Posts by Christina

How to Increase Post Reach on your Facebook Page Organically

How to Increase Post Reach on your Facebook Page

How to Increase Post Reach on your Facebook Page

In this episode of Become a Media Maven, Amanda Bond is showing you how to increase post reach on your Facebook page organically. Yes, without ads!

She said when people switch over from there personal profile to the business page, they posting is different. People notice that… and they don’t like it.

In the 14th episode, Amanda is going to teach us how to study algorithms, stop looking at vanity metrics, when you should schedule posts… and how you should schedule them.

Here is a list of resources mentioned in this episode:

Please subscribe to this podcast and leave an honest review on iTunes. Your ratings and reviews really help and I read each one.

For more on the episode, click here to download it and listen!

How to Increase Post Reach on your Facebook Page
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how to make money from events

How to Make Money (5 to 6 Figures) From an Event

In this episode of Become a Media Maven, Alexis Caldicott is sharing how you can make five or even six figures from events.

Yes, you can make this money by holding your own event, sponsoring an event, or even attending an event.

In the 13th episode, Alexis is going to take us, step-by-step, how to host our first event (a 90-minute one-day workshop) AND how to profit as an event attendee.

Here is a list of resources mentioned in this episode:

Please subscribe to this podcast and leave an honest review on iTunes. Your ratings and reviews really help and I read each one.

For more on the episode, click here to download it and listen!

How to make money from events
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How to Make Money From Home

How to Make Money From Home

In this episode of Become a Media Maven, I’m taking over and telling you how to make money from home… because I do!

I’m sharing details on how I built my business from the beginning as a “professional freelancer” to a business owner with a team and multiple streams of revenue that add up to multiple six figures.

Many people ask me what I do or how I make money from home… or anywhere with WiFi.

In the 12th episode of Become a Media Maven, I’m sharing the breakdown of the four streams of revenue in my business:

  1. PR Agency
  2. Mentoring Program
  3. TV Hosting
  4. Lifestyle Blogging

I also talk about my goals moving forward, why they are my goals, and what’s on the horizon for 2019.

In this episode, you’ll learn how I did all of this from home… without even having an office.

Here is a list of resources mentioned in this episode:

Please subscribe to this podcast and leave an honest review on iTunes. Your ratings and reviews really help and I read each one.

For more on the episode, click here to download it and listen!

How to Make Money From Home
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How to Create a Millennial Marketing Strategy

How to Create a Millennial Marketing Strategy

In this episode of Become a Media Maven, I speak with Chelsea Krost. Chelsea is an expert in marketing to millennials… and it’s important because millennials have the most spending power in the world.

She talks about how the older companies are trying to take their voice and change it to work online, thinking mobile first, and being on social media to engage the market.

How to Create a Millennial Marketing Strategy

Chelsea says the most common mistake people make when marketing to millennials is assuming we are all the same. We don’t like the same things, are not influenced by the same things, and do not purchase the same things.

In the 11th episode of Become a Media Maven, Chelsea really goes into using a personal brand to get the known, like, and trust factor to build your business and why you should be doing this as an employee AND as an entrepreneur.

Something else that’s pretty cool – Chelsea gets world-renowned leaders across the globe to tweet with her and her audience for an hour on a particular topic every week. Yeah, we talk about that too!

In this episode, you’ll learn exactly how to create a millennial marketing strategy and so much more.

Here is a list of resources mentioned in this episode:

Please subscribe to this podcast and leave an honest review on iTunes. Your ratings and reviews really help and I read each one.

For more on the episode, click here to download it and listen or read what’s below!

How to Create a Millennial Marketing Strategy

In this episode of Become a Media Maven, Chelsea Krost is talking about everything marketing and everything Millennial.

Who knew in 2007 the word “millennial” and that millennials we’re going to be such a powerful force to be reckoned with. I had such an itch that the next generation was going to be so different than the previous generation just because of all fights happening in social media and digital world. But I mean come on, who could have forecasted the last decade and the shift in the demand for us to really understand the millennial generation from a personal and consumer perspective?!

Why Millennials Have a Bad Reputation

You started working at a radio station when you were in high school here in South Florida and it really was to empower teenagers and to be like, “Hey, we’re not all bad.” However, many years later, we’re still saying, “Hey, not all millennials are bad.”

I know unfortunately some of the same narrative is happening. I think it comes with the territory whenever there’s the next generation in town. Soon, the next generation will be even more at the forefront… and I think we’re calling them Gen Z.  

In 2007 when I was in high school, people like Paris Hilton, Nicole Richie, Britney Spears, and Lindsay Lohan were big. They were kind of like the Kardashians at the time, if you will. You could not escape them. They were doing cocaine. They were out, getting drunk, and making trouble… and this was the world’s image of the next generation. There was no such thing, as Facebook yet. It was in its infancy.

So, the visual of young entrepreneurs and young influencers wasn’t good because there wasn’t a platform for us yet. MTV was airing shows like 16 and Pregnant and it was just like a very dark and dreary time of “the teenager”.

My mentors on TV were people like Diane Sawyer, Barbara Walters, Katie Couric, and Oprah. They all started to talk about the next generation in such a negative way – down to the point where I remember watching The View and the tagline for the commercial was – our teenagers are officially the demise of the future. I just was so taken aback by that comment because all I could hear, was negative, negative, negative.

I said to myself, “Well, this isn’t empowering my peers. We are way more than, lazy, entitled, and narcissistic.” That was really the motivator behind putting together my first radio talk show which was a way to create a platform for my peers to have a voice, to share their opinion, to talk about topics that were relevant and that we were passionate about.

We needed an outlet to talk about things like:

  • SATs and ACTs
  • Relationships
  • Body image issues
  • Bullying and cyberbullying
  • Sexting
There were so many terms and social issues that were starting to surface at that time. That was just further calling me to create a platform to finally have a place to talk about it amongst my generation. That was the motivator behind it all.

Why you Should be Marketing to Millennials

Based on your work over the years and all of your research, millennials – that person, they are the ones that every brand should be marketing to. Why?

You might feel like you’ve been hearing the term “millennial” for multiple years now, and that’s true. Five years ago when we first started to talk about these millennials, people were still wrapping their head around what a millennial was. The reality of how different this generation is is because of the way we grew up.  

We were born into and had full access to a technology that no other generation had. Clearly, our mindset was going to be different. We are still trying to help baby boomers and Gen Xers wrap their head around the technology.

So now in 2018, if you’re not thinking millennial, if you don’t understand the millennial mindset, and if you’re not thinking about shaping your marketing strategies to appeal to this consumer group, you’re really, really hurting yourself more than helping yourself.

Here’s the reason why. Millennials are:

  • The largest generation on the plant.
  • Have the largest consumer spending power on the planet.
  • Are getting older and becoming more financially stable.

Since we’re not getting younger, we are the next generation of consumers… even if we’re not necessarily your consumer quite yet.

Maybe your target demo is a bit older, but guess what? Millennials are getting older. So you have to start shaping your branding, your marketing, and your content marketing efforts to start including the younger audience. As we continue to age, we are further becoming acclimated and the trust factor is there with brands that we’re going to purchase later in life.

If you don’t have a digital footprint, if you don’t have a social presence, if you don’t have an optimized website today, a millennial is a lot less likely to trust your brand and trust spending their money with you.

It’s time to really start to take millennial consumers into consideration.

Niching Down to Market to Millennials Online

You cannot put millennials in a one size fits all box. First of all, we are a very broad age bracket. You know, we’re like in that 20 to 38 range, right? So obviously what appeals to a 20-year-old right now is totally different than what a 30-year-old is going through. A stage of life, income priorities, mindset, etc.

You really have to understand the niche audiences within this millennial generation and refine your message to speak to the niche audience – that’s your consumer and that means that you have to be realistic in how millennials are spending their money.

Think about the sharing economy. Millennials are so savvy when it comes to shopping online and finding the best price and getting the biggest bang for their buck. So, these are all things in regards to a millennial mindset that we should be taking into consideration.

