This week’s podcast guest (one of my former students!) has learned how to capture attention, grow an audience, share her opinion, and use her platform—now hundreds of thousands of people—to influence for good.
Giovanna Gonzalez is not only a TikTok influencer and financial educator, but she is also a soon-to-be author. During the Great Resignation, she quit her ten-year corporate career in financial services to pursue her true passion: teaching financial literacy to young adults. Since then, Giovanna has been featured in The New York Times, Fast Company, and Business Insider—and has hundreds of thousands of fans across the world—in just two years as a content creator. Giovanna’s powerful book, Cultura and Cash, will be out in January 2024.
In this candid conversation, Giovanna and I discuss:
- How she left corporate to pursue being a full-time creator
- BTS on what it’s really like to create content all day (hint: it’s not what you think)
- How to build an engaged, loyal following on multiple platforms
- Why first-gen money advice should be different
- What it was like to win a $50,000 writing grant—and what she did afterward to be successful in completing her book
- The highs and lows of her book-writing process
- The journey we went on together (this was my favorite part—I teared up!)
Learn how to capture the attention of hundreds of thousands of people—and make an even bigger impact with a book.
Get to know Giovanna:
- TikTok @thefirstgenmentor
- Instagram @gigithefirstgenmentor
- Website thefirstgenmentor.com
- Sign up for book updates: thefirstgenmentor.com/my-book
Learn more about my Idea-to-Draft Accelerator and Author Mentorship program here.
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Transcripts for Episode 99
These transcripts were generated by robots, not writers.
Stacy: Welcome. I’m so excited about today’s guest, which is going to be one of the last guests before I wrap up season four, take a replay break and come back in September with season five. And I’m especially excited about this guest because she has so much knowledge to share about creating content that resonates and educates and inspires and serves and helps people grow. And she made the big leap from creating content on social to writing a really powerful book that’s helping her move into that next level of her influence and impact. I’m really excited to introduce you today to Giovanna Gonzalez. She is a TikTok, influencer, financial educator and soon to be author. During the great resignation, she quit her ten year corporate career in financial services to pursue her true passion, which is teaching financial literacy to young adults. In 2022, she won a $50,000 grant to write a personal finance book for the first gen and Latin community.
Giovanna has been featured in the New York Times, Fast Company and Business Insider. So welcome. Geo. I’m so excited to get to talk with you today.
Giovanna: Thank you, Stacey, for the warm introduction. I’m such a big fan of the podcast so I’m so happy to be here.
Stacy: I have been looking forward to this discussion for months, and I think especially because I know about your backstory, I know your creator story. I’ve watched you while you’ve been writing your book and all of the amazing things that you’ve been able to do through your platform. But many of our listeners might just be meeting you. So I’d love for you to share a little bit about your story. You quit your nine to five about two years ago, almost exactly as of this recording. You’re a full time creator, and I would say a full time impact maker in the work that you do. So tell us a little bit about that, how’d you get started, and what was that catalyst moment that caused you to quit and start full time with what you do?
Giovanna: Yeah, so up until recently, I was living very much on the traditional path. Went to college, got the safe econ major because it was employable and recession proof. Then I got a stable corporate job, and that was my path, to go up the corporate ladder and get a home one day, that sort of thing. But that changed in March of 2021 when I started making TikTok content. So I was inspired to start making TikTok content after I came across a video on TikTok that kind of rubbed me the wrong way. So it was a video of this young, white, very privileged woman who was a law school student, and she said that if she ever got stuck with any of her casework, any of her homework, she could easily ring up her parents because they were both practicing attorneys and they would just walk her through the homework.
And the reason the video rubbed me the wrong way is because I just thought it was really insensitive for the times that were living in. People remember March of 2021, people were still struggling with remote learning. Everything was still pretty much shut down. And I immediately thought about the first gen community. So people that are the first in their family to attend college and they don’t have those connections or those resources or that support. So I made a video kind of piggybacking on hers just saying, hey, if you see this video, don’t feel that you’re not going to be capable of also graduating from law school or college, whatever you’re doing. Sure, we don’t have that kind of support available to us, but what you do have is you’re resilient, you’re gritty, you’re hardworking, you’re going to figure this out. And I just put it out as like, a positive message to anybody that had seen the other message, the other video, and I got a lot of positive feedback in the comment section.
