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Media Appearances: Your Guide to PR Professional Dress

Guest Blog post

As a PR professional, knowing how to dress for media appearances is of utmost importance. There are few departments who represent a company more directly then the PR team themselves. Though preparing yourself for an appearance with the media can be a bit stressful in the beginning, creating your wardrobe is essential. When you prep for your next media appearance, be sure to use the tips below as your guide for PR professional dress.

Embody Your Company

First and foremost, your attire when you step out into the eye of the public should always embody your company. Whether your office wear is business casual or completely casual, onlookers should be able to tell who you work for from your dress. Ask yourself if someone else in your workplace would be comfortable in the same outfit you plan on wearing in front of the media; if the answer is yes, you’re probably on the right track with your look. Remember that you are the direct link between your audience and your company. Allow your audience to get a glimpse of all your business has to offer through the professionalism of your look.

Play it Safe

Going in front of the media is not the time to step out of the box with your attire. While it might be tempting to make a bold outfit choice in order to stand out, playing it safe is always your best option.

Keep your look simple, modest, and clean. Whether you opt for a simple button up shirt or sleek black capris, stay to what’s familiar to you. Most name brands offer in-season looks that will keep you feeling professional and prepared.

Online thrift shops like thredUP even have great names like Madewell to help you save on the perfect top as well as anything else you might need.

Avoid clothing with large pockets as they might tempt you to store clunky items on your person. Bring a small briefcase or purse with you to the appearance to store those extra items you need with you and leave them in the greenroom or wherever it’s safe to store them during your appearance. Being free of pocket items such as your phone and wallet will give you clean lines and leave you feeling more comfortable and less weighed down when you address the public.

Be Color Conscious

The colors you wear can tell a lot about you and about your company. If the branding of your organization revolves around a specific color, it doesn’t hurt to incorporate it into your professional look.

Stay away from bright and bold color choices along with excessive patterns. Opt for safe and simple neutral tones that won’t leave your audience feeling distracted by your look.

Allow the colors you wear to compliment you as it will make your words have more of an impact. A neutral tone of red, like burgundy, is both a subtle and powerful example of a color that will help you feel brave and bold in front of a crowd. Be aware of colors that might show off sweat stains, or end up being see-through. Choose a color that you feel confident in and you’re sure to make a great impression on your listeners.

Know Your Location & Audience

While your professional dress should always embody your company, it should also take into account the environment of the media appearance. Always consider the location of your appearance and who your audience is. An outdoor conference will more than likely mean you should opt for sensible and simple footwear.

Check the weather outlook for the day to be prepared for the heat, rain, or a cold spell. The more prepared you are, the more professional you’ll look to your audience. Access the age range of your viewers as well to ensure your outfit remains timeless. The more you let your look speak for itself, the more comfortable you’ll feel as you represent your company.


Why I love Lady Gaga – and You – Unfiltered 

I was walking down our tree lined street yesterday when a boy popped his head out of a car window parked in his driveway.

“Hi!” he yelled.

“Hi!” I yelled back. “What cha doin?”

“Washing my car,” he said.

“Oh, don’t mind him,” his father chimed in. “He is only three and doesn’t have a filter yet.”

“I hope he never gets a filter,” I shouted back.

Kids who don’t have filters make connections. I’m always on the lookout for kids calling out to me across the street or anywhere – asking me to push them on a tire swing, examine a bug, put up a Halloween decoration –  as it happens often – up to the age of about six. Then the filter veils over their natural, unencumbered exuberance, and inhibits their instinct to connect.

What I loved about the movie, A Star is Born with Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper was their lack of filters.

They sang apart and together unselfconsciously with abandon, grabbing the mic, swaying with the music and deeply connecting with their audience through their song stories, their voices, their longing.

Cooper, who directed the film, let the camera linger on their eyes and lips and faces. So rare now in our speeded up world of fast cuts, flashy scenes, over the top emotions, tell it quick before we lose’ em, mentality.

What is so often lost is these pure moments of “sexy listening.” A term my sweetie coined when describing how I “lured” him into our relationship by hanging on his every word in rapt attention. A Star is Born is made up of an entire movie of “sexy listening.”

What  deeply saddened me is what happened in the transformation of Ally from a singer in a Drag Queen bar into a star…. In the process the filter of fame ruined the essence of what made her touch us in the first place.

