Ep 352: 5 Simple Things You Can Do To Better Build Your Personal Brand with Lori Harder



How do you make a successful transition from one career, industry, or company to another?

Today’s guest is the true epitome of someone who has taken their reputation and all of their success and accomplishments, and turned it into so many different things during the course of their career!

Lori Harder has built three seven-figure businesses and recently founded a new product line.

She’s the best-selling author of A Tribe Called Bliss and the host of the must-listen Earn Your Happy Podcast, which has over 46 million downloads.

She’s also a three-time world champion in the fitness industry, a cover model, and more!

Lori has truly seen the ups and downs, and she is here to share hard-earned wisdom from her journey that you can learn from and implement today.

If you are a person experiencing any sort of transition, this episode is for you.

Key takeaways from this episode

  • An introduction to bestselling author, podcast host, cover model, and three-time world fitness champion, Lori Harder.
  • Lori’s career journey and her message that show that everyone can create the life they want.
  • What it means to build a brand new future in the uncertainty.
  • The decade Lori dedicated to transforming her life and the lives of others through fitness.
  • Why Lori believes that your environment is everything.
  • How hiring a coach supported Lori in the goal of moving forward and writing a book.
  • The story of how Lori went from an eighth-grade reading level to writing a book.
  • How her personal brand developed organically.
  • Building a community and connecting them to one another.
  • Themes and through-lines in everything Lori does.
  • How loneliness led to community-building in Lori’s journey.
  • Being turned down 20 times before finding a book deal. 
  • Having an athlete’s mindset to failure and improvement.
  • Creating and quantifying value and time. 
  • The power of creating a test group to establish value.
  • Why a launch plan is essential to having a successful podcast.
  • Lori’s path from information products to physical products.
  • What changes when you start to learn from someone who has done what you are trying to do.
  • Focusing on a single product and message to start with.
  • Lori’s daily text and what you can get when you subscribe. 
  • What Lori wishes she knew when she got started and how you can benefit from it. 

Tweetable Moments

“I want everyone to know that no matter where you’re from or what your education level is, you truly can create any life that you want, and my story will prove that.” — @LoriHarder [0:04:31]

“I went from an eighth-grade reading level to writing a book because I had coaches and had to understand how to do it. I put so much specific time into that thing. I think environment is literally everything.” — @LoriHarder [0:11:52]

“The really cool thing about a personal brand is that if you can start learning about physical products, you already have so much of the equation already done. If these two worlds could collide, it’s mindblowing!” — @LoriHarder [0:47:40]

About Lori Harder

Lori Harder has built 3 separate seven-figure businesses. She is the founder and CEO of Lite Pink, a new lite rosé wine spritz and non-alcoholic rosé. She is a best-selling author and the host of The Earn Your Happy podcast with 32 million downloads, and co-hosts the new podcast Girlfriends & Business, launched alongside Alli Webb (founder of Drybar) and Brittany Driscoll (founder of Squeeze). Her career started in fitness as a 3X fitness world champion, 11X fitness cover model, and gym owner. Her true calling in business was revealed through her experience becoming a Top 7-figure earner in network marketing.

