Ep 468: 3 Steps To Help Turn Your Audience Into Your Community with Lindsey Schwartz



If you are in a season of figuring out how to build an engaged community around your personal brand and your business, this is a custom-designed episode for you!

It’s also been created for those looking to create more engagement for their online and offline community.

If you’re someone who wants to create live offline experiences, this is for you too.

Lindsey Schwartz is an author, investor and master community builder, and the Founder of Powerhouse Women, where she is fiercely committed to supporting other women.

Tune in today to hear Lindsey’s story, from the humble beginnings of her community-focused business to her powerful definition of faith, and her plans for the future.

She shares three crucial elements to facilitating a truly engaged community with practical examples of how to get started, offers an insider’s perspective on the task of running big events, and much more.

Thanks for tuning in! 


  • Who this episode is designed for.
  • An introduction to author and community builder, Lindsey Schwartz.
  • The story behind the first Powerhouse Women event: a book launch.
  • When faith actually comes into play – when you move beyond what you know yourself to be capable of.
  • Differentiating between an audience and a community.
  • What the most valuable thing you can build your brand truly is.
  • Three crucial elements to facilitating a truly engaged community.
  • Using captions as an opportunity to invite your audience to connect with one another.
  • What it’s actually like to run big events.
  • Creating urgency through deadlines.
  • The upcoming Powerhouse Women event and its intentional design.


“Faith doesn’t actually enter the picture until you step beyond what you know yourself to be capable of.” — Lindsey Schwartz [0:09:04] 

“The most valuable thing you can build for your brand is a connected, engaged community.” — Lindsey Schwartz [0:12:13] 

“The most important question any of us can ask if we’re really serious about building community is the question of ‘What do I want to unify people around? What’s going to be the connective tissue that brings people together?’” — Lindsey Schwartz [0:15:59] 

About Lindsey Schwartz

Lindsey Schwartz is an entrepreneur, investor, top podcast host, and the founder of Powerhouse Women. Fiercely committed to supporting other women, Lindsey invests her time in mentoring women and girls of all ages—from high achieving entrepreneurs to high school students.

As a sought after speaker, Lindsey travels around the world inspiring women to get out of their own way and into action around their big ideas, and helping them create the careers they’ve always dreamed of.

After seeing numerous women in her life stop short of pursuing their own entrepreneurial dreams because of fear and self-doubt, she saw the need for more honest conversations about the ups & downs of entrepreneurship in order to show women that they don’t have to have it all together to get started. From there, the Powerhouse Women community, annual event, and podcast were born, with the motto that we’re not meant to do business (or life) alone!


