Public Relations

You Were Born to Stand Out

I always knew I was different, and I felt really bad about that for most of my life. The first time I remember being consciously aware of the guilt I was holding was in middle school. I know I was aware of the guilt because for an entire year I decided to get bad grades.

This might not sound that serious, in fact, I don't even think my parents noticed. They were just happy I wasn't "hanging out with the wrong crowd" or "doing drugs," but I knew exactly what I was doing. I had a plan:

  • At less than 5 feet tall I tried out for the basketball team and I didn't get chosen.

  • I was fluent in Spanish and I decided to throw it all away to take first year French.

  • I got barely passing grades on purpose.

Why did I do this?

I had always gotten straight A's, I loved learning, I only signed up for things I knew I could succeed at, but I hated being the center of attention. I was the 'teacher's pet', I felt like my parent's 'favorite' child, and I felt guilty whenever someone would give me a compliment for my achievements. I noticed that the more I succeeded, the more attention and praise and rewards I got.

I felt guilty because if I was getting attention for doing what came easily to me, who was paying attention to the people who were struggling?

So I made myself small, I forced myself to fail, and I tried to blend in.

I thought by doing this I would free up some space, time, and energy for the people who were paying attention to me to instead pay attention to the people who really needed itIt didn't work and a year later I decided to go back to being myself. I never told anyone to stop paying attention to me because someone else needed help though; and I never felt empowered by the role models in my life to tutor another student who was struggling even when I was doing well.

Here's the thing, if you're making yourself small so you are not the center of attention because you don't want to use resources that should be given to someone else, then you are not doing anyone any favors. You are not going to change the world by taking up less space and being invisible. You certainly are not going to achieve your goals by playing small.

If this sounds like you, you need to know you were born to stand out.

This is something I have continued to realize about myself over and over again, every time I push myself outside of my comfort zone. I didn't just have this epiphany in middle school and now I am fine. I've had it over and over again every time I dare to dream bigger.

Now I ask myself on a monthly basis: "In what areas of my life am I playing small?"Then I call myself out on the things I am avoiding, procrastinating on, and creating distractions around. In order to make a difference in your life or the lives of others, you have to first stop waiting for someone else to do it.

Once you stop waiting, the fastest way out of playing small is taking action towards your dreams, and that is how you change the world. Don't walk, Run!

If you are a business owner and you are ready to stop playing small and start standing out, apply now to my publicity training program Imposter to Influencer. The world needs to hear that message that only you can share.

What Can We Learn From Steve Jobs About Publicity?

In 1997, Steve Jobs was answering questions posed by developers at Apple’s Worldwide Developer’s Conference (WWDC). While answering one of their questions, he mentions that “focusing is about saying no.”

The problem a lot of people have when they are trying to get publicity for themselves is that they lack focus. It is okay to be good at a lot of things, but not everyone needs to know everything you are good at (especially if you want to be recognized as an industry expert).

Jobs also mentions:

"Apple suffered for several years from lousy engineering management. And there were people that were going off in 18 different directions--doing arguably interesting things in each one of them. Good engineers. Lousy management.

And what happened was, you look at the farm that's been created, with all these different animals going in different directions, and it doesn't add up. The total is less than the sum of the parts. And so we had to decide: What are the fundamental directions we're going in? And what makes sense and what doesn't? And there were a bunch of things that didn't. And microcosmically they might have made sense; macrocosmically they made no sense.

...When you think about focusing, you think, well, focusing is about saying yes. No.”

Just because you can do something, doesn’t always mean you should. The same way you find a niche and stick with it in business, you need to find a lane and stay in it for publicity.

 Photo Credit: Pexels

Photo Credit: Pexels

The Visible ROI of Publicity

  • Increase Social Media Engagement

  • Targeted traffic to your website

  • New Leads in your marketing funnel

  • Sales

All of these things are measurable and work together to establish you as an authority in your industry.