Links Mentioned

Lori Harder

Lori Harder on Facebook

Lori Harder on Twitter

Lori Harder on Instagram

Earn Your Happy Podcast

A Tribe Called Bliss 

Girlfriends & Business Podcast

Why Personal Branding is the Future of Marketing with AJ Vaden

AJ Vaden on LinkedIn

AJ Vaden on Twitter

Rory Vaden

Rory Vaden on LinkedIn

Rory Vaden on Twitter

Take the Stairs

Brand Builders Group

Brand Builders Group Free Call

Brand Builders Group Resources

The Influential Personal Brand Podcast on Stitcher

The Influential Personal Brand Podcast on Apple

AJV (00:02): Hey everybody. This is AJ Vaden on the Influential Personal Brand. Welcome to another episode. So genuinely excited to have my friend Lori Harder on the show today. You guys are in for a super awesome special treat because Lori really is the epitome of someone who has taken her reputation and all of the success and all of the things that she’s accomplished and turned it into so many different things over the course of her career. So let me just tell you for a quick second why you need to stick around. Then I’m gonna formally introduce Lori if you don’t already know about her. And then we’re gonna hop into this. But here’s what I would tell you. If you are a person who is in any sort of transition and you’re trying to figure out how do I make a successful transition from one career to another, one industry to another, one company to another, this is the one to be a show that is very much going to help you. AJV (01:02): Or if you’re a person who is, let’s say you’re doing many things, but you’re trying to figure out how do you make them consistent and have a good through line so that everything feels like it’s connected, then this is an episode for you. Or if you’re trying to figure out what lane do you really want to be in, this is an episode that was truly built to serve the needs of those questions and for those of you who are going through this process. So with that said, I will now give you a formal introduction of the one and the Only Lori Harder, and then we’re gonna hop in and actually let her talk for a second. So quick interview or quick overview. If you don’t know Lori Lori has built three that is right, three separate seven figure businesses. She is the founder and CEO of a new product line, which we will talk a lot about the evolution of this process as we go through this. AJV (02:02): She’s also go a bestselling author of a Tribe called Bliss. She’s the host of the Earn Your Happy podcast, which is if you don’t listen to it, it is a must listen to podcast with more than 46 million downloads, which is incredible. She also is a co-host of another awesome podcast called Girlfriends and Business. She has a lot going on but she also has all this other really cool background information that you may not know. Like you may not know that she was a three time world champion in the fitness industry. She’s an 11 time fitness cover model. She was a gym owner. She’s a seven figure business owner through a direct sales network marketing company. And the list kind of goes on and on and on, which is one of the reasons that I wanted to have her on the show today is because she is someone who has been there, done that, seen the ups, seen the dams, and is still here to tell you all about it. It. So without further ado, Lori, welcome to the show. LH (03:03): Ah, I’m so excited to be here. And you guys, it’s been so much fun having you on my show too. So if you wanna like hear the reverse of this, you can go on on that near it. , thank you so much for that intro. I’m like, how old am I? Is that, that took a long time to do . Do you hate that your bio gets longer and longer? Yes. And you’re like, whoa, AJV (03:24): This is all of the amazing, LH (03:25): Hold on a minute. AJV (03:26): That’s that accumulates over the years. Yes, LH (03:29): Totally. AJV (03:30): But like truly like in all honesty, you have done so many amazing things and I bet a ton of our listeners know about you probably follow you, but then I bet there’s a fair share where this is their first introduction to you. And so just to help kinda give everyone a little bit of background, can you just tell us a little bit about how your career started and how you got to where you are now? LH (03:55): Yes. I’m gonna give you a brief overview. So I’m gonna skim through some things, but the reason that I’m gonna go way back for a minute is just because I want everyone to know that no matter where you’re from, what your education level is, you truly can create any life that you want. And my story will show that and, and prove that I’m from a really small town in upper Michigan. Like most people don’t even know Michigan has an upper part. Like truly they’re like, it’s lower Michigan, Detroit. No, there is something way up in the woods that is more Canada than Canada is . It’s called Upper Michigan. And that is where I’m from. And I was raised in a, a more restrictive religion where I couldn’t hang out with people outside of my religion. And already being in a tiny town in a tiny congregation, it made my circle of influence really small. LH (04:44): It made what I saw in the world as possible. Very small. It made you know what I thought people were capable of doing very, very small. And that’s not to say it negative, it’s to show you the picture of I didn’t really get to exist outside of this circle. So a lot of the work that I have done now and out in the world and what my book is based on and why I’m so passionate about having these conversations on podcasts is because we need to see what is possible through other people and hear these stories. So doing that when I was 18 years old, I decided to leave, which meant I had a choice. And I believe that you guys all have this. You’re, you’re facing a really tough choice like this right now where you’re going to leave everyone and everything behind. LH (05:30): And some of you don’t have to leave things behind. But some of you may have to make the choice to leave things behind and build a future that is completely built in the uncertain and in the risk with new people that you have never met in your entire life. And this obviously isn’t done overnight, but this is what majority of the things that I have done is based on is because I think that everyone who is in a pivot and in a transition is in that moment that I was in when I was 18, choosing, do I choose this very uncertain future or do I go back and stay in my very like contingent based happiness or contingent based group and love? Or do I go and try to figure out what this call is on my heart and why in the heck I’m waking up every single night and why I have low key anxiety 24 7. LH (06:21): And this is the place where I just started building everything else. It was like the, the, the first, I think the first big awakening and just breakthrough for me was realizing when I, when I had started working out, I come from a family that dealt with a lot of anxiety. Most of my family was all on some sort of medication or depression medication or anxiety medication. And they were all overweight. And the first big moment for me was when I was in middle school, I went and stayed with a family because our congregations were far away from each other. They were like two hours. So I ended up staying with the family for a week. And first I wanna just say I love my family more than anything. You could still love them and you can also want to be different. LH (07:07): So with that said, I went and stayed with this other family. Well, this other family was very fit and they were always busy and they were always out and doing something. They weren’t watching tv. In fact, it was kind of frowned upon. And they ate really healthy. Like I didn’t understand why we weren’t snacking at night. I’m not even kidding you. On the first night I was there it was probably like 7:00 PM after dinner and we were watching a movie and I was like, Hey, are we like, what, where’s the snacks? Like what kind of snacks do you have? Like, where’s your snack covered? And she was like, what are you talking about? Do you want an apple? And I literally looked at her like she had three eyeballs. I was like an apple, like an apple for a snack. Who are you weirdos? LH (07:49): I went home, I lost five pounds. Like I literally had been dieting since I was eight years old. Ended up losing five pounds in this one week that I was there. Cause we were so