the podcast recap episode with aj & rory vaden

Ep 71: Putting the ‘Real’ Back into Reality TV with Mike Johnson | Recap Episode

Welcome to this special reality TV recap edition of the show where AJ and Rory chat about their recent interview with Mike Johnson! One of the biggest takeaways for today is the idea of being yourself, and you’ll hear about how Mike’s authenticity on camera can teach brand builders so many lessons. Other big talking points from today’s recap are how one platform can be used to catapult you into others, the connection between reach, results and reputation in the brand-building formula, and a whole bunch more! Tune in for some amazing pointers about the parallels between performing on TV and building a personal brand! 

Listen to the episode below

Key takeaways from this episode:

  • One of the key messages Mike shared: be yourself. 
  • Mike’s tips for how to be yourself on camera which relate to social media too.
  • The value of having a strong character for being on TV and building a personal brand. 
  • The difficulty of performing on camera, even for successful BBG clients. 
  • How valuable performing on camera spontaneously is, even while its nerve-wracking. 
  • Mike’s attitude that he wasn’t in it to win a game, but rather to go on a journey. 
  • How your platform can be used to catapult you into other niches.  
  • The need to be mindful of reach: you can’t change the world until people know about you. 

Tweetable Moments:

“One of the biggest messages that Mike shared, which is something you’re going to hear from so many people that we interview, is just be yourself.” — @aj_vaden  [0:03:05] 

“Strong characters, strong personalities create great TV and that translates specifically to personal brands.” — @roryvaden [0:04:50] 

“One thing can completely catapult you into another thing. Mike went from being a successful financial advisor to being on The Bachelorette to now getting ready to do all types of things.” — @aj_vaden [0:09:33] 

“Your results times you reach equals your reputation. So reach is a huge part of this. If you want to change the world, people have got to know about you.” — @roryvaden

About Mike Johnson

Mike Johnson is an international influencer, global spokesperson, author, and speaker. All revolving on overcoming insecurities by cultivating self-love. He was a breakout star from ABC’s The Bachelorette and Bachelor in Paradise and has since been praised for his authenticity and writes on how to stop pretending in society and let your truth shine upon you by being genuine to yourself.

He’s worked with and represented major companies including Hulu, Smirnoff, and Colgate.
For nearly a decade, Mike has been involved with Big Brothers Big Sisters of America as a mentor and spokesperson. He served nearly a decade in the United States Air Force and also co-founded a non-profit organization raising tens of thousands of dollars for female veterans, as they are underrepresented in the military community.

Mike has been featured across hundreds of TV and online stories, including Good Morning America, Cosmopolitan, People, USA Today, Vanity Fair and Glamour. He has 750K+ followers on social media from across the world.
After years of struggling with insecurity and self-doubt, Mike has taken his set of life experiences to help others learn the art of self-care and self-love through his mantra’s and step by step guide he outlined in a highly anticipated upcoming book being released this year.

Links Mentioned:

RV: (00:06) Welcome to this special reality TV recap edition of the influential personal brand podcast that was different. A reality TV star, mega star, Mike Johnson from the Bachelorette and I, I mean, I, I’ll say this, I want to get his insights on what he had to share, but you know, he came to one of our events here not that long ago and people were freaking out, freaking out, snapping pictures with him, interrupting the conversation, strangers, not even part of our group party walking up and been like, can we take a picture? AJV: (00:48) All, all the ladies. RV: (00:49) But Mike is such a really great guy and he’s super likable. Obviously he’s done really, really well on the show. And I don’t know, it was interesting to hear about reality TV as a part of building your personal brand. AJV: (01:02) Yeah, it was fascinating. And I would say that I would love to say that, Oh, we were, you know, super fans and I was a fan girl, but I don’t watch reality TV, so I didn’t have a lot of context for why exactly does America love him so much? But he’s a super, super lovable guy. I think you guys will see a lot of why he was so popular on the show by listening to the interview by itself. But yeah, this is not new. But I feel like one of the biggest messages that he shared, which is something you’re going to hear from so many people that we interview, it’s just be yourself. He said, be your authentic self. And he goes, I think one of the reasons that I was really likable on the show is I was being myself and he goes, I was just keeping it real. AJV: (01:52) Like I was wearing my doo rag when it was time to wear my do rag and I’m a nice guy. So I was a nice guy on the show and I just, I think all of that is something that we hear all the time about how do you actually be yourself and in his unique case when there’s 20 cameras around, how do you keep it real? Like how do you actually be yourself? And I think to me, I really related to it in terms of how we are on social media, right? So many people use way too many filters. Like I see some of my girlfriends post pictures and I’m like, wait, is that them? I can’t tell because there’s so many filters, they’re almost unrecognizable and there’s this whole concept of be you, but yet not quite the real you be you, but a little bit altered a little bit. This don’t be afraid to be too vulnerable. We don’t want to come across as weak, but you know, you want to make sure you’re fun and you’re lively and engaging and it’s like, well, sometimes it’s just not you. So how do you really be you? And I thought he gave some really great insights and feedback on how to do that in a very intense, a really intense session in terms of doing it for live TV. RV: (03:08) Yeah, for sure. Well, and even just the hearing, the selection process of, of how they grab people for the show, right? So there’s all of these, these different rounds I guess, of, of editing or selection that they go through. And I think, you know, they’re looking for characters, like they’re looking for characters because they know that, that that strong characters, strong personalities create great TV. And I think that translates specifically to personal brands is like you, you have to be a strong character. You have to be like this amplified version of, of who you are. Or it’s just, it’s not really amplified. It’s, it’s more of like uninhibited or accessible or exposed. And I think, well authentic is a word you would use, you would be able to use for it. But Mike, Mike is acting as if no camera is there. And so he is being his personality as if no camera is there. RV: (04:13) Allowing people to see, okay, as a personal brand who’s presenting on camera, you have to get comfortable with the camera being there. Like you have to be comfortable being yourself, even though there is a camera. I remember one of my speaking mentor saying, you can’t be great on stage until you’re comfortable on stage because you’re going to be so consumed with being awkward and nervous and uncomfortable that you can’t even focus on connecting to the audience. You can’t even deliver a message or instruction or inspiration because you’re not being yourself. You’re consumed with this awkwardness and you know, so, so being able to be that person in your own skin and being okay with people seeing like the full heightened version of you, even when you’re making out with somebody. I mean that’s, that’s very extreme, but I think that that is, is part of the lesson is just being comfortable with, AJV: (05:06) Yeah, and I think like too that, that’s such a great point because I was, I’m laughing inside because we have so many clients in the brand builders community who are camera shy. I mean, they are incredible business people. They’re super successful entrepreneurs. They’re authors, they’re, amazing content creators. They’ve done incredible things. But yet the camera goes on and it’s like [inaudible] crickets. It’s like, hello, are you there? Okay. Hello? Is it still you? And it’s just like this weird thing where as soon as the camera comes on, they’re like too professional or they try to be too perfectionist and they try to write out a script for what they’re going to say on camera. And then, Oh, I messed up a word, got to do it again. And it’s like, y’all, you gotta be able to turn the camera on, makeup on, off in your case cloth, done