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A space for women entrepreneurs seeking to expand their influence while staying true to their values.

welcome to the
Bright Voices in Business Podcast WITH CHLOE DECHOW

Get ready to build your business on your terms

Join your host Chloe Dechow as she interviews industry thought leaders, shares her expertise as a thought leadership strategist and consultant, and pushes you toward sharing your opinion on a global scale. 





If you’ve previously thought of thought leadership as only for corporate giants, delivering speeches from prestigious stages, think again…

In this episode, we shattered the corporate jargon that often surrounds thought leadership and laid it out plain and simple: thought leadership is for anyone with a unique perspective.

Joining me for the inaugural episode of Bright Voices in Business is Mel Ripp, the mastermind behind Peapod Marketing and PR Consulting to discuss how we can all step into our power as thought leaders. Mel shared her journey and the lessons she’s learned about the importance of authenticity in building a brand. We talked about overcoming self-doubt, the power of storytelling, and how to connect with our audiences on a deeper level. Whether you’re just starting out or looking to amplify your voice, this episode is packed with actionable advice for anyone ready to lead with their unique thoughts.

Join us to hear more about:

  • Mel’s perspective on what it truly means to be a thought leader
  • Advice for combating that inner voice that says you’re not enough
  • Common objections and resistance faced by women entrepreneurs in thought leadership
  • How being genuine in your message can completely transform your brand
  • The benefits of thought leadership (that go WAY beyond marketing)
  • Tips for engaging with your community on a deeper level and growing your influence

Remember that your voice has the power to inspire change and make a lasting impact. Keep pushing past the fear, embrace your unique story, and step into your role as a thought leader.


FREE GUIDE: Steps to Building Your Authentic Authority

Forbes article: What Is A Thought Leader?

Podcast episode by James Wedmore: How to Cure Imposter Syndrome in 54 Minutes or Less

Harvard Business Review article: Why You Should Build a “Career Portfolio” (Not a “Career Path”)


West Haven Website

West Haven Instagram

Chloe Dechow LinkedIn




Peapod Marketing & PR Instagram

Mel’s personal Instagram


Mel Ripp (00:00:00) – I do believe anyone can be a thought leader. All you need is a unique point of view, consistent demonstration of it and bringing people along for the ride. That’s the connecting piece.

Chloe Dechow (00:00:14) – Hi, I’m Chloe Dechow and with more than a decade of experience working with thought leaders, I’ve witnessed firsthand the impact of conviction combined with purpose driven entrepreneurship. This podcast shows you how to authentically bring together leadership, equity, and marketing to build your authority so that you can grow your impact and scale your business. This is a space for elevating women’s voices and redefining what it means to be a thought leader. Together, we’ll unlock the potential of our bright voices and create a ripple effect of change that resonates far beyond the realms of business. This is the Bright Voices and Business podcast. Now let’s dive into today’s episode. Today I’m here with Mel Ripp, who is the founder and CEO of Peapod Marketing and PR consulting. Fueled by the notion that everyone has the insights and expertise to be a thought leader in their industry, specifically women entrepreneurs and executives who may have shied away from shining a light on themselves for a variety of reasons.

Chloe Dechow (00:01:24) – Mel specializes in thought leadership, personal branding, and ghostwriting that helps business owners and leaders that want to be visible in a way that balances all their own stories and perspectives with their values, comfort level, and goals. Thanks for joining me, Mel.

Mel Ripp (00:01:42) – Thank you. I’m so excited to be here.

Chloe Dechow (00:01:44) – I’m so excited to. I know you and I have had a lot of conversations about thought leadership and what that actually looks like in means, and I’m just really excited to be able to bring this conversation that we’ve had between the two of us to the masses, so that we can start revisiting what this term thought leadership actually means.

Mel Ripp (00:02:09) – Yeah, me too, because there are so many levels of business jargon and just, you know, messaging jargon and all of these things. But thought leadership is definitely one of those phrases that people are like, it’s almost like they recoil because they’re either not sure what it means, they don’t consider themselves to be one. You know, there’s a whole bunch of things. But yes, I agree with you.

Mel Ripp (00:02:32) – I’m really excited to get started.

Chloe Dechow (00:02:34) – Yes, and even I can relate to this. As somebody who worked in PR and marketing agencies for over a decade, I, even as somebody who worked on thought leadership strategies, felt cringeworthy sometimes about the work and the people who were being elevated as thought leaders. And so I’m really excited to have this conversation, because I know you and I when we take a step back, we define thought leadership differently than the traditional terms that are used in the C-suite or among some of the startup culture. And so I would love to turn it over to you to just talk about how you define thought leadership as somebody who works a lot with women entrepreneurs.

Mel Ripp (00:03:22) – Yeah. So I actually gave a presentation on this once, and what I did was I put the thought leadership definition that Forbes had come up with. And then the next slide was like my definition. So if it’s okay with you, I’d like to read both of those. Or I’d like to talk about both of those.

Mel Ripp (00:03:42) – Is that cool?

Chloe Dechow (00:03:43) – Yeah. Go for it.

Mel Ripp (00:03:44) – So Forbes, you know, obviously we’re not strangers to Forbes magazine and Forbes is online presence. But when I read their definition of thought leadership and it was just through an article from somebody on like the Forbes Communication Council, and they said a thought leader is an individual that prospects, clients, referral sources, intermediaries and even competitors recognized as one of the foremost authorities in selected areas of specialization, resulting in being the go to individual for said expertise. And I don’t know about you, but when I read all of that, my initial thought was like, what a bunch of word salad. Like intermediaries, you know, like, what are we even are we going to battle? Like, I was just it’s so confusing to me. And so when I gave my definition, I said, and you know, there are some consistencies there, but I said, look, being a thought leader means having a strong, unique point of view, consistently demonstrating that point of view and connecting with people through that point of view.

Mel Ripp (00:04:52) – It’s about the way you think, it’s about the ideas you have and how you’re making that thought process visible to others. And the reason that I wanted to bring those two definitions up is, I think one of the things about thought leadership that is super cringe is just that it has been kind of, I don’t know, pasteurized or like, I mean, it’s just it’s been washed in this corporate jargon. And, and I think, like with all corporate jargon, we start to think about things like, oh, you know, I don’t have intermediaries. I can’t be a thought leader, you know? And I’m not saying that we do that. I’m not saying that we read a definition and we can’t kind of think beyond that. But I do think that honestly, I think I literally say it on my website. I do believe anyone can be a thought leader. All you need is a unique point of view, consistent demonstration of it and bringing people along for the ride. That’s the connecting piece.

