Get Your Marketing Moxie On

Marketing Moxie ImageThis post on marketing moxie was one of those where I started heading off in one direction but took some major twists and turns, like a fun mystery novel, as I started to piece together the clues I was discovering. I truly enjoyed my journey back in time finding the origin of marketing moxie and I hope you will too!

Marketing Moxie

The GS version of Moxie:

I woke up this morning thinking about the word moxie.  It could be that since she’s passed, holidays make me think of my grandma more, and Easter was always one of her favorites, but my Nana often talked about someone having “moxie” when I was growing up.  I never knew what it meant for sure (I wish I had asked her more about it), but I always associated it with someone who was gutsy and had street smarts.

As a girl scout leader a couple of years ago our girls were earning their Journey badges and Moxie was a character that guided them through the journey book and activities. Someone with moxie is skilled with know-how, determined, sassy, courageous, adventurous, spunky, energetic, spirited, tenacious, and having vim and vigor.  In a nutshell, my 9 year old daughter most of the time (and the best marketers in my opinion! :))

Marketing Moxie: “LEARN to Drink Moxie”

While looking around online for an image of the GS Moxie, I found some youtube videos about a whole different Moxie!  A bitter tasting carbonated beverage from the 1880’s that is still popular today!  (Yes I’ve apparently been living under a rock because I hadn’t heard of it.)  Originally in the 1880’s, it was marketed as an elixir that healed everything it eventually became branded as the beverage nerve food!  It’s an acquired taste, but has a cult like following that as transcended generations.

This idea of a product that tasted so yucky that most people would quit after the first sip, so they marketed it under the slogan “LEARN to Drink Moxie!” made me curious.  Especially when I considered that it is still around and is loved so much by people that they are creating websites talking about it and selling this hard to find beverage online about 125 years after it was first marketed.  I wondered if there might be a whole different marketing moxie lesson hidden in this post.

3 sips & the gourmet flavor will come through…

Let’s go back to that description of someone with moxie: skilled with know-how, determined, sassy, courageous, adventurous, spunky, energetic, spirited, tenacious and with vim and vigor.

Sounds to me like you need moxie to drink moxie! “The first sip you’ll want to spit out (dont!).  The second sip you’ll want to spit out, (don’t!).  The third sip is where the true flavors come through.”

Imagine telling your customers:
“On the first taste you’re going to want to spit it out and throw it away, but don’t!”

In our marketing, rarely does something work the first time. Talking to your first prospect, writing your first blog post, leading your first team training, it’s all going to probably going to taste a little bitter the first time you try it. You’ve got to have moxie to stick with it long enough to make it work.

My upline drilled into me, “Don’t quit ’til payday,” when I was not seeing results during a struggling streak in my home business. I’ve often felt like quitting in my journey online as well, but it’s a great lesson I’ve learned and I have to say I’m stubborn enough to stick it out. Things have always gotten better with time, practice, and continuously honing my skills.

How many people get into a home based business or internet marketing business expecting it to be easy, either because of hype or exaggerated hope fed to them through the prospecting and presenting process?

What if you told your new teammates, that you will struggle, it’s going to be hard, and that’s the cool thing about it, because in order to grow, you have to be uncomfortable? The growth process involves doing something you’ve never done, which means you’re going to feel frustration at times and certainly experience failure at times too. You’re going to want to quit and throw it all away, but don’t!

Marketing Moxie: “It’s a drink that they serve that will build up your nerve, so just make it Moxie for mine!”

Hmmm…a drink that builds up your nerve? Just make it Moxie for mine! Like Alice in Wonderland, eat this, drink this and you’ll be tiny enough to squeeze into the smallest spaces, or larger than life. If only it was that easy!

I can’t count the number of times I’ve held my breath, taken that leap of faith, and clicked send on an email, dialed a phone number, or pushed publish on a blog post I was nervous about! But I’ve done it anyway. I’ve found that when I am able to get through the initial fear, I actually like taking risks in my business, I enjoy the challenge!

I think that by taking continuous steps, my marketing moxie is developing. I’m learning and implementing the things I’ve learned which is definitely increasing my skill level and courage. Being connected to my why definitely makes me determined. Sassy spunky and energetic? Give me some coffee first, It’s 5:30 in the morning and the coffee maker is still chugging!

Marketing Moxie 2 ImageMy secret to having moxie is to keep moving forward at a fast enough clip that I don’t have time to get nervous and if I do feel my nerves start to tingle with fear, I’ve already got enough momentum built up, that it carries me through.

