So you want free publicity? You want to be seen as an authority? Well, someone has to be on TV… Today’s guest Geeta Nadkarni says, “Why not you?”
There’s nothing more powerful than being seen in the right light in the media to gain authority and credibility.
Which is why week’s episode is all about helping business owners get their names and stories out in front of the masses.
Listen in and learn how my guest, Geeta Nadkarni, a speaker, author, entrepreneur, lover of good stories and the founder of Baby Got Booked, uses her expertise and 20+ years in journalism to help entrepreneurs of every stripe do their own PR and gain the credibility, exposure and connections that only come with free press.
If you want to learn how to get free publicity to get known, build your business and gain authority then this week’s episode of the 7 Days To Amazing Podcast is for you.
- How Geeta’s dad taught his daughters to write. (7:50)
- Geeta’s career in radio, TV, and how she freelanced as a writer the whole time. (16:00)
- Why organic reach is no longer possible on Facebook and Instagram (19:20)
- Getting covered by prominent media outlets and the SEO benefits (24:30)
- The importance of being pithy and sharp in interviews (34:30)
- Frank Shamrock, the MMA fighter who gave Geeta his system for learning anything (45:30)
- Ways to grow business through media that have nothing to do with building an audience (55:50)
My first job was in public relations and I have been lucky enough to be on many different sides of the media. I know about the importance of positioning and credibility in the eyes of the media. Which is why I wholeheartedly believe in being ready for your next interview or feature so you can elevate your brand and increase your reach. For free.
Part of stepping into your STAR Power is being seen in a way that’s media friendly.
I can help you with that, and Geeta can show you how to get out on the court and gain the publicity you desire so much.
It’s time to tune in…
Full Transcript + Social Share Memes Below
FREE 5 DAY ‘GET BOOKED CHALLENGE’
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Learn how to set your media goals, find journalists and craft the perfect pitch. For free!
Voice over: Welcome to the 7 Days to Amazing podcast, where you learn how to make your life, business and style even more amazing in the next week. Now your host Sharon Haver, on focusonstyle.com, helping you live the life that others only dream about so you can be the best at being you.
Sharon Haver: Hello Chicsters, I am Sharon Haver, and you are truly about to be amazed. I have a fantastic guest on today’s episode of 7 Days to Amazing. The best quote to sum up what Geeta Nadkarni brings to the table is from her best friend Nancy, “She is annoying in that way that only truly inspiring people are.” So, Geeta inherited her zeal to storytelling from her dad who used to get his three daughters to tuck him into his bed and massage his feet while he wove intricate tales of spies, killer monkeys and farting dragons [chuckles] oh, my gosh. Any residual resistance to the call of the pen was dismissed the summer she turned 10, when Mr. Nadkarni forced his girls to write three essays a week or they couldn’t go out and play.
Geeta got her first pay at an international writing gig at age 12, not too shabby, right? In a more than two decades since she’s worked for CBC, CNN, Global TV, Readers Digest, The Montreal Gazette, Asia Pacific Broadcasting and more, producing print, TV, radio and new media. She currently contributes to INC, Entrepreneur, Huffington Post and Global TV. She was voted best TV personality by the readers of The Montreal Mirror and has been featured in The Montreal Book of Everything.
She is here because she made a conscious decision to rewrite her life and fill it was joy, adventure, big stages and opportunities that scares the pants off of her. Other thing she is famous for laughing uncontrollably, look out it’s infectious, her complete unwillingness to be reasonable, reasonable is for suckers, and giving the best hugs you’ll see.
I first saw Geeta speak at a huge speaker event a few years ago in Washington DC, and I was absolutely taken with her, her straight talk and her vivacious personality. It was a crazy event, I actually sprained my ankle at it, so I was a little bit crabby to say the least.
Luckily, I married to a podiatrist, was able to basically airlift me a walking test, so I could make it through the rest of the event. Most of the speakers who were there were not making my swollen ankle feel too good, but Geeta stood out, and I have been following her ever since, and I’m sure you will love her as much too.
Welcome Geeta, I am delighted to have you here today.
Geeta Nadkarni: I think I might have to record that intro and play it on Loop, and believe it since that is just so flattering. Thank you Sharon. It’s super nice for you to have me.
Sharon: Well, thank you so much. Maybe I should just follow you around, and I could just whisper it to you?
Geeta: That would be amazing. Yes, please. Can I adopt you?
Sharon: Yes. Well, Montreal is like
Sharon: Yes. We were talking before, Montreal is one of my favorite cities, I’m in New York, Geeta is in Montreal. Way back when I used to live in Montreal a lot, and absolutely loved it. When I was thinking about college, you should see how far back I’m going, I actually thought about McGill for a bit, and my dad said, “I want you to go there in the winter.” I did, and I saw how cold it was, so I stayed in New York.
We have a place in Wyoming, I married a skier so I’m totally into like the frigid cold, but out west is dry cold, and Montreal is east coast, so it’s in your bones chill, and it’s also really hot in the summer. Putting those two things aside, I manage to get plenty of Montreal time in spring and fall [laughs]
Geeta: It’s an amazing city.
Sharon: I love it. I just love it.read more
Geeta: It really is. I grew up in Mumbai. For me to go from, I think in in centigrade or celcius, because that’s Canada and India both use. We went from basically +45 degrees in Mumbai, which is what it is most of the year, to -45 celcius. It was quite the leap and it have to be a really special city to make that logical. I moved to Montreal in the summer. I don’t know if everybody knows this but we have the most incredible festival season all summer. The Jazz Festival, the Comedy Festival, the Black African Festival, the Music Festival. We have all kinds of different — All street will be shut down half of downtown so it’s walking only. It’s just magic. We basically cram 12 months worth of fun into the three months of summer because we take it really [laughs] Because it’s so cold the rest of the time. You have to come visit. It’s amazing.
Sharon: Yes, but the whole Old Montreal area is amazing. When I was there last year it was over Canada Day, which was– Was it July 5th? I think so. It was right around —
Geeta: July 4th.
