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Unlocking the Power of PR w/ PR & Storytelling Expert, Sarah Lloyd

Krystal J [00:01:07]:

Today we have the incredible Sarah Lloyd. She is the founder of Indigo Soul PR. She is a cheerleader for the Divine feminine, a winning PR expert, author, writer, radio show host, and mom of two. She is doing all these amazing things. Sarah, thank you so much for joining us today. I am so excited to be diving into this conversation with you.

Sarah L [00:01:30]:

Thank you so much for having me. It's great to be here.

Krystal J [00:01:35]:

Absolutely. So Sarah is another one of our international guests. She is joining us from the UK, which I just love that our podcast has expanded globally. Again, so excited to have you. And I'm so excited to dive into really all things PR, because my word for 2024 is visibility. So I'm really, really excited to dive into all of the strategies that you're about to share with us. But before we get into that, why don't you go ahead and give us some of your own backgrounds and how that led you to where you are today and give us an overview of what it is that you're doing exactly.

Sarah L [00:02:14]:

Yeah. Well, so I've been in public relations and communications for 26 years, pretty much my whole adult life. So I fell into it by complete accident. I don't know if you have this, but we... I was working in a temporary agency and I ended up working in a press office, and I just loved it. I fell in love with it. And at the time it was all about fax machines and actual pieces of paper. So that's how long ago it was.

Sarah L [00:02:52]:

So I started in kind of in the defense industry, and then I moved into quite a deeply financial corporate industry. And then from there, I worked agency side. So I've kind of worked in lots of big blue-chip companies. I fell into technology because it was a growing area. So I worked in the technology industry for quite a long time, and then everything changed. So I was working for a video conferencing company, and I was the global head of, well, global head of thought leadership. So my whole job was about creating stories around the brand. So that was my, my job, and I absolutely love doing that.

Sarah L [00:03:40]:

But what happened was I had my second child and I hadn't appreciated that. I had severe postnatal depression. And I remember at the time, I was kind of. It was my daughter was six months old, and I was just like, oh, my goodness. Just couldn't do it all. I think I just had this real kind of breaking moment where I was working all hours and throwing my children into bed and not really being. I didn't feel like I was being good at anything.

Sarah L [00:04:12]:

So I went on a women's retreat to Glastonbury here in the UK, and I spent a week with women from all over the world. There was women from Canada, the US, Australia, UK. And I sat in circle with them and cried for about a week and just basically put this intention out to the world and just said, look, please, can you. I need some help. I need to change my styles in some way. And six months later, I was made redundant. But the women that I'd met on retreat were all very keen to then start sharing their voices, their messages. And that was basically how it all started.

Sarah L [00:04:53]:

I was contracting for some other kind of technology companies, and then when the pandemic hit, it was another wave, and it was almost like the universe said, right, we've given you a go. You can now do this. And that's where I then started working with even more female coaches and wellness businesses. And I really shifted into that kind of more heart centered something that I'm really passionate about, actually. So, yeah, that was a bit of a long-winded way of explaining how I ended up here.

Krystal J [00:05:23]:

Well, I love that you've worked with such diverse groups of people, which I think really is going to play to your strengths as a PR expert, right? Because you can pull from all those different experiences, and this is completely unrelated to the whole PR thing, but I completely resonate with you, you know, as well, you weren't a new mom because this was your second child by then, but still being in that space where there's just so much going on and you feel like you're not doing well in any of it.

Krystal J [00:05:54]:

So I just really want to quickly ask you, like, what was kind of your mindset in, in terms of, like, mom guilt? You know, we all deal with it, but you being able to make the decision, I think I just need to get away. I'm going to go on this retreat, step away from my babies, my family, and see if that can kind of switch things up for me. So what was your thought process, and how are you feeling making that decision to leave, to go on this retreat?

Sarah L [00:06:20]:

It was quite funny how it all happened, because at the time, I'd kind of alongside all of that, I had found, I'd reconnected with my spirituality. I was, um, having. I'd met an energy healer who basically cleared a lot of the postnatal depression energy that was carrying. But also I'd found the author, Rebecca Campbell. And so I just became a bit obsessed with her. And it was her first ever retreat. And I was like, I need to go on this thing.

