Embracing the Creator-Founder Role with Mariah Coz

Marie: You're listening to grief and pizza, a podcast, exploring the highs and lows at the intersection of business and emotional wellbeing.

In this episode, we're talking to Mariah Coz one of my longtime business mentors about what it means to design a business that works for your unique needs.

[00:00:13] Building a neurodivergent friendly business

Marie: So, Mariah, I am so excited to be here with you today because I've been a huge fan of yours forever, and I've been a long time consumer of your digital products, your courses, your programs, your blogs, your podcast, et cetera.

So you've had a huge, huge influence on kind of, I think how I show up in business. And I think there's, there's so much that you do really, really well. I think one of the things that you've kind of shone a light on for me is building a neurodivergent friendly business. And I don't know if you would, uh, agree with that or if you maybe self-identify as neurodivergent, but the way you show up in your business unapologetically and designed for the way you, Mariah need to show up has been really, really impressive to me over the years in very permission giving.

So I'd just love to kind of hear, do you identify with that when you think of you've really built a neurodivergent friendly business?

Mariah: Yeah. You know, I probably haven't used that word specifically, but it's definitely how I think. I,

I always have used the word like me proof. I'm like, I need it to be Mariah proof. How can we Mariah proof this process or this system, or this product or something? Um, and so I think before I knew what Neurodivergent was, I was thinking in terms of how do we make it Mariah proof?

But for me, you know, having anxiety and depression and knowing that there's gonna be times when I'm not gonna be able to show up or I'm not gonna be able to like, be my best or whatever.

And so I feel like I've just been always sort of riding the waves of like, creating when I have, like when I'm in a good spot, I create a lot, like too much and it's like hard to turn it off. And then I'll go into like a low spot. But it's okay if I have to take a step back because I've got like such an archive of things, but also systems and processes in place so that I can take a step back and most of the time no one even really notices, which is great.

Marie: Yeah, I mean, you talk a lot about, um, you know, building evergreen products and I'm, I'm kind of curious, do you notice when these cycles are happening where you're like, oh, I'm in, I'm in the surge, and it's time to double down and clear the schedule and just go, you know, fully into it. And do you notice those times where you're like, oh, my energy, like burnout is coming?

[00:02:25] How do you know when you're in a good or bad creative cycle?

Marie: I mean, you must be pretty tuned into some of those cycles, but what are some of the signs for you that you kind of know that the good times and the bad times are,

Mariah: That's a good question. I definitely know when I'm in a good time because I'm like, wow. Call it a braingasm. Like my brain is on fire. Like I have so many things to say and do and I can't put, you know, I can't stop taking notes and I feel like I can record a bunch of stuff. I can write a bunch of stuff. I do feel like also part of this is just, it just happens in the design too, where like choosing, um, you know, choosing formats that are gonna work

long term, regardless of what you're up to or what's going on, you know, with me personally. So choosing to like have a podcast instead of like video based stuff, or choosing to have blog posts that are evergreen rather than an Instagram presence or choosing to have, um, like my products now are supported by a q and a private podcast rather than live group calls.

And so making a lot of those changes, I think happens in like the design phase. I feel like I know when I'm in a good spot, but one thing I've learned about myself is that I do not have an empty gauge, do not have anything that tells me that we're like headed for trouble.

Like, yeah, there's no, there's no, like, you're at 10%, you're at 5%, like you're running on fumes. It just, all of a sudden I wake up one day and I'm like, Nope, I'm done. Like I, and you never know how long it's gonna last. I can't even really identify like what causes it a lot of the times or what, where it comes from.

You know what I mean? Um, so sometimes people will be like, oh, like you burnt, you went too hard and you like burnt out on your business. And it's like, well, I think it might just be a chemical in my brain or something. I don't know that it's like the business's fault. I think it's just like how I am.

Ben: There was a, a friend of mine on Twitter recently was talking about, you know, these, he had these different check boxes for, for like freelance and entrepreneur and being employed and, and the check boxes were moved to like high or low risk and that kind of thing. And when I was looking at that, I was like, oh, those, those toggles aren't really guaranteed.

[00:04:31] How do you evaluate where a project or idea might fit in your business?

Ben: So I'm wondering for you, do you have. Some sort of evaluatory process for deciding what, why go podcast versus video? Is it more just experiential and you try something and you're like, well, that didn't work, so I'm not doing that again? Or is there a initial like thinking phase that you, you think about, you know, okay, these are the values that we have, these are the principles that I operate by.

What's that look like for you?

Mariah: Yeah, that's a really good question. I, I mean I maybe I've never even gotten that granular about it and just thought, oh, well, I just prefer to not. get dressed. So, so like a podcast is perfect for me, um, because I can sit down and talk for hours by myself in my room, but I do not want to like actually take off.

Like, guys, I was so close to showing up to this in my rope so close, like, I was like, I was like,

Marie: You, it would've been welcome.

Mariah: I know. I was like, you know, I'm very comfortable. Like I know them, it's fine. I was like, they'll, they'll accept me if I show up in my fluffy robe. But then I was like, well, what if some, what if other, you know, I'm comfortable with you guys.

But then I was like, what if other people see that and they're like, oh my God. So I feel like my ideal situation is being very comfortable, being cozy, choosing something that I can do sort of with like a bare minimum approach. And that's not always how it's been. To be clear too, because like there's, if I've been riding a wave,

I've done three day virtual conferences before where I was on for eight hours a day. I was presenting, talking and interviewing people for eight hours a day for three days straight. I've done that. I've done all sorts of crazy, like live things, so it's not like this is always how it is, but I think right now I definitely was kind of going through and just being like, what's, what's low lift?

What is something that I can pretty much show up for, um, even if I'm really tired and like don't have a lot of energy? I would love to know how you guys feel about this because I feel like I'm at like a turning point where I'm like, I don't care about aesthetics. I don't care about how things look.

I only care about, like, I'm highly like. Intellectualized about everything, but, and I care about like the words and the thoughts and the ideas, but I really don't care about the visuals. And I've always felt like the visual side of things has been really hard for me and really, like a challenge doesn't come easily to me.

I don't like it, but it feels like it's necessary. And I've identified how much that having a visual component to any piece, any of your content is just like slow, slows everything down, slows things down so quickly. I want, this is what I've been thinking about lately. I want like the fastest no barriers between a thought and an idea, and then like the publishing of that, or like a thought and an idea and then like,

getting that out in the world and gauging interest in that and testing it. And so that's why like I create all of my courses in Google Docs instead of slides, you know, and I think I'm even, I've been really thinking about this a lot lately of how to really take that to even the next level where it's like even stopping to create like a Canva graphic for an Instagram quote or post or something.

Too much, don't want to, I don't wanna slow it down to do the visual aspect of things. And so I think that's also part of it is like if I had to do formats like video or Instagram or whatever, that requires visuals and is more focused on style than substance, I'm really gonna struggle with that. You know, I've obviously had visuals before, but it's, but like it always takes so much work and it requires me to hire someone and all this stuff. So now I'm just trying to figure out what are the formats I could share my ideas and thoughts in that require zero visual input whatsoever. So like, threads is really fun.

