Social Media Changed my Life

How Social Media Changed my life

Social Media has well and truly changed my life…..

Thanks to Social Media I’ve built a sustainable six-figure business from the ground up. Without a huge advertising budget, without becoming a celebrity, without publishing a book (yet) or winning the lottery.

It’s been an exciting journey that’s far-exceeded my initial goals of leaving my corporate job to spend more time with my two boys, and create an income which allows me to work from home. That was my initial goal back in 2008 when I left my job and ventured into the entrepreneurial world.

Having left the corporate world I started building niche web sites and selling information products as an additional source of income. Back in those days (2008-9) Social Media was just a free way of driving traffic. I didn’t have a budget for ads (in fact I was opposed to paying for any sort of ads) and my strategy was simple. Create a niche money making website, find blogs and Facebook pages with people interested in that topic and connect with them there.

Getting to Grips with Making Money Online 

My first niche was “women making money from home” or “mumpreneurs”, because I was my own target market. A mumpreneur, with young kids, trying to make money online while my kids were in bed.

It was tough because I was using a content strategy. Writing articles and posting them on the article banks, building back-links, and using a strategy of finding top-selling products on ClickBank to promote, rather than following my passion.

One of the more successful strategies, that I’ve returned to recently, is writing guest posts (I’ve been featured in The Sun, Woman magazine, The Guardian Small Business Network, and Inspire business magazine amongst others). And also won a couple of contests and awards  – Firepole Marketing’s “Marketing That Works” contest, and Dacorum’s Den (our local version of Dragon’s Den), with my group coaching program, The Modern Marketing Club.

When you feel like a fraud

However, I struggled because my business at the time (Women’s Way To Wealth) was creating a lot of exposure but I wasn’t consistently making any real money. So it was a vanity project, great for the ego, but not for the bank balance. My list and community were growing and people perceived that i was successful, but I felt like a fraud because I just wasn’t making the big bucks.

The problem? A combination of mindset (thinking too small) and not having the sales funnel or products in place to monetise my efforts. I’m not sure if the two are related! I didn’t like asking for money and quickly built a list of freebie-seekers who I indulged with all my best material, at no charge (the anti-sales strategy!). I told anyone who’d listen that I would happily do what I did for free as I loved it so much (and guess what, the Universe granted my wish).

The Turning Point, Or Another Zig Zag?

My next business was different. I wanted a “proper” business with real income and real potential for growth

The big break for me was being invited to speak on stage at the O2 (one of London’s biggest venues) alongside such well-respected names as Richard Branson, Alan Sugar and Simon Coulson (sadly not at the same time, but at the same event).

I partnered up with a couple of online marketing experts, and ran some WordPress and online marketing training at live events in London. My learning and network continued by co-hosting internet marketing networking groups, and joining an elite online marketing mastermind group. 

Despite spending more and more time on Social Media, and increasingly using it to grow my business, I was reluctant to call myself an “expert” because I didn’t feel I was as qualified as many others. There seemed to be a glut of social media “experts” who had the market wrapped up so I decided to stay “broad”, talking about marketing online. As a result my efforts were diluted, and I struggled to gain real traction. Jack of all trades, master of none. 

How I Started Making Money With Social Media

The opportunity to speak and train at events awoke a passion in me and I realised how much I enjoyed it. And I realised that I like meeting real people (rather than spending all day behind a computer) and that I hadn’t spent any time integrating with the local business community, so I started networking locally. Through these groups I realised the potential of Social Media for business, and also the huge amount of fear and confusion surrounding it.

People started asking me to help them 1-2-1 or come and speak to their groups, or train their staff. As my client base and local reputation grew, so did my confidence and I realised that I am an “expert” (it’s all relative anyway). I’ve got a lot of experience to share and I can HELP people get great results. Now that I was consistently getting referrals for new business and great testimonials, I had social proof that what I was teaching and doing for clients was really working.

To me Social Media is not the be all and end all, it’s one part of the marketing puzzle, albeit an increasingly important piece. But one of the big marketing secrets is that you need to lead your offerings with what people WANT, not what they NEED. In my business Social Media is what gets people excited, even when, quite often, they actually need to get their basic marketing shizzle together first. But being sensible doesn’t sell!

How I Increased My Income To Over £100,000 A Year with Social Media

For a long time I resisted going down the road of doing people’s Social Media for them. But Modern Marketing Spark started offering Done For You services when I realised how many people are afraid or lacking the time, knowledge or skills to manage their own social media. There’s such a demand, people and are willing to pay good money for someone else to do it. So I set about offering these services and building a team, systems and processes to service a growing client base. 

Building a Global Business on Social Media

What I love about Social Media is the ability to take your marketing and amplify it 100x around the world. With the click of a button you can be chatting with people on the other side of the world, and then jumping on Skype to talk about working together.

Facebook is a global world where I’ve met so many friends, business partners, coaches, clients and collaborators.

Using Facebook I’ve networked, supported, been coached by and interacted with clients and potential clients around the world including Australia, the USA, Canada, New Zealand, South Africa, and across many countries in Europe and Scandinavia.

Social Media Changed My Life and Helps Me To Help Others

My big breakthrough came on the Internet Marketers Cruise in 2013 where I realised I’d been playing very small, and very safe. I returned from the cruise a new woman. A woman on a mission to play big, and make a difference. Finally!

Modern Marketing Spark was born in March 2013 and I’ve never looked back. We now comprise a crack team of eight and a very diverse, and fast -growing client base, that never ceases to fill me with joy and gratitude.

One of the big fears around social media is putting yourself out there, being seen to be pushy, salesy or spammy, or boasty (quite British concerns!) but those fears are balanced with a frustration and a driving desire to leverage the power of Social Media. Most business owners understand that social media should be an important part of their marketing strategy but don’t know how to put that into practice. Cue, a big opportunity for agencies like mine.

I LOVE the fast-paced, ever-changing world of Facebook but for many that makes it confusing and overwhelming. The constant changing of the platforms can be dizzying if you’re not on top of it 24/7 like we are. We’re here to keep up with the changing world of Social Media, and show you how to tap into it to build your business, so you don’t have to.

I LOVE MY BUSINESS, AND I LOVE SOCIAL MEDIA.

Without Social Media, I wouldn’t be where I am today.

About The Author

Cassie Hicks

Modern Marketing Spark is your Digital Marketing Partner. We provide a holistic approach to Social Media and Digital Marketing ensuring your achieve your business goals using modern marketing strategies. We also offer training and support through our Facebook group, The Modern Marketing Club (http://facebook.com/groups/modernmarketingclub)