Mindful Marketing: Create a Better Digital World | Maggie Stara | Skillshare

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Mindful Marketing: Create a Better Digital World

teacher avatar Maggie Stara, Creative Marketer & Top Teacher

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

    • 1.



    • 2.

      Why This Class


    • 3.

      Get to Know Your Brain


    • 4.

      Build Resilience


    • 5.

      Gain Perspective


    • 6.

      Create Boundaries


    • 7.

      Redevelop Your Social Skills


    • 8.

      Control the Algorithm


    • 9.

      Overcome the Impostor Experience


    • 10.

      Do What Works For You


    • 11.

      Allow Creativity Back In


    • 12.

      Be the Kind of Leader You Wish You Had


    • 13.

      Create a Memorable Brand


    • 14.

      Have Regular Meetings With Yourself


    • 15.

      Hold Yourself Accountable (Project)


    • 16.

      I Appreciate You


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About This Class

Within the realm of social media marketing - we’re constantly being pulled in 100 different directions.

As entrepreneurs and creators, we’re told to post more, do more videos, use MORE hashtags, use LESS hashtags and the list goes on and on and on.

But we often forget to audit our own experience of the digital world as well as the experience of our audience. 

Since 2016 I have taught thousands of social media managers and business owners how to grow their businesses online. And in this class you will learn not just how to grow your follower numbers... but how to grow real connections with your audience and create a better, more powerful digital world for yourself and your social media followers.

Mindful Marketing is all about creating and consuming online content with intention. And throughout this class you will get to do just that, by learning how to:

  • Understand how your own unique brain works and what your personality type means for your productivity, career path, focus etc.
  • Build resilience and make your mind and mental health a priority in your day to day life.
  • Create boundaries around your own social media use and control the algorithms of various social networks so you can see more of the stuff that inspires you and makes you happy and less of the stuff that takes away your focus. And you will learn how to share this with your own audience so that they can learn how to see more of your posts on their newsfeed.
  • Overcome your impostor syndrome and become a more confident you online and offline.
  • Become the leader your audience and your team deserve.
  • Build a memorable brand on social media.

And so much more…

This class is for anyone who wants to learn how to develop a better, healthier and more impactful relationship with their social media both as a creator and a consumer.

You will learn about amazing brands that are already incorporating mindful inclusive marketing into their brand presence online and how you can do the same!

I’ve included everything you need to know from this class within your Class Guide to allow you to not have to take notes and just be fully present while watching these lessons.

And now if you’re ready to learn how to make a positive impact in the digital world and become a happier, more productive you - then I can’t wait to see you in class!

Meet Your Teacher

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Maggie Stara

Creative Marketer & Top Teacher

Top Teacher

Hey I'm Maggie - your creative instructor!

I was first introduced to the world of social media marketing in 2016. I was SO excited about the possibility of working online but I was really struggling with the lack of honest, authentic, and high-quality information out there for beginners. So before I even began working in this world, I knew one day I'd want to create the kind of high-quality resources for aspiring marketers that I felt were missing in this space.

Why my classes:

My online skills have led to working with an exciting range of talented people, from sole traders to multi-million dollar businesses. And in addition to working as a freelancer, I've also worked in a digital marketing agency and an in-house corporate role. With this wide ran... See full profile

