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How do I find opportunities to speak? How do I get noticed and chosen to be a guest on the right podcasts and events?
These are some of the questions I hear most often, entrepreneurs who understand that guest speaking on other people’s platforms is one of the best ways to quickly grow an engaged audience.
But the question is, is it really about finding MORE opportunities?
Sometimes yes, but what I find is that many business owners grossly underutilize the opportunities they already have, missing out on previous connections (and results).
Maybe you’re here because you’ve been doing the work to put yourself out there.
You’ve identified a topic or two that you’re pitching to podcast hosts. You’ve most likely already taught a workshop or webinar, you’ve pushed past the fear or speaking in front of groups (mostly) because you’ve accepted that getting visible and putting yourself out there is part of growing your online business.
You are ready to level up and make big strides in your business.
So here you are asking the questions, how do I land MORE opportunities to share my message?
Well friend, today I’m going to encourage you to slow down so that you can speed up ← I learned that phrase at a leadership conference years ago and have been waiting to use it!
But wait, why are we slowing down?
I get it. You want more people to hear your message. More eyeballs to see your brand. More leads.
These things are supposed to lead to more of an impact (and more sales).
But consider this:
Have you ever blown up a balloon that has a hole in it?
Sure you can gain some traction for a moment, but slowly and surely the air leaks out making your efforts futile.
After working with thousands of business owners over the last 15 years, I’ve found that while most business owners think a lack of leads it’s what’s stunting their growth (more air in the balloon), the real issue is conversion (a hole in the balloon).
Today we’re going to hit pause and do a tune-up for your business so that you are primed and ready to blow up that balloon with confidence.
I’ll walk you through 3 specific audits to make in your business and speaking process to maximize your results, whether you are already booking speaking opportunities or just getting started.
Inside this episode (or check out the full transcript below), you’ll learn:
It’s time to watch (or listen) to your past work. I know, CRINGE! But if you want to become exceptional (or even just really good), you have to be willing to WATCH YOUR GAME TAPE.
That's how professionals get better, whether you're an athlete, actor or pro speaker. Watching/listening to past interviews and presentations will be YOUR BEST TEACHER.
Now to ensure you don’t go down the rabbit hole of negativity (why does my face do that?), make sure you ask yourself this question:
What's my goal for watching this video?
Are you watching to tear yourself apart and unearth all your inner insecurities? Heck no. So don’t you dare allow yourself to entertain those thoughts. And if you catch yourself thinking about it, SHUT IT DOWN.
Instead, watch with the intention to improve.
Your feedback mantra: helpful feedback only.
If it's not changeable, it is not helpful. If it is not helpful, it is not tolerated. You have to be disciplined enough to only give yourself feedback that's actually going to be helpful.
3 questions to ask yourself when critiquing your work:
Tune into the full episode for more context and additional insights with self-critiquing in these areas.
Your home base is where people find you online, particularly on social media. Imagine someone is listening to you speak and thinking, “I like this chic!” so they look you up… and what do they find?
You want your profiles clear and sticky.
Your bio, links and photos paint a picture of who you are, what you do and how they go deeper with you.
Consider the last few posts you’ve made, ensure that at least one of them directly relates to your area of expertise.
You don’t want someone to hear you on a podcast, come connect with you, then get assaulted by your cat and smoothie photos.
Unless you're a health pro who loves cats… then that might be an exception ;)
Point is, if they follow you, then get served up posts that don’t have anything to do with your area of expertise or what you've talked about on that podcast / platform, they will most likely not engage with your content or unfollow you (and if they don’t engage, it’s only a matter of time until the algorithm puts you into the dark hole of accounts it barely shows them.
You want to ensure your home base is sticky.
Meaning, they STICK AROUND AND ENGAGE.
It is THEN that you can start establishing rapport, leading them closer to your offers.
I'm a big believer of keeping tabs on the numbers in your business. You don't have to go down a spreadsheet rabbit hole on this one but if you're leveraging guest speaking as a way to grow your audience, you should have an idea if your plan is working.
Here’s what I recommend:
Each month, when you review your important numbers (in my business that means looking at gross revenue, leads, landing page views, social media followers, and podcast downloads), look for trends or outliers. And especially pay attention to what happens to your numbers AFTER speaking opportunities. Pro tip: look at your numbers in a line graph view to make it easy to see peaks and valleys..
Here’s a possible scenario: if you did 5 podcast interviews or guest presentations in Q2, did you see a gain in email subscribers or social media followers?
Don’t worry if you didn’t and be mindful of the effort trap (the expectation that if you do X number of appearances / effort, you’ll get Y leads.)
Visibility takes time. Consider it as work beneath the surface that will slowly and surely bubble to the top. So don’t obsess over your numbers, instead learn to look for experience and for opportunities. I want you to know your numbers and take PRIDE in them.
Watching the numbers is a chance for you to start asking questions of yourself and your strategies. It will help you make decisions on what opportunities to say YES (or NO) to in the future.. If you want to want to improve your numbers-- check out Podcast Ep 101: The #1 Reason Your Message Isn't Attracting Your Ideal Client.
