Posts

,

Why Blogging Won’t Pay All Your Bills

After interviewing over 100 women, many of them bloggers, something clicked in my head. You can’t make a significant income just reply on your blog and sponsored posts.

I wanted to talk about something today that I think you don’t hear very often, especially after running the Food Entrepreneur Summit and having ears in the blogging community and also being a blogger.

I hear all the time that people want to quit their jobs and become full time bloggers. They feel like they are really, really so far off from doing that. I don’t know why it just clicked with me after talking to other entrepreneurs and interviewing people. It’s not realistic for us to have the perspective that you can make a full time really good income off just sponsored posts and blogging.  

Why blogging won't pay all your bills! Click To Tweet

Yes, absolutely there are some people who can do it. I know that. But I think those are the minority. It’s great to be able to get a sponsored post and to get paid a lot of money by a brand, but is that sustainable? Are you able to do that every single month? Are you able to pay your bills and pay your mortgage off sponsored posts?

blogging

This is just make you think a bit. If you really, really want to be a full time blogger, can you think about doing something else? Can you find a way to work so you can fuel your passion? I think having a blog is a great way to share value, to share content, to share recipes, to share business tips, anything. But I think it’s just one piece of the puzzle.

If you want to have a job that you love and make a good amount of money and support your family, then you need to really think about is blogging and just running off sponsored posts a sustainable way to do that?

If it is for you, that is awesome. You are an outlier. If you’re not an outlier, I want you to think about can you just rely on your page views to bring in a full income? I really just don’t think that it’s possible for the majority of us.

The most successful women entrepreneurs that I have talked to, who are bloggers, the most successful one also have some other source of income that supports them. And  sometimes it majorly supports them, whether they are a health coach or they have a brick and mortar shop or they’re consultants. They do something that is supporting their income.  

There are so many new jobs all the time, people like me who are starting a podcast or starting another type of business. Can you share your skills and help out another entrepreneur and just sell your services?

Is there some type of hole that you can fill and you could start your own business based on something you’ve seen that there is a need on the market? I met someone at my business group who I’m going to be interviewing in the upcoming weeks, who basically started a stock photo site because she saw there weren’t any stock photos that were really kind of girly and chic. She started a whole business based on stock photos.

That’s what I’m talking about. People who are kind of seeking the holes in the market and sharing things that they are super super good at. That’s what I want for you.

Questions to ask yourself:

  • What what am I really good at?  
  • What can I offer?
  • What do I see that’s missing from the market?  Then start a business.

I don’t want you to spend years and years in a job that you’re totally unhappy at, just waiting for your page views to reach a certain threshold.  Waiting, so brands will start to reach out to you. That is not the way to create a happy life that you are proud of. You need to be more aggressive and you need to be proactive and you need to take hold of your life. Waiting for page views to reach a certain point, so you can get to a certain point, that’s not how to do it.

So how are you going to do it? After talking to all these women and making all these connections I want to share those connections with you. I have put together a 90 Day Profit Challenge but it’s not just all about new content and more content. Yes, of course there will be new content every single month that I’m super proud of.

The theme is figuring out what you’re really good at so you can make a profit now.

Click here to learn more about the Free Training: How to Make Money as a Food Blogger without Page views of Sponsored Posts! 

Click Here to Sign Up

You need to be able to bring in income now. I’m really good at is figuring out how to take action and to move your business forward. I have done a lot (Podcast launch, Food Summit, Strategy Sessions, Challenge Groups) in a short amount of time and I want to share all those lessons that I have learned.

In the group we’ll keep you on track, keep you motivated and then share out all those connections that I’ve made with you.

I just really want to be able to support you and to show you that you can do this and you can create those profits and be passionate about your business at the same time. It doesn’t have to be hard but you do have to be be willing to put in the work and you have to be willing to take action every single day. 

 

Click here to learn more about my Free Training: How to Make Money as a Food Blogger without Page views of Sponsored Posts! 

profitable blogging

Click Here to Sign Up

,

If You Keep Going, That’s When It Pays Off with Kelly Olexa, FitFluential

Kelly Olexa is the founder of FitFluential. She calls herself the most unexpected entrepreneur on the planet because founding FitFluential in 2011 was something she thought of as this could be fun.

What you’ll get out of this episode with Kelly Olexa

  • How she started FitFluential and was the first network of it’s kind
  • How she met Gary Vaynerchuck
  • How to reach out to influencers
  • The key to staying focused and growing your business
  • What you SHOULD NOT do on social media!

If you keep going, that's when it pays off @kellyolexa #blissfulbitespodcast Click To Tweet

What you’ll get out of this episode with Kelly Olexa

  • How she started FitFluential and was the first network of it’s kind
  • How she met Gary Vaynerchuck
  • How to reach out to influencers
  • The key to staying focused and growing your business
  • What you SHOULD NOT do on social media!

Tell us a little bit about how you started out with FitFluential:

I thought I would start FitFluential on the side and maybe it would help me quit my job and this might be some, “Extra income.” What happened was the most beautiful thing in the world because founding this company and having it just explode so fast and I mean fast from April 2011 until August. We grew so fast that by August 8 I had to quit my job and ever since then it has been the wildest, craziest, most unpredictable ride. It has transformed me in every single way personally, professionally, financially, emotionally, spiritually, I mean you name it. It has been cathartic but I wouldn’t trade it for the world and frankly it’s made me very passionate to get other folks, women in particular, to understand that they can be doing things on their own. They can start their own business to see the potential that they have to make an impact on others and get them embracing this crazy, unpredictable but so rewarding world that we’re in.

Tell us how you actually took that leap to start your own company.

There would not be a FitFluential if it wasn’t really for 2 people. One, it was my old boss I was working at an agency. His name is Jack. I really had a bad relationship back then. It was not favorable. I felt he hated me. In retrospect I see now that happened for a reason because I’m certain there are folks that are going to be listening to this they can relate. I was so miserable and unhappy with my job. I was interviewing like a mad woman but no jobs were coming to fruition and I remember getting to the end of 2010 and I realized I was becoming very angry and a little negative.

Those people that know me know that I’m not that type of a person. I’m not a pessimist, I’m not a downer but I was becoming one because of my circumstances. At the end of that year, as I was making resolutions, I said I have to take action steps. I have to start doing something or I’m never going to get out of here and I’m going to become a bitter person. That’s when I started looking at what my talents were; looking at where I saw an opportunity and again I really thought FitFluential would be something I do on the side.

I had no business plan, I had really no idea of what I was doing, I didn’t have any money, I had no savings, I had no support, it was strictly me and a blogger friend of mine. And I took the leap because I had also connected with Gary Vaynerchuck and meeting Gary and spending time with him and getting his advice as well as the advice of some folks at the agency’s face, they all told me that, “You’ve got the talent, you’ve got the connections, you’re seeing something that hasn’t been done, you need to just do it and somebody said to me, I think it was Gary, they were like, “Quit waiting for the right time.

Quit waiting to have all of the money that you want in the bank that’s never going to happen. Quit waiting for all the signs to be there. Quit waiting for everybody to tell you it’s the perfect timing, you have all the clients, you have all of the assets, you have to take a leap of faith and stop worrying what other people think.” And honestly that’s what I did.

