In this episode, Bobby speaks with Jane about how her journey from bottling up her emotions as a sales team leader, to embracing who she is and connecting with her audience through ‘appropriate vulnerability’ — and how it’s transformed her business in unexpected ways. They explore the sales lessons and frameworks that help Jane form deep, authentic connections with clients. Plus, they explore what it takes to build a seamless location-independent business and live your adventurous life now.
Free Gift: Download Jane’s Innoventurous Guide: Travel as Much as You Want Without Missing a Business Beat
(01:00) – Introduction
(02:45) – Real Life vs. Reel Life
(05:00) – “Appropriate Vulnerability”
(7:00) – Jane’s Secrets to Engaging Social Media Content
(8:40) – Good vs. Bad Social Media Content for Business
(10:30) – Aligning Your Marketing With You
(14:30) – How People Buy
(17:15) – What It Takes To Be Location-Independent
(20:00) – Why It’s So Important to Know Yourself
(23:30) – How Jane’s Mission Has Evolved
Bobby: So tell the listeners a little bit about you and what your company does.
Jane: Well, I am Jane Garee, known as the sales strategist for the non sales person, and I work with passionate, committed business owners and entrepreneurs who are ready to stop the stress and get to yes in their enrollment conversations, their content conversions, and their one to many presentations. And ultimately really that’s how you can serve more people, make more money and have more fun.
Bobby: What is the overall journey that customers take with you from not knowing about your company to becoming raving fans?
Jane: That’s a good question. The first thing is there has to be some level of awareness that they’ve got a problem with, we’ll call it making money. So revenue generation. They’re in the churn and burn of, I’m putting out a lot of content, but I’m not really seeing a lot of clients come in as a result of that. They usually are introduced to me in one of those three ways. So through my content, through a conversation or through the presentation.
And really from there, it’s just about connecting with them and moving them through the process of, is this the problem that you have? And is this the possibility that you would like to have instead? So I’m a big fan of sharing what I call real life, R E A L, and not just the reel life, R E E L, because in our social media society and just even with the videos and everything it can look super bright and shiny and glossy and I really like to let people in my community know there is all that and that is real and that there is glossy and fun and there’s a lot of things that are exciting and there’s a whole backside of the story that you don’t know is going on unless I share it with you. So I want to make sure that I share it with you.
So the people that are in my community that do become raving fans, I have a solution to their problem. I’m a real person and I share it and I’m there with them. You know, I really partner with them to take the journey of entrepreneurship and business ownership because it can be hard and it can be lonely.
Bobby: Absolutely. One of the things that you highlighted was the difference between the two types of real life. I know a lot of companies and brands when they start to promote themselves on social media and put themselves out there. It’s very tempting, and they often do, give that polished view of what’s going on. How did you land at that authentic, REAL approach as the approach that you wanted to do and how has that worked for you?
Jane: I wasn’t an early adopter of, I love social media, I can see everything that’s possible here from a business standpoint. I really almost didn’t get it. As in, why does anybody care if I had French toast or yogurt for breakfast and why am I posting this? It was just a bizarre concept to me.
But a few years ago, I was just in a space in my head and my heart and my life where I wanted to post things that were a little more open and a little more vulnerable and a little bit more of not just the business side of me, but the human side of me. And it was really powerful because what I discovered was the more I opened up and shared more of who I was and the more that I allowed people to see into the darker spaces, the more relationships that I really started to build, and the stronger those relationships were. And then they ended up becoming clients. So I actually didn’t go into it intentionally thinking I’m going to share and be appropriately vulnerable and therefore people will come to know me and therefore they will work with me.
It wasn’t a business plan at all. It was something actually that was very deeply personal. And it ended up being such a gift because it really did show me the power of, it’s the adage: people don’t care what you know until they know how much you care.
And what I always say to my clients, people fall in love with who you are and then they buy whatever you’re selling. And if you think about brands that you love or the items that you buy and the brands that are attached to them, probably the things that you spend the most money on that you buy the most, it’s because you love that brand and that company. You love their vision and what they stand for and how they show up in the world.
