Here what The App Mama has to say about supporting local business in her “Local First Podcast”.
Local First Transcription
R— Nancy Lucchesi, founder of Unleashed Mobile Apps and number one best-selling author. Lucchesi’s work centers around helping other business owners bring their visions to life. After several decades of business experience, primarily in sales, Nancy finds joy and satisfaction in helping other business owners succeed.. She considers small businesses to be the heart and soul of this country and believes they play a key role in strengthening local communities.
Nancy’s favorite part of her work comes when her clients succeed in growing their business through mobile technology. Nancy is also an avid Packer fan and looooooves to travel – especially to a beach.
R— We have on the Local First Podcast The App Mama Nancy Lucchesi. Welcome!
N— Thank you! I enjoy being here today.
R– Thank you for taking the time out of your day so people can get to know you a little bit more.
Where did you go grow up, what do you enjoy doing in your spare time and what did you do before becoming the App Mama?
N— Well Rob I was born in Milwaukee and grew up here. Stayed here for most of my adult life. I went to North Carolina and Arizona and migrated back where we raised two beautiful children who are now adults themselves.
I’ve been in business for most of my adult life. I branched off back when I was 27 years old to own my own business and have been growing and changing since then. I have quite an extensive background.
I fell into doing mobile apps back a couple years ago as you know for small businesses they are a new item that haven’t been around for very many years.
I’ve always been very technology oriented and I gravitated toward this. Now I do mobile apps for small businesses.
R–That’s really great I’m excited about learning more. This is something local businesses anywhere can take advantage of. So with the Unleashed Mobile Apps in a concise way what do you do for your clients?
N— We basically take their business and turn it into a mobile app to showcase their business to their customers.
There is a difference between a website and a mobile app and social media for that matter.
Where social media people are first kind of getting to know you exist and when they want to learn more about you they go to your website. They learn about your products, learn who you are, find if they want to do business with you. Your mobile app is where people go to do business with you.
You can be able to showcase your business, buy products from there, have a loyalty program, find out where you’re at. That’s where people do business these days is on a mobile device.
R—- Do you find people using apps on their phones like that more prevalent than a laptop?
N—- Definitely. I’d say 88% of smartphone users use only mobile apps. They use up to 9 a day. When people first hear that they say ‘ how do I use 9 a day?’ Think about your habits. What are you using them for? Looking at weather, checking mail, on Facebook or Amazon, on Starbucks, you’re using mobile apps all the time.
When did you last use a mobile website on a regular basis?
R— That makes things so much easier to do. You’re directly one on one with that customer or talking to them one on one.
N- We do! We have apps to help people develop their apps on the backend. We do make it very easy for the business owner to save them time and money in their marketing efforts. By having a mobile app as part of your marketing you can save yourself a lot.
And when you look at an app like the Starbucks app, I love that app. You can purchase product, have a loyalty program, find locations, you can do all these things. But that’s a big budget one. That app costs way out of the realm of what a small business can afford. But we made a platform where the small business can compete with the big box stores in the big businesses with big budgets.
We made a platform for a loyalty program, where people can buy products. You can stay in contact with people. The idea is to keep customers coming. We APP-solutely keep customers coming back. You do that through informing, engaging and standing out.
R—- Very cool! I’ll be watching this for a while.
What brought you into the app business?
What got you so excited about creating apps for small businesses?
N— I had been in the small business realm for quite a while. I was looking for some kind of tool to help the small business compete.
I was actually in a coffee shop once and heard two guys talking and I knew what company they were with because I saw their portfolios. They made a statement that really resonated with me and got the fire lit. They said “we have more money than God don’t worry about the small guy we’re going to crush them.”
That took me aback. I know this company’s history with a 400 sq foot office to serve a part of the community that needed help. Now they’re on the Fortune 500 list and they’ve lost that helping a small person.
There has to be something out there to help the small business can compete with the big budgets. The mobile app platform is it. It’s like a website. When they started people said I have a sign I don’t need a website. The big budget people had websites because they were expensive. You wouldn’t open a business these days without one.
Now anyone can have an app. They can be as detailed as you need or as simple as you need.
I wanted to find something and when the opportunity came I grabbed it.
R—- I really like that story because it really brings it back down to the local businesses. The ones that are out there that get overlooked. I see more and more people coming back to local businesses. The village of Wauwatosa is a big one you go up and down State St. or North Ave and you see all these small businesses which created such a large community around them. With apps now they can connect with their clients.
N—- They’re basically able to reach their clients and keep the customer from going into the door or for online people keep them in that way because they carry you around in your pocket.
R—What have been some of your biggest challenges and setbacks in being the App Mama?
N— Well it started off where small businesses didn’t understand the power of the mobile app. I had to do a lot of educating the differences between the website and the mobile app. Budgets are tight every dollar spent needs a purpose. They don’t have the extra funds. To educate them to know they need this to help their business.