📝 HOMEWORK: If you haven't already created one, make your running list of your guest speaking, event and podcast appearances, including the live / release date. I recommend that you review this list monthly along with your key metrics.
🔥 ACTION ITEM: Block 90 minutes on your calendar to perform your 3x audit. Be sure to block out additional time to audit future work. Pro tip: do this quarterly.
Subscribe to Heather’s YouTube Channel here.
>>> Are you an online entrepreneur wanting to attract dream clients?
Well hey friend, welcome to another episode of the show. This one here is going to be one of the most actionable episodes we've done in quite some time. So just like get yourself mentally ready because today you're going to want to take some notes, come back to this. Good news. We have this all written up a podcast into show notes for you on the blog. But like, here's the thing, if you're listening to this show, you're probably the kind of person who loves feedback, more specifically feedback that can actually help you improve areas of your life, areas of your business. The struggle that a lot of entrepreneurs have is we're building these businesses on our own and we don't really get a lot of feedback outside of what the numbers say, or how many likes do we have on social, or random feedback from strangers in Facebook groups.
Feedback is helpful but what I prefer to focus on with feedback because that's we're diving into today is how do you get feedback where you can actually self-assess and have the confidence that the decisions that you're making are not only leveraging best practices but also leveraging the strengths of yourself because you know yourself and your business better than anyone else. Today I'm going to teach you how to do that. Specifically, we're talking about some strategies for you to use to self-assess your own speaking plan, your own kind of going out in the world doing your speaking. I want to give you some tools to level up your speaking strategy so that you can get better results. So regardless if you're listed in your like, oh man, Heather, I've been I've been rocking it. I've been putting myself out there for podcast episodes. Maybe you have a couple expert topics that you've outlined and said, okay, this is what I'm gonna talk about when I'm a guest speaker, maybe you've been a guest in other people's Facebook groups or in other people's programs. You're getting yourself out there and for many of you listening, you've gotten over the fear of okay, I can talk in front of other people. That's not my problem. It's just doing it really well without fillers, getting results from it, like feeling like you're making traction. And if you're listening going, wait, Heather, I'm still totally terrified. Don't worry, don't worry. It just means you're going to start off even stronger as you roll into showing up on more stages but don't let the like the fear of it become an excuse. Just know you just kind of do it. You just got to get up, I can do it but story for another day.
If you're listening to this, you've been going out you've been starting to feel like you're making progress, even though the numbers might necessarily show it but a lot of the work we're doing visibility is kind of under the surface. But what we want to start thinking about is as you become more confident putting yourself out there, as you get your message out there on more podcasts, you get, I was gonna say fancier on your platforms, but you get bolder and braver, maybe going live more consistently. You're putting yourself out there. What we want to make sure where that happens is that we are monitoring our progress so we're not just spending our time becoming popular without being mindful of becoming profitable.
I know, I talk about this a lot on the show. I bought been on a few little rants here around, our goal isn't to be popular, meaning look at all the busy work we show online and everybody thinks our businesses are thriving because people are actively engaging or we're showing up all the time but that's not what we're creating here. That's not what strategic and sustainable but sustainable, it was a hard thing to say. But visibility, right? Intentional visibility, as I call it, that's not what that's about. We need to ensure that with what we're doing, actually, we're building progress and progress can be measured in a few ways. It could be in how you feel, in terms of how you're showing up so the more confident you become. You can actually get progress from having your message become more defined as you go. Think about your messaging as a muscle that you build, the more that you put it out there. So that's progress, the clearer your message gets, the more your messages resonate with others, that's progress.
And then of course, there's progress in the numbers, right? But that is not the only part of the story when it comes to using your voice and getting your message out in the world to create an impact. Here's what I want you to think about because I see this as a big challenge with many. Consider this metaphor for a moment. Imagine that I've just handed you up balloon, a balloon, you know, like a birthday party balloon, a balloon, and you're going to blow it up. Imagine you take a big deep breath. start blowing it up and you start seeing some progress happening. One blow, two blow. You start seeing the balloon expanding. You get excited cuz you're like, oh, you get, you know some balloons out there like really, really like, at the beginning you're like stretching your lungs to try to like get past that. I don't know, maybe that's me. You know how like it's harder at the very beginning to pump up balloon. Speaking of visibility and getting traction is just like that. But coming back to the balloon, you see the progress happening? You're like, oh, yes, I'm almost there. Here it goes.
And then I want you to imagine for a moment that there was a teeny tiny pinprick right towards the top of balloon right where you blow. What happens if there's a teeny tiny pinprick is you're still able to blow that balloon up but a small leak of air starts slipping out. So it doesn't matter how many times you keep blowing, the balloon won't stay blown up because you're constantly having to pump more air into it from your lungs.
