Facebook Ads for Business Owners with Emily Hirsh
Your Biggest Vision
Season 3, Ep. 10

If you are an online business owner (whether you use Facebook ads at this point or not), today’s episode with Emily Hirsh was made for you. Emily Hirsh is joining us today to cover the basics of facebook ads, lead generation to an email list and why these two elements are crucial for the growth and security of your online business. Emily and I also discuss tips on how to connect with your audience during the pandemic, how to pivot your business, how to grow your podcast, and how so many other tips to being a well-balanced CEO.


Tune in to hear:


  • Emily Hirsh, CEO of Hirsh marketing, share her best kept secrets when it comes to online business and being a CEO.


  • Why you should be consistently working to grow your email list


  • How Emily is a mother to three children, leads 25 employees and continues to level-up her business while balancing her personal life through her power to decide.

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Emily Hirsh is joining us today to cover the basics of facebook ads, lead generation and why these elements are crucial for your business.

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Emily Hirsh
Facebook Ads with Emily Hirsh

Episode Transcription

Leah Gervais: Hi visionaries. Welcome back to the Your Biggest Vision show. I’m your host, Leah. And today we are so lucky to have Emily Hirsh, founder of Hirsh marketing here to join us. Hi Emily. 

Emily Hirsh: Hi, thanks for having me. 

Leah Gervais: Thank you for being here. So thanks for being here again. This is your second time on the podcast. We don’t usually have people twice a year. You’re one of the few. We’re very lucky to have you. So, for those of you who follow me, who know me, you’ve probably heard me mention Emily before. She has taught me a lot over the years. And especially in the earlier years of my business, I couldn’t help, but feel like I had a secret weapon because when so many people were like, well, not wanting to do Facebook ads, you really gave me the bravery to spearhead them. So she is a wealth of information for us, and we’re very lucky to have her. Yay. Do you, before we dive in, do you just want to share a sentence or two about what you do and like where you are now?

Emily Hirsh: Yeah, so I’m CEO of Hirsh marketing, which is basically a marketing agency that we specialize in Facebook and Instagram ads for digital brands. And we have a few different ways we work with people through a done with you program and a done for you service. I’ve got 24 employees. So I spend a lot of my day in meetings and managing, managing my team and then creating content.

Leah Gervais: Sure. Yeah, we should have an offline chat about that sometime because I know you and I both learned from Alex Charfen he helped me start building my team and, um, I struggle with all the meetings. I’m not gonna lie. It was a big adjustment for me. Yes. Okay, cool. All right. So the way I’d love to start out is, um, just kind of picking your brain a little bit on Facebook ads right now. So most of our audience is entrepreneurs online entrepreneurs. Why don’t we start with something that I’ve always believed in so strongly, which is list-building- I know you recently said your email is still the most important, so I’d love to hear your thoughts on that and how we can be using Facebook ads to do that right now.

Emily Hirsh: Yeah. So I mean, list building has been so important for so long and I feel like maybe five years ago, it was a big focus in the online world. And then you got people who came in and were like, you don’t need your email list anymore. You have mini chat or you have this. And I think we’re kind of coming full circle again, where it is very critical that you, you should have been always growing your email list, but it’s kind of very obvious now how important that is. And the reason that I recently spoke about that is obviously in the online world in the last year has been so much has happened between COVID between the elections black lives matter blackout week, like Facebook, you know, issues, iOS updates. 

Emily Hirsh: And I always come back to like your email list. You own it’s an asset to your business. And so you should consistently be using Facebook ads or whatever method you use for traffic to grow your list. So that if anything happened to Facebook or whatever method you’re using, you have that list of people you have, hopefully people that you’ve been nurturing and building those relationships with, because I like to point out, you know, if you have that, it doesn’t matter what happens. You can pivot and still serve those people in your business will be okay. And so it’s absolutely critical, especially right now that you’re prioritizing consistently growing your email list.

Leah Gervais: Amazing. So I still honestly, um, pretty much use the same system I’ve used for a few years now. And maybe you can tell me if I am thinking about this wrong, but I still use conversion ads. I still have opt-ins and that still works well for me. And I still am able to test them so much, which is something you largely taught me in your podcast was how to test things. I really think that is all Facebook ads are at the end of the day is testing things. Is that still what you advise to use conversion ads use? Opt-ins all that as a good way to grow your list. 

