June 8, 2021

What's a Visibility System & Why Do I Need One?

What's a Visibility System & Why Do I Need One?

Today on the Systems Made Simple™ podcast, business systems expert Courtney Elmer talks about creating a visibility system for brand recognition and brand building as a visionary leader.

Have you struggled to gain brand recognition for your business?

In today’s episode, we’re talking about what a visibility system is and why having one is so critical for brand building.


  • What a visibility system is and why every visionary leader needs one

  • The most common mistakes online business owners make when it comes to brand building

  • The difference between a visibility system and a marketing strategy

  • Plus, an inside peek at our own visibility system and a step-by-step plan for creating your own

If this episode inspires you, leave a review and share your biggest takeaway with me. And while you've got your phone out, make sure to follow me on Instagram @thecourtneyelmer for more quick tips on how to streamline your business systems and spend more time in your zone of genius.





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© Copyright 2022 | The EffortLESS Life®


Courtney Elmer  0:00  

Welcome back to the Systems Made Simple™ podcast. This is Episode 73, which is all about brand recognition, brand building, and how to become a visionary leader. And this month, we are doing a special series on the four systems that you need in your business. 

Today, we're talking about a Visibility System, what the heck that is, and why you need one if you're ready to scale beyond six figures. In case you missed it, we have updated the name of our podcast, I feel like oh my goodness, I don't know a kid on Christmas morning like this has been something that I have been toying with in the back of my mind for a while as we are just undergoing this big expansion in our brand right now. And it just felt like such a fitting time to do this. So you can check out our new show trailer for more details on that and hear all about the name change, what's in a name, why we did it, and how it speaks to this expansion that we are undergoing and our greater mission here at the EffortLESS Life®. Alright, you ready? Visibility System, we're diving into it. Stay tuned.


Globally ranked among the top shows in business and education, we're known for one thing, helping overworked entrepreneurs like you learn how to run your business like a true visionary leader, because when you get the right systems support, and structure in place, you can spend more time in your zone of genius. So if you're tired of listening to today's business influencers teach these same old worn out marketing strategies that aren't making you any money, it's time to take a look under the hood of your business and fix the engine itself. Because the truth is, you don't have to work as hard as you are right now to scale beyond six figures and create the greater influence, income and impact that you deserve. The secret to scaling starts on the back end of your business. This is the Systems Made Simple™ podcast. 

Before we jump in today, as always, I've got to give a shout out to our featured listener this week, Sarah, who says, “I highly recommend listening to this podcast for some inspiration and to hear valuable tips to help you and your business grow.” Wow, short, sweet to the point. I love it. Thank you, Sarah so much. And if you've been listening for a while and haven't left us a review, I would really, really appreciate it if you took a minute to tell us your thoughts. Share your feedback on the show. Just scroll down in your Apple app, tap those five stars, tap write a review, and leave a sentence or two. I personally read every single review that comes through and I love giving our reviewers a shout out right here live on the show. So thank you, Sarah, we appreciate it and we’re grateful to you for being a loyal listener.

Alright, so I have a theory. You want to hear it? My theory is that staying busy in your business allows you to hide from your greater calling. Yeah, I said it. You know why? Because for so many years in my business, and even now sometimes I catch myself still, bogging myself down in busy work — to feel important, to feel worthwhile, to feel like I matter, to feel like I'm doing something that it's making a difference. When really, all it’s doing is hurting me. It's preventing me from showing up as the visionary leader of my brand. 

This tendency to overbook ourselves, and to over-schedule ourselves, to say yes to the things that we want to say no to, to people-please, to stay busy in our business — it’s all linked more deeply to a fear of being seen for who we really are, that people are going to find out that we don't have it all together. And that is linked to a deeper fear of being rejected. This is a universal fear. And this fear causes you to play small, to show up inauthentically, and inconsistently. 