Sarah L [00:06:53]:

I don't know what it is. I just need to go. And I remember being at the airport in Amsterdam. I was actually at an event for work, and I. The thing, I think the thing with my work, I could always dress it up, is like, I'm leaving the children because it's my work. It's very important I'm there because it's my job. But when it was about leaving for me and what I needed, I just found it really hard to not ask for permission, well, even give myself permission to do it. It's different when it's work, because it's work.

Sarah L [00:07:27]:

So I was sat in the airport, like, I think Rebecca only had, like, 20 slots or something. It was a first come, first serve thing. And I just, on a complete whim, just booked my slot, got my slot, and I thought, oh, I better tell my husband now. And I was sitting in the airport and I text him and I said, I've done something. I'm really sorry, but I really need this week, I need to go away, and I need some space, because I'm. I wasn't well. I was on antidepressants. I was working.

Sarah L [00:08:00]:

I'd negotiated. I mean, luckily, I'd been in my role for kind of seven, eight years. So they trusted me. And basically I'd got to a point where I was negotiating days off because I was feeling so under pressure and burnt out. So he was great. He just said, no, you need to go. This is exactly what you need. And I came back completely well, I just felt like a completely different person.

Sarah L [00:08:31]:

And it made me realize that the. What I was doing was very on the way I was living the way that I was, you know, because I was working for American, an American firm at the time. So I would work all day with Australia and Europe, and then America would come online in the evening. And I was throwing, as I said, I'd pick my children up from nursery and throwing them into bed and having to get on calls until like 11:00 at night. So it wasn't very healthy for me, wasn't very healthy for the children, but it was absolutely something that I needed to do. And the beautiful thing about it, when the new boss came in and basically said, there's no role for you, I was dancing out of there. But it was really funny because I still went through that whole process of, even when I'd stepped out of that corporate role and took that redundancy, I still found it really hard to give myself permission to do things for me. But now, like six, seven years on now in my business, it's all about managing things around the children, but also having a real balance around business, myself, and family commitments.

Sarah L [00:09:48]:

So I always feel it when myself is, like, not looked after. That's definitely something I've learned. So it is very important to me. And earlier on, well, back in January last year, I published a book with a collaboration of other women and it was called Wake up, mother. And we dived into some real mum guilt stuff. So it was a real healing experience, actually. So, yeah. Again, long winded answer.

Krystal J [00:10:19]:

No worries. I love that. I'm going to have to check out that book, obviously, as a mother myself, to two young girls going on a third who will be here by the time this episode is live. It's absolutely so real and such a process to go through. But I'm so glad that you were able to, to make that choice for yourself and, you know, communicate that with a very supportive partner. That's always really key and critical, I think it's so funny because what you were saying, I was just thinking about the other day, like, I'm still working my day job and trying to balance my business and, of course, still try to be, you know, the best mother that I can be. And you're so right. Like, when it comes to your day job, it's like you have no problem saying, I can't do this right now, I have to work.

Krystal J [00:11:05]:

Like, I can't play with you right now. I have to work. But then when it comes to business, it's like you feel guilty for having to say that, because it's not like someone is telling you to do that, right? You're making that choice.

Sarah L [00:11:16]:

It's like another baby because it's your baby, isn't it? It might not be a real person, but it's still an entity that needs your love and attention, isn't it? So.

Krystal J [00:11:26]:

Exactly. And we need to be able to practice that discipline to still set those boundaries for us, to make sure that both our family and our businesses and ourselves are thriving. You absolutely do have to take the time to, you know, take care of yourself so that you can come back as this amazing woman that you came back as. So I'm glad you did that, and your whole world kind of changed from there.

Krystal J [00:12:23]:

So let's go ahead and start diving into the PR side of things. And you mentioned it briefly in your intro that you started creating stories for these brands. So obviously storytelling is a big part of PR, right? And then something that you, you talked about in your bio is conscious PR.

Krystal J [00:13:05]:

So dive into that for us. What is the importance of storytelling? And what are some of the key ways to really drive home this story that you're trying to sell and create for this brand?