active and we ate really healthy. What did this do for me being in that environment without even trying made me or, or turned me into something else? Right? I actually got a physical result. I had a mental result. I felt really good and I couldn’t unsee it. And that was the moment for me where I really started getting into fitness and saying, okay, I want to help people transform because fitness has transformed my life so much. So I, I pretty much spent the first from probably 20 to 30 was really that dedication to like that fitness portion of my life in transforming people. AJV (08:35): Can I pause right there for just one second? Yes. Cause you said something that I think is so impactful and maybe it’s just hitting me personally right now because one of my childhood best friends right now is in recovery and she’s actually in a program right now. And one of the things that they told her her in this inpatient program is, you know, there are three changes that you have to make if you wanna see real change. Mm. You have to change people, places and things. Oh. And what you just said right there is a really important thing about you said is like your environment actually can have a, a physical manifestation in your life. And it’s like, I think it’s really amazing of going, nothing else changed for you other than being in a new environment. And because you acclimated to that new environment, other things started happening. AJV (09:26): A lot can happen in a really good way and in a really bad way. So I’m just kind of curious, it’s like, did, did you notice that in the moment of going, whoa, whoa, whoa. Like this is so different. And then did you notice like the environment made a change? And I’m just kind of curious for everyone who is out there who is, you know, kind of sitting there going, I don’t really love where I am or what I’m doing, or, or they suffer from comparison for whatever reason we all do it. Like what kind of impacts have you seen around that environmental change? LH (10:02): I, so I think environment is everything. I think your environment is stronger than any willpower you can create on your own in that prior environment that you’re in. So when I go to make a change or a pivot, this is a huge part of pivoting. When I go to make a change or a pivot, I simultaneously look at what I will have to do, like what kind of habits I will have to do, but what kind of environment I will now have to either buy into, put myself in, or even be looking at, right? Cuz it’s, it’s all of the input. It’s, it’s what we’re reading, it’s what we are looking at and consuming on social media. It’s what conversations we’re having. Mm-Hmm. , it’s who we’re around, it’s who our mentors are. So I simultaneously look at all of these things and I know that I I I have to change my environment while I change my habits. LH (10:55): So whenever I’ve done anything, let’s say when I went from fitness to personal development, I went from going to all the fitness events, reading all the fitness magazines, looking up to all the fitness people. My vision board was full of fitness things and fitness goals to just like that, looking at who is helping people write books, who is authors, who’s an author that has a podcast who is in the space of like writing books that help people write books. I hired a coach for writing books and overnight I flipped everything and set myself up in an environment where it would support me moving forward on the goal of writing a book. And I think that that was a big reason why number one, I was able to like go from you guys. I did not graduate high school. That’s another thing I wanted to share. Went from like an eighth grade reading level to writing a book because I had coaches and had to understand how to do it. And I put so much specific time into that thing. And so I think environment is literally everything. AJV (11:55): I think that is like, this is gonna be one of those quotes that I pull out and post all over social media that is so good. It’s like your environment is often stronger than your own willpower. Mm-Hmm. that is so good. And it’s like, just remembering, it’s like what you surround yourself with is ultimately what you do, what you think, what you believe. Like it really does create the patterns and the habits in your life. So if you really wanna change, it’s like what in your environment needs to change? Mm-Hmm. like that is so, like the fact that you did not graduate high school, had an eighth grade reading education and then went on to write a book, it’s like most people let that be an excuse. Mm-Hmm. versus there’s an instant amount of information in the world. It’s just, are you in an environment that allows you to have access to it, use it and do something with it. So on that note I want to, I wanna talk about this because you have done so many awesome things and you know, often it’s like, because I know you, I forget, it’s like, oh yeah, oh LH (13:03): Yeah. It’s easy to forget when you’re with AJV (13:04): Me. All these things. I think this is so awesome. I love this. So on this conversation, you went from really having this incredible fitness career to being a cover model, to owning a gym, to then having, you know, this seven figure very successful, which you still have you know, business and network marketing to then transitioning from this that kind of world to this whole new world of more like information products with courses and books and events and a podcast. Tell me how on God’s green earth did you make these transitions successfully? Because I think that’s where a lot of people struggle. It’s like they’ve been known for this one thing for forever and now they’re trying to do this life pivot and they kind of get stuck with, well, people aren’t gonna know me for this, I’m not known as this. And then they just kind of give up. Mm. How did you do that successfully? LH (14:05): I don’t know if I figured this out in the beginning or if this was, you know, I think some of the things we do were just kind of, we don’t even realize we’re following a bit of like desire and intuition. But I, I not long down the path started to realize that if you know how to attract people to you as like a, whether that’s a personal brand or whether you are a CEO or founder of something, if you understand how to attract people to you, you can almost funnel them into anything, in my personal opinion. So what do I mean by that? I mean that even if right now I didn’t have any of those things and I was trying to figure out what I wanted to do, do, I would just start talking about the things that I was interested in right now. LH (14:56): Like maybe I’m like, maybe I wanna start a products company or maybe I wanna start like a skincare line, or maybe I wanna start a wine brand. What I would start doing is talking about wanting to start those things and like the, the journey of what I’m feeling going through it and maybe the journey of how am I setting up my environment, like what we just talked about. And I would be consistent with it because, and, and this is truly what I did. I, I didn’t necessarily always know what I was rolling into, but I always shared the journey of what, where I was at and what I was feeling and what I was thinking consistently every single day. And I think there’s so many people out there that I think it’s everyone, right? We all are on this journey of, of desiring to evolve. LH (15:39): And so I think if that is the topic of desiring to evolve and how are you doing it and what does it look like and what are you doing that’s different and what is, you know, what is this journey? Who did you have to maybe leave behind? What was that feeling? All of a sudden I realized I had this audience who was pretty tuned into what I had to say. Mm-Hmm. . And so you become, it’s kind of like I became a personal brand overnight. Not overnight, not overnight, over years and years without really realizing what I was doing. It was like, yeah, I love that I was building this audience based on my core values mm-hmm. , which means that every business that I build, the secret that the secret sauce that I have learned is that my business is just really my core values infused into a business with a product. LH (16:23): So whether the product is a book or whether the product is an actual physical product, that company is serving something that I, I feel needs to be served or a need that I see or that I