market like a mofo Archives - Page 2 of 7 - ⚡️Kristen Kalp

Posts in "market like a mofo" Category — Page 2

3 ways to actually love marketing (for real for real)

If you’ll kindly recall my slightly made-up but quite accurate modes of keeping business time from this That’s What She Said podcast, there are three types of time we have in every day.

Magic time, which is dedicated to doing the work that only you can do;
muggle time, which is dedicated to taking care of the physical world work that simply must be done;
and mogul time, the often-overlooked time in which you show the world your work and ask people of the world to buy it.

In this episode of That’s What She Said, we delve into not only routinely completing mogul time, but learning to actually love it.

I’ll take a guess at what’s keeping you from moguling in the first place, share ten starting points for your moguling practice, and throw down with kind-but-honest, practical-but-potentially-painful observations about what why you might hate marketing your business right now.

Also: castles! Angry alligators! Snail mail! Listen in to get the most practical, simple, and effective marketing advice I’ve given in years.

P.S. If you wanna get better at marketing, you’ll need a marketing calendar, an e-mail list, and a free copy of Go Your Own Way. Go get ’em!

29 ways to stop hiding in your business. (i.e. My tiny encyclopedia of failed attempts to hide.)

You have a business and sure, you’d like to be seen a little.

But not like…BE SEEN be seen.

You want peeps to give you money, but that doesn’t mean you want to actually be vulnerable in any capacity! Can’t people just see THE REAL YOU without your having to go through the exquisite torture of actually showing them who you actually are…!!??

I feel you. Here are the most common ways I call people out when I find ’em hiding — all of which I’ve tried to do, and failed. Instead of phrasing these as negatives, I made ’em actionable and positive and shit, but that’s only to make them seem less scary. This shit is terrifying.

+ Accept compliments.
+ Don’t lead with price.
+ Throw out those clothes you bought because they’re practical but in no way reflect who you really are, but they were on sale at Target that one time. Matching cardigan sets, I’m looking at you.
+ Admit that you believe in magic. Big Magic, even.
+ No, really. Accept compliments.
+ Give up on reaching the “next level” and do exactly what you want. At this level. 😉
+ Let your peeps know you love ’em. Out loud and in writing and as often as possible.
+ Tell everyone you’re an empath.
+ Reclaim your energy.
+ Create offers you would personally jump to purchase, even though they make no ‘sense’ to your peers.
+ Let out your weird.
+ Add your face to your bio.
+ Add your face to your not-bio, but somewhere else on your website.
+ Get paid, dammit.
+ Color your hair that crazy color.
+ Pause taking any more free, unpaid, or volunteer work until your business pays your bills.
+ Make up a ritual and use it. Then tell someone about it.
+ Share clients’ kind words and testimonials in three different spots on your website.
+ Tell a story that makes you cry.
+ Not even kidding. Compliments, friend. Let ’em in.
+ Tell the truth about when you feel like an outsider.
+ Share your creative process.
+ Ask your peeps if they wanna hang out.
+ Stop giving a fuck.
+ Be brave enough to do it all wrong.
+ Delete all the classes, freebies, or info products that are irrelevant to where you are right now.
+ Show us what a day in your life looks like.
+ Expand.
+ Put your hood down, take your hat off, and/or wear the sparkly shoes. They were never fooling anyone, anyway.

Oh, and.  Bookmark/pin/save this post for the next time you catch yourself hiding.  When you’re feeling brave, give another one or two or twelve a whirl!

How to be weird in a way that attracts your peeps + builds your business

Recently, I had a new dominatrixing client referred to me by one of my most trusted peeps, and yet I was really hesitant to get on our first call together. Online, this woman appeared to be chic and elegant, styled and fancy. (All things I am not, as evidenced by everything I’ve ever created ever.)

When we got on the phone, this delightful creature told funny stories and made me laugh and told me all about her struggles with finding clients. That’s when it clicked: you’re not the person you appear to be online!

You’re MORE than that. Yes, you like pretty and girly stuff, but you’re also prone to making “That’s what she said” jokes. You enjoy a styled shoot just like the next person, but you’re also the one encouraging the bride to shoot hoops at her wedding.

My fantastic client was leaving out the “and” because being girly and wonderfully weird is way more vulnerable than defaulting to girly. Adoring details and making memories with clients is not as clear cut a line as simply beautifully arranging wedding bits and bobs to show off on Instagram.