One of my favorite books and I believe it’s Danielle LaPorte she said in that book, “If you don’t know what to do, what are the 3 things that people thank you for regularly?” I started to think about what do people come to me for? Why was I becoming a resource? What was I becoming a resource for? What do people look at me as the expert in? Then out of all of those things, what do I really enjoy?

My mom has always wanted me to be an artist. I have art talent when I tried that route through college and I was actually selling my products in stores it took all the joy away from creating art. So I knew that’s what I wanted to do but as I thought about those questions that’s when I realized that this is what I’m supposed to be doing.

What was like meeting Gary Vaynerchuck?

I remember I got him on Twitter in 2008. October 30th, I remember finding out that I had no job, no health insurance, no nothing. I was unemployed for the next 13 months and spent a lot of time on Twitter. Somewhere along the line I discovered Gary V and he used to, back then, do live webcams but it wasn’t Skype and it was very awkward to log in but I remember I got on to his webcam. This is where people sometimes might doubt these things like setting intentions. I got on that webcam and I had already been so impressed with him. I was like, “This is what I need to do.” And I said to myself I’m going to get him to notice me, he’s going to follow me, I’m going to meet him, we’re going to become friends and we’re going to work together.

I got on that webcam and he did this thing where he said, “Put your screen name, your Twitter handle in the thing and I’ll follow you.” I put Kelly Olexa 4 times and I remember that he was scrolling his like, “Kelly Olexa, let me look you up.” At that time I had 1200 followers and his like, “You have 1200 followers!” He followed me and at that point I knew I was going to meet him, went to New York for real estate technology convention and he was speaking there. I videotaped him. I was the only one that videotaped it and I remember I shared that with him. After that we started emailing and then there was another trip to New York where I asked if I could see him at his wine library location. I drove out there and we spent time together and fast forward to 2009. He asked me to host his book tour in Chicago. The first thing I noticed about spending time with him is this; when entrepreneurs you start to get successful it’s a hard lesson to learn but you really have no idea how busy you’ll get and it’s really frustrating because when Gary says you got to hustle, he hustles all the time.

Kelly Olexa

Do you have specific tips for the listeners if there is someone that they want to reach out to, how should they actually go about it?

You’ve got to go with your own personality and what’s comfortable for you. What works for me in a very informal manner with my client relationships is going to come off awkward for you if you try to talk the way I do. The first thing you want to do if you want to connect with somebody it’s just like weight loss. You have to be willing to put in the time and that’s the mistake I think I see too many people is they email, they reach out, they don’t hear or they might send a Tweet and they’re like, “This person did not respond to me.”

The number one lesson that I learned as I got more successful, as the company became more successful, I believe Micheal Hyatt said this a million times, “The more successful you become, the less accessible you will become.” If you have that understanding when you are planning to reach out to somebody and you give it time and be willing to serve, and by serving means do something for that person, understand that whoever you’re approaching is probably getting a whole lot of requests like yours and have respect for their time and then just stay the course. Inevitably, I think if you have the right attitude, if you’re willing to make it a two way street and you have the perseverance, it’ll pay off whether it’s an engagement on Twitter, whether it’s a Periscope session.

Is there a specific failure or low point that you can share?

I think the failures for me were underestimating the amount of time and the amount of work.

It is a tremendous amount of work. When I kept thinking I could work the same hours and have the return for the amount of work that I put in. You think you can work Monday through Friday and have that pay off for you. That was a huge moment when I realized like, “You have to keep working, it is a marathon and you are going to feel like you’re on mile 26, time and time and time again and you will want to give up.”

I always likened a lot of business stories to the fitness journey. You don’t know when your body is going to start responding, you don’t know when that diet is going to start taking it off of you, you have to tweak and correct but you have to keep going and sometimes you’re going when you’re like, “I don’t have anything else to give.” I’m beat, I’m tired but it’s sustaining and staying the course and going, “This is going to be worth it.” I have faith in myself, I’m going to trust my gut and if you keep going that’s when things start paying off.

What do you think is the key to actually just staying focused and growing your business?

Getting rid of multi-tasking. Acknowledging that like so many of us, I am the worst person at shinny object syndrome. I get excited about every new book that comes out, every new marketing course that comes out, every single possible webinar that is on the planet I sign up for. Learning is a beautiful, wonderful addiction. Bettering yourself is a wonderful addiction, bettering your business is a wonderful addiction, your business is a wonderful addiction but if you don’t have balance, first of all in your life, you will get to the point where you’re running on fumes and nobody can perform when they’re running on fumes.

When I eliminated multi-tasking and came to acknowledge like, “Start reading one book at a time, Kelly. Pick one business book and stop buying everything on your Amazon wish list because you can only read one book at a time.”

If I don’t schedule myself and what I do know is the chunking syndrome or the chunking practice, I schedule everything by the hour and there’s actual scientific data to back up that if we stop ourselves every 45-50 minutes, give ourselves the 10-minute break and just clear your head. Go for a walk, go get some coffee, do some wall sits or walking lunges. But if you give yourself a break every hour, you can come back and be fresh and then that next hour do something different.

What I do now is I am focused on one thing, being fully present in anything I’m going to do at one time and that means I turn off my cell phone, I do not let Instagram and Skype and all of these things ping at me all day because in that case what you’re doing is your watering yourself down. You’re watering yourself down so you’re not really effective at any one thing. You’re not really giving any one thing your attention and then furthermore you’re giving out all those efforts half strength.

What would you say is your number one piece of advice for people who want to work with brands?

My number one piece of advice is to understand influencer marketing and working with influencers is absolutely a legitimate relationship now. Too many influencers are still going to down the path of, ‘I have an audience therefore just pay me.’ It has to be a 2-way business relationship and more people need to become familiar with the fact that ultimately I don’t care what product it is, a brand wants you to sell.

If you are working for a supplement company and apparel company, a cookie company, a hotel restaurant, whatever it is you need to be able to show, in whatever way you can do it best, I’m going to help more people to buy your product and if you’re not willing to do that that influencer relationship with brands is going to dry up. There kind of just out with their hand open like, “Well, I have an audience so here’s what I’ll do, this is my rate and that’s it.” Instead of going, “Let me look at this brand and see what I can do for them.”
kelly pinterest

How do you actually manage to juggle?

The reality is whether you’re an entrepreneur or not I think we all have crazy schedules. It’s kind of just the climate in the country that we live in. The biggest moment of clarity came for me over the past year and a half and it came in the midst of stress where I just looked at my life and I said, “How much balance do I have?”

I started to hear people say, “All you do is work. You never leave your house. You don’t go on vacations” I had several friends and people saying that. We glamorize that a little bit too much in the entrepreneurial field and in our country. You can find balance and you have to be willing to say, “No.”

The biggest change in this area that I’ve made and that goes back to the quote I said earlier, “The more successful you’ve become the less accessible you have to be.” You have to start saying, ‘No,’ more often than you say, ‘Yes.’ And if you start looking at that 80/20 rule in any context, I can tell you without question when I look at the numbers for our business 80% of the business comes from 20% of the clients. You start to evaluate that and start to make changes. Look at your day, how are you spending your day? And say, “What’s important to me?”

Saying ‘No’ and making time for things that are not business will make you better at your business.

