Ep 017: How to Capitalize on Your Experience as the Marketing Future Changes
00:01 – Welcome marketing futurists today, it’s important to give you a little bit of an a behind the scenes and an introduction to Mary Kathryn Johnson, who is my cohost on this wonderful summit. Thank you so much for being with us here today. And thank you for cohosting this with me. This has been such a journey and adventure and I can’t wait to see where it goes. Oh my gosh, Kelly. It’s been a blast. I just can’t even believe we’re life takes us right. And we just joined the ride and enjoy it as much as we can. So yes. Thank you. It’s been amazing. Yeah, absolutely. So give us a little introduction to you, your background, where you’ve been and what you’re doing.
00:46 – So let’s see. My first business online was 2003 a and that was a novelty maternity company and, called mommy loves and it was because of my maternity journey, my pregnancy journey that, you know, I just, all of a sudden I got this idea because it was so difficult for us to get pregnant when we first tried, as finally delivering. My first son or actually being pregnant for my first son showed me that, oh my gosh, this was like one of the toughest classes I’ve ever taken in college and I created this design on excel and I just had this overwhelming desire to create this maternity shirt to show the world that I was pregnant finally. And it was a, a, a report card and it said pregnancy one-on-one. I got an a plus pregnancy prevention. I finally failed. Oh, I printed that out and I bought a blank white t shirt at target and maternity t shirt and brought it down to a sports shop where they put numbers on jerseys and things.
01:53 – And I said, can you put this on this? And they said, sure. And I wear that everywhere and got stopped everywhere. I went. And of course the light bulbs went off and I could do something with this and before I could do that, it went into early labor and went into the hospital and blah, blah blah. And then of course the baby is born and I’m not thinking about that now I’m thinking about life. And I pulled that shirt out again a three years later with my second to get the same response and finally went, I’ve got to do something about this, but then I fell and broke both my legs while I was eight months pregnant. So I couldn’t do anything about it. But I tell you this because it’s really part of that journey that, it wasn’t time. It wasn’t.
02:34 – I wasn’t ready. The world wasn’t ready, the Internet wasn’t ready. And so finally, after I got through all of that and I said, you know, what, if I can get through labor delivery, caring for a newborn with casts on both legs, up to the knee, I can do anything. And that gave me the confidence to start that first business and that just projected into finding the next thing and finding the next thing. And, to where I started a podcast about parenting and entrepreneurship. And that was the first time I actually communicated with someone that I was very afraid to approach. And we’re talking a podcast. I had to interview people and I thought I would love to talk to Pat Flynn of smart passive income, but oh my gosh, she’s not going to talk to me. Little Ole me. Why would he do that? And I did it anyway.
03:24 – I sent that email anyway because that felt safe. He was kind mean. His persona online is who he is and I just went ahead and sent that message and he responded that he was my first guest. Wow. Again, each little step gave me confidence to go, okay, well I can do this. Okay, well I can try this. And, when Messenger opened up when Andrew Warner sent out a message saying, hey, we’ve got 80 percent open rates and 60 percent click through rates, I went and responded to that. And, I said yes to that and here I am with a business that I never even imagined doing. Wow. That’s just. And it’s just amazing how things lead. One thing leads to another and you look back over it and you see the journey, you’re like, oh, that’s why that happened. But at the time, I mean, they just seem so random and out of place.
04:17 – And why is this happening in this order? It’s not what I want yet. And it is, you know, I look back on it now and especially it’s, I know it’s appropriate to say, but it really is. We get these messages every day, right? Online. We get these messages all the time. There’s this new software coming up and oh, it sounds interesting. Should I follow that? Or there’s this new tool that I could use that would make my life so much easier. Should I follow that? So we get those messages now more than ever. And we really have to decide what we’re going to reply to. That’s the way I look at it now because I’m in the messaging, right? So reply to, I get these messages all the time, but it doesn’t mean I have to reply to every single one. And I really do now have a, a system of what I’m going to reply to now.
