Emma Lovell is the founder of Lovelly Communications and a powerful people connector, and personal branding coach whose mission is to support female entrepreneurs to live and love their brand.
Emma is a regular in the monthly Mums & Co meetups where she brings her generosity and enthusiasm. Emma lives her clever and effective personal branding quip, ‘Lovelly by Name, Lovelly by Nature’ and has recently welcomed her first child.
00:01:10:19 - 00:01:11:21
Making connections is a way that we delight people and it's a core value for us here at Mums & Co. We love introducing like-minded women to each other and believe wholeheartedly in the power of networking to grow your business and your confidence as a female business owner. Today's guest is the founder of Lovelly Communications and she is a powerful people connector. Emma Lovell is a personal branding coach who's on a mission to support female entrepreneurs to live and love their brand.
00:01:25:19 - 00:01:55:21
Emma is a regular in the monthly Mums & Co meetups where she brings her generosity and enthusiasm and lives her clever and effective personal branding quip, ‘Lovelly by Name, Lovelly by Nature’. The globetrotting personal brandsetter Emma recently welcomed her first child, congratulations and what a few years you've had. Welcome to my Mumbition Podcast.
00:02:02:08 - 00:02:16:15
Thank you so much for a gorgeous intro and I always get a bit teary when I talk to you. I love the community support and I have loved being a member of Mums & Co and those monthly meet ups are gorgeous.
00:02:17:14 - 00:02:41:10
You're very welcome. And I love when I hear our movement, our members using that word love. And I just want to remind people that it is literally such a validation of what we're doing. That's a very strong word to me. So thank you. And we're very passionate about charging business women to practice their storytelling, you know, the business pitch. And we encourage you to take every opportunity to do so. So can we please hear your elevator pitch?
00:02:47:23 - 00:03:11:00
I love these two, and I always ask my clients to do it. And a few people say that I have quite a good one. So no pressure. Here I go.
I am Emma Lovell. I'm the owner of Lovelly Communications and I am Lovelly by name, lovely by nature. I'm a personal branding coach, and I help female leaders to show up and make an impact with integrity through their personal brand. I'm based on the Gold Coast and Queensland, Australia. I have a gorgeous husband, a beautiful little baby boy and I absolutely love connecting with women and I encourage them to live and love their brand also through my podcast, Live and Love Your Brand.
00:03:26:02 - 00:03:46:18
What a beautiful pitch that is. And I love that you've thrown in your podcast because as we'll talk about later, Carrie and myself were guests on that, but that's great part of the brand of who you are. Before you ran this business, you ran a travel and personal branding business as well for several years. But last year you became a mum for the first time to your beautiful baby boy. What is it that you found to be the most transferable skills now between business and motherhood?
00:03:58:23 - 00:04:19:02
Well, it's funny because it keeps coming up that I am organised and I can tell you that in my mind it does not feel organised but it does come across that way too many others. I have been running my business for 12 years and I do think that being a solo producer or a freelancer for many years, I would have multiple clients at any one time. You do have to be organised in order to manage that client load to run the business and do all the functions of the business. You don't get an accounting team and a marketing team. You do all the things as well as serving the clients and then also just functioning as a human as well.
And for me, it was often from various places around the world. So travelling whilst running my business I would say that being organised is something that I am. And even my Mother In Law said it to me when I think it was other early days with my son or approaching his birth, she said, “you're going to do great because you're organised”. She said, she didn't feel organised but you learn to be organised quickly.
When you were an organised person, things are more manageable as a mum. It just goes into hyperdrive when you're managing not only your business and your work and your own things, but then organising an entire little human and all of their needs.
Another transferable skill of communication. So Lovelly Communications is my brand name. Communication is something that comes very naturally to me. It would be my top five strengths. This includes communication with my husband, communication with our family to get the support we need, communication with daycare, and communication with friends and family. All of that has just had to be ramped up in order to have the support that we need, for in the home and life, in order to run the business.
So communication and organization and the skills that have really helped me from business to motherhood.
00:05:59:04 - 00:06:16:01
Such important skills too. And one really feeds the other, doesn't it? Because I was just thinking, it's one thing to be an organised person. But if you can't communicate what it is that you organise when you have so many interweaving elements into your life it doesn't really work either. So well done.