Listen to Kelly Olexa on the Blissful Bites Podcast in iTunes

Find Kelly!

Kelly Olexa is the founder of FitFluential a global community of highly influential fitness enthusiast sharing their journey both online and offline via multiple social media platforms. FitFluential creates marketing campaigns for brands interested in engaging with these individuals. Kelly is basically a wealth of knowledge and I’ve known her for a long time so I’m so excited to have her on.

If you want a FREE sneak peek of Ali Maffucci from Inspiralized.com, click below to get a 5 minute preview of her class where she talks about leaving her full time job + being her own PR force! Early Bird pricing ends Monday, May 16th! Sign up for the summit here.
Get Free Masterclass Preview

What keeps you from having clarity with Annick Magac

Annick Magac is an Amazon bestselling author, motivational speaker and lifestyle coach who helps people get clear by aligning their environment, health and mindset to support success that they desire in their life. Annick helps her clients by guiding them to a create life that’s balanced between their work, personal life and health.

The long term benefits far outweigh the short term with @annickmagac #blissfulbitespodcast Click To Tweet

What you’re going to learn from this episode:

    • How your environment affects your business + personal life.
    • How to align your environment to support your health and wellness.
    • How to question your reality and environment to break out of your impacted thinking.
    • Tips on clearing your environment

Can you tell us the premise of your book, “Clear”?

This book came as a product of my two worlds colliding in, the creative background and the health and fitness background. I realized one day when I was sitting on a auditorium, listening to a speaker perhaps I also need this to be shared with the world that the way I think may be different from the way everybody else thinks. By that, I also realized that maybe I can help other people by aligning their lives through balancing decisions in health and wellness.One premise that I want people to breakthrough in there is regular thinking. It means that, we live our lives and we just accept the things the way they are. One thing that I really want people to do is to question reality and to question how they perceive themselves in their environment.

Why is your environment so important to how we work?

It is where you spend all your time. When I say environment, it covers your home, the place where you work and the location that you spend most of your time. What ends up happening is that, our environment is also living and breathing just as we do. It absorbs what we do with our lives. It means that if there is chaos or any uncertainty that is going on in your life, the environment that you are in will also be reflected. We have to stop fighting the idea of cleaning up. With our mess we are put into a position of not being empowered. If we have a cleaner and a more organized working place, it bring us so much excitement and power.

The Power of the Clutter Effect

Oftentimes, we just think of clutter as physical objects like a hoarder. Everybody can visualize a hoarder. People hoard things because they get too attached with it.  Clutter is something that we don’t really love, it is an unfinished project or a pile of paper or anything that is considered to be a distraction.

Tips on how to get “unstuck”:

The big thing here is to bring awareness to where you are and how you are with things. It is important for us, especially entrepreneurs to set up processes to make life easier, whether it is a filing process or any other means of how we do things. When I work with people, I ask them about what are they into right now. I also ask them what those things that keep them from doing better are. Most of them say that they can’t work better because they don’t have virtual assistants around them or they can’t organize their office because there are too many files or papers inside it. Basically, I question what are the things that keep them away from having clarity.

Tips on Starting to Remove Clutter in your life:

People look at clutter as overwhelmingly big things. I suggest that you start with small things. Start with the small steps. Let say for instance, you have been thinking about your own clutter, start with clearing first your inbox. When you start doing it, you actually gain confidence. After you do the small things, then there is already movement. You can keep on doing those things and in time, you’ll see big developments. The most important thing that I say is to not have an all or nothing attitude.

Tips on Being Productive Throughout Your Work day

Write down a list of things to do for the day or do a mind dump of the things that are happening in your life. Through that, you are able to be creative and be organized. The second thing is to exercise. Make time to take a leisure walk or stop in a middle of a project just to do 10 push-ups.  Starting your day writing a list and with exercise is immensely helpful.

 

 Annick Magac
One tip to building a brand and business:

The best tip to building a business is showing up consistently, which is the hardest thing to do. Have a consistent voice. It takes a long time to hone and develop yourself. People are used to the idea of an “overnight success.” There is never an “Overnight Success.” It takes time. You have to put in the work.

clear clutter

Video: Why your home office is affecting your health, wealth and wellbeing.

Find Annick Magac

Annick Magac is an Amazon Best Selling Author, Motivational Speaker and Lifestyle Coach that helps people get CLEAR™ by aligning their environment, health, and mindset to support the success they desire in their lives. Based in the Hudson Valley of NY, Annick often travels for work or pleasure; spending a lot of time in airplanes, cars and on motorcycles. In the rare moment that she is in one place for any length of time, you’ll find her training in a gym, visiting a museum or immersed in a creative project.

Have you heard about the Food Entrepreneur Summit yet?

20 Masterclasses, 22 speakers, 1 Facebook group to ask questions, PDF downloads + a giveaway! Learn more! 

Download my Cheat Sheet_Figure Out Your Priorities

Focus on the Small Things with Katie Jesionowski, My Super Foods

Katie and her partner Sylvia created “My Super Foods” in 2012 to fill an un-met need for nutrient dense organic and non-GMO snack food for kids. They met in New York when they are both pregnant with twins and talked about their shared interest for foods. One goal that they have for the company is to end hunger for children in the entire US.

Tell us about you and your company, My Super Foods.

Sylvia and I met as twin’s moms in Manhattan. When the kids were about 1.5 years old, we were having a playdate, I was a stay-home mom at the time and we just have left our careers in Finance. We were both thinking of starting a business. As we were talking, we thought of dealing with the needs of our toddlers and talked about preparing healthier snacks. We had a great playdate and when we went home she immediately texted me and said, “Do you really want to set up a company with me?” I laughed at it and up until now I never really have said, “Yes.” Anyway, the next day, we met at a coffee shop and started talking about the big plans for our business. So, as first-timer entrepreneurs it took us 14 months to get started with our business.

Focus on the small things with @mysuperfoodsco #blissfulbitespodcast Click To Tweet

 

Do you think it is easier or harder to have a business partner?

I think it is a thousand times easier to work with a partner. I always thought that it would really be tougher on me to work alone and that it is fulfilling to work with others and at the same time share success with each other. The best thing about having a partner is that you have someone who will lift you up during hard times.

What has made your the most proud in this whole journey?

In the shelves, I saw our products being displayed for sale. It made me so excited and I felt like everyone in the store knew what it was. The best thing also that happened during that time is knowing that we started the business for our kids. Our babies were the reason why we started the company, that’s why I am so proud to have them participating in this business.

As entrepreneurs, there are many high highs and many low lows. Can you tell me the story of one of those low lows?

I probably would have to say that there was a time when I got so excited about something and then I realized that I had to back track and not pursue it. As an example of that is when we reached out to schools. Our schools have this very big emphasis on the health and nutrition of the students. Yet we were still starting out at that time. It was our 3rd or 4th year in the business, we were still new and it was really hard for us with the requirements to comply. Many school officials got in the way in delivering these healthy, organic foods to the kids. We really had a lot of struggles in dealing with the schools’ terms and regulations and we had already spent so much time and effort. It just wasn’t the right time for that endeavor. You can’t do everything and you have to think about that.

My Super Foods

Can you share about the start of your company and its concept?