And so that’s our journeyas small business owners. We are the brand, we are the face. And if people don’t know who you are and they don’t know that you’re a real person and they don’t understand that you’re just like them, you have all the feelings and all the things that they experience and all the situations that they go through, good, bad, up and down and all around. If they don’t have that composite picture of you, then you’re just a solution transaction provider. And they can get that from anywhere.
Bobby: I imagine as you got into it and started sharing more of yourself, that there might’ve been times where you overshared or went too far. How did you learn to strike the balance for that level of vulnerability that was appropriate? And what are some of the frameworks that you use now to continue to strike that balance?
Jane: Number one, have I already moved a little bit past it? So there have been times where I’ve gotten on to social media and went, I’m just just and I think no you’re still high on emotion and low on logic. That’s how I describe it. I’m high on emotion and I’m low on logic. So pulling back and just giving myself the space to process it. And sometimes I just need a 30 minute processing period. And sometimes I need a couple of days or sometimes it could be several months. So number one, speak to the situation with some emotional sobriety, with some wisdom and with some insight. Because now I’m high on logic and low on emotion.
The second thing that I think about is what’s the lesson in it? So just sharing your dirty laundry for the sake of sharing dirty laundry to me personally, that’s where it becomes uncomfortable all the way around. So if it’s just this dumping of trauma and all these terrible things that are happening or things that have happened. And there’s no structure behind it, meaning there’s an inability to actually deliver the information with any kind of cohesive structure to it. So somebody’s understanding and there’s a point behind it, then that’s not going to be as powerful.
And then the third is how do I articulate this so that I’m simultaneously seen as a real person who went through something that was embarrassing or painful or whatever the case may be. And that I have the expert and authority in addition to, and because I’m on the other side of it, I can speak to this topic. Here’s the lesson in it. And now I’m able to articulate it in a way that will give the other person hope, or inspiration, or a new way of seeing things, and some practical suggestions on what to do next.
So, those are the three things that I think about when I sit down and I get in front of my keyboard. Am I sharing it in this way, so that it lands on somebody and It can be useful to them.
Bobby: Yeah. Thank you for sharing those principles. One of the things I’ve struggled with is I have this view of social media as the void. Like I’m going to be posting into the void and hope someone gets value from it somewhere. And so it’s really reassuring to hear that you had kind of a similar perspective in the beginning. But you realize like it is such a powerful way to connect with your audience and have a real conversation with them.
The marketer in me really wants to know when you share yourself and thestories that you’ve been through, is there a specific structure that you’re following? Are you just intuiting your way through how to share that? How are you approaching that sharing?
Jane: Number one, I look at what is it that I want my reader to walk away with? So from a marketing perspective, what do I want them to think, feel, believe and where do I want to transition them so that it just in the journey of reading this piece of content, they will be over here thinking and believing and feeling a little bit differently.
The second thing that I look at is what are are the human commonalities. We all want to be loved. We all want to be seen. We all want to be heard. We all want specific things. We are just hardwired that way. So what are the human themes in there? What are the human commonalities? What can I pull out from this experience that will resonate with somebody else because they want that or they felt that way and now they can realize there’s a different way to feeling it.
And then the other thing I love to tell a little story and then put everything into teaching points. I tend to speak in threes. I did not know this until somebody pointed this out to me several years ago. You always have three points is what she said. I said, Hey, you’re right. I do. I just naturally kind of teach in threes. So what did I learn from when I was riding a horse bareback on a Hungarian ranch, which was one of my true stories?
Bobby: Have you noticed any differences between stories that perform really well for you in terms of a marketing perspective and those that don’t. And even some social sharing that others do that you find isn’t as effective. Like what are the key differences there?
Jane: Yes. Okay. So i’m very very passionate about this. Because now I’m all over social media and what I mean by all over social media is I am in it every day looking at a lot of different things. Who’s getting a lot of engagement, who’s not. What’s happening in their posts. I mean, I really have become a student of it.
And the number one thing I see people do when they post where they get very little engagement is they just are sharing about themselves. And that’s it. Let me give you some travel examples because I’m a big traveler. So somebody will post, I went here and I did this and I ate this and it was fun.
