#46: Sarah McAllister [Scrappiness]
Building a Cleaning Army of nearly 2M Instagram followers
Sarah McAllister is the Founder, Director and CEO of GoCleanCo, a widely sought after cleaning company in Calgary, Alberta, Canada.
The GoCleanCo Instagram account serves more than 1.8M followers today with cleaning hacks and tips.
In this episode we talk about Sarah’s scrappy beginnings, how hard it was to even pay herself in the early days, accidentally selling out products on Amazon, and Sarah’s best advice for growing a following on Instagram.
Sarah McAllister is the Founder, Director and CEO of GoCleanCo, a widely sought after cleaning company in Calgary, Alberta, Canada.
The GoCleanCo Instagram account serves more than 1.8M followers today with cleaning hacks and tips.
As a serial entrepreneur, Sarah has been swinging for the fences since she was 20 years old. Now a proud mother of one, partner/wife and inspiring business leader, Sarah has worked her ass off over the last 15 years to build several successful, forward-thinking and female-led businesses. She is committed to building brands that empower women in their homes, lives and businesses.
click to view episode transcript
Sarah McAllister 0:00
This happened really fast for me and I was scrubbing toilets five days a week in March of 2020 that I don't forget how hard it is, like reality. You know, I don't feel like this is really reality right now.
Jay Clouse 0:15
Welcome to Creative Elements, a show where we talk to your favorite creators and learn what it takes to make a living from your art and creativity. I'm your host, Jay Clouse. Let's start the show.
Hello, my friend. Welcome back to another episode of Creative Elements. I wanted to start this episode with a quick shout out to UKRuns19, who left a review on Apple podcasts that absolutely made my day. And it reads, this podcast has accompanied me through COVID on my weekly 10 k run. As my pace increased, I'd run further so I could listen each episode out. Creative Elements feels like going on a road trip where every 50 to 60 minutes, you stopped to pick up a different hitchhiker, each sharing their story in their own unique way. Jay has a vision for where we're headed. So there's a clear forward momentum. But he's deeply curious about every well curated guest and the detours they might take us on and the detours are great. You don't have to be creative in the traditional sense to get a lot out of this podcast and lace up your shoes and take it for a ride. You won't be disappointed. Perhaps frustrated because wanting to stop every two minutes to capture something will seriously impact your average pace. reviews like this means so much to me, and really re energize me to keep making better and better episodes. So thank you, UKruns19 and if you have nice things to say as well. Please leave a review on Apple podcasts. I'd love to hear what you think about this show. Personally, I miss going for long runs outside. I really really hate treadmills. But living in Ohio it's been too cold and snowy to go out running for a long time. And I'm starting to feel a little bit cooped up. My fiance Mallory and I have been really cautious about lockdown for the past 12 months now. And in the beginning we were really, really cautious. We moved to having things almost exclusively delivered and Mallory built systems for us to disinfect our groceries and keep the house clean and Mallory actually loves to clean and she finds it calming and almost meditative. In fact, in the beginning of quarantine, Mallory got even more into cleaning and picked up a ton of new methods for cleaning different parts of the house. And she loves talking about cleaning too. I think it's really cute. One night we had an outdoor bonfire with our close friends and I caught her in action.
I use Bar Keepers Friend or I use water bleaching Tide, literally
I love cleaning vinaigrette.
A teaspoon of Tide, teaspoon.
Jay Clouse 2:42
You can only do that when I'm not home.
Teaspoon of Tide into a gallon of hot water and a third cup of bleach. You make a huge batch. A huge batch of cleaner. I use it on everything.
Jay Clouse 2:55
And then again a little bit later.
No, but here's what you do, instead of wiping them down. Get a horsehair brush attachment for your vacuum. I just got one and I did our all of our baseboards and maybe 10 minutes.
Jay Clouse 3:12
Well not to spill her secrets but Mallory learned a ton of this stuff, including that water bleach and tide mixture from GoCleanCo.
Well, it's an Instagram page, and then they made it into a Facebook group so people could talk about it on there. But this Instagram page blew up in a matter of three months. And now they're like
Everyone's like what else do I do? I guess.
Yes. Go find them on Instagram and then just like watch their highlights. You'll find a way to clean literally everything.
Jay Clouse 3:39
GoCleanCo is a cleaning company in Calgary, Alberta, Canada run by today's guest, Sarah McAllister. Sarah's team physically goes into homes in the Calgary area and cleans them. And they've been doing that since late 2018. Now you may be wondering why Mallory began following the Instagram account of a cleaning company nearly 2000 miles away from us. Well, the thing is, Mallory isn't the only person following this cleaning company. As of this recording, GoCleanCo has 1.7 million followers on Instagram alone. That's more people than the entire population of Calgary. She calls her followers the cleaning army in their community is very enthusiastic. So when Mallory told me about GoCleanCo I got really interested in having Sarah on the show. But before there was GoCleanCo there was Go Dog Co. Sarah's first successful service business in Calgary, where she built a team to walk people's dogs. And it was that dog walking business that introduced her to a completely new opportunity.
Sarah McAllister 4:38
With the dogs what happens is you get really involved in your clients, you know, day to day life because you become part of their family, you know, your walk their dog every single day for five to 10 years. We were really a part of their lives. And so they trusted us and asked me a lot of the time for cleaning referrals like hey, do you have a good housekeeper I just can't find someone that I can keep on or someone that's reliable lure. And so after referring it out a lot. I just thought like, I love to clean. Why don't I go do this and I'm always happy to do any type of a job in the business and I was there scrubbing toilets. Day one.
Jay Clouse 5:13
It feels weird to say scrubbing toilets is Sarah's specialty but it kind of is. The GoCleanCo Instagram account is fascinating for a lot of reasons. Sarah mostly utilizes stories rarely posting photos on her grid. Until the very end of 2020. Sarah herself was a total mystery. You heard her voice in nearly every video. But they were all shot in first person as she cleaned things like washing machines, baseboards, kitchens, and of course toilets. people responded to Sarah's very honest personality. And they tuned in from all over the world to see Sara pour her dirty mop water into toilets, and to hear how she got things. So clean, spoiler, water, bleach and tide.
Sarah McAllister 5:55
Cleaning is horrifying and a little bit fun. So if we can kind of change the narrative and look at it, like, make fun of myself, like oh my god, this is so gross. But it's also like, look how great it feels to get it done. At the end of the day. I identified with people with that and also put some humor into it. And it worked really, really well.
