Emily is a former TV news reporter and the founder of Richett Media, a public relations and inbound marketing firm that helps clients to increase visibility, credibility and overall, PROFITABILITY.
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Time Stamped Show Notes
(click the time stamp to jump directly to that point in the episode.)
- [00:50] – Emily and her husband are both entrepreneurs raising two girls – 1 and 3
- [01:03] – She was born and raised in Detroit to an auto-factory working family – she was the first person in her family to go to college
- [01:11] – The idea of becoming an entrepreneur is not even something she considered nor understood
- [01:18] – She started her career as a news reporter when she was in college
- [01:43] – Emily was a TV reporter for 7 years, and noticed a lot of the businesses she covered were not prepared for an interview
- 02:07 – She finally decided to make the entrepreneurial leap by starting Richett Media
- [02:39] – Getting and leveraging good publicity for brands is Emily’s area of expertise
- [02:52] – Share something we don’t know about your area of expertise that as Entrepreneurs, we probably should: You don’t need an expensive PR firm to get publicity for your brand – you can actually master your own publicity
- [03:27] – “Always promote with a purpose”
- [03:43] – Provide Value + Call to Action = Return on your PR Investment
- 04:25 – Worst Entrepreneurial Moment: When Emily first launched Richett Media it was a high-level consulting gig for herself. She realized the clients were hiring her as a person, not as a business. Emily had to get a ‘mompreneur maternity leave’ after having her 2 girls, and in that same time span she had lost her dad, brother, and uncle
- [05:55] – Being an entrepreneur meant having a lot of flexibility, but also a lot of hustle
- [06:16] – She realized that the high-level work she was doing could not be rescheduled for unexpected things and could not be handed off to somebody on her team
- [07:44] – Entrepreneurial AH-HA Moment: Emily had the wrong mindset – the mindset of a consultant/freelancer. She realized she could grow larger and have a bigger impact if she didn’t think of projects as confined to her capacity
- [09:30] – “You don’t have to be the be-all end-all of your business”
- [10:02] – Let go of some control
- [10:53] – What is the one thing you are most FIRED up about today? “I’m most fired up about a new product we just launched that’s helping entrepreneurs to amplify their brands in a big way”
- 12:10 – Go to EmilyRichett.com/fire to find out more about her new product!
- [12:26] – The Lightning Round
- What was holding you back from becoming an entrepreneur? – “Mindset”
- What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever received? – “Decide where you want to go and get there as fast as you can”
- What’s a personal habit that contributes to your success? – “I consistently put myself out there aiming for big scary opportunities”
- Share an internet resource, like Evernote, with Fire Nation – MixMax
- If you could recommend one book to our listeners, what would it be and why? – The 12 Week Year – “it just makes you get out there and execute in 12 weeks what you would probably waste all year trying to do”
- [15:00] – You will never feel 100% ready, but you will need to start
- [15:13] – “Execution is what will make the difference”
- 15:17 – Connect with Emily on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook
Emily: I am ready to turn up the heat JLD.
JLD: Emily is a former TV news reporter and the founder of Richett Media, a public relations and inbound marketing firm that helps clients to increase visibility, credibility and overall profitability. Emily take a minute, fill in some gaps from that intro and give us a little glimpse of your personal life.
Emily: My husband and I are both entrepreneurs and we hustle work by day and then we have the joy and the challenge of raising two sweet girls ages one and three. We’re in the thick of it right now JLD, we are. But it’s awesome.
I was born and raised south of Detroit to a hard auto factory working family. I became a first-generation college student. This idea of even becoming an entrepreneur was not something I really understood or considered for a long time. I started my career as a news reporter in a top 40 market while I was still in college. It was a huge opportunity. Imagine your first big that you had, and all the mistakes that you made, I had the privilege of making all mine in front of about 720,000 people a day on live TV. It was terrifying and embarrassing and I loved it. I really did. I loved it. I was a TV reporter for about seven years and during that time I noticed a lot of the businesses that I would feature or I’d do stories about were not prepared for the media coverage, even the ones that had hired big P.R. firms. I would go out and spend a lot of my time with these CEOs or founders and having to prepare them first for the media coverage and helping them to look their best and to make the most out of the opportunity.