Level: All Levels

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1. Welcome!: The digital space is this weird and wonderful world full of possibilities. In this class you're going to be learning all about it through the lens of mindful marketing, where I'll be sharing with you the knowledge and the skills to be able to really analyze your relationship with social media, both as a consumer and a producer on the platforms. Then we're going to get into how to make it a more positive experience for you, and how to make it a more positive and memorable experience for your audience, where you're going to be creating the space that makes them feel like they really belong in your little corner of the online universe. My name is Maggie Stara, and I'm a digital marketing strategist and an incredibly passionate people person. Whether you're an influencer, a freelancer, a side hustler, a corporate business owner, or aspiring to become any one of these, you're an entrepreneurial spirit and an out-of-the-box thinker, and this class is just for you. Within this class you will learn how to shape your social media experience to control both your own behavior and the behavior of the algorithms on these platforms so that you can see more of the stuff you love, more of the stuff that makes you productive and inspired, and less of the stuff that you really don't want to see. We'll then be going into some examples of some brands that are seriously kicking butt with their mindful marketing efforts online. Not because they launched a billion $ campaign or had a celebrity tweet about them, but because they focused on making people inspired in unusual and creative ways, and how you can also do this with your own brand. I'll be sharing with you my best tips on how to build resilience, how to be a better leader, and how to spark creativity in your day-to-day life as an entrepreneur so that you can really continuously show up for your audience in a way that's really authentic and unique to your particular brand and your style. By the end of the class, you'll have action items to weave into your daily routine that will help you to get more out of the time spent online as a consumer and a creator, and to regain your focus on the time spent away from the screen. Now, if you're ready to learn about some slightly unusual ways for you to be more creative, more productive, and just happier version of yourself as an entrepreneur, then I'm super excited for you to dive straight in. I'm really grateful for you being here in advance, so thank you for taking the time out of your day to learn about this stuff, and I can't wait to see you in class. 2. Why This Class: Before we get into the rest of the lessons, I wanted to just take a bit of time here in setting some expectations for what you can expect to gain from this class and what I would like to see from you in return as well. So let me first start by saying that I totally acknowledge the fact that every experience is unique to every person who's going through it. I'm sure we've all had that moment at some stage where you've walked out of seeing a movie and you thought it was the best thing you've ever seen and the person you went with was like that was the worst thing I've ever seen in my entire life, and you can't really understand how they could possibly think that about your new favorite movie. Being on social media is the same thing where for some people it's a wonderful land of possibilities and for other people it's the stuff of nightmares that they have to do to grow their business, but they really hate doing it. Wherever you sit on that spectrum, I think it's unavoidable to say that at least at some stage in your life, you have had a bit of a negative experience with social media. Because I surveyed a lot of entrepreneurs in preparation for the materials that I'm going to be sharing with you here and every single one of them has admitted that at least at some stage, they felt negatively or overwhelmed or stressed by something that they saw on social media or something that they've experienced on social media. While the general population and all the consumers out there can definitely say there's a negative impact to their mental health and well-being because of social media, for us it's even worse because how do you switch off from something that you actually need in order to grow your business. Not to mention that studies like those of former entrepreneur and current psychiatrists, Michael Freeman have confirmed that people who are on the energetic, motivated and creative side are both more likely to be entrepreneurial and more likely to have strong emotional states. So basically confirming what a lot of us already probably know that our ability to have intents and emotional states is both the thing that makes us awesome, creative, innovative, and entrepreneurial, and also the thing that makes us more vulnerable to criticism, burnout, anxiety, stress, and a host of other bad things that can really impact us personally and professionally. In fact, in a study published under the title of "Are Entrepreneurs Touched with Fire" that observed 242 entrepreneurs and their non-entrepreneurial counterparts with similar characteristics. They found that 49 percent of entrepreneurs reported having one or more mental health condition versus 32 percent of their non-entrepreneurial counterparts. Largely these mental health conditions were related to depression, anxiety, and ADHD. While there's definitely a lot more going on there than just the pressure of social media and growing your business online, I would say that social media is a really big factor that attributes to all of this because we're constantly being told to post more and do more videos and show up more and use more hashtags and use less hashtags and you're being pulled in 700,000 different directions at any one point. It's hard to know what to listen to, and it's hard to know what you can and can't do and how to actually be able to have a positive relationship with social media. So that is the stuff that we're going to be focusing on fixing here because it is supposed to be fun. It's supposed to connect us not divide us. All of the main takeaways from these lessons will be within your class guide, along with some amazing resources and some instructions on how to implement this knowledge into your online presence. We'll be talking a lot more about this within the project lesson of the class, where I'm going to be actually telling you how you can put your mindful marketing knowledge into action. Now before we jump into the next lesson, I did also want to just briefly mention that I'm not here to tell you to delete all of your social media apps and throw out your smartphone and go live the good old hermit life in the woods and meditate for 17 hours a day. Absolutely not. I'm incredibly aware of the fact that resistance to change is a part of human nature. Really it wouldn't actually serve you to do all of that because that's not going to help you grow your business. Unfortunately, social media and online growth is a necessary part of business in this day and age. So it's lot less about that and more just about making you a happier, more productive, and more connected version of yourself. One tiny little digital baby step at a time. That's a little bit about what you can expect from me and from the class. In terms of what I expect from you, really it's just to have an open mind, to really think about how some of these tips can be applied to your own life. Feel free to ignore the ones that don't sit well with you because maybe it would be impossible to weave them into your daily routine, but still just keep an open mind into how this stuff can really have an impact on your day to day life, both as a consumer and a creator on social media. All right, so that's that. Now, let's get to know that big, beautiful brain of yours in the next lesson, and I'll see you there. 3. Get to Know Your Brain: Now we'll be starting to really get to the bottom of what makes you, you. My aim with this particular lesson is just to give you some foundations around your particular brain chemistry and your brain makeup, so that you can really understand it in the context of how social media impacts your productivity, your motivation, anxiety, all of those sorts of things that we're going to be discussing in further lessons. Because arguably, I would say that your mental health is just about the biggest asset in your business. When your brain is at its best, you can be an unstoppable productivity creativity machine, and you can whip up the most amazing innovative ideas, connect with your audience online, nothing fazes you, everything's amazing. When your mental health is suffering or you're feeling burnt out or overwhelmed, it's almost impossible to do anything within your business. It can have really damaging long-term effects on your mental and also your physical health as well. The people who are creating social media networks have people employed full-time whose entire job is to figure out what makes you tick and what creates addiction and what will actually get us to keep us on those platforms for longer and engaging with their content more and more and more. Tristan Harris is expert on this. He's a former design ethicist and product philosopher at Google who now runs the Center for Humane Technology, who's been known to say that the best way to get people's attention is to first know how their minds work. Social networks then use this knowledge to control our behavior both online and offline. If we're going to learn how to get our attention back from the social media theming platforms, we first need to understand how our minds actually work. I would like to start with something that is stealing our attention on a day-to-day basis and something that we're all guilty of from time to time, multitasking. Multitasking does look super impressive from the outside, but as it turns out, it's incredibly inefficient from the inside. Sadly, as entrepreneurs, we often fall into the trap of trying to do 10 or 20 things at once. But the book Brain Rules actually explains that when we multitask, our error rate goes up 50 percent. Not only are we slower and less accurate in terms of speed, we're just less accurate in terms of actual accuracy. It means that we're making more errors and taking twice as long to do things because our brain is not able to focus on multiple things at once and it's dividing and conquering, focusing different parts of our gray matter on the different things that we're trying to do. Apparently, it's actually not any better for serial multitaskers. They've done studies on this as well. People like me, guilty, who really enjoy multitasking and who consider themselves to be experts at it are apparently no better than people who multitask from time to time. Single tasking seems to be the way forward. This is a photo of my dad on Halloween where he pretended to me a zombie victim for me and my mom who had dressed up as zombies. Now, he is a hilarious man, which is why I love this photo. But the reason he's on your screen right now is because he is the ultimate single tasker. To the point where he would be driving me to my friend's houses and he would lower the volume in the car when he was looking for the house number, as if somehow the lower volume in the car would help him have clear vision and find the house faster which seemed ridiculous to me at the time, but as it turns out, he was right, our brains cannot multitask. Now, the exception to this is music. If you're like me and you really need a little bit of distraction in terms of having music to focus, apparently that's fine. Our brains process music differently and don't count it as multitasking, so you're good on that front. Now the main reason that I wanted to talk to you about multitasking is because even just one glance down at your phone to look at a social media notification can vary way off track in terms of your productivity, and again, this is something that we all do as entrepreneurs from time to time. But according to a study from the University of California, Irvine, that return to your original focus following a distraction takes on average a full 23 minutes and 15 seconds. That five seconds of just glancing at your phone really quickly might've actually cost you over 23 minutes of focus and productivity in your day. Now, as we're going to be going throughout these lessons, I'm going to be showing you how you can improve your focus with your loved ones when you're offline, with your audience when you're online, and with your team if you have one as well. But for now, just for a bit of background, I just wanted you to know that your brain actually cannot multitask, so don't feel bad even if you consider yourself a serial multitasker and it's not working for you, that is why. Even the smallest bit of distraction can really vary way off track in terms of your productivity. If you're watching this on a little screen and you have your laptop or your phone next to you and your dog's barking and you're cooking and you're maybe watching TV a little bit, I really encourage you to go full screen, switch off, turn off the outside world. Don't even have to worry about writing notes down because everything you need is inside of your class guide in terms of your exercises and notes and key takeaways from this class. I really encourage you to be mindful and be really present as you're learning this stuff. That's going to be your first exercise in mindful marketing. I really challenge you to do that as you're going throughout these lessons. Now let's talk about how to make your mind your business. Now, as entrepreneurs, we can get a bit creative with how we structure our day. Unfortunately, many of us fall into the trap of just following along with other people's advice and not really questioning as to how it relates to us or whether it even works for us. When I first started working online, I read somewhere that the world's most successful people wake up before 6:00 AM, drink a green smoothie, write a journal, meditate, do all that good stuff. I thought that's what I had to do in order to be successful. That is my actual nightmare because I am not a morning person in terms of productivity. I'm cheery in the mornings, but my brain is just not ready to work. For me, I realized that my zone of productivity is between 11:00 AM and 4:00 PM, and that's when I do my most productive work, and that also helps me to structure any administrative tasks and little tasks outside of these hours, so that I can really be at my most productive within those hours. A regular 9-5 schedule really just does not work for my brain. It was cool to figure out that there is a physiological reason for why I'm a really bad 9-5 employee and why I'm actually meant to be an entrepreneur and working on my own schedule. That is to do with your own unique chronotypes, which is basically everyone's own individual circadian rhythm, which in my case makes me more naturally predisposed to working on a different schedule than what is typical for the regular population in a 9-5 environment. There's a really great quiz of The Power of When from sleep doctor, Dr. Michael Breus that I've linked within your class guide, which is going to tell you what your unique chronotype is and what that means for you. Now, as it turns out, I'm a dolphin, which is super cute, but it's also because they continue to swim while they sleep, which describes me perfectly. I actually listen to music while I sleep because my brain needs to be half distracted, otherwise it won't be able to fully relax. That's weird, but it works for me. Knowing this stuff can help you to find out when you should be drinking caffeine, and when you should drink alcohol, when you should schedule your meals, when you should schedule your work around, all of those sorts of things can be really helpful to understanding your chronotype. I really encourage you to take the quiz as a really good first step in being your most productive self. Then if you want to go a step further, I really encourage you to check out 16personalities.com. This is where you're really going to start to understand how your brain works and what makes you, you. Now, I have linked this within your class guide so you can do it later, so you're avoiding distractions, but make sure to take their free quiz to figure out your own personality profile. This is going to help you determine not just where you are on the introvert, extrovert scale, but also a lot of other factors that really make you, you. Within your personality profile, you're going to be able to read about your strengths and your weaknesses, and other people who are like you, your career paths, and all of that good stuff. You can find a lot about yourself throughout this quiz. My personality profile is that campaigner, and honestly knowing this and reading about myself has really helped me both personally and professionally. Because as it turns out, I'm predisposed to becoming an entrepreneur. It was satisfying to get to know that from a quiz that just got to know me through a few multiple choice answer questions. If you have a team, I also really encourage you to get them to take the quiz as well, because the very first step to understanding how to control our minds and how to get our attention back and all of that good stuff that we're trying to achieve here is to actually understand how our minds work. If you are working within a team, it would be really helpful for you to know their personality profiles because we fall into the trap of treating other people the way we want to be treated, which isn't necessarily right. You could find out how your individual team members like to be rewarded, how they like to receive constructive criticism. All of that stuff has to do with their personality profile. I really encourage you, if you do have a team, get them to take it so you can find out a little bit more about them. Plus not to mention, it's just fun to read about yourself from a quiz that doesn't actually personally know you. It's like a really more accurate version of those BuzzFeed quizzes that we all used to take about what potato you are, what onion you are, and what that says about you. Now let's talk about how to make your mind a priority. A world renowned brain and memory coach Jim Kwik has a host of quirky brain shirts because he talks about the fact that you take care of what you see. When you're having a bit of an off day and you have 100 bucks to spare, what are you more likely to do? Buy something off of Amazon, or a new shirt, or a new dress or a new video game? Or would you rather spend that $100 on a one-off counseling session to really talk through what's bothering you. I would hope that it's the latter, but to be honest for most of us, it's the former. The problem with that is that we really don't prioritize our mental health enough, even though it's actually the thing that controls every other experience in our day to day life. If you had a cut on your arm or you hit your head, would go to the emergency room? Yeah, you would because it's almost impossible to avoid the fact that your arm is bleeding on the floor. But your mental health, it is a little bit easy to avoid because it's not a visible element in our lives. That is the problem. That is why Jim Kwik has all these quirky brain shirts because it's a daily reminder for him that it's something that he really needs to prioritize in his day-to-day life. It's the same way as you brush your teeth every day so that you don't get cavities and don't have to go see the dentist. We're really just not in the habit of doing the same thing for our mental health until it's too late. Even then sometimes people will still ignore and will still prioritize other parts of their lives because it's not visible like a cavity, or a broken leg or an arm that's bleeding on your bedroom floor. Throughout the rest of the class, we're going to be talking about little steps that you can take in your personal and your professional life that will really help to prioritize your mental health and your mind. But really knowledge without action is a little bit useless. Knowing all this stuff is great and it's a really great first step, but without actually putting it into practice, it's going to go nowhere. I really encourage you as a very first step to this journey of mindful marketing and making your mind a priority, to put a physical reminder of making your mental health and your mind a priority somewhere in your physical space. In my personal life, 2018 was an incredibly difficult year for me. I thought of the happiest day of my life up until that point, which was when I was free diving in Zakynthos and I came across a turtle and just swam with it in the deep blue sea. I decided to get a tattoo of that exact day on my arm so that every single day I have a visual reminder that I need to prioritize my happiness, and really let go of the things that aren't serving me anymore. Now I'm not saying you get a tattoo, although you definitely could. But I have a lot of other reminders in my physical space to really make my mental health priority. It can be something as simple as just putting a sticky note on your fridge or anything that you can think of that will really give you a daily reminder of taking care of your big, beautiful brain and how it's a priority on a daily to-do list. Don't worry, you're going to have plenty of examples of how you can do this by the end of the class, I just want you to really start thinking about how you can do this in your physical environment. Now let's get into how you can build resilience on a day-to-day basis in the next lesson, so I'll see you there. 