Intro: Welcome to Becoming a Sleep Consultant! I’m your host Jayne Havens, a certified sleep consultant and founder of both Snooze Fest by Jayne Havens and Center for Pediatric Sleep Management. On this podcast, I’ll be discussing the business side of sleep consulting. You’ll have an insider’s view on launching, growing, and even scaling a sleep consulting business. This is not a podcast about sleep training. This is a podcast about business building and entrepreneurship.
Jayne Havens: Mariah Martin is a certified pediatric sleep consultant through the Center for Pediatric Sleep Management and a postpartum doula. She has a degree in early childhood development and has worked with babies and toddlers in some capacity for over 20 years. She has always been passionate about helping families and feels that she has finally landed her dream job. Mariah supports families virtually and in person. She lives outside Philadelphia with her partner, and their blended family of three boys. Mariah, welcome to the show. I’m so excited to chat with you today.
Mariah Martin: Hi, Jayne. Thanks so much for having me. This is so fun.
Jayne Havens: I’m so glad you’re here. So, I wanted to talk to you about sleep consulting and being a postpartum doula. When I first started Center for Pediatric Sleep Management, I never imagined that I would be training postpartum doulas. I thought that I was going to be training stay-at-home moms that were just sort of in search of a side hustle. But now we’re several years in, and our community is made up of so many postpartum professionals — doulas and newborn care specialists. I’m wondering, what’s up with that? Why do you think that so many postpartum doulas are wanting to add sleep consulting to their resume?
Mariah Martin: Well, I think it’s so funny, first of all, that you just thought it would be the stay-at-home moms with the side hustle. Because as a postpartum doula, I have been looking for a sleep training program since I started becoming a postpartum doula. Because I was a nanny for 20 years. That’s the first thing people ask me about. “How do I get them to sleep? What do I do when they’re babies? What do I do about my toddler climbing out of bed?” For me, it was always about sleep. Then when I became a doula, it was like this is the perfect opportunity to get babies in good sleep habits right away. So, that was a no-brainer for me.
Jayne Havens: Yeah. I guess, for you guys, it’s a no-brainer. For me, I didn’t even realize — I mean, I have to be completely honest. I don’t know how many years ago. Call it five years ago. I didn’t even know that I knew what a postpartum doula was five years ago.
Mariah Martin: Right. That’s so common. Either did I.
Jayne Havens: I didn’t even know that that was a profession. Then once I got into this whole sleep world, I started to see that there was this whole infrastructure setup of women supporting families in varying capacities. I was doing it from a very narrow tunnel, like sleep, sleep, sleep. I think postpartum doulas are supporting families in a more broad spectrum, but sleep is still a really big piece of that. It sort of opened my eyes to — there’s this whole world out there to support moms and parents who are struggling postpartum or just navigating postpartum. Not even necessarily struggling. I hate that people say that they need to hire a sleep consultant or a postpartum doula when they’re struggling. How about just getting support because we deserve that as a new parent?
Mariah Martin: Right. Because it takes a village. We need to be the village that comes in and helps.
Jayne Havens: Let’s break down a little bit more how adding sleep consulting can benefit you as a postpartum doula. Of course, I can shoot out all the reasons for why I think it would be great. But I’d love to hear from your perspective how adding sleep consulting to your resume really impacted your postpartum doula business for the better?
Mariah Martin: I think, first of all, I can sell a better package. Not a bigger package. It’s not like a financial thing. I mean, it is. But that wasn’t my reasoning. My reasoning was, I have this broader spectrum of knowledge. `I have a degree in child development. From conception to age eight is my expertise. But then, adding in the whole doula training, now I know newborn and mother care and family care. Then adding sleep, it just—
Jayne Havens: Made you better at your job.
Mariah Martin: Yeah, it makes me better at my job, but also the knowledge is there. So, I feel like I bring more to the table. I can charge more hourly, because I have a whole another set of skills. But also, there’s not a point where I go, “I don’t know.” Now I’m like, “Oh, this is what we’re going to do.” I think it just brought — it gave me more confidence. It gave me more knowledge, and I can help them from the beginning. I know a lot of sleep— Go ahead.
Jayne Havens: Go ahead. You go ahead.
