Selling For Soloists with Shannyn Lee

Selling doesn’t have to be a grind—in fact it can be a joyful opportunity to help your ideal clients and buyers achieve their vision. That’s the refreshing viewpoint of sales maven and Win Without Pitching leader Shannyn Lee.

We explore:

How to take control of conversations around fees and value (hint: you may need to kick some old baggage to the curb).

Developing selling frameworks that define how you’ll respond in each stage of your buyer’s journey (including how you’ll vet them).

Why you want to be “kind but ruthless” (and exactly what that looks like).

The surprising role joy can play in your selling and marketing efforts.

Using LinkedIn to engage future clients and build relationships—and one winning way to turn “cold” into warm.


Shannyn Lee | Website | YouTube | LinkedIn

Rochelle Moulton Email ListLinkedIn Twitter | Instagram


Shannyn Lee is the Managing Director for Win Without Pitching and an unstoppable force of human empowerment.

She spent a decade in senior marketing and communication roles in Fortune 500 companies before moving to a business development leadership role at a well-regarded Seattle design firm. She also spent four years at Catapult New Business where she worked with agencies of various disciplines and size, building and leading their business development programs.

Her time on the front lines of agency business development coupled with many informative years on the client side, has given Shannyn a unique perspective into what marketers are looking for in agencies and what agencies must be doing in order to compete and win.

Shannyn’s empathetic and encouraging coaching skills have helped her clients translate the lofty Win Without Pitching ideals into real behavioral change with lasting results.


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00:01 – 00:31
Shannyn Lee: Pick the 1 thing that you enjoy doing. Maybe it’s writing, maybe it’s a podcast, maybe it’s videos on a YouTube channel, and go all in on it and do it well, and then leverage that content to turn it into other things. So you might write an article that you then chunk up and use for LinkedIn posts or tweets, right? But you’re 1 person, you can only do so much. So you need to get disciplined about what’s the 1 thing you’re going to be good at. And you need to block it on your calendar, 1 hour a

00:31 – 00:42
Shannyn Lee: day, 3 days a week, that’s non-negotiable unless the house is burning down. And then you need to have some fun with it, frankly, so that you keep doing it and find some source of joy and inspiration in it.

00:47 – 01:16
Rochelle Moulton: Hello, hello. Welcome to Soloist Women, where we’re all about turning your expertise into wealth and impact. I’m Rochelle Moulton, and today I’m here with Shannon Lee, who is the managing director for Win Without Pitching, and I quote, an unstoppable force of human empowerment. And having seen her in action, I can attest. She’s also a salesmaven with off the chart empathy and encouragement skills. So Shannon, welcome.

01:16 – 01:20
Shannyn Lee: Thank you so much, Rochelle. I’m so excited to be here with

01:20 – 01:51
Rochelle Moulton: you. Well that makes 2 of us. 1 of the reasons I’m really excited is because you’ve got such a rich and varied set of experiences in B2B conceptual sales that I think will be hugely helpful to our audience. But you also have a point of view around sales that I’d love to dial into. So let’s dive in. Sounds good. And I’d like to start with your story. Now you’re clearly not a soloist and yet I couldn’t wait to have you on the show after we spent just a little bit of time together. So tell us some

01:51 – 01:56
Rochelle Moulton: more about how you got to this place and your role today with Win Without Pitching.

01:57 – 02:30
Shannyn Lee: Yeah, you bet. Whenever I look back on my journey, I think there are just key moments along the way that I think, well, did it get me here or not? But what I have come to realize is there’s some varied experience that has allowed me to just step into who I am and be really comfortable with that and really try to help others in these moments, specifically now around selling. And so I’m a big fan of varied experience. And so professionally, I started on the corporate side and worked for some of the biggest companies in the

02:30 – 03:02
Shannyn Lee: world, AT&T Wireless, for example. And I was thick in the politics of what that means to work for a big organization and navigating my way through. And I learned I liked a smaller opportunity and jumped over to the design agency side of the business, where I worked for small firms that built brands and designed annual reports. And that’s where I landed in my first sales role. And when the opportunity was presented to me, I really had no idea what it meant to sell for a design agency. But I just was brave and said, yeah, I want

03:02 – 03:32
Shannyn Lee: to do it because I want to be around creative people. I want to make an impact. And I really took to it and really found that it was a superpower for me. And I was fortunate enough at that agency to meet Blair Enns, who’s the founder of Win Without Pitching, because we had him come in and teach us how to sell the Win Without Pitching way. And it was in that moment that I realized kind of how much of myself I had lost on the big corporate giant side, and how much permission he was giving me

03:32 – 03:38
Shannyn Lee: in that moment to sell from a place of help and empathy and creating value.