Mel Ripp (00:05:48) – Honestly, if you have a unique point of view, but you’re not connecting or consistently demonstrating, it’s still noise, right? It’s still this place where you’re just kind of shouting in a. Canyon into the void. And so I think the connection piece is so important. It’s not a one sided thing. That’s just kind of how I feel or what I think of it when I think of my own definition of thought leadership.

Chloe Dechow (00:06:13) – Yeah, definitely. That resonates with me a lot. For me, this is where I feel we are very aligned. For me, a thought leader is first a leader and leadership can take so many different forms and there are so many different types of leaders. And yet at the end of the day, you first have to be a thought leader who lives in integrity, and then you extend that leadership to the ability to help shape and change people’s opinions and minds. And that’s where the term thought comes in for me. So it’s really about helping people think in a different way or see a different perspective that they hadn’t seen before.

Chloe Dechow (00:06:52) – And the fun thing is, is that we all have unique perspectives. We all see the world through our own lens. And so that does enable anybody to step up and be a thought leader if they choose to be. I do want to ask you, because I know you’ve gotten pushback in the past, that this definition, this idea that anybody can be a thought leader is actually kind of controversial. So I would love to hear what kind of pushback or resistance you’ve gotten when you’ve shared that message.

Mel Ripp (00:07:25) – Well, I have to admit that one person literally said to me, well, not everyone can be a thought leader. I mean, people who, you know, abuse animals can’t be thought leaders. And I’m like, okay, let’s kind of take the everyone out of the equation and stop taking it so literally. First of all, like, of course, you know, I don’t really I don’t care about somebody who might abuse cats. Like, I don’t care about their unique point of view. But I have gotten some pushback.

Mel Ripp (00:07:51) – And one of the things that I continually hear is I cannot call myself a thought leader. That is a title that has to be bestowed. And to that I say, who is going to be steward like in my work and in the work that I do with my female entrepreneur clients and my female leadership clients, I have had conversation upon conversation where the basic foundation of the conversation has been. I kept waiting for somebody to see that I was good at my job, that I had great insights, that I had the expertise and experience to climb the ladder or do a different job or be on the stage. And no one ever tapped me on the shoulder. And to that I usually say, well, good, because you’re tapping yourself on the shoulder now, right? And I think that there’s a lot of agency that comes with and I’m not I don’t go around saying I’m a thought leader. I got that in a workshop I was doing a couple of weeks ago. Somebody asked me, do you consider yourself to be a thought leader? And I said, I do, but my name is not Melissa Ripp, comma thought leader.

Mel Ripp (00:09:00) – You know, like I’m not, you know, kind of putting that out into the world in that way. But I guess I’m just really tired of feeling like we need permission from someone, and I just I don’t believe that that’s the case. And so that is the one thing that I get over and over is just like, oh, well, I think thought leadership has to be earned. And I’m like, well, who’s deciding who gets to earn it? So anyway, I could go on for a long time about that one, but I will.

Chloe Dechow (00:09:25) – Well, and what comes up for me, as you say, that is you have to do the work to grow your thought leadership anyway, right? So in doing that work, you are earning the opportunity to be a thought leader. I also want to talk about the responsibility that you have as a thought leader, because I also think I know it’s a buzzword these days, but impostor syndrome tends to come up. And I remember I’ll share a little bit of my take on imposter syndrome because I think this is helpful.

Chloe Dechow (00:09:55) – I remember listening to a podcast by James Wedmore. He has a podcast called Mind Your Business, and there is an entire episode on imposter syndrome. I highly recommend it if anyone struggles with that, but in his episode, he talks about the fact that imposter syndrome is actually a good thing because it makes you realize that when you go after leadership or being a thought leader, or any type of role that requires you to have influence over other people, you are realizing the responsibility that that type of role has. And so I do think sometimes imposter syndrome gets a bad rap, and there are ways that you get stuck in imposter syndrome that are not productive. However, it also shows that you’re carrying a human and you don’t want to take advantage of that role of power and influence that you have as you reach that position.

Mel Ripp (00:10:51) – Absolutely. If I can just add on to that a little bit, the imposter syndrome conversation we could probably talk all day about. But my coach, whose name is Doctor Donna moreno. She has a really great way of looking at impostor syndrome.

Mel Ripp (00:11:03) – And she’s like, look, what if impostor syndrome is really just like, why don’t we call it what it is? Which for most of us is fear, right? And when we call something a syndrome, we pathologize it, we make it a condition. And so tracing that back to thought leadership. I agree with you, Chloe. I feel like we I take my responsibility as a thought leader. That feels weird to say out loud, sorry, but I take my responsibility as a thought leader very seriously because I feel like I have two audiences. As a thought leader, I want to speak to the women that are starting in business right now that didn’t have someone that was five years into her own journey. And I also want to, you know, appeal to women executives and entrepreneurs that are tired of kind of biting their lip metaphorically and not saying the things that they really want to say. And the point of view is that they want to get out into the world. And I think that I love that idea about imposter syndrome not necessarily being a bad thing, because it does mean that you’re thinking very critically about the opinions and the content and the expertise that you’re putting out into the world, because you want to make sure that they’ll be received and that they’ll be received in a way that’s helpful to other people.

Mel Ripp (00:12:21) – So I completely agree with that. I really I’m going to have to listen to that podcast episode.

Chloe Dechow (00:12:25) – Yeah. It’s excellent. I’m curious. So that’s to me, this imposter syndrome is definitely an objection that we hear a lot around not pursuing this path to thought leadership. I’m curious what other objections you tend to see when you’re in conversations with other women entrepreneurs.

Mel Ripp (00:12:44) – Yes. So the biggest one is either I don’t have anything to say or I don’t have anything new to say. So, you know, that is. And to me, with all due respect, because I have heard that a bunch of times, that is such a cop out to yourself. I was reading a this is a blog from a couple years ago, and it’s a now defunct content marketing platform called animals. And this woman, I just loved how she said that. When we think of thought leadership, why don’t we think about it as more earned secrets? This idea that through our years of, you know, whatever it’s been, right? Our years of business ownership, our years of working in corporate, our years of working at target, like whatever, whatever it is, we have compiled these nuggets of information and these pivotal points in our journeys.

