Have you ever wondered how to exert your power as a micro influencer? Did you know micro influencers can have a big impact, and brands are looking to work with them because of their deep connection to their audience?
Today, I’ve got Mia Voss on the podcast, from Mia Voss Live. Mia understands the buying influence of women and works with brands that want to reach women in an authentic way.
In the episode, she shares how she got started on the internet, how she and her brand have evolved over time (and continue to evolve), how she is a natural storyteller, how she uses her influence to highlight the people, companies, and causes she believes in, and how with her podcast, she wants to talk about all the stuff people don’t naturally share.
Mia is a breath of fresh air. You will love her joie de vivre! And if you don’t think you have much influence because your following is small, think again. Mia shows how to create change in the world one good dead at a time.
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Welcome to the Blogger Genius Podcast brought to you by MiloTree. Here’s your host, Jillian Leslie.
Jillian Leslie 0:11
Hello, everyone. Welcome back to the Blogger Genius Podcast. I’m your host, Jillian Leslie. And for those of you who know me, I love building online businesses with my husband, David.
We are in the process of building our newest business called MiloTree Easy Payments. And it is all about helping you monetize your community with starting a membership. We’re in this new world where we pay for subscriptions.
So, you pay for your Amazon Prime subscription and Netflix and Hulu, and all of those things. Well, by creating a membership people subscribe to you. It is an amazing way to turn on a new revenue stream and it’s really not that difficult. I want to help you do it.
If this sounds interesting to you, please head to milotree.com/betatester and I’ll reach out to you. Hear about what you want to build and show you how we can help you do that easily. So again, MiloTree Easy Payments Beta Tester.
For today’s episode, I have my new friend Mia Voss on the podcast, her blog is Mia Voss Live. And she is definitely a micro-influencer, you will see she has a lot of passions about a lot of different things.
And she knows how to use her voice to elevate brands, elevate causes. I think she’s really dynamic, really interesting.
And she goes against my advice, which is always niche down, niche down because she’s got her finger in a lot of pots and she’s been able to really grow a successful business.
I think you’re going to like this. So, without further delay, here is my interview with Mia Voss.
How to Exert Your Power as a Micro Influencer
Mia, welcome to the show.
Mia Voss 2:07
Thank you for having me on. It’s great to be here.
Jillian Leslie 2:09
We met on a Facebook Live, I was doing a Facebook Live on the Tailwind Show with Alisa Meredith and Jeff Sieh, and you were there and Jeff’s like, “Hey, that’s my friend, Mia.” And then we connected.
And then I went looking at what you do on the internet. And I reached out to you. And I said, “Mia, would you come on my show?”
Mia Voss 2:32
And I’m so honored. It’s always fun to see what you’re doing. I went and looked at some of your guests as well and then shared just the adventures because right now it’s definitely an interesting adventure, the world in general.
Jillian Leslie 2:44
I love that. So, I know nothing about your story. And I said, “Let’s record it so that I can hear it fresh with everybody.”
Mia Voss 2:51
Jillian Leslie 2:51
Will you share your entrepreneurial journey, how you got online and where you are today?
Mia Voss 2:58
Yes, thanks. Like I said, thanks for having me. The entrepreneurial journey began for me as a definite in 1999, which I’m here in Denver. And I had always worked in offices. So, I bounced around a little bit in different industries.
I actually started out as an insurance agent, when I was 18. Does that not sound like the biggest news career at all?
Jillian Leslie 3:25
I’m especially looking at you because you look so happening, you don’t look like an insurance agent. I have to say you’ve got platinum blonde hair, you’ve got funky eyeglasses, you got bright red lips, you do not scream insurance to me.
Why Being a Storyteller is Important in Online Business
Mia Voss 3:44
You know, what I want to do is give a little plug to insurance, because that is the backbone of how things work. And if you have an insurance agent that knows your story. And so being a natural storyteller, I didn’t even know it then.
But you go and talk to your clients and you learn their story, you learn what is their needs in their business. And that could be anything. I’ve worked in Illinois, and we had the University of Illinois as our account.
And so, the very first Cray supercomputer was under our account because that was at the U of I, so cool stuff like that. As it’s interesting like you said, not knowing I was a storyteller back then, but it was kind of the beginning of it.
And then I grew up in Illinois, but then I moved to New York City when I was 23. I didn’t have a job lined up. This was in the ’80s this is in ’88 and so pre cell phones and went there and did insurance.
So, it was it was such an interesting life to grow up in Central Illinois, and then move to New York and be almost an anonymous person in this very big city. But again, I always worked in corporate jobs.
I decided to move to Denver and after being in New York for seven years, and actually that was when I did start. I take that back on the date, I was so tired of corporate America, that I bought a house cleaning business and just decided I am checking out I’m not dressing up.
And I’m going to hire teams and just, be that backbone of people’s lives as well. And that actually led to one of my current jobs now, which is an inspection because I learned how houses were designed either well, or poorly when you clean it.
