Why It's Important to be the Number 1 Hype Woman for your Small Business with Robyn Clark
On this episode of the Product Powerhouse Podcast we are talking about the importance of being your number 1 hype woman for your small business with Robyn Clark from Jewelry Business Academy.
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On this episode we cover …
Discovering the parts of your business you love the most and leaning into your strengths
Why you need to be the face of your small business
Why some really talented makers, artists and designers struggle to grow their business
How to overcome fears around showing up on video
Why it is so important for you to be the number 1 hype women for your business
How to remove your emotions from customer feedback
And so much more.
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Erin Alexander: Hello, welcome to another episode of the product powerhouse podcast. Today is a guest interview with a really awesome entrepreneur, Robin Clark. Who I connected with over Instagram as one does. And she is just awesome. We first connected, she asked me to be on her podcast and then after talking to her, I'm like, I need to have Robin on my show.
She has such valuable insight when it comes to marketing your business as a handmade business owner. And I just love her approach is very similar to mine. We have a lot of similar ideas about how businesses, could market their business and really embrace being a handmade small business owner.
I think you're really going to love this episode. I also wanted to just put a little bug in your ear if you will, to let you know that Robin is going to be a speaker at my next virtual summit. So the product powerhouse virtual summit is coming, april 19th, 2023.
I actually can't remember if I've mentioned it on here or not yet, but there is a wait-list up. So if you go to product powerhouse, summit.com, you can get the waitlist. Of course, I have the link to that in the show notes. be one of the first to know when the doors open. And I'm really excited for Robbins topic, because she is talking about how your sales problem is not actually a sales problem, it's a marketing problem. And that's something we cover in this episode today also.
In this podcast interview, we talk about being the face of your company, being the number one supporter of your business, and really putting yourself out there as a business owner. And what does that even mean for small business owners? Because it is very different for us as small business owners than it is for let's say Walmart or McDonald's right.
Their marketing is very different than how we're marketing our businesses. But there are so many wonderful things that we get to experience and so many wonderful opportunities to connect with our ideal clients and our real clients. Through things like, social media and our emails and. And, just talking to people.
That makes it really fun and really exciting to be a small business owner in 2023. And so that is what Robin and I talk about today. It was just a really fun conversations. She just reminds you too.
Be your biggest fan. I love that sentiment. I think it's really important. If you feel the same way, you're going to love this episode. So let me tell you about Robin. Robin Clark is a jewelry designer, turned jewelry business, coach and podcaster.
She's the founder and CEO of the jewelry business academy, she's the host of the jewelry business academy podcast. And she helps women around the world scale, their jewelry business to six figures and beyond without burning out.
Today's conversation really applies to anyone. It applies to me as someone who offers services and also is teaching people and it applies to anyone with any type of business. I know that even if you are not a jewelry business owner or a jewelry designer, you will get a lot out of this conversation.
Let me introduce you to Robin.
Hi Robin. Thank you so much for being on the Product Powerhouse podcast. How are you doing?
Robyn Clark: Hey Erin, thank you so much for having me on the podcast. I've been really looking forward to chatting to you. I'm doing really well today. It's a warm winters day in Canada, it makes such a difference when like the sun is out and it just feels easier to show up in life and in business on days like this.
So I'm doing pretty good.
Erin Alexander: I completely agree. I actually have been struggling a little bit. I've recently closed my office and so I'm working in my dining room, but the light, the windows, like my husband likes the curtain closed, and I like them open, and so I'm like, oh, I need the curtains open.
I'm like working in a dark cave
Robyn Clark: Oh my goodness. I'm the same. I love all the curtains open all the time. Even if it's blinding me with the light, it's still yeah, I prefer this
Erin Alexander: Why don't we start by telling everyone listening who you are and what you do.
Robyn Clark: Yeah, so my name is Robin Clark and I'm a jewelry designer, turn jewelry business coach and podcaster. So at my core, I'm really a business and marketing strategist, and I am the c e o and founder of the Jewelry Business Academy and the host of the Jewelry Business Academy. And I help jewelry business owners from around the world scale their jewelry business to six figures and beyond without burning out. So that's pretty much my life at the moment. The academy and the podcast is my main focus and I absolutely love it. I think you may be the same, but coaching is something that you're born with. You can obviously go into it as well, but I feel like at my core, My like sole purpose is coaching, so it feels very in alignment with what I'm supposed to be doing here.
And what I love about that, I'm going off topic here, but what I love about that is it just, it feels effortless to show up as your best self when you're doing something that's so in alignment with like your calling.