Emily Hirsh: Yeah. Great way to grow your list. I think that you can also grow your list with like a webinar though. If, if that is someone’s choice to only have that, it depends on your budget because if you only have, you know, a thousand dollars a month to spend with ads and you want to separate it out between an opt-in and a webinar, then you only have $500 for each. And so sometimes I’ll say pick one for that reason, but at least have something where you’re consistently every single day, getting those email leads, whether it’s an opt-in and a lead magnet and a webinar, or if it’s just a webinar, at least that’s still growing your leads.

Leah Gervais: Right? So let’s talk about webinars a little. I know that that’s been a huge help in my own business. And one of the things I tell my clients is yes, I, you know, do live video, do webinars is I think they’re incredible, but don’t do it if no one’s coming and don’t do it. If people don’t come live, because then that’s kind of magical thinking where you think so long as I still do it, people will buy. Right. And it’s like, you do kinda need the numbers. So how do you think about that with your clients? And do you suggest minimums for people to have, like, I know it’s hard to pay because it depends on the goal they want of the webinar, but how do you begin to think about webinars and ads?

Emily Hirsh: Yeah, I think a good minimum is about a thousand dollars a month of ad budget. I think if you have any less than that, it’s hard to get the volume to, like you said, make the webinar worth it, that people are coming and you can actually get some traction. Um, and then the other piece is evaluating, like, should I do an evergreen automated webinars? Should I do a live webinar? 

And there’s a lot of different theories on that out there. But I think if you’re, if you’re doing a live webinar every week, but you don’t have the budget to keep filling up the seats to that live webinar, it’s like you said, it’s hard. I would say, do a live webinar once a month and put all that budget to that one big live webinar to make that worth it. Um, so a lot of our clients will have like a hybrid, we’ll have an automated webinar going, and then we’ll have a live webinar, maybe once a quarter. And I talk about that strategy to go back and recapture all your leads that you got into your automated webinar. And that way you can kind of have a big bang experience with that live webinar, but also have consistent lead generation with your automated one.

Leah Gervais: Do you think webinars are still working really well? I feel like some people say they’re over.

Emily Hirsh: I think they’re working when done. Right. And if it’s to the right audience, like I can tell you from my personal experience, a lot of our agency level clients don’t come to webinars. So I know I’m not really going to sell my high ticket clients on a webinar. Um, for that reason we’ve tested and had a lot of success with the secret podcast series, which is the same concept of a webinar, but delivered via audio. 

But a webinar is still an effective way to nurture someone and pitch your offer to them. So I don’t know of a better way to do it, you know? And, and I think people think webinars are like a fad, but it’s the concept of them that’s been around for so long. I mean, people used to knock on your door and basically deliver a webinar and that’s how they, you know, sell or go into an office and do a presentation for somebody. So that concept will always work in, and it’s just kind of meeting your audience where they’re at, how long the webinars should be, the, all of those things matter around your audience, but they absolutely still work.

Leah Gervais: Right. I love that way of putting it. And I think it’s so important to remember, to not get caught up in the, the tech, the flavor of the week tech. And even when my clients, I probably confuse them sometimes, cause I’ll say webinar, but I could mean Facebook live. I could mean Instagram. I don’t really care where you do it or how you do it. 

It’s just like the sales pitch that you’re doing for people that are their live. And by the way, it’s so fun. Like talking to you. It’s so funny because I’m so used to hearing you at time and a half, like speed up the way you’re talking. It’s like good for me to slow down for a second. But I just realized like, Oh my God, how funny I love that advice. And so did you see in the last year with COVID any trends, like, do you think people are still going to them if they’re done right in yeah. Any, any tips?

Emily Hirsh: Yeah, it was interesting. Like the start of COVID we saw a massive increase in like attendance on webinars. I think people would just add more time to do that. And now it’s kind of gone back to normal of what we were seeing before. Um, live show up rates are definitely lower than what they were like three to five years ago. 

And so you have to take that into consideration. Um, and then as far as like COVID as a whole, I think the, the biggest thing that COVID did is the messaging, like, is your messaging still relevant with whatever your audience might be going through right now, if COVID impacted them and your audience, and have you shifted your webinar title and the messaging around it and how you’re attracting people. 