Podcasting, don't have to worry about the visuals at all. Um, blogging, you know, putting stuff on the website, not really that much about visuals. Um, you know, I think I just like, am really sick of aesthetics and just like what things visually look like and I'm over it and I want to avoid it at all costs. Do you guys feel like that or are you guys like designing visuals?

Marie: you're talking to, to people who like graduated from design school, so, but I can, I can totally appreciate what you're saying and I, and I think. It was shocking for me, but also quite impressive. Like the first time I, you know, purchased your higher end programs, I'm like, oh, she's just doing like a loom video on a spreadsheet.

It's so simple. And even though I, as a designer appreciating design, I appreciated the simplicity with which you're not letting those barriers prevent you from getting someone the value super, super quick. And I, I quite appreciated that about your work and even your, um, the way you explain your frameworks.

Like you always have a framework for breaking down your ideas and they're often a very, very simple graphic. There's usually three components to it. It's some kind of triangle overlapping circles, but it's like, it's so simple and you are so good at kind of distilling those complex topics into something that someone can get right away.

So just wanna say, I can, I can appreciate where you're coming from and I still think you do such a good job even with the stuff that you put out there that's not overly aesthetic. It still gets the point across and is, is very impressive. Um,

Mariah: Thank you I do like making my little diagrams, like I love to draw a little diagram, but beyond that I'm like, I can't have like colors and shapes and stuff. I'm like, there. Yes, there's circles, there's dots, there's lines. I can totally, I like that part.

Ben: Yeah. I would say for me it's the. The exciting part of, of, of it is in design systems, and that's where you're building something that makes sense as a container and you can sort of forget about the design. And so once you have something kind of effortless, you can just throw your concepts and content into that and it evolves based on that.

So an example of that is like our podcast cover. The one, one thing that we discovered recently about Canva is that you can actually sort of make like component. Component slots for images. So once you have the, the actual template set up, you just drop an image in a certain folder and the, the graphics will auto be created based on, so it'll create the YouTube cover, the, the podcast cover, the variation cover, just based on an image that you uploaded somewhere.

So I think Marie and I get pretty excited about those kind of automated systems where you don't act, you're not actually doing any active design work, you're

Marie: It's like, how could this be as lazy as possible?

Ben: Yeah. And that, and that way we can just focus on showing up for the podcast and, and having a, you know, creative conversation. And, and it can go kind of any direction and we don't really need to think about, you know, all the design language around it.

We've just created this one container for it.

And I think it, it kind of plays out in our, in our trainings as well where we've moved away from trying to create specific content around how to do things in Notion. And it's more like we're doing these trainings now where there's a little more play with the audience.

So we sort of set up a container. Um, so for example, we started doing these events called Demo Days because Notion is just shipping so many different features every week we have to. Show all the new features, but instead of doing like a really, like rigid with design and slides and stuff, we just show up and we talk about what the new features are.

We, we, we run through how to actually do it, and then we kind of let the audience drive what they want to know more about. So it's, it's less like thinking upfront and more like what is, what's actually of interest to our audience here? And we can be a little bit more loose with the, with the presentation so we don't have to present all kinds of graphics and have it make sense that way you're actually seeing it in real time and stuff like that.

So I think, yeah, it's, I've, I think that's played out a lot in our content as well.

Mariah: It's such an advantage to have the design background. I do think in this, in as a creator, as a course person, as a business owner. 10 extra points on everything you do because

you guys, yeah, you guys you guys get that like step up.

[00:12:34] How Mariah made a podcast be an easy lift

Marie: You know, and kudos to you. I, I think, you know, Ben and I have been thinking about doing a podcast for a long, long time, and I think it was seeing in your community you were shipping these, um. I mean, you're shipping your podcast and then you've got this sort of special episode podcast behind the scenes that are just for your paying members.

And, and then you were sending out these awesome emails that are kind of like a summary of here's what we talked about in the podcast. And I could see there was a system happening behind the scenes. But doing the podcast seems so intimidating, but for you, you were like, this is my focus. It's so low lift, it's so easy.

And I'm like, please explain to me how a podcast could be easy. It just seemed like there were so many moving parts. So I love that you actually inspired me to think of it as, what if it could be easy? Like what could this actually look like if other people are doing this? And it seems really low lift. So, um, yeah, I just wanna say like, thanks for showing me that it could be not just a podcast, but the way you were extracting the, the transcripts and the content summarizing it and using that for other pieces of content was sort of like a, an unlock for me.

Mariah: Oh, I love that. Yeah. No, it's been, it's, to me, it is the easiest format. It's like I can, uh, I start with just the bullet point outline. So I write the bullet point outline first, and then, I record and then I just hit record and start talking about those bullet points. So it's like I don't have to really write out that much because I can just fill in the gaps and talk about stuff and riff on things.

And then I use that same bullet point outline, becomes the blog post and becomes the exact content of the email. Um, but it all just kind of starts with like, there's five or 10 bullet points and then that's hit record that turns into every other piece of content. And that, I think just keeps it really easy.

And I do think doing it most of my episodes lately, I mean the podcast, I think I started it back in maybe 2017, I don't even know, a long time ago. Took a break for a long time and then came back last year. Uh, and have only done solo episodes. And I think solo episodes definitely, uh, keeps it really simple.

There's no back and forth. There's no scheduling and stuff like that. But you guys inspired me to be like, I got to get my shit together and figure out how to have guests on the podcast because when I was going through your onboarding process, so simple, so clear, it was so easy. Usually people are like, Hey, come on my podcast, here's like 20 different dates and times and here's, oh, don't forget this.

And I'm like, oh my God. So you guys have inspired me that maybe I could have guests in a way that doesn't make me feel crazy.

Marie: Yeah, absolutely. Yeah. All about those systems. And again, it comes down to, that's, that's my form of laziness. I'm like, I do not wanna do all this manual effort. So what is the lowest lift way that we could do this? The only way that we're gonna be able to do it is if it's easy, repeatable. I'm not having to, you know, tinker around with all this stuff.

Ben: It's so interesting how we've, we're kind of inverting the experience where you, you're saying in a sense that, oh, it's, it's easy because it's solo. I don't have to think about X, Y, Z. Whereas I think Marie and I find it really helpful to have somebody to sort of riff off of. And when we start going to like just the two of us, then we, it start to becoming more,

more precious in a way, and, and, and meaningful. And if I were to just do one by myself, I think that would be like the hardest thing to do. Um, yeah, so it's really interesting. I guess it's just a, a, a, a matter of, of, you know, how you interact with other people and, and, and things like that. So really

Mariah: Are you more of a writer Ben?

Ben: I think so, yeah. A lot of times when everyone is doing videos, for example, of a new Notion feature that comes out, it, it feels more natural for me to write and, and like kind of make these diagrams and it, it's just a lot. Yeah, I like that. Yeah. The writing feels more iterative, whereas with video, I feel like I have to go back and do all these, like, it's more, it's more of an editing thing than a just a, a getting it out and, you know, it just, it's easier for me to refine my thinking, I think in, in written language.

