You need persistence and resilience to get noticed — and the “Princess of Philly” is here to prove it
By Jim James, Founder EASTWEST PR and Host of The UnNoticed Entrepreneur.
Gail Kasper, the “Princess of Philly,” is a TV celebrity, a coach, and a professional trainer. In the new episode of The UnNoticed Entrepreneur, she talked about how she's building up her following to over 300,000 on social media and her book portfolio. She already got two in print with publishers and another 10 audiobooks.
She also discussed Gail Kasper TV, how she’s getting herself and her clients famous — and some of the obstacles she’s facing in doing so.
Image from LinkedIn
How Gail Got to Where She is Now
For Gail, her first big obstacle was when she didn't know what she wanted in her life. She ended up being stuck working for other companies and just going with the flow.
She only figured out she wanted to be a professional speaker by accident. She was a manager — a bad manager. During that stint, she learned much about leadership and building a team. The more she found out about the team, the more she found out about who they were and what they were about, and the more training and education she got, the more she fell in love with the idea of helping her people achieve; that led her to become a professional speaker.
But before all that, she’s found herself overnight on her own, in her own business. She didn’t know it was coming. She was working for a training organisation and got fired by them, which is a story in itself because then she got a TV show.
Those people basically told her: “Gail, goodbye. Go work someplace else.” They thought she was going to get a job someplace. Knowing that her love and passion are speaking to people, training, and coaching, she realised that she wanted to start her own business despite having no money in the bank.
Not having any resources, not having the money to do something, not having the people that work for you, not really knowing what you're doing — you're just starting out and just trying to get that ball rolling — these are major challenges.
And for her, it was all about hitting the pavement, talking to people she knew, and finding herself working with one client. She had one coaching client — one person — and that is what started her business.
Then, it was her doing a great job that led her to get two customers from that specific client. Two other coaching opportunities led to her training an entire department, then training an entire organisation (which was ADT Security Services), and then going up and down the East Coast. She had technically become a competitor to the organisation that fired her.
But how did she get the first client?
Gail had known one manager inside ADT, and when he found out she was on her own, he talked about a girl who was just starting and wanted to make some telephone sales. And it was within that manager’s realm to say that they’ve got a budget of $400 for that.
That was how it all started.
Now, when she thinks about people out there trying to pursue business, one of the first things she thinks about is, Who do they know?
Apart from that, it’s also about going to networking events — such as the Chamber of Commerce meetings, the Rotaries, or any of those types of clubs and organisations where you can be passing out cards and can get people to know who you are and what you're doing/
In other words, go back to the place where you began. Go back to the place where you had nothing, and build your business based on that, especially when times get tough with our economy.
Getting on TV
Gail is also now a TV host for The Face of Philadephia.
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When she was in college, she wanted to be a newscaster; she wanted to be on TV. She had a 4 full-year academic scholarship to Temple University. But she dropped out after two years because her first semester was really tough. She figured out that the communications world was a hard field to get into. When her dad said that getting into TV is tough, she thought he was right.
So she changed majors a couple of times and then dropped out — back then, she didn’t know what she wanted to do. That's when she found herself in the business world, just working day-to-day. Lo and behold, she became a speaker.
One of her jobs was to get out and meet with potential companies to bring their speaking programs into those companies. One of the companies she met with was America's TV Job Network, which was a TV show. They weren't looking for speakers or trainers, they were a TV show and we’re looking for hosts.
They told her they were looking for somebody with experience. Though she had zero experience, she couldn’t let it go. She sat on their doorstep for three months. Every day, in the midst of her travels for her real job, she was trying to be in front of them.
After that, they told her that they were holding auditions next week and needed somebody with experience. She went to the audition. When she was going after the audition, she felt like a fool, for she was constantly told “No” yet she kept showing up. Then, she got the job.
This is why she always advises people facing obstacles in getting known, being seen, being heard, and getting noticed that it’s that resilience inside themselves that matters. Make a fool of yourself, and do not worry about looking back.
There were many times Gail had said to herself how she felt like an idiot. But that is what brought her one step closer to her goal. She allowed herself to go through that momentum of “I feel stupid.”
Creating Content Around Her Brand
Gail has over 300,000 followers on social media. She has two print books and 10 audiobooks. She also owns the domain www.gailkasper.com. And these clearly show that she’s past the fear stage and is now onto the leverage stage.
When asked how she created that sort of content around her brand, Gail admitted that she’s one of those people who sometimes stumble in creating content for video or getting themselves out there on social media. She’s not any different than anybody else because it involves time.
As an entrepreneur, it’s a challenge to run your day-to-day operations, then create five videos. The time and effort it takes to get it out there — and create more — is challenging. You have to make the time and space to put that content together to get it out there.
Image from Unsplash
In Gail’s case, she’s just hitting a leverage space with Facebook. As for her other platforms, she’s still pushing forward and getting over that hump. But she acknowledges that there is a need for consistency. You have to put the content out consistently to be seen and heard.
