Not an Influencer, An Impact Maker.


Get More Clients with Ethical Marketing (with Trauma-Informed Marketing Methods)

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🎙️ In this episode of Not an Influencer, An Impact Maker, we dive deep into the world of organic marketing strategies that can help you attract consistent clients to your online service-based business. If you’ve ever felt the pressure of traditional social media marketing, this is the show for you!

🔥 Join your host, Leslie Stevens, as she explores effective and ethical marketing approaches that prioritize transparency, safety, and consent. Leslie welcomes special guest Haley, a trauma-informed marketing strategist and copywriter based in Philadelphia, who shares valuable insights on how to create marketing that truly resonates with your audience.

Haley Johnson is a trauma-informed marketing strategist and copywriter based out of Philadelphia PA and, before you ask where to get the best cheesesteak – she’s allergic, so let’s move on. After receiving her MS in strategic marketing and advertising from Temple University and accidentally becoming a LinkedIn expert while growing her marketing agency, Haley burned it all down to focus on her favorite thing: Helping values-driven service providers create marketing strategies that feel good and support as well as they sell.

When she’s not working 1:1 with clients you can find Haley interviewing guests for her podcast, Messy in the Middle, reading pretty much any thriller novel you put in front of her, or ranting about her hatred of the term “funnel” – because feel-good marketing is about so much more than Know/Like/Trust.

💡 Discover how to make marketing a positive and empowering experience for both you and your potential clients. Learn why building trust and authenticity in your marketing efforts can lead to better results and long-lasting relationships with your clients.

🌟 Whether you’re a service provider, healer, therapist, or any business owner looking to transform your marketing approach, this episode is packed with actionable tips and eye-opening discussions that can help you move forward faster in your business journey. Don’t miss out on this enlightening conversation about marketing ethics, the power of choice, and how to align your business with your values. Hit that “Subscribe” button and stay tuned for more insightful episodes!

📌 Timestamps:

00:00 Introduction

00:53 Meet Haley: The Trauma-Informed Marketing Expert

01:54 Exploring Trauma-Informed Marketing

03:23 Prioritizing Transparency, Safety, and Consent

05:17 Shifting Perspectives on Sales and Marketing

08:09 Empowering Your Clients to Make Informed Decisions

10:18 The Importance of Trust in Marketing

11:26 Evolving Your Business and Marketing Strategies

15:08 Navigating Growth and Finding Your “Why”

18:45 Simplifying Marketing Decisions

22:47 Embracing Your Unique “Why” in Business

27:00 Conclusion and Takeaways

For more valuable insights and practical advice on ethical marketing, subscribe to Not an Influencer, An Impact Maker.

Learn more about how to book more clients without having to post on social media, watch the free on-demand training right now:

Connect with Haley:,,

Episode Transcript:

00:00:18:11 – 00:00:53:06

If you’re someone who has always wanted to get consistent clients in their online service based business without the pressure to post on social media, I made this podcast specifically for you. I’m Leslie Stephens and I am so excited to welcome you to the an influencer show where we chat about other organic marketing strategies that you can use to bring clients into your business quickly and easily, and the tangible tips for you to move forward faster in your business and the stories of the entrepreneurs who are doing the same every single day.

00:00:53:08 – 00:01:22:09

You do not have to be an influencer to be an impact speaker and a successful online business owner. I have been so excited to have this conversation. I could not wait till today. We have Haley with us. Haley. Tell us a little bit about you and what you do. Sure. So I’m Haley. I am a trauma informed marketing strategies and copywriter based out of Philadelphia, and I do a whole lot.

00:01:22:11 – 00:01:54:03

Basically, I help my clients with anything they need as it relates to marketing or copy from a brand new website. Copy with a messaging strategy and marketing research to a quiz to help grow their list and welcome new potential clients into their world. We pretty much help them figuring anything out when it pertains to marketing or marketing operations, and we focus on working with service providers, healers, therapists, that kind of ideal client because we like creating marketing that feels good for people who do that.

00:01:54:05 – 00:02:21:25

Yeah, people are so intimidated by marketing. I used to be intimidated by marketing until I learned so much about it. And then I was like, I love this so much. I have to do this for a living. But you take such a unique perspective on your marketing and the way that you go about it. And I love that you talk about how like doing it in a way people kind of enjoy it, but you take this trauma informed route.