Mariah: Yeah, no, I know. It's so scary that you can't really, like, I mean, you could, but you can't really edit things once they're out there. That's why I just put 'em out there and then never look at them again. 'cause ew, like,

Marie: Do you do pretty minimal editing on

Mariah: I do no editing one take wonders. I do no, no editing. I'm literally so lazy about it.

Like, I don't even have an intro. I just, I just hop on and I hit record and I say, Hey, this is Mariah Ka show. This is what today's all about. And then I just start talking. I don't even have like a prerecorded intro that plays or anything like that. One day. I mean, this is me, I'm like, in my fantasy world, I'm like, I want my podcast to be my business.

I want my podcast to be like this huge market. You know? I want it to be our main marketing channel. I want it to be this, that, and the other thing. I have all these big dreams for it, and yet of course I treat it like, oh yeah, no big deal. The laziest lowest, you know, lowest

Marie: But it's working even with that low effort, right? It's,

Mariah: I get, I mean, it's definitely our, our number one like nurture channel.

I mean, it's, it's our sales channel. I really don't, besides, it's like email and podcast is really all I do consistently, and I don't even do it that consistently. So it's kind of like that's, I mean, that's gotta be where sales come from because other than that, I really don't know where they would be coming from.

[00:17:48] How did Mariah land on podcasting as her main platform?

Marie: Well, could we talk a little bit about that too? Because you've, you've had so many different pivots maybe over the years in terms of, I know like Facebook ads. I know you were doing YouTube for a while. So like what are some of those pivots you've made and how did I guess, podcasting become the one that you were like, yeah, this is the one we're doubling down

Mariah: Yeah, that's such a good point. Yeah, definitely. I can say, oh, right now it's like, that's prob, that's where ma majority of our sales come from. But a few years ago that was not the case because I think between 2019 to 2022, I didn't, wasn't doing the podcast at all. And we were super heavy on ads. We were running ads from 20, uh, the summer of 2019 all through until the beginning of 2023.

We were running a ton of ads. Pretty much like 90% of our lead gen was ads to a variety of different entry points. Like sometimes it was to a webinar, sometimes it was to a, um, low ticket, like $29 product. Sometimes it was to a virtual conference, sometimes it was to an application page. So like the entry points changed over the years of running those ads.

But we did go very hard with YouTube ads and Facebook, Instagram ads, Google ads, um. From 2019 to, to the beginning of 2023. And it was always, always worked well for us. And so like, it was always a good, um, strategy. there's always gonna be seasons, and I think this is true with all of business, I think this is true with any strategy, is that there's gonna be seasons where like everything is just working perfectly, everything is flowing, everything is clicking, everything is like doing exactly what it should.

And so there'll be seasons where we were able to run like one ad, that same ad for like a year and a half or two years, and it was just going. Like crazy. It was just working perfectly high conversions, 12 x return on ad spend for like years with that one ad and then things change and it's like, oh, we gotta try different ad creative.

Oh, we gotta change the headlines. Oh, we gotta change the copy, we gotta change the images, blah, blah, blah. And so I do think it started to get to a point where I felt like I was coming up with new ad creative pretty much every two weeks. Um, new graphics, new photos, new videos, new, um, you know, copy. And I was like, this is essentially, you know, for me to be running ads and paying a bunch of money to do that.

A obviously it's, it's profitable, but I also wanna feel like it's saving me time. Like if I'm gonna be running that many ads and paying for it, I wanna feel like it's, the trade off is that I don't have to do anything live. Like I, and when, when we were running ads, I wasn't publishing any free content, I wasn't publishing.

Blog posts. I wasn't publishing like, there was maybe a few, we did like a little experiment where we published some blog posts and stuff like that, but, um, I wasn't publishing free content, it was just running the ads. And so when it started to feel like, oh, hey, now that ads are changing, I think there was like a big algorithm update or whatever, and um, hey, ads are changing now.

You have to come up with new, fresh, you know, you have to come up with 10 new ad creatives and 20 variations of that ad every two weeks. And I was like, this is just the equivalent of me making 40 Instagram posts. You know what I mean? So it's no

Marie: Mariah's favorite activity

Mariah: right,

Marie: posts. Yeah.

Mariah: exactly. I was like, this is no longer feeling like it's that trade off, even though it's still, you know, still profitable and all that good stuff.

But when it comes to taking up my time, I'm just like, even if it's profitable, I don't wanna spend time making. 20 different captions every two weeks. So, but also we just change, you know, we changed up our products a lot in the last, I mean, everything about my business has completely restructured in the last 12 months.

So, so it all looks a lot different.

[00:21:43] What is the structure of Mariah's current business?

Ben: I'd love to hear kind of like what, what the structure of the current business is and maybe, maybe one or two steps back from there. What that, what that transitional journey has looked like for you.

Mariah: Well, I wish I could answer that 'cause I'm trying to figure out again myself, so, and maybe you could tell me, uh, what it should look like. No, I, I am definitely, uh, have been experimenting the last 12 months have been playing with a lot of different things. I will say we have, you know, the, the short story is that from 20. From, well, how, how far back

Marie: The Covid bubble. Yeah.

Mariah: Yeah. Yeah. I think we, we can start back there. Like in, you know, I've been, I was mostly, uh, selling more high touch, high ticket coaching programs starting from 2018 through, uh, 2018 through 2020. We were specifically focused on a program called The Accelerator, which you guys know.

Um, and then we, and then in 2020 I launched what I thought was gonna be a very tiny mastermind called High Ticket Hybrid. And I thought that through, I thought within the course of an entire year, like 20 people would join. Um, but then a few months later we had like 300 people. Yeah. I was like, wait, this is not what I thought.

And so the years of like 2020, like for most online business owners, 2020 through 20 21, 20 22 was just, uh, sort of explosive growth and, um. We had our two sep, two different, uh, very high touch, very like high delivery, high service, um, programs that required a lot of overhead and a lot of client, uh, one-on-ones and like just ser it was a service, you know what I mean?

It wasn't like a digital product that people can just download and do on their own. Um, very high touch service. And so we did that through, um. Through 2022 and I had a team of 20 employees. I had, you know, a lot of things going on. We were doing these huge virtual events like I mentioned. Um, it was really fun and I was definitely in a riding a wave.

I was definitely, definitely like, woohoo, like

Marie: Here we go.

Mariah: energy. And I think for a lot of us, I mean like I'd be super curious to hear about your guys' pandemic experience, but for me, I was, so, I, I isolated completely for like two and a half years. Like, I didn't even, when it seemed like other people were like loosening up and going out and like going on trips, I was not, I was still 100% in my house.

Did not leave, didn't, I didn't do anything until, I didn't leave my house until like. June of 2022. So I was like super isolated. And so during those years, like, what else was I gonna do other than be on Zoom all day with everybody, right? Like, oh my God, I needed more employees so I had more people to talk to.