The Invisible ROI of Publicity

  • Brand awareness

  • Referrals for speaking engagements

  • Referrals for more media interviews

  • Referrals to new clients

I like to think of this as scaling your word of mouth marketing campaign. Before the Internet, companies grew because they served their clients and their clients wanted to refer their friends to those companies. Today, businesses still grow this way in the beginning, but if you are not taking advantage of the benefits of scaling your audience then you are missing out on an opportunity to have word of mouth referrals from sources who have never met you and never worked with you.

If you gain a lot of publicity for yourself and there is no strategy behind it and you are talking about any topic you find interesting, you are doing yourself a disservice because you are confusing your audience. They cannot refer people to you if they do not know what you do. So, while you may be able to give advice on 18 different topics, if you want to move the needle forward and maximize your ROI on your publicity strategy, then it needs to spread a consistent message.

If you would like more tips on how you can increase your credibility online, join my 5 day publicity challenge here.

You can also watch my Truth Tuesday Video titled “Is all publicity good publicity?” on YouTube here:

How to Network at an Event Without Feeling Drained of Your Energy

Here are 6 easy things introverts can immediately start doing to improve their experience at events.

 Photo by: Phillip Van Nostrand

Photo by: Phillip Van Nostrand

How many times have you been invited to an event and the big day arrives, but a couple hours before it begins you find yourself dreading it?

You start thinking of all of the reasons why you can’t make it.

You wonder if anyone will notice if you don’t show up.

You wonder if you'll have anything in common with the people you are about to spend a few hours with.

You decide to go because you worry you feel like you have to make an appearance.

In the past, you may have found yourself experiencing the following:

  • Standing on the edges of the room by yourself wondering how soon after arriving is too early to depart;
  • Avoiding making eye contact with anyone because you don’t know what to talk about; or
  • Looking at your phone so nobody wonders why you’re standing off to the side of the room by yourself.

And if you do get brave and decide to walk up to a group of people who looks friendly, you find yourself in one of two situations. The first involves you standing there smiling and nodding. The second occurs when they turn to you and someone asks you a question. This one question can send you into sharing a story that goes on for so long that you even get tired of the sound of your own voice. This is the opposite of what you wanted but your fear of awkward silence has suddenly made you the center of attention.

You leave the event feeling exhausted and drained after meeting a number of people who you aren’t even sure if you should follow up with because you don’t feel like it was a positive experience. You even swear off events forever on your way home and write them off as a waste of time and energy. You also consider the possibility of not leaving your home for the next 5 days so you can recharge.

Here are 6 things you can start doing immediately to make yourself magnetic (and dare I say energized) while attending events:

  1. Set an intention before the event. Ask yourself: what would make this event great? Would it be meeting someone from a particular industry? Or introducing yourself to someone whose work you admire? Whatever it is, have that in mind before you arrive so you know exactly what you need to do to make the event a success.
  2. Be curious about other people and go into the event thinking that no matter who you meet they have something to teach you. When you approach people from a place of curiosity rather than a place of anxiety, you will intuitively know which questions to ask them to keep the conversation flowing naturally.
  3. Prepare a list of 4 questions you can ask anyone you meet no matter who they are and memorize them so you always have something to say. I like to start with, “What is something you are really excited about right now?” This question automatically stands out because typically the first question people ask at events is, "What do you do?"
  4. Network ‘outside of the box’. Try going to events where you won’t meet anyone from your current industry to practice getting comfortable around groups of people. This does 2 things. It prevents you from only speaking to people you know and it makes people curious about you. For instance, if you’re at an event in the finance industry and your occupation is in healthcare then people are going to naturally wonder why you are there. You won’t have to worry what to say because they will be asking you thoughtful questions. The group will naturally want to make you feel comfortable and welcome in this situation because most people would consider what you are doing really brave. As a result, the conversations will be geared towards topics that they think you would feel comfortable talking about.
  5. Be helpful. If you see someone standing on the outskirts of the room, looking down, who is alone, walk over to him or her and smile and introduce yourself. Chances are they will be relieved you said, "Hello." You can even break the ice by mentioning that you don’t know anyone there and ask how that person heard about the event to get the conversation started. It is likely you will have a lot in common with that person, because you have stood in his or her shoes in the past.
  6. Be conscientious of your body language. Two of the most important things you can do are smile and don’t cross your arms. If you want to take this a bit further, think about the body language someone displays when they are confident, approachable, and friendly. You can contrast it in your mind with the body language someone might display if they are unapproachable. Adopt the body language of that person you thought of who is confident.

are you exhausted after conferences because you spent all day trying to meet new people in the same industry as you?

