Think About Media
The Inventive Journey
Podcast for Entrepreneurs
Think About MediaThink about media. As Entrepreneurs, you think about advertising. 80%-90% of entrepreneurs do not even think about it and they are not familiar with a ton of opportunities that are even free with a little investment of time. Don't just put out press releases but look at some of those resources we talked about earlier to see where media is looking for sources where you might be a source. Don't be afraid. A lot of that is a mindset too. You are an expert as well. You would not be doing what you are doing if you were not an expert. Don't be afraid to put yourself out there.
Also sponsored by Cereal Entrepreneur
The Inventive Journey
Starting and growing a business is a journey. On The Inventive Journey, your host, Devin Miller walks with startups along their different journeys startups take to success (or failure). You also get to hear from featured guests, such as venture firms and angel investors, that provide insight on the paths to a successful inventive journey.
Get New Episodes
Get 2 brand-new podcast episodes sent to you every week!
ai generated transcription
think about media because um as entrepreneurs you think about advertising but you do not think about me 80 90 of entrepreneurs don't even think about it and they're not familiar with a ton of opportunities that are even free i talk about earned media that are free with a little investment of time you should look to see what not just putting out press releases but to look at some of those resources that we talked about that are free like hero and those kind of things to see where media is looking for sources where you might be a source and don't be afraid to put is a lot of that's mindset too is people think of the people being quoted or the people on the you know on the award stage is somebody else and they're just they're just but that you you're an expert too you wouldn't be doing what you're doing if you weren't an expert don't be afraid to put yourself out there [Music] hey everyone this is devin miller here with another episode of the inventive journey i'm your host devin miller the serial entrepreneur that has grown several businesses in the seven and eight figure companies as well as the founder and ceo of miller ip law where he helps startups and small businesses with their patents and trademarks if you ever need help with your patents and trademarks just go to strategymeeting.com and grab some time to chat now today we have another great guest on the episode from tracy and lamore the maury amari yeah lamorie all right um and so tracy um to give her a bit of a background she kind of started off her career um learning how to write press releases when she wrote a press release or information for a man on death row in 1999 and kind of then catapulted her career in a bit of being an activist in her 20s and working in a radio show and then also then doing full-time marketing position to kind of do that um the death row death row case got some national attention and then she had a light bulb that she didn't want to work for people and do press releases for people she didn't like so she then went the freelance route and did some profiles and built a client base opened their own business and been going ever since so with that much as an introduction uh welcome on the podcast tracy thank you so much and yeah that was all exactly right except for the one little correction is i wasn't a publicist when i did that i learned to write a press release i was in marketing and when i say that that's even that is sounding more advanced than i was because i was in my 20s and i was great at communicating but i was i was in a low level sales job you know selling iso so i wasn't doing press releases for a living i learned to write the press release on the alta vista because i was so you know impassioned about getting the message out of my innocent man on death row and the world agreed finally it was factually innocent it was all proven he's been released you know and that's all you know so now the world knows that but that fighting the light bulb moment that you mentioned happened about two years before that so by the time he got out we were able to you know greet him great you're out we had somehow so before we let's let's as we dive into that because there's a lot of good discussion there let's start your journey at that and then we can talk a little bit thank you for the correction first of all but so let's see but it's just that then people realize you know it's kind of empowering because i didn't already have those skills i learned them on the on the interwebs fair enough so so let's go back to your journey so you were working in marketing at the time and it was back in the 90s if i remember when we discussed and you know so how did you find out about the man on death row how did you get involved and what kind of catapulted that into deciding you wanted to write a press release for him so my husband dave parkinson and myself the child we had when we first met we had a radio show on 89.5 fm toronto radio which was college radio but it you know went throughout the whole city so you know with the activist heart of of kids we would you know injustice is reporting on news stories that caught our attention in our 20s that show was no more because that had stopped you know a couple years before but then the internet exploded so now all of a sudden we still feel like you know we're still used to getting our messaging out now we have this new platform so in those days you didn't need to have a lot of web skills you can just type on the netscape you know like the like facebook now so we basically would just make collecting links and making pages i don't know what drew us to that page we certainly had no previous experience with the death penalty certainly or crime or murder or any or anything like that right but i don't know how we found that opinion i think justin somehow along the you know deep dive online looking at injustices and all of a sudden oh look at this husband found it it was the page where jimmy dennis who you i think i know sorry prisoners were paying to be listed most of them were like pen pal requests or whatever which we never would have found but he was saying i'm not looking for a girlfriend i don't need a pen pal this i'm putting this is just literally the only way i have to get on this internet thing and if somebody could hear me i'm innocent someone else i don't know what drew us what made us write that letter i have no idea i can take it back to that moment now but we did and he wrote back with 18 pages on both sides with a bunch of legal documentation enough that even what was happening to me in the cell even somebody looking at it with no deep dive was like wait a minute that's not right that's true that's not right you