Okay, they’re just sharing. There’s actually nothing wrong with it. But when I read that post, I think, that’s nice. You went here, you did this, you ate this, you finished your day by X, Y, and Z. As opposed to drawing the reader in and creating some description and starting with a good opening line.
So an example of that might be: have you ever had a moment where you sat down at the table and the cream on the coffee was just a melty explosion in your mouth and you thought, how could life get any better than this? So that would draw somebody in more than I sat down and I had coffee.
Because do they care that I have coffee? No, they really don’t. If they can see the coffee and they can see themselves drinking the coffee and they’re in the place with me and I’m helping them feel that they’re right there with me, much more interesting because it has just become about them. And not about me.
So when you create any kind of content is how do you draw your reader into your world as quickly as possible? Because if it’s just an exposition about what you think, what you feel, what you do, what’s happening with you, it’s not going to be that interesting You’ve got to draw them in.
Bobby: Yeah, bring them into that moment so they can feel what you felt. So we talked a lot about social media and content and being authentic and how you stumbled into that approach.
Jane: Are there any other strategies, tactics, approaches that you’ve tried that didn’t work as well as you’d hoped?
Yes. Anything that felt out of alignment with my sense of enjoyment, what I believed in. Marketing that’s effective is marketing that gets done and marketing that gets done are usually marketing activities or tactics that you actually don’t mind doing. So if you don’t like social media, don’t make social media one of your marketing strategies or tactics. That’s not going to make any sense.
Bobby: Yeah. If you’re not into TikTok dancing maybe don’t do that.
Jane: Exactly. Don’t do TikTok dancing. Don’t pour water over your head. Don’t share your breakfast. It’s really just connecting with people. So think about what would you do if these were your friends? If your 10 best friends were hanging out with you you said, Hey, everybody, let’s go do this. What is it that you would actually do or what is it that you would actually share?
If you would jump up and say, let’s boogie, boogie, boogie, like we just can’t boogie no more than great than dancing on TikTok, probably a great way of marketing for you. If you’re sitting and facilitating conversations that tend to be kind of philosophical in nature, then hosting podcasts would probably be a great marketing tool for you or YouTube videos or something like that.
You really have to determine, what do I enjoy doing? And if I were just hanging out with my best friends, what would I suggest that we all do for communication?
Bobby: You hear that advice, do marketing that’s aligned, do it in a way that feels right to you. But I love how you put it. What are you already doing with your friends? Like, how are you interacting with them? And then just do more of that. I think a lot of people struggle with marketing because it feels so unnatural. It feels uncomfortable. I love just thinking of it from the lens of, if you wouldn’t do it with a friend or with your friends, it’s probably not right for you.
Jane: Right. And what’s your true voice? What’s your authentic voice? I was in corporate for a really long time, but I’m just not a corporate, like I’m kind of goofy and quirky.
So when I started this company 13 years ago, if you would go back and read a lot of the content that I created, it was not how I talked. It was stiff. It was very like, well, I’m an expert and I need to come across as an expert and I need to convey my knowledge and my expertise. And there was a lot of self judgment as in, well, if I don’t come across as the professional in this serious tone, then my business that I just started won’t go anywhere.
And nothing could have been further from the truth because I was coming across as being inauthentic. So when I really started using my own voice and using all my crazy little colloquialisms.
I say I talk in bumper stickers all the time. When I really started letting my voice out and speaking like I actually speak to professionals, to my high end clients, you know, to everybody, and it was my real voice. Then that was a big shift. And if that’s not you and you’re straight laced, that is a beautiful thing and embrace that.
So that’s something that I caution people on. If you’re corporate and you’re kind of straight to the point a little buttoned up and you enjoy reading the quirky, the funky, that’s great but don’t try to mimic that because it’s not your voice. If you’re quirky and funky and you’re looking at the corporate people, the very buttoned up people and you’re thinking I wish I just had that kind of polish, I wish I were just that serene. Don’t try to mimic that because it’s actually not who you are.