Think about this:

  • Who is your customer?
  • How do you create an ideal customer profile?  
  • Is it gender specific?
  • Are you catering towards male versus female?
  • What age range is your target customer?
  • Are they in college or high school?
  • A first time home buyer?
  • Are they parents?
  • Are they divorced?
  • What stage of life are they in?
  • And in that stage of life, what kind of income do these people have?

All of that information, all of those answers are going to reveal your audience demographics and helped also define and clarify where that person is on social media.

If you’re targeting a consumer in high school or college or younger, you know that you need to be on Snapchat and Instagram. If your target audience is in their mid-twenties to early thirties, they’re probably going to be on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter. If you’re a GenX or Baby Boomer, you are probably going to be on Facebook and LinkedIn.

Understanding your audience demographics and the answers in your audience demographics will help to reveal where you should be on social media, what your marketing message should sound like, and then what your content marketing efforts should look like.

What Content to Create to Grab Millennials Attention

A big mistake that people make is they are just so overly promotional!

I will never deny that content marketing takes time. It takes patience. It takes creativity. It takes money. You know you must create videos and blog posts.

When I talk about marketing, messaging equals content. No matter where the content comes from – your blog, live stream, or even the content in this podcast right now. The content must be written out in the ad and then posted on social media sites.

This is what I mean by messaging. It’s the copy within the content that you are sharing to your audience and that copy, that text, is your marketing message.

The more you understand who you’re speaking to the clearer your message will be. When somebody speaks your language, you trust them quicker, you relate to them, you want to engage… versus someone who’s so not speaking your language or on your wavelengths.

That’s what I mean by structuring your marketing messaging to speak the language of your target customer.

If your customer is in college, obviously that language is going to be different than AARP who’s marketing messaging is to Gen Xers and baby boomers. So, it’s kind of like a simple “duh” moment.

It’s something that’s greatly overlooked and because content marketing is essential today, there’s no way to get around content marketing.

What to Post on Social Media to get Millennials Attention

Some marketing efforts are churning out an ROI (return on investment) and some are not because there’s a little bit of a science and a method and the formula that needs to be done prior to just pumping out your content. Don’t just post. Purposely post so that you can get results. When I say purposefully post, that also means defining your objective and your goal. So we know who we are speaking to in our audience. We know what channels we need to be on to speak to our audience. So now, what is your objective and goal?

  1. Maybe you’re looking to grow your followers on social media?
  2. You could be looking to increase video views?
  3. Another goal could be looking to increase your email list and get more subscribers?
  4. Maybe you are trying to educate your consumer about a new product or new service?
  5. What about trying to get people to sign up for your event?

I just came up with five different goals that are five different pieces of content that you could create for your channels and those goals that you have laid out.

Take Steps to Earn Trust from Millennials

I feel like when people set a goal, most of the time it is just to sell. But they’re totally missing some of the messages. Like, the “do something” in between, goal – to get known and liked and trusted.

People need to reel their goals in a little bit because nobody’s going to buy something as soon as you post it on Facebook or Instagram. You need to constantly be building that bond and trust factor.

I think that’s where a lot of people mess this up – they try to move too fast and that’s just not how people buy anymore.

The society that we live in today is the “Insta” generation, and I don’t mean Instagram. I mean as an instantaneous! We want everything now or within 24 hours… and guess what, when it comes to marketing your business and scaling your business, there is no such thing as a quick fix.

All of those people that are looking for a quick fix or not taking the time to build a solid foundation in their branding and their marketing and their business efforts will have less success.

The more solid your foundation, the bigger the mega-mansion you could build, right? So instead of looking for the quick fix or trying to make everything work yesterday, take the time to do the research in your industry, in your target audience, and really create a marketing strategy, a content strategy, and a social media strategy that’s going to give you a return on your investment. That’s when I say sometimes we really got to get back to basics in our marketing today to really appeal to just digital consumers and especially millennial consumers.

You’re just bombarded with tons of stuff online – whether it be your competition or just standing out in front of that audience.

Why Personal Branding is HUGE in a Millennial Generation

We all want the millennials. They have the biggest spending power. There are tons and tons of them, so I know you’re big on personal branding. Tell us about how anybody can use personal branding – whether you have a product based business or a service based business and what the benefit is of branding yourself in a certain way to get that know, like, and trust factor to make more sales.

I’m so in love with the topic of personal branding because of the true realities of what building a personal brand can do for you personally, professionally and for your business.

How do we stand out from the crowd today? How do we differentiate our brand? How do we differentiate our products or services?  The biggest answer right now is really working on your personal brand.

So what do I mean by that? You might have a clothing business. Okay. So obviously that means that you are in retail, you are selling clothes, you’re in the fashion industry, but one of the ways to differentiate your online boutique or maybe your pop up shop or your brick and mortar store is by building your personal brand as a fashion influencer, as that’s putting nice stuff online – styling tips, how to put together outfits, what assets should be worn for different occasions like a first date versus the job interview versus a night out with your girlfriends. Solidifying yourself as a fashion influencer or fashion expert is only going to bring more attention, more credibility, more trust, more engagement to your store, to your online shop or to your, your physical shop.

It’s a great way to market your services or your products all while being personal, relatable, and engaging with your target audience. So there is a reason and a way for everyone to benefit from a personal brand today.

When I think of personal brand for all of the Kardashians, just look at Kylie Jenner and what she’s built with her lip kits as an example, right? It’s amazing because people buy it from her. Kim Kardashian is selling out of perfume that nobody can even smell. It’s only available online, but they’re buying it because it’s hers and they have no idea what it smells like.

People buy products or services because of the people behind or in front of them.

People love the Kardashians, so that’s the reason why people love to buy their goods. Because they’re already a super fan of hers, right? They love looking at what she looks like, what she wears, how she does her makeup, so her personal brand, her digital footprint online has allowed her to create a billion-dollar empire without any additional investment or traditional advertising.

That is the power of building your personal brand. Obviously the Kardashians are a very extreme example because they also have broadcast 10 years of a reality show under their belt, but it is the perfect example of how Kylie was able to take her social presence and further monetize it by creating a service or a product that she knew her target audience was going to eat up. She knows who her audience is and she created the products for her audience interests.

How to Build a Personal Brand

If you’re an entrepreneur, that is exactly how you should be thinking of your industry and your expertise. What does your target audience need that you can package, sell, or create to ultimately monetize your personal brand as well?

There are so many people who say they don’t want to be the face behind the brand. Some people like to be behind the scenes and that’s totally okay.

Maybe you’re the business owner, the brains, but you don’t want to be the face. Find the right influencer, brand ambassador, or partner that is willing to be the face because it will make you more relatable. 

People connect through storytelling. Who tells stories? People. It’s just the personalized way that marketing is as though they are. The more you can personalize your marketing efforts, your marketing, and messaging your content – the more relatable and the higher conversions you are going to see, right?

Now is the time to start building your personal brand and your digital footprint. What I mean by digital footprint is your website, your landing page, your social media channels, your content, your blog, or your YouTube channel. The more you’re sharing online that’s on brand, you’re further building your digital footprint in the right way,

Putting money and resources behind building your personal brand is necessary. Maybe you are selling clothes online or maybe you are a coach selling meditation, coaching, or trauma therapy.

There’s always a way to build a personal brand within your industry. For those brands that are overly promotional like we were talking about a few minutes ago, they’re going nowhere fast. It’s about that 80/20 rule, 20% promotion, 80% giving value for free and engaging with your audience. There really needs to be a happy medium.

Monetizing your Personal Brand Online

I’ve been working in this industry for over 10 years and I’m the perfect example of what a personal brand could evolve into and how you can further it and how you can monetize it. My personal brand has turned into a six-figure business, but it didn’t happen overnight.

I’ve been doing this a decade and I serve clients now – corporate consulting clients and entrepreneur or coaching clients. I do put them in two different categories because obviously corporate is more on the consulting where we’re helping them activate influencer marketing campaign structure, their content marketing efforts, or the production and producing content for them.

The fun part is that I actually get to be the talent because I do have an audience myself. I am a host, right? So I get to work behind the scenes and in front of the scenes for my corporate clients which is really fun.

Over the past 10 years as I’ve been doing this for Kotex, Capital One, Mastercard, and the Cosmopolitan magazines of the world, I really realized that I was marketing to millennials.