00:02:21:26 – 00:02:57:14

Can you tell us a little bit more about that and what that means? Yeah, of course. So trauma informed marketing is essentially marketing or any type of business that is built on the principles of trauma informed care, which there’s like a million different. But the three core ones are transparency, safety and consent. So whenever we’re creating any marketing strategy or marketing collateral or anything for our clients or making sure that we’re prioritizing transparency, safety and consent, and this can look like a lot of different things depending on who the client is, who their client is.

00:02:57:17 – 00:03:23:02

But it’s really focusing on making sure that we’re not trying to hide anything or hold anything back to try and get someone to make a decision when they don’t have all the information. It’s making sure that we’re not making people feel pressured to make a decision before they have the opportunity to think something through making sure they’re not putting themselves in financial risk or even just like generally feeling unsafe because they’re feeling pressured to make a decision.

00:03:23:04 – 00:03:48:20

And then consent is sometimes the easiest one and sometimes the most difficult one to wrap our heads around because it’s as simple as asking like, Hey, can I send you a link to book a call? Or Hey, is it okay if I send you information about my program? It’s kind of the difference between like someone reaching out to you and like starting a conversation and asking if you’re interested in learning about what they do versus like when you add someone on Facebook or on LinkedIn, they’re immediately just like, Here are all of my services.

00:03:48:20 – 00:04:15:28

Let’s hop on a call. Like, we’ve all been through that. So we don’t do that with our clients that I this is exactly why I said I was so excited about this conversation with you. A lot of the reason why I do what I do is because I’ve been on the other side of those other strategies that are more aggressive, that don’t feel like it’s welcoming in a way, it’s a little bit more bullying.

00:04:16:00 – 00:04:49:28

And the way I approach my marketing is always with ethics behind it. So you have a structure and this trauma informed process and all of these things that follow what I would agree is very ethical way to support people into whatever your business is instead of kind of I don’t want to say forcing when you use other tactics, but it’s more like extending an invitation.

00:04:50:01 – 00:05:17:21

So allowing the other person to meet you halfway instead of going to them. Yeah, it’s really it’s rooted in choice as opposed to like, this is your only option. You should use it because you’ve already spent time talking to me. You’ve already opted into my list, you’ve already given me my free or gotten my freebie. So you need to do the next step, which is to give me money versus like this is an option.

00:05:17:27 – 00:05:34:14

You can give me money and we can work together or you can do something else. And like no harm, no foul either way. My job isn’t to get you to give me money. My job is to help you get other people to give you money technically. But like, yeah, how can you do a good job serving your clients?

00:05:34:16 – 00:06:00:27

But you’re you that people don’t feel? Exactly. If people don’t feel empowered to make that decision on their own. Yeah. And I had such like that gives me a breath of fresh air when like I hear other people talk about that because it’s something I wish somebody would have said to me in the beginning. Like, you can approach your sales in marketing in a way that it’s really client centered.

00:06:00:28 – 00:06:24:07

It’s talking about the other person. It’s guiding them to make a choice that is best for them. It’s not looking at how can I make this sale, how can I make money in my business? How can I hit my goals? It’s all about them and creating a transformation in them. And then I feel like, Have you experienced this with the clients that you work with when you shift that perspective with them?

00:06:24:07 – 00:06:57:14

That everything seems a little bit more easy when you implement it that way? Yeah, definitely. I think when I first started, like getting into business, my first few sales were kind of accidents, so I didn’t really have this preconceived notion that marketing and sales were icky or scary or bad. And it wasn’t really until I got involved in more like entrepreneurship circles and talking to other people about marketing and sales that I realized that was something people were experiencing was like this negative feeling about marketing and sales.

00:06:57:21 – 00:07:24:16

And it was because they were selling the way that they were sold to, which was a lot of pressure, a lot of like, Why do you need to think this decision over? Don’t you want to make the next level in your business, that kind of a thing? And because I’d never experienced that, I started to feel like I was supposed to be feeling where people feel like I went through some kind of like mind when it comes to that.