Bobby: It makes a lot of sense. And I love giving yourself the permission to have the honesty with yourself about here’s how I actually sound. You know, I may enjoy reading these other things, but let’s be real about how I actually communicate and what the experience is actually like.
Jane: Yeah. I’m based in Cincinnati, Ohio right now. It’s where I grew up. And Cincinnati is right on the border of Kentucky. So it’s truly how I talk, but the first time I said it, I just, oh, know, I kind of leaned back and I went, I can’t believe that because one of my clients said something to me and I said, man, that dog don’t hunt.
And I remember she kind of got this look on her face and I thought, I’ve just lost this very important client. I should have said something like, understand your point, but I’m concerned that it isn’t feasible in the big picture. What did I say? Come on, man. man, that That dog don’t hunt.
And she just started laughing and she said, what did you say? And I said it again, and I said, I’m sorry, I just, and she goes, no, I love it. That landed on me so much more than, I understand that that’s a feasible possibility, but it might not be really, you know. And I certainly talk corporate speak when I need to. I don’t say that in presentations and from the stage and 400 people. Unless I do. So. Which I have. I don’t know. Use your authentic voice, but be mindful of your audience.
Bobby: So obviously you have a deep expertise in sales and not every business owner comes from that background. So I wanted to ask you, what have you learned about how people buy and how have you applied those lessons and frameworks towards this new company that you started?
Jane: Well, number one, I really do believe people fall in love with who you are first and then they buy whatever it is that you’re selling.
So if they don’t like you, if they don’t resonate with you, psychologically there’s not a connection there. So they may buy something kind of sorta, but in the service based world, that’s not a a good start. So understanding they’re looking for your authentic voice, they’re looking to understand who it is that you really are. Because they’re looking to see if they have a connection, and are they resonating with you.
The second thing is, what you are saying and the message that you are delivering, is there a recognition? Are they able to recognize that you are an expert and authority in the thing that you’re doing. So do they resonate with you as a human? Do they recognize that you have expertise and authority?
Third thing is, people are more motivated to run away from or get out of a situation that’s causing them pain than they are to jump into something that will cause them pleasure.
So when you’re in the position where you’re sharing what it is that you do, you do need to make sure that you’re addressing the problems that they have. There is a term that was kind of bandied about a couple of years ago, fear based marketing.There was this movement where I never want to talk about the problems that people have again. I just want to let them know what’s possible when they work with me. And I thought, okay, I’m not quite sure how this is going to play out. So I kind of sat back and watched it and I didn’t change my marketing at all.
But it’s scientifically proven, if you don’t have a real pain point, if you don’t have a problem that makes you go, I cannot do this anymore. And what do I need to do to get out of it. Then you’re probably not going to get out of it. So, making sure that you understand psychologically what is somebody really experiencing that’s a pain point. And you don’t have to scare them or come at them from some big intimidating, like, Oh, woe is me or it’s not that. But do you clearly understand what their problem is because if they don’t know it, and they can’t articulate it, it’s just going to be hard for them to move forward.
Bobby: Yeah, it’s really interesting because I’ve experienced the same thing. This pushback in recent years against talking about pain points And you just mentioned a core function of marketing is making sure that people are qualified. I can’t think of any time that some area of my life was good enough and I was rushing to take out my wallet. It just doesn’t happen.
Jane: Exactly. Exactly. And that’s what people were starting to experience when they wanted to strip out, I just won’t address the pain because it’s fear based marketing. So you’re either dissatisfied, which is your strong compulsion to get out of the dissatisfaction. Or good enough. And really for most of us, when we’re in the good enough space, we’re not thinking how can I invest money to get better than good enough? What we are thinking is I’m really dissatisfied. How do I invest money to get to the next phase and maybe the next phase is just good enough. But you know what?
I can’t sit here in this dissatisfaction anymore.
Bobby: So before we reach the end of our time. I’m really curious about something. I know one of the focuses with the new business is you’re helping business owners travel and live where they want while their business continues to grow and thrive. What I’m really curious about is what’s different about setting up your business for location independence versus the so called normal way of doing things.