Jillian Leslie 5:30
Mia Voss 5:31
Isn’t it funny little thing? I like finding the fascination and the curiosity and everything clearly. Also another unsexy job as house cleaning.
Becoming a Building Inspector
Jillian Leslie 5:42
Yeah, and inspection, and then how did you end up becoming an internet personality?
Mia Voss 5:48
So, that leads then because I had started a building inspection, it’s called Punch Work and I was working with architects when I sold my house cleaning business, I just got a job working as a secretary at an architecture firm and then started to learn about drawings. And this was back in the ’90s.
And, really learning how to read drawings and just getting curiosity. You had a couple downturns here, obviously, really went into entrepreneurship when I started my own inspection business in 2001.
But then I ended up really getting online in 2008, again, with a downturn, so guess what they weren’t doing? Building the buildings that I was inspecting.
So, I ended up getting online and working with some local entrepreneurs here helping to publish some books, to spotlight and highlight female entrepreneurs.
And in doing that, that’s when I really started getting online and learning about everybody’s personal brand and how they put that out to the world.
I’ve been working with men on job sites at that point for Oh, my gosh, like eight years, and then to be working with female entrepreneurs in Denver was a really fun transition.
And, that’s really when I started getting into social media. And Google Plus I was a big fan of for a while. Rest in peace.
Jillian Leslie 7:09
Yes, exactly. Yes. I was on that bandwagon as well. So, how did you think about creating a business online? And how has that evolved over time? How did you brand yourself like, what were you when you started and what are you now?
Mia Voss 7:25
Sure, initially, I thought that I wanted to be a social media manager, because I was working out with all these different brands, and really channeling a lot of, seeing how they’re putting themselves out there, but knowing their story and that it wasn’t merging.
And so, I was doing a lot of brand management. And then I realized that I really didn’t want to necessarily be the behind the scenes person. And the reason being is, again, back to the storytelling.
Starting Online on Google+
Because while I was being a social media manager, I was also doing an online show on Google Plus called The Mia Connect Power Chat. Initially, I had it as social media. And then I really was like, I need to be goofy, I need to get my own brand of humor out.
And I cannot have this as a business. So, at that point, I just would start talking to people and interviewing them. And that’s actually how I met. I’ve met some interesting people.
I got connected to a lot of shelters and interviewing them a lot of educators. I get to interview, Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus, John, that author John Gray, and Temple Grandin was one of my favorite interviews.
She’s a pioneer in autism. And she’s actually a professor here. But she’s very famous for TED talk called, “The World Needs All Type of Mind.” So, that was the really fun thing of just branding myself as an interviewer online, I had sponsors at the time, too.
And then of course Google Plus kind of bit the dust and there’s been some bounce around with NaroCAD and Periscope and things like that. And now I’ve really just focused on, I love it everything can be a broadcast tower, which is super fun.
Yes. And then I started doing travel blogging in 2015 as part of that as well. And I was leveraging all those relationships I’ve been making for those last six or seven years.
Jillian Leslie 9:27
Now, how do you make money as a broadcaster? I’m going to call you a broadcaster. Does that sound right?
Mia Voss 9:34
Jillian Leslie 9:34
Blogger, Broadcaster, podcaster. How do you monetize this?
Becoming an Influencer and Working with Brands
Mia Voss 9:40
Depend on what it is. So, I do work with brands. So, brands have paid me to represent them as I call myself, I have opinionated opinions. So, don’t ask me to talk about your stuff if you don’t really, really hear me talk about your things as well.
So, with the podcasting, it’s sponsoredships with the brand ambassadorship, it’s also working with them and they either hire me, they would go on a trip and they would pay me now, of course everything really changed 18 months ago.
So, literally you’re seeing me in this nascent journey of coming back out and saying, “Am I going to be doing traveling still?” I have been doing the podcast. And this whole time I’ve kept that building inspection business going so that when things ebb and flow.
The last major trip I took, I worked with a company called Hills of Africa Travel. And they brought me on a three week trip to write about it. So, I was paid. And then the trip was paid for. And I created a ton of content to show what this experience was like as well.
So in that, meantime, I’ve gone from like a job site with a hardhat. And then, went off on this trip and then came back. So, I did stay busy as an essential worker during the pandemic, because they still had people going on job sites and getting them built.
So, I have weird little niches. I just have a basket of them. And I really encourage people to be okay with that. It’s not flighty. You can niche down on a bunch of cool stuff. I think people think they can only have one niche.
Jillian Leslie 11:16
Okay, so let’s discuss this.
Mia Voss 11:18
Yeah, let’s talk about that.
Jillian Leslie 11:19
If I were to say to you tell me these specific niches that you are in, what are they? In those niches you don’t have to give me figures. But where are you making the most money right now?
And which ones are you enjoying the most right now? Because those might not be the same answers.