Eventually I decided I was done with waking up at 3:00 a.m. every day to be on the news and instead I took the entrepreneurial leap. I opened a P.R. firm Richett Media, it’s been five years. It started initially just to fill that need in the market that I saw as a reporter, now we’re a full-service P.R. and digital marketing agency. We just keep expanding and evolving to continue meeting those needs and the changes in media and technology.
JLD: Well today, what would you say with all the experience and expertise you’ve been able to garner is your one area of expertise that you could break down for us.
Emily: I would stay it’s leveraging publicity getting and leveraging that good publicity for your brand or business.
JLD: What’s the thing about leveraging publicity that’s the typical, average entrepreneur doesn’t know that we probably should?
Emily: The first thing is that it’s a big industry secret and you don’t need an expensive publicist or P.R. firm to get great publicity for your brand. I know it might seem like I’m trying to put myself out of business by saying that, but it’s the truth. If you run a business, you’re doing a few million in revenue or more annually, then, sure it makes sense to outsource and hire the pros, but when you’re just a start-up or a solopreneur, you can absolutely master your own publicity. I have a second value bomb to that would be that when you get opportunities for the media and you get coverage or exposure you always promote with a purpose. This means, very tactically for every interview you do, or blog you write, or speaking engagement that you have, you should always have specific call to action. I have a hack, or a formula for this and it is to provide value, plus call to action equals a return on your P.R. investment.
I know you know this JLD even if you’re doing it yourself it’s not free. It takes a lot of time and a lot of effort so you wanna make sure you’re always inviting people to take that next step with you.
JLD: Emily you get a gold star for saying that for value bomb before I do in any interview. I love that that just happened. I wanna talk about your journey because it’s been fascinating. To make mistakes in front of 720,000 people is terrifying for most people, you loved it, you thrived on it. but at the same time, you had your struggles with it. take us to what you consider your worst entrepreneurial moment to date. What is that moment, Emily? Tell us that story.
Emily: When I first launched Richett Media, it was essentially a high-level consulting gig that I had created for myself. I had a contract employer too that gave me some leverage but ultimately clients were hiring me, even though I positioned it as a business. This was okay for a while because the numbers were good. I probably quadrupled my salary and I loved the work. But a few years into it life eventually caught up with me. It was just the span of a couple years, I had my two daughters, and I do experience and learn what a mompreneur on maternity leave looks like, it’s challenging and great. Then I also suffered some great losses. In that timespan, I lost my dad, my brother and my uncle.
There’s one day in particular that was the lowest moment for me as an entrepreneur. I had a client in town for a high-level media training, we were doing some big interviews, while we were on a break at dinner I got the message that someone very special to me had passed away. I remember going back to the lobby of my office and that was the only place I could be by myself and I gave myself just five minutes to break down. I’m usually really in touch with my emotions, I feel all these emotions, and I only could give myself five minutes before I had to pull myself together, go back in there and spend the next four to five hours doing the work that someone had hired me to do. I know for anyone who doesn’t run their own business or if they have a strong team to support them that this all sounds crazy but when you’re an employee you can take days off, you get sick days, you take maternity leave, you have time for funerals. Being an entrepreneur meant a lot of flexibility, which is great but also a lot of hustle and passion. I realized if that passion gets misplaced it can easily spiral out of control. It was a really low moment for me.
JLD: What is the lesson that you want Fire Nation to really walk away with from that tough time in your life.
Emily: My lesson is, and it’s also my ah-ha moment, is that I realized the high level of work I was doing was work that could not be rescheduled when unexpected things, or just life happened. And it could not be handed off to someone else on my team because I didn’t have that kind of level of support. In this moment, I realized here I was running a successful business; I was even a contributor for Inc.com, and entrepreneurial magazine, being paid to speak at conferences on how to launch and grow a successful business. Yet I wasn’t really an entrepreneur myself. A light went on and I realized I’m a consultant with some hired support, and what got me here isn’t going to get me there. I needed to build a business that could provide value and grow and sustain even during all of life’s ups and downs. I did very specific things to start doing that, and still am.