Which brings me to some thoughts about fame…

Please don’t tell me you want to be famous.

Instead tell me what you are doing to make things better millions of people — or one person — on this planet.

Or how you’re going to bring joy in some small or big way to someone who needs it.

Don’t let anyone commercialize your talent. Don’t let them spiff, glam, or beef it up.

Don’t take something beautiful and pure and add sequins or shine to it.

Let it be.

Stay true to your self.

Keep the essence, lose the glitz.

Tell true stories. Connect. Let go of adornments.

Touch people with how you’re scared, weak and paralyzed.

But also show them that there is hope and how you’ve come through your pain or poverty and arrived at who you are today, whole, but cracked, so others can get in and feel who you are at the core, no matter how much you’ve glazed your pot.

Stay in touch with the thing that made you come alive in the first place. Music, art, words, sports, science, coding, people, whatever your jam is, feed it everyday. Listen to where it leads you next little by little.

It is your compass and will not send you astray even if it looks like the direction you’re going is taking you nowhere fast.

Don’t worship speed as your god.

Instead breathe in the molecules of today one by one. Each molecule was once inhaled and exhaled by someone you love from history, or yesterday or today. Or someone you hate. Breathe them in too for this will make you stronger even as you resist it. And you will soften in the places where the world has made you hard.

Remember your roots. Where you came from is important. It feeds who you are today.

Practice kindness. I’m going to say this again as we have strayed so far away from being kind. Find ways to do or say something kind every day. Even in the midst of your anger and frustration. Even when you can’t find an example to follow. Although there are many. Find them.

Gaze inside and follow your own heart as it’s made of kindness, first and foremost.

If you’ve forgotten just look into the face of your own child. Their kindness came from you. Look into the face of any child. It is all there. And it came from us. All of us. No filters.

Back to Lady Gaga and being unfiltered for a moment. I watched her on Stephen Colbert when he asked her what she would be doing if she wasn’t singing and acting. She said she’d still be singing in bars – because that’s what she loves to do. Sing. I believe her. She wasn’t just acting with Bradley Cooper in a Star is Born, she was there, 100% of her, sexy listening, sexy being, undistracted, whole.

Would you still be doing what you’re doing if it didn’t have the promise of fame or acclaim?

I hope so.

For the sake of all of us.



PR Tips to Make Your Movement Go Viral

By Guest Blogger Alison Luterman (Plus a poem!) – with my video commentary on how to make a movement go viral — from Erica Mandy’s Show, The News Worthy

I was walking up the street minding my own business when a superhero jumped out in front of me. He landed in a wide-legged stance, arms outstretched, head thrown back in true Olympic superhero style. He was about three feet high and was wearing sneakers that lit up with flashing lights when he moved.

“I’m magic!” he announced.
“You are magic–I can see that!” I said.

It had been two weeks since the mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, and I was still in a funky mood. Events, both national and personal, had been clouding my ability to see the magic in life. But here it was, on a bright Tuesday afternoon when the dogwood was blooming.

“I’m also the fastest runner,” the super-hero went on. “Wanna see?”
“Yes, please!”

He tore up the sidewalk, his sneakers flashing.

“Wow, you are super fast!!” His Dad was leaning up against the family SUV, chuckling.
“He’s actually the fastest runner in the world,” he clarified. “It’s not everyday you get to see something like that. I can understand if you’re overwhelmed.”

I put my hand on my heart and staggered back. “It’s going to take me awhile to recover.”

In truth I hope never to recover from the magic of children. It may be our only hope as a species.

Like so many other people, I’m still blown away by the power of the young students speaking up now for gun control, especially Emma Gonzalez, the shaven-headed, bisexual, Latinx student (president of her school’s Gay-Straight Student Alliance), who rose up out of the smoke and spilled blood of the Parkland massacre, and has been speaking truth to power like a lioness.

If you haven’t seen the video of her making an impassioned plea for gun control while wiping away tears–weeping freely, but making her points with fierce accuracy, including the amount of money the Great Pretender accepted from the NRA for his campaign–go watch it.  (Spoiler alert: 30 million dollars.)