That was a very important piece of COVID. And then overall, you know, are you doing brand awareness and visibility with your webinar ads? And that, that kind of has gotten more important. I think, as it’s always been important, I’ve always preached brand awareness and content, valuable content, but as people maybe got a little hesitant to buy as like the uncertainty of the times you realized maybe your buying cycle of your, of your lead got longer. And so you need to have that nurturing, have that brand awareness to still meet your sales goals. Those are the two main things we saw in the last year.

Leah Gervais: Yeah. That makes a lot of sense. And you know, I know for you, your clients, your agency, who probably are relatively far along in business at that point, they might not have this, but I think that that’s so valuable for you to point out because for new entrepreneurs, there is a runway, there is a time period between when people hear from you then from when they’re going to buy from you and you can’t freak out, you can’t like take it personally. And I think it’s just important to remember that that might even be longer right now.

Emily Hirsh: Right? And you can’t say, Oh, it’s not working. I’m going to shut everything off, change my whole funnel like Facebook ads don’t work for me. You gotta stay in it for that long game, because then you’re able to eventually create that snowball effect of like, Oh, I have leads buying from me now I have leads who have followed me for six months for a year. And then it starts all creating this successful business, but you’ve got to stick around for that.

Leah Gervais: Right. Right. Totally. So on that a little bit, um, I know I have really loved doing lives over the years. You, whether you know it or not have pushed me to do a lot of lives over the years on Facebook, do you still find those to be effective? Um, and I loved your clubhouse episode. I totally agreed. We can talk about that in a minute, but what are you finding to be really good ways to connect with your audience right now?

Emily Hirsh: Yeah, so, I mean, I think Facebook lives, if you were, if you are at a beginning stage of your business and you needed to find ways to connect with your audience, yes, they’re still relevant. They’re definitely better than prerecorded videos posted, but you want to keep them short, like five minutes where before you could probably get 15, 20 minute long Facebook lives, especially if you’re trying to attract new people, you’re just going to not get their time for 15 to 20 minutes, especially right on the, the Facebook newsfeed.

I also think Instagram stories, like if you have the time to pour into it, are definitely a great way to connect with your audience and you can retarget, you know, people who watch your Instagram stories and interact with you. So I don’t personally do a lot of Facebook lives anymore. My podcast is my main driver has kind of replaced that and we run ads to my podcasts to get increased downloads and traction. But if I was to choose a video method, I would say Facebook lives are probably one of the top because first of all, the live component, I really like, it’s more authentic. It’s not planned. The key is that you want to keep it shorter than the time span and attention span that somebody has on the Facebook newsfeed is just gone down, down, down as we’ve grown in the last few years.

Leah Gervais: Sure. Yeah. That makes a lot of sense. I do feel like they, I don’t know. I know they were so powerful for a while, but there’s so many other ways to do it that you just don’t have to do it anymore. Your podcast is amazing. It’s one of, I think one of the best podcasts I listen to congratulations on all of it.

Emily Hirsh: Thank you. Thank you. 

Leah Gervais: Do you love it?

Emily Hirsh: Yes, I do. I really love, yeah, we’re on like episode 200, I dunno, 60 or something, which is so cool. I love it. It’s my favorite way to show up and deliver content. I also think it’s, you know, audio is the future. In my opinion, I’ve talked about that on the podcast. Like that’s the easiest way people are consuming content. I know myself. It’s one of the only ways I still consume content is audio. I don’t really watch videos or webinars anymore. So I love it. I love giving the short, actionable content. So people don’t have to listen for an hour and a half to get something out of it. Yeah, it’s great. It’s just a, it’s a very intimate relationship. You build with people who listen to your podcasts. I mean, even just this experience, you’re like, I’m so used to listening to your voice. I’m wanting to have speed. It’s like, we’re like friends in that way because he listened to me. It’s just a very amazing way to build a relationship with your audience.