We started researching information online, calling companies and other important people, and figuring out the things that we needed to do. I spent days and weeks in the library so that I can have a broader idea on how to trademark our logo and our brand. Yet the most helpful thing that we ever did was to talk to the people who done everything before us. I guarantee that it is best to seek help for someone who’s been there before. We took advice from people who have grown successfully in the business. Anyone can go online to search for the things that is best to do when starting a business. For me, talking to people who have actually been successful in the business is the most beneficial thing to do.

Is there something that you wish you knew when you started and that  you know now?

Our failures may be bad but there’s so much that we’ve learned from it. There are many things that wish we knew in the beginning but it all had a purpose and it is part of the journey.

Do you have a specific sales strategy?

I had a background in advertising and my partner had a sales background. Sylvia and I were so lucky to get started in our backyards. It was great to start in New York City. It was also convenient for us because a friend helped us get resources as fast as we could. The specific sales strategy that we had was to get in touch with the customers and the people involved in the business. Change is something that will happen whether you like it or not. When you’re planning to change something, you must let everyone know and that you must be open to these changes for it will really help in the betterment of the product.

Katie Jesionowski

I want the listeners to know that “Persistence is the key.” Don’t give up easily.

I’ve tried sending a lot of emails yet there will be no response for a month or two. Then, there will also be others who will try to contact you after a long time of not reaching you out and then say, “We’re ready!” Everything is about timing. It doesn’t hurt unless they tell you to stop contacting them. Just keep trying.

Do you have a company or a business owner that you look up to?

There are a lot of companies which have good track records. I like companies that have an awareness of what they are doing and know the consumer’s needs. Patagonia is a really good company because they are not only environment-friendly but make high-quality products. I like Costco as well because they promote from with-in. It’s important to take care of your employees the same as you take care of your customers.

Where do you see yourself and MySuperFoods 5 years from now?

I see an extended portfolio of our new products. All we need to have is the capital and the resources that we need to have in order to make the product. I also think that we should have a stronger fight against hunger in the United States. As of now, we already have 3 food banks as partners and we’re planning to add 2 more. We also would want to extend our social media access so that we can reach out to more customers. We love the idea of giving back even if we’re very small. Everything that we do can make a big difference. I also would want to widen our distribution and expansion in the whole country.

Do you believe in balance? If so, how do you stay balanced?

I definitely believe in the idea of balance. You can be a mom for your children and at the same time run your own business. It also means that you have to make some sacrifices in dealing with things. As entrepreneurs, we are expected to not sleep. I love the idea of hard work. We make our families our huge priority. I think that working for the things that you love is much better than doing the things that you are supposed to do.

What do you do to make sure that your day is successful?

Doing meditation is the best for me. I get up and walk on my treadmill or start the day doing yoga. Although I do it most of the time, I enjoy meditation the most. I do yoga twice a week, it really helps. Those are probably the two best things. I also enjoy going out with my girlfriends, having a date with my husband and going outside often.

What is your best piece of advice to someone who’s just starting out?

Just go for it. I know that it is a little bit cliché and it doesn’t mean that it will be easy to succeed and to have a home run guarantee if you just follow your dreams. It means that you won’t have that nagging feeling of “what if”. You will grow as time goes by. Sylvia had read a quote that says, “On the days that are really bad, where you get bad news or you have horrible things to figure out, just focus on the small things.” Some days, we just have to take small tasks so that we can keep moving forward. It may not be easily successful but the process brings out so much joy.

Can you share one thing about you that your customers do not know?

I would say that we are two moms. We are involved in all the aspects of the company and we are the ones who take the calls and answer back all the emails. Sylvia and I are not nutritionists, food scientists or anything that is related to that kind of work. We are just two moms who are concerned about our baby’s health and nutrition. We are just moms who are passionate about what we are doing.

Find Katie and My Superfoods

Katie Jesionowski is Co Founder of MySuperFoods, a healthy food and lifestyle brand for kids and families.  Katie and her Co-Founder, Silvia Gianni met in NYC when they were both pregnant with twins and bonded over that shared life experience and their love of food.  After leaving a career in advertising, Katie and Silvia (a former investment banker) created MySuperFoods to fill an unmet need for nutrient dense, organic and non GMO snacks for kids age 2-10.  MySuperSnack (soft) Granola Bites launched in My Super Foods founderSeptember 2012 and MySuperCookies launched in July 2014.  A line of gluten free snacks is scheduled to launch this year.  Products are distributed nationally.  At the core of the company is a social mission to help end childhood hunger in the USA.  The company is partnered with the Food Bank for NYC, the Community Food Bank of NJ and Food LifeLine in Seattle.  Katie is married and mom to 6 year old twin daughters and lives in NJ.

NEW podcast giveaway! (2 Bags Blissful Eats granola, 3 pack from Healthy Human Life, sample pack from My Super Foods, CLEAR by Annick Magac.) by filling out the form below AND/OR writing an iTunes review and sending a screen shot of it in an email to me!

Blissful Bites Podcast Giveaway


You Have to Go All In with Natalie Shultz, Healthy Human Life

Natalie is the president and co-founder of Healthy Human Life. Her diagnosis with multiple sclerosis prompted her to make clean living and healthy choices a priority. She co-founded Healthy Human Life to help people eliminate toxins in their life with the simple choice- choose stainless steel.

 

Tell us a little bit about you and your company, Healthy Human Life.

This company is actually my last venture. My partner and I are with it until the end of this one. We started Healthy Human Life because we wanted to be in the health space with a product that would help people’s health. As you know, I was diagnosed with a MS and one of the easiest and quickest thing I did was to start drinking lots of water. I was having a hard time using glasses, my grip wasn’t good anymore and I needed something unbreakable. We decided to choose stainless steel as a container for water. We wanted this to become a universal product. As we all know, we eat and we drink, so this is a product that people could use and they could give the product to their kids.  I really wanted to have something for the entire family as well.

Why would people choose healthy human in stainless steel vs. BPA free plastic?

BPA plastic has really been in the news lately and BPA free is supposedly not safe. We go to extra lengths to make sure that even the lids of our stainless steel stein is lined with the stainless steel and not the BPA free plastic. Even in the malls or the supermarket, they don’t use stainless steel in the lids of their containers. We are doing this so that we won’t touch any plastic that is in the lid, so making this product is convenient for everyone.

How did you actually get started?

My business partner and I combined our superpowers. I am into marketing and sales but before I got to be innovative in that field, a long time ago I was a potter. I was doing sculpting. I have this creative side. My business partner is actually the biggest tech guru that you will ever meet. He was setting up a very successful online stores when the internet was just starting. We decided to work together and planned to build an e-commerce company. From that stepping stone, we targeted Amazon because it is one of the biggest means of marketing. I know what it is like to order foods and what it is like to deal with distributors and I don’t want to do that again. I want to just sit at my desk or just be at the beach while I’m doing the business. I don’t want to manage 300 people. We worked on the means and ways in the business like deciding on what products are we going to have and how are we going to manage this venture. Many people have started asking how we do these things and asking us for advice. We have decided to work with the healthy options product since we’re both passionate about our health. From then on, I realized that this is where I am supposed to be. This product is made for me and I was born to do this thing.

What is your vision of your own company? How do you align your vision and your priorities?

