063: Theresa Depasquale | Building Real Engagement and The 3 Things it Takes to be Successful

Today we’ve got Theresa Depasquale, Founder, and CEO of Capture Social Group. She began her career as an entrepreneurial fitness expert, owning multiple health clubs in the Tampa Bay Area before moving her business totally online. With over 10 years of online branding and social media experience, she used her marketing skills to quickly dominate the social media space, with her personal brand page having over 230K followers and is still growing today.
In this episode, we get into how Masterminds have helped her save hundreds of thousands of dollars in order to build her company. We go into how she helps her clients build real engagement and the 3 things it takes to be successful. Check it out!



The Mastermind Effect:  02:01

Let’s dive into it. The availability and the ability to learn today versus the last 5 to 10 years has just drastically changed. When you and I were younger, we learn from our teachers, our friends, our family, our co-workers. But that’s like a sliver of what’s possible. How is your learning changed from your early years versus today?


Theresa Depasquale:  02:28

When I started my entrepreneurial career, it was really just reading books. Back when I was like graduating high school, there was like the DVD sets, you know, the motivational and personal development DVDs that I would listen to, and then it kind of moved to podcasts, which was the new thing like what we’re doing, which is still awesome. But now it’s just evolved into this whole other domain of like what we’re going to talk about today, which is mentorship, and masterminds and networks and things that really could elevate you and your career. So my trajectory has completely changed simply because of what mastermind I joined.


The Mastermind Effect:  03:07

I would absolutely love to hear about that mastermind that changes trajectory. Go ahead.


Theresa Depasquale:  03:12

Just a little backstory, I started going on social media around 2012. It’s funny because you can actually scroll back and see my old picture. You can see the funny journey of how I got into social, into Instagram. Along the way, I had a fitness brand that was very, very big. I did some Instagram marketing on the side, I own some shared pages that I did marketing on. And I used to do really well organically just building an entire business.


Obviously, you can still do that but it’s changed a lot. Because when Instagram first started, it was literally like the Wild West. It was fair game, right? It was so easy to grow, it was so easy to monetize. It was so new. So when the algorithm, you know the holy grail, came into play, I kind of was like, “Alright, I need to get my eggs out of the one basket and learn how to do online marketing.” Because I can’t just come in organic, I want to have like multiple baskets.


So I was actually invited by a friend, which is funny, I was talking to her about doing like a private label supplement line. We didn’t end up working together, but we hit it off and we became friends and she’s like, “Hey, I have this mastermind group that I’m a part of, and I think you’d be a really good if you want to join.” I was like, “Okay, I’ve never been in a mastermind. But what is it?”


Long story short, she talked to the founder, the owner, they said “Yes, she’s approved.” Because you know, a lot of them are curated and they have to preview and three days later, I literally flew to Miami and I shared a room with the girl because everything was booked last minute. Then here I am in this mastermind of these like amazing, brilliant people who are all crushing it, doing online marketing in my space at that time, which is the health and wellness space. I loved it because they’re all very heart-centered entrepreneurs so you want to make money but also make an impact. It’s a very good tribe of people.


When I first started, I literally did not know what a funnel was. I was like is that for pre workout? But over the course of my fourth year, I’ve literally went from knowing zero about online marketing to having an entire huge online business. It’s incredible at the rate of what you can grow when you invest in things like that, because it’s just shortcutting, your learning curve, right? I’m always like, you know, I’m either going to spend the money because I’m going to spend my time to learn it, or I’m going to spend the money because I’m going to pay someone to teach me to learn it. So either way, you’re spending the money, it’s time or money. So why don’t I just shortcut the process and just pay someone to tell me what to do? That is my entire story.


The Mastermind Effect:  05:26

Yeah, it’s amazing what it can do for you. In my solo shows, I talk about that investing in yourself. Can you afford not to invest in yourself to have someone else teach you to learn from a collective people?

That’s what amazing about being in one.


So as there’s more ways to take in information than ever before, it gets confusing. It’s like, can you actually sift through all of it? Some people choose to learn through mentors, accountability buddies, masterminds, coaching, online programs– there’s a lot of ways to learn, obviously. Who are you currently learning from and how did you end up connecting with them?


Theresa Depasquale:  06:04

I’m still in the first mastermind group that I joined. I really like it because they’re all getting a lot more sophisticated now. They’re kind of all evolving because it is more competitive, so they have to be good, or else, they’re not going to survive.


I love mine, because it’s kind of like different levels. Like there’s more beginners, and then there’s intermediate, and then there’s the mentors of the group. But it’s great because you learn from the mentors, you learn from your mentor who’s running the group, which mine currently is J.J. Virgin. I don’t know if you’re familiar with her but she’s built her personal brand in fitness nutrition.


