EP 250: Creating Wildly Fun Client Experiences With Allie LeFevere

The Nitty-Gritty:

  • Why Obedient Agency co-founder Allie LeFevere believes so strongly in the power of humor to build a brand and market a product
  • How the agency incorporates humor into every touchpoint of their client experiences
  • The brainstorming techniques they use to find surprising & delightful marketing ideas
  • Why humor has even made its way into their hiring process

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The first time I heard the phrase, “Surprise & delight…”

…I was being trained on Starbucks & Seattle’s Best Coffee company culture.

Our trainer—who was excellent—told us that we were empowered to look for little ways to surprise and delight our guests. Whether that was delivered a freshly brewed cup of coffee to the table they were sitting at or simply taking the time to learn our regulars’ names, the expectation was set that we would go above & beyond.

The “surprise & delight” mantra has stuck with me over years of running my own company.

I’m not as good with stylish gifts or personal notes the way some business owners are. But I am very good at surprising & delighting our clients by taking extra time to answer questions, providing extra resources, or just paying for coffee when we meet up.

It doesn’t take much for an experience to be memorable.

And building a brand around memorable, surprising, and delightful experiences? Well, that’s a recipe for success.

This week, we’re taking a look at a very particular way to surprise and delight your customers—with humor.

Allie LeFevere is the co-founder of Obedient Agency—a full-service humor marketing agency.

Truly, the first time I landed on their website, I can describe my experience as nothing less than surprised and delighted. It’s not funny for funny’s sake—it’s humorous for clarity’s sake. Every piece of it serves to define who they are, what they do, and who they do it for in the most unique ways possible.

I had to know how this brilliant branding & positioning functioned on the inside. Had they designed equally surprising & delighting client experiences?

Yes, of course they have.

Allie and I talk about how that website got built—which is a great look at the brainstorming process they use throughout the agency. We also chat about how they infuse humor into every touchpoint they have with a client, how they manage each client touchpoint, and why client fit is such an important piece of the puzzle.

Now, let’s find out what works for Allie LeFevere!

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  • And charge for them…all while building YOUR brand.

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EP 299: How To Design Your Own Sales System

EP 299: How To Design Your Own Sales System

This week, I’ve got 4 more stories to share with you from small business owners who have intentionally done things their own way when it comes to sales and selling. They’ve found what truly works for them–even if it bucks the prevailing wisdom or would make a bro marketing expert role his or her eyes.

These stories come from business coach Ashley Gartland, marketing expert Amy Lippmann, designer Mel Richards, and work reinvention coach Lydia Lee.

Listen for how they incorporated these same considerations into finding their own unique sales systems. They designed their systems with personal values, strong relationships, reduced anxiety, and agency in mind.

EP 298: Creating A Less Harmful Sales System with Wanderwell Founder Kate Strathmann

EP 298: Creating A Less Harmful Sales System with Wanderwell Founder Kate Strathmann

This show is called What Works for a reason.

Sometimes it’s a declaration: this is what worked for this small business. And often, it’s a question, “What works?”

Today’s episode is very much a question, many questions, really:

What works when it comes to selling when you want to avoid manipulative or exploitative practices?

What works when your values conflict with many of the best practices of selling online but you still want people to buy your stuff?

What works when it comes to sales in a business that is actively anti-racist and anti-capitalist?

And even more bluntly: Can you even sell things without causing harm or perpetuating harmful systems?

My friend Kate Strathmann is the founder of Wanderwell, a bookkeeping and consulting firm that grows thriving businesses while investigating new models for being in business.

Recently, Kate took a bit of a detour from how she’s used to building her business, which is 90% referral based and fueled by deep relationship- and community-building. She decided to offer a small group program called the Equitable Business Incubator as a way of exploring anti-capitalist business practices and how they apply to the small businesses we’re building.

To fill the program, Kate need to sell differently.

Which led her to asking the question: Can you even sell things as a anti-capitalist?

While that might not be your specific question, I have a feeling that you too have wondering how you can effectively sell your offers without causing harm, perpetuating harmful systems, or damaging relationships. And that’s why I knew Kate and I needed to explore this topic on the show.

This is a conversation about what a kinder, less harmful sales process could look like—and it probably contains more questions than answers. But I’m confident those questions can help you find the answers that are right for you and the sales system that you want to build to make your business stronger.

We start out by defining what we’re really talking about when we talk about capitalism and anti-capitalism. Then, Kate shares how the Equitable Business Incubator came to be and how she ended up selling it. And then we dig into what makes many of the sales formulas and best practices being taught today problematic—and how to think differently to create your own alternative practices.

Now, let’s take a look at what works for creating less harmful sales systems!

EP 297: Selling A New Program With Proof To Product Founder Katie Hunt

EP 297: Selling A New Program With Proof To Product Founder Katie Hunt

Today’s guest is Katie Hunt—who is a member of the former group and serves the latter group.

Katie is the founder of Proof To Product, which helps creative entrepreneurs run and grow thriving product-based businesses. She works with designers, illustrators, and artists to help them develop in-demand product lines and get them sold in stores all over the world.

Not long after the pandemic threw her business and the industry she serves for a major loop, Katie and her team launched Proof To Product Labs to provide a completely digital, ongoing support opportunity for business owners when they needed it most.

And that launch was a smash.

Katie and I get into all of the nuts and bolts of how she adjusted the offer to meet the moment and how she warmed up her audience before the campaign, as well as the exact mix of emails, podcast ads, and social media content she used to sell the offer when it went live. We also talk about how she sees the sales system evolving in the future and how the offer has been received now that people are using it!

What Works offers in-depth, well-researched content that strips away the hype of the 21st-century economy. Whether you love the podcast, the articles, or the Instagram content, we’d love your support