EP 143: Licensing Your Signature Work With Momtography® Creator Beryl Ayn Young

The Nitty Gritty

  • How Beryl runs the Momtography® training program, how she landed on the price point, and how she promotes her teachers once they’ve successfully completed the initial training program
  • Why Beryl’s first step to licensing her work included hiring Autumn Witt Boyd, an intellectual property lawyer, to legally prep Momtography® for distribution
  • How she finds qualified people to work with, how many teachers she’s currently working with, and her vision for the future of Momtography®

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Today’s guest, Beryl Young, returns to the podcast — and this time, she’s sharing everything behind licensing her signature work, Momtography®. So far, Beryl’s licensed twelve teachers, with plans to expand to all 50 states in the U.S. in the future.

In this conversation, Beryl talks about how she started Momtography®, how she prepared her content for licensing (including hiring a lawyer!), and what it felt like to transition from the creator to the leader.

If you’ve ever considered licensing your work — or want to hear more of the nitty gritty details on how it can work — this episode is for you.

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Prepping to license your work

“The first step was hiring a lawyer because I hadn’t trademarked the name. I knew that if I was going to percolate this on a national level, that was the first bow I needed to tie up. I also wanted to make sure that all my legal ducks were in a row. I wanted to speak to someone who worked with other licensing programs who could give me guidance.” — Beryl Young

Getting your work ready to license is no small feat. Besides creating the content and finding people to train, you also need to ensure your work is legally ready for distributing.

How do you protect the integrity of your work? How do you ensure that people don’t steal your idea? Those were some of the questions Beryl had — and why she hired

Intellectual property lawyer Autumn Witt Boyd to help her do just that.

Together, they parsed out the contracts and trademarks associated with the program as well as non-compete clauses. If you choose to license your signature work, take Beryl’s lead and contact a lawyer to set strong foundations to protect you and your creations.

Giving up control to move from creator to leader

“I asked myself: can I trust other people with this? I started building my team out over the last 2-3 years and this felt totally different. If somebody teaches this class in a way that’s different than me or in a way that I don’t agree with, am I going to be able to take that manager/CEO role and apply it? Can I let go of control and allow this to happen and allow Momtography® to spread?” — Beryl Young

As an infinitely creative individual and the one-woman show behind Momtography® for so long, it was difficult for Beryl to shift identities from creator to leader. But to allow Momtography® to expand, she needed to give up that control… and trust.

Giving up that creative control doesn’t mean you give up structure or rules. Instead, Beryl’s implemented a training and coaching program to show her teachers what’s expected. Part of that includes guidelines on what teachers can charge for the classes they teach.

While licensing your work requires shifting up to a leadership role, it doesn’t mean that you are divorced from the creative aspect of it. Rather, it means that you’re in a position to set your teachers or trainers up for success so that the brand experience is consistent, no matter the teacher or the location.

Finding teachers to license within the Momtography® Online Facebook group

“It was like having a built-in focus group that was so willing to soak it up, learn, and try anything. They were a big part in helping to frame out how the training details came together.” — Beryl Young

Sometimes, the answer to sharing and licensing your work goes back to tapping into your existing network of customers or fans. And that’s exactly what Beryl did. “I went into my Momtography® Online alumni Facebook group and I wrote a heart-to-heart post,” she says.

In her post, she told them her plans for a beta launch and asked if any of them were interested. Out of the alumni group, four women went through the first training cohort. That’s when Beryl knew that this could work… and now twelve teachers later, Beryl’s aiming for a Momtography® teacher in every U.S. state.

Hear more from Beryl Young on what it takes to license your signature work, why you should hire a lawyer before you do anything, and how she found people to work with.

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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