4. Build Resilience: In this lesson, we'll be talking about little things that you can do every single day to naturally train your brain to be more resilient. Because no matter how many restrictions you put in place, both in your online and offline world there will always be something in your life and business that will just be outside of your control. It'll be your response to these out-of-control events that'll often have the biggest impact on your life. An incredible resource on this topic is the Resilience Project, which I have linked in your class guide created by Hugh Van Cuylenberg. Hugh has dedicated his entire life to teaching people how to be more resilient from school-age kids all the way through to professional athletes playing here in Australia. This was a result of him really seeing his family suffer because his little sister had an eating disorder when she was in high school. Then it came to a really point of realizing it was his purpose when he became a teacher in a really remote village in India. He saw these kids just having absolutely nothing by his standard of living, what he knows to be true in Australia. He just thought, "They don't even have shoes, they eat a bowl of rice every single day and they just seem so happy and content with everything that they do have instead of focusing on what they don't have." It got him into thinking, "Why do people in Australia have such high rates of mental health conditions when we often have more than we need and there are people living with seemingly very little and just meeting their basic needs and they're so incredibly happy." As it turns out, it just comes down to three things; one is gratitude, two mindfulness, and three, empathy, or in a reverse order, it's gratitude, empathy and mindfulness or GEM. These are the three things that if we practice every single day in our day-to-day routine can actually help us build resilience and help us lead happier and more fulfilled lives. This is so important for us as entrepreneurs because we are so much more prone to having stress, and anxiety, and burnout, and feeling like our attention is being pulled in a 1,000 different ways every single moment of our day. Really being able to practice these things day-to-day and allowing us to be in the present moment and focus on everything that we have right now, instead of worrying about everything that happened in the past and all of the horrible things that we think might happen in the future can be a real asset to your business. Let's now get into the first element of building resilience, which is gratitude. Gratitude is the ability to pay attention to what you have instead of worrying about what you don't have. As Hugh talks about in his book, here in Australia and in a lot of other Western cultures, we have an if and then situation going on all the time: if I'll buy this car, then I'll be happy. If I gain a 100,000 followers then I'll be an influencer and people will respect me and I'll gain the popularity that I want. It's always striving to have more and do more and think about what the next step is, instead of just taking in what we have and being happy with that, and we do it with everything, we do with our bodies, our partners, our businesses, and everything in between. We're always looking for the flaws and the negative aspects of it and what we don't have in those areas of our life, instead of just being so fricking happy with all the amazing things that we do have. This shift in perspective and having that daily gratitude of "Holy crap, I have all of these amazing things and how great is that," can be such a big asset to your mindset and your business. Psychologists, and Educator, and Author Dr. Martin Seligman study showed that if you just write down three things that went well for you at the end of each day, after roughly one month, your brain actually begins scanning the world for positives rather than negatives. Imagine if all you did was take couple of minutes out of each day at the end of the day to talk about the three things that went really well for you instead of thinking, "Okay, I have 700,000 things to do tomorrow." Instead of that just thinking, "Wow, today was amazing. I did this and how great was that?" Imagine if just doing that for one month actually allowed you to completely reprogram your brain so that the next time you get a crappy review and they do happen, then you'll just be like, "Wow, there's so much amazing feedback in this review for how I can improve my product or service." Instead of just having been completely deflated and having your entire motivation for that day go down the tubes because you'll think, "Oh, this person hated my product and service. Why am I even doing this?" Because that is naturally our negative bias and taking the negatives and letting it overpower all the positive things. Imagine if you could actually trick your brain into doing this by itself. Amazing. I am going to be giving you guys some homework on how to do this a little bit later on, but for now, I just want you to really take in the fact that gratitude when practiced on a day-to-day basis can be so powerful for both your personal and your professional life as well. But don't take it from me, the famous Doctor Emoto has dedicated his life to studying the impact of certain words on microscopic water molecules. He found that the two most powerful words, love, and gratitude, had a profound positive effect on water molecules while phrases like evil and disgust shape the water into pretty unsettling formations. Considering as humans, we're pretty much mostly water, this literally means that just by being grateful and expressing your gratitude, you are completely changing your body and not just your brain. Rule number 1 of becoming a more resilient you is to really just focus on what you have instead of worrying about what you don't have. Now, let's get into the second of these principles, which is going to be empathy. We are going to talk a lot more about empathy in terms of how it plays into your leadership style, how to inspire your team, how to build a memorable brand online, and all of those things that empathy will really play a pretty big part in as well, but for now, let's just think of you as a human being first and an entrepreneur second. Empathy is the ability to psychologically feel what another person is feeling. The more empathetic we are, the more likely we are to act in a kinder way. The beauty of empathy is that it's a win-win situation because as Hugh talks about in his book, your brain doesn't discriminate. Your brain doesn't know how many followers you have online. Your brain doesn't know any of that. Your brain just knows that you've done something kind for somebody else and as a reward, it will give you a hit of oxytocin, which is known as the love hormone. It helps us feel happiness, joy, love, all the wonderful things, and it's activated by us doing kind things for other people. It's basically an instant mood booster as soon as you do something really nice for someone else. In an offline space, it can be something as simple as just holding the door open for someone. You don't necessarily have to go and give your kidney to a stranger unless you want to you can definitely do that, but it can be something really small like that. In the digital space, there are definitely ways that you can do this as well by just going and checking out someone's website and telling them how much you really liked something that they've done with it, or telling them how much you really liked their recent posts and how it resonated with you. These are all things that will help you to flex your empathy muscle, but it will also be an instant mood booster for you as well. All of this is basically at the core of user experience as a field. By doing all these things, you are essentially going to be practicing, being able to feel like your users and understanding their pain points and their struggles, because it's going to naturally make you want to understand them a little bit better. By doing this, you're going to be able to actually help them overcome their challenges and answer their questions, and understand their pain points in a way that you can solve it for them with your product or service. It's actually going to make you a better human, but a better business owner in the end as well. Finally, let's move on to the last aspect of building resilience, which is all about mindfulness. The amazing Headspace app defines mindfulness as the idea of learning how to be fully present and engaged in the moment, aware of your thoughts and feelings without distraction or judgment, but the problem that I found with mindfulness is that people often associate it with full-blown meditation. It's not necessarily that, it's just being present with whatever you're doing. It can be mindful eating, mindful cooking, even watching TV can be a mindful exercise if you're not also checking your phone and doing a 100 other things, just being present on the task at hand. Meditation can definitely help with this, and it can actually help you to be more mindful and more present in other aspects of your life, but I find meditation quite difficult because I am a shiny object person, so I find it very difficult to sit still for an hour at a time. But for me, in my pursuit of mindfulness, I realized that even just a little bit a day can make a huge impact on my concentration in other areas of my life. Now, I use the Calm app where I get a daily 10-minute guided meditation that always focuses on something different every single day. This was really difficult for me at first, but as anything in life, it does get easier over time. At first, all I was doing is making a list of everything I wanted to do that day during my meditation time, but eventually you get to a point, especially because it's guided and the guide is usually going, "Okay if your mind is wondering at this point, get it back on track." So you're not in it alone and it does feel like you're doing it along with somebody else. Even 10 minutes a day can make a huge difference. It does get easier over time, but not only that, but meditation has also been shown to reduce depression and anxiety, improve your decision-making and your ability to focus, reduce things like drug and alcohol abuse, relieve stress, prevent heart disease, lower blood pressure, reduce chronic pain, improve your sleep and just making you an overall much more effective and less nervous version of yourself. In your business this is going to help you be a 100 percent present in whatever you're doing in that given moment instead of thinking, "I can't write about that Facebook ad campaign I'm going to launch two weeks from now or that nasty comment, I got a week ago." You are just going to be thinking, "This is what I'm doing right this second, how can I give a 110 percent of my attention to this and then move on to a different task." Because remember, your brain can't multi-task, so don't try and make it happen. Now with gratitude, empathy and mindfulness or GEM in mind, let's go into actually assessing your relationship with social media and what that means for you both as a consumer and a creator on these platforms in the next lesson. I'll see you there. 5. Gain Perspective: Now this lesson is going to be all about the power of perspective when it comes to the digital world, because this will be such an important part of being happier, more motivated, and more productive version of yourself in your personal and your professional life. Because for some reason, the online world has taken away our perspective to be able to actually think clearly about what's going on. Because it makes it seem like everyone's in Instagram model living the perfect life, living in a hammock in the Maldives and nothing could be further from the truth. If you think about an offline scenario where you're walking down the street, you going to do your shopping and a complete stranger comes up to you who's taken two seconds to take a look at you, decides they don't like you and decides to share their opinion with you and then they tell you you're not good enough for whatever reason that they've decided on. Would you actually pay attention to that? To be honest, probably not. You would think that person's having a really tough day, or something else is going on there. You probably wouldn't even think about it in a couple of hours and definitely not the next day. For some reason, we don't have this sort online. We let the opinions of complete strangers on their bad reviews or their bad comments on our social media stuff derail our entire day, sometimes our week because of one negative comment in a sea of positivity. We choose to focus on the negatives because of this lack of perspective. It's time to end that vicious cycle, and that's exactly what this lesson is going to be all about. We're going to focus on regaining our perspective by focusing first on the why, then the what, and the how. The why will come into play the next time you go to actually reach for your phone to check social media. I want you to just ask yourself why you're doing it. Are you bored? Are you looking for validation? Are you may be feeling a bit down and you're hoping to come across some memes that are going to make you feel better? Just really analyze why you're actually doing it. Now, I want to be very clear on saying this little exercise is not actually meant to stop you from checking your phone all the time. It's more just meant to make you question why. Because the first step to actually changing a behavior is to figure out why we're doing it in the first place. The problem with addiction, and I know it's tough to think about social media as an addiction, but it is. The problem with addiction is that it's often really linked to day-to-day behaviors. It's the same as smokers that have a cigarette with their morning coffee. It's really hard for them to then have a coffee without it. We do the same thing with social media. We check our phone in the toilet, and then the next time you're in the toilet, you just want the phone. It's really difficult to break those associations, which is why nicotine gum exists, because it replaces that addiction. As far as I know, there's no such thing as a social media patch, yet. That could be a cool invention. But in the meantime, there are little things that we can do to just start really analyzing why we're actually going on social media when we're going on social media, and whether that's serving us or harming us. Now let's move on to the actual what. As in, what is your goal with social media? This is one of my most common questions that I ask my clients and my students. The reason for this is because I'll often see people with a LinkedIn account and a YouTube account and a Twitter account and a Facebook account. They're everywhere, but they're really nowhere because they're just dividing their attention in so many different ways and they don't really know why. When you ask them about their goals, they'll say something like, my goal is to post every day for a month, or my goal is to have 100,000 followers. I'm not saying these are bad goals by the way, I think it's more just important to understand why. What will getting 100,000 followers on Instagram actually get you? How does that actually tie into your greater business goals? Will you gain more by having 100,000 followers than having 1,000? Will your life actually change? Are you making the most of the followers that you have instead of worrying about the ones you don't have? These are all just questions to ask yourself. As in, what is the final goal that you're hoping to achieve at social media? Because I've worked for clients who have asked me to post on YouTube once a week and have a daily Facebook post and engage with their community on Instagram for 30 minutes a day, but they never actually stopped to ask themselves why. Because they just were following a lot of the advice of the social media experts out there who say, you have to constantly be out there, you have to show up live, you have to engage with your followers, you have to be on all these platforms and all this stuff and it's not bad advice by the way. But if it's not actually serving you in terms of your greater business goals, then it might be time to just think about what those goals are and is your social media presence currently serving those goals and getting you a step closer to those goals, or is it not. Not to mention that if you're using your own competitors as a gauge of what you should be doing with your own accounts, well, people often forget that a lot of the bigger accounts out there have a team of five or 10 people managing their posts, captions, their videos, their DMs, replying to their audience and creating more posts for them. That's true for both business accounts and personal brands as well. There are lots of people running a personal brand who never actually touch their social media accounts, and they have teams managing these because they know that that's not where their time is best spent. They want to also protect themselves from the criticism and all the bs of the social media world. While you might get, and hopefully you will get to a point where you can outsource this stuff, if you're not at that point yet, you really have to be protective of your time. Because social media is free for the most part, so it makes us feel like we can do whatever we want with it, but the costs associated there is time, and time is so valuable in your business. If you're spending your time in the wrong places in terms of your social media growth, it probably means that you're not actually actively growing on any of those accounts by focusing your attention specifically on them because you're dividing your attention in 17 different places. It's just time to think about what your social media presence is doing. Is it really serving you? Is it making you more miserable than it is making you happy? Is it actually helping you to achieve those greater business goals? That's the why and the what in terms of analyzing why you're using social media and when you're using it, and what goals you're hoping to accomplish. Now finally, let's talk about how your relationship with social media is actually making you feel both as a consumer and a creator. Because unfortunately, as entrepreneurs, we're taught to think first then feel second. We're taught, show up on all these platforms because that's where your audience is hanging out and post regularly and show up constantly because that's the stuff that's going to keep your audience engaged. No one's really talking about what all of this stuff is actually going to make you feel if you're a person by yourself running your business and wearing 17 different hats within your business and just running out of time really. I just want you to really assess, you've got all these things, you're doing all these things, let's say they are actually really getting you closer to your business goals, but are you feeling like crap about doing all this stuff? Is the thought of going on live video making you feel like you need to just hide in bed for seven days, or is it giving you joy? Do you get energy from it? People have different strengths and different joys in terms of what makes them happy on social media. Some people really love writing long captions along with a brief photo. Some people hate writing, so they would much prefer to show up on video. So just assessing how this stuff is all making you feel and whether it's really worth your time. Now, I know it's really, really difficult to let go of things that you have worked really hard to build up. I guess my advice on that is people do that with relationships, with jobs, with just about everything. Just because you studied to be a doctor for 10 years doesn't mean that you have to be a doctor because if it doesn't make you happy, then 10 years is nothing in comparison to the rest of your life. It's the same with relationships. Sometimes people have been in a relationship for seven years and they just don't get along at all. If they met each other now, it would just be a complete disaster and they would never date. But they just have such a hard time letting go of it because they've spent all this time building this relationship up. Social media is exactly the same way. If you have spent every single day for the last six months posting on Instagram or posting on Facebook because you felt like that's something you had to do, it's really difficult to let go of that mindset. I know because I had it. I very much had this mindset because I was following this advice from all these people and I was also recommending it to my clients. You get to a point where you realize that time might actually be better spent elsewhere because maybe it's not actually something that brings me joy, and maybe it's not even connecting with my followers because I'm doing it out of necessity and habit rather than out of that passion-driven mindset that we should have with social media. My last point in perspective is just to really assess how the stuff is making you feel and maybe let go of the stuff that's really not bringing you that joy when you actually show up for your audience on social media. But I'm not saying you delete your accounts, or you completely stop showing up altogether, but just focus your time and energy in the places that really bring you a lot of value in terms of your business and your energy levels as well. These are the three things I really want you to start thinking about as you assess this relationship with your social media presence. Why and when are you spending your time on socials? What are your goals that you're hoping to achieve through social media? How is all this making you feel? Because I promise you that the more you start to think and feel and assess your relationship with social media, the more that perspective is really going to start to change as well. Because you'll go from saying, "I have 2,000 followers on Instagram, that's nothing in my industry," to thinking, "Wow, I have 2,000 people who have agreed to follow me and want to hear what I have to say and want to learn from me." It's such a different shift in perspective. Just think about of 2,000 people randomly showed up to your house tomorrow and wanted to hear you talk about the smoothie bowl you had for breakfast that day. You would think, holy crap, I'm a legend. These people are at my doorstep and they want to hear me talk about what I ate this morning. But for some reason when that happens online, we don't think about it the same way. We just think, it's not enough. My competitors have more. My competitors are doing more. My audience is really not as engaged as their audience. Who cares? Just think about what you have in terms of your presence. Is it bringing you joy? Is it fulfilling those goals that you have for yourself in terms of where you can see your business heading online? If all of those answers points a yes, then you're on the right right. Hopefully that's helped to reassess how you think and feel about your own social media presence and your relationship with it both as a consumer and a creator. I'll see you in the next lesson. 