Jay Clouse 6:15
So in this episode, we talk about Sarah's scrappy beginnings and how hard it was to even pay herself in the early days accidentally selling out products on Amazon, and Sarah's best advice for growing a following on Instagram. Oh, and in case you're wondering, Mallory did consent to letting me use that audio, but she wasn't super happy about it.
This is good content babe.
Jay Clouse 6:38
I'd love to hear your thoughts on this episode. As you listen. You can find me on Twitter or Instagram @JayClouse. You can find Sarah on Instagram @gocleanco tag me, let me know you're listening. And if you're not already in our listeners community on Facebook, I'd love for you to join us. But now, let's talk to Sarah.
Sarah McAllister 7:01
We live in Calgary, which is a like boom and bust town where it's all oil and gas. So I think it was 2005. I was, you know, deciding what I was going to do with my life. I was pretty young and deciding if I was wanted to go to school to be a nurse or you know, I had all these grand ideas. And every day I went to the dog park and walked my yellow lab named Lucy and I eventually made some friends when I was there. And people said like, do you do this for a living because you're here all the time, three hours a day all the time. I just loved it. Like Calgary is so beautiful. We have a beautiful river valley. It's just the mountains are close. I spent a lot of time there. And eventually someone was like, could you walk my dog because I'm busy at work. And then it kind of became an idea. And, you know, I told my mom and she was like no go to school. And I was like, No, I'm gonna try this and see how it works. And at the time, I was working at a bar, and I was a waitress and I loved it. I loved I always did. It's like I loved being a waitress. And so I said, I'm going to, you know, start the dog walking company. I'll work at the bar at night and see how it goes. And like six weeks later, I quit the bar job and I was running a full blown dog walking business. It was just we were in this cycle in Calgary where everyone had a lot of money and no no time. And our footprint is really really spread out. So you know, a lot of people commute 45 minutes to work. So that add that on both ways. Your dogs are home for a long time by themselves. So just found a little gap in the market, I was one of the first ones who did it in the city. And then that grew and grew and grew. I think at the end of it, I had, you know, four full time staff members and part time people here in there. And I grew over the years. And I thought it was really really big. Like it was a huge deal to me at that time. But that was long before GoCleanCo came into the picture. So that's where it started. And that's where I got a taste to be an entrepreneur. And to this day, like, if you ever asked me I'm going to work for somebody, would I ever work for someone else? And the answer is no. So that's where I got the taste.
Jay Clouse 8:59
So at this point, when you when you said okay, I like this idea, and I think I can charge money to be a dog walker. Were you looking for something to sink your teeth into as an entrepreneur? Or was that just something that just kind of came as a result of wanting to walk other people's dogs?
Sarah McAllister 9:14
Oh, no, I love money. And it was kind of a funny spin on I love being outside. I'm a big believer in do what you love, like and you know, the money will come afterwards. It doesn't mean that you don't work a day in your life because you still work. And you know, even if you're really passionate about something, it still gets frustrating and you still have down days. So no, I wanted a job where I was active and I could be out and I could be having fun. I loved dogs. I still do love dogs and you know, I was able to identify that people needed that. And I liked finding things like a little bit earlier than the ahead of the curve, like thinking of things ahead of time and I like being someone who identifies that and then figuring out how to kind of make it into money. So yeah, and then it was funny to me that people were paying me to walk their dogs.
Jay Clouse 10:04
So how did how did Go Dog Co become GoCleanCo? or how did you decide, you know, I think I'm gonna open a second business now around cleaning.
Sarah McAllister 10:12
In between Go Dog Co and GoCleanCo there were multiple business ventures, as I said,
Jay Clouse 10:17
Oh, tell me about this.
Sarah McAllister 10:18
Lot Oh, just like little tiny ones like I thought it was gonna be a florist at one point, like out of my basement and my partner owns a woodworking company. And that's done really, really well. He's like an artist, and I've helped with that. And then oh, I wanted to start open up a secondhand store. I'm not a big brick and mortar person I don't like like that big of a commitment. But I wanted to open up a secondhand kids clothing store when my I had a business plan for that I thought about opening. I had a business plan for opening a massage studio like two years ago. And I'm not a massage therapist by any means. But we knew that was hot. But you know, 2020 thank goodness, we didn't we say this. We text all the time. Thank goodness we didn't open on that would have been really bad, you know? But yeah, so I kind of have the dog walking company. I had my daughter eight years ago. So I kind of had to step back from actually walking dogs for a couple years. Well, you know, you stay at home and take care. And so I really took on a little bit more of the helm of dirt, like owning the business and running it from the back end as opposed to being out there every day. I am a very operational entrepreneur. I like to know what everybody's without micromanaging not a micromanager. But I do like to know what every job entails. And I like to have been able to say I've done that.
Jay Clouse 11:29
Does the dog walking company still exist today?
Sarah McAllister 11:32
No, actually, when in March of 2020, when the pandemic hit and GoCleanCo exploded? I kind of had that to make that decision based on you know, which which path do I want to go down? Looky It was very, very hard for me, because that was a big security blanket to hold. Like, I've been doing the dogs for 15 years. You know, I knew everybody I did all that. But it was a business decision. And I chose we were close for a couple months. And then all my staff was contract. So I was able to just say, you guys can continue on, I'm gonna step back and you guys do what you want to do. And you know, I believe in karma. Let's see how this rolls out. And everybody's happy. It was a great deal. And I just wanted to be able to take every opportunity that was coming my way with GoCleanCo seriously and not be spread thin, which is one of my MOs.
Jay Clouse 12:19
Before the pandemic, and before things really blew up on the GoCleanCo side, were you and you were you were it anybody's other businesses was your idea that you were going to have kind of a portfolio of multiple businesses, or were you trying to parlay into something new to put full time effort into outside of the dog walking company,
Sarah McAllister 12:35
The dog walking company ended up being a pretty good residual income, you know, like I did a certain amount of work of certain amount of hours a week, and then I would have a little bit more free time. So I was really drawn to that model where like, set, build it from the ground up, and then eventually step back. So I and I, you know, everybody here is multiple streams of income is the way to go forward. And I'm always intrigued with something with trying something new. I'm not very scared. I'm not very leery of failure, like I don't, I'm like whatever. If it doesn't work, it doesn't work. I don't care. I tried. That's and that's kind of how I am with everything. At least give it an honest go and see what happens. cleaning company isn't the most glamorous thing to own. But I do did know that their profit margins were pretty good. And you know, if you can get into the commercial side of things, there's a lot, there's a lot to be said for that. That's not how it went. That was the original plan when we opened but yeah, so the plan was it has always been just to be an entrepreneur and like, own a bunch of companies and have my you know, what's the word for it? You know, you have all your pots going?