05:05 – Because my time is much more limited than it ever has been. Right? Yeah. That’s a great analogy. I love that, I love that for sure. So I mean definitely we heard some obstacles in there. Was there anything along the way that just made you go, no, this isn’t for me, business isn’t for me. I should just get a job or I should just stay home. And that was a major major. Yeah. Well the, recession of 2008 was one of those, I was one of those, you know, actually, I’m, I’m the opposite of that. I am very stubborn, so when those kinds of things come up, I just doubled down and I’m just like, nope, I ain’t stopping. I am going to do whatever I need to take, even though behind the scenes I’m dying inside going, what’s wrong with me?
05:55 – Why is this not working, what am I doing wrong? All those things. And of course, my husband most of the time said, I’m going to just go get a job sometime soon because if something’s not right. And so he’s definitely my grounding, my, my grounder but I just kept going and that was the wrong thing to do. That was a huge obstacle because I got into debt. I mean, I basically, I was not a futurist in that respect. I did not see that this was what was happening and it wasn’t going to get better anytime soon. I just kept trying to do more, do different, do more and find those people and it wasn’t working. So I got into debt. I was totally just, my confidence was shot. And finally. And is this when you had, you had kids at the time?
06:47 – Oh yeah, I’ve been, I’ve had kids first and then became an entrepreneur. So the first time when I started my first business, my kids were 18 months in almost four years old and, so I’ve been raising them all the way through this and, I just really, my confidence was shot and I finally met my husband, who is also my accountant. He says, you know what, I’m [inaudible] because he asked me why are you still holding onto this? And I said, if it fails, that means I failed. And he looked at me and said, you are not your business. And that was it. That was the shift to let me let go and I said, okay, got it. Gave him a big wet, sloppy kiss and said, all right, let’s, what are we going to do? And so we outsourced everything. I sold all my equipment because I was still making every shirt.
07:36 – I was still completely in my business. No, no, nothing. I was doing everything. I was a wonderful super hero solo entrepreneur, right. Killing, right. Yeah. Then we all start there. We do, we have to write, unless we get, you know, some kind of angel investing. But nope, I didn’t get that. So I outsourced everything, got rid of everything, took a sigh of relief, let myself kind of heal a little bit and then jumped into podcasting because that’s what I knew. That’s what people are coming to me and asking me about. But that was a huge obstacle that I learned. Don’t hold on so tight. Don’t identify with your business. It is not me. It is, it is something I am, I’m presenting to the world, but it is not my identity. And I think we as women especially have a tendency to do that, but even men, I know men that do the same thing and it’s, it’s universal.
08:31 – So, okay, so you did podcasting and then you kind of jumped on the but ship with Andrew Warner and I mean, is there anything significant? Well, there’s lots of significant about that journey, but I mean anything significant. There are lessons you’ve learned and, you know, you and I have talked about this before and I really need a, you futurists out there who are looking for an advantage to hear this, that I think you and I both agree 100 percent. It’s when you get an opportunity to connect with someone like an Andrew Warner, like any of these people, when you get an opportunity to connect with them, just like I did with Pat Flynn, jump, just go, don’t, you know, you’re probably your first thoughts are going to be open. I’m little old me and Oh, he’s never going to give me any time of day or she’s too busy or anything like that.
09:22 – If you are going to give, in addition to have take interrelated, it’s going to be a true relationship and you’re not just trying to take a magical things can happen. And you and I know that I, it was so funny when, when we were on a call with Andrew in this course and I knew he was going to say because he was going to tell who won the contest of the best art and I knew based on the way he was talking that he was going to say you had wanted. And I’m sitting there on the call going, Kelly’s got it. Kelly’s got it. Kelly’s got it. And he said it was you and I will never forget that. That was so incredible and I was so excited that you were going to get to go to San Francisco and meet him. And then all of a sudden he contacted me and said, well, would you like to come to?
10:09 – And I’m like, what? Why know? It was really amazing to have that opportunity and the connection that you and I had as well. Yeah, I think so. It was just, it was just out of the blue, and it’s like, yeah, I’m there. I will, I will come even if I have to because I’m only a hundred 100, 20 miles away, a two hour drive without traffic turns into a four hour drive with traffic. But yeah, there’s no. Yeah, of course I’m going to come and say hi and then I have to interject and say that you did it in a way that was still true to who you were because you reached out to me and said, would this bother you if I came even though you won the contest? And I came and we had that discussion in that in that moment when you did.
