Watch This Before You Start A Business

Shama Hyder:

I always hear about passion and people talking about how important passion is. I also think that’s a little misleading, because I think for a business you have to find where passion meets market demand. That’s where you get a business. Otherwise, it’s a hobby. There’s nothing wrong with that, but you have to find that intersection of both. I’ll tell you when I first started my company … I’m a serial entrepreneur. I run a social media marketing agency. In fact, it’s probably arguably one of the first social media agencies in the world, because it really didn’t exist when I started my company about eight years ago, I did my thesis on Twitter when it had like 2000 users. So, hence, if you’re wondering how I got my first name as a Twitter handle, that’s kind of what you had to do is just be one of the first 2000 users, and you, too, could have your first name as a Twitter handle.

Shama Hyder:

I remember reading all these books and thinking about like starting a company, and all of them said, “Start with your passion. What do you love to do?” I remember looking at my list and it was so laughable, because it had things like chocolate, and playing with my dogs, and reading. I was like, “This is so pathetic. What am I ever going to do with like these things?” It’s funny because what I do today, in retrospect I’m like, “Yeah, I’ve always enjoyed these things, communication, technology, journalism,” like these are subjects that I excelled at and I really loved. So it’s funny, because what I do really is a meshing of what I love but also where there’s market demand. So, I think to say, “How do you start making money online?” I think you have to find that sweet spot.

Shama Hyder:

when I was starting my company, and I had no clients, like literally 22 years old, $1,500 in my business account. I started my company with that. I had my dog as my assistant, Snoopy. He’s still around. He eats better treats, but that’s really the big difference. Snoops wasn’t very helpful, great moral encouragement, though. Part of what, as I was starting the company, I realized what did I have to offer? You have to bring value to the table. How was I going to prove that I knew what I was talking about? Well, luckily there’s a thing called blogs.

Shama Hyder:

One of the first things I actually did was I started a marketing blog and I thought, what am I going to write about? I don’t feel like I know enough. This is something you guys may feel a lot, Where do I start? I’m not an expert at this. So, one of the things that I actually started doing was I would read marketing books and put summaries of those books. That was like my very basic, and people loved it. They were like, “Oh, I’ve been meaning to read this forever. Thanks for the cliff notes,” because the one thing I was good at was taking notes. School had gotten that down for me.

Shama Hyder:

In fact, I would go to conferences, and some of the ways I got my first clients was I would take notes at the conference, the session, and then afterwards I’d be like, “Does anybody want my like amazing 15-page notes?” They’d be like, “Yeah, great. Give me your business card.” I’ll send you my notes. So, like pure hustle, pure hustle to be able to share stuff and be able to … It was great, it was like the skillset I had, because I was like, “I’m really good at taking notes. I can summarize the heck out of this thing.”

Shama Hyder:

Here’s the crazy thing, I think, also about leadership that’s changing. What it meant to be a leader was that you had authority, and it was really hard to get in touch with you. The harder it was to get access to you, the more important you were. Candace says, True. If you have to go through six assistants, like man, you’re really important, you have six assistants that you have to go through. Today leadership is very different. The more important you are the more accessible you have to be to people.

Shama Hyder:

I’ll give you the perfect example. The other day I was on LinkedIn and all of a sudden this video pops up and it’s Justin Trudeau, who’s the prime minister of Canada, and he was like, “Hey guys, thanks so much for helping us reach a million people on LinkedIn.” It was the coolest thing. He’s like, “Let me know what Canada can do for you.” I was like, “This is awesome. You’re really cool.” To me it is, that is the execution of leadership, I think, in terms of how technology is changing, and what we expect of our leaders, not just to be responsible, and accountable, but to be accessible.

Shama Hyder:

Think about all the people you can pretty much Tweet and get a response from. I’m not saying it’s going to be a great response, but I’m saying you can get a response. It’s crazy, but it’s also awesome that we live in that world now. Part of that is curation. So, especially when you start out and you’re building your professional brand, don’t worry about so much about what am I going to come up with out of this head, think about how you can be better curators of information.

