Lisa Conway-Hughes on the Miss Lolly blog and writing a money book – MAF198

My guest this week is Lisa Conway-Hughes, a financial adviser and author.

We chat about why she started the Miss Lolly blog and how this led to a book publishing deal with Penguin.

Welcome to episode 198 of the Marketing and Finance Podcast.

Lisa Conway-Hughes on the Miss Lolly blog and writing a money book - MAF198

What you’ll hear about in this episode

  • What motivated Lisa to become a financial adviser
  • Why Lisa set her website up
  • How Lisa simplifies complex financial terms
  • Why financial advisers use jargon
  • The feedback on the Miss Lolly blog
  • How her book came about
  • The process for writing her book

Who is Lisa Conway-Hughes?

Lisa started working for a financial advice firm after university before sitting exams to fellowship level. Joining Westminster Wealth Management in 2012, she decided to sort out her own finances when she had children.

Lisa runs a website called Miss Lolly, offering smart financial advice for women. She says that organising her own money was easy, but she wanted to give support to people who can’t or don’t want to pay for advice. Lisa is also writing a book called “Money Lessons”, how to Manage Your Finances to Get the Life You Want.”

Summary of our chat

Initially, Lisa got into finance because it was the first job offer she got after university. Once in the industry, she realised she’d developed a passion for it. She says there’s more to it than just pensions and tax. It’s about digging into people’s lives and building relationships. She finds it rewarding.

Lisa’s women’s networking group encouraged her to create an alter ego to stand out among the greyness of financial advice. Miss Lolly started as a Twitter account, helping people understand their finances and make the right choices. It grew from there, gaining press coverage and giving her speaking opportunities.

Early in her career, Lisa the company sent Lisa out to employers to explain how company pensions and benefits worked. She realised one of her talents was explaining complex financial products in simple terms. She uses the same tone of voice on her the website, so people could easily understand her explanations.

Lisa thinks the finance industry uses jargon like a safety blanket: “If we use it and our client looks mystified, it makes us feel us intelligent. They’re never going to leave us, they need us.” In fact, customers struggle to engage with jargon, and it’s better to communicate on their level.

When Lisa sent a survey out to her website users, she learned that she’s made a difference to people who wouldn’t normally seek financial advice. It was heart-warming to get feedback and not just a ‘thank you for answering.’ She learned that 25% of her blog readers are men, suggesting they also like her style.

Asked on a podcast what her plans were for 2018, Lisa spontaneously said she wanted to write a book. Penguin, the book publisher, then contacted her and asked to write a book for them. They helped her write for a younger market than she has for Miss Lolly and she learned what makes millennials tick.

Lisa said she had a short deadline to complete her book, and had to do a lot of rewriting to make sure she was giving the right information to the audience. She wrote on her way to work on the train and did research on the way home. She often worked all night or all weekend.

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One Thing Lisa Would Like Listeners to Take Away

Lisa said when she first joined financial services, it felt like a different industry to how it feels now. She thought it was moulding her into what the industry had been, and not what it would be.

She’s pleased that she didn’t give in. Keeping her identity in an industry which might not have been a natural fit for her and succeeding in it as well.

A Marketing Campaign or Product Which Grabbed Attention

Lisa says she loves what Fidelity and Scottish Widows are doing with research into women and money. It’s creating media interest and encouraging them to write about these topics more often.

She also likes the John Lewis advert which talks about how they run as a partnership and that having skin in the game means you’ll go the extra mile and well beyond expectations.

Recommended Business Book

Lisa says the book that really stands out for her is, “The Automatic Millionaire” by David Bach. She loves the way he talks about doing small things regularly to have a big impact on your life.

It reminds her that that’s what she needs to ram home to clients and it’s not about getting the £1m but more about doing the little things every day that will make a difference.

Links and contact details

They have a limited number of $500 dollar vouchers available to listeners in America and Canada to spend with the company – either mention the Marketing and Finance Podcast in the chat facility or contact Natalie directly.

If you enjoyed – Lisa Conway-Hughes on the Miss Lolly blog and writing a money book – please leave a comment or a review on iTunes.

And if you know anyone who would enjoy the show – please share it with them. You can use the buttons below to share on social media.

