Reality of running my own businesses.
Episode 6- Solo With Inge Hunter
So it's only fair if I give you some little insights into the realities of running my own business, as well as pouring it out and bringing out other people. So here we go. Here's a solo episode, let me check in with a few things that are going on. So if you've been listening to this podcast or following these blogs for a little while, or if you've been following me, you'll know that I am two businesses in and I'm about to open up the third business, I'm going through a big launch in January 2023, and I've been talking about it a lot.
One of the things I'd suggest actually, if you're listening to this and you're thinking about opening up a new business or launching something, is that you always need more lead up, then you think like I've been talking about the new business since the summer. And it's going to be called clue. And I'll do like a more of a formal campaign and lead in from around about the mid to beginning to mid November. So in a couple of weeks, but I've actually been talking about it, talking about it, talking about it non stop. And the reason being, firstly, I'm a bit of an oversharer. But secondly, I think that everyone needs, like I said more of a lead up into things and they think they do so I have this company that starting in January. And if I go through the questions, I normally ask people on the podcast, what is the perception of what I do? What is the reality of what you do? What you think should be changed? What's the biggest reality you're not sharing? What did you learn from that? What advice would you give, I'm going to use a new company opening up as an a way to share some of the insights into what's going on in the businesses at the moment.
So if I look at the company structure, I had three companies. So one company was called huddle. It waslike an educational membership for people who are wanting to learn how to use social media to market their businesses. If I give you the reality that I've got close to 180 members in there, but as with all memberships, no one actually turns out well, few people do. That's not fair. So one of the things I'm struggling with in huddle at the moment is trying to encourage people to come to the live sessions. I know everyone's busy. But one of the things that I think if you've got a company where you're it's like a kind of a SaaS company model, like if you have an app, or if you have something that people have to repetitively use over and over again, one of the key questions that you need to always be asking yourself is how can I encourage user engagement because the higher user engagement, the more likely they are to tell their friends, the more likely they are to get results from the thing that it is that you're doing. And so the more likely they are to use it and carry on paying for it.
So my churn rate isn't very high at all. So people tend to stay in huddle. But so I'll have 180 names in there and go live. And there's maybe like one person that comes live, or maybe three or four, maximum five, maybe, and I do four lives a week. So we always do the same repetitive thing. It's like a gym membership, basically. So every Monday we make video content. Every Tuesday, I optimise and review someone's account every Thursday, and we do some engagement to kind of hack our growth. And every Sunday, we sit and plan and it's kind of an open session. So people come ask questions, people tend to plan for the week ahead, they get ready, like it works. I know it really works. Because I know that people do it, I get a whole bunch of people working on the replays. But one of the key questions that I like, the reality is you look at huddling. You're like, oh my god, it's slick. It's got like type branding, it's got a nice website, it's all hosted in a really cool membership community. There's loads of resources, loads of things for the members to do inside of there.
But as with membership, like something that's rolling monthly, you have to monthly come up with ideas, and new ideas for people to get involved, but equally for the members inside, to continue to engage with the content in there. So I would have meetings with my huddle manager. And every month it's always like, okay, what can we do to bring in new people next month? And what can we do to encourage user engagement you know, it's quite a, as much as some people assume like a membership model is, quote, unquote passive. It actually takes a lot of work to be able to keep people going keep people interested, come up with new ideas all the time. So that's one of the things that the reality is that it looks like oh shit, remembers it's this month per month. Like that's really easy, but actually, I'd say out of the three businesses that I have huddles the most challenging business because it requires the most creative thought and it requires the most consistent upkeep now when you are a business found, like I am I get really excited by like the new things.
