February 6th, 2012
by Kelly Kohen
Good Morning Wild Web Peeps! What better way to start your Monday morning than with some good ol’ fashion Wild Web Woman inspiration from Jess Weiner! Jess is living proof that you CAN do what you WANT to do – through support of friends, family and mentors – you just need to dive right in! Be authentic, know who you are and what you are believe in and people will want to hear what you have to say!
Did you miss the first part of our interview with Jess? Read it here!
9. What is fun and what is difficult about working as a sole “wild web” entrepreneur?
Fun: Every day is different. Opportunities abound. And life is a great big playground for me to build from.
Difficult: The buck stops (and starts) with me. So the pressure to perform can be tough and I have no one to blame for that but me!
10. You are a very self-driven individual who values productivity; which web tools helped you increase your productivity the most? Specifically, in what ways did they improve your productivity?
I think Twitter has given me a crash course in how to relay a message as concisely and creatively as possible. It’s been a great brainteaser for me to hone my skills in pitching and enticing. I sometimes find myself creating tweets in my head while I’m driving or exercising – and I love the immediate feedback a great tweet can create for my business.
11. Do you have any personal “wild web” role models? If so, what do you admire about this person?
Well, would it look like brown-nosing if I mention the original Wild Web Woman – Lorrie Thomas Ross? (I say yes, but we’ll let it slide, because I would have to agree with you, Lorrie is awesome…wait, does that look like brown-nosing?!?)
She showed me that navigating a business online doesn’t have to be like living on Stress-A-Me Street. It can be fun and loose, and fluid. I also admire Samantha Ettus who writes a great column for ForbesWomen.com – she is a consistent voice in branding and her online web presence is as authentic as it gets!
12. As far as dealing with competition in your line of work: do you pay special attention to their marketing strategies and adjust yours to stay ahead OR do you mostly focus on your individual marketing plan without worrying too much about your competitors?
I always look around to see what’s happening but I learned early on to run my own race. My career and my work as an entrepreneur is about running a marathon not a sprint. I find that if I continue to weave my voice and my vision into my marketing strategies I feel the most solid. When I try to emulate someone else, it never works out as well.
13. Being a successful professional embodies being an excellent marketer (so that people know your name and service!), how do you reach out to your wide range of customers to build a trusting relationship?
Nothing in social media can ever replace the genuine feeling of meeting someone in person. I try to live my marketing life as in 3-D as it will allow me to. I love our virtual world for the ease and quickness it may provide but you can’t underestimate the sound of a voice, eye contact, or a shared laugh. That goes a long way to creating an authentic relationship and my relationships are the strongest tool I’ve used to build my business.
14. Do you utilize both traditional PR and new PR? What is the ratio of your web marketing to traditional marketing (print ads, local newspapers…etc)?
For my kind of work, referrals and word of mouth are more effective than traditional PR and marketing.
In 17 years, I’ve never paid to advertise. I’ve worked to leverage my public image as an expert and TV personality to cultivate new relationships for my business. But I think nowadays I think it’s best to create a combo of traditional and social media PR for your business. Again, run your own race. If you find that you get great results with ads – do it. But don’t be afraid to try something new or pull back in an area that doesn’t bring you results. Everyone is trying to find the magic fit – and PR is not about magic. It’s always about relationships and perception. Not always in that order. J
15. When marketing your business, do you find yourself more often seeking risks or avoiding risks? What are some risks you have taken on the web that resulted in positive outcomes?
I took a big risk – personally and professionally – writing a very intimate piece for a national women’s magazine that basically was going to reveal to my most loyal fans that a big part of my past brand rhetoric was changing and evolving. I took a risk knowing I could lose a few fans. And I did. But what I gained far outweighed the positives. I reached millions of people with this new line of honest communication, I opened up a new portal for doing business in an area I’ve been wanting to explore, and my loyal fans became even more loyal because they saw me take a public risk and applauded me for it.
16. Business-wise, where do you see yourself in ten years?
I hope no matter where I am in my career, that I continue to be this happy, excited by life, and healthy to enjoy it!
Thank you Jess for sharing your inner-most online marketing thoughts with me and our readers! We so appreciate all of your words of wisdom! Connect with Jess to be inspired daily at @JessWeiner or on Facebook or read one of her best selling books “A Very Hungry Girl” or “Life Doesn’t begin 5 Pounds from Now“. Have a WONDERFUL day!