Julie Solomon: How to Grow Your Personal Brand | E174
Julie Solomon: How to Grow Your Personal Brand | E174
Are you ready to start pitching yourself and monetizing your personal brand but don’t know where to start? Speaker, author, and top-charting podcast host, Julie Solomon wants to help you turn your passions into profit. With her background in publicity, Julie Solomon is the queen of securing brand partnerships and turning your influence into a paycheck. In this episode, Hala and Julie talk about how to pitch your personal brand with what Julie calls a “signature pitch,” her new book, Get What You Want, fears and misconceptions when it comes to PR and publicity, her best tips for negotiation and pricing yourself as an influencer, and how she became one of the top leaders in influencer marketing.
– Julie’s come-up story
– Leaving Harper Collins to become a freelance publicist
– The start of her blog and content monetization
– Her feature in People Magazine and her free home renovation
– Her course, “Pitch it Perfect”
– The Spotlight Method
– Fears and misconceptions when it comes to PR and publicity
– What is a Signature Pitch?
– Three elements of the Signature Pitch
– On writing her book, Get What You Want
– Best tips for negotiation and pricing yourself as an influencer
– Julie’s transformational story of money and success
– Why do you need to be your own publicist (BYOP)
– Julie’s actionable advice
– Julie’s secret to profiting
– And other topics…
Julie Solomon is a speaker, business coach, host of the top-rated podcast The Influencer Podcast, and author of the upcoming book, Get What You Want: How to Go From Unseen to Unstoppable.
Julie has launched several successful online programs including Pitch It Perfect, The Influencer Academy, and SHINE Mastermind, which teach clients how to master the important skill sets needed to take a personal brand idea and turn it into a profitable, sustainable business.
Julie’s work has been featured in top-tier outlets including, FORBES, Entrepreneur, Business Weekly, SUCCESS, and People Magazine. And she was recently named one of the Top 100 leaders in Influencer Marketing by Influence.Co.
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Julie’s Website: https://juliesolomon.net/
Julie’s Book: https://join.juliesolomon.net/getwhatyouwant/
Julie’s Podcast: https://juliesolomon.net/podcast
Free 5-Step Guide to Gaining Clarity: https://join.juliesolomon.net/clarity/
Pitch it Perfect: https://pitchitperfect.net/bonfire-sale/
Julie’s Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/julie-solomon-375127133/
Julie’s Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/JulsSolomon/
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Julie’s Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCxq78Bz1s7MHVZvyBIQWygQ
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Hala Taha: [00:00:00] You are listening to YAP, Young and Profiting Podcast, a place where you can listen, learn and profit. Welcome to the show. I'm your host, Hala Taha. And on Young and Profiting Podcast. We investigate a new topic each week, an interview some of the brightest minds in the world. My goal is to turn their wisdom into actionable advice that you can use in your everyday life. No matter your age, profession, or industry.
There's no fluff on this podcast and that's on purpose. I'm here to uncover value from my guests by doing the proper research and asking the right questions. If you're new to the show, we've chatted with the likes of ex-FBI agents, real estate moguls, self-made billionaires, CEOs, and best-selling authors.
Our subject matter ranges from enhancing productivity, how to gain influence, the art of entrepreneurship and more. If you're smart and like to continually improve yourself, hit the subscribe button [00:01:00] because you'll love it here at Young and Profiting Podcast.
This week on YAP. We're chatting with Julie Solomon. Julie is a speaker and business coach. She also is the queen of influencer marketing with a passion to help entrepreneurs grow their audience. So much so that she was named to one of the top 100 leaders in influencer marketing by Influence.co. In addition, Julie is a host of the top rated podcast, The Influencer Podcast, and the author of Get What You Want, which was released last week on June 7th.
Beyond that, Julie has launched several online programs, including Pitch Perfect, the Influencer Academy and Shine Mastermind, where she teaches clients how to turn a personal brand idea into a profitable, sustainable business. Her work has been featured in outlets like Forbes Entrepreneur and People Magazine. In this episode we yak about Julie's come up story and how her past experiences gave her an edge in finding unique creative strategies to monetize her content.
We also chat about her new [00:02:00] book, Get What You Want, where she shares two crucial practices, the Spotlight Method and the Signature Pitch that will help you snag those brand collapse. If you're wanting to monetize your personal brand and grow into a successful business, keep on listening. All right here's my conversation with Julie Solomon.
Hey, Julie. Welcome to Young and Profiting Podcast.
Julie Solomon: Thank you for having me, Hala. It's great to be with you.
Hala Taha: I think this is gonna be an awesome conversation. I think you're gonna share things that my listeners are just gonna love. And so for those who don't know you, you're a former publicist, blogger, marketing expert, podcaster, and now, most recently, you are gonna be the author of a new book, Get What You Want, that's coming out in June.
And I can't wait to get into your pitching strategies, but first I wanted to talk about your journey. You grew up in Nashville, Tennessee. You had blue collar parents. They taught you the value of hard work. You graduated with a degree in Marketing and PR, and then you went straight for the gold. You wanted to go to New York and get a job in PR, which is really hard to do [00:03:00] straight outta college. But you did it. So talk to us about that and how you managed to do.
Julie Solomon: Yeah. As you mentioned, I'm from Nashville, Tennessee, actually originally from a really small town in Tennessee and come from just a very blue collar working family. Didn't have a lot growing up. My parents divorced when I was young and I moved to Nashville, and so I went to school there and then went to college.
And then like you said, I was two months before I graduated college, I had never been to New York City and I go to New York on a journalism trip with my college, and I get there and I'm like, I'm moving here. This is where I'm supposed to be. And so I come home and I had thought that I was going to go to LA or maybe go back to Nashville, like New York was not in my zeitgeist at all, but I come back home and I'm like, I'm going to New York.
And so I start taking meetings. And as if you don't really live there, no one's gonna take you seriously. So I had a friend of [00:04:00] a friend that lived there and let me fake use her address. So I put on my resume that I was there when I wasn't there. And I remember one time I was doing some calls on the phone and I didn't wanna admit that I wasn't there yet.
So I was like, oh, I'm out of town. I'll be there in a couple of weeks, just totally faking it until I made it. And I remember one time, cuz I worked all through college and so there was this PR company that wanted me to interview like the next day. So I bought a ticket that was like, $400. Flew up there in the morning, took the meeting and flew home that night.
Like I was determined.
Hala Taha: Wow.
Julie Solomon: To get a job. And I still didn't get a job. So this was like May. So I graduate college and I had, three weeks later I moved there and I had no place to live. I had no job, I had no friends, I had some friends of a friends. So I started like surfing on people's couches and like doing the thing and spent that summer just trying to get a job.
And I didn't know [00:05:00] anybody. I didn't have any kind of connection. So I had to start getting scrappy. And one of the things I knew that I wanted to get into music PR, and at this time, this was 2007, so this is still that traditional PR landscape. And it's back, it was before Facebook was around and Twitter wasn't even around yet. It was just Facebook.