People were like, thank you so much for sharing your thoughts on this. I actually came across that same video earlier today, and I was really down because I’m having a really hard time right now with Midterms kind of balancing it all. And your video really inspired me. So that was the overwhelming support that I heard on that video. And that was my little light bulb moment of instead of just mindlessly consuming social media content, I can actually add my voice to help support others. So I did it just as a fun hobby in March of 2021. Never did I think I would actually do it full time. I had no ambitions to because again, I was on this very traditional path. But eventually I did have to leave. And that’s a video that I posted yesterday on social media saying that I was kind of forced to quit because my employer wouldn’t allow me to do that kind of content on social media.
I worked for a bank, and they’re very traditional, very conservative, and they don’t want one of their people being a little social media star. So I had to either stop altogether or I had to quit and take a leap of faith. And here I am two years later.
Stacy: Oh my gosh, that’s crazy to think that you just started this as I’m going to do something, put my voice out there, and then now you are here today with all that you’ve accomplished. It’s so incredible. Gio one of the things that I really admire about you in the content that you share is you are very opinionated. You are comfortable getting out there and sharing your perspective. You’re vulnerable, you’re real about things. For me, that’s been a personal journey of getting comfortable with not being like I think I always had this idea that I had to be this consummate professional at all times. Especially, I think, just being a female in any space, feeling like I didn’t want to step the wrong way in either direction. But you have this way of just showing up fully as yourself and taking up space and making your voice heard.
Was that a natural thing for you or did that grow as you’ve grown as a content creator?
Giovanna: There’s several factors there. So naturally, yes, it was easy for me because I’m an oversharer. I also think my opinion matters more than other people, so that’s why I’m happy to share it. I know that’s not necessarily a good thing, but it did make it easier for me to put myself out there in that way. But another big factor was honestly TikTok culture. And I say that for anybody that’s not familiar with TikTok, the culture on that social media app is very raw, off the know, unpolished, where with Instagram, everybody’s living the perfect life. They have a perfect family going on perfect vacations. On LinkedIn, what used to be people would show off their promotions, their new companies. LinkedIn, I will acknowledge, has changed a lot since the Pandemic. And I know that because I create content on LinkedIn and the environment is very different.
But TikTok from the beginning, it’s always been very unfiltered and that’s why I felt I was allowed to be that way. So I love TikTok. It completely changed my life.
Stacy: That’s amazing. It’s like being in a place that’s like what’s expected almost. It let you really step into that. So tell me a little bit about what a day in the life of a full time creator is. What is that like? And how is it different from when you had a nine to five? Oh God.
Giovanna: It’s night and day beginners off the cuff. The first thing I think of is I never had to work holidays during my corporate nine to five. I was off on 4 July. It was just 4 July a couple of days ago. I had to work. I have deadlines and I’m the only one that can get it. Yeah, but there’s a lot of benefits. So the one thing I will say about being an influencer content creator, it’s something that I didn’t respect before I did it. Because I think people have this misconception that all influencers or content creators do are record 15 minutes videos or take pretty pictures and post them online and get paid. And that’s not how it works at all. We wear a lot of hats. We have to come up with the own concept for what we’re going to post. For me, I do videos so I have to script out and write out what I’m going to say.
Sometimes it is off the cuff, but a lot of times when I have a specific message, I have to write it out and then you have to make it sound natural even though it’s written out. So that takes a skill too. And not just like reading a teleprompter. I have to do my hair and makeup, which ever since the pandemic, I resent doing that. I don’t know about you, but yeah.
Stacy: Pre pandemic is real when you are home and you don’t have to get ready and then you have to yes.
Giovanna: Yeah. I love the results. Once I’m all done up, I love it. But before I never used to resent it. So now for me, that is work. Knowing if I’m going to film content today, I have to do my hair and makeup. That’s going to be 30 40 minutes of my day. And then on top of that, you have to record the content, edit it and the editing process. You have to pick the right sounds, make sure that you are cutting it off to remove any pauses. You have to add captions to make it accessible for everybody. There’s overlays to make it engaging and add different photos. There’s so much to making a video visually appealing. So, yeah, it’s not just taking 52nd videos. And on top of that, I don’t just create content on social media, I’m also a paid speaker. Right now I’m writing a book.
Part of being a creator too. I maintain a monthly newsletter that I write. I collaborate with podcasters and do podcast interviews. I do media interviews. I actually have a media interview later today. I will do Instagram lives with other creators to cross collaborate. So there’s a lot that we do. Again, it’s not just 15 2nd videos.