Now track this analogy over in business. Imagine your visibility you getting on stages, you getting more seen you getting the right eyeballs on your business, hearing the message at the right time. Imagine that's you going out there in the world, that's you putting oxygen in the balloon. But imagine that all of these efforts, as you're doing this, imagine that there is a leak in the balloon of your visibility which means that you're putting all this effort in but it's not necessarily paying off in an intentional and sustainable way. That's what we're going to talk about today which is how I can hand you a mirror, a strategic mirror for you to look inside your current visibility processes. And again, if you haven't started getting out there with your visibility efforts, no worries. I'm going to hand you over a roadmap to do it well when you do which might give you confidence to kick that fear to the curb.
I'm going to give you some things to look at because what most people ask me about when you have the ability to sit down with me for a Q&A, the questions I get is always, Heather, how do I book more speaking gigs? How do I get selected to be on a podcast? How do I find speaking gigs? How do I book them? How do I get paid more? It's all about finding the opportunities. It's all about blowing air in the balloon. That's the sexy, fun conversation. But the real conversation that I like to take it to is let's make sure there are no holes in your balloon before we are pumping it up and expecting it to float away. I mean, in that situation, you'd have to somehow convert your oxygen into helium. But just I mean, just go with me with this analogy. I think it works. What do you think?
Wait, okay, side tangent here. I think I haven't really said this explicitly on the show. But y'all know that analogies and metaphors are like my thing, right? I've recently in, I was doing out one of our level up labs inside Speak up to Level up which is my program to teach you how to create a signature talk and get out there in the world and start speaking more confidently. We do a lab every month where people practice then somebody had the question like, Heather, how the heck do you come up with so many analogies that work? I laughed and I said, well, it's because I'm willing to try so many analogies knowing that not all of them are going to actually stick. I actually have this like secret little mission when I communicate around how can I explain this in a different way that others can get? Where can I use a metaphor and analogy, all those kinds of things. It's kind of like a secret bonus tip. It's so powerful to get people to connect with what you're saying is to use metaphors and analogies which this is totally a Sager side note because none of that has to do with today's episode.
But going back in part of what I laughed at was, sometimes when I use metaphors analogies, I actually laugh and say my analogy is falling apart, but you get the point. I'm deeply committed to it so it's okay to try things out and have it not work. But I do think the balloon one works pretty well and I would imagine you do too.
Okay, back off of my side note. I want you to think about today, even though I know you're probably going okay, okay, okay, but I want more opportunities. I'm not getting enough right now to get me there. Trust that it'll come. Years ago when I attended a leadership conference, it was like a week for leaders to come in and we went through this training. They had all these like generic, but catchy personal development and leadership like phrases, and one of them has stuck with me for years and it is this. Slow down so that you can speed up. Say it again, just in case you were like washing the dishes or given your order at the Starbucks drive thru. I want you to think about slowing down so that you can speed up.
Visibility is one of those things that you get momentum as you go. It can feel really, really slow at the beginning point of that balloon but once it starts going, those dominoes can start falling. What we want to ensure is that we take a hot minute right now to slow it down, audit to ensure that we have a process that allow us to grow and keep up with that without feeling burnt out or frustrated with our results so that is the mantra of today. Anytime that you're feeling like ah, things are not working. Take a hot second slowdown, so that you can speed up.
So now you're sitting here going okay, Heather, I'm ready. I'm ready, I'm ready. If you're sitting here going, it is my year. Maybe you started this year going, this is my year to get seen. I'm done with 2020. Here we go into the new year. This is my year of being seen and here we are already to August at the time of this episode airing and maybe you're not getting the traction you want. Today's episode is going to help you with that. And hey, if you're still sitting here like Heather, I don't have a strategy with my visibility. I am kind of showing up right now. But I don't really know where it's all directing to.Let me just tell you, if you have not watched my free training yet around how to nail your messaging and speak with confidence on stages so you can bring more leads and back into your business. I want you to go watch that, like today mark that on your calendar. You can grab the link to it in the show notes or head over to heathersager.com/speak.
That was hard to say heathersager.com/speak and when you go there, you're going to get a free training. It's like a 90 minute workshop. Yes, I will tell you all about my program, Speak up to Level up. And if it's the right time for you, this is the perfect time to jump in as we head into the fall because you're going to get a lot of actionable strategies to us before you have the big excuse of the holiday break, right, and then we don't do anything for a while. Don't let yourself fall off the tracks. This right now heading into the fall is like a perfect time to start focusing on these things. But regardless of whether or not you come into my program, I want you to understand how do you actually set a speaking strategies so that you can show up and nail your message with confidence. That's inside the free training. So if you haven't gotten that now, heathersager.com/speak. Go binge that after this episode in the next couple days that will set you up to successfully accomplish what we talked about today.
Okay, so here we go three self-assessments. I'm going to call them audits that I want you to make in your business. And think about this, that actionable I want you to block out an hour on your calendar to actually get this done. So if you need to pause me right now, come back to me in just a second, pause, put an hour on your calendar within the next five days. I'm just gonna say 24 hours, but it's got a lot of you so next five, get it on your calendar. Get it on your calendars that you can accomplish this. So it's not just another one of those podcast episodes that sounds good, right, as you're walking or driving or whatever it is you're doing, maybe cleaning. Make this something that actually helps you take a big leap forward in your business.