Mel Ripp (00:13:40) – And what I always tell the women that I work with is that milestones to you are just our milestones. Until you give them meaning, until you give things meaning. It does seem like you don’t have anything to say, but if you can open up your mind a little bit to go, hey, I may think that this doesn’t matter, or I may think that this is something that’s already been said, but it has not been said by you, and it is not been said with your unique lens on the world. Right. So that’s one of the things I hear all the time. And then the other thing I hear all the time, and this is imposter syndrome, like to the nth degree, I hear a lot of what did somebody say to me the other day, I don’t want to be a pest to my network. And I was like, how would you be a pest? And she was like, well, you know, like, I’m not posting on LinkedIn very much. And I, you know, like, I, I don’t really talk about this stuff.

Mel Ripp (00:14:39) – And all of a sudden I’m going to go from not saying anything to saying all this stuff all the time. And like, what if people tune me out? Or what if people get sick of me and I’m like, first of all, we are not on people’s minds as much as we think we are. I mean, I don’t mean that to be rude. I just mean it that it’s a fact. I think about this all the time, like, oh, my client needs this. And finally, a business friend of mine was like, your client is not thinking about you right now. So there’s that. But there’s also just this idea that if people do not understand why you want to put your point of view out into the world, then not to say that you don’t have to be their friend or you don’t have to be in their network, but like, you’re not writing for them, right? Like, think about all the people that you are trying to attract that are not those people.

Mel Ripp (00:15:26) – Write for them. Strategize your thought leadership for them. Sorry. I always think about things in terms of content and writing. Those are the two things that I hear most often. I don’t know if you if you hear anything that I’ve missed though.

Chloe Dechow (00:15:38) – Yeah, I hear a lot of those same hurdles. I hear a lot around. And this goes for anybody. But it’s definitely most prominent in the women that I speak with, because when you start a business, you start putting yourself out there more. That fear of judgment tends to jump in and can really prevent somebody from going after the things that they really want in life and in their business. And I so agree with you, Mel, that at the end of the day, you’re going to have people who don’t like you or what you’re doing. And my question back is, are they even your audience? Because it’s okay to repel people. We have to be okay with repelling the wrong people for us, because do you really want to work with jerks? Do you really want to work with the men that hurt cats? As I mentioned earlier, you know.

Mel Ripp (00:16:33) – I don’t know how I got on that. Chloe. I’m sorry.

Chloe Dechow (00:16:36) – No, that’s all good. There are people in our lives that are not meant to be in our world, and so it’s okay to repel the ones that are not aligned. And we need to be okay with that. And I know that’s easier said than done. Yet when we start to put our voice out into the space, what does that actually open up for us? It opens up magnetizing the people who are aligned, magnetizing the connection in their relationship and all those things that not just help business but make our lives better. And so can we talk a little bit about the benefits of putting yourself out there in this way? Because it is it’s a scary thing to do, and it’s a lot easier to do scary things when we understand the value of making those big leaps. So, Mel, can you talk a little bit about benefits?

Mel Ripp (00:17:30) – Yeah. So,, there are so many benefits. If you can just get over that fear hump.

Mel Ripp (00:17:36) – There’s so many good things like sorry, I get like excited. So I think the very first thing is that to your point, Chloe, you attract the people that you’re meant to attract. Right. And I am on and I’m just going to use LinkedIn as an example. There’s definitely a myriad of platforms that you can use to get your thought leadership out there. But LinkedIn is kind of mine, and so I just want to chat about that for a second. So I started really leaning in to LinkedIn right around the pandemic. It was March 2020. And so this is four years of me building my brand on LinkedIn. Not just Mel is a person, but Mel is a business owner and Mel is a ghostwriter and a thought leadership strategist. And I have lost count of how many times someone has reached out to me via LinkedIn or given me a comment, or even has gone so far to contact me like, you know, go to my website, contact me on my contact form and just say I love how you show up and you are giving me courage to show up in my own way.

Mel Ripp (00:18:39) – Courage is a really important part of thought leadership and it’s an important part of business ownership. It’s an important part of being a leader. It’s, you know, wherever you are, you know, courage plays a huge role, right? And just that by getting yourself out there, that you can be a bright light for someone else is something that it’s the most heartwarming, exciting feeling that there is. So I think like just at a base level, you’re giving people permission to do the same. And frankly, I’m sure other people other than women will, you know, listen to your podcast. But like, we need more women voices in business, in leadership, in everything. Right? And that’s the biggest benefit. The other benefit is that I think that when you are, you know, again, you have your point of view and you’re consistently putting it out. There are so many opportunities that come your way. I mean, and again, it takes consistency. It takes time, it takes practice.

Mel Ripp (00:19:37) – I thought leadership is a slow burn. If you take one thing away from this podcast, I want you to take away that thought. Leadership is a slow burn, but there are podcast opportunities that I have been able to snag because people saw my content on LinkedIn. There are guest blogs I’ve been able to contribute to. I got featured in U.S. News and World Report a couple of weeks ago, which was super exciting. Like, I didn’t ask for that and work. I mean, I’ve gotten clients because of my thought leadership expertise, and I don’t even know if it’s so much the point of view, Chloe, as it is just I mean, we say this all the time, but people want to work with other people. And it’s not only that people want to work with kind people who get it, who get them, you know? And when you are able to put yourself out there and put your content out there in a way that is you, is authentically you, you know, you are able to make that happen.

Mel Ripp (00:20:32) – And then the third thing I’ll say is, I think that one of the other benefits of thought. Leadership is, you know, like that saying it’s like, you know, your reputation is what people say about you when you’re not in the room. I think if that’s true, thought leadership is kind of opening yourself up to be in those rooms. Right. And so, you know, yes, of course, like having a good reputation or having a solid reputation as a leader, as a business person, that’s important. But I think that thought leadership and again, that consistency and that kind of taking people along for the ride that you’re on, I have heard so many people be like, oh, you know, I heard about you from this person. And I went and, you know, followed you on LinkedIn. And I love what you have to say. And now I told this person about you and it’s like, that is the Holy grail, right? As you know, as a business like mine who runs on referrals, it’s like, wow, you know, I just by being myself, I can be in all of these places that I haven’t, I didn’t even know about.

Mel Ripp (00:21:33) – That’s pretty amazing. And I think it just speaks to a lot of, you know, when you’re able to show up in that way, there’s just countless benefits.

