When I began working as a web and social media manager for Mooers Volvo in Richmond in 2010, Kathi Kruse quickly became a primary source for dealership digital best practice! Kathi is well know across the country as a social media marketing expert and is sought after for regional and national conferences. Her approach to word of mouth marketing in this digital age is a wake up call to many dealerships who struggle with implementing and managing social media. Her numerous calls to action in ebooks, blog articles and webinars are invaluable even beyond the automotive industry. It is my great pleasure to present her leadership ideas since she is truly an “Entrepreneur in Action”!
1. Career influences
Cal Worthington and Morrie Sage were my biggest influencers when I managed car dealerships. They were both awesome car men and both were genius in automotive marketing and advertising. They could sell cars like nobody else.
2. Biggest career success
Publishing my first book, “Automotive Social Business.” (Amazon.com link)
3. Recent lessons learned
I’ve learned that “everyone” is not my client. I belonged to BNI (Business Network Intl) and learned to narrow down who my customer really is. We have to align in perspectives, values and commitment. The more you define yourself, your brand and define your customer, the less time you spend on non-productive events.
4. What inspires and motivates
For inspiration I always make a daily ritual of consuming content that will inspire me. Blogs, podcasts, TV, meetups. I stay open to people and situations that I can learn from.
For motivation: I have a daily yoga and meditation practice. Some days I make it to class (2 hrs) and some days I spend only 20 minutes. It’s a way for me to recharge, rejuvenate my soul. That ensures I stay positive and motivated to handle whatever comes my way.
5. Share a leadership story
I’ve been a leader all my life. I never knew any other way, actually. I’ve had many, many traumatic experiences in my life including surviving the Northridge earthquake, the death of my husband, countless times of being fired and/or quitting horrible jobs working for tyrants and heart-breaking ends to relationships. Through all of it, even though I didn’t think I’d make it this last time, I have persevered. I just kept moving forward, even though it was like moving through mud.
6. Your Top Two
Embrace fear. Become comfortable with the absolute most worst thing that could happen. At some point, you realize it’s all an illusion and you’re able to let go. The strength is in the surrender, the letting go.
Fail often. Many think the road to success is a straight line. It’s not. There are many failures that come between you and success. Fail as much as possible. Become comfortable with it and you’ll achieve much more than you ever dreamed.
7. About Kathi
Kathi Kruse, Founder/CEO
Kruse Control, Inc.
Social Media Marketing, Coaching and Training.
Check out other featured “Entrepreneurs in Action”!