Mia Voss 11:38
And, it depends, ebbs and flows. So, that’s a great way to position that question. Because during the pandemic, I couldn’t imagine traveling. And so, that for me was like, and I really kind of shut that down.
I would do product reviews and things like that, not enough to make a living off of necessarily because I really was sort of drawn in for 18 months, as I was reevaluating what did light me up? What did fire me up?
And, for me, I don’t know if I will go back to the travel blogging piece, necessarily, because as fun as it is, it’s a lot of work.
And so, in some ways, as I look back, and I repurpose a lot of my content, I go, whew, I wasn’t really able to stay present, because I was working, two trips to Italy, wonderful, wonderful.
I was on the clock with both of those as well, which I do love. But I don’t know if that’s necessarily what I want to do. So, for right now, this building inspection business, I get paid a ton of money to bossman around sister and I’m here for it. I’m here for it.
And it’s also really, the piece I love about building inspection is making sure that things are built well, that it’s represented well for companies that are building them and designing them.
That the people that are the end users that are living in that building or staying in that building, enjoy where they are, and then it’s safe. I get fired up about that.
Jillian Leslie 13:05
So, you’re like in the real world? And you’re kind of virtual?
Mia Voss 13:10
I am both, yes, yes. And so, the virtual piece served very well, obviously, during the pandemic, because I could still represent and do a lot of things.
One other weird niche that I have that isn’t paid for, but it’s a server or it’s something that’s provided to me is I work with car companies as well.
So, car companies provide fleets to these management companies that they then loan out to car bloggers and mommy bloggers and influencers to put to use in their everyday lifestyle.
So, for the past six years, I think, I usually review or feature cars. And I love doing that because another piece of my brand is female buying power.
It is so underrepresented as much as we talk about it, it’s really still not acknowledged how much of the lion’s share of overall purchases are made by women. The decisions are made by women may not necessarily be the funding.
Unfortunately, now we make dollar for dollar. I know you asked for it but you can’t always make dollar for dollar when you’re in the corporate world because we’re only paid 75 cents on the dollar.
So, that important distinction of how much women are involved in these buying decisions is really part of my brand as well to represent this.
Jillian Leslie 14:33
Okay. So, you’re on the ground with your inspection business. And how much of your time would you say you’re spending on that versus all of your virtual stuff?
Mia Voss 14:46
It’s very conservative. It’s like when people get hired for a movie set. And they’re just on that for like two months. And then they have a bunch of time off and that is something right now. I will have another project starting. It’s very cool. An old.
What was that? It’s an old Emily Griffith school here in Denver that one of my favorite developers, they buy properties and then they turn them into hotels. They’re turning that into a really cool hotel.
So, I’ll be doing that from October to probably January. And then I intersperse that as well. I usually do about two or three projects a year I could do more.
Talking about what lights me up. As much as I love it. Physically, it is demanding. You’re on a jobsite, you’re around chemicals. I go the end during a time when it’s not complete. So, you have to have hardhats, safety bag, steel toed boots.
Really your wits about you when you’re on the jobsite, and then the energy wise to as much as a joke about yes, bossing men around. It is a lot of energy to be in this very masculine space, and come in and say, you’re not doing that right.
Using Your Platform for Good in Your Community
Jillian Leslie 16:01
I can only imagine. Are you driving a car right now from one of these companies in a fleet?
Mia Voss 16:10
Jillian Leslie 16:11
Do you swap out your cars and write about them?
Mia Voss 16:15
I do. The busiest year that I had was 2019. I did, I think four trips. I went to Lake Tahoe and then I connected with a car dealership in Lake Tahoe that was a friend of my friend from Toyota.
And then they gave me a car to drive. And then I took pictures and wrote about it and talked about the performance more just as an everyday user, not a torque kind of girl. I don’t get into those weeds. But yes, so that year was super, super busy.
And I believe that I was driving test cars for 26 out of the 52 weeks. So, that was busy. My car was very dusty. This week, I’m actually going to be driving, I need to actually look it up. I know it’s a big pickup truck. Am I driving a Chevy?
Yes. It’s called the Monroney. You know, that sheet that the on the window that tells you all the details of the car, the cost and all that?
Jillian Leslie 17:18
Mia Voss 17:18
That’s a Monroney report, I call it its birth certificate. And what’s really cool about this piece in particular is I’ve been able to interweave not only the marketing piece that I love, that’s part of my brand as a brand ambassador, but I use the cars for good in the community.
And then I write about it. So, for instance, there’s a group called Colorado Pet Pantry that I will talk about as long as the day is because they’re the most well run non-profit here in Denver.
What they do is they help gather donated pet food. And then they work with local food banks as well. And so, they distributed that pet food at the People Food Banks, as well as different little drop areas. And then people can donate as well.
And especially, in the pandemic, how much that helped keep pets with their families, because we were also broke or couldn’t get out. So, see how my heart soars when I think about that.