Chloe Dechow (00:21:42) – Yeah. It sounds like for you there’s been a lot of relationship benefits. There’s been stepping into your own evolution as a leader and being able to have opportunities you wouldn’t have had if you hadn’t authentically shared your own point of view online. So congratulations, by the way, on all the acknowledgement of what you’ve brought to the table.

Mel Ripp (00:22:06) – Let’s oh, do I talk about that?, but, you know, Chloe, I was just thinking about something, and I didn’t mean to interrupt you, but, like, you’re right. I didn’t even think about the fact that you yourself accrue confidence. I mean, I think that’s the thing is, when you put yourself out there and people start to react and they say, wow, I’ve never looked at something that way, or, oh, you know, what you said made me think of a yes.

Mel Ripp (00:22:31) – And you know that I that now I’m going to talk about like, you know, those little comments or, you know, when people do that, like, it’s just so I don’t know, it kind of makes you feel unstoppable, you know, in a, in not a too heady way or like, you know, not it’s not like a heady feeling where you’re like, oh, I’m unstoppable. But, you know, you do feel like you’re like, oh, I am doing the right thing. All the fear that I felt, all the imposter syndrome that I felt, you know, there are good things coming from this. And the more kind of positive reinforcement you get and, you know, positive reinforcement is one of my love languages. You know, I think the more confident that you will be to open up even more about your story and your experiences and your point of view.

Chloe Dechow (00:23:12) – Yeah. So there’s an anecdotal story just from Mel of her experience putting herself out there. I also want to share that there’s a lot of research that supports building your authority and your thought leadership that has a more direct return on investment for your business, so you can build your brand awareness and reach new and different people than you had before.

Chloe Dechow (00:23:36) – There’s the opportunity to build that like know and trust factor, because people are getting to understand who you are and what you stand for. And of course, if they are dealing with an issue that is close to home for them and seeing you as an advocate for them in whatever space or industry that you work in that has the power to create some brand loyalty for your business and ultimately support you with purchasing decisions and your revenue and profit. So there’s a lot of research out there to back up, not just the impact you can have, because my goal is to be working with impact driven women. And I know, Mel, you feel the same way. This is a place for that. So it doesn’t just provide impact to people. There is a return on investment for your business as well. I Mel, I also want to talk about the fact that you’re a small business owner. And, you know, I think when we hear a thought leader or building authority, it can sound really intimidating because we tend to jump to the Brené Browns or the Simon cynics of the world who are absolutely wonderful.

Chloe Dechow (00:24:46) – And that might not be what everybody wants or what they desire out of their business or their life. And so you are a small business owner and proof that you can be a thought leader on thought leadership, which is a whole new version of inception, by the way, a thought leader without necessarily I mean, and maybe you have a dream one day to do a Ted talk and that is great. But without hitting, you know, a crazy large audience stage, you can be a thought leader in your everyday life. And so can you talk a little bit about what that looks like for you on a day to day basis?

Mel Ripp (00:25:24) – Yeah. So, you know, one of the things that I’m always really cognizant about is and, you know, you list two of my favorite people, right? You know, I love Renee. Adam Grant is another one I love, you know. There’s just so many people that are doing this kind of work. I think that what I’m always very cognizant about is I’m not trying to do brain surgery here.

Mel Ripp (00:25:47) – Right. And I don’t know any other way to say it besides that, that old tired trope. But I’m not looking to, you know, necessarily have this incredible new thought that no one else has thought before. Right? When I think about, you know, my daily life when I’m going through, you know, LinkedIn posts or when I’m reading something, I’m always thinking about what is my reaction to this? Do I agree? Do I disagree? Is there a yes and or a but there that I can, you know that I can kind of think about? Is the subject matter important to me? And so I’m not sure if this is exactly what you’re asking. But when I think about, you know, how I kind of decided to develop my thought leadership, it really kind of was this Venn diagram of like, what do I care about? And what do I know about, right? And that middle circle or whatever. I mean, it gets pretty big sometimes. And so I’ve really had to hone in on what topics do I care about and what are my content themes.

Mel Ripp (00:26:47) – Or, you know, I call them content pillars. You know, what do I want to share? And I think that you really have to think about them differently than just like, oh, one of my content pillars is I’m going to share, you know, lessons I’ve learned. Or, you know, one of my content pillars is I’m going to talk about awards I’ve won. I encourage people to dig deeper than that kind of base level. I’m always thinking about what are misconceptions in my industry that I want to dispel. What are things that the best practices say that I’m like, nope, sorry, doesn’t work. Doesn’t work for someone like me. What did me five years ago need? And how can I talk to that person? How can I take my own experience as a woman in corporate America who never felt like she belonged? I mean, I was I’m like the biggest corporate weirdo there is. And so how do I take those experiences and put them out there for other people to learn from? And so I think when I think about, like what it looks like for me in action, it’s just getting super curious about everything.

Mel Ripp (00:27:52) – You know, we are so inundated with social media and news and all of these things, and we obviously don’t have to talk about all of them. But sometimes things stick in your mind and you’re like, I can’t let this go. This is important to me, and I really try to keep an eye out and or an ear or whatever out for those things, because that is how I’ve come up with a lot of my platform around, you know, everybody being a thought leader and how thought leadership doesn’t have to mean that, you know, you found like the theory of relativity for your industry. It’s really about adding to the conversation and moving it along in a way that makes people kind of shake their head and go,, yep. I mean, even if I don’t agree, I have to admit you’ve got a point, you know? So I just think it really starts with and it’s probably a cop out, but it just it starts with getting so curious about everything and just really paying attention to, I always call it the tummy tickle when I read something or when I, when I look on Instagram or when I’m looking on LinkedIn and I see someone that posts something, I literally have a feeling in my belly, good or bad, that’s like, ooh, I don’t like that.

Mel Ripp (00:29:03) – Or ooh, I love that. And I want to add to it, you know, and, and I think it’s actually a really good place to start if you’re wanting to do more of this work, but you’re just not sure where to begin, just pay attention to how you feel about the messages that you’re constantly being inundated with.

Chloe Dechow (00:29:19) – Yeah, definitely. I love that idea of turning to see what you’re already reacting to naturally, and then getting super curious about what might be under the surface there. If there’s a belief that’s coming up or an alternative way of thinking that you carry, I think that’s a great place to start. I also want to add that opinions are great, but having an opinion on absolutely everything and sharing it with absolutely everyone is not typically the best approach to really marketing in general, but also building your authority. And so for me, it’s really about paying attention on what’s relevant to your audience. And it can be an extension of the service or product that you have. But really thinking about them and helping them feel seen in what they’re going through.