Sharon: Okay. We went to the Jazz Festival. We were staying in this really beautiful — Actually you’ve got to focus on selling Google Montreal. I wrote up a post and about those espadrilles we were talking about because the best espadrilles are in Montreal, of all places. We were there and I just loved it. I was amazed because I have been going to Montreal pretty regularly since I was a kid. How the whole downtown, Old Montreal area has changed. It’s just so beautiful. Especially from people in the US, it’s like going — From New York it’s a 55-minute flight. It’s like going to Europe without jet lag. It’s just great. [laughs]
[00:06:59] Sharon: Plus you have such a cute Prime Minister. [unintelligible 00:07:01] wanted to go there even more.
[00:07:03] Geeta: We do. [laughs]
[00:07:06] Sharon: Tell me, how did you get into all these? I know that you were a journalist for a long time. That’s one of the things I also love about you. I had to call them on the script tailored news wire. I always have a special place in my heart for people who are journalists. In my case there’s ink in my blood. You also were able to be on different sides of media as a journalist, as speaker, as teaching people how to get fun of journalists. We have a similar background. Just being all over and seeing it as a whole. With that commonality, can you just tell us a little bit of how you got started and how you made the shift and how you’re helping others right now?
[00:07:48] Geeta: The whole thing started, as you mentioned in the intro, writing for me is something that I absolutely hated until my dad forced us to write those three essays a week. He basically pushed me. I don’t know if other people have this in their lives but sometimes the thing that you’re the most resistance to, is what you most need. There is some kind of weird feel vortex that happens around your calling. Sometimes you tend to be very resistant to making that leap to say, “Okay, I’m going to learn to master this.”
Writing was that for me. i hated it with a passion. It’s only thanks to my dad that I was able to unlock that. He gave us each a scrapbook that summer. He would give us different assignments. We would cut it into that of magazine and stick them in there and create fictitious characters. We write book reviews about favorite bed time stories, we’d write reports on family outings. He would sit patiently correct them or give us feedback in an age appropriate way. He’d be like, “You know what, this headline is not as strong as it could be. You should’ve used a metaphor here to make it stronger. This body copy is sloppy. Here’s what you could do.”
By giving me the mechanics he can demystified this thing that seemed undoubtedly huge, complicated and opaque to me. He basically got me through the membrane of resistance into it where I could swim around and test things. He’d explain how the things worked. It was just the most amazing feeling. I fell completely in love with the process.
I’m Indian. I grew up in India. The stereotype about Indian parents is somewhat true in that they expect you to get a “real job”, which basically means it’s very stable, it’s high paid. You’re a doctor, you’re a lawyer, you’re an engineer or whatnot. I was lucky that my dad himself was a journalist and a management consultant so there was some openness there. Everybody thought I was going to get a “real job” and I never did. Because I just basically kept writing on the side. I ended up moving to Singapore and working as a journalist there. As I’m moving to Montreal with a man that I’m no longer with and I essentially fell into television because I got invited to do a screen test at the time when I had zero clue how to do a screen test. I had never thought about working in television. Basically what happened was a bunch of writing workshop, I met this other girl, she works for a production company. They’ve hired, they were doing all these different ethnic shows; so the Indian show in English and the Albanian to an unAlbanian, the Greek to unGreek, what not. They had just rebranded their Indian show, they’d hired a pair of co-hosts, a man and a woman. The female co-host had given them the wrong phone number. She never called them back. They were freaking out, they were a week away from their pilot. They go like, “Oh my god. We don’t have a female co-host.” Natalie was like, “Hey, you know what? I just met this girl and she might be perfect.”
I literally get a phone call saying, “Hey, can you come in for a screen test?” I was like, “All right.” Because I don’t say no. Like opportunity knocks, I do not say no. [crosstalk]
[00:11:09] Sharon: Yes, I’m the same way. I just stay up all night and figure out and go. [laughs]
[00:11:14] Geeta: Exactly. Here’s the really magic part about this story, at the time I had just broken up with the guy that I had moved to Montreal with. The person who did this screen test and I have been married, so we’ve been together 13 years. He likes to tell everyone, he’s like, “Yes, I gave her her first job in television.”
[00:11:37] Geeta’s Husband: I did.
[00:11:37] Geeta: [laughs] He’s in the background here. Again, we work together.
[00:11:42] Sharon: That worked out really well. I’m really glad that you got [crosstalk]
[00:11:46] Geeta: But that’s actually really funny because I have a Jewish background and the reason why I have that Degree in business, marketing and PR is because my mother also was like a writing fiend and she’s like, “You’re getting a real job.” I’m like, “I wanted to be in fashion shows.” She goes, “No way, that’s not an education. [laughs] You’re getting a real job.” Then I went to school, I have a BBA in Marketing with PR and I was in it really briefly and then went into fashion.
My mom was crazy, when I had my column and I would have to write something and even through school papers, I would call her up. She had this amazing ability of being able to edit on the phone. She’s be like, “Nope, nope, nope, semi-colon there, period there, you didn’t have to comma.” I’m like, “How can she see it through the telephone.” [laughs] It’s just like to this day, it’s like when I write, I hear my mother’s edit through the phone.[laughs]
[00:12:39] Sharon: That’s awesome.
[00:12:41] Geeta: My dad taught me a really cool [unintelligible 00:12:42] for punctuation, is read it out loud. I still use it and it has served me so well; goes for writing and for speaking, is when you read it out loud basically if you breathe right, and most of us do, it’s pretty obvious where the commas– The commas are the short pauses, the full stop for the long pauses, the semi-colons are, “Okay, I’m pausing to give you a second to collect this idea before I introduce a connected idea.”
Yes, it’s just once you get that reading thing and you can actually read it out loud, you can see when a sentence is going on too long, you’ll know when to cut it off.
[00:13:20] Sharon: Yes, it’s true. That’s what I do with my mom. It’s a really good tip. Also, I know a lot of times when we do transcripts, they come back and the transcriptionist just does it in this one long run-on sentencing, I’m like “Whoa, pause, edit, comma, period, capital.”
I know a lot of people get bogged down in social media and they spend so much time in it. Is it the same before? Out of all my platforms, Instagram is probably my lowest following.
It’s mostly because– I love it, I love looking at people’s beautiful– it’s like my fashion magazine to look at during the day in the [unintelligible 00:14:00] but the amount of time for me, especially being a professional and being on photo shoots for 15 years and wanting to create these savvy images and cool things, it’s a lot of time. I always wonder is that time the best spent?