I like, what else was I gonna do other than like, make content and host calls and do these big events and like, just all that stuff was what I think kept me engaged and like somewhat sane during those years of isolation, was like really just, that was, that was my connection to, to other people was being on calls all the time and hosting these events virtually and doing all that stuff.

Talking to clients constantly and just like that, that was everything when, and it was really a distinct thing where I went, I, I went on the first vacation I had been on in like two and a half years, in June of 2022. I went on a little trip and was like, oh, wow. Like I kind of forgot. I had done a really good job telling myself that there was nothing good outside because of how else are you gonna survive emotionally through a pandemic if you don't tell yourself that?

Like, no, no, it's terrible out there. You don't wanna go out there. It's way better in here. Just like convincing yourself of that. And then. I went on a little trip and was like, oh my God. Like I, I only, I, I have so much to make up for. I have so much time to make up for, I have so many things I wanna do and see and like, uh, it's time to get outta the house.

I started making very drastic changes to my business in the summer of 2022. And by the end of 2022 had, let go of my, almost my entire team, other than one person. And

Marie: how did you get to that point? Like I guess, yeah, what was coming up? 'cause you said you don't notice when it goes to empty or whatever. So was there burnout involved? Was there resentment? Like how did you get to that point that you knew that was the right move? I.

Mariah: There, there was a lot of things that occurred all at the same time. So it's like I said, I went on this trip and I was like, oh wow. Like. I actually need, I need more spaciousness. Like, I took a two week vacation and went to Maine and, you know, uh, spent some time kind of out of my bubble and was like, oh, in order for me to do this more, it was basically like, hi, a hiking trip.

I like to hike, you know, hiking every day. That's the thing. And so, um, I was like, in order for me to hike every day and just have, uh, do this differently, then like, I would really have to change a lot of the structure of how things are set up right now. Um, and that was part of it. And then all these other factors came in where at the same time I had, so my, my company structure within my 20 employees, me and then three directors, so like a VP and then a director of

program and delivery, and the director of sales and marketing, and those are like my three like highest managers in the company. And all three of them for different and personal reasons, ended up leaving their roles within like a couple weeks of each other. So one of them was like going to have another child.

One of them was, you know, about to go on parental leave. One of them moved to a different country, uh, to be closer to their family. Like one of them, uh, was going down to part-time. And so even though she stayed with us, she like couldn't be a director because of the, her limited hours. So it was like all three of my, and these are, these are people who had been the, the managers of my company for five years.

Like, it wasn't like, you know, these are people who've been in the company. Basically running the day to day for a super long time. And so when the three of them, for totally different personal reasons, transitioned out in a very short timeframe, it was a moment where I was like, I can either replace this, you know, fill these roles, replace all of these managers, which I knew would be extremely challenging.

Like having people who have been in the company since day one and had been with us for 5, 6, 7 years and then like, you know, replacing that is just like, that's gonna be really hard.

Marie: And time consuming, which is what you wanted more

Mariah: And yes, and like I didn't wanna bring. I was, I'm always, I never really wanna bring people in from the outside, but it didn't really make sense the way that things were structured.

It didn't really make sense to fill those roles internally. It was just like a lot. And so I kind of had this moment where I was like, I'm gonna take a take a step and I'm gonna pause. I'm not gonna rush to refill those roles and I'm gonna see what happens and let's see like how we can do with that.

I think at that point, with all these team changes, people had come and gone by that point, we maybe had like 10 or 12 people. I think that was just kind of a catalyst of then exploring of like, well, if I don't rehire for those roles, what, and I'm having these thoughts about like, I need to create more spaciousness in general.

Like, the pandemic is not, I'm not gonna be at my house. 40 hours a week anymore. You know, like, I'm not gonna be will, I'm not willing to be like doing all of that at my computer at that, even though it's like when I ha when you have such a big team, you're not really doing a lot, but you're just like there in case

people need you, you know? Yeah.

You're just coordinating. You're just there in Slack. Like people are messaging you, asking you for stuff and asking you questions and you're essentially coaching like your team. So I was doing a lot of that. It was like a moment where I was like, this can, I can either just like hop back onto what I've been doing.

Or I can take this as an opportunity to really reassess. And I did reassess and ultimately decided I wanted to create like some spaciousness in my calendar, in my, just like the pace that we were going at. Again, if I was like, wow, that, that vacation was really nice, it was really nice to be able to like take off for two weeks.

If I wanna do that, you know, more often or I just wanna have a different schedule, then I'm gonna have to make different change, different changes to the way that our programs are delivered, the way that we structure things, what we sell, what our team looks like. Um, and so it took, you know, obviously months to actually like figure out, there's definitely a few months of just kind of stasis of like, we're not gonna rehire for those roles, but let's just like keep doing what we're doing and, and see how it goes without them.

And then slowly realizing like, okay, I think the next, I think what I really need is like. Truly just time to like experiment and play and figure things out and try new things. Because one thing that happens when you have a bigger team and you've been doing something so successfully for so long in a very specific way, is I definitely noticed that I got a little trapped in this idea of like, this is what works.

This is how we do it, this is what creates the results. Like it was all very predictable. It was like you run the ads, you get this many clicks, this many people enter the funnel, this is our conversion rate and this like, this is how it works. And, and everyone in the company has a role that is very specifically tied to that system, right?

Like they're like, that person does this role and it causes this part of the system and this person does this role. When someone joins the program and this person does this role, you can't change it. Without changing everyone's jobs, you know what I mean? So I can't like launch a new product because I have an idea for something.

I mean, I could do something small, but I couldn't really make like changes like that because it's like that's what what everyone is roles are like attached to. Exactly, yeah. And they're attached to like, that pers that function of the system. And so I definitely got stuck in this idea of like, this is the only, this is the way we do it.

This is how it works. And I just felt like, I think that there's a huge difference. I'm sure you guys know this, there's a huge difference between what I would call a creator founder versus A CEO and having gotten to the point where like. We got like the Inc 5,000 fastest growing companies in America.

Like we did all this stuff, we hit all these milestones and I thought, I, I, I genu, I thought I was a CEO. Like I thought I was CEO material at that point. But then when we hit 5 million in a year, and I thought, okay, so next year we'll go to 10. And I was like, uh, no, that's not what I want. I was like, I don't, I don't want, I

Marie: wanna

make more shit.

Mariah: right?

I wanna make, I wanna break things. Like, not only do I wanna make shit, I wanna break shit. I want to do that I'm a creator. And having this like total identity crisis of being like, oh shit, I thought I was a CEO manager person. And I, you know, I still am like best, best friends with pretty much all of my employees.

Um, and so I definitely, like, I know that people will say. Mariah, you were a great manager. You were, and I don't say that to like toot my own horn, but like I know that what we had in terms of a company culture was extremely rare and very special. And I enjoyed and loved working with the humans that I got to work with.