Jay Clouse 13:39
Yeah, yeah, streams.
Sarah McAllister 13:41
Streams of income. Yeah. Or like, you know, sticks in the fire. I like to do that. And I like to be I really like talking to smart people and entrepreneurs and seeing what they're up to, and what their plans are, and being parts of things that feel interesting and exciting.
Jay Clouse 13:53
Well, one less question on the dog walking front, because I think this is fascinating, and it's probably part of your story that's underplayed a little bit. Given that it was a 15 year experience. You know, I hear you say that you've always been interested in being an entrepreneur and earning earning an income and building multiple streams. But I'm guessing that a huge part of that dog walking company was sales and selling people on your ability to be the person to do this. Talk to me a little bit about how you approach sales. And if that's been interesting to you, or something that you've had to force yourself to learn and do.
Sarah McAllister 14:24
In the beginning, it was just a huge influx, because I was kind of the new person on the wall. Like it was a new concept and idea, right? 15 years ago, there was like four of us that were doing it we all had bound together kind of as different companies because we couldn't cover so much area. So I'd be like, Oh, go to Kevin. He's in the south. And so it was nice to work with other businesses. And it was a really great lesson to learn right at the very beginning about like, your fellow competitor isn't your competitor, like friend up with them because they're going if what they can't do, they will possibly send to you. And that was the best lesson to learn as an entrepreneur because I never think of anybody at this point of like, oh, Our biggest competition, it's like, no, what can we learn from them and they can send us business. But the thing, they don't do what we do, we all have our strengths. So that wasn't hard to really pitch it from that point of view. And then as the years went on, it got harder to sell withGo Dog Co. Because honestly, people became a little bit more particular is the word I would like to say about who was caring for their pets, and not saying that people were wishy washy about at the beginning, but in the last 15 years, the pet industry has gone into a billion dollar industry. And also, like, people are choosing not to have children, and these pets are everything to them. So you know, like, there was points where I'd be going to a third interview, in order for a dog walker to go and walk this dog, it was like, Oh, my God, right, you know, so, but you had to move and kind of change with it, and really, really tighten up your policies, you know, and like I had to be really tight on like, there's kind of a movement of not vaccinating your dogs. But then there's a huge group of people who are like, I do not want my dog round anybody other dogs that aren't vaccinated like you had, those were the things that sort of started selling us. And then also just being able to be reliable I had, the bigger my staff got, the less days we missed, because when you're independent, one two person company, if you can't go to work, because your kids sick, that's that, you know, whereas we were able to kind of fill the gaps if someone needed some time off, I would go and work for if someone went on holidays for two weeks, in the summer, I worked that whole time. And that stood us apart. But honestly, I'm pretty good at going and meeting people and saying, hey, like this is us, and I go with my gut, sometimes clients aren't always the best fit for us. And then vice versa, you know, I am we had a policy at the beginning where I say it and every I said it in every meeting, you know, you have a two week commit, like you sign on with us, and you can end it at any time. But if at any point in the two weeks, you don't like us, and we don't like you like no hard feelings, because we work really close with each other. So it's kind of like you're in your head, they're in your house, when you're not there, you have to trust them. They're taking your baby out of the house you want to really be able to and then also there's boundary too, people get really, really burnt out in the pet industry. Because now they're 72 people texting you to What color was my dog's poop today? And you're like, Oh, God, yeah. So there's a lot of stuff. And I will tell you that I like the cleaning industry now. Now more than and not just because I'm successful here, like much more successful, it's just a lot more hands off. And I actually didn't realize until now, looking back where I'm like, holy cow that took up a huge amount of time in my life and quality of my life.
Jay Clouse 17:30
So you start getting these inquiries of Hey, who can come help clean my home? And you said, I can do that? I'm gonna throw my hat in the ring. What was the time period on that?
Sarah McAllister 17:37
2018 November, so I think the website and stuff got a lot. Yeah, cuz we have that as like our whole our like birthday things. So it was like November 1 2018. And, you know, I think we clean like three houses a month. It wasn't that big of a deal. But it was a start, right? And friends, it was mainly people being like, Oh, yeah, or clients, dog walking clients, where they were like, Oh, my God, this is amazing. And then cleaning business is all word of mouth, right? and Instagram. So I pushed them there.
Jay Clouse 18:03
After a quick break, Sarah, and I dig into her love of cleaning, and how she grew the go clean her Instagram account in the early days, right after this. Welcome back to creative elements. Now, I don't know about you. But cleaning isn't particularly fun for me, I could probably talk for hours about the things I'd rather do than clean. So the idea of building an audience who expects you to be cleaning every day for their entertainment, it's not exactly something I would look forward to. So I asked Sarah, if she actually truly loves to clean.
Sarah McAllister 18:35
I talked about my mom a lot on Instagram, she's definitely like a clean freak, as we would say she loves everything clean. But that being said, like my lifestyle growing up as a kid, like it would get really, really dirty, and it would drive me crazy. But then we would binge clean and like everybody would clean for the whole entire weekend. And then we would get it would get into a huge mess again, you know, and now like as the type of personality that I am type A it's like, I can't do that. Like my house gets messy. I show it all the time. But I have to I have a I have like a threshold that I can cross before it before it gets to me.
Jay Clouse 19:06
And so you open this up and you figure Okay, I built the dog walking company, I could probably do this. Was the process of sales very similar, or did you approach things differently with GoCleanCo than you did with Go Dog Co?
Sarah McAllister 19:17
I approach things totally differently. I did everything that I didn't like I go Darko and I, everything that I didn't like a code on code I did. I took it and was like, this is how I'm going to do the cleaning company. So we kind of like based on the model of where the amazon prime of cleaning, you can like click a button and we come tomorrow. And you don't have to meet up with us to do like, we have lots of people email and say can you come and give me a quote we're like, we don't do that. You fill out the forms online. We identify what you need. We have a system we only clean one way you can't change it. This is how we are and this is how we do the best that we can do and then so they click book, pay. They give us access to their home. We show up, we leave they don't see us It's all over and seamless, kind of like a house elf, right? Like Harry Potter, we have all read that. So I wanted to really, and so I didn't want to take up that time of You know what, since my life too is not being me being away from my family on the evenings, meeting all these people and giving them clothes and cake tire kickers and all that stuff, it's kind of like this is what the price point is, give it be upfront about it straight up as much as we could and go from there. And honestly, millennial market does not want to waste any time at all. Meeting people and doing extra things like even a phone call is a pain in the ass for them. It's true, right? So and I am a millennial, I'm allowed to speak like this, I totally understand I am my target market. I'm 37. I think that's the fruit like I'm the first year of millennials. But honestly, this is the market that we were heading and it worked so well. And it's all about knowing you know who you're trying to sell to. So and it doesn't mean that we're only using millennials as our main client base now, but it was how we targeted them, and then went on all their platforms.
