A Marketing Guru for the Holistic Community
It takes a special kind of person to walk in both worlds: the etheric spiritual world that fuels our soul, and the practical business world that satisfies our needs. While many spiritual practitioners may be exceptional at what they do, if people don’t know about them, they don’t get work, they don’t get clients, and their business fails.
Unless, that is, they come to see Erin Donley. Through her consulting practice Marketing your Truth, she has helped to bridge the two worlds, and helps spiritual practitioners (healers, therapists, and authors) to understand how to treat their craft like a business.
She also reciprocates, bringing spiritual subjects into the mundane world. As the editor for New Renaissance Books popular email newsletter, she sends a weekly email to 5000 readers about healing, dying, growth, love, shame, or whatever happens to be the subject of the book she is featuring that week. Her emails are well written, engaging, and frequently touching, and they help to promote the many seminars and authors that come through the New Age landmark on NW 23rd Street.
We asked her a few questions to find out how she helps spiritual entrepreneurs frame their message.
What is your unique service that you bring to the world?
I help people talk about their work in ways that can awaken others, open deeper conversations, and provide results… so they can be an original and powerful voice for their business.
What is the biggest challenge that people face in promoting themselves?
They are afraid to shake things up and get gusty about what they say. They’re too safe and polite, instead of clearly saying what they want. They are evolved in many ways from the nature of their work, but they are stuck in a mainstream marketing model that doesn’t speak or connect with those who are awakening.
Who are the typical clients that you take, and what do they usually need the most from you?
They are people who help others to change, heal, grow, and consider new points of view. They need me because they are too close to their work to see it objectively. They want to know how to create compelling messages and open conversations that grab people by the heart. They want to know how to market themselves to the right people, what to say on their website, how to stand out, how to charge for their services, how to ask for support from others, what marketing to choose, what should their ads say, what can they say on Facebook, and how and where can they create events, workshops, and products.
Who do you really admire?
I really admire this guy in New York, Michael Margolis, who is a Business Storyteller. He’s my age and is doing astounding things with his career. He says, “Tell a story people can identify with as their own, and the need to persuade, convince, or sell them on anything disappears.” He does business and marketing in ways feel right and good to me.
What do you think is the most exciting development in digital communication?
Without a doubt, Facebook. Marketing to me is about the study of people and what makes them choose. Facebook gives us the ability to learn about the inner workings of people, have multiple-view conversations, and connect in sincere and productive ways. Finding others who serve a common goal and are dedicated to their growth excites me to no end.
How did you start working with New Renaissance Books?
I had just left an 8-year job selling radio commercials and was seeing a career counselor for help. I interviewed Connie Hill, Event Coordinator at New Renaissance, because I wanted to find work like that for myself. I wanted to hear how she got there, what she did, and how it made a difference. We hit it off and I remember leaving our coffee date thinking she was insanely lucky to be doing this work. A week later, she called to say a position was opening at the store. It felt like a pipe dream to work at a spiritual bookstore. I thought, “I could stay for a year and heal the pain I felt from leaving my job. Then, I’ll really know what to do!” My first interview was almost 3 hours long. The second interview lasted 2 hours. Then they meditated on the decision for a week. I thought that was the funniest and greatest way to hire the “right person.” My last interview was easy and it was clear that I could contribute to this crew and their mission in big ways. I got the job and hopped on the pendulum for a massive swing in the opposite direction! In May, I’ll celebrate my 6-year anniversary. Words can’t even describe my gratitude for all they’ve allowed me to do with them.
What made you decide to create your marketing practice, Marketing Your Truth?
At New Renaissance, I was meeting all these amazing authors, mind-blowing intuitives, powerful healers, and incredible personal growth consultants/counselors. I quickly became interested in what was and wasn’t working for them, from a business perspective, and was flooded with ideas and solutions for them. Many had websites that didn’t accurately reflect their work. Their fliers were awful. They struggled in describing what they do and why it’s of value. They were crippled over what to charge and how to get comfortable asking for money. They didn’t know how to reach out to others and ask, “Would you like to work with me?” Mostly, they did ALL the marketing themselves and wouldn’t invest in their businesses. I felt their pain and frustration. I also felt embarrassed to be working in an industry with such bad marketing. I started giving Marketing Your Truth lectures at the store to gain trust in the community and show them that I was a huge advocate and resource for them. I saw and learned first hand what worked. From there, things took off. I created a practice outside of the store, developed workshops, and have helped hundreds of healers, authors, teachers, and leaders over the last 4 years.
If money, time, and circumstances were all perfect, what would you most love to do?
I’d love to have a dedicated and enthusiastic staff to manage my TV (and online) show, Reveal What’s Real. I’d like for it to be picked up by a bigger television network so that it reaches and benefits infinite amounts of people. I’d like to be paid generously for being the host, creator, and coordinator of guests… and I’d like a stylist to help me look as good as possible on TV.