00:06:16:05 - 00:06:35:22
I think lots of group chats and lots of delegating. At first my family and friends were like, what are we your event staff or something? I just tell them to follow the script, and follow the plan. My Father In Law even now says to me, “Emma, is it in the calendar?”. Because I say, “if it's not in the calendar, it doesn't happen”. So I include them on our Google calendar invites when we need them for Finn Care. We call it Finn Care and not babysitting.
00:06:43:11 - 00:06:56:24
It's amazing how imperative your calendar becomes. I used true love it. And so speaking of the business right now, what do you actually love the most about your operations right now?
00:06:57:02 - 00:07:22:11
I love the time I get to spend with the women that I'm working with. And I love actually how over the past two years, since getting pregnant, I have shifted the business so that I'm getting to finally focus on my genius. I think for many years a lot of the work I was doing, was doing the work for my clients.
I would do some consulting or some teaching but was more doing the work for them. In 2019, I transitioned my business. So it was my ten-year mark and I transitioned the business from PR, marketing, social media and writing to personal brand coaching. So where I bring all of those skills that I have collected over those ten years and I'm able to help someone have more impact. By sharing with them not only what I've learned and being able to see their brand more clearly. But also I bring with me all my experts, all my connections, and all my networking power to support them to build their brand too.
Through that transition of building a team and getting support into the business, it really became evident that I needed that when my son was on the way. Getting in the consistent support in the business, like having a VA and having support for my website. I remember 2019, this sort of flash moment of I need to invest in my brand.
I need to invest in my business if I'm going to ask others to invest in my services. I had been very fortunate to have a logo made by a friend. My website, I had done on WordPress myself. But it was like, no, it's time to invest in help and support so that I can grow and so that I can serve my clients properly and better.
So now I'm really enjoying the support I have in the business. It allows me to do the things like, do a podcast, speak at events, go to networking events, and host regular photoshoots with amazing women. And just to be there and know that things we're still going to operate or things are going to still run.
I love the time that I get to spend with my clients, with the women in my community and speaking to my audience. Because speaking as you can hear is my gift, my superpower and my love. So my support allows me to do that.
00:09:32:15 - 00:09:59:07
I'm hearing definitely why so many of the women in our community love what they do. It's actually giving something that they think that they can make a meaningful impact in. But the second thing I heard was it always amazes me how much of an ecosystem business owning women create around them. There are a series of business relationships. We collaborate with other women. We purchase services and products from other women. We come together to be more productive. So I think it's a really beautiful ecosystem that you you've created there.
00:10:09:09 - 00:10:28:05
Thank you. And it's the connection, as you said, that is just it is so important and it's that realising that you can do it alone, but it's going to be a really tough ride. Over these years having these virtual office buddies has been vital.
I've always worked from home and always had these virtual people around that I've called home to support. Networking is one of my strengths as well. But you just need those other people who are in it with you. And it's not necessarily your suppliers or your service providers or your staff, it's people who get it and who are on the same journey.
I definitely have found that in Mums & Co because you have women who are not only running businesses, but they also have families. So it's a really unique set of challenges and opportunities that come with that and having people who get it, it feels so inviting and like you can take a deep breath, and you're like, “Oh, you get it. Thank you”.
00:11:20:04 - 00:11:48:13
What a beautiful thing to say. And like Carrie I was listening to you, speaking about the incredible ecosystem that you have around you, which is just amazing. We also heard you list lots of things that you're doing in order to get these business ladies and in order to get it moving every day. But what is it that you've found that you've had to stop doing since you've had your son to blend his needs, your needs and business life?
00:11:48:20 - 00:12:15:15
It will sound like a double negative, but not resting. I've had to stop not resting. I've had to stop not sleeping. I just know that I should have learned this lesson many, many moons ago. But I cannot function if I'm not rested. Last year just with my son going to kindy and I guess that little person with building up their immunity. I got quite a few sicknesses through him. There were times when you think you should just push through. You know, “I've got all these things to do.” “I’ll just do one more thing.” “I'll just stay up and do that one thing.” “OK, I'll just do that one more call.” There's always another call, there's always another email, there's always another thing to do.