My partner and I really wanted to have a work-life balance. Even though we are the same age, his boys are younger than mine—ages 10 and 12 while I have 3 teenagers, one is in College and the two are soon to be out in the next two years. My life is already getting to a point that it is not home-based anymore that is why I am switching to this new thing and what I’m doing really has to fulfill me. This business perfectly does that. Dick’s sports goods offered us a business partnership but then we thought that would be a new venture. We thought about it and said thank you anyway but no. We didn’t pursue it because we are so vigilant about about vision. We get wholesale inquiries every day and it’s tempting really, it’s nice to know that there are offers for us because it is a validation that our company is doing something right. I think there is value in it but it is very powerful also to say, “No!”

What is the proudest moment you have with Healthy Human?

That is a hard kind of question. I mean, almost every single day I throw my fist in the air and say, “YAY!” There’s that feeling of excitement because I think of the small things as bits of success. Everything, whether how big or small it is, is a victory for me. I love that we’re the first Paleo-friendly product to be approved by the Paleo Foundation that is outside of Food and Beauty Products. It is so cool for me because knowing we were first, and we will always be first and I can hang on that. I just think that is my best and proudest moment I have with Healthy Human. All of these things are just amazing. It proves that we fit in the healthy space, we’ve created a new quality product and people are responding to it very well.

What are the struggles that you have encountered in Healthy Human?

We underestimated the market. In our growing company, we also experienced running out of stock and that’s a huge thing because a company must not run out of stock. We had a lot of angst about that happening. It was really bad and painful. That’s why this year we have a much better stock flow for our customers. I have to say, that was our biggest issue in the company. We’re looking forward to recovering from it today.

What is your best piece of advice for someone who is just starting out?

My brother asked me this question a few months ago because he was starting his own business. I said to him that, at the end of the day as an entrepreneur you have to put everything all in. It means that you have to put it all in, if it means you have to sell your house or you do things that you thought you can’t do. In order to launch it, you must acquire new skills and if you are not willing to do that, maybe because of your family or whatever circumstance, then it is not for you. Any business that I have done and have involved myself in, I definitely put it all in. That would be my advice for anybody who is planning to start any business. You can’t have a plan B, meaning you must have a solid plan or else you are going to fail. I mean that you have to put yourself in the position of thinking the best for yourself. Never allow yourself to think about anything else.

founder of healthy human life

Where do you see yourself in your company 5 years from now?

My goal is just to keep innovating. I mean, my mind is always looking forward to come up with the things. In 5 years, I hope that I’m going to have the most amazing product line. I don’t want to say I’m ever finished. It is always about what are we going to do and how, it is the thing that drives us every day. I can also see that in the coming years, our company will be more “branded” and become larger, it means to hire a super crew. I’m going to keep on doing things until I can’t do anything anymore. I vowed that this will be my last business.

How do you stay balanced?

Honestly, I stay balanced by taking care of myself. As a mom, I know that it is one of the hardest things to do but I actually take hold of that and realize that when you take care of yourself first, everything else falls in line. I also thought that what happened to me (MS) is the greatest kick of my life. If I didn’t decide on doing something for me, I might be laying in my bed for life. That’s why I took care of myself first so that I can do many amazing things with my family.

Do you have a morning routine to make sure your day successful?

I usually take an hour after I wake up to not be looking at computer screens, cellphone or TV. What I do first thing in the morning is that I sit and drink my coffee. I organize my thoughts and read the news. I don’t think deep thoughts, I just organize them. From then, I check my email and do about half an hour of some exercise and take my time before I go to work. When I say take my time, I have to prepare the essentials like having my smoothie. After those routines, my body is super ready to dive in to all the things in work.

What is the best promotional strategy or technique in Healthy Human?

My vision from the very beginning was to be an online company so we had to talk and reach out to people. It starts with the packaging and the entire messaging that people are reading online. When they open the gift and they use it, they feel sought out. Every detail was thought over and is absolute quality. If there’s any questions or follow up, we’re there actually to answer them. We don’t have automated emails, instead we are there personally talking with you. Every email that you get is hand-typed to you that answers your specific questions. I really wanted to create a company that had a human touch in an online world. Instagram, for example, is a large online platform wherein you can have marketing because it allows you to work hands on in a very adaptable way. From there, it blossomed and I loved to give products away.

Click to listen to Natalie Shultz from Healthy Human Life on the Blissful Bites Podcast in iTunes

Find Healthy Human Life!

Natalie is the co-founder of Healthy Human Life. Harnessing every ounce of entrepreneurial spirit starting out in sales and marketing natalie schultzover 20 years ago, she has carefully honed her skills to concentrate on business strategy and development. Recently diagnosed with MS in June 2014, Natalie began using food as her choice bypassing all other medicines. With a very clear vision in front of her today and a unique outlook on healthy eating, living, working and out world, she is ready for anything. “Business is fun, family is better, health in controllable, the earth is fragile, whatever you do, protect those things.”

businesseseThis podcast was sponsored by Businessese. Use code BLISSFULBITES at checkout to receive 10% off of any purchase.

NEW podcast giveaway! (2 Bags Blissful Eats granola, 3 pack of Healthy Human Water Bottles, 3 jars of Nuttzo, variety pack from My Super Foods and CLEAR by Annick Magac)  by filling out the form below AND/OR writing an iTunes review and sending a screen shot of it in an email to me!

Blissful Bites Podcast Giveaway

Our Needs Grow and Change with Samantha, Emmy’s Organics

Samantha Abrams is the co-founder of Emmy’s Organics. Emmy’s is a home grown family oriented company committed to spreading the good word about healthy snacking as well as social and environmental responsibilities. Emmy’s organic products are made in a wind-solar powered building and much attention is placed in reducing their carbon footprint. They like to summarize their commitment into 3 words: Ingredients, transparency and trust.

Tell us a little bit about you and Emmy’s Organics.

Emmy’s was founded by me and Ian. We started Emmy’s at the very end of 2008. We started this company in Ian’s mother’s home kitchen. We had been experimenting with vegan gluten-free raw macaroons that Ian developed many years prior and he was teaching me the recipe. We realized there isn’t really  anything like this available and this was the type of food that we really wanted to share

I grew up very active. I was a dancer and very into health, especially when I was in college. I experimented a lot with raw foods and different ways of keeping my body really healthy. Raw foods were really inspiring to me and when I originally met Ian he had a lot of experience in that world because he actually had worked in a number of raw vegan kitchens in New York and San Francisco. He end up teaching me so many skills in the kitchen and that’s how it all got started. Ian has grown up with a lot of food allergies; he doesn’t eat gluten or dairy. At that time he was just like, “Wow! There really isn’t anything like this”. It tasted so good and is so clean. It’s just really exciting for us so we really wanted to share those recipes.

Tell us what has been your most proud moment so far.

There are so many. I think that when we rebranded our company, we actually did a crowd funding campaign. This was back in 2010. We raised money to hire a real packaging designer and have our bags printed. It was a very proud moment to move in to this newer branding because it really spoke to our values a lot more. There was really something amazing about showing off the brand in that way. I think another one is when we got our loan with Whole Foods Market to expand our product line. That was really exciting just because it really shows that they believed in us as a company. Every time we get into new retailer whether it’s a large chain or an independent chain or a one-single store it’s really cool. It’s just really exciting when people are on board and excited about what you’re doing.

