Summer Tannhauser of Lady Boss League is a bonafide Pinterest queen. After using Pinterest to grow a client list for her first business, she quickly realized the power the platform held and has even helped entrepreneurial superstars like Mariah Coz build their accounts from scratch.
Summer started out as an elementary school teacher before starting her business, and now she puts her teaching skills to use helping entrepreneurs grow their businesses by stepping up their Pinterest game.
Here's what she has to say...
Ashley: Hey, Teachable Tribe. Ashley over at Teachable. Today, we are sitting down with Summer Tannhauser of Lady Boss League. Thrilled to be speaking with her. Summer, you wanna say hey?
Summer: Absolutely! Thank you so much for having me on. I am super excited to be here and just share with everybody today.
We're thrilled to have you! Summer's worked with entrepreneurs like Mariah Coz on her Pinterest following. And she has a successful blog on her own. And that's kind of where I want to start. Do you want to tell us a little bit about what you do?
Absolutely. I really do focus on Pinterest strategy. But I do try to combine it with website content and blogging and conversion strategy as well, because you can have a really solid Pinterest strategy, but if you don't have the blog and the website behind it you really aren't going to see the success.
I try to help small business owners and bloggers figure out how to combine Pinterest with what they're already doing in their business to see sales and clients and build their email list.
That's awesome! At what point did you leave the 9:00 to 5:00?
I'm kind of a long-time entrepreneur. I've been a small business owner for seven years now. I own two businesses actually.
My online space as well as a local service based business.
It was through my service based business I first left my 9:00 to 5:00. It's been about four years ago since I left. I was an elementary school teacher and I started building this business as a side hustle.
It was when my daughter was born that I finally thought, "This is crazy that I'm even trying to run two business at this point." And it was a 9:00 to 5:00 and then add a daughter into the mix.
It wasn't going to happen.
Absolutely. That makes perfect sense. Let's start here. You started the service based business. How did that happen? How did that first inkling of anything get going?
It's a local dog walking and pet sitting company. I had no idea that I was going to build this into a business. I have a management role now and have employees and manage it. I don't provide any of the services. It's more of my lifestyle business, I call it.
I'm not really involved in the day-to-day operations of it, but it's very much running in the background and it's got our VAs and office manager taking care of it.
It was just a hobby. I like dogs. I was like, "Oh, I'm gonna make a little extra money." and it just slowly grew over the years.
I finally realized, "Wow, this is actually a business." And I loved it and I loved everything about running a business.
And that's what kind of caused me to become an entrepreneur. I didn't have family who were business owner or anything, it was just I found that love for it.
Yeah. And at what point then did that become Lady Boss League, because that's very, very different?
Like I said, I'm kind of a serial entrepreneur. I'm always looking. I got to the point where I had that business space on autopilot so I was ready for my next thing that I was interested in, kind of like the next step in what I wanted my passions to be about now.
And I'd grown that love for marketing. I've done a lot of things for my business, social media, and getting clients online and that type of thing.
I knew that it was time for me to start a business that had more to do with finding clients online and doing the whole kind of online world.
Actually, before Lady Boss League, I started in a different online space. I was interested in travel and figuring out how I could start an online travel consultancy.
That's where I actually gained my knowledge and experience with Pinterest and what my business is based on today, because that's where I figured out how to use Pinterest marketing.
I gained over 75% of my clients for that business directly through Pinterest. And I realized that I was on to something that this was powerful.
Many people are replacing their full-time incomes with these online blogging businesses. But that all seems like a little vague, right, it's like I start blogging, and I start creating things.
I know this is a big question, but how did you build this website into the business that it is today?
I got started by getting content out there. I was like, "Okay, I wanna get some solid pieces of blog content out there just so that my website kind of looks a little bit full."
And then I really dove into webinars, it was my first step to really kind of put myself out there and start growing my business.
I felt like when we did that first webinar that people started taking notice of me.
It was so much easier to make connections with people who have been around for a while. And it's almost like people take you seriously then.
If you did invest the time to go out there and put together this quality webinar it shows you know your stuff, I can see that.
So then you're able to start kind of getting involved with the people that are maybe two steps ahead of you.
Absolutely. That's really cool. You're at the Lady Boss League, why Lady Boss League? Why that name? I know I'm drawn to it. I know others are. So I wanna ask.