Helping the Smallest Business Owner

There’s so much great information for on how to build a market for their own business. Yet people aren’t getting it. So after, after six years of hearing the same questions over and over and over again, I said, “You know what? I gotta do this. I have to open up my services to appeal to the startup entrepreneur” and I realized that helping startup entrepreneurs fulfill me. It’s also so rewarding. I love helping an entrepreneur or having those “aha moments” or connecting the dots to create the brand and business of their dreams because we can do it online today.

I serve corporate clients in multiple ways and then my smaller startup entrepreneurs and business owners get one on one coaching to really help them build their personal brand, solidify their business development, help them with their digital asset – optimization of websites, landing pages, social media channels, or creating a content marketing strategy.

All of these things are doable. We just have to take the time to learn how to do it. Plain and simple.

I also did something similar. I had my PR agency and after a couple of years of that I said, “You know what? Why don’t I start helping the little guy? Because the little guy needs it the most.”

So you’re still working with them and providing value. You’re just doing it in a different way because they’re at a different space at a different point in their career.

#MillennialTalk Twitter Chat

Every Tuesday night, you could always expect at 8:00 pm EST Chelsea to host a Twitter chat with millennials.

Our Twitter chat is loaded with incredible entrepreneurs, credible, insane guests that come and do this.

Always expect to have a different topic within the marketing, social media, and entrepreneurial space. We are here to serve the entrepreneur and we always have a different guest speaking on that topic. Our guests are world renowned, the top authorities in their industry, and are loaded with insight.

Within an hour’s time, there’s so much information about that topic that you will learn aside from networking with all of these incredible entrepreneurs and business owners across the globe too… and I mean across the globe – UK, Australia, Africa, Germany, Bolivia, the US, Canada. We have such an amazing audience.

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The One Reason Your Funnel Isn't Working

The One Reason Your Sales Funnel Isn’t Working

In this episode of Become a Media Maven, I speak with Paige Filliater. Paige started making money by teaching other business owners how to build online sales funnels.

Then, when many of her clients had profiting sales funnels and still weren’t happy in their business or life, she decided to go deeper.

In the 10th episode of Become a Media Maven, Paige shares some sales funnel knowledge, but also takes us back to really think about the reason for the funnel – How much money do you want to make? Why do you want to make that much money?

In this episode, you’ll learn what you need to work on before you start building a sales funnel to ensure it’s successful and you feel successful.

Here is a list of resources mentioned in this episode:

Please subscribe to this podcast and leave an honest review on iTunes. Your ratings and reviews really help and I read each one.

For more on the episode, click here to download it and listen!

Paige Fillater
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How to get on a reality TV show

How To Get On A Reality TV Show

In this episode of Become a Media Maven, I speak with Lindsay Greene. Lindsay went from blogger to reality TV show contestant to a full-fledged brand.

She talks about how when she started blogging, she struggled with finding her niche. When she did, she wanted to make sure she was honest in all of her posts.

In the ninth episode of Become a Media Maven, Lindsay talks about how she credits patience to her success. She kept blogging about food, even after moving to a different state. She kept telling more and more people about what she was doing. Those people told her about the Food Network casting, and even though she waited until the last minute to apply, she got it!

In this episode, you’ll learn what you can do to get on a reality TV show too.

Here is a list of resources mentioned in this episode:

Please subscribe to this podcast and leave an honest review on iTunes. Your ratings and reviews really help and I read each one.

For more on the episode, click here to download it and listen or read what’s below!

How to get on a reality TV show

For most of us, setting a specific goal(s) is how we gauge our success. Sometimes, we are successful and sometimes we are not. But for Lindsay, figuring out what her goal was and how to obtain her goal wasn’t so clear-cut.

Starting a Food Blog

“When I first started blogging I was kind of confused about what my brand identity should be,” Lindsay said. She knew she wanted to blog about food, but there was more to it than that. Lindsay had to ask herself:

  • Should my blog be location specific?
  • Should I be the South Florida food blogger?
  • Should I try to be everywhere?
  • What kind of content am I going to try to put out?

Lindsay decided to start her blog with recipes. Simple enough? Or was it?

“When I did start, I was posting recipes and I found it was a lot more time consuming than I thought, especially if you’re not a recipe developer like me.”

She said it started to get old really fast. “So, at the beginning, I ended up switching gears several times within the first three to four months.”

“The thing I like to do is eat and I love to cook too, but eating is really my favorite and I always knew that I had something to say about food. I wanted to give my opinion about the foods that I ate out.”  

Lindsay felt with her, straight shooter and honest approach, she could deliver a compelling blog people could rely on. 

“It’s funny, ever since I was younger, I loved, loved, loved to eat! Even in elementary school, I would have friends parents say that I couldn’t come over for dinner because they didn’t have enough food to feed me.” Lindsay laughs and says by the time she got to college, “My mom would have to make more food when she knew I was coming home from college.”

Growing a Successful Food Blog

As Lindsay became an adult, she began to realize she couldn’t pack on the food the way she had most of her life, but it didn’t change her passion for it.

“It actually kind of stressed me out transitioning out of that because you get to a certain age where your body can’t support all of this food the way that it used to. So, it’s been a constant struggle my whole life with truly loving to eat. Not just food in general, but a lot of food.”

Even with her food struggles, it didn’t sway Lindsay from sticking with her goals. She wanted to blog about food. She wanted to share her knowledge and passion for food.

From Food Blog to Food Network

Lindsay continued her blog and toyed with different formats. Then, she got an unexpected call.

“Out of the blue, a friend of mine in Atlanta sends me the casting call for Food Networks Guy’s Big Project. I remember specifically looking at it and seeing it was calling all home cooks and food bloggers.”

If you haven’t seen the show Guy’s Big Project, it’s a reality show where Guy Fieri challenges contestants to develop their own food TV show and the winner makes appearances on Food Network programs.

Lindsay contemplated responding.

“Normally, I would have never applied to something like this because I’m not a trained chef, you know, I haven’t gone to culinary school or anything like that.”

Her passion for food took over.

“Because it said food bloggers, I knew they were looking for more amateur type people. This was for a hosting position. I had always looked at my end goal of becoming a food personality. I didn’t want to just take pictures and post online. I wanted to be more than that.” she said.

The thought of applying made Lindsay super uncomfortable so she waited until the very last minute to submit her pitch video.

“A few hours before it was due I put it online.” She says, “Then they called me not more than a few hours later. I literally couldn’t believe it because I’ve never done anything like that before. Never been on camera. I wasn’t sure if I’d be good at it.”

But she says there was only one way to find out.

Promoting Your Blog to Get More Opportunities

There are two important points about Lindsay’s journey. Since the beginning, she worked hard to get the word out about her brand, blog, Instagram, and goals. This is a must for success because Exposure =  Opportunity. If you’re not putting yourself out there, how will people know what to pass along to you?

Lindsay also waited until the last minute to apply for the reality show. Why? Because she felt uncomfortable. So many people in business don’t want to do what feels uncomfortable. To be successful, you can’t avoid it. When you step out of your comfort zone, that’s a sign you should be doing it. It means it’s the next step to grow your business.

“I had my initial phone conversation with producers, and then we Skyped, and then several more calls,” Lindsay says the questions producers asked were specific to her niche. Things like:

  • What’s your relationship with food?
  • Why are you so interested in food?
  • What would her show be like? (since this is a reality show about hosting a show)

Lindsay says, “They just wanted to see how I was and how comfortable I would be on camera. They have to know you’re going to be entertaining and open and not just like closed up and not say anything the whole time… and that I had an actual show concept.”  

Three weeks after the phone calls and Skype interview, while at a wedding in New Orleans, Lindsay got the call. She was cast in the show and taping would start in a week and a half.

Lindsay’s original concept would have the show’s contestants going to fairs, festivals, and food truck events to pick their favorite dish. They would bring it back to the studio for all of the contestants to try and they’d decide on a winner. Producers told her to change the concept because it needed to focus specifically on her.

Lindsay says she had to come up with plan “B” quickly.

“I honestly didn’t really know what my concept was going to be on the way to the first challenge for the show. So, I’m kind of sitting there trying to reimagine what I wanted to do.”

