Secrets To Building Instant Credibility With Media Exposure From The Publicity Guy Andrew O’Brien

BWB Andrew | Building Instant Credibility

Secrets To Building Instant Credibility With Media Exposure From The Publicity Guy Andrew O’Brien

    Shares

    Andrew O'Brien is known as The Publicity Guy. His company, ThePublicityGuy.com, is more than just a PR firm.

    PR firms are often difficult to work with, don’t offer guarantees, and will book you on any media outlet that will have you.

    The Publicity Guy focuses on niche targeting to place you in front of your avatar audience.

    You'll hear Andrew reveal:
    • Why Andrew doesn't use press releases
    • The importance of authenticity
    • Why the right story is either controversial, informative, innovative, or a combination of all three

    The Facebook + Publicity combo: 

    • Get featured on 5 large publications
    • Run FB traffic via Sniply (or Rebrandly) to your article
    • Retarget everyone there to the next and the next and the next articles
    • Soon you've got instant celebrity status

    To learn more about The Publicity Guy, Andrew O'Brien, and his great done-for-you services, visit http://thepublicityguy.com/.

    About The Guest: Andrew O'Brien

    BWB Andrew | Building Instant CredibilityHe grew up in a broken home, his mother a prostitute and a stripper who told him and his siblings that she wished she never had kids because they prevented her from finding her own happiness. At nineteen years old, he joined the military and by twenty he was fighting combat in Iraq. At twenty-two, still in the army, he went to his barracks one night and swallowed 120 pills in an effort to put an end to the misery he called life. Just before blacking out from the overdose, laying on the floor of his barracks, he felt an intense urge to live, and so he called 911. He woke up in intensive care, with immense relief that he was given a second chance at life.

    No sooner was he back home, there was an incident involving his mother and stepfather. By all accounts, an intruder had broken into his mother’s home in the middle of the night and shot his stepfather in the head while he was sleeping. Andrew, like the rest of the world, believed that it was a random intruder until his mother approached him and asked him for help staging a set-up so that it would appear that the ex-wife had been the murderer. His mother had created an elaborate plan where she said she would buy a sweater at Walmart, take it to the woods where she would fire off a similar gun, so there would be gun residue on the sweater, and then she’d have Andrew plant the sweater in the vehicle of the ex-wife. O’Brien didn’t participate in her scheme but rather turned her into the authorities.

    Secrets To Building Instant Credibility With Media Exposure From The Publicity Guy Andrew O’Brien

    This all about publicity and using mass media to get even much more attention than you could potentially get with paid media. I'm a huge fan of paid media and I think it’s the best way to controllably scale a business.

    When I say controllably, it’s under your control, obviously. You pay for attention to your business, your website, your brand. The only problem with that is sometimes, if you run out of money or you're not starting with money, there's only so much you can do.

    However, I've always been a big fan using very smart publicity tools and techniques to get the word out about yourself. I reached out to Andrew O’Brien, who’s known as The Publicity Guy. It’s a pretty good brand.

    It’s pretty self-explanatory to chat with him about what makes publicity, A) Powerful and B) Going to ask him to share some cool strategies that are out of the traditional norm that you might be thinking of.

    One of the things about publicity is it’s not pure direct response play. It’s been around probably longer than direct response.

    I want to dive into some of the stuff that’s working so that at the end of this, you and I will have some tactics that we can go apply in our business right away, and not just theory or fluff. With that being said, Andrew, are you with me?

    I am here.

    It’s good to have you on the show. This is a topic I haven’t covered this much. I may have done an episode about this in the past couple of years but I can’t remember, so I'm interested to hear your story, your perspective and everything else. You're in Austin, right?

    Yes, I am.

    How long have you been in the publicity game and what got you there?

    I've been in the publicity game going on four years, three years for myself and going on a year for everybody else. What got me into it was I was a public speaker for a few years. I became the most requested public speaker by the United States Military.

    What I realized during that time is in order to get more speaking engagements, more people needed to know who I was. I didn’t have a budget for Facebook advertising or anything like that, so I needed to get the word out in a different way.

    I went the media route, I did without a PR agent. I did it by myself, learned a lot of mistakes over the past few years, how I did things wrong, what I did right. In the end, I ended up being featured on over 70 global media outlets.

    Places like USA Today, MSNBC, Al Jazeera, Huffington Post, Fox, ABC, CBS, NBC, I’ve been on all of them. It was because I actively researched and went out and got it. The media led into me getting the opportunity to speak at some cool places.

    I was able to speak at places like the White House, the Pentagon, Health and Human Services. I got to speak at some cool places and it was all thanks to the amount of exposure I got for myself.

    What was the primary topic you were speaking on?

    My topic was post-traumatic stress and suicide prevention for the military. I enjoyed it and it showed me the power of media. I wanted to be able to help other entrepreneurs be able to tap into that power as well and use it to scale their business.

    Now you have an agency, is that correct?

    Yes, it’s more of a boutique firm more than an actual big agency.

    You've helped a former guest and friend of mine, Russell Brunson, with publicity. You've worked with a lot of other people. Is there a type of business or industry that has been your sweet spot of helping folks?

    I believe that you can probably help a lot of people depending upon what business they're in, whether they've got a physical product or service or a consultant or anything like that. Has there been a sweet spot for you?