It was a split second decision. I do feel like it's through my branding and kind of what I'm doing. I do attract a largely female audience.
However, I also have plenty of males that email me and they're like, "I know I'm not your target audience, but I still love what you're doing. Can you help me?" And I'm like, "Yeah. You know, absolutely. You're welcome here. There's nothing like exclusionary."
But truly, it was more one of those things where I was like, "Okay. I'm just gonna go with it."
I really like it. That's awesome. I was looking on your website and you're obviously a Pinterest maven. Your designs are beautiful. The content is there. But I notice you have courses too. At what point did you start shifting into courses and why?
Coming from another business, I was very intentional when I was starting this business in that I knew I wasn't going to be a service based business forever.
I started out by providing some Pinterest services and finding clients because I wanted to gain that experience and be able to show that what I did with my own Pinterest account is possible to do with other's Pinterest account. And get that social proof and show that it's a tangible thing that can happen.
Going in, I knew that I wasn't gonna offer services forever. That was a very limited thing that I was intentionally doing.
I know how you can get caught into services and you can let it become a new day job altogether.
Maybe you're leaving your 9:00 to 5:00 and then your new business becomes your 9:00 to 5:00 if you're not careful because you take on so many clients.
It might be good money but I feel like you've got to decide, is that what you're looking for? Are you looking to create yourself a new job? Or are you looking to create yourself more of a freedom lifestyle based company?
And I knew going in that I wanted to create more freedom in my business, more flexibility. I knew that courses and passive income and different products were really where I wanted to eventually get to. So that's why I made that shift.
That's so smart. I love that. Because it is easy to leave and then you're just working 9:00 to 5:00 with new clients and freelancing. So courses have done that for you, right? Because I've heard mixed reviews. Some people are like, "Oh yeah, I work on my course like my 9:00 to 5:00," but for you it's passive income?
For me it's more of a choice. I'm a mom. I've got two young kids, you know. I don't have 10-12 hours a day to work on my business.
It fits my lifestyle right now. And yes, I probably could sit down and work all day every day on just making things better. You know, I'm a perfectionist. I wanna tweak this video and adjust this strategy and there's always something that I could be doing.
But I've really had to focus on what's gonna make the biggest impact and, you know, how can I leverage this course I've created. How can I put it into different systems? You know, how I can have a sales funnel? Can I do a webinar to do this instead of always looking to create the next thing before maybe I've already leveraged what I've got.
I love that. That self-control is admirable. And it's hard to do. I mean, I've talked to so many people in this space. They leave the 9:00 to 5:00 and then they just keep like doing it. They're on the same grind that they left.
If I didn't have kids, maybe I would be, but it's more like it's been forced on me. So it's okay though. I think it's a good thing to have that habit.
How do you go about prioritizing what's most important? How does that break down for your business?
I have two different VAs that I outsource things to. They help with things on social media scheduling, and if I write a blog post, 'm not sitting there and formatting it and finding photos and doing everything that needs to happen to get it on the blog.
I definitely try to outsource as much of the items that I don't have to specifically be involved in.
I try to focus myself on content creation whether it be blog posts or working on the courses or creating that content which is something that I know that I have to do. It's not something that I can push to someone else.
And different live things. Like, I do really enjoy webinars. So I try to have webinars fairly frequently and I'm getting on podcasts more, and different things like that where it's like I drew back. We need to be there. It's my voice or me on camera. So that's really what I'm focusing on right now.
That makes perfect sense. So, with your lifestyle business, what is the best part of running your biz?
The freedom. It's not like I'm out traveling or doing all these extravagant things. Like I said, I have a four-year-old and a one-year-old. So it's not like we're going on these crazy trips.
I'm not tied down to being at a job every day, all day. We went to the zoo the other day. We go to the splash pads, to the pool. We do these things that if I wanna do it in the middle of the day on a Tuesday, I can.
I'm creating my schedule and definitely I think that's for me the biggest thing about having my own business and being passionate about what I do. There's never a day I'm like, "Oh man, I have to do this."
It's like, "I love this." Whereas going to my job before that were definitely Monday drag.
I'm wondering like what's coming up next for you then?
I've got my current Pinterest course, but I'm really looking to make it bigger and better. So I'm re-launching this fall and I'm turning it into a two-part course now.
One part is going to be all be Pinterest strategy. And then the other part is all going to be content conversion strategy.
