How to get paid more with #Influencer author Brittany Hennessy

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Influencer author Brittany Hennessy shares her strategies for getting large raises even when companies push back. Her book, Influencer: Building Your Personal Brand In the Age of Social Media, focuses on strategies for content creators to monetize influence. 

In Brittany’s story you will learn:

-Why she did not negotiate her first job offer

-The strategy she used to get a raise from $35,000 to $55,000 after just 6 months

-How she got yet another $20,000 jump in pay not long after

-Why the third time she tried to get a raise, she got a different result, and how she moved forward from there

In Brittany’s lesson you will learn: 

-How to understand your worth and be prepared to negotiate

-When to walk away

-How to look at job interviews as a two way street, and integrate that into your strategy

In Brittany’s everyday money tip you will learn:

-The importance of staying in touch and being reachable if your work demands that. 

-The consequences of not being available when an opportunity comes up

-How to put the pressure to disconnect in perspective relative to your reality

Bobbi And Brittany also talk about

-Her new book Influencer

-The four parts of Brittany’s book: Building your audience, packaging your brand, monetizing your influence and planning your future.

-The Don’t be that Girl sections of the book

-The mega influencers that Brittany interviewed for the book

-How being an influence is a lot of work, sometimes a lot more than a traditional job, with none of the financial security

-Many of the most successful influencers went years without any financial compensation

-How brands can get more transparent value working with influencers, where they see the specific impact, compared to traditional celebrities on traditional media platforms

-Brittany’s #1 piece of advice for aspiring influencers

In My Take you will learn:

-Disconnecting from technology is a good thing- but if your business is tied to being reachable- make sure you are still reachable. 

-Use apps to limit and control the amount of time wasted on social media,so you can be more productive and focus on income generating activities

 

Episode Links:

Learn more about Brittany Hennessy on her website: https://brittanyhennessy.com/

Read Brittany’s Book #Influencer!

 

Follow Brittany!

Instagram @mrsbrittanyhennessy

 

Here are some roundup articles with apps to turn off social media:

https://www.reviewed.com/smartphones/features/10-apps-that-block-social-media-so-you-can-stay-focused-and-be-more-productive

 

https://www.teensafe.com/blog/best-app-limits-social-media-time-iphones/

 

https://www.digitaltrends.com/mobile/apps-to-reduce-screen-time-iphone-android/

 

Reward Style

Shop Style Collective


Transcription

Brittany Hennes:
I had $50,000 for someone for eight hours of work and one Instagram post, and she just did not respond. And when she did, she was heartbroken, because $50,000 is a lot of money.

Bobbi Rebell:
You're listening to Financial Grownup. With me, certified financial planner, Bobbi Rebell, author of How to be a Financial Grownup. You know what? Being a grown up is really hard, especially when it comes to money, but it's okay. We're gonna get there together. I'm going to bring you one money story from a financial grownup, one lesson, and then my take on how you can make it your own. We got this.

Bobbi Rebell:
Hey grownup friends. So, I think we would all like to make $50,000 for a day's work. It almost makes that famous quote from supermodel, Linda Evangelista, the one where she says she doesn't get out of bed for less than $10,000 seem a little quaint.

Bobbi Rebell:
Apparently, according to our guest, Brittany Hennessy, at least one influencer didn't pick up the phone and missed out on $50,000. That is a very expensive missed call.

Bobbi Rebell:
Welcome everyone. Thanks for spending some time with us here at Financial Grownup. We keep it to about 15 minutes, but feel free to binge if you have a bit more time, and it would mean the world to us if you would hit that subscribe button. Go into settings and then set up automatic downloads. Automation is everything just like with investing, right?

Bobbi Rebell:
All right. Let's get to Brittany Hennessy. She is the senior director of influencer partnerships at Hearst, and she was a pioneer in the influencer field, first as a nightlife blogger, and then she worked as an influencer for brands including Bacardi, Pop Chips and The Gap, as well as having amazing assignments like ooh going enough to Germany for [inaudible 00:01:46] and hanging out with Rihanna and live tweeting about it.

Bobbi Rebell:
Her book, Influencer, is really a first. Even if you aren't in the content creator influencer world, you should definitely check it out. We're going to talk a little bit about that too. Here as Brittany Hennessy.

Bobbi Rebell:
Hey, Brittany Hennessy. You're a financial grownup. Welcome to the podcast.

