Catch Chantel Soumis on the #PirateBroadcast™
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Introduction: [00:00:00] Welcome to the #PirateBroadcast™, where we interview #interestingpeople doing #interestingthings. Where you can expand your connections, your community, #kindnessiscool and #smilesarefree. Let’s get this party started.
Russ Johns: [00:00:10] It's a beautiful day for the #PirateBroadcast. Thank you so much for being here. And if you're watching this in the future, thank you so much. All the #gratitude in the world, wishing you all the abundance that you have coming to you. And also if you find this valuable, like, comment and share and all the good things that social brings to us.. And the algorithms, feed the algorithms, as they say. Chantel, good morning, how are you?
Chantel Soumis: [00:00:37] Good morning. Keep feeding the beast. You got that right. Make it happy.
Russ Johns: [00:00:43] Well, we were talking before the show and you and I are more in the value oriented messaging and not necessarily the buy my stuff kind of messaging.
Chantel Soumis: [00:00:55] Yeah. The stuff sells itself. Why dig in there too deep? Or let that conversation get weird?
Russ Johns: [00:01:02] No kidding. No kidding. I want to just welcome you back for being in the pirate community and joining us in the #piratenation and sharing the treasures of your wonderful life.
Chantel Soumis: [00:01:12] Oh thank you. I'm a big fan. I've been checking in on... your business advice from guests is always so interesting and it's needed. The stuff from prevention, burnout prevention to just getting organized in a crazy world is so helpful. So thank you for having me back on.
Russ Johns: [00:01:31] I appreciate it. Thank you. And also for a few people that may not know who Chantel is, give us a little bit of a snapshot of what you're up to, what your focus is and how you help people around you.
Chantel Soumis: [00:01:46] Oh a snapshot. How much time we got Russ?
Russ Johns: [00:01:51] We got 20-30 minutes. It's all about you, pirate Chantel.
Chantel Soumis: [00:01:55] Let's do this. Alright I'm from the Midwest, bubbly and blessed, just living the dream. I think a lot of my career just generated in marketing. Good morning, everybody. It's so good to see you all. Maureen, I love you so much. Marketing is fun for me. It's like the sandbox where I get to go around and just play and have fun all the time. And I didn't realize it could be a career until my mom realized how bad I was struggling in school. And she said, why don't you do something you like? Why are you doing something that is really hard and challenging for you when you could be doing something you love and having fun. So I decided to do that. A few years ago, five or six years ago now, I got really sick through the stress of life, being a young professional, having a newborn at home. And my immune system started to shut down and I lost my vision and I lost my ability to walk and hear and just everything started to hit me at once. And it was the diagnosis of Multiple Sclerosis. And because of that and having new disabilities, especially invisible disabilities that no one can really see, it was hard for me to find work. So that's where I really transitioned from being a job seeker, a hungry job seeker that wasn't getting any interviews anywhere whenever I had to check that little disabled box. So I started my own business and found the super powers and the real treasure and LinkedIn and how the community's awesome, how people need your services and if you just show up, people will connect with you and your business will grow. And nobody's judging you for being disabled on LinkedIn. It's beautiful. It's a beautiful, welcoming place. So that's a little bit about me. Marketing, digital marketing in a nutshell, specifically Google ads, Microsoft, a lot of ads and social media, as well as website and SEO search engine optimization. So I speak the nerd language of my data, analytics folks, and love data. I could eat it for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
Russ Johns: [00:04:04] Fantastic. And I know for a fact that you are very generous with your time and people can connect with you. And you've been great in the LinkedIn community too, to just share a lot of amazing information. And #gratitude for you and all the great things that you do for the community. Appreciate it.
Chantel Soumis: [00:04:24] Thank you. I appreciate it, too.
Russ Johns: [00:04:27] There's so many people in here. Neena Perez is here. Good morning, Neena, how are you? I hope you're well. She's with WinJect studios and we got a project going over there. I actually have another podcast at 11 o'clock Pacific standard time this morning talking about some things that are going to be amazing. It will be a live stream. So WinJect.com over there. Love you, Chantel, Maureen.
Chantel Soumis: [00:04:52] Oh, Maureen. Thank you so much.
Russ Johns: [00:04:55] My amazing producer, good morning pirates.
Chantel Soumis: [00:04:59] Good morning, Tracie.
Russ Johns: [00:05:00] You know Tracie through the messages and notifications.
Chantel Soumis: [00:05:02] Oh yeah.
