Marketing Strategies That Are Working in 2024, The Current State of Online Businesses, & What to Do About It

Listen to the full episode on AppleSpotify, and Amazon.

Our episode today is a full-on conversation about what’s going on in business, the online business space, and the market. We’ve been watching diligently since the beginning of last year especially because so many of our clients and community members we’re experiencing shifts in their industries, sales, and clients that they just couldn’t put their finger on. 

Folks desired a lot more for a lot less of an entry fee.

Folks were signing contracts without cash reserves to pay for their investment and ultimately having to drop out of the contract because of it.

Folks were tip-toeing around converting and using every free resource to the very end, asking for more content from brands, and not showing the reciprocal exchange expected in sales psychology, aka the potential customer or client purchasing, when brands provide their expertise on a platter. 

There’s a lot of mentions of consumer buyer habits and changes within this episode, sales psychology, marketing wins and not-so-potent strategies that are shared on the internet like wildfire, and of course, sassy thoughts in-between. 

This is such a power packed episode that’s nuanced and I know I’ll go on a few tangents with these points, but I want to give the points up-front in case you’re writing these downs or want to circle back to the episode when you’re planning future quarters. 

Point 1: Target x messaging x client experience x creativity x signature suite x personal brand = your keys to the kingdom of continued business growth always 

I have to start here because even if you think you need more marketing, more visibility and PR… you may actually need to take a moment to review everything that comes before it. 

If you know your target market like the back of your hand, from their likes, dislikes, hobbies, values, perspectives and opinions then your marketing to them becomes just as much about the product as it does the language they use and the way they see the world.

There’s a rise of personal brands right now more than ever and I see why. TikTok, in my opinion, is the new Youtube in a lot of ways and Youtube picked up so many key creators back-in-the-day to have book deals and the like and I know a lot of our listeners are interested in growing their personal brands to a point of being on stages, writing books, and essentially creating the ability to have opportunities they can cherry pick from. 

With that being said, the target audience is still skipped in the online business space. Yes, we’ve all repeated ourselves until we’re blue in the face, us marketers, but it’s still not computing as diligently as it needs to. 

When you’re evaluating your target audience, you’re looking at so much more than just “this is what I do, this is who I help, and this is why.” There’s more depth to it. If you’d like to get into immense details, send us a message on Instagram and we’ll chat back and forth, but let’s move on to the rest of the equation for now.

Messaging usually has to be tweaked. Even when I work with folks that have been in business for 5-10 or 20 years, they’re usually talking to their potential clients from too high of a level or a level back from where they’d like to be serving. If you want to work with high end clients there’s a way to speak in your messaging that will psychologically speak to them. Usually the messaging is very close to being on target, but I would say I’m in messaging work more often than not in our services with clients. 

Really considering the way that your past clients and current clients have spoken to you about their problems will provide you the bridges needed to create a storyline that clarifies how you move them from problem (unaware or aware) to solution aware and interested in choosing their conversion opportunity. In laymens terms, your messaging is in your client’s mouths. They’re telling you “this is my problem and so is this, and oh, this, too” and you’re then moving them in their customer journey with your messaging that says I see your problem, I know what to do about that problem, here’s what we would do, and I’ll tell you more about the how soon, but we’re going to move you from problem to your ideal destination of success by xyz. 

Your client experience is the next portion of the equation and it always will be. Client experience softens anything that needs to be re-evaluated, repositioned, and refined for your current clients and future clients to then be back working with you or to move up in your marketing funnel from conversion to loyalty and then advocacy to refer folks your way. 

Your creativity is the key here that combines with your signature suite of offerings. It’s necessary for us to be aware of what our peers are doing, which I prefer to say instead of competition or competitors, but if that’s helpful to refer back to then they’re one in the same. When your creativity is the driving force behind what your ideal clients are saying they need… you automatically become more a thought leader in the eyes of your ideal clients, current clients, past clients, and partnerships. I like to call it lifting and shifting; I regularly look away from my industries and look into spaces like technology, film, music, art, philanthropy, and interior design to see how we can lift and shift marketing, sales, and PR strategies that are working for them to apply them to our business strategy as a business consulting firm and to our clients’ industries. 