Brittany Hennes:
Thanks for having me. Happy to be here.

Bobbi Rebell:
Congratulations are in order. Your book, which has only been out a week, Influencer, Building Your Personal Brand in the Age of Social Media, already an Amazon bestseller, so congratulations.

Brittany Hennes:
Thank you very much.

Bobbi Rebell:
And I know you've been very busy. Tell us just a little bit about you, your background and what you've been up to. The last week or two you've been touring around with your book.

Brittany Hennes:
Yeah, I'm currently the senior director of influencer partnerships at Hearst, and here I book all of the branded content talent across all of our digital platforms and spent a lot of time working with influencers.

Brittany Hennes:
My background, for the last five years, has been in influencer marketing and just realizing that a lot of influencers were not getting the education and resources that they needed to be successful in this industry, and that's mostly because it's a new industry. There are not a lot of people who could give that sort of advice, and I love giving advice.

Bobbi Rebell:
You brought a great money story to share, and it has to do with getting paid more, which you're so good at it. So tell us.

Brittany Hennes:
So my money story ... My first job that I had after a long break of freelancing, and I had just taken the job at the amount, it was $35,000, and I was really happy.

Bobbi Rebell:
Tell us what the job was. What were you doing?

Brittany Hennes:
Oh it was to be ... So, I was the social media manager of a fitness chain.

Bobbi Rebell:
Okay.

Brittany Hennes:
And happy to have a steady paycheck, have health insurance. And so I took the number, even though it was much lower than what I wanted, and after the first six months I realized that I can't live on this.

Bobbi Rebell:
Well wait, had you tried to negotiate it at the beginning or you just took it because you just wanted to be working?

Brittany Hennes:
You know what? I knew better to negotiate, and I was scared. And so, I think that happens to a lot of people. We're afraid that if we negotiate, a company will take back the offer. And so that is a lesson I learned the hard way and quickly course corrected when I asked for my first raise.

Bobbi Rebell:
So, you did not negotiate it all when they made you your very first offer for the job?

Brittany Hennes:
I did not, and that's something I think everyone should do, and I've done every time since.

Bobbi Rebell:
Okay. So, let's go on. But then things get better?

Brittany Hennes:
Things get better. So, I put together a big proposal, and I asked for promotion, and I asked for a $20,000 raise, and they gave it to me.

Bobbi Rebell:
Wait, wait, you asked ... Let's just slow that down. You asked for $20,000 on a $35,000 base. How did you present that case?

Brittany Hennes:
You know, I think it really was explaining what I had been doing at the company and the returns they had been seeing, because they hadn't really been a digital company at all, and I really put them on the map with social media, digital advertising, and I had the numbers to show. Like before I started working here, this is how many signups you were regenerating. This is how much revenue you are making. And in the six months I've been here, here are the new numbers. So, they more than make up for the increase I'm asking for, and unless you want to go back to not making as much money, you should give me what I'm asking for, and they took the bait.

Bobbi Rebell:
That's great. Then, you actually did it again though.

Brittany Hennes:
I did it again. Once I was grooving at that new level, I also stepped up the amount of work I was doing. I really stepped into like a brand director role, and we had an apparel line that we made. We had a radio station that we were playing in all the locations. So, really doing things that increased the brand value of the company, and that's something that translated into reviews online, into sales, into word of mouth. And again, when you can show that you're adding value, I think you should not be afraid to ask for a hefty bump. And I asked for another $20,000, and I got that as well.

Brittany Hennes:
And so I think, you know, if you're working hard and you're adding value, and you can put that on paper and quantify it real numbers, you should not be afraid to ask for more money because your job will give it to you, and if they don't, they don't appreciate you, and you probably should look for a new job anyway.

Bobbi Rebell:
What if they'd come back and said, "We agree you're worth this, but we don't have that in our budget."

Brittany Hennes:
So, that's actually what happened the third time.

Bobbi Rebell:
Oh, you went back for more. How far apart? It was six months for the first time, and how much between each subsequent time?

Brittany Hennes:
Six months for the first time, and then I think a year and a half for the second time because I was there for almost three years.

Bobbi Rebell:
Okay. And then you came back the third time.

Brittany Hennes:
And my last negotiation came at the end.

Bobbi Rebell:
Okay. And?