    When it comes to my done-for-you side, that's definitely more of A-level players, people who have a pretty well-known name, pretty big in the market, can afford our services. Our done-for-you side is more towards people who are more of a proven concept instead of a theory.

    For example, startups are theories. They're not a proven concept yet. We usually work one on one with people who are already a proven concept.

    We work with everybody. We have ways for everybody to work with us whether it's trainings or anything like that. Anyone can get into media, you just have to have the right story and the right angle and get a hold of the right person.

    When it comes to publicity, what do most people think of?

    Most people think of trying to make yourself look better than what you really are. I call it the superhero complex, like if you were on Facebook and you see that 22-year-old talking about how rich he is in Bali. In Bali, the cost of living is half of what it costs to live in Austin.

    It’s more of, “Let's make myself look amazing and let's hide all the bad things,” and that's one of the biggest mistakes. People don't want to hear how amazing you are because it may seem unrealistic that they'll ever make it to that level.

    When you shine some light into those dark closets that you're trying to hide everything in, that's when the audience actually engages with you.

    That’s when you actually get an ROI out of publicity. It’s when you engage and you're transparent on your mistakes, from failures instead of trying to act like you're some superhero who has never done anything wrong.

    How do you do that using publicity?

    What you do is you get out there and you spread the story, not just on how awesome results you get. It’s like, “I'm the publicity guy. I can go around talking about how I get twenty interviews a month and it's amazing.”

    Instead, the story that I share the most is, “Right when I started this company, I had to borrow $800 from my brother to pay my mortgage because I was about to be evicted. The next week, I made $50,000 on sales easily and was able to pay my brother back that $800.”

    I share this story because I'm not just trying to sit here and act like a superhero, I'm trying to build a bond and a relationship with my audience.

    When you share something that they can relate to, something that makes them feel normal and protected, they’ll say, “He’s been the same place I've been or I currently am.” That's when you actually get engagement and people follow-up and build a relationship with you.

    Relationships are key no matter what type of marketing you're in. People buy from people they know, like, and trust.

    I know publicity helps do that a lot. In a moment, I want you to share what a successful, full publicity campaign might look like.

    I've had things featured in various higher profile websites, whether it’s the HuffPost, to what’s here and there. That alone never created a spike in website traffic or sales. It’s done by itself, a thud factor like, “So what?”

    It’s almost like you write a book and nobody buys it, there's no publicity or no action generated around it. It’s like, “Who cares?”

    I'm a consultant, I also own a physical product company. I work with companies who need publicity, etc. Let's talk about some of the more effective publicity strategies and campaigns that people can run.

    The biggest thing is people think of publicity like, “I'm going to get in Forbes and I’m going to get tons of leads because I was in Forbes.” I use Forbes because that's what everybody always requests. No matter who I talk to, everybody wants to be in Forbes.

    What most people don’t realize is there are 1,800 contributors for Forbes. What that means is the majority of those contributors write at least once a week. That means on a weekly basis, Forbes releases about 1,800 articles in a week.

    To expect that your article that you're mentioned in is going to get more leads than the 1,799 other ones organically is not going to do anything for you. It will make you feel good. It may give you ego stroke but it's not going to do much as far as lead generation.

    This is my marketing strategy. This is what I teach everybody. What you do is you go out, you get yourself on the five largest business publications that you can get on. If you're not in the business industry, you get yourself on the five largest publications depending on your industry.

    If it’s health and wellness, you go after health and wellness ones or if it’s business, you go after business publication, whatever it is. You only go on online publications. Don’t worry about print, don’t worry about TV, don’t worry about radio.

    What you do is you use those publications and you start a Facebook advertising campaign. Everybody’s so worried about immediate ROI, “How do I get someone into my sales, funnel into my email list, things like that?” I don’t believe in that. I think people are tired of hearing that and seeing that.

    Let's say Andrew O'Brien gets on Forbes. I'm going to target or call my audience and send them directly to my Forbes article, using a program called Sniply. I'm going to pixel and I’m going to capture that audience.

    What I’m going to do is I'm going to retarget them. Most people think you're going to retarget them with a funnel. No, what I'm going to do is I'm going to retarget them with my article on entrepreneur.

    I'm going to do this five times. They're going to see me in five different media outlets before I try to sell them into anything.

    What I'm doing is I'm building trust and I'm building what I call the celebrity image factor. We control our own celebrity image. How our cold audience views us depends on how you market to them.

    If you marketing to them on a beach in Bali, a lot of people know that’s not real. If you market to them and you show them that you’ve been all over the news, you’ve just created a celebrity image factor with your cold audience.

    Anyone can get in the media. You just have to have the right story, the right angle, and the right person. Click To Tweet

    If your cold audience sees you as a celebrity, they're more likely to buy from you. They're more likely to look up to you. They're more likely to open every email that you send out.

    I agree with that and I love that. For any of you who don't totally get that, it's pretty simple. You start off maybe sending the traffic to Forbes and Sniply.

    That allows you to send traffic to an authoritative website but it goes through your own link-shortener, but it allows you to also drop a retargeting cookie.

    Let's say 1,000 people clicked on Forbes. You're going to retarget them to your business insider article but you're only retargeting those 1,000 people who have already clicked, is that correct?

    Yes.

    It’s not like you're throwing money at this where you can’t potentially make anything back. By the time they get through this, especially if they keep on clicking on these articles, you’ve probably done a great job of positioning yourself way ahead in the know, like and trust factor.

