Lisa Nicholls is a consummate networker and community builder who intuitively understands how to form genuine connections with people in real life and online. After a career holding customer-focused positions across a variety of industries, in 2009 Lisa founded Tira! Strategies, a consultancy dedicated to helping small business owners navigate the complex and dynamic world of social media. Lisa leverages her deep expertise in relationship building and communications to help her clients form meaningful relationships with customers online, building communities of loyal and devoted customers.
- CEO Hack: The Promodoro Technique to be more productive
- CEO Nugget: Find the people that support you in business and personal life
- CEO Defined: Autonomy to make decisions and be the leader I want
Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/theengagingentrepreneur
Facebook Business Page: https://www.facebook.com/tirastrategies
Do you want to learn effective ways to build relationships, generate sales and grow your business from successful entrepreneurs, startups and CEOs without listening to a long, long, long interview? If so, you've come to the right place, Gresham Harkless values your time and is ready to share with you precisely the information you are in search of. This is the I am CEO podcast.
Gresham Harkless 0:29
Hello, hello, hello, this is Gresh from the I am CEO podcast and I have a very special guest on the show today have Lisa Nichols of Tierra strategies, Lisa, it's awesome having on the show.
Lisa Nicholls 0:39
Hi, thank you. I'm excited to be here. Thank you so much for having me. And yeah, this is gonna be fun.
Gresham Harkless 0:44
No problem super excited to have you on as well, too. And before we jumped in, I want to read a little bit more about Lisa so you can hear about all the awesome things that she could that she's doing, at least as a consummate networker and community builder who intuitively understands how to form genuine connections with people in real life and online. After a career holding customer focus positions across a variety of industries. In 2009, Lisa founded terror strategies, a consulting a consultancy dedicated to helping small business owners navigate the complex and dynamic world of social media. Lisa leverages her deep expertise in relationship building and communications to help her clients for meaningful relationships with customers online building communities of loyal and devoted customers. Lisa, are you ready to speak to the imcl? community?
Lisa Nicholls 1:27
I am so ready. Yes.
Gresham Harkless 1:29
Let's do it.
Lisa Nicholls 1:30
Gresham Harkless 1:31
So to kick everything off, I wanted to, I guess kind of started in the beginning. Can you take us through your SEO story, what led you get started your business?
Lisa Nicholls 1:37
Sure, you know, to make this free, because it's a longer story. But 10 years ago, Facebook wasn't as huge as it is now. And I was actually working at a local newspaper, we were doing some social media campaigns on behalf of our clients. And when the paper decided to close as many of newspapers, you know, gone that way. I was trying to figure out what to do. And I loved that job so much. So I was looking around and realized that I couldn't find anything I loved as much and decided I would just open my own company and help businesses with social media because they didn't know how to use it. And I did. And back then you could put up a Facebook page, and people followed you like that, because oh my gosh, it's so new. And it's so different now. It's amazing. So 10 years later, you know, I just made the business went a few different directions. But I really, I realized that I love to focus on social media. And so that's where I really have have all of my time focused on social media and helping people create a social media presence that really draws clients to them.
Gresham Harkless 2:32
Yeah, that makes so much sense. That is definitely so powerful. And it's funny you said that because I one of my last jobs is I worked with patch. And there was a lot of people that were former patches that actually went into a lot of digital marketing and a lot of is because it definitely correctly if you find the same thing where a lot of it's a lot more, obviously a lot of the skills are transferable. But also that story piece is so important. So when you have somebody that has that background, and is able to showcase you in the best light, it really goes to another level.
Lisa Nicholls 2:59
It does and so funny, small world about that. But my boss who owned the newspaper actually went to work for the rest and patch for a while. And so I was pretty in one of our reporters went there too. So yeah, I was pretty tight into patch when it was going on also.
Gresham Harkless 3:11
Yeah, absolutely is it's a super small world. I know that a lot of people yeah, end up transferring into a different type of digital marketing. spheres. And and I know it's a you can rub shoulders with a lot of people that have former patches, it seems Absolutely. Awesome. So I know you touched on it a little bit about you know, your business and how you serve your clients, can you drill down a little bit deeper. And let us know a little bit about that experience and how you set the clients you work with?