Alright, number one strategy for self assessment. Again, we're going to do three audits on your business. The first area I want you to audit is your past work. Your past work specifically what I mean is I want you to actually listen, watch, either or depending on the format existing podcast interviews, guest presentations, those kinds of things that you have already done. I want you to pick one or two, and I want you to watch it back. I know you're either thinking one of two things right now. One, you're thinking, Heather, I don't have any of those. I haven't done any guesting, Heather. I don't have access to the recording. If you've been a guest, you have access to the recording because the show was published and if it was behind a private payroll, email the person and ask if you can have a copy of that so that you can improve. That's what we're about to do here.
Totally, let's remove the excuse. If you're going I don't have one of those, you probably do. You just don't want to find it because you don't want to watch it right. However, if you legitimately have not done a podcast interview or a guest presentation, you don't get off the hook on this. I want you to go check out a live stream that you've done either on Facebook or on Instagram. I want you to find one that you have done. That's your next option. If you've still don't have that, we're gonna find another solution. I want you to find a video that you've recorded whether it's a course video or something, I want you to watch a video of yourself and audit your work. Ideally, a podcast or guest interview presentation, something where you're presenting your content.
Now, if you're sitting here going alright, so that was the excuse, right? Number one, I don't have one. We tackled that. The other excuses is you're probably going about I don't want to. I don't want to watch it, and I get it. Let's just call out the elephant in the room. For the most part, most of us hate watching ourselves on camera. We hate listening to the sound of our own voice. None of this is new and you're not special in this way. I hate watching myself on video. I hate listening to my recordings. However, I still do it because it's part of a process.
Let me ask you a question. Do you think right now it's rounding out the Olympics the time that I'm recording this? Do you think any like a single one of the athletes, the pro athletes who have gotten to the Olympics, do you think any of them could say I don't ever watch my own game tape? I don't ever review that footage of a race or a dance routine. I don't know the ribbon dancers at the Olympics. Those are my favorites growing up. Anyways, they have to watch it, right? They watch it back. Pro-athletes watch their game tapes. Pro-speakers watch their game tapes. If you think anybody who's performing at a pro-level, they watch whatever their version of a game tape is. And you might be thinking, Heather, but I don't have a desire to become this like, huge pro-speak, I don't care. You are a professional. You run a business. You're using your voice as a brand asset.
Let me put it another way. If you had an employee in your company whose job was to be the spokesperson for your company and they were unwilling to watch their own game tape, would you tolerate that as a business owner? I would hope not, right? We have to have the same expectations of ourselves so let's just rip off the band aid. I know it's uncomfortable. I know it's hard. You still gotta do it. You still gotta do it as Glennon Doyle made famous in 2020. You can do hard things. That is the mantra and you too can do this.
So here's the thing, though, let's set this up with some context to help you review on work because what most people do is they watch it and they initially cringe going like, oh my gosh, why do I sound like the character off of Charlie Brown? Or, oh, like for me, why is my left eyebrow so frickin overactive all the time? Or I don't know, right? We start nitpicking the things. So here is your hard and fast rule that you have to commit to if you're going to review your own work. Number one, your feedback. I want to make sure I say this correctly because I wrote this down. You want to ask yourself, let me actually set this up first. You always have to make sure before you watch one of your videos back that you asked yourself what is the goal? What's my goal for doing this? Are you just like checking it out to see how bad you look on camera or terrible you look, like to validate an insecurity that you have. That is not a good goal for watching it, right? You have to watch with the intention to improve. You have to watch with the intention to improve. That is critical with this.
But here's the hard and fast rule now, right? If it's to tear yourself apart, to unearth all of your insecurities, there is a hell no. That is not allowed in this plot. You cannot allow that to happen and if you catch yourself doing it, you need to shut it down. Shut it down immediately. Okay? Helpful feedback only, meaning, here's the hard fast rule. Is this changeable? No? Move on. It's not allowed, not helpful. If this is changeable, be specific and be kind. Let me give you example. I'll go back to my eyebrow. I use this one all the time, is if I'm observing a video and I'm going oh man, why does my face look so weird? Oh man, why is my eyebrows so overactive? Is this helpful? Is it changeable?
Now I can change things about my facial expressions. I can be more connected with my eyes by look in the camera. I can be more smiley, right? When I want to be more pleasant, I can work on my resting, not so nice person face. I can do those things. But you know what I can't do, I cannot get rid of that left eyebrow. The muscles in my face just for some reason that one is just more active. So for me focusing on that and getting mad about that eyebrow, it's not helpful. It's actually hurtful or destructive or harmful. It depends on you know what you're using it for, right? But if it's not changeable, it is not helpful. If it is not helpful, it is not tolerated. You have to be disciplined enough to only give yourself feedback that's actually going to be helpful.