Sarah L [00:13:20]:

Absolutely. I mean, it's so PR. I've always kind of had this. I've got a really simple way of explaining what PR is because I think people find it really difficult to. Strangely, what is PR of happens. But what it is, is PR is when someone else says your stuff's good, so they've had a good experience of your services, or they love you as a person. You know, that is, simply put, that's PR you can apply it to. In the corporate world, they'd say, well, it's when a journalist says your stuff is good, therefore you've had that kind of recognition, and that means other people are going to go out and buy it.

Sarah L [00:14:07]:

When you apply that to the types of people that I've worked with. So, you know, female entrepreneurs, small businesses, it's about, a lot of these businesses are created from a real heart led space. So, like you say, it's about, it's your baby, it's, you know, you've created this thing. You've been, you know, you've developed a product, you've created a book or written a book or created a service, and it's come from a place in your past. So the thing that I've always found is that people have created their businesses because something happened in their past and that's then led them to the point that they're at. It becomes very personal, and that's where the storytelling piece comes in. So when I work with clients, I always try and understand where they came from, what they're sitting in, you know, what energy they're sitting in right now, and what their intention is in, you know, three, six months, whatever. And that then helps us to understand the stories that need to come up to be kind of transmuted or shared or transformed.

Sarah L [00:15:20]:

Because when you can tell your story from a place of power, it doesn't, it doesn't trigger you. It shouldn't upset you. It's, you're telling it from that place of. And I said this earlier today, actually, on another thing, you're telling it from your scar, not your wound. So, like, I can talk about my postnatal journey now because, you know, that's a different iteration of me. I'm not sitting in that pain. I've let that pain go. But I know that there are other people out there who go through that pain who are balancing, like you just said, you know, so it's, that's the, that's the point.

Sarah L [00:15:59]:

That's the beautiful point of difference, where if you tell your story from a place of wisdom, you're then sharing and educating and inspiring. And I have, you know, I have a really lovely analogy that PR also creates TRUST. So T.R.U.S.T. the T of the trust is telling your story from that place of power. The R is building relationship, whether that's with, you know, circles of women or media, whoever, because it's about building relationships. It's also about sharing that Uniqueness that is yours, but also Unifying everything that you're sharing. So that energy is all going in the same direction. It's also about Selling and your services, not your soul. I'll talk about that in a minute.

Sarah L [00:16:49]:

And then you're also, at the end of the day, that should then position you as a Thought leader in your space. So that's kind of my analogy on that conscious piece, because I think what we also don't under, well, it's something that I've definitely worked through, because your business, you see these money mindset coaches, you see other coaches out there, but it all comes down to the same thing. If you start becoming your business, then that's when the problems arise. It's almost like you need to separate yourself from that story and come from that place of wisdom, and then that's how you're able to then amplify and elevate.

Krystal J [00:17:29]:

I have to repeat that acronym one more time because that's so good, and I love that so much. When you're creating trust, it's. T is for telling your story. R is for creating those relationships. U is for unifying that energy from your story with. With what you're offering. S is selling your story and your services, not your soul. Let's be clear. Everyone that's listening, and the last one is becoming a thought leader. What I want to ask you is, what do you. There are people, of course, that are hesitant to bring their personal stories into what it is that they're doing. Maybe they feel like it's not relevant or they're not comfortable sharing that. What do you say to those kinds of people that you come across?

Sarah L [00:18:15]:

So that's interesting because I have clients that really just want to share it, and it. And I also have clients that are boundried and both is perfectly acceptable. So we'll talk about, you know. Oh, I was. I don't know, give you an example. One of my clients had very traumatic experience as a child, which led to her having an equally traumatic experience as an adult with addictions. And she basically said to me, you know, she's just shared her story in a national newspaper.

Sarah L [00:18:53]:

And I said to her all the way along, like, you don't have to share it. It's completely up to you. How do you. You know, you need to make sure you feel good about this. And the end goal is not always necessarily to share to get clients. It's to share so people can connect with you as an individual. But it's also to bring that shadow that we all love to hide into the fore. And when she said that, when she saw the piece of coverage, because I always have this for people, she said, I did have the whole, oh, my God, that was really uncomfortable.