I know it intimidates a lot of people who don’t have the instinct to put it together. You get so much more power and so much more credibility and reach when it’s legit media. When I was listening to you talk a few times, I know this is something that you also believe in and you teach people. Just for the record, I counted, because we had to do it, I’ve been interviewed or in the media in some shape or form, it’s almost a thousand times. If you break it down it’s about half of that is interviews of some sort where I was on camera, interviewed, quoted, whatever, something where I was the person they were asking. I had about 400 of those with the newspapers I was in when I had my columns and then there’s probably about a hundred or so when I was a stylist. It’s a pretty big chunk of things that I’ve been in.
One of the other things that I know that kept me on lock when I was online was for a long time I was number one for fashion expert. I was actually for 10 years and Google number one. That was SEO and it’s the authority linked to the credibility from being in the media so much.
I know I’ve got some big shoes here, but I did it because I was trained that way and it came — It was organic to me. You are one of the first people I’ve ever seen who actually teaches people to do what I’ve been doing that became organic to me but I never really– [crosstalk]
[00:15:38] Geeta: Instinctively.
[00:15:39] Sharon: It works, folks. I’ve had some really good stuff come because of the media. Can you break it down for other people, second nature in my little brain and let people know how they can do it because I never even thought of it that way?
[00:15:57] Geeta: Sure, this all came down to this bigger experience for me. I’ve been in the media. I’ve worked [unintelligible 00:16:03] before I ended up in Montreal, I fell into television, I won the viewership awards, blah blah blah. I had my own radio show and I was on TV and I was still freelancing on the side. For me, I’ve come to teaching the press from a variety of different ways. On one hand, I received so many press releases, thousands and thousands and thousands of press releases over the course of my career. I have also always freelanced on the side. It’s a habit of mine. Even when I was on staff of the CBC or when I was on staff of the Gazette or whenever, I would always freelance on the side and be pitching editors with whom I did not have an established relationship with, [unintelligible 00:16:41] essentially in email form or in written form.
Now as a business owner, I do exactly what many of our listeners would do which is to pitch, as a business owner, to pitch a story that has value. I’ve come to pitching from all kinds of different energies and all kinds of different ways. I have spent most of my life in those morning meetings, watching decision makers make decisions. Senior producer and everybody who has that decision making power, and I’ve had that power myself where I’m like, “All right. This is the story that’s going to go on the air. This is the one gets [unintelligible 00:17:13].” “This is never going to happen.” or “Wow, I love this story, let’s [unintelligible 00:17:17] and let’s blow this into a feature” There’s that.
I mentioned bitter experience when I decided that I was no longer going to work from nine to five, after I had my first kid. I was basically off completely for two years. I was on maternity leave for two years, unpaid. I decided I was not going to go back.
I was like, “What the heck do I know how to do?” I was like, “I know how to sell other people’s stories to the public. That is what I’ve basically done my entire life. Now I freaking hope I can monetize this because otherwise, I’m screwed.”
Luckily for me, a friend of mine invited me to speak to a gathering of his business colleagues and whatnot. It was a small event, I went there and I spoke about what my understanding was of what a pitch should look and how it should look. People were completely blown away. They were like “Wow, we’ve never heard of it discussed this way.” Some of the people in the room took frantic notes and they got such ridiculously huge results following the tips that I’ve shared, but they were like, “My god, you need to teach this.”
I was like, “Oh my god, thank you universe. A sign, this is what I need to do.” That’s when I started getting really really confident. I had this moment of “Haha, I win.” Because I thought, “I’ve been trained by some of the biggest brands in the world on how to create compelling content. I’ve created stories my whole life for these big media brands. This social media [unintelligible 00:18:51] is going to be a snap, it’s going to be so awesome. I hope I have time to pull myself a mojito before the money comes rolling in.”
Sadly, that is not how it worked out. Because I got on Twitter and I got on Facebook and I did all the things you’re supposed to do. I started to post. I realized that although I was creating the same compelling content that had basically gotten me fat paychecks my entire career, there was no freaking audience.
The [unintelligible 00:19:24] stacked against us in that, Facebook is a business, Instagram is a business. If they gave you all of that — back in the day, they did give you that organic reach. But as they’ve gotten savvier and their monetization brand or their business model has evolved, they understand that there are a lot of businesses out there, small and big, who want to advertise to the audience of the billions that they have created. You hear that there are three billion people or how many bajillion people on Facebook, they’re not all sitting there waving their credit cards and waiting to hear from you. They’re busy living their lives and and doing their thing. You might as well be at a fairground-
[00:20:04] Voice over: Hey, excuse me. Let me jump in for a second. We’re sharing a lot of amazing things today. But you know, there’s more. If you have a friend that you think will also enjoy this episode, don’t forget to share it now. Do you like to listen on the go? Simply download this episode in iTunes. While you are there subscribe and write a review so we can continue to bring you the most amazing content possible. To help you be the best at being you. In your life, business, and style. For more amazing episodes go to our podcast library at www.7daystoamazing.com where you will find episode transcripts and additional resources. Thanks for letting me jump in. Back to the episode.
[00:20:45] Sharon: -because they have a different mindset and that’s the problem too because they are on social media for [unintelligible 00:20:49].
[00:20:50] Geeta: Exactly to relax, to connect with friends, to live their lives, to complain, do whatever it is that people do on social media, that is a blown up version of real life. Anyway, I basically learnt the hard way that this whole building up the audience is actually a completely separate skill set than the creation of content. That’s two full-time jobs right there because the building of the audience requires a deep understanding of analytics, arithmetics, page advertising and all of these terms that I had zero clue how to do. Content I was amazing at. Then there is the other full-time job which is whatever those people actually pay you to do. Then I had a small child that I wanted to be present for; that was a who freaking point of creating my business, was the freedom aspect.
I realized this was entirely too many jobs in a 24-hour period. I was like, “Screw this, I’m going to hack the audience part.” I was like, ” What do I do? Where and how I’m I going to where the audiences have already been built, are already been actively nurtured? Where do I go where people have a hunger for content?”
It was one night when I was super-stressed; everybody around me was telling me that I was nuts. This online course thing was a stupid idea. What the hell was I doing. How could I be so irresponsible? Get a real job et cetera. In the middle of the night, I was feeling so stressed out, upset and sad. Suddenly, it crossed in my head and I said, ” Wait a minute, why do I not want to go back to my media job?” The reason of course, was that I wanted freedom to with my child and have flex hours and all that stuff.
