When you do live events, you’re creating even more potent series of moments and then when they leave, they leave with momentum.
– Jen Kem
Darla LeDoux: Hello and welcome to Retreat and Grow Rich the Podcast. We are here with our series on retreat business models and I am so delighted to bring to you Jennifer Kem or Jen for short. Jen is a San Francisco Bay area based branding and marketing expert who gets entrepreneurs, seen, heard and paid for being themselves, which we totally love. Being ourselves in front of the room is key for really delivering transformation and making money from your retreat so I can’t wait to learn more. She’s the creator of Master Brand Method, a framework of developing powerful brand archetypes. Jen, I’ve taken your quiz. Yay. Yay. That win customers hearts leveraging Jennifer’s 17 years of corporate experience and her launching of multiple companies. She uses the Master Brand Method for emerging entrepreneurs, celebrity brands like Oprah Winfrey Network and Steve Harvey and major corporations including Verizon, Blue Cross Blue Shield, and Bank of Hawaii.
What Jen is most passionate about in her work on Femmefluence a platform that supports women leaders to fully rise into their influence and affluence so they can make an even greater impact in the world. Jennifer serves up straight talk wrapped in love because she understands entrepreneurs challenges. She built a retail business and became a millionaire at 32 only to lose it in the recession. Two years later, she’s now the successful owner of 3 million dollar businesses and the mother of three children. Jen, thank you so much for being here. I am thrilled to share all your juiciness with our people. I’ve got so much to ask you. So first of all, thank you.
Jen Kem: Darla, thank you. I’m so excited, seriously, about this conversation.
Darla LeDoux: Me Too. So I want to dive into events and retreats and how you’ve used them in your business, but before we do that, we know that people really connect through story. You are the master at helping people tell their brand story. So what story is most interesting for you right now?
Jen Kem: Hmm, that’s such a good question. Well, I think my most interesting story is this next season of leadership and legacy that I personally want to be. One of those things that I say is I think every time you pursue something of worth, and when I say worth your own worth, you learn different things through different seasons. In fact, as you were reading my bio I thought, oh my gosh, I kind of look at my life in different seasons, not really in parts or milestones, but just seasons.
Even when I left the corporate world 13 years ago to pursue my dreams of having autonomy in my life and having and living my values. I even look at what happened to me in 2008 with my first retail business, and then you know what happened to me after that and now gratefully, and with a lot of grit along with grace, I’m in that season of really wanting to leave a legacy that’s bigger than even my current work on this planet.
In fact, it’s going to sound kind of out there, so hopefully, nobody judges me that hard when I say this. My big goal is different than even business anymore. It’s actually to make sure that my children’s children’s children have a place on whatever planet we’re going to inhabit one day. I know moving into a lot of different things and technology has supported that. And honestly, I want to make sure that women especially find their worth. And that’s why when you mentioned the Femmefluence platform, that’s the most important to me. I think that retreats, especially things like that, things where women can gather and lead and support each other is one of the most powerful ways to do that. So that’s really the story that I’m playing over and over lately is how I dream of women’s opportunities and how we can be bigger and better and move into that next season of leadership and legacy that we’re all looking for.
Darla LeDoux: That’s so amazing. I know part of your story was learning that your colleague who was at a similar level, who was male, was making significantly more money than you, and that was part why you took matters into your own hands to go start your business. And that was the influence then and now it’s just grown to this place of legacy and the different kinds of leadership.
Jen Kem: Yeah. And that’s why I’m grateful for that moment, even though I was really upset in that moment. It’s, it made me realize what I really valued and how I valued myself and that if I didn’t take matters into my own hands, I was just going to live that life of life doing me versus me doing it.
Darla LeDoux: That’s awesome. One of the things that I love about hosting retreats or live events, whatever types of experience, so for me, a retreat is a multiday experience that is designed to shift something at the core to create a new awareness and have us leave in a whole different energy space. So that’s how I think about retreats. And for me, every time I lead or every time I create this new container for people to step into and grow, I grow and I learn things about myself and I see, oh, maybe this is possible, or maybe that’s possible. How do you see the seasons, you know, if you look back on your journey now with three, seven figure businesses, the one that failed, all of that, how do you see, like what’s sparked the new perspective for you?