What is something you learned from crowd funding?

It was a little different then because it was very new actually. It was also very risky and we were like, “Do people really know what this is? There is sort of an educational component. Now I think it’s competitive and you need to put in a lot more work into getting your message out. I would say get really clear on what your budget is. Realistically you need a budget for whatever your project is and also be able to budget in the gifts that you’re giving people if that’s the route your taking. If someone gives $50 and you get an Emmy’s gift box, make sure you understand the cost associated with that. A video is really important. If you know someone who can help you edit and make a nice clear video that says this is who we are, this is what were asking for and this is where the money’s going. There’s a crazy statistic about campaigns with videos vs. without and how the ones with videos get funded better.

samantha abrams

Can you share a specific flop or disappointment with us?

There was one time when we signed a contract without getting it reviewed by a lawyer and there was just something that slipped in there that put us in a stressful position. I really wished that we had spent the money on paying a lawyer because we really weren’t savvy with reading contracts at that time. Another flop is in the very beginning we made a mistake on our nutrition fact. The reason why there was a mistake was because the woman who was generating the nutrition facts for us completely misunderstood our product. She actually said there was a gram less of sugar per serving in our product. There were a few months when there was incorrect nutrition facts on there and finally I had them redone by someone else.The woman who did them the second time really understood it. It was a really emotional experience because I’m really all about transparency and trust and it was terrifying to me that we could lose the trust of a lot of customers.

How did you come up with your sales strategy?

We really just figured it out. I studied some business in college but I was not a business major and Ian had no experience as well. We’ve really just kind of figured it out as we’ve been going along. We’ve been lucky enough to have friends in the industry and mentors that we can ask questions.

Is there something you really wished you knew when you were starting out?

I’m happy for exactly the experience that we have had but there’s so many things that you do learn when you’re getting into larger retailers about how distributors work. You learn about all the numbers involved, giving discounts or refills when you get into a large retailer. We didn’t know about that in the very beginning and so when we started learning we really had to hone in on our budget and make sure we could afford that. It’s expensive.

What was a successful marketing technique for Emmy’s?

We do a lot of giveaways with other companies. We do have some really great friends in the industry and its fun to do giveaways with them. Instagram is our strongest social media medium. I think that actually probably one of the best ways that we’ve gotten ourselves out there is by using a lot of independent distributors in New York City. There’s a lot of benefits of working with independent distributors. It’s not always as expensive to work with them especially if you are just getting started. They go into intricate places like a lot of bodegas in Brooklyn.

Our needs grow and change, Samantha from @emmysorganics on #blissfulbitespodcast Click To Tweet
Do you have a specific company or business owner that you looked up to?

Yes. I think Terces Engelhart, who is one of the founders of Cafe Gratitude which is a vegan restaurant chain out here on the west coast and we’re friends their family and I’ve always looked up to Terces and how she grown and changed her business model overtime. She’s written books, cookbooks, all very value driven I would say she would definitely be one of my role models. I just love how their brand has evolved overtime to move with the current trend. There’s something special about people who are able to pivot and morph their business to really align with who they are.

What would you say your biggest piece of advice is to someone who is just starting out?

I think what I said before, “Start before you’re ready.”

Where do you see Emmy’s 5 years from now?

I really see it as a national brand in 5 years. I would say we’re almost national now but there’s definitely a lot more we need to do to really get there. At that point that we would be established as a national brand and that’s what we are really going for.

Do you believe in balance? And if you do, how do you stay balanced?

I do believe in balance. Actually, a piece of advice we got early on was that there is no separation between work and your home life, for example, and that is true because I bring my work home a lot and I also bring my life to work and there’s something nice about just making it just one thing.

Can you share one thing in your day that you do to make sure it’s successful?

I really, really like sitting down to have coffee or tea. I try to have that one cup coffee or tea at home, not in a mug to go and that is something that I really, really love.

Share one thing that you want your customers and our listeners to know about you that you think they don’t know already.

In the very beginning when Ian and I started on Emmy’s we’re very stuck on this raw foods lifestyle. We both were eating that way and after a while, we started feeling like the rigidity of this diet is impacting our happiness in general. That is something I really learned personally and with my business. Our needs grow and change like I was just saying with balance. It’s also with whatever we’re eating and taking care of ourselves. I’m much less rigid as I used to be.  I feel we become a lot more flexible and I think that that’s something I’m really excited about promoting through Emmy’s.

Find Samantha + Emmy’s Organics

NEW podcast giveaway! (2 Bags Blissful Eats granola, 3 pack from Healthy Human Life, sample pack from My Super Foods, CLEAR by Annick Magac.) by filling out the form below AND/OR writing an iTunes review and sending a screen shot of it in an email to me!

 

Blissful Bites Podcast Giveaway

Just be Genuinely Helpful with Prerna Malik

Prerna Malik is the gourmet copywriter and community manager for time starved entrepreneurs for Content Bistro. She loves crafting great content, reading good books and drinking gallons of coffee which is probably why I feel a strong connection to her.

Tell us a little bit about you and what you do.

I’m an SEO copywriter, a business blogger, a community manager and I’m also a mom, wife and I bake very good brownies. I also work with entrepreneurs to help them craft strategy for their blog, to help monetize it for their business, to help grow it; I’m a consultant as well.

Why are you so passionate about helping women in business?

It would be easy for me to say because I’m one. Here’s the thing, I work with my husband, were very blessed in that way that we can both work together on this business and together we gotten this where we essentially we want to help both men and women entrepreneurs who feeling stuck or slow down because they may not have the time or even the budget to grow their businesses. We’re passionate about helping women or men so that they can reach the full potential of their business without feeling that they need to mortgage their house or max out their credit cards.

I love your story about how you got started really on a budget. Can you talk a little bit about that? And then why it’s so important to help people to save time and money?

When we started, my husband and I, I’ve been blogging at my personal blog for a while and we had few clients who started reaching out to us via that blog asking if we can help manage their social media or write blogs for them. We have a few clients, not many, and my husband got really, really sick. He had this chronic inflammation and was really painful and he had to quit work and he was our sole honor at that time. We had medical bills and we had nowhere else also to take him and so we talked, “Let’s just do this.” We had really very little money to spend. The only things we invested in were hosting for the site because we wanted like a self-hosted site and not like a wordpress.com or something like that and paying for the domain. Our site was designed probono by a friend and it wasn’t the prettiest, I’m sorry for listening, but it did its worth. We stuck to that budget and we discussed this with each other and we said that our focus is going to be delivering great work and just getting the word out there about ourselves and it doesn’t matter if you don’t have a fancy website. It doesn’t matter if you’ve not done any high-end courses or we’re not making enough great big mastermind, groups or something like that but we just need to focus on doing great work. We started investing 10% of what we would earn back into our business so we stuck to that since. You shouldn’t let a budget stop you it’s what we believe in.

What do you think every website needs on it to drive traffic and convert customers?

Personality and authenticity. Good SEO always help.

Do you have 2 or 3 tips on how that can actually translate to your website or your social media channels?