Sarah L [00:19:27]:

But she said, once I kind of read it through again and had a little look, and I, and she said it was my truth. At the end of the day, it's my truth. I'm not that person anymore, and I feel free of it now. And she said, what else has been so beautiful is that these, there's people that have reached out to me that have been through very similar experiences and now want to work with me. And it's kind of, oh, that's so beautiful. It's a healing experience for you, but also it is connecting you to other people that maybe need support or they're a few steps behind her in their journey. I've also had clients that have said, you know, I want to talk about my work, but, you know, my family is non-negotiable, and we have never, I mean, I still managed to secure some amazing pieces of coverage, and we never, she said she was a mother, and that was it. We didn't talk about names, ages, anything like that, you know, because as far as she was concerned, the mother piece just didn't come into it for me.

Sarah L [00:20:31]:

That's part of my story. That's the reason why I do what I do. So it's so very, it's like a big part of me. And I think that was another thing that I found really interesting when I started my business, was I started out wanting to be a Reiki master, so I left. I thought my role in this world was to lead as a healer, because I was always told I was a healer, was to leave PR behind and go and be a Reiki master. So I was trying to run the two businesses at the same time. Crickets in the Reiki world. My PR business shot up, and it's like, but hang on a minute.

Sarah L [00:21:09]:

I was told I'm a healer, but then I realized that there is power in sharing your story. You don't have to share it all the time. You don't have to get your washing out and air it for anybody. And sometimes all it takes is just sharing it with one person, whether that's your PR person, who then you two then decide you're not going to do that, or you decide to share it with a national newspaper. At the end of the day, you just, it helps you to move you that step further away from it so it doesn't own you anymore. Does that make sense?

Krystal J [00:21:42]:

It does. It absolutely does. And like you said, regardless of who you're sharing it with and what capacity and what, you know, the extents of, the extent of who you're sharing it with, it's slowly letting go of that shame, right, that you've been holding onto with that story. And I love that you said it's not about just like, landing clients. It's not why you're sharing your story. It's about creating that connection. And those connections do come when you are able to share your story so authentically without that whole, you know, I'm doing this for sales piece. In your mind, it's to share your story, to release that from within and to start breaking down those walls that you kind of built around yourself. So powerful.

Krystal J [00:22:30]:

You mentioned a little right before we started talking about this, that you want to be mindful of not being your business. Right. Not becoming your business and really sharing your story from a place of wisdom. So how do you differentiate that? Like, where do you draw the line?

Sarah L [00:22:49]:

I think I'm still learning that one. But, you know, just being completely honest, I think it's important to have a community of people around you that you can check in with for sure, you know, so that you don't become all consumed. I think children are very good at grounding you into reality. And I think as well, you know, I think we all, we move through seasons and cycles in our business. I mean, this year for me has been really. I've let a lot of things go. A lot of old, old kind of old thoughts, old ways that I, you know, ways of thinking. It's been particularly powerful for me.

Sarah L [00:23:40]:

And now I think what I'm. I feel like I'm finally walking my talk, if that makes sense. I feel like it's so important for me to be in my integrity so that I can support other people being in theirs. And certainly this last year, it's been all about that for me. And, you know, I've had a lot of time with my kids and, you know, that's non negotiable. I think that that in itself is massive. I think there was so many years where I still had that little bit of, I've got to look after the children for six weeks, and now it's like, I've got the kids for six weeks. What can we do? This is amazing.

Sarah L [00:24:16]:

And I feel like I've had a real reframe life about that joy, and I think it took me a long time. I think society sets women up to fail. I'll be honest with you. I think that we feel we take on a lot, and I think the only way to stop that from happening is to take the power back for ourselves and, you know, don't allow it and be the rebels, but we don't have to go, you know, marching with placards. We can just change how our choices and make different choices.

Krystal J [00:24:48]:

So, yeah, I agree 100%. And I love the reframing aspect. That's something that I've been preaching a ton. It really is all about reframing your perspective and. And really finding the joy in things again, right? And practicing that gratitude for all of those little moments, you know, those six weeks that you do have with your kids where most of those weeks you're gonna be a little bit overstimulated and going a little bit crazy.