And I, like I said, I'm still like very, very close friends with pretty much all of them. I think that me slowly coming to this like realization of, I think I, I think I wanna do creator stuff again, which is not really conducive to being the CEO of a company with a lot of employees and people who need to know what's happening next quarter so they can plan accordingly.

Um, and so in, yeah, so by the beginning of 2023, it's just me and one other person and, uh, he's my like, ride or die just like we

Marie: So you shrank down to two. That's

Mariah: Yep. Yeah. Me and one other person and, uh, and, and that has given me the space to just experiment and try so many different things. It's like, I don't know what we're doing next month.

We'll figure it out. And so I think identifying like kind of coming back to, I guess, you know, my, my roots or whatever of like starting this business as a creator. And I think so many of us, this is something I, I've been thinking about a lot, I've been writing about a lot. It'd be great to like publish some ideas about it, but I think there's just.

There's just this, this place where our paths diverge and you're either like a creator, founder, where you have that like entrepreneurial spirit where you want to like create a new thing all the time or you discover like, I've also had the pleasure of working with people who really discovered that there's zone of genius is being a true CEO.

Like they actually really enjoy the manager part of it and they really find their like zone of genius in that experience of becoming a manager, becoming a CEO. Just taking something that's working and continuing to refine it is like they're so genius at that, have lots of friends who are like that. But I think for me, I was like, huh.

I guess at the end of the day, like I can only really CEO for so long before I just really wanna make and break stuff and like try new things, rather than maintaining and managing.

[00:36:10] How did you learn that you wanted to be a creator and not a CEO?

Marie: Where did you hear that framing? Because I, I think sometimes even just hearing a framing like that, like, oh, there are CEOs and there are creators cEOs is so permission giving, and you're like, oh, that's the thing. I, I just didn't know it had a name. Like, it's okay. It's like how did you, I guess, arrive at that conclusion and realizing there was a different path for you?

Mariah: That's a good question. Probably just lots of crying, lots of feeling like a failure.

Marie: Oh

Mariah: wondering what's wrong with me? Why can't I just keep doing this thing that's successful that everyone wants me to keep doing? Um, and then, yeah, I, I don't know. I That's a great point. I don't know where, you know, that sort of moment happens where you're just like, I guess, you know, I think, I think I was, I felt so lonely going through that.

Like I felt, thank God for my best friends who like, are like, I could talk to about that stuff, but still like, from a business owner perspective, I felt so lonely. And I felt like, am I the only person who's like actually realizing that I enjoy? Do you know how there's all this rhetoric about like, you can only do CEO tasks, or like you can only do like thousand dollar an hour tasks and you should delegate the rest.

I love doing bullshit. I love doing bullshit tasks. Like I

want to

Marie: pages

and, yeah.

Mariah: let me, let me fuck around with a landing page. Let me do this. Let, like, let me, I wanna write my own emails. I wanna do like, I like setting shit up on the back end. Like, let me do that. And I think, you know, when you just kind of are feeling like, am I, that is not, that is not what a CEO is going to keep doing.

And there's a lot of like playing pretend with that, of being like, okay, like I'm, I'm only gonna do CEO tasks now, but realizing that I missed making the like. Fun stuff. Like I miss making my own sales pages and making my own, you know, uh, everything and just doing all the little dirt details. Um, and I think at the time, like I said, I felt very lonely going through that and like I was probably the only one.

But since then, I feel like now we've seen tons of people on YouTube or talking about this, where people have. Downsized their teams or downsized their businesses or talked about, like realizing that they wanted to get back to the place of being a creator and less so a business owner first or less so like a manager and a CEO and more so a creator.

Whether that means that's for them, that was writing or making YouTube videos or podcasting or whatever it was, it's like you kind of start as a creator and then you become a business owner. But I now, I feel like there's lots of us that have realized, oh, we actually kind of wanna stay, stay in our creator lane, um, as much as we can.

There's always gonna be business stuff, but you know, more, more 80% creator stuff.

Marie: I think we can both Ben and I can relate to that. I mean, I think Ben got away from coding for a long time and it's this like, yeah, I'm a business owner, but also I really just love programming things. I love building things. I love making software. What if I wanna build a side project for fun? Like, why can't I build our own tools?

This is what, you know, gets me lit up. And so it's funny how we, we go into entrepreneurship to have independence and freedom, then we end up creating our own little jail and being like, wait, what? Why did I, why did I make these walls for myself? It can be different, right?

Mariah: And you don't know it.. Like you don't know until you reach that. And like I said, I had no, there's no part of me that thought that like, oh, I'm going down a path that like isn't gonna end up where I want it to. Or like, oh, this is like, I'm gonna one day realize that I actually, and, and all of this is, feels so temporary.

You know what all of this feels like. Uh, the way that I am feeling today where I'm like, Ooh, I really just want space to like, build things and explore and experiment, try things without necessarily them having to be this like perfectly optimized machine. I could feel very differently about that in two years.

Right. And I don't pretend that I'm gonna feel the same way about that. Who knows, maybe two years from now I'm like, yeah, I'm ready to do this thing again, or I'm ready to do it differently or whatever. Um, but I think, I think it's just, you know, I don't, I don't think it's, any of it is permanent in terms of like, oh no, this is at least, I don't know, maybe for other people, but at least for me, I'm like, this is, this is who I am today, but I don't know who I'll be a year from now.

So who knows? But it feels like there's not necessarily like, oh, okay, this is who I am at my core and therefore I will never change or experience something different. Um. It very well may, but yeah, there's definitely no part of me that was like, oh, this is not, you know, this is gonna become overwhelming or this is gonna, this isn't conducive to like my creator personality or anything, until I just kind of like hit me over the head one day, I guess.

Ben: Yeah, I wanna say. that the marker of the creator CEO role is some sense of elasticity and optionality. Um, what I've noticed, and at the end of last year, Marie and I went down from three to two, just the two of us again. And so, and that forced us into doing support emails again 'cause we were not maintaining our support inbox and,

I don't actually like doing support emails so much, but being in that inbox again made the business feel so much more alive to me again. And I started noticing all these patterns and things that I was not aware of. Uh, that made, made me more interested in, well, what could we do differently here and how could we optimize this?

And now we have like a sense of, a much more sense of people are being supported in a very, very, real way, uh, because the two of us are actually taking turns on answering people, and it's a little more distributed now than it was when we initially took over that inbox. So I love that the spaciousness is like, you know, maybe flexing in and out.

And that elasticity allows you to go from, you know. 10 people to one person and back and notice what's different. So it's this, it's this observational phases and you talk about the seasons, and I think those observational season seasons are really important to notice what works when it's just me. What works when it's 20 people, and then being able to quickly transition between those things.

Because sometimes stuff happens and you have to take over a role that you maybe weren't doing the next day. And so that elasticity allows you to really effectively move from different roles. So yeah, the creator, CEO is definitely, you know, when you're, when you're, when you're managing 20 people, you don't really have that, that flexibility or the spaciousness to be like, I'm gonna do support today.

'cause then somebody's gonna be like, Hey, you're stepping on my toes.

