B2B Growth: Your Daily B2B Marketing Podcast
B2B Growth: Your Daily B2B Marketing Podcast

Episode 2073 · 11 months ago

Thought Leaders Guide to Building a Magnetic Personal Brand

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

In this episode, Dan Sanchez talks to R obin Farmanfarmaian about the importance of personal branding for thought leadership.

They discuss:

  • Practical steps to building a magnetic person brand
  • How to find and leverage your personal story
  • Why authoring a book is key to thought leadership

Yeah, welcome back to be, to be growth. I'm dan Sanchez, my friends call me dan says and I'm here with Robin Farm. Unb Armenian, who is the author of Thought Leader, Formula Robin, Welcome to the show. I have been so excited to talk to you today, thanks for having me. Fantastic as the audience knows. I've been on a deep dive in this month of june to talk about thought leadership, marketing and all things like related to thought leadership, how to create thought leadership content. What does it mean to be a thought leader and what path does one have to take in order to become a competent and actually well respected thought leaders? None of those fakers that make all of us cringe when they are used dropping declaring that there a thought leader out there on linkedin, right, How do you actually become an authentic thought leader? And those are the questions were exploring in this deep dive. I was excited to talk to Robin because she wrote a fantastic book I have here with me now. And there was a number of interesting insights I had from the book though there was none more interesting than I think her take on personal branding within thought leadership. So what I want to head into that topic first, I wanted to get your back story for the audience. Robin, if you could elaborate like how did you get into thought leadership, how did that become a thing for you? So what I did is I used to work in both events, but also business development and sales. And this is all around health care technology companies. And when I first got to Silicon Valley the first few years it was kind of tough. I am a high energy, very petite blonde and uh in Silicon Valley which is mostly men and I found myself being sexually harassed uh sabotaged at work. I mean it was crazy people stealing my work. And I realized early on you can't fight that directly through something like HR HR is not there to protect the woman, right on the employee. It's there to protect the company. And so as soon as I realized that I decided to change the game, I went home one weekend and I created a five year project plan for myself on how to become a professional speaker and author in order to have a stronger name and presence than the men that were pushing me down and let me tell you it worked beautifully the day my first book published the patient as Ceo. It was like flipping a light switch on on the sexual harassment and sabotage in the workplace. In fact, it changed the power dynamic so much that I felt like I was in a tank and the men were on horseback. And so when the Me Too movement happened, fast forward to 2016, I realized, wait a second, it's this is happening to other women. Like that's that was a big thing. Like we didn't realize it was happening so many other places. So I said, you know what, I have a solution for this instead of trying to fight people directly on this, why don't we raise up the women right and do what I did for myself. But for, you know, millions of women out there. And so I took my five year project plan, turned it into a system for anyone to use regardless of industry. And that's my solution now for the meeting movement. That's fantastic. That's so interesting that it like positioning yourself as a thought leader and having people like believe it and it's not like it was fake that it's real and it's something substantive to believe, like repositioned in people's minds and it just had them behave differently for you. It was because it was for some very practical reasons, but obviously it came with a lot more benefits than just keeping men from being jerks. What were some of the other benefits you saw from being becoming a thought leader and establishing that sense of trust and confidence that other people put into you. So really it comes down to when you're going to do something like this and I put a lot of time and money into building myself into an author and a professional speaker. You need a multitude of reasons. So I always think of myself, okay, so what are those top...

