Devon Adams sitting and using a mobile phone
Creative Commons photo by Devon Adams.

Conversations with the Inspiring Dani Cutler

Repost: Thanks so much to Voyage Phoenix Magazine for the opportunity to talk about what I do, and my thoughts about women in business.

Creative Commons photo by Devon Adams.

Today we’d like to introduce you to Dani Cutler.

Thanks for sharing your story with us Dani. So, let’s start at the beginning and we can move on from there.
I’m a connector, a listener, and a supporter of all things local. In 2006, when podcasting was still new, I began writing, hosting, and producing a podcast called Truth Seekers. The reason for having the show was to find out what others think about a wide-range of topics. Connecting with the online community also led to voice-acting roles in audio dramas and books, as well as becoming the morning show host for KWSS 93.9fm Independent Radio based in Phoenix, Arizona. I now manage their marketing and promotions in addition to my show.

With the creation of social media, I have been able to connect even more, and submerged myself in the technology-based community volunteering for PodcampAZ/TechPhx (which unfortunately ended in 2015). In 2012 I started leading the organizing committee. I have also spent time organizing Brownbag presentations at Gangplank co-working space in Chandler. This has also entailed covering the social media and marketing for these groups, which has given me insight into how social media works, and how best to connect with people online.

In September of 2012 a friend was looking for a social media manager for her small business. I was humbled that she thought of me! She pushed me to make her business my first client– and I did! Businesses today need social media in order to connect with their customers and clients, and I love helping smaller businesses learn what an impact it can have personally and professionally.

Has it been a smooth road?
You know that saying “If you love what you do you’ll never work a day in your life?” It’s total BS. I love what I do, but it takes work to run a business. The decision to start isn’t done on a whim. It took me quite a while to decide to take on the challenge, even knowing that I was beginning with a client. I’m very good at marketing for businesses, but marketing myself was a bit more challenging. I’m used to supporting others, and it seems awkward to talk about myself to bring in business. I still struggle with this today, but if you don’t put yourself out there you’ll never grow. It can be very daunting knowing that you will not have a steady paycheck, and you could lose a client at any time. You also can’t leave work at work- because you are all parts of the business.

At the same time, it’s been the best decision I’ve ever made. I love that I can run my business the way I want, and use my skills to help others achieve their goals. It’s a great feeling.

Definitely weigh your options before branching out on your own, and know there are many support systems out there to help women starting out. Seek out women’s networking groups, or find other women entrepreneurs and reach out. Most times you’ll find they are willing to give advice or direct you to resources to help you get up and running.

So let’s switch gears a bit and go into Dani Cutler Content Creation story. Tell us more about the business.
I provide digital marketing services to small/medium-sized businesses. This includes social media management, content creation of social posts, blogs, and newsletters, research, and training marketing teams. I also help businesses start podcasts and show them how to find the tools to create a high-quality show without a huge investment. Being a small business owner myself, I know money is tight and usually the first thing to go is your own marketing. I help bridge that gap so your business can be successful whether you have 1 or 50 employees.

I take a more casual approach to marketing your business online. Now, when I say casual I do not mean unprofessional. However I see many businesses that simply do not know how to interact with their followers online, or they used canned responses or posts that look insincere. People online want personal, and I show that you can be extremely professional while at the same time having fun with your audience. Every business is unique, and I don’t use the same approach with every client as many marketing companies do. Every business has a story; In its creation, in its employees, in its products. I help them tell that story.

I also work with businesses in radio campaigns, which supplement their marketing campaigns and are a more direct approach to growing their business.

What do you feel are the biggest barriers today to female leadership, in your industry or generally?
Being a woman I still feel I have to fight to be taken seriously. No, this isn’t just a hobby. I know what I’m doing and I’m good at it. This is why it’s so important to not be afraid to brag about yourself and what you’re doing. Your actions and your work will shine through. It is a struggle at times and you have to work harder to be seen, especially when so many people think that just having a Facebook account qualifies you as a marketer.

Again, find those support groups. They are out there and they work!

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