For many entrepreneurs and small businesses, social media can be an absolute game-changer! All it takes is one viral post and a business can suddenly take off.
At Like A Voss Social Media, we’re highlighting local businesses and entrepreneurs who are killing the online game. This week’s spotlight is on Megan Hamilton, Owner of ubu skills.
ubu skills (you be you) is the business name for Megan Hamilton, a speaking, visibility and confidence coach. She offers 1:1 and group coaching, has created 2 courses and facilitates corporate workshops. She helps you control your nerves, uncover some of the reasons you’ve been holding yourself back, and learn how to trust your intuition so that you can speak authentically, and with authority.
Our CEO Mandi interviewed Megan about her secret to success in business and in life. We also got some awesome insights into what they think makes social media such an effective tool in business.
A Little Bit About Being a Female Entrepreneur
1: How long have you been in business?
I’ve been coaching for about 9 years now, and formalized the business (i.e. got a business license) in 2016. I soft launched ubu skills in 2018 and quit my day job to go full time in the summer of 2020!
2: I checked out your About Me on your website to read about your journey, but for those who have landed on this blog post, what made you decide to break away from the 9-5 and start ubu skills?
Before I started coaching, I was building my professional music career, and always had a day job to support that work. I came from the theatre world where I’d explored acting (went to Ryerson Theatre School), writing and producing, so making music embodied a lot of transferable skills.
We moved to Kingston in 2009 and I’d landed a job at Queen’s that had a whole lot of stuff I’d never had before: a pension, benefits… It was so new to me. And to be honest, I felt guilty even at the idea of leaving since so many of my friends in the art world would love to have those things I’d enjoyed.
But once I started coaching students, I realized that this was a place where I felt incredibly passionate. For the next several years, it felt like we had to put a lot of things in place before I could even consider leaving. My husband had gone back to school, we had a baby and we were saving to buy a house.
And then the plan had been to leave in April of 2020. I’d signed up for Jenny Shih’s “Make It Work Online” program to build my business into a really solid position. And then the pandemic hit.
So I had a super tough decision to make, because it seemed ludicrous to leave a solid job in the middle of global uncertainty. I gave myself some time to really feel into it, and then… I took the plunge!
3: What do you love most about being a female entrepreneur?
I love the freedom of entrepreneurship. I like to make my own decisions, and organize my days in the way that I want. I like the thrill of trying new things and seeing what sticks. I’m pretty bossy, so it works really well to be the actual Boss, haha. I have a global posse of like minded business friends (mostly women) and we call on each other when we need support. I love that!
4: What is the hardest thing you have had to overcome as a female entrepreneur? Something you did not foresee when you decided to start ubu skills?
I don’t know if it’s because I’m older, or because I developed a thick skin being a woman in the music industry, but I’ve carved out my business to be the way I want it to be, and I really haven’t encountered any difficulties specific to being a woman. The only thing that is complete bullshit is the amount of dudes on Instagram sliding into my DMs with stuff like “Hi baby” or the like. I try to keep my social followers and people I follow relevant so that my visibility stays high, so it’s sort of a pain to have to block people who obviously do not want to work with me as a speaking coach. It’s an extra layer of maintenance that I suspect most men don’t have to deal with.
5: What is one thing about working in the coaching industry that people would be surprised to learn? Or, would you classify it as the speaking or coaching industry?
A lot of my colleagues are life or business coaches, and to be honest, a lot of speaking coaching ends up being life coaching since the fears around speaking up run pretty deep. I think people would be surprised to learn that about 25% of my work is dealing with actual clients, and 75% is writing blogs, recording and editing podcasts, creating newsletters, curating social media and building relationships with people and a whole lot of business back end.
And Now Onto The Social Media Questions!
6: Do you have a favorite social media platform? Why?
Right now I love Instagram the most for business stuff, and TikTok is a close second. I like to be creative with my Stories and Reels, and IG lets me mess around with some of my old acting and film skills. It creates engagement in a way that feels fun and authentic to me, and lets people get a sense of what I’m like. I think it’s so important to choose a coach that you can be yourself around – that you can trust. So I try to be as “me” as possible in my posts, and then the people who like that stuff tend to be my people.
7: What made you decide to start using social media as a way to promote your company?
Oh I don’t even think I thought about it! Back when my band would tour, we used MySpace to find bands in other cities that we wanted to make shows with. That’s when I learned about how incredible a tool social media can be. I sign up for every new thing when it comes out, and I actually enjoy learning the functionality of new platforms. The one that I’m still on the fence about right now is Clubhouse. I know that some people are really loving it, but I don’t think I’ve found my groove. TikTok however… I can spend literal hours on that platform, laughing, collecting ideas and being totally gobsmacked by the algorithm and how many TikToks could be made just for me.
8: How has social media impacted your business? Would you say that it’s an effective marketing tool?
Absolutely. It’s allowed me to build so many amazing relationships. I tend to see it as relationship-building instead of client-finding, which I think helps me relax into it and not feel intimidated. I know a lot of people struggle with putting up videos, or not understanding the tech or what they’re supposed to do or post about, and I’d say that if you looked at my Instagram from 3 years ago, you’d see a sort of haphazard blend of different posts, not really talking about myself or my business (because I was afraid of “bugging” people). But once I started to be more authentic, and find people like me, it became fun! I mean, I still have strategies and am conscious about being consistent, making sure that people know how to hire me or how to reach out, but I also make ridiculous Instagram reels where your brain is an evil villain.
9: What advice would you give to other businesses and entrepreneurs who want to use social media as a way to connect with customers?
I know that social media can be this really strange place if you haven’t spent any time on it. But once you get into it, and you get over yourself (that’s really hard for a lot of people), depending on your brand, you can have actual fun while also sharing information about what you do and how people can work with you. We all have ideal clients, and it’s the best way to signal boost authentically so that people who are looking for somebody just like you, or looking for what you sell, can find you. The various platforms now offer a lot of great commerce options, too, so you can sell straight from the app.
A Little More About Megan
I’d place good money on the fact that I’m the biggest charcuterie fan – at least in Kingston. I have a 9 year old daughter, a cat and a dog and a very handsome and funny husband. I still write and play music (I have 5 CDs) and look forward to playing shows again whenever that is allowed. On my 19th birthday my friends took me to His Majesty’s Feast and I got put into the stocks and had a panic attack, so I broke free, and blacked out, falling off the stage. (I survived!)
Know Any Voss Babes?
Do you know a female entrepreneur who loves social media as much as we do? Contact us today – we’d love to tell her story!