Passion Squared Blog- Why Would I Follow You-

Why Would I Follow You?

“The cost of a thing is the amount of what I will call life which is required to be exchanged for it, immediately or in the long run.”  Henry David Thoreau

I mean really, why? This is the question I ask myself daily, and one I believe we all must ask ourselves, online and off.

Why would I follow you?
Why would I book with you?
Why would I review you?
Why would I refer you?
Why would I talk about you?
Why would I work for you?
Why would I pay you?
Why would I come back to you?

If you cannot answer these questions with clarity and intention, its time to take a step back and look at your brand. This is your story. Your purpose. Your promise. Without those, you are not a brand. You are simply a business. One that can be easily replaced with the next “best” thing. The next “shiny object”. The next “lowest price”. The next “contest”.

Brands add value.
Brands make me feel something.
Brands speak to me on an emotional level.
Brands create revenue.
Brands have life.
Brands inspire me to take an action.

Why did you choose to follow Passion Squared?

Love + Awesomeness-



The Art of The Question hd

The Art of The Question

In school, we’re rewarded for having the answer, not for asking a good question.  -Richard Saul Wurman

Questions… Our brain is triggered by questions. We move towards what we focus on. Awesome questions create awesome learning… In my life, with years of education, sales and marketing experiences, I have learned so much about asking good questions. #questionwisdom

Last night as I was getting ready for “sweet dreams”, and yes, if you didn’t know, when I post my sweet dreams message, I am in fact, getting ready to turn in for the night. I just happen to sit on #teamearlybird but will never ever tell you which team to sit on. Do you. Do awesome. So I digress… Let’s continue…

Last night, my awesome buddy and super smart human @andrewdoeshair posted a question he gets so very often, as do I, which is… “How do I get more followers?” You can see his post here. It’s awesome. He is awesome. He creates value. He is interested. He engages. It’s no wonder he has such a passionate group of followers and has managed to create wildly successful businesses and a rad life.

While I have blogged on the topic of engagement, relationships, and social, you can find just a few posts here, and here, and here… I will break it down one more time, well not really, I will blog on this topic til it no longer needs to be blogged on. Why? There still seems to be so much confusion about the word “social”.

Let’s look at the formal definition…

Social adjective (aka action word)
: relating to or involving activities in which people spend time talking to each other or doing enjoyable things with each other
: liking to be with and talk to people
: happy to be with people
: of or relating to people or society in general

Wow, it’s an action word. Who knew, right? Lol.

So now let’s try flipping the script, shall we?
1. Instead of asking how to get more followers, ask how can I be of value?

2. Instead of asking how to get more followers… ask how can I create more valuable content that followers want to follow.

3. Instead of asking how to get more followers, ask how can I create awesome work, consistently, and share it.

4. Instead of asking how to get more followers, ask how can I spend way more time listening than talking? Engaging, two way conversations, relationship building, you know, the stuff that matters.

5. Instead of asking how to get more followers, engage. And by engage I mean follow others who are of value to you, like, comment and share, authentically. Authentically. I mean authentically. There are some Insta experts out there that tell you to randomly search hashtags and make a super inauthentic comment on random peoples pages. #lame

6. Instead of asking how to get more followers, ask how can I become an awesome storyteller. Find out what’s important to your target audience and share. Consistently.

It’s not that we don’t know how to get more followers, and by followers, I mean create something of value for people to follow, it’s just that many of us are looking for a magic bullet, a secret sauce, and a short cut. And I am here to tell you, just as Andrew did so well in his post, there is no magic bullet or secret sauce.

Oh wait. There is a short cut… You can buy followers. I know, crazy huh? And good luck with that.

Love + Awesomeness-

Nina @passionsquared

PS: A big shout out of thanks to Andrew for inspiring this post! Love your face buddy.

I Am An Artist Too header

I Am An Artist Too

Value is more expensive than price.  -Toba Beta


Working in a creative industry such as beauty, there is an ongoing dialogue that never seems to end about not working for “free”, of value, of price, and with that, I continue to see so much misunderstanding of both value and price.

And while I have written on this topic often, here is my latest take on understanding value, price and worth. Because it’s not about getting paid, this is about delivering insane value. There is a BIG difference. Revenue is the result of a job well done.

In our hyper connected and social world, we have an opportunity to do a ton of important and valuable stuff, “for free”. We can write blogs, create videos, share tips, send newsletters with lots of cool info, answer questions on social platforms, do LIVE chats, etc. All super awesome, highly valuable stuff, we do for “free” aka not getting paid.