    That’s the biggest thing, everybody is so concerned on immediate ROI. In Publicity, there is an ROI. If you built this celebrity image factor with your cold audience, where they look up to you, the ROI in that is insane.

    Something I've realized is more people are concerned about making $100,000 in 30 days versus making $1 million in 180 days. This is a much longer process. It’s not an immediate return.

    Instead of building a list of people that has a 20% open rate, what you're doing is you're building a list of people who are waiting to read your emails, who are excited to hear what you have to say.

    In the business, especially for people who have personal brands and want to build up this credibility and authority, what are some of the things that get picked up the most?

    I also want to preface this. I saw your post on Facebook and there was one line in there where you said, “Some of my clients got interviewed on the same day that I pitched Forbes,” or something like that.

    I know that a lot of times if you're willing to wait and have patience and can wait months and months, you can get published in these things. Address how you're able to do it quickly. You mentioned it, you didn’t mention any details in the post.

    The most important thing is having the right story. When you get someone excited, that's the most important thing. I call it a three-story.

    There are three different types of stories. One is controversial. Two is informative and three is innovative. The sweet spot is when your story has all three.

    Controversial pieces do great. If people are going to disagree with what you're saying, that's good. That means the people that disagree are going to share it, people that agree are going to share it. You're going to spark a conversation.

    It’s going to go viral. Controversial is good. It's okay to make some people mad, what matters is getting the right message out.

    Informative is, “Here are some action steps.” A lot of us have seen those pieces, “Here are the five steps to build a seven-figure business.” That’s why they’re called informative.

    Innovative is how you're different and unique from someone else. A strategy or a technique that you use that no one else is talking about.

    When you’ve got all three combined into one story, that's when the writer wants to write it. For us as business owners, we use publicity to get more traffic. We want more eyes on our name.

    The writers have the exact same goal. They don't write these pieces just as a hobby. They're trying to get more eyes too.

    They want a piece that's going to get more eyes and you want a piece that's going to get more eyes. It's the same goal on both sides.

    What about the difference between getting a call and becoming a contributor? Do you focus on having people become contributors for Forbes and Inc. and all these other things, or get other people who are already contributors to write about you?

    I focus more on getting contributors to write about my clients. I don't help with the actual getting them to become contributors. The reason behind both writing in for yourself and having someone write about you is definitely good.

    If you think about it, it's like testimonials. Talking yourself up is awesome but it sounds much better when it comes from someone else's mouth.

    My business has grown because of Russell Brunson talking me up and telling people how awesome I am. If I go rant on people how awesome I am, that doesn't mean anything to them.

    BWB Andrew | Building Instant Credibility

    Building Instant Credibility: Publicity is not about making you look good than what you really are. It's about engaging with your audience.

     

    Let's say one of my audience has a controversial, informative and innovative story. It's a sweet spot. What's the first step in pitching some of these things?

    You can use Forbes. You can use anything else as an example should they try to go get written about elsewhere so they can point the Forbes writer to, “Other people have written about me.” What's the best strategy out of the gate?

    What you do is you find a writer that writes about your topic. Don't just find a database full of writers and send a copy and paste email to everybody. It’s going to make everybody mad. Writers hate it.

    What you want to do is you want to research. You go to Forbes.com. You go to the search box and put in keywords that match your business.

    For me, it would be more about communications and marketing. I would go there and see what contributors talk about communication and marketing. I'd find the ones who talk about it most, I'd read a couple of their pieces.

    There are two processes and it depends on financially what you want to spend. There's a three-step process on the free side. The first thing you do is you go and find their business page on Facebook. You like it and you message them, “I saw you on Forbes.”

    I don't do it on my personal Facebook page. Everyone has a business page. Most contributors aren't paid writers. Most contributors are business owners who are contributors trying to get more exposure for themselves.

    I go to their business page on Facebook. I send the message talking about how awesome the article was. I would mention the title. I would talk about a part of the article, so they know I did my research.

    I ask them for their email. I get in on their email and I continue the conversation there. My goal is to get their phone number. I want to get them on the phone and then I close them on the phone. It's a three-step process. Facebook business page to email to phone, and then I close them on the phone.

    If you get them on the phone, you're letting them know you did a little personal research. There's nothing worse than templates. I get those all the time. People wanting to be on my show send me a template email about them and it always gets deleted.

    When you get them on the phone, how quickly do you start pitching them the concept for the article? Do you just say, “I've got a great concept, I noticed your article in Forbes?”

    I get them on the phone and I talk about, “I saw that you love writing about this topic. Here's the story that's controversial, innovative and informative. More than just the story, here's what’s going to happen if you write their story. I'm going to be sending paid traffic to their article.”

    I'm not paying them to write the article. It's against the rules to pay someone to write about you. Never do that because that gets deleted and you just wasted a bunch of money.

    What I say is, “If you write this story, I'm going to send massive traffic to it.” That's what people care about. It's not so much, “Here's this awesome story, you should write about me.”

    It’s, “Here's how it's going to be a win for both of us. You're going to win because I'm going to get more eyes. I'm going to spend money to get traffic to visit this article because it's part of my marketing.”

    They love that and it makes them look better as contributors as well. Are there certain types of contributors you go after?

    I know some people work for the company and then some people have a contributing column. They don't work there. They're doing it for exposure. Do you typically try to go after one or the other more so?