6. Create Boundaries: In this lesson, we'll be going over few practical ways in which we can limit the negative impact of social media on your life, even if you are required to be present on socials for your business growth. So I would like to revisit the fact that I'm not here to tell you to delete all of your apps or just take a month off of social media. If you can do that, then awesome, please do it, but I would say that most of us just can't and also, I think a lot of people are still in a position where they're not confident or not able to outsource this stuff. So they have to have that relationship with social media in order to grow their brand online. So we are going to talk about putting some boundaries in place, so it doesn't completely take over your life and so you can start having a really positive relationship with social media and embracing it for the awesome thing that it actually is in your business. Twenty, 25 years ago, if you wanted to grow a business, you could maybe put up a billboard on the side of a highway and then hope that every one out of a hundred people is your target market and your target customer and maybe they'll write down the name of your business and look it up later, if they have Internet at home. Honestly, it was just such a difficult thing for people to grow their businesses through marketing and now with social media, we can pretty much do it for free or through really targeted paid ads that are going to go out in front of your exact potential costumers, to really help you to grow for like a hundred of the price of what you would have paid for a billboard back in the day and it's a lot more effective. Yes, people's attention is divided and we'll get more into that in a little bit, but social media is so powerful and it's supposed to be fun. So hopefully, within this lesson, you're going to learn how to put these boundaries in place so that you can really start to redevelop your love of using these platforms if you've maybe lost it over time. My first tip is to create friction, because the harder that you make it for yourself to do the things that you're trying to avoid doing, the easier it'll be to quit. So think about this in terms of getting rid of all the junk food in your house when you're on a diet, or getting the battery that have your remote control if you want to stop watching TV. Basically, whatever it is that you're trying to stop yourself from doing just make it really hard for you to actually do it. Once every two weeks, I encourage you to change where you're most addictive apps appear on your phone and don't keep them together if you can avoid it. Mine are together in a folder that is labeled with the poop emoji to really remind me of the fact that it can be a crappy experience being on social media. It's just a bit of fun. But honestly, because you can now have apps on your phone, even on iPhones where you don't actually have them on your screen and you can hide them from yourself. I really encourage you to just change up where these apps appear on a semi-regular basis. Now studies do suggest that it takes two months to form a habit, but in my experience, bad habits form a lot quicker than good ones. So two weeks seems to be my personal sweet spot and every two weeks I have a little reminder for myself to change where my apps appear on my phone, which doesn't actually stop me from going and checking them, but it makes it a little bit more difficult because it's no longer an instinctive, I'm bored, I'm going to check my phone, my finger knows exactly where those apps are and every two weeks, if I change them around or I separate them, put them in different places it means that I have to mindfully think about. Okay, I have to think about where this app is now on my phone and am I really needing to check it right now? It's more just putting a little bit of friction in place that's going to help you be a bit more conscious of your habits. Tip number two is to choose desktop over mobile. Something about the desktop interfaces just a lot less addictive. So, whether you're scheduling your posts, creating them or actually responding to people's messages, whether they're private or comments on social media, try to do it on desktop because you're a lot less likely to waste time on things on social media that you didn't intend to waste time on. You're just going to be there for the purpose that you came there for get in and get out. My third tip is for those of you with self-control. So those of you who are confident in keeping yourself on track, you can just get away with setting some minor boundaries on your phone around, when and how long you're allowing yourself to use your apps for on a day-to-day basis. There's a version of this on pretty much every kind of smartphone these days, but within iPhones you can find this within your settings and activities Screen Time sections, where you can limit the actual time that you're spending on socials and also the times of day where you're allowing yourself to access these apps. Now for those of you who like me have no self-control when it comes to this stuff and basically need to be controlled like a toddler in a candy store when it comes to checking your phone, this tip is for you. The freedom app is the app that I found that won't actually allow you to override the restrictions the same way as you would if you put these restrictions on your phone where you just have to put in your passcode or dismiss the app limitations that are put on by your phone. So with freedom, you can actually put restrictions on not just your phone but across all of your devices. So if you're thinking, okay, I can't go on Instagram on my phone I'll just go on my Mac or in Incognito mode, you can't do it this time is completely blocked off and you're free from distractions within the times that you have set for yourself within the app. Now of course, no matter which path you take you can change these restrictions, and plan ahead and even select apps that will be exempt from being blocked. If you really need to accept incoming calls from clients for example, or you can just plan so that you know that for sure tomorrow you're able to fully block out from 2:00-4:00 PM because there's no need for anyone to be able to contact you during those times. All those rationalizations that are currently going on and hit your head as to why you can't do this? I've definitely had them too. Well, what if my mom wants to call me? What if there's an emergency? What if a client wants me to look at a campaign straightaway? Whatever you can possibly think of, I've definitely thought it too. But the thing is, if you start respecting your time, other people really will respect your time as well. Your mom can wait. Your client can definitely wait and as far as I know, there's no such thing as an Instagram emergency. So just really think about it from the terms of going offline, respecting your time and really giving yourself the ability to focus when you need it most. All right, so that's a little bit on setting boundaries and hopefully in giving you the time and space you need to get your attention back on the things that really deserve it in your business. In the next lesson, we're going to be talking more about the fun stuff, which is all about redeveloping your social skills. So I'll see you there. 7. Redevelop Your Social Skills: We're an industry that literally has the word social in it. The social media industry is far from social. Actually, multiple studies have shown that social media is making us feel more lonely, more insecure, and more anti-social, which seems very counterintuitive. But as much as this is a problem on the personal side, it's a bigger problem in business because as much as developing your social skills is a key survival skill, it's also a really big part of growing your business. If the term networking event makes you climb up and makes your hands sweat, then this lesson is going to be perfect for you because we're going to be talking about some really easy and quick ways that you can learn to redevelop your social skills, both in your personal and professional life and both online and offline. I hope you enjoy it. The first tip is to ask interesting and meaningful questions. Like something really cool that's happened to you this week or what are you most proud of or have you read any good books lately? Basically just avoiding the "what's up or how you're going" general cookie-cutter questions. I think about this a lot in terms of when I first moved to Canada from Slovakia, and we didn't have a computer yet and I used to write letters back and forth with my friends from back home. It would take about three weeks for my letter to get to them and another three weeks to get their answer. Within six weeks me asking them how their day is going was an irrelevant exercise. Because of that, I actually learned to ask really meaningful questions, even as a 12 or 13-year-old, because asking them about their temporary state of wellbeing just didn't work. That was something that was really important back then and unfortunately, this is something that our instant world has taken away from us because you can ask really quick and questions that have really quick answers and get them straight away. We're conditioned to do this. I'm going to challenge that by encouraging you to flex this social muscle by really asking these meaningful questions in your online interactions. The next time somebody leaves a comment on your post on LinkedIn or Twitter, Facebook, or any other social network. Instead of just saying, hey, thanks, liking their comment, giving them a thumbs-up, actually engage with that comment and just say, "Hey, thank you so much for your support. Which part of this video did you enjoy the most or which part did you connect with the most?" Or, "Hey, thanks for your support. What kind of content would you like to see me create next?" Now, not only is that going to actually help you create more meaningful connections with your audience who are going to really feel like you actually care about their engagement and aren't just going, "Hey, yeah. Cool. Thanks." But it's actually going to work in your favor because the algorithm is going to see that and go, "This post has so much interaction. Like this is awesome. There's real human engagement here." These are not bots us giving it a thumbs up and going, "Hey, great posts." There are actual humans interacting with this. Let's push this out to more people and put more eyeballs in front of this. The next tip is to practice social spending. Just not letting social media be a substitute for real human interaction. The University of Michigan found in their study that replacing face-to-face contact with family and friends, with messages on social media, e-mails, and text messages could double our risk of depression. Now, yes. Ideally, you'd want to spend time with your loved ones and even with your audience in person, but it's not always possible. Half my family lives in Europe, half lives in North America, and some here in Australia and other states. It's not always possible for me to jump on a plane and be with someone just to improve my mental health and well-being. But studies have also suggested that social spending can have a similar effect on us, where we feel really good, and we feel really connected with the people that we're spending money on. This is a really good substitute, especially when it comes to your audience, for those of you who have a global audience. In terms of the personal side of it, when your friend has a baby, don't just like the photo of their baby, send them something that is going to make them really know that you care. If your team member is having a crappy day and you see it on social media that they're really struggling, just send them an unexpected Uber Eats to really make their day. Send them a cupcake to their door. It doesn't really matter what the price of the physical gift is, but there is power in receiving a physical gift from someone even if they're at a distance from you. In terms of your business and your professional life, especially for those of you who are running membership and subscription model communities, sending somebody a welcome to the community gift can be so, so powerful in really making them feel like they belong and that you care about them. It also makes them really share it on social media because it's unexpected and that acts as a word of mouth for you. It also helps to reduce refunds because it really makes people feel like they've made a really good decision in investing in you and your community. I really encourage you, even if it's just a 10, $20 gift to make it a part of your procedures to get your audience members addresses as a part of your onboarding process, that way they might not necessarily know why you need their address, but then you'd go and send them a gift, and they'll be over the moon that you've done that. The next step is to think outside the box. I know I've said this before and I'll say it again, but it's better to have 100 loyal, die-hard fans on social media or in real life than 1,000 or 100,000 followers who passively engage with your stuff. The more you start to really realize this within your own business and incorporate this attitude into how you develop connections online, the better off you'll be in terms of actually practicing one for marketing and making it a really awesome space for those followers who are your die-hard fans. One of my favorite social apps for doing this is Instagram because it's not particularly known for being super social in terms of connectivity if you don't do it right. This is your chance to really stand out from your competitors and you can actually do this even if you have a small account and if you're just managing it yourself, you don't have a team of people who are going to go in and answer all of your questions for you like the big guys do on Instagram. What I normally do is I go to my people who have recently followed me and I check out some of their accounts and see which people I would want to really grow a more genuine connection with to get them to engage with my stuff and also tell the algorithm, "Hey, I'm actually engaging with this person who has followed me so show them more of my stuff in the future." It does help the more social you are from an algorithm perspective, but also just from a flexing your social muscle perspective. It is important that these guys have a public account because you don't necessarily want to be falling back every single person who follows you because that can get really exhausting and you can end up with following, much like this account is following almost 1,800 people but only has 800 followers. It can get really exhausting if you're following everyone who's following you and then following additional accounts, and then you would never see the stuff that you actually want to see if you're following that many people. You don't necessarily need to follow people back, but you can still engage with them in a really cool way if you like their stuff. This account looks really cool in terms of creativity and in terms of prioritizing mental health and doing a few different things that I'm really, really interested in. It's not your job to be everything to everyone. Yeah, this is really cool. She's obviously a graphic designer or an illustrator and grab your copy of this magazine. Cool. That's a Canadian magazine featuring Canadian Creatives. That's something I can really connect with and maybe send Nicole a really quick voice clip to let her know how much I like her brand and appreciate her following me and try and build that connection. Hey, Nicole. I saw that you recently followed me, so I just wanted to pop in and say, hey, and also say your profile is so beautiful and it looks like you're really passionate about mental health and well-being, which is something that's really near and dear to my heart as well, so I think we'll get along really well. It looks like you're an amazing creative illustrator and that's something that I'm actually dabbling with at the moment and really trying to wrap my head around it, so if you have any resources that you would recommend for a complete beginner like me, I would love to hear all about it from an expert like yourself. Thanks so much and I look forward to seeing more of your stuff online. If it doesn't work out, you can always unsend the message as well. Instagram does allow you to do that. As long as they haven't seen it yet, then there's no harm done. So if you feel like, "This is too much, this is too stressful," you can always unsend it. It's just something a little bit different. It honestly has started some of my favorite conversations in the Instagram space, so I really encourage you to try it out. If voice clips are not your thing, of course, you can always send a written message as well but I just prefer a little bit more of that personal touch. This is a quick update for you, guys. Actually, about 20 or 30 minutes after I sent that voice message, Nicole replied back with her own voice clip telling me that she is a student of mine and we've just never connected on social media, so I didn't have that personal connection with her, which I now do, and have found out a little bit more about her. It's such an amazing thing that all it takes is a really quick 20, 30 second voice clip and I now have this totally different relationship with someone who may have actually gone months and months without ever talking to me and we've now been able to connect on a totally different level and continue that conversation onward. I really want to share that with you guys so you can really see in live time the power that this can have on your own social media growth and engagement. Of course, you can do similar things with other platforms like YouTube here where I would go to a channel like Sunny Lenarduzzi, who's a bit of a competitor, I suppose, because she does share a lot of tips in terms of social media, mental health, personal development, all of that sort of stuff, so her audience is likely to also want to engage with my stuff. I would go to her comments and she does get a lot of comments. She doesn't always have the time to reply to every single thing. She does do a really good job of replying to a lot of it, but not everything. So I would try and find a comment that I can reply to and really add value to, especially with someone who doesn't have a huge subscriber account so that they're much more likely to actually subscribe to my channel and want to get value from me as well if I provide them with a bit of advice. This is a tool called vidIQ, which is a free Chrome extension, and it basically allows you to take a sneaky peek of how someone's channel is doing when they appear in comments. Once you have vidIQ installed, you'll be able to browse through YouTube and actually see how many subscribers people have. If somebody has over a thousand subscribers, I would maybe say they might not actually subscribe to my channel because they're obviously quite dedicated to growing their own, but someone with no subscribers or just minimal subscribers is clearly just a consumer on YouTube so that is a really good sweet spot of someone that I would want to help and this is something that I can actually answer for them. Five months ago this person asked what the editing software was to put a screen side by side in Sunny's video, so I would actually go in and just reply. Then that person hasn't really been responded to in about five months. I would say that someone like Sunny Lenarduzzi wouldn't actually care that there are other people offering advice because it does help her subscribers to get their things answered even if it's not necessarily by her or her team, and you're adding value so that person might be like, "Cool. Awesome. I'm going to go and check out their particular YouTube channel and see what that's all about," and they might become a subscriber as a result. They're also going to be a much more engaged subscriber because I led with this value. There's over 500 comments on this stuff, so keep going and keep answering people's questions because they don't know that I've done it for somebody else on this video. That's a really, really good way to just engage with people online in a really authentic way. I am not actually asking them to go and subscribe to my channel or check out my stuff, I'm just providing value and hoping that that leads them to want to know more about me. Another important factor to note is that copy and paste doesn't really work anymore. Those generic cookie cutter, "Hey, welcome. Thanks for purchasing my course things," just don't have the same impact as they used to. People understand automated emails with personalization fields, they understand that you didn't actually customize each individual email, so the more personalization you can actually add, especially to your customers who are purchasing your products or services, the better off you'll be. Even if it means every single student that you have onboard your 500 or $1,000 program, just sending them a quick video, it can be 15, 20 seconds just to say, "Hey Maggie, thank you so much for enrolling in my course. I checked out your website. I really like this and this and this. I really look forward to us working together, and I look forward to seeing what you think of my course." It can be that simple, and yes, it can be the same script for all of your students, but it is slightly more personalized because you're saying their name, you are actually checking out their business, which is, again, going to really help you to learn about your audience, and it's going to force you to really think about how to add more meaningful connections, even if you have a completely digital audience online. My final tip is to incorporate acts of kindness into your business model. This is Adam Grant. He was an incredible professor, a podcast host, an organizational psychologist, who conducted a study of give and take. In it, he talks about the fact that giving when it's done right, can actually have a profound effect on both our sense of fulfillment on a personal side, but also in our professional development as well. It does have to be a little bit controlled and really aligned with your purpose and passions, not just a random act of giving, but he does talk about this magic number which is about 100 hours a year or two hours a week, when you break it down, that we should be spending on giving our time to other people without really expecting anything in return. You'll see a lot of successful entrepreneurs actually weaving this principle of performing random acts of kindness for their audience into their business model on a daily basis. Pat Flynn from Smart Passive Income, who's incredibly successful, actually talks about this as his number one priority of something to do every single day in his business. So doing this can have a significant impact on not just your overall happiness but your level of self-confidence in your business and your fulfillment of the work that you're doing on a daily basis. These are just some of the ways that you can really practice developing meaningful connections, especially within your online space because we're losing that human side, especially to those of us who are running fully digital businesses. We will think five people bought my product today. You won't actually say, "Hey, Jane and Jim bought my products today. Amazing." Because we're looking at profit margins and KPIs and sales targets and all of those things, and we forget that there are human beings on the other side of that who are putting their trust in us and into our product and into our service. They want to spread the word about this amazing thing that they found and share it with their friends on social media, and all of that stuff is just this amazing brand awareness that exists in the digital world, but we're losing that touch of developing those human connections and making our audience really feel like they belong within our online space. My hope is that by practicing these things you'll be able to flex that social muscle and really get to redeveloping more meaningful connections with your audience. In the next lesson, we're going to talk more about how you can control the algorithm to make it a really positive experience for yourself and for your audience as well. I'll see you there. 