Updated: Feb 15
You’re not alone.
But if you want to be seen and heard, you’ll need to stand out
Is it because there’s just too much riding on it?
That’s what I think anyway.
It’s not like you’re doing it for a memoir of your life because you’ve chosen to.
This is hard enough as it is, but it’s entirely different when it’s for your shiny new website, business, podcast, speaking engagements or book event. This isn’t something you’ve embarked on voluntarily - you’re doing this because you have to.
Consider the scene - that you’ve now written your book and it’s based on something you’ve been developing for some time. It could be a collaboration with another author or business partner, or you’ve come up with a new idea alone and want to put it down on paper so others can benefit - and choose YOU as their go to expert in business.
There’s a lot riding on it,
You may have hired a coach…
And now the big day is here and you’re hit publish,
And regardless of whether it’s self-published or you have a publisher,
You’ve now decided you have to go back to your business…
Back to life,
Back to the husband/wife and children who’ll need to stare and blink at you for several minutes before they realize who you even are..and where HAVE you been?
It doesn’t end there, you now have to market said book
…and you have to write a bio, your brand story, one that you’ll repurpose and rewrite once you got the basics and the details right and then post to your several social media platforms,
…then there’s your about page (it’ll need freshening up with a new book), possibly a landing page, a sales page, a PR template, your back-of-book bio, you’ll need to get your testimonials tidied up, then there’s Amazon…..
Yes you could do a swift cut and paste job, but to be honest, do you really think that after all that hard work it deserves a little bit more than that?
…and add to that you’ll have to spend some time going over your message and which bits you think your audience needs to hear that relates to the book and resonates with them.
This is where the hard work will be.
If you’re a speaker, you may have already written a book, perhaps you’re a business, a coach or a mentor, you have something to say that you want to share - you want to be seen as an expert in your field.
But when it comes to writing about yourself you’d rather boil your own eyeballs. You will now have to reel people in and make them see that your voice needs to be heard above the roar of all the others…
But you can’t write about yourself, and when you do, it’s so boring you don’t even recognise yourself in it.
Who IS this grey,bland person?
It really is unfair because that’s not how you see yourself, you know your worth, you simply don’t enjoy writing about yourself, and to such an extent it makes you feel self-conscious and icky just to even try…
And you simply don’t have the time!!
You can’t wait to rush it through so you can move on and do something else.
And also it sounds a bit like a rather selfish self-brag.
And seriously, aren’t there more important things to do?
Well, actually no…because get this wrong and your speaking ambitions and your book will fall flatter than a pancake.
And it’s really hard when someone asks you for a short bio - because no matter how hard you try to make yourself sound interesting, you wind up sounding like an automaton at a high school event where you’re asked to list your hobbies, interests and favorite classroom subjects.
You tried really hard to make it sound like you, like someone you’d like to meet, like someone you’d actually like if someone ever made two of you and you met yourself walking down the high street
- but actually you just sound so boring and uptight and you’d probably run off in fright if you did.
And that is not you at. all.
You may feel pressure to give a one-size-fits-all version of yourself in the third person because that’s what everyone else does, and you don’t want to sound ‘up yourself’ - right?
You want to say “look at me I’m really special and I did all this and you really want to work with me because I totally get you and I have so much to share that you need to hear…”
But also let’s add “I’m just another carbon copy of everyone else”
You don’t want to sound like you’ve disappeared up your nether regions do you?….so you need to dampen it down a bit, right?
because that’s not what that person over there is doing is it?
He’s writing a nice serious bio that captures his essence as a true everyman, which talks about his lifelong devotion to his National Geographic subscription and how much he enjoys eating processed peas.
And that time he went on holiday to the Algarve and had an Eureka moment drinking cocktails with his wife….
but seriously why do we do this to ourselves?!?
But that my friend is just some old mindset shit talking, that you’ve never let go of, and it’s time to let go of it because everything you’ve achieved, everything you’ve worked for, everything you struggled with and every single step you took to get to this point matters and counts.
It’s not a high school essay anymore, where all your experiences can be fitted into one neat little paragraph because you were 16 and you hadn’t actually done anything yet.
But, remember at the same time, you don’t want your bio to be a chronology of everything good and bad that has happened to you since you were seven.
You have to cherry pick the best bits, the parts that are relevant…
Don’t misunderstand me there’s nothing wrong with having a normal, standard life - but if you’re talking about your brand story, the one that got you to where you are now and made you successful,
the story of how your book became a book, how your experiences became an event you want to share, you want it to be more than the standard format -
It needs to be special….and you want to tell it in a really, truly impressive way if you want to stand out from the crowd.
What is it about writing about ourselves that is so damned hard?
Is it because when we say that we’re valuable, that we have something worth hearing, we risk being vulnerable in front of other people, people we don’t know?
That what we say might seem trite and unimportant when we’ve just poured our soul out onto a social media platform, our website for all the world to see?
And who’s to say we won’t be judged for it, publicly embarrassed after stripping ourselves bare?
Is it really worth it?
I say that it is.
Yes, when you raise your head above the trenches you are going to get shot at. But the risk is worth it because that connection, that realness, the specialness and uniqueness of you and your brand story is what will draw people to you and what you’re selling.
You’ll repel some but that doesn’t matter, because they were never your audience to start with.
This will only happen if you take a risk and ditch the everyman, average bio that everyone else subscribes to and write something better, that gets to the heart of who you are and why you do what you do….
It’s not easy, if you’ve been doing what you’re doing for a long time now, no book or set of speaking engagements is going to help shake that feeling of wishing to remain the same, to be that safe pair of hands you’ve always been and stay firm in the opinions of those that judge you…
especially if you’re changing direction,
taking a different approach to them….for everyone else, that’s unsettling… change is hard for everyone but…
That is where the gold nuggets are, the true essence of your brand story. And it could be the change that really turns your business around, a bio that gives people a taste of some part of you they didn’t know existed.
You can still connect and be consistent without remaining average..you can still connect without gratifying and placating the same people again and again.
To get to the next level you have to ditch the dull and grasp at what makes you and your business unique and shout it out as loud as you can….and amplify it to the rooftops.
And if you need help with that - well I’m right over here…
If you need help with your brand story, bio, profile come stay at The Story Hotel and for more pithy observations and connection (and honesty of course) why not subscribe to my list here - https://t.co/LSVRvrIoFj?amp=1
There'll be business advice, some copy tips and book recs that inspire me.
If I have something to sell in the future, you can unsubscribe from that particular sales pitch but stay on the remaining list.
Your information will always be kept confidential and you can unsubscribe from my general email list whenever you wish.