    I never go after staff writers. In the past, I've had one staff writer write a story on the client. Staff writers only want to write about people like Mark Zuckerberg, Steve Jobs, Tesla, the big billionaires.

    I only focus on going after contributors because contributors are entrepreneurs. They don't get paid to write for these articles. If they do get paid, it may be $50 an article, it's not their full-time job.

    The majority of them are entrepreneurs. It's much easier to speak to an entrepreneur as an entrepreneur than speak to someone that has an employee mindset.

    Two of my team members are actually previous editors at Ochsner Magazine. They left Ochsner to come work for me. Even though it's called Ochsner Magazine, it’s a very big corporate environment and they won't write about someone that no one has heard of.

    Let's talk about your current clients. Is that the hardest part to come up with, the reason to pitch? Is there something that's more challenging? What's the hardest part about this whole process?

    The hardest part is getting people to be open-minded because everybody's on the immediate ROI mindset.

    You're talking about clients mainly?

    It’s clients and anyone else. The first question I always get is, “How quick do I make my money back?” It depends on what you do with it.

    It's against the rules to pay someone to write about you. Click To Tweet

    The biggest challenge that I have is everybody wants to talk just about one specific thing, “I want to talk about my own business. I want to talk about this marketing technique I use. I just want know to about that.”

    What I tell people is what you want to do, especially when you're first starting out and you don't have exposure, you want any publicity that you can get. It doesn't have to be just on your business.

    For example, for me, I talk about publicity all the time but I also talk about how much I love being a dad. I talk about how much I love giving back to the community. There's an opportunity to be on Forbes that's more about being a dad-preneur and not about publicity.

    I'm still going to take that opportunity because what I'm doing is I'm building a bond with my audience, even if it's not about my business, even if it's not a call-to-action at the end of it, even if I'm not getting leads from it.

    What I'm doing is I'm building a bond and a relationship where they're getting to know me on a more personal level than just business. That helps. The know, like and trust.

    I know this depends on the topic and the person. How long does it usually take for somebody when they start off on this plan?

    If I said, “Just like Andrew O'Brien recommended, I want to get written about on the five top business magazines or websites.” What’s the time expectation here? It's probably not immediate like in the next week you've got a story written about you.

    The time expectation depends on the time that you're willing to put into it if it's your focus. For example on my team, it’s what they do Monday through Friday. The time that it’s going to take for my team to do it, versus a solopreneur who's got 20,000 other things going on, is a lot shorter.

    For my team, for example, we just signed Mike Dillard as a client. Within two weeks, we had him interviewed on five of the largest business publications. The reason it’s because that's what my team does every day, all day, so it's a lot easier.

    There's a difference though being interviewed and it going live, that varies. The biggest issue we've had, and we solved that communication issue is, “I'm paying for it. I'm going to get interviewed and it will be up the next day.”

    What happens is the writer has to write it. It has to go to an editor. The editor has to review it and either approve it or send it back for edit.

    Once it’s actually approved, that has to go into queue. It goes live whenever they the time for it to go live. None of us will ever control when an article actually goes live, except on Huffington Post.

    I'm going to tell you that anyone can get on Huffington Post. Huffington Post is not a big deal anymore. They're approving everyone to be contributors at Huffington Post.

    It's just like anybody can write a book on Amazon and be a published author. The good news is, to the public at large, they don't know that. There's still some cache to the general public.

    Still a credibility building and still authority building. Even if you don't have any media exposure at all right now, all you have to do is put a Facebook post up and say, “Who in my network writes for Huffington Post and is willing to help me out?”

    I guarantee you, someone on your friends list writes for Huffington Post.

    That’s because you mentioned being interviewed. Do you typically encourage the contributor to do an interview with your client or student or somebody who's doing this, versus giving them all the story points via press release and having them piece it together without you?

    Do you typically encourage them to get interviewed?

    I typically encourage interviews. I want them to interview the client. I don't want to send them some ideas. I don't like emailed questions.

    I like for my clients and the contributor to get on the phone and do an interview that way because most of us are much better at communicating verbally than we are over text. Sometimes things can be misconstrued or whatever.

    It's easier to do it over the phone. It's more of an experience that way versus some more email communication.

    Let's say I'm a contributor and I get contacted by you or one of your employees to interview somebody, we’ll use Mike Dillard as an example. What do you provide me, the contributor, with so that I can do my job?

    Are there some suggested interview questions? Is it like a press or media kit? The real question is what are you asking your clients to put together so that this interview can go smoother?

    What I have is what I call the media package form. When people sign up as a client, they fill out this pretty extensive form where I ask a lot of questions about anything and everything, they're willing to share with me.

    We put it into Google Drive doc. We'll usually share that with a writer if they need a lot of pictures or things like that.

    BWB Andrew | Building Instant Credibility

    Building Instant Credibility: Get yourself on the five largest online publications in your industry. Capture your audience and retarget them so they can see you in five media outlets before selling them anything.

     

    We've had Forbes profile pieces. These Forbes profile pieces usually need a lot of pictures. Other ones, not so much.

    What I’d ask most of my clients to do and my students is you need to build what's called your media page. There's no need for a media kit anymore or one-pager that you send over email. We have websites now.

    For example, if you go to ThePublicityGuy.com/media, that's a perfect example of a media page. It’s a headshot, it's a bio and it previews features where people can see where else you've been featured.