00:07:24:18 – 00:07:48:29

But once I started embracing this, like, trauma informed approach to things and really thinking about my marketing and sales as an introduction into a partnership and as a choice that we both have in the matter, it just started to feel a whole lot easier. Like I close way more sales calls now because it’s not here. Let me give you all the information that I refused to give you until you got a call with me.

00:07:49:01 – 00:08:09:09

It’s like, Hey, you know what I offer? You know what it costs. Let’s just make sure that we vibe. And then they’re usually going to buy it because like we do vibe. Yeah, it feels way less like, like a game that you’re trying to play or a game that you’re trying to win. And then it actually gets to feel good.

00:08:09:11 – 00:08:36:23

There’s a lot of resistance that I had with sales personally because of the way that I was sold too. And it was in that aggressive way. It was like, Why do you have to think about this? Why? Like if you don’t have the money right now, that’s why you need to to join this and then you’ll make the money later kind of thing, like the false promises and like the hiding, the prices and being like, Oh, I’ll wait till I get a call to tell them all of those things.

00:08:36:23 – 00:09:06:07

I think in the beginning when you start a business like you don’t have to do it that way just because it’s been your experience and it’s, it’s like I’m very rebellious in my own spirit. So I feel like I am always opening open to learning different perspectives, different methods, things like that. But if I see something done a certain way and I’m like that just I try it.

00:09:06:07 – 00:09:29:08

It doesn’t work, doesn’t feel good. I’m going to try and do the exact opposite. And that’s just my approach. And honestly, that has given me the biggest. I feel like breakthroughs in my own business and I wish I had somebody like you to to work with to guide me through that process and just be like, There is another way.

00:09:29:11 – 00:09:56:14

You don’t have to do it the way everybody else is doing it. And I like to also kind of flip the script with that from rebellion and also be like, okay, how would I how do I make purchases if I was on the other side of this conversation or this transaction or some of these come into my website or something like that, what would I look for?

00:09:56:16 – 00:10:18:23

What would I want to know? What would encourage me to take the next step? For me personally, if I don’t see a price, I’m going to go somewhere else and look for somebody who has a price to just give me that information. It doesn’t matter what the price is, it’s just, Are you giving me a full picture or does it seem like you’re trying to hide something from me?

00:10:18:26 – 00:10:40:19

I think those are the things in your marketing that can kind of be a little bit telling. And when you allow yourself to like, be like, okay, how would I want the other person to feel while they’re going through this process? Like, do I want them to feel like, oh, they need to kind of come to me for everything?

00:10:40:25 – 00:11:01:00

Or do I want them to have everything right in front of them and then if they have more questions that I wasn’t able to provide and all of these different methods, then they can come to me feeling like, okay, I have most of the pictures. I just want to make sure that I have all the bits and pieces before I’m actually ready to move forward.

00:11:01:03 – 00:11:26:17

Mm Yeah, Yeah. Oh I see. I think, I think a lot of that comes down to trust and it’s like this cycle of trust. So do the people who are using these like kind of manipulative, kind of like, Heidi sales tactics, do they trust that you are going to be able to make an educated decision and choose them if they have all that information?

00:11:26:22 – 00:11:48:01

Do they trust that they are able to sell if they’re not holding back some kind of secret, do they trust that they’re going to be able to, like, grow their business to where they want to grow it if they’re not kind of tricking people into working with them? Or do they even trust that once you start working with them, you’re going to keep working with them?

00:11:48:03 – 00:12:12:15

If you, you know, believe in yourself, you know, there’s so much of like that kind of manipulate motion and like talking people down and only giving them enough to feel like they can keep paying you, but not actually giving them enough to succeed on their own. That like, is this weird cycle that can make sales so scary because we’re on the wrong end of it so often.

00:12:12:18 – 00:12:52:06

Mm hmm. And I think that, like, I just love everything you said there. Just want to like, Mike drop right there. But I think that also gives us all the opportunity to take the steps forward to make selling a better experience for other people. Because if you have been through this experience, if you had seen other people use this method and it doesn’t feel right to you and it doesn’t feel maybe ethical sometimes and it makes you feel icky, you get that choice to be like, okay, how can I change the narrative around sales?

00:12:52:08 – 00:13:20:01

How can I make people feel better about going through the process of moving forward in their business or providing them with life coaching service that may change their lives? There are so many services I feel like to. You have to be mindful of your brand and the marketing that you’re using because it is setting a precedent for the whole basis of your business.