know with the documentation the things of course we're even saying over another year we ended up you know fine doing enough that we can attach our names to us actually you know standing beside well yeah i believe this person is actually factually innocent took and we learned to write the press release tell the world about it ultimately it was slow going but we got attention here attention there in a worldwide level do we develop this team somewhere along the line um a law firm came in who are looking for like unicorns it doesn't usually happen where they're just looking to go and give free 20 years if we were but they were like looking for actual factual innocence case to do some pro bono work and because of the buzz that it started to be created they started to hear about from people that know well go check out the jimmy dennis go check out the jimmy dennis and they finally ultimately they were the ones that freed him with the legal workers you know as a lawyer it comes down to court you have to do these things you know activism fine but you need to be done in court and he was ultimately freed two years before he was freed that's when i had my light bulb moment as i'm sitting there just doing my regular marketing thing so this is 20 years into our journey we've been doing advocating for 20 years we've gotten ourselves on cnn msnbc all these major media talking not just about his case but about the deep on you know the death penalty so now let me jump in really quick there so you're you know because all this time in addition to you know working with him on press releases trying to get attention and working towards his innova in a sense being you know an activist on his behalf you're also doing a full-time job i think it was in marketing as well as uh doing a bit of a radio show the radio show is no more anymore both with my husband and myself we didn't have kids yet we were young and when everybody else is playing video games or watching tv we would come home after our full-time jobs in fact we had both of us had full-time jobs and part-time jobs three days a week in those days so we'd come home whatever leisure time we had and my husband and i were both sit beside each other each on a desk an old desktop and we would do this work and write this stuff and you know reach out to people and write all that stuff so yeah it was complete advocacy no one ever got paid for it no one ever would have thought you and that work ended up expanding to you know we did some deeper talk about the death penalty beyond that case that ended up again because of our messaging getting us who were not lawyers who had we were not even in america who had no real experience other than our you know our our opinions and our car we knew we were talking about but i mean in terms of to hang our hat on why would you put us on court tv on msnbc on cnn and all and we did all that so it wasn't until 15 years later that i thought wait a minute that's some skill now let's dive into that a bit so you've been doing that for quite a long period of time you're working the full-time jobs working on part-time jobs you're coming home and trying to get or continuing to get attention do the activist role and then you know along that journey you then have the lipo moment okay i don't want to work for people that um that i don't like working for anymore that aren't they aren't my favorite clients i want to choose the clients that i enjoy that i can do the work that i enjoy and so you know as you're doing that you know how did you make that shift or that transition did you quit your job one day and say hey we're done we're just going to go do our own thing did you you know take it over a period of time did you get a side hustle or kind of once you had that light bulb how did you make the transition to building your own clients yeah i guess i was lucky in one way that i had we just come back from you know we left the house behind we were living in a rental apartment trying to decide are we gonna go there we're gonna go there where are we gonna buy for a while so it's you know really kind of transitioning and there i was with my desktop computer in the corner doing some work from home i was privileged to be able to do some work from home even though i didn't like the job it wasn't the people just the iso and it was stuff i didn't care about you know and so i was you know um doing basically uh inside sales at that point for them but from home like dealing with their clients and their customers and so i was able to like transition very quickly like it wasn't like i was out of work and then i said i'm not coming in tomorrow it's like i had this bunch of work to do and i'm gonna be like yeah i'm not gonna do this finish it out but you know the way i remember it is i actually remember not making any more calls after that moment so it's like like i think i had the work there but then i went over because we have the screen in front of us now that gives all of us all these tools power we didn't have before and i and the way i got my first client before i ever would have thought i couldn't start a company because that wasn't my history i didn't know about starting companies and i wasn't in my comfort zone i just knew how to get the work right so i went to if there was freelance sites like elance or upwork i think it's called now i've been used in years but um where you could put up your best i always like i said you likes a pitch with a p not a b right you can put up your best pitch explain who you are what you can do then hopefully somebody was is going to give you a chance right and through because of the power of online there was these i guess essentially networking tools that allowed me to meet the people that would hire i was able to convince the first few people hire me here i am at home i'm gonna do this for you and then so i really quickly was able and people can too by being smart and finding out what resources are available transition you know almost in a weekly day almost like instantly from getting that income to finding a little site and i guess it was aside at first when i first used it um so and that's what i was gonna ask is so when you're doing now you're doing freelancer work you're kind of doing that on the side you're getting trying to build a bit of a client base build a profile get the reviews and whatnot did were you still working the full-time job at that point or did you just said hey i'm going to go freelance or go all the way not at all because i had been doing it it just literally when i didn't i don't remember making any calls after that i was working full-time doing the outgoing and i had to work at my desk and because i was doing it from home right so i'm there i'm not like physically having it it's just i probably it was probably a structure where i had to do so much work that week not day