Erin Alexander: Absolutely. I completely agree. I didn't know how passionate I was about like helping other people until I started doing it, and so I think it's really exciting when you find that piece of you that just is lit up by what you do.
Robyn Clark: hundred percent. And it just feels like the pieces fall into place, because I was obviously in jewelry design for many years and I loved it. But I preferred the marketing and business side to it, design I was fine at, I was average. I did really well in business.
but the marketing and business, and then being able to coach people who are much better designers, who are much more skilled, but don't have those core skills that you need to actually drive brand awareness and drive sales in your business. To be able to walk them through something that they find so complex and so complicated and break it down step by step.
It's just so fulfilling and it's just, it's such a fun job. Like I really love it and I think you must be the same, cuz websites, people are always like, oh, I don't even know how to get started. And I'm sure you break it down in such a simple way for them.
Erin Alexander: I think it's this thing, at least for websites, it's this thing that a lot of people are intimidated by, and I love showing them that it doesn't have to be scary, and it's okay to make mistakes. It's okay to try new things. It's okay to just click the button and see what happens. And I, yeah, I think we, we align on that a lot of, like our passion of where we like to help people.
Robyn Clark: Yeah, a hundred percent.
Erin Alexander: So I know you were a jewelry designer first. I'm curious, how long have you been in business for yourself?
Robyn Clark: Yeah, so that's a really good question. So if you are asking, when I started designing, I was designing, when I was in junior school, I was making jewelry like. From, honestly, age five, six wasn't selling it obviously at that level, but I was always super creative in school, but I was also very into science and economics and things like that.
So my entrepreneurial journey started. I will have to count back. I started in the startup industry, in the corporate world, but in two different startups. So although I was an entre an entrepreneur in those two first jobs that I had, it was a startup environment. So I think as much as I hated a lot of what went on in those two different companies, I also loved a lot about what I learned, some of the people I got to meet.
And I definitely think that those two jobs set me up for success in entrepreneurship for sure. And I know that for some people who are still in the corporate world, it can feel really difficult to Find joy and gratitude in your current job, and that's one thing I wish I had been able to do better was, recognize that this is giving you so much experience and so much training that you'll use down the line when you do have your own business.
And then I started my own jewelry business, I think it was full-time for six years, and I basically left my marketing manager job. Within three months of starting my business, which came to me in the middle of the night, I just dived headfirst into this business world and into entrepreneurship.
And let me tell you, it was a rollercoaster. I do not recommend my approach to my clients. I do not recommend it. It takes a certain type of person, it takes a lot of grit, and honestly, it led to burnout at one stage. That's why I'm very passionate about helping people not make the mistakes I have made in the past, but also implement things in a much more strategic manner in your business.
Because business can be hard and, you want to set yourself and your business up for success. Doing what I did, you put yourself under a lot of pressure where you have no choice but to make it work, which for me, I thrive under that, but I would not recommend that for most people. And then, yeah, and then it evolved into coaching.
For many years was approached by jewelry business owners or other product makers at events at Toronto Fashion Show, on Instagram. And I would hop on calls with them. I'd give them help, I'd give them support, I'd chat to them about their strategy just because I was obsessed with marketing. Marketing is my background.
And obsessed with business, and obsessed with research and testing and trying things out and seeing what works and seeing what doesn't. And looking at the psychology behind what makes people buy, what makes them feel connected to and connected to your brand. And how do we like, go from knowing okay, they need to feel connected to how do we actually make that happen?
Like what are the steps to do that? So I would chat to other business owners, help them hop on calls, as I said. I didn't think I would end up full-time coaching, but it evolved because I saw all way more talented jewelry designers than I was who had gone to fashion school, who'd gone to design school, who had just years of experience and really technical designers, way beyond what I could ever dream of designing and making whose just didn't have that foundation of business and marketing and a lot of their businesses were doing very average or they were closing them down, or they never even got started in the first place.
And the reality is, I say this all the time on Instagram as well, but the reality is if you don't have that business and marketing foundation- You don't really have a business and you can have the most beautiful jewelry in the world.
The most well-made jewelry in the world are the best quality materials and with the best images and the best photos, and you just put it out there, it's not gonna sell because that's not marketing. And I just wanted to help these people. I am really passionate about business and about marketing, and it was just an easy kind of transition into, you know what?