She was dimming down her weird and was about 14.2 miles down the yellow brick Kinfolk road, posting perfect image after perfect image and giving her true peeps no chance of seeing her weird.

This, then, is a guide for bringing your weird to light without freaking out, going too far, or pushing all your peeps away in a flurry of strangeness.

First, assess your weird.

If the person I would meet in person, just the two of us at 7pm on a Tuesday isn’t exactly the same as the person you are online, you’ve got room to add your weird into the mix.

Weird means quirky, unique, interesting, and YOU.

Weird does NOT mean unprofessional.

Let’s divorce the two things, shall we?

Let’s separate your quirks from your professionalism: ability to treat people kindly, to respond to communications in a timely fashion, to ship products, to deliver services, and to do what you say you’re going to do across the board.

My inability to wear socks until it is absolutely necessary at some frigid point in October in no way impacts my ability to be on time for our scheduled coaching calls.

My love of Harry Potter doesn’t prevent me from being fully present and capable of supporting my clients when they need me most.

My love of the word “Fuckbuckets” doesn’t keep me from delivering sound, cash-making, heart-centered business advice for my peeps. If anything, it frees them up to be themselves. My last few dominatrixing clients have doubled their businesses when they stopped trying to fit in and let their weird bits hang out.

Also: ‘weird’ is another word for ‘vulnerable.’

It’s not easy to show people your quirks. Your brain’s job is to convince you that everyone wants to see only your pretty, pretty perfect life. What if people judge your house, your hair, your pets, your kids, your business, your life? What if they think your ninja moves are strange, or your book collection is stupid, or your devotion to black coffee is pretentious?

Brain wants you to play it safe and hedge your bets by showing people varying degrees of perfection porn. Your meticulously organized closets, your freshly arranged flowers, and your darling workspace are much easier to show off than your windblown hair, your chipped old mug, and your 6-day old bouquet that is starting to smell funny but that you still love because your kids picked those flowers for you.


Your peeps — the ones who will adore you and keep you in business for years to come — can’t love you if you don’t show them who you are.
They can only love what they’re shown.

If what you’re showing people isn’t all the way deep-down true, you’ll end up resenting your clients, hating your business, and resenting the shit out of everyone who lines up to give you money.

Fun, eh?

You don’t show people the real you, then they like the not-real you, then you assume that no one could possibly like the real you because no one currently does…because you’re not showing it to them. DO YOU SEE THE MADNESS OF THIS CYCLE.

Further. Weirdness and vulnerability are what we want from everyone else, but we’re the least willing to give to others first. It’s like a new couple in love having a hanging-up-the-phone fight:

You be vulnerable first!
No, you!
No, YOU!

Only no one goes first, and then we default to pretending we’re fine and exchanging social pleasantries.

::bashes head on desk::
::inserts Starbucks IV drip to counteract the boredom::

“Vulnerability is our most accurate measurement of courage.” — Brene Brown

Be courageous in small doses. You don’t have to go from referring yourself exclusively in the third person and keeping all your clients at arm’s length to suddenly telling us about every sexual encounter you’ve ever had, or every dream you nourish in secret, or cataloging your grossest habits and calling out each one, body part by body part.

Vulnerability is a practice. You can open a little every day.

No need to treat it as an all-or-nothing deal. You can start with a list of quirky yet harmless facts.

Here, I’ll go first:

+ I can’t wear high heels unless I’m the Maid of Honor in your wedding. Even then, I’ll have had my dress tailored to go barefoot at the reception.

+ My aspirational self is Martha-motherfucking-perfection-Stewart and my actual self uses Mod Podge and glitter for every craft project I undertake. Everything else is too complicated.

+ I can’t even look in the general direction of Kinfolk magazine. I want to walk into every scene and yell, “Bored!” before throwing glitter everywhere and ruffling up all the perfect scenes. (I’m really bad at perfection porn of all kinds, I’ve learned.)

+ My belly doesn’t like dairy, but ice cream is still my favorite favorite food. I understand that this is stupid AND YET chocolate marshmallow.

+ I invited everyone in the Fuck Yah Club to go watch Quidditch with me on Saturday. Because why not?

