a beautiful brand, perfectly put together and relaying the message I want to share with the world but I’ll never do that just to “look” the part.
I share where I am in business because I know it IS inspiring to those who understand this is not an overnight process. There are many of us who struggle and yes, for a long time. It’s not because you can’t blast in and make a lot of money in a short time, you can.
There are, however, many many people who take YEARS to overcome the mindset issue that hold us back. I was one of them and I AM one of them. I NEVER EVER EVER will pretend to be anyone other than who I am and I can guarantee you one thing: I DO NOT have it all figured out!
If you’re looking for a mentor who knows everything and will give you the golden gauntlet from their high pedestal that is simply NOT ME.
How Could People Be Inspired or Want to Buy From Someone NOT Making Six Figures?
I teach from where I’m at. Where is that?
Well… I quit my job as a factory worker, a single mom in 2007 to work from home full time.
I created a VA business that earned about $25,000 it’s first full year.
I grew my business about 30% per year.
I was making about $60,000 per year when I broke my ankle, then had my baby girl.
I overcame a ton of confidence, mindset and just lack of business know-how struggles during those initial years.
I STRUGGLED to find time to work as a busy mom of a challenging but amazing girl.
I work three days per week while the girly is in daycare (plus my “sneak in time” whenever I can get it) and I made a little over $80,000 last year.
(UPDATE: July 2019 - Ella girl is now in school full-time and last year (2018) I DID break that six figure income goal. There was no parade - though - I don't know who forgot to order my six-figure celebration parade!)
While that is not six figures I’d have to say that’s inspiring. It’s real. It’s raw.
It’s not in pretty packaging but you can learn a hell of a lot from me and I know how to do a lot of things really well!
- I know how to make over $100,000 from one program (my WordPress training).
- I know how to add hundreds of people to my list in one go (giveaway events).
- I know how to create successful coaching programs (I’ve created dozens and have sold over $100,000 in programs).
- I know how to run an engaged an active membership site (I do that).
- I know how to work with clients and keep them happy (Over 10 years experience with people who love me).
- I know how to write copy that gets people responding and reacting (I’ve earned my full-time income solely online since 2007).
So yes, I agree… I need to highlight these successes more. I need more people to hear my story, to know my struggles and how I overcame them, to hear of my successes and see how they can learn from them. I have a TON to offer my market and simply not enough people are getting my message yet. When they do, I’ll break six figures and I’ll tell my peeps (YOU) and they’ll celebrate with me because they’ll see it as a guiding light to show them they can do the same!
Looking the Part of the Successful Business Owner
What I loved about this email I got was all the unsolicited advice. Seriously. I’m not being sarcastic.
It’s rare to get an email from a subscriber who ACTUALLY is trying to help me. Usually, it’s from someone who seems to be trying to help me but really just wants me to do what they want me to do because they don’t like what I’m doing lol.
This email… was different. And the part about not looking professional and hiring a photographer I also agree with. Though I don’t LOVE stock photos I do use them sometimes. I walk the line because I am NOT interested in looking like any kind of corporate site or looking like a big company with no real person behind it. I am strategically using selfies because I have a target market who will relate to ME. THAT is my brand.
No… I won’t ever try to “look” like I’m making more than I am but I also will keep sharing where I’m at because I have absolutely NO SHAME in the struggle. It’s made me who I am, it’s helped me help others, it’s been a blessing and it hasn’t happened TO me… it’s happened FOR me so that I could be the person that is trusted, that can inspire, that can help those like me grow, learn and be the most amazing business owners they never thought they could be!
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