The real reason, the underlying reason was I didn’t like where the media, [unintelligible 00:22:37] at you going the [unintelligible 00:22:39]. We were producing five times of content with half the budget. The same staff was creating so much more content in the same eight hours shift. It’s not just one story for TV anymore, there’s that story is for TV, that story again for network, that story for radio. Then you had to write a blog post on top of it. In the same shift for the same money. It was crazy. It was very stressful, very much more competitive than it used to be when I first started.
I was like, “Wait a minute, how do you fill in those holes? Well, dah there are filling that big gap by getting eight people that they don’t have to pay. Which as a business owner is like violating people.” It was that tough. We get to come in and we’re out there doing the stuff, writing the stories, journalists are hungry for that insight. We come in and we say, “Hey listen, let me tell you about a trend I’m seeing with my clients. Let me tell you about this question that a lot of people are talking about that you may not know about. But this conversation is already happening around the pitching table or the water cooler. Let me bring it to your screen so that when people see it on social or when people see it out there, they are immediately going to stop and want to be part of this conversation. Because let me tell you, the media is even more obsessed with social sharing than you and I are.”
What ended up happening is that singling out this piece I’m like, “Okay, I’m going to go to get the media, the media people have the big departments and the budgets to build the audience and nurture them. All I have to be is being like [unintelligible 00:24:19] would be. He would show up a new thing.” That’s what I would do.
I come in and I say, “I’m going to share five tips that I’m going to make your audiences’ life much better than it was before you have me on screen.” I’m going to figure a way to bring value to your audience. What that does is that after that there are social cliches’ they would link. Their social cliches’, the videos, the articles and the what not, Google, even if nobody else was watching which is not true, but let’s assume 80% of the people that you want to reach didn’t happen to turn on the TV the day you were on it. They didn’t happen to read the article the day and night. We have a whole follow up system to how we leverage that media but Google notice it.
You talked about SEO and being number one on the front page of Google, think about this. You’re listening right now, somebody out there, assuming that you have any kind of name recognition, somebody out there is googling either you or googling the problem that your company solved. When they do that, instead of getting just your website where you could write just about anything, we all know people lie on the internet, not just dating sites, right? People are pretty savvy about that kind of stuff now.
Instead of just your site or just your social profile, what if the first few pages of Google were filled with links to Entrepreneur, New York Times, Forbes and Huffington Post, all holding you up as an authority in your field? Then when a meeting plan of Google hears your speaker, or a prospect to googles you because they want to check you out before they get on the phone with you or before they go to your website and get by, that allows them to feel safe giving you their trust, their time, and their money. That’s how we were able to build our company exponentially and we see this over and over [unintelligible 00:26:13] my program.
[00:26:15] Sharon: Absolutely. The other thing is what I said earlier, for your own personal website, when you have first SEO, when you have legit media linking to you in a story, it boosts the authority of your site and it just put your website-
[00:26:33] Geeta: Absolutely.
[00:26:33] Sharon: – higher on the page. Even if the link expires, I see a lot of the times these newspapers they’ll have the story, it will be there but then it has a timer, it’s not there three years later. But you still have the link built in. You can see their page not found, you still get the link juice from being an authority. It’s really helpful, folks. I focused on SEO back in 1999. I feel like I should have a fairy skirt, covered wagon on the internet.
[00:27:02] Sharon: And in those days– I will say it lasted maybe five years ago, four years ago, I am [unintelligible 00:27:10] massive, massive amount of traffic on my website. It was easy to do this stuff because there weren’t that many people out there. As at the internet get more crowded, it’s not so easy even for a site like mine. It’s really not so easy to get the authority because there’s just a million others. I know you have an expression which I love and it’s called “Borrowing someone else’s audience”. So you want to just fill people in on that a little bit?
[00:27:37] Geeta: Absolutely. This goes to the whole idea with social, when you start– let’s say you start your brand. You decide, okay, I want to build a company around being a speaker, I want to start a company around style, I want to start a company around executive coaching, whatever it looks like, you have to create a website. Then you have to go onto Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram, whatever it is that you decide your idea of clients are seeing. You have to open up social channels so that you can start posting content, they can find you, they can have conversations with you. There is a huge value to this idea of broadcasting yourself. No question about it. It allows you to control the story that you’re telling in a very powerful way and I highly endorse it.
However, it is not an overnight success. It’s not that kind of tool, it’s the long play. It is the medium to long-term kind of play where you build that content, you do the work. You clock the miles eventually, does up to a marathon. You don’t have to run that marathon on day one because you are building that audience from scratch. I think it will a long time and will probably cost you a lot of money. Certainly, like you said, you’re going to spend a long time.
If you want to create good quality, that’s time-consuming and your time is money. For me, I’m way too lazy to do that. I’m all about [unintelligible 00:29:06] It’s just easy. I’m just like, I like results and I get really excited by momentum. I truly believe that a lot of entrepreneurs fail, not because of lack of fund, not because of lack of time, not even because people tell them that they will fail. They failed because of a lack of momentum. I know that I was very, very clear that in order for me to succeed, in order for me to get buy-in from everybody that I needed buy-in from, my team, my family, my clients, et cetera, I needed to create momentum and in a hurry.
The way that I figured that out is literally to say, “Okay, I’m going to go to where a company or people have an audience already built. They have invested in our field, they have invested in infrastructure, their running paid advertising, they’ve clocked all years and years of back-breaking label to build up their brand.
Now, view this in a content marketing world, everybody is a content factory and media outlets more so than ever. I was like, “Okay, I see how our need align beautifully. What they won’t do–” This is a mistake that a lot of people who pitch the media, since you’re listening and you’re like “I tried doing PR that did not work.” Either you hire a PR agency to pitch for you or you try doing it yourself. Chances are you sent out a press release, which I think is probably the biggest mistake you could make if you want to get press, unless you’re Kim Kardashian in which case when you eat breakfast it’s news. For the rest of us who are not already famous, the press release is completely useless.
What I suggest you do is really think about, who are your ideal clients. I always taught module one of my course. We set, as a foundation, something that doesn’t even have anything to do with the media. What we realized, create exponential growth is a deep understanding of who our ideal clients, where ideal prospects are, what our niche, or as the Americans would say, what our niche is and what sets us apart, what makes us different from everybody else who’s out there in our space. Most people can not answer these questions in a compelling way.