cloth on, done AJV: (06:02) Off on. AJV: (06:04) But it’s like you gotta be able to turn on the camera and just go, no script, no planning. And in many cases, no being dressed up, no makeup, if that’s kind of how you now have your super glam and that’s your brand, then do your thing, girl or man, either way. But I just to that point, it just kind of like was laughing inside because you do have to be comfortable on camera, especially in today’s age to have a successful personal brand. But yet, I know that some of you who are going to listen to this podcast, if we were to turn a camera on you right now and go, all right, say your piece. You’d be like, Whoa, Whoa, Whoa, Whoa. Give me a minute, let me write something down. Let me make an outline. And it’s like, no, speak your truth and do it regardless. Right. To turn the camera on and go. And I think that to me in my opinion anyways, being on reality TV, Shirley is, I’m sort of training for that. But even Mike told us, he goes, Oh my gosh, I’m so nervous on this podcast interview. AJV: (07:09) Yeah, that was funny cause he wasn’t, he’s not used to being on podcasts, but here he is on TV. No, no problem. So it’s a different medium. I think it’s just, you know, the first time you do a podcast, even if you’re a professional speaker, like you get a little nervous, you know, the first time you do a speech on stage, you get a little nervous. Right? Or, or even if you’ve been a speaker, you stand in front of a, an a camera and you do like a TV shoot or you know, like a movie shoot or commercial something. It’s different in different set or shown up. I remember the first time I did a live news, you’ve done this the morning like the morning shows. It is, it isn’t. It’s a different environment and you have to just be able to trust that you as you are is good enough and to just sit and allow people to experience who you are and be okay if they like you be okay if they don’t like you, but the, the best experience for them and for you is to just allow them to have access into it, into who you are and to not have to pretend and not, I’d have to fake and not have to try and cheat. RV: (08:15) And I think Mike wasn’t trying to steal attention from the camera. He was just being himself and. RV: (08:22) said, which I really love. He’s like, I wasn’t trying to win a game. I wasn’t ready to win a game. And I think that is really insightful too for a lot of reality TV. It’s like, yeah, maybe some people are getting on there too. Get married and fall in love. But I think we all know that somewhat unlikely in many cases, but he wasn’t trying to win a game. He was just like, man, I’m just on there to see where the journey takes me. I wasn’t trying to get on there too to when I was trying to get on there to follow the journey. And I thought that too was really interesting. And then just his in general. But I also think what is really fascinating about this too is how one thing can completely catapult you into another thing. And he went from being a financial advisor, a very successful one, which people probably don’t know about to being on the bachelor and then the bachelor in paradise to now he’s getting ready to do all different types of things that I don’t think we’re able to share, but really cool and amazing things because of that. AJV: (09:23) So it’s, it’s that leverage and that platform that it gives you. And you can get a platform in a lot of different ways and clearly being on TV and reality TV is definitely going to help you increase that platform, which could help you do X, Y, and Z. So what are you doing to build your platform? It just happened to be that reality TV. Was his, his catapult vision RV: (09:48) [Inaudible] certainly a word catapult data pulls you in. That’s definitely a word. I like it. Well, and I, yeah, reach, I mean there’s that reach and I would say it’s easy to kind of judge people, right? And go, Oh, reality TV or Hey, you just want to be famous or whatever. But look, reputation formula, this is textbook brand builders one-on-one reputation is relation is your rep. Your results times your reach equals your reputation. So reach is a huge part of this. Like if you want to change the world, like you got to know, people got to know about you. You got to do something to increase your reach. You don’t have to go on the bachelor or the bachelorette like, but you, you, you could you just, but you, you do need to be mindful of reach. You can’t, you can’t be, I think in one part of your brain going, Oh, you know, you’re a fame monger and that’s bad. And then the other part of your brain going, who I, I want to reach more people and be successful. Until you reconcile that, like you’re going to sell self-sabotage because you’re not really believing in just going, it’s not about fame. It’s not about any of that stuff. It’s just about reach and making a difference in getting in front of more people. So I thought it was a really sweet interview. He’s a sweet guy, very lovable. Not, not at all, you know, fake or anything. He’s just really awesome. AJV: (11:11) Really down to earth. Check it out. You’ll like it. AJV: (11:14) You don’t get a chance to hear from the bachelor and then a bachelor in paradise on any other day. All right. Thanks for being here. Have a great one. We’ll catch you next time.

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