The Better Bolder Braver Vision
We have arrived!
This post is designed to set out our vision, so that you can be clear about what we are trying to do, how, when and why — so that you know if the Better Bolder Braver community is the one for you.
Who We Are
We are two humans who’ve been around the marketing block. We are now turning our attention, experience, passion and excitement to a brand new venture — for us and for coaches.
Before I launch into one about Better Bolder Braver, here’s a little history of us:
I’m Frances Khalastchi. I have 20 years’ experience in Corporate, Third Sector, Startup and Government communications and marketing. I’ve managed sponsorships and PR strategies, created brand partnerships, launched products, designed websites and trained several lovely people along the way. Now, I help coaches improve their relationship with marketing. My clients face the feelings that marketing brings up and then capitalise on that self-awareness to feel more confident about putting themselves out there and, perhaps more importantly, are clear on who they want to surround themselves with and what energy they want to get back.
Simon has run an online marketing agency for over 18 years, and in that time has transformed the marketing of over 400 small businesses. Their longest-standing client tripled their turnover to over £5m, and they’ve taken another from starting their blog in a coffee shop to talking on the TED stage. Simon has - up until now - been hosting the Marketing Success Club. They are an absolute genius at presenting marketing concepts in a clear, fun, fascinating way. I really enjoy listening to Simon talking and seeing them presenting what we call ‘the marketing journey’, and I get a new idea, tip and energy from them daily.
When I noticed Simon on social media talking about Empathy-Led marketing, I got a bit excited. And then I started saying things about what I call Human-Centred marketing, and Simon got a bit excited. So we got together.
After much chat, playing about with ideas and trying out some bits and bobs with excellent people, what we’ve realised is this:
We want to help coaches feel better about marketing themselves — to attract Better clients, build a Bolder offer and be Braver with prices, planning and purpose.
Let me break that down into the Who, What, Why and When for you…
Coaches — The Who (not the band. And DEFINITELY not a ‘customer segment’… we really do try not to use wanky marketing lingo round here.)… I‘ve been running Optimistic Marketing — a mentoring service especially dedicated to coaches struggling with putting themselves out there to attract customers. They are a tribe of people I was relatively new to until Lockdown 1.0, but with whom I quickly connected and became inspired by. From their training methods, the mentality, the mindfulness and their generosity of spirit, to their ability to make huge changes in the world by empowering others— coaches felt like a good crew of people for me to live amongst. In all my years of doing marketing, it’s been the relationships with people that I’ve cared about most. And what’s been most interesting to me has been how people feel. So now, what I do is help coaches to become alert to how doing marketing is making them feel. I help them to become conscious of what comes up for them when they are “putting themselves out there”. I help them to be compassionate to themselves, not take themselves too seriously and give themselves permission to enjoy the spontaneity, self-growth and focus that doing marketing can serve them.
Simon has been looking for a ‘niche’ (sorrynotsorry — see what Simon says (!) about niching here)… because they’ve been helping loads of different people do marketing better, but has been aware that specialising in a particular audience would allow them to build expertise and offer a very personal and focussed approach to marketing support in a way that was relevant all the time for their customers. And for similar reasons to me, Simon started being interested in the world of coaching. They’d already set up a community to support people with their marketing, provide a safe space to play, learn and share and to benefit from Simon’s generous, clear, reassuring way of teaching what I now refer to as “what good marketing looks like” (just check out the Bullshit Busters podcast, as an example of this).
So what are we offering?
Better Bolder Braver is the first dedicated community space just for coaches to grow as people via marketing. It’s a safe, fun, educational, diverse, accessible space where you will find inspiration, new friends, potential collaborators and resources, be taught and encouraged to develop and practice new skills, shown wonderful ways of being creative and encouraged by others to feel better about putting yourself out there in the world to attract the kind of energy you need to keep going. You will enjoy what you do, earn at least enough money to satisfy your personal needs and stay true to your values. This is all served to you as part of our Empathy-Led, Human-Centred marketing approach.
If I was showing you our business plan (we haven’t actually written one, or a marketing strategy, by the way — I’m just talking about the conversations we’ve had) then I might next talk to you about ‘Channels’ and ‘Customer Relationships’. In normal human language, that would be to say how we are reaching people we care about and inviting them (you!) to join our community and to spread the love to others. So here goes…
We have established social media profiles — or “laid down beach towels”, as Simon calls it — for Better Bolder Braver across all of the usual platforms because we know that you may totally rate Linkedin but hate Facebook (I feel you!!), enjoy scrolling through Instagram but can’t deal with Twitter mania (again, totally understandable), like watching videos (let’s talk about ‘screen-cringe’ some time!) or prefer to digest podcasts whilst cleaning the house, picking up kids, walking the dog or taking a (ok, thank you).