That's the beauty of being an entrepreneur. And I've talked about it a few times recently, but there's this book called Don't Sweat the Small Stuff. It's an old book but it’s fantastic. I keep it in my bedside drawer and I just pull it out and read a couple of pages and they just these little pearls of wisdom.
But one of them is when you’re dead, your inbox won't be empty. It sounds a bit morbid, but it's true. There's always another email, and this thing is being like, “I will rest when I'm done”. It's not possible there'll always be something to do.
Actively choosing to rest has been something that I've had to do and just not pushing through. I've had to stop pushing through. And when I feel my body or my mind just getting to that, even the glimpse of burning out, I just have to stop.
I feel that I've been much more productive and I'm a much better mum and I'm a much better wife when I've had some rest. It's not always possible. And I know there is probably mums sitting there going, “Oh, when do you have time to rest?”. But you have to choose that too. So sometimes I choose to rest over starting work earlier. I choose to rest instead of going out with friends, that's the choice I'm making. Stop overdoing it. Stop not resting.
00:13:58:08 - 00:14:19:20
Sage advice. So Emma, you run Lovelly Communications, you mentioned that you also host a podcast, Live and Love Your Brand. Lucy and I had a fantastic chat with you recently on that podcast. Now your social media gives some wonderful insight into your business and life. But is there something of Emma that we might have heard or may not see?
00:14:20:13 - 00:14:48:17
I'm such an open book. I think people can share a lot, but we don't always see the full story and you can keep something to yourself. So I think something that my clients find challenging when they think about trying to put their personal brand out there, put themselves out there, is that they need to overshare. That they need to share every single detail and every single corner of their lives.
But that is not true. There are things that we keep for ourselves, and there are moments that I have that are just for me and just for my family. But you definitely get a broad picture. I do love a fun fact. I’ll share two fun facts with you now, and they sort of link up.
So fun fact, I actually have a small business partnership with an Indian travel company. So I help arrange travel to India for anybody who would like to go, but they are boutique and bespoke tours. I took a group of women in 2019 over to experience India. And when I mentioned this the other week when I was at a retreat I just sort of flippantly said that I've been there 11 times. I actually have a tattoo of an Indian phrase on my arm.
Many people say there's an Indian woman inside of me. I truly love it so much. I said, “Oh, well, maybe I could take people over there or maybe I should run a retreat there”. And the table was like, Yes! So 2023, there might be a retreat in India on the cards.
The other thing that people might not know about me, I did a ten-day silent meditation. An Avi Pazner silent meditation in 2012 and yes, I was silent the whole time.
00:16:23:01 - 00:16:53:19
It's amazing that there might be a whole new business venture or concept out there for you. And that's what I love about our community, we have multiple businesses under our belt. I think we did do some research a few years back and we know that actually 27% of business owning mums in Australia have actually owned or co-owned a business before.
So it's amazing that we are able to launch more than one business. One in three of us have that aspiration. You've already gone to your third and I think you have one under your belt prior to that, so it's just truly inspiring. Now your podcast is an extension of the theme of your business in terms of the support that you're providing to women building brands that they love. So what would be your number one tip to any woman listening to the podcast today who is thinking about creating a business?
00:17:26:15 - 00:18:03:08
I think the issue with women and I’m sure you see it often as well, is that women tend to feel that they don't have enough, don't know enough, need more learning, need more skills, need more expertise, need more support or they need something. And when we get all of those things, then I will start. Or on the flip side, we actually talked about it in our episode on Live and Love Your Brand, where I said I hate the term side hustle. This is why I called what I do a small business.
People are running a small business and they saying it's just a this or it's just a that or it's a side hustle. It's like, no, you're actually running a business. A lot of the work that I do is encouraging people to say I am and to feel comfortable and confident in whatever comes next. So you get to decide your story.
You get to decide your future. So if you decide I want to start a business, you just start saying, I run a business. Hi, I'm Emma and I'm a business owner. Nobody's going to argue with you. It doesn't matter if it's one person or 50 people or you have an office or you don't have an office.