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AJV (00:02): Hey, everybody. Welcome to the Influential Personal Brand podcast, AJ Vaden here, and I’m so excited to introduce a new friend and I say a new friend because although we have dozens and dozens of mutual friends, somehow Lindsey and I have just now gotten to meet. But I believe it was God’s timing and super serendipitous because it’s super in alignment with what we’ve been hearing from the Brand Builders Group community, and all of our listeners on the influential Personal Brand podcast. So, I’m so excited to introduce you to Lindsey Schwartz. I’m going to give her a formal introduction in just a second. But first and foremost, I wanna tell you why you need to stick around for this podcast and how you know if this episode is for you. Number one, if you are in a season of trying to figure out how to build engaged community around your personal brand and your business. AJV (00:52): Well, this is, this is a custom designed episode for you. Number two, if you’re figuring out how to get more engagement from your community online and or offline, this would be an episode for you to episode for you. Number three, if you’ve been thinking to yourself, I wanna create live event experiences, and you’re wondering, should I do that? Why would I wanna do that? How would I do that? And are you crazy enough? Do you do that ? And these would all be good things that we’re gonna talk about on today’s episodes. It was really about building engaged community. How does it begin? How do you continue it? How, how does it end? But then also weaving in some conversations around how do we do that on, on offline environment with this idea of events and experiences, but also in the digital ecosystem with social media? AJV (01:45): And how do we stay in touch with our community when we don’t live nearby and we don’t see you all the time? So that is what we’re gonna talk about today. And if that sounds appealing to you, then don’t miss a second. Stick around to the very end, and you are going to be glad that you did. Now, with all of that said let me introduce you to Lindsey Schwartz. I will read you an official bio, but I know just even by reading this, there are millions of things that she has left off in this because I know, ’cause I’ve heard so many amazing things about her for so long that she is very much downplaying all of her awesomeness in this bio. But I’ll tell you that she is an author, she is an investor, she is a master community builder, and the founder of Powerhouse Women, which is fiercely committed to supporting other women, which I love. But she also invests her time in mentoring women and girls of all ages. And I think that’s amazing. It doesn’t matter if you’re a high school student or a, you know, powerhouse entrepreneur, the power of just mentorship and leadership is ever present and all things that you’re doing. And I’m so excited to learn from you today and to ask you questions, and most importantly, introduce you to our awesome community. So, Lindsey, welcome to the show. LS (03:01): I am so thrilled to be here. I’m a longtime listener of the podcast, so this just feels super fun. AJV (03:07): I am so excited. And one of the things that I would love to do before we get into the nitty gritty details, since we are newer friends and you’re new to our audience, I would love for you to just kind of give a high level background of where you started and how you got to where you are and what you’re doing today. LS (03:26): Mm. I am so grateful that you asked this part of the story because the further removed I get from it, I think people see what powerhouse women is today. And it’s easy to forget that everybody has that day one. Everybody has that season where you’re figuring it out as you go. And powerhouse women really started when I decided to do something that challenged me, probably for the first time in my adult life. And when I tell you that I had lived a very safe life, I had lived a life that didn’t involve much risk, it didn’t involve getting outta my comfort zone. And it was tricky because I am the person that can give 60, 70% of my full potential, and I can create results that look really shiny on the outside. But I think you get to a point where you realize that personal growth is such a fundamental need. LS (04:20): Our own evolution is such a fundamental need that that life starts to feel really small if you’re not stepping into things that really challenge you. For me, this season really came to a head about seven years into building a, a little network marketing business that I built. And, and it was really successful. So I shouldn’t really even call it little, but I was in this season of restlessness, just praying for direction, praying for an answer. And, and, you know, I think we, we often pray prayers that we’re not ready for the answer for Mm-Hmm. , we’re not ready to get the answer. And that, that prayer led me down a journey of saying yes to writing a book, a self-published book. And that was the last thing I really thought I had any business doing. I was not a writer. I always tell my audience at our events, I had this little blog called Love Lindsey. LS (05:07): And I published consistently one article per year because I was just so afraid of putting myself out there. You know, they say publish consistent content. So every year I would put out one blog , and then I wondered why I wasn’t being discovered, why my personal brand wasn’t taking off. And I, I just had to really come to terms with the fact that I, I was what was holding myself back. So I, I said yes to writing this book, never, ever in my wildest dreams intending for it to become something more. And that journey of writing for an entire year change changed my life. It had me really face where I was playing small and stopping myself. And the moment that fear would show up, I would do this kind of cute quit where I would, I would just choose comfort and all of that to say, I finished the book, spoiler alert, I named it Powerhouse Woman because I really wanted to, I was speaking to myself just as much as I was speaking to the brilliant women around me, that we don’t, we don’t need to achieve something more to become this powerhouse. LS (06:05): It really is already within us. It’s within the seeds of these dreams and visions that are put on our heart for a reason. And the book was released, and my, I had some support in, in the publishing process. My editor and publisher now, good friend, said, you should do a book launch event. That’s, that’s what people do to promote their book. And I said, okay. So the very first Powerhouse Women event was really just a day supposed to be about celebrating this book and this message. And I’ll never forget, you know, and we’re gonna dig into what a big production it’s become. Now. I’ll never forget at the end, women said, okay, well, what’s next? And I was just kinda like, goodbye . You know, I had nothing else. I had not even thought through