28. How Personal Branding Can Help You to Grow Your Business | Kasey Jones

Slide Ep. 28: Interview with Kasey Jones

How Personal Branding Can Help You to Grow Your Business

EP28-Kasey Jones

We have a soul-searching and insightful discussion with Kasey Jones (Thought Leadership + Growth/Strategy Coach, A Better Jones) on the topic of personal branding and thought leadership for B2B founders. In our conversation, Kasey elaborates on why she believes that personal branding has now become more important than ever, how entrepreneurs can become thought leaders in their space to grow their business, and why everyone should be strategic about running a podcast or be featured in them.

Topics discussed in this episode:

  • Why podcasts are becoming more powerful and why entrepreneurs should leverage this medium. [05:25 | 07:39]
  • Kasey shares her story on how she became an entrepreneur. [13:38]
  • Why everyone, especially entrepreneurs, should invest in personal branding. [22:56]
  • Relationship building at scale in the era of digitalization. [27:57 | 34:04]
  • Kasey’s Do’s and Dont’s when it comes to social media. [41:10]

Companies & links mentioned in this episode:

Transcript

SPEAKERS

Christian Klepp, Kasey Jones

Christian Klepp  00:08

Hi, and welcome to the B2B Marketers on a Mission podcast. I’m your host, Christian Klepp, and one of the founders of EINBLICK Consulting. Our goal is to share inspirational stories, tips and insights from b2b marketers, digital entrepreneurs, and industry experts that will help you to think differently, succeed and scale your business.

Alright, ladies and gentlemen, welcome to this episode of the B2B Marketers on a Mission podcast. I’m your host, Christian Klepp. And today, I am absolutely thrilled to welcome a guest into the show who is not just an experienced b2b marketer, but also a successful entrepreneur specializing in the fields of personal branding and thought leadership. So Kasey Jones, welcome to the show.

Kasey Jones  00:51

Thank you so much for having me. Christian. I’m so excited to be here.

Christian Klepp  00:54

All right, Kasey, it’s really great to connect again, and why don’t we just get started and, you know, give the listeners a little bit of background about yourself.

Kasey Jones  01:03

Okay. Yeah, so like you mentioned, I have been in the b2b marketing space now… goodness, I really should look at the calendar and figured this out. I think probably eight or nine years, eight years, I guess. And I actually started in b2b sales and sales for quite a while and made the transition to marketing. And I, I love to say that I have the brain of a marketer and the heart of a salesperson, I view my… that path as one of my strengths. It’s why I’m really good at demand gen, and kind of beginning stage b2b marketing. Don’t talk to me about massive ad campaigns, I know nothing. But that kind of scrappy, kind of b2b stuff. I really love. And in the last four years, three and a half years, I’ve had my own business where I help early stage entrepreneurs, kind of accelerate their growth. And most recently, I’ve been more focused on helping them figure out their messaging and their branding, and also helping them grow and build kind of powerful and authentic personal brands, become thought leaders in their space, and use that platform to grow their business.

Christian Klepp  02:31

Wow, that’s amazing. Thanks so much for sharing that. And we’ll definitely talk more about the thought leadership piece in a bit. But you brought up something that was really, um, I thought it was it’s so aptly describes successful marketers, you know, like, and, and, you know, I’ve met many of them and myself included, before they became marketers, they were actually salespeople, or in the field of sales. And it’s always great to have a bit of, you know, have a bit of experience from both sides, right, to have more of a balanced point of view.

Kasey Jones  03:01

Yeah, well, you know, look, the never ending battle is between sales and marketing. And if a marketer really understands the role of a salesperson, he can be much more effective. And I think one of the things that has always been frustrating for me is when I work with marketers that really don’t understand that. There’s this disconnect between what they do, and revenue. It’s more, they get focused on these kind of superficial vanity metrics and things that really aren’t the point, you know. And especially on the b2b side, it’s like I get it, if you’re, I don’t know, Coca Cola. And it’s much more about this kind of brand affinity and awareness and things like that. But when it’s b2b, and especially mid-market, or earlier, revenue, period, end of story. I think, marketers, sometimes when they’ve been brought up in this very traditional marketing kind of space, if they’ve spent a lot of time in like creative agencies, they think about how something looks instead of how something performs. And I think when you’ve got that sales background…. Yeah, I mean, I think the real point here is that when a marketer has a much greater understanding of the importance of revenue and how marketing ties to revenue, he can be much more effective. And I think sometimes, the marketers that get kind of brought up on the creative side only and then try to go to the b2b side, they really struggle to make that connection between not just how things, how something looks, but how it performs. What are those it actually drives and that’s really the important part.