    It's also good if you want to add a photo gallery on there so they can go on and download whatever pictures they want.

    Right there, ThePublicityGuy.com and then you have a media link so you can go check that out. I did have another question. A successful campaign gets written about, run paid traffic to it, let people see you.

    You like to use Sniply. There are some other sites like that I've used in the past. There was one tool, maybe it's called Rebrandly. Have you heard of that?

    I have it.

    The one thing about Sniply is when you share it, it's still says Sniply.com/forbes or whatever. There's another one called Rebrandly.com. I started to look into it and I want to say it does similar thing.

    I could be totally wrong on this. It’s a link shortener tool that you send it through, it drops a cookie and then you land on the actual webpage like Forbes.com, etc.

    It's something I came across and I started looking at it. Have you found a use in Sniply that many people take action on the little Sniply banner that shows up?

    With Sniply, you can use it to track and do pixels. You can add a little banner to pop up while they're reading the article.

    I don't use the banner. I use it as strictly a pixeling tool, so I can pay for a third-party website. I don't use it to target people to come into my funnel.

    The biggest thing is people are trying to hardcore market it all the time. I'm trying to be unique and different by not marketing to them until after they've seen me enough times.

    Tell me some fun success stories of some prior clients or students, of somebody who followed your advice and blew it up.

    I've got two clients, Alex Charfen and Russell Brunson of ClickFunnels.

    Both former guests on the show, thank you very much.

    Russell Brunson of ClickFunnels, I’ve gotten him in front of over 124 million people in the last 90 days. Their name and everything have been seen. I've had the potential of being in front of 124 million people due to media exposure.

    Alex Charfen has been in front of over 122 million people because of media exposure.

    You shared something on your Facebook. It was a quick little video showing something like this. How do you get those numbers?

    How do you know it's 124 million people? You get the story out there, but how do you know that Forbes article got viewed X amount of times? You don't get that data, do you?

    It’s a third-party tracking tool that publicity campaigns are able to use. It's very expensive. It does not cost a couple of pennies. It tracks everything as far as how many shares that article got socially, how many views that it had, how many views it could potentially have.

    For example, I got Alex Charfen on an article in Adweek. That article in Adweek had the potential of reaching over two million people because that's the amount of readers that visit Adweek on a monthly basis. The potential is there.

    It’s not saying two million people actually read the article. What it’s saying is that article got in front of two million people. It all depends on how strong the story is, how good the headline is and what you're using for direct response marketing.

    Paid advertising is amazing, publicity is amazing. Both together is like a superpower. It's taking two amazing tools, putting them together and building something completely new.

    Are there any unique stories about using this that they didn't necessarily follow? They're just the traditional, “I got in front of a lot of eyeballs.” Do you have any fun, unique like, “Check this story out?”

    Reliable third-party websites such as Forbes calling you an expert is what counts versus just you saying it yourself. Click To Tweet

    The biggest question I always get is, “I'm not known in this industry. I don't have a name. I have no recognition. I'm not worth writing about. I don't have $1 billion.” I love hearing that.

    I've got one client, his name is Ed O'Keefe. He owns a supplement company and he was trying to get into the personal development world. He discovered Time Collapsing.

    He had no experience in it, no recognition in it. He had a name in the supplement industry but not in the personal development industry. He has no experience, no exposure there.

    He wrote a book, and in two months, we got him featured in Fast Company, Entrepreneur, Inc. and Huffington Post. Two months, we got him featured in four of the largest ones. He's the first person to get into Fast Company.

    He has no experience in that industry but he was able to get into four of the largest media outlets available to entrepreneurs. It's all about angles and stories and all that. What they did is they either called him a marketing expert or they called him them the bestselling author of Time Collapsing.

    What people don't realize is there are a lot of self-proclaimed experts and gurus, “I'm the best. I'm amazing.” Calling yourself an expert or guru is one thing.

    When you've got a third-party website that people trust like Forbes, Fast Company, Entrepreneur, when they're saying that you're the expert, when they're calling you a guru, when they're calling you a marketing expert, that's when it counts versus just saying it yourself or having clients say it about you.

    Third-party endorsements are so powerful to be able to do. What are some of the easier stories to place? Are they about personal human-interest stories, journeys of an individual?

    Is it about most innovative products? Is there something that's easier to place than something else? Let me give you an example because this would cover both.

    Let's say your primary product is a physical product, that's potentially story-worthy. I know these days telling the brand story and the owner and the founder’s story can be equally if not more important.

    Would you try to approach that interview with the founder because it may be the founder’s journey in bringing this product to life? Or just staying on the product and its features and benefits and why it's unique and innovative?

    We all go through what's called the hero's journey. I think that the hero's journey is the bestselling story there is. It’s not so much about the product or the service, it’s about the person behind the product or service.

    It doesn't matter how awesome you are. It doesn't matter how tangible the results that you get. What matters is who is it that built this company and what did they go through. When the audience hears that, it gets them involved. It makes them feel close to it.

    If I'm going to decide between going to Wal-Mart or the corner store, the only reason I'm going to choose the corner store over Wal-Mart is because I know the story of the owners. I know the battle they’ve been through to fight the big corporate people.

    For example, Click Funnels. I get exposure for them on how important cell phones are for business, but a lot of it has to do with Russell Brunson. How he went from his first product being a potato gun-building product to creating this fast-growing company.