Jen Kem: Mainly the transformation in myself. You know, I love how you define retreats and that being a mechanism or a method or a way for people to have a powerful and potent experience over a number of days. And I think that when I think about what I’ve learned about myself, mainly since that fateful day, that I found out by accident that my male counterpart was making $100,000 more than me and was also set up in the succession plan in the company to have the top spot when I had not just as much experience. I also had been there longer, had just completed one of the biggest projects the company has ever seen. And at this time, even 13 years later, Darla, that product is making them billions of dollars, not just millions but billions of dollars. And so when I think about that moment, it’s such a catalyst moment for me. And to where I am now, the seasons that I’ve gone through this allowed me to really lean into me, if you will, and also have the courage to ask for help from others and seek guidance and mentorship as well.
Jen Kem: And so when I look at, you know, I think about transformation, I think about it through me first. I believe that if you want to effectively lead others, because you can be given the role of leader or you can go get it, but you’re a much more effective and transformational leader when you work on leading yourself every single day. And so my daily practice is really asking myself, how am I leading myself well today? And just answering that quick question allows me to snap back into any reality from any fantasy I might have around how I wish the day was going.
Darla LeDoux: That’s beautiful. I love it. So speaking, I’m snapping back into a reality that’s maybe different than you know, our ego mind might create for us. That for me is the beauty of retreats is we’re actually stepping out of our regular environment that we created that has all the things that maybe make us feel safe but don’t necessarily grow us. And stepping into an environment where anything is possible, where we’re receiving support. As you mentioned, having the courage to ask for what we need, all of that. So you’ve done a lot of live experiences in your business. Can you share a little bit about some of the ways you’ve chosen to incorporate them and what your strategy has been?
Jen Kem: Since I own a branding company, I’ll just define also for me, thank you for defining retreats because for me, I want to define how I see branding cause there’s a lot of different ways people look at branding. Branding is the ecosystem of experiences that you put in front of your audience as a business. The greatest businesses I call them master brands have found a way to not just market but deliver potent experiences with excellent product. Their products are excellent, not perfect, but excellent in a way that makes people not just want it, but makes them talk about it and invite others to the party for it. And so branding to me is not a separate thing from marketing, sales, finance, accounting, operations in your business. It’s actually the ecosystem. It is the container. It’s the thing that I think businesses who are committed to developing a brand even more than building a business are the ones that we talk about daily in our lives.
So with that context and with that definition, to answer your question around how I use live events, I actually believe, and it’s not that I just believe it, I’ve tested it. This is what we work on when we work inside of big companies like Verizon and then with companies like Steve Harvey and then with everyday entrepreneurs and business owners like you and me on architecting brand experiences that have an analog component. Okay. Because we live in a noisy, overstimulated world in the digital world. And don’t get me wrong, again, as I said up front, technology is great. It gives us opportunities to reach more people. It allows us to make a global impact if we want that it, you know, again, it provides in a lot of ways to access as many people as possible, but you know what?
It also isolates. It feels colder than what I call a belly to belly experience. And so interestingly, the trend over the past, you know, obviously five to 10 years has been people moving their businesses digitally to create more leverage inside of the business. Inside of, let’s say if you’re a coach or consultant, author, speaker, type of person, a lot of people have done, you know, webinars and online courses and even high ticket programs, and that’s great. And most of them are useful. The issue is, is that if you only have a digital component of either marketing your business or even your business itself is 100% digital. And there’s a difference there too, if you don’t have an analog strategy built into your digital strategy, which means to me, live events, retreats, high end opportunities where you can meet your audience in person. You’re not just missing out, you’re going to get left behind.
What’s happening is it’s a renaissance. Again, technology has opened up the entire field, but it also, again, like too much is too much, right? People start to crave human connection. We’re human beings. We actually, we are not built for isolation. We’re built for community. And so brands that do things like what you do and teach Darla, like creating live retreats, transformational experiences that help deepen the knowledge that you’re teaching. As a coach, consultant, service provider, you’re going to miss out. You know, you can make money online and run some Facebook ads and sell your course and program. And that’s great. And I hope you do well doing that. I do, I do that too, but I would never eliminate a live component from what I do because great brands don’t do that. Great brands meet people in person.
Darla LeDoux: Ooh, great brands meet people in person. I love that. So you talked about the marketing versus really the delivery or the offerings and those being two different things and needing an analog component in both of those. So you know, the approach that I teach, which I know we likely have similar philosophies, Jen, around, you know, meeting people belly to belly as you say, and really creating that connection, that community.