have. And it’s, it’s based off of my personal core values. So I don’t become, I don’t have to become a different person as I pivot into different businesses, I literally get to show up fully me in every single business because it is literally based off of my core values and, and my desires and, and a need at one time. So it’s not hard for me to talk about any of the products that I’ve ever created, whether it’s a e-course or whether it’s a book or whether it’s a physical product because I base all of these things off of things that I either was and lessons I’ve learned. LH (17:10): So it’s very easy for me to obviously talk to my past self and talk you through you know, what I went through or it’s very easy for me to be like, this is what I needed and here’s what it does for me. And it’s a part of my life every day so it doesn’t feel unnatural. Where sometimes I know we can maybe be thinking of products or something like that, that you’re like, oh well that’s making money. Maybe I should do that. And then it feels very awkward. Mm-Hmm. like, you’re actually not gonna be able to show up consistently to it cuz there’s not gonna be a natural place for you to show up daily. You’ll have to create it cuz it won’t be authentic to you. And then people will feel that too. AJV (17:45): Yeah. I tell you what, that, that is so vitally important. Cause I think a lot of people make their decisions about what businesses or what products or services to get into based on some sort of market analysis or market research. And you’re saying no, it’s the opposite of what are my core values and how do I exhibit those into products or services that I think will serve the people who need ’em because I needed them. And if I did, then so do others. And I think that’s a really strong way, which quite honestly is probably going to be the answer to my next question, LH (18:19): , AJV (18:19): Which is how have you kept everything consistent mm-hmm. with a good through line between all the things that you’ve done. And just even hearing you say that it’s like, well that doesn’t even make you have to evolve your personal brand at all. It’s like, this is just a as as you grow and evolve, then the things that you’re interested in come along with you as does your audience. LH (18:41): Yes. I I, so I love this question though, taking it to like the, the second level of this is, you know, what you can do, especially as you pivot, there is always a gift in what you just did. Even if, even if what you just got done with, or maybe you were working a corporate job that you feel like you’re like, ah, I wasted two years of my life or five years of my life. Absolutely not. There are so many gifts that that past thing has given you that you are going to get to integrate into this new thing of yours. I was just thinking about how my past of doing e-courses and meditations and speaking in public and learning to create a talk is gonna help me so much with getting this new product out because I am going to get the product out through events. LH (19:26): And if I hadn’t, you know, spoken publicly, if I hadn’t felt like I can just get up in, in front of a crowd now and connect with them on a very human level then I wouldn’t have this great modality and these great ideas around, okay, we’re gonna do events, we’re gonna do some challenges that maybe we include like, you know, some daily rituals and maybe a meditation. Like these are all things that are coming from my past that are now making me think in the grand scheme of honestly, I’m thinking about how do we create community? Because if you can create, you already have a community essentially. If you’re creating your own personal brand, I just want to now take the community I have, insert a product and create even more community around it. So essentially I’m gonna continue being me and building community and also say, this is one of the things I’m obsessed with that I use every single day. LH (20:16): And this is what our community does. Or, you know, choose it if you like it. And that’s been, I think that that has been such a huge realization for me is, is if you can build that community, it’s kind of like, what, what does the community need? What are they doing? What are the healthy rituals? What are the, what are the habits of this community? How, how do you, how do you want to connect them to each other? Cuz that’s next level community, right? Like, that’ll really take your community deeper. And it’s just kind of of like rinse and repeat, rinse and repeat that same idea. AJV (20:50): You know, what’s interesting is that even as I sit here thinking through all of the things that you’ve done through your career that I can already just hearing you talk, pull out as an outsider looking in, what are some of the through lines that I see, which I think is really fascinating that I didn’t correlate to before, but now hearing you talk about some of your core values and it’s just things that you believe in. It’s like health is a theme through every single thing that you do. Happiness, community, like those are themes through every single thing that you do. And I, so I’m curious, it’s, was that intentional? Like, did you like kind of like outline those before and was that a very strategic decision or did it just evolve and happen naturally? LH (21:35): You know, I think I really realized the power of community when I had started the Bliss Project and also when I had started writing that book, because simultaneously while I was doing those things, I was in search. I had, I had told you guys at the beginning of this podcast and aj you know, like I was looking for my own community because I had started kind of the, the fitness thing is a very solo journey. Like, you’re, you’re pretty, you have to be pretty self consumed to get to that point and stay at that point with your body. You, you, you kind of have to be pretty selfish. It’s, it’s actually, it’s actually fairly hard to be social because you really need to control, especially when you’re competing all the time, you really unfortunately need to control what’s going in your mouth 24 7. LH (22:19): And it can get really tough if you’re very social. So when I got out of that, and that’s a whole other thing that I had to like, figure out how to like recalibrate and be what does normal look like? What is health? What does normal healthy look like? And I, those words aren’t even the right words to be using. It’s just trying to figure out what, what works for me, what, what is like truly a baseline that feels really good. And so from there I was like so freaking lonely. Like I had started, you know, even, even my when I started the membership, I had a fitness membership, you guys, and, and that was a huge focus for me. That was one of the first things that I really outside of network marketing also started making money with was, it was around the same time I had launched a fitness membership and, and we would do challenges where they were, they started as 30 day challenges, then they went to 14, then we realized people had the attention span that only seven days would work . So we were doing these, you can see I was like that. Ok. Nope. Got it. AJV (23:17): Try and error. LH (23:18): Yes. And even from that, you know, I launched those challenges. We, we were trying to get those right for three years. So I didn’t just throw it out and say, oh, that one didn’t work good. Like, we took the same challenge and we kept launching it and we launched it four times a year. And that’s how it became a really great challenge. So I just want you to like, oh my god, three years to even get like one of those things, right? And so around that, yes, I had, I had a bit of a team, but we were all, all kind of working solo and I was really lonely. And I just, I did not, I didn’t have support around like, I dunno, like when things would go wrong in my business. Like I had my husband, but we can’t count on one person to be everything for us. LH (24:01): And we did, we weren’t speaking the same language business wise yet. It just wasn’t a good thing. When I would go to him, like with any stresses or what I should, our creation process was very different. So this was when I actually went to a Jack Canfield event. I was like, I need help. I, I think I wanna start doing other things, but I also need to tribe like, so I had enrolled in a Jack Canfield event. I was also becoming interested in personal