And I get really excited by new like ideas and I want to run with them and stuff like that. But with something like that. monthly rolling subscription plan based, you have to curb that. And make sure that you're not innovating all the time because it isn't what's right for the product model. So there's an element of me that pushes against the grain with huddle, but then an element of me that knows that I have to keep it very consistent and the same. The other thing that works well with the huddle business is that it is a bit of a filter into the other businesses of mine. Now, if you have a few businesses, you'll know that like, let's say you have a few restaurants, let's say, or you have a few businesses like me, you'll know that one tends to run into the other and they kind of co exist, but the market for each of them is different. Now huddle was my kind of mass support for micro business owners like it is a funnel for the other businesses.
So I know that the more people that engage with an inside of huddle ended up becoming a client and one of the other businesses and so that means it's more important, more imperative to me to ensure kind of customer engagement inside of huddle long term. So one of the things like I said, like, this is insane versus reality, and this is my first proper solo episode, I'm just gonna take my jumper off. And it's, uh, feels very weird for me to sit here and spill the reality. But that's what I wanted to do. And that's why I'm doing it. So we're breaking it down. So that's the reality of huddle. Now, if anyone has any ideas, obviously send them in, we're always trying to always open for new ideas. If you're actually a member of huddle, then come and come to live sessions. The other thing that we have to do in huddle, which is like kind of mentioned is constantly innovate the ways that we're attracting people in because it's open all the time. So we have sample sessions, we have 14 day free trials. And we have, we're going to move into some ads to attract people in that way. Although a lot of the things that I'm hearing about ads at the moment is that they're good for leads. But there's people aren't really converting from the paid ads and socials at the moment. So it's something that might hold off on for a little bit longer. But yeah, so that's one company huddle, I told you that I'd actually be talking about Blue. I'll get clues.
Let me just give you a little of his summary of the other ones. So that's how it all the next company is in a hunter limited. So being a hunter is a company in itself. Yes, I know. It's weird, because it's my name, but it's actually managing the business brand. And it is ensuring that the mentorship programme that I have is kind of the key product of the inner Hunter company. It's called the agency. Now inside of the agency, we are six months in the agency is a 12 month long programme slash mentorship. And it's designed that way on purpose. But what tends to happen six months in is people are like, Oh my God, I need to do so much more. And I'm like, actually, we're only halfway through so don't worry. And I also like to send out six months reports like I go through people's marketing. I sit there, it takes me a while to get to me my month to get through everyone actually. But I go through and I look at every single piece of marketing that someone has why starting their Instagram account, then I clicked through to the website, I signed up the email address. I see if they're on LinkedIn, I see if they're on Tik Tok, I see if they're on Pinterest, all these things, I pull up all of their markets, their visual marketing that I can see that I can sign up to. And then I go through it and I send them a report of what's happening, stuff and so many stuff they've built within the agency, some of the stuff still needs to be built. But I'm working through that at the moment.
Again, Insta versus reality, the Instagram version of the agency is that it is highly successful, it gets loads of results. And the people in it are really, really motivated and driven. They are all those things are true. But what comes with that is hard work and time and dedication. So from my clients perspective, it is the most intense visitors programme that they will have ever been on, I check in with them every month, some of them have one on ones every month, to encourage them to do more, do more, do more, do more, do more. But from my point of view, it's actually really, really time heavy. So one of the things that I am battling with at the moment is that the doors reopen again in March, they always reopen in March and I will be reducing the number of one on one hours. And that really, really goes against my core. And the simple fact being that I cannot duplicate myself I have at the moment 27 ish people doing one on ones they get one on one every single month. And that is a lot of hours to give someone because I'm having to bounce my brain between the different businesses that people have, and provide guidance, support and advice on individual businesses in individual places and individual growth points with individual targets and goals. And it's actually quite mentally exhausting. I absolutely don't we're I absolutely thrive on it like I absolutely love, love, love giving the feedback having one on ones with people but with the way that the company is going. It's just not something that's sustainable.