When you’re willing to show people the real you, they can actually fucking love the real you, and then you can make some friends that you actually adore who happen to sometimes give you money. (Some people call them ‘clients.’)

This is, I assure you, a far better fate than trying to remain “professional” while resenting the shit out of your clients, eroding your love of your work, and pretending to be someone else for the rest of your days.

Let your weird out.

Regale us with your strange habits.

Refuse to hide behind small moments of perfection.

We can’t wait to love you, just as you are. (Now, who wants to glitter craft with me!?)

***********Oh, and! This is important. You can take on weird at your own pace. You don’t have to show us your deepest wounds or unhealed bits. You don’t have to talk about anything you’re going through until you’re past the gaping wound phase.

In other words: please don’t try teaching us lessons about grief three days after your fiancee dies. Don’t teach us about anxiety when you’re experiencing a string of unexplained attacks that you and your doctor haven’t quite figured out. Don’t teach us about bankruptcy while you’re still crying on the floor every night and you’re $94,247.56 in the hole.

Give yourself a little room to heal, okay?

The point of letting your weird out is to be a touch more revealing than you find strictly comfortable without triggering all of your peeps’ collective ‘OH GOD I MUST HELP HER SOMEHOW’ feels. Triggering our motherly instincts helps no one and will only do damage to everyone involved.

Permission to take your time, granted.
Permission to show us your weird: given.
Permission to be exactly who you are, swears and ninja kicks and all: you got it.


P.S. Here are my top 8 bookstores on Earth. Because I know you know about bookstore weird.

Everyone is not for everyone.

I’m at the wedding, plopped in an adirondack chair high in the yard, enjoying a cold beer while I watch folks in fancy dress mingle on the dock. The chatter of the other guests is all around me, a gentle fuzz of voices, when a woman stops in front of my seat.

“Who are you and why are you sitting all by yourself!?”

I blink. And laugh. “I’m the DJ’s girlfriend. I don’t know anyone.”

“Well, this is my daughter, Carli, and this is Grandma. Now you know someone.”

A blue-eyed old woman clutching red wine and smoking copiously plops down beside me. Carli, blond and light, proceeds to talk about Beverly Hills 90210 (“If my boyfriend is ever a drug dealer, I should dump him, right?”), her friends’ moms and dads (“They’re living together but she pays all his bills, that’s not right, is it?”), and her 10th birthday wishes (“Barbies, and a car for them. I would take pink or purple or white but not green”). We try the crab lollipops together. She pretends to like them. We laugh about all sorts of things. Then cocktail hour ends and whoosh! We’re relegated to separate tables.

Later, as dinner drags on, I feel a tug on my hand.

“Kristen I was thinking about dancing and I finished eating and…

Do you want to, like, hang out?”

That question, heartbreaking and tenuous all at once. So deeply vulnerable and childish (because of course I’ll say yes) but also, so adult. Asking for what you want.

It’s only by asking that I’ll say, “Yes, of course I would like to hang out with you, darling girl.”

We danced and danced and danced.

If you’re here, reading this, the work you do feels like an expression of your soul — or you’re trying to find the work that feels that way.

That work is inherently vulnerable. It’s exhausting and debilitating when people don’t like it or aren’t interested.

It’s scary to ask people to pay attention. It means tugging on the hands of people you like and asking, “Do you want to, like, hang out?”

Some will say no, or say they’re too busy, or beg off hanging out until later.

But others. They will dance with you until the wee hours of the morning. They will turn you around and around in the fading light, gleeful and lit up like so many fireworks. They will make all the asking worth it, and they’ll reward all that rejection with a heart that’s full to bursting.

Ask, friend.

Ask your clients to talk to you.

Ask them to come to your workshop or lecture or party or event or or seminar or phone meeting or class or photo shoot.

Ask them to dance with you, and I promise, the ones you’ll end up loving will answer with a resounding, “Yes. What took you so long to ask?”

That’s only the beginning of today’s podcast, in which we talk all about finding your voice and inviting them onto your metaphorical dance floor.  (Also, in the kayak pictured?  Beer.  BEER BOAT AT A WEDDING.  Genius, isn’t it?)

P.S.  Why you don’t want to be failure-proof.

Climbing Mount Visibility: get your work seen without driving your customers crazy

Being in business is a lot like being on a trek in the mountains. You’re putting one foot in front of the other, day after day, and you’re not exactly sure you’re on the right path. The conditions change, you question your choices, and you feel good or not so good. You keep going. You’re climbing Mount Visibility, getting the world to notice your business and what you have to offer.