Russ Johns: [00:05:04] Michael Baker's in the house. Thank you. Good morning, pirates. Cathi Spooner. We got a whole crew. You got a whole crew.
Chantel Soumis: [00:05:12] Awesome. I love your pirate lingo. Crew is right on isn't it? Is there another word for a bunch of people on a ship? No, I think it's just crew.
Russ Johns: [00:05:24] And for anyone that's been watching and anybody that's been enjoying the #PirateBroadcast™, there's pirate treasure that we're putting together and just type in hashtag #piratenation and Chantel has a few little goodies that we'll be passing out at the end of the show. So stay tuned for that. So I want to talk a little bit about transformation because we have transformation when you had obstacles and challenges in your life, you had to transform into someone else. When marketing takes place and you're not being seen, you're not being heard, nobody's talking about you and you have to figure out, okay, what is it that's going to bring visibility to my brand? And then pandemic transformation. People have to think in a little, slightly different way. What comes to your mind when you think about transformation in some of these areas?
Chantel Soumis: [00:06:21] I think opportunity, right? I think authenticity, I think transparency, I think all the good things that happen with that. You could look at the good side, on the bright side, or you could look at the scary side and just get stuck in analysis paralysis. Definitely the opportunities side. A lot of companies, when they try to hide things through transformation or they're transitioning leadership or focus, they can hide things and it can be found. And when it's found, and you're not transparent or authentic about who you are, your team, your messaging, it can really sink a ship if you will. In marketing we really try to encourage airing the dirty laundry in a very accessible and supportive way by saying, hey, we're not perfect, but we are working on this because that's what makes a stronger connection with your community or your consumers, if you will.
Russ Johns: [00:07:16] It's a journey. And I think people need to realize, and consumers definitely identify with companies that are making progress, improving. Doing things that are going to make it better for the community and put things out there that are helpful and useful and marketing that and sharing that message is so important. And so much noise that we have right now, I think it's really critical that we build relationships with our consumers and our communities as well.
Chantel Soumis: [00:07:48] Oh, for sure. Because just as accepting as those consumers are, they're also unforgiving. And if you aren't showing up and being a part of the dialogue and the conversation, that whole reputation is going to be controlled by those unhappy individuals that will control that dialogue for you. So making sure that you're active in your community is critical, whether that's social media or just being involved in community events and listening to what your consumers or your clients leads all of those folks need, that's the name of the game. Don't let them run the conversation for you.
Russ Johns: [00:08:23] Right now a lot of social media allows a two way conversation to take place. And I think business owners need to be really aware that it is a two-way conversation and to be responsive to the audience and what people are asking for or what kind of feedback is important for the business to grow from as well.
Chantel Soumis: [00:08:48] Absolutely. Social media is such a strong tool. You can love it. You can hate it. You can do anything you want with it, but it's always going to be there. And the fact that it is and you have a profile out there means you should probably be using it to its full advantage. There's so many cool, super powers that come with having a voice. And if you use it well and you use it right, anything could be possible.
Russ Johns: [00:09:10] And it's like you said, the word you used is ideal. A tool. It's just a tool. It's a tool, one of many that you can use, however, I think it's like social platforms, it's almost like monopoly, where you want the real estate on these platforms. You may not necessarily utilize them to their advantage, however, having that real estate and knowing that your brand is present, at least protects you from having somebody else with a different message show up in those platforms.
Chantel Soumis: [00:09:43] So true. So true.
Russ Johns: [00:09:46] I got on Twitter late and there's a gentleman that has three tweets and from '91 or something like that, it has my name. I was like, really? It's oh no .
Chantel Soumis: [00:09:56] What happened?
Russ Johns: [00:09:58] Exactly what happened? And it's just one of those things that you have to really... at least for a brand and do what you can to protect your brand and stay present in some of these platforms and LinkedIn's been a powerful tool for you and I both. And so what do you see in LinkedIn from a messaging and a marketing plan these days?