Then of course, doing that can only yield one thing: inconsistent results and a lack of brand recognition. I am so guilty of this. Oh my gosh, in the early days of my business, I would wait until I felt in the mood for doing videos. I don't know how else to put it. It was like I had video days and I had non video days, you don't I'm talking about? Where on those non video days, you're like there is no way even touching a camera with a 10 foot pole. 

And then there are those days where you're like, I'm gonna show up on a camera and nothing can stop me from being a visionary leader. That was me in the early days of my business, and wow, if you could see some of these videos, they're so embarrassing. It's so embarrassing! I have one video that I share with the students inside of the EffortLESS Podcasting Formula™  to show them the difference in my voice because here, you’re listening to my voice right now on this podcast, this voice that you hear — this is the real me. 

But years ago, you would not hear this, it was much higher pitched. It was more monotone. And what it was really saying was, don't look too deep. Don't look too closely. I want you to like me. So I'm going to just have this higher pitched monotone voice so I don’t offend anyone, because I really want you to like me. And what it was saying was, please don't reject me. Well, now, I don't care. And this is a big thing for online business owners everywhere. So before we dive in, I want you to know that I have been very guilty of showing up inauthentically in my business. And there has been massive growth over the course of those years which is evident now. But it's due to a lot of work on myself, which is part of being a visionary leader. Being a visionary leader is a calling. It is a calling that you're born with. But it's a calling that you have to rise to nonetheless. And to be a true visionary leader, you need a Visibility System. And with the right visibility system will help you build brand recognition. 

Every visionary leader has a Visibility System, they might not call it that. But they have one. Think of any influencer that you look up to. Do they show up consistently online, in your inbox? In your Instagram feed? Do you see their ads in your Facebook newsfeed?

Do you hear them on podcast interviews? Or maybe listen to them on their own podcast week after week? Or sometimes multiple times a week? Do you listen to them on clubhouse? Maybe read articles they've written? Or see their media features? Do they show up authentically? Do they have great brand recognition? Do you feel like you know them even though you really don't? In seeing them and in hearing whatever it is they have to say, it feels personal doesn’t it? Like they're talking to you. They're relatable, they're real. 

Now imagine for a second if they didn't show up in your feed every day. Imagine if you went a month without getting an email from them. Would you forget about them? Would you wonder what's going on with them? Or wonder where they've been? Are they still in business? Did something happen? Why haven't they sent me anything? Wondering why you haven't seen much of them all of a sudden.

Every visionary leader has a Visibility System that helps with brand recognition. If you want more sales and clients, you need to be more visible. And you've probably heard that before. Chances are, I am not the first person to tell you that. But let's talk about what a Visibility System is and what it isn't. 

I want you to listen closely to my voice right now. Because a Visibility System does not mean being everywhere at once. It means showing up intentionally in support of your greater vision. A Visibility System is an outward facing mechanism that helps you establish your brand presence and your thought leadership. When you do this right, it increases sales and clients because it increases know, like, and trust. It creates desire and demand for what you offer. It does not mean you have to be on all platforms, and show up all hours of the day on all the things. 

When it comes to having a Visibility System, I’ve already hinted at a few of the mistakes many online business owners make, which prevents them from building brand recognition. The first one, which is maybe the most obvious, is not having a Visibility System at all. Or maybe being visible inconsistently showing up only when you feel like it. Or maybe it's just not being visible at all. For example, Oh, I can never do a podcast. I hate the way my voice sounds. I hear this a lot!

On the other hand, many online business owners try to be visible, but it’s too much. They spread themselves too thin trying to be everywhere at once. You know what this does? it dilutes your message. I don't think that's what you want. 

Another mistake is showing up inauthentically, which negatively impacts brand recognition. Let's talk about this one because “authenticity” (I'm putting that in air quotes) is a buzzword right now. I don't know how long it's going to be a buzzword, maybe as long as social media exists, and it's this whole idea of showing up authentically as you.