Chloe Dechow (00:30:11) – And so how how does somebody take their hundreds of opinions that they have consciously or subconsciously acquired throughout their life? How do they narrow that down to 3 to 5 messages that really are the platforms that they want to stand on?

Mel Ripp (00:30:29) – Yeah, that’s a great question. So I think that one of the things that I take my thought leadership clients to. Rule is they take them through an exercise where we talk about everything. We talk about who you were as a kid. What values did you see in your family life, you know, how did you decide what you wanted to go to school for? Maybe you didn’t go to school. What did you decide? What you wanted to do for work? And the reason I start at that very, you know, nascent stage is because we did not just, you know, we didn’t show up at work one day and go, oh, okay. Well, I believe all this stuff, I believe it must be because I have a job now, right? Everything that we value, everything that we care about, everything that we feel deep empathy for.

Mel Ripp (00:31:15) – You can trace it back many times to who we were as kids, what we did have, what we didn’t have. And so I always kind of encourage people as their as they’re kind of like trying to wrap their arms around their own pillars or their own themes to think about the spectrum of their life and what are the things that have come up for you as these micro moments? I like to call them. Right. And so one of my micro moments is in, you know, when I was eight years old, I wrote a story about a laughing hyena, and I read it as Laughing Hyena that had lost its laugh. And I remember reading it out loud to my class. I was terrified, I was a huge ham, but I was terrified because I was like, oh God, you know, like, I already am a weird kid and now they’re going to not like me. And my class, I remember, had so many questions at the end of the story like, well, what? What happened? Did he ever get his laugh back? Did he ever, you know, and I tell this story because that is when I knew I wanted to be a writer.

Mel Ripp (00:32:13) – That’s when I knew that it wasn’t just about writing a story. And like beginning, middle, end. It was captivating people on a level. And one of my content pillars is how to captivate. Right. And and I don’t know if I would have necessarily thought about that if I would have just started when I, you know, like if I just was like looking at thought leadership through the lens of my professional experience. Right. And so I think my first step is to just really look at the breadth of your life and think about it more as like, what did I value? What do I feel? What do I you know, what is there a deep reverence for? And most of the time, yes, that will be something in your career and that’ll be something in your craft and something that you do. But I think it actually can help you narrow things down. If you look at the breadth of your life and go, okay, here are the moments that mattered. And here’s what I can talk about as a result.

Mel Ripp (00:33:12) – So I’m not sure if that exactly answered your question, because it’s it’s hard just to kind of get down to like those five key things. But I always tell people like, yes, of course you want to talk about what you do for a living or like what you think about something, but also thought leadership is not just about, you know, hard skill expertise, right? It’s about how you’ve gained things like empathy and understanding and compassion and how you’ve applied that to your work. And so anyway, that’s that’s why I love to kind of start, you know, from that entire context of your life. And honestly, if you do that, you will be able to start picking out those themes and going, oh, yeah, I can talk about that.

Chloe Dechow (00:33:53) – Yeah. What I’m hearing you speak to is the fact that there are lots of different ways of gaining experience and being able to relate that experience as a thought leader. And so, of course, what’s usually recognized more traditionally in the working world is the professional experience and years of work and types of things that you worked on.

Chloe Dechow (00:34:15) – And of course, there’s the educational experience, like going to college or getting an MBA or a credential of some kind. Those are typically what is honored in our workplace. However, there’s also lived experience that we gain throughout our life as we grow or experience things that happen to us or that we did, whether that’s good or bad. And that is another element of leadership that you can provide to people because you’ve lived through something. And I think sometimes that can be more valuable as well, because when you’ve actually lived through a challenge that you are supporting someone else through, you become more approachable. You become somebody that they know understands them in a deep way, that somebody who’s never been through that before can. And so I love that you are talking about these messages don’t have to just be something that you learned in your career, but it’s also something that you’ve learned or gained through your life. Like I think about when I became a mom and how much my identity shifted as a mom. And you hear, you know, when you become a mom, you see the world differently.

Chloe Dechow (00:35:34) – But it’s one thing to hear. Or that phrase, and it’s an entirely different thing to experience it. And so, you know, that’s just one idea of identity shifting. The same thing happens when you leave a career and start your own business. Or, you know, when you are writing and presenting to a classroom and realizing that you have a deep love for something and the people around you are finding it incredibly engaging and interesting. And that shift happens in those micro moments and in those macro moments, and those are things that you can rely on as part of your thought leadership in your messaging and the way you show up in the world as well. So I just love taking that large view and then shrinking it down into what matters. I also know now that the topics that you recommend change for people as they grow and evolve, because something that we learned three years ago, we might find out more information about. Right? And when we know better, we do better. And so that might evolve to is what you decide on today as your thought leadership topics.

Chloe Dechow (00:36:39) – In a couple of years, you’ll need to revisit and see what those are or trends might emerge, right, that are going on in your industry or in the world. And we have to be flexible and willing to understand the impact of all the other little interconnected pieces that impact the people we serve and the topics that we talk about.

Mel Ripp (00:37:00) – So I just want to say a quick story about a client that I just started working with. And so she’s a former VP of people or SVP of people ops. And so, you know, of course, like her entire role throughout her two decades of people ops experience was, you know, just having a very deep care and understanding of, you know, what people are going through and really wanting to kind of get rid of the misconceptions around, you know, paper pushing HR people and kind of all that. And then she decided to leave that job, and now she is a career coach. She’s helping executives manage big transitions like layoffs. And, you know, she calls them career quakes, which I love.

Mel Ripp (00:37:36) – But anyway, you know, one of the things that we’ve been working on is really kind of bringing more of what makes her her into her expertise. And she said to me a couple of weeks ago, she’s like, you know, I’ve always had this mischievous streak. And so she told me this story about when she was five and, you know, she was there was something that she did, and it was just very mischievous. And she’s like, that’s actually what I bring into my coaching. There’s a little bit of mischief there. There’s a little bit of like, you know, what you could do. And that’s one of her content pillars now. And, and so that’s what I mean when I talk about like, you know, and I think, like everything that you said just totally like cements that too, is just that we know who we are from a very young age. And so I love that there are certain pieces that will shift, but there are certain pieces that will never go away.

Mel Ripp (00:38:27) – And it’s really about how you adapt them to all of the hats professionally, that you’re going to wear throughout your life.