And there was no way to get contacts. There used to be this huge database called Cision, and that was like the only way you could get contacts. And it was like 30 grand a year to subscribe to. I think it's still around, but it was really hard to get contact. So the one thing that I took from college Hala was that I knew in one of my PR classes, I had to learn how to write a press release, and on every single press release, there is a PR contact on it and always at the bottom.
And the other thing that a press release always has is this saying at the top that says, for immediate release. And this basically allows the media know that what you are sharing with them is for immediate release. You're, you don't have to hold the information. So I started [00:06:00] Googling in parentheses for immediate release, and then I pulled up the billboard Hot 100 list, and I just started going down every single music act.
So I would do four immediate release, Pink, four immediate release, Lenny Kravitz, four immediate release, and just started going down, just hoping that like maybe their publicist contact would pop up on Google. And luckily some of them did. And so I sent out like 35 pitches Hey, I don't know if you're hiring, but if you are, I'm here.
And I started to interview with a lot of people and ended up snagging an interview with a company called 42 West. They represent like really top film and TV stars and then interviewed with a company called Press Here Publicity and they rep some of the top music acts at the time and that is who I ended up getting my first job with.
I went into press here and one of the top publicists there, Carlene Donovan, was looking for an assistant and she repped [00:07:00] Lenny Kravitz that Bob Marley Estate, Mackay Pfeiffer, most def Pink, Maroon 5, Def Leppard, Stone Temple Pilots. I mean she repped
Hala Taha: Wow.
Julie Solomon: So many big names back then. And so I was just this young 21 year olds girl that had never been to the city that now had this opportunity. After a couple of months of just like sending out my resume, I finally got the job. I was making $20,000 a year with, about $35,000 in student loan debt. I found an apartment. I found this random person that I had never met to live with me.
It was a one bedroom that we converted into a two bedroom so we could actually afford it. And I just started going to work. And similar to you Hala, like I got to do some really amazing things. I was front row at fashion week, I was going to the Grammy's. I was flying across the country for tour press and tour media.
I got to experience and be a part of some really incredible things and I got to work with some really powerful women doing really big things, but I wasn't [00:08:00] making any. And I had to pay my bills. I had, I kept deferring my student loans because I couldn't afford to pay them. And my business, the work that I got to do would warrant me to be able to get like free dinners and stuff.
Cuz some nights we would have a show we would have to go to and we would go and do a dinner first. But after about a year or so of doing that, I got to a place, I couldn't sustain it anymore. My parents helped me as much as they could, but they told me, they were like, look, after a year, like we're out, you've gotta figure this out on your own.
And so I left, I got scared. I didn't know how to figure it out on my own. And so I came home and I went into a massive depression because that was my dream job. And it was this weird, I'm sure you've been through it where it's you're like in different world in this different vortex. And then it's then I was like living with my parents in like my old childhood bedroom.
Like it was just.
Hala Taha: Oh no.
Julie Solomon: So bizarre. But the gift of that moment Hala was that I just said to myself, I was [00:09:00] like, I will never freaking feel this way again, and I will never give up on a dream ever again. So clearly that wasn't for me and a lot more happened from that that we can talk about. But the gift of New York, it showed me the grit that I had, the ability to think outside the box.
My resilience, I learned more in one year than some people learn in a decade. Working in that environment, and it really kicked off the confidence that I needed to then go to the next stages. That really ended up creating the business that I have today.
Hala Taha: Yeah, this is such an inspiring story. First of all, I wanna call out like, wow, do we have it easy in 2022 in terms of getting context?
Like you just plug in an extension, you're downloading emails off LinkedIn. It's so much easier now and so kudos to you for doing it when you were just a kid in 2007 when the resources weren't there. And to everybody out there listening when you were talking, I was like, I think your strategy could still work, [00:10:00] honestly.
Julie Solomon: It does still work. I teach it to students and clients all the time. Press releases still go out. Absolutely.
Hala Taha: Yeah. So I'm about to tell my guest outreach leads here's a hot tip from Julie. But from my, I didn't know that you actually had this whole blip in your career where you moved back to your parents' house.
I thought it was just straight to Harper Collins. And how did you move up in the corporate world? Because I know you eventually did that and then started basically a side hustle. So talk to us about that.
Julie Solomon: Yeah, so I went back home. It was in the summer, and again, I found myself like no job back at home where I did not wanna be, just fell into this quarter life crisis of who am I?
What am I doing? I broke up with my boyfriend at the time, there was this other guy that I had started to see in New York that I had left. It was just like I didn't have anybody. And so I had to just to take this inventory that summer. And I remember it being like me just running away from things and just trying to figure out what I wanted to do.
But I knew that I needed something stable. I needed to [00:11:00] have some kind of stable job. I needed to start paying off my student loans. Cause I had been deferring them for over a year. And so that's where the corporate mindset came in. So back to the drawing board of applying to different positions.
And in Nashville there was a subsidiary to Harper Collins that is based in Nashville. I think just through indeed and doing some searching and people that I knew, I like reached out to apply for a job and I even worked with the film commission with the State of Tennessee for a little while. It went through like a couple of years of trying to navigate and figure out what I wanted to do.
And then I got the corporate gig, but I always had this, I was never quite satisfied. Like I would get done with my work at, in the corporate in my cubicle really quickly. And then like on the side I started working with, cuz at the time EDM Music started to become a thing. And I had a friend who was an agent who worked with a lot of DJs.
And so I started to do some side hustle publicity, music, [00:12:00] publicity for these DJs that were going to all of these music festivals. And this is before, this was back when Ultrafest in Miami was called Winter Music Conference. Like it was right when that whole world, the DJ festival stuff started to blow up.
So I was doing that on the side and then I got into the book PR thing and then I did that for about two years and then that itch to really go out on my own kind of came back in. And so I left Harper Collins and me and another woman that used to work there join forces. And we just started basically being freelance publicists.
And so we started working. Then Harper Collins hired us and so we started doing the book campaigns and I knew that was possible cuz when I was in house at the publishing house, I was the one hiring these publicists and I was say, I was like, oh my gosh, they're making like 5, 6, 7 grand a month. And I'm sitting in this cubicle like, and they have freedom and they don't have to wear this Anne Taylor suit and come into this office.
I kept seeing [00:13:00] what was possible, and I think that even if I didn't truly have the confidence to even know what that was at the time, if it was possible for them, I knew it had to be possible for me because it's possible other people. So that gave me the courage to just roll the dice again and be like, I quit.
I'm going out on my own. And then that was the corporate gift and then what brought me into doing my own freelance work. .
Hala Taha: And so I'd love to understand how you became an influencer, because from my understanding, you have a blog and you at least had a blog at some point. So how did you dabble into being an influencer? Because at that time there was no such thing really, as an influencer that wasn't really a thing.
Julie Solomon: Yeah, so about this time, it is like 2011- 2012, and I have left, it's 2012. I've left corporate, I'm now a con publicity consultant and they're hiring me to basically do what I was doing in-house. . And it was good, but I was just like always wanting something more.
