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Vanessa Bell Mumbition the Podcast

Mumbition

The Podcast By Mums & Co

Episode 93: Mastering Micro-Influencer Marketing with Christie Nicholas

Christie Nicholas

Founder, Mumpower

May 21, 2024
On today’s episode of Mumbition, we chat with Christie Nicholas, Founder of Mumpower. Christie delves into the challenges and rewards of business growth, the power of networking, and the strategic use of micro-influencer marketing. Christie shares valuable lessons for aspiring entrepreneurs and seasoned business owners alike.

Links

Australia's No.1 Marketing and Influencer Agency for Mum-centric Brands - Mumpower

Mumpower (@mumpower_au) •Instagram photos and videos

https://www.facebook.com/mumpower.au

https://www.linkedin.com/in/christie-nicholas-mumpower/


Credits
Produced by -
Lucy Kippist
Edited by -
Morgan Sebastian Brown
‍Interviewers - Carrie Kwan and Lucy Kippist
‍Guest - Christie Nicholas

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Episode 93 Transcript

00:00:04:20 - 00:00:27:14
Christie
I believe with pain prodsvision pools. And that's pretty much how I live my life. I listen to my innervoice I face reality, good or bad, and always take small progressive steps towhat excites me, scares me, and brings me joy. I think, as women living in avery busy, fast paced life, it's easy to ignore what's bothering you, but Ihave always found that the sooner you are honest with yourself, the faster youmove through towards the next best step for your life and your self, whateverthat is.

00:00:38:18 - 00:01:12:11
Carrie
Now, we know that 80% ofhousehold decisions are made by women. And today's guest has spent the last 14years or so working with brands who want to make life easier for mums. ChristieNicholas is an incredible businesswoman. She's, taking mum power from strengthto strength. And it was really terrific to have this opportunity to find outwhat's contributed to her longevity, in this space and share some of her bestadvice for women led businesses looking to market to mums.

00:01:12:15 - 00:01:30:21
Carrie
Christie, it's so great to seeyou today. I know a lot of, women in business know about you, but for thosethat don't, please give us your, best pitch and, tell us a little bit aboutyour journey so far.

00:01:31:00 - 00:01:57:09
Christie
Absolutely. Thank you, Carrie. WellMumpower fast tracks growth for brands that speak to mums. And we do this withour blue chip growth marketing solutions, which are a whole mix of marketresearch, influencer marketing and events, user generated content, and productreviews, and they're all designed to get millions of mums to be more empoweredto know, like trust and buy your products.
So ultimately we are brandsilver bullet.

00:02:01:21 - 00:02:34:00
Carrie
Everyone wants one of those intheir pocket. You did some tremendous work advocating for women lead businesses.Those that are potentially micro, that start small but tend to grow, and welove the work that you do. And I think you shared a little bit earlier, it'sbeen 14 years, and, recently recognized with, a leading business women's award.
So you've been a real advocatein that space. and it's exciting to see. You're telling the stories of theseamazing businesses. I know we'll go into that a little bit, in our conversationtoday, but what do you love about, you know, being in business at this point intime that it's been, you know, 16 years?

00:02:57:16 - 00:03:14:08
Christie
There's probably a few things.And, you know, like yourself, Carrie. You've been able to say a lot of changesover the past, over a decade. At the moment, there's three things in businessthat I'm enjoying. Then I'll tell you about, you know, on the other side ofthings, how we're layering it up.
But one is I'm really enjoyingthe team dynamics. I feel like at the moment we've got a bit of a beautifulorchestra happening. all of us bring different skills and we're playing inharmony. So that's a really beautiful feeling at the moment because there's alot of new things happening and we're playing really nicely together. The otherthing I'm excited about is with changesin the economy and what's happening, it's opened up, new clients coming ourway.
So I'm really excited aboutwhat 2024 looks like with different types of brands on our network. And also,this year we've been really focused on improving systems and procedures. Sowe're right in the thick of rolling out new systems that will be scaling our brand presence. So that's like the logistical side of things ofwhat I'm enjoying in business.
But on the other side ofthings, I really like the fact that I we're called Mumpower and we get to bringMumpower values into what we do. It makes it a lot of fun because we get toplay. That's what I enjoy as well, so it's a great combination.