Food on Instagram… on TV

She says Instagram immediately popped up in her my mind.

“I thought, okay, what are the things I like about Instagram? And it came to me, all of these obnoxious things that we see. You know things like ice cream that is fish flavored. They look cool but do they actually taste good, So I would try them out on my show.” Lindsay says producers liked it. And although she didn’t win in the end, she says the experience was life-changing.

Lindsay tells me that no matter how much she reviewed it in her head, once the camera started rolling… She just had to do it!

“It was like the mecca for being professionally uncomfortable. Lots of strangers around, and here I am in front of Guy Fieri and other Food Network stars and I’m literally standing in front of them having to perform on the spot.”

“These experiences definitely help you. It’s just about continuously showing up to these places that you don’t necessarily want to be in, knowing that it can get you in a better place in the long run.”

A much simpler challenge was keeping the secret. Contractually, Lindsay wasn’t allowed to tell anyone about her involvement during the 5-month taping. Lindsay laughs, “I am a terrible secret keeper. Keeping the secret was almost as impressive being on the show.”

Becoming a Food Influencer

As you can imagine, once the show aired, Lindsay’s life and business changed. Her social media went crazy, her website visitation exploded, and her expertise and passion for food were on full display.

Lindsay says “The process was so overwhelming and fulfilling at the same time. It took a lot to step into the unknown and succeed. But it’s important to note that just because you get on a TV show that doesn’t mean you’re going to skyrocket because that’s not necessarily true.” she said.

It’s been a year since the show aired and Lindsay said, “I still have people saying, they saw me on the show. It gave me more credibility as a food blogger. But you know it’s not like a magic pill you take and your successful forever, I still have to work hard every day to achieve my goals and keep my brand going, but being on TV doesn’t hurt. That’s for damn sure.”

Earning Credibility as a Food Blogger and Influencer

As a PR professional, if I wanted to work with an influencer, of course, I would choose someone who has been on a Food Network show over somebody who hasn’t. They would be considered more credible and have authority in their industry.

So, I asked Lindsay if the experience changed the way she works as a food blogger and influencer.

“Oh, absolutely. Before the show, I had not done any video content. I mean I had done some video content in the form of light food videos, but nothing with me in front of the camera. Being in front of the camera and knowing what it felt like, it just excited me. It energized me and it made me happy. So when I got back, I was on a mission.” she said.

Bringing the Food to YouTube

After the show, she started making YouTube videos.

“It took a while to find my groove, but after trial and error, I’m now more specialized in the type of video blogs I’m producing,” Lindsay admits if it hadn’t been for the experience she gained from the show, she likely wouldn’t have gone the video route.

Getting Paid as a Food Influencer

So adding video content to Lindsay’s brand has helped to step up the quality of her influencer appeal. She has over 25,000 Instagram followers because she is good at what she does.  She has an amazing engagement rate. She gets over a thousand likes on her posts and gets dozens of comments. I asked her how her Instagram is turning a profit for her.

“It’s mostly brand deals. I get A LOT of offers but I’ve chosen to work with only a handful of them because I am an honest blogger. I have a long way to go financially before I can completely support myself with the blog because I’ve limited myself with who I will work with.”  

There are actually tons of different influencer agency platforms that connect influencers with brands. It includes lots and lots of networking events.

Lindsay finds them helpful. “I mean, it all helps you get connected in one way or another. That’s basically been my strategy thus far – finding these brands that I love and I can stand behind and create content for them.”

My conversation with Lindsay was interesting for several reasons.

First, of course, sitting down to chat with someone who appeared on a reality show is interesting. The details are like a mini-movie. There was a beginning, a middle and end.

But Lindsay’s interview is also interesting for another reason. It paints a picture of perseverance and taking a risk in life even when you don’t want to. Unless you are independently wealthy, stepping outside of our comfort zone is rare.

I asked Lindsay if there was any final advice she wanted to share. This is what she said.

“Each month I ask myself what have I done to make myself uncomfortable and to educate myself. Because that’s when I have grown and improved the most. Immediately following one of those two things. Because as soon as you stop trying to become better, you start getting worse. YOU have to make things happen for YOU.” Lindsay said.  

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Ways To Work With Influencers So You See A ROI

In this episode of Become a Media Maven, I speak with Angela Ledford. Angela knows everything about working with influencers – the good, the bad, and the ugly.

She talks about how you can impress brands if you’re an up and coming influencer and how to see an ROI if you’re a brand looking to work with influencers to reach more people.

Angela and I met in a Facebook group for media bloggers – people who work in the media and blog as well. We see both sides of the media industry – traditional and new.

In the eighth episode of Become a Media Maven, Angela (who is also the Today Show Social Media Star for Beauty Vlogging) is going to share some stories about up and coming influencers, true influencers, and what PR agencies are paying attention to determine who they want to work with.

In this episode, you’ll learn ways to work with influencers so you see a ROI.

Here is a list of resources mentioned in this episode:

Please subscribe to this podcast and leave an honest review on iTunes. Your ratings and reviews really help and I read each one.

For more on the episode, click here to download it and listen or read what’s below!

Ways To Work With Influencers So You See A ROI

Ways To Work With Influencers So You See A ROI

I was so excited to talk to Angela Ledford on the Become a Media Maven podcast. Angela is the manager or Public Relations and Communications at Discover the Palm Beaches. She knows a lot about working with influencers and influencer marketing.

The mistake businesses make when working with influencers  

There are so many misconceptions and so many people doing it wrong, including really big brands that make billions of dollars a year. Even they’re not doing this right and Angela can see that online.

“I think part of the problem is that it is very time consuming to do your research, to learn the digital space, and that’s something that I have focused a lot of my attention on so I don’t know if I’d call myself an expert, but I know both sides, both the public relations side and the digital influencer side, which I think gave me a better perspective,” Angela said.

Offline, we talk a lot about this topic and I feel like we’re the only ones who really care if an influencer is influential. But, before we get into all of that, I want to explain what makes Angela an expert.

“Working in public relations for a tourism organization, we are basically trying to attract people to come visit Palm Beach County… and not only that, we’re also trying to convince Palm Beach County residents, the people like Christina and me who live here, to visit within the county.

Her day to day life is traditional media, which is television and radio, but mostly newspapers, magazines, blogs, etc.

Why influencer marketing works

If I tell you, “Hey, I had a great vacation in Boca Raton”, you would pay attention to me because I’m your friend. You would listen to what I have to say because I’m a real person who’s really telling you I had a great time in this city.

It’s using people who are on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook who are sharing content naturally and organically.

“We’re using their content and sharing it on our platforms and in our advertisements to say, “Look, we’re not paying models to go and say they’re having a good time on the beach. These are real people who are actually on the beach having a good time and we’re sharing their content.”

So, Angela’s day to day job is working in the traditional space as well as the new media space and kind of breaking new ground.

Influencer marketing looks like a referral because it’s somebody else telling you to come visit Palm Beach because it’s great. It’s not necessarily Palm Beach telling you Palm Beach is great… and this is why media relations and public relations over the last few years has changed a lot. Now, we’re mixing traditional media with the new media.

If you want to be in the media, work with people in the media

Before we really dive into influencer marketing, I want to shout Angela out for being a fellow TV newser (is that word?) like me. Because of this, Angela brings in some amazing media hits. I honestly believe that some of the best people in PR are people who used to be in the media because you’ve seen both sides of it.

I use the analogy: If you were going to hire a criminal, (which you shouldn’t hire a criminal for anything) but say you want to hire a criminal to commit a crime. Would you want that criminal to be a career criminal or that criminal to be a former police officer? I always say you would want them to be a former police officer because they know what the police are looking for, so they know how to get away with the crime.

That’s like us. We know how to get media because we used to be the media and have experience on the other side. 

When Angela first started in TV news, she was a producer and an anchor in a small market in her hometown in Monroe, Louisiana. For five years, she produced the morning show, which was two hours. She learned the morning news space – which is different than the evening news. It’s more light coverage with fluffy feel-good stories.

Then, she became an education reporter in a larger media market – Shreveport, Louisiana. After that, she went to WPTV – the NBC station in West Palm Beach, where she currently lives.