You follow what I'm saying here? That's the hard and fast rule because here, here's the important thing. When you develop the resiliency to go back and listen to a podcast episode that you were on to be able to, maybe you have a podcast, to listen to your own podcast, to listen to the sound of your voice, to listen to, are you rambling a lot? Are you on track? Are you talking so fast people can't keep up? Whatever it is, like when you have the ability to listen to it back, sure, you might not know all the secrets and strategies to get to become the best but you are your best teacher. You are your best teacher because you know yourself. You know how you're coming up. You want to come across. You can see if it's meshing, right? Is it actually coming across as you intended? And if it's not, you can ask yourself questions to make changes. Do not use the excuse that you don't have access to a speaking coach. Hello, you have me in your earbuds every single week.
Let's say you can afford a program right now. You don't need to. Think what can you do right now to get better. If you're not already working on getting better, what's the likelihood that you're going to work on it when you do have a coach? What's the likely that you'll work on it when you do have a program? You need to start developing this muscle for yourself right now. And for those of you listening who are my clients and are in my program, I'm just going to say this to you right now. You also have no excuse. You must be watching your own game tapes and asking the question, is this feedback helpful? What would be helpful for me to improve?
Let me give you a couple lenses, just a little bonus tip here if you're going okay, so I am going to be helpful with my feedback. But what Heather, what specifically should I be looking for? So I'm going to give you three things I want you to think about and just these three and I'm sure you'll come up with a laundry list of other things which is great, go for it. But remember, I mean, you don't want to come up with a laundry list of feedback for yourself because imagine being on the receiving end of that if it was another person so Be kind. Be kind. Be helpful. That's your mantra. But I want you to think about these three things.
One, were you likable? I know I'm starting there but were you likable? Were you pleased to listen to you? Were you friendly? Did you have personality, like whatever that looks like for you? But were you likeable? And if not, okay, ask yourself, do I need to smile more? Do I need to sound a little bit more pleasant with my voice? Do I need to maybe throw a joke in there if you're a funny person? Do you sound like you? So that's number one, just audit, are you like authentic and are you likeable?
Number two, I want you to ask the question, how do I want to express this? Was what you said light? I call it light led? Light led? Okay, let me explain what I mean by that. This is one of those things that's in my head, it makes sense and then saying it out loud, I'm like, I have to explain this. Light led, meaning, it's feels light, ie, it's easy to follow. It's clear, but it's led because it packs a punch, right? So it feels light where it doesn't take me 10 minutes to explain this idea but it packs a punch. It's not like, the best way to get better on camera is to practice. That's such a simple like, everyone's gonna be like, well, we're all dying to do that, right?
You have to back it up with something a little punchier. You have to make it led in terms of its value. Led being like the heavy metal. That's what I'm talking about here that word led, where it's like if it's concentrated, packs a punch, but light meaning it's not a dissertation that you're delivering. I hope that makes sense. But that's what you want to see is the balance of was it digestible in terms of like this easy, clear content, but did it pack a punch when it came to helpfulness and value? That's the second thing. So number one, likable. Was it light led? and then number three Is did it led them somewhere? Did it led them somewhere? Ie, How was it for you of getting people excited to go connect with you on Instagram? How was it introducing your freebie or taking the next step with your people? How easy was it to lead them somewhere? How well did you do that?
Chances are these three categories, being likable, light led, and leading them somewhere. There is probably a big area of opportunity. I still have a huge like, we all have opportunity areas on here but those are the three lenses that I would recommend you have. Just to give you a little extra piece here, I was chatting with one of my Speak up to Level up members yesterday and she was telling me how she was watching the game tape. Her name is Anna. She had the ability to speak at Bobby Klinck's live event in the fall. She was the only guest speaker that Bobby asked to come to the event and she delivered it. She's super nervous and she did a rocking job so she was watching a copy. She messaged me and she said, Heather, I'm watching my game tapes. She had watched a, I think was an interview or a guest presentation she had done months before and she was like, oh my gosh, I'm totally, I'm totally cringing, and then she watched the one that she did at Bobby's event and she's like, oh my gosh, I got so much better between the two. She was actually celebrating herself. I was thrilled for her. I'm like, I'm going to talk about this tomorrow when I record. But because there is this tendency to think that when we review our own work, how we're only going to feel bad, but I want you to know, you can also feel pride. So many people that I talked to you, they're so scared of watching themselves because they feel like it's gonna be terrible. But then they watch and they're like, oh, that actually wasn't so bad, or actually, that sounded pretty good, or, hey, I did that really well.
I want you to look for those moments because when you get more of that it builds that excitement where the next time you step in front of a camera, you're gonna have a little bit more swagger because you're gonna know you can rock it out even if you're nervous. It's that inner knowing, as cheesy as it sounds, that's what brings that electricity and that spark, the magnetic effect as we call it around here, it's from that knowing that you can rock it out but you have to see it in order for you to continue to cultivate it. Hope that makes sense. I'm super passionate about this one. Okay, that's number one, audit your work. That one was a juicy one.
Let's go into number two which I'll keep this one a little lighter touch because I think there's been easier, however, I see it as a huge missed opportunity. Number two, I want you to audit your home base. I'll clarify what I mean by this. Your home base is where are your platforms that people would come and find you on. So let me set the scene here for a second. Let's say that you were on a podcast. And it dropped, let's say it's dropping on Friday, whenever you're listening to this is dropping next Friday. You have to ask yourself the question. Hello, if people listen to the podcast episode, what happens next? What happens next?