Jay Clouse 21:01
I wonder why that is because I'm in that demographic, too. And we do very much like like to self select things. We don't want to have a face to face conversation to get answers. And I wonder if that's a convenience thing, or if that like speaks to some sort of embedded cultural disdain for just conversation and social skills? You know, part of me thinks that that's probably a bad thing.
Sarah McAllister 21:20
No, I don't think it is. Because I think that it's convenience. And I think that we're better at managing our time than our parents were so and I think that that's it, it's like, well, do I and my feelings are hurt that they don't want to meet the cleaning team. Like, I'm like, score, like no one, I don't have to pay anybody. It's amazing. I don't have to spend time doing this. Really? Do you need to know who your cleaner is? People, many people will argue the old way that you should. And like you know, and there are lots of millennials who love that connection and the small business aspect of that. But we have great relationships with people that we've never met ever. So it's all about what you what you're selling. And if you can deliver on that then people like you.
Jay Clouse 21:59
How did you grow this in the beginning? What was your strategy for getting clients in the beginning of GoCleanCo?
Sarah McAllister 22:04
Originally, the plan was, like cleaning. And then I always love the Instagram Stories from the beginning. Like they worked well for the dog walking company as well, but not this well. Um, and Originally, I had booked like a coaching call with a pretty well known someone who wanted a million dollar cleaning company. Her name's she owns blissing Academy in Edmonton. And she was like, in five years, she did a million dollars in revenue. So I booked this thing with her and she have a, what's it called a coaching call just for a couple of hours. And it was really, really valuable. I knew her through a friend of mine. And she you know, said like use social media, you have to get out there, you have to do all of these things, which I already kind of knew, but I didn't plan this strategy. So originally, we were only posting like I was posting like pretty aesthetically pleasing houses, you know, the same thing you see on everybody's grid. And that got nothing like boring, boring, boring, right? And then I started showing like dirt. And people just started reacting to it and commenting and dming and asking questions. And then I just started giving away all the information for free, then I remember people saying to me, like, you're going to give away all your secrets. And I was like, I don't care. Like you can google how to clean anything at this point, as far as I'm concerned. So I'm happy to provide our methods and at least if somebody the value will be there when their neighbor is asking for a cleaner and they'll be like, hey, use these people on Instagram because they're always so nice to me and they always help out and that kind of was the plan and then it snowballed into, you know, getting kind of ballsy and called reaching out to local influencers and being like, Hey, I know you guys get paid for sponsored posts. Do you want your house clean for free? What's your rates? That's just what I started doing and honestly not one influencer has ever said no to us cleaning their house for free. And so to this day, I have spent $0 on advertising for this company ever.
Jay Clouse 23:50
Sarah McAllister 23:50
Which like influencer marketing is and say all you want to say about influencers I'm kind of like I'm a business owner and then now I'm an influencer which is hilarious because I know both sides of the like, you know both sides of the pendulum or whatever it is, but I can talk to both points. And honestly like if I wasn't an influencer and if I didn't know any of this that was the best possible move I could have ever made for the business because it doesn't mean I had to only use big influencers like yeah, it was a score to get someone who had 20,000 followers and go clean their house but some of them were you know 3000 followers micro micro and they had such a trusting following that they sent more business than someone with 20,000 followers so I didn't under estimate the like you know the value that they had. It costs me money and labor and supplies and everything like that but in the end we had to be like hey, we can only claim three influencers houses a month because to make it balance out kind of thing. And honestly it worked so so so well and I made up a contract for them without knowing anything about the influencer world which is pretty funny. Like I was like you guys got to do it in feed post. You have to do five stories. You know if you are unhappy with any and I use them as secret shoppers to so the girls didn't know whose houses they were going to which was a real estate smart thing to do. So the influencers themselves were secret shoppers, they didn't know if it was an influencers house, they were just going to clean a random house. And then that was nice to get the feedback from them too, because it was a free clean, but on top of it, they were able to give me some feedback like, hey, they didn't get underneath the couch or whatever. So I used it on like a double edged sword kind of thing. And man, did it work.
Jay Clouse 25:19
Wow. Okay, well, I want to highlight a couple things here. Because a lot of people listen to the show aspiring creators. A lot of them are also still doing some Creative Services a lot of the time. And some of you pointed to, well, I'm not giving out my secrets necessarily, because you can google a lot of this. It's also true that even if I wanted to book you to come clean my home in Columbus, Ohio, like you can't really do that. But you can serve me in this way. If you're providing information. I think a lot of people out there probably underestimate or overestimate the damage that is done by sharing some of this versus the upside of what can be gained.
Sarah McAllister 25:50
Yeah, totally. And like, we have this conversation actually on a regular basis in my household because my partner, he's a artist, woodworking carpenter, and he doesn't like showing his methods and stuff online. But I'm like these guys who show it like, look at what's going on with them. And I think it's a really good thing to point out, I'm like, no one, I said, I always say to him, like, they have to do it, there's a difference between giving this ideas, oh, but whether like one out of 70 people is actually going to pull up their socks and try and do what you're going to do, right? Like in all the power to if you want to open up a cleaning company and use some of our methods, that's no problem, like more houses will be clean all that like, we'll be happy about that. But it's really truly honestly providing value online, but they don't have to pay for at the beginning to you know, engage them and pull them in is one of the best things that you can do and quality content to write. And it is kind of funny, because our stuff isn't, you know, shot HD or whatever it is. It's mostly myself or my staff holding a camera, a phone, a camera phone, but it's still funny. Like, it's still great, and it comes across well. And I think we have that downhome aspect that helps that people like so, yeah, I just think that you have to really focus on what you want to give away. You don't have to give away everything. But you can also just don't be scared of it. I think you can reach more people by being offering a value for them to click and follow you versus holding back and not providing anything you need to get them in there.
Jay Clouse 27:12
You mentioned that you're doing this influencer marketing and it was working. And then you mentioned that around the pandemic time you had about 10,000 followers. Were you doing influencer marketing before the pandemic? Or has that been more recent post pandemic started?
