Expert Economy Founder
If you’re a solo entrepreneur selling a service, there is a high chance you’re an Expert Entrepreneur.
I know for many people using the term ‘expert’ can feel strange and a little egotistical. You’re good at what you do. You solve real problems for your clients, but does that make you an expert?
Actually, most likely it does.
But don’t worry I am not about to ask you to start showing up a network meetings calling yourself an ‘expert’ or putting it on your LinkedIn profile.
Using the term is just a way to distinguish the type of entrepreneur you are and that you market your business by positioning yourself as a ‘go to’ expert within your industry.
This means that you lead with your subject and are known within your industry for it. You solve meaningful problems for your clients and your name comes up in conversation whenever someone mentions a problem related to your area of expertise.
So why The Expert Economy?
Because how you market your business as an Expert Entrepreneur is very different from traditional marketing methods and, being a solo-entrepreneur, you are exposed to a host of challenges that most people won’t understand – especially the business elite amongst us.
The Expert Economy is about navigating the road less travelled with others taking the same journey as you, and doing it with finesse.
the expert economy
We believe that Expert Entrepreneurs should be billing 70% of their time, spending 20% of their time studying to remain an expert in their industry and 10% of their time moving all the pieces around. When we make sales and marketing a natural by-product of our study time we remain inspired and fulfilling our purpose.
Sales conversations are an opportunity to help a prospect fully understand the extent of their problem and offer valuable solutions. If a prospect can implement the solution by themselves they should do so. We only want to take on the clients that really need us to transform their situation and will receive a clear return on investment.
The goal of an Expert is to solve meaningful problems for their clients, taking them from where they are now to where they need to get to. They may not have all the answers or know all the variables, but they have the experience to know how to navigate the course and stick with the client until they arrive at the destination.
The Expert Economy is part of TheProfile.Company. After years of reviewing LinkedIn profiles and then writing them for solo-entrepreneurs, Founder Naomi Johnson noticed that the majority of expert-led business didn’t have the structures in place to enable prospects to come to the business pre-sold and ready to buy and make LinkedIn really work for them.
Wanting to help other Expert Entrepreneurs take the road less travelled, Naomi began The Expert Economy.
why join US?
CONNECTIONS & NETWORKING
Meet likeminded entrepreneur experts, share business referrals, build your own tribe and make introductions and glean valuable insights and tips.
SUPPORT & MENTORSHIP
Navigate the road less travelled with others taking the same journey. Ask questions, share valuable insights and be inspired with experts on hand to help you build momentum.
TRAINING & EXPERTISE
Marketing & Sales training designed especially for the solo-entrepreneur, expert-led business. Online training, individual and group coaching using a tried and tested methodology.
Expert Economy Founder
DIscover MY story
It’s important to know who you’re working with so I’ve included key highlights and background information to help.
You could say it all began from spending 3 years writing LinkedIn profiles for thought-leaders and experts within their industry, but actually, it goes back further than that.
My journey with entrepreneurialism began in 2006 when fresh-faced from my graduate job, I decided to become a Life Coach.
Taking Anthony Robbin’s advise, I burned my boat to take the island. Stating my plans boldly to the world, I stepped out of fulltime employment and into the unknown. And you could say the island took me. It was certainly no walk in the park.
Within two and a half years and just as the financial crash of 2008 happened, I crashed and burned. Unlike everyone else struggling at this time, it wasn’t the economy that was the problem, it was me. I’d made every mistake in the book.
But like the mouse that fell in the milk, I didn’t give up I just peddled faster and made butter. In 2010 I published Grassroots to Green Shoots. Writing it was very much a healing process, but also a gift to my colleagues who I knew were struggling just the same as I was.
Publishing the book led to my employer at the time, Hannah McNamara giving me her company Marketing Help For Coaches. She recognised that the topic of my book was very timely for her audience and she was ready to move on. Read More.
Taking over the company (with no more than a weeks notice) I began applying the principles from Daniel Priestley’s Key Person of Influence Course that had just launched. I was one of the people to sign up for the programme in April 2010.
But it my reluctance to make sales and approach sales methodically, plus the crazy truth that coaches with money don’t need help and coaches without money can’t afford the help, I struggled to make the business work just as Hannah had.
Eventually, I had to make a decision and instead of throwing in the towel forever, I decided that I would take a job in sales so I could finally master this elusive skill. In a strange turn of events that prove the world is very small, I actually won a sales job based on my sales record from thirteen years before – when I was excellent at selling! (Does anyone see something strange in there?)
The job didn’t go well. Unable to position myself, or the company, as ‘go to’ experts and unable to use LinkedIn (I was banned), I struggled for 6 long months trying to make a sale.