I want you to put yourself in the shoes of a listener right now, right? They're most likely, if they liked what you had to say, then maybe they're going to go to your landing page for your freebie. How does your landing page look? Have you checked that lately? How is your welcome sequence? Is it up to date? Is it relevant? Is it still sounds like you or did you write that 18 months ago? Does it need a little spruce up?
Think about what are the touch points. More importantly, I want you to think about your home base which is on most likely social media. What is your Instagram profile look like? And most importantly, is it sticky? So I know a lot of times people that I work with they're still early on their business, they're still trying to figure things out. But some of you are listening to this going, ah, I still I'm using my personal profile on Instagram or I'm still using like a cutesy name on Instagram and my bio says hashtag ma like boy mom, wine lover, avid reader. I say that with all the love because I swear that's what my Instagram profile said when I started my business. Totally change it, change it and be clear of what you do. You want your Instagram profile to be sticky because if people love the conversation and let's pretend your main platform is Instagram, they're gonna connect with you there. Bonus points if you told people to connect with you there.
But I want you to think about not only is your profile sticky, ie, do you have a good bio? Do you have a picture they can see your face directly on camera? They can see you and not like your hair over your face. That's not sticky. I want you to also think, listen to this one very carefully. What are your last three posts on your social media? What are the last three posts because if somebody lands on your page, they're going to see those but if they start following you those are going to show up in their feed. And if all three posts are about your cats or bout your new juice cleanse, unless you're a fitness person, or about your life things which life things are great to put on Instagram. But if last three posts don't have anything to do with what you've talked about on that podcast or our area of expertise, your platform, your your area, your home base is not going to be sticky. What do I mean by sticky? Think about fly paper. Here's another analogy, consider fly paper, not to call these people flies, but they're flying around, you want your paper to like zing. They're going to stick around. You want people to go to your feed and be like, yes, I'm going to follow her and then work like engage with your content. Are they going to stick around more than 24, 72 hours once they really see what you have to bring to the table on that platform? I hope that makes sense.
But I think this one here auditing your home base. All I want you to do with this, when you block out this time and do it. I want you to walk through the experience of somebody who just met you. What do they experience? What do they see when they visit your Facebook page? What do they see when they visit your Instagram page? What do they see when they visit your homepage, whatever it is that you send people? I want you to do a walk through, a virtual walkthrough, right? What do people see and ask yourself the question is this sticky and the best representation of me? It doesn't mean you need to change anything, it just means that, maybe you make a couple changes. But I want you to think about this and why I call it an audit because I want you to do this now and then build a process around this.
When you know you have a podcast episode dropping live or you have something coming out where there's potentially going to be more eyeballs on your social media, make sure that you have planned some good posts for that time right before and right after. That is a bonus tip for you. But I want you to think about this, what is, like if that's their first impression, is that slice of time best representing you? If it's not, well, there's an area of opportunity for you to work on. But remember, feedback still applies. Is it helpful? If so, it means it is changeable so do something about it.
Okay, audit number three, I told you that one was a quickie. Audit number three, this one here, I want you to stay with me if you're not a numbers person. This is going to take a little bit more cognitive discipline on your part. We're going to use your brain but we're going to go with it. We're going to talk numbers because here's the thing, we run businesses, not hobbyist shops, and business is a series of numbers. Now you might not be tracking a ton of numbers in your business, maybe this is an area that you don't feel super comfortable with. Can you make it a goal for yourself to get more comfortable with it? Can you wade through the muck of numbers so that you at least can develop some, let's just say some resiliency to be uncomfortable. It's okay if you're uncomfortable with it. But for those of you listening, you're going, I rock it. I love numbers. Either way, stick with me because this one's going to be important.
Number three, we're going to audit your results. We're going to audit your results and pinky promise with you, I'm not going to go down a spreadsheet rabbit hole with you on this one. We're going to stay mildly high level but I'm going to give you some little tastes and flavors of things I want you to be looking at so that you can keep the eye on the metrics related to your visibility because I'm a big believer of keeping tabs on the numbers. I think it's really easy for us to especially if you're like me and you're a creative, it's easy to, I hear this a lot and I've said it before. It's really easy to go, well, ultimately, revenue doesn't matter, right? I want to make an impact in the world. But if we're really talking clear, you know, in order to make an impact, you need to make money, right? You need to make money to make a bigger impact. So we don't know that we want to have. We don't know what the dollar amount maybe. Maybe you don't like I don't want to necessarily make $5 million. I'm not here to try to be the big next Jenna Kutcher or whoever, like whoever calls comes to mind. That was the first name that flew in my head. But you still know that revenue is important, right?
So if you are putting yourself out there on guest stages, if you're getting yourself on podcast and you don't actually know what impact you would like to make with that outside of I just know I'm supposed to get more eyeballs on my business because theoretically, it should lead me somewhere. Make sure you go to that training. I specifically break this down but heather sager.com/speak. I'll go through that a little bit more specifically around how do you set a specific goal related to a specific strategy related to your speaking because you might not be set out for the numbers right now. But there are some different different goals that you should have related to speaking but here's what I recommend. What I want you to think about here, here's what I recommend.