I know women who are running great businesses who say I run a business but it's just from home or, oh, it's just me. It's should be, I run a business full stop. I hear a lot of “I'm going to start a business” or “I want to start a business”. If not now, then when.
So start it. And who knows, you might not like it a lot. But just start. And I understand that some businesses take more set up and they do take more foundation. But if you don't start somewhere, then it's just never going to happen. And then owning that, I am running a business. No diminishing, no self-deprecating. Just, I'm doing this and that in itself is amazing.
00:19:34:10 - 00:19:56:14
What a fantastic piece of advice. And what I love the most about what you just said is that you get to own your own story. You get to write your own story, which is such a motivating thought to have at any time of the day. If don’t like what’s going on, you have full permission to change it and the way you speak about it. It's amazing how taking out those buts and the ands and the justs can do to writing your story.
00:19:56:18 - 00:20:19:00
I do still write it on an email and I take it off the front. It’s these sort of tentative statements we put, and it's cutting them out and saying boldly, I am. And I spoke to a woman yesterday and it was the way she was speaking was so beautiful.
And I said, “now what you just said say that in the mirror every morning”. And she was like, “what did I just say?” I said, “you said I am where I am, and where I meant to be right now”. So acknowledging that whatever experiences we've had, our skills, our experiences, our triumphs, our challenges, everything that has happened has brought us to where we are today.
And you are exactly what you're meant to be. So if you can even say that I am where I'm meant to be and I am Emma and I am running this business and I'm amazing. Just saying that to yourself every day, can be very powerful.
00:20:57:03 - 00:21:13:07
I agree very powerful. So you also described to us a really amazing evolution of yourself and your business and your product and the service that you're selling over the years. What has changed for you in terms of how you look at risk in your business and how have you tried to protect yourself from that over the years?
00:21:13:12 - 00:21:39:12
I think it's funny. I'm probably going to do this question in the opposite. I think I'm actually taking more risks now. But there are two prongs. I think in the past I have kept myself small to avoid risk. I can shut the doors at any time and go to India in three months and do whatever. That kind of feast or famine type of work that's been the protection.
I don't have to worry about stuff. I don't have to worry about other people and providing for them. I just run my business, I serve my clients, and when I'm not doing it, I'm not doing it. That's where I was at.
But I realised that to make more impact and to do the things that I really want to do and see the changes and live the big life that I want to live. It involves risk. I do take risks in personal ways. But I think when you start to involve other people and have that bigger machine around a business, then it does feel riskier. But I've also run a lean business for many years, so I can still continue that.
And I do see there are micro-preneurs and all these terms now. But there are all these people who still run a daily lean operation, they still do create a big impact. So when I saw that, I thought, “Yeah, OK, I'm ready and I can do that”. And I do need to grow in order to serve more women and to have the impact that I want to have.
But to do that, I needed structure. And so I have really gone about the last two years. I guess that's where the minimizing risk has come from. It's getting into that systems and processes. I'm not a real lover of routine. As I said, I'm organized, but I'm organised for me, I think when you start to bring more people in and that grows, that feels harder.
But I've really had to work on that part of myself because I am that ideas and creative entrepreneur and I just make things happen. But when you have all the people in it, you do need to slow down a little bit, make sure the systems are there and the processes are there and make sure it's running well. And then I can run off and create and have fancy ideas.
00:23:35:04 - 00:23:54:03
Now, Emma, we talk a lot about harmony as this triangle of ambition and livelihood and wellbeing. And I can see that resonates with you. Now, you are an inspirational woman harmonizing your travel interests and personal branding business and your family life. Can you describe the shape of a good life for you?
00:23:54:07 - 00:24:16:05
I love this so much. I talk about it all the time. I talk about it in my recent podcast episode about what's planned for 2022. Because my 2021 word was growth and my 2022 word was harmony. I chose that before really hearing the definition from Mums & Co and how much you use that word.
And I now talk about the orchestra that you describe. I just think it's so beautiful. You wouldn't believe this, but I'm showing this in the video, it is a candle made by a lovely woman called Empath Ana. It's a candle called Harmony. She's got about 15 different candles with words like balance, serenity and healing. And she had harmony and I was like, “Oh, I’ll have that”.