She’s a celebrity nutritionist, but her goal is to help a billion people become healthy. So because she was so good at the marketing and business side of it, she opened a mastermind to help other wellness professionals learn how to get their message out to more people. Because when you’re an expert, I think a lot of times you’re a doctor, especially like it’s very hard to be an amazing doctor and figure out the business side. You’ve got to have someone to help.


So she started this mastermind, and I’m still in it, even though I’m doing social media now, because the tech still work regardless. I actually work a lot in that niche so a lot of my clients, I’d say around 70%, are still in the health and wellness field. Obviously, naturally, because I was a fitness expert. They gravitate to me for help with what I do. But yeah, I’m still in her group. I’m still learning from her. I consider her my mentor. I’m in some other groups as well but that’s definitely my main one.


The Mastermind Effect:  07:25

Are you able to tell us which mastermind that is by any chance?


Theresa Depasquale:  07:27

Oh, yeah, it’s called Mind Share Mastermind.


The Mastermind Effect:  07:39

A lot of people get stuck. They don’t know how to execute what’s in their head. It’s like, you can’t see the tree through the forest. We’re going through a pandemic and I feel it’s causing a reset. You and I touched on this briefly where you didn’t have to reset. But a lot of people are having to reset and figure out how they can accomplish things. How have masterminds helped you, when you’re looking to reset and get unstuck in what you’re trying to accomplish?


Theresa Depasquale:  08:06

I’m going to give an example of how they’ve helped me in the biggest way. In what I do which is online marketing, there’s so many different strategies. There’s so many different things that you can do. If you go to this expert they tell you one thing. Then go to another and they’ll tell another one. So for me, having the clarity of the plan that I can execute has been essential for me.


Instead of me trying to figure things out my mentor maps out things. Like, here’s what you’re going to do. Here’s your business model, we walk through the entire thing. And literally, so I have a strategy, because I think as entrepreneurs, especially when you’re first starting, it’s hard to get out of the business and look at it, right?


We’re so in it and you’re just trying things and there’s really no strategy. I always laugh I, I say that it’s my $100,000 online marketing degree. That’s probably how much money I’ve spent learning this stuff, because I’ve done so many between the learning of the masterminds and all the things I’ve invested in, but also in the testing of things that didn’t work. So just having that clarity of them saying, “No, no, that’s not going to work. Like don’t do that. I’ve tried that, it sucks. Do this over here.” Like that alone has been game changing for me. Because then I’m excited and I feel confident. I’m like, “Okay, I just need to execute XYZ, and I’m off to a head start versus trying to figure out what to do.”




The Mastermind Effect:  09:46

So masterminds, they’ve been around for a long time. Probably back to the apostles that was probably like the first mastermind ever. Then Benjamin Franklin creates the Junto Club in well, whenever Benjamin Franklin was around. Then eventually, you have this guy write a book called “Think and Grow Rich”. And he really defines the mastermind world. Why do you feel there’s been this large boom of self-education over standard education? Where do you see the two lanes really going forward?


Theresa Depasquale:  10:19

Oh, that’s a good question. I think just the access to information has made it. I’ll give you an example outside of business. So we talked about this with parenting, you know, our parents didn’t have Google, didn’t have a handbook, they didn’t have ways to be a better parent, because they didn’t have access to that. So it’s just like, with parenting with entrepreneurship, I think like, people didn’t realize they could be an entrepreneur, that they could do these things.


I just put a post up the other day, I think entrepreneurship is the biggest personal development journey to ever go on. So I think that it starts kind of with the personal development, once you start getting into it, then you kind of realize like, “Oh, well, I can do that.” Then there’s all the information for us to execute as to where it used to be. Go to college, get a degree and then start a business. I think information is just more accessible for people now.


The Mastermind Effect:  11:03

Yeah, absolutely. I’ve got the four year degree, it took me four and a half years. But that piece of paper isn’t worth what it used to be at the end of the day. I’m a firm believer that my son who’s six, and you’ve got children yourself, they don’t have to go to college unless they really want to be a doctor, a nurse, an engineer something in that area.



The Mastermind Effect:  12:04

So typically, when someone invest in their future, they have a better than vague idea of what they’re going to get out of it. They know who’s going to be in the room, and know what they’re going to get and what you’re going to give in return. What should people expect when they enter Theresa’s reality?


Theresa Depasquale:  12:20

Oh, I like that question. So I’m really different. I am kind of almost trying to change the conversation around social media. Because I think for so long, it’s been about the vanity metrics. And, you know, the people that I work with are entrepreneurs, and they want to build a business, they want to build a brand, they want to build an engaged tribe, like a loyal following.


So for me, I’m really teaching them more about how to do that with engagement versus just looking at the vanity metrics. So for me, everything that we do is about like building a real authentic engaged tribe that’s going to be interested in what you’re doing. They’re going to lean in to help spread your message, hopefully, eventually become a client or customer, right? So I teach people how to utilize social media for that, obviously, your social media grows. But we’re not as concerned with having 500,000 followers overnight, as we are with the slow consistent doing it the right way, and building an actual business out of it to monetize your social media.