Each month when you review important numbers in your business, many people refer to this as KPIs, key performance indicators. Let's just call them the big numbers. They could include something like revenue. Sales, like how many sales you had, it could be or how many clients you have this month,. It could be new leads so like opt ins or your email list size. It could be landing page views. You could be looking at total number of social media followers by platform, podcast downloads. Those are some examples of some of the numbers you might be looking at. My team and I, we track those once a week. My virtual assistant, my executive assistant, Doreethy, every Monday, she pulls those numbers. I take a glance at them, but I look at them in depth every month. So what I'm recommending is that you when you look at these numbers on a monthly basis, and if you're not doing that right now, I might encourage you to start. Just start yourself a Google spreadsheet and list the things you want to track and then just go January, February, March, April, and at the last day of the month. Put the numbers on. It really can be that easy. Please do not overcomplicate and be like, oh, I have to have this fancy. You do not need fancy, good, just need scrappy In this scenario, right?
Here's where we're going with this. As you look month over month, so you see the trend. I like to look at this. This is where I will get a little fancy. I like to do the little thing and Excel or sheets, and like highlight it and be like make this a graph. It's fast. It's it's easy to do. You got a little thingy and push, make it a chart, and then you see a line graph over time. So like your Monday number, your January one number might be like here, and so maybe, if you're listening right now I'm doing like a hand thing with a chart. But you know a line graph, right? It goes up, it goes down, it goes up and down whatever else.
What I want you to notice is what's the trend month to month? And if you see months where it's like, whoa, I got a lot more leads this month, like what happened here? What I want you to start thinking about with your brain is how do you look at these kind of numbers and compare them to activities. Specifically, if you spoke on some podcasts, when did those release, if you guess taught in somebody else's training, if you did an affiliate launch. Think about the activities of you getting out there in bigger ways. You do not need to do this, like scientific mapping all these dates onto something but this is a gut check.
So we keep, follow me. Let me just recap what I've said so far. You have a spreadsheet with your numbers in it, right? So every month, you can look at your main numbers, then number two, we keep an ongoing list of all of my, let's call a media appearances. It's like all of my guests speaking, specifically when it goes public. That sounded really fancy but you know when it airs, not the time I recorded it but when does it actually go live? I look at those two things and I have a list on the two separate things. And then when I sit down and go on my numbers, I just skim and say month of August. What happened that month? Oh, how did my numbers look? It's just this anecdotal, right? There's nothing the scientific like forever a guest speaking gig, I get 73 leads? It isn't. I'm sure someone out there is doing something very specific with that, right?
I do not want you to worry about that right now. I just want you to ask the question, what happened? Oh, what happened when I go out and speak more? There's probably not going to be a huge correlation for a lot of these but you will definitely see when there is. I just want you to get into practice around how do those two things go together because here's what I don't want to have happen. I don't want you going out and doing a ton of podcasts, flooding your schedule with all these things to not see any results like 18 months from now. That's the pursuit of trying to be popular and not being profitable.
So I just want you to start working the muscle to get comfortable looking at the numbers, and then asking what activities happened this month? You're wicked smart. You can start going, huh, what activities are actually getting the results versus what activities are actually, potentially a waste of time, or how can I optimize those activities? Are you following what I'm saying here is I want you to look at what are you doing and watch the result.
Now, big sidecar thought with this. It doesn't mean that if your numbers aren't going up based off the activities that you're failing? No, no,no,no. A lot of times the work we do with visibility feels like it's like under the surface and it takes a while for actually to bubble up. I just want you to be empowered with your own knowledge. What are you doing and how is it working? Because when you have some benchmarks, ie, prior data, prior numbers and information, you can start evaluating your results off of your past self instead of doing the thing that so many do which is asking other people online, well how many of this do you have or how big is your business? We start like comparing our sizes to one another and that doesn't help. I mean, unless you're in a mastermind and you're actually really understanding somebody's business.
Anyway, so I'm gonna go on a tangent here. Stop looking at other people's numbers and that's the phrase. Eyes on your on paper but the challenge is we don't have anything compared to it and we feel the need to compare it to make progress. Start tracking your own dang numbers so that you have that comparative but to your own past history. That is what I'm recommending for you.
So let's see here. So remember, it's just information, nothing's good, nothing's bad until you attach meaning to it. You get to ask yourself some questions but what an incredible opportunity if you spent 30 minutes once a month and just looked at your numbers and then said, what happened this month? Side note, you could say obviously, visibility things which is what I'm talking about here. But also, did you try other things? Did you try Facebook ads? Did you, like what other things were you doing? For me, I'll give you a great example with this. I'm just doing the my debrief for the month of July right now. Looking back, what happened in July, I took three weeks off in the month of July. So when it comes to activities, it was like a screeching halt, halt. Wow, that's a new word screeching halt. Halt. Halt. You know what I'm saying. But also, I think it's so funny to word flub live and not edit these things because that's how we speak like that's how we speak. I hate when people edit out all their little word things and then we think they're superhumans. Anyways, I took three months off in July. So when I look at my numbers, I have to ask like, okay, was the business great? Does it still perform taking three weeks off?