If you can’t, then what might happen is that you will use some our templates perhaps. You buy some of our templates, you use them, you get some press. You realize, “Oh my God I did it, that’s awesome.”
Then you wait for the money to go in and it won’t. The reason it won’t is because you haven’t told the right story and/or you don’t know how to leverage it. The reason for that is because the foundation that you built your media plan on was shaky. You didn’t have a deep enough understanding of what it is clients truly desperately want and are willing to pay for.
I highly recommend that people really get clear on this. If you don’t have another way out there, get in touch with me, purchase the program. We actually have questionnaires that you can get on the phone with. We’ve written it out for you so that all you have to do is follow the program. Just do the work. Show up and follow and go step one, step two, step three, step four. We’ve seen people’s companies glow up because this is where the money is.
[00:32:27] Sharon: It’s totally possible. The other thing is, what I want to touch on a little bit too, is being media ready. When you do all these work, and this is something that I see so frequently with women entrepreneurs especially with clients, with potential clients, is they do all these stuff but what happens when the national news calls and they are possibly wanting to put the microphone in front of you. They’re going to your website. They’re looking at your head shot. They’re looking at you. Do you look media ready? Does your website look like you’ve got the expertise you say you have? Do you look relevant? Because if you don’t look relevant in your brand image and your physical appearance, they’re going to assume what comes out of your mouth, unless you’re really a total academic, then they’ll assume what comes out of your mouth is not that relevant too.
Another thing I know, which is a real common problem, is a lot of people just look very local, very regional. If you’re local and regional from a big city that’s cool. But if you’re local and regional from a very small town and the national news is coming to you, everything about you needs to look national. That’s what I cal, “Standing in your store power”, or “Now with the internet, international.” You need to look involved in a way that a big network would say, “Hey, I want to go talk to her.”
How do you work with that and have them when they go knock we want to hear, “That was a great pitch. That was really good. We we want to bring you on the news.” “Umm–”
How do you make that whole package stand out?
[00:34:09] Geeta: Well, there’s a few different moving pieces obviously. So want to make sure that your message is clear that when you put up copy on your website, that it sounds like you and it sounds good. It’s compelling, it’s soundbyty, this is another thing we talked about. [crosstalk]
[00:34:27]Sharon: Soundbyte is really important. [crosstalk]
[00:34:30] Geeta: Right absolutely. What’s a soundbyte ultimately? It’s just a plausible, clever, delightful. When you sometimes hear somebody have an expression, you’re like “Oh my god, I never thought about it. That’s so fun.” Then you remember it. It makes you feel smart because the next time you’re in a social setting, it’s going to come out of your mouth and everyone’s going to turn around with that same line and be like “Oh my god, I never though of it that way.” That becomes viral.
[00:34:54] Sharon: Absolutely. One of the best things that a producer ever said to me is she said, “You know Sharon you give good quotes.” The same thing now is, if you’re not sure of what giving the quote is or what a sound bite is, it’s as I’m talking to Geeta, I’ve come talking to fuess — I’m scribbling down some things you said, I’m sneaking around. Here are really good sound bites and we will use them as memes. We will promote them in social media and get the quotes that way. But it’s the same thing when you’re in the media, when you’re being interviewed, to be able to get these [unintelligible 00:35:24] sync statements, that I have to say everything or lure somebody into wanting to hear more. That’s super important.
[00:35:32] Geeta: Exactly. That’s one piece of it. I worry that this is going to feel overwhelming. It is like everything else. You break things down into baby steps and then you do the work and it all comes together in the end. Now Sharon is obviously the expert when it comes to what colors are going to suit you and what kind of outfit you should wear and how you’re going to up-level your appearance. One of the things I’m absolutely aware in full alignment on is the fact that your visual brand, basically how you look, your website colors and everything about your appearance.
We like to get really mad at people who judge us by our appearance, but the fact of the matter is when you have no other information, your appearance is often the first thing that’s put on the table. And we tend to have as human beings a very viceral reaction, like or dislike or indifference to the appearance of something. It could be anything. It could even be an inanimate object. We go through this all the time. This is how our brains are wired. It’s best not to fight it. It’s best to use it to your advantage. It’s a lot less energy and it’s a lot more reward.
I highly recommend that you get professional head shots taken or if Sharon has a better system for you to follow, one of the things that I tell all my students is, “Do not take a selfie and put that as your bio-picture,” because it makes you look like an amateur. I’ll tell you why that’s a bad thing. Having been in multiple newsrooms and especially these days with media budgets being cut and so on and so forth, it’s very, very competitive. Which means if I’m a producer, a junior producer, and I’ve decided to book you as a guest, my butt is on the line. If you come across as anything less than absolutely fabulous, that’s going to reflect badly on me, and guess who’s head is going to roll?
[00:37:29] Sharon: Yes, but this-
[00:37:30] Geeta: You want to make me look good.
[00:37:32] Sharon: Absolutely. Your job is to the person who answers the phone, who’s taking the calls, who’s in the booking desk, you’re there to make their job look good. But when it also comes to your head shots — because I have my Simply Amazing Headshots program and I do believe that you can take your own photos. But they shouldn’t look like selfies.
I mean, I did it for my book cover and it’s because I was skilled. I’ve been on photo shoots for 15 years.
I understand what you need to do and how you could translate that to yourself because I think it’s worse to have one of those portrait studio horrible head shots with a model brown background and you’re standing there wearing that corporate suit, your hands are crossed and it’s just so [groans] dated and horrible. That’s almost as bad as having the seat belt selfie in your car where you put on lipstick and you just have the seat belt across you. [laughs] You need to have the happy medium so you look like a pro no matter who took the photo. But better to have — Just don’t take one of those stagnant, in-the-box, corporate, horrible dated head shots, people.
Because as a media and I, too, have gotten tons of press releases and thousands I wrote on my column and even the contents on Focus on Style. When somebody comes to me as an expert and they have one of those [disgusted] photos, I don’t even read it. It’s like as soon as you see it, no. It’s so important.
[00:38:54] Geeta: I would agree with that. I think the real — and all of this could feel really, really heavy where you’re like, “Well, I don’t know how to do any of this. I just want to fold my hands or stick my fingers in my ears and just forget and go la la la and forget and I can’t hear this.”