Christian Klepp  04:57

Yeah, no, absolutely. And I you know, I love that you brought that up. But I like to call it it’s that age old conflict. Right. And I know that sounds like a bit of an archaic term, but it’s that it’s that misalignment between sales and marketing, right, that usually gets organizations into trouble. Yeah, you mentioned it a couple of minutes ago, Kasey, talk to us about a recent project that you’re working on that got you really excited and motivated?

Kasey Jones  05:25

Yeah, so that was something that, you know, I’ve gotten kind of obsessed with lately, is the power of podcast interviews. Oh, look, it’s very meta that we’re talking about this on a podcast interview. But, you know, as an entrepreneur, we’re often told how, you know, the way to really, you know, get brand exposure, and to kind of get out there is to get guest posts on, I don’t know, Business Insider, Huffington Post, something like that. And those days are kind of over, it’s like, I don’t know, when’s the last time you even read something on Business Insider, it’s been a long time for me. And where I’m seeing huge opportunity is for entrepreneurs to get interviews on podcasts in their industry. And so I’ve, you know, for a while my, my company, we would get those interviews on behalf of clients. And where we’ve really started to focus is on coaching and teaching people how to do it for themselves so that it can be this really consistent thing. And not just teaching them how to get the interview. But you know, how to strategize what you want to say, what kind of offer do you want to give on the interview, how to promote the interview afterwards to get the most value out of it. And I think this is going to be kind of the next big wave in how we grow businesses, or a method that we use to grow businesses, especially kind of early on when you’re really focused on kind of brand awareness. And leveraging more of this instead of the age old guest post.

Christian Klepp  07:14

Right. Right. Well, that’s such a great insight, Kasey, and you know, like, I think you hit the nail on the head, like, I mean, it’s the right time to do podcasting. And, heck, that’s probably even the reason why I started podcasting. But let’s jam on that a little bit further, if you will. Like, why do you think that podcasting is really taken off?

Kasey Jones  07:39

Well, there’s a lot of reasons. One, it’s a much more intimate way to learn something. And what I’m seeing in general, and I bet you’re seeing similar things kind of from where you sit when it comes to b2b marketing. People don’t follow company brands the way they used to on social media, and we don’t read blogs the way we used to. We follow people, we want to learn from people. And there’s this like craving of human connection. And I think that was already happening. And then the pandemic happened, and we’re all home all the time. We want to see people. So there’s something it’s this like proximity, you get to feel like you’re, you know, one step away from an in person conversation. And you get to kind of make that kind of connection, I think we’re all looking for that sort of personal, that personal path for learning. And for kind of, I don’t know, getting to that next level. And podcasts would really help us do that. I think the other thing that’s really amazing about, you know, the, one of those sort of few upsides to the pandemic is, it’s levelled the playing field.

Christian Klepp  09:01

Yeah.

Kasey Jones  09:03

You know, I’ve had this conversation…. Next week, I’m speaking at a digital summit that these guys invited me to speak at, they… actually they’re Canadian. I think they live in Toronto. They used to make like a million and a half dollars a year doing live speaking, doing speaking at events, doing live workshops, things like that, and the pandemic happened. And they literally lost like 80% of their revenue overnight. And they had to figure out okay, how do we how do we do this? How do we reshape this? And so their pathway is they’re doing these digital summits and they’re trying to build out these digital programs. But the thing is, now we all can do that, you know, there’s we all have this ability to build high growth impactful businesses. exclusively online, and it doesn’t really matter who we are. I think pretty amazing about that. And I think we’re seeing a lot of people kind of seize the moment and get really innovative. And I think podcasting is just a phenomenal part of that, of creating that connection, building that following and, you know, building something with impact over a pretty short period of time.