03:39 – 03:40
Rochelle Moulton: Imagine that.

03:40 – 04:09
Shannyn Lee: Yeah, right. Be yourself and see if you can help. And it just took off from there. We stayed in close touch. He was a mentor and he asked me about 9 or 10 years ago to join as a coach. And I’ve been doing this for all of those years and now moving into a leadership role in January where I’m taking over day-to-day operations of the company. So it’s just been a great ride. It’s been filled with some ups and downs, like everybody goes through, but I really feel like I’m working in my unique ability and helping

04:09 – 04:10
Shannyn Lee: people.

04:11 – 04:26
Rochelle Moulton: And I just love the trajectory of this because it’s, you know, big corporate and then you start to find your way. And then you just find that place where I call it your genius zone, where you’re firing on all cylinders and doing the work that you were meant to do.

04:27 – 04:37
Shannyn Lee: Yeah. And it feels good to Allow yourself permission to find that and then find the right company that sees that. And man, it’s just unstoppable if you can get there.

04:37 – 04:39
Rochelle Moulton: Yes, when you get there.

04:39 – 04:41
Shannyn Lee: When you get there. Not if, you’re right.

04:43 – 05:01
Rochelle Moulton: So Shannon, there are a few things about selling that I’d really like to 0 in on. So I guess the thing I’d kind of like to start with is why do so many of us have such a hard time selling ourselves? I mean, because as soloists, that is what we do. I mean, we’re mostly selling our expertise and ourselves.

05:02 – 05:39
Shannyn Lee: Yeah. A couple things come to mind for me. The first is, I think, so many of us equate selling with something icky and pushy and feeling like we were being duped, right? Like being convinced of something. And so I think that’s the first thing is people’s baggage or perceptions that they bring to selling service roadblocks. The other piece of it is, I think a lot of times people struggle with how to communicate who they help and how and what the value is they think they can create for that client. And I’m talking about positioning there and

05:39 – 05:49
Shannyn Lee: you know very well how important that is. So I think those things combined oftentimes crash and people just can’t overcome them. And that’s where the hangups can be.

05:50 – 05:56
Rochelle Moulton: Do you think as women, do we have a harder time with this than men do just on average?

05:57 – 06:14
Shannyn Lee: Yeah. And I wish the answer was no, but I think it’s, I know it is completely possible to overcome and be quite effective and quite helpful as a woman in the sales environment. I think there’s some additional things we have to overcome as women for sure.

06:14 – 06:43
Rochelle Moulton: You know, it’s interesting because I thought 1 of my superpowers back when I was in a big firm was that I was empathetic and I would listen because I didn’t think of myself as a power seller, which sometimes people would look at it that way. And I found that leaning into my natural personality, which wasn’t soft, but wasn’t hard either, it felt like I was bucking the system, but it worked for me.

06:43 – 07:22
Shannyn Lee: Yes. And so What I love about that is you were uniquely okay with being you and not trying to step into a role or turning into a sales robot because you felt there was some way that this had to be done. But you let that true you come out and use those strengths and superpowers to help you guide those conversations. And selling should come from a place of empathy. Selling should be about having conversations and uncovering, can I help? And there are vulnerable moments on either side of the equation, and you should be yourself and figure

07:22 – 07:31
Shannyn Lee: out what is it about you that really matters in those conversations so that that person across the table can see you in a true manner.

07:31 – 07:51
Rochelle Moulton: I love that. Well, and the irony, feel free to tell me if you disagree, but the irony strikes me that it’s actually easier to do that as a soloist than it is inside an organization where there is a model for how to sell versus you create your own around your unique strengths and your vision for the work you’re doing?

07:51 – 08:17
Shannyn Lee: Yeah, I agree. And I would think so. And I think that the soloists that I’ve worked with at Win Without Pitching eventually get there once they’re given permission. And I think a lot of times the soloist entrepreneur has a lot of pressure on them because they have to play every role in their business. And that can be where things get challenging and where things might feel harder than they need to.

08:18 – 08:48
Rochelle Moulton: Yeah. 1 man band or 1 woman band in this case. Right. So let’s meander over into this idea of how we can do a better job talking about money, about our fees, like giving a big ass number to something and not choking when you’ve said it. I’ve done that a couple of times. It seems like we spend a lot of time getting in our own way around these fee conversations. What do you think about all this?

