Dive into personal branding's power for CEOs and founders. Learn how a strong brand attracts premium clients, boosts team morale, and even shapes AI's trajectory. Unlock personal branding secrets that redefine businesses.
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the unexpected benefits of building your personal brand as a CEO and founder. This is both from personal experience and from seeing the benefits that our clients have experienced. By the way, if you don't know who I am, my name is Shanae Murray. I have about a million followers on LinkedIn, 265,000 LinkedIn newsletter subscribers, and I started just by marketing myself on LinkedIn starting in late 2018. I'm going to go through the list and then I'm going to add some details to every single one of these benefits. Attract better employees. Retain top talent. Win back former employees that maybe you have lost to a competitor. Eliminate cold calls or cold DMs, because now clients will come to you. Get more responses from cold calls or cold DMs if you choose to continue to do them. Filter potential clients through content, and by doing so, you attract clients with the same morals and values as yourself. Earn trust before ever talking to a prospect, before ever getting on the phone with them. When they're sitting across from you virtually or in person, they already trust you. Earn referrals from a broader audience because now people on the internet associate you with your specific expertise and have enough context to refer you to whoever needs your services or your products in the future. That they know Attract high quality clients that do not lowball you and that pay you more for whatever it is that you offer. Have successful launches because you actually have a warm audience that is interested in whatever it is that you have to offer. Sell out in person speaking events.Speaker 2:
I'm still going.Speaker 1:
Influence AI's future, which is, I believe, a responsibility of all leaders in the room. Speaking opportunities so you'll get more speaking opportunities that you don't have to hunt for. Build relationships with investors before you ever need them because they already trust you. Mentorship opportunities so build relationships with mentors that you probably would have never had access to otherwise. Collaborate with influencers effortlessly. Amplify new voices that are up and coming with your platform. Connect with other power players that indirectly endorse you and add to your credibility. Get invited to podcasts without you having to ask first. Launch or grow a podcast and increase the quality of guests who will come on your podcast and get a better book deal. Slash pre sell your books on a waiting list. Slash increase your chances of becoming a bestseller once your book launches because of your reach. If you're interested in any single one of these benefits, then personal branding should be a top priority for you. The first benefit on the list is attracting top talent with a strong LinkedIn presence. You're sharing the values and the morals of the company. You're sharing why you started the company. People start to get emotionally invested with the purpose of why you are doing what you are doing and they want to become part of that. So the CEOs with very well known personal brands. They rarely have to go on the hunt for top talent because they have more leverage. They're reaching more people For them. The top talent usually initiates. According to statistics, a compelling employer brand generates 50% more qualified job candidates. Teams that win, including universities, too. Harvard starts with top tier candidates. Not every single person gets into Harvard. It's higher quality alumni. They're more likely to succeed in corporate or start their entrepreneurial journey or achieve the goals that they set out to achieve. Same with the sports team. Nobody wants the fifth draft pick. If you start with A players, you're more likely to succeed. So if you're starting with higher quality candidates from the get go, there's two companies. Which one is more likely to succeed? The one that starts with higher quality people or lower quality people that benefit alone. The fact that CEOs are sleeping on this is truly insanity. A significant 84% of job candidates consider a company's reputation as an employer when deciding where to apply for a job. I guarantee you that people that have huge personal brands they almost have too many applications that they have to sift through versus ones that don't. They're begging people to just start working today. So it's not just about attracting employees. It's about keeping them. I personally know two consultants that work for Patrick Bed David. If you don't know who Patrick Bed David is, he started on YouTube. He built a health insurance company, he sold it and exited for nine figures, and he's continuing to grow his influence on all social media platforms, including LinkedIn. He has grown significantly in the last year across a few social platforms. These two people they are so bought into the culture, especially as he grows, because it also positively affects their brand. As he expands his influence. It translates to this increased pride, this increased satisfaction for them to even be associated with him, to be invited to his home, to take pictures with him, to gain access and personalized mentorship from him, because, as his social value increases, his perceived power and all of that increases and they're associated with him. Any other company can come to them and offer them more money, but because they're so bought into the culture and their association with the brand, it would be hard for them to leave. And this is not woo-woo stuff. This is backed up by data Employees at companies that invest in personal branding initiatives are 27% more likely to feel optimistic about the company's future and 20% of them are more likely to stay at that company. 