Jillian Leslie 18:19
Mia Voss 18:19
Well, what I do is I use the trucks and then I see how much pet food I can stick in these cars. And deliver that as well. So, I combine the function of what that is with how the car works. And it makes me so happy.
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Jillian Leslie 19:25
Are you pitching yourself to brands? Are brands pitching themselves to you? And if you had any recommendation for somebody who’s going to listen to this and go, “She’s cool. She’s doing cool stuff. I want to do what she does.”
Maybe not the inspection part because that seems kind of hardcore but I want to drive around and deliver pet food and feel good about myself in a freakin’ crazy ass pickup truck.
Yeah, that sounds incredibly exciting. But how do I do this? How would I go about living the Mia life?
Building Credibility with Interviews
Mia Voss 20:03
Sure. And that 10-year overnight success situation where it’s just taking so long, which, literally it almost stems back to 12 years ago when I started doing interviews.
And so, because I was showcasing people in these interviews, I was building on this. I say, credibility as in like one, people know I’m not going to talk about anything I don’t love. So, there’s an authenticity.
And we lost a lot of that with a lot of influencers in the last five or six years, especially when you find people that are just schilling anything to get free stuff. So, please don’t do that first of all, it’s very hard.
It’s always work, one. So, think about that. The first question I always want people to ask themselves with that is, so who’s listening to you if you are going to talk about it?
And I think and I’m what’s considered a micro influencer, if you go take a look at my numbers, they are not huge numbers, but I’m very consistent in what I post. And then there is interaction with what I post as well. And I weave a story in that.
So, I’ve been coaching people a lot. I just did a talk called, “How to Reintegrate into the New Normal.” And one of the things that I talked about is that people really need to become their own little mini-influencer brand ambassadors for everything.
And that means if you went to a restaurant that week, you talk about that, you take pictures be like, “Oh my gosh, I love this place.” Especially right now, with everybody coming out of the pandemic, you can really become a hero in your community.
How to Raise People Up With Your Platform
Just simply by sharing things, talking about the great things that they did, your vet, your car wash anything, you can become a cheerleader, for anything in your world
Jillian Leslie 21:46
So, would you be posting this on Instagram like, let’s say I have this great meal at this restaurant where people are happy. And I want to give them props.
Mia Voss 21:57
Jillian Leslie 21:58
So, what would you do? How would you do?
Mia Voss 22:00
Yes, and I just want to add the caveat that everybody needs to find their own little recipe. Because what happens is, when I tell people this, they get very overwhelmed their eyeballs get like the fire hose of information.
And I think, “Oh my gosh, I can’t do all of that.” You start with what you’re comfortable with. And that can literally be a Facebook post, just say, “Oh my gosh, this was so fun. Look at this fab meal. So, excited to get back out again, I felt really safe.”
The chef came out and said, “Hi.” Just tell a little mini story just like when you post about anything. And I have to tell you and you probably noticed the same thing.
Because of the way the algorithms are, I just get presented with too much sloppy stuff and not a story as much.
So, when I see pictures of my friend’s baby that’s like covered in chocolate because they loved what they had at the restaurant and like that kind of posts I’m like, “Oh, that’s so cute. “And then my suggestion would be I love Instagram stories.
So, that’s super fun. Because let’s say I’m at a restaurant, and I tag them and that shows up as a notification for that restaurant. They can re-share that back out, that magic of Instagram stories.
And then for me, I actually have boards of all the cars. And so, I can share all those stories to that. That’s a little higher level, but just on a simple level. You can do stories; you can do a post. I actually love Twitter. It’s fun. You can link Twitter to that as well.
Just make sure that you’re tagging them. And then if you’re a business, you better be listening. Because you’re leaving money on the table, if somebody is commenting, and sharing your information, and you are not sharing that back or acknowledging them.
So, when I get companies that acknowledged me, I don’t care who it is, it makes me so happy. Like I went home to Illinois last month and my parents had new skylights put in by this local company. I really dug what they were about.
And so, I took pictures of the installers. And I posted a review to Google Maps. Now, this is the pro pro tip. So, you can create these Google. I have a Google account. So, when I’m looking up on Google Maps, I can post photos to Google.
And then because I’ve been doing so many reviews, I have Cloud as a contributor who actually contributes as opposed to just this one guy who has no picture. And now all he did was eat crappy reviews. Twice. You seem disgruntled not bonafide.
So, if you start using your ways to do that, it’s so much fun.
Jillian Leslie 24:39
Oh, that is so interesting.
Mia Voss 24:42
That’s a great way to start. That’s a great way to start the whole thing.
Leading with Your Heart and Growing Your Business
Jillian Leslie 24:45
What I hear you saying is, it looks like you lead with your heart. So, you’re not sitting here saying, okay, what is my strategy and what are the points and how do I do this? You are authentically going into the world. with integrity.