I’d love to know what your marketing moxie secret is? Please share it in the comments below, and share this post on facebook and twitter! Then…get your marketing moxie on and go do something that makes you nervous!

Oh, and all of you prove it challengers…I need your stats! I know you’ve all got marketing moxie and I want to show you off to my audience! 🙂

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  1. I guess the most successful business people are the ones that stick it through the leans times. Good article and intersting twist. Thanks.

    • Thanks Marty!

      Stick-to-it-ness is definitely one of the keys to success, isn’t it!?!?

      I appreciate your comment,


  2. Heather, thanks for this exposition on moxie. You’re right; it’s one of those words that were used in the previous generations and has fallen into disuse. We should work hard to bring it back. It is SO much better than the current vernacular (with the same number of letters). I’m committed to do so!
    Thank you!

    • Hi Roy,

      You peaked my interest…what’s the other word? Maybe I’ll want to commit to using it more too, once I realize what the other word is! 🙂

      Please let me know!!!

      Happy Blogging,

  3. Heather, this is such a fantastic post! Hanging in there, feeling nervous but doing it anyway, is half the battle. I’d say the other half is knowing what to do so there are actually some positive results.

    But moxie is just what we marketers need to keep going until payday, even if the going gets tough, even if our knees are a’knocking :).

    • Hi Jeanine!

      I agree with your two halves of the battle! Kind of fits with “street smarts and guts” as I originally thought moxie meant.

      I’m reading a great book (you can get it free on ebay: ) that suggests that picking the projects that bring up the most fear let’s us know we’re working on the right things.

      I guess knocking knees is a great indicator of doing the right thing!


  4. Hi Heather!

    Great Moxie story and a little education I wasn’t familiar with.

    Bravery and perseverance are huge in this business, or really any business for that matter.

    My motto has always been “patience and perseverance”. But maybe that’s just my personality as I know lots of people that couldn’t do what I do because they don’t have those qualities.

    But also most people prefer the security of a regular paycheck they get from working for someone else. It certainly takes bravery to give that up, doesn’t it?

    “Don’t quit til payday”, love that.

    Great post Heather 🙂

    • Hi Liz,

      It’s great to see you! 🙂

      Patience and perseverance is a great motto to live by. I think that giving up a secure paycheck can be scary, but so many people today have had their paychecks ripped out from under them and they’re looking for a different way.

      I’m glad you like the “Don’t quit til payday!” phrase. It’s from my upline, and I’m sure they’ve heard it from others as well, but it kind-a puts things into perspective for me. 🙂

      Thanks for the comment!

  5. I love the idea of moving forward fast enough, so that you don’t feel the nerves! =) It’s a funny idea, but I bet it works! This makes me think of all those emails that I don’t want to answer or articles I don’t want to write. Procrastinating definitely makes it worse. My moxie technique is to hold my breath and dig in! I try to assign an hour a day to work directly on those things that make me uncomfortable. =P Maybe if I moved fast enough through that hour, I won’t feel the uncomfortableness. =)

    • Hi Samantha,

      Playing a game of beat the clock certainly works for me to push past the yucky things I don’t like to do! 🙂

      I don’t know anyone who is procrastination free in every area of their lives. But for me, in my business, giving myself too much time to think about something is the kiss of death. I’m way to talented at talking myself out of things that way.

      I’ve found that I’ve got to move forward, even if I’m not totally sure how or what I’m doing. The answers always come to me when I’m in action!

      Thanks for the comment. Let me know if moving fast through your uncomfortable tasks helps you! 🙂


  6. Heather, aloha. What a brilliant post. You truly are a Clever Marketer!

    Like you, I have neither “enjoyed” nor heard of Moxie, the beverage. That being said, your analogy is terrific.

    Most new things that we start to taste “yucky” and we want to spit them out. Even success is an acquired “taste” which far too many people resist.

    My moxie is movement; I keep going. To me, it is easier to pick up the phone, write the e-mail or blog than to think about it. If something bothers me, I want to get it over with as quickly as possible so I take the action to do it.

    Again, Heather, Congratulations on this Great Post! Aloha. Janet

    • Thanks Janet! 🙂

      Movement is huge. I just replied to Samantha’s post about how thinking about things gives me too much time to talk myself out of doing them. I’ve been amazed since marketing my business online, how many things I made harder in my head than they actually were when I did them.

      I think having moxie is all about moving forward!

      Thank you so much for your comment!

      Aloha & happy blogging!