I know Femmefluence is all about women supporting women. People are more committed to your brand. They get your, they get you, they get your vision. I often say, you know, people get so concerned about how do I give my elevator pitch? Well, when they’ve spent three days with you, they see you, they know you and they want to go where you’re going. And so it’s a great opportunity to make higher level offers to offer what you really want your clients to be doing with you. So it’s both marketing and delivery.
Jen Kem: Yes, yes. In fact, I’d like somebody to show me and know, I’m the brand strategist for many online brands as well as obviously like corporations and celebrities. And I can tell you that I can’t think of one of them that doesn’t have a higher conversion rate in a live event than they have in an online events. Whether it’s, you know, even whether it’s an evergreen type of webinar or selling event, or even if it’s live, if you can do live events, well, you actually will have a higher conversion in sales. And you’ll also again gain even more credibility and trust and loyalty and retention, which is the way to have a sustainable business.
You can get really good at sales, but then if the fulfillment and then follow through on the back end doesn’t have as much strength online, a live event allows people to trust you more because they can tell that you’re committed. People who put on live events, whether it’s a retreat, a workshop, a conference, people take them more seriously because they’re willing to put their, you’re putting your reputation and your money on the line, right? When you put together a live event experience. And so there’s actually built in respect that goes into people who create these types of experiences for their audience.
Darla LeDoux: I love that. You know, we talk a lot about how people attending the event are more committed because now they’re public, right? They had to get a babysitter or you know, they’re posting online that they’re traveling to this thing and people know what they’re up to. But absolutely, there’s this commitment on the part of the business owner. I placed a deposit, I picked a date, I’m going to show up live whether I’m feeling well or not, like I’m all in.
Jen Kem: Yup. It’s a great way to also give yourself some big hairy audacious goals, right. In terms of once you put it out there, you know, you have what I call a PONAR, point of no return. And you know, online events you can change the date. But when it’s an offline event or an analog event, you actually have to show up fully for both the marketing and filling of the event as well as executing and delivering of the experience you’re trying to deliver. So it’s a huge show of commitment on yourself. It’s a great leadership opportunity for you to show up and show off what you’re made of. And so I have mad respect for people who put on retreats and live events because of that.
Darla LeDoux: That’s awesome. So Jen, I will talk a little bit more about what you see in the future. Have you always known great brands meet people in person, or is this something you learned your way to in business? I know you started with retail. Could you share a little bit about that?
Jen Kem: You know, I, yeah, I think that in my corporate career, because my last job was a regional VP of marketing for Verizon. And so my entire career has been in building brands ever since I was 22 and my first job was at one of the biggest advertising agencies in the world, Ogilvy, where I was a junior copywriter. And from the moment I started in my career, all the way to when I left the career in the corporate world, analog moments have always been almost like the seal keepers of any brands, advertising strategy.
So for example, like what I mean by that is what do you think, I’m aging myself here. But why do you think when Pepsi could not figure out how to take down a Coca-Cola, what do they do? In the late eighties they created the Pepsi Challenge. Okay. And it went viral because Coke has always had the edge over Pepsi and they still do, but Pepsi wanted to get more wallet share and market share and they created this idea so that they could get that.
So it’s an example, it’s an old example, but if you look at what corporations are doing and those are the brands that actually impact what we do today, it’s actually not us, you and me, Darla, like smaller companies, we’re not impacting the market like the bigger brands are. So we need to be looking at what they’re doing and they are doing analog events, they have bigger brands, are doing things, even retreats for their clients. They’re doing, they’re bringing their focus groups to not just having these cold, you know, behind the curtain focus groups, but they’re actually bringing them and frankly wining and dining them and taking care of them in a different way because they realize that’s what’s going to keep them having the edge.
So for me, I’ve always had and known that the analog impact that’s possible is important in marketing and branding. And that’s why I think even coming into the small business space, it’s also what makes me different when I talk about, you know, having that advantage. If you have a double strategy, both digital and analog, you’re gonna be stronger, not just now, but in the long run with your business.
Darla LeDoux: Yeah. So it sounds like you knew from the start. Get people in person.
Jen Kem: One hundred percent I knew that even coming out when I built my training and development company, The Mastermind Institute, I knew that the live event component was critical to building it fast. And it’s why also, even though that company is only three year and a half years old, I started the company with a live event. I didn’t start it with an online webinar. I didn’t start it with a course. I sold a workshop and then that turned into multiple different ways that we support our clients, including retreats.
Darla LeDoux: Can you speak to that, we’re told to just make a course? Right. And what did I teach is yes, you want to have some way for people to build some trust with you to discern, yes I am in alignment, I want to get in the room, I want to travel to be with you. But so many people want to start there and they don’t even know what to put in their course. But you started live.
