How to be a Strong, Female Voice in Business with Amy Porterfield

Episode 28

Amy is an online marketing expert and educator and the host of the top-ranked podcast, Online Marketing Made Easy. Amy has worked with mega brands like Harley-Davidson Motorcycles and Peak Performance Coach, Tony Robbins, where she oversaw the content development team and collaborated on ground-breaking online marketing campaigns. Through her bestselling marketing courses, thriving social media community and popular podcast, Amy inspires a grounded, tangible and self-affirming sense of “Wow! I really can do this” for over 250,000 online entrepreneurs. She proves that by moving away from “step-by-step” and into “action-by-action”, even the newest online entrepreneurs can bypass overwhelm and self-doubt, and instead generate exciting momentum as they move closer to building a life and business they love.

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Andrea: Welcome to the Voice of Influence podcast, Amy Porterfield!

Amy Porterfield: Well, thank you so much for having me. I’m delighted to be here!

Andrea: Well, it is definitely an honor. I definitely consider you to be one of my biggest online mentors for this business building, message sharing process, and I am so grateful to you for all the things that you’ve taught me. So it’s great to have you.

Amy Porterfield: Well, it’s always nice and I truly mean this to have a student that dives in and does the work and it’s so obvious that you do that. You’re a little go-getter so I wish I had a million of you inside of my courses, so thanks for having me again.

Andrea: Well, we’ve already introduced what you have done in the past a little bit. Why don’t you give us a snap shot of what you’re doing today.

Amy Porterfield: Oh yeah, I’d love to. So in my business today, what I do is I create online training courses, digital courses. And specifically for my business, they are around this building and course creation and webinars. So I put together the courses and then I do online launches or evergreen launches, which means I prerecord all of the promotional pieces and I run Facebook ads to the prerecorded content to sell my courses. So I do evergreen and live launches and that primarily is the only way I make money in my business.

I don’t do small group coaching or consulting or any kind of service-based business. And the only other thing in my business that is a big piece is I will promote a few of my partners program so like B-School is one of those. You’re familiar with that so I’ll promote B-School because I went to the program. I’m a huge fan. I had a lot of success with it, so I’ll promote that to my audience. But the bulk of my revenue comes from digital courses.

Andrea: I’m really wondering, when you first started, when you got going with your own business, were you thinking about it in terms of personal brand business or was it just something that kind of happened as you got going?

Amy Porterfield: It really was something that happened as I got going, but at the time back then, I don’t think I was savvy enough to know “Am I going to do a personal brand business, or am I going to do more of a general brand that I’m not the face of the business?” I think at the time when I was just leaving corporate, I thought “Well, I wanna teach and so I’m just a one-woman show at this point so I guess I’m gonna be the face of this.” And it really was more into that but it wasn’t an incredibly thoughtful decision because you don’t know what you don’t know. So I was very new to all of this just starting out.

Andrea: I know that you’ve mentioned before that you’re an introvert, so was that a difficult thing for you to do, to put you as the face of your brand or was that something that you could kind of accept by the time you got to that point?

Amy Porterfield: You know it was difficult. So coming out of corporate, I think I have to mention, I work for Peak Performance Coach Tony Robbins, which meant that he was this literally this huge guy. But more so he has this huge presence. He still does today. So he was, obviously the face of the business, he was front center onstage literally. I used to travel to the events and support the content he would do onstage.

So that was my model and I never wanted to be that front and center. I was very comfortable behind the curtain, behind the computer screen and I felt pretty good there. And then I realized, if I wanted to create this business, you know, social media was a big part of it. I had to put face out there; even putting my picture on social media was a big deal to me. I just had never had never had to do that before working in corporate.

So I started my own Facebook page and my own Twitter page outside of corporate and I’m thinking “Oh my God, people are gonna think I’m crazy.” What am I doing? I’ve never not been attached to somebody else being my boss.” So there was a lot of trepidation there. I was worried about what my past coworkers would think or my friends. I was worried about someone saying “Who are you to be doing that?”