Sarah L [00:25:13]:


Krystal J [00:25:14]:

Absolutely. We're so grateful for it, right? So, for a lot of our audience, they are fairly new in their businesses. So they don't have PR teams. They don't have a PR person. So what tips do you have for them to be able to get out there and start sharing their stories? Like, what are some good starting points to, I guess, be your own PR person?

Sarah L [00:25:39]:

Oh, absolutely. I mean, I guess the first thing I would say to anybody is to do a little exercise, a little journaling exercise to work out. And I know lots of coaches and business coaches say this stuff, but I feel like if you're doing it from a story perspective, so, thinking about sliding door moments that have happened, that's happened in your life, so, maybe up to the last ten years and just sitting with, okay, what are the sliding door moments? What led me to change my path? So, for me, being made redundant and going on retreat, they were all my sliding door moments. They've become my stories that I share and my wisdom that I impart. It's so journaling on those moments of gold which are hiding from us normally, because there will be moments that people have done something where they've taken another trajectory and it's changed the whole of their life, or there's been moments where they haven't made those choices and they're regretting it. I feel like there's. Sometimes it's useful to journal on that and also, then another piece to journal into is kind of who is it you're looking to sit and circle with in the present moment? So why are you doing this? Why have you shown up? So you've got the stories that, the sliding door moments that have led you to the point that you're at, they're going to be. Those stories will be playing out in other people's lives.

Sarah L [00:27:11]:

So, for example, the post network piece or the motherhood piece, those types of people are consuming things like podcasts or mainstream magazines or national newspapers. But then people that I'm sitting in my present moment would be women, thrive, global, would be communities that I'm showing up in. They wouldn't necessarily be reading magazines. I think a lot of people don't read as much as they used to. They consume podcasts and they follow communities. So I'm showing up in those spaces because that's my present.

Sarah L [00:27:50]:

And then I guess my future self is, you know, who knows? Right? I. I'd love to speak on more stages. I'd love to kind of impart more wisdom. So it's probably an amalgamation of the two. I mean, I'm kind of going in a convoluted way, but it's a bit like a tarot reading. It's like past, present, future. Who were you in your past? What does that look like? Can you physically see here? What are they reading? So it's understanding who it is that you're trying to reach with that old story of yours. It's who you're trying to connect with now in your present moment and where they're hanging out. And then the future's probably. You just kind of let the future take care of itself a little bit, because the stories that you're sharing, the wisdom that you're sharing, is actually happened. It's already happened. So.

Sarah L [00:28:44]:

So it's getting your kind of key audience right in your head. This is not clear. And then understanding where they hang out. So somebody in your past probably read Cosmo every week, or they watch national news or they watch whatever tv programs. It's 60 minutes or whatever. Your present will be community based or podcasts. I'm kind of talking about myself here. So what is really important is once you've understood what your stories are, where those people are hanging out, and then what then happens is you create kind of your killer pitch or your kind of your story that you want to share.

Sarah L [00:29:32]:

And from there, there are places you can go free, places you can go to connect to journalists. So it might be that you have a crystal business. And the reason why you started your crystal business is because you were in love with crystals in your teens and that's what happened. And now you sell crystals to this business, or, I don't know. So the people that are going to be reading magazines about crystals are going to be mainstream pressed because celebrities love putting them in their pockets, or podcasts because they're spiritual teachers that use crystals in their work. So it's kind of understanding how to connect your dots because it's a massive kind of matrix. And then going to find those media opportunities. If you go on Twitter or X, there's a hashtag called #Journalrequest.

Sarah L [00:30:22]:

There's always journalists looking for people to input into those features. There's also a free resource called Haro, which is very great for the US, and you can register and get free opportunities to comment. You just have to respond. There's also lots of places where you can actually reach out and submit articles. So there's lots of different ways. I mean, authority magazine is a great one as well for people that want to get started. Yeah, there's just, there's so many different ways. But understanding your story, getting that clear and your audience straight is probably the first few steps you need to take.