“That’s what really strengthened my pitching skills because that was a station where you had to sell a story.”

Angela left TV and went to the Palm Beach Zoo where she became the PR manager. She did a lot of fun stuff and learned about tourism because that’s a tourist attraction.

“I would 100% agree that my background in TV and journalism helped me understand how to tell a good story and how to speak the language that media speaks, Angela said. “Whenever I tell somebody I’m working with, “Hey, I come from journalism too”, It’s like they breathe a sigh of relief because they’re like – She understands a deadline. She understands the pressure that I’m under. She also understands that I’m not going to respond to her email all the time because I got 500 emails today.”

So, we get the stress that they’re under and we also know how to roll out the red carpet which is what Angela tries to do in her role with Discover the Palm Beaches. She tries to hand the information to a journalist on a silver platter.

Angela understands they don’t have time to do the research. They are not a subject matter expert about tourism in the Palm Beaches, like she is.

Her job is to know why they’re the best place in the world to the visit. Working in journalism, in any capacity, really does strengthen your ability to be a better PR manager and do better work “on the other side” or the dark side. (When you’re in news and you go to PR, they say the dark side, haha.)

Thanks for creating influencer marketing Kim Kardashian

Let’s all thank Kim Kardashian for inventing influencer marketing. What used to be just pitching traditional media is now pitching influencers to get your brand out there.

There are influencers who charge. There are influencers who don’t charge. There are influencers who should charge. There are influencers who shouldn’t charge.

There really is a wide variety of how to work with influencers… many are wrong.

Angela touched on how influencer marketing is like a referral from a friend. It’s a friend saying, “Hey, come here. Visit this place.”

If you want to know how to work with an influencer to get more attention on your brand OR if you want to become an influencer in your space, (as a business owner, you should want both), keep reading!

“It’s super important to work with influencers because it is the new way people are getting their information,” Angela said. “If you’re a millennial, are you really watching the 6:00 evening news? If you are, you’re a rarity.”

We have to face the reality that people are getting their information online now.

“I love going on Facebook a million times a day. I’m on Twitter. I’m on Instagram,” Angela said. “That is the new way. Even people who are in the traditional demographic or like traditional journalism, like newspapers and magazines, are now moving to the digital space as well.”

We have to stay abreast of that trend and to ignore it would be to bury your head in the sand. I don’t think that’s a good idea.

So, looking at that as a business owner, I would definitely recommend you take a look at what the digital space can mean for you and how it can help you grow your business.

Why businesses don’t work with influencers

Whenever I pitch any kind of media relations package to a Media Maven client, it includes both traditional media and new media because people are getting content in different places at different times.

You should be earning coverage in a variety of places, but I had a client recently tell me, “We don’t want to do the influencer thing. Just traditional media” and their audience is very much on social media, but they did not want to do the “influencer thing” as they call it.

Angela thinks there are two reasons for this:

1. They don’t understand the value of influencer marketing.

2. Unfortunately, some digital influencers can have a bad reputation.

Angela and I have had a lot of offline conversations about good bloggers and bad bloggers. Bad bloggers give the rest a bad name because they are either just too grabby and looking for freebies or they have fake followers.

They’re not really giving you a return on your investment, or ROI.

“I’ve been burned and look back and I’m like, “Oh my goodness! That person really didn’t have the following that they said they did or they didn’t work as hard as they said they would,” Angela explained.

When they have a campaign that’s a paid advertisement with a business, it’s up to the blogger to execute it. If you’re a news reporter, you have an editor or producer or an assignment manager standing over your shoulder like, “Hey, turn in your story on time.”

When Angela and I started talking about this, it brought back terrible memories of working with several influencers.

It was actually more than a dozen, who were supposed to visit a client’s restaurant… and the client was not wanting to work with influencers – didn’t understand it. I was so excited about this group because they were true influencers. I mean they didn’t just have the numbers, but they had the engagement. I was really excited about getting them in there. They all went in. They all ate. The table was set amazingly and I thought, “Okay, this is going to turn the client. They’re going to see the value after this.”

Not one of those influencers posted. They came, they ate, they drank, they had fun, and not one of them posted anything.

It happens a lot. So, if you’ve taken on the role as an in influencer, be professional and don’t act like that.

What to look at before working with an influencer

If you’re a business owner, working with influencers is something you should consider. Picking the right one(s) takes a little skill. You’ll need to ensure the person you’re bringing in will write a blog post or share something on Instagram. How do you do your homework and vet these people to ensure it’s not going to turn into a negative experience?

“There are several things that I do to prevent what happened to you from happening to me because it has happened to me several times when I’ve hosted influencers and they did not deliver at all,” Angela said. “They would go eat and did not do any social media, which again, I do consider stealing.”

1. Set Expectations

Whenever Angela works with an influencer, she says, “Listen, I’ve hosted somebody and he went and ate at this restaurant, had a great experience, and still didn’t post. I need to make sure that doesn’t happen to you. Can you do me a favor and guarantee that if you have a good time and you really do enjoy the food, you will give me a tweet… or you will give me an Instagram post… or whatever?”

Angela specifically says this is her expectation.

“I really want to make sure that it’s authentic,” she said. “If your server messed up your food and it was burned, don’t tell a lie, but if you have a good experience, can I count on you to do that for me?”

2. Call the Shots and Be Direct Because You’re Advertising

Angela has become so transparent with her expectations. She used to tip-toe around and hesitate to ask influencers to share stats or engagement. She used to consider it private, but now she doesn’t beat around the bush.

If you’re working with influencers, you’re most likely paying them money or providing them with a product or a service. It is an advertisement.

Ask for screenshots of analytics, like how many people saw an Instagram story, for example.

“As a business owner, what I would recommend is to be upfront with your expectations. Like – Hey, I’m hosting this blogger event and I’m not requiring you to post, but what I really would like to see is a permanent Instagram or Snapchat post.”

Angela says to let them know what they are getting and what you would like in return. Be direct.

In traditional media, you know what you are going to get. A 30 second pre-recorded commercial on TV or a printed ad in the local newspaper… but with digital influencers, you can never be certain.   

For instance, Angela says, “You know this blogger has 10,000 followers on Twitter and 50,000 followers on Instagram but for whatever reason, they decide to post a Snapchat, instead of a permanent Instagram post. You’d much rather have the Instagram post, so you ask for it.”

That’s why, she says, laying out expectations is super crucial.

3. Choose The Right Influencer

Now that you and your client have determined you want to work with influencers, how do you know which ones to choose? You need to make sure the influencers you do choose will give you your best ROI. Angela says this is when you really need to pay attention.

“I am about to explode the lid off the blogging world because I’m going to tell on myself as well. Basically, you can’t fake followers but you CAN buy followers.”

So, what does this mean?  Bloggers can rack up the numbers on their social media through giveaways. For instance, Angela has a side job as a beauty blogger. She advertised a free makeup giveaway. Naturally, people wanted to win so they followed her.  

“Unfortunately, a lot of my followers on Instagram are not as engaged with me because they followed me only after I posted about a free giveaway. They wanted to win something free so they followed me.”

Angela says bloggers can also easily buy 100,000 followers, like nothing. She believes if PR people had more time to dig into the influencers they plan to work with, they would have a better idea who to choose, but that takes time… and lots of it!  

Angela says there are other ways to dig without going insane. There are websites like SocialBlade.com. She says it only takes a few minutes, “Go on there, put the person’s username for whatever platform – YouTube, Twitter, Instagram, and you will see a graph. It shows how their website or following has grown… and a large jump of followers tells a story.”

She says you want to see a slow steady incline. That means their followers are likely organic.

Influencers working together

The great basketball player Michael Jordan once said, “There’s no “I” in team but there is in win.” That brings us to how influencers sometimes work together to win.

Angela says there is something in the blogging world known as “comment pods”. It’s when a group of local bloggers agree to comment on each other’s Instagram posts. Angela says this is important because it gives influencers posts the appearance they are superstars. She says it’s obvious when “comment pods“ are happening.

“If somebody has 6,000 followers on Instagram and they do a post, then within minutes they get a thousand likes on a photo? Come on, you’re not Kim Kardashian. No one gets that unless you’re a Kardashian.”

