Welcome to The Leap! For this IG Live series, Wethos CEO Rachel Renock sits down with entrepreneurs who took the leap toward working independently or starting their own project.
In this episode, Rachel sat down with Jordan Crump, the founder of The Space Social, a digital marketing agency that creates high-quality social media content for service-based providers. Jordan was in-house doing digital marketing for about five years before being laid off in the midst of COVID — just two days before she had an emergency c-section.
Watch the full interview here or read below to learn more about Jordan’s journey to entrepreneurship, how she balances content creation for herself and her clients, and the biggest misconceptions about social media management.
Note: The following interview has been edited for clarity and length.
RR: I’d love to kick off with a little bit in your own words, tell us a little bit more about your journey to start your own business and how that’s evolved over time.
JC: Like you said earlier, it did start with a layoff, unfortunately. I was listening to a podcast recently that said that to know if someone is successful or not is how they respond to a problem.
I think a lot of us went through a lot of shit with COVID with our jobs. I think there was a lot of uncertainty for a lot of us, and for me, the same thing happened. I was laid off two days before I had an emergency c-section. In some ways, it was nice to be home, in some ways it was really shocking, but that’s what started The Space Social. I decided I didn’t want to work for anybody anymore. I didn’t want to give somebody else the power to lay me off two days before I have a baby. I decided to make the leap and The Space Social LLC was born. It’s been an incredible and hard journey, but I am grateful for it.
RR: Is there anything in particular that helped you sort of push through the initial shock of that crisis moment and then turn it into an opportunity?
JC: I’d say that initially, I didn’t really care. Because I was having a baby, it was kind of something where I was like, I’m going to come back to this when I’m recovered.
But I would be as resourceful as possible. I know that the people who are listening here are very resourceful people, so I would say listen to podcasts. I would say listen to podcasts about what you’re interested in — that’s how I learned a lot about what I do currently. Google’s great, but I think people are more willing to give out information on podcasts.
RR: In terms of your business and how that’s sort of grown or evolved over time, how do you tactically handle growth? How did you grow the business at the start and how has that changed as you’re at a different sort of life stage? Maybe you’re even thinking about scaling? How’s your strategy changed?
JC: I didn’t scale big, but I did scale early. I hired a VA about four months into my business because there was one specific aspect of my business I hated. It made me dread what I did and I felt like I lost creativity over it: engaging [on social media] for my clients. I hate going and leaving comments. I just don’t enjoy it. I love the creativity, but that’s not a part I enjoy. I hired a VA to do that part for me because I was feeling uninspired and she loves it. I ask her all the time, “Are you good? Are you sure you like this?” And she likes it.
I love utilizing her and using her talents. She’s local to Las Vegas as well, I wanted to hire someone in my community. I was paying her $20 an hour at the time for four hours a month. It wasn’t a crazy investment, but it made my job easier. That’s probably my advice.
RR: One thing that we always used to debate when we were scaling was how to communicate to our clients about who is doing the work. It always felt like it was kind of an open secret that you might be talking directly to us but other people may be executing. How do you go about communicating to your clients and making them confident that the quality won’t suffer? Any sort of pushback that you’ve gotten there?
JC: It is an open secret, they see that someone is logging on and sometimes they’re like, “What’s this log on?” And some are like, “Oh yeah, I just assumed you had help.” And some are like, “This isn’t you?” And if I have had to explain I’m like, “This is her passion. We’ve had in-depth conversations about what she’s doing for you, if there’s ever a problem, let me know immediately, but I do need her help.” And I really talk her up as well.
I’m actually, as I’m sure many people are, about to increase my prices. And when I do increase prices, [I will let my clients know] that these are the things that [a price increase] is going to allow me to do for your business. I will increase my VA’s hours. She will be doing more for them. I think that’s one way I want to talk about it is to be like, this is actually a huge benefit to you.
RR: I want to talk a little bit about social media management. Our most popular scope template on Wethos is social media strategy and management. How much do you think clients are typically vetting your past client work for other brands versus your own social media presence? I’ve heard people go as far as to say, “I won’t hire a social media manager if they don’t have a massive following themselves.” And I’m like, who has the time?
JC: I don’t have a grand amount of followers, but just assume that if even 1% of your followers are your clients, you’re hopefully making a living. When people say that, I’m always like, it’s going to be okay, even if 1% are your followers, it’s going to be good.
Most [clients] just ask me how many years of experience I’ve had. But no one’s ever asked me if I had a degree. I mean, some people have asked to see clients’ portfolios or their current Instagrams, and I’ll ask my client’s permission before I send that over.
But I think that’s honestly the extent. There have been times in my business where I’ve shown up more than other times, as I kind of think it is with everybody, and I don’t think that has affected the influx of clients for me.
RR: What do you think is one of the biggest misconceptions about social media management? And how do you balance time between the content creation versus the managing of it? Which I know are two very different brain waves.
JC: I think a big misconception about social media management is that you have to post every day to be successful. I don’t think that’s sustainable for humans, we all have lives. I think that if that’s your goal, great, but I don’t do that for my clients and I think that can be really overwhelming.
For most of my clients, we post four times a week. I’m actually in the process of beefing [that] up. And this is just for Instagram. I’m kind of beefing up their Reels because I’ve noticed that’s the only way they’re gaining followers. That’s how we’re starting conversations. That’s how I get people to know my clients. That’s why I only take service-based providers, because I love to show someone’s personality off, and it’s easy. In my opinion, it’s easy to show you off. Everyone’s a unique individual and I love that.
When it comes to time management for social media, I’d say my best advice is to batch. That’s when I essentially set aside a day or two, a week, a month, whatever you need, and I create all my content. What this does is I don’t have to create it when I’m not in the mood. I do it when I’m in the mood and when I have a set time. It makes my time management a lot easier.
RR: Do you plan out a month of content in advance, and then you do the batch creation of it too? And then a batch scheduling?
JC: I don’t plan out a month because I think that can be kind of far in advance. I think that things are changing. There are some posts that I can — for example, if it’s a review, I know that’s not going to change in a couple of weeks. But I might leave a couple of slots to do something more trending. I would say for myself, I do it a week at a time. I think as a social media manager it is changing that fast.
RR: If folks are thinking about taking the leap or have recently — not by choice — taken the leap, any advice you’d give?
JC: Get on unemployment ASAP. But I would also say, I think something that felt good for me is when I first started I didn’t spend a ton of money. It is a little bit more upfront, but I would say, you don’t have to go super hard initially. It doesn’t have to be an A, it can be a B minus and you can work your way up. Don’t let perfectionism stop you from taking the leap. It’s going to be okay if it’s not the best for a little bit.
And if you’re nervous to have a presence on social media, I would just make a close friends account on your personal account and practice posting there so only you can see. Just practice, that helped me when I was starting. It was still nerve-wracking and I’d done it for five years.