Finally, your personal brand is the last key within this equation. Can you believe we’re only on point 1? Your personal brand works hand-in-hand with thought leadership, business growth, and future opportunities that you’re laying the groundwork for now before those opportunities are even presented to you. To be quite frank with you, we were seeking to pull me more out of the brand and really shape our marketing strategy around our community, our team, and the education we provide. Though that was a lovely experiment, we could actively see that views would increase when my face and energy was more present than it was during that experiment. This led us to really reconsider our marketing strategy for 2024 by the end of December even though we decided that we’d move forward with this plan in September 2024. We’ll talk more about how to leverage your personal brand even if you’re an entity in our final point.

Point 2: AI marketing automations, known as ManyChat for many of us for automated funnels or leveraging the strategy manually is working

You’ve seen everyone and their mom use this strategy. It’s a bit up-and-down on consumer response about ManyChat and even manual re-creation of AI marketing automations. Folks like the immediate delivery, but there’s a sentiment that’s being lost in marketing automations like ManyChat and this is the factor that many high-end buyers enjoy.


Prowling around and furtively allows for concealment as a lead; we don’t have to make a decision quickly, sales calls and automated funnels aren’t reminding us that we haven’t taken action and we get the space to consider. 

If you haven’t read the incredible study done on how Gen Z Broke the Marketing Funnel, take a peek in the shownotes for a link to the incredible work done by Archival. Gen Z is looking for inspiration, exploration, community, and loyalty within their customer journey and the old marketing funnel was awareness, consideration, conversion, loyalty, and advocacy. You can see that lurking, prowling, and staying concealed in their consumption exists in the first two steps of their funnel: inspiration and exploration.

Take a peek at your marketing plan and consider are you hitting those points, even if your ideal client isn’t Gen Z… they’re changing the internet so rapidly that millennials are semi-lumped into that group because our knowledge of technology is so key, Gen X and Gen Y are having to follow in suit because businesses understand that Gen Z will soon be the new audience they’ll have to cater to.

So, is ManyChat working? Yes. Especially for business owners, but there’s also another side of the sentiment that’s saying no, not really because consumers are annoyed by it, too.   

Are there considerations I’m looking at instead of just falling in line with what the marketing industry says – that AI is our newfound ruler? Yes. AI is a tool and if it’s not fitting into the marketing funnel that’s old and breaking right now as we know it… then we won’t be using it as much as our industry suggests us to.

Fix this by providing options; if you have a funnel running in your DMs and comments on social media, add the links to your bio, too, for those that want to lurk without the DM funnel. You can still see if they open the email that sends them the resource; still require the opt-in, but let them explore their desired pathway to working with you.

Point 3: Having a sticky content plan; love this and suggest it for our clients in a way that really drives sales instead of just being on every platform to be on every platform. 

We love omni-channel marketing, but we look at it from a sales perspective first, team management, and energy management especially if you’re running a personal brand attached to an entity.

In short, sticky content is content your audience and community remembers after interacting with it. It might be a memorable quiz that reveals the depths of your ideal client’s soul with a few clicks of a button, a graphic that stands out and stays in the consumer’s mind not just because of the branding but because it delivered a key element that was needed in the customer journey, an original audio that stayed with the consumer from an Instagram reel that provided value in a way that a trending audio never could, or even marketing copy that pops and shows the brand’s personality. What matters about sticky content is that your audience remembers it, comes back for more because they come to expect that level of content, and it’s shared to their audiences and makes them look good for doing so. 

I like to take the sticky content plan a step further and really consider the way it’s moving someone along the customer journey and marketing funnel. If you have a free resource that you haven’t promoted recently, promote it constantly within your omni channel plan by pulling tiny pieces from it and nudging the consumer to receive the full picture by downloading your free resource. Use point 2 that we just discussed to influence the consumer to have options to receive the resource.