Christian Klepp  10:30

Yeah, those are definitely some great insights. Would you also say that, um, it probably has something to do with the fact that there’s just so much… it’s the way we consume content and the fact that there’s so much noise out there. And on top of the way that we have to, like, for example, if you’re reading a blog, or if you’re watching a video, you actually have to take aside some time to actually sit down and look at it and digest the content. Whereas like a podcast, you could, you know, you could be doing a couple of things or multitasking, while listening to the recording right?

Kasey Jones  11:06

No doubt. And look, what’s really interesting about it is there was some evidence early on in the pandemic, the podcast listens declined, because a lot of people were listening on their commute. And that’s changed. It’s evolved again. And now it’s back on the rise. Because now exactly, to your point, now it’s like, I listened to podcasts while I cook, while I fold laundry, you know, while I’m brushing my teeth, like all kinds of things. And I think we’re finding these new kind of creative ways to catch that learning.

And here’s the other thing. Because we’re all home more. And life has kind of slowed down. I think we’re also seeing people very eager to find ways to learn and grow and kind of evolve as humans. And so people are looking to digital education, online education in a ton of different formats, to kind of fill some of that time in that space. And make sure that, you know, we kind of come out the other side of this whole crazy experience a little bit better than when we started.

Christian Klepp  12:27

Yeah, no, absolutely. Absolutely. Kasey, you know, your thought leadership coach, and a growth strategist for b2b founders, as you’ve mentioned already earlier, and you run your own company, A Better Jones. Love that name, by the way. You’re also the founder of Our Galaxy, which is your other business where you run programs, as you’ve explained, that are, you know, that’s designed to teach entrepreneurs how to become well known for their expertise and experience. So, talk to us about how you, you know, what led you down this path or what, you know, what prompted you to take that I call it the leap of faith into the world of entrepreneurship?

Kasey Jones  13:10

Well, you know, what, it was a little bit of forced circumstance, which I think is true for a lot of us. You know, it’s funny, years ago, after my brother had his son, I was asking him, I was like, “Well, how did you know you were ready to be a parent?” And he was like, “Kasey, If you think too hard about it, you’re never ready.” I think entrepreneurship is exact same way.

Christian Klepp  13:36

Totally agree.

Kasey Jones  13:38

Really, you’re not going to do it. And so there’s a little bit of that, like, I don’t know, to your point leap of faith. And what happened for me is, at the time, I ran marketing for an early stage startup, we were very early. And I got invited to go to Beirut, Lebanon for 10 days to lead a series of kind of growth strategy and go to market strategy workshops for the first ever partnership between the UN and a startup accelerator. And it was… they were testing with this like social impact. Class of startups. And I had total imposter syndrome on my way over there. I was like, Okay, I’m used to helping companies sell analytics products. What am I going to teach somebody who is trying to build an app that helps UN field workers in uniting 250,000 refugee children over a period. And I had an absolutely incredible experience. And I got amazing feedback from all the entrepreneurs that were there and on my flight home I just I couldn’t stop thinking about how much I loved it, how much I loved working directly with entrepreneurs and, and coaching them. And I just I was on a high, and I got back to Portland where I live. And I think it was the day that I, the day after I got back that the founders of the startup I was working for, let us know that they had run out of money. And I was going to be out of a job. So, you know, at that point, I was like, okay, and I was still considering maybe getting another job. And I was really leaning towards starting my own thing. And I took a call with someone that I had been working on a co-marketing project, she was an entrepreneur, and I let her know what was going on, and why the project wasn’t going to be moving forward. And she said, Well, what are you gonna do? I was like, Well, I don’t, you know, I don’t know, I might find another job. But I might start my own business. And she said, Well, if you start your own business, I’ll be your first client.

Christian Klepp  16:02

Wow.