11:00 – That was just something that made me go, wow, she’s real and she’s going to go far and I mean you can do those things. You can jump on those things without sacrificing who you are as a person and see it. Because it wasn’t about me. I mean I was, I really did not want to take away anything from the fact that you did amazing work and won that contest. And it was, I really did not want to take that, but at the same time, I mean, if I’m getting given this opportunity, I want to do it in a way that, that supports us both but doesn’t take away. So I thank you for that. Absolutely. It, it was, it, it’s, it’s how you feel. And that’s why I say when you get those opportunities to connect with people, remember every time you come in contact with someone, they have an interpretation of who you are and if you step on them and if you go and just push them down because now you are in the limelight.
12:02 – That will come back and bite you. I can’t tell you how many people, the person I just talked to this morning, I used their services, and hired someone from them. This particular person that is now talking to me about using my services for Messenger. And, when I left them, I, I didn’t have bad feelings. I didn’t want to make it a bad situation. I gave very good reviews. I talked about how great they were, but I just didn’t need them anymore right now. And now they’re coming back and they remember that conversation. They remember who I am. I would have been all, yeah, you guys are stupid. You’re idiots. What do I want to use you for? Or anything like that in any way derogatory or negative, that would have burned that bridge and, and it would have come back to bite me, but I can’t if that’s in your nature, um, you know, I, I feel I would ask you to start doing some soul searching because if you are a genuine person, you’re going to capitalize on these things.
13:07 – Not from a capitalistic perspective but from a genuine human connection and you will, it will be magical. Right. That’s, that’s such powerful advice. And you know, I definitely, like you said, I encourage all the people listening to, to do some soul searching and discover why. What is it that, you know, if you ever have that tendency to feel like, oh, I gotta stay away from my competitors and really guard myself, you know, ask yourself why. And I think for a lot of people it becomes, it comes from fear. You Think, oh, of course. I mean you can’t say that you and I, when we first connected didn’t see each other as competitors. I mean, that’s just the way it is. It’s our natural, it’s our nature. But with, and that is going to always be. And I know it, it will always be my initial feeling because I come from corporate America, I was raised that way and those are, those are in me because of experience.
13:59 – But I can overcome them and I’ve shown that with this situation I can overcome them. Even when I was in mommy loves, people would call me all the time because I was the first maternity store online. And so I would get phone calls all the time, how are you doing this? What are you doing? And I would think to myself, are you kidding me? You’re asking me how I’m doing my business so that you can duplicate it. You know, that’s my first thought. But then I went, okay, wait a minute. There were lots of people who helped me get here too. So don’t worry, Mary, you have what you need, you’re doing what you need, you can help other people too. I had to talk myself through that, literally talk myself through that in order to do that back in 2003 or 2004. Now I don’t have to talk myself through it anymore.
14:43 – I can have that feeling come up and just go breathe and let it go and keep going with who I not what I have to overcome. Right? But it’s true. The abundance mindset is real. It works. It is so freeing. And I don’t have to worry about someone else. I can celebrate someone else’s successes. That’s, that was the first opportunity, Kelly, I got to tell Ya, that was the first time I really felt celebrated story when you won that contest. And I didn’t. It really felt like, yes, fantastic. I didn’t have to feel bad because I didn’t win. And in the past I would’ve been like, what do you mean? Right? It just would have been my natural response. That was the first time it wasn’t. Well, that’s, that’s amazing. That’s, that’s a huge key of this path for you being, you know, the right way to go and sign of what’s to come.
15:46 – For sure. It feels so much better. Let me tell you. So. Okay, so let’s, let’s get into the future a little bit. What do you feel what, what drives you nuts right now about the future? About marketing or messenger or anything related to what we’re talking about? Yeah, I’m really the only thing that drives me nuts about this whole marketing idea of messenger or the future of marketing is when people use it just for lead generation and that these, these people that they’re communicating with are just leads. They’re labeling them as leads or prospects or. I mean we all use that language and that’s totally cool. We have to identify certain things, but when they treat them that way, that drives me nuts. So I don’t build bots just for lead capture to send to somebody else. Okay. I’m not a, I’m not a, I’m a piece in the, the conveyor belt in the assembly line.
