Marnie LeFevre is a self-made international businesswoman who is passionate about supporting women to achieve success in business and leadership.
Not only has she worked for names like Richard Branson and British Telecom, she has forged a path that is opening a wealth of new possibilities for aspiring female entrepreneurs and business leaders.
Marnie’s experience runs deep. With more than 20 years in marketing, branding and sales in diverse large corporates and her own businesses, she has become a serial local and global entrepreneur and women’s mentor who speaks all over the world. She has proven that with effective marketing techniques and consistently working on your own personal growth, there is no limit to what can be achieved and now measures her own success using the brilliant achievements of her client list, which includes the most promising female business names of this decade.
She is working harder than ever to lead and inspire women to get started and continue with confidence, to love what they do, believe in themselves, and to view wealth as a way to make a difference.
Victor Ahipene: Speaker nation, what’s happening? Welcome to another episode of public speaking secrets where we dive into the brains and the knowledge of what separates the world’s greatest speakers, trainers and the people that you look up to when it comes to speaking from stage. I’m your host, Victor. He can in today we’ve got money and she is a best-selling author, speaker, and a successful entrepreneur who has created and started businesses around the world and now helps empower other females to do exactly the same. It’s an absolute pleasure to have you on today. Money maker. It’s a pleasure to be here. I love to get a bit of a bit of a background, so not necessarily maybe on the business side of things, but how. How did you get into a running training events and becoming a speaker and getting into that space because we all start somewhere. I think it’s nice to break down that barrier. You know, a lot of us see Tony Robbins and go, I can’t be a speaker because I’m not. Yeah, that person jumping up and down on the trampoline, but how did it all begin for you?
Marnie Lefevre: Yeah, well that’s a great question. Actually. I guess I had built businesses and become successful and I kind of said, okay, well now what now what do I do? And I had been mentoring and coaching a few women in business sort of giving back that way and then I was being asked to do keynote talks and in different areas and then it sort of someone came up to me and said, well why don’t you start to speak and inspire because clearly one to one is fine, but one to many you can make a big difference. So I guess that was probably the seed when it was more clients and just people I ran into who couldn’t get to certain keynote talks or whatever. That said, well where are you speaking? When can I, where can I see you, how can I get information from you? And then. So I resisted for quite a while to be honest because of course, you know, being at the front of the room can be quite confronting and I didn’t know what I was doing and I didn’t know. I had him know run events. I was great at building businesses and marketing and the rest of it, but not, you know, standing in front of my own room and inspiring people and um, the right people just started to turn up. In fact, I think I was resisting so much that I went off. I said, okay, well I’ll go ahead and learn about speaking. And I went off and I do speak of course. And when I came back I got to horrendous cold, like massive. And it took out my voice and I thought I had laryngitis and I was like, oh no, come back. Isn’t that ironic? I’ve gone and I’ve come back with what’s that mean? And, but it didn’t go away and my voice didn’t come back. I wasn’t sick anymore, but I still didn’t have a voice and I literally couldn’t even. I could only whisper and I couldn’t yell at my kids and you know, that’s always tough. And eventually I had to go to a. I sort of, I wouldn’t resist going to the play as much as possible, but I went off to the doctor and I sort of said this is happening, and I said, we’ve got to go to an ear, nose and throat specialist and I wait to say stuck a tube in my nose and made me sing happy birthday, which was just horrible for everyone really, and I discovered that I had paralyzed my larynx and apparently the only way you can do that, which I didn’t. I had just had a really horrible code which then somehow caused nerve damage. Talk about resisting, wanting to speak, right.
Victor Ahipene: Self-limiting beliefs.