It was fun. But this was [00:14:00] also around the time Hala that I could start to see that the landscape of publicity was changing and it was changing fast. And just that traditional landscape was, it was getting skewed. And now at this time, Twitter exists, Instagram exists, these people called bloggers started to come out of the woodwork.
And then personally, what was happening in my life at the time is that I had met my now husband and he lived in Los Angeles. And so we were doing this back and forth thing and we got to this point where it was like, what are we doing? Yeah. And so since I had been freelancing and I wasn't working in corporate America anymore, it gave me this freedom to move.
So I pack up my bags and I move to LA and move in with him. And it was the beginning of 2013 and I find myself in LA Barefoot and pregnant cuz we got pregnant very quickly with my first child. And again, it's like New York, don't know many people here knew some from my [00:15:00] connections but don't know many people here.
My husband work requires him to travel a lot cuz he's an actor. So he's always gone on set. So I'm home alone. I don't know many people. And it was at the time that this idea of blogging was becoming a thing and influencer marketing was becoming a thing. And LA has always been the top 1% of the top 1% of those people, like all of the content creators and bloggers that were really doing big things were coming out of LA.
And so it was the timing of being there and seeing like this new way of marketing that was interesting to me. And I was like maybe I could dabble in this. It gives me a different creative outlet. I've been doing this consulting book PR thing for a couple years now. I'm getting tired of it.
. And so I started doing that and I started to reach out to some people that I knew from my New York days just to be like, Hey, I live in LA now. I don't know anybody here. Do you know anyone that you can connect me [00:16:00] with? And I did. I had some friends connect me with some of their friends. And another good friend of mine, Angela, had started a YouTube channel at the time, she was a glam YouTuber and she was like, you should get into blogging.
I think that it will allow you to be able to network and I'll take you to some of these events that I'm going to. And so I started blogging on the side and I started to notice when we would go to these events, it was like all of these influencers and bloggers would just be like sitting in the corner of this event, just like doing this.
But then all of the brand reps who made the deals and had the money were like over here. And I'm thinking to myself, and this is just my publicist hat, I'm like, why aren't these content creators talking to these brands? They wanna work with brands, they want to collaborate with brands, and they're not, they're in, they're at this event.
They have this great opportunity. To connect and network and to meet these brands and they're not talking to 'em. So I just started going up and talking to them. And what I found, because of my background in understanding marketing and PR, not [00:17:00] only was I able to build these relationships with these brands by going to these events, but I was able to actually to start monetizing my blog really quickly.
I had not even 5,000 followers at the time and I started outearning what I was making in PR through my blog and content monetization. And that's when I was like, okay, this is interesting. And at the time I just, I told myself, I was like, if I can just make $6,000 a month, like that will give me breathing, like I can pay my bills.
I can pay my credit card debt or my college debt. I can keep the lights on, I can do what I need to do, and it will also gimme some breathing room so I don't have to take on certain book clients that I don't wanna take on anymore because I'm able to facilitate that money over here. And so I started doing that and then about six months into it, I started to have these friends of mine or these women that I would meet at these events who were big content creators at the time.
And at the time they had hundreds of thousands of followers, which is like having millions now. And they were sitting front [00:18:00] row at fashion week and they were doing those things and they said, Julie, I don't mean to come off rude, but how is it that you have no followers and you're making money and I have hundreds of thousands of followers and I'm making $10 off of a t-shirt.
And then that's what gave me the idea that instead of really being a blogger, I need to being the coach and being the consultant and being a resource of information and support for these content creators, because that's really where my expertise was. It wasn't in, people didn't care what outfit I had on.
They wanted to know how I was making money.
Hala Taha: Yeah.
Julie Solomon: So I listened to that and that's really how all of that kind of transitioned and where the blogging piece of that came in.
Hala Taha: This is so interesting to me, and I resonate with it so much because I was a blogger too around that time. Blogging was so hot.
Blogging is like what having a podcast is like now I feel like it's the equivalent or like having a TikTok channel or something like that because social media, like you said, people didn't [00:19:00] have millions of followers. Like the big social you, you'd have 5,000 people and you were an influencer. Like people thought you were a hot chick.
I used to have 7,000 people on Twitter and everybody thought I was famous. Oh yeah, it was a whole different world back then. So it was just a different world. And I look at myself now and like I make so much money off my podcast and I'm punching way above my weight, but it's because I understand the business.
I understand how to make money off of every single download and squeeze it. And the thing is that there's a lot of influencers out there. They have no idea how to capture the money that they deserve. And I think that this is really needed right now because there's not that many people teaching influencers how they can actually make money.
And a lot of people think they need hundreds of thousands, millions of followers, millions of views in order to get sponsored. But that's definitely not the case, especially now when micro influencers are so hot. I love this. Let's dig into how you came up with some of your first creative strategies to get placements.
So I found out that you got into People [00:20:00] Magazine very early on and you were somehow able to fanangle getting your whole house remodeled and you got featured in People Magazine. So talk to us about how you did that and how we can do similar strategies.
Julie Solomon: Yeah, so this was 20, probably 14, 2015, something like that. And again, I never was the content creator or the girl that had all the followers. I was never the person that was had the perfectly curated Instagram feed. I was never the one that just the fashion sense like naturally came to her. I was never the one that was being invited on the front row of fashion week.
So I really had to work with what I had. And what I had was an understanding of marketing and PR strategy and really an understanding of serving other people because it's not about me. It's about how can I give them what they want? Because if they get what they want, then I can get what I want and then everybody get what's gets what they want. Everybody's happy.
So what I wanted at the time was my son was two years old [00:21:00] at the time and we were turning his baby room into a big boy room and I wanted to try to figure out a way to partner with a brand really. So like I didn't to offset the cost so I didn't have to pay for it. And I knew it would be a good opportunity for me to work with brands, and this is what I was trying to do and monetize my platform.
But when I started pitching it out to all of these different companies and they just kept being like, what's in it for us? Like you have two followers, like why should we care? And so instead of just feeling bad about myself and giving up, I was like, okay, I can't change the fact that I don't have a lot of followers, but what can I work with?
And so I was like why do they want me to have a lot of followers? Why is that important to a brand? Because they see that as them being able to get in front of more people to get more eyes. So following is really just a viewership. So I started to think if I don't have a platform that has a viewership, what are other [00:22:00] platforms that have a viewership?
And I go media have platforms that have viewerships. What relationships do I have? I have media relationships. So again, I don't have the following. I don't have, people aren't just knocking at my door begging to work with me. But what I did have was an understanding of how to pitch myself and how to get those relationships.
And if I didn't have those relationships, I knew that I could figure out how to find those relationships. Because here's other thing that I wanna mention, because I think that it's probably easy for someone to hear this and be like, oh, easy for Julie to do it because she was a publicist and she had relationships.
Book contacts are completely different than lifestyle and fashion and brand contacts, like the book contacts that I had, they couldn't help me with any of this. , they covered books, the music contacts that I had, they couldn't help me with this. And really by this stage, and this Hala, I had lost a lot of those relationships.