Jen Kem: Live is where you can get real life interaction and you can get paid for it too, which is great and I think a lot of the mistakes people make, and I love that you focus specifically on retreats because most retreats aren’t hundreds of people big, right? It’s not even, I don’t think it’s really a retreat at that size. You get an opportunity to bring a smaller group of people together to make, again, a very high impact transformation occur. And I think that you learn a lot about what you would want as what I consider maintenance material, which is a course.
Jen Kem: Maintenance material that keeps them in movement, keeps them to have a vault of information to look back on. And inside of that maintenance material is things like really fun, like photos and pictures of the experience. Things that they can go back and remember those moments that inspire them when they’re having a bad day.
That’s what I do on the days that are feeling particularly tough. Whether I’m tired or just I have to deal with somebody who was a jerk on my social media or whatever the case may be. Sometimes I’ll just go and look back at even pictures, “Oh that’s when I hung out with my with my clients or even my friends” and you know, you can create memories and moments. That’s also what makes brands great. Great brands create moments and moments create momentum.
Jen Kem: Momentum is the plural form of moment. When you do live events, you’re creating even more potent series of moments and then when they leave they leave with momentum. Some people are like purely digital. Some people are purely analog. I definitely think that depending on your business model, it’s the proper mix of the two that are going to be best suited. You need to figure that out versus whether you should do one or the other. I think everybody can be served by a live event, every single person.
Darla LeDoux: I want to underline a couple of things you said, I love Jen that you bring the corporate experience and, the smaller businesses are thinking in that way and imagine, you know, we’re not going to grow to that level unless you start thinking in that way. And I personally come from corporate. I worked in market research for Proctor and Gamble for many years and then I actually worked in marketing for Lenscrafters, so we had stores. Then I went, I’m imagining you did a lot of visiting stores and working with the retail arm. We did a lot of that and, paid a lot of money to do market research and in this world you can get paid to do that research.
Jen Kem: It’s very exciting. It’s like flipping it on its side. And I love what you just said is that the thing about small businesses is that a lot of us are small business owners or CEOs because something in corporate didn’t rub us the right way. We knew we weren’t made for that life even though we were probably really effing good at it. I think a big mistake entrepreneurs make today, huge mistake is that they don’t take the discipline and the way you approach marketing building brands in the corporate world and apply it to a small business. I think that’s a huge mistake. We try to separate ourselves and be innovative. It’s like why would we do that? Those bigger brands, even Lenscrafters, they own the market on fast turnaround on eyeglasses, and vision. What are the biggest brand envision? Well, what if we could instead of, I tell people all the time, don’t compete.
Don’t model your competitors model. The models, Lenscrafters a model for fast turnaround. You know, in person, you know, choosing that took, they were the first to create that model and in a bigger way. And if you have a business, it doesn’t have to be a vision business. But you want to take the attributes of a brand like that and apply it to your business. You should be studying what they’re doing versus like going, I don’t want to be a corporation. Right? It’s really, they’re really still influencing the world. We influence people one by one through what we do. And especially since we do more intimate types of things like, like retreats, you know, so to market yourself better and get people to come to your retreat, you need to be looking at what are the people who you want to come being influenced by. And normally they’re not being influenced by other retreat people. They’re being influenced by the brands that make their life better. So how can you implement some of that in your business?
Darla LeDoux: That’s awesome. So Jen, I know you have The Brand Story Challenge and you have a live experience that goes with that. What else do you deliver through live experiences? Like do you have some back end live experiences or is it more through your agency?
Jen Kem: So I use, as you described upfront live experiences for both marketing and selling purposes. And then also as what I consider fulfillment experiences. Okay. In all three types, I’m making an offer to do something next with me. I have what I consider like lower-end marketing and sales experiences so people can come, you know, to one of my workshops anywhere between, you know, $1,000 to $2,500 and get three days worth of training. And then in that experience, I’ll invite them to either work with my company in our coaching and consulting program or sometimes I’ll even do a retreat. That’s kind of like my high-end offer. And then I also, the retreat itself is a workshop if you will. Right. It’s a live experience and so I use them in both ways is basically my answer.
Darla LeDoux: Yeah. That’s awesome. I think it’s great for people really get that while you’re doing big events, a lot of times people don’t realize that the people that are following that are selling courses or maybe have large events also have a back end offer that’s an intimate retreat experience with them where it’s like the VIP, I get to rub elbows with Jen Kem. I think people just take at face value what they see people doing on Facebook and assume that’s their business, but there’s so much more going on behind the scenes.