Sarah McAllister 27:27
No, no, I was doing that to get to the 10,000 followers. So it was like I think our first influencer claim we only had 400 followers. And even then I just saw the value of what they were what an influencer can bring to the table for you. So their followers trust them. And especially for me, it was really important that I had local influencers because like I can't clean someone's house in Halifax, there has to be someone who lives here and someone who people trust. And I identified a couple of them that that way. And then also I liked them like I do for a while, like I would find some that I liked. But then I didn't like their message or their brand or what they what their vibe was what they were putting, like, I don't want to be aligned with someone who I'm not actually identifying with right and then take route from an integrity Deep point of view. So a lot of people would once they got wind, the influencer like in within each city, it's a pretty small group of people. They're all kind of friends with each other. So once you end up breaking into that, then they tell their friends and then some of them would work and some of them wouldn't kind of thing. And then we just kept doing that. And we worked out and I found that one thing I will say is like we kind of got into the habit of doing bi weekly cleans for some of them and that wasn't valued, like eventually that lost its value. It was almost like overkill. Like they were just talking too much about us it was more once a month we found worked or once every six weeks, because it was just like they're talking about these cleaners coming to clean their house too often they can only do it so many times.
Jay Clouse 28:48
So I saw your end of year Instagram post and you had the caption you said I ran a very tiny cleaning cleaning company in March of 2020. And shut it down with a pretty good hunch that I would not reopen it when the pandemic was over. So help tie together some of the timelines here and what that looked like what the company looked like up to march and then what the turning point was for you.
Sarah McAllister 29:09
This is good. Okay, so it was the cleaning owning the cleaning company prior to March of 2020 was a huge pain in the ass like it was just the type of company that there if you're in the business of complaints, because no matter what people like we had a really good reputation we had you know p word was spreading man 10,000 followers, and that was a big deal for Calgary like, we're like, oh my gosh, we have 10,000 followers, we can swipe up we can do all this cool stuff. That was a goal like I was like, let's just get to 10,000 it will be so amazing if I can get some of that sweet Amazon affiliate money kind of thing you know, and then in the end, but then the company closed we closed down for the lockdown. Our lockdown procedures are pretty strict. We're pretty strict here and we just kind of sat back and the Instagram started taking off and I thought you know, I don't know if I'm going to reopen. Maybe I'll just clean online for 10, you know, with my 10,000 followers and try something new, I'm scrappy, like, it pushed me into a wall. And I was like, Hey, I have to think of all of these ideas of what I'm going to do so that I can still, you know, pay my mortgage and do all of these, you know, keep my life in order because the dog walking company closed at the same time to like, instantly, both my revenues were called, like, my salary was gone. Done. So we already have the cleaning Handbook, army handbook in the works, because our brand designer, she was very adamant about being like, even at $10,000 being like, you need a PDF or something because these people like they're messaging me asking your methods because you can't reply to everybody. So I just thought, okay, pivot pivot, everyone was yelling at you to pivot, I'm going to write this book and see what happens. And that really, really helped. But again, even going back, like we kept growing, like one day I went on from we had 20,000 the next day, I had 50,000 followers, like I woke up in the morning and thought what happened like $30,000 people were just cleaning their houses, buying the handbook, tagging. And even down until reopening, you know, I was still pretty leery about the company doing well itself in the pandemic, like I thought, I don't know if anyone's gonna want us in the house, I laid off a couple of people, I thought, you know, like, let's, let's really work on what we're doing here and see if we could do it. And I kept thinking, like, if worse comes to worse, I can just clean and instagram it can't just clean an Instagram it but one I'm very well aware now that was coming from fear. And I was scared of what was going to happen. But now I know that like the cleaning company can't exist without Instagram, they are very intertwined. They don't have to be huge. One of them doesn't have like the cleaning company itself doesn't have to be, you know, 100 employees or whatever it is or a franchise I just know that a main component of my cleaning company on my staff is like part of their training is content creation. It's not just scrubbing houses. So that's a thing that I had to kind of twist and turn and kind of readapt to when we are adapt to when we reopened. Yeah. And like my whole family was like, why are you reopening this company? You it's all you could hear like, I cry a lot. I was I cried a lot. I would drive home at the end of the day and like do my calculate every entrepreneur does it. I was like he was paid her 20 bucks an hour I paid this the calculations, the math, you know, my gas, everybody's mileage. This time, I'd be like, and my mom would be with me and she'd be like, so you didn't get paid today. She's like, you didn't get paid even 18 bucks. Like she's I was like, nope, nope, nope, I didn't get paid. But I'm still gonna do it. Because I just had this feeling that something's gonna work. And that was before we close down and I just had this really big gut feeling that was this was the path to what I've always wanted to do is create something really great. And I didn't give up. I remember my stepdad saying, like, Sarah, why are you doing this? Like, it's seven o'clock in the morning, why I was picking my mom up to come with me. She was like, you don't have to pay me today. Like there was all of these alibs. Like, if you're an entrepreneur, you get it, man, it's so hard. But you keep going.
Jay Clouse 32:53
In that season of like struggle where you're doing the calculations, and you're paying your cleaners and you can't pay yourself that day. How did you think about prioritizing the actual in the house cleaning that you were doing versus influencer outreach versus posting to your own social media? Like how did you prioritize those different aspects of where you're spending your time as the business owner,
Sarah McAllister 33:12
I quickly learned that if we weren't posting on Instagram stories, we weren't getting bookings, they were like, very, very closely related. I remember having a staff meeting with my staff and being like, they weren't sending videos I ended up writing manage their contract saying like, Hey, you guys know that if we aren't posting on Instagram, we don't have these pictures. And we don't have the videos and stuff. It's stopping people from booking us and it honestly was like, direct correlation, like it would just like line up, I would know. And then I did find too that if we had someone who counseled like last minute, or within the, you know, 48 hour window, I would be able to slot like just throw it up on Instagram be like, Hey, guys, we have an opening for you know, 20% off tomorrow, if you get instead of my team, my salary, I was not to work, right. Like, that's what our labor laws are here. So I would throw it up and say, Hey, like we have an opening tomorrow 20% off, it would just be instantly gone. Like you have a you've created a core group of people who are like, essentially just your customer base, right. So you know, when I was able to do that, that really helped to but I found that the more I posted and even today, like the more I post, it's such a different world now. But the more I post, the you know, more handbooks we sell, the more it it's all relative. If I go quiet for a little while, you know, two days, you know, sales go down. It's very interesting. So it's the same thing. You just have to put that reliable, consistent message out there that you're there and you're providing value to people.