...three reasons? First of all I can, you know, battle against these men done Right. Second of all, I do business development and a lot of the times sales, which means now that I'm an author and a professional speaker, I get access to events that people don't even know are going on like internally at some of the big insurance companies or the big device or pharmaceutical companies. And I get to meet the ceos of like Fortune 500 companies all the time by being able to be an invited speaker there. And so that really helped with the business development. And then I also understand that technology is really disrupting a lot of the way we work. And so I believe in multiple revenue streams you cannot rely on anymore. Just one salary from one company over, you know, your career and expect to be able to survive. And so if you have multiple revenue streams, you'll be able to turn to one in the case of something like a pandemic or of course artificial intelligence or robotics taking over or displacing your job in some way. And so we saw this this past year because I have so many revenue streams that I was able to set up because I'm an author and a professional speaker means I could lean on a lot of them when my professional speaking went away, like Ma'am overnight, I lost most of my paid talks and I was able to very quickly just rely on one of my other revenue streams. Fantastic. I've spent a lot of time thinking about it. And I've also, I mean reading a lot of thought leadership books, a lot of thought leadership books are more geared towards the person who wants to become a thought leader than the marketers who want to position the company as a thought leader, which is kind of two different things. But they obviously overlap because a lot of times the amount of position a company as a thought leader, usually taking maybe the ceo of founder and a internal subject matter expert and turning them into the face of the company or faces, Right. Um, so lots of overlap between those two things, but I've certainly thought about how, I don't know, I think this is going to become a bigger part of the future for many people, especially as, you know, taxes go up for companies, you can't hire as many people, people are going to be leaning on contractors more that a lot of people will essentially become a mix of contractor. Thought leader, freelancer with probably there are side hustles and businesses going on. Well, I think a lot of people are going to have to diversify income in this in the future and they're probably more people reading your book and others like it to do so, so it's fun to be on the forefront of what I think is going to be even a more a larger tidal wave coming in the future. One of the things you dive into in your book is around personal branding and one of the things that I want to dive into before we even cover, like the things you go into and being, how to build a personal branch, very practical is why personal branding is actually a really important part of building out your thought leadership. You got to look at it as if you were a company and in fact I call myself Robin inc because I look at it like a company and so you've got to build that personal brand the same way you would build a company brand. What is the voice? And I mean by voice, not just the way your voice sounds, but how do you communicate? Is it with, you know, long science words or you're communicating to more of a general audience. So really everything that goes into a brand what you look like, right? So for instance, I'm recognized by complete strangers from behind. Like that is kind of crazy. I have people come up to me all the time. High you Robin firm information and it is, it's hilarious. So I have so many different aspects of what I look like that are very signature and very, very obvious. So like imagine if you are a guy and a lot of guys in my world are, you know, physicians or they work in firma or med device. And so you know, a lot of the time they'll still dress up to go to conferences and they're like, oh, I'm gonna wear a pocket square to differentiate like how is anyone going to see that? Right? Like you want your...

...signature look and I call it a signature look to really be something that's in all the photos. And so that's really anything from your, you know, chest up and it's not going to always include a something like a pocket square. The other thing is, is is it visual from stage? Right? Like a lot of the time, something as small, like a pocket square or even just like maybe the way you do your makeup isn't visible from stage. And so things like your hair, your eye glasses, if you wear glasses, that is a fantastic opportunity because you can do the funny rims or a certain color, right? We were talking earlier that you remember one of the speakers because he wears these bright yellow glasses, yep, all those little things and I find personal brands can be powerful because they're essentially a representation of you, but they're not necessarily the full you, right? And I think I've often often heard advice when it comes to building personal brand of just be you right, which I've always kind of felt rings true and at the same time it's kind of frustrating because you're like, well what do I do with that? That's like just be me. I'm a lot of things, it's like which part of me like the past me currently or like the me, I'd rather be out in the future somewhere. So it's not, I don't find that it's the best advice when it comes to personal branding. So like one of the things you talk about is being authentic or a B A always be authentic, which I find is really important. It's like of course, it's not like when I say just be used bad, don't mean to be someone else, but there's something more to it than just being who you are all the time. So when you say always be authentic, how do I actually go about doing that practically? So first of all don't tell like white lies. So I when networking, I use this kind of an example when you go up to someone, I like to compliment them on something that I like about them. But I will never compliment on someone on something I don't like, right? And that's just one very simple example of showing you where people will understand that you are either telling the truth or you're lying. You say, oh I love those shoes on you. It's really obvious when you're lying, right? And so take that kind of situation. But put yourself on stage, if you are trying to tell people something that you yourself don't believe in, or if you're wearing something that makes you feel uncomfortable or you're not used to or you've taken someone else's advice on a brand new haircut, a you're not gonna be coming across as someone who isn't um isn't lying, right? You're not going to come across as if you are telling the truth, you're going to come across as feeling uncomfortable. That is so obvious when someone is wearing something they don't like, it is incredibly obvious to everybody else that they're uncomfortable, right? And so if you are always authentic, always exactly who you are. You're never put in that position of being that impostor, and no one's going to notice that. So there's a little bit more to it than that, I think is even like when you dress up and you're taking photos and you're on stage you're wearing the same things, but I'm like even in this book cover your brain like a red dress and I've seen you another book covers, you're wearing similar type dresses um in different colors depending on the audience, Right? Something you mentioned the book, but you're probably not always wearing that dress. Maybe when you're behind the scenes or it's like a cozy work saturday or something like that, or you just outfit the mall, you're probably not always wearing those things, but when you're on brand or you're picking something, you're probably really comfortable in this dress for starters, so it's not inauthentic, but when you're getting in building your brand, you're essentially highlighting certain aspects to you and kind of leaving the rest off the table, is that right? Exactly? To give you an example. I gave this talk in Germany and it was at this giant sports conference and I mean like full on like fitness studios, were there giant pieces of fitness equipment and for my main talk, I went in my normal dress and high heels and then the next day I...

