[FOUNDER SERIES] Beth Stephens of Soapbox Influence
Updated: Apr 13, 2020
A company's culture is important to its success because it differentiates them from their competition and it is essential for attracting the right talent and customers. This week, Beth Stephens of Soapbox, shares with us how they approach the essentials of building company culture that invites risk and growth within boundaries and expectations and the importance of LinkedIn for young and established businesses.
Soapbox is a spinoff of a larger company, Kendal King, who have been around for about 30 years doing work in the physical store space. They started pulling in blogs, social media, and influencer, but they still needed a digital element to further in store solutions. So, Soapbox started as a product of that company and grew into a division with a separate team that works with influencer marketing and customer insights. Soapbox highly credits their team members for all they have achieved; therefore, community is at the core of what they do because you don’t get to work in the space your in without investing in the people who make it possible!
Soapbox is unique in that they focus on making sure their team has all the resources they need to produce the caliber of work that their clients expect and they pride themselves in paying their content creators well and fast. They believe that when you take care of the members of your team and give them clear direction, in return they will produce the quality of work necessary. Furthermore, they make an effort to be a genuine company and appear like they are on their website. This helps with the company culture because being excited and believing in the work you are doing is a great way to motivate your team and encourage them to want to produce the best work possible. Second to equipping their team, Soapbox focuses on being unique when they come to the table with their product offerings because they found a niche and a need, and what they do is like solving a giant puzzle and the challenge of this is what motivates the to get out of bed in the morning with passion and enthusiasm.
“Flexibility is a way to give your employees freedom while still having parameters in place, and Soapbox sometimes elevates those in their company who may not necessarily be ready for it to give them the opportunity to stretch themselves and grow into their capabilities. ”
— BETH STEPHENS
Besides high quality work and a fantastic team, another great thing that comes from having a positive company culture is an attainable work/life balance. Being able to walk away at the end of the day even when everything you had to get done isn’t finished is important because you will not be able to give your best if you don’t take care of yourself when you get home. Having a company that aims to elevate their workers and build their confidence is vital for employees being able to step away from the work when appropriate. Moreover, when employees feel trusted by their employers and the company makes it clear that they have their back, team members will be less afraid to make mistakes and they will be able to leave at the end of the day knowing that they don’t have to stress about work because they aren’t being micromanaged. Flexibility is a way to give your employees freedom while still having parameters in place, and Soapbox sometimes elevates those in their company who may not necessarily be ready for it to give them the opportunity to stretch themselves and grow into their capabilities.
In addition to employee culture, Soapbox focuses a lot on the social media aspect of business and marketing. They view social media as a process because as a young business you can be so tempted to run out and get on every social media platform available, and it’s really easy to try and be relevant every single one. However, in doing this, you will do a disservice to each of them as you try to do all of them. When it comes to business, LinkedIn has to be your focus because it provides organic traffic and that is where your business leads are going to come from. Instagram is perfect in terms of popularity, but LinkedIn is where all the necessary networking is going to take place. Soapbox sees a direct correlation of immediate results when they reach out to current and potential customers directly. This is because LinkedIn allows you to be real and authentic, which is so important for brand image and fostering relationships. Company’s/business people should spend daily time on LinkedIn responding to comments and just interacting because that is how you start to build credibility and become a thought leader, which will in turn provide you with the clients you desire.
Overall, having an empowering and positive company culture results in amazing growth opportunities for the company and its team, and employees become driven to produce their best high quality work. This makes for an cohesives and authentic company who can then take that image and reach out to others via social media to further establish their reputation and place in their industry!