Everyone we have out there has found phenomenal result just by taking that leap of faith and allowing us to help them. We have fixed cost so your ROI is going to be what you put into it not dollars you put into it with me.
R- If you were to go back in time and start of your business what advice would you give to your younger self?
N— Listen to your gut.
You have the passion within you. You know what you’re doing you just need to listen to yourself and take inspired action.
We often believe our doubts and doubt our fears.
R— (story about his relaunch)
As an expert in your field what are 3-5 things a business should know about your field and why should they come to you?
N— Biggest thing is that we are local. We work with small business. We will expand outside of our area but we are real people. We are approachable. We are something you can sit with us whether it’s virtual or in person. You are able to hash out what you need and we flexible.
Every business has unique needs. We work with you on an individual basis. It’s not a cookie cutter thing. We don’t have you make our product work for you we make our product be what works.
We are very approachable with technology and listening to what you need.
R— I take for granted there are a lot of people that are scared or know nothing, how do you handle that?
N—- We take them slow. We educate and the biggest thing we tell them is there is nothing you do we can’t reverse.
It’s simple to operate. It’s truly a click and push way to operate on the backend. We do one on one training.
We don’t just give you a block of time, sometimes it takes steps or pieces.
There is nothing you can’t do that we can’t reverse. Have at it. It won’t blow up and you won’t erase the memory.
R— Take me back to when you thought ‘wow’ I’m doing this.
N— If you go way back to when I worked for a corporation I was told at that time in the medical field in radiology I was told based on my profession I’d never make a good salesperson. That floored me. I broke off and started my own business.
When I look at my current customers and what I can do for them it’s amazing.
We have a local bar in West Allis – there are many bars in West Allis – this is just a local tavern. He has 1600 downloads for his app. He increased his sales by 30% just by having the app. He can keep track of it and knows his return on it.
I have another customer who runs an antique store who has had an app for a couple months. They have a few hundred downloads. I see these changes and shifts.
There is a dog grooming place – their clients love the fact that they can make appointments right from the app.
R— What are some of your day to day practices that contributed to your success and happiness?
N— As far as happiness goes I have learned to live authentically.
Through the years I’ve learned that being authentic is the only way that I can be. Fitting into a mold doesn’t work.
Come from a giving heart not from a taking heart. I network very well. I’m huge into networking. I’m specific on groups I join because I want to contribute.
Through that I’ve been able to grow my business and help others and by helping others my business is growing. I had a referral by someone I met two years ago.
It’s really cool.
Networking is the key. It’s all about relationships.
R— This podcast would not be here without networking or the groups I’m part of.
Is there any book or quote or resource that has guided you through this process?
N– Yes! My favorite business book “Three Feet From Gold.”
Every business owner needs to read this. It talks about you stopping three feet from gold. I use that on days when I don’t know the next move. To have that motivation, to think it’s not coming together you need to realize you’re three feet from gold.
Read that book. Digest it. You’ll be blown away by who is in that book and the motivation behind them. Your thoughts control you all day. Have a good thought in the morning and you’ll have a good day.
This helps pull me out so my bad days aren’t as many or as long.
R— I see people do things and they’re so close and they quit or do something different instead of pushing through it.
It’s all choices.
What has you fired up about the future?
N– The way the business is evolving and the fact that small businesses can take advantage of a mobile app. And the whole online presence.
I have a client in Florida I’ve never met but I feel like we are best friends. We go back and forth and I love the community of local expanding beyond the local walls because of what they do. If they aren’t brick and mortar they can reach other people.
I was just down in Florida and not once did we go to a chain.
It’s amazing how this massive internet brings people so close together. Our nation was founded on small business and that to me is what will keep our nation going.
R— Info on how to get a hold of Nancy —-
R— Anything you would like to ask me?
N- How did you decide to go forward with podcasts?
R—– (story about podcasts at 22:00)
(Goes until 24:45)
Rapid fire questions.
From my book … Tools of Titans…. Page 648 we have rapid fire questions. Worst advice you see or hear being dispensed in your world?
N– Listening to family and friends. They have no business. It’s your business. Seek counsel in professionals in your business.
R— What is something really weird or unsettling that happens to you regularly?
N— in the business world it’s people thinking they have a mobile app and don’t need to do anything with it.. It’s unsettling because it’s not a magic tool. You have to give the magic to the tool. It’s like having a Facebook page but never using it and saying it doesn’t work.
That’s probably my biggest hurdle I have to overcome every day.
R– If you could have one giant billboard what would it say?
N— I AM THE APP MAMA
Contact The App Mama and Unleashed Mobile Apps to get more information on boosting your business with a mobile app or to learn more about how it can help reach your customers more effectively.
I founded Unleashed Mobile Apps with the goal to help small business owners bring their visions to life.