08:48 – 09:22
Shannyn Lee: Well, I think it starts with understanding your motivators that cause you to do those things in the sale, like the inability to talk about money. Why is it hard for you? I think you have to examine those motivators. And those motivators could be things like you have a high affiliation score, which means you have the need to be liked and you have the need to create comfort and make things easy for people in these conversations. So you seek to kind of ease the tension versus bring a healthy tension to these sales conversations. So I think once

09:22 – 09:41
Shannyn Lee: you can identify like, what are my motivators? Why does it feel uncomfortable to talk about money and name it and explore it? And then frankly, like flick it off into the universe and get yourself in the right mindset. That’s the beginning to this journey of gaining confidence around talking about money.

09:41 – 09:49
Rochelle Moulton: Well, talk some more about healthy tension. I totally agree with that. I can feel it in a meeting. You can describe what that looks like for people.

09:49 – 10:26
Shannyn Lee: Yeah, what that looks like, for example, in an initial sales conversation that we call the qualifying conversation, just like many do out there, is your ability to demonstrate some selectivity. You should be equally as selective as that person looking to hire you is when they’re assessing the right fit. And so when you get into a sales conversation, you should feel very empowered to take charge from the get-go and let that person know, hey, I also have a process when it comes to deciding who’s a good fit for me and my expertise. And so I’m gonna ask

10:26 – 10:56
Shannyn Lee: you a bunch of questions on this call to assess, is there a fit? And if we decide, yeah, at the end, this makes sense, then we’ll keep talking and we’ll schedule the next conversation, which will be largely around what’s the value that we think we can create for your organization working together. We’ll identify metrics. What’s happening is here is from the beginning, you’re taking control of that conversation and letting that person know, hey, I’m checking you out just as much as you’re checking me out because I’m most interested in seeing if I can help you. And

10:56 – 10:59
Shannyn Lee: if I can’t, I’m going to be really honest and let you know upfront.

11:00 – 11:36
Rochelle Moulton: Yeah, taking the reins from the very beginning. And I think it’s not always natural when somebody first starts a solo business because usually they’ve come from being an employee somewhere else. And this idea that you have a process, not just of who you’re going to work with, but how you’re going to work. Just taking the reins from the beginning while still engaging the client and getting them to talk about their challenges and their environment, all of those. It feels like those are confidence builders. I almost felt myself sit up straighter as I thought about handling a

11:36 – 11:37
Rochelle Moulton: meeting that way.

11:37 – 12:07
Shannyn Lee: Well, and I know I sit up straighter when I handle my sales calls that way, because you’re right, I feel confident. And part of why I feel confident is because I have frameworks to follow that tell me what I need to do in each conversation throughout the buyer’s journey. So I’m organized and I’m clear and I don’t feel like I’m making it up each time I have a new sales conversation. So that’s the other piece of it is adopting some selling frameworks for yourself to get yourself organized around this journey you’re about to go through as

12:07 – 12:11
Shannyn Lee: you’re working with a potential buyer to decide if, you know, you’re gonna do this together or not.

12:11 – 12:24
Rochelle Moulton: Well, let’s dig into that. That’s just too juicy to ignore. So when you say selling frameworks, it sounded like you were talking about the conversation. So we’re talking about the conversations versus the process, the entire sales process.

12:25 – 12:58
Shannyn Lee: Yeah. So we think about things in terms of the buyer’s journey and What are the things that need to get done during the buyer’s journey to help decide are they a fit, should we work together? And so for us, it starts with this idea of what we call the probative conversation, which is this is positioning, essentially. This is there through your thought leadership or through referrals, people are hearing about you. You aren’t necessarily present. They’re forming an opinion about you, maybe stuff you’re posting on LinkedIn, and they see you as an expert. And they raise their

12:58 – 13:37
Shannyn Lee: hand and say, I want some help. And then the first kind of in-person or via Zoom conversation happens where you qualify. That’s the next framework is the qualifying framework, vetting to see if an opportunity exists if the fit is good. If it is, you proceed to what we call the value conversation. And the value conversation is all about bringing transparency to metrics, measurements, needs, but more importantly wants, like what’s the future vision? How do we get there? What do we think we can be accountable for as the solopreneur to contribute to that vision? What do we

13:37 – 14:13
Shannyn Lee: think together a fair range of investment is to get this work done? And okay, now you’re collecting all this information. And that means you can then go away and create a proposal. And in When Without Pitching Land, we like a 1 page 3 option proposal. We don’t want a big long daunting document. We want 3 high level ideas for different ways you can work together within a budget range that was agreed upon. And then you come into a closing meeting, but it’s more about facilitating a choice and really saying, okay, we’ve arrived at this place where

14:13 – 14:34
Shannyn Lee: we know enough about each other and enough about the project and enough about what the right investment is that it’s time to decide. I’ve got 3 options, which 1 makes the most sense for you. So it’s following these frameworks, these 4 conversations to help guide this journey and be effective, but be efficient. So it’s not a long drawn out sales process.