8. Control the Algorithm: In this lesson, we'll start putting you in control of what you see on socials. Until now, we've talked about how to put boundaries in place and how to restrict yourself from either using your phone too much or just seeing stuff you don't want to see. Now it's time to really get back to actually giving you more of the stuff that you do want to see and making social media the happy place that you really deserve for it to be for you and for your audience as well. Until recently, I've only really ever thought about algorithms from the perspective of me as a marketer. As in, how can I get my content out to more people? How can I get people to engage more? What do certain types of engagement mean for in terms of my campaigns, both paid and organic? There's just a lot that goes into the analysis of what happens behind the scenes of a marketing campaign on an organic and paid level, but it wasn't really until recently that I actually started thinking about this in terms of me as a consumer. As in what did all of my engagement on social media platforms actually mean in terms of the data that these platforms had on me and what content I was seeing and could I actually control some of it? Could I maybe see more of the stuff that I wanted to see in terms of ads and organic content as well? That is the stuff that we're going to be focusing on here in terms of the stuff that you're seeing on your socials, and also how to then leverage this to educate your own audience as to how they can actually see more of your stuff by engaging with it more and by putting certain things into place in their social media accounts, so they can make sure that they always see a new post from me. Let's do that now. Let's talk about how you can see more of the stuff you want to see on Facebook particularly. Do encourage you to just completely unfollow and get rid of people from your personal account that you wouldn't say hello to if you saw them on the street. That's my rule and I do this every December. I literally cut out everyone that I think I wouldn't say hello to you on the street, so why am I following you on Facebook? That's rule number one, I really find it to be quite helpful in getting rid of toxicity and people whose updates are maybe looking at for the wrong reasons, who I maybe went to high school with, but I would never actually communicate with them in real life. But sometimes that's not always possible because you don't want to upset people, but you still don't really want to be seeing their updates. That's what we're going to get into here. On your main news feed, you will see on my particular news feed there's going to be a lot of inspirational stuff, a lot about company culture in terms of ads. This is because I've controlled what I see with my own Facebook account. The way that you can do that is just by heading to the top three dots in the top right-hand corner, and this is how you can turn off. First of all, talking about how to restrict yourself from seeing things that you don't want to see. You can go in and hide posts or you can snooze that particular page, you can unfollow them, do all of those sorts of things if you don't want to be seeing anything from them and that's the same for friends. If you've got friends that you're like, "I don't want to say their stuff on Facebook" you can just say, "Okay, I'm going to hide this particular friend for 30 days." Maybe they're getting married and they're just spamming you with weddings stuff and you don't want to be seeing it for whatever reason and you just want to take a break, then you can snooze them for 30 days, or you can just unfollow them, in which case you're still friends. You've not unfriended that person, but you're not going to see their stuff on your feed. Alternatively, you can hide the post as well. Then the reverse of that also works where you can tell Facebook, "Hey, I want to see more of this stuff." We're going to get into that next, but just keep in mind that pretty much everything you see on Facebook will have some option for you to see more or less of it. For me, for example, maybe I just don't really want to see their recommendations of people I might know because I don't really want to go and friend people. That's always an option, just keep in mind that everything you see will have some sort of an option to see less or more with these three dots. Keep that in mind. Now let's get into how you can actually see more of the stuff that you do want to see. In terms of Daily Goalcast, that's a brand that I know is always sharing inspirational and motivational stuff. I always want to make sure I'm seeing their stuff on my feed. The first thing that I do is go into the follow settings of that page and then I list them as my favorites. That means that every single day, pretty much that I log in, I will see some of their stuff. This does require you to be a little bit more proactive because normally, any page that you follow will be just set on default. You want to make sure that if you really want to see stuff from this page that you're setting it on favorites. Again, this is something that you can really leverage in terms of educating your audience about this. If you are doing videos on Facebook, then at the end you can say, "Hey, make sure to follow the page, and list me as your favorites so you never miss an update." Then you're programming the algorithm for them as well. That's the first step, but really the main tip is just to actually go and engage with stuff that you want to see more of on Facebook. If you want to see more content of inspirational stuff or of happy animals, then actually go through your Facebook account, see the stuff that you really want to engage with more, whether it's from friends or from brands, and actually go in, like their stuff, comment on it, engage with it and that's going to be telling the algorithm, "Hey, they want to see more of this on their feed, so let's put more of this stuff out there." Now when it comes to ads specifically, let me just jump back up here to this emotional Culture Deck ad that I'm seeing. You can always click into it and say you want to hide the ad or report it, save it as well in case you want to look at it later for inspiration if you're thinking from marketing perspectives. But then you can actually go in and check out why you're actually seeing this ad. In my case, it's because I fit in within their age range and their geographic location that they're looking to target. In terms of people similar to the people who follow their page, I've obviously interacted with a page that's similar to theirs. That's what they're targeting off of and I can always manage that here, or I can actually go into my ad preferences and figure out what other advertisers are using to target me so that I can leverage this and actually control the ads that I'm seeing a little bit more. I can go into ad settings and then it's going to tell you what activity other Facebook partners are tracking, the categories that are used to reach me, and then my activity in information, and then whether or not I want to be shown ads off of Facebook as well. It's really interesting and a little bit freaky obviously. But it's good to know that you actually can control this stuff and you can click into it to discover really how these people are getting your information and what you can do about it as well. That will actually help you to control this. In terms of categories used to reach me, it's really interesting because they have found out my birthday is in December, away from my family and away from hometown because I live in Australia and my family is in Canada. These are all the categories that people are using to reach me, but the ones that I would primarily be concerned about in terms of what I'm seeing would be the actual interest categories and potentially removing these based on what I want to see more of. I really encourage you to do an audit of the information that Facebook has on you and really think about how you might want to control this in order to make sure that you're actually seeing the ads you want to be seeing on Facebook and on Instagram as well. The same thing goes for Twitter. With accounts that you actually do follow, you can always remove them or unfollow them or mute them, block them, do all of those sorts of things, and even just tell Twitter that you're really not interested in this tweet, so you can continue to follow that person, but that doesn't necessarily mean that you have to express interest in that particular tweet. But then, in that case, Twitter is just going to try and figure out what it is that you mean by that. It's best to really, actually actively express what you do like and what you don't like. Either you can do that through these restrictions or you can do that through actually actively engaging with the content that you see on social media that you want to see more of. This is an ad because he can say obviously it's promoted. We can do the same thing where I can see, why am I seeing this ad? I don't like this ad. I want to follow them, not follow them, mute them, etc. I can go into, why am I seeing this ad? Once again, it's just going to say, above the age of 25 located here in Australia. It just has to do with my age and geography, nothing really particular. But then I can go into personalize ad settings and do the same thing that you're able to do with Facebook if you want to control more of what you see on Twitter as well. Now when it comes to YouTube, this is really interesting because obviously YouTube is also connected to Google, so it's not entirely clear of how much data they're pulling from the YouTube platform and how much of your data is being shared across from Google as well. But you primarily can control what you see on YouTube and what's recommended to you based on your view time. That is the commodity on YouTube. It's not necessarily you liking stuff or commenting on stuff, it's more about what are you watching, and based on that, YouTube will try and guess what you want to see more of. Now, this can get a bit messy because for example, recently I was redoing my hair and trying to do a DIY haircut and style at home. Then I was just seeing a lot of hair videos, which is not something I'm particularly interested in, but it was a temporary state of something I wanted to learn about. That's when you can come in here and go, "I'm going to control what I see here because this is not actually as relevant as YouTube likes to think that it is." With this stuff, you can go in, again the three dots and just go, look, don't recommend this particular channel or I'm just not interested in this particular video. Likewise, you can save these things. If you're like, "This is something I'm really interested in, I don't want to lose it." I can come in here and save it to a playlist or save it to a Watch Later list so that I can not miss out on watching that video in case YouTube refreshes this feed. But a really big part of YouTube itself is just the actual notification system. If you go into notifications and head over to your settings, you're going to be able to control what you actually end up seeing. You can say, "Look, notify me when the channels I'm subscribed to have a new video." You can notify me with recommended videos, which gets really annoying because these might be from totally unrelated channels. Again, I have gotten notifications from recommendations on hair channels which is not something I'm particularly interested in, but then the rest of this is more about activity on your channel so that you generally want to keep turned on, but I would actually turn this off. Then something that's really handy is to do a cleanse of the channels that you subscribe to, and particularly the ones that you have said that you want to get notifications from. I do this quite often because I end up being subscribed to a lot of stuff on YouTube, same as you randomly follow accounts on Instagram and then you forget why you've actually followed that account. It's good to do a cleanse every once in a while to see if these are still channels that you want to see content from. Because again, YouTube uses this data to figure out what you're looking to actually learn more of on their platform. You can come in here and just unsubscribe from people, and you can also manage your notifications. For example, I've said I don't want to get notifications from this particular channel, but these ones are still turned off. Generally speaking, I would actually turn these off especially for things like this which is a channel that I used to do my workouts, but I don't necessarily need to know every time they have a new video on because I am only going to that channel for that specific purpose when I am working out. So I don't necessarily need to be subscribed to all of their new videos and new updates. This stuff is not going to bother me but I am going to just leave my notifications space for the actual channels that I do want updates from. Again, this kind of interaction by saying, "Hey, I really want notifications from these guys," is telling YouTube, all right, this is something they're really interested in, maybe less interested in yoga because they've turned off their notifications, but really interested in learning about illustrations, so let's show them more of this stuff. Now heading on over to Instagram, there are a few things that you can do to help your audience out in terms of really allowing them to control their own algorithm and actually helping them to see more of your stuff when they do you want to see it. This is a really good example of a post from simplysakile, and at the very end of this carousel post, she's got a little notification in the top right-hand corner that says, Turn on Post Notification with a little arrow to the three dots. So now if I was going to tap that, I can turn on my Post Notifications here and now I'm going to be notified every single time she has a new post. Likewise at the very bottom of this post you'll see a little share icon which allows me to, when I tap that, I can go in and add this to my story. Likewise, if I go in and tap this little save icon, it's going to help save it to my little collection of private posts in case I want to use this for inspiration later or if I just really like this kind of content. It's actually telling Instagram, "Hey, she saved this post. This is the kind of stuff that she wants to see more of." Again, it is just controlling the algorithm on behalf of your users if they want that, if they want to see more of your stuff and they want to make sure they never miss an update, then you can teach them how to do this in a really simple way like that through your post. In the top right-hand corner on everyone's profile as well, there's a little bell so you can see mine has a tick mark at this point because I turned on my notifications for this account, but I can always tap that and say, I want to see notifications for whenever she has a post or maybe I actually want a notification every time she has a new story, or a new IGTV or Live videos. This is where you can go in and actually control a little bit more of what you see from the accounts that you're following on Instagram. Another really important aspect of this is protecting yourself and your brand from hate on Instagram, specifically because it can be quite difficult if you block or unfollow users, they can still create new accounts and some people are just relentless. So Instagram does have a function for this as well. If you turn or if you click on the top right-hand corner, the three dots, you can actually restrict users here. You can basically say, now this user is restricted and they will still be able to see their new comments on your posts as if they were live, but they'll actually be hidden from everyone else in your audience. That means that they can say all the hateful things that they want to say about you, but no one else in your audience will be able to see this. Yes, unfortunately it's not a perfect solution, but it does mean that if someone just has a vendetta against you and your business for whatever reason, it could even be a competitor who is trying to sabotage your business through nasty comments or reviews, this is where you can come in and restrict them so they don't learn none the wiser in terms of not knowing that their comment is not actually live to the public, but you'll be able to protect your brand. The same goes for your Facebook page on an organic level or on a paid level as well, whether you're running paid ads or just organically, if you have anyone who is really gung-ho about leaving you nasty comments, you can always go into the actual comment and then just hide it. They'll still see it, they'll still think it's live, but no one else will be able to see that comment. Again, it's just protecting your brand a little bit. Really commit to engaging with the stuff online that you really love. If you find something funny or motivational or anything like that, don't just go, "Yeah, that's really funny." Actually go and engage with it, like it, comment on it, share it with your friends, do all those things that are going to give the algorithm a tip that, "Hey, I want to see more of this stuff." Because it might not seem like it's a big thing or it might seem really obvious to you, but the more you can also practice this in your own day-to-day but also educate your audience about it, if it's right for your business to do that, the better off you'll be because yes, it might seem obvious to you or to some, but it's not obvious to everyone that this is how these platforms work. There's definitely a lot of people out there who don't realize that by engaging with really negative or heartbreaking stuff that's not serving them in their day-to-day to see on their profiles, they're actually telling the algorithm, "This is the stuff I want to engage with" because the algorithm doesn't know that it's negative or positive news. It just has some recognition of, this type of content is the type of content they're engaging with, send them more of this. If you can educate your audience about how to use their profiles in a more conscious and mindful way to really make it a positive experience for them, and for them to see more of your stuff, then the better the experience will be for them and the more they'll want to connect with you. Because even the guys developing these platforms have occasionally said that the algorithm is programmed to be smart and act independently if it's right for it. They don't even know everything that it's doing or thinking. If those guys who are spending their days developing this stuff don't know how it's acting, then you can bet that your users and your audience don't either. Just sharing with them these tips and just getting them to really consciously decide which platforms they want to use, and also which accounts they really want updates from and the content that they want to see more of, then it's going to make it a really positive experience for them and in their own little digital corner of their online world. 9. Overcome the Impostor Experience: As an entrepreneur, I would say that you have likely heard of the imposter syndrome. But the two badass psychologists who first coined the term in 1970 actually called it imposter phenomenon, originally thought that it only affected women. Though they were studying subjects at a women's college, so maybe there was a little bit of a flaw in gender bias in their focus group. But regardless, what they discovered is that these women were incredibly talented and successful and there was evidence of this. Yet they were still spending their days feeling like they were going to be discovered as frauds for some reason, they were feeling inadequate. Anytime they had a success, they were attributing that to lock more than their actual skills. Since the '70s, it's become very clear that this is something that's not exclusively felt by women. Clans who wrote about their findings said that if she could go back and rename it, she would call it the imposter experience. Because it's not really a phenomenon or a syndrome, it's something that nearly all of us experience from time to time. Plus the imposter experience makes it seem like a theme park attraction, rather than a negative thing that we all experience. I'm going to choose to refer to it as the imposter experience for the purpose of this lesson. First, let's talk about how it happens, how it affects us and then finally how to overcome it. Of course, how your online presence plays a significant role in your imposter experience. First, let's talk about how it actually happens. But this part is quite different for everyone, but naturally it happens when we're faced with uncomfortable or new situations. If you're starting a new job, that's the same position that you've had before. But all of a sudden, you feel like you don't know what to do or you feel incompetent. Or let's say you're about to go on stage at an event, and the person before you just delivered every line perfectly. The audience was engaged the whole time, they were hilarious, they were captivating, they were smart, they made people feel. It was just an amazing experience. All of a sudden, everything that you wanted to say as you're about to go on stage after this person just goes out of your head and you think, "I'm not funny. I'm not captivating, I'm not motivating. I can't do that. That person's way better than me." Even though you went into it feeling really confident and all of a sudden just seeing this other person deliver something like that and making the audience really think and feel has now made you question your own abilities. Now, this is common and it happens in these one off for advance. But the problem is that social media makes it feel like you're on a virtual stage every single day because it's filled with your competitors, it's filled with those people who you presume to be funny or are smarter, or better looking, or richer than you are. That means that we have this imposter experience pretty much 24-7 by putting ourselves on social media as business owners. Of course, this is far from the truth. This really only hit me after I spent some time living in Bali, in Chengdu, which is the hub of influencers. I got to see them in their natural habitat. They were eating the same smoothie bowls as me, laughing at the same cat memes. They were surfing in the morning and reading books at night. Basically what I'm saying is that they were human and they're really different from their online personalities. But what was more interesting than anything is the fact that they suffered from the imposter experience worse than anyone that I'd ever met before. The reason is because the more successful you get, naturally you surround yourself with more successful people, which then makes you feel more insecure and less competent in your own abilities. It's a vicious cycle that we feel every day on social media, where every time you go in your phone and you see something that makes you feel like the thing that you were going to do that day is now less worthy because you saw a competitor do it online and your thing, it just doesn't seem to be as important or as funny anymore. Luckily, there are things that you can do about this to really overcome your imposter experience by putting daily practices and habits into your routine as a business owner. Let's get into that now. My number one tip for overcoming the imposter experience is to teach someone something. Because you don't actually realize how much you know about something until you're teaching it to someone who doesn't know anything about it. This is why spending time with kids is such a big confidence boost. They'll sit there and look at you in awe of the fact that you can peel a potato or draw a cat. They're just amazed by everything you do because it's all the things that they don't know how to do yet and they want to learn how to do. Adults may not look at you at all while you peel a potato without injuring yourself, but there are so many things that you know that the people in your space and in your online universe don't yet know. Go and share that knowledge and teach someone something that they really want to learn about that you already know and they don't yet. Number two is to check yourself. What I mean by this is the fact that when you are feeling that imposter experience, it's easy to forget about all the amazing things about yourself. Having a list ready even if you don't regularly look at it, but actually writing down a list of all the things you're so amazing at that maybe you never thought you would be. Maybe you've accomplished some things or learned some skills you never thought you could master. Write all that stuff down so the next time that you're feeling a bit insecure, you can whip it out and go, "I'm fricking fabulous, this is amazing. Look at this list, how awesome is that." You might not have exactly that experience, but you will actually look at it and realize all of the amazing things about yourself that make you not necessarily better than the person you are trying to compete with in your head, but will make you feel like you're worthy and you can do this. You really don't need to be competing with anyone else because you're doing your own thing, they're doing their own thing and there's space for both of you in the online universe. My third tip is to find your people. Because they will tell you about all the mistakes they made and all the ways in which they screwed up, and all of the inadequate imposter experience moments they felt when they were starting out and when they were where you are now. It'll make you feel so much better because you'll realize that what you're going through is a perfectly acceptable, a normal part of being a business owner. Just finding people who are a few steps ahead of where you are. Not necessarily giant, monumental leaps, but just maybe six months or a few years ahead of where you are now and aspiring to be in a few years time can really help to build your confidence by them sharing with you their stories of their imposter experiences, and also giving you the confidence that you're probably a lot farther along than you think you are. My fourth tip is repetition. Everything worth doing is worth doing badly for the first and the 100th time. Really big part of mastering a skill is just to do the thing and struggle, and repeat, and do the thing again and do that, and do that until your brain actually cannot avoid thinking that you're good at this thing that you're doing on a daily basis. Seth Godin has written more than 7,000 daily blog posts. They're not huge, enormous words of wisdom, novel