[00:39:11] Sharon: [chuckles]
[00:39:11] Geeta: Here’s what ultimately what Sharon and I are both saying is that the only rule to follow is, get clear on what it is you want to do, who it is you want to serve, what makes you different and what makes you fun. What is that special spark that you bring to the table that will shift people out of whatever it is that they’re stuck in, right? That is the energy. Ultimately it all boils down to energy and all of us, we’re all creatures of energy; our bodies are energy. All you want to do is basically get you energy as clean as possible and then project that. Your style and the colors that you wear, Sharon, and the fact that you wear espadrilles and I don’t-
[00:40:04] Sharon: [laughs]
[00:40:04] Geeta: – I probably never will. That’s totally okay, there’s no rule, like the rule-
[00:40:09] Sharon: Out there, I know-
[00:40:10] Geeta: – there are lots of stylists out there, right? There are lots of stylists-
[00:40:12] Sharon: There are no-
[00:40:13] Geeta: – they. Oh, yes. you have to do your nails, then you have to have [unintelligible 00:40:16] and blah blah blah and whatnot. I don’t buy any of that. I have always broken the rules about one of these things. What I truly believe is that if you put something on whether that’s your message, your site, for the clothes, for makeup, if it makes you feel like a million bucks only to show up as the best possible “you”, it will work. Even if it breaks every rule in the book, it can work. If you can pull that off with the [unintelligible 00:40:44], yes.
[00:40:48] Male Voice Over: Excuse me. Let me jump in for a second. We’re sharing a lot of amazing things today, but there’s more hop on over to focusonstyle.com, and be sure to subscribe to become a Focus on Style insider so that you can start to live the life that others only dream about. Not only will you get instant access to the STAR Power Flash kit curated to help you and your business get out there, but as an insider, you’ll also receive exclusive bonuses, amazing content, and access to special events that Sharon only shares by email. Subscribe now at www.focusonstyle.com/insiders. It’s your time to be the best at being you. Thanks for letting me jump in. Back to the episode.
[00:41:35] Sharon: Honest. If you feel good in your skin and you’re showing up in the best you can in that moment and not stressing out that, “My visual message is out of whack, my written message is out of whack. I’m trying to pitch a story to something that I don’t even believe in because I think somebody’s not going to want to listen to it,” all that stuff shows. It’s just getting clear on who you are and being you and realizing that the people on the other side of the camera, the ones on TV, they’re no different than you and I. They’re just trained a little bit to be able to have that spark. They’re not all on burgundy [laughs]. It’s just the ones you really — they’re them, they’re personality brands.
[00:42:23] Geeta: Yes and if you watch anything, any show, watch the television, or if you open a magazine and read through the articles, you’ll feel huge diversity of types of people and types of brands that are all media worthy. There is plenty of room for everybody in that. The real challenge is to clean up your mindset and feel more possible. It’s that feeling, when you bring that feeling to the table — I have had people who are brand new to business when I was a journalist and I was making some of these booking decisions.
I got people who are brand new to business who are just launching something, who are doing something so totally cool and innovative that it’s brand new and there’s no proven market to it and I will put them on the air. I have put them on the air because they have just such tremendous energy and diversity that I’m like, “This is a good story. Just to be able to share this energy with my audience, this is a great story.” If you can do that, the story writes itself from there. The training that I provide and that Sharon provides and the guidelines that we provide, that will give you a base from which to go.
Those are the drills that you do as an athlete, so that in that moment when you’re on camera, when you’re on the phone giving an interview or you’re in front of a microphone, you will be able to break the right rule because you’re so relaxed, that you’re going to be fully present in the moment. You will know exactly when to break the rule and when to follow it because you’re not’so stressed out and your mind is not crowded with all the different things that you forgot and that you’r worried about the blah blah blah blah. You’re fully present. You’re able to play and channel your greatness, there’s no other way to put. It ‘s up to you, but there you have it.
[00:44:09] Sharon: It’s true, it’s absolutely true. I mean, it really boil down to you’ll be compelling. You’ll be confident, you’ll be compelling and you’ll be you. You can’t be unless you have a little bit of training in advance to this so it does become natural because it is scary. For me, when I transition from being on one side of the camera as a stylist and the other side of the media as a journalist, creating the website, having it like a magazine, and now putting myself forward where it is more of a personality breath, it’s scary to me on being on the frontend of the camera [crosstalk] the backend that there’s a wrinkle in that shirt, maybe I didn’t say that the right way because I’ve been the one critiquing on the other end.
For me, it’s even more difficult. But you know what? When it’s time to go, it’s time to go. You just like clap clap, chop chop and it’s on with the show and you know you can do it. That, I think, is the most important thing is being compelling and being trained to be able to get that out there, get that message out there. I’d like to leave with a couple of really — because you guys, there’s so much value in this people-
[00:45:14] Geeta: [laughs]
[00:45:13] Sharon: – I just want you to rewind. It’s on Geeta. But let’s just do a crib notes here. If you could just give us a couple of really short sound bites [laughs] of what someone can do in the next week to make their life more amazing.
[00:45:28] Geeta: The very first thing that you can do is believe. There is no shortcut. Belief is a habit. I will tell you, Google anyone that you admire deeply, whether that’s huge multi billionaires like Richard Branson or Oprah or Sara Blakeley of Spanx. Whoever it is that you admire and look up to, Google any of them. They all, without exception, have stories of falling flat on their faces for multiple times and sometimes for multiple years in a row before they finally made it. The reason that they made it is because they fell in love with the process. They fell in love with the journey. The only way to do that is to, first of all, believe that you’re going to make it. I’m a great believer [chuckles] of building belief as a muscle.
It’s like you break it down into small dots. In terms of fitting or media, if you decide that you want to do this, if you want to hack an audience and borrow an audience and get your brand out there in a really huge way, then put some time in your calendar every week. You put 30 minutes a week. My students are doing this and they’re killing it. Put 30 minutes a week in your calendar and say, “Okay, I’m going to fill out a pitch. I’m going to Google some Jones names, and I’m going to send it out there.” If you want a free challenge, I have a free resource for you to use, which has all of this lined up step by step. You can actually use it.