Chantel Soumis: [00:10:18] LinkedIn, I'm loving their ad platform. So over the past few years, they've become very regulated. They're regulating a lot more than they've ever done before, which means controlling feed impressions, views, et cetera, where before it was really, if you show up, you're going to get some serious exposure. Now it's not so easy. So having a combination of company profiles, personal profiles and using those sponsored posts or those ads, if you will, are extremely powerful. The way that LinkedIn targets individuals for their ads or their sponsored posts is so scientific. So detailed that you won't find this on Facebook or Google, even though Google, Facebook, Instagram, they all talk to each other, right? They're all communicating in the background, building their own algorithm. But on LinkedIn, you can target more than just the job title or the company that they work at, or the location that they live in. You can target their job attributes. So certain elements of their work day that plugin to further detail, right? So you can really dig in to find the exact target market or those personas that you're trying to find and having a hard time doing it. So there's been a lot of changes and I expect to see a lot more tightening of the screws if you will. Now that Microsoft has had a good five years under their belt with the new technology and building that code in the backend. And a lot of super influencers that kind of monopolize the feed a little bit, I think LinkedIn is going to continue to promote new users and smaller users to get fresh information out there that isn't that already viral content that is new and interesting.
Russ Johns: [00:12:04] I saw that they limited the number of posts and messages that could go out during the course of a day. And so that allows me to believe that that unified opportunity is much broader than it was for somebody that had teams of people that could create content and put things out there. Fill the feed, so to speak.
Chantel Soumis: [00:12:30] Totally. They're encouraging folks to get verified by scanning their driver's license. This isn't any kind of simple social media tool. This is really in-depth, it's very serious. They take Cybersecurity very seriously as well. So any kind of fraud or fraudulent activity or potential spam activity, it's going to be penalized and people will get caught if you're doing anything naughty. So this is your warning audience, everybody out there be careful.
Russ Johns: [00:12:57] It's not your platform.
Chantel Soumis: [00:12:59] You got it.
Russ Johns: [00:13:01] So I know that for myself, I show up every day I do a live feed, 7:00 AM, regardless, I think your 445 or something crazy like that. This episode here, 445 episodes, continuous and still, my feed, it hasn't blown up. It hasn't gone crazy or anything like that. And I'm not one of these individuals that gets thousands of views per post. It's almost okay, I can go after a lot of views per post, or I can just stay consistent and show up every day. And the numbers to me, I don't eat data for breakfast like you do. However, I just believe in consistency in anything I do. Staying consistent. So talk a little bit about some of the cause and effects that being consistent and showing up versus really being analytical about all of your posts and your content you put out there. What are some of the things in the range of those two things?
Chantel Soumis: [00:14:03] Yeah, there's definitely a strong balance. Those are different ends of the spectrum, for sure. I think that no matter what, consistency does rule a lot, but if it's more of autopilot and it's not necessarily you taking the time to dive in there and dig through real conversations and add to the conversation, you're really just doing that spray and pray approach, right? Like you're putting your stuff out there and you're just being consistent and that is still good. It's an important step. A lot of people don't even make it to that consistent step, but then there's engagement really does rule the roost. That means if you comment on people's content, they're going to be much more likely to see your content in the future and their feed, because the relationship is a two-way street. And the way that LinkedIn's algorithm works, it's very engagement derived, right? People want to see who you're engaging with, or who's engaging with you because if they are, that means that they're more qualified than the folks who are just lurkers, right? Just the people in the background, not doing anything.
Russ Johns: [00:15:05] So you get rewarded for your engagement.
Chantel Soumis: [00:15:09] Indeed. You do. You really do. Yes, engage. You want to make sure that they're are people, right? These are the people that you really identify with and you want to grow your community with, because if they're just an influencer that you just want to be another number for them, cool, that's fine, but if their content doesn't resonate with you or who you are and your values and what you're selling yourself, the community pools are not going to connect at that deeper level. Where you are really trying to grow your own community and making your consistency of all your hard work worth it. It takes so much time and energy to create content and to be present and to be valuable. So in order to be that resource, you want to make sure you're using your time effectively and building the right community with it.
Russ Johns: [00:15:54] Yeah. And it doesn't take as much time as one would imagine to be engaging. I spend some time every day, not as much as I used to. The downside is the more visibility you have, the more opportunity you have and the more opportunity you have, you have things that have to be, you commit to projects. And and I'm feeling like, okay I'm a little behind schedule right now, need to get caught up and I need to engage. So there's that pressure of being everywhere all at once, being omnipresent, as they say. I want to say it's challenging. It is challenging. And for those that struggle with that, you're not alone. That's what I want to say. And also how do you know, Chantel, who you need to actually comment on that's going to make a difference in your feed. How do you select that process?