00:04:21:02 - 00:04:41:19
Carrie
Thanks for sharing some ofyour, loves at the moment. And I think it's a really nice reminder, because alot of women that are listening today, maybe thinking about starting theirbusiness. Some are in the early stages. and it's great to always be able tolook a little bit ahead, a few years ahead of someone who's actually successfuland doing things differently.
And what I was hearing when youwere talking, is that we're always investing in our team, in our capability, inour people. So that never that never stops whether, you know, day one or day 16years plus. Then you also said about your systems and processes and, and Idon't know, maybe I'm having a big mind because it's, it's this never endingsomething's you just don't stop investing in. And just on that, I'm always about the hacks and thetools and something that can elevate another business owners success. Is thereanything around that that you found useful in terms of processes and, tools tohelp you get those workflows in place?

00:05:30:00 - 00:05:59:21
Christie
What we use, very strictly isMonday, which enables us to manage, tasks and, really say when we're working ona different project, we can really break that down into micro level. Everybodyknows who's accountable for what? and, you know, if you're on track. So if youreverse engineer what you, what your, project needs to look like for it to besuccessful and then literally itemized every single task and delegated, andsomeone has to be, accountable for it.
Then you increase thelikelihood of getting the job done, getting it done well, and making surenothing slips. And then the beauty of it is, is when you have a life project,you can simply replicate that, and roll it out and refine it. We're alwaysrefining it, you know, adding a couple, steps that we noticed that, you know,there might have been a gap or something was broken. It could be better, but it gets easier everytime. So Monday has definitely been a great tool for us to be able to manage,and ensure we've got consistency in how we operate.

00:06:32:16 - 00:07:01:10
Lucy
Thank you so much for sharingthat, Christie. As Carrie mentioned before, you've been in business for 14years. A big part of the philosophy of Mumbition as a podcast is to sharelearnings and experiences from people at all stages of business. But when weget to speak to someone with your experience, it's really interesting to hearabout a kind of your visibility wins.
So I've got two questions foryou. The first one is,can you share with us somethingthat's really boosted the visibility of brand power over the past 12 months?You mentioned before you've got some new clients, some new types of clients.I'm just wondering, have you changed anything? Was there a particular,methodthat you used to attract that into the business?

00:07:22:13 - 00:07:45:16
Christie
The number one way we've beenable to grow Lucy and increase our visibility, has been on getting results forour clients and doing what we say we do - above and beyond what was promised.And doing this consistently for many different companies for many differentyears. And that has been able to instill trust in the industry and word ofmouth. So our first number one focus has always beenon delivering well above what we're being paid to do, consistently over thelong run. And then when you get to do that often and well, it does generate,you know, it's social proof in terms of endorsements and feedback from brandsthat others end up saying as well. And it gives they can see themselves inthose brands and then they're more likely to come to us. So that has been key in improving ourvisibility in the marketplace as the trusted authority. That's been the numberone thing that we've done. But then from that, of course, has been other waysthat we've been able to increase our visibility, largely with blue chip mediainterviews. That's been an instrumental vehicle in being able to share, andknowledge, what we know about the industry and what we can do or share withother brands who want to be successful and build beautiful, authenticrelationships with mums.As a customer avatar that, theyrespect and value and nurture. Then probably lastly, it has been over the yearsthat there has been a bit of a shift in how we're showing up. And, what thatis, it's because I felt like with what had happened, you know, with, with Covidand, changes in the industry, that that's obviously very confronting for many,many businesses. After what we all went through, goodness me,it was quite a big deal. And I just decided after that the fact that wesurvived it, I thought, no, now we're only in luck. I don't want us to holdback. I want to go for gold and not be hesitant about our voice and what wehave to contribute. I felt, confident enough that we've survivedthis point. We've made a difference to other companies, and now we want toscale the impact we can make from others so that change in self-belief andconfidence, has definitely also, had it made a difference in the marketplace aswell.

