Free at 50 Blog's 2023 Summer Interview Series: Lola Bailey Tells Her Story, It's Her Business
Introduction to Free At 50’s 2023 Summer Interview Series and to Lola Bailey.
I mentioned in the kickoff post to this series, how I was inspired by Sally Miller’s The Essential Habits of 6-Figure Bloggers, and I dove into it again over the weekend while sitting poolside. It’s continually inspired me (and I even have a whole new set of tasks/goals/ideas now!). Why? Many reasons but it’s about people. About REAL stories. That is what my 2023 Summer Interview Series is about! Understanding how successful entrepreneurs think and what they do can move you forward with your goals!
Lola Bailey is today’s entrepreneur, and it was in her Facebook group that I was inspired to do this series! She is a B2B copywriter, medical writer, and magazine owner living in London (I soooo love the online business world and the fact I meet people literally all over the globe!)
Image by Ralf Ruppert from Pixabay
Her gift is her ability to communicate well! She specializes in messaging, tone-of-voice guidelines, storytelling and thought leadership content for coaches, consultants, and global pharmaceutical companies. She also runs Copy Club, a 90-day intensive for small businesses who want to learn how to build their businesses through organic content.
Lola has found her niche, building her business around her passion. Enjoy her interview, but don’t just read it: grab a pencil or pen and take notes!
Note: As a blogger, I use affiliate links sometimes! I may receive commission from purchases I share, but it does not change your price.
RELATED: Buy The Essential Habits of 6-Figure Bloggers!
Question 1 on how successful entrepreneurs think and what they do: How did you decide which business idea was best for you?
I've always been a closet writer, and I set up my first magazine while I was writing part-time for Glaxo Smith Kline (GSK), a pharmaceutical company. The magazine was a success, and that success gave me the confirmation I needed to go into it full time writing after I had been made redundant by GSK.
I say my first magazine, because two years ago I set up another magazine, this time an online magazine called pan-African, which is aimed at Africans living in the diaspora (i.e. outside Africa). We get over 6K monthly visits, which tells us that people like our stories!
Question 2 on how successful entrepreneurs think and what they do: Please share your thoughts on starting a business vs. being an employee, working for others?
Starting a business vs being an employee/working for others requires a significant mindset shift that few are prepared for. I wish I had really understood that shift once I had been made redundant.
I wasn't prepared for the income unpredictability of being self-employed; I underestimated the amount of marketing I would have to do to make my business known; and I wasn't prepared for the online noise and competitiveness of social media.
As an employee working at home, I had none of those concerns. All I had to do was clock in and clock out; everything I needed, from the company car to the expense account to the key account leads, was provided to me on a plate. And I got my salary at the end of it.
Having said that, there's nothing quite as empowering as being in the driving seat of your life, which is what self-employment offers.
RELATED: This post on the blog about being in control of your paycheck!
Question 3 on how successful entrepreneurs think and what they do: Do you have one piece advice for anyone starting a business without a big budget?
My one piece of advice would be to have a brand core. Whether we like it or not, we are all personal brands. So have a clear purpose, vision, mission, and values as this will shape your messaging.
Communicate your message and those who resonate with it are likely to be the people you can sell to. None of that process costs money, as social media is free. I call these four bits your 'brand core'. I have plenty more advice, but you asked for only one lol.
RELATED: Join Lola’s Facebook group here and get more tips!
Photo by Fiona Murray on Unsplash
Question 4 on how successful entrepreneurs think and what they do: What was the biggest challenge, fear, or obstacle you had to overcome on your entrepreneurial journey?
As an introvert, I didn't like the idea of 'being out there', i.e. on social media. So I've had to do a fair bit of reframing around that to make it more palatable. Truth be told, I'd rather just write and do nothing else.
RELATED: This course focused on Instagram for introverts Daphne recommends!
Question 5 on how successful entrepreneurs think and what they do: What are some of your productivity tips and hacks for anyone starting/building a business?
A few ideas that come to mind are these:
- Set clear goals and priorities. Things that will 'move the needle' in your business. Define your long-term goals and break them down into smaller, actionable steps. Focus on the most important tasks first. One prompt that has helped me with self-discipline is this: "Do I need to answer this now?
- Use a few productivity tools. We now have ChatGPT, which is a huge help. There are also time-tracking apps and automation tools that are built into platforms. These are worth taking advantage of, for example content schedulers.
- If you can afford it, outsource what you need to do but don't enjoy. For example, I outsource tech-related stuff. Identify things that can be delegated, such as administrative or repetitive tasks and delegate these.
- Don't spend too long in front of the computer - it's not good for you! There are some eye-tracking tools that help you take regular breaks.
- Don't multitask as this can be counterproductive and decrease your productivity.
- Eat your vegetables before dessert!
RELATED: Click here for Daphne’s recommended planner to stay organized with Lola’s tips:
Question 6 on how successful entrepreneurs think and what they do: How has being able to live a location-independent lifestyle changed your life?
I don't know any different!
When I was working for GSK, I was home-based and could in theory work anywhere. So being self-employed has made no difference to that aspect!