Sarah Grear: How the Right Copy Can Get You Sales

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With all the different things we have to think of and the tasks we have to juggle as entrepreneurs, it’s easy to classify copy as “less important” or “low priority.” Why are the words you use on your website, in your emails, and on your social media so important to your business?

In this episode of the Office Talk podcast, copywriter Sarah Grear shares explains how your copy can translate to actual sales and affect your bottom line. If that doesn’t catch your interest, I don’t know what will! Sarah shares her top tips on how to tell your unique story in a way that builds your brand and engages your target audience in order to amplify your sales. Plus, she had some really great resources that I never knew existed but now am not sure how I ever lived without. If you’re struggling with writing your own copy or looking to hire a copywriter for your business, you’ll definitely want to listen to this podcast before you get started.

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WHAT YOU'LL LEARN IN THIS EPISODE

  • Why the right copy can translate to more sales
  • The first thing you need to do before you start copywriting
  • How to become a better storyteller and better relate to your audience
  • How to write subject lines that make your audience open emails and take action
  • The first piece of copy you should create for a new service
  • What to expect when you hire a copywriter and how to prepare for the work process
  • How new business owners can create a copywriting strategy without getting totally overwhelmed

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Kristin Kaplan: Pricing and Planning for Profitability

There’s an old story about the iconic artist Pablo Picasso that goes something like this… 

Picasso was sitting in a Paris café when an admirer approached and asked if he would do a quick sketch on a paper napkin. Picasso politely agreed, swiftly executed the work, and handed back the napkin — but not before asking for a rather significant amount of money. The admirer was shocked: “How can you ask for so much? 
It took you a minute to draw this!” “No”, Picasso replied, “It took me 40 years”

This struck such a chord with me because I meet a lot of entrepreneurs (me included) who have trouble valuing their work and time. How about you? Do you experience this in your business?

Do you wonder if you’re asking for too much—or not enough—when it comes to pricing?

Do you have a financial plan for your business, or are you getting caught up in the day-to-day of serving your clients or customers, to find out that all that effort is paying you peanuts?

In this episode, Kristin Kaplan explains why pricing and planning are two of the most important factors in running a profitable business. With pricing, it can be a bit tricky to quantify the value of your time, and it’s so common for entrepreneurs to wonder if they’re overcharging or undercharging. Kristin shares some tips to take the guesswork out of it and make sure you’re getting the full value of the work you provide. She also gives some stellar advice on how to increase your profits through business planning. So basically, listening to this episode will help you make you money! {wink}

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WHAT YOU'LL LEARN IN THIS EPISODE

  • Where to start in figuring out your pricing (without undercharging!)
  • Where so many new business owners lose money
  • How to build confidence around your pricing and see your real value
  • How to be more productive (and therefore more profitable!) in your business
  • What a business plan should include
  • The one piece of advice that all new business owners need to hear

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Maria Bayer: How to Get More Leads and Close More Sales (Without Feeling Like a Sleaze)

One of the biggest challenges I’ve heard from some of you is finding clients and closing sales. When I have a question about sales, my mind goes directly to Maria Bayer - a sales coach for creatives.  So I invited her on the show to pick her sales brain for this episode of the Office Talk podcast.  Drawing from her sales experience in Corporate America, Maria now coaches creatives on how to book clients quickly and for more money. And she’s sharing some of her top tips with us in this episode.

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WHAT YOU'LL LEARN IN THIS EPISODE

  • The flaw in the traditional “ideal client” exercise and how to attract the “right client” instead
  • How to determine when to change your contract at your client’s request and when to hold your ground
  • The questions to ask your potential clients to reveal what matters most to them and how to use that information to sell more purposefully
  • Why you should avoid email when closing a sale and what to do instead 
  • How to get your client to see your value and gain trust
  • Who should be included in the conversation when booking a client
  • The power of saying “no” to clients
  • Ways you can gain insight into your clients’ needs

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Shanna Skidmore: Finance Tips for Creative Entrepreneurs

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In this episode of Office Talk, I got a chance to chat with Shanna Skidmore, a business strategist and financial coach for creative entrepreneurs. I could definitely relate to Shanna, whose primary business goal is to simplify the seemingly daunting task of finance for her clients and set them up with the basic financial knowledge they need to take their businesses to the next level. For most creatives, finance and law can appear so overwhelming, but as Shanna shares with us, there are very few things you need to know, and once you know them, you’ll find it’s really not as complicated as you’d imagine.

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WHAT YOU'LL LEARN IN THIS EPISODE

  • The most common pitfalls that Shanna sees creative entrepreneurs making and how to avoid them
  • How to calculate pricing based on profit and what to do if your prices are higher than you think clients are willing to pay
  • How time-tracking saved Shanna’s business, plus her favorite app for time-tracking
  • Why knowing the purpose of your business is essential to its success
  • Why Shanna recommends sabbaticals for creative entrepreneurs and why it’s so much easier than you think
  • A bit about Shanna’s background as a financial planner and how she grew into her current business of helping creative entrepreneurs master finance

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RESOURCES WE TALKED ABOUT

** Heads up! Items marked with an asterisk are affiliate links. This means that if you purchase an item using this link, I may earn a commission.  I only recommend products that I love.