But she says, even if a blogger isn’t a high-level influencer, they could still be good for your business. Angela says she looks at previous posts too. 

“I look at the quality of the post. Is the content good? Is the photography beautiful? Is the topic interesting and compelling?”

If all of those are a yes, she will work with that blogger because she knows they will work hard to deliver their message and she will get an ROI within their engaged following.

Again, that’s because she takes the time to dive deep and look into potential influencers. A lot of mistakes get made when PR professionals don’t have the know-how, time, and patience to check out the source.

Angela says until social media website truly cracks down on bots you’ve got to be careful about who you work with, the dollars you put out and the expectations you relate beforehand.

Ways to vet social media influencers

As a PR professional, you know collaborating on projects can go both ways. You reach out to them or they reach out to you. If you’ve reached out to them, hopefully, you’ve done a bit of research, but when a blogger contacts you because you have a service or product they are interested in, ask them to show you previous posts.

Angela tells them, “Give me some previous content examples. I want to show my boss what you can do. I want to bring you here and get you a nice hotel stay. However, can you show me hotel blog posts that you’ve done in the past?” (And it needs to be recent, not five years ago!)

Angela says if they send her a lot of links, she will share them with her boss, so he can see the potential in working with the blogger. Some of the things she passes along are:

1. The blogger’s engagement

2. The blog posts comments

3. The original photography

4. Promotions on Twitter and other platforms

Angela admits she gets very detailed about how to work with influencers, but she says, “There are so many steps to check mark that I think that’s why a lot of PR people don’t even bother.  

“Just because a blogger has 60,000 followers on Instagram, doesn’t mean they can deliver for YOU.”

Microinfluencers and their worth

We’ve been talking about what to look for in a good blogger and how to protect yourself from the “bad bloggers”, but I also shared a story about a blogger I worked with who had 3,000 followers.

Her name is Jade, and she is at @_badassfoodie on Instagram.

“Jade got over 300 likes on a post with over a hundred comments… and they aren’t bot posts. You click on the comments and they are all in direct relation to this image she posted.”

So why is this important to mention? I’ve been pitched by influencers with 50,000 followers who don’t get near half of these likes or comments and they want my clients to pay them hundreds of dollars for a post when they’re not getting any quality likes or comments.

Not only does Jade have good engagement with her followers, but she will send you links to the posts after. She says it just goes to show you that it’s not all about the numbers.                            

Influencers vs. Reporters

Working with influencers can be downright draining according to Angela.

“I feel like they take a lot more attention and time than working with traditional journalists.” She says, “If a television news reporter calls me at the beginning of the day and tells me they are going to do a story on breaking record tourism in the palm beaches. I’m like, okay, I know this is going to take two hours with my time and then I’m going to be done.”

But she says working with an influencer you’ve got to continue that conversation over and over and over. First the pitch, then follow up, then the back and forth conversation about what you can offer, your expectations and then before you know it, two weeks have gone by and they’re not even visiting you yet.

Angela says she doesn’t want to give influencers a bad name. She says there have been tons of times she has had a great experience.

“Some people are so worth your while and every now and then you hit upon those gold mines and then you’re like, well that person really gave me ROI.”   

Anyone who has worked with digital influencers likely has good stories and bad. Just as digital influencers who have reached out to PR professionals have their good and bad stories too.

It’s just the industry we work in so we are more attuned to it. If you are a business owner, whether you’re spending money on influencers or your trading product or service, that still is money. Products cost money. Services cost money. So, you just need to do your due diligence.

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Measuring Public Relations Effectiveness

Measuring Public Relations Effectiveness by Turning Publicity Into Profit

In this episode of Become a Media Maven, I speak with Lisa Simone Richards. Lisa is not only a publicity expert, but a profit expert. She is very strategic and understands the ins and outs of PR and money.

She also talks about how you can use specific branding to charge premium prices and dives deep on how one of her clients did this with lots of success.

Lisa and I met in a Facebook group and clicked because we do exactly the same thing. Some women don’t like to get close to women who may be considered their competition, but Lisa and I collaborate so much and it only helps us grow our businesses.

In the seventh episode of Become a Media Maven, Lisa talks about how to use the media you’ve earned to earn even more media. So many people think that once they’ve earned coverage, their business is going to blow up. That’s not going to happen if you don’t know how to leverage your exposure.

In this episode, you’ll learn how to measure public relations effectiveness by turning publicity into profit.

Here is a list of resources mentioned in this episode:

Please subscribe to this podcast and leave an honest review on iTunes. Your ratings and reviews really help and I read each one.

For more on the episode, click here to download it and listen or read what’s below!

Measuring Public Relations Effectiveness by Turning Publicity Into Profit
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How To Promote Yourself On Social Media To Actually Make Money

How To Promote Yourself On Social Media To Actually Make Money

In this episode of Become a Media Maven, I speak with Michelle Dempsey. Michelle is a dear friend of mine and fellow mompreneur who hustles hard… and her hustle translates into dollars.

I call Michelle the queen of self-promotion. She began her career as a teacher, then she started writing for various publications and fell in love with creating content. She was doing it and promoting it so well for herself, that soon to be clients started contacting her. That’s how she started her business, Very Well Written.

In the sixth episode of Become a Media Maven, Michelle talks about how many times her content was rejected and what she did with those rejections to turn it into dollars.

Michelle is also sharing her networking secrets – a form of lead generation many people hate doing, but she has learned to love it and see an ROI from all of those local networking events.

Here is a list of resources mentioned in this episode:

Please subscribe to this podcast and leave an honest review on iTunes. Your ratings and reviews really help and I read each one.

For more on the episode, click here to download it and listen or read what’s below!

how to promote yourself on social media

How To Promote Yourself On Social Media To Actually Make Money

I call Michelle Dempsey the queen of self-promotion and when I started my podcast, I knew I was going to have Michelle on.

I met Michelle right after she decided to start her own business. She was just leaving teaching because she was just desperately wanting to be home with her eight month old who she had put in daycare.

“I knew I wanted to be home with her because it was just killing me,” she said. “I was a teacher and had this whole thing about having to be with other people’s kids while mine was at home or in daycare, being cared for by somebody else.”

How to Start Freelancing

That’s when Michelle started freelancing. She had already developed a mommy blog, was writing for Huff Post, Scary Mommy, Mind Body Green, and a bunch of other publications that really put her on the map as a writer.

Her friends and friends of family with businesses started asking for help with written tasks such as new website content or adding a blog to their website. So right around the time when we first met, she had just secured her first paying client to write a blog.

“I met you when you were speaking at a blogger event and I remember being so inspired by you and your way of putting yourself out there, Michelle said about me. “So I just realized there was a community of women doing that. It was okay to just move forth and go for the gold.”

How to Start Contributing to Outlets like Scary Mommy

I feel like so many people want to write for those big, impressive publications like Michelle, so I asked her how she got into that and how she started writing for those bigger outlets in addition to your own?

“I just started submitting my work, she said. “I would stay up late at night Googling ‘how to submit articles to publications’ and anytime I would find a submit email address, I would submit or upload to their platform. I would upload and I got rejected.”

Scary Mommy rejected her about 19 times before they published one of her posts and when they did publish it, it was their main posts of the day. When you went to their website, they got so much engagement in responses, backlash, and all.

There are so many places to get your content seen these days. You just have to do the work and really look into where you want your content to be featured… and just keep trying. There are people behind these publications that actually do sit and read these articles. They are making money off of us giving them content for free. And so it’s really to your benefit to at least try and not give up.

Now, I played devils advocate and said, “A lot of people don’t want to spend time writing all of these articles for nothing if nobody picks them up.”

Michelle reminded me it’s not for nothing. If nobody’s picking it up, you put it on your own website and you link people back to there. At least it’s giving you do website traffic. It’s not for nothing and if it can be on your website and nobody else’s and there are links back to it. It’s out there. It’s in cyberspace. It will get shared eventually by somebody.

“My first foray into having work published was because I kept publishing my own blog content. Somebody shared it and a Motherhood magazine contacted me and asked if they could publish it, so you can’t be afraid to just consistently put yourself out there.”