Chantel Soumis: [00:16:50] Oh, for sure. I think there's two pools that you should really focus in swimming in. So the first pool is people that are like you, that you admire and respect and provide the valuable content that you aspire to provide as well. Because they're communities that are building to probably resonate with the ones you want to build yourself. So that can really have a strong collaboration opportunity. And those are already pre-qualified community members, right? So that's pool number one and then pool number two are your consumers, right? What is your target market that you're trying to reach? Who are these folks that have the perfect fit for your service? Or maybe you're job searching and you want to find the right folks at those organizations to engage with. Understanding exactly what you're selling and who is the buyer. There is like the marketing 1 0 1 process. We build personas. So yes, who the avatar is and where they live, the language, they speak, what they eat for breakfast, do they eat data for breakfast, lunch, and dinner?
Russ Johns: [00:17:52] What kind of data do they eat for breakfast?
Chantel Soumis: [00:17:55] Exactly. How many breakfasts do they eat? There's so many questions to ask, but once you do have answers to those questions, you can build your community so fast. And such a strong, supportive community at that. Instead of chasing numbers, because you're right, that the numbers can be daunting and it is hard to show up everywhere in a very valuable and strategic way. So making sure that you have all of those answers and you have that clear outline. It's not like throwing spaghetti at the wall, which is what a lot of people do with their social media strategy. It's targeted and there's ways to measure it.
Russ Johns: [00:18:33] I love that. I want to say hi to a couple of people and remind everyone that Chantel will be giving away some pirate treasure. So just type in hashtag #piratenation in the comments and we'll have a drawing at the end, James Jimmy Jam. Let's catch up today. I missed you over the weekend. I hope you had a wonderful father's day. Thank you so much for being here. Russ Hedge in from Oregon. Thank you so much. Another amazing individual and pirate. Wendy, good morning, pirate Chantel. Sheri Lally. Another amazing individual. Thank you so much for being here. Love you. Cathi Spooner says, great insights, great conversation about LinkedIn. Thank you for so much for sharing. And the reality is that I think any social media, and this is one thing that I have a tendency to, I like to share the #kindnessiscool, #smilesarefree, have a little patience, a positive message across there, and it really doesn't have a call to action in it. It really doesn't have an objective and I have programs. I'm running a a five-week mastermind right now about lead generation and making some cool stuff using video, which I'm a fan of. And so there's an opportunity out there, however, it's always nice to be able to put a positive word out there and make sure that people understand that, hey, we are here to encourage you. We are here to share somebody. I love shining the light on you and some of the things you're doing. So it's really nice to be able to do that as well. So how do you start thinking about ads on LinkedIn? Cause I've heard that it's expensive and complicated and it's a little bit of a challenge. Is that still the case?
Chantel Soumis: [00:20:25] Yes, it certainly is because there's so many moving parts to get to that level, that granular detail that you really do need to figure out or take a class or two or three, or just work with an expert that already knows everything and can help lead you through it, design it for you, tell you what they're doing so that you don't feel you're just putting blind faith in somebody. But you're right. It is still expensive. It's very expensive compared to Twitter. But Twitter is a lot less detailed oriented and that's more like hashtag trending and who's following who, how are you going to engage that? And likewise with Facebook and Instagram. So LinkedIn has a reason why they have a more costly targeted ads. And there's so many different kinds that you can do. Video, like you said, Russ is so important. We love video. And if you don't have a video strategy, you need to get one because it has such a powerful way of connecting with your target audience, way better than an image ever could. So taking advantage of that and doing an ad with a video is even stronger and it's going to help even more.
Russ Johns: [00:21:36] So we should JV sometime and the #PirateSyndicate can develop a video strategy and then you can develop the ads.
Chantel Soumis: [00:21:43] Hey, you got it. Do it.
Russ Johns: [00:21:46] Pirate treasure right there.
Chantel Soumis: [00:21:48] You got it.
Russ Johns: [00:21:50] I love the idea of collaboration and connections and building community around these ideas and these concepts. And so what do you recommend for people that are just starting out on LinkedIn and trying to get their feet wet and maybe haven't jumped on board yet?
Chantel Soumis: [00:22:08] Just do it. Just go. I know it's so hard to get on video. I remember the first time I did it. Scary and awkward and weird and video was terrible. And I didn't want to keep it up.
Russ Johns: [00:22:19] You haven't put out a terrible video ever.
Chantel Soumis: [00:22:21] Okay. Let's go back. I'll show you, I'll prove it. I remember I was holding my dog and I have a giant German shepherd. He's well over a hundred pounds. And I was like, hi, I'm Chantel and this is Red and we're going to share content about living with disabilities, working with invisible illness and marketing our favorite. And it was really cool because people got to know me. They were like, oh, she has a dog. That's cool. So then people started sending me dog pictures, which is probably the best thing you can get online. And yeah just get started, post and ghost. That's another trick. Post and leave because you don't want to read the comments right away. You're going to be scared if there's only one view after 10 minutes. People hold themselves to unrealistic expectations when they're just getting started. So try posting and ghosting and checking back in about six hours and responding to those first few comments, because if you do that analysis paralysis, if you start thinking about it too much, you're never going to get started, or you're always going to be too critical of your content. And progress is better than perfection, right, Russ?