Once they get back to your blog or your website from Pinterest, how are you converting them into email lists, signups, and sales, and clients. And so, the second part is really gonna focus on that. So I'm excited about having really expanding it, making it bigger and better.
I think a lot of people are right there where, yeah, even if you get Pinterest right, how do you turn that into actual money?
Exactly. So I love that part of it. Looking at the sales funnel and then how can you get more people to convert and that type of thing. It's kind of the next step.
Digging into a little bit the nitty-gritty in Pinterest there are so many blogs about it. What do you think is a one thing that most people are missing in their Pinterest strategy?
I think it's when they go in, they don't have the right mindset, because a lot of people are converting from a personal profile.
Or they've never really used Pinterest for business before when they first get started. They're still thinking of it as their personal pin board where they're putting recipes and things that they want to decorate around their house.
It's a full mindset shift, because now your Pinterest profile is all about your ideal client.
You've got to be making everything about them. The boards need to be things they would want to see.
Things about your business, but also what are their other interests. How can you put that into your profile? Having a really solid about section that tells who you are, who you serve, and what you do.
Having a business name in your Pinterest profile that also has keywords in it. I'm really big on keywords because that Pinterest is like a search engine. It's not even really social media.
You have to have this keyword so that people can find you on there. It's this whole mindset shift about making everything you do on there all about those ideal clients who you really want to find your blog or your website.
I feel like I'm gonna walk out of here and be like, "Okay. Let's go. Let's go look over those keywords as well." Because you're right, Pinterest is more of a search engine than just social. And it has a conversation rates to back it up. I mean, when you see how much people end up making and that people spend like twice as much coming from Pinterest and other like social media. It makes sense.
Yeah, it's crazy, the different stats you can get from it. It's like 41% of all e-commerce traffic comes from Pinterest.
I mean, just think about that, all of those people. It's like people get on Pinterest when they want to buy versus, Facebook where it's more like, "Oh, I'm gonna go be social with my friends and network," and that type of thing.
But when you get on Pinterest, you're really looking to purchase. So that's a big thing for business is getting on there.
For that first time kind of solopreneur, would your first advice to them be to set up their website and then their Pinterest? Or, what is the first thing you would tell people to do?
I really think it's one of your best first steps because it's a way that Pinterest builds on itself.
If you can get your website up and have one, to two, to three quality pieces of blog content on there and really make sure the images for that content is Pinterest optimized.
So making it vertical images, having a solid stock photo or something that's gonna draw their attention and then having text on there that gives a little teaser as to what your blog piece of content is gonna be about.
Interested in learning more about how you can use Pinterest as a creative entrepreneur? Summer has a FREE 5 day Pinterest Power course that will help you drive consistent website traffic that converts.
If you can just have three articles with those solid images and then start pinning those to your accounts, and really getting active on Pinterest daily. And you could definitely re-pin those images.
Maybe not every day, but you're gonna re-pin them not just one time. You set the time to get them out there and just really get active on Pinterest daily. You're gonna start seeing that traffic come in, and it's just going to build on itself. So the more you get on there, the better.
I love that 100%. Before I let you go do you have any last-minute advice for your solopreneur or someone who's like looking to leave that 9:00 to 5:00?
You have to figure out how you can you make that jump. I remember how hard it was even when I knew that I could make it and I knew that I had a good reason to leave.
You've just got to get in that mindset and say, "Yes, I can do this."
And just figure out what are you going do? Is this gonna become your new job, your new 9:00 to 5:00? And is that what you want? Because that is what some people want. Or are you really looking to do this so that it supports your lifestyle? So I'm big about really knowing in advance like what direction you're going.
I think that's something that most people I've talked to haven't touched on it. It really is like an active choice that should be on your mind.
I don't think I would've realized that if I hadn't have owned a different service based business ahead of time before making this leap. I probably would've dove into freelancing to boost my income.
But I feel like if you got the option to not need to do that right away, then it's more ideal. If you can start work on your email list and building these courses and getting your products and courses out there.
That leap of faith is nerve-racking, right? You're like, "Oh crap, I still have rent, I still have this mortgage. I'm leaving my job." Of course, you wanna take on like all those freelance jobs right away, but it is smart to kind of invest long-term.
I've got limited time for days, so you've got to figure out what's gonna be the best use of that time, and is it for the long-term gain or do you need to do something right away? I'm looking for the long-term.