Once they’re receiving the free resource, make sure you have 5-7 automated emails revealing more about the resource, introducing you to them and vice versa, requesting information back from them in regards to the resource so they become more than a faceless email, and see where they’re stopping in the funnel. 

Did they open the resource? Did they stop opening emails on email 4? Check your subject line and preview line and tweak that. Did they stop clicking links in the emails on email 5? Might be your messaging and the way you’re revealing or presenting the products or services you offer. 

Here if you desire support. Love working through funnels with clients in our intensives and consulting!

Point 4: Long form content is making a comeback (though we don’t think it ever really left for high-end purchasers!)

This point really connects with all of the points we’ve already gone through, so, I won’t repeat too much here, but if your marketing strategy is remaining in the trendy arena then consider the timelessness of longform content. It’s how we were first introduced to the internet and it’s never going to die because before we were reading carousels and articles online, our ancestors were reading newspapers, brochures, and articles in journals. 

It’s in our DNA to want to have the ability to explore a little bit, a lotta bit, and a lot more a bit. 

Point 5: Generating anticipation and excitement is more important than ever and though it might seem like this will make your launches longer and more cumbersome, it’ll pay off.

Teaser campaigns meet fresh creativity, meet countdowns, meet personal invitations with deep relationships will influence your ideal clients to come out of the woodworks and show themselves.

We have an episode on building everlasting relationships in season 1 that will support you with the personal invitation portion of this conversation. We’ll link it below in the shownotes. 

If you’ve not added teaser campaigns into your live launch strategy, you’re going to want to. 

With any launch I help clients create I always have to do a little convincing that they do indeed need a ramp-up period, a really great free resource, low ticket resource, or free/paid event to entice interest even if it’s a proven program.

Marketing is disruptive. Branding isn’t as disruptive, but instead just provides a safe space for acknowledgement and the know, like, trust factor that Bob Burg taught us. With the experience to be had within your pre-client experience through a free resource or event, or even a low ticket experience or event, you’ll be able to create a safe haven for ideal clients to explore what it would be like to work with you BEFORE you roll out your teaser campaign of the offer you want to sell. 

That anticipation and excitement, connection in unity to watching something unfold, is rooted in sales psychology and has a similar neural effect in your ideal client’s experience that watching a football game on Super Bowl Sunday has to die-hard football fans. 

Point 6: Serialization is huge. Part 1-100, if we love your Tiktok video series we’re going to watch every bit of it.

Okay, if you haven’t enjoyed serialization as a consumer or tried it as a marketing strategy, start today. 

It gives you more space to explore the nuances and depth of the content you want to share. We did this on Instagram in January 2024 as we sunsetted our membership, The Cheetah Coalition. It was one of our longest standing offers and I really looked at it in our annual planning for 2024 to consider if it was still serving the business AND our ideal clients.

We walked through 10 lessons on Instagram as we sunsetted the offering, then produced a teaser campaign of the offering that was coming to take its place, then revealed our newest offering, The Harmonious Business Mini-Mind™. 

That serialization got our community talking, connecting with us via direct messages on Instagram about offerings that were no longer serving their businesses, energy management, or clients. Serialization gives you the space to say more without forcing 50,000 characters into one carousel.

We later took those posts and moved them into a blog on our blog space, The Cheetah Cafè. You can take a peek at it in the shownotes below. 

Point 7: I’d love to see augmented reality come into play more often in the online business space. 

Though it would have to be tweaked in obvious ways, many businesses are leveraging this to help customers experience the potential before truly experiencing the products or services. 

The way you can leverage this is by infusing immersive brand storytelling versus “talking at you” content styles in your marketing plans.

Consider making your services more tangible even if you deal in spreadsheets and documents. You can absolutely bring your content to life when you consider new ways to augment reality for someone that’s actively scrolling or stumbling upon your page!  

Point 8: Economy = need more proof and truth 

In an economy that needs more proof, truth, and information to show that your past clients had a great experience and received the promise of what you promised them, show them.