development at this time because I realized that in fitness I couldn’t get them to transform if I couldn’t change their mindset. So I wanted to go and learn from people who knew how to do that and, and add it to my program. So this all was happening at once. It was like, okay, this is gonna fix a lot of things for me. LH (24:45): That was my hope anyway. And it did. But I ended up going, and simultaneously while I was doing this, he was talking about masterminds and I was like, what’s a mastermind? And he was talking about how he gets together with a group of friends. He did it like weekly or biweekly. And this was this group that would support each other through business and even life. And it was very, it was very planned out. And to me right away I was like, okay, that doesn’t feel like it’s gonna take away from my life. You know, according to like prior experiences where maybe I would try to get something together and the people just weren’t there yet and I was trying to drag them with me and they didn’t wanna go where I was going. I was like, okay, find people who wanna go where you’re going. LH (25:22): Create a touch base where you are accountable to them every single week. It did not go, actually we did every other week for one hour, created this with another fitness woman and then another woman that she knew. So a total stranger and then another woman that I had just met. But we all had goals that were similar. We all wanted to grow our business. And that is when I just realized the power of connecting with people. Our businesses all accelerated so fast by doing this. And, and here’s the thing is like, I was serious, so I wanted to create accountability and so did they, like when we first got on our first call, it was like, how serious are we taking this? And it was like, well, I, if you don’t show up, like without an excuse or if you have to travel, like you’re out. LH (26:06): Like if you don’t show up or if we go, if you continue to go over or if you come here with a problem but you’re not into it you know, if you, if you’re not willing to find a solution, that’s not why we’re here and we just can’t move forward with you, we’ll find someone else. And so this was like an expectation from the beginning. Well that scared the hell outta me. I was like, oh my God, this is serious. But my vision was so much bigger than my fear because I would pay attention to it daily at this point. I was, I was going on walks or runs or working out and I would specifically choose to visualize what I wanted every single day during those moments of movement. And so my vision was, was just, even, even if it was just 1% bigger than my fear, I kept it bigger than my fear. LH (26:46): So really started showing up to that. And that taught me so much about consistency, accountability, who you are around putting it out there, talking through your fears. Like my comeback rate is so much faster when I’m in these groups because it, where where maybe I would be, let’s say somebody tells me like when I was trying to get a a a book deal, right? And they tell me this is real. Your book sucks. Your writing is basic. This idea’s been done a million times. No. Like, no one will buy your book. Okay, well instead of me being like, my book sucks, I shouldn’t put this out there, I’ve already been turned down 20 times, that is a real number. Instead, I got on this call that week with those women and they said to me, are you kidding? Like, this book is amazing. You’re incredible. You’re a great writer. That’s just some, you know, jerk that you literally need to get over and we’re gonna make a plan to get out there again right away. Who’s your next call next day? Get on another call lit. Literally that week because I went right back into it and they made me feel so much better. I got a six figure book deal that week, literally same week where I would’ve not first time author. I would’ve not, I think I would’ve just like walled and given up. AJV (28:04): That’s so important because you said three things there that I just like, this is a very big deal. And the first of them comes back as something you already talked about is your environment. Mm-Hmm. . It’s like, it’s what, but it’s also who, right. But the other thing, it’s the community, right? It’s like it’s environment, but then it’s community. And I think that that’s a theme through everything that you do. And it’s like that’s, and I, I think that’s a really important thing because I think as anyone who is listening who considers yourselves a creator or an entrepreneur of any sort, we all know that’s a lonely road often. Mm-Hmm. , it’s not one that many people understand. We feel a lot of burden. There’s a lot of pressure, there’s a lot of comparison. I read a statistic that the other, I read a statistic the other day in a book that I’m reading that says that entrepreneurs are four times more likely to suffer from depression than the average American. LH (29:00): Wow. AJV (29:01): Four times more likely. And the main reason is they don’t share their failures. LH (29:08): Oh AJV (29:08): Wow. They don’t share their failures. And so I think the environment is huge. You said the community is huge, but then the third thing is just literally having a support system. Yes. Having people who believe in you is if frigging big deal. Mm-Hmm. LH (29:24): , that just having someone did that AJV (29:26): Was help you up. LH (29:27): Mm-Hmm. it was, it was so big that I didn’t realize, I guess I I didn’t realize the time in between my path after that point accelerated much faster because I realize the amount of time in between the blows and the hard times and the challenges or when we think we’re dumb or whatever that is when we launch a course and it fails when we have an event, no one shows up. The time in between there is so much less like that. You’re compacting your whole jour, you’re accelerating your whole journey by getting in a group and having them say, yeah, so that happened to me too and, and I got back out there. Or who cares? That’s part of the process. What does that guy know? Like, is he writing a book? No. Like, so these are the moments that you’re just like, oh yeah, he’s not writing a book. . I AJV (30:22): Think this is like a really big deal. Cause I think about all of the people who are in our community at Brand Builders group and I just know that so many of them suffer from, well I have been doing this for like 10 months. AJV (30:39): Yeah. And yes. And it’s like, Daisy even hear you say that you were doing the exact same challenge for three years of just going, okay, well that didn’t work. Let’s let’s launch it this way. Okay. That didn’t work. Or show it again. It’s like you were doing it four times a year for three years, 12 times for over three years to go, okay, I think we finally have a formula that works. Mm-Hmm. , you got turned down from your book deal 20 times. Mm-Hmm. , it took us two years to finally talk to an agent who would even talk to us. LH (31:11): Yeah. AJV (31:11): We were basically stalking these people at this point, but it took two years. We had two years of rejection when we were getting our first book deal. And it’s like people, it takes time. And I love what you said. It’s like, you know, I, again, I wrote this down too. This is gonna show up all over social media in some way so that there’s always a gift in what you just did. Mm. There’s always a gift in what you just did. And it’s like in a huge part is that bounce back factor, that ability to come back and go, okay, well that didn’t work. What’s next? But we gotta have perspective of this. This is a, this is not a sprint, this is a marathon. And it takes time and trial and error and a whole bunch of perseverance. And it’s a whole lot easier to do if you’ve got a whole bunch of people coming along with you on the sidelines. LH (32:00): Oh my god. You know what I think of all the time that is, is so crazy because we all watch it every year, is is football, like majority of people like athletics, basketball, golf, like, so I think the reason, I mean, the reason that athletes can number one, get so good and also just like they’re resilient is because they have a team and also they don’t have an expectation around if they fail, they don’t get to quit. There is no quit. Like there’s another game Yeah. That they can show up to, but they have to, to know how to publicly fail mm-hmm. over and over again. And