Marnie Lefevre: No, clearly I was a powerful manifester. It just wasn’t really working out for me at that time and so I had to go to voice coaching to get my voice back. This must be devastated because I was still running businesses and I was still. I still had a marketing agency and I still had to speak to clients and to speak to people. That’s where the mindset really kicked in and I said, no, this isn’t devastating. This is just going to be proud of my story and from there, even though it wasn’t speaking yet, I then went on without a voice to have a record sales month. Maybe people felt sorry for me, a highest amount of sales she was selling, started selling records with a new from the companies that was running. That was ridiculous, but that was. That was the start of my speaking journey was paralyzed, so I guess the message in that is that, you know what, if I can do it, got it, and it still paralyzed. Victor. That’s the funny thing, is it just the other side, so if I can do it, anyone can do it. If I can get up in front of a room of hundreds of people and Inspire, tell stories and share my message, then anyone can do it.
Victor Ahipene: It’s interesting when you talk about the vocal retraining and things like that, as I’ve been listening to some stuff from Roger Love who’s kind of regarded as one of the world’s vocal trainers for a lot of the world’s most successful speakers and singers and things like that. And he said the most damaging thing that you can do for your vocal cords as whisper. Yeah, it’s a thing. Not a lot of people there, they think it’s taken it easier on the, on the invoice when they start whispering and in doing that, but it’s actually the kind of the most harmful to your vocal chords and dries them out and then causes them to be stretched and it puts a lot of air through them. So there’s something for all of you out there, a cutback, the whispering. Speak Louder, get your message out there.
Marnie Lefevre: Well that’s the first thing I thought I was doing worse. So was actually hurting it. Homework was singing nursery rhymes and we did. And bless them, they all sing along with backing.
Victor Ahipene: The dream team with the transition. Um, before, before we kind of get into the training side of things, because that’s something I think a lot of people out there, I mean this is kind of the keynote speaking and the news running events and then there’s running trainings. I think they’ve all got, they’ve all got very, very different fundamentals that make them successful. When, if we were to start with the keynote speaking side of things, are you as it, was it something for you that came off the back of having successful businesses or were you on the offense with a lot of, I’ve had a couple of these, how do I stack up some more? I’m going to put myself out there. Or was it something that you were like, when they come along I’ll weigh them up and see if I do them?
Marnie Lefevre: Well, interestingly, we don’t sort of sit around and wait for stuff to happen. We make it on the back of my success and also gaining a number one best selling book. I was approached and said, will you come and speak at this week? So it was a few nights and I thought, oh well, you know, and then I saw the difference that I was making and I saw the impact that it was having and I thought, okay, now I’m gonna push through and then of course paralyzing nobody tells me I can’t do something. So no, it was, it was a push, it was uh, making sure I had a robust personal brand then I’m know getting onto different speakers, speaking to different places that you know would patent into my nation and I’m there to motivate women. And so we, I started having my pa and my chain female around eight mile paypal for speaking opportunities.
Victor Ahipene: And out there listening who’s wanting to go down the same side of was sending them like a one page, you know, a link or just testing out interest or sending a video with some highlights of you. How about that?
Marnie Lefevre: So at first we just sort of sent again because it had a marketing agency. We put together a bio, like a really slick brochure. Yep. You know, with all the touch points and you know, what would mean would benefit from, from having this. Um, and so yeah, we would do a cold email to whoever we identified would be a great joint venture partner and then or interview a okay night talk and then we’d send over having a, having a really well designed brochures pdf that you can send them through. Can you just help you to stand out from other speakers? I’m and of course sitting in a nice, you know, motivating women and empowering women to achieve, you know, everything that they wanted in business and life is. Some, was, it was a powerful thing as you know, I was riding a wave of successful women who are out to try and empower other women to do the same. So we would, we would target and then just go for it and you’d send 20 emails for one response and that it’ll be okay. That’s marketing.
Victor Ahipene: Yeah. I think there’s another layer in there that a lot of people don’t realize the power of, you know, obviously the success that you have, you’ve got to, you’ve got to be some sort of, you know, some, some level of expert to stand up on stage, but a lot of people don’t necessarily value their own expertise high enough. They, they think because I can do it, it must be easy, which is. Yeah.
