Personal branding experts gathered in Las Vegas last week to deliver powerful advice for entrepreneurs at this year's Amplify Live Experience. Top names including Gary Vaynerchuk and Dr. Sean Stephenson were among the headline speakers sharing their best advice for personal branding success.
I attended the event and met with the top speakers at the conference. This article highlights the best lessons I learned at the event and breaks them down into actionable advice for building or strengthening your personal brand.
Focus on yourself
One big surprise from Vaynerchuk was that he does not read other people's books or watch other branding experts' YouTube videos.
"My game is about me knowing myself," Vaynerchuk says. He only focuses on his content and his audience. He regularly reviews user comments and analyzes important distribution metrics.
Too often we pay attention to what other people are doing and we forget to play our own game. Instead of worrying about others, Vaynerchuk recommended creating more content, engaging your audience and testing your ads.
Entrepreneurs tend to be natural self-starters. Our struggle is maintaining that excitement as the initial launch turns into a daily grind.
I interviewed Stephenson, a renowned motivational speaker who was born with a disorder that left him 3 feet tall, on how he deals with struggle and self-doubt. "You compete with your doubt every day. You just need to keep going," he said. "Pain is inevitable.... it's not going to be easy. There's going to be stress. It's part of being human."
Realize that you're not alone in your feelings of struggle or self-doubt. To overcome self-doubt, Stephenson conditions his thoughts to continually remind himself of his life's purpose. He also surrounds himself with positive, link-minded individuals that support and empower him.
Create more content
Stephenson pointed to a common trait among the event's speakers: they all started at zero. But they showed up and did the work that ultimately would propel them to success.
All the speakers recommended that you create more content. You can only reach more people and distribute better content by practicing. The only way to practice is to create more content.
While best known for his hustle, Vaynerchuk is an excellent example of a person who expresses himself without inhibition. He uses raw passion and a blunt message to motivate and inspire his audience.
Stephenson is the opposite. At multiple points in his keynote, Stephenson expressed his love for the audience and inspires them with hope and belief.
Vaynerchuk and Stephenson are both effective because they are true to themselves. "This game is predicated on truth," said Vaynerchuk in his keynote. You just can't fake who you are.
Don't try and sound like someone else. Look inside yourself and realize that you have a voice and it's worth sharing. If you start to lose your identity, use Amplify Live Experience founder Keith Yackey's mantra, "you do you."
Staying positive plays a big role in helping sustain your energy and focus when you feel doubt.
David Bayer, a leading expert on mindset, explained how our subconscious mind affects our belief system and our attitude. Bayer emphasized using self-awareness to keep tabs on your negative thoughts and replace them with positive thoughts that are congruent with what you desire.
Putting it together
Whether you're looking to create or strengthen your personal brand, learning from the best can yield powerful results. Challenge yourself to take one step forward this week, and then build on that activity over time. You might just find yourself with a personal brand that allows you to reach an audience and help others with your message.