Jen Kem: Absolutely. The backend is where the money is. The front end is a place for people to experience the value of your brand brings and they pay a little bit to play in that arena, but the bigger investment happens in the backend.
Darla LeDoux: So I’m curious, Jen, what do you see is the future of live experiences? And I was chatting with someone recently who was excited about big brands offering retreats and contracting people to create experiences for them. And I know our listeners, one of the things they’re invested in is being really amazing at facilitating these experiences. How are those skills going to be useful for people in the future?
Jen Kem: Well, I think that there’s going to be, even in the near future, a consolidation of online offerings because people who don’t understand the business of online business, which includes to your point, a backend offer, typically some type of coaching consulting or retreat component that is a five-figure plus investment, sometimes six figures on the backend.
What people need to get ready for is asking, where’s at least one area that I could implement a live component as either the front end draw or the backend fulfillment of the experience of the results that they’re looking for. Because people buy results, they don’t buy people, and if your retreat for example, is promising, you know when you finish this retreat you are going to emerge more confident or you’re going to emerge with a clear plan of action to build your business or whatever the retreat’s purpose is.
Jen Kem: If you’re not doing something like that where you’re guiding and mentoring, then especially in what I called the expert business, like anybody who teaches like authority and expert business, so that’s mainly coaching, consulting, speaking and authorship. If you’re in those arenas, you need to do something live just period. There’s no excuse not to do it. Most of the excuses, “I don’t want to have the time”, “I don’t want to make the time or the money” or “I’m afraid of the risk”. Well, you’re an entrepreneur so you even have to get cozy with risk. That’s kind of like what we’re about.
Then on the other side of it, if you’re not in those industries, if you’re not an expert industries, but you’re in the product based business, two things. One is you want to get in front of other people and to call that brand jacking, I call it where you want to associate your products and services maybe with people who are doing retreats or live events so that people can see and experience them and use them. Or I think there is a case for product based businesses to do live events in a way that demonstrates their value. So if you’re not doing or considering some live component, I think you’re missing out because people are seeking a lot more authenticity nowadays. They don’t want just the perfect pictures that are architected on Instagram. They want real people doing real things. And so those are ways that you could do that.
Darla LeDoux: That’s awesome. If someone’s going to do a live event, which they should, some kind of live experience and they want to brand it. One of the things you said is that the definition of branding, people often get that wrong, but that you know the experience you’re creating, you use the word potent experiences that is creating your brand and in the mind’s eye, what advice would you have for someone for ensuring that their live experience is “on brand” for them?
Jen Kem: So number one, you need to go into your live events with the offer in mind. So what I mean is you actually build your live events around the ultimate offer you’re going to invite them to next. And here’s what I will say I have. If you don’t have an offer, then you shouldn’t put on a live event. I really believe that.
When I say offer, I don’t mean like salesy schemey run to the back of the room kind of energy. I’m talking about. If you’re doing a live event where you truly believe that the things that you’re going to teach will create change in their life, it’s actually irresponsible, I believe, to do a live event or a retreat without offering them a way to work with you, or at least give them direction of where they could go for further support. Even if it’s not you, even if it’s more like a partner or something else, because you give them this potent experience. And then, you know, I always say like, it’s like the space shuttle, right? The most dangerous part of the space shuttle’s journey is reentry. So it’s like we bring them into a container and then we set them back out to the wild to deal with the wolves. So number one, begin with the end in mind is my first advice. So what ultimately by the end of the seven day retreat or the three day workshop or whatever, are, is your intention to support them in once they leave your worlds and go back into theirs. And so that’s the first thing.
I think the second thing is, is that vanity experiences or brand experience, brand workshops or retreats are, I think there are doing a disservice. And what I mean by that is, first of all, it’s a lot of money for you to put on these events, period. I mean, you know, you’re making a clear of time, energy, and money when you put on a retreat. And if you’re only doing it to sell tickets, you’re probably going to spend a lot more money before you test out what they really want.
Darla LeDoux: And so it’s important to what you mean by vanity experience. It looks good on Instagram that’s creating this thing, even though it’s breaking me.