Mariah Martin: I know a lot of postpartum doulas that are sleep consultants like the fact that they have repeat clients. So, you’re a doula for when they’re small and then you’re a sleep consultant for when they’re older. I haven’t experienced that yet. Maybe it’s just because I set them up for success at the beginning, so I haven’t had to bring them back in. But I don’t know. I think that’s a really good perk though.
Jayne Havens: I think that there are so many benefits. I think that the way that you articulated it was fabulous, that it set you up to be better at your job. When you’re better at your job, then the end result is that you can charge a higher hourly rate. You can get jobs easier. When you have more confidence, when you go into an interview and you’re like, “I know what I’m doing. I’m one of the best out there. Not only am I a postpartum doula, but I can get your baby to sleep,” when you walk in with that sort of confidence to an interview, you’re going to blow your competitors out of the water.
Mariah Martin: Yeah, I think you bring a bigger package. It’s like when you’re a doula and you’re a breastfeeding or lactation counselor, that goes hand in hand, too. I just have a different set of skills. So, I think it’s really beneficial, too. It has been really beneficial to my postpartum business.
Jayne Havens: If you’re not getting clients from your postpartum — your postpartum doula families aren’t hiring you down the road as a sleep consultant, I think that that’s one of two things. One, you’re just doing a really great job and they don’t need you later, which I think is super valuable. That doesn’t mean that you’re not getting additional business. They may refer you to their friend who needs a sleep consultant. Maybe that family doesn’t need you again, but you set them up for success in the first 12 weeks. Now they’re going to sing your praises to people who may hire you in the sleep consultant role. So, I think it might be happening and you’re not even realizing it, or you’re getting business down the road in a different way than the repeat client that you’re imagining in your head. Then the other thing is, down the road, you started this in what, 20? What did you say? 2020? Did you start this?
Mariah Martin: 2020 was when I joined.
Jayne Havens: Okay. So, my class in December.
Mariah Martin: Yeah.
Jayne Havens: These little babies that you were supporting at that time, they’re still like only two years old.
Mariah Martin: They’re little. Yeah, they’re still little.
Jayne Havens: Wait till they’re three and not staying in bed. You might have another six months to a year before you get those phone calls.
Mariah Martin: Right. I totally agree with that. Because before I did this course, I had no idea how to get babies to sleep. I remember somebody calling me, when I first signed up, and said, “I need help.” I was like, “I don’t know. Come back to me in a couple months, because I have no idea what to tell you. But I will know. I will know soon. So, come back to me.” She did. So then, I helped her then. But you’re right. Those babies before 2020, they’re just toddlers now.
Jayne Havens: Yeah, they’re still really little. It’s not like they’re fully big kids yet. Let’s talk about the doula community a little bit. I love getting to know the doula community. Again, a few years ago, I didn’t even know what a doula was. Now I feel like I have 500 friends that are postpartum doulas. But the doula community can sometimes be a little bit opinionated. Sometimes postpartum professionals have very strong opinions about sleep training. It’s a controversial topic. Have you come up against any colleagues who are really against the work that we do as sleep consultants? If so, how are you navigating those conversations?
Mariah Martin: I have found a lot of that. I love that you’re in all of those groups. I’m in a lot of postpartum doula groups. I love when somebody says something, and I got to say something and you already have. Because I think that there’s a lot of misinformation out there. I have somebody that I really admired as a postpartum doula. She was a mentor, and she is very critical of sleep training. It saddens me, because I think that there’s such a bad rap on sleep training. I know that our community is really, really out there pushing. Sleep training is not ‘cry it out.’ That is not what that equals.
Getting that information out there that there’s not just one way to sleep train and that it’s not this detrimental thing, and that yes, of course babies need to wake up. Yes, of course, babies are going to wake up. But that doesn’t mean that they can’t fall back to sleep. So, I think getting that information out there. I talked to a lot of doulas in my area who will contact me if they have clients that are struggling. So, they’re very supportive. I’m constantly like, “Remember, this doesn’t mean that. We can do a gentle approach to sleep training even with newborns. It’s not sleep training, it’s sleep shaping. This is not a bad thing. This is a good thing.” I think you just have to keep reiterating that to people.