The Mastermind Effect:  13:16

Yeah. And you know, when people go through what you’ve created, I have a feeling that they have a way of surprising you from time to time. Whether it’s their willingness to learn, their drive, their execution, whatever that is. Has anyone been to a course a mastermind event that you’ve curated who has surprised you? And what was the outcome because of connecting with you?


Theresa Depasquale:  13:39

I used to do consulting, where I would basically do like, kind of one on one coaching. Now, I have a course that’s essentially a group coaching course, which is the same thing. But I had a physician that had like 190 followers when she started.


As you can imagine, when you don’t have a lot of followers, you kind of feel like it’s like an uphill battle. It’s like climbing Mount Everest and that you’re never going to get there. You have to do a lot of front end effort to start seeing it work, but I kept telling her, just hang in there, follow the process, follow the plan, follow the strategy, I promise.


So she hung in there and she executed. She’s been my best student yet. And she really took off. She’s got a huge following now. She’s a physician, but she does like functional health with eyes. It’s so interesting. So she basically can diagnose things through their eyes. I was just so impressed. Because someone like her, it’s easy to quit and be like, “Too much work. I’m never going to get there.” And now she’s got like, almost 10,000 followers.




The Mastermind Effect:  15:13

I love hearing that. One of my companies is in not one of the sexiest industries, it’s insurance. So you know, getting people engaged can be difficult from time to time. So when I do my solo shows, I talk about success and the pillars of success and what it takes to be successful. And I feel it’s a partnership. It’s experimentation, mentorship, coaching, and willingness to fail, I think, is a big one. What do you feel it takes to be successful today?


Theresa Depasquale:  15:45

Patience is a really big one. I see a lot of people that start whether social media or entrepreneurship in general, and you know, overnight successes are not the reality. It takes a lot of time to grow and build a company, to grow and build a social media.


I think that there’s a lot of people that have been trying to kind of sell or portray the “get rich quick” kind of thing. I don’t think that’s reality. So being able to discern who to listen to, and not to, and really understand that, like, I love something called an aggressive patience. It’s like, consistently, actively working towards a goal, but understanding that it’s going to take time.


Being adaptable– I think that’s huge. I think everyone can understand that, especially in the year 2020. I think it was important for entrepreneurship before, but I think now it’s more important than ever. I work with so many different clients. I’ve seen so many different business models, and the most successful ones are the one that pivot and adapt and do whatever needs to be done. So you can’t be stuck on the one thing just because it worked in the past. I think that’s another really big one. I think teamwork is important. You mentioned that, but I think it’s more also about building a team. You know, for me, I think that I love the saying that you don’t build a business, you build people and people build your business. And that for me has been 100% sure, I could never do it. I didn’t do it without my team. I think those are a few of the really important ingredients in the pot.


The Mastermind Effect:  17:03

Yeah, and building the right team. I think that that’s a super difficult thing. You can think I can just hire, you know, slow to hire, quick to fire but like building that right team. You’re building the business together, you’re building it up, because you’re bringing other people’s specialties. You can’t be good at everything, or you’re good at nothing. And you had talked in the beginning of the podcast, about working on the business and not working in the business. That’s what a lot of entrepreneurs get stuck in is they work for the business so they really don’t have the business, the business has them. So yeah, I love the patience and there I think that’s something we could all learn especially as being a parent is having patience.


Theresa Depasquale:  17:43

Oh, yeah, exactly. Definitely parenting and, you know, pandemic and tornado warning. I think we all need some extra patience.


The Mastermind Effect:  17:56

There’s always new ideas brewing in times of prosperity. It’s really easy. When times are good. We’re all winning. It’s like a success story around every corner. But I think innovation and ingenuity comes out of times when we feel the squeeze and the world is feeling the squeeze right now. What are you working on right now that’s going to take place over the next 12 months that excites you?


Theresa Depasquale:  18:19

So I love that you said that. Because I totally agree with that, too. I think sometimes when it’s easy, we get complacent. And when we are squeezed, we have to get creative and get our feet to the fire.


For me, I would say I just launched my new course which I love because we have an agency and we obviously you know, it’s a service-based businesses, we cannot work with a million people. I don’t want to scale that much. Because we’re a specialty at what we do.


So I created the program to be able to basically teach more people at a more budget friendly price because obviously everyone can’t do the agency. I’m very excited about that. We just launched that this year. And the next project that we’re moving into is offering a membership.