So there was a lot of that worry that as an introvert, there was a lot of “Wait a second, I have to put a video out of myself?” I hated that thought. I still struggle with video all these years later. So I think we all just kind of have our challenges and that’s one for me. But a million percent, it was very difficult being an introvert and having to be so front center with the personal brand. I wanted it so bad that I moved past the fear but the fear never went away. I just kind of said “Hi, I see you there,” and I just kept going.

Andrea: So you said you wanted it so bad. What was it that you were wanting? What was the motivating factor?

Amy Porterfield: I wanted to be my own boss more than anything. So I was so tired of my hours, my efforts, my decisions, my creativity being dictated by somebody else. Now, I have an amazing job with Tony Robbins. So it’s not too bad having your time dictated by this amazing man who had so much great content that I got to play around in as the content director. So I got to work with some great, great content and with some great people.

However, there’s still came a time that I thought “I wanna do this on my own and I don’t want to answer to anybody else.” And it felt like there’s like rebel soul came up inside me that said like “It is your time.” Now, when that rebel soul started to talking like “It’s your time,” and I’m thinking “What are you talking about. I’ve never ever done anything out on my own.” It took me a good year to take the leap and actually go for it and ease into it, but I’m so glad I listen to it even though it means no sense at the time.

Andrea: So you had that drive to move forward. Is that something that you’ve always had? I mean, you landed a job with Tony Robbins of all people. What draw you to seek that? Have you always had that kind of aspirational goals for yourself?

Amy Porterfield: Great question. So no, is the short answer. But a little bit of the longer answer is I never ever thought about being an entrepreneur. It was never even in my mind. I like structure. I like following the rules and for a long time, I like answering to somebody because a little bit of a show up in the sense that I like to do a good job and say “Look, what I’ve done.” And I like those words of affirmation.

So when you’re in corporate and everyone’s like “Look at her, she’s doing a great job.” I really enjoy that so I never had that sense of, “I wanna be an entrepreneur when I grow up.” Or “I wanna create a business or do this or do that.” Never at all, and so what’s interesting is that that was never part of the plan. However, I’ve always been a leader, just ever since a little girl. I mean as a little girl, I think they call me bossy.

But from there as I grew up, I was always in a leadership in student government. I was captain of the cheerleading squad. I like to call the shots in that respect and so looking back, I know how I got here with that type of drive. I always wanted to be the best. I always got good grades. I always wanted to be the leader. And so some of that definitely has played a part of “I wanted to run my own business” but I didn’t know it until way into being in a corporate for a long time and in my early 30’s actually.

Andrea: Yeah. I can really relate to that because for me, when I decided to take B-School because I was writing a book and I just wanted to know how to market it. And so it occurred to me while I was in B-School, “Oh if I wanted to do something with this, maybe I need to do something more with this,” and so just the idea of having my own business really came then. And as we got going through the process, you in particular because I’ve really dove into all the things that you had to offer through that experience, it was this dawning revelation that “Oh my goodness, this is what I made for.”

Amy Porterfield: And isn’t that interesting that just comes to you like all of a sudden if you really listen to your inner gut saying like “This is what it supposed to be about,” and you listen, it’s very truth-telling in a way that I just never knew until I got a little bit quiet and trusted my gut in that respect. But I got to say this really quickly speaking of B-School, you and I kind of getting to know each other even more and sharing insights and thoughts, is because I did this contest with B-School. And I asked people “Hey, if you got a great idea for a bonus.” So just put in together a big promotional launch and I wanted to do a great bonus.

So I went to my B-Schoolers and said “Does anyone have a great idea for a bonus that you think would be valuable?” And we got so many responses like probably 50 or 60 people with great ideas. But I chose yours and it was all around the profit plan reality check, diving into your profit, how you’re making money, what are your expenses look like, how are you evaluating this, and how are you planning for this. That idea would have never came about if it weren’t for your amazing bonus idea, which I know that whole area is actually a big strength of yours, right?