Marnie Lefevre: it’s funny that you mentioned that in a room yesterday with a beautiful man that I know and I’m not going to mention his name because it was tank and my pa and I went to support him or she’s not a PA, she’s right hand. She does everything for me. And um, we was sitting there just going, oh my God, this is torture. And because you don’t know what you don’t know and you really do need to go and get an education in how to motivate a room, how to be inspirational, how to tell a story, how to take people on a journey, how to connect and serve, how to serve, you know, it’s not all about you. It’s all about how do you weight that in and still tell your own story and things like that and it. It’s the most painful. However many hours I, none of us are ever get back to the people in that room and painful for him to really devastatingly painful, so he poured a lot of money into it and I see this all the time with a lot that I teach. You know, you invest a lot of money into trying to speak before really going and getting the education and the understanding of, of how you run a room.
Victor Ahipene: Yeah. That’s a huge point because I’m on the mission to try and make it more exciting for the people out there because there’s so many people who just check up so many words on a spreadsheet. Yeah. This is from the board room. You would’ve. You would’ve seen it in and pitches and presentations all the way to on stage and just seen me the slides if you’re going to do that because I want to be entertained or informed or all of the above and motivated, inspired. I want all of those things wrapped into one. If you were just going to literally turn 45 degrees to me and start reading off your slides or look down at the screen down in front of you and read off your slides, I can read them faster than you. Please send me the slides. Save me. I’ll read them in an hour instead of sitting in there for six and that’s what, you know, expertise versus actually being able to motivate a room and, and you know, having that social proof as well. Yeah. Having a, having a book that you can, you know, before you even walk on the stage, you have to go, this person must be an expert, therefore I’m going to give them the time of day before I write anything off. And then it’s your responsibility to convey that message. So yeah, I think that’s. Yeah. Sorry, carry on.
Marnie Lefevre: It’s really variable and it’s not a thing. I have it. My time is so precious. So if I’m coming to hear you speak or if I’m having a meeting with you or if I’m having an interaction with you, you know, it has to be a two way street. Both people need to feel uplifted and motivated, you know, it, it is a gift that people have given you and so go and work out how to. It’s called stage crop, you know, it’s not just you getting up and talking about everything that you’ve achieved and how terrific you are. It’s about you. You giving value and having a laugh with people and understanding what their problems are and then showing them how you might help them with your experience or your or your system or your formula or, or your knowledge or whatever it is or your product. Um, because we, we just, you can’t buy time. And so it’s a, it’s a much more valuable commodity than if someone’s paying you to help them or talk to them or…
Victor Ahipene: Yeah, 100 percent full set through those talks were just gone. I’m not getting that time back. And people were saying that you don’t even remember what the talks about because you’ve, you’ve switched off, you’re not open to any ideas and it’s. And it’s horrible.
Marnie Lefevre: Unfortunately asleep. No. Let me be very clear, not in one of my talk, but I have been in and talk and um, that, that happened. I felt terrible for the speaker, but you know what, you got to go get the education.
Victor Ahipene: I mean I’ve been to Tony Robbins events and or one of his events and yeah, it was, I don’t know, 14, 15 hours and everyone was go, go, go. It’s like being in a so very energetic nightclub for 15 hours and that’s not necessarily saying everybody has to be at that level if you’ve got no excuses. If you can’t keep people entertained for 30 minutes, an hour, two hours, four hours when there’s people out there who are doing it for 15 and bringing the energy and noise. But I’d love to get your insight into the training side of things that you do because I think there’s a, there’s an art and a lot of lessons into the training side of things. What kind of trainings do you offer to us to help these and empower these women and what does, what does the funnel kind of look like? Do you have free events or or lower level events and then and then bring them in or how does that all look for you and how do you move them through that?