length blog posts, they're really short. But he talks about this as he's writing blog posts for a million people in his audience, which is really intimidating and it's really easy to feel insecure about that. Unless you make it a part of your daily habit to just write a blog post. Then it just becomes something that you do every single day, regardless of how many people are reading it, it's a part of your daily practice and it tells your brain, "Hey, I'm actually doing this thing every day, I must be good at it." Tip number five is to let go. A really big part of the imposter experience is just a really unhealthy pursuit of perfection that we all have from time to time. But the thing is, you could have the most amazing idea and be waiting for just the right time until it's perfect for you to release that into the world so that you feel really confident about it. But by doing that, it's never going to happen. Because when I look back at some of the courses I filmed when I first started, they're awful. In my mind and in my eyes knowing what I know now, they're pretty freaking terrible. You can hear dogs barking in the background, the video is blurry, I didn't know what I was doing. I just decided to release it into the world anyway. That was back in 2018. I've had people message me who were some of my very first students from those original courses telling me how it's changed their lives because they were able to become social media managers, travel the world, create their jobs because of these courses that were making me feel inadequate and making me feel like, "Gosh, they're not good enough." But I decided to put them out into the world anyway. I'm so glad I did because the only way you're going to get better is to actually do the thing, release it into the world, get the constructive criticism, improve what you're doing and just keep going. That comes back to repetition and practice. But letting go of that perfection is such a powerful first step and just going, "There's a spelling mistake in this e-mail. But whatever. It's gone out to 60,000 people." and that's it. What are you going to do about it? It's gone out, it's in the world and it just doesn't really matter. I think that's a really big learning experience in terms of the imposter experiences. Just realizing that people don't care as much as you think they do. You are your toughest critic, believe me when I say that. Now in terms of social media, I really encourage you to unfollow people from within your industry on your main account. This especially goes for Instagram. Because I know you might be thinking, "I learned so much from these guys and I get a lot of inspiration from their stuff." I totally get that, which is why I have a completely separate Instagram account where all I have on there is following my competitors in my space. I dedicate a time every two weeks to actually sit down when I'm in the right head space to go for an hour and look through all these accounts, look through their latest posts, learn from them, watch their videos. Have that as my learning space. But that means that every other time during the month, those people are not visible on my main accounts. So anytime I'm on Instagram, on my actual main account, I'm not seeing the people who are going to make me feel less competent or less confident what I'm doing. All I'm going to see is the accounts that I really want to see that make me feel good, but aren't people who are necessarily doing the same thing I'm doing, that can potentially make me feel less worthy of the content that I'm putting out there in the universe. Really, really encourage you to do that and really schedule the time that you're spending interacting with your competitors. You can completely delete them out of your accounts altogether, but for me it's worked really well to have a separate account where I actually have all those account saved and I just schedule a time to really go and learn from those guys. Because there's benefit to that, but it doesn't need to be a part of your day-to-day life. The great thing about you sitting there and potentially worrying about being discovered as a fraud or feeling like you don't know enough is I can pretty much guarantee you that you're not a fraud. Because frauds don't sit there and worry about being discovered as frauds. All it means is that you're going through something really human and something that we all experience as part of just putting our vulnerable cells out there on social media and being vulnerable to getting criticism from people. Just know that it's completely normal, it's something we all go through. Hopefully with these tips, you'll be able to overcome your imposter experience by really being confident in what you're doing, and also not exposing yourself to having that moment of going up on stage after someone that makes you feel like you're less worthy or you're less confident in your own abilities by removing those people from your own social accounts. Really just showing up for your audience in a way that feels really authentic to you. Go and create and explore and be yourself on social media. Do what works for you, which brings us to our next lesson. I'll see you there. 10. Do What Works For You: I always tell my students, and pretty much anyone that's on the receiving end of my advice, to feel free to ignore any aspect of my guidance that doesn't feel authentic to them and their business, and that's what this lesson is going to be all about. This is such an important aspect of actually learning stuff online about how to grow your business and how to show up online for your audience. Because there is no such thing as a one-size-fits-all type of advice out there. So you always have to be thinking critically about how something fits into your own brand, and does it feel authentic for your particular business? Because not doing this can be very damaging to your brand, and also just a really expensive thing to do in your business. So I'm going to give you a bit of a controversial opinion here, but I'm going to give you permission to do whatever feels right for you and your business, regardless of the advice that you are getting about how you should be showing up online, how you should be growing your brand. That includes my own advice because I have taught thousands and thousands and thousands of social media managers and business owners all around the world about how to grow their audience online. The advice has always been, put your brand out onto social media networks where your audience's hanging out. It's really good advice and I stand by it, but there's an exception to every rule. The exception to this rule is the fact that if your audience's hanging out on YouTube, but the thought of jumping on video literally gives you a panic attack, or you hate doing it and you don't feel natural about it, and your videos are therefore not actually connecting with your audience, then maybe it's not the right thing for you to be doing. Maybe you don't have to put your face in those videos. Maybe you really like video creation, video editing, but you just don't want to be in them. Then maybe there's a way for you to just have an entire YouTube channel that's all about just screen flows and slides and you don't ever have to show your face. Or maybe you can outsource it. There's so much stuff out there that can be outsourced. So you just have to find what works for you because your limited energy is better spent in the areas of your business that really bring you joy. Influencer and vice reporter, Oobah Butler, actually hired a body doubles to sub in and do his press interviews because it's something he knew was really good for his brand, but he kind of hated doing it. Now that's an extreme version of outsourcing something in your business, but my point with this example is just the fact that because it hasn't been done before doesn't mean that it's not something you can do for your business. There's been plenty of other brands within all different industries that I have done something totally unique for them and their product or their service-based business and it's really worked for them, even though it was going sometimes completely conflicting with the advice that was given to them or going completely against standards within their industry, and it just worked. One of my favorite examples of this is Chapter One. So I will be talking to you guys a little bit more about, thank you, the amazing company behind this book. But this, guys, is actually not my first copy of this book. The very first copy I got was still on a pay-what-you-want model. As in, I picked up the book, went to pay for it, and the person at the register asked me what I wanted to pay. I was super confused. It was just because 100 percent of the proceeds from the book were going to charity, so it was a case of, you can pay $0.20, you can pay $2000. Whatever you gave to pay for this book is what will go to charity. It was such a revolutionary way of doing it that could have backfired for these guys so badly, not to mention that the entire book is written sideways, which is something that their publishers told them not to do because people have tried this before, and apparently it's failed miserably for everyone who's tried it. But they decided it was something that was really authentic to their brand and they thought they're going to put their faith in humanity and hope that people will pay for the book whatever they can and knowing that it's going to a good cause. They wanted people to think differently because the entire book is about the fact that their brand is doing things in really unique and unexpected ways and they wanted the format of the book to reflect that as well. Not to mention that it's called Chapter One, it's actually kind of a story of how their brand hasn't succeeded yet at the point of finishing this book. It's about the journey of their mishaps and all of the things that went wrong in their journey of trying to grow this brand. That in itself is crazy, like think about the fact that you haven't achieved your goals, but you want to write a book anyway and hope that by the time the book goes live, you will have maybe taken a step further in your business journey. So then this is just going to be a funny story of older mishaps that happened along the way. It worked really well for them. Millions and millions of dollars of revenue have been generated from the proceeds of this book. If they had just listened to the people who were telling them not to do these things, they would have never gotten and seen that success in their business. Think about it from the perspective of what Wendy's did with their Twitter account. They were one of the first to really incorporate humor into their marketing strategy by having really sassy employees in charge of their social media strategy. So they really developed this kind of brand identity for themselves on social media in a way that the fast food industry had never done before, by really understanding their customers and understanding what it would actually take for their customers to want to engage with a fast food brand on social media. Because a lot of fast food is just, "I'm hungry. I need a burger." It's fulfilling an immediate need. But in order for people to really engage with a fast-food brand, like Wendy's, on social media, it required an outside-of-the-box strategy, and that's exactly what they delivered, and it's now an iconic thing that a lot of brands have tried to replicate since. Now, Who Gives A Crap is an Australian brand of toilet paper that, again, are really known for their amazing humor, their beautiful, sustainable packaging, and their connection to a really great cause. But their social media strategy is brilliant because they individually wrap every single toilet paper roll in their beautiful wrapping. They encourage their users to actually go and re-purpose their packaging by creating these beautiful things that they can then share with their audience. Honestly, if even five or ten years ago, you told me that a brand of toilet paper was going to have this cult following online through a really fun and playful vibe that they have, I would tell you you're a little bit insane. This is something that was never really done in this particular industry, and especially with toilet paper, which is something that people previously associated with, "Well, we need some, let's go get some." They didn't think about it in terms of, "Wow, it's actually such an experience for us to receive our package of toilet paper and all the amazing things that we can playfully do with the packaging." So really the main takeaway from all of this is that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result. So if you're doing something and you're doing it consistently and it's not working for you and it's not bringing you joy, then maybe it's time to try and do something else. Do something that really brings you joy and makes you feel creative and makes you feel really authentic for you and your business, even if it's something that people think is a little bit strange. So do what works for you and also just manage expectations. One of my biggest pet peeves is when people feel like they have to show up consistently online for their audience because someone at some stage told them they have to. You'll see this a lot with YouTube channels where people will say, "I have a new video coming out every Monday and Wednesday." It's really great if you can keep up with that, but again, people have teams of people managing these stuff. If you're just by yourself, then you're just backing yourself into a corner of anxiety and stress to say, "Okay, I have to post a video every single Monday and Wednesday." But to what end? Is it actually bringing you joy to do that? Is it actually growing your audience? If it is, then amazing, keep doing it. If it brings you joy and creativity and it's really great for your business, then do that. But I would like to challenge that by saying, I have a pretty small YouTube channel and I post whenever I feel like I have a video that's worthy to share with my audience. I've managed those expectations by letting people know that my videos are not going to be showing up consistently in their feeds twice a week. But my YouTube channel grows on its own because people find value in the videos that I do share whenever I share them. So I'm not telling you not to follow this advice, so showing up consistently and posting on networks where your audience's hanging out. These are all really good pieces of advice. What I'm saying is just analyze why you're doing it. Why are you doing the things that you're doing in your business? Are they still making sense for you and for your audience? Is it may be time to try something a little bit different? Even if it's completely out-of-the-box thinking, like you saw with these brands that are doing weird things in their industry and they're just really working for them because they feel really right for them in their brand. So get a little bit creative with it, and that brings us to our next lesson, all about creativity, so I will see you there. 11. Allow Creativity Back In: There's almost a hilariously conflicting element to our beautiful digital world. It divides our attention and it can be a creativity killer in many ways, while at the same time giving us the tools to express that creativity. This lesson is going to be all about giving you some tips that you can pull out of your back-pocket at a moment's notice when you're feeling a bit uninspired, bit uncreative, and like you have created everything possible in your business that's worth creating, which is just not true. But we all have those moments where you're feeling a bit flat in terms of your creativity and you just want to be able to spark it. Hopefully, some of these little tips and exercises are going to help with that. But before we get into it, I did just want to mention two things about creativity that we all forget from time to time, myself included. The first of these is the fact that none of us are actually born creative. It's a skill like anything else that we practice by doing things in our day-to-day lives that spark our particular creativity. Which brings me to the second point, creativity comes in so many different forms. There are so many amazing people that are creative in so many different ways out there. There are incredibly creative people that don't think themselves to be creative just because they are creativity comes in a completely different form from what we consider to be the standard of creativity. Just because you are not like Leo aboard the Titanic drawing Kate like one of his French girls does not mean that you're not creative. You might have been the person aboard the Titanic that would look around their immediate environment and think of four things they could quickly grab to create a life-saving raft and save people from the freezing water. That's super creative and a very different creativity, but one that's really useful in that situation. So I guess that's insane example. But all I'm saying is you are creative in your own particular way that works for you and your business, so please don't forget that. Now let's get into the fun stuff of how you can actually explore your creative side a little bit more deeper. The first tip is to use your non-dominant hand for things. Jim Kwik famously talks about how he starts his day by brushing his teeth with his non-dominant hand, and there are a lot of reasons for this aside from just bringing a bit more fun into your morning routine. It's uncomfortable and difficult, so it forces you to be fully present on the task because otherwise you can end up making an absolute mess. Jim Kwik talks about the fact that sometimes we have up to 70,000 thoughts a day. Sometimes around 90/95 percent of them are exactly the same thoughts as the ones we had yesterday. Of course, we're not really coming up with any creative ideas because we're doing the same things, we're talking to the same people. We're walking our dog down the exact same route, we're having the exact same experiences. It's a little bit Groundhog Day sometimes, and so doing little things in your daily routine that are slightly different can really spark that creativity because your brain is thinking, "This is something new, this is something different than what we did yesterday. Let's analyze this." Does this maybe give you some different ideas. The other thing is the fact that it actually forces both sides of your brain to work together and think simultaneously because you're activating both sides. It's not an automatic thing, you have to really think about it. Because it's a bit of a misconception that only one part of your brain is responsible for the creativity. It's very much a whole brain experience because the most innovative and imaginative ideas require you to also think logically and analytically. When you are trying to think creatively, you have to use your whole brain. By doing things with your non-dominant hand you're actually flexing the connections between the two hemispheres in your brain, and you're helping them form new connections which is fostering that cooperation inside of your brain as well. The second tip is all about staying curious. So you know those people that somehow they know who won the javelin throw in the 1932 Olympics, and they also know everything about history, and music, and popular culture, and everything else, and love those people too. I'm certainly not one of them, but I think there's beauty to knowing a little bit about a variety of subjects. As entrepreneurs, I think we fall into the trap of our vertical knowledge. As in we're experts in this one field and this one subject, and we spend our entire days in this one industry in one topic. Then all of our spare time we spent on learning about this particular thing. We forget that learning is supposed to be just fun. It's a okay to learn about something just for the sake of learning about it, and that's that horizontal knowledge of knowing about a variety of subjects that can really help to spark our creativity. You can take a class on collecting old coins and it might teach you something that's going to be irrelevant to your particular business as well. But we're still in this habit that we were in, in high school where we're just asking, "Will this be on the test?" If the answer is no we'd not really interested in learning about it, but really knowledge is supposed to be fun. Staying curious and trying to learn about all these different things out there, not just your particular area of expertise can be such a big asset to your creativity. The next tip is to let yourself go. Doing something without really thinking about what the end result is, is very unnatural to us as adults not even just entrepreneurs. We're always taught to do something and understanding what the outcome is or what we're trying to achieve. I want you to actually completely go against this by scheduling a session once a month, or once a week, or whatever you can afford to make time for in your schedule to just do something without thinking about what the actual reason for it is. Even if you're really terrible at it, think about kids will draw like 100 things in one day without thinking about whether it's practical, or a logical. Does it actually make sense from their physical environment, they'll draw a giraffe with wings and they won't think, "Oh, that would never work." They just draw it, they just do. They let their imagination flow. As adults, we never really do this because we think "Oh, a giraffe with wings. Yeah, that would never work, so I'm not going to spend my time thinking about that." But letting yourself go and letting yourself be really bad at something, there's something so great at that. I love to dance and I love to sing. I'm I good at either of those things? Absolutely not. I'm a terrible dancer, but I love doing it. It's such a big part of what brings creativity into my life because I'm not good at it. So I'm not actually worried about how I look or not worried about making it look good, I just do it because I love it. I really encourage you regardless of what that activity is, maybe you're terrible or maybe you're even great at baking. But it's not something new, you really want to do it professionally. Just do more of the things that make you feel free and creative regardless of what the outcome is. Some of the world's best inventions from penicillin to Post-it Notes were discovered by complete accident with their creators embracing what they created, not what they're trying to create. That's exactly what I want for you from this exercise as well. My next tip is all about saving your great ideas. Much like it can be difficult to spark creativity, sometimes too much creativity or too many creative ideas floating around in your head can really distract you from the thing that you're doing in any given moment. I really encourage you to just have a note on your iPhone, or just bring a Notepad around, a or sticky note in your back-pocket or in your handbag, and actually write stuff down so that it's out of your head, and you can revisit it at a later time where you can schedule one day a week or one day a month where you go through all of the creative ideas that you had throughout the month that didn't necessarily fit with what you were doing in a given moment. So you didn't want it to distract you, but you still thought, " [inaudible] great idea, so I might revisit this lighter." There's actually now a waterproof Notepad from my Aqua Notes where you can write your bright ideas down in the shower where apparently all the great ideas happen. There's absolutely no excuses for why you can't write down your great ideas and execute on them at a time when you've got that brain space to be able to actually think about them. The last tip is to move. It is quite difficult for your brain to think creatively when you're stuck in one space, especially if you have a home office and you're there every single day staring at the same law, staring at the same decorations, same screensaver, same everything. It's really difficult for your brain to think about things differently, so this is why people like Steve Jobs and Mark Zuckerberg are quite known for the think works. They'll actually make time for this throughout their day where they'll go and just walk without any podcast, no music, just observing their natural surroundings and letting their creative ideas flow while they're in motion because they're experiencing things differently naturally by observing their natural environment. I'm not saying you have to go and climb Mount Everest, but even just doing little things like going for a walk around the neighborhood and to try and go down a different route if you do take regular walks. Just to do something a little bit different can really help you to think creatively. I totally get that scheduling creativity sounds like a total oxymoron, and it doesn't seem to really make sense because you should be able to just be creative whenever creativity strikes you. But unfortunately as entrepreneurs unless we make some time for something in our schedule, we forget to do it. Unless you actually block out a day every month to have your creative flow day, you might actually forget to have those creative moments when they come to you. The best way that I've found to make sure that I'm actually doing these creative exercises, is to block out time in my schedule to have a creative day without any rhyme or reason; no objective at all, other than to just do things and maybe try a completely new activities or learn something that I've never learned about before and have those creative juices flowing and see what happens without really having any idea about what I want out of that day. I really encourage you to have these fun free-flow days from time to time. Now let's think about how to actually bring more creativity into your leadership style online as well in the next lesson. I'll see you there. 