Andrea: Yeah. Through that process of being in your group and having interactions with other people, I really noticed that the questions that I was drawn to answer had to do with who people are and how that can translate into a business for people. And I’ve just so drawn to those conversations and then as I would hear people talk that have these great aspirations and noble ideas even a noble message. But I could tell that it wasn’t going to go anywhere if they didn’t really figure out how they’re going to monetize it and all these things that I had never thought before, honestly like it was just crazy. When you made that contest offer, I looked at my husband because he was with me. I looked at my husband; I’m like “Oh my goodness. This is so me. I’m gonna nail this.” And I worked my tail off.

Amy Porterfield: You nailed it! This might be a little bit off topic but I feel but I feel like this is so important for people that are building their brands, they need to hear this. And that is so many times in my business, I’ve had whims along the way because I’ve gone the extra mile. So for instance I was speaking on Michael Hyatt’s stage. I hired a speaking coach. We put the whole presentation together over a series of months. I got on stage and I killed it more so than I ever would if I didn’t spend the time and that created this beautiful relationship with me and Michael.

In your situation, a lot of people submitted bonus ideas with a few different sentences and maybe a little paragraphs, oh not you. You definitely spelled out the entire thing. You showed me where I could show up and give a little tough love because you knew my personality and you know how I like to do things. You gave me examples. You gave me stories and you made me a video to go along with it. And so there’s something that you said about people that would go the extra mile because now you and I have this great friendship. We know each other. We talked to each other about our businesses, like it go so much further when I feel like people are making that effort and I think that’s overlooked.

Andrea: Yeah and I think it’s also really cool when you can be something that just arises out of you, you know. Like you said, it just turned into something that’s really natural and you never know where it might go.

Amy Porterfield: So true, so very true.

Andrea: OK, so now I’ve got to ask you this because this is something I have a little bit of an issue with. I’ve always kind of struggled with a little bit and that’s just my voice as a woman and especially as a woman leader. So as you started in this online business space or actually, I don’t really care what you want to talk about, I’m curious. What is it like for you to be a woman leader and to find your voice both in your corporate experience maybe and then how it’s really come to the point right now where I see you and you’re just on such a different level at this point, right? You know your stuff. You know your voice. You’re really comfortable even though you still feel fear at times; you seem to just conquer it because you’re not going to let it get in your way and that sort of thing. So I’m curious, tell me about the development of that voice for you particularly as a woman?

Amy Porterfield: That’s another good question, I love this. So it has definitely evolved. If I go back into how I was raised. I was raised by a really strict father who always had the last word and actually had the only word. You never ever talk back or show a lot of emotion. I love my dad dearly but that is truly how I was raised. And so coming from that and then getting into the business world where in my industry, you know, there’s a lot of man. There are a very few women doing this kind of thing and so I definitely was more quiet in the beginning. And I had a sense that the men that were doing that before me, they were all knowing. And I didn’t really have an opinion because I was scared to have a voice. I was very new and very few women. So there was a lot more fear in the beginning and I was a lot quieter.

However, because I can draw from wanting to always be a leader, I had this self confidence that was hidden deep down, and I recently listened to a podcast episode of Brooke Castillo. She had a podcast I love and I was listening to it and she was talking about self-confidence. And she was saying that self-confidence comes before you actually do anything. So confidence comes from knowing that no matter what’s going to happen, no matter what emotion comes up or feeling comes up that you know that you can tackle it and that you can move beyond it.

And looking back, I did have that self-confidence that I thought “Well, no matter what happens, I know I’m strong enough to move past this.” So I just started speaking up a little more and little more. What the difference then what I did then and what some of the men were doing is I got into the content. I found my sweet spot. So I would teach step-by-step where a lot of the men in my industry kind of just give me over it and talking about the big picture, the big fat numbers, and how much money they were making in. All the really good sexy stuff but no one was slowing down enough to say, “Okay, here’s exactly how you do it.”

So I found my little sweet spot and I found more confidence in that and my voice got louder and louder. And I never was mousy about speaking up as I grew in my business. So I think it was a total evolution and I will say, it is intimidating when most of the big shot influencers, especially when I was starting out, were men. That did make me very nervous but I was able to just kind step-by-step, I love baby steps, I found my voice over the years.