Lisa Nicholls 3:36
Sure. So most of my clients they have I do social media management, where it's really just done for them, I go in, look at what they've got going on now look at their platforms, they're on their content and create a strategy based on what they want to get out to the world about their business and what the world wants to hear about them. About from them about their business. And then we implement it. So we create content, we create graphics, and we start putting content out there and monitor and gauge it, you know, create engagement among other businesses, other people and do that. So it's really designed to boost their visibility in front of their target audience. But I also sometimes we'll go into companies, larger companies and just create a strategy for three to six months. And then they have people who implement that. And then I also do workshops about social media, which I love doing because put me in front of an audience with a microphone and I am just golden. So I'll do workshops and speaking engagements. And those are the big things that I do for clients and it's just so much fun. I love love being able to look at what they've got going on with social media and create in making corrections that that work because when you really look at it, a lot of people are doing the same things wrong over and over again. And so it's not it's just taking the best practices and shifting their focus.
Gresham Harkless 4:51
Yeah, absolutely. And I love it's muted. The word visibility is always music to my ears because I think so many times and I'm sure you experienced this as well too is last time clients and people have really phenomenal products and services and things that they're doing. But they can't get it out to as many people and being able to understand the nuances. I love how you have, you know, different tiered approach to be able to help serve clients. Because I think that being able to get your, your name, your business, what you stand for, and all those things around your story out to the world is such a huge thing that people need to take advantage of.
Lisa Nicholls 5:21
Yeah, and that's a good point that you bring up too. I always say that more people would buy our stuff if they knew what we did. So what I have to do is help people see what other businesses do. So they buy their stuff, like people just don't understand it. And I love to take businesses that have kind of a weird thing that nobody gets and make that into something that the average person would understand. So yeah, that's, that is just I think the commonality among a lot of businesses, the more people know what you do, the more they're likely to buy from you.
Gresham Harkless 5:47
Yeah, absolutely. I can't I can't tell you the amount of times I've heard entrepreneurs or business owners say that, Oh, I didn't know you exist. It I wish I knew that you were around. And a lot of that is because maybe they need a little boost in your social media strategy so that people know exactly what you do and how you do it. So well.
Lisa Nicholls 6:01
I didn't know you did that.
Gresham Harkless 6:05
Why did you tell me that?
Lisa Nicholls 6:07
You're best read my website. I posted that all the time. But okay. Nobody knows.
Gresham Harkless 6:12
Yeah, absolutely. But it's so important to kind of be where the people are. So that's why I love you know, everything that you do you help people to kind of understand that and understand how best to kind of leverage that. So what do you consider to be what I call your secret sauce, anything you feel kind of sets you apart, or your organization, it makes you unique?
Lisa Nicholls 6:28
Yeah, I think I have two things that set me apart. First of all, I think I'm really good at going into business and taking this weird thing they do, and making it palatable so that their audience really is interested in it. So a lot of my businesses have services or products that are really not normal, you know, and so it's hard for people to understand what it is. And it's hard to translate it to social media. And I think what I do well is go in and say, Okay, well, we can't post about your thing that you sell all the time, because people would be turned off. And that would get boring, but we can post about these other things that relate to your business, and help them understand more about what you do. And I think I'm really good at that. And I think I'm really good at building a community rather than just followers. So we don't we focus on engagement, we but we focus on getting people invested into what you sell, rather than just liking it. So we create, for lack of a better word, brand loyalists and evangelicals about your brand, so that they really just are gung ho and 100% behind you.
Gresham Harkless 7:22
I wanted to switch gears a little bit. And I want to ask you for what I call a CEO hack. So this could be like an app or book or a habit that you have. But what's something that makes you more effective and efficient?
Lisa Nicholls 7:32
There are a couple of things when we talked about this, I thought, Okay, what is it so but my top thing is the Pomodoro Technique, I tend to left to my own devices, I'm go to the work that I like doing the most. So Excuse me, I would end up spending hours creating graphics in Canva, or, you know, doing fun stuff and letting all the other stuff slide. But with pomodoro is it's a technique where you put a task in a 25 minute blocks at a timer. When that time is up, you're done with that part of the task, and you have that five minute break and move on to something else. So now I just put all of my weekly tasks into pomodoro throughout my week, and I tackle them. So the stuff that I hate doing, I put in there and I can do anything for 25 minutes. So it just makes me a lot more productive every day, every week, every month. And because I can put my long term goals and my you know, the things I need to do for planning in there, then it helps me make the time to plan and to have goals because without goals, you've got nothing or without working towards your goals. So pomodoro is has been life changing for me. They are amazing.