I'm gonna create this program and help you and take you step by step on a journey. Because what I've also seen is I'd seen some people, go and buy books or get some kind of course and get the information or go to Google. There is so much information on Google, an abundance of information, and it actually puts business owners into a freeze mode where there's an overwhelming amount of information and you don't actually know like, how do I get started and how do I what are my steps?
And so I was like, I'm gonna develop this program where I can actually take them on a step-by-step journey. You can't go wrong because in my mind, business, a successful business is an accumulation of thousands and thousands of teeny tiny, doable steps. Like when you break down anything, whether it's building a website, coming up with a marketing strategy, sending out emails, whatever it is.
You break it down, it's a whole lot of two minute tasks that basically anyone can do, but it's like how do we break that down into a really step by step way? And so that's what my program does. And I don't know if I went off topic here, but , that's how my entrepreneurial journey started and it just evolved over time.
Erin Alexander: I love that you just took it and ran. I love hearing the stories behind people's business because, a lot of us do start in one field and we learn and grow and we realize, oh, I'm better suited for this part of things, or, this is what I really want to do. And I 100% agree with you on there are crazy talented people out there.
They don't get the traffic, they don't get the visibility. And really it's not that they don't make cool stuff or they don't have wonderful designs, it's that they don't have traffic, And that all comes down to marketing. And I know you and I have a lot of philosophies that align , we just talked last week for an episode on your podcast, you know about marketing and websites and the jewelry industry and so much of it comes from putting yourself out there, getting in front of people and you know how you show up and even if you're doing pr you're doing any kind of marketing. It all starts with you as the business owner.
And I know you have a lot of thoughts on people being the face of their business owner.
So like why is it so important for artists and designers and makers to embrace being the face of their.
Robyn Clark: I love this topic so much and I know, I'm super passionate about taking, like encouraging jewelry business owners and any business owners out there to just embrace being the face of their brand. And there are so many different reasons for this. But the first, and like the ultimate thing is you are the only differentiating factor in your business.
If we take the jewelry industry, for example, and you look at how many jewelry businesses there are out there in the world. Thousands and thousands. If we just look at, for example, 14 Karat Gold, full minimalist designs, thousands and thousands of designers doing the exact same sort of vibe.
If you are wanting to stand out from your competition, embracing who you are, showing up as you are in your most authentic self is going to make you, number one, feel more confident in the content you're putting out there cuz, it's authentic to you and that makes you more magnetic. So people who are your ideal customer who have the same values as you are going to be attracted to that when they see that authenticity. Now just showing up in a way that you think people want to see you is not the same as showing up authentically. But if I just go back to the differentiating factor. What I see people try to, especially small businesses, is they think that they need to look successful, and so they hide behind a logo and a polished business.
That looks way more successful than they are, and they hide their face. They hide the fact that it's handmade in their studio. They like hide their real story behind their brand, and that's actually what helps people connect to you. That's what makes people excited to buy from you. So for someone who's listening to this, who's like maybe in their first year of business, maybe they're making their pieces in their basement at home or in the garage or at the dining room table, I don't care where it is.
I don't care if it's not aesthetic. I don't care if they feel like it dampens their branding, it doesn't. We wanna see you making your pieces wherever it is you're making them. In your real home, we wanna see what you're wearing. I don't care if you have no makeup, I don't care if your hair's a mess and your community doesn't either.
They just wanna see a real person and there's so much power, for example, in just showing up on Instagram stories on a regular basis, just talking as though you're talking to a best friend because you have to recognize that your community is watching these stories from their homes, from their bed, from their kitchen with their children, in the car.
They're watching it from places that are safe spaces to them. So when they're seeing your face and you're talking to them like you're a best friend, you're gonna become somebody that they know and trust. And that if they were like in the same town as you, they would invite you for dinner kind of level of trust because they've already had you in their home when they're looking at you face, like over FaceTime.
But it's Instagram stories, but it gives that same vibe and it's really important that people show up in a way that it's like we're talking to a really good friend when we are showing up. We're not selling, hard selling. And there's a difference there. What I find with people who are really struggling to embrace showing up and being the face of that brand is number one they have a lot of insecurity around maybe how their voice sounds on camera, how their face looks on camera, just the whole thing. Because yes, it's uncomfortable. You're putting yourself out there, you're making yourself vulnerable to be judged and criticized and people could judge and criticize you. It's very unlikely, but you are putting yourself out there.
So it is uncomfortable. And I was actually chatting to somebody about this morning who was. I just don't wanna do it. I just feel so scared. And I was like, yes, it's normal to feel scared because our bodies are there to protect us. When we do something that's new, it's very uncomfortable, and our bodies think that our life is at risk, so they go into fight or flight.
