This is an extensive review of an internet marketing program in which I have participated. In it, I will not dwell upon other programs offered by Lisa Marie Pepe or others. By reading it, you will have:
what are some of my professional opinions, as a (1) marketer and (2) trainer over the content and performance delivered by Lisa Marie over the first (beta) edition of this program that ran live between May-August 2022;
who would benefit most from “The Confidence to Clients Method for Female Coaches and Online Entrepreneurs”;
what to expect when you’re subscribing;
my (limited) experience as a participant.
What did I get, ordered by what was important for me:
6 online live one-on-one consulting sessions (if you want you may record them). In each of these, you may ask for support on any of the content you are having issues with or you can pick Lisa’s brains on how or why she does certain things a certain way (like the structure and preparation behind her very successful other events, services, and products). This is very important because in other programs you rarely get one-on-one time with the trainer, so when you get stuck you’ll have to wait your turn in a group call or write to some training assistant.
direct access to Lisa Marie during the course with brief questions on challenges you may have
24 (actually 26) meetings of approx. 1 h, structured half in courses (teaching) and half in seminars (Q &A) on 12 steps;
12 weekly PDF sheets with synthesis from each course and homework. Each homework builds upon the previous weeks, so if you’re not keeping up, you will lose track and fall behind;
Access to the Voxer text group where you can talk with all of the other participants and with Lisa;
the video recordings of the meetings that you can rewatch for homework preparation (if you’re in the Facebook group)
This course is aimed at experienced freelancers and wantrepreneurs who aspire to be solopreneurs by selling online services and/or digital products. If you already are a solopreneur, you would benefit by going through the process to up your game. If you already are an entrepreneur, this course gives you a lot of ideas about what you could delegate to some of your employees or workers to which you outsource jobs. I believe that the freelancers and wantrepreneurs would benefit the most from this course, even though it might be harder for them. I don’t think this program is fit for beginners, students, or fresh graduates. You should already have several years of experience in delivering one service that can be sold online. If you have several, that’s not an issue, but if you have too many (like I do), doing some of the homework might be a problem and you might get stuck.
The program combines training/teaching, group calls, and one-on-one consulting. The program does NOT include coaching, mentoring, accountability partnering, or done-for-you services. It does not have anything in common with dropshipping business or any business model based on selling physical products. I have tried to create a study group, but I only got interested in this from one other participant I could synchronize with.
The four pillars of this program are (1) confidence, (2) clarity, (3) content, and (4) clients.“The Confidence to Clients Method”, is a sort of short form of “From self-confidence to vision clarity to content development to paying clients”.
The time allocated for homework may vary from participant to participant because some homework is going to be more difficult for some participants than for others. I would recommend allocating at least 6 hours on average every week besides the time for the training and Q&A.
What is special/most valuable in this program
I have participated in several live training programs on entrepreneurship, some of them taking whole days or weeks one after another. I didn’t count them, but I think overall, at least 50 entrepreneurs were claiming (hallucinating) that they were teaching me entrepreneurship. Most of this training, even though it had theoretical parts and practical applications, had the following issues:
missing pieces that many weren’t noticing because each trainer would focus on certain aspects and neglect others;
little or irrelevant homework for building long-term skills;
lack of personal individual support when the participants were having trouble implementing homework, which would result in the “I’ll do it later”/the “never” syndrome;
lack of transdisciplinary integration, which meant that when a participant got stuck (s)he didn’t know who to go to;
lack of flexibility or open-mindedness on the participants’ needs;
no option for paying in installments.
From an instructional design standpoint, I’d say that “The Confidence to Clients Method for Female Coaches and Online Entrepreneurs” is the best entrepreneurship program I have ever seen, read, or participated in. Considering I have participated in about a dozen such programs/event series/opportunities in which I networked with hundreds of business people between 2004-2010 (some of them, millionaires), that counts for something. Why?
Lisa Marie puts all the pieces in the right order in this program for the purpose, in a way that makes sense scientifically, business-wise, and practically. When you go through the steps, it’s a seamless experience well thought out and crafted for the participant. For example, the first step is one of the most important, but most missed by those who claim to teach entrepreneurship. If those who teach entrepreneurship would pay more attention to this strategic aspect supported by research, maybe fewer participants would drop out of their programs.
Lisa Marie focuses on each step with a moderate amount of energy. Even though you could find whole programs that dwell upon each step of the program, the course requires you to do a minimum amount of work regarding that step. If you want to explore more, you are welcome.
The 6 sessions with Lisa Marie may be used at your own convenience on whatever topic from the course you’d like. Lisa is available to support you with whatever issue you might have. These are very important and in my opinion, are the essential valuable component of the program. If this wouldn’t have been part of the program, I wouldn’t have bought in.