  7. Marketer with a Moxie! Am I one? Maybe…maybe not!

    Heather, you’ve dug into something real important! It’s that initial energy that helps get things done. You can’t see success as we know it if you don’t send that first mail or make that call or contact that prospect or something related.

    For me, with every task that I accomplish, my moxie increases, my energy increases and generally I have that you should get your toughest client immediately after making a giant sales. I know this works because it has worked for me.

    Thanks again Heather! Your pushing me!!!


    • I agree, Tim!

      The initial energy to get things done has to come within, but everything else can be carried through with the help of momentum. Getting started is always the hardest part, isn’t it?

      Doing something difficult when you’re “high” on a win is a great way to leverage that momentum! Great tip, Tim!

      Glad to know I’m pushing you…you all do the same for me!

      Have a great day,

  8. I want to say this a unique writing. I have really felt each sip of Moxie during reading this post.

  9. Hey Heather,

    I definitely have drunk a lot in the past and I hope that I will have to drink more. Well, to me it is all about just doing it. When I think a lot, I most probably fail. But if I do it anyway, I have reaped great benefits.


    • Hi Jane,

      Thanks for the comment. Doing it anyway, even if there is fear is definitely the only way to work past it! 🙂

      Have a great day,

  10. Hi Heather,

    I love how you tied Moxie with your story. Just like your URL says, Clever Marketing!

    Have a great day…

  11. Hi Heather,

    “Clever” post. It has a lot of “Moxie!” I’m biased, but I like to think that I help small business owners find their inner marketing moxie too. In fact, that’s my company name: Moxie Marketing. I’m in Austin and I’m also a certified Duct Tape Marketing Consultant.

    I went through a similar discovery when deciding what to call my soon-to-launch consulting business a few years ago. One night at 1 in the morning, I emailed a friend and fellow small business owner, saying, “If I just had the moxie to get this business going, I know I’d be successful.” Aha! That’s it, I thought. “Moxie Marketing” was born.

    Digging deeper on Google, I was pleasantly surprised to learn the word’s origin. My Dad, a World War II vet talked often about someone having moxie – a prize fighter, a golfer, a business man. Little did I know that the word came from the soft drink! Now whenever I get a new client, I present them with a six pack of Moxie (which I have to special order online), and tell them “Let’s open up a can of moxie on your marketing!” Great fun!

    Moxie. Clever. Duct Tape. They all seem to work together!

    • Hi Rick!

      I’m so glad you stopped by and introduced yourself. Awesome name for your business! Very clever, indeed!

      Clever marketer started as a notebook that I used to jot down the marketing ideas that I was learning from the gurus, when I was studying to learn internet marketing.

      I wanted to name my site clever marketing, but of course it was taken. This ended up being so much better for me in the long run, since the core of my business has become helping others learn how to break past their insecurities and effectively market their small and home based businesses online.

      (I love how life works that way!)

      I had the same feelings of knowing my business would be successful if I could just get it going. I was dealing with some major inner resistance! Who doesn’t right?

      What a great way to brand yourself by giving your clients the 6 pack of Moxie! We’ll have to connect on FB so you can tell me more about the duck tape!

      I’ll seek you out!

      Have a great week and thanks for introducing yourself!


  12. Hi Heather,
    What an interesting post! I have never heard of the drink either and I found the whole thing, from beginning to end, fascinating. I like how you incorporated marketing into it and how we ought to look at our business skills.

    This post also reminds me of Marie Forleo’s post yesterday, she interviewed the author of The War of Art who has a new book out now (which is free on Amazon kindle right now). The whole topic is about resistance and how we can use our own resistance to serve us.

    Great job!

    • Hi Stacy,

      I just read the Art of War yesterday! It’s fantastic isn’t it?!?!

      I’m thrilled you liked the post. I’m going to order some moxie and maybe do a video tasting it the first time (if I’ve got enough moxie to do that anyway)!

      I’ll let you know what I think and if it gives me any more nerve!

      Thanks for your comment, Moxie Lady!


  13. Heather,

    Don’t you secretly love that anxiety in the moments right before placing that call or publishing that post? I’ve been there. It’s funny because the second the call goes through or post publishes, it’s game time. Your game face is on and you’re fine and feel better because you’re all in.

    Your moxie is my moxie, I just like throwing myself at it (ok with SOME planning at least) while looking forward to how I’ll feel after the fact.

    Keep pushing forward – you’re a leader!


    • Don’t you know it, Jon?!

      I’m so addicted to a little thrill now and then (a little more frequently than many.)