40% are more likely to believe that the company is more competitive and think about it. When you are constantly sharing your vision and your employees are constantly in front of your content and being affected by your content the positivity where the company's going they feel more secure. They don't feel like they're working at a company that's gonna be out of business tomorrow or they don't feel like they're working for someone that's gonna be irrelevant tomorrow. Now let's talk about winning back employees that you may have lost. I was advising a CEO that is in a very blue collar industry and if you don't know blue collar industries, the guys kind of jump around companies, right, they'll get mad at their foreman or their project manager. They'll curse them out on the job site. The next week they're working for the competitor. It happens all the time in construction and a lot of blue collar industries. But what was interesting, that one of the first benefits that this CEO they've done over a hundred million dollars started to see was that, because of his visibility on LinkedIn, a lot of his top executive employees that had maybe gone to a competitor started to reach out to him to work for him again, which is so powerful, because that would have taken a salary increase, that would have taken months of negotiation, of reaching out to them, of hounding them just to get them back, but they wanted to willingly come back because of his visibility. So this is the first part of it attracting, retaining and maybe winning back higher quality employees. And when you really start to grow your business, you realize at the end of the day, it's just about the quality of people. So let's talk about connecting with power players. When you grow your visibility on LinkedIn and position yourself a certain way, other powerful people, whether they are influencers or just powerful people within business, are more likely to connect with you without you even having to personalize the connection request. And I'll give you a few examples. Over the weekend, I found a couple people on LinkedIn that specialized in partnering with influencers when launching a product. One of these people is going up against a legacy brand and basically positioning a drink product. He has taken it from almost zero to 250 million. The first year I sent him a connection request and in less than five minutes he accepts. Now I have the ability to message him whenever I want. The same thing goes for Grant Cardone, patrick Bet, david, for billionaire Navine Jane, all of these people that have been on the podcast, just because of the positioning on LinkedIn. It gives them a sense of oh, this person is trustworthy and I should accept their connection request. The value of this cannot be underestimated. When someone connects with you first degree connection on LinkedIn, they're almost indirectly endorsing you because now their entire network knows that you are a first degree connection and that they kind of vouch for you in one way or another. When more powerful people connect with you, without even thinking twice, you are exposing yourself to more powerful people in their network that now know that that person vouches for you. The other thing is you can eliminate cold calls and cold DMs if you want to. Personally, this was my situation, because the only reason why I started to create content in the first place, I didn't even know what personal brand was. All I knew is what I hated, and I hated to cold call. I hated to cold DM. I hated to talk to someone, convince them of my skills and then low balling the price. For me, content was the answer, because I was like what is everyone doing that doesn't cold call? And the number one thing was content, especially video. So that's the only reason I started. I didn't start to become an influencer, I didn't start to build a personal brand. I didn't even know what that was. I started because I didn't enjoy the process of convincing and like pulling someone's arm to do business with me. I wanted them to be excited about doing business with me, to want to do business with me, and content for me changed the game. So within 60 days, I went from having to do 100% outbound to changing that and going 100% inbound, and the results of that were something that I also did not expect that when someone reached out to me, instead of a prospect call being like an interrogation what do you do, how can you help us? And all this stuff, they understood more or less what I could do for them. It was just about clarifying questions and more about timeline and the type of people, their attitude, their energy, their morals and values I could see were much more aligned with me, and once I started to see that, I was like okay, I'm going all in on content If you want that experience. I highly recommend content and personal branding for that reason, because for me, I could say that it changed the game. Now, if you are someone that actually enjoys cold calling and outreach and outbound. I would still recommend it. I got a message over the weekend by someone who helps place top sales talent at SaaS companies. He messaged me over the weekend after positioning himself on LinkedIn for about a year and this was his message. We were in a conversation and then he texted back. He said by the way, we've been scaling cold email and cold calling. We're about three to five appointments a day. They all use LinkedIn to confirm who I am and because of my visibility they get pre-sold on the call. Wanted to say thank you. I know I've been slacking a little lately, but I'm trying to get back to posting the way I was. It doesn't even matter if he continues to post at that cadence now, because he already did the work and he's seen as an authority because of his following on LinkedIn. They're kind of vetting him and then getting on the calls with him with less effort, with less resistance, and that in and of itself, is so valuable. Shankar, do you want to add anything to that?Speaker 3:
For me it was very interesting to see that it can happen much quicker than one would expect. Not everyone is as far along in the journey as you are, but I remember a couple of years ago I was looking for a LinkedIn expert and I found an article about you and I started following what you teach and I went from 1500 connections to 3000 in a very narrow segment. I focus a lot on working with healthcare professionals and I was very surprised at what you described the inbound leads and also the referrals referrals from people who I didn't really know that they would care about giving me referrals in that very narrow circle. That started happening very, very fast.Speaker 1:
Same thing with clients. The ultimate power, I'd say, of personal branding is your ability to attract clients with the same morals and values as yourself. Not only are you going to enjoy working with those clients a lot more, but they're more likely to communicate better with you. From there, you could really design other offers that could best serve them, get the results that they want. They're more likely to stay clients for longer periods of time and to refer other people just like them with similar morals and values, maybe without you even having to ask. So when you look at a business, retention is so key and it's easier to retain clients that will do the work, that align with their morals and values and that truly you could attract just with the messaging that you put out there. If not, it could be this hamster wheel where you're constantly getting clients and then losing them, and that's just really, really exhausting. Long term Influencing AI's future. We won't go too deeply into this, but there's a AI expert. His name is Mogadet. His message is that if you truly consider yourself a leader, as leaders we almost have a moral obligation to start sharing content, sharing our ideas, sharing our morals and values on the internet with others, Because by doing so, we become a role model, not for others in our communities that look like us or may resonate with our story. Not just for them, but for AI, for training AI, by being an exceptional model showing exceptional characteristics through content. A lot of that data will be used to train AI and will ultimately influence the future of humanity. What he premises and predicts is that if even just 1% of leaders start to share, start to stand up and start to express themselves positively with exceptional messages on the internet, it will impact AI enough to still be good for the future of humanity, and we may have to do a part two of this room. Maybe tomorrow will be part two, because we still have building a community that is ultimately priceless, successful launches with a warm audience. I get asked all the time, shene, how do I sell my coaching program? How do I sell my course on LinkedIn? You don't. The answer is you don't. The answer is you share content that will help people and that earns their trust, and the right ones will reach out to you for the link. People are smart. If you earn their trust before you ever even have to convince them or anything, they will literally just be like send me the link. Right now I'm not playing. I get these messages all the time. There's a strategy to this and, again, that's why, if you want to really take it seriously, do not message me. If you're not going to take it seriously, message me the word challenge and I'll send you the link to join. But building a successful community, successful launches with a warm audience selling out in person speaking events. There's a podcaster that I listened to. He announced his speaking event the first in person speaking event ever that he's doing, and he sold out in 30 minutes. After doing three years of content and every single event that he'll have in the future, he will also sell out in 30 minutes. This is a long term mentality, and the long term mentality could potentially change your life, but not only that. This is much bigger than you. This is much bigger than me. It's the ripples that we have, the impact that we have by sharing a message that could potentially save someone's life. Give them enough hope to stay another day. Give them enough hope to leave that toxic job and start that business. Give them enough hope to not quit on their business and keep going. Those are the type of people that I want to work with Speaking opportunities. I have so many people that get speaking opportunities, even board member roles, just from their visibility on LinkedIn Mentorship opportunities, the ability to collaborate. I mean this may be a week's series. I want to give those in the audience who have done the work to maybe build their personal brand be able to pour into others who are listening so you can raise your hand, or if you have a question about starting to build your personal brand, you could also raise your hand, dr Rajesh.Speaker 4:
Thank you so very much. My question to you in the era of instant gratification, when the AI is said to give you the shortcuts, how do you hold your horses to enforce, visualize and capitalize the future?Speaker 1:
The simplest way to do this is to just spend more time with people that have a very long-term mindset. You need to surround yourself with people where, if you fail or whatever, they kind of giggle and then they lift you back up because they didn't expect you to have a home run on your first try. For me, the community is everything. I didn't really start thinking that way until I started to see how people that made $10 million a year, $40 million a year and that were building companies that had already done $100 million around me started to think. And none of them think in terms of days or months or even years. They really do think in terms of decades, and I think that rubs off, and I think when you have those type of people in your corner, it's almost impossible for you to lose, especially if they have your best interest in mind. That's really the first thing. The second thing is really to stop thinking about yourself in the process and to on the micro when you don't feel like doing a video. I kind of reframe it. If I don't do this audio room, maybe someone that could start growing the personal brand and go on to impact a million people doesn't hear the message. I almost have this internal obligation and duty to spread the word, and that's more of the faith that I have that if I don't use the talents and skills at my disposal, they will be taken from me, and if I do use them to make a positive impact in the world, they will just be enhanced and magnified. And I think that too many people are sitting on talents and skills that they were given and they're not using them. And what you don't use, you lose. So that would be my answer. Thank you, dr Rajesh.Speaker 3:
So I think when there is a technology such as AI that commoditizes the ability to be quick and eloquent and to be creative, then automatically that starts a certain respect that it gets. So we need to think as content creators okay, what's beyond that, what is a little bit harder to achieve, what cannot be shortcutted with AI, and in my opinion, that is the ability to build trust and also the ability to create community, and that happens with whatever is most difficult or more difficult than the thing that the masses have access to and, yes, ai is something that the masses have access to, but using video as an authentic communication medium to build trust and community. That is something that we still, to this point, have to do, and to learn and to build skill and habits around that.Speaker 1:
What Shankar is saying is that AI is easy and video is hard. Because video is hard, you have to show up. You have to have the courage to share your message. You got to do a little makeup. Right, how to do a little makeup? Just from this 40 minute message, I could get 30 short clips that could go on and maybe generate at least a million views across different platforms. So now I have leverage, but it took time. I had to wake up this morning, I had to exercise, I had to get in the groove, I had to do makeup, I had to set up the equipment and all of that is resistance and is hard. I could have just had chat GBT, write this transcript, run it through the machine with an AI voice and still be in bed in my pajamas, and that's what most people will do and that's why most people will be replaceable.Speaker 2:
Well, first of all, thank you for the content this morning and getting up and putting the work in because it does matter, and I want to just give a little testimony based on everything you shared, and I've gotten to know Shanae and Sean Carr personally over the last few weeks as part of a cohort of people doing what she's describing. But I came to know her through her content back in 2018, 2019. When she started, I was in a corporate position responsible for building a profile and a platform and a brand Personal brand for our CEO, the company I worked for and leaned into what she was putting out there. So for the next three, four years, applying what I was learning through her content, I succeeded in growing that person's platform, building that platform and then, when I jumped out into business just over a year ago, begin seeking out the coaches that I needed. When the opportunity arose to join a cohort and be part of this and I took the four day video challenge. It's a great entree in understanding how to start building that and now digging deeper into that consistent placement, got to host a room myself this morning and had some great interaction with people. I'm still getting some great feedback. Can't stress enough the importance of getting the right people, investing in the coaching and putting the training to work. So, shanay, thank you, shankar, thank you those on this audio today, at the very least, follow and engage and, if you're in that position, take the opportunity to join and jump in. So appreciate y'all.Speaker 1:
That's truly what gives me other than family. My daughter gives me the greatest sense of achievement. It's not just about me growing anymore, it's when I see other people grow and they have a chance to influence other people's lives, like through their audio rooms or through their live video events and their influence grows, their newsletter grows, and that just makes me happy because they'll be able to go on and make a positive impact with that influence. And you're definitely one of those people, Roy. I know you say the automatic feeling or emotion is distrust. How important is personal branding, do you think? Because I think that's a way of earning people's trust. You couldn't be more right.Speaker 2:
People want to get to know you and I cited some research this morning that a company does every year. It's called the Edelman Trust Barometer and what I shared in the room was that their findings, through surveying tens of thousands of people every year for the last 20 years, in the most recent surveys, their finding was that distrust is the default human emotion. Now, right, so I'll say that again distrust is the default human emotion, which means all of us are starting behind the line, way behind the line. It's not just they don't know us and don't trust us, they're programmed now, we're all programmed now, because of everything we've gone through, to not trust. And it's important for you to take responsibility for the relationship to be intentional. And in this day and age, on this platform, part of that is being consistently present in a way that you're being generous. You're giving away the things that most people might say oh, you need to sell that. No, no, no, no, no. You give away your best stuff. Seth Godin says this he gives away his best stuff and they'll buy his book to memorialize having had that content. That's meaningful, that's a real relationship that you're striking out to have with people, not a transactional engagement If you're just out there searching to close a sale, it's a transactional engagement you're looking for. If you're seeking and building relationships, you're creating lifetime engagements.Speaker 1:
I love it. Thank you so much, roy, and we are out of here. We'll continue with the list. Tomorrow I have my private community meeting coming up, so I have to go. But God bless you all and have a phenomenal day. Ciao.