what this could become, but it all really started with the seed of getting out of my own way, really deciding to challenge the limits of what I knew myself to be capable of. LS (06:58): And realizing that there were so many others who were in a similar season. They just knew they were meant for more, but they were stopping themselves because of fear, or self-doubt, or all the things that now we know are so normal. That is actually the price of admission. That’s how, you know you’re pursuing something that’s, that’s worth pursuing. So, fast forward, here we are seven years later. I know we’re gonna get into all of that, but the beginnings of the story are very humble. I had no clue what I was doing. I was really operating on faith and on this, this knowing that I couldn’t keep playing small and hiding my gifts anymore. AJV (07:37): Hmm. I love that. One of my favorite quotes that I keep getting fed to by the Instagram algorithm is let this year be a God did a year. And I love stories like yours ’cause it’s like, you can take no credit. And it’s like, it’s like to give him all the glory of, if we just step back and step into faith, it’s amazing what he’ll do without us . As long as, as long as we’re willing participants of going, Hey, I’ll step out and I’ll take that next step. And God, I just show me the way, show me what to do. Yeah. And it’s amazing how, and you have enough courage to just go, I don’t know, but I’m going to move forward in faith what amazingness comes from this. So that was seven years ago. What would you say is like the biggest thing that you’ve learned from, Hey, I’m gonna do this book launch event too. Oh no. This is way more than just a book launch event. This is a whole event series. What would you say is the biggest thing you’ve learned in the last seven years? Yeah. LS (08:38): Well, I think on the heels of what you just shared, I thought I was living my life by faith up until that point, but I, I realized that faith doesn’t actually enter the picture until you step beyond what you know yourself to be capable of. So here I was operating within what I could control and what I, I wanted to control the outcome. I wanted to control people’s perception of me. I wanted to control so many variables of it. And I had this tight grip on my story and my purpose and my life. And it wasn’t until I opened that up and I said, okay, I’m gonna step way out, way beyond what I know myself to be capable of. And now the lesson I learned in that is that that was where all the magic lies. That’s where the miracles lie. You don’t actually start to scratch, scratch the surface of what you’re capable of until you step into that feeling of, can I really do this? LS (09:34): So even still now, I know that my next miracle, my next breakthrough is waiting for me. Just beyond, like, if you imagine kinda like looking over the horizon, it’s, it’s just over what we can see. Mm-Hmm. And that’s easy to say, and it sounds really cute, and we’ll probably all be fed a quote like that on Instagram this week. But it’s a whole other thing. Let, let’s just be real. It’s a whole other thing when like, your heart is pounding and your palms are sweating and you’re like, am I really about to do this? Which kind of brings us to, I know we’re gonna get into the just the community element today. I think that’s why community is absolutely essential, because I’m not strong enough to do this on my own. And I, I don’t know many people who are, I just think we’re, we’re really designed to create in community. AJV (10:18): I love that. So that’s such a good transition to talk about community. And so I would love to know, it’s like, what would you say is the difference? Because people always talk about my audience, my audience, but an audience and a community are really different. Yeah. And so how would you define like, here’s my audience versus here’s my community. LS (10:39): It’s, it’s such a important distinction to make, and I’m sure other people would have their own definitions, but I remember when I started to be asked to teach on this, and I really had to sit step back and go, well, I don’t know, we’re just do, I’m just doing what I’m doing. I couldn’t even tell you what it is. But the moment I sat down, it really kind of just downloaded right there in that moment that I think we, we confuse an audience with a community, and both are necessary. And I have strategies for building both in my business, but building our audience is really step one. It’s really it. When I think about building my audience, I’m, I’m answering the question for myself. How can I get more people to connect with me? Whether that’s me as a personal brand or me as a business brand? LS (11:23): And that’s important. We want people to know about you and know about how amazing you are and how you can serve them. But most people are stopping there. They think, okay, I’m just gonna get that attention and convert that into sales. And you can do that. That, that’s beautiful. It’s a, you know, that’s a whole strategy. But what I predict and what I know from my own personal experience is when you take it a level deeper and you start to ask a better question, once you have that attention, you have a way to bring new people into your world. It’s asking a question of not how can I get them to connect with me? Now they’ve done that. How can you get more of those people to connect with each other? And that’s where community really starts to form. And it’s, I mean, it is the most valuable thing that you can build for your brand is a connected, engaged community. LS (12:13): And even when people hear engaged community, I think they imagine, oh, when I post something on Instagram, they’re talking back to me. No, no, no. What I talk about when I say engaged community is I’ll use, you know, my own story as a, just a mini example. We will launch, you know, event tickets. And I’m actually not really selling that event. It’s the people in our community saying, Hey, five friends, you have to come with me. Yes, buy your ticket. I’m gonna send you the link. But it’s taken a lot of intentional cultivating to get to that point. So when you have an engaged community, you know, because you have these, it’s just like this natural built in almost affiliate marketing channel. You have these referrals coming in, you have this brand loyalty that actually can’t be taken away and it can’t be matched. It’s so deep. Community is just so much deeper. But it really starts with that question, how do I get more of the people who are following me to connect with each other? AJV (13:13): I love that. And it’s so true. But I love that distinction of building an audience is helping people connect with you. Building a community is helping them connect to each other. And that’s awesome. So I would love for you to talk about how do you do both of those mm-Hmm. How do you, in all that you’re doing, build your audience, right? Because it’s like, first you kind of have to start there. And then how do you, today between