if we can understand how important that is for our journey of getting better it it’s just like we, we think like, oh, if we’re bad at it, like that’s the end, or if we fail or whatever that is like, oh my God, the the only way to be great is to embrace public failure. And truly, I believe that if you are on a track of like publicly failing over and over then you’re on a fast track because you’re learning more lessons than anyone who’s winning is getting to learn. Eventually when it clicks for you, it will click beyond what would normally click. Because if you are extracting the lesson from each of those failures, and also you’re building up this thing of just like, it didn’t kill me. Mm-Hmm. do it again. AJV (33:30): I think of that, LH (33:31): Oh my gosh. With just athletes, they have an expectation of, okay, get back in the game. Like if they suck so bad, like I think of those people who are, who are throwing the, what is it? The, the the free throw or the kickers, right? They don’t get to be like, oh, I sucked and go cry on the sidelines. Even if they just lost something for their whole team or, you know, it was a huge turning. They could have been a huge turning point for their team. They are great and athletes are great because they don’t dwell on the past. They do not dwell on what happened. Their next thought is what’s next? Okay, what can I do next? And I’ve just adopted that. I’ve stopped being willing to look back unless it’s to say, what could I do better? And then I say, what’s next? AJV (34:17): That is so good. And that is also so representative in your trajectory through your life and your career of this evolution of all the things that you’ve kind of done. So I wanna kind of pivot just a little bit right now and talk tactically about some of the things that you’ve done. And so I’ve got a few questions outlined that I know are gonna be really important to our audience. So here’s the first one. Keys through your eyes, through your opinion, I don’t care what anyone else says, just through Lori’s eyes, what are the keys to creating courses that both create real value but also generate real revenue? LH (34:55): Mm. Well, a few things that I’ve learned is that a good course is only good if people complete it. AJV (35:03): check. Okay. LH (35:05): And a lot of the courses that I created in the beginning I learned really quick and relaunched them. I like segmented them because I came out with like 12 modules, then quickly segmented them to six, like took it down and chunked them up. And then even there we started selling even like individual things like individual modules. So with that said, you know, we can think that we’re perfecting it by adding more, but I think we’re in an era of less is more. And to make the number one thing I want people to feel when they go into a course is accomplished. Mm-Hmm. . Like I, I want to create the habit of showing up and completing something. And if you make it too challenging, I just think people aren’t gonna do that. And you immediately feel like a failure within there. So that’s kind of where I’m at right now with, with courses is how can I create something where they’re gonna feel accomplished right away? Whether that’s shorter segments shorter modules and remembering that the fundamentals never get old. I think sometimes we can think that we have to give all of these big new ideas and it’s like if your people were doing the fundamentals, they wouldn’t need to buy anything from you , because AJV (36:16): They’re true. LH (36:17): Because those work, they just do show up, do the work, make yourself feel better, work out, eat well, repeat, do it again, . AJV (36:28): It’s so true. LH (36:30): And so yeah, AJV (36:31): Go ahead. That point of less is more. It’s like my number one complaint with like, pretty much every single course that I purchase is I get in and I’m like, I don’t have time for this right now. Totally. Cause I get in and I’m like, oh my gosh, there’s 14 modules I I don’t even care about. If they’re one minute each, I can’t even get that far. I’m like, huh. Cause I wanna be able to like do an entire course in one sitting. LH (36:54): Yep. AJV (36:54): That’s how I roll. And so if it’s, if I can’t do it, I’m like, oh, now I have to schedule it. And then that just never happens. So I love about the concept of less is more. I would pay more money to get the information in a more consolidated version. And that’s what I hear you saying. LH (37:09): Totally. And people do pay that for different things, right? Like how many I was just thinking about the book or the, the audibles that take books and they chunk them down and you pay for essentially the cliff notes of the books. And I was like, see, I will buy more of those, spend more money so that you can just tell me what the book’s gonna tell me right away. . And people have made a whole business off of it. AJV (37:34): Well it’s a, it’s a whole thing. Like we talk about this all the time when we talk about the keynote business and you know, we’ve been in the keynote business for a really long time and I remember earlier in our career, I remember so many people saying, you charge that for an hour. And the answer is no. You get 15 years of consolidation and experience in trial and error and knowledge and research and hundreds of thousands of dollars spent. You get all of that in an hour. That’s what you’re getting. It’s not an hour rate. It’s no, you’re getting 20 years of stuff primed into an hour. So you don’t have to go through all of that. That’s what you LH (38:19): Oh my gosh. Totally. Like literally it was just in a mastermind that was four days long and lots of hours for me to come back with three things that I’ve given to people and they’re like, shut up. This blew my mind. And I’m like, you’re welcome for sitting in there for four hours and traveling and spending all that money. AJV (38:36): So glad it cost you, cost you five. LH (38:38): Yes. Could now could you go and bring something back to me? AJV (38:41): that that’s, but that’s so true. It’s like, I love that concept that less is more make people feel accomplished, but it’s, people aren’t buying like 62 hours, 45 workbooks, 600 pages. Like No, no, thank you. It’s how can you create the most value and the least amount is time. LH (39:00): Mm-Hmm. . I love that. And, and I think, I think you need to like find a spot where you can try some things. Meaning like find a group of people, a test group where you can get some real feedback, even if it’s like six of your friends that you’re like, Hey, could I borrow you for 20 minutes? Like, does this feel like it’s valuable to you or would this be valuable? And maybe it’s not people who are way ahead of you, but maybe it’s people who you would want to sell to who are a little behind you. Right. and just, I, I think we can get so much in our heads thinking we need to have this like, mind blowing content. And it’s, it’s not necessarily mind blowing. It’s kind of like exactly what you said. Like what is the best stuff that you have learned? LH (39:43): Like just sit for a day and say, what are three key things that have changed my life on this journey? And from those key things, you can literally tell a story for each one, each. So break ’em down. You have three things in front of you. Tell a story for each one. Extract the lesson, have them maybe do some writing around it. Like it’s that simple. Like that is what people need is just that moment of like, oh, if I did this, this would really change the game for me and move the needle. How can I implement it? How can I integrate it? And when AJV (40:16): Yeah. You know, it’s that whole concept of save the best for first AJV (40:22): . Yes. Hot last, save the best for first. I know I find myself I’m, my favorite thing to do is go to conferences and events. I’d like to be live in person. I like to just like remove all the electronics and go, I’m here for it. And I have found myself, like if I’m at a four day conference, I’ll often just bail at like day two because I’m like, I’ve got everything I came for. I don’t need anymore. I just need this now I need to go and implement. But if they had saved the best for last, I would’ve never done that. And it would’ve felt more challenging and more overwhelming cuz now I have to filter through four days to go, oh great, I got something in the last hour of day four. Yep. That says being like, I got everything I