Andrea: Yes and there’s no question about it. I purchased other online courses about different things and yours always standout as being so much more in depth and clear and easy to follow. It’s just so much easier to get to the end result that you’re promising than anything else that I’ve really participated in. OK, so I know that you were in Mastermind or maybe it wasn’t Mastermind, it was with Marie Forleo for a while…

Amy Porterfield: Yeah.

Andrea: Yeah, it was the Mastermind?

Amy Porterfield: Yeah that’s what we call it.

Andrea: Were all those people in there women and what was helpful to be around other women at that time?

Amy Porterfield: Yes. So for two years, I was in this live, I called it live because we would meet in person four times a year Mastermind like you said with Marie Forleo. It was called Rich, Happy, and Hot. OK, the name pretty much fails me because at that time I wasn’t rich. I wasn’t happy, I was just leaving corporate. And hot, well, I didn’t look at the mirror and sees that so that was a little bit tough. But I did it anyway and for two years, we would, like I said, meet in person and they were women from all different industries and all different levels of business.

Some didn’t even have a business yet. Some had been in it for five to ten years and then I was just starting out as well. So it was really good for me to see other women doing what I was doing further along than me or a little bit behind me and also I learned from Tony Robbins that you’ve got to surround yourself with people doing bigger and better things than you so you can strive and move forward and there was that element. I love that. Marie had done so much of what I wanted to do in my business.

So it was so important that I was around these really powerful women that were driving things forward. So that made a huge impact in my life but also at that same time, we would do hot seats and Marie typically was the leader because it was her Mastermind. So I get in the hot seat and every time I have to admit it, it was the early years I’d played small. And I’d say something like “Well, I wanna do a launch but not a big launch. I’m wanna do a video or I’m not gonna put myself out there like that. I’ll just gonna send a few emails.” And then this woman, Marie, who had gone before me and who had done amazing things said “There you are, you’re going to show up in a really big way.”

And I think surrounding ourselves with other women who have gone before us and will challenge us and will call us on our BS and say, “That ain’t gonna happen.” That was a pivotal moment for me when she said “Don’t play small and if you’re planning to play small, please get out, you’re wasting our time.” She didn’t say it like that but I’m sensitive so that’s what I heard. So I think we need to surround ourselves with people that would be honest with us and it’s hard to find that group but it’s worth looking for.

Andrea: Hmmm yes! OK so I love how you target both the very practical things that practical needs of your students and like you said, step-by-step and here’s how you do it, and you lay it out. But at the same time, you also had such empathy for your students and really care and you bring that heart. I’ve only been around for a couple of years now with you, so I’m curious about beforehand, have you always addressed the heart of people when you’re also talking about their step-by-step process? Is that something that you’ve always done?

Amy Porterfield: I’m so glad you asked this because it’s something that I felt called to do more so than ever. And what I noticed in at online marketing space especially among women, but there are some gentlemen that are doing it as well is that they are authentically becoming more transparent. Like we heard the word authenticity, transparency, and genuine; we hear it all the time. But there are some people out there that are really showing up in that space talking about their struggles, their stories, their triumphs in a way that there’s real truth behind them, like “Look, what it took to get here.”

And they’re talking about their every day struggles as well and I gravitate toward that. Over the last year, I looked at someone and I’m like “Are you kidding me?” Like I have great friend, Mary Hyatt, and she is a body-positivity acceptance kind of niche. And she appeared on Instagram in her underwear and bra and that is the cover of her online training program. There’s a bunch of women, all different shapes and sizes, there she is my dear friend in her bra and underwear looking beautiful, but she doesn’t have that typical size to a body, like she’s putting out her authentic self.

And I looked at that and I thought “I know that Mary didn’t think even a year ago, yet alone three or four years ago that she be on Instagram in her bra and underwear. And in that moment, I thought “You never know where honesty and the real stuff will take you.” And so I decided I wanted to me more like that. So I started to infuse more compassion in the things I was talking about, more heart, and more honesty. I know the struggle. I know what it takes to get there. I know the fears and the lack of confidence. I’ve lived it and I haven’t talked about it enough, so let’s do that.