Jayne Havens: I’m sort of trying to take the power back with the language. Everybody is so afraid to say sleep training. They like to say sleep shaping, because it sounds nicer. I, honestly, am totally cool with saying sleep training. Let’s call it what it is. Potty training is not like potty shaping, right? When you say potty training, there are people out there now calling it potty learning and whatever.
Mariah Martin: Right. Let’s not get crazy.
Jayne Havens: You can call it whatever you want. But all we’re doing is, we’re supporting parents through the process of teaching their children how to do something in a new way. Period, end of story.
Mariah Martin: It’s another skill. I think that’s something that you reiterate a lot, that this is a skill. This is a skill like anything else. You’re just teaching your child how to walk. You’re just trying to teach him how to fall asleep. That’s it.
Jayne Havens: Yeah, that’s it. Taking it back, I think, is really important. I also think there’s a lot of irony with doulas. The whole idea, correct me if I’m wrong, about offering support as a doula is that you’re providing information and support. That’s what being a doula is. That’s actually what being a sleep consultant is, too. It’s sort of very much the same thing. So, I find it really interesting when there are these very opinionated, sometimes close-minded postpartum professionals that are not willing to support parents in a way that they want to be supported.
One of the things that I work really hard to do within Center for Pediatric Sleep Management and with our community is to encourage our students and graduates to support families in a way that feels safe and comfortable for them. There’s no one size fits all approach to parenting. There’s no one size fits all approach to sleep consulting. These parents deserve to get the type of support that they are looking for.
Now, sometimes I’m not the right fit. If a parent wants to improve sleep but to continue to bed share with their infant, I follow AAP safe sleep guidelines so I’m not the right fit for them. That being said, I refer those cases out all the time to professionals that are willing to support that type of parenting. That’s totally fine. So, I think that all this anger and nastiness and drama that comes out on this topic is upsetting and silly. I don’t know. I like to surround myself with doulas that are open-minded and just willing to support families in a way that works for the family.
Mariah Martin: Yeah, I think that you’re right that as a doula, I am educating and supporting. As a sleep consultant, that’s what I’m doing. I like to say, I meet my parents where they are. “What are you doing? Where do you want to be?” I do that as a doula and as a sleep consultant. As a doula, I walk in every day and I say, “What do you need today? Do you need a shower? Do you need a nap? Do you need to tell me about your birth story for the fourth time? What do you need?”
Jayne Havens: I love that.
Mariah Martin: I spend a lot of time talking about restaurants in New York. I’ve noticed that seems to be a key thing lately. Sometimes they just need me to talk. Then there’s other points that are just straight education. So, I do what they need me to do. As a sleep consultant, I do the same thing. “What do you need? Let’s figure it out.”
Jayne Havens: Yeah. “What are your goals? Where do you want to be in two weeks, one month, whatever?”
Mariah Martin: Yeah, I’m not trying to change somebody’s entire parenting philosophy. That’s not my goal. My goal is to figure out what your philosophy is, and then let me help you figure out how to make your goals happen.
Jayne Havens: I love that. I’m wondering what your business looked like before you were a sleep consultant and what it looks like now. Are you getting different types of postpartum clients because you’re a sleep consultant? Are you supporting your postpartum clients in a new way with this newfound education? How is becoming a sleep consultant changed the way that you, both, I guess, find clients and support families?
Mariah Martin: I think that it’s changed a lot because I’m way more confident. Because as a doula, I’ve been with babies for so long and toddlers for my whole adult life that it’s like second nature to me. Sometimes I forget to tell people simple things, because I just think that they already know that. That to me was like, my doula stuff I already knew. But the sleep stuff is all new to me. So then, it gave me this whole new set of skills that I became so confident about. I was like, “Oh, now I can teach you all of these things.” It made me more aware of breaking things down.
Not every parent knows how to change a diaper or how to give a baby a bath. Not every parent knows when to put their baby down for a nap and when to hold them. So, I had this whole new set of skills. I got a lot more confident. I think coming out of being a nanny and into a doula, I was still taking those hybrid doula nanny roles where I would stay for three months, which was great. But it became a nanny job. Now I’m more precise on what my weeks are, what my time is. It has made me more of a professional, if you will. I feel like, “Okay. I will come into your house for eight weeks, and then I’m going to go. You are going to be great. So, I was able to work myself out of a job.