Russ Johns: [00:23:27] Absolutely positively. You said it. Have fun with it. Enjoy it. Just like you would in any networking event or community. Go in, you don't have to be connected with everyone all the time. Connect with a few people, build some relationships, build some bridges, build a community. And have some fun, enjoy your life.
Chantel Soumis: [00:23:49] Strangers are just best friends you haven't met yet. There are amazing folks on this platform that you don't know are there yet, but they're ready to connect and to grow with you.
Russ Johns: [00:23:59] It's beautiful. And this is the most amazing time in humanity. We're able to connect with so many ways. And so many people in different ways and I smile all the time as a result of being able to have conversations like this.
Chantel Soumis: [00:24:13] It's beautiful. It's a beautiful thing, huh? And it's even more beautiful to acknowledge it and to realize how big of a gift it is so that you can use it effectively, because if you're not taking advantage of it...
Russ Johns: [00:24:23] We have Rebby Too,From Kenya.
Chantel Soumis: [00:24:25] Hey, Rebby.
Russ Johns: [00:24:28] #piratenation so let's do a drawing. Let's give away some pirate treasure here.
Chantel Soumis: [00:24:32] Let's do it.
Russ Johns: [00:24:33] You ready for that?
Chantel Soumis: [00:24:35] Let's do it.
Russ Johns: [00:24:38] I want to test this out because I've been going back and forth. Somebody suggested that we might want to do this once a week because it takes away from the conversation if we break in, so I'm not sure how it's going to go, but we're going to do some treasure today. You ready? Hashtag #piratenation for your pirate treasure. The Lottery is coming up. Who is it?
Chantel Soumis: [00:25:01] Rebby Too from Kenya?
Russ Johns: [00:25:03] Fantastic. Drop your LinkedIn link here in the comments, so we can actually follow up with you. We're ready and love to get you some pirate treasure and yeah, I'll make a new connection here.
Chantel Soumis: [00:25:18] I can't wait, looking forward to it.
Russ Johns: [00:25:20] Chantel, it's always a pleasure to connect and catch up with you. And some of the things that you're doing, amazing stuff. I'm less on the data side, more on the community side, which is a great compliment by the way. I think, anyway.
Chantel Soumis: [00:25:37] Thank you. I appreciate it.
Russ Johns: [00:25:40] We all need our data. We all need our...
Chantel Soumis: [00:25:42] It's a cool secret language, right there.
Russ Johns: [00:25:44] Exactly. Things that you don't know. How do you like people to connect with you? What's your favorite way and method?
Chantel Soumis: [00:25:51] So I say LinkedIn messaging. So send me a LinkedIn message because my connections get capped really fast. So if you do send a connection request, include a custom message because I usually delete anybody who doesn't cause I don't like... why do you want to connect? What are you going to sell me? I have enough essential oils to last me a lifetime, or Bitcoin is not my thing. Please leave. But include that custom message. But yeah, LinkedIn messaging, please reach out. Otherwise email me. Hello@ChantelSoumis.Com does it just fine? Or firstname.lastname@example.org if you're interested in the social media and data and stuff like that, or just want to have a quick conversation and figure out what the heck you got to do next in order to level up. I'm happy to help.
Russ Johns: [00:26:42] And all of these contacts and all of the information is always available on the replays at RussJohns.Com, so you can check it out. Also, it's probably most of the, if not all of the the PR promotions for this episode as well, it's available. Tracie does a great job. She's an awesome producer and helps me out tremendously in keeping all this information together.
Chantel Soumis: [00:27:06] Thank you, Tracie.
Russ Johns: [00:27:08] All the #gratitude in the world. Thank you so much, Chantel. I love that you're here. I love that you're doing well and let's stay in touch and stay in contact and make sure that we're spreading a little #kindnessiscool and #smilesarefree message now and then.
Chantel Soumis: [00:27:23] So keep smiling.
Russ Johns: [00:27:24] Keep on smiling, take care, everyone until then tomorrow, let's come back and have another party. All right. Take care.
Chantel Soumis: [00:27:33] See you then.
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