WATCH THIS Before You Ignore Social Media Marketing…

Speaker 1:

Facebook’s fate, is the social media site the bubonic plague of our time? A recent Princeton University formula was released comparing it to the deadly infectious disease. The reason being that research shows Facebook will lose 80% of its users by 2017. That’s a drastic outlook. Are you a believer? This is pretty dramatic. Shama, I’m going to start with you. They say it will be largely abandoned by 2017. Do you think that’s true?

Shama Hyder:

These are very exaggerated claims, and no, I don’t think it’s true. I would love to have a replay of this segment in 2017 just so we can compare. This is very narrow study, it’s a very narrow focus, and they’re comparing it to MySpace, which is really not a fair comparison. So, I’m going to say, “Nay, Facebook is here to stay.”

Speaker 3:

How do we see the future of marketing and social media going? That’s the big question now. We’re stepping in, we’re very close to 2020. The world changed overnight in 2000. Technology’s driving us, the thirst for information drives us. You look at how millennials are using technology and social media. What are the new frontiers? Where you see us going? What do you think the next step is going to be?

Shama Hyder:

Yeah. I really think the future’s a lot more integrated. So even today, technology feels a little disjointed. You’ve got this app over here, and then you have to switch over to this. And I think as we move forward, it’ll really become so much more seamless. Add to that augmented reality, variables, and I think we won’t think about digital and traditional separately, it’ll be one in the same. It’s like, someone said the other day, a client of mine, his daughter said, “Dad, why do you always say to hang up the phone?” Because she has no sense of [crosstalk 00:01:39].

Speaker 3:

Oh yeah, yeah.

Shama Hyder:

“Why don’t we just say disconnect or end?” So, I think even the digital, traditional, those lines, it’ll all become a misnomer.

Speaker 4:

Yeah. That’s right. I never thought about that.

Speaker 3:

That’s a great point.

Speaker 4:

If you don’t actually remember having to hang up a phone, it’s very strange.

Speaker 3:

I still used to have to turn the dial to [crosstalk 00:01:59].

Shama Hyder:

I don’t think they know how to do that.

Speaker 3:

No, they’re vintage. They love being vintage. Speaking on millennials, because we’re looking at a time now where millennials make up a very large portion of the voting population. They are a very large portion of the workforce. And they’re about to inherit a lot of money from middle age and older brackets because those are the people that are holding onto that wealth right now. How do we use young people’s technology, this idea of all these digital technology to maybe either appeal to those older age brackets, to get them on board? Because it seems this fight right now is really against old and young, the future versus what they want the future to be even though they’re not going to be here for it. So how do we utilize this to bring these two sides together?

Shama Hyder:

I think in history, if you look at it, you’ve had this generational tug of war at every level. I think it feels more amplified now because it’s playing out on a stage where we can all see. Where it’s not so much undercurrents, but it’s what you see. I think the other misconception is that older people don’t use social tools and it’s just a younger people thing. What I think is really interesting is how older generations use social media versus younger generations.

Shama Hyder:

So millennials and stuff, what you’ll find is they’ll interact more, right? So they will Snapchat and comment, and like, so you know that they’re out there. What you find with Gen X, baby boomers, even the silent generation is that they’re consuming the information, but they may not be interacting with that information, but that you can’t discount that they’re not part of that ecosystem, if that makes sense? So I think that’s a very interesting dichotomy.

Speaker 3:

That’s interesting. And it’s always interesting having you on and thank you so much Shama Hyder for coming on and talking about this. The book is Momentum, definitely check it out. And for all of your thoughts and ideas about social media and where it could go, I think you have a lot of really good ideas in there. And a lot of very interesting view viewpoint on it. Thank you so much for coming on and sharing with us today.

Shama Hyder:

I appreciate it, thank you. Thanks for the conversation.

Hala Taha:

So, another topic I wanted to talk about was actually the vehicles of communication. So I’ll give you an example. Email is a vehicle, mobile push messages, social media is a vehicle. Direct mail can be a vehicle. What do you think is working in your opinion right now in terms of the channels or vehicles in which we communicate?