That leads to why Michelle is the queen of self-promotion because if you throw enough sh*t at the wall, it’s going to stick. You have to be willing to try. Nobody got famous by going to one audition and being denied a role in saying, “Okay, well forget it.” They just kept trying.

Building a Team as a Business Owners

Michelle and I have both discussed this offline because we both have agencies with have team members and when it comes to growing a team, it is so hard to find people who are dedicated and have a good work ethic and that’s why I wanted to ask her about people saying, “Oh, but what if we’re writing for nothing? Then we’re working for nothing.” I feel like that’s so many people’s mindset today.

“I just got off a call with actually one of my team members right before you and I started this podcast and I was complaining to her about how hard it’s been to find team members that take initiative,” Michelle said. I am always taking the initiative, whether it’s even within the realm of what my clients are paying me for that particular month or what I even have the bandwidth to do for myself or that day.”

Whether you think you have the time or you don’t like it, you have to put yourself out there or to try new things to be seen or have the next big, viral posts. It takes initiative and it takes finding people who understand that if you’re going to have a theme, it’s definitely not easy,

I think it’s the hardest part of building a business, especially if you have an agency model like Michelle and I do. But back to putting yourself out there, Michelle started getting some stuff published and then she promoted what was being published. She didn’t just rely on Scary Mommy to share it with their audience. She told your audience, “Look at me, I’m in Scary Mommy,” and she did it over and over and over again.

“I did it over and over and over again to the point where I could feel the eye rolls and I could feel the unfollow buttons,” she said. “And you know, at that point I really didn’t care. Desperate Times call for desperate measures. I was married at the time to my ex-husband. He had just lost his job. It was a struggle. He was looking for something. He was still unemployed. I at that point was home with my daughter making $50 a blog post for other publications and I knew I needed to make money. So I said, screw it. I don’t care what people think. I don’t care if I’m being spammy or annoying. I’m going to put myself out there until I can make a living. I knew my writing was good. Other bloggers, who are now huge big name bloggers in the industry, were reaching out to me like, “Hey, how do I start a blog?”

Michelle can take credit for helping them and now they are some of the biggest Scary Mommy writers.

How to Network Like a Boss

She kept going with it until it stuck… until people were calling to hire her. Apart from that, she was going to networking events – with no business model and only a website, She had Microsoft word and was like, “Okay, I can write for your business” and was meeting business owners and selling them on the benefits of blogging, because at that point, we knew it was essential for SEO and Google rankings, She started landing clients (and pretty big ones).

Now, her business Very Well Written has been able to grow from just blogging to actual content marketing with strategy and social media and brand development. It’s amazing to see how she’s evolved just in learning about what the need is and being committed to learning and growing – consistent self promotion on every level.

I hate networking, so I don’t do it much. I put myself out there enough online that I don’t need to do it, but networking is a huge lead generator and I feel like people who don’t like it, like me, are either lazy or they just don’t do it right. Michelle it right. So, I asked Michelle to tell us a couple of stories on how she went to a networking event, what she did, what she said, and how it turned into dollars.

“I started going to networking events because I was lucky enough to have friends who were in business who belong to different organizations,” Michelle said. “I was meeting people, giving out my business card, etc. Turning that into dollars is going home, sending an email and following up saying, “It was so great meeting you. I’d love to talk about what I do can benefit your business, whether you’re interested or not. Let’s just grab a cup of coffee and connect.”

Taking the pressure off of making somebody hire me really helped. We all hate when we’re at a networking event and the next day we get an email and are already subscribed to somebody’s email list about why we need to buy their health insurance that we don’t like.

Michelle has had more coffee dates with people who didn’t hire her, but she gave them tips. When they had a friend who was able to hire her, they shared her name.

If you put yourself out there enough and help enough people, your name will eventually end up on somebody’s list who wants to pay you and that’s how it’s happened for me.

How to Start Speaking at Local Events

Michelle started noticing that she would go to events and there would be speakers who really had nothing worthwhile to share.

‘If I’m going to go to these events, I want to share what I know,” she said. “Not only am I here meeting people – people get to see that I am educated in this field.”

Most don’t just go to some bad salmon. They get some tips. So, Michelle started hitting up the heads of all these networking groups in her area and offering to speak.

That’s how I started speaking, by saying “Hey, I want to share with your group the best ways women can brand themselves, or best marketing tips for dermatologists, or whatever the case may be.”

Michelle was going there to tell the world, “Hey, I’m a subject matter expert.” That’s why I’m speaking – to make further connections with the people in this group to have this group. Then follow up with me and asked me questions about my speech and to be able to promote on social media that I’m a speaker now. It’s another reason for you to hire me because I know what I’m doing.

“People want to hear from me, so I just took this real aggressive route to making myself seen and heard. That’s what I think people are so impressed with,” Michelle said. “It’s just second nature for me at this point and I feel I owe it to myself. I’m selling people on hiring my company to market them and make them present and seen. I got to do it for myself too.”

What Will People Think of You?

“I know there’s plenty of people who are like, “Oh my God, that Michelle Dempsey. She’s everywhere and it’s enough.” But you know, I’ve evolved past the point of caring simply because I’m doing my thing. I’m growing, I’m supporting my daughter on my own and you know, there’s gonna be plenty of people who hate it or don’t like the what I have to say, but you get to a certain point where you don’t care and you realize how people feel about you is just a reflection of them.”

So much of what we hear from women is – Can I really say that? I don’t want to bother anyone?

Who actually cares who you’re bothering! This is your path. If that person is bothered, it’s because there’s something within them that you know it’s not your job to fix or deal with.

“I hate the whole, “I don’t want to bother anyone” thing and I get that a lot so you know, you can either take my lead and put yourself out there or don’t, but know that if you don’t, you’re not going to grow.”

You can’t control how people feel. Trying to worry about how people feel will sink you into the ground very fast because it’s consuming and it’s useless. It’s like worrying about what’s going to happen tomorrow. You don’t know. You can’t change it. You also can’t change how people feel ever.

“You rubbed somebody the wrong way once. It doesn’t matter what you do after that to get on their good side, they already don’t like you. So move on,” Michelle suggests.”

The #1 Way to Waste Time as a Business Owner

Now, let’s talk about wasting time. I get numerous emails, numerous messages on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook. People want to work with me, and I did waste a lot of my time – not necessarily on people who didn’t want to spend money with me, but people who just had no clue. I would talk to anybody and everybody who wanted to talk to me – even building them proposals if they wanted one.

At the end of the day, I was not doing a good job qualifying these people. These were people who had no idea what my industry was like. They also were not at a stage in their business where they had money to spend or they were not committed enough in growing their business to want to spend money or they didn’t want to do the work they would have to do after hiring someone like me as a mentor.

So, I was wasting my time getting on the phone with anybody and everybody who sent me a message. Now, I’ll tell you what I do now so I don’t waste my time on the tire kickers. But what does Michelle do to filter leads to ensure she’s not talking to people all day every day?

“I want to be a value to people so that I stay at the top of their list for referrals, but I also have a lot to get through. I’m a single mom and I really only have till 3:00 every day when my daughter gets out of school to make sure things are in order and clients are happy,” Michelle said. “It came a point where I couldn’t meet with everybody. When people do inquire, my first questions are,

1.) what kind of business do you have?

2.) Where are you with marketing your business?

3.) Have you thought about hiring somebody yet? If right away they’re like, well, I’m not, I don’t really have the budget to hire anyone. Then I’ll say, “Why don’t you join my Facebook group? I have started my own Facebook group for Solopreneurs.

It’s really for the ones who can’t afford a marketing team so that they can learn the tips and tricks. It’s called Mind Your Own Business Marketing for Solopreneurs. I’ll direct them there, but if they are on the fence about hiring somebody, what I do is I send them all of my information, pricing, and everything upfront and I say, “Give me your email, let me send you information about how we work, how our prices are structured and what you can expect from working with us.”

I was getting to the point where I was upset that I was wasting people’s time by talking to them about working together when really they had no intention of working with me. It was a waste of my time and a waste of their time.