Jayne Havens: I love that.
Mariah Martin: That’s where I carry myself more as a professional now. I think of myself as more of a professional. I think that comes across in my performance at my work.
Jayne Havens: I think it takes a lot of competence to want to always be working yourself out of a job, right?
Mariah Martin: Yeah.
Jayne Havens: Especially when you’re in a field where nannies are getting a new job every 2, 3, 4, 5 years. But postpartum doulas are picking up a new job every 6, 8, 10, 12 weeks. If you’re not really fully confident in the work that you’re doing, in the service that you’re providing, and the value that you’re offering these family, it can feel easier to find something cushy and just stay.
Mariah Martin: Yeah, definitely. That was something that I did before. I jumped in with both feet — with my doula business and my sleep consulting business. I was like, “Okay, I’m not taking any more new jobs. I’m just going to do this,” which is sometimes totally terrifying.
Jayne Havens: I’m really proud of you for doing that. I’m wondering, are you doing any in-home sleep training, or is all of your sleep support virtual?
Mariah Martin: It’s been all virtual. I’ve had a couple people reach out to me about in-home. I just haven’t figured out how that works yet because I don’t do overnight support for my doula business very often. I’ve had a couple of clients that I’ve done that for, but it’s too hard on me. So then, I think, “Well, how am I going to do it as a sleep consultant?” It’s something I would totally do if I could figure out how I would model that, and what my strategy would be.
Jayne Havens: Yeah, so you and I might have to talk about that offline. I like that you said that you’re not doing overnight postpartum doula work so much, because that’s hard for you. It would be hard for me, too. Shout out to all the ladies that are working overnights. I don’t know how anybody does it. It’s really, really hard. I think it’s amazing that you’ve built a business doing daytime, postpartum doula work. That’s really impressive, because I think a lot of families really do seek that overnight support. So, good for you for doing daytime work. Good for you for recognizing that maybe you’re not a candidate for overnight work, sleep training. I wouldn’t be either, so I get it.
Mariah Martin: I think it would be interesting. I would love to know how people are setting it up and doing it. I know we’ve talked in our community a lot about it, but I’m still not sure how it looks. It’s definitely something that I would be interested
Jayne Havens: One of our grads is doing something really interesting, where she’s sort of doing a hybrid model where she does two or three nights in-home. Then she pivots to virtual. She gets them through those first couple of days overnight. Then she just moves to virtual support, which I think is really smart.
Mariah Martin: That’s probably the best way.
Jayne Havens: Because it’s really not necessary to be somewhere overnight for a week or two, just like the first two or three days and get them started.
Mariah Martin: Yeah, and I think it’s so important to teach the parents how to do it — not doing it for them. I think a couple of nights, you’re like, “This is how we do it.” Then they do it. That’s a good model to do.
Jayne Havens: Actually, I think that’s an interesting point to bring up. I get asked from time to time if I will do in-home sleep training, and I don’t. One thing that I always tell parents and this is not to undermine those who are doing in-home sleep training. However parents want to be supported, I think that they should get the type of support that they’re looking for. But I do think that there is such an incredible value to supporting a parent through the process of supporting their child, rather than me coming in and sleep training a baby.
I think that it’s so much more long-lasting to give the parents the tools. I actually asked one of our — I did a podcast episode on this topic of supporting families in-home. I asked the person who does this like, “How do you feel about that?” Because I know that she values teaching the parents. The parent then teaches the child. Yet, she’s still doing a lot of in-home sleep training. Her response was like, “Some of these parents, they’re just not willing to do it. Either I come in and do it, or it doesn’t get done.”
Mariah Martin: Or it doesn’t happen. Right.
Jayne Havens: That was a valid point.
Mariah Martin: That’s such a key part of what we were saying, what we do in our community. She’s supporting them where they are. She’s saying, “Okay. Well, if you’re not going to do it, I will do it for you. I’ll help you”
Jayne Havens: Exactly. Let’s get back to the business building piece of all of this. Not too long ago, you hired a coach. You hired Alison Henderson, who has been on this podcast. She’s one of my favorite people. She’s a CPSM contributor. I’m wondering why you ultimately decided to go out and hire a coach? What did you gain from that experience?