00:13:20:03 – 00:13:47:15

And if you are a life coach or a health coach or somebody who’s trying to empower people to make changes in their lifestyle or like honestly, anything because I was just going to say like in your business too, you you need those people to trust you enough to make the changes to actually succeed and make the transformation. Because when you make the transformation in your business, that’s how you get referrals, that’s how you get momentum, all of those things.

00:13:47:18 – 00:14:15:04

But if you’re going about it from the very start, with kind of icky marketing tactics, then how are those people really going to feel as soon as they step into your program? You may have the most groundbreaking, transformative program, but if you got them in there by really pressuring them, are they going to get the most out of it?

00:14:15:07 – 00:14:36:26

Right. It’s very much like if the purpose of working with you is to empower someone to do something, that feeling of empowerment should start with the sales conversation. And if you’re not treating them that way, you know, before their client, how are they going to feel when they are your client and like what’s that relationship going to feel like?

00:14:36:28 – 00:15:08:01

Mhm. Exactly. So how have you seen like your clients businesses change when they start implementing your marketing methods in this like empowering way? Yeah, it’s definitely just a lot more like ease. I think a lot of clients come to us and they’re in this, you know, helping, healing, serving industry. But the sales part feels hard because it doesn’t feel in alignment with their goal and their purpose of helping and healing.

00:15:08:01 – 00:15:24:27

Like these are people who truly would just like, do their job every day for free if they could. But like, obviously they can’t. And so a lot of them are in this hard place of like, okay, it kind of feels like I’m doing my job for free because I’m stretched so thin, but I don’t have the bandwidth to start doing this thing.

00:15:24:27 – 00:15:49:05

I hate that marketing and sales. So like, how do I create the opportunity to market and sell without spreading myself so thin, but also without engaging in these tactics that I don’t like or that don’t feel good or that just don’t work like they’re kind of like feeling very lost when it comes to what to do, how to do it, and almost like why to do it.

00:15:49:05 – 00:16:19:04

Because they’re why it’s so rooted in helping and the tactics that they know are so rooted in like forcing or like kind of pushing and pressuring. I feel like you are speaking to old Leslie, like, like the epitome of what Leslie was when she started her very first business, because that’s exactly how I felt. And you get into this entrepreneurial world and they’re like, Set your income goals.

00:16:19:04 – 00:16:44:23

You need X, Y, and Z. This is how you need to price, and this is how many people you need to make sales for and all this stuff. And it’s like, I just wanted to help people. Like, can you put it in a context where I’m helping people change their lives and only when I like when you get the right information at the right time, in the right context, that can be absolutely life changing.

00:16:44:25 – 00:17:10:21

And when I had that moment, when I was able to change that mindset for me, like if I talk to ten people this week, I have the opportunity to maybe change two people’s lives. Like that perspective made me excited to get on sales calls. It made me excited to start like talking about my business because I didn’t want to be front and center.

00:17:10:21 – 00:17:52:13

A lot of people who provide services don’t want to be front and center. They they show up for their business because they wanted to help people and they’re like, Oh, well, I’ve got to get myself out there. I’ve got to, I guess, market myself in my service and my business. And it’s kind of this forum and thing that you find a lot of resistance with because when you start your business, you think, I can help people do this one thing, and then you have to wear all of the other hats in the business, the marketing, the branding, the sales, the website management, the content creation, all of those things.

00:17:52:15 – 00:18:20:00

And a lot of a lot of the times we don’t expect that and we take it as it comes and then we get a little bit lost. And that’s why I think getting the support in the guidance from the right people can make the biggest difference. And I know a lot of people who could be guided by you and have an entirely new outlook and free invigoration in their business.

00:18:20:03 – 00:18:45:21

And I’ve said this before, you do not have to do things one way. Even though people make sales with their certain method and they promote it and shout it from the rooftops and you’re like, Oh, that looks good. Maybe I should do that. It doesn’t mean that is the only way to do it. So it’s okay to try things.

00:18:45:21 – 00:19:25:27

I highly recommend trying different things, seeing what you feel, resistance to seeing what feels good, but also being smart about the information that you take in and choose to implement long term. And that’s where being instead of just jumping in, talking with certain marketing professionals and like really taking your time and doing your due diligence and kind of seeing their method to marketing can like just taking a little bit of extra time can save you so much resistance in your own business.