Shama Hyder:

So I think there’s, again, I’m a big fan of using multiple platforms to get your message, because you mentioned, there’re people who prefer live, like we’re doing now. There’re people who prefer email, there’re people who prefer texts. And so I don’t think there’s a one size fits all. Now, with that being said, I think you have to be consistent. So if you’re going to do email, do it regularly, right? I love email. I still think it’s a wonderful way to engage. If you’re going to create a separate, if you’re going to do Tik Tok, whatever, be consistent because none of the vehicles are listed Hala, are overnight. They don’t happen like this.

Shama Hyder:

I mean, with the podcast people want to … I talked to this gal who was very upset with me for my advice, but she wanted to make her podcast go viral and she had two episodes. And as you know, it’s very difficult to make a podcast go viral. You have to consistently build that community, consistently put out that great content, shop it up. Just because you put it out there and you’ve done it once or twice doesn’t mean people are going to come [crosstalk 00:05:23].

Hala Taha:

Even if you’re a celebrity, podcast thing is the great equalizer as Jordan Harbinger says.

Shama Hyder:

Yeah, it really is. But the consistency is what pays off, it’s not one video, it’s not one podcast, it’s not one email. Look at this guy who’s been on my list since ’09, 2009, right? Eleven years he’s been getting my email. How many emails do you think he’s gotten?

Hala Taha:

Yeah. Consistency really can pay off in the end. So I have some data from a customer data platform called Amperity, and there are some clear winners in terms the vehicles. I just want to share this with my listeners. Purchases made on social media have risen by 84.7% year over year. Purchases made directly from retailers’ websites grew 57.9%. Purchases made in response to email grew 22.1% compared to last year. And purchases on mobile devices has increased by 23%. So there you go. Don’t worry about emailing too much because it’s working right now. More than ever, people are getting emails and purchasing off their phone. So make sure that you’ve got your social media, your mobile, your email strategy, everything is on point.

The First Rule Of Online Marketing

Shama Hyder:

You’re not even marketing to consumers. And everyone’s marketing, everyone has a brand, a message, whatever you’re doing. You’re marketing to Gods, and that’s really the big shift. So for me, it’s helping people understand what that shift looks like, what that means, and then how to best take advantage of that, how to articulate that. How do you market to Gods?

Speaker 2:

Wow. How do you define these Gods?

Shama Hyder:

The Gods are really you and I, the modern day consumers, and the power is in our technology. Because this is the crazy part, let’s say we wanted a meal, gourmet anything, 30 minutes, 45 minutes tops that we could order whatever meal we wanted. Let’s say you and I wanted to go catch a movie tonight. How many minutes for us to look up reviews, find which one we really want, which one the critics and audiences love, book tickets, have our snacks ordered, and then call an Uber to take us there? All these things that really [inaudible 00:01:03]. That is power. The power to make decisions. The power to buy.

Shama Hyder:

You order from Amazon much?

Speaker 2:

Yes.

Shama Hyder:

So when I keynote, I ask audiences this and everyone laughs, but it’s so true and they groan because I ask audiences all the time. I say, “How many of you have honestly groaned when it says it’ll take two days to get to you versus same day? And the audience laughs because it’s so true, right? I’m like, “Oh I have to wait 24 hours to get this package.” That power has only belonged to the Gods, the demi Gods. Being able to have anything you want. Be able to do anything you want.

Shama Hyder:

Information in so many ways has been historically, because I know you enjoy history, the domain of the powerful, right? The church controlled it. So there’s a long history of the Catholic church, like Gutenberg and the reason they hated the press. Now everyone has information. And by everyone you meant small people who could afford information. But of course the internet changed all of that because information doesn’t belong to those that are powerful, it belongs to everyone. So if you lose your power card, you lose that, then what do you have? And so brands really have to look at that and define like, “All right, so we are marketing to Gods. If we’re engaging, if we’re communicating, that means we have to find our place on Mount Olympus with them.”

Shama Hyder:

And what does that look like? What can we give them? Maybe it’s exclusivity. It’s something that you can give them which [inaudible 00:02:34] by the way, completely separate but integrated in that sense that it’s a unique experience. It’s lovely that the best thing that you can do in an age where information is available to everyone, is be the curator. The curator wins because there’s so much information. We still need it, but we need it relevant within context. So if I want to know what’s happening at the intersection of entertainment and glamor and media, everything that’s hot in South Asian communities and what we’re doing, then you think of Noki. And that’s power, especially in this age where information is prevalent, but relevance is harder and harder to come by.