And it can't just be any content. You really got to make a point. If you're going to tell a story, if you're going to share some methodology that's worked for you, you've got to make a point.
Along with that, you shouldn’t still let go of the other things you want to do. Every day, we’re faced with a new opportunity or something new that we want to do. You may say to yourself, “Am I going to make an idiot of myself doing this?” Gail is willing to go through that. She’s got different goals and ambitions that are part of her world, and she works to bring them all together creatively to be different from anybody else.
On Publishing Audio Books
Gail’s 10 audiobooks show how she is a constant creator. When her brain goes in a specific direction, she knows she has to put something together on that.
Her books are everything from sales and business to communication. Her most popular audiobook called “Likeable You” is about communication. It’s about building those long-term relationships and how you connect with people.
These audiobooks are glimpses — meaning, they give quick content so that you're not listening for three to four hours. It's 30 to 45 minutes. It’s quick content. She gets straight to the point inside her audiobook. She doesn't talk in circles about all the challenges that people face. She goes straight to “This is what you need to do.”
How she got these books out there has been very serendipitous (Gail believes that everybody meets everybody for a reason).
When she was doing a magazine photoshoot, she had done some research regarding Time Warner (now Hachette Book Group), which was in the same building as the magazine. She knew she was going to the same suite as them.
During the photo shoot, she told the magazine folks that she would just go across the hall and see if she could run into somebody interested in her first audiobook. One of those people said she needed to talk to a certain person, but that person wasn’t in yet. At that point, she was thinking: “Any minute now, I'm going to get kicked out.” It was one of those “I feel like an idiot” moments.
Yet she sat outside their office, going with the flow and talking to people as they went by. And that’s how it all began. She then actually connected with someone who helped get her books out there, and now they're out there.
Image from Hachette
To record an audiobook, you can record them yourself as an audio file and upload them to Kindle Digital Publishing or Audible. But in her case, her publisher handles all that for her.
For the recording, somebody helps her record the files. But as she’s a stickler for doing things the right way, when recording, she will often ask and say, “Does it sound right?” “Did I make the right point?” “Am I making sense?” “Wait a minute, I want to redo that one line.” She wants the people in her game to ensure that something is done correctly and right.
It’s always about elevating your brand. Elevate what’s going to make you stand out. And there’s a big difference between just getting it done and getting it done right. Sometimes, it takes her a little longer with her projects because she wants them done right. She wants them done the best they can be done.
Once she has the audio clips, she can break them down and put them out as content herself. She’s in a spot where she can maintain and control all of that. She has the skillsets to break things down and push things out — to the point that she has to pull backwards.
She considers this one of her flaws: She needs to get her nose out of some of the stuff she’s in. She needs to allow people to run it. For instance, there are instances when someone would write something that she doesn’t mean, and she has to rewrite it. So she finds her fingers in everything. And it’s something she got to work on.
Keeping Content Simple
Gail is shooting her own content, and uses an iPhone for that. She keeps it as simple as she possibly can. For her, the key is knowing what you're going to say. Have that down so that it can be clear, concise, and to the point. Your goal is to get content under two minutes. It's not that people won't listen to more. If you can do it in a minute, that's even better.
She uses Adobe Premier Pro as her editing software. Because it’s a little more complicated, she had to go through a course to be able to do that. But generally, you have to know the basics of any editing format. And there are apps out there that make that stuff easier today. They allow users to be able to trim and cut things down, for example.
She also uses Slack, InfusionSoft, and ClickFunnels. Today, you’d also want to be collecting email addresses. Though she waited a little longer than she should have to start that process, she emphasised that you should want to be in a spot where you’re using ActiveCampaign or some other campaign process where you can collect those emails and stay in touch with people.
Image from Freepik
Gail’s set of tools is probably the status quo of what many people are doing. But she believes that if it's working, don't change it.
For example, she will only pull in an editor if she needs somebody here or there just to add some flash to some of her videos. But, for the most part, she just tries to put straight content out, keep it as simple as possible, and let the content speak for itself. Her ultimate goal is to let her content speak for itself, no matter the platform or program she’s using. In other words, fancy doesn't mean better.
For Gail, the key is just to keep going. Put your head down and keep moving no matter what’s going on around you. She has a book called “Unstoppable,” and it’s all about being logical versus emotional because it's the emotion — the failure — that stops us. When we get hit, we start to doubt ourselves. That’s all emotion.
You must get up, keep going, and keep pushing forward. Believe in what it is that you're doing. Believe in the reason that you are doing what you're doing.
To find out more about her, visit www.gailkasper.com.
The UnNoticed Entrepreneur podcast is sponsored by Prowly, the all-in-one software for leveraging PR activities. Boost the media relations game for your business - get more coverage while saving time and money on everyday tasks.
This article is based on a transcript from my podcast The UnNoticed Entrepreneur, you can listen here.
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