00:19:26:00 – 00:20:04:25

And I got to the point where I completely burnt myself out of my first business. And sometimes I think if I knew what I knew now would have I still had that business. Mm So I think like if you knew what you knew now, like I don’t think you, I don’t think you would get to the point where you know what you know now if you hadn’t had the business burn down like I am very much in a period right now where like I had an agency in 2021 and I burned it down because I was like, in this weird spot with like the marketing and the sales and the team and like, I felt

00:20:04:27 – 00:20:33:07

just like very out of alignment with, like, why I needed the help I needed and like, why I was doing what I was doing for my clients. And even like, understanding how my pricing worked, like my pricing, you know, I was making money but like, I didn’t get it and there was no like, justification behind it. I just charged what like the coaches told me to charge and like, hoped for the best and now I’m like headed back into, you know, building the agency side of things up again.

00:20:33:07 – 00:21:09:28

And it’s a completely different experience. And the most interesting thing is that I never found myself wondering, like, Oh, if only I knew then what I know now, because I know that if I hadn’t gone through that, I wouldn’t have gotten to hear. Mm hmm. I love that you mention that, because it’s also allowing yourself to have those experi insists that, like, I think exponentially just allows you to rise as an entrepreneur because sometimes people get stuck and they feel that resistance and then they’re just done.

00:21:10:00 – 00:21:34:18

Yeah, but if you let yourself be okay with me and like, I’m done with this, I learn something from it. Like whether it’s good, whether it’s something I don’t want to deal in the future. Like you are learning. And every part of that process, whether it worked or didn’t work out, my first business worked great. I just didn’t feel good in it.

00:21:34:21 – 00:22:02:13

So it’s been okay with that and allowing yourself to learn. And I love that you are like bringing parts of it back, but in a way that feels better for you. And I think another misconception is like you build a business and that’s your business forever kind of thing. And that can’t change things, but you implement them. But you can also like do not be afraid to change and evolve.

00:22:02:13 – 00:22:27:00

You should grow as a person. You should grow as a business. People change their marketing all the time. Even if they are a huge brand. They always, always evolve. So how do you help your clients like navigate through that process? Those experiences that we’ve both had and like navigate that growth period? Yeah, So a lot of it I think comes down to asking ourselves why?

00:22:27:00 – 00:22:47:24

Why do we use this tactic? Why do we have this goal? Why are we seeking this revenue stage? Why do we want to hire this team member? Like getting to the root of the why of all of it? Because a lot of times we learn like, okay, like you use this technique, you hire these things out, you create these keys, and then you have a business that runs without you and you don’t have to do anything.

00:22:47:27 – 00:23:07:20

And so like all have clients who are building that business. And I’m like, okay, but why? Why do you want to build that business? And they’re just like, Oh, like that’s what, you know, this coach or this person or this, whoever set them to pursue, it’s like, cool, but do you want to do that? And a lot of times the answer is like, Oh, like, no, not really.

00:23:07:25 – 00:23:23:08

My biggest thing that like I have clients come to me for is I’ll be like, okay, what’s your current revenue and where do you want to be in six months? Or do you want to be in a year? Where do you want to be in five years? And usually one of those is ten months. I’m like, okay, cool.

00:23:23:11 – 00:23:43:26

Why do you make $10,000 a month? And you know, they’ll be like, Oh, like it’s because I want to bring someone on to help me and then I can pay them $5,000 a month to pay myself $5,000 a month. And it’s like, cool. Do you just want to make $5,000 a month? Like, how do we break down the why?

00:23:44:03 – 00:24:07:27

And then once we get to like, okay, what do you actually want? If someone really wants $10,000 a month for whatever reason, like, cool, let’s make that happen. But let’s make sure that we actually want to make that happen. But it usually does start with the revenue and start with the why. And then we break down all of the marketing tactics, like, okay, cool, you have this like countdown timer on your $59 thing to make it a $49.

00:24:07:27 – 00:24:28:17

Say, why? Why do you think you need that? And it’s usually like, oh, well, like that’s what this person said or that’s what this template came with or whatever. And it’s like, okay, what if we didn’t do that? Perhaps what would that look like if we didn’t do that? And they’re like, Well, then people would probably buy it for $59 instead of $49.