by day you know so i had to so instead i just started i just changed my focus literally no i'm not going to do that anymore it was literally that it's why i say light bulb moment it wasn't a transit it was literally like huh wait a minute whoa wait a minute i like it's like when it hit me that those were actually marketable is it sounds crazy right but because for years and years i've been writing press releases going on tv getting it but i was for active i was i thought of myself as an advocate as an activist not as someone you know so it was our message i wasn't i never thought about it as oh wait a minute i could be hired to create messaging for people you know and then once i once that moment happened i had every confidence in the world that i could do it because i had been doing it for 15 years right i can say look i i you know even they don't whether i've been paid for it or not i got us on cnn msnbc all those things want me to do that for you so they only had to convince one person to take a chance on me and that's true probably for every entrepreneur not that dramatic story but whatever your skill is whatever your thing is you really need to convince yourself first that you're that per you know that you can do that and then one person that you can do it and then do that and then get that client and you start to build that reputation so now let me or follow up so i mean so you went out and did a freelancer said okay i'm all in i'm going to build my freelancer reputation i'm going to build a profile going to do everything i need to to to really get the work to come in you know before or how long and you know because some of those platforms when i've looked at you know you kind of have it's ones where at least when you start out you're having to do it as a cut rate or you're going to have to be you know very competitive on price to try and get that reputation to get that reviews and to be able to warn a larger price so how long was it as you're going along that that road or you know that journey before you were able to you know demand the higher price or in other words you're able to build enough of a client base or reputation i think a lot of that is mindset because what i've learned i could have done that way earlier i have built enough of a reputation in the skill to do way to increase my price not just on those because i left those sites very quickly and i never went super low i always had enough respect for my work that i said here's what i can do i didn't go bottom barrel i went like in the wreath you know what i mean then i got one or two and then i read more but then i left both aside very quickly because once i i just started you know using the social media using linkedin effectively once i had done a couple projects it could point to some press releases you know and then but your question's a really good one and i find it because even today and i talk about that when i do podcasts is how we price ourselves as entrepreneurs i find it's you know a huge thing for a lot of us and we have that fear i'm over that now i mean now i've got a resume this long and i could go and it's true i could go and only get the hollywood projects or only get almost anybody who looks my resume now if they're interested in pr i'm in the running you know so i don't have to compete the way i used to but still we all have that we still so i'm learning not to now but it took a long long transition of my business consultant pounding me over the head telling me i'm ridiculous because like look at them that i wasn't you know i'm not operating like a seat i felt like you know more of a company that's there to make money i'm a sucker for the story of oh i have a great message but maybe i'll you know all you have to do is be like oh hello and then i'm like i used to be like oh i can give you a three so i'm like giving you budgets giving you deals before because i was stuck in that activist mode but now this is a service i'm providing and i had to learn so now follow up so now you so you do that for a period of time say okay i'm not going to be you know cut rate or i'm not going to go to a race to the bottom and i'm going to be still competitive on pricing and then you build it and to the point that now you know you have a client base a clientele you don't have to you know people are almost coming to you you have that reputation and get referrals so as you're building that now if you're to take kind of taking that to where you're at today you know where is where do you see you know what are you doing today and where do you see the next you know six to 12 months taking you so all my business all right 80 of my business now for real if not more is repeat clients and referrals so part of it i know what i'm going to be doing in the next year you know who i'm going to be working with but then all that business always just piles on i never know who's going to come to me who's going to come to me and i still find interesting projects on linkedin all of a sudden for example i thought an interesting project on linkedin october just connected with another power lady turns out she's got three tv shows in eight different cities in the corner countries in the country in africa she's coming over here to do an international version of one of them shiro's all of a sudden now we i'm you know placing all my clients in it and then she asked me to be the executive producer so that came out of nowhere through a one-minute linkedin conversation now i'm executing executive producing you know a series focusing on amazing women around the world as well as the pr stuff so who knows what could develop as a result of that and that's going to take me once the world opens up apparently i'm going to go to ghana with that project and i had another project you know film secret of svalbard i'm sorry television series a canadian us canadian uk co-production that's in development so there's all this stuff and these literally happen like on a dime so just fascinating interesting usually international projects that cause me to be able to travel and leave you know hamilton mountain and go more exciting places though i don't know right now with the all these lockdown and things where i'll physically be but you know even while we've been all locked down i've been all over the world and panels and podcasts and meeting interesting people and you know so who knows so now going to kind of uh taking this next six to 12 months it sounds like the kind of the plan and projection is we're going you're going to continue to go on the road to building getting reputations working for clients and just kind of overall expanding the business is that a is that a fair summary yeah and also a big thing a big goal for this year that i you know we just incorporated so we're still getting our heads around the difference between being a partnership