Brittany Hennes:
And they didn't have it. They said, "You know, you're great, and we don't have it." And I think you can either be able to walk away, which I was able to walk away, and I had also gotten another job offer that was for significantly more than they were paying me, so I was willing to walk away. Or, you know, if you can't, then you can look into trade offs. Like, if you can't give me X amount, can I have more vacation? Can I have a work from home day? Can I, you know, have shorter days? I think, if you really love your job, and the job is not just about the money. It's also about the work-life balance that you have.

Bobbi Rebell:
What is the lesson for our listeners when you look at a big picture in sort of a broader sense of how it can apply to our listeners' lives?

Brittany Hennes:
I think the lesson there is really when you're going into a job situation, to understand your worth and be prepared to negotiate for what you want, and also be prepared to walk away.

Brittany Hennes:
I think lots of times we're very much, "I hope they like me." And we forget that interviewing for a job is a two-way street. Of course, you're going to be able to work at this great company and all the perks that come with it, but this company is benefiting greatly because they're going to get to have you as an employee.

Bobbi Rebell:
So I want to talk about your everyday money tip because it's fascinating and brilliant, because it goes against the grain.

Bobbi Rebell:
We're in a period where a lot of people are saying, "We look at our phones too often. We need to completely detach, turn it off, put it away for a full day or whatever it is and be in the moment." But that could be very expensive and could be a money mistake. So, what's your everyday money tip?

Brittany Hennes:
My everyday money tip is don't play hard to get and definitely be present.

Brittany Hennes:
I work with a lot of influencers who, I email them, I have contracts, I have offers. Sometimes it's four or five, six figures, and they don't respond because they just didn't get around to it, and they're always heartbroken when they try and connect with me later, and the opportunity has passed them.

Brittany Hennes:
So, I think, you know, it's definitely important to disconnect and recharge, but you still need some sort of out of office-on even if it's just letting people know that you only check email twice a day, and the next time you'll check is that this time because you never know what's sitting in your inbox or in your voicemail, and you have to make sure you're ready.

Bobbi Rebell:
Without naming names, what's the worst case that this ever happened?

Brittany Hennes:
I won't name names because the poor girl's probably still traumatized by it, but I had $50,000 for someone for eight hours of work and one Instagram post, and she just did not respond. And when she did, she was heartbroken because $50,000 is a lot of money for anybody.

Brittany Hennes:
Even Warren Buffet, if you want to give him $50,000, would probably take it. Why not? It's a nice amount of money, and she could have made that doing relatively little work, you know, compared to what a lot of people have to do for $50,000, and she just wasn't there.

Bobbi Rebell:
Heartbreaking. All right, let's talk about Influencer because, as I said, I love this book, and I don't know that there's any other book out here yet that lays it all out so clearly and in such a specific way.

Bobbi Rebell:
I love your expert tips. You have throughout the book this Don't Be That Girl, which is a lot of no-BS advice for people as to what you can't do. Tell us more about the book and what went into it.

Brittany Hennes:
The book is broken out into four parts, building your audience, packaging your brand, monetizing your influence and planning your future, and it's really just giving you tips and practical advice. Like I even give email templates on if someone asks you this, you should write back this, because I think part of what makes people successful is having a formula and having some sort of standard, and influencer marketing is still so young that there really hasn't been anything that's been created that's a textbook, and that's really what I tried to write.

Brittany Hennes:
And I think my favorite part ... I really liked the icons that I interviewed eight mega influencers who were at the top of their game, but I do really like, Don't Be That Girl just because I think it's really ... I think it's really funny, and people always like horror stories, and so I had to change some details so that people aren't easily identified, but the meat of the story and how ridiculous some of the [inaudible 00:10:49], they are a hundred percent true.

Bobbi Rebell:
Yeah. You talk about the request that some of them put forward as if they were celebrities of a caliber that they just are not at this point, but because they live in this bubble, they believed that they are.

Bobbi Rebell:
And I think another good thing that I love about the book is that you make it very clear that they treat this like a job, and in most cases it's not even a solo job. It is a job with multiple people working on these brands. So, it may look very carefree, these beautiful photos, but in fact, they're very planned. The equipment is specific. The lighting, the filters. The other people working on it have very targeted jobs. This is work even though you say it's eight hours, for example, for $50,000 that that person missed out on. To be at the caliber where you ae being offered $50,000 for eight hours of work and an Instagram post, that person probably was working for many years very hard.