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3 power words to drive business in 2019

Inspire. Entertain. Teach.

These are the 3 words I’ve chosen to guide my business in 2019.

Welcome to Marketing Made Simple. So what’s with the 3 words? It’s a little exercise I picked up back in 2010. I’m not sure who started it, but I associate it most with famous marketers, Mitch Joel and Chris Brogan.

Every year I come up with three words that will drive my business and what I do in the year ahead.

In this video, let’s talk about why I’ve chosen, inspire, entertain and teach and how this fits with my goals to speak on more stages, produce more videos and finish my book.

The words are also integral to my personal definition of content marketing.

“Creating stuff that inspires, entertains and teaches people to know like and trust you enough to do business with you.”

What are your three words for 2019?

Did you enjoy this video? Please subscribe to my YouTube Channel right here.

This is the 7th in a new series of videos under the “Marketing: Made Simple” banner. I’ve been doing marketing tips videos for a while but putting them out under the title, Marketing and Finance TV. Whilst this title works for my podcast, I rarely talk about finance subjects in my videos. So it makes sense to focus on keeping marketing simple. Fighting the BS and the complexity. Marketing: Made Simple!

If you enjoyed this episode: 3 power words to drive business in 2019 – please share it with your friends and colleagues. You can use the social media share buttons just below.

Andy Couchman on Protection Review and the launch of the I Mark – MAF197

On the show this week, I talk to Andy Couchman, co-founder of Protection Review.

We chat about how the Protection Review Conference, Dinner and Awards has grown to become one of the premiere financial services events of the year and the new “I Mark” which seeks to recognise true innovation.

Welcome to episode 197 of the Marketing and Finance Podcast.

Andy Couchman on Protection Review and the launch of the I Mark - MAF197

What you’ll hear about in this episode

  • How Andy started Protection Review with another financial services luminary, Peter Le Beau
  • The process Andy goes through to write product reviews and how he scores them
  • What innovation really means in financial services
  • The reasoning behind the launch of the I Mark
  • What companies will have to do to receive the I Mark.

Who is Andy Couchman?

Andy started his career in product marketing roles in various large UK financial services companies.

After leaving corporate life he made a success writing about financial services topics. Together with Peter Le Beau he started Protection Review back in 2003. What started as a paper publication and an annual dinner has turned into a prestigious annual Conference, Dinner and Awards event and a popular website.

Although he has retired from the day to day running of Protection Review, Andy still writes the reviews published each month.

Summary of our chat

In his reviews Andy always remembers that teams of people will have worked hard on launching the product or service he is reviewing. They’ll be looking for the highest score possible. But over the years he’s developed a method of setting a benchmark for the products and services he’s reviewing.

He rarely gives a 10 out of 10. In fact this may only have happened a couple of times.

Until now, Andy has always acknowledged innovation in his reviews. Thinking back to the launch of Critical Illness Cover in 1986 he acknowledges that it was real innovation back then. However the current practice of adding new illnesses and conditions, whilst a good thing because it improves the product, is more evolution than innovation.

That’s why he’s please Protection Review is launching the “I Mark”. It will recognise and promote true innovation in the protection segment of UK financial services.

He’ll still mark his reviews on a scale of 1 to 10, but from now on he’ll also award the I Mark to products and services that offer something different.

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Recommended business book

Andy likes Damon Hill’s Autobiography. The racing driver faced many mental health challenges over the years and Andy thinks this is sobering reading and reiterates how important it is for insurance companies to take care of people with similar issues rather than simply rejecting them for cover.

He also recommends Lucian Camp’s book about financial services marketing. Lucian was my first ever guest on the Marketing and Finance Podcast.

Links and contact details

They have a limited number of $500 dollar vouchers available to listeners in America and Canada to spend with the company – either mention the Marketing and Finance Podcast in the chat facility or contact Natalie directly.

If you enjoyed – Andy Couchman on Protection Review and the launch of the I Mark – please leave a comment or a review on iTunes.

And if you know anyone who would enjoy the show – please share it with them. You can use the buttons below to share on social media.

Don’t miss an episode of the MAF Podcast – subscribe now.

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Sign up for Marketing and Finance bulletins and get your free Business Writing Tips eBook right here!