Kasey Jones  16:03

And that was literally the first call that I really took. And that was my first client. And so I dove right in and things have just evolved from there. How Our Galaxy came about is that, you know, for a while I was running, really a marketing agency, we were basically early stage startups, our outsourced marketing team. And in February of this year, I had the aha moment that I really hated it. I didn’t like the agency side, I wasn’t particularly good at it. I’m not a great project manager. I’m not, it doesn’t play my strengths at all. And I really wanted to get more focused on the thought leadership side, the growth coaching. And so I decided to focus A better Jones on that, but then also build a platform and a private slack community. That’s all about helping entrepreneurs kind of learn how to build their personal brand and grow their businesses through that platform.

Christian Klepp  17:15

Kasey, that was an amazing story. I mean, you know, everything that you have just described in terms of like, you know, when you went to Lebanon, and when you came back, and what happened from there on. And you know, what happened in February this year. It really brings to mind and I’m sure you’ve seen that it’s been floating around on social media for quite a bit. But it’s the it’s the path. It’s a visual, essentially. And it’s basically, it’s the entrepreneurs path as viewed from an outsider’s perspective, and what the actual path really looks like. And basically, and obviously, it’s a split screen kind of image, right? Because so the one on the left is basically like, Okay, so what everybody thinks your your journey looks like. And it’s like a guy that’s basically trying to climb up a mountain, and it’s a relatively straight line, right? And the right side, well, that pretty much illustrates exactly what you just said. And the visual is basically somebody who’s trying to reach the summit of this mountain. But in between all of that they’ve got to climb down these really deep valleys and cross this huge divide, or this crevice, you know, on a zip line. This is full of all these trials and tribulations and it’s just, it’s just such an amazing story. And I’m really, I’m really glad you face these adversities. And it looks like you’ve bounced back quite nicely.

Kasey Jones  18:52

Yeah. And look, you know, I also glossed over plenty of other adversities. In the meantime, like, I had, for a while, I thought I needed business partners, and I formed a business partnership, and it absolutely ended in spectacular failure. And, you know, like, there were lots of things along the way. And that’s the thing, it’s like entrepreneurship, it is a journey. And that things come up along the way that you cannot possibly foresee. Some of them are beautiful and amazing and exciting. And some of them send you down a path where you waste a bunch of time and you have to then you know, retrack your steps and figure it out again, but the best thing about it is that you learn these incredible things through experience and you become more empathetic, that’s for sure and more resilient. And you know, I wouldn’t trade the tough stuff for anything. I wouldn’t wish it on anybody, but I wouldn’t trade it for anything. Because we, you know, if you have the right attitude, and you have that kind of growth mindset, your greatest periods of progress and, and personal and professional development, immediately follow your greatest struggle.

Christian Klepp  20:19

Yeah, without a doubt, without a doubt. And in fact, I’ve made it a habit and you might have seen it on LinkedIn I make, I make it a habit like every Monday morning, I post this on this inspirational quote I found online, then I just, you know, give my two cents worth on what it means. And it’s basically just a nice way to like, start the week with a bit of positive energy. And well, one of the quotes I found last week was by Henry Ford, and it’s so aptly describes the current situation that you were talking about. So it goes something like if you feel that everything is stacked against you, just remember that an airplane takes off against the wind and with it.

Kasey Jones  21:01

I love that. Yeah, we were gonna do the Henry Ford quote where he says, If you believe you can, or you can’t, you’re right. Or bring it basically that and I, you know, and I love that because I think we all need that reminder of like, we can do really hard things we can do really amazing things. The first step is believing we can.

Christian Klepp  21:26

Yes, no, that’s absolutely right. 

Hey, it’s Christian Klepp. Here. We’ll get back to the episode in a second. But first, is your brand struggling to cut through the noise? Are you trying to find more effective ways to reach your target audience and boost sales? Are you trying to pivot your business? If so, book a call with EINBLICK Consulting, our experienced consultants who will work with you to help your b2b business to succeed and scale. Go to www.einblick.co for more information.