...was doing a kind of more of an informal sit down interview and so I decided to grab some workout equipment, like everyone else is wearing workout gear, I threw on sneakers, yoga pants and one of these energy harvesting shirts, it was, you know, high tech workout shirt, nobody recognized me, like the people who are, who are waiting for me and they had never met me in person, but they were watching for someone with a dress and high heels on and they're like, where where is she, where is Robin? She's late? And I'm like, hi, I'm right in front of you. It was hilarious because I was just not even recognized because I was in that sport in uniform. So you feel like building a personal brand is really like just highlighting the parts that you want to highlight in order to essentially. I mean it's kind of a marketing play. You're, you're highlighting your finding out what the audience expects to some degree and you're bringing the right elements that are true to you. But you're kind of mixing and matching. You're trying to bring the right things so that you're leaving the right impression that you want to leave its designing based on what's already true about you. And it's a lot more than close, but be from anything from the way you talk to, the way you write to, the way you'll take photos to, the way you talk on camera, to the way you do a podcast interview, right? It all has to be authentically you, but obviously it is designed a little bit and that you're being specific in the way you're coming across, yep, and consistent. So what's consistency is key? So how do you go about choosing those things? Like how do you work backwards? Like for example, how did you choose the dress as the signature item? Did you think backwards? It like no, like what do I want to look like? How do I see myself? Or is it something like, what would they expect? Or is it kind of like a blend of the two? It was nothing to do with what the audience would expect. It was 100% what am I comfortable in and what is someone of my job would normally wear? Right, So first of all I'm just really comfortable and sheath dresses, like it's almost like wearing pajamas, but they are nicely fitted and tailored, but it's just so soft and easy to move in and so it's much more comfortable for me than, say, a pair of jeans or something like that. And then I'm in sales and business dev, you know, I meet with sea levels, you know, executives, I meet with investors and so people don't always show up into those kinds of things with like jeans and sneakers on to begin with. So that's first off, and a lot of my paid keynotes are consider business attire, Which means, again, you shouldn't be wearing like jeans and sneakers. So that was already off the table and it's just something that I was already comfortable in and I can by repetitive Lee. So I literally do have the exact same dress in, like 20-25 different colors, patterns and, and fabrics, but it's essentially the exact same dress. Yeah. And that just helps people remember, helps give you a distinct style and your new thing. Like if you picture Simon cowell's in your head, I guarantee you you're going to think about him in a particular shirt, You're thinking about it right now. It's a black v neck. That's what he wears. Either he decided that or a brand specialists who specialized in like brand identity told him, hey, this is your thing, right? Some, some people like steve jobs just decided they like black turtlenecks. But oftentimes celebrities are being told by highly paid individuals what their look should be and how to be memorable because that's a big part of the game. Things you need to think about it as a thought leader. I know we're spending a lot of time on dress, but this plays into like, I think most areas of branding, right? Finding that thing that's true to yourself, that's appropriate within the space or maybe strategically inappropriate. Right? Exactly. And then trying to be consistent in it. So let's walk through some of those other elements that you've spelled out, including enhancing your name. Tell me a little bit more about that. Sure. So I'm lucky in that I'm the only Robin furman for me in in the entire universe. But when I google other people's names, sometimes they're not the only name in the universe. And it can be really hard...