How do you reach the summit without burning out or driving your customers crazy?

1.) Stop hiding.

It’s the hardest step, and it’s not freaking easy. Are you willing to be seen?

Are you ready for it to be embraced, beloved, and generally chatted up like a Kardashian at a champagne mixer in Vegas?

Are you willing for your work to be brushed over, ignored, and misunderstood?

You’ve got to be ready for both sides of the coin when you decide to let your work, your business, your products, and your services truly be visible.

When you stop hiding, you consistently tell the world you’re up to, you promote your work on the regular (the 30-second marketing campaign can help), and you collaborate only when it’s interesting and fun instead of when it’s a “sure thing” but leads only to money, not fulfilling feels in your belly.

2.) Consistently create something worth seeing.

A daily, weekly, or monthly promotion is a great place to start. Ayup, you STILL need a marketing calendar, friend.

Whether you’ve got your Instagram hashtag, a regular blog posting schedule, killer e-mail marketing campaigns, a referral-letter writing regime, or a series of networking events in which you pimp your wares harder than a Venetian with a surplus of blown glass in Renaissance Italy — create something worth seeing.

Yes, you’re a photographer. You expect people to hire you because they’re suddenly hit by the “I need images” fairy’s lovestick, but that’s not how it works. We need reminders that you’re alive, that you’re creating, that you’re a consummate professional who will blow our minds when it’s our turn in front of the camera.

Show us what you’ve created.
Tell us what we can get by working with you.
Let us fall in love with the clients who love you by sharing testimonials.
Help us hire you by telling us how many spots you have left.
Reward us for booking in your off season with prizes, extras, and delights.

In other words…

3.) Woo us, baby. Woo us.

Leave treats behind for your peeps. Reward them for sticking with you, for letting you know what they think, and for paying attention to you on the regular.  Free books — in my case, Go Your Own Way: free yourself from business as usual — help.

Whether you share knowledge, inspiration, behind-the-scenes glimpses, funny stories, secrets, insider tips, gorgeous work, or the secret to life on the planet…share. Think of your social media and blog posts and marketing efforts as leaving cupcakes behind on the way to your bakery…or pretzels behind on the way to your hummus volcano…or pages behind on the way to your library. You’re enticing readers to stick around and pay attention. The higher the quality of the woo, the longer they’ll listen.

4.) Thank your peeps and really freaking mean it.

Gratitude is a buzz word like “manifesting” these days, but truly. Be grateful for what you’ve got, because the opposite is off-putting and repels the crap out of people.

I’ve watched colleagues earn what they used to earn over the course of a year in a matter of mere days, then brush it off as if they hadn’t just struck gold. No grand thanks, no weeping, no donations to charity, no celebrations and reveling in success. Just nose-to-the-grindstone business as usual.

How very…uncreative. And boring. And fucking ungrateful.  (Yah, I said it.  Ungrateful is the WORST.)

5.) Celebrate!

Being grateful is nice, but it’s often quiet. I want to see you CELEBRATE.

If you’ve made your corporate salary in the course of a month or even 11.5 months instead of twelve, fucking hold a jello wrestling party for all your friends. Go skinnydipping in an exotic locale. Eat only ice cream for a whole day, then get a 3-hour massage. Race your friends at Go Karts, then play arcade games until you run out of quarters, THEN move the bunk beds to make room for doing more activities, Stepbrothers style.

Don’t give the finger to the universe.

Let the powers that be know that you’re grateful, that you’re enjoying what you’ve got, and that you aren’t going to waste your good fortune by adding more zeroes to your savings account and then quietly going about doing your work in exactly the sort of ho-hum way you do every day.

It robs both you and your colleagues, friends, loved ones, and family members of the opportunity to celebrate the good that life has to offer.

We want to celebrate the good with you.

We want your business to flourish.

We want your life to have meaning.

We want to see your artwork on walls and your products in stores and your calendar all booked out and your pockets full of quarters at Chuck E. Cheese.

We want good things for you.

Help us give them to you, please.

Go on and climb Mount Visibility — and when you get to the top, PLEASE enjoy the freaking view.

P.S.  No really, stop hiding. Here’s how to start.