You’re finding stuff that excites you, because you seem like a person who gets lit up from a whole host of random things. And even if you find something like skylights, maybe you’re an inspector, so it kind of fits.
Mia Voss 25:13
Yeah. It did. But it was more like, thank you for taking good care of my grandparents.
Jillian Leslie 25:18
Mia Voss 25:19
That’s what I wrote. Because I actually haven’t been to that business. I didn’t hire that business. But I was there when they were helping my parents have a safer space to live in. Can’t get any better than that of saying, Thank you. Thank you.
And you know, I’m not all sunshine and roses, either. Because if something’s getting on my nerves, if I see that they’re not treating somebody well. You can use your voice for social justice as well.
If you can be in a restaurant and say, “Hey, I saw your staff, not treat someone well.” On the flip side, you can also go and really help them. I just saw this article the other day that really hurt my heart, actually.
And it was saying how restaurants are reporting this increase in disgruntled out of control customers. Now we are in the middle of a supply chain issue.
Jillian Leslie 26:11
Yes. They’re not enough people.
Mia Voss 26:17
And a people issue. That’s right. So, we have supply chain issues. We have staffing issues, we have people. They’re coming out of the pandemic too. Do you think they’re immune from depression and anxiety and what we’ve all went through?
And so, it really kind of made me up my game on going back through my pictures and being like, I want to support these restaurants that are doing a good job. And I promise you, I just hope somebody acts that way in front of me, because I’m going to record it.
And I’m going to out it. And I think being advocates and cheerleaders and really letting people know that we care is just super important right now. And again, that leads back in answering that question of what if somebody wanted to do that?
This is where it starts. This is where it starts. And you may not be hired by companies. I’m not doing a bunch of super high level things. Because I don’t really want to do that right now. I just like this little piece that I do.
I like having my cars, my brands that I work with, and my podcast and my hard hat.
Starting a Podcast to Talk About Difficult Issues
Jillian Leslie 27:18
That’s great. Okay, let’s talk about your podcast. Your podcast, we’ve been talking about it beforehand. It’s called the Sh*T, like bad word, We Don’t Talk About.
Mia Voss 27:29
Jillian Leslie 27:29
And I’m only not saying it because I’m trying to have my podcast be clean. There’s like a thing.
Mia Voss 27:36
Mine by nature is not.
Jillian Leslie 27:37
Mine isn’t either, to be honest with you. My nature is not but my podcast, I’ve kept it very clean. About the podcast, what inspired you to create it when you did? Do you monetize it? What’s it for? What does it mean to you?
Mia Voss 27:53
It’s such a great extension of this passion that you cut that I have. It actually started, I was interviewing this guy named Peter Shankman. This was about six years ago, just because I’m so fascinated.
He’s kind of, I wouldn’t say a political pundit but he’s been on CNN a lot. And I met him through some circles and he had just launched this podcast called, “Faster Than Normal.”
And it was about recognizing having ADHD not as a malady or as a downfall but how you can harness that for your brain. It’s fascinating. I think he’s still doing it, but it’s called, Faster Than Normal.
So, I was interviewing him and he was talking about brain function AD and I was like, man, I think I have ADHD. This is the about six years ago and I was just convinced why go to my doctor and I start talking about my symptoms.
She’s like, you’re perimenopausal. She said that brain fog is part of it. I was like, “Who’s Peri? What is happening here?”
Dealing With Perimenopause
And I was about 49 at the time and so it was interesting even with how nice that she was. The information that I was given that I walked away with was very minimal. I was given some advice and some information and a prescription for an antidepressant.
And I was like, “Oh my gosh, this is it.” And that this is -ish we’re not talking about. I didn’t actually launch the podcast, I just kept talking about it and getting more and more mad and gathering information.
And quite frankly, trying to navigate my own world of being in perimenopause and now fully menopausal.
Now, when I talk about bioidentical hormones, which if you hear the snorting that’s my friend, Shay, she’s sitting behind me and she’s decided she wants to wake up and let you all know she has nasal passages.
So, that literally was when I started realizing, oh, my word. There’s so much that we’re not talking about that either covered in shame or misinformation, or there’s still a lot of things that we just think we can’t talk about.
So, that was the inspiration for it. And with the pandemic, the universe brought me a friend that wanted me to actually be a brand ambassador for his web design, web production company.
And then same thing with him he pivoted during the pandemic, he said, “I’m going to start doing podcast production.” I said alright, “Let me be your guinea pig.” And so, I started working with him.
Shout out to Drew and HELIX-Interactive is the name of them.
Jillian Leslie 30:32
What is it? Say it again.
Mia Voss 30:32
So, HELIX-Interactive, H-E-L-I-X dash Interactive.com and they do everything. They do a blog post for me and all that good stuff and make it sound good. But that leaves me open.
And I talk about a lot of potentially triggering issues, but the guests that I have on, lived experience. We just did one on OCD, which I learned so much about that. And that’s definitely a headphone one.