Stacy: And your accounting department and all of the things legal, marketing, there’s so much to it and I love getting to share that because I think people think it’s like this easy ticket to whatever and it actually is a ton of work. So you mentioned a book and of course I’m very excited to talk about this. You won a grant, a really amazing grant that has enabled you to invest in this project and really get to write the book that you wanted to write. So tell us a little bit about the book and then of course, I’m going to ask you some questions about the process.
Yeah, so the book is called Coultura in Cash Lessons from the First Gen Mentor, which is my brand for managing finances and cultural expectations. So the book is a book I wrote specifically for the first gen community and even more specifically first generation Latinas. I struggle with that at first. I’m like, should I make it for everybody in the first gen? But as I wrote it more, I’m like I need to add my voice for the first gen Latina community and what it is. It’s a money book that shows how our money experience is very much tied into our family, our culture and our upbringing. And I learned that the hard way because I read so many personal finance books that were written by white male authors that didn’t talk about how to plan for your parents retirement, how to set financial boundaries, how to account for providing monthly financial support to your family.
So these are all things that affect our community, but they’re not talked about. So I’m really happy to finally be creating a book that addresses those needs.
Stacy: It’s so important for that particular content to reach people in a way that’s useful and that takes into account their broader context. When you were talking about that disconnect, I was thinking about some of the really famous books on habits that are written by usually single white men or white men who have somebody at home taking care of all the house stuff. And so it’s really easy for them to come in and be like wake up at 04:00 and drink your fresh juice and exercise for 2 hours and have this really rigid approach and with no context about actual life that other people are living. Can you talk a little bit more about some of those differences between the advice that is in prevailing the big books that we think about in regards to finance and a book like yours that takes into account your specific reader and her specific context and situation?
Giovanna: Yeah, so I actually just got an email the other day from one of my favorite personal finance authors. His name is David Bach. He’s a big name. He’s been on Oprah back when Oprah was on. He has, like, ten New York Times bestsellers, and he’s still my favorite, even though there’s a lot of stuff that wasn’t relatable. But he wrote that one book, smart Women Finish Rich, that really touched me, and that’s the one that really inspired me to get my stuff together. But I subscribed to his newsletter, and he sent an email the other day, and it was 20 commandments of money that stand the test of time. So I’m like, okay, let me check them out. And one of them said, never loan money to friends or family. You’re not a bank. And I know in theory that sounds great, but that does not work with my family.
Trust me, I’ve tried to implement that advice, and every time I’ve been attacked. And it’s just because there’s such a cultural difference, because with the traditional American culture, you very much just look out for yourself and your own money situation. You don’t get other people involved. And with my Mexican upbringing, it’s very much we do it as a group. As a group and as a family, we help each other out, and we’re there for each other. So the two clash, and the book addresses how to kind of navigate that culture clash.
Stacy: I’m sure there are so many other things as well. That’s such a great example of one of the prevailing areas. And in your book, what is your take on that? What do you offer your reader that lets her see it in a different way?
Giovanna: Yeah, so I tell my reader, understand, you may not get this money back. Right. And then if that wouldn’t make you resent the person, if you’re comfortably able to essentially give this money, and it’s a surprise if they actually do end up paying you back, then perfect. Then that arrangement works for you. And if you have the financial space to actually loan out that money, but then I say if you can’t if your family asks for $1,000 and they may not pay you back and you’re not willing to just gift $1,000, then you have to have a tough conversation. I’m like and sometimes they’re a little bit uncomfortable, but the more regular you have those conversations, the easier. So I actually was just working on that section of the book yesterday, so this is very fresh in my mind. So basically, yeah, if you can’t do 1000, hey, I’m not able to support you in that way, I can help with $500.
Does that help? That could be one option. Another option? If you can’t help at all, hey, I’m not able to financially support in any way right now, but I would love to help you in other ways. Can I bring groceries over, or can I help you look up through health insurance information, because this is regarding a medical issue that somebody’s asking $1,000 for. And then the last one, the bottom tier, is I’m not able to support in that way right now. I want to be there for you, so I’ll make sure to visit the hospital as soon as I can. There’s just different layers and whatever works for you and your family.