Marnie Lefevre: Yeah, a session model, so there’s two types of speakers that you can be. It can be at a keynote speaker and get paid by corporations and the rest of it to come in, but it is driven by them, right? They’re going to engage you and then you kind of have to go through an interview process. I got a bit sick of that after a while as you can probably tell a little control freak. So I was like, no, I’m going to force my own destiny if I want to get out on my terms in my room so that I can make a difference. I don’t have to wait for someone to give me a typical entrepreneurial thinking. So what we, my particular brand does is we run a room that’s four hours in length, a free room and we go out through facebook and we fill that room and you can do for your paid low level prepaid. I wouldn’t go over 40, 50 bucks, but then you might have vip, but not until you have. Definitely if you’re a brand, sometimes paid is better because when you’re. You’re a little brand, you’ll do a free room, you’ll put, you’ll pay for the room, you’ll do this, you’ll do that. And then three people have turned up. If you’re lucky, if you don’t have lots of Google and facebook will say they’re coming, but they weren’t. So the breakdown, victor is that, you know, we might have 400 people sign on inside that they coming. Okay. And this hopefully will be really great information for your, your listeners. So they’ll sign on and they’ll say we’re there. Now we know that 30 percent will turn up. Okay, so. But what we do is we then call each and every one of those. So we always get their phone number and we give them a cms them thank you for signing up and we sms them two days before or text them, whatever you want to call it. I’m saying looking forward to seeing you. So lots of reminders. We also send them emails in the time, you know, let’s say the six weeks since they signed up for the two weeks or two days, we send them a set of emails and those emails, sales emails, they’re training a mouse, so I’m sitting at my credibility and I’m sitting and I’m giving value and I’m teaching them what I’ve noticed so that even if they don’t come into the room, they get something of value from my brand and may and then we send them reminder emails as well, see you in a couple of days and this is where it is and Yada Yada Yada. And then we call the bowl. Okay. So we, let’s say we get 80 people say they’re coming, right? Or 100 people say they’re coming. For argument’s sake, we know that even on the yeses, only 60 percent will turn up every time. And it’s like a science. It’s a formula. We, it’s like we, there’s only been a couple of rooms and then my local room. So I’m based in Perth, Western Australia and I have a lot of credibility here. So we’ll get a 40 percent rather than 30 percent on a 400 room, but it’s off the yeses from the phone calls that we get a more accurate rating. So we’ll know that 60 percent, so 60 people, 100 have said they’ll come that said Yep, I’m there. We get 62 now and we have chairs knowing who will overdo it. So we’ll make. We might put the 100 chairs in because every now and when we were just recently run in Melbourne and lots more girls, lots of more girls turned up. But you have the chair stacks and then you pull those chairs in as people turn up. You don’t. Because the worst thing is people turning up and empty chairs everywhere. Which is what happened yesterday to this. It was. That was just one of the things that. But yeah, because you see you can make a room look intimate with everyone sitting next to each other or it can not Kevin with 30, you know, 30 people, intimate 30 people cabaniss. So that’s why you have to have a great team. Were you counting constantly up front, people registering and then you keep the doors closed. They don’t wander into your room until you’re ready and then you’re pulling out chairs and you’re whacking them back in. So we do a lot of heavy lifting. My team doesn’t want to heavy lifting before I even speak, so we have a four hour training and it’s. It depends. This is one of our funnels. This is the foot. Sometimes it’ll be a one day training, whatever it is, but it’s free in this case. Although we do do, when we’re thinking about doing some moving forward and I give a train, I tell my story, I give a lot of value in every single one of those rooms. People walk away feeling like Dave gained knowledge and we’ve had testimonials back saying, I just went to those three things you recommend and money and I change. My whole business changed and I was about to shut my doors and now you know, so it was around 80 percent. So just on that one where a lot of speakers a might trip up is they don’t give enough great value because they think I’m giving away all my ip, I want to sell into a course I want to sell into a cooler or something. I don’t want to give up my ip away. You can give enough away that people trust, like and respect you, see you as the expert and then they’re more likely to engage with you to do your course. So from there we sell into a three day event…
Victor Ahipene: A training…
Marnie Lefevre: …and then from the training we sell into a group coaching.