Mariah: Exactly. Yeah, that would be the worst if you to get in there and someone would be like, why do you hate the way I do my job? You'd be like, no, that's not it. I'm just bored. Like, yeah, no, that, we always would like create things like that where it's like, oh yeah, let me get in over there.

Like, what's going on over here? But really like when you have that sort of team, you just need to let other people do what they do, um, and do, do their jobs. But it's so interesting. I love the way that you. Specifically phrase that as elasticity. That's, I think that's aligned with what I was trying to say is like, I, it doesn't feel like, oh, this is how I'll always be, or this permanence, but just that ability, knowing that you can and probably will move back and forth like a, like the pendulum or whatever, right.

Where you can just fluctuate through those things and not make it mean anything about you as a person too. Because I definitely think like, you know, you can have feelings of failure or not meeting other people's expectations or like you let people down. At the end of the

day, it's like you gotta, you gotta explore, explore new things.

Ben: Yeah. I love the pendulum metaphor too, because I've always thought of it as, oh, the pendulum swing, and it's like you're imagining it sort of a, as a wrecking ball as it goes back and forth. But then I try to think of it as more of like, oh, you ride the pendulum. So it's like we, like, you know, the, the change is actually, yeah.

Is actually really enjoyable. Swinging back and forth to those extremes along the way.

Mariah: Yes, yes. I love that. Yes, it should, it should be fun. That's the thing. I mean, like so many people take themselves so seriously and I just would like to have fun and explore. I love to make things, love to build things, love to unbuild things, uh, love to rebuild things much to everyone's dismay, and I just think everyone should expect it to change.

Like I've really, I think I've really had to set some reset expectations with just like people in general and just been like, you should always expect me to change. You should always expect me to evolve. Like it's very frustrating when people, which could just be the general public or people that you interact with when some of them do not like when you

shift or change or evolve, or like you have a new idea and it's different than your old idea and you can just, again, as a creator, that feels very suffocating and like hemming you in when you just want to be like, well, everyone should always expect that every year, maybe every six months I'm gonna go through a total reinvention and it will look totally different.

So if you're like, oh, I want something that's really consistent, or I wanna like, I don't know. You know what I mean? It's like, if you just want me to like be doing the same thing 10 years from now, then like, don't follow me. 'cause I won't be

like I will disappoint you.

Marie: It's okay to outgrow. Like if my stuff isn't resonating with you anymore, you can hit that unsubscribe button. So there's like a weird audacity that people are like, I don't like the copy on your sales page. And you're like, that's okay. Right? It's, it's

Mariah: Bye. Yeah. Yeah.

[00:46:31] Being a destroyer and not always a creator

Ben: I really like the, I. You seem to have this sort of, um, more than just a creator, but you're also talking about like this identity as a destroyer or a, or, you know, this kind of, you know, we always, we are always talking about creativity and, and, and it being, making new things all the time and what's the next thing we're making and, uh, I like that you're, you're having this like disassembly as part of your identity.


Mariah: Yeah, that could be like my wrestling name.

I love wrestling. Yeah, that would be great. Um, thank you for pointing that out, Ben. That's actually like very profound. I'm gonna journal about that later. I didn't even catch that, but that's a really good point. And I do feel like it's just as much my job to un unbuild

things and destroy things and yeah, dismantle and like, um, just re rearrange things all the time.

Um, and that's so part, so much a part of it. I mean, you really can't especially without like, what do they call it? Like the fertile ground of failure. You really can't like do anything, you know, you really do. Sometimes it's gotta burn it down so that new plants can grow there, as we know.

'cause we're permaculture people.

Marie: exactly.

Mariah: Yes.

Marie: Another reason I'm sure that a lot of your, your language resonated with me and, um, and I appreciated you modeling those changes in real time. Like you would be teaching one thing and then you'd be like, you know what, we tried this, we noticed this isn't working anymore, so here's what we're doing instead.

So there was this really interesting real time, Hey, I don't have to have all the answers, but I'm sharing with you what I'm learning as I'm learning it. And that was a very different model than a lot of the sort of guru with an online course authority figure type thing. It was a very different, almost like as a peer, you're like, let me show you in behind the scenes of what's working for us.

And I just, I really appreciated that very different approach. It was, again, very permission giving that like, you can do this differently in a way that aligns with you.

Ben: I also got to sort of experience whenever Marie would be in the kitchen during Hi, her high ticket hybrid experience was hearing all of these different people talking about their different businesses. And I was like, oh damn, this is like, the value here is just you are being

set up, aligned, integrated with so many different ways of thinking and so many different, incredibly successful businesses. 'cause there is a value to having a price point where we're expecting most of the people that are in the program to have a certain success, uh, level of their business already to be able to afford that high ticket.

Um, so that was just so interesting to see. Oh, wow. Like the value here is actually the, the evolution of a community rather than it being like. A fixed curriculum thing that everybody is doing. It's like, what is working of that curriculum for all of these people? That was super interesting to see.

Mariah: That's such a good point. Like it's just how it's being applied and customized to everybody. And I think that's where, you know, these programs are alive. Like they're little organisms that continue to change and evolve and shift all the time, which is why passive income is fake and not real because people who are like, create a course, it's passive income.

Meanwhile, people like us are like updating our

courses every three months, rerecording everything, being like, oh yeah, here's a better way to do things and here's this and here's that. And like, let's do a workshop about what a, this new experiment. And like, I just think all those programs, those courses, those digital products, they are alive.

They're always changing, they're always being updated. Um, and it's, I mean, it's rare. There's, there's some stuff that I think can be like. You know, it's a timeless principle and it doesn't change that much. But I think for, you know, I know you guys, I'm sure with your programs have to do the same thing where it just has to be kept.

It's a, it's a living organism. It has to be kept, uh, updated all the time. And that's also part of it where it's like, if you get to the point where you're like, I am not excited about updating this particular piece of it or this particular version of it. I wanna build some, I wanna build a new thing. And sometimes it gets to that point where you're like, I've been updating this, but I think it's ready for like, a whole new iteration, you know?

Um, and sort of like in a, in a bigger way, which maybe happens every couple years.

[00:50:55] What does your current iteration look like?

Marie: Which I think would maybe be a good segue to talking about your most recent iteration and the Creator Party, the monetize. Like how did you arrive, maybe you could give us a little background on kind of what it looks like now today with you and your, you know, one other team member, and even just like what are the support needs look like on your end too, for managing it?

Yeah. What is, tell me a little bit more about the Creator Party and Monetize with Mariah.

Mariah: Yeah, we, we simplified things so much, um, and last year that looked like different. There was different things going on at different times. So like at the beginning of 2023, we launched a program called Profit Architecture, which was a bundle of lots of our legacy programs, um, that had not been available, like to purchase as a self-study experience until that point.

Um, so we did that and that was where I. Transitioned our support to being a private podcast feed. So we have a, instead of getting on Zoom calls or office hours or q and a calls where people ask their questions live or they submit them and I answer them live, um, in order to create that spaciousness. And I wanted to have more of a, like evergreen asset, like a, an f, A Q that people could go back and listen to over and over again or whenever they needed something.