And as in the media landscape, those relationship, those people are changing jobs every single day. So somebody that I might have [00:23:00] known at People Magazine five years ago, they're not even there anymore. . So I really was starting from the bottom, but what I knew was how, if I didn't know that relationship, I knew that I could figure out how to get to that relationship.
. So I just started thinking, I was like if they're wanting to get in front of people, if that's really the goal for them, the goal is not that I have followers, the goal is that they get new eyes on what they want. So maybe I could get them media and if I could basically act as their publicist and get them media, then maybe they would wanna work with me.
So then I started to switch gears and instead of pitching the brands, I started pitching the media companies. And at the time, because of blogging, I had been just trying to get my name out there, so I would always offer to do contributing posts and editorials and op-eds and stuff like that just to get tagged and get my name out there.
So I went to modern Mom and mom.me and just all of these mom sites, pop sugar moms and these mom blogger sites at the time. That covered a lot of mom content [00:24:00] because again, I was working on my son's room and this was a mom related piece of content. And then I noticed during my research that People Magazine was coming out with their own blog.
They were gonna have a blog on people.com and they were gonna have a parenting section. So I got scrappy, figured, found a bunch of different contacts, just reached out to all of them. And I was just asking, would you guys be interested in a piece of this kind of home makeover? Stay at home, work from home mom, home makeover?
If I were to partner with a brand. And so they were like, cool. Like sure we need content. That's the thing. Media always needs content. So they were like, awesome, no big deal. They were like, we're starting this new thing. We would love content. So I was like, awesome. Now I can go back to the brand and say, Hey, people Magazine is interested in covering this story.
Are you in or are you out? And so I went back to the brands and after 15,000 different brands I went to, I was able to [00:25:00] narrow it down. And then finally one, all you need is one. One brand got back to me and that was World Market. And they said, we would love to do this if you can guarantee that we're gonna get media, we would love to do this.
So then I paused and I put my PR hat back on and I was like, okay, so how can I make this as big as freaking possible? Cause this is my only chance at this. So like how can I make this big? So I went back to People Magazine and I said, World Market is in, but they're wondering, is there any possibility that we could also get a print opportunity?
And they were like if we're gonna do print, we need to have this be just more than one room. We need to see like a makeover transformation. So then I was like, okay. So then I went back to World Market and I said, okay, so guys, the only way that People Magazine's gonna be able to do this is if you redo my entire house, because they need to see a full home renovation.
And if you can do that, then we'll be able to not only get the blog coverage with links clicked, so then World Market's making money, cuz people can click on [00:26:00] those links. But then we're also getting a.com feature and you're getting an imprint feature, which is just good for awareness. And they were like, cool, let's do it.
And so I was able to then get like over $250,000 worth of furniture and interior design services and photography services all included in this deal. And that was really like the first, that was at the very beginning of all of this and one of the first things that I ever did. And so from that, when friends and people caught wind to this, cuz this was back when like people, girls like me that were doing this, they weren't thinking like that.
They weren't thinking like that you, was possible. And so then just so many women and girls that were in that content creation space just started coming to me and they were like, how do I do te help me do this. I wanna do that. And that's when I created my first course, which is still around today called Pitch It Perfect.
And it helps content creators learn how to pitch and land brand deals.
Hala Taha: Let's hold that thought and take a quick break with our sponsors. [00:27:00] Okay. Yeah, YAP fam, you know that when it comes to marketing, time and place are everything. But in today's age of a million messages per minute and not enough hours in a day, how do you really catch your target audience's attention when and where you need to?
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This is amazing. I love the way that you think, I feel like we think really similar and so I wanna like piece this apart at a high level because it's just so interesting. So basically what you're doing is you're finding an opportunity, you're like matching two people together and then inserting yourself basically.
Julie Solomon: Yeah.
Hala Taha: I'd love for you to like just explain how you can do this over and over. Like you've done this dozens and dozens of times, right? [00:33:00] So what is the formula to do this?
Julie Solomon: Yeah. What I call it the spotlight method. So the biggest challenge that people face when they come into this, and you actually already touched on some objectives.
People think that they need to have a million followers. People think that they need to look a different way or act a different way or anything. They just need to think a different way. That's it. And you can teach someone how to think a different way. So that's the first objection, but we can get over that.
The second issue that I have seen, and again, like I've been, I had the first pitch course out of its kind ever. This was back in 2016. People weren't talking about this, people weren't doing this. If content creators were working with brands, they were catching the deals. No one was pitching themselves.
And so I have seen it all, and I have been on all different facets of this. And what I share in the course is what I call the Spotlight Method. So the biggest issue that I see people have is that when they go to work with a brand or to essentially pitch themselves, they make [00:34:00] it about themselves instead of about the brand.
It's all about what I want, what can you do for me, how much money I wanna make, how I want this to look, how's it gonna help my following, instead of focusing on, it's not about me, it's about them. I am a solution provider for what it is that they want. So it's about taking the spotlight off of you and putting the spotlight on the brand and really remembering that at the end of the day, it's always about people first.
On the other end of that email, on the other end of that brand is an actual human being that has wants, that has needs, that has desires, that has a boss. That is wanting to make sure that they hit their goals and their targets. So if you can make that person's life easier, if you can help that person do a good job for their company and their boss, they are gonna wanna work with you time and time and time again and happily pay you for that.
So I teach people this idea of the spotlight method and how to approach brands in a way that is not self-serving, but is [00:35:00] solutions based first and really making it about supporting the brand first. And it's funny I have a lot of relationships now in that brand space and about two years into this, I think it was like 2018, a friend of mine was like, Julie, it's so funny now because when a content creator pitches us.
If she pitches us a certain way, we know that she's come from your Pitch Perfect Program because of the way that , she knows how to talk to us because she's learned your formula, you've coached her, she knows how to do it. So they could al, they call 'em like the Pip girls. They could always tell if it was like a pip girl.
Cause thousands of incredible women have gone through that course now. So they could always tell that. And and I think that when something like that becomes so proven in the marketplace, when you have brands that are able to identify that way of working, you know that it works. That's when you know that something is proven and tried and true in a marketplace.
Hala Taha: Yeah, I'm very excited. Honestly, I think I'm gonna put my whole sales three team through your fidget course cuz we, we do sales for [00:36:00] influencers. We have a podcast network now. So I'm gonna have them go through that. Now, there's a lot of people out there, they've got expertise. They're very smart, they're very credentialed. They're very talented, but they feel like they're not good enough to get PR. They feel like they're not big enough. It will never happen. Talk to us about the fears and some of the misconceptions when it comes to PR and publicity.
Julie Solomon: Yeah, so the first one is the following, and I always say this, it's people are like, I'm not big enough, or I'm not, I don't have enough followers.
And it's that idea of what do you think gets you the followers? It's not just creating content and then someone des bestowing a bunch of followers on you. It's brand awareness that gets you the followers. It's creating quality content that people wanna see and actively engage in. Now, Instagram today is way different than Instagram a few years ago. It's not really, I don't even really see Instagram as being a place where you can grow. It's more of a brand awareness tool. It's really hard to grow on Instagram now. You can still on, TikTok and other arenas.