I get to ask myself some questions, because now I have awareness of the activities or lack thereof, that I can ask myself better questions about the results. Anyway, I've totally obsessed everything. But do I actually obsess over my numbers? Is that my sole thing? No, I'm also looking for experience. I'm also looking for opportunities. I'm also looking for how is the messaging jiving, like I'm getting to know you even more. I'm getting to know my Instagram audience even more. There's information that comes back that isn't just how many leads we get. That is one lens to look out but there are other lenses too. But it's important for us to have a full picture, which means we do need to have awareness with the numbers.
So here's your homework. If you do not have somewhere in one place, I'm going to argue this, in one place, not going into log into your buzzsprout account to your podcast episodes and then logging into Instagram to see what how many is that and then logging into Kajabi and then ConvertKit. These are all tools I use in my business. But I don't want you to have to go, it's going to take so much time. It's going to be inefficient. If you have someone on your team, a virtual assistant or someone, I encourage you to set this up one time and then teach them to do it for you. So they log into all those places once a month, like I said, I do this every week, or my team does it every week to grab those numbers. That way, you have a snapshot in one place. We call it our business dashboard and it's just the one place it's a Google Sheet, the home sheet. That's the thing, like the first sheet is like all of those things together and then the other sheets are each individual platform. What are the numbers? It's not pretty, it's not fancy. it's just captures which is great. So if you don't have a spreadsheet like that, I encourage you just get something rough started. Do not feel like you need to go back a bunch in your history. Just start today. Just start tracking today so that way, when you evaluate your numbers, you can say, where does the visibility fall into this? And that's when you have the power to start becoming more strategic because you're asking questions.
Okay. So what I want you to do right now we covered and then recovered three specific audits that you can make in your business to self-assess to level up your own speaking and visibility strategies so that you can get results you're proud of whether those are qualitative results or quantitative results. You get to decide what that looks like. But the three strategies we talked about was, number one, be brave and audit your work. Get comfortable watching your game tape and learn that yes, it might be uncomfortable, but it will be worth it. Build your resiliency for being your best teacher watching yourself and giving helpful, not harmful feedback. And remember, helpful feedback means, can it be changeable? If not, not helpful, move on. That is the rule.
Audit number two I want you to perform is I want you to audit your home base to make sure that your social media profiles or any other landing pages where people might find you based around your visibility, make sure they are sticky. So just do a walk through and say what's the experience if somebody were to find me for the first time on this platform, would they stick around? That is the question and then the bonus tip I gave you on here. Make sure that when you do have a an opportunity go live, ie, a podcast episode or something else or somebody gives you a shout out online or make sure you have a post that's either already out or coming up quickly, that's specifically related to what you do. It's an expert topic where people are really, it's gonna make it really sticky.
Audit number three, I want you to get comfortable with the numbers and audit your results. Specifically, I want you to look at your mega numbers in your business. So leads, revenue, eyeballs on landing pages, those kinds of things. I want you to look at those. And then just take note around visibility efforts that you have made. Just to start asking some questions to see the correlation in those.
Those are my three tips for you remember to schedule an hour on your calendar right now get this done in the next five days. And I swear like, you will feel more confident of saying, okay, I've identified where the holes are in the balloon because chances are, remember the balloon analogy we talked about. There's probably multiple pinpricks. There's always going to be holes in the balloon. The question is, do you have the information to be able to ask the right questions to find the holes or are you blindly just trying to figure it out or just keep blowing up the balloon over and over again? The whole goal here is to slow down so that you can strategically identify where to focus to improve and then start building some traction.
I hope that you found so many good things in today's episode, but don't be overwhelmed by the volume of things we covered today. I want you to pick the specific things that were most relevant for you and it's okay to flush the rest. Pick the one thing that really resonated with you or if you love all of them, remember come back and listen to this or we've written up everything we've talked about today in a blog post, heathersager.com/podcast. You can find all the details there. You also can find the link in the show notes here wherever you're listening to the show today. And remember, if this idea be more strategic with speaking, if you're also going ah,but what do I talk about when I do this guesting, like am I talking about the right things that will actually drive leads back into my business that will actually lead people to stay connected with me so that I can then worry about some of these things. If that's where you are a kudos for you for listening today and saying I am ready to speak up in a bigger way. I am ready to make a bigger impact.
Now I just need a little guidance. Let me give that to you. Go check out the free training right now at heathersager.com/speak and I'm going to teach you the secrets is not only nailing your messaging, but doing it with confidence and intention so that you can sustainably grow your online business. Thanks for listening today. And hey, if you found value and you thought this episode was a fiery one, would you share it with one of your business besties or your audience on social media? Take a screenshot wherever you're listening. Give me a shout out and tell me what you love most about the episode. I love seeing those on the gram. Isn't it funny to say the gram. Anyways, I hope to see you over there at the @theheathersager. And friends. I'll see you again next week.