Stacy: I love the care that you bring to that. It’s not so, like, never alone to your family, but it’s like, how do you bring love and empathy and care, even if you can’t or don’t want to do it financially? So you mentioned that you’re working on a section of your book right now, and I would love to hear a little bit more about your journey in writing, editing, and your book will be out in early next year, so you’re still in the thick of it, getting it done and getting it out into the world. Tell us a little bit about that journey for you and what it’s been like also with the grant. And I’d love to hear a little bit behind the scenes of this process.
Giovanna: Yeah, I’m so happy to be talking about this because usually the podcast interviews that I do, they just want, like, money tips, and that’s fun. That’s all I do. But there’s this new side of me that I’ve been working on for a year, and nobody asked me about it, and I’m like, I have so much to share, so I’m so glad you asked. So, yeah, back to the grant, a little bit more context on that. So that grant was something that was accessible to me, that was available to me because I was in an incubator program with TikTok, so were contractually obligated to post, I think it was three to four times a week. So it was pretty consistently and used a TikTok hashtag for the program. And then once we completed that program, they let the 150 of us pitch ourselves for this grant.
There were only ten spots, so I was one of the ten. And I think you had asked, how did you feel when you found out about the grant? It was a bittersweet moment, to be honest. And it was mostly because there was so much at stake. I knew that those $50,000 could really change my project and the kind of support that I could hire. And we had been kind of kept in the dark about when were going to get the news, so I didn’t know for weeks. I’m like, did I get this thing? Did I not? Should I move forward pretending I didn’t? And then if I do, it’s like, a nice surprise. And it was just something I constantly thought about, and I put so much work into my pitch, so when I got the news, I was happy, but I was also like, why’d you make me wait so long?
So it was like happy, angry tears. It was such a weird moment for me. But yeah, the writing process. I remember when I fantasized about writing my book, I very much had this picture of, oh, I live in Chicago, so I’m like, oh, when I write my book, I’ll be able, know, explore different coffee shops and write a couple pages every day. And yeah, maybe I’ll even get to travel because you can write from anywhere with the laptops. Maybe I can visit family or visit other parts of the country, maybe even go abroad and write for a couple of weeks. And I quickly learned that, at least for me, that’s not what writing my book has looked like. I’ve needed extreme focus and a routine to be able to get into the energy that I need to write my book. There’s been a lot of highs and lows and honestly, I wrote down the highs and lows and there are more lows than highs.
Yeah. Which is why, honestly, it’s so important to hire support because, like I said, in theory what’s the statistic? You have to know a statistic of how many people want to write a book. It’s like 81%.
Stacy: Yeah, roughly.
Giovanna: Yeah. But who actually does, right?
Stacy: I think it’s like it’s got to be less than 1%, but probably half a percent.
Giovanna: Yeah. It just takes a lot of consistency and showing up and doing the same thing every day. There’s a lot of self doubt along the way. The highs, there’s lots of positives. For me, personally, I feel a lot of excitement for my book, and I feel it from my community because I have fostered a social media community. And I’ve told them about the book writing process. They’re always like, I can’t wait to preorder, I can’t wait to read your book. So to me, that helps kind of keep me going. And then also, I have had some beta readers who are my target readers, read my book and they’ve loved it. So that’s really good feedback. And I’m like, okay, I’m onto something. But yeah, writing a book is the ultimate delayed gratification with TikTok content or social media posts. It’s an instant dopamine hit when I create something and people find value and immediately I get good feedback.
Oh, that was really good. Thanks for telling me about that. Or, oh, I never thought about it that way. And for a year I’ve been writing this book and I haven’t had that kind of feedback. I’m very much missing it. So I know that it’s good, but it’s something that I have to constantly convince myself of. But yeah, I mean, some of the lows are having to step away from creating content to focus on the book. I thought that I would be able to balance both, and I quickly learned that they both take a lot of energy and I’ve had to really. I mean, I used to put out five videos a week now I only do probably one or two a week to preserve my energy for the book. This last holiday season in December, I worked through most of the holidays to meet my writing deadlines.
There’s a lot of lows. I had a hysterectomy. I forgot I had surgery a couple of months ago in the middle of writing, and that completely halted the writing process and delayed my publishing date. Again, there’s been a lot, but I’ve been very fortunate to have support along the way, and we can definitely dig into that kind of support.