So, Kasey, let’s focus on, you know, an area that you’ve built your business and expertise upon. And that’s personal branding and thought leadership. But before I ask you some questions, I thought it’d be a little bit of fun to drop in a few quotes. So I’ve only picked two, there’s a gazillion of them, but I picked two. Alright. So the first quote is from Jeff Bezos, and we all know he’s the Amazon CEO, and I absolutely love this quote. So it’s “Your brand, is what people say about you when you’re not in the room.”  All right. And the second one is from Brian Tracy. So he’s, you know, the famous motivational speaker. So he says, “Everything counts. So everything that you do, either creates and builds your brand, or weakens and destroys your brand.” So talk to us about why you think personal branding and thought leadership is so important for entrepreneurs, and how do you believe personal branding generally impacts the role that business owners play?

Kasey Jones  22:56

Yeah, good, really, really good question. So I love the Jeff Bezos quote. My take on personal branding is that whether you think you do or not everybody has a personal brand. It’s whether you’ve intentionally designed and created it or not. And so if you leave it to chance, if you leave it to, you know, circumstance, I don’t think that’s kind of the smartest strategy. And I think, you know, when it comes to entrepreneurship, you know, especially early on, it is much, much easier to build a powerful personal brand than it is to build a powerful company brand. And so, if you’re not investing in your personal brand, you are not investing in something that could wind up being a killer asset for your business. So, having that intention, and really thinking through Okay, what do I want to be known for, right? What do I want people to say about me when I’m not in the room, and the quote that I love, and I use quite literally all the time, someday, somebody is going to slap me across the face, because I just, they’re sick and tired of me hearing the same.

I love the quote by Maya Angelou where she says, “Nobody’s going to remember what you said, they’re not going to remember what you did the work, they’re going to remember how you made them feel.” So you got to think about how you want to make people feel. You know, when you show up on social media, when you show up in on a call or in an interview. what’s the takeaway? What is somebody gonna say the next time they’re on a zoom happy hour with a friend and they’re like, Oh, yeah, I talked to so and so. This is my takeaway. This is what they’re all about. And if you can do that work, and this is where I think everybody kind of like misses the boat. They think personal brand is just about posting stuff on social media. And so they skip to the tactics, and they don’t really think about the strategy, they don’t really think about the point. And as an entrepreneur, like, Look, you know, when you’re, when you are reaching out to prospective customers, when you are reaching out to prospective investors guess what they’re gonna do? They’re gonna look you up online.  What are they going to find anything? Are they going to find and basically blank LinkedIn profile with no picture and like no description? Or are they going to find stuff that that really tells your story?  And I think putting that work in, it can really propel your business forward, and you can do it in a way that doesn’t feel icky. I just want to make that very clear. I work a lot of entrepreneurs that I lovingly call aggressively humble, and they find the concept of personal branding icky and self-aggrandizing. And it’s not. You know, it’s like a resume, if you’re applying for a job. It’s your reputation. And so making sure that you’ve put thought into it, and that you have this kind of professional presence online. There is literally no downside. There’s only upside.

Christian Klepp  26:26

Yeah, no, I totally agree with that. And, you know, you brought up so many good points, I think it was somebody… I attended this in person event last year in Toronto, and the guy that was given a presentation on stage basically said something to the effect of, you know, you are who Google says you are. And, you know, and that’s for better for worse, right? Because I mean, to your point, it’s like, you know, are they going to Google, Kasey Jones and find some great content? Are they going to find nothing? Or, you know, and hopefully, whatever they find it’s going to a) be something positive, and b)  helped them to build an impression about who you are, as a) person and b) as a professional. Right?

Kasey Jones  27:13

Exactly. Exactly.

Christian Klepp  27:15

No, amazing, amazing. Um, you know, there’s been a few reports and articles, and I’m sure you’ve read many of these. But you know, there’s one, like, there was one that was written by the likes of, you know, media platforms like entrepreneur. And they were stressing about how personal branding has become even more important now than ever, right? So from your experience, and your own observations in these past couple of months, which clearly have been, you know, for lack of a better description, something that we’ve never experienced before. What changes have you seen in the landscape of personal branding and thought leadership?

Kasey Jones  27:55

You know, everything’s digital.

Christian Klepp  27:57

Mm hmm.