And just recently, it’s interesting you’re bringing this up now, one thing I never talked about is my weight. I’m embarrassed by my weight and I’ve been a lot thinner in this industry when I first started out and it’s like a topic that… it’s funny, you’ll see me. You’ll all know what I look like but I still just want to pretend like it’s not struggle that I face. And so because I wanted to change the way I talk about things, I don’t need a platform to talk about my weight in the sense that I’m not changing my business. I’m still all about list-building, course creation or webinars but I did one podcast episode and it was just me solo on my own podcast, and usually my podcast like 45 minutes. It was only 9 minutes and it’s not even out yet but it’s me saying “Here’s a challenge that I face, it’s my weight.”

And I talked about the fact that I always say I don’t love video but in my darkest and most truthful hour, I don’t like video because I don’t like looking overweight on camera, and so I just put it out there. The audio wasn’t to teach a big lesson and show my audience what to do instead; I just need to say it out loud so that there’s less shame and embarrassment around it. And then of course, I can’t help myself, I’ve got to say “And if you have something like that I want to invite you to be more open about it as well.” But just hearing myself saying it literally took some of the shame away, because let’s not be shameful about any of our insecurities or weaknesses or challenges. We’ve got to own it. So thank you for the opportunity to talk about this. I wasn’t planning on it but it kind of lend itself to exactly your question around that but I think we all have to have more heart in our marketing in a way that we feel good about sharing. We don’t have to be over the top or too mushy if we’re not that way, but there’s a way to be honest in the marketing that you do.

Andrea: Yes. Oh Amy that’s so powerful. I think that people oftentimes have a hard time finding the balance between the head and the heart. I think you mentioned this before but I definitely agree with you that you kind of have to have dealt with the heart a little bit before you start to share it real publicly. You don’t want to just throw out something out there before you’re ready or before you accomplished, you know, maybe gotten ahead on it a little bit. But for you to come out and be able to say that and bring something out of the dark and into the light and then show us that there hasn’t have to be shame around that. I mean, that is super empowering to the rest of us for sure.

Amy Porterfield: I love that and there was a fear and I talked a few friends about it, like I don’t want my strength as a marketing expert and trainer to be diminished by me being vulnerable around these topics which happens to be weight for me. And so I was nervous that this is going to make me look weak. And so I had to have some reassurance from some of my peers, which is so important to have that small circle around you that they could read what I wanted to say and say “No, that doesn’t make you look more weak, and yes, I do need to be honest about this or whatever.”

So I had to do some consulting with some peers of mine in the industry because you make a great point. I couldn’t just come out there and just vomit like “I’m struggling with my weight. I’m so unhappy. This is so horrible, goodbye!” Like that is offering no value to you or anybody else. So I did need to process it a little bit. I’m still deep in it, like I’m thinner because of it but I see what you’re saying that you got to process it a little bit and make sure that you know why you’re doing it. That was another thing.

Before I put it out there, I kept asking myself “Why I am doing this?” Part of it was selfishly, I wanted to eliminate that shame and the other part is I want audience to feel comfortable doing the same. But I got clear about that. I wasn’t doing it for likes or people to like me more in general or anything like that. But I need to be honest with myself before I did it. So yeah, I totally, I’m with you there.

Andrea: Yeah, I mean I wrote a memoir and I didn’t plan on it. I didn’t plan on sharing inner thoughts and feelings with the world. But as I got going, I realized that this is going to communicate something totally different to people in a totally different way and if I were just to outline it for them and give them the step-by-step because sometimes a step-by-step is important. But it’s not really reaching and touching the heart, it’s not as effective. It doesn’t do the transformational work that you wanted to do and so I love that you have moved more into this transparencies space, I kudos to you for having the courage to do that.

Amy Porterfield: Thank you!

Andrea: Have you noticed the difference in engagement with your students because of that?

Amy Porterfield: So it’s just happened. I didn’t put the episode out yet, however, I have noticed that when I get on video, especially with my private Facebook groups with my students, I am more at ease, just a little bit but it was very apparent. And I know that when I’m more at ease, I am more willing to share with my audience and accept and listen and all good stuff. So I can’t imagine it’s not going to make a difference.

Andrea: Yes, and I’m wondering too about just in general as you have shared more heart, has that changed the relationship with your audience?