Jane: Yes. That is a really good question. Number one, it’s always imperative in your business to have systems and processes. But if you want to have true location independence, you have to have systems and processes in place that will support you. And generate revenue regardless of where you are or what you’re doing.
So point number two, it’s about the selling and the conversion. Are your systems and processes actually lending themselves to conversions? Because a system and process without the conversion, not that useful in our world to be able to have a business and live and work anywhere you want.
Soand the third thing is, and this one’s a little interesting. In theory, you wouldn’t think it would be that difficult to say, I’m going to go rent an apartment in Paris next year for six weeks. I pick up my laptop and I go, right? That doesn’t sound that hard.
This is truly one of the cases that of you don’t know what you don’t know, it’s going to get problematic and stressful really quickly. I’ve been living like this 30 years. It really started when I was 7 years old in the family truckster when we would take long vacations about the U.S. and I would have to write book reports while we were traveling because I knew stuff had to be turned in.
What I have discovered over the years, it’s the little things that really show up in a big way when you’re location independent. And it ranges from what your particular strengths are. Are they going to be amplified or exacerbated in a foreign environment?
Number two, what’s your rhythm? Say you’re in Spain where they eat dinner at 10 o’clock. Well, if you’re a morning person, telling yourself that you’re gonna work all morning and then go to dinner at 10 PM. No, you’re not. You’re gonna be asleep because you’re gonna be dead tired because it’s just not who you are.
So really understanding what what your strengths are as the business owner, what your personal rhythms are, what your personal preferences are. And what you need to do to set up and support not just your business, but you as the human behind the business. And that’s the thing that can get people into a tangle. I’ve seen people just have absolute meltdowns over the bed not being the size that they thought it was going to be. Or dinner isn’t served until 10 and lose their minds. And it’s really just because they were trying to run their business in a foreign country the way they run it at home.
And there are so many little things that make such a big difference. So really having an understanding of how to seamlessly integrate your business obligations with your travel opportunities is huge. When you successfully do that, then you don’t worry aboutconsistent income and you are able to travel as much as you want without missing a business beat.
You’ve got your business in some type of structure that is going to support generating revenue and support your accomplishment of feeling like you’re out on adventures.
Bobby: Yeah, absolutely. One of the interesting through lines of our conversation so far that I’ve heard is you have this innate ability, or maybe it’s something you learned when you were traveling around the country and had to get those school reports done, is being really clear and honest with yourself about how you function, how you communicate, just have that honest realness with yourself so that you can have the best chance of success. Whether it’s your approach to social media, showing up authentically, knowing how you like to communicate and being authentic to your voice, traveling and knowing how you function.
Jane: Yeah, I was kind of starting to feel a little emotional when you were talking about that, because when I was in corporate I was the boss and I did not have the luxury of having feelings.
Salespeople are notorious for being emotional. It’s just kind of part of the personality. And these were, you know, we were in a bullpen with salespeople, so, and the office staff would sit back there with us too. So it didn’t take long before one person’s emotional moment became everybody’s emotional moment.
And I don’t know how many times after I said, okay, we’re gonna take a deep breath and then here’s what we’re gonna do. I don’t know how many times they would say to me, how did you not cry? How did you not get really angry? How did you not insert an emotion?
And I always said to them, I don’t have the luxury of feeling my feelings because if I fall apart, who’s going to keep all of us together? And I had a hugely loyal staff. It’s one of the things that I, really take such pride in, you know, I loved them. I loved them and they loved me. And that’s really how I am with my clients.
I love them and I think that most of them love me. But the thing with the feelings, I would go home and then I would still not be able to process my feelings because now it’s 12 hours later. And so it would turn into bad things. Overeating or oversleeping or shopping when I really shouldn’t be shopping. It was starting to leak out because I wasn’t able to process my feelings.
10 years or so ago, I thought I could still see the remnants of that showing up of my life. And I thought, I don’t want to do this anymore. I don’t want to be somebody who’s stuffing her feelings down so they can come out sideways. But
I remember sitting down on the couch and saying, I am angry about this. And I thought, okay, angry, why? And then whatever I said to that, I said, okay, so in addition to being angry, that also sounds like you’re frustrated.