16:48 – Just take this person from point a to point b and sell them something that’s really the only thing that drives me nuts. Everybody I’ve been connected to, it’s, it’s been an incredible experience and they’re so willing to give and chat and talk and share ideas and share advice. I’ve paid quite a few people to do things for me, but uh, but really if you’re just looking at this as numbers and you’re just looking at these as a leads, you’re going to miss out. These are people and even though we’ve gone way out into this whole future and now we’ve been able to scale and look at huge numbers and everybody says, Oh, I’ve got 100,000 people on my email list or whatever. We’ve gotten way out to those huge numbers now, but I really do think we’re coming back because messenger allows us to be so personal in our communication and it really does allow people to participate in that conversation.
17:44 – Not just consume it, that we really do have to come back to center. Say these are people and how are we going to communicate with these people? Not Leads, not lists, um, I know we have to call them that, but really we have to keep in our minds that these are people, right? That’s the only thing. Everything else has been incredible. But you know, those people, those marketers who just want leads. Oh yes. Conversations and the people that are hesitant to use messenger and think it’s a fad and, and those that are on the receiving end that don’t like it, that’s, that’s what they’re scared of. Those people that aren’t using it the right way and it will happen. It will happen. We’ll all come against that will all come up to that where there’s a Bot, we subscribed you thinking that’s really cool. And then we realized we’re just a number and we will just, we have so much power.
18:39 – We have so much power or just type stop and you never hear from them again. From that moment on. It’s not like email where yeah, we go in, we unsubscribe and they say, Oh, you still might receive some emails from us. Doesn’t happen here. You how you type stop. That’s done right. Or how someone gets a hold of your email address and puts you on their list when you didn’t ask to be on their list. Yeah. We can’t buy messenger lists, like we can buy email lists. Yeah, it’s, it’s coming full circle. And really the people who are genuine in their communication and treat people like people and are respectful, are going to go far. The ones who don’t, you know. Yeah, they’ll give us a bad name like they always have, but but that’s not going to stop us from being who we are and, and helping our clients.
19:27 – Right, right. So fast forward five, 10, 15 years and this, you know, marketing futurist brand, we’ve got here, what are we going to be talking about in that time? Let’s put us in that space. Oh my goodness. We really are going to, you know, how I, I see this as, you know, how we can, we are followed around the Internet. So I go on and I’m looking at something on Amazon. I want to buy a sweater, right? And, I look on Amazon and I’m kind of looking at that and I get distracted or have to go back to work and I can’t, I can no longer shop rite and I shut that down. I didn’t buy that sweater. Yeah, to. I just was looking at it and then all of a sudden I open my email in, you know, my personal email which is on a t and t and I get an ad right on the side for the exact sweater I was just looking for.
20:16 – That’s just the basic advertising and how we’re being followed around the internet. I really think that in the future we will be followed the same way with very personal communication, not just with ads telling us that, but with communication. So if we were looking, let’s say, okay, so my husband has really bad psoriasis. Okay. And if he is doing some research on psoriasis online, we, I see in the future there may be messages that we get specific to what we’re looking for in, let’s say, not just in advertising but in information. So our libraries. Can you imagine our libraries can be much more personalized in our communication, the information that we can get a and be exposed to an access we will be able to get through messaging apps through these kinds of very personalized communications. Instead of giving us an entire book, we may have access to certain segments of that book that are specific to what we need right now.
21:22 – So I really, I really see our communication in general, not just advertising, not just marketing with companies, but in any information we want to consume being delivered to us in this medium in a very personalized way. That’s, that’s fascinating and that’s really exciting. I can’t wait. I mean to have that kind of access and it’ll be a benefit at a detriment obviously because we can get very single minded and only get this piece and not realize that there are other parts that connect to it. So yeah, you have to be wary of that, but the access we’re going to have is going to be incredible. And businesses, we can educate people beyond just trying to sell them something and get them deeper into our worlds. And really I look at, right now, I look at, I invite people to reject me. Now I totally do that.
22:16 – And before I was very afraid of rejection, right? They don’t like me. What’s wrong with me? Something’s wrong with me. They don’t like me. Why don’t they like me, doesn’t have anything to do with that anymore. I think I’m a pretty decent person if they don’t like my communication style, that’s totally cool. There’s lots of people we just didn’t connect. That’s totally. It hasn’t had anything to do with me as a person. They don’t know me. How could they not like me? So I’ve gotten beyond that and I really do invite people to decide on what look warm. I’m not looking for luke warm. I’m a very passionate Italian woman, right? I want, I want red, white hot. You either love what I’m doing or you don’t. And that’s totally cool. Go onto someone. You do love what they say and how they say it.