Jay Clouse 34:37
When we come back, Sarah and I talked about GoCleanCo's quick growth on Instagram, and why she'll continue to build a cleaning business despite GoCleanCo's online success. So stick around, and we'll be right back. Welcome back to my conversation with Sarah McAlister of GoCleanCo. A moment ago when Sarah was talking about the scrappy beginnings of her company. She mentioned that to GoCleanCo, Instagram and cleaning business were very intertwined. She even said they couldn't exist without each other. With an Instagram account of nearly 2 million followers, a digital storefront and countless affiliate income opportunities. I wondered why the cleaning company, a business that requires a full staff was necessary for her digital business.
Sarah McAllister 35:20
Because one of the main things about the content that we create, and we're putting out there is that we have variety. So I have like, especially now that I realize how important the actual Instagram is, and you know, most people, like who's a content creator, who is an influencer are going to say, like, your brain gets fried, and you think, like, what am I going to put out there today, and that's why you see influencers, like I don't know what to talk about, or kind of thing. Whereas me, I have an, I have too much content, there's this step, my staff is always filming, we have a minimum requirement of five bids or slides a day. That's how it works. And then you know, we get fully follow up with you, if you aren't doing your before and afters and that kind of a thing. And then plus throw in my personality and what I do at my house. Like right now we've been home for like eight weeks, or sorry, six or seven weeks. And it's just been me cleaning my house and it gets a little bit like I don't want it to get boring. So I'm trying to mix it in there with some of my archive stuff that my staff has put together. Like then I get to see like a stainless steel fridge, then we get to see a you know, gas range stove and electric range stove hardwood floors, we're showing, it's like I have this smorgasbord of what I can pick from I can I think okay, I haven't showed anyone how to clean this tile, I haven't showed him how to do travertine. There's so many things and it just endless content to put out there. Which is a that's just a dream.
Jay Clouse 36:39
And you're getting paid to create it.
Sarah McAllister 36:40
Yeah, exactly. And that's what it is. It's just like, some days, it's until some days your brain is like fried and you think like, what am I gonna put up there and keep talking about blinds or whatever it is, but and then people love to see dirty to clean no matter what all the time so.
Jay Clouse 36:55
Do clients have to sign a type of like release for you to do that?
Sarah McAllister 36:58
Yeah, we've had that from the very beginning. So we just have like a disclaimer on their booking that says, you know, we use clever Instagram marketing to, you know, get our name out there, if you don't want to be shared on the online, let us know, basically, and then they and then they can opt out and like they can opt out. And then they were and now it's like, they get pissed if they're not online. Like they're like, where was my house. And I'm always like, your two weeks, like reminder, just so you know, just because we're at your house today doesn't mean it's sometimes it gets posted like four or five days later or something, but now they want to see it or, and we're just pretty careful. You know, we try not to post anything personal or any pictures of kids or anything like that. I'm very mindful. That's why you guys see, like, sometimes the writing is walking stuff, or you know, or gifts or whatever that's out there. And yeah, they do. But honestly, if I'm gonna say like, 1% of people opt out, and it's usually people who are like publicly known, if that makes sense. So they're kind of like, I don't want anyone in my head. I don't want them to see my house.
Jay Clouse 37:53
Let's zoom into this moment where you said, you start waking up and he had 20,000 followers, and then 50,000 new followers helped me understand that, like, what what do you attribute that to?
Sarah McAllister 38:04
Help me understand that? It was honestly it was, I just found that I already have my voice and my, I guess the like, my my team would call him at the brand down path, right. So I didn't change anything about who I was, it was just a matter of I knew with the pandemic that you know, what was coming from, there was a lot of noise for my followers at that point saying like, I don't, I need to use bleach and I never bought it and please help me and all so it ends up being really a lot of the same stuff. Like once you go through all of your jams, they're asking the same question. So I just kind of was like alright, I'm going to show you guys how to make hand sanitizer wipes out of baby wipes or hands like throw some rubbing alcohol and some baby wipes that's going to help you because nobody can buy Lysol. Here, we're going to bleach our houses base. And I always refer to the CDC website, which because I, you know, I don't like to put false information out there. So kind of, you know, lining everything up the way that it needed to be. And it just spread like wildfire. It honestly did. And I think it has a little bit to do too, with the fact that I shoot stuff straight. Like I think a lot of people are very used to being having kind of like Instagram is a little bit more people being like, very thankful or I shouldn't say thankful. I'm very thankful of the followers. I mean, like, people a little bit more like but kissy like it's kind of like, Oh, perfect and uplifting and all these things. Meanwhile, I'm kind of like you we call you dirty bastards because you are, things are filthy. You guys need to get to work to get your life's together. And I don't really hold back on that part of it. Because I feel like that's how my mom talk to me. And that's the only way I got up and back in my bedroom when I was 16. So guess what? It's going to work and it worked for everybody. So it kind of snowballed from there. And the handbook really did well because even though we really I think we've only released it when we had about 20 or 30,000 followers, but once people started buying it, then they use the methods then they shared the methods and there was nothing in the habit that said like please tag us or anything like that. They were just blown away. With how much we've simplified things, and made it efficient for you, so that it's you're not so overwhelmed when you go into the cleaning aisle and you don't know what to buy, you know, so we just really dialed it down for everybody to make it as simple as possible. And when I wrote that Handbook, it was just a huge brain dump. And if there was way too much information, I had to shave it down a lot. I was like telling people how to open up a whole entire business, my friend was like, This is not a franchise manual. It's a how to clean your kitchen manual kind of thing.
Jay Clouse 40:28
I want to cut in here and talk about this handbook. Sara actually has three handbooks, the cleaning army handbook, the laundry guide, and RV addition. what's so fascinating to me about these handbooks is that the information in them is easy to share from person to person. And recently GoCleanCo created a Facebook community so that their followers could in fact help each other. And as Mallory will tell you, it's pretty great.
If I don't know how to clean something, I'll post that in the Facebook group. And like within 10 minutes, I've got an answer.
Jay Clouse 40:57
But inside this community, Sara's audience is so supportive of GoCleanCo, that they'll often encourage people to buy the handbook to support the business, instead of giving them the answers inside the handbook.