Watch the way she feels deeply, but also has facts and figures at her command, and uses them. That’s not easy. When I’m crying my voice shakes, or it knots up in my throat, my chin quivers uncontrollably, and I feel foolish and naked. I’d prefer to hide under the bed than let people see me like that.

But it’s the job in front of us right now–all of us. Find our deepest feelings and speak from that vulnerable, exposed place.

It turns out many of the young activists effectively challenging Senators and Congress are drama club kids. I was a drama club kid. It was the ultimate safe space for queer kids, outcasts, weirdos. The energy and passion, the intense bonding love that gets generated backstage can be used for so many good things. You can put on a play, you can read your poetry at an open mic, you can start a movement and take your message to Congress.

Art teaches us to be brave. And we need a lot of courage these days. And a lot of love. Hold your friends and companions, fellow-artists, fellow-activists, children and the young at heart extra tightly. And don’t stop speaking truth to power even if it makes you cry.

Watching the Giraffes

The baby giraffe stands
in the shadow of the tall
mother-body,
both of their astonishing
necks marked
with a perfect mosaic pattern
like kitchen linoleum.

How close the gods come to
us sometimes,
how quietly.

Then the tallest one
who has been gazing off into
the distance,
his small head atop that
neck
like a long lonesome train
whistle
high above everything,
lets loose a Niagara of
yellow pee
and another giraffe ducks
a swanlike neck down,
down,
to catch a deep, hot
mouthful of urine,then undulates back up,
swanlike, elegant,
gulping and swallowing.So that too is part of it.

How they take
what they are thirsty for
without apology,
as I am drinking in the gentle
weight
of the child’s small trusting
body
leaning against my arm
on the bench at the zoo,
both of us watching the
animals
without saying anything.

Alison Luterman’s three books of poetry are The Largest Possible Life; See How We Almost Fly; and Desire Zoo. Her poems and stories have appeared in The Sun, Rattle, Prairie Schooner, Nimrod, The Atlanta Review, Tattoo Highway, and elsewhere.. She has also written an e-book of personal essays, Feral City, and more than half a dozen plays, including Oasis, Saying Kaddish With My Sister, Glitter and Spew, Touched, and two musicals, The Chain and Nasty Women. She performs with the Oakland-based improvisation troupe Wing It! and has given writing workshops all over the country, including at Omega and Esalen Institutes.

She teaches memoir at The Writing Salon in Berkeley, and is available for private coaching in writing or creativity, both in-person or on-line. She also loves to teach easy accessible theater games and writing prompts to groups. For more information, please visit her website at www.alisonluterman.net.


Your 12-Month Publicity Plan: Right Resolutions for You

Resources I mentioned:

Get Your 12-Month Publicity Plan + 40+ Magazine Editorial Calendars + The 100 Word Email that Can Get The Media to Call You.

Magazine Editorial calendars 2018

40+ Magazine Editorial calendars

Social scientist BJ Fogg has a system to develop desired habits, called Tiny Habits.

Enjoy delicious anti-aging dark chocolate and youthify without pain, surgery or injections.

Anti-aging Dark Chocolate

Esthechoc Anti-aging Dark Chocolate

Time your productivity and reward yourself with the Focus Booster app

Temptation Bundling: The thing I couldn’t remember when you link something onerous that you don’t want to do with something pleasurable that you love.

What I repeat every day: Open my path before me, and grant me the opportunity to be of maximum good in the world. ~Caroline W. Casey

I forgot the mention my favorite Instagram feed. This one always makes me laugh and feel good. So if you’re feeling low, and like everything is just too darn much, head over here for a jolt of joy. Then once uplifted you can move forward.

self-esteem

Still thinking about your New Years’ Resolutions? Some more things to ponder from past years here and here.



6 Weird Ways to Get a Reporter’s Attention For Your Business

Guest post by Victoria Green

Getting media attention – especially the right kind of attention – is something of an art. Whether you’re a celebrity, a business owner, or a politician, it’s all about finding an angle. And not just that – you have to be able to get a reporter’s attention in the first place. This can be easier said than done.

Bear in mind that reporters and media journalists are solicited hundreds of times a day. Their email inboxes are virtually overflowing. So if you want their attention, you need to go about it in the right way. You need to stand out from the crowd – even if that means taking an unconventional approach.