I started the agency up well, I'm going it will be the fourth round that I release and so that will be three years of It's intense one on ones. And the thing is it gets it dries and it gets the results. But I'm kind of thinking instead of one every month, I might lower it down to like, eight in the year. So it's not like not quite one every month or six in the year, one every other month with a couple of bonus if people book on quickly. That's something I'm battling between. So the insert versus reality of huddle, all these things are in my brain at the moment, I guess this is kind of like a diary spillage of stuff that I'm thinking and working on. So that's something I'm considering, which again, like I kind of mentioned, makes me feel weird, because I it's like giving up control. You know, I know that I can push the businesses if I'm there every month, but equally, should I be there every month. So you know, I should be able to give these businesses like a little bit of a setback, a little bit of autonomy over their own pace. Yeah, something that I'm battling in between them, here's the point I'm trying to show is that as much as on the outside and the surface of everything in business, it's always like these are going amazing. Look how great this is.
Behind the scenes, there are always questions that come up these kinds of thoughts, these kind of processes and never stops, like my brain never switches off. So that's only two businesses within the under the anger Hunter brand. as well. We've got the podcast, we've got planning workshops that we're selling at the moment. And General just team management, most of the team sit underneath in Hunter and development of the NG Hunter brand. So as more and more people are getting to know me, I'm getting booked in for more and more podcast episodes, I'm getting magazines reach out wanting to know my classic homeless to multi six figure businesses kind of story, which is great, because the long term point of what I'm doing is to inspire people to grow their and start their own businesses, because I fundamentally think it makes a massive difference. But equally, that's a lot of again, like I said, takes a lot. So I'm in this kind of real sticky moment at the moment where I am very hugely operational, but equally need to be the driving kind of CEO, the person turning up to the networking, the person turning up to the podcast recordings, the person that's talking to PR and all these kinds of things, this company is me. So I have to be the one that's present.
But equally, I still want to be able to sit and deliver and be there with my clients. So if anyone has like a kind of cloning machine, that would be great. But one of the things that I need to bear in mind is like the capacity that I have for the agency. So that's something that's ticking over in my brain, because it's not something that I want to give up. But it's something that I'm just gonna have to think about how I can best support my clients. In a way that doesn't mean that I'm doing sometimes close to 41 on ones a month. Which sounds mental when I say out loud, but yeah, there's the reality, you know, and we're churning out so much content at the moment in the encounter brand as a challenge to push ourselves to be able to diversify into other platforms. So as much as in a hunter and huddle, Instagram centric, and clue will be as well, for the time being, I want to start pushing it out into LinkedIn, tick tock, and YouTube shorts.
So as well as speaking events and all those kind of things. I'm pushing and challenging the team at the moment to be able to deliver, deliver, deliver, deliver, deliver, to kind of push against the boundaries of where we're at. Now, I could stop there, because I could stop even way before that, you know, my company could exist, I could exist on just huddle alone. I could also exist on just the inner Hunter brand alone, I decided to do both huddle, by the way used to sit under the England brand. But because it's now got such a different clientele, it sits in a different company, which is something I'd suggest if you notice that you're trying to market to different people in one place. Consider splitting out the companies because it makes it a lot easier. But no, I decided to bring clue into the mix. So clue like I said is we're promoting it marketing at the moment, we're gonna go heavy from November, but doors open January and clue is my way of creating a business that is not me centric. So huddle requires me to do live sessions that 100 grand obviously requires in Atlanta and clue is going to be driven by a team.
So at the moment what I'm doing with clue is it like looks like things are moving on outside like they are it's really really pushing really, really moving and I'm actually kind of speeding things up as we speak. But behind the scenes I'm trying to I'm in a real chicken and egg situation with this company so it's what comes first the chicken or the egg now with clue it's what comes first the clients or the staff I'm in a position where I can't commit to a massive workforce of people without getting the contracts in. So I'm trying to gather some contracts that could start January I think it's looking kind of quite good for that. Those of by the way have all come from networking. So if you are looking for my my kind of experience of more higher ticket kind of things is that it's going to come from, you need the marketing to support the portfolio and support the process and tell people show people that they can trust you. But a lot of the contracts are going to come from word of mouth and marketing, sorry, networking. So I am working on the networking.