And so if you're feeling a lot of anxiety over, like showing up on video or like embracing being the face of your brand, it's stepping. Recognizing that your body's just trying to protect you. That feeling of fear is just to protect you. Realize that what's the worst that can happen? Really nothing. You can maybe be judged for it.
Do we care about the people who are gonna judge you? No, cuz they're not your ideal customer. And then feel the fear, take action anyway. If you wait for the fear to disappear before taking action, you could be waiting a lifetime. And so I think for anyone who's listening to this who's Ugh, it's so scary.
I just need to wait till I feel better. You will feel better when you take action while you are scared. This is a very low risk activity. , it's very low risk, and once you've shown up a couple of times, honestly, I see it within my clients within a week, show up every day for one week on Instagram with video, and your body will suddenly realize Hey, this thing that I thought was so scary, that was gonna put me at risk.
I haven't had anything bad happen, and then you just relax into it and I've just become so much easier and it can actually become such a connective thing for business owners. Like I've seen people who are hands down no way am I doing this. No chance. and within a week of showing up, consistently talking to the community, like their friends with them, they have had such incredible feedback from their community, sending them dms from customers who've known them for years, but haven't seen the face of the designer and are like, oh my gosh, I'm so glad, like I finally know who's been making my jewelry. I feel like I know you now. , there's that connection and I've seen not only does it impact sales, but it actually impacts the self-esteem of the business owner, and it makes them feel more connected because entrepreneurship's lonely journey, and that's why community's so important.
If you can build that community around your brand, embrace being the face of your brand. It's gonna impact not only your business, but also yourself and your sense of community and your sense of being connected to the world around you.
Erin Alexander: My mind is just thinking of all these examples, like I know how important and true this is. I have been there too afraid to show up and then you just rip the bandaid off and it gets so much easier. My sister wants to do a TikTok to have some accountability and she asks me like, how do you get better at videos?
And I'm like, you just keep making them and you see someone else do something and you. Do the same thing, like as far as, the position of the phone, the lighting or anything like that. Like you just keep doing it and you just keep learning and know that it's going to be uncomfortable and you're gonna hate the first videos you put out there.
I can see my, like first ever YouTube videos and they are cringey, but people watched them, and they got me clients. Just knowing deep down that it's going to get easier and it's going to get better, you are going to get better at doing it is the key to pushing through those uncomfortable days.
And also knowing that even like someone for me, I have been posting, videos of myself, camera facing, talking for years, and I will still go a few weeks where I like hide and the first day or two, the first few stories is still scary because what if they forgot about me?
What if I'm irrelevant? And then all of a sudden you start getting messages like, oh, you're back. I've been wondering where you were. Or if you don't post for a few weeks. They're like, I haven't seen you and I'm worried about you. And it's wow, these are real people who care about me. I care about them also.
And it just shows you how important you are, even though you feel so insignificant.
Robyn Clark: Yeah, that's so true. And I love that your sister's starting that TikTok account. And this kind of reminds me of a story that I heard of I think it was a teacher in high school who had photography students, and he took one group of photography students who had to get one perfect picture in the whole semester.
They just needed one perfect photograph. The other group was ju was graded based on the volume of average to good photos that they could take. So they were there just to take a ton, whereas the other group was there to take the perfect one and at the end of the semester, The group that got the higher grade was the group that did volume because by practicing, by taking so many photos, they ended up getting the best photo, the best quality, everything.
Whereas the other group was Obsessed around perfection of each photo that they hardly took that many and they spent so much time overthinking it. And so I think for anyone who's like in your sister's position or is like ready to start showing up and they're like, okay, I'm gonna do this, but I'm gonna do this right.
Don't. Don't try do this right? Don't try do this. Perfect. Take messy action. Messy action is so much better than anything else that you can do in business. And so accept it's gonna be messy, except it's not your best work and show up anyway. And I give my clients in the Jewelry Business Academy, this two take rule, which means maximum you can ever retake a piece of content is twice, and then you post it.
That's it. There's no negotiating. And Recognizing that you're not gonna be great when you get .
and it's not gonna suddenly be significantly better maybe three weeks later, but be consistent. In showing up and one year from now, when you look back, you are going to see such an evolution in terms of your skills on showing up on camera, the way you talk to the camera, the way you create engaging content, your body language, and all of that matters. But you can't say, okay, I'm showing up perfect from day one because there's so many.