I will let you know because there’s a lot that we discussed again, covered in shame and shrouded in mystery. And the more that we talk about it, and I will tell you a quick story.
What was still interesting, as I did that show and one of my cousin’s kids, I just call her my little niece. She’s 18. And I didn’t know anything about this. But she shared that podcast and said, I’ve been living with this for two years. I haven’t talked about it.
And she outed herself in this glorious fashion and shared her story along with that. I was like drop the mic. I’m done.
Jillian Leslie 31:36
You mean you then interviewed her or she was sharing privately.
Mia Voss 31:40
I haven’t interviewed her yet. She actually took my post and shared that post on social media and said, “This is me, this is what I’m going through.” And put that out to all of her family and friends. I get teary eyed thinking about it. Because I didn’t know that.
And so, just me having that guest on, gave her some information to share her story and then drop that secrecy and I was like, “Oh, my job here is done.”
Jillian Leslie 32:08
Well, okay, first of all, do you have ADHD?
Mia Voss 32:13
I do not it was brain fog. It’s brain fog and that’s part of it when you just can’t focus, and I do not. But I was able to go on that journey, and then go on the journey, that of the lack of information.
And so for me, especially, even before the podcast, I’ve been on this journey of uncovering how underserved we all are in different ways. And also, in the last two years, I really upped my game as becoming, I call it an actionist.
Jillian Leslie 32:44
I like that.
Mia Voss 32:45
Activists with social justice because it needs to be action. It can’t just be posts, hashtags, hashtags, black squares, and platitudes. It has to be action. So, I’ve been able to loop that into my brand as well.
Jillian Leslie 33:02
So, your podcast, when did you start it?
Mia Voss 33:07
I think I meant almost a year. I started it last September, I believe I have 37 episodes.
Jillian Leslie 33:14
And the topic, we’re talking about are women’s stuff, menopausal stuff.
Mia Voss 33:19
Jillian Leslie 33:19
Mental health issues, what have been your favorite topics?
Mia Voss 33:24
Oh, gosh, don’t make me pick the baby. The very first one I did actually was with my podcast producer, because he actually has a podcast called, “The Anxious Truth.” So, please follow that one as well.
I have tried to really mix it up so that there’s a variance of it. One of my favorite ones actually was we just did one on toxic masculinity with the son of a friend of mine who has worked in the adult sex education world and he’s just so brilliant.
And it was such a good conversation but I learned so much. “Medical Gaslighting” was also a very interesting topic, which I knew was a part of all of our worlds. And when you are told–.
Jillian Leslie 34:07
Oh, it’s interesting.
Mia Voss 34:10
—it’s nothing, it’s in your head. That’s just the normal. And oh my goodness, that’s really, really common to a lot of racial, social justice pieces. Mental health. Yes.
One friend, education about being a breast cancer survivor. Spectrum, we’ve done on the autism spectrum. So, you name it, come bring it to me. I’d love to talk about it.
Jillian Leslie 34:45
I love that. Do you monetize your podcast or is this a labor of love?
Hosting a Podcast as a Labor of Love
Mia Voss 34:48
This is a labor of love right now. I do have sponsors through anchor they just, pay a little bit. I am going to be as I said, you’re kind of catching me a little bit of the coming out of the pandemic where I sort of hunkered down and observed as well.
And so, now I’m deciding what doesn’t serve me anymore. And I think a lot of us are doing that everyday to clients, to friends, to family members, just not going to fit in your world anymore.
And I think the thing I’m going to be leaning more towards, I saw one of your questions was about email lists and newsletters, I have shied away from that. But I really would like to have a space to put that all in and say, here’s my next podcast.
Here’s my next thing. I am getting back into also of being a show host. So, I have a company that’s called, Just Get Out Of Town. That’s a travel company that teaches you how to travel at business class and first class at really, really great rates.
And so, I am their weekly host now. I just finished right before here. I’ll put this and give you for the show notes.
Jillian Leslie 36:05
Yes. Oh my God, who doesn’t want to travel like that?
Mia Voss 36:09
And see how that worked out for me of just deciding, I don’t think I want to be more of that travel blogger the kind of the paid on someone’s dime, which is wonderful. But again, I have to stay within those confinements.
Now, I’m working with this company as their hosts. So, I host the show, I started out, I helped them wrangle the questions. And I think that’s the direction I’m going to go with travel. So, I’ll still be doing it.
And I’ll still be shouting it out, it’s just going to be in a different thing. So, I’m in a little bit of a transition period as well.
Jillian Leslie 36:41
I love that. I think that being an online entrepreneur, and I know you’ve got your kind of brick and mortar business as well.
Mia Voss 36:48
Jillian Leslie 36:48
If you are not continually taking stock, first of all, how the landscape is changing, because it’s always changing. And like Google Plus, you know, turning into TikTok, meaning going from that to this. Who would have ever predicted that?