Jen Kem: Yes, it’s breaking me. And by the time people get there, you know, you don’t even feel authentic anymore in what you’ve created because you work so hard to fill it that by the time they get to your, not even your whole self anymore. And that happens a lot. I think people, I get a lot of people go, oh my gosh, I want it to do this live event. And I’m like, have you ever sold anything that you have before? And I think that it’s important to, you come from a market research background, Darla, you understand this. Try some things first. Even if you were to get a person, people in a room for a day, even if it’s a virtual room on Zoom or something, live and have a conversation for you, invite people to your event because then it’ll allow you to not just find the actual words they’re using to describe what they want, but actually to validate that what your vision is, is what they want. Assuming that they are the ideal clients you want to invite. So that’s another thing, I think that’s important when you’re planning.
Then the third, I believe if you treat your retreats as brand experiences versus like even more so than they’re just retreats you’ll have an eye for. If that’s your filter, you’ll have an eye for the ways that you can surprise and delight them every step of the way and create those moments. And so I think that’s really important too because visuals are part of branding. Aesthetics are part of branding, but to me they’re not the first thing. They’re driven by the experience you want to create. Then you create the visuals, not the other way around.
So my approach to doing all of it is completely backwards to what people teach small business owners. And you know why? Because people are lazy. I’m going to be really honest, they’re lazy and they don’t want to teach people proper strategy, but those that are doing this are actually having an advantage and an edge over other people.
Darla LeDoux: Thank you for sharing that. I’m an engineer, that’s my background. So we reverse engineer everything and one of the things we really look at is that back end offer, you know what goes into it ultimately, if you could wave a magic wand and have your right people say yes to exactly how you want to work, what would that be? And then what’s the piece they need first to open them up to that. And there’s a way I teach that to really help people get clear about what their retreat is actually about. So it’s not just random. And so many people come to us because they want to host a retreat and they want to know how to book a venue. And those are the wrong questions.
Jen Kem: Exactly. I will tell you this, the logistics aren’t actually the most important piece on the front end of the planning. They are important obviously because you want it to go as smoothly as possible. But it is the wrong question. When people ask me, where should I have it? What type of like, you know, hotel should I do it in or what? I’m like, well let’s first talk about your strategy. What do you want to achieve, right? First of all, and then start from there.
Darla LeDoux: Amazing. So the thing I love the most that you said, Jen is moments create momentum. And I know that that’s going to sit with me and I’m going to percolate on like, oh, okay. Moments, because that’s for me, not something like I’m, I’m the opposite of vanity metrics, right? I’m like, how do we get to the heart of this? How do we, you know, make this sustainable? How do we create real transformation? And sometimes moments can feel fluffy to me, so I’m going to take that and run with it. So I’m super excited about that.
One of the things I know you’re offering our listeners, your Archetype Influence assessment, and I took your assessments and mine were the explorer, the lover, and the alchemist. So I’m curious just to kind of create a little conversation about that offer. What would be a piece of advice for an explorer to create moments and create momentum.
Jen Kem: So once everyone takes this assessment, you’ll also get different results because there’s over 1400 different results. I want to make sure that everyone knows that as I help Darla process her Archetype Influence Mix, you know, you have the same opportunity to really look at what yours is and see how it applies.
So for Darla as an explorer, first of all, you know, the explorer is in my research, the number one archetype, a dominant archetype for entrepreneurs. And the reason is, is that on one hand it’s basically the most multi-passionate of all of the entrepreneur segment. But at the same time they are very good at giving a guideline to what it takes to get to point B. I love actually behind you, enjoy the journey. It’s such a explore motto to have because the explorer is very motivated by the journey and they’re motivated to help others not just create their own journey, but they’re a guide, a Sherpa, you know, somebody who is willing to mentor and lead by actually taking the road that needs to be traveled to get there.
So in terms of like your personal brand and your business brand, the more you can speak to their journey as well as the journey they want to take their customers on. And I think since you specialize in retreats as a modality to serve people in a big way, and retreating is even an explorer modality. Because it’s going away somewhere. Getting out of your comfort zone, right? Going, traveling to a place to actually deepen into whatever the work that you’re teaching as well as you’re teaching others to do. So you have lover and you have alchemists as your secondary. And so what makes my Archetype Influence Mix assessment different, it’s called the AIM. So Archetype Influence Mix is that we look at the three levels of your archetypes and how that can inform the way that your brand speaks to people as well as the image shows up visually for people.