Chloe Dechow (00:38:35) – Yeah. I you know, I’m actually picturing like, a homecoming, right? Because sometimes, actually, I shouldn’t say sometimes. Most of the time as we grow, we get conditioned by the outside world or, you know, families and things like that that put on these expectations of us. And we tend to lose a part of ourselves as we grow up. And what I’m hearing from you is really like this homecoming to who you were as a child, and those natural skills and interests that are really a part of who you are, but tend to get washed down or washed away as we age. And so that’s really about, again, being authentic and coming back to that inner child in us that wants to be mischievous or silly or playful or curious, and being able to have that show up today as an adult and as a leader, I think that’s what ends up charming people right in like magnetizing people, is they want to be around people who are authentically them.

Mel Ripp (00:39:36) – Yeah, 100%. As you were talking, I was thinking about this like funny image. And I think this is why people get so weird or up in arms about thought leadership, because it literally feels like you’ve got some like old white dude on a mountain and he’s like, I’m a thought leader. And, you know, so he like, says his thoughts, you know, and everyone’s kind of looking at him. And then he goes back to wherever he, you know, and like and everyone’s like, what just happened. And so I think that is again, it points to kind of the antiseptic nature of this or like the I don’t know, it’s like just this washed feeling of like, you know, a thought leader. It isn’t just thoughts about business. It’s not just thoughts about expertise. It’s just it’s all of these things kind of wrapped up. And the more that we’re able to share and I get it, vulnerability is a thing. Everyone has a vulnerability spectrum where they’re like, look, I’m an open book or, you know, look, I don’t want to talk to you.

Mel Ripp (00:40:30) – I really just want to stick to business. And that’s fine. Right? But you have to find a way to let. Your authentic self shine through because it is going to be a pretty hard sell to others. If you are just kind of spouting off education or spouting off expertise, and there’s no they’re there for people to kind of react to and kind of snuggle up to in a way, you know, I think good thought leadership makes people feel seen, as you said, heard. But I think it also makes people feel a little safe. It makes people feel okay to be like, oh, yeah, I feel that too. Or, you know, I don’t feel that, but I feel this. And now I feel like that’s okay to feel that way. Of course it’s okay to feel that way, you know? I mean, yes, for most things, yes.

Chloe Dechow (00:41:13) – It’s bringing humanity back into business. And it can be really easy to forget that at the end of the day, people want to do business with people.

Chloe Dechow (00:41:23) – Most of us, especially in the service based industries like coaching, consulting agencies that matter. You know, it’s a relationship business. And so, yes, you can talk just about business, but you got to figure out how to bring some humanity into what you’re talking about business. And so that does require a different type of creativity to bring that in.

Mel Ripp (00:41:43) – And it’s so much easier. Being yourself is so much easier than trying to be someone else. I lost track of in corporate, and I’m sure that you can relate to this too, Chloe in your agency background, but it’s like I lost track of how many masks I was trying to wear and how many different people I was trying to be because I thought that that was what leadership was supposed to be. Right. And I think that one of the things that I love about true thought leadership is that you really get to see someone as they are, and it’s so much less work than trying to fake it and be someone else. And people see right through that anyway.

Mel Ripp (00:42:20) – Right? So I don’t know, just I like that part of the business that we’re in.

Chloe Dechow (00:42:25) – Absolutely. So say somebody is listening to this podcast and they are super jazzed about getting started on thought leadership. What would you recommend their first step be?

Mel Ripp (00:42:35) – So I think the first step is I always start with three questions. What do you believe? What do you want and why does it matter? And honestly, even if you’re not a journal or journal on it and don’t give yourself any limitations or anything, just start to think really critically. Like when it comes to my industry, what are my answers to those three questions when it comes to who I am as a human being, you know how I interact with people or how I build relationships. What do I believe? What do I want? What’s that end goal for me? And I honestly feel like when you have those really fundamental questions, you can start to pick out those things that make you you and you can literally start to kind of see patterns in it.

Mel Ripp (00:43:24) – You can start to circle similar words like, I remember just circling curiosity ten times and I was like, oh, this is one of my values. This is what I hold dear. How am I going to talk about curiosity as part of my thought leadership? And so I think just starting out with some really foundational questions and kind of just getting to that point, and there’s a great Harvard Business Review article about this. I can’t remember what it’s called, but thinking about our careers, not in terms of a career path, but career connections, right? So think about all of the roles that you play personally and professionally, all of the jobs you’ve had. What did you like about those things? How did you get to use your skills? So that’s another way to kind of start to do it. That’s a bit more a bit more tailored to like your professional life, but like, what are the connections that you can make between all of the different hats you wear, all of the different roles you’ve played, all the different things you love? What are the 3 to 4 things that are just really obvious? I remember doing this exercise, and one of the things that came out for me is like all my life, and I think it’s because I was born into a very, very blue collar family.

Mel Ripp (00:44:35) – We didn’t have a ton of money. You know, I lived in a trailer court for the first couple of years of my life, and I remember doing this exercise and I was like, wow, everything I’ve ever done in my life has been predicated on I’ll figure it out. I’ll figure it out. Everything is figure out. All right, I think it’s Marie Forleo. But then like, that became one of my pillars too, is just this idea that, like, it is so important to me to figure it out because I don’t know any other way forward than that. Like everything I’ve done in my life has just I’ve always had to move forward. And so when you start to ask yourself those fundamental questions or even trace your path of like what you’ve done in your life, you will start to see patterns, I promise you.

Chloe Dechow (00:45:20) – Yeah, I’m hearing a lot of finding that through line with your your education, your professional experience, your lived experience. What are those through lines that have common themes? Because that can be a great place to anchor your messaging and what you want to be known for.

Chloe Dechow (00:45:37) – Agreed. The other thing I wanted to ask you about is, I know you mentioned earlier that thought leadership is a slow burn, and I would love to hear from you. I have my own thoughts, but I would love to hear from you. What makes this method of leadership and marketing a slow burn compared to like paid social ads, for example? Like what about this is different?

Mel Ripp (00:46:00) – So here’s my spicy take, which is all of marketing is really a slow burn. But, but having said that, you know, I think that the reason why it’s a slow burn is twofold. So first of all, you have to really get clear, just like you do in as when you’re marketing a product or a service, you have to get clear on who you are, what you stand for, what your audience is, what your goals are. And that takes time within you. So. So I’ve been in business full time for five years. It’s only been in the past, I’d say, 18 months, that I have become crystal clear on what I want to do, who I want to serve, what I want people to know, and how I’m consistently telling that story.