Mental barriers we have to break through to do that. It's not just the skills in terms of how does the camera, how should I set this up, what should I talk about? It's also your body language, your energy, and there's just a lot of steps of personal growth you have to go through. And there's no way around that.
Some people will move through really quickly. Some people need longer, and both are totally okay, but it's accepting to be okay with being a beginner. And entrepreneurship is gonna force you to be a beginner no matter what at different levels. So embrace. Whatever it is, wherever you're at right now, and just start showing up.
Take that messy action. Recognize that actually nobody really cares if you are showing up in a messy way. I hate to say this, but people think they're more important than they are. Your followers and your community have hundreds of other accounts they're following, they're gonna see you for maybe a minute of their day.
They also have bosses and families and sports and other things going on. They are not gonna be like, oh, Erin thought that was a good idea to post. I would not have shown up like that. Nobody has time for that. They're just gonna be like, oh, nice. Erin's here. I haven't seen her face So keep that in mind.
We are so hypercritical of ourselves and nobody else is. So instead of judging yourself as though you're judging yourself, judge yourself as though you're judging your daughter. If you have a daughter or a best friend, think of yourself as your daughter or your best friend because we are way nicer to those types of people and have more compassion for the fact that you're showing up as a beginner and it's okay.
Erin Alexander: Yes, it really is. Okay. Those are great tips. I love the idea of, judging yourself as you would judge someone else, or what would you say to your daughter, because you would never say the things you say to yourself, to your daughter, and it's so important to think of yourself as a friend and to really be your own best cheerleader. That is another thing we wanted to talk about. And let's like being your number one supporter, being your own hype woman let's talk a little bit about that.
Robyn Clark: Yeah, so I love this topic so much because it's actually something a lot of business owners rarely struggle to do. And it's funny there's so many incredibly talented designers, but the number of designers who will not tell people that they're designers cuz they don't feel qualified even though they're making this gorgeous jewelry is mind boggling.
And I think what it comes down to, Number one, you don't need to wait for somebody to reach out to you and say, Hey, I think you're a really good designer. Like you can use that title if you are making design like jewelry or if you're a founder of a product-based business. I know there's lots of listeners of like just product-based businesses.
You are a business owner, you're A C E O, like claim that title. . What I like to ask my clients, and I'd ask anyone listening to this, is if you're out at a coffee shop and somebody asks, what do you do? How do you introduce yourself? Cuz that will tell us very quickly if you're even your hype woman at all or not.
So if somebody says, Hey, what do you do? And you say, oh, I have a business that tells me you're not hyping your business. You don't really believe in yourself. You know that's an issue cuz if you're introducing yourself in that way, nobody's gonna be excited about your business.
if somebody says, Hey, what do you do?
And you say, oh I am, I'm Robin and I'm a designer and founder of this jewelry brand and I actually make a design this style jewelry, which. Is meaningful and effortless for every day. He has one of the pieces I'm actually wearing, and yeah, I absolutely love it. I have my own online store and I have my products in stores across Canada, and I'm like growing the number of stores every single day.
If you introduce yourself like that and even tell a story of how you got started being like, yeah, that's a really great question. I actually used to be in the corporate world and I realized that my passion was in design. One night, like this idea came to me and I just decided to do it, to dive in and start this business.
And so I actually designed my own pieces. I make them, there's a meaning and story behind every single one.
Telling stories and being engaged and excited about your business is really powerful. So if you are introducing yourself to people at coffee shops or people that you're meeting in that way, they're going to be excited and interested in your business.
Obviously we're not looking for them necessarily to be customers, but it's that energy. If you're showing up to strangers with that energy, it means you're gonna show up on Instagram with that energy. You're gonna show up at events with that energy. You're gonna show up with your email marketing on your website with that same energy of, here I am, I'm taking up space.
I'm worthy of taking up space and I'm really excited about my business and I'm really excited that I get to share this with you, and I'm really just excited for you to get a piece of this and to have that feeling behind my product because I don't care what product you're selling a feeling.
It's always the feeling behind your brand that people are buying into. It's very rarely just a product because if it's just a product, they would go for the cheapest one. And so keep that in mind. People are buying into that feeling, and so if you can, Be your number one fan. Be so excited when you show up on Instagram.
Don't feel hesitant to talk about your business cuz if you aren't talking about it, don't expect anyone else to talk about it. But if you are constantly talking about it, excited about it, talk, telling stories about it, then your customers are gonna start telling stories to their friends and to their family and be like, Hey, I met this woman at the coffee shop today, and do you know what?
