65. Five Life and Business Lessons I Learned from Amy Porterfield
18 August 2020 | By Salome Schillack
I have the great pleasure of knowing the Online Marketing Expert Amy Porterfield as both a mentor and a friend. Without Amy, I wouldn't be where I am today in my online business and leading my team.
Knowing and learning from Amy has helped me figure out SO many things. On today's episode I'm sharing the five biggest life and business lessons I've learned from Amy, including how she helped me move from having NO idea what I wanted to share to holding my hand as I built my courses and started letting people inside.
Amy helped me define how I want to impact the world, how to get bigger results, and she's provided me with an invaluable community that helped me feel less alone in some crucial moments for my online business journey.
Tune in to today's episode to hear more!
When you subscribe and review the podcast not only does that give me the warm and fuzzies all over, it also helps other people to find the show.
When other people find the show they get to learn how to create more freedom in their lives from their online courses too!!
So do a good deed for all womenkind and subscribe and review this show and I will reward you with a shout out on the show!!
Hello, and welcome to episode number 65 of The Shine Show. I hope this episode finds you really well wherever you are, that you and your family are healthy and safe and really well. I want to ask you a favor today. I would love it if you listened to the podcast, if you could share it with your other online business friends or share a picture on the social platform that you love the most. Facebook or Instagram, send me a DM and tell me what you love about today's episode, and also show me where you're listening in from. I would love to get some ratings and reviews on iTunes so that we can start climbing some of those charts a little bit. I've been able to hit number 33 in the marketing category in Australia so far, and hey, it's only up from there. We've been to number seven in New Zealand.
So all 20 of my listeners in New Zealand, thank you so much. We've also ranked in Malaysia, Canada, Singapore, Switzerland, the UK and Italy. So wherever you're listening in, I want to let you know that I really do appreciate you. I would love, love, love it if you could go and write us and give us a review on iTunes. It means the world to me. I love bringing this podcast to you and I can't wait to bring even more episodes and to make it even better. I want to know where you're listening and what you think. So thank you very much. Without further ado, let me jump into the content and teach you the five life and business lessons I learned from her majesty, Amy Porterfield,
Giving up your time and freedom to make money is so 2009. Hi, I'm your host Salome Sherlock, and I help online course creators launch, grow and scale their businesses with Facebook and Instagram ads so that they can make more money and have an even bigger impact in the world. If you're ready to be inspired to dream bigger, launch sooner and grow your online business faster, then tune in because you are ready to shine, and this is The Shine Show.
It was early in 2015, and it was one of those days where I had the whole day laid out in front of me to get work done. I dropped my kids off at daycare and I didn't have anywhere else to be that day or anything else to do, so I knew I had a whole day dedicated to building my business. So I did what I usually did on days like that, I got in my car and I drove to my favorite coffee shop, which is the coffee shop called The Bodhi Tree in Perth, where I used to live. It's a coffee shop/inspirational bookstore. So you're surrounded by beautiful books and healthy coffee and healthy snacks, and one of the most productive places to sit and do some work, if you're a coffee shop working type of person like I am.
So I sat down at The Bodhi Tree with this heart full of expectations knowing that I'm going to have a full productive day of getting work done. As soon as I sat down and opened my computer, this very deep unhappiness hit me, because I realized that everything that was on my to-do list were either things I hated doing or were things that I had no idea how it related back to success in my business. I was tired of hustling, I was tired of networking to find one-on-one clients at that stage for my coaching business. I was working my tail off on social media trying to get in front of more people and trying to build an audience, but I didn't really know how the busyness was getting me to a successful business, and it felt like it was just not taking off. At this stage, I'd been building my business for about a year.
In this moment of complete unhappiness, dissatisfaction and defeated feeling of having the gift of this day that I get to dedicate to work, but also this feeling of dread of I don't even know if what I'm doing is helping, I had a moment of clarity where I asked myself, "What is it about my business that I don't love, and who has a business like the one that I think I will love?" I remember making a list of people who I have started following on social media that did have a following, or that did have a business like the one that I wanted. One of the people on that list was ... I remember the list had Maury Smith and Marie Forleo and Danielle LaPorte and Denise Duffield-Thomas, and there was one more name and it was Amy Porterfield, was on that list.
