Podcast Archives | What Works
EP 294: Refining Your Offer With SpeakEasy Cooperative Founder Michelle Markwart Deveaux

EP 294: Refining Your Offer With SpeakEasy Cooperative Founder Michelle Markwart Deveaux

Refining the product or service you already offer can be as good—or even better—for giving your business a shot of energy as offering something new.

When you refine or repackage your offer, new people might notice it who passed it by before. New methods of delivery might give you back some serious time. A new price point might unlock a new level of profitability for your business. A new message or angle on what you really offer could open your eyes to a whole new way to market what you do.

In other words, refining your offer could lead to a new, bold vision for your whole business!

This is exactly what I talked about with today’s guest, Michelle Markwart Deveaux, founder of FaithCultureKiss voice studio and the SpeakEasy Cooperative.

Michelle is a voice teacher… as well as champion for voice teachers who want to empower students, performers, podcasters, and voice talent of all kinds to use their voices in powerful ways.

Michelle started out teaching voice with the same kind of offer you’d expect any voice, piano, or instrument teacher to use. Students paid her for each lesson and they called it a day.

But as she started to hate how transactional that method was and how guilty it made her feel for doing work outside of her lessons, she started to refine her offer—and ended up creating a whole new model for teaching voice.

We get into all of that and more, including how she doubled her rates and delivered 3x the value, how she structures her packages, and how she got started teaching voice online. Plus, we talk about how she took what she learned refining her original voice teaching offer and created a new offer to help other voice teachers, too.

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EP 293: Offering Bespoke Services With Flaunt Your Fire Founder India Jackson

EP 293: Offering Bespoke Services With Flaunt Your Fire Founder India Jackson

Offer development is an incredibly important part of running a service-based business. Without a careful strategy and thoughtful process behind how you create value, you are likely to get stuck in the trap of trading time for money or wind up overwork & overwhelmed.

That’s why I wanted to make sure we included a bespoke service-based business in this series on creating value.

I invited India Jackson, the founder of Flaunt Your Fire, a full-service brand visibility agency, to share her approach to how she creates value and constructs the services she offers clients.

India is clear on what her agency does and what it does not do.

She’s clear on why her agency offers the types engagements it does and why some projects just aren’t right for them. And, she’s clear on how her team adds value to the services the agency provides—so India isn’t stuck doing everything herself.

Even if you don’t run a service-based business, this conversation has a lot to offer. Listen in and consider how you might be trying to do too much with your product-based business or how you’ve succumb to making offers that aren’t aligned with your values or best work.

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BONUS: How I Created 2 New Offers When People Asked Me, “What’s Next?”

BONUS: How I Created 2 New Offers When People Asked Me, “What’s Next?”

This is a special bonus episode of What Works–the show that takes you behind the scenes of how small business owners take decisive action to build a stronger business.

This is the first episode in a three-part series taking a closer look at what’s worked for me as I’ve developed a new ways to create and deliver value over the years, both here at What Works and now at YellowHouse.Media.

Today I’m sharing how our latest What Works offer, a live program called The Commitment Blueprint came to be—tracing it from its humble beginnings as the seed of a major life and business shift for me to a successful webinar, to a paid template, and finally to the live program version.

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EP 292: Figuring Out What’s Next For Your Offer With LOE Collective Founder Alisha Robertson

EP 292: Figuring Out What’s Next For Your Offer With LOE Collective Founder Alisha Robertson

This month, we’re focusing on how small businesses create & deliver value.

How do we develop new offers? Put together new packages? Build new products?

We’ll be deep diving into 3 businesses and how they create & deliver value.

I’ll also be sharing a series of short bonus episodes looking back at how I’ve created & delivered value over the years—and how that process continues to evolve both at What Works and at YellowHouse.Media. Plus, we’ll close out the series by hearing from a few more business owners who have found creative ways to create and deliver value through the offers they make.

As I mentioned earlier, “What’s next?” is often a question that helps you figure out how to create and deliver value beyond what you’re already doing.

A product or service that solves a particular problem might shine some light on the next problem that needs to be a solved. A product or service that creates a delightful experience might simply leave the customer asking for more.

Or “What’s next?” might simply be a request to go deeper, keep working together longer, or investigate new possibilities.

Alisha Robertson found herself with a whole bunch of customers asking her “What’s next?” after she released a book called Living Over Existing. After a lot of thought, some customer research, some soul-searching, Alisha came up with her next move.

Alisha and talk about how the LOE Collective came to be, how she’s set up her community to meet those “What’s next” needs, and how she created the Intentional Success Path to guide her members through more “What’s next” questions. Plus, Alisha shares why she also created a physical welcome kit to send to her new members.

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EP 291: Reply Hazy. Try Again.