Kasey Jones  27:57

You can’t rely on going to an event and meeting somebody in person, it is all digital. So your personal brand is now the most important part is your online personal brand. And I think that’s really hard for folks that are used to doing business in person, that are used to these very personal, you know, handshaking relationships. It just doesn’t work anymore. There’s no opportunity there, and you’ve got to be able to kind of shift. And so, um, and it’s also look, you know, tons of people lost their jobs. And so there’s a competition to go find another job. Yes, people are going to Google you. And they’re going to look and see what you’ve done. And do you kind of walk the walk? Right? Can you back up the stuff that you’re saying in an interview, or when you send an email to a prospective client or employer, it is more important now than ever. I think the thing that’s amazing about it, though, is, like I was saying earlier, there’s been this like levelling of the playing field, where you have this opportunity to put yourself out there to kind of break through the noise and, and build these relationships.

And so I and I do want to be clear, for me, branding isn’t about isn’t just about Okay, what do people find when they Google you? It’s also what relationships do you build? And here’s a great example. Right? Like, you and I, through this experience of I interviewed you about stuffer, my bit my business. Now you’re interviewing me for your podcast, like we’ve become friends and that continue. And what’s incredible and like, I am not exaggerating, so I went through, I went through a pretty kind of harrowing experience. About five months ago, I was attacked by a dog and spent some time in the hospital and had surgery and people really rallied to support me. Let me tell you, the friends of mine that did more to support me through that experience than anybody else. I am not exaggerating are the friends that I met through social media and personal branding stuff. My girlfriends that have been my friends for like 10 years, they were supportive. But no joke. It is my social media friends that like, made sure that my boyfriend and I didn’t buy groceries for six weeks, two months that called me constantly that we’re always checking in on me all these things like, this isn’t just about vanity, it’s not just about your online reputation, it is about creating really meaningful relationships. And if you approach it in that way, it can have… it can make you feel less lonely during the pandemic, it can help you that next john, it can you build your business. And it can help you through hard times.

Christian Klepp  30:59

Yeah. Well, I mean, first of all, I don’t want to sound insensitive. I’m really sorry that that happened to you.

Kasey Jones  31:08

Thank you.

Christian Klepp  31:08

I think I did read about that on your Instagram feed. And it really does sound like a very traumatic experience. And I really hope that you’re, you know, you’re slowly on the mend. And that you’ve recovered from what was clearly a traumatic incident.

Kasey Jones  31:27

Yeah, no, I really appreciate that. And look, you know, I will say, again, this is another experience that I wouldn’t wish on anyone else. But it was a blessing. I mean, I learned how supportive and how loved I am, and learned how important it is to be alive, how grateful I am for my life. And there is quite literally nothing like a near death experience that will help you find clarity, and what you want, and what you want to be doing, and what matters in life. Life is 10 times more beautiful than it was forehand, and I feel thankful for it.

Christian Klepp  32:15

Yes, absolutely. Absolutely. And if I may just add on a little bit to what you said earlier about how you and I met. That in itself was an interesting story, because, and why do I say that? Like many entrepreneurs, and many b2b marketers out there, I’m constantly trying to like, you know, I’m a strong believer of continuous improvement and investing in myself and learning more. And, you know, I spent quite a bit of time searching on the internet for uncertain topics, and podcasting happens to be one of them. And the, I believe it was on Facebook, there was an ad that showed up on my feed, which says, Well, why don’t you download this ebook, which talks about, you know, guest podcasting and promoting your podcast? So I downloaded the Our Galaxy book, right. And, um, you know, gave my name, my email address, and, and, you know, fingers crossed and see what comes back, right. And then, and, lo and behold, I mean, I got, of course, I got the book. And I’ve been, I’ve been reading that quite intensively.

And then a couple of days later, I got your email, which at first I thought, Okay, this is probably one of those, you know, many follow up emails. Well, hey, Christian, thank you for downloading our ebook, would you be interested in a demo or a call? Um, but then when I looked closer at the email, it was actually a personalized message. It actually wasn’t templated. And that’s what prompted me to respond to you. Because like, okay, you actually do want to talk to me and get to know me more. So I responded, and, you know, a response came back, and then that’s how, that’s how we got on the call, and you did your interview, and well, and here we are, right.