    It's more of the hero's journey. What did he have to go through to build this amazing fast company?

    I've done that with another business as well, taking the hero's journey regarding the founder of the company and how it led to the founding of the company and then why the company is so great.

    I thought that most writers probably like that better anyway. There are a million products and things they can write about and they're impersonal, but writing a cool story about a person is never impersonal by nature.

    Do you do anything like this? Let's say somebody has not gone out and gotten five or multiple stories written about them. They’ve got one, maybe it's on the HuffPost or Forbes or whatever.

    Do you ever use that as a tool when you're reaching out to new contributors and people to write about? Pointing over here like, “Here’s an article in the HuffPost about this and this is why you may want to write about it, too.”

    Does that make them think, “You've already been written about over here, I don't want to write a story as well?”

    Some media exposure leads into more media exposure. It's like a momentum ball. Once you get that ball rolling, it doesn't stop as long as you can continuously get exposure on it. When you've got one or two on a couple of credibility building websites, I use that to get more.

    I don't aim for the same story, the same angle because they won't want to write the same angle that has already been written about. When they see that other people have written about you already, it gives them that comfort level where they feel more comfortable writing about you.

    A lot of people don't always want to be the first. If you've gotten someone else to be the first, it makes them more comfortable to be able to write about you.

    How would you do that? I'm asking for extremely selfish reasons. I've got this one article, it’s on the HuffPost. It's not a complete soup-to-nuts profile but it's a pretty good profile of the founder, who is my wife, of her company.

    BWB Andrew | Building Instant Credibility

    Building Instant Credibility: Contributors are entrepreneurs. They write for exposure and don't necessarily get paid to write for articles.

     

    It’s a founder story from where she grew up, the challenges she had, what led to the starting of her company called Stiletto Coffee and what it's about. It's a good overview of her entire story.

    There are pieces you can pick out of that. Let's say we take that to another media outlet and say, “We thought you might want to cover this. Check out this story over here on HuffPost.”

    Would we typically want to feed them with other angles that could be covered or let them figure it out themselves?

    I always give a couple of suggestions and I always say these are just suggestions. I'm not telling you what to write about. I'm just giving you some ideas that I’ve got which would make sense because I've done research on your writing and I've seen you like writing about this topic.

    I won't even tell them what the story is about but I’ll suggest a couple of headlines that may catch their attention. If the headline catches their attention enough then I’ll ask them, “What would that story be about?” Then I would walk them through that process.

    The Huffington Post piece that you’re talking about, that’s called a profile piece. That’s more of, “Here’s this person, here's what they've been through, here is how amazing they are now.”

    Those are great but what I do is I'd use that profile piece and be like, “Here's a profile piece on Huffington Post that they did on her. Here are some suggestions based off of this piece that we could extract out of there to write a different piece on.”

    We could talk about this one part where we're talking about the coffee and the benefits of it. We can take how she overcame this to build this, the mentality that she had to have. There are all kinds of angles you can pull out of that one piece to completely create a new one.

    That’s what I was thinking as well because that happened. It made me think, “What's the next step there? How do we leverage this for even more exposure?”

    One thing on that. When I was talking about the media page, it’s important because any media that you've ever been on needs to be on your media page or on your website because it's an SEO strategy.

    Backlinking is one of the strongest SEO tools out there. Having a media page where you're backlinking to every media outlet you've ever been featured on, even the small ones, will boost your SEO and helps you become more competitive over your competition.

    What about press releases, do you use them? How do you use them? Press releases used to be phenomenal.

    Used to be is the word here for SEO because they ranked really well. There were ‘do follow’ links but they have not been as effective here in the past few years because Google caught on. Do you use them and how so?

    I do not believe in press releases. We don't write press releases ever, anymore. We don't do them at all. I think press releases work for very famous people, who the media is constantly waiting for news from.

    As far as us, general entrepreneurs, I don't believe it does anything. There are other services out there like PRWeb, where you can have a press release that goes out to 70 credibility building web sites based on the backend of the web site.

    People are catching on to that and it doesn't mean anything anymore. It's actually causing a lot of damage because you see people saying, “As Seen On FoxTV and As Seen On CBS.” Everybody thinks that they did a press release.

    I think that’s the biggest waste of time and money. It may give you a little boost in SEO, but Google has caught onto it and it doesn't bring any traffic. No one actually sees those press releases unless you just share the link with them.

    I've noticed personally from using them, I've got a hook up with a press release service but I've never really seen any action from that. On top of that, I've noticed that the SEO juice from that disappears quickly.

    Sometimes it shows up in search results for the first few days but then Google, almost just gets rid of it. I can't even find the press release anymore. Nobody else is going after this term.

    It should be there and it just disappears, almost like Google's been penalizing press releases. I could be wrong. It's interesting because it's been my experience as well.

    If you think about actual interviews and actual features that are done on you, if you open an Incognito tab and search my name, I'm on the first page of Google. There's an Andrew O'Brien, hockey player, there are some professors, there are all kinds of people with the name Andrew O’Brien.

    The reason I'm on the first page and the first story that you see, the Austin American-Statesman is one of the first stories that shows up, it's like third or fourth link down. That was an entire piece that was written about me just in the local news here in Austin.