With this in mind, here are 6 weird ways to get a reporter’s attention. (See also: 9 Steps to Be a Thought Leader — and Become a Media Darling).

Start with Google

Google is an amazing resource to unearth useful information about the reporter, what they cover, and how they like to be approached.

A good place to start your ‘Googleathon’ is social media. See how they interact with others online, and whether they regularly interact with others pitching them ideas. You can also look to their work bio to see if they specify preferences.

There are different schools of thought on the best way to approach a reporter with an idea for a story. They may prefer email, Twitter, or a good old-fashioned phone call. In the unlikely event that they aren’t present on social media, you can defer to phone or email.

HOT TIP: look out for any pet peeves they regularly complain about. Take note as well of the current issues that they’re tweeting or retweeting. See if there’s any common ground you can use to help build a connection. Maybe you have a product that might help? Or maybe you feel the same way about a social issue?

Ultimately, if you already have a feel for the reporter and what s/he likes and dislikes, you have a better chance of reaching out to them successfully.

Weird ways to get media attention. source: pexels

Take a lesson From Tinder

The more I think about it, the more I realize that attempting to reach out and get the attention of a reporter is much like modern dating. Thanks to online dating, we often have a chance to find out about someone before we decide to approach them. When we do decide to make a move, the opening line is critical.

Tinder lines can be hilariously terrible. They can also be downright dull. Mastering the art of a good opener is paramount if you’re serious about looking for love online. And if you’re serious about getting your story picked up by the media, then it’s equally crucial.

‘Hey, how are you?’ is a great way to get ignored by a journalist. It does nothing to spark their curiosity. It lacks creativity and fails to disclose your reason for getting in touch.

Powerful subject lines for an opening email are:

  • Concise
  • Engaging
  • Unambiguous
  • Personalized
  • Value-driven

Remember, your pitch must immediately rouse the reporter’s interest. An effective subject line really is half the challenge. Check out these top 10 email subject line formulas for inspiration. You  may be surprised to learn that in some cases, “profanity f*cking works”.

Journalists also love data — so put your best foot forwards and give them some awesome data for free. Running an ecommerce business? Why not send out some surveys to your customers via social media and email to find out more about their habits? From family life and holidays, to food habits and leisure — there are plenty of useful insights and stories lurking out there.

Play it cool

Yep – the online dating metaphor still stands. When you’re building a relationship with a reporter, timing is important. Journalists are busy people with full schedules, and your clinginess will not be appealing to them.

Be respectful of what the reporter already has on their plate. Realize that when you send them a pitch, they’re probably not going to be able to respond right away – unless you’re very lucky and caught them at exactly the right moment. Give them at least a few days to respond before following up.

If the story is especially time-sensitive, then you need to make this clear when you reach out to them first time around. Conveying urgency is another great way to get a reporter’s attention.

weird ways to get a reporter’s attention. source: pexels

Send them a video

Video is changing how we create and consume news. Journalists know it, and if you can help them source quality video content, then they’re going to be very happy with you indeed. Here in 2017, video content represents 74% of all internet traffic (Source).

So if you want to give your story a boost and make it more likely to hit the headlines, consider sending a video along with your pitch. 4X as many consumers would prefer to watch a video about a product than to read about it – and the same goes for news stories. News publications love video because it encourages readers to stay on the page for longer.

Making a vaguely professional-looking video doesn’t have to be hard. There are lots of great apps out there for making videos, including iMovie, PowerDirector, and LumaFusion.

Be willing to let it go

With time stacked against them, most reporters will probably require a follow-up a few days after you’ve pitched them your story. In most instances, they’ll probably appreciate the reminder — always with added ‘new’ information that’s of value to them — not, “Did you get my email about…”.

However, if you’ve already chased them a couple of times and received nothing but stony silence in return, you might need to try a different approach, angle, or twist on the topic. You can also ask if your pitch might be a better fit with someone else at their organization.

The risk is that you may not necessarily get the answer you’re looking for. But by putting it out there in a gentle way, such as “seems like this wasn’t a perfect fit for you – unless I hear otherwise, I will run a different idea by you soon.