Brittany Hennes:
That's 100 percent true, and I think that's the part people miss when they, I think, are a little disgusted, might be the proper word, about how much some of these top-tier influencers are making, and a lot of these women weren't making that much money until recently, and some of them have been YouTubers, bloggers, Instagram stars for 10 years, and for the first five they made $0.

Brittany Hennes:
People just think they snap one photo and slap it on Instagram. Have you ever taken one photo of yourself? It's not perfect. You take at least five. And so, they're taking hundreds, then doing select, then editing, and that's even before they were mood boarding the clothing and the locations and getting permits, and they're ... You know, if you think of any major brand that does a photo shoot, they're doing the exact same thing just sometimes on a smaller scale.

Bobbi Rebell:
Brands can tell on a much more granular level exactly what return they're getting. So, if you were a traditional celebrity and you're in a shampoo ad on TV, they never know how many bottles of shampoo they sold. But it's much easier, somewhat, to track the impact of an influencer campaign.

Brittany Hennes:
Absolutely. Between ... Even if you just look at basic media, if you're looking at engagements, the cost per click, the cost per impression, we have those data points now because Instagram is providing them, and YouTube provides them, and then you have huge affiliate networks like Reward Style and you know, Shop Style Collective where influencers can actually see how much product they're moving because they make commission off of it.

Brittany Hennes:
And so I think Reward Style has crazy numbers that like in a very short period, they did a billion dollars worth of sales, and companies like Nordstrom, 80 percent of their mobile traffic comes from influencers.

Brittany Hennes:
And so, brands can really see the difference that influencers are making, and it's not just enough to make great content, you also have to be able to move product.

Brittany Hennes:
And the girls who are commanding six figures for a campaign, they can do both really well.

Bobbi Rebell:
All right, final question on this. Number one piece of advice for people that want to be an influencer that earns money.

Brittany Hennes:
Number one piece of advice is make sure you are in it for the right reasons. Everything is great, but everything, once it is your job, is now a job, and you may not want to get up some days, but you still have to go and shoot content. Definitely pick something that is your passion. And if you could do it and no one would pay you, you would do it anyway, because it will be a while. It can be a short while or a long while until you see real revenue from it. So, you definitely want to make sure you don't burn out before your time comes.

Bobbi Rebell:
Great Advice. Tell us where we can follow you because you are an influencer in your own right.

Brittany Hennes:
I'm on Instagram. That's my primary channel at MrsBrittanyHennessy.

Bobbi Rebell:
Love it. Thank you so much, Brittany.

Brittany Hennes:
Thank you so much. This was so much fun.

Bobbi Rebell:
Hey friends, so Brittany did not hold back. Here's my take on it though. Financial grownup tip number one. There is a big trend now that we should take breaks from our technology, and that is a really good thing, but if you have a job where you need to be reachable, be reachable.

Bobbi Rebell:
One option is to use, for example, the do not disturb feature settings on your phone. So, within there, you can set it up so that the calls from one group, let's say VIPs are allowed. You can also usually set it up so that repeated calls get through. That way if someone's calling you over and over again to hand you money, like $50,000, you may notice repeated calls and eventually they will get through to you. You can also, obviously, have some kind of message on your voicemail telling people to call someone like an assistant that can reach you.

Bobbi Rebell:
Financial grownup tip number two. While we are talking about phone settings, one way to not make money is to always be on social media, unless of course that is literally your work. Then be on social media.

Bobbi Rebell:
There are all kinds of apps and settings that can put controls in, so you won't be distracted by all the apps on your phone, but you can leave the right things on and use the setting.

Bobbi Rebell:
So I'm going to list some roundup articles with a bunch of these, but a couple to check out are Moments, Off Time, and Freedom.

Bobbi Rebell:
Thanks to everyone for sharing your time with us DM me and tell me what your financial grownup tips are. I am at BobbiRebell1 on Instagram, BobbiRebell on Twitter, and Bobbi Rebell on Facebook, and you can get the show notes, for example, with the links of those articles for this episode BobbiRebell.com/podcast/BrittanyHennessy, and all of the show notes follow that same pattern where it's BobbiRebell.com/podcast, and then forward slash and the guest's name. And we have lots of great information there, including links to their books, where you can find them on social media and all that good stuff.

Bobbi Rebell:
All right. Thank you for Influencer author, Brittany Hennessy, for helping us get one step closer to being financial grownups.

Bobbi Rebell:
Financial Grownup with Bobbi Rebell is edited and produced by Steve Stewart and is a BRK Media production.