Eventually, just after Christmas I called it quits and set about finding a new opportunity. And that was when I found LinkedIn. A long-term business colleague of mine reached out to ask whether I’d be interested in joining his company to sell LinkedIn training.
We had met in 2006 when he arrived in the UK with Daniel Priestley to build his first company, and he knew my dedication to learning to sell because just the year before I had purchased his online sales training.
Recognising how timely LinkedIn was and how important the platform could be to solo-entrepreneurs I readily accepted. It was a platform I could get behind.
For two years I sold LinkedIn training with the team. Our key person of influence was well known within LinkedIn and we had frequent trips to the head office in Ireland and we ran the Rock Your Profile Stand at Talent Connect in 2013 and 2014, and Social RecruitIn in 2014.
However, when the company was sold and LinkedIn asked us to focus on training their corporate clients, I knew it was time to leave.
My speciality and passion lay in for helping individuals market their businesses. I’d spent two years providing LinkedIn profile reviews for solo-entrepreneur experts all over the country for two years – and I had written a book about it called ‘What to Put on Your LinkedIn Profile’.
This insight coupled with my training on the Key Person of Influence course with Daniel Priestley, Mike Harris, Peter Thompson, Mindy Gibbon-Klein et al, my extensive travel to the USA to learn from self-made entrepreneur Dani Johnson and husband Hans Johnson, had left me with a very unique skill set, plus my mentee-ship with Hannah McNamara, left me very well positioned to help others.
However what was my track record? Leaving the training company, again with little notice, I had something to prove. I knew who I wanted to help and how, but first I would have to prove I could do it by implementing all that I had learned and establishing my own business.
Seeing a big need to help people implement the advice I provided during my two years of providing LinkedIn reviews, I began writing LinkedIn Profiles for entrepreneurs and corporates.
After a while, though I knew my sweet spot was working with the entrepreneurs, those who were experts in their industry (whether they recognised it or not) and had something to say.
I also saw that while I was writing LinkedIn profiles for people, many of the prospects I spoke to weren’t ready for a LinkedIn profile because they didn’t have the structures set up within their business to make the profile work for them; ie. bring in new business.
Wanting to fix this I wrote my LinkedIn Business Strategy course, now The Expert Economy strategy course, which then led on to providing one-to-one coaching, and us talking here today.
In 2015, I faced an unexpected turn of events. After investing two years working for someone else in a fledgling start-up, I was faced with the decision to either get a new job or start my own business (again).
Very much against the idea but faced with the need to make cash fast, I went with the latter. Four months on, I was known as ‘The LinkedIn Expert’ in my area and had built a thriving business – in a city I had only moved to seven months before.
I achieved it by applying the principles of The Expert Economy.
The Expert Economy is a term I have coined to explain the new age of business development where each of us has the opportunity to build a business doing what we love – and get paid generously for it.
Today, information is free. The answer to just about any question can be found by googling it, and most buyers will try to ‘do it themselves’ before thinking to invest in an expert to help them.
Recognising this, The Expert Economy is about ‘leaning in’. About being readily available to answer questions. To supply this content, and let our prospect know, that should they want anything ‘we’re here to help’.
Because we know that when we do this, people experience our expertise, understand what we do and they trust us.
And the right people want to work with us.
Starting my company, I had zero notice.
On a Thursday, I signed a new employment contract for £50k.
On Tuesday I quit.
On Wednesday I hired a desk in an Innovation centre.
I had no choice but to make things work.
One night, shortly after I signed a minimum term contract for my office desk, I was walking home from the office questioning my choices and asking ‘but what if this doesn’t work? What will I do?’ I had just moved to Portsmouth seven months before and really didn’t know anyone. My previous role was London focused and hadn’t afforded me many opportunities to network locally.
“What will I do if this doesn’t work out?”
Suddenly I stopped in my tracks and remembered all of my personal development training.
The real question was ‘How do I make this work?’
Walking along Elm Grove in Southsea, Portsmouth, I ran some quick calculations. If I wanted to earn £4k per month, I would have to sell 10 profiles at £400 per person. To sell 10 profiles, I would need to make approximately 40 presentations to ideal prospects (fast!). If I wanted to make 40 presentations, I needed to share my message with approximately 120 people.
I didn’t have a list and I didn’t have time.
So I asked myself ‘How can I get in front of 120 people fast?”
“Who do I know that would give me a speaking slot with my ideal audience?”
Malcolm Archibald from Business Builders immediately came to mind.
I had met Malcolm the year before when he called my previous employer looking for a speaker. Out of my colleagues, I volunteered. I hired a car, drove down from London the night before, and had dinner with a longtime contact, Karen Williams of Librotas, whom I’d never met after 5 years of conversation.