So again, I'm stuck in this kind of operational and CEO role in that company, whereby I'm trying to bring in the contracts at the beginning of January, so that they're like the, I guess, the chickens, but I need the workforce, which is the eggs to be able to deliver on the contracts. Now I have a whole bunch of if you're listening to this, and you're thinking, I'm gonna sign up to clue but holy shit, she hasn't got stuff, that's not the case, I have got the freelancers in place, but I want to employ them. So I am currently applying to any every grant that I can come across, I think grants are really cool and important for that kind of thing, when you have this phenomenal business idea, but you really need a Kickstart to make sure that you can get the team in place.
Generally, I think grants are well spent on workforce as long as you have a really solid kind of plan and process for that workforce as soon as they come in, so that you can hit the ground running, which is exactly what I've got all the all the things, all the things, but also what I'm going to have to kind of what we're doing in the team is kind of pushing and really pulling out every single hour of time that we have within the company to be able to get clue running and off the ground. So it's going to be a real tight, kind of six months, I think, and I'm terrified to be honest, like, not from not I know it will work, I have the evidence that will work, I know it's going to be amazing, I have the evidence that it will deliver, it's just going to be really tight. Because it's kinda like a swan, like, I'm going to have to be really cool and calm on the surface, and then absolutely pedalling my feet underwater to make it go. Because also the other thing that I'm hyper aware of is the fact that I'd love the company to hit the ground running. And to really deliver really quickly because I think that's going to be one of the core values and strengths of the company is that it can create and deliver the content and really quickly.
So I'm in this kind of real chicken and egg scenario with clue where if it had been just me, I wouldn't necessarily be in that position, because it would be just, I'd have the capacity to be able to deliver on it and just bring in freelancers to support. So again, I guess I could live just on clew alone, without hurdle and without the enhanced brand. But I like the challenge of having all three. What I'm trying to get to, I think is that when you see a business, I have a lot of followers, I have a lot of people that's listening to this podcast, and I get so much amazing feedback for a bit. And I think people are really interested to have the realities of what goes on and just a chatty, chatted and sense instead of a kind of five ways that I hit 10k followers in a month, like that's not realistic, and it's not the reality. So let's peel back the surface and have a chat about it. So the perception of everything that's happening is that it's all kind of like Oh, my God, I see her like, these are the kinds of things I get.
People say to me, like, it looks like it's going really well I see all the time I see everywhere, how exciting, I'd love to be in your position, or those kinds of things. And it is, it is exciting. I'm feel very grateful to be here. I've worked really, really, really hard to be here for a long, long time. But the reality is that my brain is like tick, tick, tick, tick, tick, tick, tick tick with three different businesses that all have three different needs, and three different skill sets at the moment alongside trying to just generally manage a team, manage the company finances, do contracts, make sure that my diary is up to date, all those kinds of things which the team support me in doing but But yeah, if you've been following along listening in looking at what I'm doing recently, hopefully this has helped to give you a little bit of a reality in a in the sense of that, I think the more that we can share the reality of things that are going on, the more that people can understand that the success that they want is attainable as well, in whatever capacity that means to you.
And I think that the success is only going to come from people being more honest about the things that happen, the processes that go on, or the thoughts that go on or the struggles or the realities of stuff so that people don't feel disheartened or chipped or crap or things when things don't seemingly work out like other people's. But it's not that it's seemingly working. It's because other people aren't giving a realistic view of what's actually going on. So that's where I am. It is the 24th of October when I 2022 when I'm recording this, obviously keep following see how we go see how it grows. But I'll be back in a couple of weeks with another kind of solo episode where they update on where we're at, and more realities of anything that's gone on in the past few weeks.
I hope you have a lovely week, and I'll catch you soon.
To see what is going on in all of these businesses, click the links below where it will lead you to the business websites and my instagram for any further questions:
ClueContent - For the Clue business launched in January 2023.
TheAgency- My 12 month digital marketing program.