Kasey Jones  34:04

Yeah. And, you know, it’s interesting, it’s, it’s my whole approach when it comes to, like, b2b marketing at the early stage is what I like to refer to as relationship building at scale.

Christian Klepp  34:18

Yes.

Kasey Jones  34:19

And so finding ways that you can, you know, have a system for building actual real relationships. And that’s one of the things that I love podcasting is when you listen to somebody have a conversation, you feel like you had the conversation with them. And when you meet somebody in person who heard you on a podcast or who listened to your podcast, it’s always actually a little funny because they act like you’re way better friends than you are. Because they just met because they feel like they know you. It’s amazing. It’s amazing. Like you get to skip like seven steps in friendship, because somebody feels this intimate connection, even though they’ve never met you. And that’s when they’re just listening. When you actually have a conversation like we are now, you’re skipping, like 10 steps in friendship. And it’s wonderful, and it’s powerful. And I and I think we all need a little more of that in life.

Christian Klepp  35:25

Yeah, no, no, you’re absolutely right. You’re absolutely right. Um, so, you spoke about it a little bit earlier on, but like, what are some of your future predictions, you know, when it comes to personal branding and thought leadership?

Kasey Jones  35:40

So I think that the biggest thing that I’m seeing is that a lot of people that have been rolling their eyes at the concept are recognizing that it, you’re not Kim Kardashian, if you build a personal brand, and that they are valuable and authentic, and I think we’re just seeing a lot more people recognize the power of it and, and want to make an investment. And so I think we’re gonna see more of it, and more of an understanding that, like, you really can show up as yourself and, and create an impact.

Christian Klepp  36:13

Exactly. And you know, and you’ve probably heard this many times over, but everybody’s got their own little unique story to tell.

Kasey Jones  36:19

Yah! Absolutely. Absolutely!

Christian Klepp  36:25

Great! So, Kasey, welcome to the favorite,… at least my favorite part of the conversation, because this is where it gets a little bit like, Okay, um. There’s a few things every area of expertise or specialization, so you can call it whatever you want, commonly held beliefs or conventional wisdom. And certainly in the fields of personal branding and thought leadership. There’s no exception here, either. Right? So talk to us about something in your area of expertise that is considered a commonly held belief that you passionately disagree with and why.

Kasey Jones  37:06

So really, I’ve got two, and one, we’ve talked about it a bunch. Personal branding doesn’t have to be icky. It doesn’t have to be lame. You don’t have to be fake. Okay, like it’s, it’s not a…. it’s not just for Instagram influencers, right. It is for everyone. But I think the biggest thing is, it’s not about bragging. Okay, so the number one thing that people say to me, when they’re like talking about why they haven’t done this, is they go well, you know, I just, I don’t, I don’t like to brag. Yeah. And the thing I always say is, I’m like, okay, I hear you. Think about you know, 5, 10, 15 of the sort of thought leaders that you kind of, that you respect and admire their social feed, social media feeds that you follow all of this stuff. And they’ll be like, no, shake their heads, like, Okay, I’m like, you’ve got them in your mind. Yes. How often do they brag? And there’s always this like, slow smile, that kind of creeps on their face. And they’re like, well, never. I was like, Yeah, no kidding. They don’t do that. watch someone brag. We’re not going to talk about American politics right now.

Christian Klepp  38:32

Not now, not ever.

Kasey Jones  38:35

Ah. It’s all about sharing. Okay, it’s about sharing how you got to where you are today, the things that you tried and you failed at and what you learned from them, the things that you’re focus on, known, you’re learning right now, right? It’s like pulling back the curtain and sharing. And it’s about learning. It’s not about bragging.

Christian Klepp  38:58

Yeah, exactly. Yeah. And, and I love that comparison about the pulling back the curtain because that’s really what it is. Right? Like, um, there’s a certain degree of, would you say like, vulnerability involved, like you have to be a little bit vulnerable, because you have to share your story somehow.