How to Get Promoted on Purpose

Experts Unleashed Podcast Interview with Joel Erway:
How To Get Promoted On Purpose w/ Tara Bradford | # 013

When you’re striving for recognition as an industry expert, you pull out all the stops. Some
even sacrifice their authentic selves just for a sliver of the spotlight. But what if there was a
way to gravitate people toward you without having to sell out…or sell yourself?

It was an honor to be interviewed on the Experts Unleashed podcast! In Episode 013, Joel and I got to talk about how I connect the dots of my journey from nurse to high-
performance coach to founding my PR firm, The Potentialista — and how I was able to  become a
natural media magnet by planting the right seeds in the right landscapes.

During the interview, we touched on:

  • Using uniqueness as strength and being different on purpose
  • Breaking into established groups in a new town
  • How to become a magnet and get people to come to you first
  • Building a solid network from complete scratch
  • What holds people back from getting more media for themselves
  • Leveraging deep connections and building a personal brand
  • And much more...

Click here to listen to Episode 013 and you can follow along with these show notes:

[3:58] Starting line: While she worked as a nurse, Tara started a side-hustle recording
makeup tutorials.
[6:02]Realizing potential: She started getting good feedback from the videos including
one woman who thanked her for helping her marriage.
[7:27]Hiring a coach: When she moved to New York, she worked with a business coach to
help monetize her YouTube channel. But really, he improved her mindset.
[8:50] Supportive network: Friends took notice of Tara's newfound confidence and
encouraged her to teach others her ways.
[10:24]Discovering passion: By the time she was done working with the coach, she
wanted to be a coach and make a bigger impact.
[13:46]First mentor: She met a serial entrepreneur who invited her to networking events
but she refused —she never saw herself as an entrepreneur.
[15:19]Paradigm shift: After a fateful conversation, Tara began viewing herself through
other people’s eyes. “That’s when I learned more about personal branding and solving
problems for my target audience.”
[17:21]At a crossroads: Signed up for coaching certification not knowing if she’d pursue it
as a business. She had 2 weeks to find her own NY apartment, a job, and inform her grad
school she wasn't coming.
[18:24] August 2017: One month after she found an apartment and landed a hospital
admin job, she launched her coaching practice.
[20:38] A walkthrough of Tara’s 10-week coaching certification program.
[21:49] Featured on Dr. Oz…kind of: Although Tara wasn’t sure how to market herself,
she was featured in the media every 2 weeks including on the Dr. Oz show. After her
segment was bumped, she started exploring PR.
[24:35]Seeing opportunity: She recognized the need to help people get publicity after
being asked how she did it. One year into her entrepreneurial journey, Tara began doing PR
for people.
[27:49]Getting clients: All of her clients found her through social media, her website or
guest blogs. "I never had to actually sell anything. People just came to me and said ‘I wanna
work with you’."
[29:17]The evolution of The Potentialista: How Tara connected the dots between previous
experiences and what she does for clients today.
[32:07]Attention magnet: She put herself in situations where she could be a magnet for
conversations that she's afraid to start herself.
[32:53]Building a network from scratch: Attended events with established groups
where she’d be the odd woman out. People wanted to hear her story. "When you put
yourself out there and make yourself different on purpose, people want to help you achieve
your goal."
[42:09] How Tara uses Potentialista to help people build their ideal reputation.
[45:10]“People think they can't be featured in the same publication twice and that's holding
them back from getting more for themselves.”
[47:28]Be vulnerable: “Doing something brave, courageous, and vulnerable is what makes
people wanna help you…they think ‘wow you're really putting yourself out there in a way I
could never or have never done. I admire that and wanna be a part of it.”

Join Joel's Facebook group where you’ll find fellow experts plus access to hangouts
and webinars to support you on your journey.