Lori Hildebrand interview with founder of Your Brand by Design.

In the Beginning Series: Interviews with women entrepreneurs and their journey with starting their own business.

Excerpts from the interview (full interview found here):

Tell us a little bit about who you are, what your business is, and what you do?

Your Brand by Design is an intentional creation of the experience you want with your ideal client. I do coaching and speaking and am a two-time best-selling author (one of the books I co-authored with you, The Profitable Woman’s Playbook).

You were a rock star at one point in your life.  Can you tell us a little about that time in and how that came into your current business?

It came about by my willingness to say, “yes!” I got a call to play the keyboard with Erasure (Andy Bell). I was open to something that really mattered to me and made it happen. I realized that this was a part of me and that this time of life was my time to live out loud and say, “yes” to 100% of everything that I am. By accepting all of me and learning to say yes, my business shifted and opened so many doors that weren’t open before.

When you switched from that experience and got this renewed energy and new momentum, what lessons do you feel like really applied as you started launching the new version of your business?

I stopped listening to all the, “I’m not enough” stuff in my head and was willing to get out on stage. I stopped trying to hide who I was from people and offered my true self. When it is something important to you and you opt in, you will feel like you are home. If it’s something you have to offer, then be willing to offer 100% of yourself. Even if you feel that you don’t have it all together, know that no one has it all together.

When you have that reel running through your mind of, “who am I to do this” or, “I’m not perfect, and I’m not this or I’m not that”, what advice would you give women to overcome this and get out there?

Just jump! Get in touch with the solution you are providing. You’re not presenting yourself as the expert of the entire world, just at that one thing you know really well. Put yourself in your clients shoes and realize that not only do you have something amazing to help them, but you are uniquely qualified to solve their concern. If you don’t know it, they won’t buy it. Just put it out there, acknowledge it.

Tell that little “who am I” voice to take a nap.  Tell it, “I have to go be amazing for a minute”! Your clients will be able to learn from your imperfection as much as from anything else you offer. If we see everyone struggles, that can help us, too.

When you started, how did you fund this business venture?

I was a VP of marketing in a real estate company, so I had a built-in network. I was lucky, I wasn’t the sole breadwinner. I relied on what I saw others doing and then did it my own way. I set boundaries at the very beginning to set myself up, so that my life still worked outside of my business.

What about your calendar? Do you time block? How do you set your time up?

I set aside certain days of the week and turn everything else off to get stuff done. If I focus on one thing at a time, I am so much more productive. I have my accountability coach and I set up my three non-negotiable things to focus on each day.

What would be your biggest tip either in business in general or from a branding perspective that you feel women really need to know?  What’s something that is missing out there that women just overlook?

Don’t market to your ego: trying to be everything for everyone. Find your ideal client and serve who you are really meant to serve. If you market with your brand and focus on what you are meant to do and the people you are meant to serve, you will be ahead of the game.