Kasey Jones  39:15

Absolutely. And let me just tell you, I know it, it might seem surprising, because I really share very, very honest stories all the time now. I did turn out this way. And there was a something that happened to me with me in my life, like, I don’t know, six years ago, that I just felt like I had to get off my chest. And I wrote a blog post. It was very personal. I posted it on Facebook. I didn’t think anyone would read it. And a ton of people read it and a ton of people sent me private messages saying, Oh my god, I’m going through something super similar. And I thought I was all alone. And I thought, oh my wow, that that was kind of amazing. And it still took me years before I started doing more of it. But you will realize is when you, you know, we worry that being vulnerable in public is going to make someone think we’re weak. But the actual response that people have is, oh my gosh, you’re so brave.

Christian Klepp  40:15

Yeah. Yeah. No, absolutely. I mean, and it’s a it’s something that, you know, through my own personal experience, and through the experience of others, courage comes in many forms. Right. It’s not always the kind of courage where you know, like in the movies, you know, you draw your sword and start charging into the sunset or something like that, like, that kind of encourage, I mean, there’s that too, but um.

Kasey Jones  40:42

We don’t have that kind of opportunity too often in life.

Christian Klepp  40:48

(laugh) Probably not, not now, not during this period anyway. Um, right. Um, so just expanding on that a little bit further, just, you know, name one thing that you think people should start doing. And one thing that people should stop doing, when it comes to personal branding and thought leadership.

Kasey Jones  41:10

So start doing is started engaging in other people’s content. If you don’t know, kind of how to get started, I don’t know, pick 10, 15, 20 social media accounts that you check in with every single day, or a few times a week for 15 minutes, and comment on their posts, and don’t just say, great post. But, you know, say, oh, wow, that really made me think about this. Really engage. And I can pretty much guarantee that if you do that consistently for a couple weeks, you’re going to realize that you have these ideas of things you want to share. And a lot of people think that, you know, personal branding, and social media in general is like shouting into the ether. It’s not. It’s engaging.

Um, with stop doing. Stop, stop jumping ahead to tactics. So, so stop, you know, randomly posting stuff online, or, you know, writing a blog post, you know, once a week or whatever, until you take some time to actually think through. What do you want to be known for? How do you want to make people feel? What do you want people to say about you when you’re not in the room?

Christian Klepp  42:31

Yes.

Kasey Jones  42:33

If you do that first, doing all the rest is much, much easier.

Christian Klepp  42:37

Yeah. Well, that’s some really great advice, and especially the bit about, like, you know, not jumping, or not being tempted to jump straight into the execution rather, and taking the time taking a step back and planning ahead. Right.

Kasey Jones  42:52

Yeah. Yeah.

Christian Klepp  42:55

Well, Kasey, this has been, this has been such a deep, but incredibly insightful and engaging session. So thank you so much, first of all, for coming on, and for sharing your story. Right. I mean, I really hope that the listeners walk away from today feeling motivated, I think, for one, and also being inspired to work on their personal branding, right. And regardless of whatever profession they find themselves in.

Kasey Jones  43:26

Yeah. And let me say one thing, too. I don’t care where you are on your journey. You are an expert to somebody. There’s someone out there that is one or two steps behind, and you’re sharing how you got to this step. And where you’re planning on going next could make the difference between them giving up and continuing.

Christian Klepp  43:47

Yeah, Indeed, indeed. Speaking of which, what’s the best way for people out there to get in touch with you?

Kasey Jones  43:53

So you can find me on literally any social media platform, my handle is always “A Better Jones”. Or you can go to abetterjones.com and book a time with me. And I’m always open to have a conversation, always open to help in any way I can. So please reach out and connect.

Christian Klepp  44:17

Fantastic, Kasey. I really enjoyed our conversation. So thank you so much again for your time.

Kasey Jones  44:24

Thank you so much.

Christian Klepp  44:25

Well, take care be safe, and I’ll talk to you soon. 

Thank you for joining us on this episode of the B2B Marketers on a Mission podcast. To learn more about what we do here at EINBLICK, please visit our website at www.einblick.co. And be sure to subscribe to the show on iTunes or your favorite podcast player.