Mel Ripp (00:46:46) – Right. So that’s the first reason why it’s a slow burn, because it just takes some marination you’re marinating for, you know, sometimes several months. The other part is that it is really scary to let people see you, and I don’t care how confident you are. It’s always a scary thing. And so the reason that it’s a slow burn is you start out small, right? Like and you obviously don’t have to, but I was one of those people that right out the gate, I really didn’t know what I believed, I didn’t know what I wanted to say. And so I started testing things. I started just kind of getting things out there on LinkedIn. I mean, nothing that, you know, I would come to regret later, but, you know, but just things that I was like, oh, I, I’ve always been thinking this way about this or oh, I wonder if anyone else is thinking this. And I paid attention to what my audience was looking for and what they wanted.

Mel Ripp (00:47:39) – And, and I, you know, paid attention to the engagement and. All of that stuff, but it’s different than a paid social ad because you can track that social ad, right? You can track to say, oh, well, I, I got this many clicks. They went to my site, they filled out a lead, you know, a lead gen form and blah, blah, blah, right. Thought leadership is different because you’re just it is human to human marketing, and there’s no replacement for how much time it takes to build a relationship with somebody. I have a client right now who and I’ve talked with them several times, but they’re always very frustrated. Whenever they post something, they pour their heart out and there’s no engagement. There’s like three likes, right? And that can be incredibly frustrating. I’ve been there before. I posted something yesterday and I was like, oh, it’s gonna be great. And it was fine, you know, it was. But you have to remember that engagement is not the only metric here, and it’s not even the most important metric, because just think about how we are as human beings.

Mel Ripp (00:48:44) – Every time someone says something awesome. Chloe, do you pick up the phone and go, hey, Mel, you said something really awesome and I just want to let you know about it. Like we do not do that in our daily lives. You know, I don’t like everyone’s LinkedIn posts. Like I barely text my mom back, you know? And so I think, like, the point is, like, we’re waiting for all of this external validation. And sometimes it doesn’t come and we get discouraged, but it just it takes the time it takes. And there’s especially if you’re depending on digital channels, there’s algorithms to think about, you know, LinkedIn for example, just, you know, kind of blew up its algorithm again. And so everyone’s having low engagement and low reach. And you know, it isn’t it is not for the it’s not for the faint of heart. I will say that.

Chloe Dechow (00:49:29) – Yes, I couldn’t agree more with both of those. And I also want to add that when we think about traditional marketing, we are thinking about engagement and followers and some of those more vanity metrics, so to speak.

Chloe Dechow (00:49:44) – We’re also thinking about people downloading our free guide or lead magnets and getting on our email list and all those kind of, as you said, like it’s a straight line from A to B, maybe not 100%, but a lot of the time it is. Whereas in the goal for that is to get them into your funnel with thought leadership. Yes, there is a secondary goal from a business standpoint, but the main goal is really about building credibility and trust. And I don’t know about you, Mel, but I think there’s a lot of research out there. And from my own experience that usually you don’t trust a paid ad the way you would a person. And so that’s just something that we have to think about is when we we think about relationship building, it requires us to keep showing up. You can’t just have one conversation with somebody and implicitly trust them. That’s not how relationships work. And so it’s about showing up. It’s about also sharing your message consistently, maybe in different ways and different subtopics, but sharing consistently so somebody knows what to know you for and developing that, that credibility and trust because you’re not going away.

Chloe Dechow (00:51:00) – And so I think that can also kind of get lost a little bit in the thought leadership realm.

Mel Ripp (00:51:06) – I always tell people to think about thought leadership, as maybe you and I just agree on this, I don’t know, but I don’t think of thought leadership as a marketing tool. I think about thought leadership as a trust building, relationship building, connection building tool that does act as a marketing agent to get you business. It’s not the easiest. It’s not the fastest. It’s your point. It’s definitely not a direct line where you can be like, oh, I see how many people downloaded my lead magnet, right? But I guarantee you that when you are able to build, you know, your your own thought leadership ethos, that it will become a marketing engine for you. But I think the shift has to happen where you’re like, because, I mean, I see this a lot where people are like, I’m posting all the time, I’m not getting any business why, why? And I’m like, it’s because you’re thinking about thought leadership and the platforms that you’re using for it differently.

Mel Ripp (00:52:07) – Yes. Those platforms are used for marketing. Yes, messaging is an important marketing component. Building trust is an important marketing component, but I have had to make that shift where I’m like, this is not about getting business, at least in the short term. This is about building my messaging, building my credibility. And to your point, the only person I ever trusted right away broke my heart. Right? And so, you know, so I just want people to feel comfortable with me. I want them to like what I’m having to say. But trust just takes time. And that’s I mean that. Is what thought leadership is.

Chloe Dechow (00:52:44) – Yeah, we can all reflect and remember a time in which we got burned. And so naturally we get more skeptical and it takes time to build that trust. I couldn’t agree with you more though, Mel. You know, I think marketing comes secondary when it comes to thought leadership. And thought leadership is really about leadership at the end of the day. So you could be an internal thought leader at a business.

Chloe Dechow (00:53:09) – You can be a C-suite thought leader. You can be an entrepreneur, thought leader. It’s really about leadership, trust. And the intention needs to be rooted in impact. So to me, it’s really this is how you’re going to make an impact. And lucky for me, doing this also helps me grow my business in all the ways we’ve talked about. It’s a lot harder to measure directly the impact of thought leadership. And yet the research shows that buyers trust people in businesses more when they see thought leadership content. It’s a way to cultivate culture. If you have a team, because they can rally around a purpose and mission that they’re on board with, they can see that they’re contributing to something bigger than themselves.

Mel Ripp (00:53:55) – Yeah, it’s talent acquisition tool like we haven’t even talked about, like all of the ways that I always looked at it through the lens of a business owner. And I didn’t mean to interrupt you, Chloe. I just was like, oh, my God. Like, I didn’t even think about, like, all this stuff around, right? It’s around rallying around a mission and vision.

Mel Ripp (00:54:10) – If you have a manager that is a thought leader and like just can think about things in a different way, you want to work for that person, you want to work for that company, and you’ll be more loyal. You’ll be you’ll be engaged. And the talent acquisition opportunity for thought leadership is just immense to people want to work with people that have cool ideas and they’re trustworthy and they’re empathetic and yeah, all that stuff, I love it.