Your marketing strategy should have heavy pieces included that point to happy customers and clients. Think case studies showing the start to finish experience of a client that came to you in peril and left in peace with the promises you gave them. Think about showing different story archetypes within those case studies, such as the rebirth archetype, rags to riches, the voyage and return, overcoming the monster (the monster being the problem), the quest (very often used in spiritual businesses), comedy and tragedy. The tragedy would be more of a positioning story of what can happen if a problem isn’t solved, but that’s a case study without a client included! 

Your marketing strategy will want to include testimonials, especially if you can provide them in a video format from your past clients. These easily sell and show more authority than text on a page. I like to think of the Chick-Fil-A commercials here; take a gander at them on Youtube for how promotional they could feel, but feel more like a universe that’s been created to chat with a real Chick-Fil-A customer about their experience and what they love about their local franchise. 

Pepper your marketing strategy with the proof beyond clients; think of media features, your podcast tour, articles you’ve written for other brands, exclusive spaces you’ve spoken for like masterminds and group programs, and share the who, what, when, where, and why of the feature. Builds more authority than you know. 

One of our favorite ways to share authority at The Cheetah Company is re-sharing stories our community tags us in that shows something we gave them that impacted them – no matter how big or small. Now, this can get kind of boring if you’re not adding in additional pieces to make your stories pop. We’ll talk about those in the personal brand section of this episode. We love screenshotting comments and DMs our community sends us, highlighting their words builds community with them and authority for us very authentically. We didn’t strong arm, beg, or incentivize their words; they just shared them and that’s good user-generated content. 

Point 9: The value of authenticity is the value of your bottomline this year and always. 

From authentic storytelling that has a less curated feel to leveraging user-generated content styles and micro-influencer styles for their “no, I wouldn’t sell this unless I loved it” sales content. 

If you can remove yourself a bit from your products and services and consider that you’re influencing on behalf of your expertise and you yourself are NOT the product, even in the era of the personal brand, you will win this year.

Consumers are craving authenticity like we’re craving regulation in the online business space to stop allowing ChatGPT-created products burn consumers through sparkling marketing campaigns. 

Your authenticity is your currency and the more authentic you are, the more folks will be drawn to you like a dang magnet. Think about it, let’s take it to celebrity culture (even though good Lort it seems like celebrities are showing us that a true recession is coming with how hard they’re working to get us to purchase their products) – celebrities draw us in even if they are media-prepped and positioned in a PR narrative because we can’t look away from their unique POV. I think back to the time of Will Smith and Pinkett Smith and what seems less like a media blow-up around their relationship and more like a well-positioned PR tour for her book. 

The internet could not look away.

How deep are you willing to go into your authentic self to deliver your unique message that reigns beyond the explore page of Instagram? 

Point 10: Video marketing is obvious, but it’s become a harmonious balance of long and short form. 

Thankfully we’re slowly getting out of the hyperspeed reels and tiktoks to microspeed. That’s all I’m going to say on that! Even TikTok has given us the blessing of longer form videos and we’re all consuming them yet and still even if it’s a story about someone’s spiritual journey from their college years to now or a wild experience they had on a Tinder date that influenced them to delete the app and find a new way to find love. 

Point 11: A mention for giveaways, UGC, and fostering a deep sense of community through unity

Sales psychology 101 shows that unity and a unified stance between individuals speaks to the human psyche like nothing else can.

Consider the feeling you feel when a choir sings or you stumble past a peaceful riot of folks campaigning for something to be changed; it makes you tingle and pause and say what’s going on here? 

User-generated content, even if it’s just one person at a time, is a powerful brand marketing strategy that provides social proof from a past, happy customer and overt engagement from a past customer that shows they advocate for the brand. You can encourage user-generated content creation by asking for a recorded video from clients in the middle or end of their experience with you. 

If they’re a busy, ambitious, and multi-dimensional founder like the founders we usually work with, then you may want to ask if you two can jump on a Zoom call while you interview them about their experience for 10 or so minutes to make the action happen even if their calendar is stacked. This will ultimately amplify your reach and engagement with ideal clients because if you tag them in this video a few several times over a course of 24 months, let’s say, and they re-share it each time… you’re diving straight into the psyche of their most loyal audience members because they trust your client’s face, tone, energy, and authority. 