But what you have to — What is going to cement your belief that you are the kind of person who’s going to succeed is actually showing up and doing the work even if nothing happened from it. You keep showing up and doing the work. You pivot along the way as your instincts will kick, your intuition will tell you, “Oh, you know what you haven’t tried? Try this.” Pick up the phone this time instead of sending an e-mail. Do this, do that, whatever. I can’t tell you what that’s going to be because it’s custom to you and your life and your message. But that download will come only if your bum is in your feet and you are there, present and available, for the intuition to show up, for inspiration to strike.
So the first part is, believe; the second part is, show up. Those are very, very cool feelings because the more you show up, the more it will reinforce your belief that you are going to make it. Not because you have results, but because you are the kind of person who doesn’t give up. That is really [chuckles] more than anything else, the secret of success, especially huge success, audacious success, the kind that people write about. The kind that people tell each other as inspirations. That’s the kind of success I’m going for. I’m telling you what I do in my day-to-day life to actually build this muscle. That’s belief, show up, and then, play it forward.
A really beautiful, profound pieces of gifts that I got from one of my mentors in the system called Plus, Equal, Minus. This is from Frank Shamrock who is the most unlikely mentor you could imagine because he’s a mixed martial arts fighter. He’s the undefeated world champion. He’s this guy who can basically size you up in less than five seconds and beat you out before you have a chance-
[00:48:43] Sharon: [laughs]
[00:48:43] Geeta: – even say, “Hello,” if he wanted to. If he wanted to, but he has the most relaxed — He’s just the nicest, coolest guy. He’s kind of like my Yoda.
[00:48:50] Sharon: [laughs]
[00:48:51] Geeta: He said that the system that he’s used to build several multi-million dollar businesses, to get him from being abused as a child — he would get locked in the closet, he had a broken back that he recovered from, to become the world’s leading MMA fighter. That’s unheard of, right? This is the system that he used. Here’s how it works, when you are trying to do anything in life, whether that’s improve your marriage, become a better friend, launch a business, improve a business, whatever; you have a plus, which is somebody who’s way ahead of you, who has done and accomplished what you are choosing to accomplish; you reach out to them for mentorship. So, they’re your plus.
They have to be somebody that you admire, that you’re open to being coached by. Your equal is somebody who is a competitor or a collaborator. Somebody who’s on an equal playing field. You reach out and this gives you a good idea of the lay of land. This is going to give some great insights into niches that you could be dapping in to. So that you’re like, “Okay. This doesn’t own the x, y, zed pieces of market. I’m not even going to bother going after that. But, I see that this whole area of people are being left on service.” That’s where I’m going to go. That’s going to help you make more money quickly. That’s the equal. In order to keep the chi going, as Frank would say, “To keep the energy flowing,” because you have refuge from your mentor, you are sharing equally with your equal and now you must find a minus. You must find somebody who can benefit from your mentorship. That’s how you keep the cycle of energy going. You share openly and joyfully with them. This has changed my life.
[00:50:32] Sharon: That’s amazing. That’s fascinating.
[00:50:33] Geeta: It’s too simple.
[00:50:34] Sharon: Yes, it is so simple. It really is so simple. I think also when it comes to mentorship, a lot of times you’re afraid to ask. Even if it’s not really big mentorship, I know it — one thing on social media is Twitter is really fantastic, people, that if there’s someone you want to ask a question to, and you want to open the door, and you don’t know them, you’ll be amazed. I’m amazed with who follows me on Twitter and I’m amazed of questions I’ve asked — it’s also really good for customer service when something’s really big like, “Hello, AT&T.” [laughs] It’s just [crosstalk], but if there’s someone you want to talk to that you want to mentor, just ask them a question, a simple question, open the door there.
Maybe that’s a good way to start a conversation before you email them, call them, or meet them somewhere. That’s where where all the playing field is in so many different ways that you can actually talk to very high-powered people, and just a hundred [crosstalk]-
[00:51:32] Geeta: You can.
[00:51:32] Sharon: – yes. You can’t take it much further, but you can knock-knock [chuckles].
[00:51:39] Geeta: Yes. It’s funny that you say that because one of the ways that we teach people to leverage the power of the media that they do get, for example, I write for Inc. & Entrepreneur and Huffington Post. When I want to recheck with somebody who is way out of my league, the way that I usually do it is I reach out and I say, “Hey, I would love to interview you for my column. I’m nothing [unintelligible 00:52:00] get on Skype, but I can [unintelligible 00:52:01] 30 minutes of your time.” I don’t know the [crosstalk] because we’re in different cities like, “How lame is that?” Instead, I’m like, “Hey, listen, I’ve read your book. I loved it. I implemented XZs of your book and it created Y result in my life.
I would love to share you with my audience. You can [unintelligible 00:52:19] on a call.” No one says no to me, I have built the most insane, unreasonable relationships [chuckles] with people using this technique. Nine times out of 10 the energy is amazing, highly successful people typically are very, very down to earth, are really cool. They make fabulous pluses. They’re actually looking for good mentees because, I’ll tell you, there are very few good mentees out there because most people like to show stuff, but then what? They sit there and they will be like, “Yes, but that would work for me for x, y, zed.” They’d be, “No, I’ve tried that.” They’re not coachable. They don’t listen.
If you’re the kind of person who’s good at listening and great at implementation, which I try to be, then people love to mentor you. They’re excited about how their success is going to be amplified by your success. That’s usually how successful people experience success is that when they’re able to contribute to somebody else’s success, that’s an amplification of their own success. Yes, reach out. Build this relationship if you want to have a deeper, more meaningful relationship, and get on a 30-minute call, and have really big, huge successful people not say “no” to you, then that’s another way to leverage the power of the media. But you’re absolutely right, Sharon, because you can absolutely get that knock-knock.
You can get your foot on the door and keep doing it. The trick is to keep showing up. The trick is if you want to use the Twitter tip, then, schedule it. Do it. If it doesn’t work for the first six weeks, don’t stop or modify it, but don’t stop the habit. Modify the habit. Maybe you don’t want to be on Twitter anymore, maybe you want to do a different thing, but don’t forget what your objective was and don’t forget to do the habit. That’s, I guess, what my big take-away would be.
[00:54:12] Sharon: Yes, absolutely. Also another thing we have is my mother’s motto was “never say die”.
[00:54:18] Sharon: Just never say die. Just keep believing that you can do it.
[00:54:22] Geeta: Keep going.