Mariah Martin: I was not looking to hire a coach at all, because I didn’t think that that was something that I could do in my business at the time. But when you meet Allison — she’s my favorite person ever — you just have to. You want to be in her limelight all the time. So, it was a no-brainer. I reached out to a couple of people in our community that had worked with her. They all said she’s the best. So, I did it. It was great. I learned.
I think most of my confidence comes from her. I know a lot about babies, but I know nothing about Instagram. Nothing. So, she gave me the words that I needed on a sales call. She gave me the confidence to close the deal and to reach out to people and to talk to people in my community. That really built my business. Her energy is so amazing that you just want to replicate that in your own life. She’s just like, “Of course, you can do it. Why would you even think you can’t do it?” You’re like, “I can do this.”
Jayne Havens: Yeah, I love Alison to death. It’s interesting. You were saying she gives you the words for a sales call. She tells you. The interesting thing is, Allison — for those listening and who aren’t enrolled in CPSM, Allison does a training inside of CPSM. It’s like an hour-long training. It’s specifically for sleep consultants. It literally has everything that Mariah is talking about right now. It’s all actually in the course. But I think that there’s still a huge value in getting that one-on-one support if you need that limelight shining on you, right?
Mariah Martin: Absolutely.
Jayne Havens: You needed that. You had all of the tools that you needed. There was nothing being hidden from you. You were in need of a confidence boost. You needed somebody to tell you, you already have all of the tools. Now you just need to get out there and use them. I think that that’s what Allison did for you.
Mariah Martin: Totally.
Jayne Havens: I think that she really showed you that you already knew everything you needed to know. You were already a master at your craft. You were already really good at what you were doing. You just needed to get out there and talk to people about it. She helped to make you brave enough to do that.
Mariah Martin: Right. I struggle a lot with trying to figure out what to say, like the initial part. I struggle with how do I create this conversation, or how do I reach out to a local daycare, or how do I put myself out there? Because I’m really an outgoing person, but I’m really timid on making that first move. She really was like, “Why?”
Jayne Havens: Yeah, like let’s just go.
Mariah Martin: So, it really did. It really helped me. It really gave me the confidence. After her course, I had my best couple months ever. I had 12 clients in one month, which has been my best so far. It was like one after another and after another. I wrote to her. I was like, “Look at what I just did.” I listened to myself on sales calls. We call them discovery calls.
Jayne Havens: Yeah, whatever you want to call it.
Mariah Martin: I listened to myself. I’m like, oh my god. I’m confident. These parents are hiring me because they’re like, “She knows what she’s doing.” I had it in me, like you said. She just brought it out and refined it for me.
Jayne Havens: I love that. Within CPSM, I’m really committed to — I always say it plays a very heavy emphasis on business building and entrepreneurship. Because being a sleep consultant is all well and good. But if you don’t know how to get out there and talk to people, if you don’t know how to connect with your prospective clients, then you’re not going to have any business. Then you have this huge skill set that’s for nothing. So, I really do place a really heavy emphasis on the business piece. But I think that there’s something to be said for getting that one-on-one support from a coach.
If you’re the type of person that benefits from that accountability and support, it’s exactly what we are offering to our clients as sleep consultants. It’s interesting. Actually, ever since I got into this business, I have been more apt to hire out support for myself. I’ve hired health coaches. I’ve hired all sorts of accountability and support type people for myself once I became a sleep consultant. Because I saw, “Okay, I’m giving this support to my clients. It’s hugely valuable. I’m getting them a transformation. I need to go out and find someone to help me with the transition.”
Mariah Martin: Right. That was totally my thing, too. Because I kept thinking. I ask all these parents. It’s a big investment to have a sleep consultant. So, I’m asking these parents to invest in me. Invest in yourself. Yeah, Allison’s program taught me not only all my confidence and everything, but how to do Instagram, how to do a reel, and how to post, and how to get all that stuff. Because I didn’t know. I’ve been a nanny my whole life. This whole computer thing is not my thing. So, I had to learn all that. It was finally like, invest in yourself.
