Your story is a huge part of your brand.
When you share your story, your potential clients and fans are able to get to know you at a deeper level and the right people will begin to love you too.
Think about it for a minute. What are some of the things that drew you to me and keep you reading my emails?
I'll bet at least a few of them are personal in nature.
I know when I go to events to speak, people come up to me and talk with me first about personal things. Here are some examples from recent conversation.
One lady came up to me and said “Nicole, thank you for sharing about your struggles with depression and anxiety. You're such an introvert, yet you still do all of these public things like podcasting and webinars. That inspires me that I can, too. But, I've got to know – HOW do you get up on that stage?! I couldn't do it.”
Me: To be perfectly honest, it's hard, but I make myself do it. I know that I have to push myself in order to grow my business, so I do it.
It's like flying. I used to be terrified of flying to the point that I would be terribly sick for days before a trip. I made myself fly repeatedly usually with the help of some drugs or lots of essential oils (and drugs) for a few years. Finally it got to the point where while I don't like to fly, I know that I can do it. I keep in mind that the end result is worth it – going to awesome places like my trip to Costa Rica in a few weeks – and, of course, Latvia. I can't imagine if I had let fear keep me from those experiences. I would regret it so very much.
So, I push myself through the fear in these situations, knowing that what's on the other side is worth it. I also compare it to child-birth. It's not fun, but you know it doesn't last forever and the result is worth the discomfort a thousand times over. 🙂
Another gal said “Oh Nik, my heart hurt reading about the flood that you guys went through. Did you really lose ALL of your Christmas decorations? But how cool is it that your husband and daughter saved those girls and the babies.”
Me: Yes, it was a huge blessing that my husband and daughter were driving by when that car was going under water and they saved those two teen girls and their babies. My daughter suffered some post-traumatic stress after the fact because frankly it was scary as hell, but I can't imagine if they hadn't been there to grab those girls and their babies so I try not to think about the alternative.
As for my Christmas decorations? Yes, we lost them all due to a combination of water and mold. By the time we were able to get access, everything was slimy and fuzzy with mold so it was not salvageable. I lost everything from ultrasound pics to my baptism gown when I was a baby. The blessing in this was that, a few weeks after it happened, I started getting box after box of special Christmas decorations from my Beachpreneur sisters. That made it suck a little bit less.
And of course all of the sweet people who have told me “Nicole, I still pray for your daughter in Latvia. How is she? Do you get to talk with her often?”
Me: Thank you! Yes, I love my girl tremendously, so much that my heart still feels incomplete without having her here. Even though she never ended up going through with the adoption, she's still mine and will be forever. She had a beautiful baby girl recently so I'm hoping to go over to Latvia this summer to meet my new Latvian grand-daughter and love on her (and her mama) like crazy.
I love the ones that come up and elbow me with a “NICOLE! I died laughing when I listened to your ‘how sex is like sushi' talk. My hubby is way sexy too, so I get it. Is he still working at home with you? (wink, wink)”
Me: Actually, My Joe started teaching again. My daughter's math teacher quit in December and the kids started a “We want Mr. Dean” campaign (including texts) – so he's happily teaching the honors and gifted math classes in middle school. He's got a new-found spring in his step and he's making a huge difference, so, although I miss him very much during the day (and I miss our more frequent sexy time) I know he's where he should be.
And of course the many many Monkey fans who ask me “I can't believe you still have that ‘foster' dog, Monkey! Is he really still a foster or is he FINALLY Monkey Dean?”
Me: MONKEY is finally ours! And, because he was born with 12 (yes TWELVE) back toes and a tongue too long for his face (that adorably sticks out when he sleeps) — and we name all of our dogs after scientists, he is officially Charles P. Darwin Dean (or Darwin). Although we still call him Monkey more often than not. 😉
To continue to prove my point about story and brand, at the SAME event, I can stand right next to my friend Kelly McCausey, and she will be hearing totally different things because she's a different person!
“Kelly, I'm a single mom, too. I'm so inspired by you. If you could build a business as a single mom while homeschooling, then I know that it's possible for me, too.”
“Kelly, your George (kitty) is so cute and naughty! He reminds me of my cat.”
Believe me yet?
There are a million people out there teaching about online business,
so the EASIEST way that I can stand out is by just. being. me.
The same applies to you. If you weave in your stories, YOUR competition disappears. 🙂
We have a new planner over at CoachGlue.com called “Your Story. Your Brand. Embrace Your Unique Story to Create a One-of-a-Kind Business”.
As with all of our done-for-you planners and workbooks at CoachGlue.com, this comes with special rights, so after you use it for your own business, you CAN use it with clients AND incorporate it into your own training.
Whether you buy this workbook or not, I challenge you to infuse more of YOU into your business every chance you get.
YOU are special. YOU are unique. Your clients are hungry to get to know you deeper.
Let them and you'll have more raving fans than you know what to do with.
Warmly and with big hugs,
PS. Speaking of storytelling, my friend, David, has a cool freebie to help you brainstorm your story telling, too. You can grab that here.