Leah Gervais: Yeah. It’s, it’s funny. Yeah. I feel like I know you because I listen to your podcast so much. And I, the other day I live in Miami now and I was on the beach and I saw Ramona singer from the real Housewives of New York. I don’t know if you watch that show, but I was thinking like how weird it must be to be a reality TV star, because everyone does think they kind of know you personally that watches the show. They kind of feel like they do because you exposed so much of your life personally, but you obviously don’t know them at all. So you’re kind of like a reality TV star. I feel like I know everything about business and stuff, but, uh, do you have any tips for growing your podcast? Yours is clearly like killing it.

Emily Hirsh: Um, putting out consistent content is the first one. So if you’re going to start a podcast or you’re going to commit to one, make sure at least once a week, you’re putting out a new episode because that consistency will help your downloads. You can run ads to your podcast. The, what, what we do is run ads to the page on my website. That’s kind of like a blog page, but each episode has a page that way you get the pixel traffic. Cause it, you can’t, if you send it straight to like iTunes or Spotify or something, you’re going to lose that traffic to be able to retarget. So it’s hard to know if the ads are resulting in more downloads is the only bummer because you can’t, you know, obviously track downloads, but it’s great for building retargeting audiences building that, um, you know, hopefully increasing those downloads and then really just, I think providing as much valuable content as you can.

There is always, you know, as we continue to grow, the noise is going to grow and so there’s competition. I actually recently said this on a podcast episode. I don’t take it lightly that someone listens to my podcast, that someone trusts their time with my information. And I constantly want to deliver for that reason because I know there’s a dozen other opportunities out there to go listen to Facebook ad podcasts. And so your goal should be the best in your industry. And really over-deliver. I mean, I give it all away on my podcast. I’m not worried about- I think it’s great. If people can take my podcast and actually go implement it and see results and they haven’t paid me anything yet, like great, then they’re building trust with me and that, you know, that works. 

And I also think that unless for some reason, your brand is that longer style podcasts, but people tend to appreciate the short 20 to 30 minute episodes with a lot of value in them than the like hour and a half minute. You know, I know like Joe Rogan, he can get away with those really long, but I never listened to them. 

That’s not my audience, but he does have like the number one podcast. So those are the biggest points. And, um, we’ve also done things like promote reviews to try and boost your numbers, which has worked where you give away something. If they leave a review and send in a screenshot. So if you really want to launch it new and do something like that, that first time that could potentially help your growth and your numbers.

Leah Gervais: All really good tips. And I can definitely vouch. I tell all my clients that yours is a great way to learn about marketing. And I even remember being back back in the cubicle days, you know, I would get your, um, I don’t know if you still do this, but your monthly report. That was also, we still do it. 

Yeah, I guess I haven’t looked at all of that. I have your podcast now. Um, but I, I think you’re a great example of something that I don’t believe people give good advice on that much, which is, I think that people, this is kind of boring to you, but you can let me know your thoughts. I think some people in the online business industry have way too calculated and formulaic approaches to what you should or shouldn’t give away for free. 

I personally have the approach that I’m not really going to withhold information because I have found that people, it doesn’t make them not want to work with me. It makes them want to process information with me. And I think that you have done a really good job of being like, I’m not here to play some, you know, do some dance around how much I’m going to are not going to give away, because I know that since I deliver so well, people aren’t going to trust me and buy from me and refer me and do all the things.

Emily Hirsh: Yeah, absolutely. I think that if you’re really worried about giving away too much, you should rethink it because people, you know, you can give them all the information. And at the end of the day, it’s like the system and the execution that they really want to buy from you. So the information just builds the trust. It makes you stand out from everything else out there. 

I also think that one of the reasons my podcast is an advantage is there’s not a lot of people in the trenches then sharing the day to day, like marketing gets expired very fast, or somebody has just their narrow, like this is what I did to build my business. And so that’s all they can, they can teach on. And so having being actually in it every day and then also teaching on it is rare to have that and sharing the behind the scenes, you know, unfiltered. I don’t, I never have been like, Oh, I’m going to hold that back because I want to make sure they pay me for that information.

Leah Gervais: Right. I, yeah. I mean, you have this unique balance of you have so many clients where you can see what’s working, but what I appreciate it, I appreciate about you and like the way you do businesses, you don’t just sit on the sidelines, watching your clients either like you test your own launches, you test your own webinars. You’re constantly still trying new things and seeing like, what else can scale your business? And I think, I think that is a hard balance to find, because I think some people are like, Oh, I have clients. I’m just gonna, like, I’m not gonna, you know, try all these new things and you do both.