Yes, I’m frustrated. So, okay, well tell me more about that. And then I walked through that. And then that to me sounds like you’re sad. And I went, yeah. I’m, I’m sad. And sothat’s what I really learned. And I was sitting there and I went, I’m not angry over here at this, whatever situation. I am deeply sad because of this way of thinking I’ve inherited as a child.
And it was such a pivotal moment because I realized that If I couldn’t tell myself the truth. And if I couldn’t be honest with myself about who I was and what my feelings were and all of that mess that comes with it, how in the world could I continue to have conversations, especially with prospects where I’m asking them to get to their truth?
I’m closed off from it. It became really clear to me that it’s never about the closeand I just didn’t have the words for it before. What I realized is the reason it has never been about the close for me is I always wanted to get to the heart of who people were. What you really thinking? What are you really feeling? What are you really experiencing?
Our job as business owners in an enrollment conversation, it’s not to close them and get the money and move on to the next person because people are not paychecks. We do not treat them that way. What we’re doing is facilitating a conversation so they can speak their truth. And so that’s what I’m most passionate about.
My mission started in this business is to ensure that anybody who is self employed can actually afford to stay self employed. How do you do that? You generate revenue. How do you do that? You do it with sales. But the mission has become so much bigger and certainly on a global scale now working with people who want to be location independent because no matter where you’re roaming, you’re there.
And you need to be able to there with yourself, by yourself, and understand yourself. And that’s really the genesis of being able to run a successful business is know who you are, know what you stand for, figure out how to love on your audience, deliver great value, and let them know you are a partner with them on this journey of life that we are all on, on this planet.
Bobby: Thank you for sharing your story and your mission. I think a lot of times marketing and sales, the copy and communication around that can be so clinical, so transactional. And I love how you’re bringing in the humanity and the emotions around it. Because that’s just so, so important.
So as we’re wrapping up here, I believe you have a gift for listeners called the Innoventurous Guide: Travel as Much as You Want Without Missing a Business Beat. I love that name. Tell us a little bit more about that.
Jane: I’m so excited for this. First of all, I have to give major props to my team. This is an incredibly gorgeous guide and that was all them. I have absolutely no vision for that. But what this is, I think it’s 55 pages, it’s going to walk you through the three foundational pillars of what I teach if you want to be truly location independent. So there’s a section in there that’s going to help you think about your business in terms of structure, sales and set up. That’s the money. There’s a section in there that’s going to lead you through, again, some of those things that we talked about. Who are you? Who are you really? How are you wired? So that’s the ability to manage your travel opportunities with your business obligation, the human side and the business side. And really they’re one in the same. And the final piece is really, what does it mean to live like a traveler opposed to a tourist? And that’s a life skill. That’s not just a location independent skill.It’s beautiful. It’s so much fun. I’ve had people say this was my weekend homework, and I loved it. It was, it was so fun. So yeah, grab that. And I think you’ll have a lot of fun with it.
Bobby: And I’ll make sure the link to that is in the show notes for this episode. So where else can people find you online?
Jane: You can find me ShowstoppingSales.Com.
I love hearing from people. So you can email me directly. email@example.com. And you can also absolutely find me on Facebook if you really want to follow my travels and hear all the stories of when my lips blew up from eating sushi and I squeezed lemon juice into the VP of a company’s eye and I have a unique knack for embarrassing myself.
Bobby: And then, are there any final notes or messages you’d like to leave with our listeners?
Jane: What I would like to leave everybody with is, is this concept. There’s only one you, and you have gifts. And you have talents. And you have skills. And there is only one you. And you can do a lot of great things with the time that you have here on earth and people need you to use your talents and use your gifts and use your skills.
So I want you to do that. Embrace who you really are, your quirks and your foibles and all the funny little things about you that make you you. Find your audience and you find it just by being who you are with, you know, some sales and marketing tactics and strategies involved.
And go out with a heart of love and serve people. Amazing things happen when you do that.