So because you have lover and alchemists, what that tells me is that you honor, like you love beauty. And what I mean by that is not just physical beauty but the beauty of life itself and that you want to taste and basically like indulge in it as much as possible. In fact, when you’re not doing that, you’re miserable. And then on the other side of it, right is the alchemist, which is the innovator, is the transformer, is the brand that helps people make complex things look simple. And so because you’re an explorer, lover, alchemists, basically you help people create experiences and help them navigate that by discovering what their special thing they can offer people in their retreats, right. To create an intimate, beautiful experience that simply transforms people in a way that gets the highest return on investment. And so like for your brand, that’s how I would break down that. And then I would use the AIM to look at all the parts of your marketing and your branding and even your internal operations like your team, et Cetera, to see where you may not be on-brand so that we can make those adjustments and tweaks.
Darla LeDoux: Wow. Well, that sounds exactly like me. I love the idea of looking at the team in that way too. That’s awesome. So, guys, you can get the assessment and I wanted to kind of share personally because this is really spot on. This is not like a quick assessment that you can, you know, just a quick run through and it’s going to give you something fun and you move on. It’s very detailed. And for me, I found it to be super accurate, Jen, so thank you for putting that together for people. I mean I imagine the level of attention that went into creating that.
Jen Kem: Thank you. And I do thank you for saying that because back to vanity things, you know right now it’s very fun to create quizzes as a way to get leads online. And I’ve got nothing against it. But the difference between the gift that we’re giving to your listeners today and those types of what I call for entertainment only quizzes is that this is a real assessment actually certified by the College of Monterey. It’s a psychological assessment on what motivates you personally as a visionary and then how that applies or doesn’t apply to your current business so that you can be a more powerful and potent brand. It is a real assessment. So take it, put some time around it, take about, you know, 20 minutes, put aside, you know, have some tea and take it and what you get on the other side will probably support you in a bigger way than you ever thought possible.
Darla LeDoux: Yes. So the link is on our podcast page. So you can find that there. And this is like Jen said, it’s a real assessment with real value. So make some time for that. Do go and get it wherever you are in your business or however clear you feel you are about your brand. I highly recommend taking this.
Jen, I want to talk about Femmefluence because I think that’s where you know your legacy is right? That’s where you’re headed. And I love the name. I love the content I’ve listened to so far and Retreat and Grow Rich. My brand, the acronym RICH is right-brained, intuitive, connected, and heart-centered. And this is literally about the skills, the soft skills that I was told in corporate that I should tone down because they’ll only get me so far. And those are the skills that more feminine, a lot of our retreat leader clients are women. And what would you like to share with people about your vision for the Femmefluence brand?
Jen Kem: Oh, it’s just so exciting to talk about Femmefluence because it is a, it is something that I’ve been holding in my heart. Honestly, I didn’t have a name around it. I didn’t call it Femmefluence back in the corporate world, but I really resonated with the story that you just shared, Darla around people told you that the soft skills did it matter or being feminine, it was going to hurt you. In terms of your ambition. And there are two parts of influence that really I feel as ambitious women we need, and the first is, first of all, is to be celebrated for being ambitious and that you can be ambitious and very much present as female if that’s how you want to be presenting as. Okay. And I think that the societal norms around male, female and stuff is what’s keeping a lot of women from going for it. And so that’s, that first piece is just this full celebration and hell yes girl too. You can do it. And both accessing frankly both your feminine and masculine sides of your, you know, your being are worth it and worthy.
The second part is I believe that all women need to be rich and recognized. I believe that when we’re rich and recognized, not only we do bigger things and we want to create bigger impact, but we have the resources to do so. And so my goal for femmefluence first the podcast is just to rally the women who are looking for who I call the others, the others like us who want to be celebrated for our ambition but also not tear down other women. And frankly men in the process. There’s actually no reason for that. But we’ve created a way to feel like we have less opportunity. And the truth is is that if we band together, we have a ton of opportunity. And that’s especially true of women who are of color or in disadvantaged groups. And so it’s very important to me for that to happen.
Ultimately it’s going to be mainly an events company. We want to gather women together who have linked values and are looking for other women who again, we’ll celebrate and recognize them and help them up instead of competing with them. And so that’s what we want to build in first. If the podcast and the next, we’ll have a big, we’re looking to make our first event happen next year, and so we’re just excited. I’m excited. It was an idea that actually people told me Darla not to do. They said it was a waste of my time. Why bother? I’m already successful. Why create another thing? And it was one of those things that I couldn’t sleep at night thinking about and I realized that, I think that’s a good indicator when your intuition supersedes your intellect, you’ve got a good idea. So. Mm. Yeah.