...to differentiate. So if you have, you know, a first name like Michael or David, which is very, very popular. And then you also have a last name that is also a popular last name. You might want to tweak your name some way, right? And that might be adding the doctor to the beginning. That if you're, you know, if you are a doctor or it could be adding a middle initial or it could be, you know, using a nickname but something that will literally differentiate your name. And if you can't think of anything and your name is something uh, you know, popular like Michael scott, like just or Michael smith or something like that, you could say Michael sweet smith, technology entrepreneur and like have those two words always appear with your name. So you're essentially branding yourself in a name and that way you can differentiate yourself because let me tell you, there are a lot of speakers and authors where I've tried Googling them and I couldn't find them right away. If you're not those first few results for your, not only your subject but your actual name. You've got to differentiate from the people who are the first results for your name. As a marketer, you're probably brainstorming outside the box ideas to engage your prospects and customers working remotely. And you've probably thought about sending them direct mail to break through the zoom fatigue. But how do you ship personalized gifts to remote decision makers When you have no idea where they're sitting at B two B growth? We use the craft and platform to send hyper personalized gifts to anyone working from anywhere. Crafting makes it easy for your prospects and customers to pick and personalize their own gift in real time and offers highly secure data capture. So decision makers feel comfortable submitting their home addresses for shipping purposes. To get your own personalized craft and gift. Go to craft um dot io slash growth to schedule a demo and receive a complimentary personalized gift from craft. Um to claim your personalized gift, go to craft um dot io slash growth, that's fantastic. I was just thinking, I'm like, you know what? I kind of stumbled into that on accident, hence calling myself Danchev and just said to just dan Sanchez, which became, was, it was like a hashtag like even eight months ago, I just started doing it on linkedin and people have stuck Because there is honestly about, I think there's about 2000 of Dan Sanchez is out there. It's a common name, so I mix it together and I'm pretty much the only one that goes by Dan says now it's awesome, it's cute, it's funny, it's interesting and it's still, I can still go by dan Sanchez and people know, but it's still just a different naming thing and the way we know Gary Vaynerchuk, uh he's got such a long name, he just started going by Gary V because less syllables is usually more memorable. That kind of depends. Right? So I know he had shortened it and a lot of I've seen a lot of people play with the name, what would you say to people who have like just really harsh sounding names or like they're just names, it's kind of like, you know, they just don't have a great name. What would you say to people like that? Have you ever worked with customers whose names are just sound not funny, but like they're hard to really hard to say they're they're impossible to spell. I could think of like a friend whose last name is like sub check and it's it's literally impossible to spell right and even the way I said it, you would never guess the spelling of it. So I would say make sure your first name is easy, right? And so I do have some clients that I've worked with and some entrepreneurs have worked with from china right and their names started with an X and for an american, anything that starts with the letter X, you say x x ray, right or something like that. And it's so rare in the english language, I'm like no one can remember how to spell your name and no one knows how to say it. So you need one of your names, like your first name or your last name, but hopefully your first name be something that the audience you are trying to target and reach will be able to remember and spell and remember. A lot of Hollywood actors and even authors change their name all the time.