Emily Hirsh: Yeah. Yeah.

Leah Gervais: It’s amazing. So what are, what would you say are the biggest mistakes you’re seeing people make like, especially newer entrepreneurs with marketing or Facebook ads right now?

Emily Hirsh: so yeah, the biggest mistakes is going into ads with that mentality of like, I’m just going to throw spaghetti at the wall, see what sticks. I don’t have a plan, but everybody tells me I need to test ads. Like a lot of people find themselves in that situation. And I try to always teach and talk about, you know, going into your ads with an intentional strategy, paired with an intentional, you know, ad strategy and a budget and goals defined and, and simply doing that will make such a huge difference in your results and your experience with ads. Um, I think people think a lot like testing Facebook ads means just like throwing random things out there. And then just like seeing if somebody takes off and it’s magic and it works and it just doesn’t work like that. You’ve got to have a solid foundation.

And I often say, you know, you can’t amplify something that’s broken and Facebook ads are here to amplify your solid foundation. So before you go run ads and take your ads to the next level, you need to have that foundation, which means having your budget and goals defined, which means having a clear strategy and metrics to measure that strategy and knowing your ideal customer and having all of those things in place before you go run ads. 

So that’s one of the biggest mistakes I see people make the other is really not playing the long game. We kind of talked about this in the beginning of the interview, but people who, you know, go one or two weeks and then they’re like, Oh, I’m turning off all my ads. I’m going to change my whole funnel. This doesn’t work for me and like freak out and panic.

My advice is to have the mentality of the first 30 to 60 days of Facebook ads is you’re buying information. Like you said, Facebook is testing and it’s giving you that information of how is your messaging doing? How’s your strategy doing? And if you can go into it, seen ads as an investment in the beginning for the long term growth of your business, you’ll stick with it and feel more confident with it. 

If you go into it with that expectation, there’s some, you know, marketers and people out there who have made it feel like, Oh, you just put a funnel and run ads and it’ll work in like two days and you can go on vacation. You know, like that is not the reality of business. And I like to, you know, attract people who it’s like, we’re growing a real business. That’s going to be here for hopefully years, decades. And that means taking time to grow an audience, grow our leads, figure out what’s working, fix our messaging and, and constantly refine. And that’s, you know, if you’re, if you’re doing a good job in your business, it’s never going to be fully perfect. I know our, our mentor, Alex, Charfen talks about that. And that’s something you can take into your marketing. It’s like, you’re always going to have something to improve. And if you don’t, then you’re not growing. You’re just not doing enough to run your ads properly.

Leah Gervais: Right. You know, that, that brings me, uh, I’m excited to ask you this question cause you’ll have more insight than I do, but I was talking, I was on someone’s podcast yesterday and I was talking about how, especially when I started a few years ago, I don’t think it’s as bad now, but there was so much like sexiness around the passive $297 eCourse. Like everyone was selling it. 

Everyone had it, everyone was talking about it. It’s like it was what everyone wanted. And I think what I’ve really learned over the years, and as I become more front, like friends with that are really successful course creators and friends with people that have seven figure businesses and growing my own business to, you know, an income level, I never could have dreamed of those situations are rarely, truly passive. Most of the time people are behind the scenes at analyzing.

If the funnels are working, analyzing, if the data is working, testing things and seeing if they’re working and the situation that people have in their head of you literally kicking back and not looking at all seems either few and far between, or almost a little bit like escapism, because it feels like those things need maintenance. So I’m kind of, of the frame of mind that like, it’s not entirely passive. Yes. You can have assets. Yes. You can scale them and yes, you can make money on demand. Um, but either you’re spending your time actively making money with clients or you’re spending your time working behind the scenes with things, but you still are working. Do you agree? Or do you think…

Emily Hirsh: Absolutely. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a case where someone successfully was like, okay, I built this funnel. I created ads, it was a successful one and so, and now it’s forever. I don’t have to do anything. Like I don’t think I’ve ever seen anything like that. I mean, you’re constantly having to stay relevant and update your messaging, update your webinar title, fixed and update the content, change the positioning of your offer if you need to. 