I stayed at my brother’s in-laws’ house who lived locally, creeping in at 10 pm and out at 6 am (I’d never been to their house before!!) and showed up the next morning to a fantastic group of entrepreneurs that I absolutely fell in love with.
Knowing I had to move out of London, and seeing this incredible group, I ask ‘Is there any sea near here?’ My criteria for my new home out of London was to be by the sea!
I was directed to Southsea. I drove in and out within the hour but made my decision to move there. Six weeks later, I had my own top floor flat with a view of the Spinnaker Tower. I’d attended the group a few more times but with my job focused on building a corporate business and establishing our partnership with LinkedIn based in Ireland, I wasn’t able to attend often.
Knowing the value of this group and its importance to me, I called Malcolm.
He immediately agreed saying he needed a speaker the next week because someone had dropped out. I stepped in. Just as I was about to start my talk, Fiona Farley from Portsmouth Business Exchange, approached me and asked if I’d speak at their open meeting the next week. I said yes.
Within 2 weeks I’d spoken to 120 people.
During my talks, I added value. I provided lots of insights and practical tips and talked about how LinkedIn is a vital part of your marketing mix, and the importance of making sure it pitches you, your business and your expertise perfectly.
I offered attendees a free LinkedIn Profile Review.
Taking business cards and following up, I held back-to-back meetings, focused on getting to know each business owner, and telling them how to write their own LinkedIn profile. I pitched to them exactly what they should do and then asked whether that was something they felt they could do for themselves or whether they needed me to help them.
Ten people said yes. Then another ten.
By my fourth month, I was at capacity. I had far exceeded my goal of writing 10 LinkedIn Profiles.
In my fifth month, my name came up in all the right conversations at a marketing agency in High Wycombe. Before I knew it, I invited to write 40+ LinkedIn profiles for Oracle in the USA and Europe.
This wasn’t by luck or by chance.
This was a formula.
The formula that we’ll be sharing at The Expert Economy Event.
I achieved this result by applying the training I received with Daniel Priestley’s programme Key Person of Influence.
I achieved it by combining the LinkedIn strategies I teach with offline strategies, to quickly position myself as the ‘go-to’ expert in my industry so my name came up in all the right conversations. I proved that what I teach clients absolutely works.
I achieved it by building a clear sales process with sales scripts, and clear products and clear pricing.
I achieved it by using my years of investment in my personal development.
I want to see you build a thriving business too.
Not just like me. Because we’re all different.
But by sharing a formula that works.
What’s Been Happening?
At The Expert Economy, I am always up to something.
With LinkedIn being such a popular topic of conversation and the increasing numbers of people leaving paid employment to start their own businesses as coachings, consultants and freelancers, I am frequently approached to feature in Podcasts and speak at events.
Here I share our latest updates and company news. I try to keep it as up to date as possible. A few things are missing still but stay tuned.
For upcoming events and activities, make sure to click here.
Speaking at Dent Global on how to use your LinkedIn profile to position yourself as the ‘Go to’ Expert
Speaking for Dent Global with BBC Apprentice candidate Richard WoodsSharing why, as a Key Person of Influence, your LinkedIn profile is so important - plus how to get startedYesterday I had the privilege of speaking for Dent Global, the company behind Daniel Priestley...read more
New Podcast Interview It was a pleasure to be the first guest interviewed for Matthew Larcome, CEO of Memo Events, new Podcast Expose It was a real honour to be invited to the first ever guest on Matthew Larcombe's new podcast series Expose. We actually did the...read more
Not only is my video series now available but it's also being actively promoted. It came as a real surprise the other day to see my LinkedIn training series promoted on LinkedIn by Tuko from Wealth Dragons. It has been almost a year to the day since we filmed it and...read more
Filming the New Video Series Today I had the privilege of working with James Rostance from Wow Productions. Our goal for the day was to film a video series. The content follows the structure of my upcoming book The Expert Economy and is designed to give an...read more
Interview for The 414 Local legend James Rostance reached out to me via LinkedIn to feature on his new video series It's always nice when a perfect strange reaches out to invite you to feature in their podcast, especially if it is new. It confirms a number of things...read more
the expert economy
Meet in persion with other Expert Entrepreneurs following the principles of The Expert Economy.
Our workshop introducing you to our step-by-step methodology and how to build your business as an Expert Entrepreneur
Implement The Expert Economy step-by-step methodology and build a LinkedIn Strategy right for your business.
Personalise the content to you and gain vital support for your journey with One-to-one coaching with Naomi Johnson.
Our workshop introducing you to our step-by-step methodology and how to build your business as an Expert Entrepreneur
Use our helpful online resources to build your own LinkedIn profile that brings prospects to you pre-sold and ready to buy.