00:09:53:04 - 00:10:09:00
Lucy
All of that is wonderful. But Iespecially love that last bit. Because I think people think as you grow and asyou as you, as a brand grows, and as your experience grows as a business owner,perhaps as a point where you stop having to look at those things. But as yousay, it never stops, and the winds from that never stop coming. So it's soimportant to keep investing, in yourself and in your belief of yourself andyour brand.

00:10:18:06 - 00:10:35:14
Christie
And you know what? It'sactually very scary to do that. You've got to put yourself on the line. You'vegot to be prepared for criticism and many other things. And, you've but you'vegot to do it anyway and be courageous and,you know, you have to be courageousand it is scary. But I actually like the adrenaline rush ofthat.

00:10:39:01 - 00:10:41:15
Lucy
Yes. I think it's wonderful. Nowlet's just talk a little bit about networking, because we know that Mumpowerruns the Australia's premier and most established influencer marketing event. Thepromise of that event is to create highly leveraged relationships. We also loverelationships here at Mums and Co. Businessconnections is a big part of what we do. But again, asking to lean a little biton your, expertise and experience here. What have you learnt about networkingfor business, and perhaps what's a tip you could share with us if we're in for,in the context of a networking, to make the most of a networking opportunity.

00:11:24:03 - 00:11:27:15
Christie
The way I see it is that you have to remember we're all people. Sometimes the concept of networking, you can befearful. I was networking for the past two days, and I remember walking towardsentering a room, thinking there's going to be 200 other business owners there.I did feel a little bit scared, and it did feel a little bit daunting. I think that feeling is normal, but the tip is to remember thatwe're all people, and everybody has probably got similar experiences. Find afriendly face break the ice with someone, ask them about themselves, maybeyou’ve got shared interests. You're both there for the same thing. Soimmediately find something to chat about, and then think about how can youlearn about them. Nobody wants togo there and hear about how amazing another person is, and if they're trying tosell their services. Be genuinely curious and think what value can you give tothem? Or what can you learn from them by asking them questions? So that takesthe pressure of the whole concept ofnetworking.And it's really simply about learningabout others being inspired and, opening doors. You never know where that could lead.

00:12:40:01 - 00:12:56:23
Lucy
100%. And what about in the inthe digital context of networking? Because, you know, you mentioned Covidbefore. That changed the way we all did business in lots of ways. And there'sstill a lot of carry over there. Do you do you take that listening to thedigital side or is there another tip you have for that element of networking?

00:12:56:23 - 00:13:06:23
Christie
I did, what we did duringCovid, which we've continued now, is we started running a whole range of Mumpowermasterclasses ourselves where we would share knowledge, trends, insights we've been able to garner to and give valueto others who are interested in this space, and provide an opportunity and aplatform for other brands, to ask more questions and to network all together inthat environment.
And one Mumpower did that andstill does these free masterclasses. All you have to do is sign up to our,corporate network, and you could be a part of it. I also attend other people'smasterclasses. You know, I actually just did it before I've joined up, a fourday, masterclass it’s half an hour, 8 to 8:30 each morning - I want to learn. So I'm still an active participant in masterclasses. for others as well. And, when you do go to these masterclasses, don't be afraid, to ask questions. And, you know, yes,you could risk looking a little bit, you think you might look silly, you know,asking a question, but chances are somebody else is in the same boat, so byasking questions, it can also increase your visibility to.

00:14:07:01 - 00:14:11:20
Carrie
So what's your one tip? Ifyou're thinking of engaging a micro influencer?