And even people who have a successful, automated funnel, especially in the last year, to be honest, have had to update their messaging. Even if it’s just your webinar titles frequently, at least once a quarter that you’re changing that out and you have different, you know, messaging and copy. And if you’re not doing that, you’re probably going to just decline in your growth instead of being able to scale. So you might be able to sit there for a little while with something automated, but it won’t continue to grow in scale. It’s just going to kind of sit there and slowly decline potentially.

Leah Gervais: Yeah, I totally agree. Thank you for being honest about that. I think it’s important. People have a realistic idea of what the funnel really is. 

Emily Hirsh: Yeah. Yeah. 

Leah Gervais: Um, okay. I want to shift gears a little bit. I know, I obviously, I feel like I could talk to you for hours, but um, I want to talk to you a little bit more about just you being, you know, the visionary and the founder of your business. So you said you have 24 employees. You’re also a mother of three, right? Yes. And you’re young. We’re in our twenties.

Emily Hirsh: I’m 26. 

Leah Gervais: Yeah. Okay. So, I wanna, the way I wanna shift gears is through kind of social media. So I heard your, I love your clubhouse episode and I guess you can summarize it if you want, but you shared why you’re not going to be there. And I would just kind of love to hear your philosophy on that and how you think about your time.

Emily Hirsh: Yeah. So I am extremely intentional with my time. Um, I’m either working and I’ve got my work hours or I’m very present with my kids and that’s kind of how I’ve set up my life. I have a lot of support around me with nannies and a chef who helps me and that’s how I can do it all. When people ask me how I, how I do it all, is that support it’s intentional. 

So I recently talked about, you know, going into the new year, what I want my time to look at. I really analyzed it. I actually marked off eight weeks out of the year that I had calls and they’re like off weeks. I just had one, um, where I either am, you know, reading, thinking, brainstorming, or I’m doing content because that takes heavy focus. Um, but also, you know, I’ve, I’ve always struggled with like, how do I want to show up on social media because not paid ads, but organic social media is set up so that you have to always be on especially Instagram stories where it’s like, okay, document your whole day or it didn’t happen.

And like, I would get into phases where I’m with my kids and I’m like, Oh, you’re doing something so cute. Let me pull my phone out and do it on Instagram stories. And like, I just did not, I want to be like that. And so when clubhouse came out and it was started getting really popular and I have a lot of friends who were like, you got to get on clubhouse, like it’s so great. I’m getting all this traffic. And I did go on for like a weekend for four or five days and just kind of check it out. And my biggest takeaway is I was in rooms with these very successful entrepreneurs, but they, you know, with, with very successful eight figure businesses. And then they’re in this room with like a thousand people who are asking these like honestly silly questions. And I’m like, that’s how you value your time.

You’re going to give your access away to people like that and just sit here for 90 minutes? And so I’ve just decided I’m not, I’m going to intentionally not be on clubhouse because to me it’s like the definition of trading time for money. So that’s a great, you can get a hundred leads. And, and one of my friends like love her and she was telling me all these leads she got and I’m like, and how much time did you spend on club house? She’s like six hours. I’m like, I don’t have six out. Like I’d rather spend my money on Facebook ads and put one hour into a webinar and get those results. So I think if you are, if you’re a brand new entrepreneur and you have that time to trade. Clubhouse is probably great. It’s in the beginning phases. You’re going to get that organic traffic more than you normally would.

I’m not saying clubhouse is bad. I’m saying for me, I think any opportunity out there in marketing, you have to say no to as much as you say yes to, and every time you say yes to something, it takes away from the no. So I just decided I’m, I’m still, you know, I’m all in on my podcast. I do not want to be on an app. That’s going to take hours. I mean, I have friends who are literally like 15 hours, 20 hours a week on clubhouse, which they love it. Like, and I just did not want to do that. So just, you know, I don’t have the app, I have a profile. I don’t know if I have followers, whatever. And I just decided I’m not going on clubhouse. Um, obviously if they ever roll out ads, I’ll look at that for our company.