Hala Taha: I 100% agree there's [00:37:00] no organic growth.
Julie Solomon: Yeah, there's no organic growth there. But at the time, there was, and if you would align with a brand who then is promoting you on their page, your likelihood of growing is going to be tenfold. And so that's what I always say to people is how do you, it's like you're saying, I wanna go major in chemistry, but I've never taken a class, so I can't major in chemistry.
What do you think gets you the major? Taking the class, going to the classes, learning how to do it, actually testing things out. And so that's a big misconception. Another one I think is people will say I've tried pitching and it didn't work. So it just, clearly it doesn't work. And my thought is like, yeah, but that's like saying, Hey, I, I tried to walk when I was two years old and I fell down, so walking doesn't work.
I tried to swim and once and couldn't figure it out. So swimming doesn't work. Or I tried to drive when I was 16 years old and I didn't do it perfectly. So driving doesn't work. It's no, it's not that it doesn't work. You just haven't, nothing's [00:38:00] gonna work perfect the first time. You have to learn how to do something over and over again.
So that's another big misconception is people will try it once and then they'll just vote it off the island. And then I think another really big misconception is the idea that they have to get all of these ducks in a row first before it's I need the followers and then I need to do this, and then I need to do this, and then I need to do this, and then the brands will be ready to work with me.
And it's no it's not the brand's job to come and find you. It's your job to go to the brand. And I think that's the other thing that a lot of people just feel like they have to become a certain type of influencer. And then once they become that these brands just start knocking on your door.
And that may be the case for some of those influencers, but for most of the micro influencers who are actually making the majority of the money, that is not the case at all. And then another challenge that I see people go through, and it goes back to that idea of pitching doesn't work.
It's somebody that's never pitched before and they'll try to go [00:39:00] off and pitch, like to Chanel , they've got like 4,000 followers. They don't wear Chanel, but they're like pitching to Chanel. And it's let's actually build out what a realistic plan for you is and don't you think it's, you're going to be setting yourself up for success if you actually pitch and land and monetize a lot of small brand deals first before af. There's nothing wrong with having that pie in the sky goal, but let's actually work with where you are today and what it is that you have today.
Hala Taha: Yeah. And I imagine like just matching yourself better with brands. I feel like brands would resonate if they feel like you're their target audience and you actually use their stuff. Right?
Julie Solomon: Absolutely.
Hala Taha: So something that I wanna uncover, I thought it was really interesting. In your book you talk about something called a signature pitch and you have a very distinct definition. You say that a signature pitch is a specific opportunity that transfers a belief that a brand must have to say yes to you.
So break that down for [00:40:00] us. What does that actually mean? Cuz it was hard for me to understand it fully.
Julie Solomon: Yes. Okay. So everyone needs a signature pitch that is unique to their experiences, their expertise, their core beliefs, what they bring to the table. And so that's what I call it as a signature pitch.
Your signature pitch Hala may be different from mine. Now the foundations of a pitch and the foundations of selling, I think pretty much remain the same, but it's, everyone has a unique distinction to what that is. And what makes a pitch signature to you is that you have to figure out a way to transfer belief.
Meaning, most of the time people are already psychologically out of the gate wanting to say no to you first. So how do we transfer the belief from the no into this is exactly who we need to work with, where do we sign? And you do that with your signature pitch. And so that's really what I teach of that model is your signature pitch, again, is not about you and what you [00:41:00] want, it's how are you transferring that belief that you are the solution provider for what it is that they need, want, or desire that is going to get them to say yes to you.
The other thing that I think is an important element to the signature pitch, and I may not even share this in the book, but people wanna say no because it makes us feel safer. So if a brand wants to say no, go ahead and get that out of the gate first. Let them say no. And what I say about this is that if you have an ask, you wanna make sure that you have other asks in your arsenal.
So you're not just coming out the gate with only one option that you're pitching. You wanna have these other ideas that you could potentially collaborate with a brand on. That way if they say no, okay, great, we've got the no out of the way. Now let's get to the yes and you can then follow up with these other ideas that you have.
And so that's really where a signature pitch can come into play and really having these diff these different options. And so you're not really, it's like you wanna get the no, because we learn from our no's first off. But also a no is it's guaranteed in any kind [00:42:00] of negotiating type of situation that's happening.
So let's get the no out the gate. So then we can get to the good stuff and get 'em to say yes. And that even goes back to the story that I shared with my home renovation. I got a lot of no's. I even got no from the two from People Magazine and from World Market before I got the Yes. So interesting. Does that
Hala Taha: answer your question?
It does, but I'd love to get some examples of what is Signature Pitch is like what's your signature pitch?
Julie Solomon: Yeah, so my background is in education, so I'm usually gonna be coming from this place of offering some type of solution to an educational based thing. So if I'm going to a brand and like for example, right now I'm pitching a podcast tour.
So I'm going to these brands and I'm using what my signature is the education piece to say, I'm gonna be on this tour, I'm gonna be teaching X, Y, and Z. We're gonna have X, Y, and Z type of person that is there. That is your ideal avatar as well. And I'm gonna be using my expertise [00:43:00] in that education forum to really kick off this event and to make that be what people are coming home with.
So that would be the angle that I would take. Other angles that you could take for people. Sometimes it's beauty, sometimes it's wellness, sometimes it's health, sometimes it's fashion, it's entertainment. Sometimes it's your own products and services. So it's about what is signature and unique to you that is going to be able to connect with the brand that the brand is actually gonna see value in to get them to say yes to you.
Hala Taha: Yes. And you talk about three elements, connection, credibility, and promise. Is there anything you wanna add to in regards to that?
Julie Solomon: Yeah, so I think connection, and we've talked a lot about that, and this is really where that spotlight method comes into play. You wanna be able to authentically connect to the brand and to also what it is that you're offering them.
And that's why I always say like it's always people first. And coming from that place, I think that is huge and credibility. You wanna be able to back up what it is that you're saying. It doesn't mean that you need to be [00:44:00] necessarily the biggest or best expert in whatever it is, but it's about showcasing the things that really make you stand out and really make you shine.
So what are those credible pieces? Maybe it's not your following, but maybe it's your newsletter list. Maybe it's not your email list, but maybe it's the fact that you're a really good content creator. There's a student in my Pitch Perfect Program right now. Her name is Erden and she has no following, but she is this phenomenal content creator and she creates these incredible Tiktoks and reels.
So brands are actually hiring her, not for her to put content on her channel, but for her to actually create content for them. So that has become her signature pitch. They're not having to hire this ad agency anymore. They're hiring her. And so it's about thinking, what can I work with what I have to have that credibility piece shine to light.
And then your promise, which is your PIP promise, is, am I actually going to be able to back up what it is that I'm saying? Is this brand gonna be able to see a return on [00:45:00] investment with what it is that they are investing in? And that could be with conversion, that could be with brand awareness. Again, this depends on what's important for the brand, it's your job as the content creator to be asking these questions to figure that out. But making sure that you're executing on that promise, that you're telling them.