Also, though, checking in with yourself, and what is resonating with you, because in order to do this, you have to do it. And you have to show up.
And if I were to say what is the secret to online business? It’s not sexy, it is showing up and doing the work, even when you don’t want to.
Mia Voss 37:29
It really is doing what you say you’re going to do. And then also, being that cheerleader, and that can mean also just interacting with people. And so, when doing what you’re saying what you’re going to do.
Showing up and then also being that person just interacting, retweeting, sharing things not asking for things not coming out right away. The talk I did the other day really was like an exhortation to people to stop asking for free things.
And stop giving away your free time. Because then when you do that, you save that time, so that you can give your time away to these very select group of people that you know are going to appreciate it.
Thinking About Self Care as an Entrepreneur
And on this intuition thing about checking in, that is an essential piece of self-care. And one of the silver bullet top tip things that you can do is getting grounded and being so aligned with what you do that you can see through the BS.
You can get out of things quicker, because you know, that’s not going to be somebody you want to do business with. It’s going to be a waste of time.
The quicker you’re the hard stop, no, I love. No period, you’re not going into a big explanation. But all of that comes from that internal compass.
Jillian Leslie 38:43
I love that and I can feel that in you. Meaning you’re doing a variety of stuff, but it feels like each one is aligned with you. And when it’s not. You’re going, “Do I need this? Or should I let this go and wait to attract something else?”
Now you seem like an extrovert.
Mia Voss 39:02
Jillian Leslie 39:03
Okay, because that’s my next question. I feel like you’re moving through the world, and you’re loving on stuff.
Mia Voss 39:12
Jillian Leslie 39:13
And when you look, whether it be a restaurant, whether it be an installer of skylight, whatever it is, you go through the world, and you are kind of going, “I see you and I love you. And I want to just give you a touch of my heart.” And then it comes back to you.
But that’s not an easy way to move through the world in that again, there’s no strategy. There’s no like, here’s the playbook. I do it this way. And then I do it this way.
Talking to you, I would think, as an introvert, how are you putting this out in the world because that’s a lot of energy.
Being an Outgoing Introvert
Mia Voss 39:56
So, I’m not an introvert either. I’m an ambivert. I am an outgoing introvert; I am a gregarious loner.
Jillian Leslie 40:03
I would say I am the same by the way, so go on.
Mia Voss 40:06
I think, honestly, when you start saying that, and I first heard about that term, I’m going to say about six or seven years ago, previously, I went through a time where I thought I was just a really crappy extrovert.
Because I thought I was extroverted, but I would get so drained, I’m like, I guess I’m not doing this, right, because I should be enjoying this as much as I feel driven to it.
But what I wasn’t doing and I actually learned the first self-care practice about this when I was doing my Google Plus shows, because I would do this every Friday. And it was a very intense process, because sometimes I would have five or six guests on at once.
And I would do all the pre-show things before I would, promote it. Set up the event they used to have, and then that would be like on a Friday, and then by Friday night, they say, “O, let’s go out.” And I would get out and be like, “When can I get home?”
And so, I learned to either not make plans on Friday, or I learned to make them short, or I learned to get my own right there. Or sound like I had this much time. So, the outgoing introvert, the ambivert puts out a lot of energy, but then they learn what will re-fuel.
Like this weekend, I did some things. And it was all people that I knew were vaccinated. But there’s still this energy, expelling, when you go out, I’m still on guard and safety.
And then there was a lot of people on by yesterday, I’m like, “I’m out.” Nope. And so, I just learned, so I think a lot more of us are ambiverts than we think.
Jillian Leslie 41:47
I like that. So, love on stuff and put it out there when it feels right and make sure you are also paying attention. I have to do this too. Like if I do a bunch of podcasts and I need to retreat, you can’t just like, jump on.
Or I noticed when I’m going inward and working on a new project, we’re launching this new product. And I’ve been spending a tremendous amount of energy in it, that I can’t then be on Instagram, as much. I can’t it’s too much my focus is where it is.
And then when I finish or come up for air, then I can do that. But I can’t put myself everywhere. I have to in certain ways conserve so, that I can then really focus and really go balls to the wall. I don’t know if that was a curse word, but you know what I mean.
Mia Voss 42:42
No. It’s a feisty saying.
Jillian Leslie 42:46
That’s what I personally need. And I know that about myself. But I think you’re, right at times. I didn’t know that. And I beat myself up going, like you saying I’m a bad extrovert. So, I totally get that I absolutely am.
Mia Voss 43:05
A piece that goes with that too, of what you’re saying and like knowing okay, I can’t be on Instagram. And the piece that I’m almost fully integrated, but it’s also going, so I’m not going to and I’m not going to feel badly about it.
So, I just put that aside because then you feel like I should. So, even though you’re not going to do it, you might be shooting yourself a little bit over here. So, then if I just say, “Nope, that’s not going to serve me.”