14:35 – 14:51
Rochelle Moulton: You know, 1 of the things I love about the way you just framed that is the value conversation. And I have the advantage of having heard Blair just talk about this in the last month. It sounds way less intimidating, the way that you just described it than I think people think about it.

14:51 – 15:23
Shannyn Lee: Yeah, I think what it really brings is integrity and transparency, honestly, because you’re demystifying how you price things. You’re putting it all on the table for the client to say, these are the things that need to be true at the end of our engagement. These are the metrics that matter to me most. And you’re sitting across the table saying, these are things I feel like I can hit. I’m going to think about solutions to do that. This is what I think the value is that can be created through this work based on that value of, let’s

15:23 – 15:39
Shannyn Lee: just make up a number of $50, 000 that I think I can create. What do you think a fair range of compensation is to get that work done, right? So it’s this give and take, and they’re equally as involved in how we’re going to get to the numbers and the solutions in the proposal.

15:39 – 15:48
Rochelle Moulton: Yeah, it also allows you to identify price buyers right up front. The ones who will not engage in this kind of a conversation are probably not a good fit.

15:48 – 16:15
Shannyn Lee: That’s absolutely right. And this buyer type is super interesting because I think of selling also as a bit of a game, right? Like, let’s have some fun with it. And understanding buyer type allows you to kind of play the game with them in a way that can feel more proactive and more of the abundance mindset instead of just like, oh, they’re a price buyer, so I’m going to shut it down. Well, maybe you’re willing to sell something to a price buyer if it’s profitable for you and if you think you can do good work, right? So

16:15 – 16:19
Shannyn Lee: it’s good to kind of understand who’s the type of buyer I’m dealing with here.

16:19 – 16:34
Rochelle Moulton: Well, and you might, depending on your organization, how you’ve structured your business, you might have a price buyer option. It could be a thing of like a flat fee assessment or you know, some kind of service, a strategy session, something like that.

16:34 – 16:50
Shannyn Lee: And that’s why I love talking to you because you’re a salesmaven too. That’s exactly right. That’s exactly right. And that’s the beauty of it is there are different options. Everybody values things differently and some people want that price by our option. And it may be, hey, we know budget’s top of mind. We’ve got a good solution for you here.

16:50 – 17:27
Rochelle Moulton: Yeah. I mean, it’s always interesting, but if we just ask the right questions and more importantly, listen to what they’re saying, we can kind of figure some of this out with empathy. Yes. So I feel like I’ve worked with a lot of clients who had set their prices, and we’re talking like a productized service type of thing, and they set them incredibly low relative to the value that they’re actually providing. And then when they transition to having value conversations, it’s like the light bulb goes off. It’s like even if they still use flat rate project pricing,

17:28 – 17:57
Rochelle Moulton: successfully experimenting with raising their prices dramatically for new clients, builds that muscle that says, hey, I’m providing significant value here. This work is worth a lot more than I’ve been charging. Note, I said the work, not me. This work is worth a lot more than I’ve been charging. Can you talk a little bit about this shift that happens when we finally figure out how to best help our ideal clients and buyers, and we get the value connection?

17:58 – 18:36
Shannyn Lee: Yeah, Blair and I often both say that this idea of getting skilled at having a value conversation is where you will completely revolutionize yourself and your business because you tap into this ability to give yourself permission to have these kinds of conversations about value and worth and frankly not tie it like you said to you, the solopreneur, but to that client’s vision and the work you can do to help them achieve their vision. And it’s a real moment of truth in a selling scenario when you lay out, these are the 3 options. 1 of them is

18:36 – 18:43
Shannyn Lee: a million dollars, 1 is 100, 000, 1 is 300, 000 in the middle. And if you see that client’s jaw drop,

18:43 – 18:43
Rochelle Moulton: right?

18:44 – 19:14
Shannyn Lee: Your whole point to them is, look, these are options I created tied to the vision that you outlined for me. And yeah, 1 of them is a big jaw-dropping number. You’re not obligated to buy that. What I’m obligated to do as the expert is put these options in front of you and talk through what do you value, what makes the most sense? And Do you want to hit that big vision now or are we just planting a seed for the future? What we’re doing is removing judgment from the sale, which people then place judgment on themselves

19:14 – 19:28
Shannyn Lee: as the salesperson. If you can remove that, that’s where like, permission comes, comfort comes, your ability to talk about these business challenges and the money tied to it and the value to be created really transforms you.

19:28 – 19:38
Rochelle Moulton: Well, and just listening to you describe that, I felt very calm. I felt like I would be in control of that kind of a meeting in the sense that I’m fine with whatever the client picks.