Darla LeDoux: Good. Yeah. A lot of people have that with retreats, right? They keep seeing this as an, a lot of coaches will say, don’t do it. It’s not worth it. It’s too much work. It’s too much money. Yet they have that knowing. I love that you shared too, that you envision this as an events company yet right now you’re just gathering the women. Oh, so back to the business model. You know, so many people also feel like, well, I’m just gonna put my event up on Facebook. Nevermind. I have, 2000 friends. Most of them are my family who put the event up on Facebook and it will fill. And so I just love that little reminder of gathering the audience that’s primed and ready for this thing.
Jen Kem: You know, I believe that successful people have both clean decision making skills and discernment. And so what I mean by that is it’s great when you’re excited and you want to go and you want to develop something and put it out there. And I think there’s a danger even in online coaching and whatnot, where there’ll be like, just do it right. And I am about giving yourself a big goal, putting it out there.
I love since you’re an engineer by trade, reverse engineering what you need to gather and look at so that you can architect something spectacular for yourself and the audience you want to create. But if you put all that pressure on yourself upfront and don’t do it in phases, you’re usually the person who’s the most disappointed and give up or you make that bad consultant right about not doing it. In this case like a retreat, right? Because they didn’t, they just told you it was not a good idea. They didn’t tell you. Actually, it is possible. Here are some of the recommended steps and you as an explorer, I think obviously since you know, retreats and how-to, not just fill them, but create these epic experiences inside of them for your clients. I’m sure there’s a methodology right to doing that and it doesn’t mean, hey, I had this idea for a retreat, let’s go do it for three weeks from now and sign a contract for the Ritz Carlton and you know what I mean? And then go, oh gosh, you know, how do I feel that in three weeks in a Facebook post and then they’ll only do one Facebook post and then it’s like, no one, no one has signed up. And I’m like, ah, Babe. It’s not you. It’s math, it’s just straight facts.
By the way, if anybody’s figured that out, I’d like to know too, because I certainly don’t have that power. You know, you have to warm it up. So that’s so important for people to understand.
Darla LeDoux: Awesome. So Femmefluence is available over on iTunes. Subscribe, leave a review, leave a comment. Anything else you want to request of people, Jen, in this realm of having women be rich and recognized?
Jen Kem: Thank you for mentioning the podcast. I’ve been getting great feedback on it and I think that, you know, if you listen in to the first, let’s say five episodes where I talk about the values and fem fluids, and if you feel like if you’re listening and you already resonate with what Darla and I just spoke of it, great. I’d love for you to listen in and tell other women that, you know, they want to get rich and recognized too. They just don’t feel like they have the community to do that. And it’s not just your basic business community. I’m talking about women, including corporate women. I wish I had Femmefluence back in my corporate career. You know, I wish I had a place where I could meet other like-minded ambitious women. You know, the Sheryl Sandbergs of the world who, you know, she runs Facebook, Sarah Blakely, who yes, started as an entrepreneur, but now she is a corporate CEO. She has a big company with hundreds of employees and they’re the same type of women that us as small business owners who are building our own brands and looking for ways to make more impact and income that comes along with that.
We all need each other to see what’s possible. And so I just have to build to something Darla, that I wanted so badly. And so I just invite everyone to listen. And yes, please. It helps so much when you leave a review because not just obviously for my ratings on iTunes or the other podcast stations, but mainly because then it’s data. It’s you. If you tell me what you resonated with, it helps me create things for you that you need as a woman, as a leader. So thank you for that. Beautiful. Thank you so much
Darla LeDoux: Jen. I so, so value your time and your insight and the excellence with which you execute everything you do. I know on your podcast you talk a lot about what it takes for you to be able to do that as a woman and the support you have and and the habits and practices that, for those of you listening, you know it really is uncommon. Jen, this is what I’ve noticed about you since I’ve gotten to know you. You have an uncommon level of integrity and attention to detail and intention about what you do, so I highly recommend people hop on and follow are joining in on your work, joining in on the movement.
Jen Kem: Oh, Darla, thank you so much. That means so much to me. In fact, I’m going to listen back to this podcast episode and take the transcript and cut that out and put it on my computer so I can be reminded that have that uncommon integrity. I really, really appreciate it. Thank you so much to you for sharing this message with your people. I’m very grateful to be on your podcast today.
Darla LeDoux: Have an amazing day everyone and we will see you on the next episode.
Have you been called to integrate retreats into the way you do business?
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