I opened up all of their websites in front of me, I opened up all of their Facebook pages. I don't think Instagram existed back then. I opened it all up and I asked myself, "What are they doing that I love? What are they doing that I want? How are they doing what they're doing?" I started making a spreadsheet of their business models. I was looking for patterns. I was looking to see what is that I think that they have that I want, and I noticed that they all had a topic that they spoke about 90% of the time, they all had an online platform where they were delivering content to people on a regular basis, they all had amazing what I now know to be lead magnets, but I saw it then as amazing things that I wanted to download, and it looked to me like they were all working from home from their laptops building businesses.
The beautiful thing is they're all women, and they were all making really good bank. They were earning some income. One of them really caught my eye and that was Amy Porterfield, and I started listening to her podcast and I remember so clearly being one of her absolute lifers, being engaged 100% with every single word that came out of her mouth. At that time, her podcast hadn't yet hit 100 episodes, and she launched a competition for the 100th episode, somebody would win a one-on-one session, a full day session with her. I remember feeling like it is so unfair that I'm stuck in Australia, even in Perth, and I can not apply for this competition because I can't go to San Diego or [inaudible] where she lives and spend a day with her.
I remember that feeling of being completely new in her environment and just soaking up everything she was teaching. So it wasn't a surprise that I got redirected very quickly with an ad for her webinar on which she sold webinars that convert, and I knew that buying the scores was going to be it for me. I bought webinars that convert, I put it on my credit card and I paid it off over 12 months at $97 a month, which was huge for me back then, and I worked ... It took me months to work through webinars that convert. I worked through it twice before I launched my first online course. Fast forward to today, Amy Porterfield is still front and center of everything I learn, everything I do, and by some amazing miracle, I feel like we've grown up together.
I feel like as she has grown, I've always been able to keep up with her, and as I have grown, somehow she has managed to always stay relevant to wherever I am in this journey. So today, I have an agency that does multi-six figures and a team of people who work for me. My Kajabi account shows that I have made over $40,000 in the last five months in online courses, and I know I will easily hit 100K before the end of this year. I have had the absolute privilege of working with some unbelievably smart people, doing their ads and being at the back end of their online course launches. The best is I have a team of people that I absolutely adore who helps me to create my vision, and that vision for me, my personal vision is really to change the way that women work.
I mean, I don't even have to explain it to you. You probably already know there's a massive pie gap and we all stay at home raise kids and then we don't have money to retire with, and a lot of women end up feeling really trapped. I felt really trapped with the decision of choosing between being a mum and working, and I just think there's a better way. So not only do I absolutely dedicate my life to teaching female entrepreneurs how to make money, but I also want to change the way women work through my own business and through the women that I hire. I can tell you, every woman that works for me makes good money, they earn good income, they all work from home and they all work just as flexibly as I do, because I don't believe that flexible work is just reserved for entrepreneurs.
So in the few five years since 2015 when I sat down at The Bodhi Tree and felt so incredibly frustrated, the one person that has been there alongside me, in front of me, leading the why and showing me how to do this, and not just showing me how to do it, but also showing me who to be while I was doing it has been Amy Porterfield. I get a little bit emotional when I think about it because she hasn't changed my life once, she hasn't changed my life twice, she's changed it multiple times. For me to create a podcast episode where I share with you all the ways in which Amy Porterfield has changed my life and my business, we're going to be here for a long, long time. So I've tried to narrow it down to just five things. But there are no other online educators that I have learned from for such a long time and that have impacted my life in such a tremendous way.
Today I want to share my Amy with you, and I want to share some practical things that I learned from her that has impacted my life and my business. But I also want to share how she's shaped in terms of how I show up for my students, for my team, and probably most importantly for myself, because she's more than just an online teacher. She's a really cool human who does really good stuff. You can hear how emotional I get about it, but that is really how I feel. So number one, the first way that Amy has changed my business is by teaching me to build my email list. Okay, so I really wish that when I heard her say this the first 1000 times, I listened. Here's the truth. I have people who are buying from me today who have been following me for over five years.