Some of them changed their name to be completely brand new and nothing like their old name and some just tweak their names. But really I mean if you want to go ahead and tweak your name you're welcome to do that. There's no reason you even have to go through anything legal. You can have that stage name that name that everyone on social media calls you by and everyone on your email list but then you know when you pay your taxes you pay under your normal name. So many different ways to mix and match it could literally be a nickname. It could be you probably name tied to the industry if you can find some fancy alliteration to make it work or and find the domain name and then everybody kind of knows you. Is that thing think about E patient Dave right. E patient Dave. I don't most people don't know his last name is D bronc something I can't even remember it because it's hard but I remember e patient Dave right? And he's a very famous E patient now, just by that name, yep, that works. I think the one scary thing about is you get locked into that one thing and it's hard to pivot later. Right? But I'm sure people have done it. One thing you talk about is having a fundamental truth. Tell me a little bit more about that. It's not necessarily a mission of a kind, but what do you mean by fundamental truth? So when I'm talking about your thought leader formula itself, it is a combination of your y and your fundamental truth and that's really the beginning of your thought leader platform and so your fundamental truth is something that you believe that either the rest of the world doesn't even know about yet or don't actually agree with you, for instance, my first book and how I launched myself was the patient as Ceo, right? And that is a concept that when you go to places like Germany and Japan, their mouths dropped open because it's a very paternalistic healthcare system. And so when the patient goes in to see a doctor, they're not even supposed to ask questions, they say yes, thank you. And then you're supposed to go do what the doctor tells you to do, right? And by saying the patient is the Ceo that is a dramatic shift in how people view patients. And so that's my fundamental truth. But it also is something that I truly believe, right, always make sure you walk your talk. I'm I am the essentially Ceo of my own healthcare team and I demonstrate that over and over and over again with real life scenarios and I talk about it on stage, so it makes sense. You're essentially like taking what is a long explanation for what could be in finding a very short insistent way to summarize it into one a one liner kind of like um Toyota has always better never best right to summarize kind of the lean manufacturing, which has a whole book behind it, but you can kind of get the sense of it and always better never best write your summarising your truce. And would you say these truths are like the unique things you're doing to expand the industry? Because I'd say thought leadership is making unique, it's not just being an expert, it's making unique contributions, right? And these truths are your unique contributions as a thought leader, your pillars as a thought leader. Exactly. So thinking about the fact that also many of us have more than one fundamental truth, So it's really targeting it down to that one concept that you can build a brand off of a platform, remember anything you do now doesn't mean you can't do other things next year or the year after, right? You're not going to pigeon your whole yourself necessarily. I mean if you call yourself e patient dave maybe you don't go into agriculture with that name, but in general like with the patient as ceo I've done now the healthcare stuff, I've done the thought leadership step. So I thought leadership stuff which I can't say obviously and I've also done facilitating virtual events. So I've put out a book in the event world right? And now I'm about ready to put out 1/4 book and that's on a I democratizing healthcare. And so really I I decided...

...not to let anything pigeonholed me, but everything just keeps building absolutely. I have noticed that thought leaders, you are professional thought leaders often have a specific beachhead that they come in on with one idea, but then afterwards, once you kind of have that established you can do one after another after another. Hence Gary V started with the wine guy, he was the wine guy and then he became the social media guy. And now lately he's been the crypto N. F. T. Guy. Like he keeps adding these feathers to his hat. But ultimately it's becoming a truer expression to him and you can continue to add those things. Of course he would say that you only know 5% of who I actually am because I've crafted this brand, but you can do one thing after another though I'd say usually probably have to pick one thing and stick with it for a while. Yes and I mean that's that's something from from Silicon Valley entrepreneurship. Right? When you are first launching a company, you need to be able to do one thing incredibly well with a very well defined vertical, Right? And so for instance, I worked at a health tap back in 2010 and this is data and telemedicine type platform and when we first initially launched in order to get feedback and really kind of look at the product, we did it just for pregnant women and new moms, even though we were not even remotely going to focus on that later on. Right later on, we were planning on going across all the major diseases, from diabetes to cardiovascular health, but we really just launched in that one well defined market, so we could get traction and then once we were able to get traction and understand what was going on, then we expanded across diseases. Makes sense? So just like it's you incorporated right? You really do have to do to build a personal brand and I thought leadership, you really do have to think about all the things that normal business would have to think about. Just like if you were starting up, you do have to think about who's your market, who is your audience, what's the solution generally that you as a brand bring to the table like all that kind of like um like steve blank's four steps to the epiphany, the lean startup kind of methodology you really have to bring yourself, which is probably why a lot of people don't get into it because let's be honest, like those steps and entrepreneurship are kind of hard. Let's say they do find it though. How long do you think you should stick to it or when do you know, you were able to break away from the first thing you got established and can established another thing? Well, first of all, um has it fed your revenue stream enough because you shouldn't be launching yourself just as a thought leader and expect money to fall in your lap because it's not going to happen. Right, What is your business model? So looking at your business model, have you been able to feed it correctly? Is it working? And once it started working and really got new traction then, is it time to launch a second brand or, or vertical? And what is the business model for? That? That makes sense, But you might have to pivot on the way there in case the first one didn't quite, I don't know if I'm ready for whatever reason, just didn't connect the way you wanted it to. So it might be interesting. Moving on. One of the other things you talk about for a personal brand is catchphrases and I love this. I recently read about even at a different thing, a book called Primal branding, I think they caught words or like um sacred words, but I'm like, it's kind of the same thing, like what do you mean by catchphrases specifically? And then I'd like to kind of go back and forth on different iterations of it. Sure, so thinking about what are those 3 to 5 phrases? And I mean just to start that you repeat over and over again. Right? So one of mine would be the patient as ceo, right? That's both fundamental truth. A book name as well as a catchphrase, Right, Another catchphrase could be back when I first launched that book Doctors as medical Engineers, right? So I could just say that concept over and over again and all of my interviews and put it in my books and put it up on stage so that these are concepts and phrases that get associated with your brand, What would you think about coming up with phrases that are not...

