We had the good fortune of connecting with Laura Pence Atencio and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Laura, Let’s talk about principles and values – what matters to you most?
Freedom is at the root of everything I do and everything I want in my work and my life. Time freedom is the biggest driving force in my life. I lost my husband in 2018 and that loss has massively changed my priorities. My primary focus shifted from growing my company to making the most of my time – right now. I already had a strong foundation in place which allowed for location and financial independence. I have run a successful digital marketing agency for speakers, authors, and podcasters who are coaches selling programs and services for over a decade. I was spending more time in my business than necessary. I was working long hours because other people thought I should. What nonsense! My God-given talent is creating order out of chaos. I look at existing systems and see opportunities for improvement. I put that talent to use for myself and spent the bulk of a year traveling with my daughter and spending more time with her. I reduced my hours drastically. I get more done in less time and my clients felt better served than ever. I have systems in place that allow me to increase my impact and income without sacrificing time freedom. It’s the one non-renewable resource and I will never regret making the choice to live and love more every day.
Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
Directly prior to founding Social Savvy Geek, I was a financial advisor. It was there that I discovered my love and natural talent for business networking, both online and off. I completely ignored my manager’s instructions on how to market myself, intuitively knowing that his advice would make me miserable and waste my time. Instead, I followed my gut and started using social media to deepen connections I made at in-person events. Soon, I was being asked to train my peers and speak in front of outside organizations. I was elected VP of Marketing and Public relations in my local chapter of a national women’s business organization and then President of another. When the market tanked and I lost my job people started offering to pay me to manage their social media and other marketing tasks for them. My first client and now good friend, Vickie Griffith, encouraged me to put a name to what I was doing and make it official and that is exactly what I did. My business has changed over time from me acting as a social media manager to digital marketing strategist to digital marketing agency owner with support staff and customer journey strategist. Over time I have been able to stop giving my clients what they ask for and instead identify and give them what they need. Most coaches came to us asking for one thing but truly wanting something else. For example, when asking for social media their desire was actually more clients. Putting systems and processes in place for lead generation, follow up, and sales solved their need better than only posting content online. Instead of providing deliverables to check a box, we define outcomes tied directly to business goals and work to achieve them. We partner exclusively with speakers, authors, and podcasters who are coaches selling programs and services so that we are intimately familiar with their needs. Instead of putting our entire focus on marketing, we tackle the entire customer journey from awareness through retention. By continuously identifying areas of opportunity and implementing solutions, we are helping successful coaches to scale their businesses with integrity and without burning themselves or their teams out.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
Should anyone want to explore Colorado together, I am all for it. Most of the places I have visited locally have been kid-friendly. The Denver Zoo is great and Elitch Gardens is adequate. My daughter, Brennan, and I have been traveling the United States extensively and we are ready to explore all that is right here in our backyard. My parents are here and we enjoy camping together as a family. We have plans to explore Woodland Park, Beuna Vista, Salida, and Cañon City this Spring. We are especially excited about the trains, kayaking, and zip lines. Finding fun things to do is one area where I am open to suggestions since I still feel like a tourist here.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I started Social Savvy Geek in Virginia in March of 2010 and moved it to Colorado in October of 2013. I felt adrift socially when I arrived in the Denver area. I knew no one but my immediate family and was the single mother of an infant. To say that I didn’t get out much is an understatement! Luckily, a connection through LinkedIn hosted an in-person gathering and I made a point to go. That is where I met Dru Shockley. He is one of the kindest and most generous humans I have ever met. I can trace nearly every connection in Colorado back to him. Although he has since moved to Oregon, he made a lasting impact as the center of my circle here (like my very own Kevin Bacon.) Through him and those he introduced me to, I met two of my best friends and power-partners, Erin Cell, Founder of Socially Powered, and Monica Miller, Founder of Monica Writes. They, along with Lila Veronica, have encouraged me in my own speaking and podcasting over the years. I can also credit him for introducing me to someone who introduced me to Meghann Conter, Founder of the Dames which is absolutely the best networking organization ever.
Anne Barhyte | Photographer of Life LLC