I really appreciate that you brought up the big hard stuff because I find that most of the people that I work with or have an opportunity to support in some capacity on their books, something big and hard happens. The severity and the grandiosity of the bigness of it varies, and how much they have to navigate through varies. But there’s always something that comes up and what having observed from the outside, you during this process, you recognize the need to pause, but then you reengaged, and that’s the really critical piece. A lot of people, they hit these blocks and then they kind of throw their hands up and they decide it’s too hard and they don’t pick their book back up. And then it kind of gnaws at them, I think, in the back of their mind for years until someday maybe they do pick it up or maybe they never actually move forward and publish.
So I’d love to hear a little bit from you. Having done a bunch of big things quitting your job, starting this business, writing this book, navigating health challenges, and still being able to come back and see this book through, what did you draw on? Like, what was it inside of you that helped you come back and finish and what you’re doing now? Finishing this draft.
Giovanna: Yeah. So what has helped a lot was knowing that I was responsible for this grant. This grant had a specific purpose, so it was bigger than me. Right. And from the beginning, when I won the grant, I really wanted to be a success story of this is what can happen when you invest in Latinx creators, and I’m very driven by that, of being their little success story, so that they have future investments like this for other emerging creators that lack the funding very much like I did. I also had my amazing book coach, Stacey Ennis, that was there to nudge me along the way and tell me, you’ve done so much work already, keep going. Right. And we had a call and that was super helpful to just kind of remind me of why I even decided to do this and all that was up ahead when it comes to my book launch.
I also have been journaling this whole time that I’ve been writing. And I always write like, why am I doing this? And what do I look forward to once my book is done. So I was able to kind of lean on those notes to kind of get a little pep in my step and get writing. But yeah, the grant definitely having that responsibility helped push me along as well.
Stacy: I see the grant as like, this is my perception, so tell me if I’m wrong on this. Okay, but it’s not really about the grant. It’s about what the grant signifies for the impact that you’re making in the world. And this is why I love getting to support you and people like you, because I think it’s really easy to abandon your book when it’s only about the book. And that’s like the end thing. And as a lover of books and consumer of fiction and all kinds of different things, obviously I want people to write for the sake of writing. But for me, getting to work and support people who have a mission and a vision for that impact, I think that is really key what you pointed out you were doing. It not just to finish this personal goal of writing a book, you were doing it because you had a goal of making a big impact and you really care about your reader.
I think that shines through in all of the things that you do. Has that shifted this process of writing your book? Has it shifted anything about how you envision that future impact or how you show up or your business? Has there been any shift or change for you there?
Giovanna: Yeah, so I would say in the beginning that was mostly my motivation for the book, writing the book that I wish the younger version of me would have had. Because I know I desperately needed a book that talked about these themes and helped me kind of navigate the challenges that I would have as a first gen Latina Navigating family and since with my family. But to be honest, as the going got tough, especially after my surgery, and I was just like, well, I already know this stuff. You know how teachers would tell you growing up, you need to pay attention because I already know this stuff, I’m not going to be the one taking the test. So there I had to selfishly remind myself, well, what’s in it for you? You know, that this will impact others, but how will this impact you? And I also had those reasons written out or those pros for me, and those pros are for me, writing this book, it’ll help me grow from just a TikTok that makes educating financial content to a published author that comes with more credibility.
I’m then able to command higher paying speaking engagements, which helps my business grow. It’ll also help me launch a group coaching program that will finally make me location independent, which that’s always been independent, which has always been the goal. So those selfish things when the going really got tough are really. What helped me. So it was a mix of both.
Stacy: I love that point. That’s such a great point, because it’s not like, especially if you have a business or you have a brand that you’re building, there is that piece of it of I have goals, I have things that I want to accomplish and things that I desire and I want from me and keeping those insights. So I absolutely love your framing on that. So it’s both. And so, as your book, as of this recording, this will come out in August, I believe, either late July, early August. We’re still quite a ways off from your book launch. Right? It’s coming out in January of 2024, but you’re already marketing your book. And this is something that I wish more authors did. I wish that more authors were actively talking about their books. I want them to be marketing them and really bringing people into the writing process, which you’ve been doing.
Can you talk a little bit about this? Because I feel like our listeners and viewers can learn so much from you about bringing it’s, like, not just about having this curated marketing plan, but really about letting people into your world. Talk a little bit about how you’ve done that and how you envision continuing to do that for people that are in your community.