What I’m finding is that social media, specifically Instagram is really like a moving target, which means it’s constantly changing. So it’s really difficult. And it’s very time consuming for people to like constantly be to keep up with like the changes and the features and the this and that the things that are coming out all the time. So I’m creating something to where it’ll be like, “Hey, here’s your one stop shop to like be able to dominate maximize everything you’re doing on Instagram.” So that’s my next little baby.


The Mastermind Effect:  19:19

Wow, amazing. And they’ll be able to find that at your website, I would assume as well. Correct?


Theresa Depasquale:  19:22

Yeah, I’ll be posting on my social when it’s ready. That’s going to be launching in spring.


The Mastermind Effect:  19:26

Alright, last question for you. What is a tip, a tactic, an actionable item that if someone listening to this implemented this over the next 30, 60, 90 days, whether it’s the personal business life, they would be able to see real results?


Theresa Depasquale:  19:49

Well, I’m going to give you a tip with my area of expertise, which is social media. And obviously you have entrepreneurs here, listening to the podcast. So you know one of the biggest mistakes I see people making but I think hinders their growth and their progress. And social is, when they go to build their social media online, they kind of hide behind their business. That means they’re just posting their logos and their business content, like people don’t even know who they are. So I always encourage people to put yourself out there and make your social media a little bit more personal.


What I mean by that is not you know, you don’t have to check in every time you go to the gym. It’s just like don’t be afraid to get out and share your story. Talk about your why. Let people in on your journey and what you’re doing. People love to be part of that process. And you’ll be shocked at the rise and engagement that you get when you do things like that. So just, you know, start being a little more vulnerable, and personal. That will bring your audience in.


The Mastermind Effect:  20:37

I agree with that. I don’t have a huge social media following. I don’t post as regularly as everyone else. But I can tell you, when I do post, depending on the platform, LinkedIn and Facebook seem to do better for me. If I post something about myself, my family, what’s happened and it’s not a sob story by any means. I don’t need to air my dirty laundry. Right? I know likes don’t put food on the table. But the amount of engagement of people actually going back and forth? It’s amazing.


Theresa Depasquale:  21:07

You know why? Because people want to follow people. That’s just how we are innately connected with our design. So that’s where I tell people is like, “Don’t forget that you’re a person.” Whether you’re the founder, CEO, the doctor, the attorney, whatever that looks like, you’re still a person. Don’t be afraid to like, talk about yourself and tell people what you’re doing.


If you’re just starting an entrepreneurial journey, you know, like, for example, when I was in my fitness business, I wanted to write a book. My people were with me the entire time. And I was like, “Hey, I’m going to write this book, it would mean so much to me. I want to hit the bestsellers list. I would love for you to help me and just purchase it.” On this one day, we did a huge pre-sale and I came out on Amazon, and I beat Harry, one of Harry Potter’s books.

For the most hot and noteworthy, yes, that’s how many people bought the book on one day for me. Because they’re part of my whole journey. They knew how important this was, like the meaning behind the book and all these things. So like, don’t be afraid to do that. It works. Bring your audience with you. You don’t have to pretend like you’re on a pedestal.


The Mastermind Effect:  21:59

Wow, I love that and obviously beating up Harry Plopper! I know you said Harry Potter, but that’s unbelievable. Like you said, you allowed them into your life on a personal level and they were able to engage with you and obviously help you launch the book. The name of the book is?


Theresa Depasquale:  22:14

It was Boston Bikini. Yeah. I think it was like 2015 when I wrote it. So obviously I’m not doing fitness anymore. But yeah, Boston Bikini.


The Mastermind Effect:  22:22

Wow. Theresa, I appreciate the time. What you have led us into, not only what people can expect once they work with you, but all the nuggets that you left along the way. We’ve got Teresa, Founder and CEO of Capture Social Media Group. Teresa, thank you so much.


Theresa Depasquale:  22:40

Yeah, thank you so much for having me.

Tweetable Quotes:

“It takes a lot of time to grow and build a company, to grow and build in social media.” – Theresa Depsquale

“My trajectory completely changed simply because of one mastermind that I joined.” – Theresa Depasquale 

“It’s incredible at the rate of which you can grow when you invest in things like masterminds, because it’s shortcutting your learning curve.” – Theresa Depasquale

“I think that Entrepreneurship is the biggest personal development journey you’ll ever go on.” – Theresa Depasquale

“We’re gonna figure out how to make money with whatever you want to do, you don’t have to have a degree.” – Theresa Depasquale 

Resources Mentioned:

Connect with Theresa, follow her on Instagram, and visit https://capturesocialgroup.com/. Also, Check out https://socialbutterflycourse.com/ms-social-butterfly 

Be one of the first adopters of The Success Finder when it releases! Email me at brandon@thesuccessfinder.com

You can connect with me, Brandon Straza, on LinkedIn, Instagram, or send me an email at brandon@thesuccessfinder.com. I’d love to get in touch and talk more about personal development and how you can move beyond your limits.

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