Sarah McAllister 41:09
Yeah, and you know what, I'm so surprised. And I totally, you know, my faith in humanity has been so heartwarming, because, honestly, we're pretty open about the fact that of what's in the handbook, like the handbook is the recipes, the method, I share all of that information on the highlights, you can go and watch, you know, 10 hours of highlights if you want, basically, and it's all there. And I don't hold back any of that information. But if you want to know condensed into like 11 pages where you can just open up your phone and clean and go from there. And then also just the fact that so many people were like I knew how to do it, but I bought it to support you guys. It was so incredible to hear that because we've offered so much value. And honestly, I just I'm forever shocked every single day about how loyal everyone is and how amazing they are and supportive and to the it just it blows my mind. Like what I you know, I came out of my hidings. No one really knew what I look like on that New Year's posts kind of thing. And that's I really meant it from the bottom my heart like thank you guys have changed my lives is incredible.
Jay Clouse 42:08
Yeah, let's talk about let's talk about that. You're very behind camera, like it's your voice. It's your actions, but you are rarely seen on camera. How much of that was an intentional decision? Because you thought that's what that brand needed? versus like a personal preference. How did that come about?
Sarah McAllister 42:24
It kind of became the bigger we got. Originally, it was like no one was ever going to find out who I was. But not at the beginning. It didn't matter when he had like five or 6000 followers. It didn't. I was like, I don't care if anyone sees me on there. But I did find that talking facecam didn't work. Like it didn't make any sense. It was like they're there to see the scrubbing and why do they need to see my face and which is goes against every little online course I've ever taken like show who's behind the brand show they want to see your real life. They want to see your family and all that. But I just first saw it didn't work for it. And I wouldn't even say I've really trialed it I just found that like it's not broke, don't fix it. So I was showing my hands I was talking people through things I didn't see the need to ever really show it to flip the camera around and talk to people about cleaning their stuff because they need to look at the stove while they're cleaning it. And then it kind of became you know, the bigger that we got, the more I was like hey, I'm gonna enjoy this and anonymous like factor of it for a little as long as I possibly can but we do have some big stuff really known in 2021 and it's it's not possible anymore which is really cool but at the same time it's kind of like hey, this is who I am you still haven't seen me since I've I haven't flipped around and talk to people besides like when we hit a million followers and I don't think that it's necessary to for for what I'm doing it's different for other people but for what I'm doing an offering right now I don't feel like it's necessary like people recognize me at Starbucks from what my hands I'm not even joking like my ring that I wear someone came up to me and said are you Sarah and I thought what how would you know that and she's like, from your ring I and your nails? Like I saw your net? I'm like oh my goodness, it's hilarious. So anyways, yeah.
Jay Clouse 43:58
So for people listening to this that are saying, I know I need to tweak how I'm doing Instagram I need to take Instagram more seriously what are some of the the top rules that you have for your own Instagram and how you use it that someone else might get to learn from for their own business?
Sarah McAllister 44:15
I actually don't adhere to a lot of those Instagram rules you know, that are like post two times a day and I'm you know, certain at the high times you have to reply to every single comment. It's impossible for me to do it at the scale that we are now. But my top rules are just like consistent, valuable content, be yourself and I know that sounds cliche or whatever. But honestly, I know that online can be a little bit scary, especially this year. It's hard to speak who you are, who you are and not censor and do all those things that everyone tells you to do. I am laser focused on what the brand is. So I do not step outside of what we are. I get offers all the time for lipstick and beauty products. It doesn't happen. I'm like what am I going to do around and into my couch and scrub it out? Like it doesn't make sense to me right? And so And it's easy to, it'd be really easy to sell out and kind of show and change. And I have, there's a lot of other big cleaning influencers who kind of, you know, go this way and go that way. Like, you know, the most off brand I've done is posted a picture of a Sweet Valley High book that I ordered, like, cuz I was cleaning out my kitchen or my closet kind of thing. And that, to me is off brand because it's supposed to be cleaning, and I focus, focus focus on that. And I stay in my lane. I don't, I think because also from the beginning, you know, this happened really fast for me, and I was scrubbing toilets, five days a week in March of 2020, that I don't forget how hard it is, like reality, you know, I don't feel like this is really reality, right? Which is, and I think that's fair to say, this is a dream life. And it's pretty cool that this happened. But I knew I knew how hard it was to make 500 bucks profit at the end of the month, six months ago, guys. So it's very, it's a totally different world for me, and I'm thankful for it. But yeah, my top thing would be Be yourself really focused on what your brand is, I will say I don't necessarily really like family on business pages. That's one of my thing that I just really, it irks me a little bit and I also don't do it. It's kind of like and one of my friends I originally had said to me with a dog walking company, like she's like, Why are you putting like the dogs on your personal and not like dividing those and ever and she was she was isn't even a marketing marketing. And I remember taking that to heart and being like she's right, like it should all be kind of divided and make sure that you have a boundary there. That's a big thing. For me, I think just focus on what you're actually doing and try not to hit so and you know, you don't have to hit every single hot topic for the day, you know, stick to what you know,
Jay Clouse 46:36
it seems like you really really prioritize stories versus on the grid. I don't know how much you do with like IGTV. But tell me, for someone who's kind of new to the Instagram game, how do you think about those different elements within the platform,
Sarah McAllister 46:49
I still hands down stories are always my go to I'm not a big grid person, like you know, a couple weeks can go by before I post something they like everyone likes it, don't get me wrong, but I do find that I can get a little bit I get more engagement from the stories. And that's just how it's always worked for us. I would say two, I haven't ever done an igtv ever. If you asked me to do one, I probably wouldn't be able to reels are really good of getting yourself in front of like a new audience, I do find that real people can be a little bit mean like for something because you're getting in front of new audiences, you get a little bit more trolls and a little bit more of like, you know, whatever cat comments, which I think are funny, they don't really I have pretty thick skin.
Jay Clouse 47:30
At this point. With the growth that you've seen. You know, as of recording, you have 1.6 million followers on Instagram right now. How do you think about your business differently? Like what how are you structuring things differently? What do you think in more longer term, because this probably wasn't what you expected when you started cleaning houses, you know, a year ago.
Sarah McAllister 47:48
Now, we didn't This was foreign from what the plan was. But we've totally you know, pivot is the big word for 2020. We've done that I have an online team right now of like, five full time people. And then I have a cleaning staff of 20. Like it's big, and we didn't ever expect to be this big. But we're now looking at like the idea of what we can do online, as opposed to what we can do on the ground. So we have such a really 70% of my following is American. So that's a big thing. And even though we're Canadian company, right? So we're focusing on how we can grow. And we love digital products. Who doesn't love a digital product net? You know, they're pretty cool. Yeah. And so offering a little bit more, we are wrapping our head around 2021. And what we're going to be offering, there's a lot of talk about franchising, and I'm not a big fan of the franchise model. I'm a fan of teaching people what we do, and figuring out how to spread the GoCleanCo brand, internationally. So we're going to be focusing on that. But also everyone's at home right now. So we have to think about that things like this can't be in person anymore. The world is changing. But I think it's a cool way it's changing and how things are offered.