Gresham Harkless 8:30
Yeah, absolutely. I don't think I've heard of pomodoro. I feel like I've heard the word but I didn't really understand exactly what it is. Is it like an app? Or is it something that is just a practice or something you do on a regular basis?
Lisa Nicholls 8:39
Yeah, it's a technique. So pomodoro actually is the sauce, right? It's spaghetti sauce. Okay. Yeah, but if you look at Pomodoro Technique, and I don't remember the person who created it, it's not anything you can buy, I don't think you know, it's just a technique to do your time blocks. So they may have built it up to do tasks, but I, you know, I just use it the way it is. And so sometimes I'll put things into pomodoro blocks, like to 15 minute blocks, it's a bigger task. But again, it's just the productivity for me is so much better. I'm just not a, I don't know, I think I have trouble focusing on things. So this just really helps me knock out my work, make sure my clients are happy, do my long term planning, do my short term planning and get everything done. And it also helps me with my family life. So before this, I was bleeding into the evenings and my son was upset with me. And so now I actually have it like at five o'clock start dinner, you know, or, you know, I'm working till four or working till six, and then I put it away. So it's been super helpful.
Gresham Harkless 9:33
Yeah, absolutely. And I feel like there's a lot of power. I feel like there's even studies that say, when you start to say, I'm gonna do this, and this amount of time you start to figure out are you become superhuman, and you get it done in that amount of time. And I think so many times, we're like, oh, I need to get this done by the end of the day, then it starts to take the whole entire day, but the time, the amount of time that you have those constraints allow you to really figure out how to make things happen.
Lisa Nicholls 9:56
Yeah, I think that's exactly you're correct. Yes, yes. Yeah. I've had that. tastic could be done an hour in the day later, I'm looking at it going, we spent eight hours. Well, I checked my email, and I did this. And I did that. So yeah, it just helps me be much more productive. So that is my big, big hack. Yeah,
Gresham Harkless 10:14
I absolutely love and I'm glad to hear I'm also like that that's the only one as well, too. So that helps we feel a lot lot lot better. And so now what it asks you for what I call a CEO, nugget. And this could be a word of wisdom or piece of advice, it might be something you would tell a client, or if you happen to a time machine, you might tell your younger business self.
Lisa Nicholls 10:32
So there again, are a bunch of them. But I think for me, my big thing is to find your tribe and hold on to them. And I think we use the word tribe a lot in terms of the relationships we build. But I think having been in business for 10 years, and over the years, just having friends come and go, I think finding those people that support you, no matter what, both in business and in your personal life, art, it's just crucial to being a successful business person, the ones who share your values, the ones who, you know, when you have a bad day, you're crying too, and they lift you up. And just, I think it makes all the difference in the world to have that amazing support network. And I will, there are days when I will just I have a gratitude journal, and I'll sit back and be grateful for the people that are in my tribe, for my, for my people, for my sisters in my thoughts, my business organization, I just am so grateful for the people who have are in my life, because they are so high quality, and it takes a long time to develop those relationships. And they tend to happen naturally. But just find your tribe and hold on to them. And you know, you can be a good supporting person and friend to them also.
Gresham Harkless 11:36
Yeah, absolutely. And I think that goes, you know, so deep because I think so many times, you know, in business, we talk a lot about, you know, numbers, and, you know, strategy and goals and all those things, of course, they're of extreme importance, but we so many times forget about that human aspect of business, and to be able to have that tribe that you spoke to, because a lot of times, if you're not, I guess hold or at least support it from a relationship standpoint, or you don't feel your cup is full. So many times that fills into you know, your clients and fills in the work that you do, and you're not always showing up as your best self. So having in finding that tribe of those people that you can kind of lean on or talk to or just, you know, express anything with allows you that opportunity to show up your best self in so many different other ways.