...necessarily tied to your thought leadership, but tied to just you and your personality or tied to something that's specific about your brand. Have you played with those at all with yourself or with customers? Uh so it kind of blends for me because I do have enough catchphrases now and enough things that I can go into like fundamental truth and your why? Right? That's another one of my essentially catchphrases. So it's just, I mean you can really have as many as you want and they can be related to either just your personal brand or to your business model, but they're really just things that you're going to say over and over again concepts that Essentially getting your concepts down 3-5 words, 3-5 words. That's a good rule. And it's funny because we can all think of different catchphrases from all popular brands, like Nike is most famous, just do it right, is a catchphrase from their brand and ways to sink your teeth into something and they can probably be more thought driven or maybe concept driven, certainly more emotionally driven, like just do it. Um could probably be all over the place. In fact there might be I imagine would be powerful if you can work emotion to it. I don't know how thought leaders would work more emotion into a specific phrase, but I imagine it's possible the last thing you kind of have in your steps to building a great brand, is building your bio or story. So, tell me a little bit more about that. Well, if you haven't had a professional bio done right, and, like, you're launching yourself as a thought leader, I'd say, have someone can help you with it, because sometimes you are so close to it, that it's difficult for you to really take out the things that are most important, and so what I did now, I'm an expert of course at writing bios, and I can write my own or anybody else is in a matter of minutes, but when I first started out what, eight years ago, I was like, I don't know how to do this. And so I brought on a pr company who went and went through and created like a small bio, a medium length and then a super long bio for me, and then I just took those and I built off of them. So you kind of build a different back stories for different people depending on their fundamental truths and their audience, I imagine, because everybody is you have a really everybody's got a really long backstory. If you tell someone to tell you a minute and 20 stories, they can ramble for 20 minutes, but most of it's not really relevant to the audience. So what kind of things are you looking for when you're looking at a story, let's say they're there, want to become a thought leader there, they sell to SAAS companies, right? And they want to be positioned as a thought leader. They have a new way of running SAS companies are helping them enhance reoccurring revenue or something like that. Maybe they discovered a methodology that really helps them do it, and they've been pioneering that in the space like what kind of things are you looking for in that kind of persons backstory? So something that is personal that can give that emotional response right? And tie you to that. So when we started this interview we talked about why I decided to become a thought leader Right? Why I became a professional speaker. It's because I was so pushed down in Silicon Valley and how that much you know how that changed the equation. And so there's that story where you can have the emotional reaction and take them onto that success thing. So that's always a good one. or what may be some kind of an epiphany right? So that one works well too. Like you were watching a baseball game one day you were at work and you know your I. T. Guy said this and then all of a sudden bam the light bulb went off and you had an epiphany and that's why you want to do this. So it could really just be um anything that gives that emotional response. It sounds like there's a couple different templates or ways of going about it. Like you just said because you had you had an obstacle that you were facing. You had an epiphany right? That hey this should be a thing. Like you maybe you connect to different ideas together and you're like what the I wonder what some other common stories are. Kind of like I...