Giovanna: Yeah, so I very much feel community made. If I didn’t have the following of people on my social media accounts, I wouldn’t have the opportunities that I’ve had. So I want to bring along my people on this journey from creator to author. So when I started writing, I really wanted to share more along the way of, hey, this is what I worked on this week, or, oh, I learned this new week about publishing, but I just, again, quickly learned I couldn’t balance both. It was really hard to balance creating content and writing. So I’ve done a little bit. Not as much as I like, but I’m like bursting at the seams to really pour it all out once I’m fully done with the editing process. What I have sprinkled along the way is I remember I made a LinkedIn post that did very well. Got lots of engagement, lots of comments, lots of questions that said, hey, this is what I did to actually start writing my book.
For a long time, I’ve been wanting to write a book, but I wrote a little bit here and there, but never had anything cohesive. So I said, I work with a book coach, and that was really helpful. So people really like that. I also wrote an article on LinkedIn as well about how I chose my publishing method. When I first started this journey, I thought I was going to self publish. Then I was exploring a traditional publishing because somebody was emailing me about that, and that didn’t work out. And then eventually, through your support, Stacey, I decided on hybrid publishing. It’s what made the most sense for my goals. So I wrote an article about that, and people thought that was insightful. Recently, I made a video sharing how I used that $50,000 grant, because this grant was announced in September of 2022. So it’s been months since people got an update.
So I’m just like, hey, remember I shared that? This happened to me a couple of months ago. Well, this is what I’ve done with the money. I used some of the money to hire a book coach, and that was a very worthwhile investment because I finally had somebody to keep me accountable, but also an experienced person that could help me come up with a writing plan and help me navigate the publishing industry because it really is a whole new world. And then the other part of the fund of the grant was used to hire the hybrid publisher. So people really appreciate the transparency and they didn’t realize how expensive publishing can be. And I did tell people, you can write a book for $5,000. It can be a lot less. But I had the funding, an outside funding to be able to get all the bells and whistles, and that’s what worked for me.
But people appreciated the update and knowing how I use the fund. So in the future, yeah, I’ll be talking about what apps I subscribe to really hunker me down and help me focus and write. I have that one app that blocks out my Internet, but I can’t be scrolling on social media.
Stacy: This one. This will be cool. I can’t wait to see these apps.
Giovanna: Yeah, it’s called freedom for anybody listening. And it is a paid app, but I swear by it because even at late at night, I’ll keep scrolling and it keeps me up late at night. And I turn the app on and it removes all access to my social media apps because I just don’t have the discipline. So I needed the app to help me. The Calm app has helped meditate and get into the right state to write. So there’s been a lot of little apps like that that helped me on my writing process. But I’m really excited to just kind of pull the curtain and show people a little bit behind the scenes of how this is all coming to life instead of just coming on social media and saying, Bye, bye. This is my book. Buy my book and support.
Stacy: Yeah, because people get invested in the process. And I think it’s important to note that even though, yes, you have hundreds of thousands of people that are interested in what you have to say, somebody over here who has hundreds of people or dozens of people right now that they’re communicating with, they still can nurture that in really the exact same way. Share along the way. Bring people into the journey. Share your excitement. I think observing your posts what you brought to them that I think was very special and smart is just energy, like excitement and realness, like sharing behind the scenes, being useful. You share useful content that other people can utilize in their own life if they want to. So there’s that piece of it that I think a lot of times authors and I mean not I think I know having had so many of these conversations, they get so intimidated by the idea of creating something, anything.
Even posting a LinkedIn post feels very overwhelming. But it doesn’t have to be this big thing. You can bring people in and share and it can be valuable for them.
Giovanna: Yeah. No, you can play with different styles of content too. LinkedIn is great for that because you can do a video, you can do a carousel post, you can just do an article. So there’s different mediums on LinkedIn where with TikTok it is very much just a video. Actually, I guess I have photo carousels now, but nobody hardly uses them. But yeah, just kind of play with what feels comfortable. You can also ask people that follow you, hey, I’m writing a book. What are you interested in? Learning about the process and created content around that.
Stacy: Yeah, I love that. It’s so practical. So your book launch is coming up. I’d love for you to share with our listeners and viewers where to follow you, where to be engaged in your community. You send super valuable newsletters and they’re always packed with all kinds of great content. So tell them where to find you and then how did they get notified about your book? Get on the pre order list.
