the branding lab podcast

Tune in as we explore what it takes to build a truly strategic, heartfelt brand.


Find Your Business WHY:
The POWER of Purpose 

by Yvonne Ivanescu

Welcome to the first-ever episode of the Branding Lab Podcast 🎧🎙. For our inaugural episode, we decided to start all the way at the beginning, specifically understand the WHY of your business – what is your brand purpose? 

You’ve probably heard the quote by Simon Sinek, “people don’t buy what you do; they buy why you do it. And what you do simply proves what you believe.” Too often people forgo the WHY of their company to first focus on the WHAT and HOW, but it is the why that can provide that essential differentiator.

In this episode, I’ve sat down with Yulia Stark, founder of the FAB Academy, to talk all about the power of purpose. Until 2009 Yulia was a private banker, traveling between Geneva, Brussels, and Luxembourg, managing investment portfolios of her wealthy clients. Then the financial crisis hit and she lost a lot of clients. The crisis destroyed her business but also gave her the best present she ever had: the realization that I did not fit in anymore because honesty, authenticity, and freedom had become my core values. That moment was the beginning of a new journey. 

In this episode, Yulia and I chat about finding that G Spot in your business – your spot of greatness; identifying your core values, your brand purpose and steps on how you can monetize your passions. 


Money isn’t everything, but it does help. If you are doing what you love and you are not making any money from it you will probably get frustrated and burn out.

To understand or find your why, it can be beneficial to take a couple of hours to reflect and take the following steps;

STEP 1:  elicit your values. Tony Robbins has stated that values are like a compass that directs your life. So what do you value the most? Friends, family, travel, or wealth? Write down your top ten values and rank them from 1 to 10 from most important to least important.

STEP 2:  reflect and answer the following questions: if you knew that you would succeed without a doubt, what would you be doing? Another question that you can ask yourself is: if there was no such thing as money, but jobs still existed, what would you do for free?

Step 3: Make a list of everything that you are passionate about — even if you are not passionate about that’s fine. What are you interested in? Then make another list answering the question — what are your skills. Maybe you speak five different languages or maybe you are good at marketing? The last column is how you would connect all the interests and skills and monetize them.

Yulia provides an example of dance. She loves to dance and as a result of this, she decided that she wanted to become a dance teacher. So in 2019, she started to earn money by teaching people how to dance Zumba. And not only was she doing what she loved, but she earned a lot of money from it.

Understanding what you are passionate about and connecting them to skills while addressing how you can monetize that passion + skills is what Yulia called the sweet spot.


A lot of people don’t do what they love because they have a fear that they are going to fail — what if this doesn’t work?? In reality, fear will always be there, but it’s always over-exaggerated.

So how to get over the fear? Don’t overthink the process. Action is always the best healer but takes small actions. Just do the first step.

It’s also important to look for people who have already done what you want to do; in short, people who have successfully achieved what you want to achieve. These types of people will not only inspire you but will show you how to do it. And once you find these people, ask for their help — the worst thing that can happen is that they say no.

These fears and voices inside your head are not real. What is real and what really helps is your network. So invest your time and energy in networking, but remember that you need to figure out how you can help them before you ask them for help.



The problem is that there are a lot of people who are doing what they love but are not actually earning enough money. Most of the freelancers that Yulia knows are selling their time for money and it’s no scalable. They are often overworked. If you want to start a business it is important to think about scalability — the big picture. At times this might mean that you will need to acquire new skills.

Your passions need to be monetized because if they aren’t, then you just have an expensive hobby — that is also ok if that is what you want. But if you really want to scale, then you need to master new skills and understand the feedback from the market.

People buy from you, and not your services, at least in the beginning. Later when you scale, there is no more of YOU behind the project — but at the beginning, individuals value that storytelling element and connection with your brand. Never underestimate that.

It is also important not to lose yourself in the details. Don’t try to do everything yourself, invest in yourself and your business. That first 1,000 euros or dollars that you own, invest it. Find a freelancer that can do the copyrighting or advertising. This is the type of mentality that will allow you to move from an entrepreneur that struggles from pay-check to pay-check to an entrepreneur that is growing their team. You need to invest in your people and your team so that your business can grow.


In reality, not everyone needs to be this freedom-preneur living in Bali. Understand who you are and how your brain works. You can rewrite your story. There are different books in neuroscience, that states that sometimes we start believing the type of conversations we have with ourselves. Sometimes we can re-write that.

Those you take action without thinking about their values and the strategy behind their business will probably end up giving up quite easily. When you are connecting to your why, you’ll figure out all the other steps — the marketing strategy, the sales, the connections, etc. In the end, it’s important to remember that you are not doing it for the money, but you are doing it for what the money can give you related to your values — travel, freedom, more time with your family.

So calm your mind and take the small first step. Quite often we make decisions that are not aligned with who we are because we are stressed or have lost our balance. Take the time to write out what you want, and your why and plan out those small action steps that can take you to your ultimate goal. And remember: change the inner conversation that you are having with yourself and you will change the results as well

Interested in listening to another episode? Listen to What Brand Purpose Really Means & Why It Matters


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