Jayne Havens: I think it all boils down to the confidence piece. Because you felt like you needed to learn Instagram. You actually didn’t need to learn Instagram. You didn’t. You could have built a successful business without Instagram. We have plenty of people doing that. But in your mind, you felt like you needed that. Instead of being sad that you couldn’t do it or frustrated with yourself that you didn’t know what button to push, how to find the song, how to do this, and how to do that, you just went out and you got the support that you needed. Again, I think it all boils down to the confidence. Because at the end of the day, it doesn’t matter if you’re doing it on reels, or you’re doing it by calling a local daycare. You just needed the confidence that you were capable of getting out there and telling the world that you exist — which is what, I think, Alison taught you.
Mariah Martin: Right. Yeah, she’s the best.
Jayne Havens: She really is. I think of the entrepreneurial journey as being a bunch of ups and downs. I know you’ve been through them. I’ve been through them. Sometimes we’re sort of on the top of the world. Other times we’re crashing and burning, for lack of a better way of saying it. We’ve all been there, right? I’m wondering if you’d be willing to share something that felt really hard in your business, and then maybe follow it up with a big win.
Mariah Martin: Like I was just saying, the whole social media aspect of it felt hard. To leave a whole guaranteed paycheck as a nanny, to just wing it for a while was hard. I always say, and I know that most doulas say this business is feast or famine. You are either riding high and you’re like, “I don’t have enough room for everybody,” or you’re like, “I don’t know. I don’t have a job next week.”
That, I think, is a really hard part. It’s hard to adapt to that, but it always comes. I think that I know how now, which I didn’t with my doula business. But as I’ve grown over the last year, I know how to go out and pluck up a job. I’m in all the mommy groups, and I’m in all the doula groups. So, I can see where the jobs are, and I can have a job tomorrow if I want one.
I think that it is hard in this business to trust in yourself and trust in the whole process, but I’m doing exactly what I was meant to be doing. That is something that I totally take confident every day. I just finished two postpartum jobs this week, and so I was kind of panicky. Then I was like, “It will just come.” I have two sleep consultant clients coming. It just comes.
Jayne Havens: I was just going to say that. What I’ve noticed with my postpartum doulas that are enrolled in CPSM and who are a part of our community, what I’m noticing is that sleep consulting is filling the gaps in their postpartum doula work. Hopefully, you’re not feeling that feast or famine so much anymore. Because if you are in between jobs, and you’re supporting two families in sleep consulting, it sort of carries you over.
Mariah Martin: It balances it. Yes, totally. That’s where I say like it’s feast or famine with my doula work. With sleep, it just keeps me afloat. It keeps coming. Eventually, I would like to be doing totally sleep clients and phase out my postpartum clients. I love them. I just finished with a client that has a brand-new baby. He’s 10 weeks now, but they had never really been around babies. Those are my favorite clients, like first child. “We have no idea. Teach us everything you know.” I love it. But then, when I’m out of it, I’m like, “I’m just going to do sleep.” I think I would like to do sleep and then sprinkle in some postpartum, as opposed to the other way around. That’s my goal.
Jayne Havens: Are you finding that now that you have sleep consulting in your mix, that it’s positioning you to be more choosy with the jobs that you’re taking as a postpartum doula? Because you’re not feeling that feast or famine as much. If you meet with a family and you’re like, “I’m not sure about them. I’m not sure this is the greatest fit,” two years ago, you’ve taken the job. Now maybe you’re like, “I’m not going to take this job.”
Mariah Martin: Yeah, and I can refer them out. Because before, like you said, I think that doula work is like dating. There has to be a good chemistry. You have to fit well because you’re in their home. So yeah, I think there were times that I was like, “I’m just going to take this job because I needed a job.” Now I can be more choosy and be like, “This is not a good fit for me. So, I’m going to refer them to somebody else.” But I’m consistent with my sleep consulting, so it carries me through.
Jayne Havens: What an amazing feeling to be in that position.
Mariah Martin: Yeah, I think it’s huge. It’s where I’ve always wanted to be, so I do it.
Jayne Havens: I’m really happy for you. I’m wondering if you have any big goals or small goals for the next six months, a year, two years, five years? Where do you want to be? I know you said you want to be doing maybe more sleep and less in-home work. Is that right? Any other sort of big goals for your business?