If you are looking to promote something time-sensitive like a product launch or a new ecommerce venture, you are going to have to plan ahead and be mindful of editorial deadlines you can tell them that you’re offering it to them first. And if they pass you can move on to the next top person on your media list. Whether you build a store from the ground up, or invest in a readymade one, make sure that your branding and content is on-point enough to appeal to busy journos. A good pitch from a badly formulated brand may go to waste — so make sure you cover all bases.

Go bananas

Of course, if all else fails, and you really will stop at nothing to get that reporter’s attention, you can try one the following:

  • Hire a banana costume and do a little dance outside their office window
  • Pay a movie theater to play a pre-recorded video of your pitch after the ads at a movie you know they’re going to see (because they posted about it on social media)
  • Accidentally bump into them on the bus while holding a basket of kittens
  • Heroically save them from falling into a pond

Disclaimer: These methods are not tried and tested. I hold no responsibility for them going wrong.

via GIPHY

We need the attention of reporters for all sorts of reasons. Maybe you’re trying to make a story or piece of content go viral. Perhaps you just bought an online business and you want brand coverage. Possibly you’ve found yourself in the public’s bad books, and you need a bit of good publicity. Whatever the reason, it helps to know how to go about it. Hopefully these suggestions have been useful.

Got any other great ideas? Let us know!

Victoria GreeneVictoria Greene: Brand Marketing Consultant and Freelance Writer.

Vicky is a freelance writer and ecommerce marketing consultant. She loves being part of the brand growth hacking process and producing real, measurable results. In her spare time, Vicky shares her knowledge by writing for a variety of digital publications.


Failure, Faith and Perseverance

I’m in a tizzy right now. I have an unknown, itchy red rash under my arm. My stomach is upset and bloated. And my office has a giant pile of clothes on a chair I’ve been meaning to take to the consignment store, but haven’t. When I want to shift something, I clean out. But sometimes, the shift doesn’t come soon enough. And stuff piles up.

While I continue to consult with some amazing and talented clients, at the same time I’m also moving into a new direction with my True Shield: Verbal Self-Defense For Girls. So I have a foot in both worlds — which can sometimes be crazy making. Like worried nights pacing and writing at 3:00 am, searching for that roll of sweet tarts I have in the laundry room cupboard for such emergencies.

For one thing, I didn’t really realize that I was a start-up. But that’s what I am. I have a business with no track record for a new idea.

Verbal self-defense for girls

I have all the measurements in place, but have yet to have anyone complete the program. Everyone in the schools and organizations who have purchased it is starting in August or September and while it will take me just 3 months or so to get initial statistics and evidence-based results it will take me about 9 months to get a full picture of all the survey results.

That’s almost a year! Panic. Seems like forever and a day.

Starting something new can be a maddening and discouraging process. I want to chat a bit about the three things about the process, which is often hard to love. Failure, faith, and perseverance. We are often told to embrace the journey. While that is a noble thought, the muck during the journey can weigh you down something fierce.

I just heard an interview with Jessi Klein on Terry Gross’ show Fresh Air talking about getting an Emmy while having a three month-old baby and having to pump breast milk during the ceremony which nicely sums up why embracing the journey is necessary to happiness. “…Having a baby is really hard on a marriage. So things with my husband were just – I’ll just say they were very hard ’cause we were just so tired, and it’s so crazy. And I just suddenly felt very much like, oh, I won this Emmy, and tomorrow I’m getting on a plane and I’m going right back into my own little struggles.

And nothing is really different. Like, this was great but now it is over. And I just have to be back in my sort of currently overweight, milk-laden body and waking up at 2 in the morning and 4 in the morning. And it’s hard. And the Emmy is amazing, but all of this will continue. I think it just brought into very stark relief in the moment what would have been the truth no matter what I was doing. But it was very immediate, which is that this doesn’t really mean anything for your actual happiness or your life.”

the journey is the reward even if it doesn’t feel like it

We think when we get to the big award, reward, end game, whether it’s finishing a book, landing a big deal, selling a bunch of stuff, finding love, that suddenly the world will become rosier and all that ails us will fall away. Yet, happiness often comes on the heels of failure — though rarely soon enough, it seems.

Failure.