and an incorporation and all the new reporting and all that stuff right which we're not in business minded person but the next goal i would like to become more a job creator because i have no problem getting contracts i could get 10 more contracts tomorrow i could get 20 contracts tomorrow no word of a lie that's not hard the world is my way like it's the whole world that i can work in that's english speaking it's in and across industries but but that i can only take on right now as much as you know the two of us that are here can work and that whole hiring people is a whole other thing i really want to do it but that's a whole other education for me and you know and so that i hope to go there i really hope to become a not just one or two people but i would love to be able to get an understanding in my head about how to do that so that i can expand and really you know share the share of the wealth share the job people need work this is good work and there's a lot of it available well i think that's awesome and sounds like a fun trajectory and right now it sounds like it'll be fun for you and your husband continue to grow it continue to bring on clients that you like and then maybe sometime down the road is to bring on some employees but that's a whole other thing to tackle and a whole other lesson to learn so well here and as soon as we start to wrap up the podcast and you know i always ask two questions at the end of each podcast so we'll jump to those now first question i always ask is so along your journey what was the worst business decision you ever made and what did you learn from it um taking people at face value i guess you know i'm not stupid but a lot of times you know i'm honest and a lot of people show me that there are some great things i mean about themselves i feel like i know them and i like them and sometimes people have mental health issues or other agendas or something comes out later i don't know that you didn't realize and then especially when you're working with them and representing them that could become problematic so you you know want to make sure you're not taking on any you know the hung contacts people that you don't unders 100 know where they're going where they stand that you're in alignment with them that you can ethically continue to represent them feeling good about yourself and ethically serving your client because you believe in what they're saying so what i learned is i'm not quite sure how to you know make sure that that never happens again but i learned to be more definitely more um thinking about that more clash and i always was in terms of are we aligned because i would never work for something i wasn't in line with but sometimes you may think you are because you're looking at one aspect but you know you're not you don't necessarily see the whole picture and then once you do more due diligence something might have popped up that showed you there may be problematic to work with you know that kind of thing yeah i know i think that makes sense i mean and part of the you know it's always as an entrepreneur the one century i think you know a lot of entrepreneurs are very savvy and they understand you know they make good business decisions and yet a lot of times and i myself included i would always think hey everybody will work as hard as i will they will be as honest as i will they'll be as vested and everything else and the honest truth is very seldom is that the case in the sense that nobody's invested in your business no one's going to work as hard to make and take care of it because it's not theirs and so i think you know learning who to trust and how to trust and how to you know delegate that trust is always a learning curve and you know one that is often made along the way so now the second question i always ask is so if you're talking now to someone that's just getting into a startup or small business what would be the one piece of advice you'd give them i always say me you know think about media because um as entrepreneurs you think about advertising but you do not think of me 80 90 of entrepreneurs don't even think about it and they're not familiar with a ton of opportunities that are even free and talk about earned media that are free with a little investment of time you should look to see what not just putting out press releases but to look at some of those resources that we talked about that are free to care and those kind of things to see where media is looking for sources where you might be a source and don't be afraid to put is a lot of that's mindset too is people think of the people being quoted or the people on the you know on the award stage of somebody else and they're just they're just but that you you're an expert too you wouldn't be doing what you're doing if you weren't an expert don't be afraid to put yourself out there no i think that's great advice and you know both take advantage of free resources put yourself out there explore what is you know what options are what possibilities and rather than pigeonholes you got to do it one way or you're thinking of it one way i i like that advice as well as we wrap up and people want to they want to find out more about you they want to use your um you know pr or you know um publishing or their publishing services they want to find out more about you know what other services you offer they want to be an employee they want to be investor they want to be your next best friend any or all of the above what's the best way to what's the best way to connect or uh connect up to you or find out more so i live on facebook the tracy lamar if you have my spelling my name right there they can find me on the only one um on instagram tracy lamorie pr media lamari media.com is my website under development still but it's up there right now you can see it um and what else lamaripr gmail.com and i'm happy to do a you know 20 minute and a half hour free consult anyone heard all this like yeah media but i bet you couldn't get me in i'm happy to talk to you about you know you specifically what you do what what we would do to get you in media the listener you know if they're interested so awesome well i definitely encourage people to reach out find out more and uh make sure to uh support uh support you and all that you do so well as we wrap up thank you for being on now if you're a listener and you want to you have your own journey to tell feel free to go to inventiveguest.com apply to be on the podcast if you're a listener also make sure to click subscribe so you get notifications all the episodes come out and leave us a review if you can and last but not least if you ever need help with patents or trademarks just go to strategymeeting.com grab some time for it with us to chat thank you again tracy and wish the next leg of your journey even better than the last thank you so much bye you