I'm excited to introduce to you a new segment on my blog: BOSS BRANDS, where every month I highlight and introduce you to a BOSS. This month, I'm honored to kick off this series with Joyce Feustel of Boomer's Social Media Tutor. Joyce is a lifelong learner who found her professional calling at the tender age of 61. Joyce knows how to leverage her strengths and stay true to herself and her students. I know you'll find Joyce and her story as inspiring as I do!
Nik Scott: Who are you?
Joyce Feustel: I am lifelong learner and connector who found my professional calling at age 61. Also, I’ve been married to Bruce for 46 years, have two daughters Anne (age 37) and Jane (age 34) and one granddaughter Hava (age 3). All my life I’ve been a community volunteer and leader.
Recently I had a scientific hand analysis done, and I will include the life purpose that
came from that experience: My life purpose is to be an influential master of connection helping people who feel lost through radical transformation using deep intuitive wisdom, courage, intention, love and mass communications.
NS: What do you do?
JF: Through my business Boomers’ Social Media Tutor, I help people, especially those 45 and older, to become more effective and productive in their use of social media,
especially Facebook and LinkedIn. The way I help people is through one-to-one tutoring
and group/team training – both in person and virtually.
NS: Tell us a bit about your journey.
JF: As a girl growing up in the 1950s and 60s, I figured that I’d become a teacher like my
mom. She was a lifelong learner, and I always admired that trait of hers. Even though
she gave up her teaching career to be a home mom to 4 kids and a partner with my dad
on our dairy farm, she was always very intellectually engaged with life.
Through my dad, I developed an ability to easily meet and get to know people, as he
was naturally very outgoing and gregarious. A dairy farmer from his youth until age 50,
he also worked in the field of sales in the winter months. Also, he and my mom were
very involved as leaders in our church and our community.
I majored in English Education as an undergraduate with a minor in Speech, and when I couldn’t find a teaching job in 1971, I worked for a year and then got a master’s in
school health education. However, after teaching part-time in that field, I realized that I
wasn’t cut out to be a teacher. I decided to get a degree in business and then hoped to
work in nonprofit agency management, but after one year in that field, I realized that I
had another career that wasn’t a fit.
Fast forward to 1995 when we moved from Madison, WI to the Denver area. By then I
had married (in 1972) and we had girls ages 14 and 11, and I’d been a home mom
since the older one was born. When we got to Denver, I fell into the field of sales, and
worked for a local chamber of commerce, the Better Business Bureau, for two state-
wide membership organizations, the University of Phoenix, and the College for Financial Planning – all involved intangible sales.
It was at my last job with the College that my manager encouraged me to help other
people in my baby boomers’ generation to understand social media like I did. We had
launched a Facebook business page, a Twitter account and a LinkedIn group to help
marketing our college to financial planning professionals. As it turns out, at age 61, I
was the enrollment advisor most proficient in getting our students and potential students to engage with our social media sites.
So, taking his advice, I started to get more familiar with social media sites, taking
classes, reading blog posts and entire books about social media, and simply being more
involved in social media, especially LinkedIn and Facebook. Three years after he
planted the seed in my mind about helping others with their social media, I retired from my job and went full time with the business that I had been ramping up for the past 2.5 years.
NS: How has personal branding helped your business and/or career?
JF: It helps me to be easily distinguished from others in my field, because there are so few people who are social media savvy and who are over the age of 60. Also, I find that
folks I target (the 45 and up crowd) truly appreciate having help with someone relatively close to their age and who gets them in ways that younger people simply don’t.
NS: What specific strategies or tactics do you utilize to maintain your personal brand?
JF: Along with the brand of being an older person in my field, I also brand as someone who is ultimately a teacher. So, my voice when I blog and speak is that of a teacher persona who is driven to help people master something that had previously been stumping them.
I don’t pretend to be a marketing guru or strategist, because that is not my forte.
My strength is in getting to know people quickly, being able to easily grasp their world
and then provide some basic tips to help them showcase themselves better and be
more familiar with the functionality of sites like Facebook and LinkedIn.
Other strategies include blogging on a weekly basis and promoting my blog post
through LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter. I also make a point to add helpful updates on a regular basis to my Facebook business page and on LinkedIn. Finally, I share helpful
pieces that others post on Facebook and LinkedIn.
NS: What challenges or obstacles have you faced along the way and how have you
JF: One of my biggest challenges has been determining how much to charge for my
services, in part because there are so few folks who do exactly what I do. Also, as
lifelong volunteer and someone who has given away (willingly) my talents and services
through Toastmasters, my church, and other entities, I have to work hard at reminding
myself that my services are worth the amount that I charge for them. This October 1, my hourly rate for tutoring is finally over $100, at $105, up from $95 currently.
Being in two different master mind groups has helped me to overcome my challenges in terms of my fee structure as well as sometimes feeling like I’m not as proficient of a
business person as I’d like to be.
NS: What are your secrets to success?
JF: Persistence, patience and a spirit of generosity. In addition, I find that when I follow up more consistently, and pick up the phone and not just email people, I do better with landing more tutoring sessions and training gigs.
NS: Where can we find you online?