Now, I go like, "Who the heck would be hanging out with me for five years?" But just like I've been hanging out with Amy for five years, there have been people hanging out with me for five years. I want to tell you the thoughts that I have allowed to get in my way when it comes to list building, one of them was, well, who am I to talk about anything? Imposter syndrome is a massive, massive issue for anyone who struggles with worthiness issues, which is one of my challenges in this world. I think we all have different ways that we need to learn that we are loved and it manifests in my life in worthiness. So who am I to talk about anything was a giant lie that I believed for a long time that kept me from building my email list.
Another lie I believed that kept me from building my email list was I don't have time to create professional looking videos once a week when I was working full time. So my choice of weekly content for a very long time was video blogging or vlogging, long before I started the podcast. I believed that I needed perfectly looking videos and I needed them every single week, and I needed them to be super polished and I needed my hair to be done and to be wearing false eyelashes and to be all the things. I would rather not put a video out than put a video out that looked like it was homemade, and that kept me from building my email list for a very long time.
The third lie that I believe did that kept me from building my email list was a lie that my agency runs on word of mouth and referrals. So I don't need to build my email list. Or another way that this shows up is I'm so busy serving my clients or training my team that building my email list is just not a priority for me. So I wonder if any one of these three lies that I held on to for way too long also shows up for you. I want you to know that if it does, that's totally normal and you're by no means alone in that. But I also want to share with you that what I learned is that people don't need a guru. They need someone relatable that they can share a journey with, and that's what Amy's been for me.
You can become a community builder and share other people's content around a topic that you are also interested in, or that you know enough about to help some people who are just starting out even though you're not yet fully convinced of your own complete expertise. Amy only shares the things that she has personal experience with, and if she doesn't, then she brings on someone else to talk about it, and it complements everything she does. I mean, go to her podcast page and check out how many interviews there are on her podcast. So I want to invite you to think about your own content creation strategy, not as being a group, but as being a host, being a facilitator. Don't wait until you feel worthy or you think you have enough knowledge or experience. Just start and keep going.
I wish, I wish, I wish I did the sooner because then you know that $100,000 I told you I will be making before the end of the year? That would possibly have been a million dollars. Well, I don't know, I can't see the future, but it's possible that it is. As soon as I started building my list, my online courses took off. So please don't put that one off. Go and build your email list and become a facilitator of a conversation. The second thing I learned from Amy is that if you can take small steps consistently, you make massive progress faster than you think you will. I was staring at a complete blank screen. I had no idea how to even begin to teach what was in my head.
Then I looked at Amy's notes and I started to just let it all come out of my head. She said, "Just give yourself a couple of days and let it all pour out of your head. Everything, let everything come out." So over a few days, I just kept adding and adding and adding more ideas of things that I had in my head about the topic I created my first course on. It would come out of my head in the shower, it would come out of my head while I was driving. Everything I knew had to get out of my head and onto a sticky note. At that time, my office was a mutual play area where my kids ... where I could work while I kept an eye on my kids. They were baby and toddler then. I mean, if you're in that phase, I feel your pain. But today I no longer use sticky notes.
I have a digital system to get things out of my head and get it structured in a way that is consumable by students. But I remember so well having the whole wall stock full of pink sticky notes, and using my voice recorder in my car and writing things on my hand because I don't have a piece of paper handy. Because I had a step-by-step method that held my hand all the time, a system to break all of my knowledge down into small digestible chunks. Before I knew it, I had four modules. Each module had between three and five lessons in them. There were broad strokes for what to talk about in each lesson, and a couple of PDFs. I was golden. It was the best feeling when I sold my first course to 10 people, and they started going through the content. I was like, "Holy cow, these people are actually going through the thing that came out of my head."