      Maybe that’s why I love to play beat the clock and try to squeeze one more thin in before I leave for something, and maybe why I totally am enjoying myself most when I’ve got butterflies in my tummy, and why my husband just shakes his head when he comes down to make coffee in the morning to find his wife still working on something she started the night before, because I was too excited about it to sleep?

      I think I need some more planning in my life, but to be honest, when I stop to think too much I talk myself out of things.

      Here’s to the thrill of the push! (You’re a leader too, Jon!)


  14. great article. thanks for sharing!

  15. Hey Heather,

    What an amazing post! You’re one clever marketer indeed! Moxie is what we all need to keep going until we get what we want.

    Thanks sharing the moxie story and the inspiration 🙂

    All the best,

  16. Heather,

    Very good. You are a master at tie-in’s.

    I like the way you took what the store clerk said about Moxie the drink and gave your own “moxie” marketing spin.

    It is true, to really get out there marketing a home or small business, the owner needs moxie. You’ll need to put yourself in uncomfortable positions but just push through it before the nerves take over.

    I recently took the plunge into video. Eeeek!! I decided to post an intro video about my blog on YouTube. I had a lot of fun doing it because I like to talk. But once I say it on the screen, I hated it. But I didn’t delete it. It was my first shot and I know I will improve with time, like you stated above.

    Thanks for the pep talk.

    “In order to grow you have to be uncomfortable.” Nice quote to live by and market with.


    • Hi Allie,

      Thanks for the compliment, I always wonder if the “tie in” as you say will make sense to others like it makes sense to me in my head.

      Congratulations on your video adventures! That was a huge moxie moment for me. (Still is to be honest, but I commit to doing it more because I know it works. I think I’ve got 35 or so videos on youtube and they still scare me! LOL

      But getting comfortable with being uncomfortable is all part of the game of growing a business and ourselves, right?

      Thank YOU for your pep talk too!


  17. Hi Heather,

    I’m obviously not familiar with the Moxie drink, but it sounds very interesting. Your post is definitely a great word picture to explain how anything we do for the first time will taste bitter, at first try. Momentum is definitely key and we have to act FAST, to be able to get ‘into’ the fear, not just over it.

    Guess what, I have read the book you recommended “Do The Work” , and I can’t thank you enough for sharing it with me. I believe I’ll be reading it everyday, as I want the principles and the golden nuggets from that book to really sink-in 🙂

    Again, thanks for a lovely post and I love hearing your voice too!

    – Rowena

    • Hi Rowena,

      I LOVED the book too. I’m on my second read and I think it’s one of the best I’ve read! I’m so glad you liked it as well.

      There is something of comfort, for me at least, to know that we’re all fighting a battle to the death with resistance! I feel inspiration and power within myself when I see someone else who has pushed past it and done something big. It makes me know that I can do it too!

      Totally Committed with Success as the ONLY option! 🙂

      Hugs Rowena! Thanks for being you!

  18. Hey Heather – what an interesting post!

    I love the slogan for Moxie – ‘LEARN to drink Moxie’ what a great bit of marketing! Turning the weak point (the taste) into a challenge and a strength!

    As you expand upon here, those first bitter tastes in marketing need to be stuck through, and indeed – ‘don’t quit till pay day!’ is definitely sound advice…

    How do I get my marketing moxie on? Two main ways spring to mind. First is put on some kicking tunes and get energized (check out my blog post in the link below – it’s all about that). Second is JUST DOING IT! Jump in, make the call, start the post, whatever it may be. Feel the rush, Ignore the fact that I could (always) be more prepared and do what has to be done!

    Thanks Heather, I learned a new word today, and a great one too!
    All the best,

    • Hi Jym,

      I loved your post on using music to get over yourself when you’re not feeling it in your business! It rocked! (pun intended!)

      I know that there are so many stories about people not stopping until they’ve reached their success. My company has success stories on the website that I’ll read sometimes when I’m needing a little boost of moxie, and I love the Chicken Soup for the Network Marketer’s Soul book for that purpose as well.

      I also use music and my best way of mustering up my moxie is to act without thinking about it too much. I can justify any excuse until I’m blue in the face, so if I don’t give myself time to feel doubt, I can make much bigger strides. Just Do It!

      Thanks Jym, I appreciate your awesome comment!


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  3. […] upon a fellow marketeer today who appreciates the fine points of marketing with moxie.  Check out this post from Heather Stephens, a full-time mompreneur who specializes in teaching others how to market […]