JLD: Fire Nation, those words that what got you here is not gonna get you there is so true. As an entrepreneur, you’re always having to grow and reiterate things, and pivot and try and test new things. I mean if you just create something that’s good you become comfortable with that, that’s your comfort zone. But guess what? All the magic happens outside of your comfort zone. Recognize that and realize it’s time to push the envelope, it’s time to get uncomfortable, it’s time to grow. That’s what a true entrepreneur does every single day on some level. Now, Emily you mentioned a little bit about that ah-ha moment. Let’s dive deeper, what’s one of those greatest ideas you’ve had to date? What’s that ah-ah moment you and how’d you turn that exact moment into the success you’re experiencing.
Emily: It was a combination of I just kept realizing, evening listening to your podcast and hear some true entrepreneurs talk and I think I had the wrong mindset in my business. My mindset was that of a consultant or freelancer, all the work that came in would impact my actual salary. It was to my capacity. Finally I realized I could grow so much larger and make a bigger impact, and be able to make an impact on whether it’s my own employees, or the businesses I was serving. If I didn’t think of all these projects as just my capacity. It was something that shifted in me over the matter of two weeks, from listening to podcasts like yours and I’d just seen this message again, and again. I need to aim higher and bring on the people to support me to do that. I did.
In the past six months invested in hiring my first full-time employee I decided. Yeah, that was a big leap, it really is. I got a real payroll, I had, essentially, full-time contract employees, but this I had to make it official, I had to bring someone on that would have some skin in the game too. I added a couple strategic partners, people who are smarter than me at something. That allowed me to bring on those bigger projects because I had better people to help execute. I joined a CEO roundtable locally, I met with some business coaches and we actually crunched the numbers to look at what does scaling look like? So, I can start to remove myself from the day-to-day work and really grow the business. It’s still in progress. It’s just been the past eight months since that ah-ha moment but as a result we’re going to experience 250 percent growth this year.
JLD: Wow. What are some of the value bombs you can take away from that ah-ha moment and really share with Fire Nation on how those worked for you and why?
Emily: That you don’t have to be the be-all, end-all of your business. I have my name in my business, and I had say someone say to me recently, well your names on the door, it’s your name. I said you know what? That’s a really sad thing to me if my business only gets as big as my knowledge or my creativity. I wanna find smarter than me, better than me and a bunch of different aspects so we can come together and join forces and truly serve these brands and businesses and make a greater impact. You’ve gotta let control and trust that there are people out there who can do things better than you and let them do it.
JLD: You use the phrase you don’t have to be the be-all, end-all. I would say Fire Nation you can’t be the end-all, be-all if you really wanna grow the type of business that’s gonna give you the financial independence, the lifestyle independence that you want. You have to trust other people, you have to bring people on your team, you have to give them responsibilities and skin in the game as you said Emily. These are all important things, so you’re not gonna just be the person who’s waking up in the morning cranking all day, answering everything from customer emails, to website complaints, to things that are just going wrong, shipping, you name it, this is a team. This team works together. Teamwork makes that dream work. For you Emily what are you most fired up about today, beyond the fact that you just grew 250 percent?
Emily: Well, I’m most fired up about a new product that we just launched that’s helping entrepreneurs to amplify their brands in a big way. I’ve spent the past five years working with established businesses or start-ups that had an actual budget to do P.R. But the number one request we would be getting would be from small brands and entrepreneurs. My team and I created an online publicity course called Amplify. It’s so exciting to see the results people are getting because these are people who are doulas, or bakers, and artists, and financial coaches, and mompreneurs who created a business during nap time, and they’re doing incredible things.
We can actually help support that growth. They don’t necessarily have the means to hire a firm to execute it all, nor should they. It goes back to what I said earlier, you don’t need to spend thousands of dollars a month with a firm if you know how to do it yourself. That’s what this course in online community Amplify us, it teaches them not just the foundations of P.R. but also those tactical skills and steps it takes to get coverage for the brand or product, and then how to leverage that press into profit. That’s something that people aren’t talking about in this realm JLD, I know there’s a lot of people that are publicists out there but very few people talk about the return on investment for publicity. How do you monetize media coverage? That’s a big game changer for us.
JLD: Where could Fire Nation find out more?
Emily: They can go to emilyrichett.com/fire because I have information there.
