When I came to the Lab, I knew what I wanted my revenue to be. I knew how many new clients I wanted. But, I didn't really know what the business was going to look like.
The Lab helped me hone in on exactly the things that needed to be solved.
What I really loved about it was the systematic approach. A building blocks approach to marketing strategy and a plan as opposed to "let's write some cool stuff and throw it out there and see if it works."
For me, the resistance was: do I have time to do the Lab? I found myself falling back on: "I'm a small company, I don't know if I'm going to have the budget to do the things I'm learning here."
But then I thought: If I don't do it, I'll never grow.
Stages Planning Group
When it comes to articulating our own strengths, it's just very hard. It just doesn't come naturally.
I had a very long corporate career and also I worked in higher ed. I did a lot of program management: program director and operations.
The idea of leaving it in the hands of the CEO is very compelling. I'm all alone in this, so now I have smart people at my back. And I'm no longer wishing: if I only had a roadmap.
It was really good to have other senior people to bounce ideas off of so that you end up confirming your own thinking.
The Lab offered a structure and a way to look at things to evaluate what we're going to focus on. Because I can't focus on the world. It helped me commit to focusing on this part of my business today, because otherwise you end up chasing your tail and getting nothing done.
The Lab helped us prioritize what we should be focusing on, in what order. And then once that's done. Let's come up with the next list of priorities and how we're going to work through those.
By the end we saw where all of the pieces fit in and like anything else in life you pick and choose the things that work for you and are applicable to us.
I was a very studious student. When I came to the Lab prepared, we were able to really dive in and improve where things needed to be improved - for our business, not everyone else's.
When you build the skills in the Lab, it's like being your own personal trainer.
As Ilene's favorite quote goes: "It's hard to see the label when you're inside the jar," this is the bitter truth when you get so close to the project.
I was so eager to get marketing tactics rolling, we fell into the trap of "Spray and Pray" marketing.
The Lab was an incredible wake up call that allowed us to take a step back, reevaluate our actions and create a strategic roadmap which became a much larger, but more productive, undertaking.
We were able to find the "blue ocean" and now are very excited for the future results.
Founder and CEO
Nano Web Group
I feel like before the Lab, I was trying to get on LinkedIn, get on Instagram, get ads out there, do a blog, do webinars. And we were spreading ourselves too thin. In the Lab, we got a lot more clarity on how to narrowthat down and really understand how to focus on just a couple of channels to really get our message out there in a production.
Understanding the channels that are right for us and what will get us to the audiences that we want to reach was really eye opening.
The Lab provided an open collaborative space that really allows you to look at your business from a different perspective.
You're not just working with one marketing strategist. You're working with other people who are going through the exact same thing that you are with their business.
Mind, Body, Money
“If I could, I would shout out it out from the mountains…We'd just begun our working relationship with Ilene; in a very short time, she's demonstrated a deep understanding of our business, and provided strategic guidance to support our business.”
Senior Director of Marketing
White Space Marketing Group has contributed to our $20M, 100% growth during the last three years. Ilene is the rare strategic thinker who can also stay on top of the details of implementing a multi-channel, multi-product line, multi-vertical marketing campaign.”
Chief Product, Marketing, & Privacy Officer
“Ilene's deep nuanced expertise is matched by a no-nonsense approach to planning and executing a marketing program that is customized to my audience as well as my business goals"
Owner + Author
Modern Daily Knitting
“There is only one person who can look at the whole view of your business, not just marketing. And I'm serious on this point. Ilene understands complex businesses. Brains, service, great attitude.”
“I worked at WSMG as a Content Strategist for two years, and I loved working them. Ilene has one of the best strategic marketing minds I've encountered, drilling down to the essential business issues quickly and knowing how to craft a plan that gets results. She's also a real pro when it comes to hearing what matters to different stakeholders and addressing the needs of each. Any business would be lucky to have Ilene aboard -- her clients get first rate thinking, execution, and results.”
“ Ilene has a special combination of sensitivity, enthusiasm, know-how, and professionalism that make her services an asset to any business. She has the rare quality of being a great listener, which enables her to custom-design resources and plans needed to achieve specific goals.”
Private Education Consultant
The Wright Tutor