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Legal Quickie: How Do I Get a Client to Pay Me?

You've done all this work for a client and now you find yourself chasing down your client for payment.  If you worry about ever finding yourself in this situation, then listen to this episode.  Here's what you'll learn:

  • What to do after you client fails to pay you
  • The differences between litigation (including small claims court), mediation, arbitration and the pros/cons of each
  • The questions to ask yourself before you draft a dispute resolution clause in your contract

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Mary Beth Storjohann: Working Your Wealth to Work For You

In this episode, I'm sitting down with my friend Mary Beth Storjohann - a certified financial planner - to talk all about the Benjamins. 

Whether you're an entrepreneur wanting to learn more about how you should plan financially for your growing business or you want to learn how to take control of your finances once and for all,  then this episode is for you.

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WHAT YOU'LL LEARN IN THIS EPISODE

  • The financial numbers you should know to make sure you're headed in the right financial direction
  • The mindset you should cultivate in order to take control of your financial future
  • What a lot of people kick themselves for when it comes to their finances
  • When to hire a financial planner and what to expect when you start working with one
  • Things you should be considering if you're starting or running a business
  • How to prepare to transition from a full-time employee to your own boss
  • When is the right time to make an investment in your business
  • The advice Mary beth would give to her own young daughter about money

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Join me, Amy Northard (a CPA), and Mary Beth Storjohann (a certified financial planner) on December 6th for a casual conversation. We're getting together to answer your questions about law, taxes and finances.... or just to sit back and connect. BYOB!

 


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Amy Northard CPA: Understanding Taxes, 1099s, and W9s as a Small Business Owner

A lawyer and a CPA walk into a bar....It's the set up for the perfect joke, right? But there will come a time when you'll need to consult a lawyer and a CPA at some point in running your business. 

In this episode, I'm talking to Amy Northard who's a CPA for creatives. She's breaking down all those questions we have about taxes, W9s, 1099s, quarterly taxes and much more!

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WHAT YOU'LL LEARN IN THIS EPISODE

  • Why Amy took a leap of faith to quit her job at an accounting firm to run her own business
  • What are W9s and 1099s and when do you need to issue one
  • What kind of deductions can you really take as part of your business
  • What are some red flags for the IRS and how to avoid them
  • Quickbooks got you confused? Here's another (easy) way to keep track of your business expenses
  • How do you pay yourself when you own an LLC or a corporation
  • Will you really get in trouble if you don't pay your quarterly taxes 
  • The one book we both love about building a profitable business from day one
  • What to expect when working with a CPA

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RESOURCES WE TALKED ABOUT

 

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Legal Quickie: How Do I Get Out of a Contract?

If you regularly enter into contracts with clients or customers, then you'll want to listen to this Legal Quickie episode before you swipe right on your next contract.

We're talking about why contracts are just like dating, how to think about your contracts just like you would any other relationship, and what terms you might include in your contracts to make sure you have a way to "break up" with your (nightmare) client.

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Michelle Loretta of Sage Wedding Pros: Drawing Upon Past Experiences to Build Your Future Dream Business

In this episode, Michelle Loretta shares her own entrepreneurial journey - from being a CPA at a big accounting firm to running her own consulting firm, Sage Wedding Pros, dedicated to improving small businesses in the wedding and events industries.  Whether you’re in the events industry or not, Michelle draws from over 20 years of experience to share some valuable nuggets of wisdom to help take your business to the next level.

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WHAT YOU'LL LEARN IN THIS EPISODE

  • How and why she left her big firm accounting job to build Sage Wedding Pros

  • Her best advice for business owners who want to take their business to the next level

  • Why you should “milk” your current  9 to 5 corporate job even if you have dreams of starting your own business

  • What you should do before you take an expert’s advice

  • How to go about creating your own live workshop/conference

  • Michelle’s advice on pitching to for speaking engagements

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SAVE $200 OFF THE BE SAGE CONFERENCE

Invest in education that gives you GROWTH. (the sun, sand, and tacos are just bonus)

Be Sage Conference is about deeper thinking to take your business to new places… all in a friendly collaborative (and sunny) environment. Learn about:

  • The Science of Happiness and How it Can Better Your Business
  • How to Become an Epic Expert and Gain New Opportunities
  • Ways That Your Online Communications are Missing the Mark
  • How to Get Out of the Wedding Box and Expand Your Business into Other     Events
  • How to Sell Digital and Physical Products Online
  • How to Surprise & Delight Clients and Prospects; The WOW Effect
  • How to Put Your Team First, Ahead of Clients & Profitability
  • How to Grow Your Business With Other People’s Money
  • What’s Next in Social Media? Positioning Your Business for Tomorrow’s Brides

The conference, presented by Sage Wedding Pros, will take place in Cabo San Lucas this November 14-17. Learn about the speakers, topics, and registration hereUse the code “ANNETTE” for $200 off your registration. Offer expires September 30, 2016.**

** Please note that this is an affiliate discount code which means that I will earn a commission if you purchase a ticket using this discount code. I only promote products and services I believe in and any commission received goes to help fund the production of this podcast..

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