Jay Clouse 49:03
A little bit earlier. You mentioned Amazon affiliates with the swipe up on your story and everything. And I've I've heard that you've sold Amazon out of some of the products that you've recommended, how much does that play into how you think about what you recommend?
Sarah McAllister 49:14
Yeah, that you have to like, click down, I won't post something that has like five in stock, and it has to have a certain amount. That's something that I never, ever would have ever thought. And I spoke to some pretty well known like influencers in the States. And they said, you know, one of my biggest problems is not having places not having deep stock and I thought like what, and then Nope, it's a it's a serious thing. And that goes with our sponsorships too. Right. Yeah, we just we have a sponsorship coming up soon. And they didn't have very much talk. And we were like, Huh, like it's not it's not beneficial to do this unless you're totally loaded with the warehouse kind of thing. So it's a cool thing too. And people get mad. They're like, Oh my gosh, two hours later and this is totally sold out and I'll try to find another link. I'm not a big fan of like we have the links to the Amazon stores. On on the site, I don't like over swiping. Um, I just find I don't like it to be a billboard constantly push, push, push, sell, sell, sell, which is great people still shop the links and everything like that. But our they asked for them. And we you know, it's just a matter of really, again, focusing on the brand, not a catalog, I'm here to teach you guys this, and then please shop the links. Well, if you're gonna buy vacuum, please go and find them. If you can. That's, that's really the message that we've put out.
Jay Clouse 50:24
You launched a Facebook group fairly recently. And I'm sure that came with a lot of decision making, like just thinking about it. So how are you thinking about community? As far as GoCleanCo goes, GoCleanCo goes for the next forever.
Sarah McAllister 50:40
Yeah, we've had a little bit of minor connect that this ties in Well, my American Amazon store at the moment is currently down or having a little bit of issues with Amazon, which gave me a huge scare because of the fact that they're pretty powerful. And Instagrams pretty powerful and you can lose this stuff pretty quick. So and then that so then we I was like, hey, Pinterest, Facebook, TikTok, we have 50,000 followers, I think over on Tik Tok, which I don't utilize enough, I know that it's kind of one of those like blocks of like, Hey, I did good for two weeks. And now I'm like, whatever. But we're trying to kind of move everybody so that our email list grows all of these things so that if one thing crashes with one social network, we aren't going to lose, you know, all everybody and we still have the contacts. That's a big thing, too. So try to get them all across all platforms. But the Facebook page was I was pretty resistant to it, because I knew how much work it was going to be. And it ended up having to turn into like an official fan club, because we did not expect it to just like explode the way that it did, I could literally have probably 50 full time staff managing that thing all day long. So it's just it's and being careful and mindful of the fact that people aren't, you know, what the liability is and what kind of advice they're giving each other. So we kind of had to make an official fan club as opposed to we run everything. So because it was just too much for us, it was too much to handle. And there's like, I think there's like 70,000 people over there. So it's totally different than Instagram, because they're more able to interact with each other, which is such a great community feel they love it. I creep on there all the time. And like watch the post, it's hilarious. So.
Jay Clouse 52:13
Well, I'm so inspired by your story. And so impressed by how you've grabbed hold of this growth and continued to grow along with it, you know, I can see where it could be really, really intimidating to hire more staff and continue to lead as a leader and not just be on the ground every day. If there's anything that I didn't ask that you think is really, really important for aspiring creators, or business owners listening to the show, this would be the time,
Sarah McAllister 52:36
That was a great little segue. Because honestly, the one thing that I've spent so and I've said this at the beginning, I'm really operational and I'm on the ground. And I like to do I like that, like I, I like to be I'd much rather be working like physically working lay a little bit more labor intensive than sitting on my computer all day, they my staff, my team knows that about me. So my thing with this is that with GoCleanCo exploding as fast as it did, I was absolutely forced to hire people to do their jobs that I cannot do. And normally it takes me like six months to wrap my head around bringing somebody on on a salary or on you know, it just the responsibility. And everything to me is like very heavy. And with this, it was like I just was hiring people left, right and center. I was, you know, doing the whole entire process and onboarding and doing that. But right now even like, we're looking for a social media manager, and it's kind of like, it's like, I know, this person is gonna bring so much value, but till you stand in their shoes, and you think like it's coming at me like a freight train, I had to make all these very quick decisions. And it was a best decision ever. Because now I'm like, I just think in my head, like hire them. They're smart, they're just going to make you more money. They're the best decision you're ever going to make and let them be free. And that was a really very difficult lesson for me to learn. But it was the best lesson ever because I was 15 years of me doing everything I go dog like walking dogs, doing the books doing everything and, you know, points of contact every single absolute to the bottom thing I did, and I have my fingers in it all now. It's like I'm a little more hands off. And this baby is just growing and growing and amazing rate. And that's because I'm able to sit back in trust what the people that I've hired. So I know it's not always feasible as an entrepreneur to hire someone and it's really, really scary. But the first time you do it, it feels so good. And then, you know, if it doesn't work out, it doesn't work out. It's okay. That's a big thing to remind yourself, you know, you're in control of everything.
Jay Clouse 54:34
Well, I can't say that I'm more interested in cleaning after this interview. But I'm certainly more interested in building a community on Instagram. Sarah's approach is so fascinating to me, starting with micro influencers, focusing almost solely on stories instead of the grid or reels, doing it all from behind the camera. I don't think you'll find many giant Instagram accounts that put their star behind the camera. And I don't know if anyone would actually recommend it. But for Sarah, it works. She knows her audience and she knows what they want from her content. Sarah is yet another example of the content being her true self delivering a ton of value in finding success because of it. You can learn more about Sarah on Instagram at GoCleanCo or bleachpraylove.com thanks to Sarah for being on the show. Thank you to Emily Clouse for making the artwork for this episode. Thanks to Nathan Todhunter for mixing the show and Brian Skeel for creating our music. Thanks to Mallory for letting me air that audio. And if you liked this episode, you can tweet @JayClouse and let me know if you really want to say thank you. Please leave a review on Apple podcasts. Thanks for listening, and I'll talk to you next week.