You’ve heard the expression “Fail fast.” It’s about trying a bunch of new things and letting go of the ones that don’t work. So first I had to find people to call schools and organizations. I used Upwork and went through about four people before I found the two that consistently got results- i.e. they called the decision makers to set five-minute appointments for me to discuss the program. I failed fast with the callers by starting them all at once on different excel spread sheets for my target markets.

Failure number two. Schools are a hard sell. Most principals, counselors or PE teachers loved the program. Then it had to go to committee. Then through the budgeting process. Guess what? 99% of the schools couldn’t afford my program due to budget cuts or lack of funding. Many said that would have to get independent funding in order to implement the program. So, we moved on to organizations. Organizations totally got the concept and wanted the program. Problem? Funding. They were used to getting most of their programs free as they were mostly funded by other organizations or grants.

Faith.

So, I started researching how to get grants. Getting a grant is a laborious, time-consuming and confusing process. In short you have to make sure your mission is in absolute synch with the grantor, then you typically have to earmark those who will get the funding. Which meant that I had to start getting commitments in writing about which organizations were really keen on using my program so I could list them in the grant.

Another problem with getting grants to fund the people who wanted the program is there are no guarantees that I’ll even get the grant!

So all that work could be for nothing.

I hired an expert for that to make sure that I was on the right track. But, after talking to many of the grantors, they told me that had hesitations about giving money to an unproven program — even though they loved the idea and said would go to bat for me.

Start-up woes

My faith began to flag. Am I really going in the right direction? How many obstacles do I need to go through before I give up? So I turned to my friends. They told me to keep going. They said it was a much needed idea. They said to find a way in. They said hold fast. Today, a man in charge of programing for the Boys & Girls Clubs said he had faith in me and my program and that all girls need it. “Stay in touch. This is a great program.”

Perseverance.

One of the things that I recommend to my clients and course participants when they aren’t getting any traction with the media is to tweak. If you send in a pitch or press release and no one is biting, try a twist. Approach your topic from another angle. Switch up the perspective. Go in the back door— a non-obvious angle that isn’t a direct pitch for your business, book, product, service or cause. Think small and get specific.

What seemed to spark real interest in the contacts I was speaking with is this idea of teens and college girls teaching each other. This is my big dream for my program to become self-sustaining in this way. So my business mentor said, “Let’s approach your course from this angle.” So I did.

I got immediate interest from a Boys & Girls Club that serves an at-risk community and already has volunteers that are groomed in community service through their Keystone program. Perfect.

The head of programming for a department of education said that she thinks she could wrangle 20 girls to train that could then be dispatched back to their schools. Fantastic.

Today, I talked to a man who works in five schools where Opioid addiction is rampant. When I told him about my vision he said, “I can’t believe you just said that. We have those girls at the ready and we’ve been wanting to do something like this the up their self-esteem.” Yes.

Keep your focus on the vision.

By focusing on my original vision, the big dream and bigger mission and slightly shifting the approach, I’m now getting a more enthusiastic response — because it directly taps into the organization’s bigger mission as well.

Am I still discouraged, downtrodden, despairing and weepy? Yes. I cried my eyes out last week, and sobbed on my sweetie’s shoulder, and starting thinking about tossing in the towel. Seriously. On other days, after making calls for hours and not reaching anyone who can make a decision or having people tell me that they get a similar program for free, I feel exhausted and hopeless and have the urge to gorge on cookies.

Then I think about all the time, energy, money and inspiration I put into this. And keep going.

I talked to Susan Kennedy yesterday (SARK) about my plight as she’s an expert in keeping a person’s creative spirits high. The advice she gave me was, “When I’m tempted to deflate in this absence, instead I’m going to fill myself with presence. I’m going to remind myself of my vision and certainty.”

Which all requires discipline and managing what I tell myself. After I bemoaned my plight I told Susan that I did believe that I could already feel that my program was instituted far and wide, helping girls all over the world — and that it had already happened and that I just needed to catch up with it. We talked about the fact that we have no idea how this program has touched people and where it will reach — now and in the future.

Does this mean I won’t have days when I feel it’s all hopeless. No. Like Jessi Klein I’ll still be mired in my own daily struggles, but thank God I don’t have to pump breast milk. When I imagine her life I think I may have gotten off easy. Though it doesn’t feel that way. I just have to get through this next patch, I tell myself. I will remember the discipline of keeping to my vision and certainty. And I invoke the question I’ve told you to ask yourself: “What is my next step?” That is my question. I keep following the answers, wherever they lead.