Amy Porterfield: Yes, yes definitely. I feel that they have a sense that I’m their friend. Although, we’ve never met, when I met in person with people, more often than not, I will hear them say, I feel like you could be my bestfriend. And I know what that feels like with my people that I follow and feel really connected to and so that’s what I live for. I live for the fact that they have that connection. So 100%, they feel like that they know me. They love when I talk about with my mistakes because I’m more human to them, so yes 100%.

Andrea: We’re really dwelling on this voice stuff that I’m loving this. I have a couple more questions that I actually came from some of your students and one of those questions has to do with fear. How do you handle it now versus how you handled it maybe 10 years ago or five years ago?

Amy Porterfield: So how do I handle, say that again?

Andrea: How do you handle fear? Like if you have fear, soft out, you just now told us what you’re doing now which is more being transparent about it. How has that changed over the years?

Amy Porterfield: Before, I would let it consumed me to be quite honest so I’d be fearful. And what would happen is that it would stop me from experimenting in my business or taking big chances and so I played it really safe in the beginning. And here’s what happened, for the first two years in my business when I left corporate, I was doing social media marketing for big businesses as my own business.

So I was in the trenches working on their social media, posting for them, doing analytics all that good stuff. And I hated it and I was so fearful that I won’t be able to make money on my own that I wouldn’t have enough customers or have business model that didn’t work. I wanted to create online training program but I was so fearful because I didn’t know how to do it that I started to just take a bunch of clients for social media. So my fear led to building a business when leaving corporate for two years that I hated. I didn’t like having a bunch of clients. I didn’t like the business I created but my fear was driving my decisions I was making.

I’m not happy and this is why I left corporate, this isn’t worth it. The hours were longer. The pay wasn’t as good. There was no security in it and I didn’t like the people I was working with and so that’s finally when I said, “Okay, I see the fear. I hear the fear but I’m going to do it anyway.” And that’s when I let go all of my clients and started creating my online training programs. I’m still not sure that’s going to work out but I was just so tired of letting that fear drive me. So it stayed with me for the first two years of leaving corporate.

Andrea: Do you think that you’ve gotten more courageous as you confronted your fears?

Amy Porterfield: Oh yeah. It was like every time I would do it in spite of the fear, I would grow more as an entrepreneur, every single time. So now, I’m working on some stuff in my business and some things might not go as I had I hoped or planned and I’m fearful of that because they’re new things, new experiences. I’m very fearful in the sense I could feel the fear right now just talking about it and thinking about it. I could feel it kind of bubbly enough inside me.

And when I do, this is so very true because I was talking to my husband about this, I tell myself, no matter what happens, no matter the feelings that come up, the emotions come up, the circumstances of whatever happens, I know I can rise above up. It might not be pretty for a while. I might be in the fetal position for a little bit but I know based on my track record, I will be fine and that’s the cool thing about slowly but surely pushing past that fear. All of those little wins are evidence that you are going to be okay even if it’s a little tough for a while.

Andrea: So good. Let’s move in to talking a little bit more about strategy and tactics and this stuff that you really dive into so well on your own podcast and all of your trainings and things. I definitely want to make sure we touch on this before we’re done because this is your specialty. What do you say are the most important building blocks? If somebody is going to use their own personal brand or even if it’s not a personal brand but somehow they’re building a business around themselves, what are the things that you feel like are really important to understand or know about yourself so that you can move forward?

Amy Porterfield: One of the things that you want to understand about yourself in order to move forward, did I get the question right?

Andrea: [34:43]

Amy Porterfield: OK so a few things that you want to get really clear about is number #1, who is your ideal avatar? Who do you want to speak to and importantly, who do you want to ultimately work with, because getting clear about who you’re marketing to kind of like one of the biggest steps that you really need to figure out. You don’t have to have it all figured out but you got to start somewhere. And so getting that done on paper and saying “This is who I want to attract,” is one of those things that you just need to know in order to start building your business.

Another thing is you got to be clear on your messaging. So who is it that you want to talk to and what do you want to talk about? What do you want to stand for? What do you believe in? What do you love to teach because you know you can get people results, whether it’d be physical results or results in their business or their mindset or whatever it might be. You’ve got have a message that leads to something that will improve their life. And then from there, I think it’s also important that you start to think about what you want to sell.