I wanted to create a more useful library of FAQs rather than, you know, as you can imagine, just sifting through a bunch of two hour call recordings, like, who's gonna do that? So that's when we launched the private podcast now has like 70 something episodes on it of like frequently asked questions and strategy questions and stuff like that.

Um, so that was one way that we sort of like changed the delivery and the structure of our programs, um, in order to be. Supportable by just two people, you know? And then midway through the year, we, through our partnership with school launched a new program called Monetize, which incorporates a lot of my classic stuff for launching, creating digital products, but with the added sort of perspective of creating subscription products, um, which is something that is new for me.

So again, experimenting, playing, trying new things. Last year, uh, we, that was the first time that we launched a membership with really like that monthly subscription type thing. And so we've been doing that since I think September of 2023. And so we've, we've definitely launched and created a handful of different things, and this year I have a whole new idea, so I feel like it's a little too early to share exactly what it is.

I'll tell you, Marie behind the scenes. Um, but I have a whole, I have a whole new idea and it'll be something totally different. I have no idea when it will be ready. 'cause it, it's, it's like, you know, it's like I said, there's times for iteration and there's times for just building something brand new, um, which is always so fucking hard and scary and like truly, you know, why do we sign up for this?

I don't know. I dunno why we do this to ourselves, but it's like, you know,

you get a little creative spark. Yeah. It's a compulsion and you're just like, well, I have an idea and I must express it in this way. There's more fun stuff to come, but I feel like we had, we had a lot of fun last year trying out lots of different things, and then I just, I just like to take all of those things and turn them into learnings, lessons, what can I take from all of that and share with people to try to help them and make everyone else's journey a little easier, hopefully.

Marie: I love that.

[00:54:29] Why would you intentionally avoiding big opportunities?

Marie: One of the things you mentioned on Instagram that I was a little shocked by, but I would love to dig into if,

Mariah: mm-Hmm.

Marie: you're open to it, you said, I very intentionally avoid big opportunities because I'm terrified of more eyeballs. So with a move to a more subscription model, obviously there's, there tends to be a need for more, more eyeballs.

Right. Um, so I'm kind of, tell me a little bit more about this fear, because you have the brand of fearless, C-E-O-I-I have always, I guess, thought of you as someone who's very fearless, but maybe it's in the delivery, right? Like the podcast is, is audio or that sort of thing. So where, I guess, where is that fear of visibility for you?

What does that look like?

Mariah: Yeah, so I have definitely a huge fear of visibility of getting in front of like a bigger audience, I think. I think like some people want some level of recognition. They might use the word fame, like some small amount of fame or something like that. I definitely do not want that. I definitely do not like I, there's no, I don't know what, I don't know why, but I just like no part of me, I always said I wanna be. I always said, like, if I could just work with the same hundred clients for like my whole career, that would be great. That would be ideal. And honestly, I have kind of like, I do have like a kind of a, a cohort of like clients that I have legitimately been working with since 2015, who I still work with today.

Um, I'm very lucky and, and love them. And it's like at this point I don't, you know, we're, we just come as a package deal. But I feel like, I feel like I always, even if I can't necessarily identify where my fear of visibility comes from or stems from, like not wanting to be seen, not feeling like it's, feeling like there's just a lot of like bullshit that would come along with a certain level of being known.

Um, and that that's not something like, that's just not compelling to me. It's not appealing to me. Um, but also feeling, I feel like. The result of this has been that I've always hyper, hyper-focused on like efficiency and optimization and maximizing the, like, conversion of having a very small audience.

Like our audience size compared to our revenue makes no sense whatsoever. Makes no sense. People would be like, and all, all the time people who look at who, you know, look at my audience size and they're like, how are you making this much from such a small audience's like, well, I've sort of built everything to do the most with the least, which is one of my favorite Eames quotes is like, do the best for the most with the least.

You know? And how can you, how can, I don't know. I feel like it's caused me to figure out conversion and figure out. Really like optimizing for things instead of just growing bigger, bigger volume audience, which always felt really like hard for me. Like growing volume always, always feels hard for me. Um, and I've, you know, I've, I've, you should see the things that have landed in my inbox that I said no to because I was afraid of the, like, the

Marie: So it is actively holding you back right

Mariah: Oh yeah.

I'm like, oh my gosh, I don't want like this per this, like, very well-known person wants me to come on their podcast and they have a million downloads a month. And like, well, what if I just say the dumbest thing ever while I'm on their podcast? Like, what if,

what if I, what if I totally messed that up? Or like, what, or like my worst nightmare would be,

being asked to like, go and like do an interview on television or something. Like, I, I would just, I mean, I've said no to that multiple times. Like that would just straight up be a no for, for me.

Marie: I find this so fascinating, right? Because you podcast so much and you speak off the cuff so often, but you are afraid of saying the wrong thing in front of a larger audience.

Mariah: Yeah. It's like, I genuinely feel like, oh, I'm comfortable with like. I love, I love to work with the people that I know and that I'm comfortable with. And I feel like my audience, that I know, I know everybody, like, I mean,

Marie: Yeah. There's an

Mariah: person. But yeah, there's like a coziness of like, we, we've, you know, we know we know each other and like, I know you, you know, and I'll just be like, you guys know what I'm talking about?

Or like, you guys know me. Whereas if it was in front of a large audience who didn't know me, I would be like, oh, I have to really explain myself instead of being like, oh, you guys just, you guys just know how I am. And it's funny too, because I come from, uh, I'm a musician. I'm a singer. I have no problem.

. I was in a touring band. I can sing and play guitar on stage for however many people, and it doesn't bother me whatsoever because it's a. It's like a alter ego, right? It's like a different person. It's like another part of you takes over.


Marie: But now you've got Mariah the Destroyer. That can be your,

your alter

Mariah: and I love it. And I love it. I'm about to, yeah. I'm about to book myself on all those podcasts and be like, here I am. Um, yeah. And I, I think there's something though, so like, it's one thing to kind of get up there and sing a song and play music and feel like it's this, like, artistic representation of something.

But I think the idea of like, if I share my thought, it's like my, yeah. Like it's my brain. It's my real, it's not like a, it's not a character that's singing on stage. It's a, it's an actual, like that's just me. And, uh, who knows what people will think about that. So, so I've, yeah, I've definitely like. I've stayed, uh, I've stayed small in, in that department because I, I like to kind of keep it cozy.

Um, and I want, I want the people who resonate with, you know, with this to, to find me and I want us to, to hang out. But if, but it's like, I just recognize that, I don't think it'll ever be like a mainstream, super popular thing because I'm, I'm definitely not for everybody, as you know, like, for sure. Um, and just feeling okay with that.

Yeah. I don't know. It definitely is something I've, I've been thinking lately. The reason I mentioned it to you too recently was because this has been on my mind a lot lately, is figuring out where is this visibility fear, and where is it something that could. Shift with therapy or work or mindset or something like, I don't know.