00:14:12:06 - 00:14:37:07
Christie
I think the important thing todo Carrie, is do a little bit of homework on that influencer and make sure thatthat you, are informed of her tone of voice, her style of, of content andensure that it's aligned. That's really helpful because then when you're out,when you reach out to her, you're going to be able to demonstrate that there isa connection, you've done your homework, and you can personalize your approach. And simply doing this will ensure greater cutthrough than not doing that. And copying and pasting a DM that you have sent out to 20 others as well that won't get heard. So if you want to be,noticed faster in the first instance, let's do your background checks and makesure you identify, micro-influencers in alignment with yourbrand.

00:14:58:08 - 00:15:28:07
Carrie
Great advice. And I guess theother one to that is, you know, get along, get along to the next Mumpower. Ifyou, you know, or, I know that you've, you know, do some great work. If you'reon the flip side, I think if you actually wanting to be a micro influencer,that is the space, to be seen as, you do some really, really exciting workthere with, with brands for mums.

00:15:29:09 - 00:15:53:09
Christie
Definitely. We've got lots ofopportunities for, influencers, content creators, or even for mums who are notinfluencers or content creators but want to try to review products. We've gotan amazing shopping network there as well. So lots of opportunities for mums tobe a part of the Mumpower network, as well as for brands who have productsthat, that they sell and speak to mums for.

00:15:53:13 - 00:16:15:21
Carrie
Absolutely. Christie, I wantedto go, with a nod back to your journey, with Mumpower. I wanted to visit in thesense of, how you perceive risk of running a business. How do you describe yourrelationship to risk? Has that actually changedover the years?  Are there any sort of systems or processes that you putin place to actually manage that risk?

00:16:28:09 - 00:16:55:11
Christie
Yes. Great question Carrie. Honestly,I love the concept of risk. It actually excites me. If it was up to me and myentrepreneurial impulses, I would be going for gold with more risk. But thereality is, not all risks are a good thing. So, I have got two grounding forcesaround me that when I'm tempted and I've got this big picture idea and I thought,I know what we could do it of course it would change everything. I run it by,these two grounding forces, and they'll throw a few logical questions my way.And that, you know. Yes, in a one way they burst my bubble. If I can't answerit, then I know that there's flaws in the risks that I want to take. That's really helpful to counteract. Because,yes, you've got to take risks to grow like that. It takes some chances. Noteverything you're going to do is, going to be successful. No chance. Like, Ilike the concept of, you know, failing forward or failing your way to success.And that's obviously through risk. That's a great combination, but then theother thing is sometimes I get these risks right. So, it's still good toexplore your risks and just, you know, have a sounding board to say if you'vegot any gaps.


00:17:47:19 - 00:17:58:04
Carrie
I love that. And I always loveit when someone actually, goes a little bit against what you're expecting themto say.
Because, you know, it's really. Well, we've asked this. Weactually ask this question every mission episode. We've almost had a hundredepisodes now. so we've got 100 views from business owning women about risk. And I need to look into the data a bit more, but I think we actually probably would get, a bit of a love hate relationship withthe risk question.
And, it's always kind ofchallenging that, that stigma that business owning women aren't open to riskand they don't like it. And yet they realize when we ask this question thatthey're they are actually masters of risk mitigation. And they've always got thisradar of risk and how to manage it because, well, I guess, you know, I'm not ahelicopter parent, but I definitely I'm, always conscious of my two very activeboys, and I've got Cohen who you know Cohen's; Cohen's my big emotion child.And  he just jumps into things straight away. So sometimes he's prone to getting a little bump on the head or you know, he's, he's just fallen in. So weare always, looking at the concept of risk, so that's probably my context. I'm always surprised. And I love that you love it. A lot ofbusiness women have the skill set to do it quite well.

00:19:22:11 - 00:19:47:23
Christie
Yes, definitely. And it isabout finding that balance. Because you don't want to burst your bubble.Because without some form of risk, you won't grow. Yes, I do listen to otherswho are more operationally or logistically minded and they can see the biggerpicture, so forth. But if something else is, driving me and I still believe it,and I know that we'll figure it out, we will figure it out, and we do figure itout. Where some people might not be able to seethat you can get through that risk. Entrepreneurs are good at being able to seewhat others can't.

