I am honored and thrilled to have been invited to speak at the Future of Media & Publishing in Holborn, London this past November. Alongside industry leaders, I was given the privilege to share how I built a brand and a business from my own personal experience as a young adult with cancer. Here are few key highlights from my talk “How a Story Becomes a Brand” at The Future of Media and Publishing event in Holborn, London, hosted by Bibblio and WeWork.
Tell a story for a reason.
After I got sick, I had this overwhelming drive to make sense of it all, to turn it into something useful, and resonating, and big. I had to make sense of why cancer chose me. I needed to make it mean something, to myself and to others. I needed to make it worth it.
Because what I learned through my cancer experience went beyond a just a journey in health and wellness. It changed my perspective of what we do everyday as brand builders, marketing experts, and publishers.
My experience with cancer changed my perspective of how we connect with people. Of how we impact and move them into action. Of how we give meaning to ourselves and our businesses.
Here is what I learned.
Make a true connection through authenticity.
Make a true connection with your reader and audience through authenticity, honesty, and vulnerability. How do we do this? We get real. We start with the heart. We show the grit and the real, not just the gloss. In my ten years experience at a large scale advertising agency, marketing was all about the spin, the twist. What we did with the data. In creating not just a sale, or a conversion, but a foundation of true brand believers, authenticity is required. Personal connection is the driving force.
Let the emotion make the lasting impact.
The emotion behind any story (be it a personal memoir or a brand platform) is what inspires our audience to believe, because it is the “why” behind everything we do.
In many ways, my memoir and my story encapsulated the feelings, fears, and drives of those around me, of those that came to my talks, that read my book, that came to me for help growing their business. This is a powerful thing, to give someone the words and perspective they have not yet known how to articulate. Help them. Give them a voice, and you won’t just have a brand believer, you will have an advocate.
Provoke a change in perspective.
Provoke a change in perspective that leads to action. For me, the seemingly simple idea of changing how someone’s sees themselves, their business, their health, their partner was an incredible thing. The idea that my story could give a little window into having more gratitude, more appreciation, more adventure, more risk, more passion was one that made my experience with cancer a little bit more worth it.
Please don’t hesitate to reach out for more information, to ask questions, or to get in touch with me.