Lisa Nicholls 12:17
It does. And I think it helps you grow your business and make it through, you know, as a business owner, the tough times, and then the resources are amazing. I can always look to somebody who I know for something that I need, or you know, it's just gosh, it makes all the difference in the world for me.
Gresham Harkless 12:31
Yeah, absolutely. Success is a team sport, they say so you want to make sure you have the right team and tribe in place. So now I would ask you my absolute favorite question, which is the definition of what it means to be a CEO. And we're hoping that a different quote unquote, CEOs on the show, so Lisa would just mean a CEO mean to you.
Lisa Nicholls 12:47
So I love this question. And again, had to give a lot of thought to it. But I think for me, I really subscribe to the idea of servant leadership, and similar in many, many organizations, I volunteer my time to where I am a leader to help others. And so as a CEO that carries through everything I do, I can choose to use my time as a business owner to help other businesses in any way that I want, whether it's to volunteer, whether it's to offer products, whether it's to support them through, you know, low cost offering. So I just love that. For me, it allows me the freedom to run my business the way I want to be the kind of leader I want that can help other people. And so that is everything I carry through into my facebook group into my business into the volunteer work I do. So yeah, it's just the autonomy to make the decisions and to be the kind of leader that I feel like I want and I want my business.
Gresham Harkless 13:41
Yeah, so powerful. And so many times I say like, a lot of times being a quote unquote CEO means, you know, being like an artist and you get to really paint a picture on the canvas that you want. You get to be the leader, you get to be the change, you know, you hope to see in the world. And I love that just because so many times we forget, I guess the autonomy and even the power we have in order to write that and create that. But I love that definition just because it hits home directly to that. And also the direct effects of sometimes us being in serving on a really high level can have on the world.
Lisa Nicholls 14:11
Very true. Yeah. Yeah.
Gresham Harkless 14:13
Awesome. Awesome. Alisa, truly appreciate that definition. I appreciate your time, even more, what I wanted to do is pass you the mic, so to speak, just to see if there's anything additional, you can let our readers and listeners know and of course, how best they can get a hold of you and find out about all the awesome things that you're working on.
Lisa Nicholls 14:28
I'm sure I always love to. It's so funny, because when I talk about social media, I think and I'm going to give you guys like a little bit of tip wisdom from from me who's been in it for a while. But I think that the two top things to be on social media are authentic and consistent. And if you can master those You are so far ahead of the game. And the funny thing is I was listening to singer Jason Derulo, who has millions of followers on his Instagram and he was on a radio show. And he said, Well, consistency and authenticity are the two biggest things that are crucial to gaining his following and I said oh my gosh, me and Jason. So if you guys can master that I think you're going to be so far ahead of the game. It's amazing. And then, in terms of getting in touch with me and following me, I think you asked that, right. So I have a Facebook group called the engaging entrepreneur and it's open to anybody who wants to better learn how to use social media for their business. So we do a lot of fun challenges. I give tips every day, there's a lot of interaction and that's a great way to find me. And then of course, my social handles, Facebook, on to strategies on Instagram under Lisa Nichols with two L's Twitter, I don't use that much on LinkedIn, and I am if you guys wanted to my website, just know that is actually hopefully by the time this airs, it will have been revamped because it is very old right now. So we've got cool new colors that kind of match that painting there. And yeah, and a big revamp, so we just went through a rebranding.
Gresham Harkless 15:49
Awesome, awesome. Awesome, very, very exciting. And we will have the links and information in the show notes as well for tier strategy so you can get all Elisa, join the Facebook group and hear about all the awesome things and I love that consistency and authenticity message as well, too. I think so many times I say you can't lose if you run your own race and so many times we're running somebody else's race. But being authentic to you and being authentic to yourself on a regular basis on a daily basis is so important to being successful, whether we're talking about social media or just showing up as leaders in this world. So I appreciate that reminder so much and I hope you have a great rest of the day.
Thank you for listening to the I am CEO podcast powered by Blue 16 Media Tune in next time and visit us at I am CEO, CEO, I am CEO is not just a phrase, it's a community. Be sure to follow us on social media and subscribe to our podcast on iTunes, Google Play and everywhere you listen to podcasts, subscribe and leave us a five star rating grab CEO gear at WWW dot CEO gear.co This has been the I am CEO podcast with Gresham Harkless Thank you for listening.
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