Torchliter Spotlight: Robin Lanning

Aug 22, 2017 Maria Rummel

Source, Torchliters

Torchliters are digital marketing experts who deliver high-quality work to our customers. Marketing is their passion and their livelihood. So yeah, they’re pretty darn good at what they do.
Robin Lanning is an Indy native with a passion for helping both people and organizations become their best. Not long ago, she took a leap of faith and started her own freelance business – Think Floof. We sat down to learn a little more about her day-to-day life as a freelance sales & marketing professional.

What’s your role as a Torchliter and which clients do you work with?

I am a Project Manager on two accounts. I have also done some graphic design work for another client.

What do you like to do in your free time?

In my free time, I serve on two different non-profit boards:

  • JCI Indianapolis – the local chapter of a young professional organization empowering young people to create positive impact in communities around the world
  • Phantom Regiment – a marching arts organization and competitive drum corps out of Rockford, IL

The rest of the time I’m either hanging out with my best friend who is also my neighbor or making up silly songs with my husband about our dog. I also like to cook, camp, work in the yard, create DIY decor & furniture for our house, and – crazily enough – clean.

Where do you live and what’s your favorite part about your hometown?

I live near the Broad Ripple neighborhood in Indianapolis. I grew up in the Indy area and love that Indy has all the amenities of a big city without losing its small city feel. I meet so many awesome new people every week, and I run into people I know constantly. I joke that it’s like a 6-degrees of separation game around here, but I love it! I also think there are opportunities here to really explore your passions that might not be as accessible in larger cities. If you want to play sports, you can. If you want to be an artist, you can. If you want to be a leader, you can!

What was the last trip you took?

My husband and I went to Gatlinburg for our honeymoon at the end of last October. The leaves were at their peak colors and the views were amazing. We also enjoyed plenty of Tennessee moonshine. We were so sad to hear about the forest fires that affected the area after we left. It’s a beautiful part of the country.

What was the last book you read?

I tend to listen to books because I have a hard time sitting still. I drove to Atlanta for a friend’s bachelorette party and listened to Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty the entire way down and back. I couldn’t stop listening, which made the drive feel much shorter. I was expecting something totally different from this book and thought it was an excellent read – or listen. I highly recommend it!

If you could have dinner with anyone (alive or dead) who would it be and why?

I’d love to have dinner with my Aunt Len. She and I were close and had very similar personalities. She died of cancer in 2009. I would love nothing more than to tell her how great her family is doing, share stories with her, and hear her laugh. She would have been so happy to see all of the people she loves living out their dreams and would have such good advice for those of us still working on it.

What’s one interesting fact about you that most people don’t know?

I’m kind of an open book, so there isn’t much that people don’t know about me. However, I’m guessing that the Torchliters might not know that I’m into dinosaurs and I will eat almost anything except lemon desserts or chicken. Lemonade – fine. Lemon bars – gross. Lemon chicken – grosser.

How did you get into freelancing?

I spent 9 years in account management/sales in the promotional product industry (give-aways! swag!) and decided to take a leap of faith about 2 years ago to join the sales team at a tech startup. It turned out to not be my thing. Last fall – 3 weeks before I was getting married –  I left that job and decided to see what else might come my way. I actually applied for a full-time gig at Torchlite, and they asked if I’d be interested in a Strategic Lead position instead. At the same time, one of my former employers asked if I’d be interested in handling marketing for them on a contract basis. I had coffee with a few other freelancers to see how they liked it and all of them said, “you’d be great at this!” So, I took the leap, created my LLC & website, and went for it!

What does your typical day look like?

I usually roll out of bed when my husband heads to work (we don’t have kids… and our hound pup loves to cuddle), make coffee, let the dog out, and then head up to my upstairs office (where said hound pup does not go because she is afraid of the stairs) to get to work. I spend my morning on client calls, answering emails, and tackling the tough stuff. I’m definitely a morning person, even if I’m not an early riser! I like to use lunchtime for a walk/run with the dog. I spend my afternoon digging into design work, and then almost always have some sort of evening networking event or meeting. If I don’t have a meeting, I like to cook dinner and watch Wheel-of-Fortune & Jeopardy with my husband.

How do you stay up-to-date on the latest digital marketing trends?

I have a few email newsletters that I enjoy reading regularly: Hubspot, InVision, The Hustle, to name a few. I’m also really grateful for the Torchlite network. I gain a lot of insight from the other freelancers I work with and love to interact on Slack. I also learn a lot as a consumer of marketing. If something comes into my mailbox and gets me to click, I almost always think about my clients and if a similar tactic or messaging could help them convert as well.

What’s your favorite part about working with Torchlite?

The support of the community has been really invaluable for me. I have a very collaborative work-style. I like to ask questions and get confirmation from my teammates. Working for myself and by myself has been a tough transition for me, and it’s not something I feel I can always talk about with my friends who have full-time jobs. It’s nice to have a network of people who “get it”. The dog pics on the #random channel are my other favorite part.

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