JLD: Killer. Well, Fire Nation if you think Emily’s been dropping value bombs, she has. But we have plenty more coming in the lightning round. We get back from back from thanking our sponsors.
Emily, are you read to rock the lightning round?
Emily: I’m ready, let’s do it.
JLD: What was holding you back from becoming an entrepreneur.
Emily: Mindset. I just literally didn’t think it was an option for me. My whole life I assumed someone else would determine my worth, that I’d always have a boss or a contract and someone would say here’s what’ you’re worth. Once I was able to change my mindset and realize that I could be in control and set my worth based on the value I could bring, and I knew I had a skillset that people wanted, then it all changed for me.
JLD: Here is what you are worth Fire Nation are words I hope you never hear because if you become an entrepreneur you decide what you’re worth. Emily what’s the best advice you’ve ever received?
Emily: My uncle told me when I was in college, decide where you want to go then get there as fast as you can.
JLD: What’s a personal habit that contributes to your success?
Emily: I consistently put myself out there aiming for big, scary opportunities. You know that saying do one thing every day that scares you? I do that, maybe not every day but at least a few times a month. Things I don’t even know if I can do them.
JLD: What’s something recently that you’ve done you’ve been pretty scared about?
Emily: Take on an international to do international publicity.
JLD: Oh, that is scary.
Emily: I signed up to be a contributor for inc.com, who am I to be a contributor for Inc.? Then the said yes. I thought, oh no, what did I get myself into? To keynote a national conference. I have never keynoted a national conference. They said yes, and they were gonna pay me so I created the presentation and I rocked it. It was scary. I just put myself out there and then I figure out how to make it happen afterward. By doing so, I really have just pushed my boundaries.
JLD: Recommend one Internet resource.
Emily: I’m loving Mix Max lately. It’s an email tool, it allows me to see when my messages are opened, it’s how I schedule my meetings easily because it integrates right in my calendar, I can schedule my emails, track the clicks, it’s like a virtual email assistant.
JLD: Recommend one book and share why?
Emily: I read a lot and I love almost all the business books that folks on Eofire recommend. But the one in the past year that’s made the biggest impact would be the 12 Week Year, by Brian Moran. It’s because it just makes you get out there and execute in 12 weeks what you would probably waste all year, or longer trying to do.
JLD: Emily we started on fire, in the middle there was some fire as well. I wanna end on fire with a parting piece of guidance. The best way that we can connect with you and then we’ll say goodbye.
Emily: This is something that I have to remind myself every day and I hope everyone else will do the same, it applies to so many things in life and business. Whether it’s putting yourself out there and getting publicity or starting anything new, you will probably never feel 100 percent ready, you could spend a lifetime researching, preparing, testing the new tools, eventually you just need to start. It doesn’t have to be perfect. At the end of the day, JLD, you know this, execution is what will make the difference.
JLD: Totally. How can we connect with you?
Emily: I’m all over social media. I love to chat there on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, you can find me @emilyrichett. That’s spelled like rich R-I-C-H-E-T-T, Richett. I’m always looking for sources for some of my media interviews or national column, so get in touch there. Then if you’re looking for my P.R. and marketing firm it’s richettmedia.com. But if you’re an entrepreneur and you want the best free P.R. resource out there, go to emilyrichette.com/fire I have a free guidebook for entrepreneurs on how to get publicity, there you can also sign up for my monthly live webinar called Get Press and Gain Profit. It’s a jam-packed hour teaching you exactly how to position yourself to be newsworthy, my hacks for pitching the media and then exactly how to create a return on return on investment and to leverage your P.R. I truly believe that our free training is better than most of the paid stuff out there. Check it out emilyrichett.com/fire.
JLD: Fire Nation you’re the average of the five people who you spend the most time with. And you’ve been hanging out with E.R. and JLD today. So, keep up the heat and head over to eofire.com, type Emily in the search bar, her first page are gonna pop up with everything that we’ve been talking about today. These are the best show notes in the biz. Timestamped, links, you name it. of course, head directly over to emilyrichett.com/fire for that amazing gift package she’s put together. Emily thank you for sharing your journey with Fire Nation today. For that we salute and we’ll catch you on the flip side.
Emily: Thank you, JLD and thanks for all you do.
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