Even though everybody else looks like they’re handling just as much and doing the same thing. Doesn’t matter. You don’t know what’s going on in their home and their personal life.
This is what’s for you and this, I think those boundaries are so good to just quickly set and then stay focused because you’re doing stuff.
Jillian Leslie 43:47
Okay. So, my biggest take away from you is if you are aligned with what your heart is telling you and I love that you are like a micro-influencer. So, you’re out there in your community, like there’s nothing too small, you’re not going well.
It’s not Pepsi, but it’s like a small local nail salon, or whatever it is, you’re like doing it in your community. And you are finding that people just see what you’re doing. And it comes back to you whether that be financially.
Whether that be in terms of a relationship, whether you can have tremendous impact and even make money by loving on the people near you.
Mia Voss 44:34
Yes, and who needs it now more than ever, are the small people. These big companies, they’ve got this big, thing now I do pay attention to what they did during the pandemic.
I will say I was very aware of what large brands were doing and how they were handling everything from Black Lives Matter to the pandemic. Even COVID, the election I want to be aligned with these people when I see them doing the right thing.
And in supporting communities. And I’m not saying they have to do exactly what I believe in, I’m just saying, I like how they’re aligned.
So, looking at the bigger brands, making sure you’re voting with your tech or with your dollars with your spending money, then supporting smaller because that’s who needs it.
Jillian Leslie 45:16
I love that. I highly recommend everybody check out Mia. So, Mia, where do you send people? How can somebody connect with you? Where do you send people to be like, this is the Mia experience?
Mia Voss 45:32
I would just go to miavoss.live, that is my overall umbrella website. And I have a link tree link on that as well that has all the different places where I am. Now, I am on Instagram and Twitter as @MiaVossOnTheGo, which is what I was before.
But now I’ve just made it miavoss.live that has my podcast there, has my car reviews, anything that I’ve written about, and then other links to my social, I would start there. And then maybe subscribe because I may put a newsletter out at some point.
Jillian Leslie 46:02
I do recommend you put a newsletter out.
Mia Voss 46:04
Jillian Leslie 46:04
I feel a connection to my subscribers. It’s like a much more intimate relationship, than your followers.
Mia Voss 46:15
I appreciate that advice.
Jillian Leslie 46:16
Yes, to allowing you into their inbox.
Mia Voss 46:21
I like this pep talk, I’m here for it.
Jillian Leslie 46:24
I highly recommend you start that because you will identify your super fans more easily by connecting to them.
They’re the ones who if you put a question at the end of your email newsletter, when you say I’d love to hear from you, or what are your thoughts about that? They’re the ones who will click reply.
Mia Voss 46:46
Hmm, I like this. It just came up for me this week. And then I saw it in the questions for our prep notes. And I was like, oh, there’s your sign. There’s your sign, you need to do that. So, I appreciate that. Thank you.
Jillian Leslie 47:02
Just one last question on the horizon, as you scan the horizon, what is lighting you up the most right now?
Mia Voss 47:12
There are so many things. I would say doing the brand ambassador work where I can talk about things that I love. The public speaking that I did the other day really led me up as well of just talking and this was the message.
This will be my parting advice for everything. And I came up with this but I was thinking about all the variants that are coming up and how we thought it was kind of getting back to normal and I literally pinpointing in on finding your new hybrid normal.
And that is “your.” So, the emphasis is on “your.” So, that’s not what anybody else is doing. And it could be a hybrid for right now because we kind of thought that we got vaccinated and not as much mask.
And now it’s going to ebb and flow. But I think more importantly, now more than ever, so many cracks in society have showed up and so many different things that our world is changing how we perceive it and see it.
So, finding your new normal setting. And really what’s lighting me up is really honing my compass too. I can’t do anything if I’m just over here not grounded.
Jillian Leslie 48:30
I love that advice. I really do. Well, Mia, I have to say thank you so much for coming on the show. I feel like I don’t know. I’m also trying to figure out kind of what my new normal is.
So, I appreciate that as a prompt for me, because I will be cogitating on that. So, thank you.
Mia Voss 48:51
Cogitating. Excellent word to end on. I love it. Thank you for having me on. I appreciate it.
Jillian Leslie 48:57
I hope this episode gave you a lot to cogitate on. I really enjoyed talking to Mia, talking about her truth and how she puts that out even in all of the business relationships she has.
I really respect how she goes to bat for people and for businesses as she moves through the world. I found that really inspiring I found it really authentic.
If you are enjoying the podcast and I hope you are because I love doing this. Please head to iTunes, or go to your Apple podcast app on your phone.
And please rate the podcast give it five stars write a review, I would be so grateful and I might even read it in my next episode. And I will see you here again next week.
Other Blogger Genius Podcast episodes to listen to:
- Can You Be a Successful Lifestyle Blogger with Jessica Burgess
- How to Grow Your Blog While Raising a Family with Micaela Preston
- How to Write About Difficult Topics in Your Blog with Cheryl Garove
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