    It went front page and got picked up by the Associated Press and now on the first page of Google, even though there's an NHL hockey player with the same name.

    That's an authoritative web site that's written about you. I've used press releases and I've used guest posts. I call it proactive reputation management because you never know if you're going to need it.

    There's nothing worse than having a name that a whole bunch of other stuff shows. I've got a pretty unique name, Brad Costanzo. I've only found one other Brad Costanzo in the entire world.

    Failure is what sells right now. Click To Tweet

    I own the front page, I own Google for my name because the other guy’s not a marketer. There are a lot of these things that you can do and it is true. You are who Google says you are.

    Everybody Googles your name, whether you just meet somebody, you’re going to interview him for a podcast or be interviewed, or hire somebody for a job, or decide if I want to work with a coach or a service, or buy a software.

    What Google says about you in the minds of your prospects is often true to them. Not being proactive with this, just in case you need it, is a detriment even if you don't have anything major to sell.

    It's good to be doing this, especially that trend is not going away. Social media perception is reality.

    There are so many liars now and people research everything now. They want to know. I've gotten some clients who've had some pretty bad reviews and they've been on Rip Off Report and things like that.

    Getting them media exposure is a lot more challenging because when you Google them, all you see is negative on the first three pages of Google.

    They're not bad people. They made someone mad and someone went off and spent weeks hating on them and getting things put everywhere. It's a lot better. If that happens, media exposure is the way to make all that stuff go to the back side of it.

    Do you ever do or recommend any particular search engine optimization using those links out there, linking to them from your own site and giving them extra juice? Is that like if you're doing this right, those sites have enough juice, you don't even need to do any special?

    I definitely give strategies on it. A big thing that I tell people is when you're interviewing and you're doing visual or audio interviews, focus on your keyword terms that you know that you need to use. Use them a lot during interviews so that they are put in to the articles.

    You’re not telling a writer what to say. It’s using a little bit of psychology. You use the words enough, they’ll put the words in there.

    That will boost your SEO and then again, using social media and direct response marketing with those media outlets. Getting on Forbes isn't going to get you on the first page of Google. If there are a lot of viewers, a lot of likes, a lot of shares on that article then that's going to boost your SEO.

    Publicity, in general, is not a static industry but it's been around for a very long time. The methods and things that you're talking about, it doesn't seem like in a good way, going away anytime soon.

    Are there any new trends or new developments that are coming out that you're excited about and ways to use those even more?

    The new trend, something I’ve reported we’re catching on to, is what they called the false truth era.

    Fake news and all that or what?

    Everybody’s trying to act like everything is perfect. What I keep hitting on is failure is what sells right now.

    I put a post on Facebook about how I had my first nervous breakdown. I never have one in my life, but I just had one a few weeks ago.

    I talk about taking my daughter to the foster home on Christmas day to give gifts to the foster children. I talk about things that have nothing to do with business and have a lot to do with my personal life, some mistakes or nervous breakdowns, refunds, chargebacks.

    Things that people that normally won't talk about because a lot of people don't want to talk about refunds. They don't want people knowing that they have to give refunds but let's be real. We're all business owners, we've all had to give refunds at some point.

    Instead of sitting here and trying to act like, “I've never had to refund anyone,” I've told people I over-promised on my first sight of this company. I’ve had to refund everybody because I made a mistake and I gave everybody their money back.

    It's just being honest. That’s what was selling right now. That's what I love about it. It’s this full transparency of it.

    This is the time where I ask one question, and I like to ask everybody this because this is Bacon Wrapped Business. You're in the frying pan, so turn up the heat.

    What is one technique or strategy or tactic or something that you're going to reveal right now that it almost pains you to reveal because it's so good? Is there anything out there?

    The one technique that I'm going to give away is what I want everybody to do is I want them to go on to Entrepreneur.com. I want you to go into the search tab and type in the search keyword that has to do with their business.

    You’ll see there's a picture of a face and by their face will say the name. It will say either contributor or staff writer. You're going to avoid the staff writers and go after the contributors.

    BWB Andrew | Building Instant Credibility

    Building Instant Credibility: You can take a published article to a writer in the same field of interest and suggest a couple of headlines. If it catches their attention, they will write about it.

     

    What you're going to do is you're going to find a contributor that wrote about your topic or about something in your industry, something that matches what you talk about. You're going to go on there, you're going to find their Facebook page.

    If you look on their name, there's usually a bunch of pictures and there's a Facebook link, a Twitter link, a LinkedIn link, a website link, all that. What you’re going to do is you're going to go after their Facebook. I don't use Twitter because it's just a pain. Facebook is the way to go.

    I’m going to Facebook, I’m going to message them and here's what you're going to say, “Bob, I read your article titled this. I thought it was absolutely amazing. I love that part when you mentioned this.”

    “I noticed you wrote this in April. I had a few questions to ask you. Would you mind if I send them over email? I don’t want to blow up your Facebook Messenger.”

    It’s not a copy and paste template. I actually did a research. Using that template, what you did is open the door. I guarantee, at least 80% of the people actually doing what I told them to do, will start a conversation with a large social media outlet.

    The obvious thing is you start to build rapport with them. You didn't open up with a pitch, “Will you write about me?” You have questions. It's a soft opening. Once that relationship is established?

    What you do is you send an email and you actually send questions to their email, “I have a question on this part. When you said this in the article, have you seen this or did it work like this for you?”