So you might have not figured this out yet. A lot of my students don’t. They’re just building their list and putting out great value to attract that avatar but eventually sooner than later, I’d like to see you put a stake in the ground and say “This is what I want to sell.” And then you can decide from there on how do you want to package it? Do you want to do live workshops, masterminds, digital courses, live events, whatever that is? First, get clear on what is it? What kind of information or physical product do you want to sell and then we can talk about how you kind of wrap it all. But these are things that are important for you to consider because they really dictate the type of business model you want to create.

Andrea: And you mentioned building an email list and I know that this is such a foundational part of what you talk about. What exactly does that mean and why is it so important?

Amy Porterfield: Yes. So I would say that the energy of your business is directly tied to the strength of your email list. And the reason you need email list, which are just people signing up let’s say for your newsletter or for a really great freebie or checklist then get on your email list and then you start nurturing that relationship by communicating with them let’s say on a weekly basis. The reason why that email list is such a huge asset in your business is that you basically own it and you get to control it. Facebook changes tomorrow and algorithm changes and none of your stuff is getting seen.

Instagram is constantly changing right now because they’re growing so rapidly. They could change something and it totally takes away from the strategies you had in place. You never know. Never build your business on top of social media. I see social media as icing on the cake. But my foundation is what I sell and who I’m selling to, and who I’m selling to is my email lists. So I would never have a success of building a multimillion dollar business without my email list. That is cool response to my promotions the most.

They might see in on social media but with an email come and says “Here’s the link to buy now.” It’s way more powerful in email than it will ever be on social media, so you really do want make it a priority to focus on this building.

Yes. When you do build your email list, you kind of guide people through a process from there. You don’t just send an email every once a while and throw something at every once in a while. You have a meticulous plan that guides people through process, to the point where they know whether or not they want to buy something from you. And that’s been really inspiring for me because I hate the idea of selling. I absolutely hate it and I think a lot of people do. But at the same time, when you look at it, you know when you’re offering something to somebody that could help them and it definitely changes things. Do you have any suggestions for us if we are looking at selling? Whys is it the people are so happy to buy from you?

Amy Porterfield: Hmmm, why are they so happy to buy from me? OK, so here’s a few things. I am very intentional with my marketing in general but also with my promotions, and so I think that people are willing to buy because I am not pushing the product or whatever it is I have in front of them in a way that they feel like “Oh my gosh, this feels aggressive,” because I don’t like that kind of marketing either. So what I mean by that is I ease into my marketing just like I ease in everything else I do in my life. So that means that I might start out with a really great blog post with a great freebie kind of get in their feet wet around the topic that I want to sell.

And then from there, I’m inviting them to a webinar and on the webinar, I give, give, give before I ask anything in return. And I think it’s important to remember. I have this motto when I do a webinar because on all my webinar I sell but on my webinar, I had this motto that says no matter if they buy or not, they walk away today feeling excited, inspired, and driven to take action no matter if they buy or not.

And so if I’m coming from a place of total service knowing that not everyone’s going to buy but I want them to walk away feeling really, really good about what they just learned that come across as trust and affinity with my audience. So I really do believe that it’s a mindset kind of thing. Give more than you take. And I always say I’ve got to earn the opportunity to ask for somebody to buy something and the important thing is giving great impeccable free content again and again and again just like you’re doing on this podcast. You give, give, give and when it’s time for you to say “I’ve got something incredible for you to check out, your audience is listening.

Andrea: Is that something that you kind of did naturally or did you figure that model out on your own? Or is it something that gleaned from other people along the way?

Amy Porterfield: I want. I definitely, you know, I would come back to Tony Robbins because he taught me so much about being an entrepreneur. But he also taught me that you want to model the best of the best, not copy them but model what they’re doing. There’s no need to reinvent the wheels especially in the market I’m in. It’s oversaturated anyway. People are doing a lot of stuff here.

