Cultivating Success Against the Odds Amanda Catarzi Hengst’s Inspiring Story

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Show Notes:

🚀 Dive into the raw reality of business & survival!

✅ An unfiltered conversation with Amanda Catarzi Hengst on “Think Business with Tyler.”

✅ From cult upbringing to CMO triumphs, & tackling Amazon’s fierce marketplace.

✅ Tap into Amanda’s poignant insights on overcoming barriers, branding wisdom, and the powerhouse of emotional intelligence.

Join us on the latest “Think Business with Tyler” for a story of resilience, strategy, and the entrepreneurial spirit. Don’t just listen to success stories; learn what it takes to create one.🔥


Welcome back to Think Business with Tyler! Today, we have an inspiring and eye-opening episode featuring our remarkable guest, Amanda Catarzi Hengst. As the CMO of Automation Empire, Amanda’s expertise in PR, marketing, and business strategy is reshaping the company’s operations and public image. With a leadership style centered on being real and honest, she influences her company’s culture and connects emotionally with clients, reinforcing the significance of branding and authenticity for small businesses.

In a candid revelation, Amanda shares her personal journey of being raised in a cult and overcoming the experience of sex trafficking. Her resilience shines through as she discusses the importance of healing and raising awareness about the realities of trafficking, providing valuable insights and advice for individuals and parents alike.

In the business segment, we dive into the intricacies of selling on Amazon as Amanda discusses strategies for maintaining profit margins in the face of hefty Amazon fees and the advantages of using the Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA) model. Also, learn about her unique franchise model, which harnesses the power of pooled investor capital for greater negotiation leverage and swift business adjustments.

This episode is not only about business acumen but also about personal strength and the importance of communication. Tune in as Amanda suggests “Closer” by Ron Early as an essential read and extends an invitation to connect on Instagram to discuss a range of topics from business to overcoming life’s hurdles. It’s an episode filled with heart, hustle, and valuable takeaways, right here on Think Business with Tyler.


Amanda Catarzi Hengst is an embodiment of unfiltered authenticity and a testament to the power of candid leadership. Imbued with a spirit that thrives on the raw and honest, Amanda’s journey took an enlightening turn upon engaging with a vibrant team of 60 employees in Colombia. This new chapter challenged her self-perception as an effective communicator and leader, confronting her with a diverse cultural landscape that demanded adaptability and a refined approach to interpersonal relations.

Prior to this pivotal experience, Amanda’s philosophy was firmly rooted in the principle that the truth should be unbridled, that only those who could withstand such openness truly belonged in her sphere. However, as she navigated the nuanced paths of cross-cultural communication, she discovered the beauty and complexity of differing customs, and learned the importance of empathy and tailored interactions.


Honest Leadership Cultivates Culture
Amanda Catarzi Hengst highlights the importance of honest and transparent leadership in building a positive company culture. She believes authenticity resonates with teams and clients alike, fostering an environment where emotional connections thrive. This approach ensures that public perception is consistent with the company’s brand, which is crucial for building trust and facilitating a more engaged workplace. Honesty, for Amanda, is not just a personal trait but a strategic advantage that aligns well with the company’s operations and growth.

Branding and Human Connections
Amanda insists on the importance of establishing a strong brand from the outset, stressing that branding is not just for large corporations. She points to the potential pitfalls for businesses that lack authenticity or fail to maintain a human element in their operations. Amanda argues that genuine branding resonates with both clients and investors, leading to better business opportunities and more robust investor relationships.

Navigating Amazon’s Marketplace
Amanda offers insight into the complicated dynamics of selling on Amazon, emphasizing the significance of understanding Amazon’s fees and the need to sustain profit margins despite these costs. She also discusses strategies for managing relationships with brands and distributors, as well as the benefits of using Amazon’s Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA) program for distribution efficiency and scaling up business operations.

Overcoming Trafficking Trauma
Touching on the darker aspects of her personal journey, Amanda Catarzi Hengst shares her painful experience with sex trafficking and underlines the healing process that must precede sharing one’s trauma. She sheds light on the commonality of such experiences and dispels some misconceptions surrounding the issue. Her personal story is a stark reminder of the importance of early education about boundaries and the risks that technology brings in making young girls vulnerable to exploitation.


  1. “We’re really just trying to maintain that emotional connection with our clients because at the end of the day, people want to do business with humans, not robots or some big, faceless corporation.”
  2. “You have to start branding from day one. You can’t wait until you’re big to figure out who you are because by then, it’s too late, and people see right through it.”
  3. “I learned the hard way that you need to have those boundaries and values in place because if you don’t stand for something, you’ll fall for anything—especially in the world of online business.”
  4. “Our program is designed to maximize returns quickly, particularly in Q4. We understand Amazon’s cutoff dates and have a process to get our products into the system efficiently, positioning ourselves for the best returns possible.”
  5. “I would encourage anyone getting into online sales, particularly with Amazon, to understand your fees and profit margins. It’s not just about selling; it’s about selling smart and keeping that profit margin healthy after all costs.”




Automation Empire

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