She left her job and started beautiful jewelry line because she wanted this in her life and she showed me some of the pieces and they made me feel like so excited. And I'm actually gonna check out her Instagram. So anyone who's listening to this, I know there's quite a lot that I'm sharing, but if you're listening to this and you're like, oh, okay, so how do I where do I get started with that? How do I become my number one fan? Start talking about your business and at every single opportunity you get, talk about your business and tell it in a story form. This is really important. Stories are easy for people to remember, and they're easy for people to connect to.
Try not to ever just give people the facts, be like, yeah, I left my job and now I have a business. We're not gonna connect to that. If you can tell a story and be like, so I was walking down the street one day and I was just having a really bad day and really stressed from whatever just happened.
And then I saw like this dainty ring in the Window of a shop and it just triggered something in me and I was like, I want to work with dainty beautiful things and I wanna create pieces of jewelry that when people are feeling really down or stressed, they can look at them and they're suddenly like reminded like, oh no, like things are okay, things are good.
Whatever it is. This is gonna differ for obviously different product based businesses, but tell stories. Tell stories about customer experiences. Tell stories about messages you were sent. Tell stories about emails you were sent. Tell stories about behind the scenes what's happening. Shipments that aren't arriving.
I don't care if it's bad news, you can frame it into a story. It's interesting and that is gonna help people connect you.
Erin Alexander: I feel like this ties into what I teach so well. I am always telling people like, if you are, if you're not so proud of your website that you're willing to share it with, like strangers out walking their dog or someone you meet on the coffee shop, if I was offered you a free billboard and you had to put your website up there, if you are not willing to take that, then you need to update your website because you should feel so confident and so proud of your website and your work that you're willing to put it everywhere. And if you're not, then that's where we get to work on some inside mindset stuff or maybe it's, some technical stuff of fixing your website, putting in the right pictures.
Learning how to better use Shopify, but part of it is absolutely mindset. I can totally re relate because I have been in that position of being afraid to share and being afraid to talk about my business. But when you get to that point where you are just you're willing to shout it out everywhere, it feels so darn good, and it fuels your passion. And that is like a big part of my brand values is that you are able to do something that really fuels your passion and lights your fire and keeps you motivated.
And sometimes motivation wanes and it can be tough. But then you'll have a conversation with a client who says, oh, I was looking for a jewelry designer, and I found you, and this is why I fell in love with you.
And all of that happened by you showing up and being yourself. Being your number one fan and putting yourself out there, which completely sums up everything we've been talking about today and how important that is for small business owners. And it's also the benefit of being a small business owner. Big corporations don't do that, we would think it was weird if they did, and so it's a really unique part of being a small business.
Robyn Clark: I actually love that you bought that up because I get this all the time. Jewelry business owners are like, no, but I wanna be like the top. I don't wanna be like these little, the ones who are making like up to a million to 7 million, whatever. I wanna be like really making it big. And I'm like, okay, if you look at the top, top jewelry brands, I don't know for the other product brands, but look at the top jewelry brands. I don't know if I can name it on the podcast, but if you look at Mauri, they're a massive billion dollar jewelry company based in Canada, but they're worldwide now. I think if you look at their Instagram, they understand that people connect to people, they understand that people need to see the face behind the business.
And you know what they, they use their interns and they have them showing up and doing Instagram takeovers and be doing like, let's like try these pieces on, or come with me today and see what I'm doing. And they understand that people need to connect to a person and a face. And so they do that all the time.
And there's a lot of big brands that do this. It's not always obvious to somebody who's not looking at it, and I'm actively looking at it all the time. Some big brands do understand that people rarely connect to people, especially on social media, and so they may not necessarily have the big bosses as the face of their brand, but they have these other faces of the brand that are people that look like the ideal customer. But yeah, I love that.
Erin Alexander: I also think that if you could go back in time and if you could see how that company started, it was a different time, but they probably still did some relationship building. We just do it now in a different way and we are not able to see that. Like years ago, like 50 years ago when this company was started, they weren't recognizable.
They weren't these top companies, they all started smaller. And as your business grows, things will change at whether or not you are doing some of the things and that's okay. But to get there, you have to you have to start on the first step. You can't just jump up to step 50.
Robyn Clark: Yeah, I totally agree with you, Erin. And actually, what I would say to somebody who's listening is that embrace how easy marketing gets to be for your business. You can show up as you are. No makeup, hair, however, or dress. Dress up, however you like to show up in your day-to-day life.