Mariah Martin: Yeah, I would like to be doing solely sleep consulting, and I would like to buy a house. That’s where our goal is now. I do okay. I make good money, but I don’t contribute as much as I would like to. So, that’s my goal. It’s to contribute more to a house. I feel like my name is really getting out there now. I never had to look for a nanny job. I was always referred. Somebody was always like, “Oh, you’ve got to get Mariah as your nanny.” So, I want that as a sleep consultant. It’s starting to. People are referring to me out a lot. So, I just hope it keeps growing. I’m going to hit that 12 again.
Jayne Havens: Absolutely. It’s such a good feeling. I remember it happened for me somewhere between six months to a year of being in business, where I really felt like I wasn’t out there pounding the virtual pavement anymore. I wasn’t hustling. It was just every day, I’d get an email, or a text message, or a phone call from somebody who’s got my—
Mariah Martin: It’s consistent.
Jayne Havens: Yeah, from a friend, or their old college roommate, or their sister-in-law. That’s the best because most families are sort of — they already trust you. We’re already vetted, right? It’s just an easier transition to work with somebody that you have that mutual connection with already.
Mariah Martin: Right. Yeah, definitely. Like I said, it’s starting. It’s starting to get there. It’s so fun to wake up in the morning, get on Facebook, and three people have tagged me in a post. I feel like, “Oh, thanks.”
Jayne Havens: It’s fabulous when your business starts to sort of work for you, right?
Mariah Martin: Yeah, definitely.
Jayne Havens: I love that. I wake up sometimes, four o’clock in the morning. I don’t wake up at four o’clock in the morning, but I often get emails at 4:00 in the morning.
Mariah Martin: Yeah, I get a lot of those.
Jayne Havens: Did that happen to you?
Mariah Martin: Yeah.
Jayne Havens: People will say to me like, “I’m so sorry for the middle of the night email.” I’m like, “I get them every single day.”
Mariah Martin: I get a lot of Instagram posts like two in the morning. I need help.
Jayne Havens: Exactly. These families are reaching out. It’s not like a completely cold reach out. It’s, “I got your name from so and so,” or somebody tagged you here or whatever. That’s the best feeling.
Mariah Martin: It is.
Jayne Havens: Once that starts to happen, I think consulting businesses — whether it be sleep consulting or anything else — it’s all referral-based. Once you really get your name out there, it just sort of churns, which is great.
Mariah Martin: Yeah, and I’m noticing that as much as I thought it was like me leaving flyers somewhere or me dropping a business card, it’s not. I don’t get those clients. I get the clients from Instagram and from word of mouth. Those 12 clients that I got that month, they were from one person who just kept telling her friends. I think everybody in Northern Jersey is sleeping fine now, I guess.
Jayne Havens: I call them super spreaders.
Mariah Martin: Yeah, exactly. Thank you.
Jayne Havens: I have a few of those as well. I have a handful of clients that I supported years ago at this point, that still continue to tell everybody they know about me. Those are the relationships that keep your business afloat. We’re all so grateful for that.
Mariah Martin: Yeah, and it just gets bigger and bigger and bigger.
Jayne Havens: Exactly. Before we wrap up, where can everybody find you? I want people to check you out on Instagram, now that you know how to do reels. You’re out there doing it. So, where can everybody find you?
Mariah Martin: I’m getting there. I’m @mariahmartinsleepconsultant on Instagram. My website is mariahmartinpostpartumdoula.com.
Jayne Havens: Perfect. I will put that on the show notes. I hope everybody listening will go follow you on social media and check out your website. Congrats on your success, and thank you for chatting with me today.
Mariah Martin: Thank you. Thanks for having me.
Outro: Thank you so much for listening to this episode of the Becoming a Sleep Consultant Podcast. If you enjoyed today’s episode, it would mean so much to me if you would rate, review, and subscribe. When you rate, review, and subscribe, this helps the podcast reach a greater audience. I am so grateful for your support. If you would like to learn more about how you can become a certified sleep consultant, head over to my Facebook Group, Becoming a Sleep Consultant or to my website thecpsm.com. Thanks so much, and I hope you will tune in for the next episode.Lucia Mariah