Or, and because I would really like to stay a very small team, like I would like to stay a team of two. And I recognize that the highest form of leverage that we have on the internet is audience size. It's either audience size or price, right? So I can play with pricing, I can play with optimization and conversion, which is what I've typically done.

If I wanna play with the other lever, it's audience size. And that if you have a very large audience, you can have a one or two person team and you know, still grow with the right product suite and stuff like that. Um, so it's very top of mind for me is kind of trying to figure this, figure that out. But. I don't know.

I mean, do you feel like that? Do you feel like Yeah, if you guys like got super, like, I just like, like the worst thing in the world to me sounds like going viral. That sounds like the worst nightmare. So I don't make any social media content because that would suck.

Marie: I think both Ben and I can can relate to that. And you know, even friends of ours, like Thomas Frank and folks that have large, large YouTube followings, you see some of the, you see them put out work and then you see some of the, the questions or trolling comments or whatever, and you think you kind of have to be ready for a bit of that if, if you're ready to scale, right?

Like you, you know, that it kind of comes with more critique or more energy or effort or whatever that looks like. So there's, there's definitely a part of that that's like, oh, you know, do I wanna dip my toe into that?

Ben: Notion just acquired this company called Skiff last week. And a lot of the Skiff customers are saying things like, I will never forgive you for this. Like, you know, that kind

Mariah: harsh.

Ben: yeah. So then that's, that's what, that's what you're dealing with at that scale. That when you make a decision that is not conducive to somebody's expectations of you as a business, that you're gonna end up really upsetting people.

Um, so yeah, that, like, dealing with that eventuality, 'cause it's probably gonna happen to most businesses in the future, um, is a real, it's a real, uh, scary prospect. I think sometimes, especially for these solo creator businesses where your whole business is around your, like, identity online and not like a separate product that you've created.

But this is me that we're criti cri critiquing versus a product that we're critiquing.

Mariah: Yeah. And like your relationship with those people is what, it's

all, all based on real relationship or parasocial or whatever type of relationship it is. Um, yeah, that's really tough and I don't envy that. Yeah, it definitely takes a unique person to wanna pursue that level of being known, I guess,

Marie: Yeah.

Mariah: I don't know.

I don't know. Lots to explore and excavate with that.

Marie: Yeah. Well, I guess, you know, saying, saying yes to podcasts and saying yes to the scary asks that come into your inbox, like, you're, you're gonna learn so much by saying yes to some of those things, right? It's like, oh, maybe that wasn't as scary as I thought. Or, you know, who knows

Mariah: Marie you're coaching me to, to doing all the things.

Marie: I know you wanna do them, Mariah, go and destroy it. Yeah. Well, it's like I've, again, I've been so influenced by your work and your ideas, and they've shown me in a way, like, oh, I can actually be myself in my business without judging myself. Like, why am I holding myself back? And so I just think about. What could happen if your ideas were operating at a bigger scale?

I think, you know, your work would touch so many more people in a really positive way, even if it's not for everyone. And I would just love to see more people. Like, I'm always shocked. I'm like, what do you mean you've never heard of Mariah Coz don't you, people know? So I would

Mariah: little secret,

Marie: Yeah.

Yeah. Totally.

Mariah: little best kept secret. Um, yeah, no, I, I, I think that's funny. And, and that's the thing is like, I, you know, I've worked, I've worked with a lot of high profile people. Again, don't envy, I don't, I don't envy their situation whatsoever. Especially having been behind the scenes of a lot of,

you know, those more ho high profile creators or actual celebrities and business owners and people like that, that we've worked with.

Um, and yeah, it's hard, it's hard to like, see the feedback, but I so appreciate that, Marie. And thank you. I appreciate that.

That's why I, I like, I like little ideas. I mean, I wish that my ideas could be out there without me. That'd be great.

Marie: Mm.

Mariah: What does that look like?

Marie: Yeah. What does that look like?

Mariah: Hmm.

I don't know. Don't think



[01:05:56] Do you use any AI tools in your work currently?

Marie: Chat? GPT, I'm curious, are you using some, you know, chat GPT and

Mariah: I don't, I'm such a weirdo. I don't use AI for anything. I dunno. Any, I don't know anything about it. , It's weird, there's like never a moment where I think, oh, I need, like I, I want some, I want help like putting this, I'm like, I either have a very specific way of writing something that I want it to be me or I don't know.

There's not, like I'm, I'm not doing volume. You know, when I could've used chat, GPT would've been when I had to create, you know, 20 versions of the same ad every two weeks, right? Like, that would've been good. But I'm not doing that anymore. I'm not doing any like high volume. I'm not writing Instagram captions.

I'm not doing like high volume output of content. I'm doing very careful slow content, you know, where I'm like, Hey, when I have something big to say. I'm gonna fucking say it in two, in a two hour podcast episode. But there's no, like, there's no version of, there's no, you know, um, hey, summarize this into, you know, blah, blah, blah.

There's no version of it right now that looks like that.

Marie: Amazing.

[01:07:07] What's the best way for people to find out more about Mariah Coz?

Marie: Well, what's the best next way for people to engage with your content and get introduced to your ideas? I mean, obviously you've got your, your podcast, the Mariah Coz Show. You've got your creator, creator,


Mariah: Creator Party. Uh, yes, I have, I would say the podcast Mariah Coz show. And if you want to get some more free trainings and videos and workshops and stuff that I've done, I have a community on school. It's called Creator Party. If you go to creator party.co, it'll take you there. Um, it's free.

And inside I have like a free mini course. I have a bunch of free trainings. A bunch of workshops, and even some of my like paid courses are in there that you can unlock with

Marie: of your, even your free stuff. Like there's so much good stuff in there to learn from. So like, yes.

Mariah: Thank you. Yeah. And then I think I'm gonna try to, one of my goals this year is to launch like a themed newsletter. You know, it's like I have an email list and I send emails to my email list, but I have an idea for a themed newsletter. So if you wanna get on my email list, so you start getting these new newsletters, which will be called The Creator Confessions, where I will just have my existential crises in public for everyone to watch

Marie: me up.

Mariah: in their emails.

Then, uh, yeah, could definitely go to Mariah Coz.com and uh, sign up for the email list so you can get all that stuff. We'll see all that mind vomit.

Marie: It's so valuable. Like when, when you are thinking about stuff and you're noticing trends and you're kind of noticing what's happening, like I always feel like you're 10, 20 steps ahead. So I just, I love your insights and love the way your brain works.

Mariah: Thanks. Feel the same about you, Marie.

Marie: Amazing.

Mariah: Awesome. Thank you. Thank you both so much. This was so much fun. Love it.

Creators and Guests

Benjamin Borowski
Benjamin Borowski
Notion warlock at NotionMastery.com, Systems at WeAreOkiDoki.com, volunteer firefighter, hacker, DJ
Marie Poulin
Marie Poulin
Taming work/life chaos with Notion • Leading NotionMastery.com • Online Courses • ADHD • Permaculture
Embracing the Creator-Founder Role with Mariah Coz
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