Show up on Instagram, be your authentic self. Use Instagram as a tool to get to know yourself even better. Because sometimes people are like, oh, I don't even know what my authentic self is. Use it as a tool. It's an incredible tool to show up and keep going deeper and deeper into who you really are. Like just embrace how easy it gets to be.
And how authentic it gets to be to you. It doesn't have to be this really scary, complex thing. It gets to be a thing that helps you grow as an individual and helps your business at the same time and makes you more, feel more connected to yourself and to the world around you.
Erin Alexander: Yes, Robin I love talking about marketing and I love your approach to it. Will you tell us a little bit more about the Jewelry Business Academy?
Robyn Clark: Yeah, of course. So the Jewelry Business Academy is obviously my program for jewelry business owners who are wanting to scale their business to six figures and beyond. There are multiple different components that we have one-on-one calls with me. We have a whole online training taking you on that step-by-step journey.
And the one thing I'm really proud of with the training is that it's geared towards successful implementation and to me, implementation is key. It's one thing, getting all the information, it's another thing actually implementing it successfully. So the program takes you on a really easy step-by-step journey to actually implementing everything that you are learning.
And you have all the strategies, all the frameworks, all the support that you need in that training. And then we have group coaching calls every single week. And we also have a community. So we have jewelry business owners from around the world who are all scaling their businesses together in this community.
It's very supportive. And actually like the topics we've been sharing today, I've seen how being part of a community helps people step outside their comfort zone because they're actually doing scary things together. And there's safety in numbers, and there's safety in doing it as part of a group.
And there's safety in having somebody to be like, oh I'm nervous. Oh, I'm nervous about this too, but let's do it together. And then we're like, both, we're both fine. We're celebrating. And so the community's a huge part of it. But for anyone who is a jewelry business owner who wants to learn a little bit more you can just go to jewelry business academy.ca.
Or follow me on Instagram. It's Robin Clark coaching cuz I love connecting with you over there as well.
Erin Alexander: We will have the link to your Jewelry Business Academy website and your Instagram in the show notes of this episode. It's been really great talking to you. I have one more question I like to ask everyone who's on the podcast the same question. I like to ask, what is something that you're currently learning or going through in your own business that you're, willing to share with us?
Because I like to show that it doesn't matter what you do or how long you've been in business, we are all learning and growing and evolving as business owners every single day. So what is something that you don't mind sharing with us that you're currently learning in your own business?
Robyn Clark: Oh my gosh, there's so much going on behind the scenes in my business right now. There's a couple of things. I'm moving towards, making more hires in my team, and that's very uncomfortable for me.
It's my least favorite part of business building. I definitely like controlling everything. I like doing it all. I like knowing that it's done to the way that I like it to be done. And it's also, you probably understand this. You put so much of your heart and soul into your business. That giving away parts of it to someone else can feel so scary.
But the reality is I'm being my own bottleneck by not letting that grow. And I walk through clients through, through this as well. And it's the reason I have my own coaches, cuz I'm like, Hey, you're gonna have to walk me through this cuz I am holding on tightly. I'm like not wanting to let these roles go.
But the reality is it's time. It's time. And you have to embrace bringing on new team members and understanding that it may not be done the same way that you would've done it. And that's okay. That's actually okay. And it doesn't all have to be perfect. And so I think that's one of the things that I am going through right now.
And Here's another one, I'll share this. This is a little bit vulnerable, maybe someone listening is going to resonate with this, but I do regular feedback sessions with my clients in the Jewelry Business Academy, and I also do anonymous ones where I wanna know what you're really feeling about the program, about whatever, even if I don't know who it is.
So I feel you get a little bit more truth by doing that and. . I will say the feedback's always really incredible, but I always have a part where I'm like what would you like to actually be seeing? And I don't know why, but asking for that and then getting the feedback what you actually wanting really hits me
And I'm like, oh, I wish I had thought of doing this. Like why didn't I do this? I should have done this. And I get very self-critical and I feel very uncomfortable by the whole thing. and it took me a few days to process and be like, Hey, this is not like criticism of me. This is just to we would love to see this.
And actually I've looked at them and I'm making a whole lot of these things happen. So it's taking things, not necessarily criticisms, but things that your customers are suggesting. And not taking it to heart, but listening to the information and being like, what can I act on and what's not actually going to support my business in the best way possible?