But because we're human, there's a tendency to only want to let people in so far. We assume that if people saw all the mess that's really there, maybe they wouldn't like us as much. Or maybe they would realize your greatest fear: I don't really know what I'm talking about. 

The truth is, people don't care what you have in the closet. They don't care if your closet is color-coded, if you have matching hangers, if you have all of your types of clothing hung in a certain direction, if everything is folded properly, and if there's no dirt on the floor, they don't care!

They want you in all your hot mess self. And I say that with so much love, you know that. Because guess what, my life is a hot mess, too. If you know me, I probably look like I have my act together. But I really try to show the other side of my life, which is not having my act together most days. As the mother of a three and a half year old, very, very, very, very busy little boy, my life is not perfect (it is a far cry from perfect). 

The problem is, that I used to think I had to show up perfectly in order for people to buy for me. I don't know why we do this, but it is the most whacked out reasoning that possibly exists today. 

You do not have to show up perfectly for people to like you, you do not have to show up perfectly for people to buy from you. So stop trying to show up perfectly, because all it is doing is wasting your time and energy. I see it happening so often in the industry, and it breaks my heart. It breaks my heart because there's so many people with so many gifts, who have so much to share with the world. And they're shortchanging themselves.

So, a lot of people make these mistakes because they just simply don't know that they need a Visibility System, as in they don't know that that's actually a thing. 

Others don't have a Visibility System in place, or they're showing up inconsistently or inauthentically because they're falling victim to the trap of comparison. This is a huge one. And comparison is nothing more than comparing your interior to someone else's exterior.

Hold on, let that one sink in. Think about that for a second. That's what comparison is. That's why it steals your joy because you are comparing you and everything you know about you to someone else's shiny, polished Instagram version life. You're comparing yourself and where you are currently in your business to someone else's seven figure launch or feature on Forbes or whatever it may be. That's their exterior, you don't know what's inside. You don't know what mess is in their closet. And of course, if you continue to show up inconsistently or inauthentically — this might sting a bit, but the truth is — you'll be forgettable. People won't know you. They won't like you. They won't trust you. You'll make less sales because of it. And again, I am so guilty. I have been there, and there are still days I go there. If you ever don't see me on Instagram Stories, that's why. Because I'm in my head about not showing up on video and not knowing what to say. I know it sounds crazy. But that's the truth. Because even for me stuff still gets in the way sometimes of me showing up. 

The real question is: How much longer are you going to let it stay that way? How much longer are you going to let it affect you, affect your business, affect your happiness? Is the silliest thing in the world to say I'm not showing up on stories because I don't have makeup on, but yet I make that excuse. 

And they say that how you do one thing is how you do everything. So, if I'm making excuses in that area of my life, where else am I making excuses? Where else are you making excuses? These are the kinds of questions you need to be asking yourself. 

So you need a Visibility System. There's a reason I call it a Visibility System because it is greater than just marketing. Marketing is just a piece of it. Building brand recognition is also part of it. 

And inside of the Visionary Leader Incubator™, I teach our mastermind students how to create a Visibility System, they can actually stay consistent with. One that they can enjoy and have fun with. So they can show up because it feels good, not because they “have to”-- which helps with brand recognition. 

The other reason that I don't show up every day on Instagram Stories again, just using this as an example, is because I have more fun on reels. I love reels, reels are so much fun! You will see a reel for me probably just about every day, except the weekends because I don't work on the weekends. Because it is fun, and it feels good. And I can tap back into my creative, artsy theater side and pull out all these characters and just have fun with it. Whereas I'm a little bored with stories. I have more fun here on this podcast, recording these for you every week. I have more fun on reels. I have more fun sending out emails, I love emailing you. If you're on my list, and you get an email from me, I literally sit there and write that email to you. Just you and me having a conversation. That's how I approach my inbox. 