The areas that are touched by this program don’t require the participant to become a master, but to become knowledgeable enough to understand how they work, what they require, and if you want to do that yourself or delegate to someone else. The areas touched by the training are:
self-confidence, which is closely inter-related with self-respect; self-confidence is also an important component of the self-esteem level. I know that because I proved that in my dissertation on self-esteem;
consumer psychology research;
online personal branding;
social media marketing;
technical systems integration.
All these are sprinkled with extremely valuable tips and tricks that few know, that Lisa shares from her extensive entrepreneurship experience.
Why Lisa Marie Pepe
If you’ve never heard about Lisa Marie Pepe, I suggest you check one of her websites, Positive Transformation. She positions herself in the online space by offering to coach, advise and train business women to strengthen their confidence, visibility, and business acumen. She has competencies in various transdisciplinary areas, which is one huge common point that attracted me to learn from her.
Lisa offers extremely high-value services in any professional encounter. We met as colleagues in the virtual online marketing program KBB (Knowledge Broker Blueprint) developed starting in 2019 by Dean Graziosi and Tony Robbins. I took an interview with her on a success she shared in that private Facebook group in 2020. Sometime in 2020 or 2021 I also subscribed to one of her newsletters. In early spring 2022, Lisa Marie ran another limited program in which she offered incredible value to all participants for a whole month by doing weekly 1 hour sessions of Q & A on the path from freelancer to entrepreneur. The incredible cost for that service was just 1 USD. After that interesting experience, I recognized the “confidence to clients” program as an opportunity for me to follow up on someone humble enough to get down on my level (freelancer since 2005) and provide me with what I was missing in terms of what I needed to make the jump from freelancing to solopreneurship.
Lisa Marie, through “The Confidence to Clients Method” has proven to me the following important qualities:
(1) She isn’t only one excellent inspirational entrepreneur, but she can also train and explain to you how you can follow in her footsteps! I believe she proves a good balance between walking her walk and talking your walk. Her procedures are tested and followable.
(2) Lisa Marie has been really open to feedback for this program, especially considering this is a beta/pilot version. So the initial participants have been allowed to make suggestions and improvements to the study material.
(3) Lisa Marie doesn’t know everything and she doesn’t need to know everything, but everything is “figuroutable”. Therefore, I tried to learn also from the way that she deals with her own limits. I am amazed how she can find sooner or later a response for everything. I honestly think that any participant could ask her for anything and she’ll find a way to support him/her, even if she doesn’t know the answer.
(4) Lisa Marie is extremely supportive and caring for the needs of each individual participant, showing a lot of flexibility.
(5) Lisa Marie has a goal-oriented big picture perspective with a lot of awareness of how to prevent the detailed problems on the way. If you follow the instructions from this program towards your vision for the goals and you use the Q & A calls + the individual sessions for overcoming the specific difficulties, you should do great.
(6). Lisa Marie sets clear boundaries, contracts, and agreements with each participant. Actually, she can be followed as a model regarding that. This leads to clear responsibilities and expectations for everyone.
(7) Lisa Marie has created “The Confidence to Clients Method for Female Coaches and Online Entrepreneurs” as a mostly evergreen program that covers the basic steps that have worked in the past and which continue to work in the present for those who want to make use of the opportunities the internet economy still provides.
(8) Lisa Marie offered in this program business, strategic and tactical information. The information she presents in the program is relevant for each of the topics presented.
(9) Most of the suggestions and recommendations made by Lisa Marie can be made without spending a huge online advertising budget, creating super-performant and competitive content, or having a huge team together with you. This said, you will need some capital for implementation, but it’s not as high as with other programs. The steps she recommended can be done by you or scaled as you develop. So one of the key advantages of implementing this course is scalability.
(10) Lisa Marie demonstrates what she teaches throughout the program, and goes beyond sharing her own business and personal experiences, both positive and negative.
Have realistic expectations
As I noticed during the months of delivering this program, Lisa Marie walks a thin line between perfectionistic overachievement and candid self-acceptance. The advantages of this program come also with logical consequences. So you should know that:
(1) Time is relative and you can never really know when a meeting starts or finishes, which is something that you should be comfortable with especially if you, like me, deal with people from different continents, countries, and cultures. Time is relative partially because Lisa over-delivers and overschedules and partially because Lisa has an in time preference. So theoretically, the training should start at let’s say 5 PM my time, but really it may start anytime between 5.07-5.15 PM. I suspect that some of the participants started to adjust to this by deliberately coming later (me too). Then, the training should theoretically finish after an hour at 6 PM (it usually doesn’t), but if Lisa hasn’t finished what she’s teaching and she doesn’t have another call, she might continue teaching even up to 6.38-6.45 PM. That’s why some of the meetings might be 45-50 minutes long and some closer to 1h 30 long. My suggestion? Have something else to do in the background for the first 15 scheduled minutes of the course/Q & A session and block at least 2 hours for each training/Q & A session. If you don’t do that, you’ll likely miss out on some of the most important questions and answers that get discussed at the end of every session.
