Leanna DeBellevue is a global marketing agency owner, author and social media strategist.
Leanna has helped clients generate millions of dollars in sales using social media to connect and engage with their target markets. The companies she has worked with range from global conglomerates to real estate moguls and individual business owners looking to reach new untapped markets.
She has written for HuffPost and was a guest speaker on podcasts by iHeartRadio, Real Estate Publications, and Health Coach Academy among several others.
Q: What would you like to see your team accomplish in 2020?
I would like to see the company itself continue to help clients engage with their audience on social media and have clients on six of the seven continents (Antarctica may be a bit of a stretch for client base!). I want to be able to take a step back from my daily role in the company and refocus on the public speaking aspect of our company. The journey of business ownership/ entrepreneurship is not easy, and it takes courage.
I speak Internationally in groups, summits, and corporate settings on topics such as overcoming Imposter Syndrome, having the courage to fail, and how transparency can transform your business. I would like to see that aspect of our business grow exponentially.
Q: What were the most challenging areas in the early stages of the company’s growth?
The most challenging thing by far was knowing who to hire and when to bring them on board. It is hard when cash flow is not consistent, but you know you are maxing out on time and are stuck doing tasks that you hate, add in the fact that you know you could be making more if you had the proper support it creates a confusing situation.
The other challenge was learning how to monitor expectations while not micro-managing. When your name is on the company, it is difficult not to want to oversee every single aspect, but that is not realistic. Learning how to get your employees to “buy-in” to the company vision so that quality is reflective at all levels is key. It helps the employees feel valued and confident in their abilities and gave me the ability as the owner to trust the quality of work going out.
Q: Who is your role model or hero?
Three dynamic and powerful women come to mind: Fabienne Fredrickson, Brene’ Brown, and Rachel Hollis.
Q: What is your favorite book?
The Bible. No question!
Q: Do you use any specific method or system to run daily operations?
We use quite a few systems to run things effectively. We utilize Asana and Slack for team communications and a program called Smartsheets for communications with our clients. Add on top of that a system for clients to book with us, our communication platform and billing systems it seems as if it takes a system of systems to keep us up and running seamlessly!
Q: Why did you choose your present industry at this time?
Marketing is something I fell into and found a passion for, so we will always pursue that aspect of our company. The speaking portion of the company is new, and I have been intentional with entering the speaking industry because I see business owners shut down and fear taking risks because they doubt their abilities. There are so many voices telling people how to succeed overnight, and I want to be a voice of truth around the fact that this is a journey and learning how to navigate the ups and downs that comes with having your own business, regardless of the industry.
Q: What is the best/worst moment you can remember in your career?
Best – booking my first international client and international speaking opportunity. Worst – making a bad hire, ignoring the signs for fear of micro-managing, and almost losing the business over it.
Q: Looking back – if you could advise a younger version of yourself to do something different – what would it be?
Two pieces of advice I wish I knew – Stop second-guessing every choice and go all in, you know more than you give yourself credit for. Second, you will fail at some point, but see failure as a redirection back to success. Embrace it, and never fear it, that is the only guaranteed way to success.