12. Be the Kind of Leader You Wish You Had: Over the years, I've studied a lot about how great leaders think, work, and build relationships. Now, when I say leader, I don't necessarily mean the boss or the CEO. Although yes, in a perfect world, that is where leadership would come from, is from the top-down. But leadership can come from the most unexpected places in work and in life really. Whether you're looking to become a better leader as a parent, a friend, a daughter, or in any other aspect of your personal life, or you're looking to become a great leader in your professional life, for your team, for your audience, for your clients, the steps are pretty much the same. Also, pursuing great leadership in one aspect of your life is just likely to make you a better leader and other aspects of your life as well. So there's a lot of benefit to learning these skills and they're incredibly transferable to pretty much every other area of your life, because the best way to make the digital world and you're offline world a little bit better and kinder is to start by leading with kindness. Let's start with a lesson in vulnerability. One way that really great leaders connect with their audience and their followers is through personal connection and lessons and vulnerability. So yes, while there's definitely power to aspiring to be successful and looking up to really successful people whose lives seem perfect, the people who we really connect with and who we would follow to the ends of the earth are the ones that share their mistakes and their mess ups and their vulnerable sides with us. Those are the imperfect and those are the people that we really want to follow. I want you to think about this from a social media marketing perspective with these two posts, both essentially showing people what's possible if they work hard at it from their own personal experience and their own personal view. Now, which one of these are you more likely to actually connect with, and respond to, and want to go along for the journey with this kind of influence on social media? I'd pretty much bet that it's the one on the right, and don't get me wrong. I'm not saying there's anything wrong with showing off your success and there are definitely people out there whose entire business is seemingly built on, showing off their wealth and kind of inspiring people through those material possessions as well. Now, people like Tai Lopez have pretty much a cult following online, but this aura of constant hustle and overnight success is not a sustainable way to really build your following, because really great leadership comes from not just sharing your successes, although definitely share those, but also sharing the big failures and the lessons learned from those, and people think it's going to reduce the credibility that you hold within the eyes of your audience, but it actually does the opposite. We trust in people more when they share their mistakes and they share their human side so we know that they're not robots. There are plenty of people out there whose entire online presence is actually built on their vulnerability. Like this YouTube channel where Lauren is sharing her story of living well with schizophrenia, where she's turning that vulnerability into strength and also giving other people permission to show theirs and connect with her on a human level. This can be the power of actually turning that vulnerable element into your strength and seeing what's possible if they really empathize with your story as their own. Now, let's talk about inclusive marketing and cultural intelligence. Seth Godin talks about culture as the people like us do things like this movement, as in, people with whom we share a common goal, a parental status, religion, ethnicity, sexual orientation, or any other part of ourselves that we really weave into our identity. These are the ones who are likely to be aligned with a type of event, or a service, or a movement, or a product. The best way for you to operate as a leader in this sense is just to really figure out who your audience is and how you can better support them to really make them feel like they belong and they are represented within your community online. The best way to do that is just through educating yourself, because it's really clear that some business owners are just more confident and more comfortable than others in expressing where they stand, especially in terms of social justice issues and there's just a lot of people who still aren't because unfortunately, the online world has overruled this whole no such thing as a dumb question that we used to have in schools when we were first learning stuff. That doesn't seem to be the case online anymore. People judge you for trying to educate yourself on areas that you're not really comfortable in yet and you want to know more, but you're also afraid to ask, because also, we've all seen businesses crumble because of the result of one viral tweet that was maybe intended in a totally different way than the online universe took it and that entire business ceased to exist in a matter of 24 hours because of one thing that when viral. So it does make us scared to ask and the best way to really overcome this fear and really be able to actually show up and represent our community members and make them feel like they're really a part of our brand and that we are so grateful to have them there is to educate ourselves on how to do better. The best way to do that is just to be a proactive rather than a reactive leader. This will not only help you to really stand up for your audience and support the issues that really matter to you and to them, but it's actually going to help elevate your business to another level because you're always going to be thinking about the needs of your audience whenever you're creating a new offer or you're redeveloping something on your website, on your social media presence, you're always going to be thinking about how is it representative of my audience and their needs. This will get you to continuously think about your creations and how they cater to the needs of your audience. You might be thinking, "I'm rebuilding my website, how can I make sure it's more representative of the diverse members of my audience so that future members who are my target market can see themselves using my service or product? I want them to feel at home here, how can I make that happen?" So these are just some of the ways that you can be more representative of the needs of your audience and bring a level of authenticity to that approach, rather than making it feel like it's a publicity stunt that you're doing, and just really caring about how your audience is perceiving the things that you're putting out there. Now, yes, of course, you're never going to be able to cater to the needs of every single individual in your audience, but doing something, even if it seems like a really small digital baby step in the right direction, is very big for that one person who suddenly feels like, "Holy crap, I can see myself in this business. This is the right thing for me because I can see other people who are like me who are engaging with this brand, who are buying this product, who are engaging with this service, and who are loving it," so I'm so much more likely to also go in and engage with that brand. A brilliant example of this is project #ShowUs, which has over 5,000 images and it's the world's largest stock photo library created by women and non-binary individuals to shatter beauty stereotypes. It's something that's live on Getty Images. It's actually a brilliant example of how you don't necessarily have to dedicate your entire business to changing things for the better, but just doing one small thing like this where Getty Images have decided to dedicate a portion of their image library to this project, where advertisers and marketers can come to check out, and license, and use this type of media in their next campaign to show a more authentic, and diverse, and inclusive representation of women all around the world. This is such a really strong example of just how powerful something like this can be, even if it doesn't mean that Getty Images is not going to make their entire business around this, but they have created this space where that authentic and diverse representation is embraced and highlighted so that people can really feel like this is their space and this is a step in the right direction. So the first step I encourage you to take is just to audit your customer experience and also maybe get some feedback from people who have very different perspectives on this. Try and survey your audience and really ask them how they feel about this. That's the best first step to just figuring out how your current experience is making your audience feel and where you can make little improvements. But I know this stuff can be really difficult and again, I totally get that it can be really intimidating to know how to ask the right questions on sensitive topics that you're not confident in. So I am going to provide you guys with some really great resources in your class guide on this that are really going to help in that sense. Among these, you're going to find Sonya Thompson's resources. She writes for Forbes and she also runs Belong University, and is an absolute expert in teaching brands how to make their customers feel represented and feel like they really belong within their brand. So make sure to check out some of her amazing free resources within your guide. Now, let's talk about emotional intelligence. The actual IQ score has been held to a very high regard for over a century now, but our understanding of emotional intelligence and especially how it plays into leadership roles is still relatively new. Just speaking from personal experience, the people in my life that I've considered to be really great leaders weren't necessarily the smartest people in the room. They often were, but that wasn't actually the thing that made them really great leaders. That came down to their emotional intelligence. Leaders with a high EQ are able to not only manage their own emotions, but really tap into the emotions of others and act accordingly. They also create an environment where people really wanna give their very best effort, but they also feel like they really can put their hand up if they've messed up and made a mistake. Or maybe they won't meet a deadline and they don't feel like they're going to lose their job over it. They also put a really big focus on employee development both personally and professionally, and make the time to mentor their employees as well. Finally, they really put their trust in their team instead of just micro-managing every single thing that they do throughout their day. How can you make sure that you're actually flexing that emotional intelligence muscle as a leader on your day-to-day basis? Well, there are definitely a few things that you can do, even if this stuff doesn't come naturally to you. The first of these is to lead by example. Basically, be a do as I do, not a do as I say leader, and that comes down to little things like, if you prefer to do your administrative tasks at midnight or 1:00 AM, that's fine, but don't send your clients or your team members a e-mail that late because it's an expectation that that's how you want them to act with you and that's what you expect of them, which may not actually be true at all. You might be totally fine with them managing their own work schedule, but you're setting that expectation with your actions. The same goes with your audience. If you want them to be a bit more vulnerable and interact with you and engage with your business, you have to do the same with them. Otherwise, they're not just going to keep engaging with you and interacting with you, and liking all of your stuff and messaging you if you're not doing the same for them. The second tip is to make values as important as results within your business. Things like integrity and kindness should take precedence over making money in your business, and actually communicating this with your audience can have a really big impact in attracting and retaining the right kind of customers within your business. It can be really little things like making sure you're giving people a really generous refund period or having a satisfaction guarantee to make sure that people know that you really care about how they experience your product or service and that you're not just going to take their money and run. All of these things can really communicate your values to your customers in a way that they connect with them, and the wrong people may not connect with them and may not actually become a part of your community, and that's a good thing. The last lesson of these is empathy, which is just to really understand that everyone you know might be struggling with something even if you can't see it and this is so incredibly true for Internet trolls. You might have people telling you really horrible things and commenting really bad stuff on your content on social media and your initial instinct will be to protect your business baby and try and argue with this person, because of course, you're protective over your creations and this person's trying to destroy it. But I want you to really think about the fact that that person is probably going through something in their life that has resulted in them jumping online and wanting to leave negative criticism on a complete stranger's post. Lot of the time, these people aren't customers. They don't actually know your product or service. They are just people who have decided to take control over something online because maybe they don't have control over their circumstances in their offline life. I just really want you to try and control that really strong impulse to have an immediate reaction to the hate that you might potentially receive online and just try and understand it from their perspective, and maybe offer your support if it feels right for you to do that, and that is just a very strong expression of what it means to be a leader in the online space. The really wonderful thing about being a great leader in the online space is that it will really benefit your self-confidence, because as Simon Sinek talks about, self-confidence comes from the outside. None of us are born self-confident. It comes from people encouraging us and telling us how much we've had an impact on their life. When you actually start to implement these things and practice inclusive marketing within your social media strategy, you're going to get that feedback from your audience, even if you've just made one person's life a little bit better by making sure that they're represented in your marketing materials, I can guarantee you that that feedback will start to flood in and you will start really receiving that almost immediate sense of, holy crap, I've done something right here. I really encourage you to take screenshots of all the positive stuff that you receive online so that when you do get the inevitable negative comment or negative review, you have that folder on your desktop to go to and read all of the amazing positive stuff of all the people who really love what you're doing online and who really appreciate the fact that you're making sure their needs are being represented in their online universe, and you're making them feel like they really belong there, so that when bad things happen, and they will, you'll know that you have a place to go to where you will actually be reminded of all of your fabulous work as a leader online. 13. Create a Memorable Brand: So everything you put out there in the online universe is competing for your audience's attention with everything else that they see online. Not to mention that they're probably following a lot of your competitors. So how do you make your stuff stand out from the rest of the noise that they're seeing online? Well, that's exactly what we're going to do in this lesson. We're going to talk about how some of the world's most memorable brands or most memorable campaigns have done this to really stand out from the crowd. You might be wondering why I'm wearing a cow onesie for this particular lesson, and there is a reason for it. There's always a method to the madness, and it's because as it turns out, all learning is state dependent and this onesie is connected to a story that I want to share with you about how I found out that information, when combined with emotion, can result in really powerful long-term memory creation. This is probably where most of us really don't remember anything that we learned in high school, because we were bored off our faces and being taught by very unenthusiastic teachers, or at least I definitely was. So of course you're not going to remember this stuff because you don't have any emotion attached to that. There is an important story behind this onesie, but it's also incredibly hot in it, so while I'm dedicated to the cause, I am going to take the hood off and tell you the story. When I became a tour guide back in 2014, my task was just taking a coach full of 50 people under the age of 35 from all over the world, all around the European continent, and teaching them about the world wars, the revolutions, the historical churches, and the cultures of the past and present. All the while, I definitely knew that a lot of those people were there just for the wild party nights out, but the historical aspects of these tours helped to sell it to their parents as a "cultural experience." But for me, it was really difficult to wrap my head around teaching history because I found it pretty dull. So I found a way to make it memorable for me and for me to be able to remember these things by sharing those things that I was actually really passionate about, and helped to make it fun by dressing up as well. This is what led to me dressing up in a cow onesie while I was going through Switzerland with my passengers, to be able to tell them about the beauty pageant for cows that they hold in Switzerland every year and make it really memorable for them. I also dressed up as a gladiator in Rome when I was helping my passengers re-enact sword fights in front of the Colosseum, and I even used this little guy, Oscar the ostrich, when I was doing pub crawls in Greece so that I could give directions to my passengers when they were still sober so they would remember how to get home at the end of the night. The reason for it was because I genuinely lost people a few times. The first few times that I ran these pub crawls, I could not get people to remember how to get back to their hostel after four or 40 cocktails, and that's when I realized that they really needed to just remember that moment where I gave them those directions. So even at 04:00 AM when they were stumbling home, they'd remember, "Hey, Oscar said go left to the shiny man statue. So we go left." I know that sounds really silly, but Oscar actually ended up being an iconic part of my tours to the point that the bartenders would actually make him his own tiny little drink. While I was a tour guide, I was doing these things out of pure entertainment and a little bit of necessity. But it wasn't until years later that I actually realized how powerful this was. I was working in Adelaide in Australia in 2016 and a girl walked up to me while I was working in a travel agency and said, "Hey, are you the girl who talked about Swiss beauty pageants back in the day?" That was almost three years after the fact and she wasn't even one of my passengers. She spent maybe 10 minutes with me dressed as a cow, and she could still remember that three years down the line. This blew my mind wide open because I basically started realizing the impact that it has on people when they have some sort of memory attached to the stuff that you're teaching them or attached to your particular brand. So years after the fact, I was still the cow onesie girl, the weirdly wonderful hand puppet tour guide, the Russell Crowe in Gladiator impersonator, and this type of emotion and information combination to form our memories of particular brands and slogans is something that brands have been doing for years. For example, "Have a break, have a KitKat." The feeling that they're tapping into there is hanger. When you're hungry, you get angry, and the next time you're feeling a bit irritated because of low blood sugar, standing in front of a vending machine, you naturally gravitate towards the KitKat because of this association. The best and most long-lasting campaigns that really have the biggest impact on us are the ones that get us to really feel something very deep. Not just these quick, fleeting, surface-level emotions, but something that makes us really feel what our life would be like if their product or service was in our lives and gives us that future feeling. A really quick tagline example is GoPro's Be a Hero, which then they embody with all of their marketing campaigns as well. But to this day, my very favorite marketing campaign using this technique is Carhartt's Canvas of My Life video with Jason Momoa, and it goes on for almost nine minutes while Jason talks about being raised by a single mom in a small country town, how he loves skateboarding, and rock climbing, and pushing himself beyond his limits, and traveling, and playing in the dirt with his kids, and towards the end of the video, he then talks about his dirty old Carhartt and how every scratch, every stitch represents the laughs, the tears, the memories as the canvas of his life. This ad is the most perfect representation of how you can actually make people almost forget that it's an ad, but by the end, they're so emotionally invested that they're ready to buy anything and everything. It's not logical, it's entirely because of how you've made them feel. So make sure to check out that campaign within your class guide. The second lesson in building a memorable brand is to have a long-term vision and be prepared to evolve. In 2014, when Airbnb