Hala Taha: I love this. So many great pitching tips. And speaking of pitching, so assuming everybody does, they take your course, they listen to this podcast, they start getting some offers, then they're gonna have to negotiate, right?
That's the next step. And in your book, you talk a lot about negotiation. It's called Get What You Want, it comes out in June. Why did you decide to write this book?
Julie Solomon: This book was something that had been, I think, in me for a while. I didn't know how I would do it or when I would do it, or what I would necessarily say, but I always knew why.
Obviously being a book publicist, books, I've always loved books. I've always loved working with authors in that way. And I am a communicator at heart. That is my art form. It is the [00:46:00] way that I connect with the world. I do that through speaking just like you do on podcasts and on stages, and I do it through writing.
And so it was, in some ways it felt very natural to write a book because that is how I connect with people. And then in other ways, it was incredibly terrifying and scary to put yourself out there. It's, in some ways it's a lot easier just to be a strategist and a marketer and kind of have the vault up when it comes to everything else, but to peel back the layers and to really show people more of my story and more of a side of me.
And most importantly I felt like a lot of times when I would read books like this, they would do a really good job at helping me align my goals with my purpose or my passion, but a lot of times they didn't leave me feeling good about myself. They actually left me feeling very overwhelmed I wasn't doing enough.
And so I wanted just to bring a lot of worthiness into this book that you really are enough as you are just in this moment, and that is enough to get what you want. You, there's just probably a couple of steps or some [00:47:00] mindset stuff that we have to work through, which we share in the book, but it is possible.
Hala Taha: I love that, and I loved reading your book. What is your best tips in terms of setting a price when it comes to negotiation? And this is super interesting, especially when it comes to influencers, which I'd love for you to take that angle because I think a lot of influencers don't understand how to price themselves.
Julie Solomon: Yes. So I had to do an entire chapter on negotiation in the book because it's such a core element of my program Pitch it Perfect. And just core element in my method of pitching and how I pitch. And it's probably the biggest takeaway over the last, since 2016, however many years, the thousands of students that have gone through the program.
The biggest feedback that I hear is, Julie, you gave me the confidence to know my worth and to ask for what I wanted and to get it. And that really does stem from this art of negotiation. And for me, I think the most important piece when it comes to negotiating, especially for influencers is to [00:48:00] remember that it's, there's not a one size fits all.
The art of negotiation is super relative. There's a lot of factors that go into it that are super unique to the deal that you are talking about. The scope of work, the terms, the licensing. There's so much that goes into that. The key feedback that I can give anyone that's listening is that the biggest thing that I always tell people is never throw out a price.
Because when you throw out a price, you immediately lose any opportunity that you have of negotiating because you just showed all your cards. So I always recommend asking the brand what their rate is first, seeing what they come back with. And a lot of times I've had students that are like Julie, I ask the brand what their rate was for this deal.
and they're paying me five times more than what I was gonna tell them that my rate was. It's fascinating what can happen.
Hala Taha: Wow.
Julie Solomon: When you throw that back on them, because a lot of times we're undervaluing ourselves. I always say to my students whatever you think you need to [00:49:00] charge, double it and then we'll start from there.
Hala Taha: I love that rule.
Julie Solomon: Yes. Because someone can always say no or not now to you, but the biggest key, and I'll get back to my solution to that, but I wanna say this with negotiating, if you're throwing a number out and someone is immediately saying yes to you, you're undervaluing yourself and you're underpricing what it is, it should hurt them a little bit to say yes to the number that you're throwing out.
You should be negotiating the price. If they're just saying, yeah, no sweat, like you're undervaluing yourself, and so you want to get to a place where you're actually negotiating not only the price, but the terms and the deliverables and everything that's included in that. So it's mutually beneficial.
So instead of throwing out a number, you wanna first ask them what they're charging. If they don't give you that and they keep pushing back to you to give them a number, you don't give them a number. You give them a range. Okay, based off of what we've talked about and everything that you want me to do, it's gonna cost between X and X, and then you leave it [00:50:00] open.
That's where you can start to negotiate. Because if they come back and they say, okay, we wanna give you $500 for this, it's actually, if all you have is $500, then I need to take X, Y, and Z off of this. Cause I can't do all of this for $500. I can do all of it for $1,500, but I can't do all of it for 500.
You get to decide brand, what is it that you want? And again, it's the spotlight method. We're putting it back on them to have the opportunity to make their choice. And what happens when people feel like they're in charge and when they feel like they're making the choices, it makes them feel good about the decision that they're making.
So it's really about letting them decide. And it's like you're still getting what you want because you're protected by the range that you threw out to them, but you're letting them decide where they wanna meet you halfway.
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These are some really great tips. I think the other thing that I would add, especially for these niche micro influencers, don't forget if a brand is trying to specifically target the audience that you cater to. So let's say you're like an animal influencer and all you do is talk about [00:55:00] cats and dogs and all of your fans are animal lovers.
You can charge like 50 X to the cat and dog brands out there. Whereas like some general car company that wants to sponsor you, you're gonna have to be like standard rate. But if it's like somebody who's actually trying to target your exact audience, you can charge a lot more money because you have to think they're usually advertising to the 2% of the audience that might be interested in their brand, not the a hundred percent of the audience that is interested in their brand. So that's the other thing I think people forget often.
Julie Solomon: Oh, there's so much power in the niche. And I think what you said, it's that it speaks volumes. It's so powerful, it's so important. And the data doesn't lie. It's like instead of targeting only 2% of your audience, you're gonna be targeting 100% of your ideal audience. And there's a lot of value to that.
Hala Taha: Yeah, 100%. Okay, so as we close out this interview, I'd love for you to share a transformational story of yours that I read in your book that I thought was really touching. And it was about you hiding [00:56:00] $30,000 of credit card debt from your husband, and it unlocked a toxic origin story for you about money and success.
Can you talk to us about that?
Julie Solomon: Yeah, so I actually kick off the book with this story that I thought it was important to share it and put it in the book because I think it's so easy to see someone online or on social media that you start make up this fantasy about their life. That like they make all this money and they have this and they have that, but sometimes you don't really know what's happening behind the scenes.
And for me, what that looked like, because of my origin story of just having a very scarce mindset around money, not understanding money, not thinking that I was worthy of money. I've always been really good at making money, but I haven't been really good at budgeting the money. And so what would happen for me is that I would get a bunch of money and then I would spend it as fast as I could make it.
And this really just comes from this core belief that I had that I wasn't worthy of the money. And I think that happens a lot of time with women. You'll either see women get it and spend it immediately, or you'll [00:57:00] see them get it and it's like they just stockpile, like underneath a bed in a shoebox cuz they're so afraid to spend it at all.
And there's really a balance to me. I really think now getting to the other side of all this money is really meant to be used. And so at the time, what was happening was that I was overspending money that I did not have. I would make money and then I would spend that plus. And over the course of about two-ish years, I amassed over $30,000 of credit card debt.