came from on day one. I don’t even need to go to the other three Ds. I’m sure it’s gonna be great, but I got everything I need. Yeah. And that makes me feel accomplished quickly. LH (41:13): Yeah. I love that you even shared that as I’m like thinking about just different things in the future. I’m like, gosh, why don’t, I mean that’s such a great even marketing idea to be like, look, our conference is one day and we’re just gonna have more of them, or whatever that looks like because we want you to take something from this day and go integrate it like that. Same with courses that we just talked about. Yeah. How can you think of it in a, a different way of like how your people learn best or what do they need most to do? Like is it just the one thing and then go integrate it? Like how could you build it so that it works better for them? AJV (41:44): I mean, every, every audience, every community is different, but mm-hmm. , you know, that is, that is what we’ve done at Brand Builders Group is we just said we’re, we don’t have learning events, we have come and do events. Mm. LH (41:56): That’s AJV (41:56): So good. It’s like 30% of the time is learning, 70% of the time is doing. And we do it with you because selfishly that’s how we do it. It’s like that’s, I learn we need, that’s how we learn. And it’s like we can’t be the only ones go home at the end of a a mastermind event going, oh, when am I gonna have time to even look at these notes? Versus no, we’re gonna do those notes in session together. So I love that Less is more help ’em feel accomplished quickly. Give ’em the best goods right up front. Change their life in the first hour. That’s amazing. So, okay. I’m gonna, I’m just like, I’m gonna go rapid fire. I love it. I don’t wanna miss any of these. Ok so next one. You know, I’m sure this is going to be such an easy answer, but how do you get 46 million downloads on your podcast? LH (42:44): Oh God. How AJV (42:45): Do you do this? LH (42:46): You know what, I think it was consistency, like consistently showing up and I talk about it everywhere I go. So at every speaking thing I’ve ever done, I’m pretty sure I’ve mentioned it at everything or weaved in like, you know, I’ve had this many interviews and this is what it’s taught me. I talk about it on social media every day. I you know, started a a a text list where I’ll also text you a reminder like, listen to this episode if you’re feeling this way. In the beginning I definitely feel like it was important to do a good launch. And that’s what I focused on. So, you know, if you’re thinking of launching a podcast, I think having a good launch strategy strategy, and I’ll share just a tiny, a couple tiny things around that. If you can speak anywhere when you’re launching, that would be awesome. LH (43:36): Or if you can have an event, because I think one of the main things that got me onto new and noteworthy is I was holding a Bliss Project event and I didn’t even really realize what I had done in a, in a good way. So take this and plan it better than I did. But I, I had that event and it had like four to 500 women at it. And what I did is I literally asked them, cause I launched the podcast that week, knowing the event was there, but I said, can you take out your phones and subscribe and leave a review now? And I think all of those going at once, you know, helped it stay up in new and noteworthy. And then I also continued to ask through the event, I’m like, Hey, you know, I spent all this time in front of this microphone because I wanna give you like the, the best stuff. LH (44:18): It’s truly like the, the things that have changed my life. If it changes your life or if you like it, would you share it? Would you just remember to share it? And on the podcast, I ask on just about every episode share this with someone. Like you get now to be, even if you’re not the person giving me advice, like you get, like when I share podcasts, I get to be the hero. And I say that like, I’m the hero. I just shared this awesome information. Be the hero. Share this information. Would you share this? Would you rate and review this? People will not do what they’re not asked to do. So I consistently, specifically ask for what I want on every single podcast. You guys am almost a thousand episodes in, that’s over a thousand asks. So it’s, it’s definitely going to help spread obviously when you do that AJV (45:09): Well. Yeah, it’s like if you don’t ask, the answer is always no. LH (45:13): Yes. Ask so AJV (45:15): Good. That’s just, I mean, simple, but again, the fundamentals work. LH (45:21): Mm-Hmm. AJV (45:22): doesn’t have to be revolutionary for it to make a big difference. Stick to the fundamentals. Okay. Next one. All right, moving right along here. Tell us about your path from information products to physical products and knowing just a little bit about the backstory. Help people understand like, what are the things you need to know? What are some todos not todos? What do we need to be aware of if you are considering making a transition or stepping into the world of physical products? LH (45:55): Yes. Oh my gosh. Okay. So for me it was really what is the next challenge? And I felt like I had really done. So I was at that place where that realization where I did not, I did not dream past where I was like, I, I became the author, the the speaker. I had done the things and I was like, I never let myself dream outside of this. This was the cap. And I hit that place in like 2018 and I was like, I don’t think I wanna write another book right now. That was a really long journey. And I, I was feeling, you know, as you can tell from my journey, I’m a bit of a squirrel brain. So I was like, I need, I wanted a new challenge and I was craving a challenge that would force me to become a different person in order to fulfill it. LH (46:45): And I also was having a lot of conversations with my husband and started going to dinner with Chris and his friends. And I was noticing this stark difference in conversations. I was so lit up. Not that I wasn’t lit up with my friends, but at the, the place that I was, we were kind of having the same conversations about how do we get our courses out? How do we, you know, all of those, which is amazing, but I, I was having them and my brain likes new things often this know that thy self, right? And so I was going to dinner with my husband and they were having conversations about investing in companies, investing in each other’s companies how to really start pulling in lots of money, hundreds of millions of dollars, if not some of them talking about billions. And this was blowing my mind. LH (47:32): I was just like, they’re having this like a normal conversation. Like it because people had exited for 300 million and this guy for 500 million. And I was like, whoa, whoa, whoa. My girlfriends are not having this conversation right now. They’re burnt out and they’re trying to figure out how to launch their next course, which is amazing. But also, what if this was an opportunity for them because they had already built their brands. I was sitting here thinking, okay, these women could, like, immediately I was thinking of all the ways they could implement and help grow these things. Cause I’m like, they have the audiences and you guys are looking for the audiences. Yeah. So we were just missing how to raise money, how to invest in each other, how to start a company. And so I was starting to feel this really big call. I was like, no, no, no, no, no, God, not me. LH (48:15): No, why. But I was feeling it like, oh, it’s gonna be you who’s gonna bring this back to your friends? And I was like, oh, crap. So I just literally got that soul hit and it was like, oh gosh, I am on this journey. Learned how to raise money, started learning about physical products. So, so similar, yet so different. So the really cool thing about a personal brand is that if you can start learning about physical products, you have so much of the equation already done that a lot of people who might be good at physical products don’t necessarily know how to do yet. So if these two worlds could collide, it’d be like, it’s mind blowing, right? Because you have both Hals of what you need. You need the marketing, which is like very much of what you’re learning in a personal brand is like how to market yourself. LH (49:06): All you’re doing is you’re taking marketing yourself and you’re gonna now market