all the different mediums build a truly engaged community? How do you facilitate that? LS (13:48): Well, it’s interesting having you ask that question in that way, because what I realize is we, we actually focus primarily on building the community element. And that inherently has helped to also grow our audience. I think audience growth, and you have so many amazing resources even on this podcast to really dive deep into that. You know, it’s as simple as really knowing who is the person you’re speaking to, what, what works in terms of getting them to come, you know, and, and wanna engage with your account to listen to your podcast. So we just pay a lot of it. It’s kind of boring. We pay attention to metrics and numbers and we’re like, oh, wow. When we do a podcast about this topic, we tend to have more downloads. Or when we post quotes on our social media, those are actually what get us new eyeballs, new followers. LS (14:34): So there’s, I, I think the strategies for how to build an audience are, you know, there’s so many different resources out there, but for us, just really paying attention to numbers, metrics, what works. I’m most excited to talk a little bit about like, the strategy behind the community. ’cause I think this is kind of where it’s, there’s not many people really teaching this. Hmm. But when we, when I really sat down, like I said, to kind of put it into a formula that I could gift people, that I could help them have the success that we’ve had, I realized that there’s, there’s these three crucial elements. But if you skip the first one, the other two don’t matter. Okay. So the first one is, there’s this culture, there’s an energy and a magnetism. And even if you, you know, go to the powerhouse Women page today, or you, you meet someone, I, I always say that the true test of culture is if you meet someone who’s associated with that brand. LS (15:26): So if I were at a party and I meet someone who I know has worked with Rory and aj, because I follow their brand, I love their brand, I immediately assume some things about that person. That’s the culture. Whether you’ve intentionally created that. And if you haven’t, then now is the perfect time to start. Or if you haven’t, it’s, it’s really what do people know about your brand, whether or not you’re telling them that, what are your customers, the people who engage with you, what are they saying about your brand? But it starts with the, the easiest place to start. So if this is kind of like, woo, okay, that sounds deep. And where do I even begin to really cultivate that culture? I think the most important question any of us can ask if we’re really serious about building community is the question of, well, what do I want to unify people around? LS (16:18): What’s gonna be the connective tissue that brings people together? Because you can unify people around all sorts of things. You can unify them against, we all dislike this thing, this topic, this person, people unify around that you watch it happen all the time, or you can unify people around a common mission, a common cause. But what I found, I’ll just give you the cheat sheet for what I believe is the most, the most powerful thing to unify people around, especially those of you that are building more personal brands, is who do they wanna become? What’s the aspirational identity that they wanna become? And that, that’s essentially what we’ve done within powerhouse women is, you know, there’s this, people would probably use all different words to define it, but there is this mission-driven, heart-centered, collaborative version of ourselves and, you know, kind of like this future higher self that we’re all on this, this journey to step into. And so defining that culture, what you’re unifying people around is number one. Then there’s a whole strategy around, AJV (17:30): Before you go on, ’cause I wanna, okay, , I wanna just stop you for a second because I think this is the part that people so often skip over. Yes. LS (17:38): Agreed. AJV (17:39): It’s so focused on where do I get the people? Where do I find the people that they forget? It’s like if you don’t know who you’re trying to attract and why you’re trying to attract them and why they would stay, right? It’s like you’re missing the core element of what really builds community. And so Mm-Hmm, , I just wanna reiterate what you say ’cause I think it’s so powerful. It’s number one, what do I want to unify people around? And I think that is such a defining part of a business, a personal brand, but even just a, a life statement of what do I wanna be about? Like when, you know, we always say brand builders group, when people think of you, what do you want them to think of? LS (18:17): Yes ex, it’s exactly what you guys teach. AJV (18:20): And that is so true. It’s like if you met somebody that was associated with brand builders group, like we know, like hopefully they have this, this, this and this, because that would be an extension of the culture that we’re trying to create. And hopefully they wouldn’t have X, Y, and Z and there’s nothing wrong with X, Y, and Z. It’s just not what we represent. It’s, there’s a, there’s a community for that person. It’s just not here. And I think a huge part of that is knowing you gotta know who you are and who you’re trying to attract, so that when you find them, you’re like, that’s you. And they know that too. So I love that. Yeah. And then the second piece is, who is the aspirational pers the aspirational person they want to become. And if you have a whole bunch of people going after the same thing in the right direction, it will multiply. AJV (19:08): Because then it’s like they become your sales force, which is kind of what you said earlier. And I love that. And I don’t wanna skip over that. ’cause I think these are the types of things that people skip over and the plight of urgency to get it done. Mm-Hmm. and to be done. Yeah. And this is the hard work that is worth it. And it is the hard work that no one talks about, but it is the secret sauce. And so I love that you talked about that. Would you mind telling us those two things for you and powerhouse women? Like what is it that you’re unifying people around? I could take my guesses, but and then who is the aspirational person they wanna become? I would love to know what that is for you. LS (19:47): Yes. So from the very beginning, the motto within powerhouse women is we’re not meant to do business or life alone. So what we’re unifying people around is this belief that we are better together and not just as like a platitude of women supporting women, which is beautiful. There’s something wrong with that. But I, and, and this is very much the truth today. I want people to feel that when they walk in the room, I want them to feel it when they engage with someone that they meet from the community. It’s, it’s different and people feel it. So it, you know, what you’re unifying people around is, is so much more than words. It, it’s, it’s something that it takes