00:24:45:14 - 00:24:47:13
What does it smell like?
00:24:47:23 - 00:25:07:17
It's musk, oriental myrrh. And it has in it a blue light agate and a white Hallet crystal. So once you burn the candle, you get the crystals and the energized at the end. So I actually smelt it right before we started the podcast.
But what does that shape look like for me? I know you talk about it as a shape. I see it as those sound waves, like waves. There will be like three or four colours of waves crossing over one another. So it could look messy. It could be a bit sort of wiggly and up and down and ebbs and flows. But ultimately those waves make that piece of music, they make that sound and that's the harmony.
When you talk about harmony, I really resonated because I don't love balance as a word. I think with balance everything's got to be equal. And if it's not, then it's all out of whack. And then I tried calm. But for me, harmony is when work life, my family, friends, those things are all working together.
And even when I'm talking about those systems and structures in the business, having that little bit of flow to things means it can go up and down and they can move, that to me is harmony. When things are just working and it's just flowing along. So flowing lines, crisscrossing over each other with beautiful rainbow colours, of course, because that's my brand.
00:26:19:24 - 00:26:43:07
Beautiful answer. I really resonate with that image of a wave completely there with you. So, Emma, the last question for you today is something I know that you are personally passionate about and supporting women is a big part of your business as well. So who are the mumbitious, the ambitious mums running businesses, but you know at the moment that you'd like to shout out to, to say hello?
00:26:43:14 - 00:27:04:20
Well, this wasn't a very fair question because I have too many. So I actually had to write them down because I was like, can I have 100 or 200 or 2000? But the ones that I really want to shout out to are Jane Hillsdon from How To Do Marketing. She's also a Mums & Co expert and she is a brilliant woman.
Her marketing expertise is next level but her generosity in the sharing of education information is amazing. We have built a friendship over the last eighteen months as well as a collaborative business relationship that I am endlessly grateful for.
Leah Selfe, Collectively Assist, has been my Virtual Assistant for a long time, but is way more than that. She's a friend. She held my son the first time I did a speaking after coming back from maternity leave. Literally held my son so I could do a speaking gig. So she's an incredible support, an incredible cheerleader, and we have fun doing reels together. So check her out.
Caroline Hutchison from Light Up Letters and Events Fantastic. Just an amazing woman. Totally gets it. And we have become amazing business besties.
Amanda Miller from Carmex Australia, which I have on my desk. She's just one of those women who you just meet and you connect with on all levels. And I know she's going to be a lifelong friend as well as an incredible business mentor and connection.
Tanya Boots from Inspirational Tea Co, who has this beautiful thing of Hug In A Mug. So sending somebody a hug and a mug, these beautiful gift boxes. I drink her peppermint every day and I get a little inspiration. But again, being that business friend and mentor and she's local and we've just built a really beautiful connection over the past year and a half.
Rachel Smith from Rachel's List, who I can't thank enough for bringing Lucy into my world. Lucy and I had floated around each other for many years and I mean this Lucy, Lucy Kippist. But she actually made the connection and I'm only here because of Rachel and her putting us together. So thank you to her, amazing businesswoman.
Emma Isaacs from Business Chicks. I mean inspiration. Six kids running an epic business and always making time to connect to her community and to speak to me and to take an interest in my son. That means the world to me.
Amy Bett. Don’t worry I've only got two more. From Lady Without Limits. I'm going to retreat on Monday. I can't wait to she expands my mind. She encourages me. She says really openly about all the things that she's doing in business. And I'm so excited for the partnerships and collaborations we have in the future.
And Amanda Thompson, who runs Finance Financially Women, she's a triathlete. She's a mother, she's beyond generous. And she's also in my program. And I'm in hers. And we just have so much synergy. And I'm so excited for the future.
So, yes, I wish I could have 100. I truly as you said, Carrie, I love women and I think we can say love in business. It’s okay to accidentally send kiss, kiss. It's like we can do that. We can be business people. We can be professional and we can still have passion and care and love and connection.
And I truly love these women and I cannot do what I do without them. So thank you to all of the people who support me.
00:30:19:02 - 00:30:43:00
What a passionate and beautiful way to end the podcast.