I now have a Google Doc that I have people fill out and you have to tell me where you’re at in your business along with what you’re ready and willing to do. If you do not fill this Google Doc out, I will not get on a call with you because I cannot spend all day, everyday talking to people who are not interested.

Work ON Your Business, Not IN Your Business

“Christina, you gave me the best advice a few months ago. Work on my business, not in my business,” Michelle said. “That’s been my focus every day now because of you.”

That takes almost more effort if not more than actually doing the physical work because when you’re doing the physical work, you worried about one thing at a time when you’re working on your business, you’re worried about the entire thing all the time. So, it’s a lot.

I told Michelle I said that to her because I knew she was at the point where she shouldn’t be in it. She has a team.

Can I Pick your Brain = the Worst Question Ever

I also want to talk about one other thing that Michelle mentioned and it was “picking my brain”. Now looking back, I am so embarrassed that when I started my business, I would ask people if I could pick their brain. It was so rude and stupid of me to do.

First of all, you cannot get all of the answers you want over lunch or over coffee. Picking somebody’s brain like, “How can I do this and be successful?” Oh yes, that’s just a 30 minute conversation. (sarcasm)

It doesn’t work that way and that’s why Michelle is glad that I said you now charge for that,  She started charging for that probably about a year and a half ago.

“If you want to sit down and you want to talk, that’s my time that I could actually be working on my business or I’m making money or looking for a speaking gig or something, so yes, you have to pay for my time,” Michelle said. “If I’m offering value and I do the same thing that you do, if you’re not ready to pay, then there are tons of free resources that I can guide you to on my website and on my blog.”

To sit down with somebody for an hour and spill the beans?I I’ve been played that way before, Michelle said.

“I had a client who fired me two days after they asked to sit down and let me show them how MailChimp worked, In case they want to send something out. Then two days later, they fired me, tried to get back their retainer money, and I was like, “Oh honey, now refer to page two of the contract.”

In her two and a half years, Michelle has never messaged somebody who she never met in person and try to get them to buy into what she do. She will always put herself out there on Instagram and Facebook and say, “You know, today was sh*t. Iwas in the middle of a meeting and got a call from my daughter’s school and I was still able to get her down for a nap and do XYZ.”

So I’m, I’m always showing my effort and my involvement in things and I think that’s a lot different and it’s a much more passive aggressive way, smarter way to show your strength as a business owner and a businessperson and whatever it is that you do, than directly just telling people, hire me, hire me, hire me. Because it becomes white noise,

People do business with people and you can have five people who do the exact same thing, but they do it all a little differently and at the end of the day you’re going to do business with that person who resonates with you more.

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How To Become A Paid Influencer On Instagram

How To Become A Paid Influencer On Instagram

In this episode of Become a Media Maven, I speak with Scott Eddy, a man who gets paid to travel the world and post images of his experiences on Instagram. Seriously. That’s his job.

It all started with one tweet that turned into a relationship launching a reach of well over one million people on social media with opportunities and trips that involve the best food, hotels, resorts, and experiences most people would trade an arm and leg for.

In the fifth episode of Become a Media Maven, Scott talks about what he does to impress brands looking to work with influencers and what they need to do on their end to get him to say, “Yes!”

Scott is also sharing his secrets on how using Twitter starts and builds worldwide relationships that continue to take his brand to the next level.

Here is a list of resources mentioned in this episode:

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For more on the episode, click here to download it!

How To Become A Paid Influencer On Instagram with Scott Eddy

Scott Eddy is always traveling because that is his job.

The Travel Bug

Scott came from a family of police officers. He thought that his life was mapped out. All he needed to do was finish high school, join the Police Academy, become a police officer, and start a family.

Three weeks before he graduated from high school, his father was killed in the line of duty. When this happened, his life turned upside down. He didn’t know what he wanted to do, but he knew two things: He hated school and he did not want to be a police officer.

Scott was a stockbroker for 10 years in the 90’s, which he believes gave him a great foundation of selling the most difficult product in the world on the phone. Now, he can sell anything to anybody.

At the end of the 90’s, the firm that he was working for was sold. That’s when he flew to Bangkok to meet a friend. He discovered the place had the nicest people in the world.

As opportunities knocked at his door, he called his mom to send his things and said, “I’m never coming back to the US.” He ended up living in Europe and Asia for 17 years, 11 of it in Bangkok.

He didn’t do anything professionally for the first year and a half. Not until one of his friends encouraged him to start a digital agency. He was reluctant at first because he doesn’t understand how it would work. After exchanging discussions with his friend, he finally decided to try it.

So, he rolled out the dice, set up a company, rented a small office, and hired a couple of people. Within six months, it became the biggest digital agency in Southeast Asia. After five years, he closed it up and started to bounce around different countries.

Becoming a Travel Influencer on Twitter

With his new venture, he focused on building relationships around the world via his Twitter account. He made Twitter his weapon of choice.

He pushed out non-stop content full of information. It always went back to luxury travel.

When he visited new countries, he connected with the most active people on Twitter who lived there by following those people and engaging with them. Then, he would try to meet them in real life. He did that for many years, especially when he moved to Asia and Europe.

Becoming a Travel Influencer on Instagram

When Instagram launched, he started taking screenshots of his six-picture grid on his Instagram account and asked people on Twitter if they were following him on Instagram.

He did this at random times during the day, different days of the week. He also conducted loads of research for content and hashtags while engaging with people who looked like they had the possibility of following and engaging back.

In January 2015, he got a tweet from Jason Will, the CEO for Zipkick – a food and wine app out of San Francisco built of food bloggers and wine bloggers around the world. Scott was invited by Jason to visit to San Francisco, become a global brand ambassador, and build the brand together.

Working with Brands as an Influencer

Scott has NEVER pitched a brand. Ever.

“I’ve never pitched anybody in my life,” he said. “If I ever was asked to put together a proposal, I would literally reply – I don’t know how to do that. I’m sorry because the more active I am on social, the more incoming comes in. I would genuinely say that it used to be 95 percent of my business, even higher.”

People who wanted to work with Scott would find him on Twitter. If you search his name in Google, he dominates the first four pages without ever spending a dollar on any kind of advertising. That is because of Twitter and Google search having a strong relationship for news.

According to Scott, the media world needs Twitter. Every PR company in the world is on Twitter and “Google search is basically like a news source, so if you think about it, it kind of makes sense,” he said.

Today, Scott gets most of his business from about eight PR agencies he works with on a consistent basis. He also works with a lot of the vineyards and wineries in Napa and Sonoma. He also works with a lot of hotels as well.

Once the relationship is established, a lot of these brands will just reach out to him directly.

Standing out to Brands as an Influencer

With Scott’s established credibility and the way he delivers an outstanding client experience, people are coming back to him.

“If you ever want to know how good an influencer is, look to see how many repeat clients they have,” Scott said. “How many times have they been to the same destination multiple times? I’m sitting at 69 countries right now. I’m dying to tick off that 70th country.”

Scott is a people person and wants to feel a friendship right away. He tries to figure out what people want.

Scott is also keen on providing personalized content that is unique to the social media platform being used.

“You should not just push one post automation to three different platforms,” Scott said. “Each platform has its own unique personality. You wouldn’t want to bore your audience, right?”

He is not also a believer in scheduling content like most people do. In fact, two of the biggest scheduling platforms have reached out to him and are trying to get him as a brand ambassador, but he doesn’t want to do it.

He built his business on being real-time and won’t change that for anything. There’s no amount of money they can pay him.

Standing out to Influencers as a Brand

If you want to reach out to someone like Scott, come from an educated standpoint.

Send an email and introduce yourself. Be yourself and explain what you do and what you want from the influencer by sharing your ideas so both of you can work together.

Nine times out of 10, Scott tries to hop on a call as soon as possible. If what you do doesn’t interest him, but he thinks you’re a good person, he’ll introduce you to some good people in the business.

Brands need to do a lot of research on the person they potentially want to hire.

“There are some brands not doing any research on who they hire,” Scott said. “They need to know what the influencer likes to post and what their audience is like.”

He also believes some are doing influencer marketing just because society says they need to do influencer marketing. On both sides, whether you’re an influencer or a brand, you need to keep your marketing goals in sight and try not to get distracted by everything else happening online.

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