time to, to really cultivate this, but the depth of it should be felt Mm-Hmm. Before you even have to say the words. So really that connection and true collaboration almost just seems like, not a strong enough word, but the belief that we’re better together. LS (20:45): And, and the aspirational identity is, is kind of what I described before of this woman who knows she’s meant for more and wants a space that it’s safe to be just as unapologetic about how big her dreams are and whatever size big really means for her. ’cause We all have different, different callings in life. But she, she feels the sense that she’s meant for more. She wants a place that it’s safe to be unapologetic about the big dreams, but equally safe to be really honest about the parts that are challenging and hard. There can be space for both. ’cause I believe when we’re, when we give ourselves the freedom to be just as honest about both and really open and unapologetic sharing both, that’s where our true power lies and where we really see that connection and multiplication of sharing in each other’s gifts really, really comes to life. So that would be my answer today. And there’s, you know, I think that’s important to know too. I’m constantly getting to know my own community. And my community is constantly evolving. So this isn’t something that you write down day one of starting your business. This, this should be something that evolves as your mission and your purpose evolves. And mine has, AJV (21:58): I love that so much. And I think too, just knowing that it does evolve and so whatever you said it as today, it’s like, let it organically change and evolve as things grow and progress. And that’s okay. ’cause It makes different, likely will look different, you know, from where you are today, seven years ahead, which I’m positively sure all of the things we’re gonna talk about have gone through an evolution process. Okay. So that’s number one I love. I just thought that was so powerful. I wanted to stop to make sure everyone got that. Yes. Okay. So that’s number two. LS (22:29): Well, and I, and I definitely wasn’t trying to steamroll and, and jump into number two because what I, what I said at the beginning is give yourself time to sit with and marinate in this first piece. And, and I think that’s the other thing I just wanna make sure to mention is I wasn’t clear about those things in the first couple of years, but what I was really dedicated to was constantly gathering feedback. And I would, I mean, I, I would set up one-on-one Zoom calls with, with women who would come to our events and, and just for 15 minutes and like really hear their heart. So the way that this started to form was by getting together, like, just communing with the people who, who were in, in some way or another really resonating with, with the message. So it, it took me some time to even get really clear. LS (23:21): I would say I remember so vividly it was, it was our third annual event. So first one was in 2017. In 2019, all of a sudden I felt like something clicked in. And that was after two years of building this community, listening to people not even really monetizing it yet, other than the event which was essentially just, you know, paying for itself barely. It was two years of cultivating this. So I want, I wanna make sure to, to state that piece. The, the second part, the second pillar of, of what it really takes to build not just an engaged community, but a profitable one, is that connection piece. And, and that’s the connection where you intentionally create ways for people to connect with each other. And, and this goes like to such a deep human need this. And, and if you look at the, the hierarchy of needs right above food, shelter, and water, like things that are actually necessary for our survival is a feeling of belonging. LS (24:19): Mm-Hmm. . So if your brand becomes a place where people know they can find their people, and this is so much of what I feel about Brand Builders Group and what you and a, what you and AJ, you and Rory have done is, is you know that you’re gonna find like-minded people there and then translating that into ways people can connect. And usually the pushback I get here is, but I hate Facebook groups and so do my, so do my people. And I never said anything about a Facebook group because the truth is connection has nothing to do, or community has nothing to do with the container, meaning the place where community happens, it’s the connection. So we build community and connection via our podcast by interacting directly with our listeners. We do have a Facebook group where people can connect, but we have a tech, we use text messaging to allow people to send us their questions and they feel very much engaged. LS (25:17): Like it’s a direct conversation between us and them. We do this on our social media channels. And my favorite little tip to give is, you know, do you use your Instagram captions to encourage connection between each other? Or do you use your captions to encourage connection with you? Now we use both, right? So a call to action if I want someone to engage with me is, you know, tell me what you think about this. Or we’ll post about a podcast and say, you know, have you ever experienced this? We’re asking them to talk back to us, but take in another step further and instead create captions maybe once a week that in call people to engage with each other. So we’ll do things like, hey, our motto here is, you’re not meant to do business or life alone. And we believe that the answer to anything you need is just one or two, you know, introductions away, or one or two bold asks away. LS (26:08): So in the comments, you know, comment below one need that you have in your business right now, and then go through the comments and see if there’s someone else that you could be the answer to their need. And we get people to engage with each other. A even simpler way to do this, this is like one of my favorite things to do it either in Instagram comments, or you can do this on Zoom calls, is we’ll just say, Hey, we’re gonna have everybody drop, you know, an emoji in the comments below. And all I want you to do is go and follow and DM the person who commented right above you. We’re gonna use this thread for you to make two new friends right away. You just send one message, you’re gonna receive one message. Little things like that, all of a sudden start to position you as sort of this, this place where people know they can come to your brand and they’re gonna meet like-minded people. LS (26:56): It’s no longer just about you and connecting with you as the brand. That’s gonna happen anyway. If I know that I’m gonna get a core human need met when I am interacting with your brand, I don’t even need to worry about people falling in love with the brand. That’s just gonna happen by default. So that connection piece, those are just two really easy examples for how you can start to build connection. Now, of course once you’ve gotten really