“Aim High” Personal Branding for Speakers, Speaker Magazine

Thought this article was relevant, given the Superstar Speaker Academy coming up next week. Check it out – all about speaker branding. Want to learn more? Sign up here: http://www.SuperstarSpeakerAcademy.com.

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The Identity Iceberg – Excavating The REAL You For Your Branding

Imagine an iceberg. The very top of the iceberg, above the water line, is what people on the outside see. Below the water line is what makes up the bulk of the iceberg. It’s the stuff no one sees, but it is the BASE of the iceberg. It’s what holds the iceberg in place, “grounding” it. Now imagine YOURSELF as an iceberg.

What’s visible – above the line – is what the outside world sees. These are your behaviors and activities (and your brand, for sure). But down below is what makes you YOU and determines what you show to the outside world. From the base all the way to the top, each piece builds on the piece before, until we get to the surface, and that’s what the world sees.

At the very BASE of the iceberg is the core YOU – what you love, your innate talents, your interests, your personality type, etc. This is Who You Are.

Identity Iceberg.042-001Who You Are then influences your Why You’re Here, or your Purpose on this planet.
Your Why You’re Here in turn influences Your Core Values in this world, or those basic principles that you hold most dear, which in turn impact What You Want out of your life (i.e., your Goals & Objectives).

The What You Want/Goals & Objectives (particularly your short term ones) lie just below the surface – because those immediate wants and desires are closely tied to actions and behavior.

Ultimately, it is all these pieces together that impact your behavior, activities, actions and – at the end of the day – Your BRAND. In order to establish a powerful personal brand or Identity In The World, it is essential that dig deep into your Identity Iceberg first.

Want more iceberg? Check out this video: 

So, What Are You Going to DO About It?

If you’re someone who generates business and opportunities by referral, or by being an expert in your field, then consider how much MORE business, opportunities and referrals you could get by positioning yourself as a professional speaker – whether that’s paid or even free, to generate leads. To do this effectively, it’s essential that you get really clear about who you are, what you want, and what ACTIONS this year are going to get you there.

To this end, we have put together a 3-day Intensive Training Academy – The Superstar Speaker Academy – precisely to teach you how to develop 1) The Identity, 2) The Influence, and 3) The Income to do what you love, deliver on your life’s purpose and make money all at the same time.

Check it out here: http://www.SuperstarSpeakerAcademy.com

Climbing The Wrong Mountain

Last week I got a call from a man who wanted to find out if and how I could help his business generate sales online. All of his questions centered around tactical ways to drive business, but as our conversation progressed, it became clear to me that what we needed to be discussing was more strategic than tactical. I said as much to him, and he paused and said, “please explain what you mean.”
Rather than explain, I used an analogy. “Imagine you’ve got a team together to climb a mountain. You get your water bottles ready, you equipment together, you have team leaders, maps, compasses, everything… check, check, check. So you start hiking – your team works well together, you make great time, everything just goes swimmingly and you get to the top… only to realize you climbed the wrong mountain.”
Strategy is figuring out WHICH mountain to climb, and a big-picture plan for how you’ll do it. Tactics are everything that comes after that. In business, figuring out which mountain to climb involves questions like ‘Why are we in this business? Who is our target market? What niche or niches do we serve? What is our business model? Where is the growth in our industry? What is our pricing strategy? What messaging will attract our ideal clientele or customer base? And so on.
Because this gentleman came from a systems and operations background, he viewed business very tactically, and that was proving to be his biggest challenge, he didn’t “see the forest for the trees,” so to speak. He didn’t know which mountain to climb.
No matter what our background is, when we are working in our business day in and day out, we can get mired in the details of that business and can be blind to the big picture.
If you’re struggling with completing projects, assigning tasks and overall execution in business, you’re likely facing tactical issues. But if you’re struggling to attract business, grow your business and know where to focus your assets and energy in the future, chances are the questions you need to answer are strategic in nature.
As someone who values (and enjoys!) strategic planning, ideation and brainstorming, sometimes I forget that not everyone feels the same way.
My advice: every once in a while (at least quarterly), set aside some time – at least a day – to step back from your business and look at the big picture. I do this for clients all the time, and I did it for myself just last week. A whole day just dedicated to answering the big questions: “Who am I?” “Where am I going?” “What am I building?” And most importantly: “What’s next?”
Can’t wait to share what I came up with… Stay tuned!! And if you’re interested in doing some strategic planning with me, let me know! It’s my favorite thing to do. Call or email me anytime.



10 Little-Known Apps That Entrepreneurs Can’t Live Without

Great tools I need to check out. I already use Keynote Presenter Tool, like Seth Godin, and am going to get JumpCut next. Not on this list, but I love: SaneBox (for email management), Evernote (for keeping track of notes), ScheduleOnce (not an app, but worth looking into for scheduling), and Google Maps (instead of the native iphone maps app, which is awful). 

This Is Your Brand. This Is Your Brand Online. Any Questions?

On Sunday I had the honor of presenting at Mashable Social Media Day Miami – an amazing event – and I delivered a brand-new case-study based presentation called “This Is Your Brand. This Is Your Brand Online. Any Questions?” The room was PACKED – standing room only (or sitting on the floor!) If you missed it, the good news is that you can see the slideshow here!

Who loves you!!??

Coming Soon To a Bookstore Near You (okay, maybe just Amazon for now…)

The Stiletto In Your Back Front Cover Only For BlogI got inspired over the weekend, and turned an old project of mine – a Special Report called “Why Women Play Dirty” – into an eBook AND sent it to print with CreateSpace (Amazon Publishing). WOW!

I retitled it “The Stiletto In Your Back.”

It’s a short guide to how women compete, from an evolutionary, psychological and sociological perspective (written in a fun, very casual style), and how a woman can protect herself while dealing with female rivalry at work. I can’t wait to hold it in my hands!!

It’s the first in a series of “Good Girl Guides” (Thank you Jessica Kizorek for that idea!) so this one is The Stiletto In Your Back: The Good Girl’s Guide To Backstabbers, Bullies, Gossips & Queen Bees, the next one is Shameless Self-Promotion: The Good Girl’s Guide To Visibility, Credibility & Marketability, and so on.

Have ideas for more “Good Girl” editions? Would love to hear them!!

Michelle Villalobos (veeyaLOWbos)