EP 291: Reply Hazy. Try Again.

The future is hazy.

It’s unknowable. And that makes taking decisive action to build a stronger business much more challenging.

But we have a choice. We can either fight it–and metaphorically try to shake that damn ball until we have a complete picture of what the future is going to be.

Or we can make decisions based on the information we have, a solid understanding of our goals, and an acceptance of the uncertainty of it all.

Waiting until you have all the answers you need or want is a great way to keep spinning your wheels. While embracing uncertainty might be risky and it’s can definitely be scary, but it’s the only way we move forward.

This month, we looked at 3 different stories of embracing uncertainty. Lou Blaser told us how a big life change allowed her to look at her business in a new way and see how she could finally build the business she’d been dreaming about for years. Sarah Avenir shared how she leads herself and her team through uncertainty. And Cher Hale told us about getting clearer and clearer on her vision for life and business–and the big moves it required of her.

We’re rounding out this conversation about embracing uncertainty today by hearing from 4 more small business owners: Podge Thomas, Melissa Dinwiddie, Kat Lu, and Amy Feierman.

Each entrepreneur embraced uncertainty in a way that allowed them to move forward despite not having all the answers or a guarantee of what the future would hold.

My guess is that you’ll hear a version of situation or question you’re wrestling with right now in at least one of these stories.

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EP 290: Discovering Your Vision With Ginkgo Public Relations Founder Cher Hale

EP 290: Discovering Your Vision With Ginkgo Public Relations Founder Cher Hale

My guest is Cher Hale, the founder of Ginkgo Public Relations.

Cher is full of incredible stories of figuring out what she wants and taking action to make it happen—from making a big personal moving, to going full-time with her business, to embracing a bold new “why” for her business.

We talk about why she made the move from working on the Vegas Strip to getting weird in Portland, how she used retainer clients to take her business full-time, and how she rewrote some of the harmful mindsets she held. We also talk about her mother’s erotic romance novels and how Cher was inspired to make a big shift in who she serves with her business and why.

Don’t worry—this interview is completely PG.

Now, let’s find out What Works for Cher Hale!

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EP 289: Leading Through Uncertainty with &yet CEO Sarah Avenir

EP 289: Leading Through Uncertainty with &yet CEO Sarah Avenir

I wanted to dig into what leading a team or community through a crisis can look like, and I could think of no one better to talk to about this than my friend Sarah Avenir.

Sarah Avenir—who you might know better as Sarah J. Bray—recently took the helm as the CEO of &yet, a digital development and strategy agency.

Sarah is an incredibly thoughtful leader and I knew her approach on leading both herself and her team through this time would be an insightful look at embracing uncertainty.

Sarah and I chat about how she became CEO of &yet, how she considers herself a naturally fearful person, and why a key part of her leadership is knowing others have her back. We also talk about how she structures her time, team, and approach to her work so she can focus on her own role and let other people do their job.

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EP 288: Rethinking Your Business Amidst Change With Second Breaks Founder Lou Blaser

EP 288: Rethinking Your Business Amidst Change With Second Breaks Founder Lou Blaser

We are all facing uncertainty–as we do every day. So I wanted to talk with business owners who have their own stories about embracing uncertainty this month and the first person I thought of was Lou Blaser, the founder & host of Second Breaks.

I’ve watched Lou embrace uncertainty over and over again throughout the years. I’ve watched her step outside her comfort zone and I’ve watched her take courageous action.

Earlier this year, she announced that she’d made the decision to upend her business, then a career coaching company for late Boomers and Gen Xers, and move back to the Philippines to help out with her aging m. And while she could have tried to continue with her business as is–she made the bold move to use the change as a way to rethink everything.

That’s where this conversation starts–and throughout, Lou and I talk about how her business has evolved, the questions she asked herself to create the new plan, how she could use her existing assets in new ways, and how she started experimenting with her new ideas.

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EP 287: The Things We Thought We Knew About Money

EP 287: The Things We Thought We Knew About Money

This week, we asked members of The What Works Network to share one thing they thought they knew about money but later discovered wasn’t true. Each shared a narrative or bias that held them back from fully embracing their business and their earning potential.

As you listen, consider which of these narratives are ones you’re currently operating with and how you could start reevaluating them. What would you do differently if you reprogrammed those money thoughts? What decisions would you make if you claimed a new money narrative?

You’ll hear from Charlene Lam, a curator and social media strategist, Maggie Patterson, the founder of Scoop Studios, Carol Hamilton, the founder of Grace Social Sector Consulting, and Anna Wolf, the founder of Superscript Marketing.

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Host of What Works

Tara is a podcaster, small business community leader, strategist, and speaker. She’s been helping small business owners build stronger businesses for over a decade.  

Tara McMullin, What Works Weekly Newsletter

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