Victor Ahipene: So that’s one of the huge things just on one of your first point. So another thing that I’ve seen really done really well for a, a entry level event is one of my friends Steve McKnight, he runs a, one of the, he owns property investing.com and he, every year he runs kind of a speaker multi-speaker sales event. Um, but he said it’s free. I just asked you to put a $97 deposit down on your seat. That is completely refundable when you turn up. Otherwise, you know, blah, Blah Blah to cover costs and then when it’s at the event is he says, Oh yeah, you can apply for it over at the end of day one or lunchtime data or something like that. And he says, but it’s going to be worse. I can’t remember what it was like if you get any products today, it’s going to be worse off anybody who offers anything, it’s going to be worth double or triple. So you’ll get, you know, two or $300 worth of value out of your $97 if you decide to use it for that. Um, and there’s a little thing on your name tag, you just take that up when you, if you get any, anything that anyone offers. So I thought that was quite a good kind of spin on things. You know, you get that security deposit of whatever and then you can further value edit by making it worse, triple the amount.
Marnie Lefevre: The biggest, biggest do that, the technology for the startup or the technology behind that and the coordination of refunds and Yada Yada, Yada. It’s a bit intimidating. But even with your now you will get less people in your own victor, but they’ll be higher quality already dig into wallets to come and see you. So, um, yeah, there’s, we have a big debate about three and pied room, but you’re not like that model. It just would take a lot of coordination for the startups. They come.
Victor Ahipene: And with your, let’s say you in your free event, are you, is it 30, 30 percent will move forward or…
Marnie Lefevre: Generally the averages is a good. Brilliant. So that’s around bridge. Oh, I actually, I think 10 percent. Do you know that?
Victor Ahipene: Yeah, I know. I mean a lot of it depends again on your, if you’re talking even just webinars, which are kind of a similar but less intimate kind of sitting. Um, I know a lot of it depends on all the stuff that you were doing in the pre stuff, the SMS, the coals, the, you know, the social credibility, the giving value before they’ve even walked in the door. All of those things are going to massively impact because a lot of people will be like, I’m going to get bums on seats. I get a few people to a room. It’s a lot harder work if you’re trying to build the no one likes stuff before you can even get into the trust, so…
Marnie Lefevre: It also depends what you’re selling. You’re selling into a conversion. It’s not going to be potentially a $500 program anywhere from 500 to two and a half the money on the table because you’ll still get the same amount of people for a cheaper program.
Victor Ahipene: $500 commitment. Not going to see the bank manager to get a a mortgage or personal loan for it. So…
Marnie Lefevre: Sort of like, okay, well let us speak to sort of say, oh well I’m not making big conversions. Maybe I need to get need to get better at selling.
Victor Ahipene: Exactly. It’s something that I’ve had in the past really battled with, oh, maybe if I make it cheaper, does it makes no difference? I’m still got to convince people.
Marnie Lefevre: Yeah. Anything from 500 to two and a half. Does that make sense? We’ll be charging two and a half grand. You’re not going to get more for 500 is what we found or the people that come through is so low value that and their hard work and difficult and can I please pay five bucks every three weeks and it’s an admin nightmare so and I completely respect those people just trying to make it happen. But you, you trying to make a big impact, so getting stuck in the nitty gritty can’t. It doesn’t always work.
Victor Ahipene: Yeah. When you get them to this three day training event, what do you find? I mean obviously a lot more intimacy built, a lot more value edit in that time. Do you find those that move into the coaching program as, as as the coaching program, looking like, Hey, you’ve learned all this stuff, let’s now follow through each month and make sure that we’re implementing it. We can have calls and that sort of.