First, just start by being who you are. Sharing parts of yourself that you would want to share with someone you will meet in person. One of the things that I would say is social media is all about being social. How would you interact with someone if you would meet them in person? You are not just going to whip out business card and say you already give them your product and say you need to buy this. Similarly I don’t see why people on social media will always go buy this… Instead of really taking out the time to engage and connect. Start by engaging and connecting your audience, start by finding out who they are, what they want and sharing more of who you are as well. Letting yourself be open, letting yourself be real, letting yourself be just out there and it may not work with everyone and that’s okay. You want to essentially hang out with people who actually get you. The second thing I would tell someone who would say starting out and wondering how do you start by being authentic or showing that you’re passionate of what you’re doing is by genuinely helpful with your content, with your posts on whether it’s on Facebook groups or whether it’s on commenting in other people’s blogs. Just be genuinely helpful it works wonders. And finally focus on building relationships. Relationships where you may or may not get anything in return.

Just be genuinely helpful with @content_bistro #blissfulbitespodcast Click To Tweet

Prerna Malik

Tell us why great content is so important.

Great content is a lot like your legacy online. It’s what you’re putting out there, it’s what going to remain for a very long time unless of course you have decided to just leave your site to something like that but great content on social and great content on your site is how people get to know who you are. It’s how people get to trust you. It’s how people come to respect what you do. I’m not just talking about the written word I’m talking about podcast, video blogs; great content is what sets you apart from the rest. You would add your own personality to it, you would add you own unique spin to it, you would add your own special value to it, great content is pretty much an essential for any business, any blog.

What does every product description need to have?

Benefits. Product description need to showcase how a product is going to change someone’s life or how a product is going to make a difference to them, how a product is going to make things easy for them, how a product is going to solve a problem that they’ve been struggling with and you do that to benefits.

Tell us about your Facebook Mastermind group.

We have a Facebook Mastermind group for Parent entrepreneurs actually call the bistrol. The reason why we created it it’s because parent entrepreneur is facing unique challenges that entrepreneurs may or may not. You have to juggle meal planning and school pick up and drops and volunteer work and projects along with planning you marketing strategy, launching a product, the usual entrepreneurial stuff as parent entrepreneurs ourselves we realized that a Mastermind group where we could discuss things that make life simpler both at home and business hold each other accountable for whether making a personal change or achieving a professional milestone would be just so perfect.

What has it done for our business?

A lot. It’s big but intimate. We know each other, people are helpful and from a business perspective it’s really helped us build relationships with entrepreneurs all across the world.

Would you say that the mastermind has been a game changer in your business then?

The greatest game changer, I would think being out there and building relationships.

What would be some advice on how to get started with guest posting/blogging?

Start by being who you are, identifying blogs that would be a great fit for you. If you’re just starting out I would advise you to not just go straight for this really big blogs but start by places that feels like more comfortable to you, smaller blogs probably the same size as yours or slightly bigger than yours and then just reaching out to them.

Tell me your favorite social media platform for entrepreneurs building a business.

Contrary to popular opinion I would go to Facebook.

Do you have a secret online tool?

My latest love is ConvertKit.

Tell us one thing you do in your day that contributes to your success.

I use a planner. A real paper planner. I’m using a passion planner to be precise. I’m so much more productive, I’m more focused, and I have a clear idea of how my goals are getting accomplished.

Share one thing that you want our listeners and your audience to know about you that you think they don’t know yet.

My 8-year-old daughter and I have the same shoe size. I have tiny feet.

 

Find Prerna and the Content Bistro

Prerna Malik is a gourmet content chef, copywriter and community manager. She is the co-founder of Content Bistro , a full service
content marketing agency serving up scrumptious SEO, social media and content solutions to time-starved entrepreneurs. Prerna has worked with over 200 clients, in the last 5 years, helping them to double and even, triple the sales and traffic they get from social and search. She brings with her a wealth of “kitchen-tested” experience and strategies that guarantee results. 

Click to listen to Prerna Malik Blissful Bites Podcast in iTunes.

NEW podcast giveaway! (2 Bags Blissful Eats granola, 3 pack from Healthy Human Life, sample pack from My Super Foods, CLEAR by Annick Magac.) by filling out the form below AND/OR writing an iTunes review and sending a screen shot of it in an email to me!

Blissful Bites Podcast Giveaway


No More Shiny Object Syndrome!

Have you heard of the Pareto Principle? Or the acronym of FOCUS? That’s what we’re talking about today. The Pareto principle is named after an economist who figured out that 80% of your results come from 20% of your efforts. I really think focus is so important. I want you to get away from the shiny object syndrome, which means you’re always rushing to do the next best thing in your business because it’s going to be “it”. FOCUS on one thing until you’ve had success! FOCUS = Focus on One Course Until Success. Keep powering on and working on your one course/product until you’ve had success with it!

Blissful Bites Podcast iTunes

Don’t add other things until you’ve really perfected your first thing. If you’re working on streams of income and you know having passive income is a way for you to make more money BUT  If you’re offering five different programs and you’re just making a little bit of money and you’re not giving anything your full focus it deserves and you’re not doing any one thing great. Take a look at that one thing that you can do really great and give that you’re full focus and energy. Stop being all over the place and focus on one thing.

Let’s talk about the Pareto principle. 20% of your time produces 80% of your results. You should be spending more time on the activities that are giving you 80% of your results. If you have a blog or website, look at what is giving you most of your traffic and spend more time there. Like Katy says, look at what is working and what is fun? If Instagram is working and twitter isn’t, then spend more time on instagram! Look at your analytics. What is creating the most business and traffic for you? What can you do to reward those people/platform? How can you produce more content that works? If there was a recipe that got tons of engagement and feedback then take note of that and produce more of that content. If we’re talking about instagram, look at what gets the most engagement from you. Is it a recipe, workout tip, quote, picture of your kids?

80% of your results comes from 20% of your efforts #blissfulbitespodcast Click To Tweet

We think we need to be everywhere and do everything, but that’s not true. Figure out what is working. You don’t need to be everywhere. Focus on quality, NOT quantity. What do people like to see? What do they resonate with? Get more traction by doing more of what is working well. I want you to think about what is working the most for you? Put more effort into that. Shift your focus. Instead of thinking you need to be doing 2 pictures on instagram, a blog post, 10 Facebook posts and Pinterest, just pick a few!

pareto principle

Brainstorm ways you can improve on your 20% (what’s working)! Schedule those tasks into your calendar. Try theme days! Have a focus and a plan for every single day so you’re not multi-tasking! Get focused! What do you need to focus on? Make sure you figure out what the 20% is that produces 80% of your results!

Let me know what activities you’re doing to produce more results for your business!

NEW podcast giveaway! (2 Bags Blissful Eats granola, 5 Pack of Not Ketchup, sample pack the Granilla Bar and variety pack of mixes from Among Friends and Smart Cookies from Bitsy’s Brain Food) by filling out the form below AND/OR writing an iTunes review and sending a screen shot of it in an email to me!

Blissful Bites Podcast Giveaway

Find me on social media and tell me how you’re working more on your business/blog!