...guess they this this might be the epiphany but of common origin story for most companies is uh I had this problem myself and I was like huh? How come nobody else does this? Right? Like Uber that's the story. They were stuck in a I think a snowstorm and Harris and they couldn't hail a cab and had ways to go and they're like, man, wouldn't it be nice if there was an apple record? Just some in the cabin, they would come to me right, Uber was born. And I actually think the real story was a lot more longer complicated, but it's certainly a nice soundbite that they've essentially crafted into a story. Um Can you think of any other like Takeaways or tactics for trying to find the story? 11 thing that I find happens a lot is like the story behind the company is like, well, it seemed like it was a profitable market that was kind of interesting to me and therefore I developed a product around it and I happen to have the right idea now, the products pretty good, but I don't have a really compelling story. It's because they didn't bring on an expert to help them, Right? So you've got to understand that in the world of marketing, you've got experts who have done this for years and maybe have a lot of education. And then you've got people who are starting companies who might be an engineer or might be a biologist or you know, might have studied finance, but not necessarily marketing. And then, uh, you know, they try to come up with their own personal story and it looks like it's a mess because they've never tried to do that before. They're not an expert. So I tell people hire a coach for one session, even just one session to really break it down. Because like I could hear someone's personal story, you know, you could spend three or five minutes telling me and I'll get that down to like three sentences in seconds, right? Because I'm used to being able to do that. That is a skill that needs to be learned and actually used not just suddenly come up with at the spur of the moment when you want to become a thought leader. But if you want to try to do your own first thing I tell people is no more than three major details, right? Yeah. Because a lot of the time someone will tell a story and they go on like, have you heard of an eight year old ever telling a story like on this favorite cartoon, eight year old right now? And it takes them 15 minutes to tell you something. That should have been one sentence and that's what a lot of people think our storytelling is. So instead think about what are the three main points you need to get across in the shortest length of time. You want to write it on the back of a napkin or the back of the envelope? It's your elevator pitch. Yeah, so three main points. And is it almost is it usually along the lines of like the world was like this, there was a problem and then this it's kind of those things, if somebody who actually wanted to hire somebody like what what kind of job titles are they usually looking for in their headline? Of course they can contact you. But if they were looking for that one hour, like, okay, I want to just be able to tell my story for 30 minutes and they pull out the three sentences that are just going to work. What kind of person am I looking for that helps with that marketing team? Right. So yeah, so like there are marketing companies, there are marketing coaches, there are companies that just literally work on personal branding a lot of the time. Um These companies are 2 to 5 people or even just a solo consultant, like I'm a solo consultant and you just reach out to me and then you hire me for an hour and a lot of friends who do that kind of thing. So literally just start googling marketing marketing people on linkedin, Fantastic. And the last major part you do a huge push with your book on the power of writing a book. Now, this isn't super uncommon. I've talked to a couple of the thought leaders that push that, but I want to revisit it again because um the more I've read about it, the more I find that this this is the thing. A lot of people agree that the Almighty book um despite social media being so popular is still the number one way you become a thought leader. Why? Better than a degree? And let me tell you why? So I'm a chronic disease patient and my whole patient as Ceo book is based on that and the fact that I'm a technology entrepreneur, I am called Dr furman for me in more...