00:24:28:17 – 00:24:46:07

And it’s like, okay, cool. Do you think your people need like that 30 minute incentive to make the decision or is this something they either want or they don’t? And it’s like, do there’s something they want or they don’t? It’s like, okay, cool. Then like let’s get rid of the weird ass timer. Like, that’s kind of just how we break through.

00:24:46:07 – 00:25:04:18

Everything that they’re doing in their business is like, Why do you think you need to do this? Do you want to do this? What can we do instead that maybe feels a little bit better? It always comes down to like, you came to me because something feels wrong. Let’s find the thing that feels wrong and make it feel at least a little bit less wrong.

00:25:04:21 – 00:25:32:12

Mm hmm. There’s some stuff you just don’t like, and that’s fine. But it seems like such a silly question, like, because it’s so simple, but nobody asks themselves that. And that’s why, like, we have to state it, we have to talk about it and be like, why is that? Just because that person told you to? Or is it because there’s really a reason that’s driving this decision?

00:25:32:19 – 00:25:51:19

And I love that you start reply and then work backwards from there, but everything else comes after you. Because why was my biggest problem for so long? Like I was on this like work class made more work last, need more destiny. And then like I kind of got to that point where I was like, making the same but working out.

00:25:51:21 – 00:26:19:21

And I was like, I’m so bored. I’m so bored. I don’t want to find a hobby. I don’t want like I, I want to work. Why did I create this business that I like can’t work? What’s the point of that? And so, like, because I knew why was my biggest problem, I figured like, I’m probably not a Yeah, it’s really and it’s something that you got to come back to.

00:26:19:23 – 00:26:41:24

I had people all the time be like, You got to come back to Y, you got to figure out your why. And I was like, I don’t I don’t really know why, man. Well, that’s the thing is like, you’re why doesn’t have to be this, like, big grand thing. It doesn’t have to be like, I want to make this money so I can, you know, get my partner to not have to work anymore and retire my parents and do this and do that.

00:26:41:24 – 00:27:00:25

I can just be like, I want to run a business because I don’t really like going into an office and I have a dog that needs to go out in the middle of the day and I don’t want to figure out how to deal with the logistics of that. So yeah, I want to be an entrepreneur like that can be or y I can totally be your why and there’s nothing wrong with that.

00:27:00:25 – 00:27:20:29

It doesn’t have to be that deep. But that’s your why all of the what start stacking up and you get to think more critically about like, okay, do I really want to dive down this like thousands of dollars a month coaching thing? That means I have to make thousands more dollars a month when really all I want to do is like cover my bills and play with my dog.

00:27:21:01 – 00:27:43:20

Mm hmm. Maybe not. But the people who charge thousands of dollars a month don’t want you to think about that. Yeah, well, they want you to hit these revenue goals so that you can pay them. But I love that you. You said that like you’re cool. Like your body doesn’t have to be something profound and you don’t have to have the same y as other people.

00:27:43:20 – 00:28:30:27

If people have this big elaborate Y, that’s amazing for them. The way I got my Y is figuring out what my priorities were in life like, What is my priority? How do I want to live my life? And then how does my business like add to that? Yep. Not does not how do I hit all these business goals so then I can maybe live this certain lifestyle I’m not clear about later because my priorities are X, Y, and z, but I was like, I need to get clear on what my priorities really, really are and I need to do those things first and then to create a business that feeds into that and makes that

00:28:30:27 – 00:28:54:29

possible for me to actually do this long term. And it wasn’t something profound. It’s just the fact that I want to be able to be there for my little boy as he grows up. I want to have the flexibility to pick him out from daycare when he’s sick. I want to market my business in a way where I get to have more conversations and I don’t have to post on social media all the time.

00:28:55:06 – 00:29:14:16

And it’s all of those things where it brought so much peace to the way that I was running my business and brought so much peace to my life because I wasn’t constantly worried about like, Oh, what coach do I need to help me to hit these months? And that which marketing tactic do I use this time? Which funnel do I need to go down?

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Get More Clients with Ethical Marketing (with Trauma-Informed Marketing Methods)

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