23:02 – I want, I want someone really that’s, that’s committed to what we’re talking about. Yeah. That’s. It gives us an opportunity to bring people into our world who are really as passionate as we are. Yeah. Yeah. That’s awesome. But yeah. So you mentioned briefly some of the pitfalls of the downsides, what, you know, what do you think are obstacles that are gonna come across those people who really do just think of us as numbers will also have access to all these tools and be able to know about us a lot and portray themselves as someone who is passionate about what they’re doing. So we’re still going to have to look at this as, as people. So yeah, we look at brands, but I’m looking at Coca Cola and Pepsi and t mobile and a and t and verizon and all these things, their brands. But I really don’t get a sense of the difference personality wise between t mobile and verizon.
24:08 – I don’t really. I do get a sense of a little bit of the difference between Coca Cola and Pepsi because I have a bias. I like Pepsi, so I automatically tend to identify with that brand. But really, if we don’t identify with something on a personal level, I, I’m not as white hot about it, so those companies who have the same access to the same data about us and are following us around the Internet, we’re still going to have to look at them as to whether we identify with them or not, if they and, and that’s going to take time and being exposed to their brand and being exposed to what they do and possibly buying something from them and testing it out and all those things. So it’s still gonna come down to that personal connection. And that’s what I’m seeking every time I have communication online, I’m right now looking for a mastermind, my next mastermind to belong to my next paid mastermind for a next mentor that I’m looking for and I’m looking, there’s probably about three key people and I have to really identify, are they, do I identify with them?
25:16 – Are they close? Which one is closest to me in different areas. And we’re still going to have to do that. So it can’t just be automatic, automatic all the time. It’s still gonna take time and exposure to the brand, to the people to really be able to see whether we connect. So I see that as an obstacle we’re still going to have to face and the easy answer to it is be true to yourself, know who you are, know what you like and don’t like, and it’ll be an easy choice. Absolutely. Absolutely. And so, yeah, I mean, so that’s, that’s how people overcome the obstacles of the future and maybe we can’t identify the exact obstacle, but I think what you’re touching on is just an overall mentality and mindset that can help us overcome almost any obstacle. Yeah. And it is, it’s very, you know, it always comes down to we can use technology for so many amazing things, but it really does come down to the human element and knowing who you are, knowing what you like and allowing yourself to adapt and all those things that we do.
26:22 – I mean, every day we were learning, we grow. We never stay the same unless we make ourselves to the same, you know, I know people who do that, right? They routine, they don’t want to change, that’s fine, but if we allow ourselves to adapt and grow with these new tools that we’re using and just incorporate the parts of them that fit and follow our instincts, follow and develop that mindset of abundance, of growth, of education, self awareness, all those things we can’t help but be happier, healthier, more successful when we do that, and yeah, that’s what it comes down to.
27:02 – Yeah. Awesome. I just think you can’t go wrong if you’re able to incorporate those things into your life and into the way you approach life, and specifically as a marketer, I don’t see how you could possibly fail. I don’t see how you could come out at a loss and if you do you’ll be oblivious because you’ll be happy anyway. So what the heck? Who cares exactly. Work. It won’t affect you so drastically. Like it did me back in 2008, nine and 10. I mean we’re talking years. I lived that way. It was awful. If I had a different mindset back then, but I wouldn’t have developed that mindset without that experience. You know, you have to accept it, move on, and incorporate that and adapt with it. That’s exactly what that situation taught me.
27:50 – Yeah, exactly. So what do you think, what tool or tip do you have for our listeners that just like we’ve asked everybody that they can use to give them the futurist advantage?
28:04 – Okay. I don’t have a specific tool or tip like software or anything like that. There are lots of books you can read. The leap, was, I think that was what it was. Isn’t that what it’s called? The big leap? I think that was it. That was one of the first books I read that really just like hit me over the head. And then right after that, I read the book that’s on my shelf, the code of the extraordinary mind. Those two really started me on an amazing abundance mindset. So if you’re looking for that and you’re getting out of corporate and you need that, those two books I would start with. But really the futurist advantage isn’t really a book. It’s your relationships. It is really your relationships. You can future proof yourself, you can give yourself an advantage with two things.