(2) Having a direct experience with Lisa and having direct access to her also means remembering that Lisa is just a human being, not Wonder Woman. She actually responded incredibly promptly and customized to all messages I have personally sent her but don’t expect an immediate response.
(3) Lisa is keen on creating relationships, which is great if you’d like to use this as an opportunity to become part of a small community and get closer to (some of) the other participants ( I like to think I at least tried to do that). The logical consequence of (1), (2), and (3) is that there is about 25-30% of time spent in the beginning letting participants express themselves about what they have been up to. If you are in for mostly the knowledge, in some cases you will have to wait until at least 30 minutes into the scheduled call to get into the actual content.
(4) Remember what I wrote about the material being developed/improved with the support and suggestion of participants? The other side of that coin is that in some weeks, of course, all participants would receive later a PDF with homework for that week and would have less time to implement it until the next call. This naturally happened for the beta version of this program. Actually, Lisa decided to extend the program by one more week because we actually had to allocate more sessions just for the social media marketing lesson and the PDF came approximately one week later.
(5) If you ask a question in a group call, Lisa will try to answer that question not only to you but also to make the answer useful to all the other participants as well. That’s a good practice, but it’s also time-consuming. So it’s a good idea for each participant to separate the questions that are mostly specific to their own needs from those that may be useful to other participants as well. That’s why each participant also gets 6 one-on-one sessions with Lisa. I, unfortunately, got carried away in at least one of the group meetings by asking too many questions and as a direct consequence of Lisa answering all of my questions, she didn’t get to finish the theoretical training part so she had to take out the Q & A session that week to finish the training.
(6) The environment that Lisa Marie created inside this program seemed to me such a supportive one that if you don’t do your homework, nobody will push you (because there is no study group and no accountability partnering). There is also no gamification, no officially set reward or award for the incentivization of the participants, which fully leaves the responsibility of the implementation to the participants. On this issue, I would just like to comment that several members of the particular group in which I was part of this beta program were extremely challenged: I got a chronic infection and then I got poisoned; one other participant got evicted from their home with the entire family; one participant had a very difficult illness and two participants had their family members go through tough medical interventions. Therefore, it was difficult for each of us to participate. My presumption is that none of us did all the homework in time. If someone would have given me a practical test at the end of the course, I would have flunked it, but it was not because of the course content. I believe Lisa really did her best.
(7) This is not technical training. Lisa will not show you what buttons to push, she will not tell you what software to use or make comparisons between various suppliers. She may briefly share with participants what she’s using and what are the basic features of each tool but she’s not making affiliate commissions by selling any of them (which might actually be a good monetization idea). The “The Confidence to Clients Method” program was not conceived to go into technical depths. If you’re interested in more about fine-tuning your technical tools for marketing online, I suggest that you look for some tutorials.
(8) This program does not deal with organizational branding. If you are an entrepreneur and already have a company for which you want to create/develop branding, there is another route to take. This program supports each participant with their personal branding. The tools, tips, and tricks presented here are not enough for more than that.
(9) I guess you could still use this program as it is for the next 1-2 years, but it does not take into account what the future brings, especially when it comes to automation, artificial intelligence, and outsourcing. It does not dwell on trends, but it gives you some very useful principles (for example, how to choose a social media channel) which are evergreen. My intuition about the future tells me that if Lisa Marie keeps running this program, its fundamental structure will need to get changed/extended by 2024 to be useful for the future.
(10) This is a focused program that requires full attention, especially for the moments when Lisa Marie shares her screen to show something practical or discuss case studies. I do not recommend participating in it or listening to the recordings while doing something else.
My experience with this program
Through the homework required in this program, I got some awareness of some of the issues that are still keeping me from going to the next level in my professional career. Lisa also supported me in overcoming some of the issues that I had.
Unfortunately for me, this program overlapped with one of the most difficult health crises that I had as an adult. As my health deteriorated, I was unable to keep up with the homework. I tried doing just some of the homework even though there were holes from the previous weeks. The inevitable came and in the final week of the program, I was confronted with the fact that I was unable to evaluate how much this program would eventually support me. Hopefully, I will implement it completely when my health will serve me better so that I would enjoy more of its benefits. I hope that I might also get the chance to go through the program again next time with other participants.
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