Thanks to all of you for your overwhelming feedback on My Work Happy. In my second profile, I’m beyond excited to bring you Instagram genius (and goddess) Sam Burgess, aka Social Mouth Sam.
Sam’s transforming how small retailers use social to engage with customers. If you haven’t listened to her Small & Mighty podcast, do. Her interview with Not on the High Street founder, Holly Tucker is worth a double listen for ALL small business owners.
I attended one of her Instagram workshops at Hero a few weeks back and noticed the traction on my feed in days. We also share an awesome business coach (that’s you, Helena Murphy) and a love for Sex and the City. I was delighted when she agreed to be my second profile.
Introduce yourself, Social Mouth Sam
I’m Sam Burgess aka Social Mouth Sam. I live and work in Richmond-Upon-Thames. A passionate retailer turned social media marketing expert; I help small and mighty businesses find their voice online and convert their communities to customers via my Instagram marketing methodology. In addition to this, I host a weekly podcast called Small and Mighty which celebrates and supports the small business owner.
What’s the big plan right now?
To grow my business in a way that I can help even more small businesses without outsourcing. To do this, I’m taking my Instagram Brand workshops national.
I am also involved in a number of exciting projects – which you’ll just have to wait and see!
How are you setting goals for your business?
I have a big vision for my business, but I don’t set hard and fast goals as I like to be fluid and agile and be able to react to the needs of my customers as well as anticipate what they may want next week, next month and next year.
And what keeps you on track?
My passion for what I do, I LOVE helping people, I love social media marketing, and I love small business. If that flame ever goes out, it’s time for me to do something completely different.
It’s not all coffee and sparkles, how do you stay focused on low-mojo days or, when you hit a wall in your business?
I look at the big picture and try to understand what has gone wrong and how I can make things better. Or, I take the day off! Sometimes it’s not worth wading through mud, and I’m better at stepping away and clearing my head before tackling the issue. Monty (my miniature dachshund) is my constant companion, and sometimes all I need is a walk with him while listening to a podcast to help pep me back up.
How do you celebrate your success?
I don’t do enough of this, but I have a close-knit group of business buddies, and we all share our highs and lows and celebrate where we can with a glass of bubbles!
How do you invest in yourself and your business?
I am continually educating myself, I listen to podcasts, I read books, I go to events and conferences, I attend webinars, and I keep a very close eye on what’s going on in the market. I assign a budget to be able to purchase competitor products (e.g., courses and e- books) to ensure I’m offering something unique and of excellent value to my customers.
I also attend a personal training session twice a week and try to eat well and take time off. I am my business, so if I am not healthy and functioning well, then my company won’t be either.
Where do you get your inspiration from?
The guests I interview on my podcast. Chatting to other small business owners and listening to the journeys and insights of those who have grown their businesses to household names is a constant source of inspiration!
What’s the one success habit that’s changed your business?
Being more positive. I struggle with imposter syndrome, but since reading what my clients have said about me and listening to the feedback instead of becoming all bashful and brushing it under the carpet, I absorb it and say thank you and beam with pride. We’re taught from a young age never to be too proud, but I disagree with this so much, we should be proud of what we do and who we are, just don’t let it go to your head! There’s a difference between pride and ego.
Tribe – who’s yours and what does it mean to you?
I have more than 10,000 people in my tribe, and I couldn’t name them all. Every single person that listens to my podcast, reads my blog, comments on my Instagram, tweets me or is a part of my Facebook community, is a part of my tribe. These are the people I get out of bed for and the people I run Social Mouth for, and they mean everything to me.
Work-life balance – what’s the secret?
Remember why you do what you do. If you want a “good-life” business then that’s fine, if you want a million pound turnover in 12 months, then that’s also fine. Knowing your goal and your vision will help to define your individual work/life balance. My goal is somewhere between those two,so I work my butt off Monday – Friday and the weekend is family time because without my family I wouldn’t have the cheerleaders that fan the flames of passion inside me.
What makes you happiest about your work?
Seeing my clients’ success. I always say to them; your success is my success. I am profoundly invested in my clients (and expect them to be the same) so when they succeed, I know I have succeeded. My favourite thing is when a client calls me or emails me to tell me that they’ve had a record-breaking sale from Instagram or they’ve been approached by a wholesaler they’ve dreamt of working with because they’ve nailed their branding. It makes what I do worth it and I absolutely burst with pride.
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