19:38 – 19:39
Shannyn Lee: Yeah, that’s right.

19:39 – 19:51
Rochelle Moulton: It doesn’t matter which 1 they pick. It’s the 1 that is aligned with their vision and I feel like I’m partnering with them and I’m going to win no matter which 1 they pick because I’m helping them get to where they want to go.

19:51 – 20:03
Shannyn Lee: That’s right. And I think you say as much, right? Like I’ve come to you today with 3 options. There is no right or wrong answer here. It is really about what you think the best 1 is that’s going to work best for you in this moment.

20:03 – 20:34
Rochelle Moulton: Yeah. Yeah. So I like that idea of having this framework. 1 of the other things that we talked about offline was we were talking about, you know, how can you sell consistently, which is a big issue with soloists, right? Like how can I have this consistent pipeline? And you were talking about developing a process around selling. Would you talk some more about that? Like, are there some good hygiene sales practices and processes that you recommend, or how do you approach this?

20:34 – 21:08
Shannyn Lee: Yeah, so I think the framework serve as this foundation of here are the conversations I need to have in the sales process. Here are the things I need to get done in each conversation to help me decide do we move to the next conversation? That’s where process builds around conversation type. Then I think once you’re in these conversations, you do have some hard and fast rules with yourself, meaning you’re showing up like the expert, you’re leading in the sale and you’re in the early stages of the sale trying to figure out frankly why you shouldn’t work

21:08 – 21:40
Shannyn Lee: together. And this is this idea we talked about where your ability to be kind but ruthless is really important. And what I mean by that is kind in your words, but ruthless in your behavior, meaning, hey, we’re going to have this conversation and see if we’re a good fit to work together. And if at the end we decide we’re not, I’m going to let you know. Right? And if in the end you get to it and maybe you’re enamored and excited by the opportunity, but you really know that you can’t help them, but you’re just kind

21:40 – 22:05
Shannyn Lee: of getting emotionally attached, it’s when you have to remember, I got to be kind but ruthless here. And that may sound like, hey, Rochelle, it’s been lovely to get to meet you. I think what you’re doing is really exciting. It’s just not something I feel like I can help you with and add good value around. So I’m going to take a pass on this 1. But I sure would love to stay in touch now that we know each other better, because maybe something will come up down the road where I am a better fit. Does that

22:05 – 22:06
Shannyn Lee: sound okay to you?

22:07 – 22:12
Rochelle Moulton: And yes, and that doesn’t sound ruthless. Really? It is, I mean, it is in this context,

22:12 – 22:23
Shannyn Lee: but yeah. Kind words wrapped in a hug, but behavior is ruthless. I’m saying no, and I’m holding and standing my ground, but I’m doing it with empathy, and my integrity will be intact as a result.

22:24 – 22:40
Rochelle Moulton: And what I love about, 1 of the things I love about that is that ahead of time, you are setting the rules for yourself about who you want to work with, which will help because it’s hard to make those decisions in the moment, especially because most of us are wired that we want to

22:40 – 23:13
Shannyn Lee: help people. It’s why we do this work. That’s right. We actually have a target audience, right? Many people do. And then we’ve defined it as when we have sales conversations, I will say to those prospects, here are the types of firms where we have the most impact. And I will describe revenue, employee size, kind of firm type. And then I will also show 2 other categories of firms where we have impact but not as much typically as the correct target audience but here are some stories. So that’s for you to decide if you want to move

23:13 – 23:25
Shannyn Lee: forward with us. And then I will share This is the target audience we don’t have impact with. And here’s what I would recommend if you’re that audience. So we make it really clear like where they fit into our target buyer map.

23:25 – 23:43
Rochelle Moulton: I love saying this is the kind of buyer we don’t work well with. Yes. I love that. I mean, ideally, we’re telegraphing that in the authority content that we put out there in the posts that are in LinkedIn, but not always.

23:43 – 24:06
Shannyn Lee: Not always. And then those things show up that get us emotionally too invested in a sale and sometimes we slip into old habits and we just do something because we want to help or we’re just afraid to say no. So if we have some of those documented tools sitting there in front of us during the sale. It can also help to keep us accountable.

24:07 – 24:41
Rochelle Moulton: Yeah. I’m not sure if you address this in Win Without Pitching, but I know you must address this personally. And it’s 1 of the challenges that many soloists feel is that they have to keep up with this ever-expanding, never-ending list of people. So we have potential clients and buyers. We have what I call centers of influence, people who can influence a sale, the members of their authority circle. How do you recommend keeping in touch both meaningful and manageable for a soloist without turning it transactional?