Chloe Dechow (00:54:37) – People want to leave their mark on the world in whatever shape and form that looks like for them. And so when they see a leader who genuinely wants to make a difference, you know, that attracts the right talent, people are more likely to give their time and energy and money to support you. It’s huge. So absolutely, the second to last question that I have for you would be that I want to talk a little bit about when we do think about the marketing aspects and where you show up. I think we also tend to think of thought leaders as people who hit the keynote stage, right? The Ted talks, the major conferences, they’re those people.

Chloe Dechow (00:55:25) – And yes, absolutely. But you can also, if public speaking is not your jam and it’s not a goal of yours, that’s okay. You can also demonstrate thought leadership in lots of other ways. I know for me, I work with clients on helping them have the skills and strategies to be able to navigate an interview with a podcaster or journalist and really make sure that their message gets across. And that’s an intermediary audience where they are using someone else’s already built up audience to share a message. And there’s a lot of credibility in that. However, some people don’t want to do interviews with journalists, too. So, Mel, what other channels in the marketing world could somebody use thought leadership and share those 3 to 5 messages with the people that matter most? Where could they do that?

Mel Ripp (00:56:19) – Yeah. So, you know, obviously social media is a great place for this. You know, I know Chloe, you’re definitely more of the Instagram. You know you’re more Instagram I’m more LinkedIn. But maybe you might get into LinkedIn a little bit.

Mel Ripp (00:56:31) – But like both of those platforms are so great for really kind of warming people up to you, having them understand what you believe in. I call LinkedIn, like LinkedIn is your own personal public relations firm. Like you get to set your messaging, you get to set when it goes out, you get to set what you say. You get to set the words that you use. No one is doing that for you. I mean, LinkedIn does, you know, put you in LinkedIn jail for, I don’t know, I, I’ve never been in it, so I’m not sure. But like it is such a great way to showcase your own thought leadership. However, you know, the thing that we have to remember about social media is that we are beholden to algorithms. We’re beholden to people who want to make money on advertising. And so one of the things that I always tell people is don’t don’t build your house on real estate. You don’t own build a rental property on the real estate you don’t own.

Mel Ripp (00:57:26) – And so, you know, anything can be a thought leadership channel. Obviously your website, a lot of people look at websites and they’re like, oh, people need to know the services I provide, and they need to have a couple of case studies. And it’s like, know your entire thought leadership ethos should be on your website, right? And that goes for brands too. Brands need to have their point of view on their website, and I know that we talk a lot about being customer centric, and we talk about like, oh, well, we shouldn’t talk about ourselves because, you know, we need to talk about what we do for our customers. And I think that that’s true to a point, but people are not going to buy from you if they don’t know who you are. So, you know, like whether it’s an about page or like who we are and why we’re different, like, that needs to be part of your ethos as well. And then, you know, the other part I would say is I know that you already mentioned it, but it’s like there are so many opportunities to get earned media just earn media opportunities, whether they’re podcasts, whether somebody’s looking for a quick 1 or 2 sentences for a blog they’re writing.

Mel Ripp (00:58:25) – There are so many ways to do this other than getting on a stage I personally like. I only started to have a desire to be on a stage this year, and so social media is kind of my jam. Just because I can control the message, I can say whatever I want to say for the most part, and my audience is there. And so I think that thought leadership can be definitely, you know, kind of given and, and, you know, dispersed throughout a bunch of different channels.

Chloe Dechow (00:58:56) – Yeah, definitely. There’s so much opportunity to weave it into what you’re already doing from a marketing standpoint. So yes, speaking engagements is one way journalist and podcast interviews as another. Writing op eds or having a column for a publication is an option. Your blog, your own podcast if you have one, even your you know, your free guides and lead magnets can have some grounding in your your thought leadership topics. So this isn’t something that you have to once you know what you want to talk about, this is something that you can naturally weave into the things you’re already doing for your business.

Chloe Dechow (00:59:34) – And there’s also even greater opportunity once you have these topics to be invited into other spaces to talk. And so that could be a speaking engagement, but that could also be a webinar or a LinkedIn live or something else that enables you to get in front of audiences because people start to see the value you have to share with their audiences. They have nourished and cultivated as well. So some things to think about in terms of, you know, now, you know, a little bit more on our take of thought leadership and what is important and what isn’t, how to define it. Would love for you to find that for yourself. And now, you know a couple of ways to start putting that into practice. So thank you so much, Mel. I could talk for literally hours with you about this and still have so many follow up questions. So maybe we’ll have to do a part two down the road, but we’d love for you to share a little bit about where people can find you and learn more about what you do.

Mel Ripp (01:00:33) – Sure. So my website is a great place to go. So it’s workwithpeapod.com and then I’m also on LinkedIn. Just search for Melissa Ripp last name Ripp, and I’m also on Instagram. My personal Instagram is at Peapod Mel and my business Instagram is peapodmarketing.

Chloe Dechow (01:00:54) – Awesome. Thank you Mel. We’re going to also leave all of those links and opportunities to connect with Mel in the show notes. And just a big thank you Mel for being my first podcast guest. I couldn’t think of a better person to help get this topic kicked off.

Mel Ripp (01:01:11) – Oh, I’m so honored, Chloe. Thank you so much for having me.

Chloe Dechow (01:01:14) – Thank you.

Chloe Dechow (01:01:19) – Thank you for joining me today. If you enjoyed this episode, invite your entrepreneur friends to tune in. Don’t forget to connect with me on Instagram at West Haven Coaching. I would absolutely love to hear your thoughts on today’s episode and continue the conversation with you there. And before you go, be sure to download my free guide, Five Steps to Building Your Authentic Authority, which will walk you through how to grow your thought leadership in a way that’s true to who you are and what you stand for.

Chloe Dechow (01:01:48) – You can find the guide at West Haven coaching.com/steps or follow the link in the show notes. Thanks again for tuning in. Together we are changing the faces and voices of thought leadership. Until next time, keep leading with authenticity and impact.

Redefining What a Thought Leader Is (and Who Gets to Be One) with Mel Ripp

April 4, 2024

thought leadership, women entrepreneurs, unique point of view, corporate jargon, objections, resistance, fear of judgment, imposter syndrome, brand awareness, brand loyalty, authenticity, personal experiences, content pillars, humanity in business, marketing strategy, leadership journey


Leadership, Marketing

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