...frequently sometimes that I'm called Robin, like thanks guys, but I have a Bs in management and finance. That's like my education. I am far from being a physician yet people just assume I am and this is a big deal in the world of medicine because most women who spend that 15 years studying medicine, doing residency and fellowship and all of that most of the time are not called Doctor, which is kind of interesting that people will just assume like they cannot get people to call them doctor and people just assume I am right. That's the power of a book. Just people seem to think that if you can write a book then you must be the world's expert. It's probably gonna go on like this for the next five or six years. Uh If you're trying to speak to generation Z, this is probably not the way. But if you're trying to speak to millennials, gen X or anyone older than that. Absolutely. A book is the equivalent of getting a graduate degree. Yeah. I mean, well did even write a book, even if it's and okay book, you still have to do a lot of work. You still have to do a lot of study and you still had to articulate all the things you learned, right? Which is why college has, you write papers. But generally you write nonsense so called papers because I have great I've worked, I've had my M. B. A. And I've totted colleges before and reading papers like worse than writing them right? If you write a book you actually have to write coherent something in there. Even if it's like not breakthrough. Um What if people feel like they're not ready to write a book? Like they have their an expert, they have some unique ideas but they haven't like flushed out their unique ideas. They haven't been practicing their unique ideas. They don't have a lot of evidence that show that you're, their unique ideas are like bulletproof yet and they're afraid that the real experts will come for them. What about those people? So there's two things first to think about. First of all, single digit hundreds, maybe thousands of people are going to read your book seriously. Like oh no there are very few people are actually going to read your book instead. They are going to hopefully be feeding your revenue streams like my revenue streams. I fundraise for startup companies and health care and I'm hired by big companies to come and give keynotes, right? So those are two of my big revenue strings. And so everything I do kind of wants to feed one of those. So, first of all thinking about that, but second of all this is a company, you have to get that into your brain. Being a thought leader is not an individual side project you do for fun, you've got to think of this as a company and you bring on experts because writing in general, but then specifically writing a book, This is a big deal, it is a skill set and it takes a lot of back knowledge on even how the process works. Right? And so if you have never written something more than 20 pages before, you might need to bring on extra help. And there are many ways to do that from, I I refer people to a bunch of my different friends who will ghost off there for them or they will be that person who helps bring them through the process, like a coach that stands with them and and it does a lot of the editing or help them with their outline. You can also use companies like Scribd media, who I used for my first book, which is amazing. They spend about 14 hours with you, they talk to you on the phone, they help you outline your book, then they spend 10 hours just sitting there talking you through your outlined and everything is recorded transcribed, edited and then sent to you in a perfect book. Right? Those kinds of things are very, very pricey obviously. But then there are other ways you can hack it, go to something like scripted dot com and order. That's uh It's essentially articles on demand from just writers who can do like 800 word articles or something. Order seven or 8, word articles. Put that together as a book. Right? An intro and write a conclusion, smash it together. And there's your book, write a book, is a...

...marketing tool. It is not a revenue stream. It's a way, I imagine if you package all your ideas in one book, you have a really nice little package to give people your thought leadership ideas. Two, they may be paid you a little bit of money for it. So it sets them up for maybe a bigger spend because the relationship has changed at some point. You can you obviously just splinter out all the different content in the book and all your social media post for who knows how long? So it plays a lot of different roles. But why, I guess, I guess the big part about a book more than a podcast, more than maybe a Youtube channel or social media of some kind is just the credibility that comes with the book. That's what it is. It's the packaging, it's just the packaging, you could you could literally, you know, say your entire book out loud and it's not going to have that same credibility as a physical book, even if it's just an e book. And that's really just the psychological conditioning we have here in the United States around books. Up until now, No one realizes just how easy it is to get it done. I don't know, I mean, it is hard to write a well formulated book. Would you say? It's better to write it earlier or later? So, start now. Right. I, I published my book, I think about a year, year and a half into my thought leader journey and that was on my actual project plan. So I came out with first a bunch of different articles that I had. I hired a PR company to place in high end magazines. So I had that kind of content catalog out there. Then I did a bunch of key notes and I hired someone to do like high end slides for me. And then I hired a team to come on and help me with my book. This is a company, you are building a brand. If you are trying to do it so low, you are probably not going to be as successful or it takes longer or maybe you just never get it done. I can see the point of hiring someone to help and some people have enough drive to push it all the way through and knock it out in a month or six months or whatever, whatever it might be. So this has been fascinating. There's so many other elements elements in this book that we could have dive into. But if you want to, you're going to have to go and read the whole book. I think we flushed out one chapter pretty well, but that's just one of many chapters in this book. Um, so again, the book is Thought Leader Formula. There's a lot of books with the title, Thought, Thought Leader. This is the one with the word formula in it. Um, and you'll see Robin right on the cover, Robin, it's been a delight to have you on the show. Thank you so much. If people want to learn more from you, where can they find you online? What's the best social network and then what's your website? Sure. So as I mentioned, I'm the only Robin Farm and Farm Ian in the entire universe. So you can reach me on linkedin facebook and twitter are the three that I'm on most frequently. And my website is Robin Fs dot com. Fantastic. Again, thanks for joining me on the show. Thank you. Is the decision maker for your product or service at BBB marketer. Are you looking to reach those buyers through the medium of podcasting? Consider becoming a co host of GDP Growth. This show is consistently ranked as a top 100 podcast in the marketing category of apple podcasts and the show gets more than 100 and 30,000 downloads each month. We've already done the work of building the audience so you can focus on delivering incredible content to our listeners if you're interested email Logan at sweet fish media dot com.

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