My Visibility System is very simple. It helps with brand recognition and brand building. And it is very aligned with where I feel the best because guess what, I'm not going to be as likely to show up if it doesn't feel good. And sometimes for me showing up on Instagram stories just doesn't feel all that good. It feels kind of forced. And that's not what you need from me. 

So, on Mondays, I post a reel, I share that reel to my Instagram stories.

On Tuesdays, you get a new podcast episode, we share that on stories too. There's a new reel and there's an email that goes out. 

On Wednesday, another reel and/or carousel post.

On Thursday, another reel and/or carousel post, and an email.

On Friday, more reels. 

IG stories when I feel inspired.

Once a month, a live workshop because I love nothing more than to sit down with students face to face on the computer. Thanks for Zoom. That is literally one of my favorite business tools. Because I love to teach, and I love nothing more than to see those students walk away with a clear plan that they can go and implement and execute to save time in their business. So monthly live workshops. 

I show up on clubhouse when I'm invited. I show up on podcasts interviews, when I'm invited. I show up on PR and media and features and articles when I'm invited. All of these things help build brand recognition. 

That's my Visibility System, it is very simple. Now you can go a lot more into detail than that. But for me, every piece has to have an intention behind it. If it doesn't have an intention, what's the point? If it's not getting you closer to your greater vision, what's the point? The point for me of being visible is to build brand awareness and to create a connection with you. That's it. To teach what I know and to help you in that way, but those are the two deeper reasons, brand awareness and connection. That's it.

So I want you to start thinking about your own Visibility System, and then I want you to create one to help build your brand recognition. When you do, if you want me to take a look at it, send it to me on Instagram, @theeffortlesslife.co. Shoot me a DM and send it to me. 

But before you create that system, the question I want you to ask yourself is: What feels the best? If I were to show up anywhere, where would I show up as my best self? Maybe it's one platform. Maybe it's two platforms. It doesn't have to be everywhere, but it has to be consistent. This will also help you become a visionary leader. 

Now in terms of setting up your own Visibility System (and how your marketing system fits into it, of course teaching you how to set up many, many, many other systems in your business is what I teach you how to do inside of our signature program, the Visionary Leader Incubator™. This is a one-year, mastermind experience with me where I get to work super hands on with you and put my eyes and expertise on your business to help you figure out where there are cracks on the back-end so you can fix them and learn how to get the right systems, structure, and support in place to scale your business, and have the greater income and impact you deserve. So if you're interested in hearing more about that program, shoot me a DM on Instagram about that as well. We can get you all the info that you need.

And we got a new podcast website! I'm so excited for this. It's called systemsmadesimple.co, so go check it out. There's a new feature there where you can send me a voicemail. Yeah, you can send me a voicemail! If you have a topic that you want to see covered on the show, if you want to send me a verbal review, if you have a question about your business, or about organization and structure and systems and hiring and procedures and any of the unsexy stuff (that really is sexy because it makes you look so good when you have it in place) then send me a voicemail. 

Plus, as I mentioned, connection is so important to me and I would love to hear from you. So check it out: systemsmadesimple.co and coming soon there too, we are working on some really fun things behind the scenes for our loyal listeners.

You are going to get the chance to become a podcast insider and get access to special bonuses and perks including access to our template library, special inside only giveaways and other perks that we are putting together just for our loyal listeners so you can start building brand recognition. So definitely check out the new site. You want to stay tuned for that. 

And next week on the Systems Made Simple™ podcast, we are going to continue this theme on the four systems for building brand recognition and showing you how to become a visionary leader. We're diving into the second of the front end facing systems. This is a sales system. What the heck is that? And why do I need one? I mean the answer there should be pretty obvious: to make money. But more importantly, we're going to ask and answer the question. Why isn't your sales system working the way it should be? That's coming up next week right here on the Systems Made Simple™ podcast. So stick around. 

I'll see you back here next time. Until then, go live your EffortLESS Life®.