The Ugly Upsell – and how to do it right

You can’t escape it. The ubiquitous upsell. No sooner have your gotten something for free or bought, there is more. You’ve just gotten something delicious – and now there might be more deliciousness right around the corner.

Of course I train all of my clients to offer an upsell in an online marketing campaign or funnel. We want to engage our followers and fans and then inspire them to invest – in themselves and in us.

And, on the flip side it can go too far. Like those endless sales cycle loops that ask you questions like, “Do you want to have more free time? No thanks.” Which makes you seem like an idiot. Like you made the wrong choice and you may live to regret it.

You can’t get away from the upsell, no matter where you go. We’re here in Bali and went to a little local massage place about an hour’s walk from Ubud (the town that Elizabeth Gilbert wrote about in her book, Eat, Pray, Love). As soon as we sat down in the tiny, bright green reception area to peruse the massage menu the owner was hovering over us pointing to the expensive packages.

online marketing

Susan Harrow and Clare Barry in Ubud at the Yoga Barn

Enter the ugly upsell.

It was ugly because she had no idea what we wanted – just what she wanted. More money. The package she wanted us to get included a facial (which I can’t stand) and dinner. We were on our way to a restaurant so while we were interested in eating, but having a meal in a spa that was the size of a broom closet and had a bit of a rancid oil smell didn’t appeal. She kept pushing. “You come back and get package.”

A beautiful upsell inquires, engages, entices. It shows you glorious pictures of a place like Clare Barry and Alex Franzen’s upcoming London retreat. (Sign up in the next 2 weeks and get a 10% savings with coupon code Alex10 at checkout for either the Create a Tiny Book workshop or the Reviving Retreat in London next month).

It tells you about all the wonderful feeling you’ll have – exploring yourself or breaking bread with others. A beautiful upsell transports you to your future self. It plants a little flag on where you are now.

Then moves that little flag to a different, imaginable spot — after you partake of our offering here is the transformed you. The happier, lighter, more present you or ___________________________. (Fill in the blank to the promise of your beautiful upsell).

The bottom line…

Upsells do not have to be ugly. They can be uplifting, energizing and quite glorious.

marketing upsell

How to do an upsell the right way

This is not an upsell – it’s (hopefully) a beautiful offer:

My Next New Client – You?
Some recent clients have asked me for help to redo their websites, create webinars + speaking topics, media train them for local and national TV + documentaries, create TV segments, and get their book proposal done. If any of this sounds like you — or if you have something else in mind, hop on over here and tell me a bit about yourself. I have space for one new client. I hope it’s you!

And…Want to get involved or teach my course True Shield: Verbal Self-Defense For Girls? Let’s talk.


Your Publicity Strategy: You Don’t Need to Be Brash or Loud

I just read a woman’s special report that disparaged one of my colleague’s tag lines saying, “I feel bad for those who’ve built a brand around this message.” (My colleague is a wonderful AND successful person by the way. And her brand is working just fine.). This is a poor publicity strategy.

This gal’s special report blasted me with her loud clothes, wildly colored hair, and audacious language. She made it a point to shock me. Granted, that’s HER brand, and people who resonate with in-your-face brashness will be her perfect clients.

But please don’t think you have to imitate this way of being to get media coverage, fans, followers or clients. And please never disparage anyone’s brand to promote your own. I once had a client who said she chose me over another colleague precisely because I wasn’t as “slick and sound bitey.”

There is a place for everyone, no matter how shy or small you feel. No matter how big and bold you are. No matter if you’re quiet and thoughtful. No matter your race, ethnicity or point of view. We need us all.

Be yourself. Everyone else is already taken. ~Oscar Wilde

And know that often the loud ones get attention more quickly, because, well, they are jumping up and down, blowing a bullhorn and calling attention to themselves, while you made be sitting, listening, pondering and seeking to understand others. As long as you’re sitting tall and centered in your own way of being that’s fine. Sometimes, quieting your voice makes it easier to be heard.

And, if you wish you were other, or want to shift your life in a big way before taking center stage – in the media or online, heed the advice of my dear friend Sherry who shows you how to live the life you want in the now — just as you are.

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