Krystal J [00:31:05]:

I actually just came across Haro. So cool. Yeah. So anyone that's listening that is looking for ways to get featured in all these magazines that seem like no way they're going to pick me up, they will actually just email you a bunch of different prompts and then if anything is relevant to you and your expertise, you can just send them a quick reply and see if they pick you up. But I love all these other ones that you listed. I'm going to make sure we have those in the show notes as well. And for free resources, you absolutely do not need to wait for someone to reach out to you, right?

Sarah L [00:31:41]:

No. I mean, there's also Facebook groups that are run by journalists that are always looking for comment. There's. I also have. So I have a PR circle as well where I teach people how to do this, but I also share the opportunities that are relevant to the guys in my group. So. And I'm not alone in that. There's hundreds of PR people that do this.

Sarah L [00:32:04]:

I guess it's just, it's one of those things. It's a chemistry thing, if you like my style, but there are so many PR people out there that can help join the dots and it doesn't need to cost the earth as well. That's another thing, a real common myth. People think they should. You know, PR agencies cost hundreds of thousands of pounds or whatever, but, you know, you can hire a good PR person for a few days a month or, you know, you can do it yourself. You know, there's lots of ways to do it without, you know, breaking the bank, especially, you know, if you're trying to get that authority or those logos on your website.

Krystal J [00:32:42]:

Yeah, and I am absolutely a proponent for doing it for yourself while you're just getting started out because there are so many free resources out there and it's not as difficult as a task as you might think it is. Just follow Sarah's guideline. Just know who your audience is first and where they hang out. You don't need to write articles for every single magazine, right? I'm not going to be pitching anything to the cars magazine or whatever anytime soon, so be very.

Sarah L [00:33:08]:

I guess that as well as the, that's the conscious bit as well. So the conscious bit is why am I doing it? Why am I reaching out to that journalist? Is it because my e. Because someone else is in that magazine? Is it mine? So I feel like they're interest. So, like, when you come to Haro, like when you go through those opportunities, not every single one of those opportunities is going to be right for you. So it's always about checking in before you put yourself out there, but by all means, do it.

Krystal J [00:33:38]:

Yes, absolutely. Such great tips and I feel like there's so much more I can dive into with you. We're going to have to just bring you back on a second time because obviously we're nearing our time here. Do you have any final tips for women in business that are just kind of getting their footing or still in that space where they're slowly starting to transition into expansion?

Sarah L [00:34:02]:

All I would say is if you feel like PR is something that feels good, then do it because you don't have to wait. You don't really have to wait because there's, there is a story behind your business. You know, there's a reason why you created it in the first place and, you know, don't disregard where you came from. You know, there's going to, you will have had a whole business or career before you got to where you are. And that is often the stuff that's really cool to share. So don't ever feel like you aren't far enough along in your journey to. To promote yourself because, and, you know, one final other thing is, what's really cool about PR is if you get a piece of coverage in the Wall Street Journal, you're likely going to get like 200,000 pairs of eyes on it. And that would have cost quite a lot of money if you'd have done that through a Facebook ad or something. So there is that aspect of media as well, so don't shy away from it. And not all journalists are horrible. They're actually human beings as well. So.

Krystal J [00:35:12]:

Love that reminder. Where can everyone find you, Sarah? Do you work with clients in the US?

Sarah L [00:35:19]:

I've had clients in the US, absolutely. Yes. Um, I haven't got any at the moment, but yeah.

Krystal J [00:35:29]:

If they're itching to get in contact with you, how can they do that?

Sarah L [00:35:30]:

So I am I'm mainly active on Instagram, and that's @sarahlloyd_ispr. So you want to come find me? Come find me.

Krystal J [00:35:45]:

I love it. And of course, as I mentioned a couple times already, all of those links and really great resources are going to be linked in the show notes, so be sure to check that out. But thank you, Sarah, so much for joining us. You've been full of such incredible information. So I'm so excited for this episode to go live so people can start being their own PR person and sharing their story with the world or whichever, you know, smaller community they want to start out with. That's totally cool, too. But thank you again, Sarah, for joining us.

Sarah L [00:36:14]:

Thank you.

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