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ANNA LAMAN

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Messaging Advisor
for Independent Business Owners

I help freelancers, consultants, and other solo-entrepreneurs become more articulate about their work so they can get better clients, make more money, and feel like their brand is aligned with who they really are.

 

Any of these sound familiar?

(These are actual comments from people who became my clients)

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I have a difficult time talking about my work in a way that isn’t vague or scattered.
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I have trouble pinpointing my ideal client and differentiating myself from the other people in my field.
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I’m overwhelmed by the volume and variety of work I take on.
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I’m stuck when it comes to writing my website content. I can talk about my work easily, but when I put those ideas into writing, it never sounds right.
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I need more clarity about my purpose and messaging but can’t go deeper on my own.

If so, Lemme guess...

You’ve been in business for a few years. In the beginning, you took everything that came your way – any client, any project… anything that would provide more experience and pay the bills. You felt lucky just to be out on your own, doing the thing you love. But now…

 
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You actually have too much work.

You’re busy all the time and you feel like your business is running you instead of the other way around. You’re being pulled this way and that, and you never have time to be strategic about what you’re doing next. You tell yourself that the variety keeps you from getting bored, but really, it’s just overwhelming and confusing.

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You’re tired of the crappy clients.

The ones that take up all of your time, but bring in the least amount of money. The ones that don’t align with your personal beliefs. The ones that don’t value your expertise and don’t enable you to do your best work.

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You have no idea how to stand out.

There are so many other people in your field, and sometimes it feels like you’re all talking the same talk. You know you’re different, but you’re struggling with how to communicate the things that make you special.

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Your purpose has gotten lost.

You initially wanted to work for yourself because you wanted to stand for something. You know you have something unique to offer the world – a killer combination of skill and perspective – but it’s gotten lost in the shuffle. You find yourself bending to each client’s wants and needs.

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Your confusion is clouding your confidence.

You’re great at what you do, and most of the time that makes you feel like a bad-ass. But when you try explain your work (especially in written form), everything comes out sounding lame… scattered, incoherent, generic. Which, in your most insecure moments, makes you wonder: “Why the hell would anyone hire me? Am I a total fraud?”

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There's nothing really wrong... but something's not quite right.

You can’t really complain because you have a “successful” business, right? But at the same time IT TOTALLY SUCKS. Because you’re confused and lost and going around and around in circles in your head. You know there’s a bigger picture there, but you just can’t find it, no matter how hard you think about it. UGH.

 

Dude, I know. I’ve been there.

I know how uncomfortable it can be. Maybe you assume that this is "just how it is," so you'll continue to muddle through until an epiphany comes along. Or perhaps you even wonder if you should totally shift paths and "just go get a job." Maybe you weren't meant to be an entrepreneur after all!

If that's where you're at, here are a few things to keep in mind:

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This is a natural part of the progression.

I know, everyone else seems all slick and fancy on their pretty websites. But the reality is that every service-based entrepreneur goes through growing pains like these. Step one is doing all of the things, experimenting, honing your skills. And if you survive that phase (most don’t!) then you’ll inevitably get to this point of having too much work and a sort of identity crisis. So… congratulations?

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The next step is where liberation happens.

Maybe that sounds a little dramatic, but it’s freaking true. Right now you’re in a sweet spot where you get to decide what you do, with whom, and how to do it so that you LOVE IT. Is there anything better than that?

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It’s essentially impossible to get there alone.

When you are your business, you’re mired in the muck. It almost always takes an outside perspective to gain clarity on yourself, your business, and where to go next. As a brilliant friend of mine likes to say, it’s like you’re running late, frantically searching for your keys, when your spouse says: “Your keys are in your hand.” You’re just too harried to see what’s right in front of you.

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You're looking for help in all the wrong places.

You think maybe you need a general business coach. Or someone who can help you get organized and teach you better time management skills. Maybe you should redesign your website, or finally learn about SEO. Or perhaps you should join one of those online communities so you have a place to ask all of your random questions. You’re welcome to try any of those things, and some will help a little. (I know, because I’ve done them all!) But none of them will get to the heart of the issue.


So, what'S the solution?

Believe it or not, it all comes down to messaging.

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For service-based entrepreneurs, how you communicate about your business is everything.

Your marketing strategy is based on networking, word of mouth, and sending folks to your website – right? But what happens if all of that language is weak, confusing, or inconsistent?

Not only is the world confused about what you do – so are you. Instead of being a focused, efficient, fulfilling livelihood, your business is just a flabby, amorphous blob that smothers you while it scares others away.

Which is, um… not great.

If you don’t have your messaging nailed down, nothing else works.


Here’s where I can help

Through personalized, one-on-one advisory sessions, I can help you:

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Focus in on the work you like best – so you can stop doing the things you don't enjoy.

 Focus in on the work you like best

Define your ideal client and brainstorm ways to find, attract, and sell to them.

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Define higher standards for the projects and clients you accept.

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Raise your rates to reflect your experience and the value you offer.

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Make thoughtful decisions about whether and how to niche down.

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Integrate your own personality, values, and story into your business.

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Get empowered to do smarter marketing with new tools and a plan for moving forward.

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Craft an elevator pitch that feels damn good to say and helps other people become your most powerful marketing tools.

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Write website copy that pulls the right clients in, and keeps the wrong ones from wasting your time.

Write blog posts and other content that illustrate your expertise and pull prospective clients closer.

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Write proposals and other client-facing documents that are articulate, effective, and in line with the rest of your brand.


What My Clients Say

During my sessions with Anna, I pinpointed my ideal client and discovered why my services are a great fit for this niche. She also helped me create a tool that helps me vet potential clients. She was able to identify my strengths and the unique qualities that set me apart from others.

Today I feel more confident when networking and talking with others in my industry. I’ve been doing this work for a long time and am really passionate about it, but now I feel like I’m owning it more and know where I’m going with it.
— Dena, graphic designer
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As an independent financial planner, I was always able to talk to people about what I do and how we could work together but when I tried to put those ideas in writing it never sounded quite right. I avoided redoing my website for more than a year because I was stuck.

Working with Anna changed all that. She asked the hard questions, wasn’t afraid to critique my work and pushed me to rethink, revise and edit some more until it was just right. I never believed I could distill my brand down to three words. But Anna helped me do that. It’s powerful.
— Stephanie, certified financial planner
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Anna helped me to really look at my business, determine what my business is all about, what makes me different from others who do the same thing, and to understand why I do what I do. She asked good questions that helped me dig deeper and prioritize. When we got to the end of the process, Anna helped me fine tune my copy so that it contained my thoughts, ideas, and goals, but had a better flow.

Now, after only four sessions together, I have a clear-cut vision of what my goals are, what sets me apart and where I want to take my business.
— Linnae, photographer

REMEMBER...

If you don’t have your messaging nailed down, nothing else works.

Let’s pick up a hammer and get to work.

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Ready to talk about it?

 

Want to learn more?

And... you are?