… We wanted to make sure we were practicing what we preach and putting ourselves out there in a way that would be meaningful and diverse… but not perfect. You will, though, probably see me all over Linkedin but quite shy on Facebook as the former is my happy place and the latter I find too “noisy”. You can, though, already enjoy some lovely trailers on our podcast and YouTube channels from Simon.
On the subject of authenticity, you may notice that we are still firming up our branding and our social media presence is still lean. It is evolving organically. ‘Getting it out, not getting it perfect’ is probably our favourite mantra, as you will learn.
What will this community give you?
The resources that you will get from Better Bolder Braver range as follows:
- Closed, safe, small group workshops exploring all facets of our Empathy-Led, Human-Centred marketing journey… from getting to know your clients before trying to sell them things… engaging with your engagers, trusting and being trusted, being clear in your mind about your values, intentions, your offering and your boundaries and then being able to articulate these important “details”.
- Interactive video masterclasses with experts in marketing, coaching and more — all talking candidly, openly and generously about their marketing practices, demons, challenges and fears as well as offering invaluable insight, advice, support and other marketing enlightenment gems.
- Myriad contents, polls and chat about marketing themes and concepts… and how doing marketing things can make a difference but also how it can make us feel.
- Tips and Tricks for how to do Better, Bolder, Braver marketing and how to be kinder to yourself throughout.
- Reflective moments for you to take stock, breathe, hold up a mirror and get nice to yourself and also to others in your community. So much of the point of Better Bolder Braver is to help you with a happy marketing energy. Laughing at yourself is a biggie too.
We work with a bunch of other marketing people who we’ve befriended over the years… who we like to refer to as our ‘marketing family’- copywriters, photographers, podcast producers, SEO geeks, GoogleAd word wizzes, community-building guys, ritual designers, UX guys, video producers, branding peeps, social media and PR specialists, publishing friends and more. We are of course also surrounded by fabulous coaches, and also have some excellent therapist friends, psychologists and philosophers around us too, all helping us help you with the ‘how marketing makes us feel’ bit. Whilst these guys will not be present on the community platform — that’s just a playground for coaches — they are on hand and in our rolodex ready to help us help you. So you’ll hear and learn from those guys too in some way… in the community or as part of our courses, which we will tell you about later. We are happy to introduce you (free of charge!) to any of them that you would like to work with, but more than anything we are about empowering you to feel that you can largely do your marketing yourselves, if that is what you’d like / budget for.
How much is being in the Better Bolder Braver community?
Yep. Money. Question first… How does charging for your services make you feel? As you can imagine, if we did not charge you for this, we sadly would not be able to provide to you, include you, invite you to support others and be part of your growth. Indeed, we are actively looking to embolden you to develop a healthier relationship with money, pricing, charging for what you serve and asking for payment, and our community pricing is no different. Our monthly membership fee is $25 for the first 50 Founding Members (we use round numbers, not “charm prices”). This is about a quarter of the price of an average monthly London gym membership, about the same as 10 cups of decent coffee, but way more than soap (unless you buy your toiletries from Liberty & Co, which by the way is a nice treat too once in a while).
I want to round this off with some more honesty — about the fact that I was struggling to sit down and just write this blog post (I have a part time job at the moment too, and two kids under 4). So, I turned to a new friend called Marianne Powell, who is in the community that propels Simon and me along (The Happy Startup School). There she hosts a ‘Write Club’ — a dedicated, collegiate, online space for getting writing done — which was just the focus and accountability I needed to get this done. My fellow Happy Startup tribesman, Stephen Dargan, was there and something he said stuck with me as a great quote on which to end this post…
“You have to have rewards, otherwise it’s fucking dull… and there is too much dullness in the world already.”
So, go on… treat yourself and do a good thing for you and your marketing. Sign up to Better Bolder Braver today. Simon and I very much look forward to seeing you there.
Also, if you are a member of the Association for Coaching, do keep your ears pricked for the AC’s last podcast of its current series, Boost your Coaching Business hosted by the podcast producing expert AND coach, Rob Lawrence which features none other than Simon and yours truly! The lovely guys at the AC have also invited us to host ‘a signature programme’ for them in 2022, which we will be able to share more about in due course.
Take it easy and see you soon!