But, um, you have to decide where you put your time and especially as you grow your company, you know, with, for me with that many employees, the biggest strain I often have is everybody needs me as what it feels like somedays, where it’s like, I’ve got, you know, all these departments, somebody there’s days when everybody needs something and then I’m done and my kids need something and my husband needs somebody. 

And I’m just like, I don’t know. I cannot make another decision. And I, you know, every, just leave me alone. And so you have to create space like for yourself to, to actually just think. And I, um, since the fall of last year, and I’ve kind of like regressed a few times, but I completely stripped social media off my phone. So on top of the decision of no clubhouse, I also made the decision of really no Instagram stories.

Because for me that was something where I couldn’t find a balance where it was like, you can be off social media and show up on stories. So I told my team at the beginning of this year, like, I will create content for you in a batched way. You tell me what you need, I’ll record the videos, you know, one, you know, one day, a week, a month or something. And that’s how I’m showing up on social media. I don’t care if it gets us a little bit less followers or less engagement. I think there’s a better use of my time that will get us a more return for that investment. And so we made that decision. It’s been great.

Leah Gervais: Yeah. Yeah. I think that, I just love that you’re sharing that so publicly and reminding people, especially entrepreneurs that even if you’re not like far, far in advance, if you have a little traction, it’s your business, you have to own your time. You can’t fall victim to what other people think you should or you shouldn’t do. Another question I want to ask you is one, okay. I have five employees and zero kids. So I can only imagine what it’s like for you, but I struggle. Uh, and I have a lot since day one with how many decisions you have to make when you work for yourself. And when you have people asking you things all the time and having a team is amazing, but if you’re not on your shit, you’re going to bottleneck them from getting things done. And that can, that’s a stress of its own that you don’t, I didn’t really envision. Right. So how do you handle how many decisions you need to make?

Emily Hirsh: I mean, it’s, it’s tough. Like I said, there are some weeks where it’s really draining and I’ve been on, you know, days of six hours of meetings and every single one required my 110%, you know, energy to give to people who are looking to me to lead them. Um, the best advice that I’ve spent really the last year doing is trying to build leaders under me. And I feel like I’m finally in a very good spot with that, but it literally took probably the last two years to get there because they first usually have to come into the company at one level and then move up is what I’ve found the most successful. Um, but now I’ve built, you know, each department has a leader that I feel very solid with, who can make decisions for me and make, make the decisions that I would have made.

And they didn’t need to ask me for that, which really, to be honest, just takes a lot of time. Like it takes time to build that relationship, to build that trust, to work with them. So they see how you work. Like it’s not something that can even happen in like 90 days. It’s like a year until it happens. And so, um, I’ve struggled because I’ve been in places where the company grew so much and I needed those leaders and I didn’t have those leaders. And so then the stress came on me. 

But just building that, and whenever you have to go on vacation or be out, if you can look at like, where was I, the bottleneck, those are always the opportunities. And so any time that I, you know, didn’t work, I would look at like, what was, what were the questions people had and what were the things they needed from me? And where’s the opportunity and me delegating that in the future. But ideally you create, you know, department heads who can make the decisions around marketing and your delivery, and you’re able to have them kind of represent you, um, which I finally am there for now until the business goes to the next level. And then I have to recreate it.

Leah Gervais: Yeah. Well, that’s, that’s great advice. I love that exercise. Do you just use personal? So you’re not to answer, but like, I’m wondering if there’s any way you think about it in your day-to-day life. Like, I, I don’t know if you know this from following me on social media, but at the beginning of this year, I just decided to stop drinking alcohol completely. And one of those reasons was because I was sick of it, taking up a decision that I would make- like is tonight and I’m going to have alcohol? Am I going to lose sleep? You know, it was just, I was over it. So I’m wondering, do you think about that in your day-to-day life too?

Emily Hirsh: Yeah. Well, I think for sure, I’m trying to get decisions, so I have a very like routine. And so that allows things around like working out or being with my kids. Like I don’t have to make decisions about like, what am I going to do today for this? So my day is very routine so that I have that schedule. And even if my meetings change a little bit, like I know what I’m doing and I don’t have to constantly make decisions around that. 

So absolutely like looking at all the places you have to make decisions and trying to lessen that by simplifying things or making, you know, uh, one blanket decision or something. Um, I definitely do that. And then I struggle the most with decisions around like the personal side of things. Cause it’ll be like, Oh, you have to like an annoying thing, like go in and get this like form filled out and you really have to go in and do it.