decided to completely change up their logo, the keyboard warriors took to social media to make a few suggestions of what they thought the logo looked like. They thought it looked like a dog pooping, an embarrassed face. But largely, the conversation there revolved around how it looked like men and women's naughty bits, and the pink background probably didn't help with that. But the point is that Airbnb stuck to their guns. They knew why they created the logo. The symbol itself was a combination of four simple things. A head to represent people, a location icon to represent place, a heart for love, and then an A for Airbnb, and they called this the universal symbol of belonging. They knew that this was something that would really connect with their target audience, which would be a logo that people would think of when they thought of their amazing hosts that they had in a little Switzerland Airbnb or that cute little apartment above a cafe that they stayed in in Milan. With that long-term vision in mind, they didn't really let that short-term critique get to them because they weren't interested in building a brand for the present, but a brand that will stand the test of time. The key point there is that when we talk about creating a memorable brand, it's not really talking about a logo, or a color scheme, or any of the stuff that people normally associate with what a brand is. It's a lot deeper than that and it comes down to the mission. I know you might be thinking, okay, well, Coca-Cola isn't exactly changing its signature red anytime soon. Now, look, maybe not, but if you've seen the original brown, naked, slightly terrifying Starbucks mermaid logo from the past, you will know that even the world's biggest brands will pivot and evolve with time. That's because in the wise words of the richest man in the world, Jeff Bezos, "Your brand is what other people say about you when you're not in the room." When you're thinking about having a long-term vision for your brand, don't just think about what you want people to think about you now, but think about all the feelings that you want people to feel about you and your brand in two years or in 20. Finally, the way to build a memorable brand is to get people involved. It's funny, but I sometimes think that brands forget that without people, their business would not exist. So people-centric businesses are memorable businesses and that doesn't necessarily just mean your users. It can mean your employees, your suppliers, and any other human that's really involved with the creation and the execution of your business. Patagonia might just be one of the most wholesome product-based brands out there in terms of social and corporate responsibility, and being entirely transparent with their audience about what goes into the making of their range. Just one of the amazing ways that they do this is by featuring the people behind their products, telling the stories of their people, the products, and how everything ties into their core values of wanting to build the best product, cause no unnecessary harm, use business to protect nature, and not be bound by convention., and because of this, they often show their product creators and suppliers, and the process of actually making their products. Not to mention that they also showcase their employees, which brings us to the second way to get people involved in the representation of your brand online, through your amazing employees. Now, no matter the size of your team, it's really important for people to be really proud to showcase the brand that they work for. Amazing brands like Digital Picnic often do employee take over days where one person from their team does a behind the scenes of their workday on socials and they also often feature one of their employees to celebrate wins or share some really cool personal stories about them to really connect with their overall audience. Finally, it's time to get your users involved. Now, art museums are not something we typically associate with a fun, lighthearted environment, but Getty Museum in Los Angeles decided to make the best of the 2020 lockdown by encouraging people to share their best recreations of famous artworks using the objects they found in their house. This allowed people to still feel inspired and creative, but in a very different way and connect with the art in a very different way as well. Whether you're providing a service like Getty Museum, or selling a product like Apple, or selling a software subscription like Photoshop, there's always a way to get your users involved to the point where some of these brands don't have to show the thing they're selling on social media or online at all. Now, if none of this feels like something you feel that you can implement within your business, sometimes it's enough to just make your users feel like they're a part of your mission through the language that you use in your online presence. TOMS do this really well by saying, "You've helped to generate XYZ." Instead of saying, "We've donated XYZ." It's a really subtle change in language, but to a consumer, this makes a huge difference because it makes them really want to be a part of this thing that they've created. Remember that people will forget what you said, they might forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel. With that, let's now talk about how to make sure that your brand is still on track with achieving its mission, whether it's in six months or six years from now in the next lesson. So I'll see you there. 14. Have Regular Meetings With Yourself: Have you ever felt like, no matter what you do in your business something just doesn't feel quite right? Your business can be making a lot of money. Your audience can be engage, all of your stuff looks beautiful online, and for some reason you just don't feel connected to the business the same way that you used to. It happens really regularly and unfortunately, a lot of brands wait until it's way too late to actually adjust. The reason this happens is because as time passes, naturally, you as a business owner, your business, your audience, and the needs of the world around you, completely shift and change and the priorities change, and the business has to adapt with it in order for you to really feel great about where it's heading. In his book, The Infinite Game, Simon Sinek gives a heck of a lot of examples of companies that were once incredibly successful but didn't take the time to change and evolve with the world around them, which ultimately destroyed these ones booming businesses. Blackberry, who once controlled 50 percent of the US smartphone market, is now pretty much an extinct relic of the past, because they didn't pay enough attention to what Apple was doing and also refuse to innovate at the speed at which the public demanded it. Kodak, on the other hand, actually invented the first digital camera, but they refuse to market it because they were fearful of losing their lucrative photo printing business. This once again led to their competitors taking over the market. But it's not just about innovation, sometimes it's just about really keeping tabs on what's making sense for your business. You might remember me talking to you about Thankyou, the book that was written sideways. Well, they started as a single use bottled water company. There was no innovation needed on this front, they're basically selling bottled water, the world needed bottled water, and they're eradicating poverty with 100 percent of their proceeds from their sales going to their cause. This was all really good and they were still making millions and millions of dollars selling all these bottled water every single year, but they eventually got to a point where they realize both from the feedback from their audience and just generally what was going on in the world around them, that selling single use plastic and contributing to the world's plastic problem was no longer really suiting their mission which was to make the world a better place. Although, their fight for environmental sustainability isn't actually aligned with exactly what they do with their business, it's like a side mission to their main mission, which is eradicating poverty, and it just wasn't really fitting with their business model anymore. Overnight, pretty much they pulled all of these bottled waters from the shelves in terms of not being able to sell it from all these major supermarkets in Australia, and they are giving up millions and millions of dollars every year in revenue for the pursuit of a greater goal and a much more long-term goal and their mission with their business. Simon Sinek calls this practicing existential flexibility as a way of forgoing short-term goals in the pursuit of a long-term mission. As time passes and you evolve, as a business owner and the world around you changes, just make sure to keep tabs on whether or not your business model is still making sense. Set yourself, what I like to call KPIs as in key purpose indicators. What I mean by that, is just what should you be tracking in order to make sure that the day to day stuff is still aligned with your overall purpose and passions. The beauty of this is the fact that if you've done a good enough job of building a memorable brand that is really inclusive and really takes the time to be representative of the needs of your audience, then they'll come along for the journey. Even if you completely stop selling the product or the service that they initially bought from you, honestly, they'll adapt. So they won't be thinking, "I buy bottled water from these guys." They'll think I'm a part of a mission that these guys are trying to do to eradicate poverty. Now they sell soap and baby products, who cares? I will buy whatever it is that they're creating, because it's not just about a products, it's about something greater and that's the stuff that they'll connect with. That's one side of it. The other side of it is something that, again, as entrepreneurs, becomes a bigger issue in your business, which is the fact that when you're first starting out, you have to be everything in your business. You're teaching yourself how to be a copywriter, maybe even how to design websites, how to do your own photography, how to do your own video editing, how to do basically everything in your business because you can't afford to outsource yet. But as time goes on, maybe it's not even about the fact that you no longer have the time to be doing all these things, or the fact that you have the resources to outsource some of these stuff. Maybe it's just the fact that your actual interest change. Maybe at some stage, you really enjoyed designing your own Facebook ads. Maybe it's the stuff of nightmares for you now, and maybe what you really enjoy is doing your own photography, or you really want to get into video editing, so that's where you want to spend your time. Really, actually, taking stock of where your skills and your passions are in your business, and thinking about how you can potentially let go of some of these stuff that you really don't enjoy doing or you're not really good at, and maybe you could pass that onto somebody else out there who is still developing their skills in that area, and you can actually be a mentor for them and let them take a crack at doing that in your business. Once every six months or so, I really encourage you to schedule a meeting with yourself to really check in and see how things are going and how you're feeling about it. How are we actually feeling about how our brand is looking online at the moment? Yeah, not amazing. Just imagine if Amazon just kept on selling books instead of adding other products to their platform. Or imagine if Netflix had just stuck to competing with Blockbuster and kept e-mailing people DVDs instead of creating their streaming service. Some of the best products and services in the world had been created as a result of brands being willing to pivot and evolve. Honestly, my own brand has gone through probably at least four, maybe five evolutions since it started in 2016, and it'll probably go through at least a couple more. But I'm pretty confident that the value I provide to you guys, my students and my audience is good enough that no matter what happens next with my business, there will be people who will come along for the journey and who will want to learn for me regardless of the brand that surrounds that. Your logo, your brand colors, even your business name, your website, everything else might completely change. But as long as you're really clear on that mission of what you're trying to achieve with your business, and you take the time to actually evaluate how you still fulfilling that mission over time, and that's all making sense to you, then I guarantee you, people will come along for the ride and will be stoked to get behind whatever it is that you create next. 15. Hold Yourself Accountable (Project): At this point in the class, you've learned a lot of really important stuff in terms of mindful marketing and how to really create a much more positive digital experience for yourself and your business and also for your audience. How to be more creative, how to be more productive, and really how to just be a better version of yourself, both offline and online. But really, unless you actually do the work to implement the stuff into your day-to-day, nothing's really going to change. Just knowing this stuff isn't going to magically make a change for your business or make you feel better about your online presence, or make your brand more memorable or any of those things. You need to actually make sure that you are putting a few things into place to make sure that you're following through on all the awesome stuff that you've just learned inside of this class with some help from me, of course. Let's talk about how you can do that here. First of all, within your class guide, you're going to find some action items that will help you to keep on track with putting all of this stuff into action in your day-to-day life. Let's talk about that first. You'll remember in an earlier lesson we talked about building resilience through gratitude, empathy, and mindfulness. Let's start with gratitude. We talked about a daily gratitude journal, eventually helping to reframe your brain to look for the positives in the world, which will help to make you more focused, more productive, more creative, and overall more resilient within your business. I've provided you with a few questions within your guard that you can print out or just use as an example to write your own questions in a blank journal or something like that. But I really encourage you to take 3-5 minutes at the end of each day for the next three weeks, and just write down the answers to these questions. I know you might think on some days, hey, well, nothing good really happened today. It was just one of those days. We all have those days. But on those days, I still do my gratitude journal and I just talk about how grateful I am for my amazing parents for emigrating when they did, which allowed me to learn English so I could do all the amazing things that I've gotten to do in my life, or the fact that my career in digital marketing and teaching online didn't even exist when I was born. This allows me to do what I do and love to do every single day and connect with amazing people like you from all over the world. It's okay to have a bad day or even a series of bad days. But there's always something to be grateful for every single day, even if it's just the fact that you have your health and safety, which is not something that everyone in the world gets to have every single day. I just ask you to commit to 21 days, and then at the end of this three-week period, assess how these exercises made you feel. The last question in this exercise sheet is, who is someone that has had a positive impact on your life and how can you share this with them? You might not be able to do this every single day, but it is an exercise in empathy, which is the second of these three things that will help you build resilience. Maybe not every single day, but I encourage you at least once a week for those three weeks, select one social media account each week that has helped to improve your life in some way and send them a message on social media to thank them and tell them the impact that they've had on you. This is going to help you to really exercise your empathy and your kindness and your ability to share your emotions with other entrepreneurs and other people online. It's also just going to help you to form those more human connections in your online space. The biggest piece of advice I can give you in terms of mindfulness, even if you're not meditating every single day, like I talked to you about in an earlier lesson, I really just encourage you to restrict your social media use at times when your mind is already at its limit and it's overworked and on the edge of being burnt out or when it's at its most vulnerable times of the day like first thing in the morning or late at night. Put those boundaries in place to make sure that you have your focus when you need it most. Now, we talked about the imposter experience and how it's something that we're all really prone to on social media, pretty much on a daily basis. An exercise in overcoming this would be for you to write a love letter to yourself as if you were doing it for a close friend. Highlight all of your amazing qualities and all of the things that you really love about yourself. Mention all the things that you accomplished that once seemed totally impossible and how proud you are of having achieved them. Because while a lot of us are really good at appreciating and recognizing this stuff in others, we really forget to appreciate our own awesomeness. Now the key here is that you might seal this letter and you may never actually read it again. But trust me, your brain will remember that it's there in your desk drawer, in your car glove box, or wherever else you put it supporting you, even if you're not actually re-reading those words that you wrote about yourself. Now I know a lot of this stuff is quite personal. While I definitely hope that you choose to challenge yourself and put some of these tips into place to redevelop a healthy and happy relationship with your marketing online, what I would love to see is a screenshot of a social media post that you create after you've completed this class. It can reflect any one of the topics that we've covered here. It can be a post that shows off your vulnerability as a leader or your empathy towards someone, or your gratitude for your team or your business or your suppliers, or just something really creative that creates that positive digital experience for your audience. You'll see my own example in the project section of the class, which is an Instagram post from Halloween, where I talk about crying in a supermarket parking lot because the entire city was out of pumpkins for me to carve and the lessons that I learned through this experience. The reason I love this post is because it's super flawed. It's a story that anyone else can relate to on some level in terms of looking forward to something for months and months and months and then not getting to do it because of circumstances outside of your control. I encourage you to create your own project. You don't necessarily need to have a cover image, but I would like for you to give it a title in terms of the skill that you're representing with this post that you've learned through this class and then let me know which platform you posted this on and the account as well. I would type in here and then just highlighting that and making sure I'm linking that as well if you guys want other people and myself to be able to actually check out your accounts and maybe share some of your amazing stuff with my audience as well. Then you can just put the image in and then I would like for you to paste the captioning if there is an image and if there is a caption. You might have posted a video without a caption or vice versa, have just created a text-only post on Facebook or LinkedIn or what have you. It doesn't necessarily need to be Instagram. Then if you want to go a step further before posting your project, you can also write a little blurb about why you like this post that you created so much. Basically, as soon as you start implementing these tips into your social media strategy and into your overall online presence, it stops feeling like you're just a brand that somebody has seen on the side of a highway and they're admiring your beautiful photo. It shifts people's perspectives into really feeling like this is a space that they can share their ideas and ask questions and have an open two-way communication from somebody that they admire who's just maybe a few steps ahead of where they want to be in life and in business. It just changes absolutely everything in terms of how you're developing these connections online and hopefully making it a much more positive experience for you as the creator and for your consumers as well. Now it's over to you guys to put your mindful marketing knowledge into action. Create a post, a tweet, a video, or whatever else brings you joy in terms of your online marketing presence, and take a screenshot and post it in the project section of the class. Please remember that it absolutely does not matter if this post had two likes or two million likes. It just has to be truly and authentically you and reflect what you envision for your brand. I cannot wait to see what you guys create. 16. I Appreciate You: [MUSIC]All right guys, and that brings us to the end of the class. I hope you really enjoyed it. I hope you've got a lot out of it. If you have any questions or you want to maybe share your own experience, and have a few things to add that I haven't covered, please let me know in the discussion section. I would love to hear your thoughts on all this. I have created some templates for you guys, that you will find within your class guide that will help you to hold yourself accountable even further by keeping your relationship with social media in check in a more visual and creative way. You'll have both the light and dark screen versions of a few different smartphone wallpapers, that you can use to act as reminders of what you've learnt here, and a few Instagram and Facebook story templates for you to use with your followers, if you use Instagram and Facebook for your business. The aim of these is to help your audience get to know and connect with you, on a more human level by getting to know your lessons learned from starting a business, your fears and ask you questions. So check that out in your class guide and you'll also have a mini bonus video there, where I show you exactly how to use these in your online presence. I'd absolutely love to see what you guys create. So make sure to tag LIVINGTOROAM on Instagram, so that I can see what you create and also share your creations with my own audience. I really hope you've enjoyed the class. Thank you so much for being here. I could not do this without you. So I'm really incredibly grateful for you giving me the time to learn from me today, and if you did enjoy the class, I would love it if you take a little bit of time to leave me a review, and let me know your thoughts and likewise, if you think that there are improvements that can be made, let me know that as well. I'm always looking for ways to improve that such a big part or just putting my content out there, and a big part of what you learn in this class as well. So let me know, if you've got any feedback in that sense as well,, and please follow me here on Skill Share, if you would like to get some updates on any future classes that I create. Just remember, that you are the greatest project you will ever get to work on. So be kind to your mind, be kind to others, and never stop striving to be a better version of the person that you were yesterday. Thank you so much for be here and I'll see you next time.