And I kept it hidden from my husband and we were in the process of refinancing a house. He found out. And I had to really sit with a lot of, just a lot of that stuff that was coming up. I couldn't deny it anymore. I couldn't be delusional about it anymore. I had to really face some hard truths about me and my relationship with money and my relationship with being worthy of money and understanding money.
And I couldn't use that excuse of my origin story of, oh, I grew up and my parents didn't have a lot of [00:58:00] money, and I'm a financial toddler and I'm not good with math. I couldn't use those excuses anymore to keep me from learning at least conceptually about money if I wanted to have a business.
And so what that looks like for me now is like I have people on my team who I've learned a lot about money, and I've learned where my strengths are with money and where my challenges are with money. And so I now, I have people on my team that support me to make sure that I do understand and that I do budget, and that I do streamline, and that I do keep a profit first mindset, and that I do pay myself first.
Because that's really the whole of having a business that thrives and making impact is make sure that you pay yourself first so you can have a life of abundance and so you can give back and you can keep this train running. So that's the gist of that and the origin story behind that and just all of my limiting beliefs around money, and it's still a work in progress.
I think it was probably easy for me to feel like I had [00:59:00] gotten really far from that, but even now that I'm promoting the book and I'm talking about it, like there's still things that come up that it's I don't think that we're ever done growing and learning. There's always gonna be a next level. And so I think this is something that a lot of women I know deal with and face.
And Hala we've talked about it. You had that, happen with you when you were first starting out with figuring out how to make the money and how to balance the money and all of that. So I think it's a story that maybe not everyone's hiding credit cards from their husband, but I think that they can relate to that fear and that shame around money.
Hala Taha: Yeah. And I love how your book walks everyone through a transformation they can make to become more successful in their lives and pitch themselves. And so I think a great way to end this before we go into the final questions of the show is talk to us about why you need to be your own main publicist.
Why do you need to be your own publicist?
Julie Solomon: Yeah. I call it BYOP, Be Your Own Publicist. And to me it's really simple. And this just comes back to a confidence piece that if you're [01:00:00] not gonna teach your own horn, who is, it really does have to begin with you. It has to begin with you advocating for yourself, saying what you want, saying what you need, meaning what you say with clarity, with confidence, with security, getting really clear about what is it that I want, and being able to advocate for that.
And I think. From my experience, not only just being a publicist, but just through my own journey. It has to begin with you most publicists that I know, it's like they can't even really do much for somebody if someone hasn't laid that foundation first for themselves and have really learned, especially in this day and age Hala like how to brand themselves, how to speak for themselves, how to be clear about their messaging, how to be clear about their marketing, and how to promote themselves.
And so that's really, I think, the important piece. And if anyone's having any trouble with that, I would just encourage you to ask yourself, why are you so afraid to be seen? You can't hide yourself and expect to be seen, so why are [01:01:00] you so afraid to give yourself that gift of shining and see where that leads you?
Hala Taha: I love that. This was such an awesome conversation. We always end the interview with a couple of questions that we ask all of our guests. The first one is, , what is one actionable thing that our Young and Profiteers can do today to be more profiting tomorrow?
Julie Solomon: I would say definitely keep a profit first mindset. So that means when you make money, you've gotta pay yourself first. So getting clear on that, and that's gonna keep that profit going. So remembering that paying yourself first is important.
Hala Taha: Love that. And what is your secret to profiting in life? And this could be anything. It could be financial, personal.
Julie Solomon: I think profiting in life is the more ease that I have in my life, the more that I can just trust the process, the more that I can let go and the more ease that I allow into situations, to things, to my business, I feel like the more abundant and the more profitable it becomes.
Hala Taha: Ease. I like that. Thank you so much, Julie.
This [01:02:00] was such a great conversation and congratulations on your new book. I'm gonna stick all your links in our show notes. Where can our listeners go learn more about you and everything that you do?
Julie Solomon: They can go to juliesolomon.net. That is my website, and on that website you will find everything on how you can work with me from just amazing free content that I have.
I would love to share. I have a five step guide on gaining clarity, building confidence, and achieving your goals. If you wanna start there, you can go to juliesolomon.net/clarity. It is a 45 minute audio guide with a downloadable worksheet that will help you lay the foundation. Got a ton of free stuff.
My podcast, the Influencer Podcast, wherever you listen to podcasts. I know that you guys are obviously podcast listeners, so definitely check out The Influencer Podcast and then juliesolomon.net. You'll also see that the Pitch Program there, it's Pitch It Perfect, is the name of the course. And then I'm on Instagram.
That's where I tend to spend most of my time. So it's at Juls, j u l s, Solomon, [01:03:00] s o l o m o n. Feel free to slide into my dms. I'm in there a lot. My team's in there a lot. That's where we really love to communicate with people.
Hala Taha: Amazing. Thank you so much.
Julie Solomon: Thank you.
Hala Taha: All right Julie just dropped so many value bombs on this episode.
I think you have to agree, and I absolutely love chatting about marketing PR. So it was super fun to bring this conversation with Julie, and I hope you enjoyed this conversation as much as I did. And so there's a couple takeaways that I think are super important for my listeners specifically. And the first thing that comes to mind is talent stacking or skill stacking.
Now, I talk about this all the time. It's a concept that I learned from the creator of Dilbert. His name is Scott Adams. He's also a bestselling author, and I interviewed him way back in episode number 38. And over the years, this concept just keeps coming back. And in fact, if I ever write a book, I'm gonna write it about skills stacking and talk about all the people I've interviewed and how they've skills stacked to become successful and how you [01:04:00] can do the same.
I'm super excited about this book idea that I have, and so I love this concept. I feel like I talk about all the time, but if you're a new listener or if you just need a reminder, I did wanna take the time to get on my soapbox and talk to you about why this is so important. So it's so beautiful to think that every experience that we have is worth something.
Whether we win or lose, whether we fail or succeed, whatever it is in that endeavor, it's actually the skills that is the gold of that time in our life. It's what we learned during that time that we're gonna use again and again in some capacity and carry it with us wherever we go, because skills are transferrable assets.
You can learn something in one industry or one job and then take that same skill and apply it to a new industry and a new job and use it in a totally different way. And it's just the coolest thing to think about. So for Julie, she used the knowledge she gained in her career in publicity and PR to give her that [01:05:00] competitive edge as an influencer.
And then she became so successful because she knew how to pitch herself, where other influencers didn't know how. She had that unique skill that really just put her over the edge. And for me, Something that I was been thinking about recently. I've got a social media marketing agency and as the CEO in my company now, I am a salesperson now.
That's my primary job. But I haven't had a sales job in 10 years. I've been working since I was 13, and so in my teens and during high school and college, I worked retail jobs. I've worked every job at the mall you can think of. I've worked at Abercrombie and Fitch, BB, Art and B, Juicy. You name it, I worked at that store and I got really good at sales.