24:43 – 25:16
Shannyn Lee: This is such a good question. With joy and clarity and consistency and accountability. Here’s what I mean by that. There’s all these things you have to do as a soloist when it comes to marketing your firm or nurturing leads or staying ahead of the game on trends and topics, right? And you’re 1 person and you can’t do it all. And so just if we take the marketing side of the equation, let’s say, I really think that there should be joy and simplicity in marketing. I really think that you should pick the 1 thing that you enjoy

25:16 – 25:46
Shannyn Lee: doing, maybe it’s writing, maybe it’s a podcast, maybe it’s videos on a YouTube channel, and go all in on it and do it well, and then leverage that content to turn it into other things. So you might write an article that you then chunk up and use for LinkedIn posts or tweets, right? But you’re 1 person, you can only do so much. So you need to get disciplined about what’s the 1 thing you’re going to be good at. And you need to block it on your calendar, 1 hour a day, 3 days a week. That’s non-negotiable

25:47 – 26:03
Shannyn Lee: unless the house is burning down. And then you need to have some fun with it, frankly, so that you keep doing it and find some source of joy and inspiration in it. I tend to think about it that way when I think about working with a soloist and how to help them be effective and organize their day and not feel overwhelmed.

26:04 – 26:42
Rochelle Moulton: When you said the word joy, my heart leaped up. Why shouldn’t there be joy? Right? Exactly. Exactly. And simplicity. And I think it’s so tempting when you’re a soloist, especially if you like to read, like everybody’s got a book about the 1 thing you need to do differently to change everything. Right. And so it becomes really easy to listen to all of these competing voices. But Yeah, I like joy. I really like joy. I like joy. I’ll tell you, Shannon, when I started this podcast, I thought about it. I probably spent 2 months really deciding to

26:42 – 27:12
Rochelle Moulton: pull the trigger because I co-host another podcast, The Business of Authority. And I love that podcast, but I wanted this to be different. And I realized that I could give myself permission to have joy in the process. And so I’m only interviewing people who I think are women, who are really interesting, who have something to say, who like I like, you know, that I’m intrigued by, I’m curious by, and that joy makes all the difference.

27:12 – 27:31
Shannyn Lee: It doesn’t, doesn’t it help to recharge you and motivate you and create more space in your heart and soul and brain to go do the rest of the things within your business that you need to do to grow it and run it. You’ve got to find things that recharge us, not suck our soul.

27:34 – 28:04
Rochelle Moulton: When you start something new, there’s always that, like at the beginning, I was like, oh, this is gonna be like really hard and I’ve not done this. I mean, you know, 6 years of the other 1, but just somehow this just felt so much bigger. And I just started with people that I already knew who had wonderful stories to tell. And I was like, this is fun. Like, you know, you just get out of your own head and you focus on what do people want to know about this particular thing. And then it’s fun and joyful.

28:04 – 28:13
Shannyn Lee: Well, and it’s working, I think, for you because it’s how I found you. I found you through a mutual friend that we have. She was on your podcast. We have to

28:13 – 28:17
Rochelle Moulton: say Mindy Zisman. She’s a friend of the show and a friend of ours.

28:17 – 28:41
Shannyn Lee: Yeah. And when I listened to that episode, I was like, Oh, I don’t know Rochelle, but I absolutely love what she’s doing because you were super clear about who you were and what your mission in the world was and who you were talking to. And I love it when people have a perspective and a point of view because I know I’m going to learn from them and I know they’re going to be honest with me. And like I just gravitated towards it and listened to the first episode and was like, Oh yeah, I’m in this is

28:41 – 28:42
Shannyn Lee: a great podcast.

28:42 – 29:20
Rochelle Moulton: Well, just like I gravitated to our first conversation. It’s so much fun to talk about sales with somebody. I love talking about sales. We’re geeky. I love it. I know. It’s awesome. So let me just ask you to talk about social media for just a second, Especially LinkedIn. So social media for soloists as a one-to-one sales vehicle. I mean, how do you suggest B2B experts connect and begin developing relationships with people in their target market in social? And we can restrict it to LinkedIn if you like, although you do a great job with your YouTube videos.

29:20 – 29:23
Rochelle Moulton: So feel free to talk about that too.