UGC or user-generated content is the most important it’s ever been in a decision-fatigued, burned era where everyone has a story about a business coach that burned them or a service provider that said they’d provide the goods but didn’t. I’ve experienced both of these and completely understand the consumer experience, but I really want you to consider how powerful it is to shape a different story when you’re considering a new person and brand to purchase from. What you fear, grows, and what you hope for can grow, too. Be diligent in Googling the person and brand you’re considering purchasing from, ask questions, ask to speak to past clients, and vet your advisors and providers.  

Activating your audience through a giveaway will support ideal eyes on your brand if you’re leveraging the right strategies for giveaways. If you’d like some support with this, send us a message on Instagram and we’ll share our audience-winning way to drive ideal visibility on your brand. 

Point 12: Personal brands are steadily on the rise as usual and always will

Think about it, we love falling in love with real people and in this conscious-consumerism environment (which we love!!!), we want to be conscious about who we’re purchasing from, the values the individuals and entities have, and the proof to back it up.

Keeping on the idea of the person we’re purchasing from, even if there’s a whole team of 20 to support the company’s operations, we’re going to dive into the exercise I love doing the most with clients.

Within our brand messaging framework we specifically ask what makes you interesting as a founder. We have a framework for brand messaging and personal brand messaging that our clients always walk away with saying “wow, I have so much more to share that I didn’t realize was important to working with my ideal clients” and “I’ll be re-using this every year to refresh and refine my messaging.” 

We focus on what makes them interesting, the team interesting if we’re having the team jump in, and where the commonalities are between the founder, team, and clients/potential partners. 

That ranges from:

  • Hobbies
  • Likes
  • Dislikes
  • Perspectives and opinions
  • Values
  • Desires & goals
  • Interests
  • Lifestyle choices
  • Characters in the story

And in case you’re wondering, those are psychographics and as a marketer of over a decade I can tell you that even if you don’t land your demographics. Demographics in marketing refer to gender or gender identifying, education, income, nationality, ethnicity, religion, and age. 

If you find the psychographics beyond all-else, I promise you that your demographics will range larger and will increase your revenue more than you know. Taking age for example, our clients have ranged from 18-67. The only way we’ve been able to have that large of an age range is through our shapeshifting ability to lean into psychographics, meet folks where they are at, and have a service suite that caters to their needs at each point in their journey. 

So, what does this look like in your content? 

I’ll take it from a stories perspective for me as the main character of The Cheetah Company: 

  • Hobbies – reading, writing, sunset watching, renovating & real estate, pickleball, walks
  • Likes – great music, traveling, new experiences, wine, old fashioneds, friendships
  • Dislikes – sisterhood wounds & women hating on women, unconscious consumerism and being burned by lack of knowledge about offers, making a ton of money and never sharing it with the world through philanthropic acts 
  • Values – harmony, curiosity, exploration, experiences and experimentation, connection, creativity, resilience, laughter, honesty and integrity 
  • Desires & goals – to publish my books, speak publicly around the world more often, expand our real estate portfolio, expand our business portfolio, open a coffee shop, have a bunch of babies 
  • Characters in my story – my husband & CFO/CTO, Chris, our one-eyed pup, Ripkin, decaf coffee, my Stanley 


Listen to the full episode on AppleSpotify, and Amazon.


Ashleigh Henry has been in marketing, sales, and leadership positions for the last decade and it was exhilarating for Ashleigh to climb the retail, corporate, higher education, and start-up ladder holding positions such as Marketing Strategist, Copywriter, Social Media Strategist, Manager, Editor, Co-Editor…until it wasn’t. Alongside her degree, Ashleigh decided to bring all of her experience into the freelancing world until it became clear that she didn’t just want to pay the bills – she wanted to create a company that was foundationally built on cheetah print, legacy-minded marketing, and sexy sales structures that could stand the test of trend and time. The Cheetah Company, founded by Ashleigh, does this for female entrepreneurs through their education, coaching, and consulting services. Learn more about Ashleigh here.

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