Marnie Lefevre: Yes. I would say 80 percent of the room moves from, from, from the three day training, we generally convert to the girls. You know, we’ve had unfortunately some goes into we’d love to do it, just not financially. I’m cashed up to make it happen, you know, so and we still work with them. We put them in free groups here and we have the academy. We’ve built this amazing online platform for female entrepreneurs. Like it’s ridiculous. It’s $49 a month so none of these girls have an excuse not to. Well, you might want to work directly with me or one of my coaches, but you know, if you can’t afford that yet, then get into the academy. You can see we have a forum, you can ask me questions. There is no point. My brand is a bit different in that I do not block access to me. You just might not get a direct face to face with me. But until you asked me a question on the forum, I’m not going to hold back because my mission is to empower women to get out there and you know, and I don’t want to give them any excuse not to. And if they try I’m like, hey listen, we have everything. Any price point you want to tap in where it’s there.
Victor Ahipene: You see it time and time again. Like if you go into a group and say, I’m going to, I’m going to change my mindset to make a thousand bucks a month, you’ll find, you know, $10,000 worth of value if you go out, it’s only $50 a month. I’m only getting $50 a month worth of knowledge. You know, you’re, you’re tripping yourself up and it’s those people that you’ll see transition through, they’ll have success and then there’ll be in your, in your higher, higher end products.
Marnie Lefevre: Yep. Coaching is less time and now we have a number of coaches on board. So that’s what the local coach. And then I come in for specific training. So you still get time with me, but if you want time with me then you know, top dollar. Because I don’t have time. Victor, I don’t have a lot of times so I’m being very frugal with it. But those girls, the ones that invest, and this is with everything. When you invest in yourself, you obviously improved. We have a speaking course called speaking with confidence that we run as a four day trainer. When girls pop out of that, they know how to sell from stage, dig good at selling from stage, they know how to tell their story and but they’ve invested a good amount of money to learn that. So yeah, it’s all about did we go off track?
Marnie Lefevre: Then I got to be passionate about investing in yourself because sometimes there’s just so much resistance and yet how do you get what you need to go without learning? Happy to pay the universities to give us to give us a degree and no disrespect to universities, but that just gets us a job. So if you want to become an entrepreneur or a leader or an impactful speaker or you got to invest in learning the craft because it is a craft. There is a formula which good great speakers and they to speak it. There’s a formula. When you follow the formula, you, it makes it easy to close sales.
Victor Ahipene: A lot of people, you need to understand that you’ve got a couple options. You can invest, you can invest money and you’ve either got to be resourceful. Go to your library, get every book out, read them all implemented, get some more money than skill up and it’s gonna. Save you time when you start investing Maddie, when you can hire the person to run your marketing so you can focus on what you meant to do and I mean there’s a, there’s a lot of different aspects, but speaking of time and valuing of yours that you have given so much value, I think not just to. I mean you obviously out there giving value to all these amazing female entrepreneurs and business owners around the world, but also to everyone who’s looking to also make a big impact because speaking allows us to have leverage and leverage allows us to have a bigger impact and share our message. So I want to thank you so much for everything that you’ve given here because I know a lot of people go, ah, okay. That’s why I need it. Run a lower level. Yeah, a free event where I can give value, but then you know, how, where do I go from here and how do I transition it from here and go to the next level. So yeah, thank you so much for, for giving that value and I just want to welcome you to speak in nation. If people want to find out a bit more about you and what you’re doing, where can they go and what can they do?
Marnie Lefevre: Well, they can head over to my personal brand, which is a really big mouthful. So if you can’t spell that and I get it, it’s tough. Then just type in the secret secret women’s business academy and it will bring up, you know, me and all of this stuff we’ve got and of course join me. I’d run my facebook page, connect with me through facebook and um, yeah, I’d love to love to connect. And if again, if you have any questions about speaking, just ask. I’m not about hiding any of it. We need more powerful male and female speakers out there inspiring us. And I’m happy at publicspeakingblueprint.com.
Victor Ahipene: And I look forward to catching up, touching base and uh, you know, when either one of us are on the other side of the country.
Marnie Lefevre: Yeah, that’d be great. Too. Face to face with connect to wherever you were overseas. Perhaps. We’ll see a Ben. Thanks a lot for your time. Take care.