And so the things you can act on, be like, oh, okay, I'm gonna take this on a very non-emotional way. Just take it as information. And be like, okay, this is actually a really good idea. I think I will implement this, and this sounds like a good idea, but they don't know behind the scenes what's going on. So actually this isn't something we'll act upon, but I think it's taking that emotion away from things like feedback, taking emotion out of feedback.
Erin Alexander: Yes, I can completely agree. I do the same thing with my projects and even if someone doesn't fill out the feedback because it's specifically sent to them. I feel like, oh, they must not like me . That's why they didn't fill it out or whatever it is, but it can be difficult to not take feedback personally.
And I know a lot of people shy away from asking for feedback because of that exact reason. So you are so right. And that is a thing that I think maybe it'll get easier as time goes by, don't you?
Robyn Clark: Oh yeah, a hundred percent. A hundred percent. I like to say that business and entrepreneurship is a personal growth journey and I can see how much I've grown over my years of entrepreneurship and you just get more and more grounded and less rattled by things because I like to say this to my clients as well.
Your business is gonna grow to the number of problems you can handle. So if something small when you're making 50,000 a year is rattling. Good luck. When you get to 500,000 or 5 million, like good luck, your problems are just gonna get bigger.
If you can make sure, no matter if they're saying you're the best coach ever, or, Hey, I'd like to see this, if your emotional response is the same. You're gonna do way better in business. And I'm not saying don't celebrate the wins, definitely celebrate them. But you don't wanna be on that rollercoaster.
You want to have a really regulated nervous system. I've done so much work over the past year, especially on regulating my nervous system, and it's just a game changer. And for anyone who's feeling burnt out or stressed or tired, I'd say look at number one, your boundaries and then regulating your nervous system because to me, that's one of the keys to being able to scale effectively.
Erin Alexander: Oh yes. I was like cringing a little bit when you said that because I had inexperience with a client at the end of last year that I took very personally, and there was some like personal attacks, like it was meant personally.
And it's just one of those things that I let completely shake my business and my personal outlook to the point where I didn't even wanna book new clients, but what you said about your business will grow to the level of what you can handle just really hit me hard. So next time something like that comes up, I can work hard on handling it more objectively.
Robyn Clark: Yeah. And it's so tough when things like that happen, because in business you're dealing with people and people can be unpredictable and it's often not even that client going off on you, it's not even a reflection on you at all. Often it's like there's other things going off in their life.
Anybody who is getting triggered and sending like content or information or feedback or anyone who's listening product reviews or emails to you, and there's a lot of emotion behind it. They're not coming from a very grounded place. So I would take what they're sending with a pinch of salt, get the key bits of information, remove all the emotion, and then look at that from it just gives you a bit more perspective.
But yeah it's really challenging, especially in your first few years of business,
Erin Alexander: Yeah, even seven years in. I will say that from that experience, I was able to go through my design process and my contract to clarify where someone might not have understood maybe what we said. Now it is very clear to the point where I'm like, I know this feels like a little, like it's over the top, but here's, how things are laid out.
And that clarity has helped me feel more confident saying like, yes, this is included. No, this isn't included. So even going through, some kind of that was less than ideal. There is learning experiences from those moments that make you better at being an entrepreneur, being a business owner, providing the offer that you do, creating jewelry, whatever it is you learn from those negative experiences.
Robyn Clark: Yeah, that's so true. And I always say that you're just always looking at information. We're just looking for information. Whether it's good, bad, we don't care. Because your business is a constant refinement process and you are just constantly looking at what's working. Okay, let's tweak it like one or 2% and make it better.
Let's just keep tweaking and refining. So you are like refining your contract, refining your boundaries. And that's what like all of us are doing, and I sometimes have business owners who are just getting started be like, what do I do when I've hit a hundred thousand? I'm like you're not there yet, but when you're hitting a hundred thousand, you're gonna start refining what you're doing.
It's a refinement process. Sometimes there's new strategies we add in or new revenue streams, but at its core you are going to keep refining your messaging, the way you're showing up, the content you're putting out there, your designs, your product lineup. It's just a constant refinement process and your boundaries, massive one
Erin Alexander: robin, I have had so much fun chatting with you today. Thank you so much for being here on the podcast. I love getting to chat with you and talking about marketing. We can tell that you really know what you're talking about, and I love that this passionate side of your jewelry business turned into a full fledged business. All on its.
Robyn Clark: Amazing. Thank you so much for having me, Erin. It's been so much fun chatting to you and I'm so glad that we connected and yeah, I'm looking forward to sharing this episode as well with our community.