00:19:57:12 - 00:20:28:05
Carrie
Absolutely. And then you'vealso brought in that element of ask for help bringing in those experts aroundyou and get those fill in those gaps. Because you're right. You will find away, even if you don't know at the beginning. So another thing that we're verypassionate about here at Mums & Co, and a build on the networking side ofthings is that, you know, business introductions can really change thetrajectory of a business success. So whowould you like an introduction to for anything? And it might be in a businesscapacity or even in life?

00:20:38:06 - 00:21:03:05
Christie
That's a great thing to thinkabout in both, both parts of our life, which is just as important. I'd say inbusiness, I love the idea of meeting, super connectors. I'm definitely puttingit out there that I am going to be introduced to a super connector has who hasbeen following the Mumpower journey, has seen our potential, and they arecompelled to introduce me to the right people. That's going to make sure Mumpower keeps going to the next level. Sodefinitely open to meeting super connectors there. I guess in life, what Iwould say is this, yeah, I've really been enjoying new friendships, new naturalfriendships that have evolved with other women, who are on a similar life pathto me juggling, you know, the ugly parts of business, the good parts ofbusiness, family life, and just our world in general. I'm definitely open andreceptive to, introduction to more women like this as well, because it's,always so much more fun, and you get to see the lighter side of life.

00:21:42:16 - 00:21:57:12
Lucy
Thank you. Christie. So, hereat Mums & Co, we talk a lot about the concept of harmony being a circle ofour ambition, livelihood and wellbeing. All those elements together. How wouldyou describe the shape of a good life for you?

00:21:58:11 - 00:22:17:08
Christie
Through experience and, youknow, some crappy phases of life. Like, everybody, you know, you go through upsand downs where, you know, you might not be as happy as what you think you canbe. For me, a good life is when I'm living in alignment to my personal values. That'swhen I feel, harmony.The most harmony out there. So,if there was a way to describe it, it really is about, you know, identifying orencouraging listeners to identify what are three non-negotiables that, you wantto live your life by, like what's really important to you that will guide anydecision that you make in business, and in life. And then that's how you show up. And I feel like when I am showing up inalignment with what is important to me, things are okay. Of course things willbreak and they'll, you know, they're not always perfect all at the same time,but at least that is a guiding, foundation for me. So that's what I would sayis the shape of a good life for me.

00:22:58:10 - 00:23:20:07
Lucy
I love it, and I love the call toaction there with the three things. It's so important to be able to identifythose values. Thank you for sharing that. The final question for you is, in thespirit of women supporting women who are the Mumbitious, and I'm sure you'vegot a long list of these women who are unapologetically blending theirmotherhood and ambition that you'd like to shout out to today.

00:23:20:11 - 00:23:48:03
Christie
I'm going to do a shout out toMelinda Farley from Collective and also to Marissa Brown from Guide Your Light podcastNetwork. Both women have got, a bigger purpose with what they do. Fantastic,warm, friendly personalities. And they're really savvy operators. And I thinkthey definitely, deserve a big, beautiful, warm shout out.

00:23:50:02 - 00:24:01:02
Carrie
Thanks so much for joining uson Mumbition, the podcast by mums and Co. If you'd like to connect with Christyyou can find her on our mums and co member directory on the member platform.


00:24:33:21 - 00:24:49:06
Lucy
Now, after that great episodewith Christy Nicholas, we are going to round out the podcast with a questionfrom one of our listeners. And that question is, if you were a brand wanting tocreate a product for the Mum market, what would you be?

00:24:50:01 - 00:25:12:16
Christie
Very good question. What Iwould be is, definitely one of three categories. That would be a product for,babies or kids because it is a lot more recession proof. when things go down inthe economy, mums are still going to invest in products for the kids or, youknow, for babies or their children. Sothat's a smart industry to be in. Likewise with that, I might be cosmetics andskincare, because if you look at all the women, you know, they all have morethan one of that same thing. So that's a great industry to be in. And I believethat health and wellness is definitely still in the up. So it would be a product in the in one ofthose three categories.