29:23 – 29:52
Shannyn Lee: Probably like many social media makes me absolutely nuts. And so I made a decision a long time ago, like I’m done with it from a personal perspective. I’m okay with it for business. And I went all in on LinkedIn. And yes, then I started playing around with the YouTube channel and that has been great fun. But for LinkedIn, I believe in the value of that platform for business and I’m seeing results for our business and our clients’ business. And so again, it goes back to this pick 1 thing and do it well, and that’s the 1

29:52 – 30:27
Shannyn Lee: social platform that we pay most attention to. And I think, again, it is about your own unique voice and being yourself in these moments. And I think it is about, again, what is your positioning and perspective? These are the fundamentals and the foundation that you need to have in place to go take advantage of a tool like LinkedIn. So I think it has to be consistent thought leadership, for example. Are you writing and sharing it on LinkedIn? And when you do share it, share a little perspective, pose a conversation starter, ask people to get involved in

30:27 – 30:55
Shannyn Lee: the comment section with you, and then make sure that you’re there to stay involved with them. Because I think some good conversations and back and forth can happen and you start to identify, oh, these might be good fits for the work I do, or this might be somebody I want to learn something more from, or hey, these are the challenges that people in my target audience are facing. Like it’s just a goldmine that way if you put yourself out there to have conversations on LinkedIn. I also think it’s a great platform if you’re at all playing

30:55 – 31:16
Shannyn Lee: around with paid ads. We’re doing some of that on LinkedIn and we’re seeing conversions to people popping to our website, joining our subscriber list, reaching out to want to learn more about the workshop or whatever that we’re running. And so it’s my favorite tool right now. Who’s to say that that may change down the road, but it’s the 1 that we’re placing the big bet on now and spending more time with.

31:17 – 31:49
Rochelle Moulton: Yeah. I like the ads. We could talk about the ads idea for like, that could be a whole episode of itself. It’s fascinating. But so if I’m a soloist and I’m early on in my soloist journey, you know, I’ve got a, let’s say I’ve got a bunch of contacts in LinkedIn and real contacts, people that I know, people that I worked with, and I’m starting the soloist business. I’ve been doing it for a little while. Is your, you’re thinking that they should sit back and kind of do this kind of engagement and wait for people to

31:49 – 31:57
Rochelle Moulton: come to them? Or is there a way that they can do specific outreach within LinkedIn without being like a filthy spammer?

31:58 – 32:26
Shannyn Lee: Right. I think it’s a blend. I think about driving leads across 3 categories. I think there’s what we call a tier 1 lead. They’re gonna find you, let’s say, through your content on LinkedIn, and they’re gonna reach out to you and say, hey, can we have a conversation? Your obligation is to be putting good insights into the world. That’s how you attract those leads or a podcast or writing a book. And so you want to be doing that kind of activity. Then there’s these tier 2 leads and these are people who maybe follow you on LinkedIn

32:26 – 32:54
Shannyn Lee: or who have commented on your posts. They just haven’t raised their hand yet to say, hey, I need help. So I think you watch those leads for a little while and maybe once there’s a threshold of 3 likes or 3 comments, you reach out and just say, hey, thanks for paying attention. Would you like to have a conversation to see if I might be able to help? Feel free to say no if the timing isn’t right or you don’t see a fit. That’s the line that you got to add when you do the outreach. So then

32:54 – 33:21
Shannyn Lee: it’s a little bit like you’ve been putting deposits in the bank and now it’s okay to make a withdrawal. Then I think The final category is these tier 3 leads, people that don’t know you, you don’t know them, but because of how you’re positioned, you can generate a target list of folks that it would make sense that they might have interest in what you do. And you may reach out to them directly on LinkedIn. You have a top 10 list through a direct message and just say, hey, I checked out your profile. Here’s who I help.

33:21 – 33:33
Shannyn Lee: Here’s the outcomes I deliver. Would you be interested in having a conversation? So I think you have to have a blend of different types of outreach that you’re doing at all times really to drive the right kind of healthy pipeline.

33:34 – 33:44
Rochelle Moulton: Yeah, and what I hear underlying all that is don’t be afraid to reach out. Like you don’t have to just sit there and push content out there. You can actually reach out to people.

33:44 – 34:06
Shannyn Lee: You can reach out. And I think it is, it’s just like anything. It’s just respectful. And that’s why I like that line of feel free to say no if the timing isn’t right or you don’t see a fit. That will increase the response rates because people feel like you’re dealing with them from a kind of a business perspective. You’re not trying to convince, you’re not trying to sell, you’re giving them a professional out if they need to say no, thank you.

34:06 – 34:38
Rochelle Moulton: Yes. And it does build trust, I think. That way. I just did this with a future podcast guest. I’d heard her podcast and I thought, oh, she’d be great. And there was no way to contact her on her website. And I’m like, so I connected in LinkedIn and said, you know, kind of did this as part of the connection and said, let’s totally okay. If you’re too busy, but I heard your episode on XYZ and would love to have you come on and talk about that. And we did, I mean, she’s in the queue to join,

34:38 – 34:48
Rochelle Moulton: but it felt, it’s so funny when I did it, it felt a little salesy, but I’m sitting there going, Rochelle, you’re offering her an opportunity to extend her expertise to an audience that aligns with hers.