Then they started telling me how much they loved it, and I cannot begin to describe to you what a good feeling that is. My first reaction was, "What? That old content? That's not special at all." But what I forgot was that to someone who's never heard it before, it was pretty special. Taking those first few small steps really helped me gain massive traction and get a course out into the world faster than I thought possible. Know that there are small steps you can take to make huge progress fast and to get your course launched, even before you take the leap and quit your job, or before you fire all your clients. Oh, don't fire all your clients. Just kidding. I know you love your clients. I mean, before you fire the absolute pain in the ass clients, because you're making so much money from your online course.
Number three is that tactics are cool, but strategy will get you bigger results every single time. With Amy, you know you'll get the low down on what's working now. But what I love so much is how she's always bringing it back to the overarching strategies that are the foundations of successful online course businesses. We all need a master plan, we need a roadmap or a blueprint, and once we have that, then we can start coloring between the lines. Maybe live videos not your thing. That's cool because maybe blogging is, and you can apply what Amy teaches to blogging or video blogging or Facebook liveing whatever tactic floats your boat and whatever it makes you feel good and comfortable and confident. Or maybe your followers are not at all on Facebook, but they live for Instagram stories. That's cool too, because Amy teaches you how to apply her strategies to lots of different implementation tactics.
So for me, social media has never been a massive focus. So I've applied what she taught me to using ads to grow my audience, because that's my jam. When I didn't have time to write sales copy for my sales page during my first launch, I just sent my students straight to a checkout page ,and I was able to do this because in the big picture, in the strategy I had, this worked, I've applied this to our clients' business strategies, to my own agency and to launching my own course, and when we launched the launch lounge membership, the same strategies work just as well, even though I will say we dropped the ball on a couple of times. But because the strategies were in place, the big victory or worked, and it all came together beautifully.
Get the right strategy in place, and then you get to have fun with the tactics, but you need a mentor to teach you what the right strategies are. Because what you're going to get in all these little mini courses that are available now, you're going to get tactics, you're going to get little put the fire out sort of things. That is not going to get you to a sustainable longterm success. Only strategy does that, and I can say that with confidence because I've been in it now for five years and I've made every mistake and I have learned the hard way that it is the longterm view, the strategic planning that gets you there faster. It feels like ... it's like you slow down so you can speed up.
All right. Number four is community is everything. I have to tell you that back in 2015, I felt like a complete and total alien in my immediate environment. I promised my husband I would make money in this business. And two years in, I still hadn't delivered on that promise. That made me question if I'm crazy buying into this dream that the internet has sold me. My friends back then smiled and asked me how the business was doing, and I would just smile back and say, "Great. I'm learning heaps." Always turning it into some kind of a positive thing, and meanwhile inside I'm dying. Moms at school, and sometimes I will say their creepy nosy husbands too, would follow me on Facebook and think that all I do all day long while my kids are in school is make videos and go live and have fun.
It made me feel like a total attention seeker, and I felt completely alone. Nobody understood what I was trying to do. While it wasn't paying off, it just left me feeling like why am I doing that? Except my fellow family members inside of Amy's community that were just on the other side of my screen, that were inside a Facebook group, where I had this one place online where I could go and complain about how hard it was to learn how to build a webinar opt-in page using Leadpages and people would offer help and support. So this is back in the days when Leadpages was still a thing. I specifically remember another mum from Arizona that I came close with at the time. We were both video blogging at the time and she offered me her course on how to use iMovie as a better student in exchange for a testimonial.
That girl was me on the other side of the world, with a girl the same age as mine trying to make videos in between changing nappies. She gave me her course, I gave her a testimonial, and to this day I edit my own videos in iMovie with the skills I learned from my fellow online course creator who were in my shoes on the other side of the world. Now I'm teaching my nine-year-old daughter how to use iMovie to make videos at home. But it gets even better. In December 2017, I boarded a flight from Perth, the most isolated city in the world, to Sydney which is four hours. Then from Sydney to LA, which if I remember correctly is about 11 hours, and then from LA to San Diego, which is about another hour to attend the Amy's live events. It was all up 30 hours of travel to get there, and 30 hours of travel to get back.