I was often like the top salesperson as a young woman working at these stores. And then I went into corporate and I got my real jobs and I never thought I would use these sales skills again. Here I am in my early thirties running a social media podcast agency and now I'm close millions of [01:06:00] dollars a year in sales and I'm like such a good salesperson still and just crushing it.
I feel like I close deals left and right and people you know have told me like, wow, like you're the best salesperson I've ever met. And it's just so funny because I haven't had a sales job in over 10 years and I'm just using the skills that I used as a young girl working in retail, getting paid minimum wage by the way.
And now I'm making millions of dollars a year for my company, and it's just so beautiful to think about that and think about how all of your experience, just add up and layer on to make you, your unique self and provide that unique value to the world. And so if you're trying to break into a new industry or start a new side hustle or business, you really wanna look at your past skills and see how you can use those abilities and past experiences to gain an advantage over your competition.
And more often than that, this just comes naturally because once you have those skills, like they, they don't go away. It's like writing a bike. But the key is to take the [01:07:00] time to get those skills and get a variety of experiences and put in that work. You've gotta pay your dues. Nothing is gonna fall in your lap.
And the younger that you are, the less that money should matter in all of this, right? I need so many young people that ask me for help and they're like, Hala, can you help me? Hala, can I have an hour of your time? Hala, can you coach me? And what I say to them is, Hey, like I don't have the time to coach you.
I'm really busy, but you can intern for me. Why don't you intern for me for three months and then you know, if you do a good job, I'll hire you. And. I find that the most successful people are the people who will take those opportunities. A lot of the times people ask me for help and then they're young people like in their college years or something, or early twenties, and I offer them an internship to learn under my wing, and sometimes they don't take it.
And that's when I know that they're actually not serious because you need to forget about money when you're young [01:08:00] and you should focus on just getting skills. I know you can't do this forever, but when you're young, you can get away with it. And so for me, I entered for free at a radio station for three years, and I don't regret a minute of it.
It's the reason why I'm successful today, it's the reason why I'm a successful podcaster is because I took the time to learn skills under somebody else's dime, and it's a chicken before the egg thing. Nobody's gonna hire you if you don't have the skills, and you'll never learn the skills if you don't take the time to learn them.
And so sometimes you have to work minimum wage, you've gotta work for a lower wage, or you gotta work for free to learn those skills. And Young and Profiteers, I feel like lately I've been beating a lot of young people who are refusing to do that. They think that they should be getting paid right away without even having the skills, and that is ridiculous.
You guys need to realize that you've gotta get the skills and that these internships, what you're doing is actually investing in yourself. And even if you're an adult and you lack skills, you should be [01:09:00] taking on internships. I promise you it's gonna help you. Because here's the thing, as a company owner, sometimes interns are actually a burden.
Sometimes they're not worth the trouble. And so you have to understand from the employer's perspective, they're gonna have to take time away from their team to train you and hopefully you produce good work. So it's mutually beneficial, but don't forget or underestimate the value of a free internship.
Okay, so I'm going to get off my Soapbox now. And by the way, you can also get experiences working minimum wage jobs or internships with stipends. I'm not saying everything has to be free, honestly, I don't even know if free internships are entirely legal now, but all I'm trying to say is that getting those experiences will be worth it down the line.
And I just feel like I meet so many people who are unwilling to put in that work and to sacrifice a little bit. And honestly, if you don't sacrifice, you're never gonna gain the skills. And I'm sorry, you're not gonna end up being successful or differentiated when you do wanna start your side hustle or your business, [01:10:00] cuz you're just not gonna be experienced enough.
All right, so I'm gonna get off my Soapbox now. I think I really went off a tangent there, but hopefully it was motivational and inspirational, especially to my young listeners who may need a kick in the butt to go get those skills. Let's go back and quickly recap the three elements of the signature pitch, connection, credibility, and promise.
So the first is connection. Remember to put people first, ask how you can help them, not how they can help you. Remember, you wanna make it all about the brand, turn the spotlight back on them. Ask them what they need, what their goals are, and what you can do to further their needs. When I'm on any sales call, the first thing I ask is, what are you looking for?
How can I help you? How do you want to see yourself improve? Understand what they want, and then you can customize your pitch based on what they say. That is key. You wanna be asking a lot of questions. You don't wanna be doing a lot of the talking. Next, you wanna understand what makes you credible, what makes you unique.
Again, this goes back to the skill stacking thanks. Or maybe it's an asset that you've built a newsletter with an incredible click rate [01:11:00] or a very engaged social following, or your insane Photoshop skills that's gonna make your assets stand out for the brand. Whatever it is, feature those qualities, those skills or connections that you have when you're pitching yourself so they know that you've got this unique advantage.
And finally, you wanna promise, right? How can you back up your pitch, make sure that you can drive results? What will you do to make sure that there's a return on investment for the company? How will you go above and beyond to make sure they get roi? That is key. And so once you've mastered your signature pitch, you're gonna start getting offers.
And so I'm gonna leave you with a couple of negotiation and pricing tactics. The first is from Julie, from this conversation, and that's. That the brand should always tell you their number first. Let them tell you what they're willing to pay first. If you throw out your number first you risk undervaluing yourself or shooting too high for a number that they'd not even consider, and then they're just gonna be turned off.
Know what they're expecting first, and then move the needle from there. The second pricing task I actually learned from Chris Voss, I don't remember which episode he told me this in. Been on the podcast like [01:12:00] four times, and I think it was the first episode actually with Chris Foss, I think that's number 23, negotiate like a boss.
And in that episode he told me that you've gotta give out an odd number. And that's because when you say it costs $1,000 to work with me. It seems very arbitrary, like you just picked $1,000 outta the sky. But if you're like, Hey, it costs $977 to work with me, they're gonna think that you had some sort of calculation to come up with that number.
So it's just like this little hack. I personally have a high ticket offer, and I like to end my offer in 750. I know that it's not an odd number, but it works for me. So I'll be like, it costs, $8,750 per month to work with YAP Media, for example. And so I love to use numbers ending in 750.
That works for me. But Chris Foss says an odd number is gonna work. So again, just don't do like a blatant number, like 10,000 or 1000 or even 100. You wanna have a number that seems thoughtful. So there's my hack [01:13:00] for you. So this stuff is my passion. I love talking marketing sales, influencers, content creation. If you guys wanna DM me and get any insight from me directly, I'm really responsive on social.
You can find me on Instagram at YAP with Hala or on LinkedIn by searching my name. It's Hala Taha. And before we go, I did wanna give a shout out to one of our amazing listeners, mavis1892, who dropped us a five star rating. And guys, the number one way to thank us is by dropping us a five star review.
And he wrote, Young and Profiting is a great podcast for millennials who wanna truly level up their lives. She has influential and successful guests who put us on game. We truly need more podcasts like this since she just had a build and grow and have an impact. Thank you, Mavis1892. What an amazing review.
And if you wanna follow suit, go ahead and drop us a five star review on your favorite podcast platform and maybe I'll shout you out next week. All right guys. Thank you for tuning into another one of our episodes. And thanks to my amazing YAP team, this is your host, Hala Taha, signing off.
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