Giovanna: Yeah, so you can follow me on TikTok. My handle is at, the FirstGen mentor. I’m also on Instagram. The handle is a little different. It’s Gigi, the FirstGen mentor. I’m also on LinkedIn, like I mentioned. But if you go to my website, Thefirstgenmentor.com, you’ll see all my socials and you can just click there and then my book is not available for pre order quite yet, but there is a list where you can sign up to be notified once the book is available for purchase and you can sign firstname.lastname@example.org. That’s the name of the book. Gurtura and cash. If that’s a little difficult for you to write out, you can go to thefirstgemntor.com and you’ll find it.
Stacy: Yeah, I love your title and your book cover. It’s so good. So people should go on just to see this amazing cover. It’s such a great book. Gio and I should have asked you this before I asked you to plug all your socials, but I don’t want to miss this opportunity. So looking back now on your know, I don’t know how far back you want to go. When you first started creating, when you started writing your book, so many people that are listening right now dream of what you’re doing. It’s just such a beautiful reality to so many people listening. What would you offer yourself at the beginning of this journey or even at the early stages of this journey that could also support somebody who’s looking to you and inspired by the path that you’ve taken?
Giovanna: I think in the beginning, it took a lot to leave my corporate identity and do my own thing. And that was especially hard for me because I never had any ambitions to be an entrepreneur. So unlike a lot of people that already had tried to launch a side hustle, it really very much happened to me like an accidental entrepreneur, if you will. So I had to learn very quickly the basics of building a website, starting an email list, all that fun stuff. And back then, I was very much stunted by the feeling that there were already too many Latinas doing what I’m doing, because I had seen some people on the Internet, and actually they’re the ones that kind of inspired me to get my voice out there because I didn’t necessarily agree with their style. So I wish that back then, I would have known what I know now and that’s that there is enough sunshine for us all.
We all have our own lived experiences, unique perspectives on life, different personalities. So the kind of style that I deliver my content might not resonate with somebody else and vice versa. So the more of us that there is, there’s just more opportunity to access and to give and to support others. And I wish I would have known that in the beginning instead of feeling a little intimidated by, well, is there going to be space for me? Is anybody going to care about what I have to say? So if I would have kind of leaned into that sooner, it would have just made me a little bit bolder with my content. I eventually got there. I’m happy to share. I eventually got there, and now I know I am. What am I trying to say? Like, not the boss, but what’s the word I’m trying to say?
The bomb.com. Yeah.
Stacy: There you go. Thebomb.com I loved it.
Giovanna: Yeah. And I say that because I’m a brand ambassador for secret deodorant. They launched this initiative called no More Financial Secrets, and I’m one of five women that was selected to be a brand ambassador, and we’re all women in the financial education space, but I’m the one that’s only been doing this two years. Some of these women I know because I follow them for years have been doing this five, seven years. So I think to myself, like, here I was doubting myself, and I’m just as good as these people that have been doing it way longer. These people that I’ve admired and listened to their podcast to kind of learn how money works. I’m right there with them. If there’s a little self doubt, get the support that you need for me what was really helpful was a life coach therapy, I imagine would be very helpful.
I haven’t worked with therapists yet, but I need to. But, yeah, you have all that you need within you to succeed.
Stacy: That is so beautiful. I’m so glad that I asked that question before wrapping up the podcast. Thank you for this conversation and sharing your story and behind the scenes and about your book. I’m so excited to shout it from the rooftops when it comes out.
Giovanna: Yeah. And for anybody listening, because I am a religious listener of the Beyond Better podcast. If you’re listening to this podcast and thinking, should I work with Stacey as a book coach or not? I can only say positive things about my experience with Stacey. I cried on these coaching calls. I laughed. There was just so many emotions that go through the writing process, and just having you in my corner and beyond that, beyond our coaching, has been so helpful. There’s no way I would be where I am in the book writing process if it weren’t for you. So I’m just so thankful that I stumbled upon your podcast and that you were able to take me on as a coaching client because you transformed my Stacey.
Stacy: AW. You make me cry. Thank you. That means the world, and thanks for this conversation and for joining me today.
Giovanna: Yeah, of course. Thanks for having me on.
Stacy: And thank you so much this week to Rita Domingues, who produces this podcast, Catherine Fishman for project management support, and to Kim Foster for helping make sure that everything is error free when it goes out into the world. I could not do this show without you, and I appreciate you so much. And if you’ve been hanging with us all the way to the end, would you do me a massive favor, please, and rate and review this podcast either in Apple or in Spotify. Either of those are amazing places, and it hugely supports my ability to reach more listeners with the message of Beyond Better. And that’s it for us this week. I will be back with you before you know it.