a product that technically is you. If you build it the way that I told you throughout your core values, it’s just something that you do and use, right? So it’s kind of, it’s kind of the same thing. And now people are really buying the core values and the founder and all of those things behind the products, which I think is really cool. So things that you want to know about building a product, find somebody who has done what you have done before. Do not go into this just Googling. Like you have to start by Googling, but then you need to sit down with as many people as you can and say, what do I need to know? What do I need to look out for? I would say start with a product that feels really natural to you. LH (49:50): Like a, a need that you see, or that you, you can see the world needing out there. Like a white space. Look for what the differentiator is. Why, why is it different from all of the other products out there? Why is it better? Why are you the person and that your team who can market it the best? I would stay away from your first products for anything that has a lot of legal tape around it. Anything that is really regulated, you, you’re gonna spend this is no joke. You will spend 10 times more on legal fees. There’ll be a lot more things that you cannot do when you are marketing online, when you’re marketing in retail. So it really stops a lot of the organic things that you can do, especially if you have already built a brand. It, it’ll even kind of stop you from being able to use what you already have. LH (50:38): So with that said, I would stay away from things that have a lot of like red tape or regulations. Okay. So finding that thing that maybe, and I would focus on one, I would focus on one product so that all of that money in r and d and research and all of the copywriting and everything, you can put all of your money behind that one message and you can tweak that . And if that’s not working, then you can go to the next product. But if you have like multiple skews and a bunch of different flavors, yeah, you have to remember every time you do that, when I say flavors, it’s just multiple things, right? Like maybe you have eyeliner, lipstick, and every single time you bring in a new product, that’s another email, that’s another person for copywriting that that’s another sales page. That’s another. LH (51:23): So it’s a lot of energy and it’s a much bigger team. So I would say start with one thing. Start with something that you can see needs to be improved out in the marketplace. And from there, honestly it’s, I don’t wanna say it’s easy, but you just have to have meetings with formulators co packers and you’ll learn all of these things along the way. Cause it’ll be how to make a lipstick and market it out to the world or put it on retail. You’ll get all of your answers, I promise you. And then from there, you’ll wanna talk to people and research people who have done it. AJV (51:53): Oh, those are so good. And I, I love what you said too about just avoid any sort of thing that has lots of legal tape because you’ll spend all of your investment money voyers. LH (52:04): Yes. AJV (52:04): So avoiding those sorts of things, it’s just an easier, easier, not easy, easier mm-hmm. place of entry. I love that. That’s so, so good. Okay. I know that we are almost up on time and I’ve got one other, one last question. And then I will let you free AJV (52:23): Before I ask you this last question. For all of you who are listening, I as before we started the recording, I said, Hey, where do you want me to send people who wanna connect with you? Because if you have listened to this interview and your mind is not blown with the amount of information that you have gotten, then you need to go back and listen again. We’re clearly spaced out. Like there is so much richness, there is so much gold in this interview. You don’t even know what you’re listening to because I, I just know how much time, money, resources, education that you have gone through to be able to quickly spit out some of these things that we all get on a free podcast. And so if you want more of that, which I think you do, I think you should probably tune into this. Lori has a really cool daily text that if you just text the word daily to this number, which is 3 1 0 4 9 6 8 3 6 3. So again, text the word daily to 3 1 0 4 9 6 8 3 6 3. Now don’t worry, I will also put that in the show notes. You can grab that. But you are gonna get a daily text from her. So Lori, tell ’em really quickly what this is all about. LH (53:48): Oh my goodness. Well, thank you for sharing this. I, this is actually the spot where I create all content from. So you kind of get like the real me sitting down and talking to like a best friend. And these are the conversations or the, the, the quotes or the nuggets that I’m getting from masterminds or things that are really pushing me forward. Or maybe there’s a block and then there’s a thought around the block that helps push it forward. These are some, you know, different things that Chris and I do to really like, keep our, our vision in front of us. These are different affirmations that are rocking my world. These are just like, if I was your bestie and I was sending you like cheerleader texts every single day, like truly from my heart and from here, that is where I, because I sit and I write from my heart, truly. Like, okay, if this was my best friend, what would I be sending her right now? And from there, that’s where I kind of create all other content. So you get the first videos, you get the first texts, all of those things. So I will only spam you with things that will change your life. AJV (54:52): only healthy spam. Really? Yes. Good, healthy spam. Well, I am, I’m literally, I’m doing this right now. I am signing up for this because yay. This is, I think as that great reminder that you shared earlier. It’s like you gotta put yourself in the right environment and you gotta build community and you gotta learn from people who’ve done it right? And that’s why you guys should do this. And text the word daily to 3 1 0 4 9 6 8 3 6 3. Okay, now, last question. All right, what do you know now that you wish you knew then as you were getting started? LH (55:27): Oh God. Go, go to the scarier places first. Like at, go to the, do whatever you can to knock down the doors of the people who have done it and ask the go learn from them and ask them questions. Like join their stuff. Ask for one on one time. Like they will, everything that we have said on here, they will accelerate your journey. They will save you money. They will save you heartache. Make sure they’ve done what you wanna do. , like, make sure people in the industry like check their credibility. Like really ask around and say, I’m thinking of investing in this person. What have you heard? Like, just, you know, I won’t take it personal. Just tell me all the things. What have you heard? Is this a good investment? And, and that will collapse time for you. AJV (56:18): Oh my gosh, this is such a good reminder. I says, don’t do it alone. Mm-Hmm. , do it alone. Lori, this has been so good. I have one. I love learning from you. Cause those are things we don’t do in normal, just like lunch conversations or whatever. So this has been such a special treat for me to go, oh my gosh, you have so much brilliance in your I need to pull that out of you more often. When are you moving to Nashville again? LH (56:46): I gotta live. I gotta live there too. I want to. AJV (56:50): Y’all, this has been so good and I’m a quick learner. I take advice. Well, so if you got value from this podcast, please share it. Please, please go like it, leave a review, please share it with someone that you think it’s going to be helpful for. Be the hero, get this content out in the world. So and then go do the same, right. Quick learner. Mm-Hmm. , I don’t have to recreate the will, I can follow instructions. So share it, like it, comment on it, leave a review help spread it out there. Y’all, thank you so much for listening. Lori, thank you so much for being on the show and to everyone as stay tuned to the recap episode and we’ll see you next time on the Influential Personal Brand. LH (57:31): Bye.

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25 of the World's Most Recognizable Influencers Share Their Tips on How to Build and Monetize a Personal Brand

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