If we are just starting out, and nobody knows who the heck we are or what value we bring to the table, there are several strategic decisions we can make about working for “free”. Remember, these are strategic decisions and also an investment in building relationships, community, value and potentially a ton of traffic, online and off. Just think, every time you post a blog, hair tip, step by step or formula, that is working for “free”.

If people keep asking you to work for free or discount your prices, instead of getting mad at the people, you may want to consider the following…

1. You are connecting with the wrong people. And this means your marketing plan is off or you simply don’t yet understand or have not clearly defined your target market.
2. You have not effectively communicated your value.
3. You have not set healthy boundaries, people will push, it’s your job to push back, with love of course.
4. You are not comfortable with having courageous conversations.
5. You do not see your worth.
6. Your work is not as awesome as you think it is.

If you set your price, and people won’t pay it, all of the above statements may be true, plus one very important thing; you could be overpriced. I know, a little blow to the ego, but its possible. Pricing is both an art and a science. As I shared here and here and here, if you care to learn more, for “free”.

Lastly, for an industry that screams about not working for free, at least 1 time per day, usually more, those same people ask me to work for free. And the awesome news is, I do have a ton of content available to those people, which is free*.

This weekly blog, The Weekly Dose of Awesome newsletter, my #QandAwesome show, Awesome A Day morning text messages & Wednesday Wisdom LIVE Chats, my daily posts on social platforms, all of it, is 100% available to anyone who chooses to consume it.
*If I was to charge for all of those things I choose to do to create value for my community, it would be thousands of dollars each month. Yes, thousands!

What I sell is experience, knowledge, context + results. I create stuff of value. I am an artist. Just like you. So when you call, text or email me and want to pick my brain about your brand strategy, ideas, team challenges, social platforms, website, problem client, or whatever, you are asking me to work for free. Hmmmmm.

I pay for all my professional services. Why? I respect the businesses & artists who provide them. My haircuts, colors, waxing, facials, nails, graphic designer, web programmer, accountant, #teamawesome at Passion Squared. And I pay with joy, love + gratitude for having fellow artists and humans in my life that know way more than I do about their area of focus & experience.

So next time you text, call or email me asking for help, be prepared to get an invoice…created and sent with love, gratitude and respect. And in turn, I will always pay for my haircut.

Love + Awesomeness-


Are You Really Worth It?

“The realization of what it takes to create value might break your heart, because it means you have to specialize, take risks, create art, leave a positive impact and adopt generosity in all you do.”

Seth Godin

Are You Really Worth It?

Here is the audio version of this post. Enjoy!

Price and value has been heavy on my mind lately, as I continue to see a wave of discounting of services from hairdressers, salons, education companies, fitness studios and more. I would have to say it is one of the most heartbreaking things for me to see when working with small businesses.

You see, what it tells me, without even knowing you or your business model, is that you have no plan. No brand purpose or promise. You do not value your own services or business.

While doing research for this post, I came across a blog from the great Seth Godin, titled, On Pricing Power, and it opens with this profound statement, which I could not say better myself…

From Seth’s blog…
If you’re not getting paid what you’re worth, there are only two possible reasons:
1. People don’t know what you’re worth, or
2. You’re not (currently) worth as much as you believe

This is probably the most important part of creating an awesome brand. Whether you are premium price or the lowest price, you still need to have a deep understanding of value, price and worth.

There is nothing wrong with promotions, adding value, or special pricing, but if discounting is the foundation of your brand, it’s gonna be a tough, painful road.

Instead of…

Instead of focusing on how little you can offer your services for, begin to focus on what value you bring to the table. And deliver that, consistently. It’s amazing what happens when people are happy with their experience and begin to tell their friends.

Instead of focusing on how little you can offer your services for, begin to focus on content creation that brings a ton of value on social platforms.

Instead of focusing on how little you can offer your services for, begin to focus on your WHY.  WHY I would choose you over someone else?

Instead of focusing on how little you can offer your services for, begin to focus on how you are going to be a better businessperson.

Instead of focusing on how little you can offer your services for, begin to focus on healing the part inside you that does not see your worth. By far, the most difficult journey you will take, but so worth it. Just like you.

Love + Awesomeness-


PS: This concept applies to undercharging, overcharging and discounting. Again, it’s about understanding value, price and worth, not delusion or greed.