At that event, I met Rick Mulready whom I was already learning Facebook ads from, and after that, he also became a really important mentor of mine. I made James Wedmore, I make Pat Flynn, I make Jasmine Star. I made all the people who were these rock stars in my eyes, and who only existed on either a podcast or on an Instagram account as far as I knew. But most importantly, I met hundreds of other women who had the same dreams as I, who had the same challenges I had and who had various degrees of success that I was chasing too. For the first time I could be with them and see them and hug them, and I wasn't just a crazy lady with a computer, a phone and a dream. It was real, and I was hanging out with people who had really results and who were really living life on their own terms while making huge impact in their students' lives.
I came home from that event with some friends that have become like sisters to me. I came home from that event knowing that I had found my family. I came home from that event and I quit my job and I went all in on my Facebook ads business. Community did this for me, and I know that this is a community that Amy has nurtured and poured all of her energy into, and that has made this so life changing and so special, and that is what makes this a family. If you've been feeling like you've been on this journey alone for too long, I want you to know that you have a family waiting for you, and I'm part of that family and I'm ready to welcome you into that family with open arms. To be honest, COVID can suck it because we will hug each other again one day.
Number five is that I can do it with my unique set of challenges. The last thing Amy taught me is that we all have different challenges and we can all overcome whatever it is that we believe is our own Achilles heel. I feel stuck at the bottom corner of the world in the most isolated city working from behind the screen. I'm an introvert who hates sharing my private life with my family. So nevermind sharing it with strangers on the internet. I had $40,000 of debt to pay off and I was risking losing my house if I couldn't turn my business around. My ideal customer lives in a whole another continent most of the time.
But when Amy reminded me that she too is an introvert and that she hates leaving your house to travel anywhere, and that she shared her journey to learning to love her body and respecting herself, and then I saw something magical happened when she started really stepping up and reframing her old belief of I am big into I am a big deal. You see? Amy vulnerably shared that she had held herself back in the past, but now she was no longer choosing to shrink and not take up as much space as she could in the world. In 2019, I witnessed as she set out to achieve the fricking audacious goal of making $10 million in one year. I mean, I was like, "Dude, a million is great. 10 million! Holy cow."
What I admired most was seeing how she put all her excuses of the past, the I don't like to travel and the I'm not really a big deal thinking, in the backseat and start to show up like the fierce leader that she is. The Amy train has left the station, and every single day I am so glad that I get to be a passenger on this train. The ride is thrilling and there is never a dull moment. I've been scared out of my mind and I have bawled my eyes out feeling so incredibly proud of what I've been able to build as a result of hanging out with Amy, and a little bit of Amy rubbing off on me every time I hang out with her.
My wish for you is that you two could get on the Amy train with me, that you would see what a big deal you are and that there is a step-by-step way to create a business that allow you to make a massive impact in other people's lives and create income levels that are beyond what you can dream of. My wish for you is that you become so incredibly independent and powerful that you can buy yourself into or out of any situation, be that a job, a destructive relationship or something as simple as a bad hotel. I am doing it, Amy has done it and there are many, many students in her community and in mine who are part of this family with me.
So as you listen to this and as you start to think about what becomes possible for you when you create your online courses business, I wonder what is it that gets you most excited? Is it that you're not taking on any more one-on-one clients? Is it having more time to be with your kids? Or is it telling your boss he can stick it? Or is it finally feeling free and totally in control of your own destiny because you are completely financially independent? Whatever it is for you, I would be honored if you let me guide you on this journey to that place. So I've created a special five-day challenge where we're going to map out your plan from here to launch day, so you can get your ideas out of your head and start creating a plan for how you will get there.
I want to invite you to join me. If you haven't already inside The Shine Show Podcast posse group, where we will be kicking off that challenge really soon. I want you to just go to shineandsucceed.com/Amy to become part of this experience with me, where I'm going to hold your hand every step of the way, and we're going to get those ideas out of your head and start mapping them out on paper and start getting something real on paper where you have a plan and a strategy for how to move forward. I can't wait to see you change your life in the way that Amy has changed mine, and I want to see you in that group. So come and join me. Thank you so much for listening. If you had fun, please come back next week and remember to hit that subscribe button so you never miss a thing.