28:54 – Number one, look to your past. Look at where you’ve come from, everything you’ve done, whatever, whatever job you’ve done. So I’ve been in the staffing industry, I’ve been in the weight loss industry, and I looked to those industries and I see who do I know, what have I done, who have I connected with, who do I relate to and who can I provide value to in that particular industry. And then I look at the relationships in the forward and where I’m going, who do I admire? Who am I learning? Huge things from, who is opening up my mind and changing my mindset in a, in, in the community that I’m looking to, to become a part of. And I want to take some of those relationships from the past and see what connected with me and look to the future of those relationships. Like the relationships now we have with Andrew Warner.
29:49 – And these people on this summit have all come from relationships. You and I have built and approached. Even though we got over the fact that, oh, we’re not good enough, right? Or, oh, we’re not big enough, or whatever enough we think we aren’t. We looked to those relationships in those communities and we took from the previous and what worked and projected it to the future of what we can also provide. And if you come with that mindset every time, what can I provide, will succeed and you will build relationships. And when you build those relationships, that will be your advantage. If you really, truly build them in, that only takes time. You can’t build it tomorrow. You can’t just say one thing to someone and they all of a sudden love you. That doesn’t happen that way. You can turn on a software, you can turn on a phone, you can do those things, but you can’t turn on a relationship. And so if you, if you give and come with that mindset and build those relationships, and if you have something actually to provide, to give, to offer, then you are, you haven’t, you’ve just given yourself an advantage. No one needs to give it to you. You’ve just given yourself that advantage and run with it.
31:08 – Yes. Yes.
31:11 – If I had not said yes to that conversation with Andrew and and going and spending time with you in San Francisco, I would not be where I am. I would not be here, my clients. So yeah, do it.
31:27 – Great. That’s perfect. That’s perfect. Right? You agree with me, I think. I think you do. Yes. Yes I do because I am living that exact same thing that it’s because of the opportunities that I have taken advantage of and stepped outside my comfort zone that we’re sitting here. We’re having this conversation. We’ve got this amazing panel of people that we’re talking to and the future is nothing but bright and shiny and exciting. Yeah.
31:57 – Yeah. And then I have to come back to my day of, you know what I mean? And I have to say this, that gives us the advantage and we can think high level with those things and think of changes and amazing opportunities, but that we still have to come back down to the day to day grind and actually do the work that we have to do. We can’t just have those relationships and think they’re going to give us things. We have to actually reply to the day to day messages in addition to the big messages and do the work and we actually have to jump in and decide what am I going to do today? Am I going to build some funnels or am I going to build some bots? And like when you talk to people, am I going to hire someone, am I going to check my email 50 times?
32:38 – Am I going to just sit on facebook and chat with people all day thinking that’s gonna get me sales or business or what? We really still have to do the day to day stuff, but when we start, when we have those high level thoughts of where we’re going and keep and look up once in a while ago, oh my gosh, what just happened? How did then we can go down into the day to day and do it with, with joy in our hearts, with, with amazing mindset. Nothing feels mundane, nothing hard, nothing feel. Yes, we have terrible days when recordings don’t work out. You know, those days are awful. I hated that day when I all of a sudden saw, oh my gosh, how in the world did that happen? But I was so much more able to get over it and be able to see solutions and not get stuck in, oh yikes.
33:33 – This happened because of that, because I have these relationships and I’m moving in such an amazing direction. Right. And so now that it’s temporary, you know? Yeah. It’s okay to have a bad day to give yourself the grace to have the bad day. Exactly. Easy to say. It’s easy to say not to do, but yes, you’re right. The more you have of them, the more you have that mindset that’s not going to last. Life will go on. Nobody’s dying. Oh my gosh. I couldn’t imagine. You know, that’s a really bad day. A bad day would be very difficult to recover from, but these, that we’re not dealing with life and death here. It’s okay. Even money. It’s okay. Yep, exactly. There’s no limit to. Money is not finite. Nope. Cool. Such such amazing wisdom from my dear friend, and I’m just so honored to be on this journey with you. Thank you so much again for your time. We will speak soon. I think we will. Yes. Thank you.