And so because of that, I would watch Michael Hyatt, Marie Foleo, and some others in the industry that I knew were doing great things and I love their style and never felt like they were too pushy and so I studied. I made a big study of what are they doing. How are they saying it. When are they saying it. So I became a student of the type of marketing that felt good to me and I modeled it then I kind of made up my own.

Andrea: Yeah that’s some really good advice. You also seem to really get focused on not offering too many different things like I think you mentioned before to just have three offerings. Don’t have these whole smorgasbords of things you could pick from and maybe it’s not just three but you get really focused. Why is focus so important when it comes to your strategy for your product offering?

Amy Porterfield: You know a lot of people are chasing the next shiny thing and it’s so easy to say “You wanna do this, you wanna do that.” I have a good girlfriend that I watch her, and she’s not making the kind of money she wants to make and she has an audience. She has an email list and she is constantly changing directions, “I wanna do this. I wanna do that. What about this? I wanna create this.” And nothing gets completed and so I understand why that happens. I truly do, but I feel like the secret to success here is that you commit to something and you get to the finish line.

There are five things right now that I would love to be working on my business. But I’m not even entertaining the idea until I reach my commitment of finishing this program that I’m redoing. I’m literally down to like three videos but I can’t move on because I give myself my word and my team my word. And so quite honestly, my students are waiting for it. I’ve talked about it too much. That’s another thing. If you really want to hold yourself accountable and get really focused, tell your audience what you’re doing. And if you’re a person of integrity which I’m assuming you are, you’re not going to be away from that.

These things that I’m doing, I’m redoing a program, I told my audience “Who’s going to be out there?” And quite honestly, I said I’m going to be out there a little sooner than I was able to do. So now, I’m really committed to get it done because I actually miss the small deadline. So share with your audience, it will keep you more accountable. But I do feel that it’s just one thing at a time get to completion and that’s where confidence comes in as well and then when completed that “Alright, here I go.” There’s major momentum in that.

Andrea: Yes, yes. That’s something I definitely took away from you. OK this has been amazing. If you could just say one thing to the person that’s listening, and some of the people listening might already thinking about doing something. They might be doing something on their own. They might have their business or thinking about doing a business. There might be also some people in the audience who actually have some really amazing expertise in their job but maybe they toyed with this idea of doing something different. What would you have to say to them about what it’s like or why you would encourage them to explore the idea of becoming an entrepreneur?

Amy Porterfield: I would say that I don’t think you’ve ever experienced true freedom in your creativity, in your time, in your effort until you are the one calling the shots. And I also know it’s not for everybody. I have some friends that would hate being an entrepreneur because there’s more uncertainties. It’s a little bit scary at times when you’re just starting out. However, if you have that desire to call the shots and you don’t want to answer to anybody and you want complete freedom with your creativity.

And one more thing, you want to build a lifestyle that you absolutely love. I believe when you do entrepreneurialship right that the sky is the limit. You do get to free that life that you want. It’s funny a lot of the time there’s something is going kind of tough in my business, I’ll complain to my husband, Hobie, and I’ll say “Uh, I’ve got to record one more video and I’m gonna be working till 11:00 o’clock tonight. And he’ll say “You should talk to your boss about that.” And I realized, “Wait a second. I’m creating a silly deadline.” And is like “What am I doing?” And it puts me right back into “I’m calling the shots and I’m not working ‘til 11:00 o’clock tonight.”

So anyway, it really comes back to freedom and creativity and really owning your lifestyle however you want it to be. And I do believe that you are held back in corporate in that sense. So if you have those desires, I really hope that anybody listening is going to at least explore them.

Andrea: Alright, Amy. So if people are wanting to find you, it’s not going to be difficult but where would you like to direct them?

Amy Porterfield: Thanks a lot for asking. I’m at, and my podcast is Online Marketing Made Easy.

Andrea: Thank you so much for being here today and thank you for your voice of influence in my own life and my business and the ripple effects that that has in other people not just me but all of your students and the people that they serve as well.

Amy Porterfield: Oh I’m so very happy to be here. I’m so glad we have found each other and we are friends and I hope this little podcast audio makes its way that people I’ve seen away that makes a big impact. So thanks again!