34:48 – 34:58
Shannyn Lee: Like, yes. And you did your homework. You heard her. You felt what she had to say. Exactly. You value. You let her know that. Right. And what’s the worst that can happen? She doesn’t respond or she says, no, thank you.

34:58 – 35:00
Rochelle Moulton: Yeah. Well, I can handle that.

35:00 – 35:01
Shannyn Lee: Yeah. Right. I

35:01 – 35:03
Rochelle Moulton: can handle a no or a 0 response.

35:04 – 35:05
Shannyn Lee: We’re resilient.

35:05 – 35:08
Rochelle Moulton: Yes. You don’t have to be very resilient for that 1.

35:08 – 35:10
Shannyn Lee: No, that’s what I think. That’s like

35:10 – 35:11
Rochelle Moulton: a low level resilience.

35:11 – 35:19
Shannyn Lee: Exactly. So maybe that’s how people dip their toe in the water. Like just dip your toe in the water and try some of these things that may feel a little less threatening.

35:19 – 35:32
Rochelle Moulton: Yeah. Yeah. I think it’s you work up to these things and it’s like anything we do, right? The more we do it and we have a little bit of success, the more confident we get and the easier it is, we’ll take a bigger risk next time.

35:32 – 35:37
Shannyn Lee: Yeah. Incremental baby steps, attitude of experimentation, right? Just try some things.

35:37 – 35:38
Rochelle Moulton: And joy.

35:39 – 35:39
Shannyn Lee: Yep.

35:40 – 35:41
Rochelle Moulton: And joy. Let’s not

35:41 – 35:42
Shannyn Lee: forget joy.

35:42 – 36:00
Rochelle Moulton: Joy. Our theme for the day. So Shannon, there’s a question that I’ve asked everyone so far. I want to modify it slightly for you because I know you’re not a soloist. But if you could go back to who you were when you left Big Corporate, like what’s the 1 thing you’d advise her to do?

36:01 – 36:32
Shannyn Lee: Release the anger a little more quickly is not the word I want to say, but acknowledge what was going on for me in that moment and probably seek having some conversations with folks to release what made me angry about what didn’t work for me in corporate America. And then remember that there was a lot of value I had to add and it wasn’t as much about them as it was about me and just what I needed to find for myself. Wow.

36:34 – 36:43
Rochelle Moulton: Yeah. That’s delicious. Yeah. Because I think a lot of us don’t even realize we’re angry when that happens. It’s

36:43 – 36:50
Shannyn Lee: like, well. That’s what happened to me. And then it showed up in not good ways in opportune moments. It was like, oh, come on, girl, you gotta look in the mirror and face some of this stuff.

36:51 – 37:21
Rochelle Moulton: Well, and there were reasons for us to be angry. Like, it’s not like, we’re not saying that they weren’t valid, right? But it’s, yeah, we have to find ways to release or re channel it into something. You know, I think we get to the point where we go, Oh, this professional life I have now is what I always wanted. Thank you corporate America for expelling me or, you know, making me want to, to expel myself from you.

37:21 – 37:35
Shannyn Lee: That’s exactly right. Yep. And I really believe that. I’m like, yeah, you know what, there were some bad behaviors and maybe not nice things, but that was what they did there. Didn’t mean that I had to do that. So it was more about me than them figuring that out.

37:36 – 37:42
Rochelle Moulton: Yeah. And it usually is, right? It usually is about us. But then when we get the courage to leave, it’s pretty awesome.

37:43 – 37:44
Shannyn Lee: It is. It is liberating.

37:46 – 37:58
Rochelle Moulton: Well we are going to be putting all sorts of links to the content that we’ve talked about in the show notes, but where’s the best place for people to learn about you? And I want to make sure we put the YouTube link in there because I really like those videos.

37:59 – 38:07
Shannyn Lee: Yeah. I have so much fun with that YouTube channel. Yeah. Thank you for doing that. So it’s just is the best place to go to learn more. Awesome.

38:08 – 38:23
Rochelle Moulton: Shannon, thank you so much. Like I feel so much joy right now. I feel like that was our mantra from today is sales can equal joy. So thank you so much for sharing your wisdom.

38:24 – 38:30
Shannyn Lee: Yeah, thank you, Rochelle. This was really fun. I was so happy to be here with you today and just good luck to everybody out there. Go do your thing.

38:31 – 38:39
Rochelle Moulton: Awesome. Okay, so that’s it for this episode. I hope you’ll join us next time for Soloist Women. Bye bye.



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