clear, like, well, what do you wanna build connection around? ’cause It’s gonna be a different, different conversation. If I’m building co connection around business and entrepreneurship and, you know, supporting one another than it is if I’m building connection around gluten-free living and, and healthy eating or clean, you know, a clean lifestyle. So I think, again, starting with that most important piece, but connection is an action word. So how are you encouraging people and telling them to take the action that you wanna help them take? AJV (27:55): That’s so good. Because the truth is, as much as people say, I want community, they truly do need to be told how to build it. Yes. How to involved, what to do. It’s like, just give me some steps. Right? And so the easier you make it, it’s more likely they are to follow through on it. It’s like whoever’s above you, this is what you do. And it’s like, oh, okay, I can do that. Mm-Hmm. . But it’s like I hear, I hear so many people in my personal life and also in our professional life where it’s like, man, they’re lonely. They’re lonely because they’re doing something that their friends and family don’t agree with or think it’s crazy or they’re alone because this is a new venture and they don’t know anyone else who’s doing this or they’re lonely because they aren’t reaching out, they’re not asking for help, they’re trying to do it on their own. AJV (28:41): And it’s like, man, this is hard enough to do with other people. , you don’t, you don’t wanna isolate yourself and try to do it all alone. And I just hear from so many people, I just, I just don’t know where to go. I just don’t know what to do. You know, one of my favorite books is Find Your People by Jenny Allen. And like, the practical, I always tell people to me it’s like how to make friends as an adult. This is what this book is about. And I think it’s the same in business, it’s the same thing you’re doing. It’s like, man, you just need practical steps. It’s like, oh, I can do that. Mm-Hmm. . So I love that of just like telling people what to do, giving them short, easy, actionable steps, but then creating a variety of ways for people to get engaged with whatever fits their vibe. LS (29:23): Mm. It’s so, it’s, it’s so simple that it’s easy to overlook AJV (29:29): . Yeah. I mean it’s like just, I, I was like literally thinking to myself, I’m gonna have our community team mandatorily watch this interview. Yeah. Because there’s so many things of like, ’cause we do, I think, I don’t know, 48 v virtual events every year and what an easy thing for us to do with everyone. Put something in the comments, whoever was above you now go follow them. It’s like those are super tactical, easy to implement things that could revolutionize our community and the lives of the people in our community. And it’s like, I’m just like, mandatory. So they have to listen to this interview LS (30:05): . Well, and that was honestly AJ where I came up with it because I used to host a lot of Zoom calls for our community and you know, there’s like that, that period of time when you’re allowing people to log on and it’s a little bit awkward. Like, well, what do I say? I’m not diving into the content yet. I just, one day I, I just said it and I was like, oh, that was actually brilliant. And it so reinforces what we want people to know, powerhouse women as is. I just said, okay, we’re gonna do a quick little exercise, so no matter what, you’re gonna walk away tonight with two new friends. Yeah. And even just the way that I position it is further reinforcing that, hey, even if you’re brand new here now you kind of know that’s what this community is about. And so it’s, it’s not just doing these, these easy to implement things, it’s also how can you make sure you’re telling people the story of how this relates back to your brand and what you want people to know about your brand. Mm-Hmm. . So yeah, I could nerd out on this all day. AJV (31:02): I love that. I think that’s so good. So another question I have, wait, was there anything else? Were you gonna add anything else? So there LS (31:09): The third piece, and we won’t even really dive into this because unless you’re doing the first two, the third one doesn’t matter. But because like I said, there’s, there’s this journey. You’re essentially invi inviting people on. You’re inviting them to grow with you. So the third piece, because I love a good alliteration and I needed a C word, is the climb, which is do people see a clear way for them to continue to grow with you? Mm, AJV (31:32): That’s good. LS (31:32): And that there’s a whole other strategy to that, but I really want people to not, again, ’cause I think people jump to that and they’re like, oh, great, this is where I sell offers. No, not necessarily this, this is such an important piece, but if you aren’t mastering the first two, the third one is gonna fall flat. So we’ll kind of leave that there. We can always do a part two if we need to in the future at some point. But just asking yourself the question, do people see a clear path to grow with you? And I think the self rele reflection question is how are you modeling that as an aspirational leader? Are you constantly growing? Do your people see you evolving? Because that is, that sets the tone, especially if there’s a personal brand element to your business. AJV (32:13): Mm. I love this. One of the things that just like registered as you were talking about this is, although we’re talking about, you know, a community centric conversation today, my mind also just went to this is mutually applicable to all things company culture with recruiting, hiring and employee retention. It’s like there’s, that is your community. Yes. So don’t think this is just for, you know, your customers. This is for your so true and so true. This is equally as important for any of you who are maybe I don’t wanna build a huge community per se, but the truth is, is you do have a community, it’s your team, it’s all the people around you. So how are you instilling these things within your community so you have less turnover and better retention and happier employees and because they too are your best, you know, recruiting grounds. So you never have to go out and recruit like they’re doing it for you. So, LS (33:11): So well said. AJV (33:12): So many of those things are just very much the same. Now, one of the things that I wanna make sure we get to before we do run Outta time is one of the, you know, choices that you have made is to create this experiential component with live events. And I know that is no light undertaking. And so I would love for you to kind of just as much as you’re willing, pull back that dark black curtain and say like, this is what it’s actually like to run big events. And big again, is totally up to you to decide what’s big, but it’s like, I think an any, any size of event can be considered a big event because there is so much planning and orchestration and doesn’t matter if you’re talking about 50 people