 

Just Roll With It with Lee Hersh from Fit Foodie Finds

Lee Hersh is the blogger and business women behind Fit Foodie Finds. She is a healthy recipe creator, food photographer, risk-taker Blissful Bites with Lee Hersh from Fit Foodie Findsfrom Minnesota. She co-runs the Blogger Project which is dedicated to bloggers learning more about the ever changing industry. Lee has transformed her website from just a recipe blog to an entire wellness brand. She is always having fun creating the next best recipe, showing her infectious personality on snapchat and she makes getting a good sweat in fun!

click

 

How did you start Fit Foodie Finds?

I started 5 years ago, at that time I was a junior in college at the University of Minnesota and my sister and I loved to read healthy living blogs.  She just said why don’t you start a blog? The next day I just jumped right in and started a website called College Foodie Finds. It was more to chronicle my journey in college and live healthy. I was posting more educational stuff, I was not really creating content at that time.

Things morph, 6 months later I changed it to Fit Foodie Finds and then I really started focusing a lot more on food and sharing the recipes that I was eating in my own home. Today things are a lot different. I not only focus on healthy recipes but I’m really trying to incorporate more lifestyle into my website, more workouts, and travel and just like general life updates.

How do you sum up everything you do?

I say that I run a food and lifestyle website then I also mention that I run kind of like an educational consulting platform where Davida from the Healthy Maven and I kind of mentor other bloggers into how they can also run their blogs as businesses.

What has been your most proud moment out of everything?

I think every single day is a proud moment for me  being able to wake up kind of just have the realization that I plan my day and it’s completely different from the day before and that I run my life. I run the business and every single aspect of my day. It randomly hits me throughout the week, I can get really stressed and then I can just take a step back and say, Oh wait! This is awesome. This stress is awesome.

What is your biggest flop/disappointment?

My biggest flop is not realizing what Fit Foodie Finds was until 4 years in basically. I wish I’d gone into things with a different mindset. I think it took me quite some time to get the confidence to just tell people that this is what I do. If I had that confidence a little sooner I would have taken myself more seriously and just have the will power to be like, ‘this is a thing; we’re moving forward.’

Tell me more about The Blogger Project.

We really wanted to create a space where we just are very transparent about how we’re making money, how we’re pitching brands, what’s working and what’s not. That’s the whole goal of The Blogger Project. It’s really to create a community and to create conversation around blogging and business.

Biggest piece of advice who are just starting.

It’s just get started and roll with it.

Do you have a company/business owner/mentor that you looked up to?

I love Pinch of Yum. They’re based in the twin cities and I’ve met Lindsey in real life and they have become mentors to lots of different bloggers because of her transparency in business. Also Dana from The Minimalist Baker; her creativity and her work are sheer amazing. I always kind of looked up to her in micro photography and the food styling aspects of things. And any site with podcasts out there. I learn so much on podcasts, hearing other’s stories.

Even Martha Stewart, she just created this monstrosity of a brand and I’ve always liked her and I secretly wanted to be like her because she has kitchenware then she moved into bedding and it just shows how a brand can evolve overtime.

Where do you see yourself and your business in 5 years?

I wish I could predict the future because I have no idea what the internet is going to look like.  If I was doing exactly what I’m doing today in 5 years, I would be very happy.  I want to have kids, I want to raise them, I want to be at home with them and I also want to make 6 figures at the same time. Now, I like to take on a lot of projects so I could see myself kind of dipping my hands into some other businesses, not starting them but kind of joining a team of a business or two in the food space probably.

Blissful Bites podcast with Lee Hersh

What is your secret online tool?

For blogging I love Coschedule it is a content calendar scheduling tool and I swear by that. I love it, it’s visual, it helps me categorize and stay on tract. Another tool that I just picked up over the past year is called Wunderlist and it’s pretty much just this app and syncs with your desktop and your phone but it allows you to create lists. It’s kinda like to-do list but it’s virtual instead of written.

How do you find a way to stay balanced?

It has been a work in progress. I think that it’s hard to, beyond vacation to completely disconnect from your business just because social media lives on and doesn’t just like stop at 10 pm and pick back up the next morning. There are little things that I try and incorporate in my everyday to stay balanced.

What has been a successful technique for your company?

In the summer of 2015 I partnered with Ambitious Kitchen. Monique is amazing. She is actually from Minneapolis but she lives in Chicago now. We met on a press trip and we came up with the idea to host something called the Summer Sweat series on both of our websites. There is something we call the summer slump where in the summer months traffic kind of dips, engagement is low. It was a food plan mixed with workouts and kind of a guidance of a nutrition plan. It was a big risk because it was so much work but we’re moving forward with 2016 and we’re really excited and we might implement it twice this year. It was a really cool thing where we stepped out of our comfort zone and a really good thing came from it.

How did you manage to build a team around you?

Last year I was swimming in work and I decided that I would love to have someone who can help me manage social media, be there to assist in my photo shoots and just have someone to bounce ideas off of. So I hired Linley who I went to college with and she is just amazing. I feel like she kind of keeps me afloat. She just brings great energy to the business which is invaluable to me. In October, I brought on Emily as a brand manager.

Just Roll with it: Blissful Bites Podcast with @fitfoodiefinds Click To Tweet

Where can we find Lee:

Untitled design-31

Enter our February Podcast giveaway (2 jars of Wild Friends Nut Butter, Variety pack of 7 soups from Splendid Spoon, 1 bag of Blissful Eats granola and Thinner in 30 by Jenna Wolfe) by filling out the form below AND/OR writing an iTunes review and sending a screen shot of it in an email to me!

Find me on social media and let me know what you think!


A Little Catch up on Blissful Bites

What a whirlwind week! The Blissful Bites Podcast has gone off and it’s on it’s way to 500 downloads. I would love to hit that before the week’s over. This podcast has been all about your help and support…seriously. Without you, it wouldn’t be doing so well! I posted a few posts here this week, so I wanted to kind of play catch up to make sure you saw them all! The Blissful Bites podcast launched this week with 3 episodes, the About Me episode and interviews with Jenna Wolfe and Nikki Frezza from Nikki’s Coconut Butter.

You can listen to them here. 

Just a note: This blog will not be all things podcast, all the time. Next week you can expect it to go back to wellness, family and business, with two podcasts posts a week added in! So if the podcast isn’t your thing…no worries (except I secretly hope it IS your thing!)

Blissful Bites Podcast Jenna Wolfe

Blissful Bites Podcast Show Notes:

The show notes for each episode will always be under the podcast tab…or you can directly go to NicoleCulverblog.com/podcast. I’ll have interview highlights as well as the images and promo videos. So in the past week I’ve published Jenna Wolfe’s show notes, Nikki’s Frezza from Nikki’s Coconut Butter’s show notes and my About Me show notes. I’ve also published a compilation of fantastic tips from all 10 interviews I’ve done with all of their best advice on how to get started. It’s a great print out for motivation!

So now…I’m asking you all for a few favors! The beginning stages of a podcast are SUPER important...so I could use some even more help.

Here’s how you can help the Blissful Bites Podcast:

  1. Subscribe. This is the most important!
  2. Share. Share with anyone you think would love a listen. You can tweet, text, pin an image from this post. Click here to tweet out the podcast. 
  3. Write a review! This would be SUPER helpful too. You can write a review here! 
Have you listened to the Blissful Bites podcast yet? Click To Tweet

THANK YOU so much for your help and support!! xoxoxo

Let me know what you think of the podcast! 

Find me on social media!