    You end every email in a question. You never ever end an email or a Facebook message with them in a period. The reason you end that with a question is it makes them feel more intrigued, more like they have to respond.

    What they would do is respond and they'll answer that question. After they answer those questions, you say, “It’s amazing. I love that. I'm going to implement that in my business this week to see what results I get.”

    “I'll let you know how it works for me. While I have you, I have a story that’s similar to this. What I’ll do is I promise that I will do everything I can to make it a top trending story. I will send a lot of paid traffic into the article. I want to give you an idea of the story. Can we hop on the phone?”

    Instead of pitch right away, what you did is you start a conversation. You made them like you because you're complimenting them because you're asking them questions. Now they know you did your research.

    You're not just copying and pasting. You're asking them, “Can you get on the phone? I'm going to make sure that you wanted this just as much as I do.”

    That's a brilliant way to do it. As a guy who's got a media platform, I get requests for people who want me to interview them constantly. That stuff absolutely works, building the relationship first, not leading with your hand out saying, “Can you give me?”

    The final question is what is a nut that you're trying to crack in your business or life right now? By a nut, I mean is there any particular skill you're trying to learn, a challenge you're trying to overcome, a person you're trying to hire, a person you're trying to fire?

    Is there any nut you're trying to crack right now besides just getting more of what you've already got? If not, that's cool. We could potentially go, “I can help him.”

    We doubled our pricing for our done-for-you services and we cut our clients in half. The reason is because I'm not trying to build an entire agency. I'm not trying to build this big firm.

    I'm trying to represent a few unique A-level players and then the rest will be trained. What I'm trying to do now is build up my passive income, which is our online training.

    We do online trainings and we have a high ticket, live intensives, where people come out and spend two days in the mansion. We go through the entire publicity training and strategy and tactics with them.

    That's where our focus is right now. I'm trying to create the automated passive income where I wake up every day and I see sales in my email. We're working on that.

    That's the toughest nut I'm trying to crack right now. The biggest reason behind that is I don't do low-level products and my profit are in between $1,000 to $2,000 from my courses.

    That's what we're trying to figure out now, how to be able to wake up every morning with sales coming in and not having to bring on too many done-for-you clients.

    You don't want to create a whole bunch of low-end info products.

    I believe that there's a lot of value in what I offer. I realize the lower you charge, the more pains and more problems that you have.

    If there's anything I can do there to help you out, we can talk about this. If you ever want to strategize and brainstorm, I do this stuff with my friends and clients at all times.

    If anybody out there has any ideas for Andrew, please don't hesitate to reach out to him. By the way, where can people get a hold of you?

    The best way is ThePublicityGuy.com.

    Are there any social links you want to share or is everything on there?

    You can just find me on Facebook if you just lookup the Publicity Guy. I'm pretty easy to find. I'm on all the social platforms.

    I'll tell you my team uses every other one. The only one I use is Facebook and I only use a personal page. Find my personal page and send me a friend request.

    Andrew, this has been a pleasure. Thank you so much for being on the show. For everybody, I hope that you got a lot out of this. There are so many useful things that you can literally go out and do right this minute, so do not hesitate to put that to work.

    If this resonates, I don't mind putting in some sweat equity especially if I don't have the dollars to buy ads. This is an awesome way to do it. Andrew's got great done-for-you services. You do have some courses you can buy as well. You can find that all on ThePublicityGuy.com.

    If you have any questions, if you are stuck in your marketing, if there is a nut you're trying to crack and you either need to meet the right person, get the right insight or idea or strategy and you want my second opinion on this, you can email me directly at AskBrad@BaconWrappedBusiness.com.

    I am happy to take a look at any inquiries and requests and whether you become a client or I'm just able to solve your problem with a quick introduction or anything else. I am more than happy to see if I can help you out.

    That being said, thank you once more, Andrew, for joining me. To everybody else, keep on reading. Share it on social media and let me know what you like the most. I'll see you on the next episode.

    Important Links:

    About The Guest: Andrew O'Brien

    BWB Andrew | Building Instant CredibilityHe grew up in a broken home, his mother a prostitute and a stripper who told him and his siblings that she wished she never had kids because they prevented her from finding her own happiness. At nineteen years old, he joined the military and by twenty he was fighting combat in Iraq. At twenty-two, still in the army, he went to his barracks one night and swallowed 120 pills in an effort to put an end to the misery he called life. Just before blacking out from the overdose, laying on the floor of his barracks, he felt an intense urge to live, and so he called 911. He woke up in intensive care, with immense relief that he was given a second chance at life.

    No sooner was he back home, there was an incident involving his mother and stepfather. By all accounts, an intruder had broken into his mother’s home in the middle of the night and shot his stepfather in the head while he was sleeping. Andrew, like the rest of the world, believed that it was a random intruder until his mother approached him and asked him for help staging a set-up so that it would appear that the ex-wife had been the murderer. His mother had created an elaborate plan where she said she would buy a sweater at Walmart, take it to the woods where she would fire off a similar gun, so there would be gun residue on the sweater, and then she’d have Andrew plant the sweater in the vehicle of the ex-wife. O’Brien didn’t participate in her scheme but rather turned her into the authorities.

    Love the show? Subscribe, rate, review, and share!
    Join the Bacon Wrapped Business Community today: 

    Got A Question Or Comment For Brad?