or 5,000 people. So what would you have to share with us about what it takes to sell out an event? In your case you’re, you know, 500, 600, 700 plus P person events, but what are the mechanics to pull that off? ? LS (34:16): Well, this has again been m many years of, I wouldn’t even say trial and error, it’s more dedication to building the community. Just knowing that, because I have always, and we haven’t even really touched on this, but let me just pull back the curtain all the way. We’ve always had a very small audience. We sold a 600 plus person event last year with an email list of under 10,000 or right around 10,000 and our social media falling now we’re starting to grow and get some traction. So anyone who’s coming to the brand now is like, you don’t have that small of an audience, but, but it, it really started very small. I didn’t even start an email list until mid 2018, almost two years into the business. Really wish I would could go back and change that. But so when I say I have always had a small audience, I think there’s so many of us that use that as an excuse. LS (35:09): Mm-Hmm. . And I never saw it as something that held me back. I just saw it as a reason why I had to think a little bit differently. And without realizing that this is what I was doing, I started to really focus on the connection and realizing that, okay, my first event, I remember my vision, it was so small, I actually at first thought I was gonna have the very beginning event in someone’s living room. That’s how small my vision was. But if someone could just, you know, re loan us their, their home, we could have, you know, 30 to 50 people. We eventually did expand that had a hundred women in the first event. And I remember having this moment again, just like so humbly in prayer going, God, why did you gimme this vision? If I am so ill-equipped to fulfill on it. LS (35:51): And just in something in my spirit kind of just said, okay, Lindsey, you’re thinking about this. Like you’re doing it by yourself. You don’t need to know 50 women, you just need to know 10. Who would all be willing to invite five friends? And so I think that was always the way that I look at, I look at my events that way now, is how can we provide such an incredible experience and make it feel like something that you wouldn’t wanna come to this alone, you wanna invite, like even that, that cool girl that you haven’t really talked to in your Pilates class, but you just sense that like she’s got, she’s into the same things and maybe you two could connect and go to this event together. So it’s just built into our culture that you don’t, yes, you can come to this event if you don’t have a community and you can find your community, but once you’re in, it’s kind of like, okay, who are you bringing with you next year? LS (36:43): Because you wouldn’t wanna keep this to yourself. So in the early, early days, you know, we’ve we’ve also never run ads. So it’s all completely organic, small audience. So anyone who wants to come at me and say, Lindsey, here’s my excuse for why this won’t work, , I mean, I would challenge you on that with so much love because it’s, it’s been, it hasn’t been an overnight success. It’s been a slow build, a very intentional build. But because I’ve prioritized the connection, building that culture in big and small ways, and then also just really creating this environment at the events where people want to come back and they want to bring others because they see a continual way to keep growing. We have been able to, you know, now we can post a Black Friday sale. We did this this year in a week and we sold 350 tickets, which, you know, is kind of like unheard of in the event space. LS (37:43): But it’s not just because I woke up one day and had this huge email list. It’s seven years of creating the connection, listening. There’s no one who’s more in touch with her community maybe than me. And still to this day, individually answering dms and messages and, and really creating the experience that this isn’t my community, it’s theirs, and I’m just the one who’s gonna throw the party for all of us to come together. So I know that that’s a little, I I can just hear the people who are more left brained, like, but give us a strategy, . So I’ll give you, I’ll give you some actual strategies. Okay. But you had to hear my heart first because this is far more of the conversation we’ve had up until this point than it is send these three emails. Okay. Mm-Hmm. , something tangible that has actually really worked for us is creating urgency through deadlines. LS (38:34): So in the past we would do like an early bird ticket sale, and then we would do, you know, just then from however long you have until the event, you’re just trying to get butts in seats, right? We’ve realized, again, data and numbers, which I have the most brilliant business partner, my COO, who is brilliant at this. And she really helps to bring, bring these numbers together. We noticed everyone buys tickets right before a deadline. So if you notice this trend within your own event promotion, just create more deadlines. So we create deadlines that are ticket price increases. That’s kind of like the mower conventional approach. So we’ll do, when we launch tickets in March, there will be a one week flash sale. You have seven days to get the best possible price. So it’s condensed into a really, really short timeframe. And we typically will sell 30% of our tickets in that one week. LS (39:25): Then it goes to our early bird, and that’s kind of like the longest stretch of time. It’s kind of like the Sahara Desert where you see a tumbleweed coming in that’s like one ticket sale every couple of days and you can’t freak out in this period time period. There’s just no urgency for people to buy. So until we have another price increase that we can really push toward, we create other deadlines. So one example of this is we host a speaker contest where two women get chosen to do like a five minute head talk, if you will. We call it my powerhouse moment. And you have to be a ticket holder in order to submit. And we, we realized that that was one of the biggest questions we would get asked from our, from our audience, from our community, was how do I become one of the speakers? LS (40:10): I would, my dream would be to speak on stage one day. So we, we gave them the opportunity and we built that into a reason why they, they should have their ticket earlier than maybe they were planning to purchase it. So yes, there are strategies, but it all really comes down to building that community and creating something that people can’t miss. It is, we actually now relate to it as our New Year’s Eve. That’s like the start of our year. And then we come back around and we celebrate the growth we’ve had in the previous year, you know, at the next event. That’s, that’s just kind of how we roll now. But, AJV (40:42): You know, part of that is, and I love that because I do think it’s like we’re just trained, our human brains