[00:54:23] Sharon: Keep going and just keep going. With perseverance, you will win. [laughs] It’s true. All this stuff is you got to show up-
[00:54:32] Geeta: It’s true.
[00:54:32] Sharon: – everytime. You got it and you’re never too big to learn more [laughs]. You’re never too big to learn. The three tips. Let’s just do our crib notes real fast and I want people — You could show many different ways people that will contact you for resources, but we’ll get to that at the end. Right now, just believe, show up, and pay it forward. When you want to find more of Geeta, where do we get you? You said you have that really great challenge, you have your website, you have your program, what is the best way — Baby Got Booked, I know you like to talk about babies.
[00:55:06] Geeta: Yes [laughs].
[00:55:05] Sharon: Tell us a little bit more of how they can find you [laughs].
[00:55:09] Geeta: Awesome. If you will listen to all of this and you’re like, “Man, I could use the media right about now. I would love to get my feet wet. I would like to basically try before I buy and see if this thing actually works for me.” If you’d be willing to put aside 30 minutes a day for five days for over a week long period, so you could have a few days where you can catch up on what-not, go to Baby Got Booked, that’s E-D booked, babygotbooked.com/challenge. What we’ve done is we’ve put together a five-day challenge. The videos are really short, they’re less than 20 minutes a day. I basically walk you through A, understanding the true opportunity that the media represents to you.
This is way beyond exposure and credibility. I gave you a sense, right? I use the media to reach out for mentorship. There is a whole bunch of other creative ways that you can use the media to grow your business, that doesn’t even have anything to do with being in front of a bigger audience. There are lots of different ways to exponentially grow and I’m obsessed with them. This is where I share both ways with you, so that you can see what applies to your business and customize your plan, so that you’re doing what works for you, not what works for me or somebody else. That’s day one.
Day two, we talk about how to build credibility in such a way that when producers will bring you or when she’s looking for an expert on your topic, she’s going to pick you. I tell you exactly how to do that. Day three, you build relationship with a journalist and actually share a free tool that’s going to help you find almost any journalist’s contact information without having to pay for it. Oh, yes [laughs]. On day four, I teach you exactly why the press release is such a terrible idea and what you should do instead. I even give you an actual blueprint, a template that you can follow that’s based on our Baby Got Booked style of teaching and it works. People have learned the dead docks from it.
People have closed million dollar deals based on some of this. It’s quite amazing what people have used them for and they work, so there you go. Then, day five, I show you how you can pull everything together in a system and then leverage your media and turn it into something that is predictable and not a one-off. That’s when I will introduce you to the program, should you be interested in buying. That’s the five-day challenge. Its 100% free if you just go to babygotbooked.com/challenge.
[00:57:30] Sharon: There really is no one out there who has their own business, who has a message, or even as simple as if you have an association, if you have — if you’re even a mom at a PTA, if it’s your place of worship, you’re having an event, you’re having something and you want bigger reach, there’s so many — one of my favorite quotes from college which I love is — I believe it’s from David Ogilvy and it’s “an advertising you pay for PR you pray for”. You don’t need to always pay for advertising. Get your PR, do it right, and listen to what it is saying. Even if it’s not just your business, if you’ve got a message you need to get out there, this is the way to do it, people [laughs]. This is a really good way to do it.
[00:58:17] Geeta: What this is basically going to do is it’s basically going to teach you how to tell your story in a way that makes people want to listen to. If you want to use that in a media context, great. If you want to use that in a field’s context, amazing. If you want to just use that to get your kids to do [chuckles] what you want them to do, do that.
[00:58:35] Sharon: [laughs]
[00:58:35] Geeta: This will work in a full bunch of different contexts. Obviously, I hope that you will get out there in the media and then play a huge game. Then, call me up, or send me a testimony, or send me some kind of — [chuckles] talk to me if you’re like, “Hey, I checked your program. You did this. I love it. It worked.” That’s going to make me so happy if you do that. To me, the biggest game that you could possibly imagine and then add 20% and do that.
[00:58:59] Sharon: I just think this is brilliant and I want to wrap it up now. We’ve had such a really meaty conversation here. There is just so much. Listen people, rewind, take notes if you didn’t do it the first time. If you come to focusonstyle.com, you’ll see the transcript below, so you can read it. We’ll take some key notes there. If you’re listening on iTunes, don’t forget to share this with your friends who also might need a little PR boost to get out there and do it the right way, and learn how to teach in for more of yourself and be credible and be seen as a leader in the media. You know what? You’re used to be what like internet superstars?
Nothing beats seeing your name in French, nothing beats seeing yourself on TV, trust me. Like that little ego in there, its like, “Oh, I did it, I really did it. Now, I’m in authority,” and people look at you the same way.
[00:59:53] Geeta: Differently, they look at you differently, it’s true. It’s the mentor’s belief piece that we talked about and the three take-aways, right? You want another way to
[unintelligible 01:00:02] to follow that belief, right? And you’re so — Then, get it out there and have other people see it. It helps you believe even harder.
[01:00:11] Sharon: Yes, I mean it’s like — that’s another one of your good things. I’d bring a wingman and the media becomes your wingman kind of. It’s there. It’s talking for you and when it’s legit news, it’s, “Hey, baby, it’s legit news.” You might be getting your news on Facebook, but there’s still media out there you’re reading it from and that really puts you in a different level. Thank you so much for being here and-
[01:00:35] Geeta: My pleasure.
[01:00:34] Sharon: – this is great. Thank you so much.
[01:00:38] Geeta: Thank you. Thanks for having me.
[01:00:40] Sharon: You’re very welcome.
[01:00:44] Voice Over: Not so fast. We covered a lot of amazing things today, but what’s your biggest takeaway from this episode? Hop on over to www.focusonstyle.com to leave a comment and keep the conversation going. While you’re there, be sure to subscribe to become a Focus on Style insider. Not only will you get instant access to the STAR Power Flash kit curated to help you and your business get out there. But as an insider, you’ll also receive exclusive bonuses, amazing content and access to special events that Sharon only shares by email. Subscribe now at www.focusonstyle.com/insiders. It’s your time to be the best at being you, so don’t forget to subscribe at www.focusonstyle.com/insiders. See you on the next episode of the Seven Days to Amazing Podcast with Sharon Haver, where you learn how to make your life, business, and style even more amazing in the next week.
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