And like, deciding like when I’m going to do that is like the hardest thing for me, because it’s like, not in my routine, but it’s this decision I have to make. So trying to get help, like from an assistant in person has helped with that. Um, and then creating, I have found it helpful to create time in the week. That’s just like for those things, I don’t always do that perfectly, but I’m, I’m bad at giving myself a buffer time. Like I definitely think I have more time than I do every day. So I’ll like, over-schedule myself. 

But if you have like one or two hours where it’s just like responding to people, making those decisions, catching up on those things, it will help a lot because you won’t avoid it completely. Like I’ll never be able to avoid having to respond to any team member. Like I obviously have to have that communication. And so I try to just schedule it versus like be reactive where I’m like in between meetings, in my email and my Slack trying to respond, but I have intentional times that I go and do that.

Leah Gervais: Very good advice. Amazing. Well, you’re inspiring is always, which leads me to my last question for you is what most inspires you these days?

Emily Hirsh: Um, definitely creating the life of my dreams is what is inspiring me. So, you know, I actually, uh, a podcast will come out soon on this. I just have reflected a lot on like, why is it that we’re doing what we’re doing? And once you create enough success to kind of pay for your bare minimum needs, you have to reflect on like that, that kind of addiction to doing, doing, doing, and then balancing that with like, what’s my ideal life look like. 

So for me, what inspires me is the freedom to be able to say, I want to not work half days on Fridays and I want to be with my kids or whatever. I want to travel, whatever that is. And so what inspires me is that I have that freedom to create that and define that. Um, and one of the things I’ve thought a lot about in the last, you know, three to six months is looking at successful entrepreneurs that also have a very fulfilling life.

And I think that is actually hard to find. I recently read, um, it was Sheryl Sandberg’s book, and I know she’s not a CEO, but she’s the COO of Facebook. And she said in the book, the days are long gone when I could have a weekend unplug or a vacation. And I was like, I hate that. Why that’s not the, you know, that, that doesn’t have to be how it is. And so I think it’s hard to find, um, really successful entrepreneurs. I’m talking like a hundred million plus that I’m looking at like long game where I’m going, who also are present with their family, can travel, have a life. And that’s my goal is to create that. And I think you can be that successful and have that life. 

And I think it’s rare. I mean, even I just watched Elon Musk’s dinner and he’s like, yeah, I worked at one or 2:00 AM every night, which is fine I guess if you want to do that, but I want to show people, you don’t have to do that. Which is where like the no social media and the stuff like that comes in for me, because I think that people think, Oh, you’re an entrepreneur. You work all day and all night and you have no life or, you know, a business and you have no life and it just doesn’t have to be like that. So that really inspires me. That motivates me to continue to create that reality of whatever my dream life looks like now, not in 10 years or 15 years like today.

Leah Gervais: Right? This is it. There’s no second round of this. Yeah. I love it. I think that that’s a great perspective. I do feel like I got to a point in business where, you know, I started looking up to people and feeling like, why aren’t you guys that happy? I don’t want that to happen. And I’m not trying to judge anyone. 

You know, I don’t know what other people are going through, but I did notice that pattern as well and trying to like have to electively decide that that isn’t what you’re going to let happen to you, even though you don’t necessarily know how you’re going to do it differently because the people you might be looking up to have done it that way, it’s, it can be a little scary, but there’s no other choice. Like you didn’t come this far to not live life the way you want. So I think it’s great that that’s something you’re really intentional and vocal about. Amazing. All right. Well, thank you so much for sharing all this with us. This was so insightful. Where can people contact? You find out more about your work, you, all of the things.

Emily Hirsh: Yeah. So my website is the best place. HirshMarketing.com and I have a podcast that comes out every Tuesday, Thursday. We’ve got a, that monthly marketing report, lots of resources. If you’re interested in learning more about Facebook ads and marketing.

Leah Gervais: Thank you so much, Emily, for sharing your wisdom with us. This was hugely helpful. 

Emily Hirsh: Thanks for having me.

Show notes:

Website: https://www.hirshmarketing.com/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/emilyhirsh/?hl=en

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