are trained to go like, you know, fomo, right? It’s like, I want this good deal, don’t wanna miss this deadline. It’s like our brain thinks in those types of tranches. And, but what I love is that you’ve also incorporated some of the things that your community wants as incentives. Yeah. And you can only do that if you’re in touch with your community. You’re getting feedback from your community, you’re listening to your community, and you’re going, Hey, like let’s weave this in as an incentive to get people to move to action. ’cause We all need that. We all need some reason to get a, to move to action so that we don’t miss out on the things that we said we wanted. So I love that you’re also using the things that you already know about your community as a way of getting them to take action and in a, in a schedule that works for you, right? Because in the event business , there are deadlines that you have to meet too, right? So, LS (41:42): Oh my goodness. AJV (41:43): You know, I love it. LS (41:44): Once you, once you become an event host, you realize, oh, okay, I was the jerk that was always waiting last minute to buy my ticket. And then you’re hosting an event realizing you have to pay all of those deposits months in advance. So if you, if you really wanna get on an event hosts good side, buy your ticket early AJV (42:04): . But I have a, a good friend who I was asking her one day, like, what’s your pricing strategy? And she was like, oh, well I have my favorite client pricing and my pain in the butt . LS (42:17): That is so AJV (42:18): Genius. I was like, yeah, that’s true. And it’s like, yeah, you are gonna pay more if you wait till the last minute because it’s stresses everyone else out. So yeah, you’re gonna pay more if you pay. Yeah. You have less stress, it’s easier. But I think there’s a lot of those just nuances of going, like, I gotta get you to move to action so that we can move to action on the backend. And so how do we dually incentivize that? And I love that deadlines and discounts and speak on stage incentives. That’s like probably like a, a favorite that you mentioned of giving something to people that they’re asking for. And, you know, for so many people, what a cool life changing moment for them to like fulfill a dream that, you know, I love that. I think that’s so cool. I, I love all of this. AJV (43:02): And I know that you have your big events coming up and it’s in August and tickets are going to go on sale any day. So as this is being released, as, as you were listening to this right now we are timing the release of this also with your tickets going on sale for your 2024 Powerhouse Women event, which is going to be in Scottsdale on August 9th and 10th. What can you tell us about this event? So, I, I just, I’m an advocate of abundance mentality. Everyone who’s listening, if you wanna just go and watch how it’s done, right, like this would be like a great opportunity to do that. But tell us about this event and what, what should people expect? LS (43:46): Oh, you’re so kind. I I’m biased. So I always tell people this upfront. I am very biased. So I will tell you it is, it is the best day of my year. And it’s, it’s truly, it’s a culmination of everything we talked about today. If you are someone, if who is listening and you’re like, yeah, I, I wanna be more unapologetic about how big my dreams are and be in a space where that’s celebrated and where people aren’t intimidated or trying to talk me into a smaller vision, but I also wanna have real conversations about the challenges that come along the way. And I wanna meet my people. I wanna meet people who are on that same journey. Then we’ve brought them all together in a room for you. And it is happening August 9th and 10th. The 10th is the full day event. And then the ninth, we have a kickoff party, which is a pajama. It’s a big pajama party. We call it pajamas and Prosecco. And really, that even that’s intentional. It’s, it’s, it can be intimidating to walk into a room of powerful women, but it’s a little less intimidating if you get to meet them Friday night in fuzzy slippers. So, and they’re pajamas. AJV (44:49): We do LS (44:49): That in pajamas, AJV (44:51): In your pajamas. I love LS (44:52): It. It’s a little less intimidating. So it’s, it’s just the most beautiful celebration of ambition and authenticity. And we bring in amazing speakers, some who you’ve probably had on the podcast, Amy Porterfield, Jasmine Star has spoken on stage, Lori Harder, Patrice, Washington. We do have, I guess I can share it here. Jamie Kern Lima is coming this year, which I know you guys are helping That’s AJV (45:16): Awesome. LS (45:16): With her book launch. So we have a lot in store and I’m, I’m just so excited for it. Yeah. And the tickets will go on sale any day now. But like you said, even if you’re just listening to this and you just wanna take like a masterclass in how we are promoting this event, you know, tap into our email list, watch our social, you’ll see actively how we’re doing this. And I’m just so excited to pay it forward. AJV (45:40): I’m so excited for you and for this event and for this episode. So much goodness in this. And I love your heart behind everything and I love too, that you can appeal to the right brain and the left brain . That’s good, good self-awareness of that. I love that. It’s so good. But y’all, just like Lindsey said, if you just wanna just follow the process, worst case scenario, just learning by experiencing, I want you to go to powerhouse women event.com, powerhouse women event.com, and perhaps just by watching the process, you understand why you should be at this event, and then you can go ahead and click and buy your ticket, right, . So again, I’m a super advocate of this. I think this is amazing. I’m actually gonna check my schedule. I think this sounds so awesome to be, again, back to being in a room where you feel like I found my people. AJV (46:30): Mm-Hmm. , right? And that’s what we all want. So as you’re listening to this, this is one way, if you’re looking for your people, then again, go to powerhouse women event.com, the events August 9th and 10th, tickets on sale, like we set any day now. But then also if you’re just trying to learn the process of going like, how did, how are we doing this? And just go check it out. Get in the email sequence, follow , all the things they’re doing on social media. We’ll pull all of that on the show notes. So you can just click and go check ’em out on Instagram the different websites. But the primary one is powerhouse women event.com. Lindsey, thank you so much. This was so awesome. Loved every second of it. And for everyone else who is listening, make sure you stick around for the recap episode and we will see you next time on the influential personal brand.

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25 of the World's Most Recognizable Influencers Share Their Tips on How to Build and Monetize a Personal Brand

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