Speaker 2:

So would I be right in assuming, just to encapsulate what you said there, is that we’ve gone from a mass market opportunity to a niche market, focused targeting kind of world. Would I be right in saying that?

Shama Hyder:

Absolutely. Because even think about a brand like a detergent brand or Hudson’s Bay, which is a cool department store. We don’t have it in the State so I love it when I’m in Canada because it’s fun. And so you think about that and this is crazy, but even 30 years ago, 40 years ago, if they wanted to reach the Canadian market and they wanted to reach women aged 30 to 40, they could pretty much take an ad out on television because guess what? 30 to 40 year old women watch, they had 70% coverage maybe because there’s four channels, right? So you pick the channel, you pick a show, you advertise, bam, you get 70%. Tell me what that demographic looks like today. There’s nothing that will give you 70% reach.

Shama Hyder:

So you have to be targeted. You might have to go Pinterest to find the women that are really crafty that enjoy that sort of thing and appeal to them or your kitchen aid items or different things that are going to appeal to them. Then you might have market on House because that’s where the women who love the interior decor hang out, that’s their domain. Instagram for fashion.

Shama Hyder:

So the world where you could get 70% mass, that’s gone. Because we as a society have changed. We have so many choices now. Women are so empowered. So even that demographic of, Oh, you could say 40 years ago if you’re between the age of 30 and 40, majority women married, two kids, probably not the sole breadwinner, church on Sundays, whatever. It’s very specific, a lot of homogenous. It’s a very homogenous world. Today we don’t live in that world anymore so you have to market accordingly.

Speaker 2:

Absolutely.

Shama Hyder:

Hi Derek, this is Shama Hyder again. Thank you so much for watching my videos. I super appreciate it. Please share if you find this information valuable. Do comment, I love hearing from you and be sure to subscribe. That way you don’t miss a single thing.

How To Make Money On Social Media

Speaker 1:

… And it’s a little bit of a tricky one, but what is your biggest tip for making money online?

Speaker 2:

All right. Biggest tip that’s going to apply to everyone in this room. I would say, learn to be an editor and not a perfectionist, because the way you’re going to make money, the way you’re going to… I think just approaching business, and this tends to be my philosophy, and it’s funny, because I think I’ll also say this, there’s so many philosophies that you’re going to hear today. Take the ones that ring true to you. It’s going to be different. Different things, make sense to different people. I know, the thing I heard earlier, the panel, which I thought was great and it ties into your question I promise, was this idea of writing out where you want to be a year from now.

Speaker 2:

I think that’s awesome, but you know, for me, people ask me like, “Oh, what’s your exit plan for the company?”. And I say, “I don’t know.”, and I’m fine with that, because I’m in an industry in a world where I just want to be open to opportunities. We’ve grown so organically that I don’t want to have a five year plan or one year plan that’s like, “This is exactly what I’m going to do”, because I feel like I don’t even know what’s next. My world changes too quickly. How many of you guys knew that Snapchat was going to be where it is? Nobody. Things change really fast in social media. Think, just 10 years ago, there was no Instagram. Facebook had 5 million users. It’s totally different. So many of the things that we see today didn’t exist, so for me I think making money online or otherwise, it’s about being an editor, being open to what the market wants, which is going to be constantly changing and be willing to evolve.

Speaker 2:

I see people who sit on their websites for a year, because they want to get just the right sheet of magenta for their logo, like; “Ugh, a tad too bright, tad just.”, and I’m like, “In a year everything changed, but you were so stuck on magenta. Your website should have gone through four iterations by now.”. I think you have to start thinking about business, branding, all of this as a living breathing thing.

Speaker 2:

Alicia, you’ve been talking about your clients, you help them create these amazing campaigns and be authors. But you’ve seen how much the world has changed and what that looks like. What it meant to be a bestseller five years ago and what it looks like now. I think that’s just really important is, that’s my best advice, is learn to be an editor. Take from this, put something into action, I don’t care what it is when you go home that makes sense to you, but know that you’re always going to be changing things. If you reach for progress and not perfection, I think you’ll do much better in the online world, but you’ll also be a saner human being and I think that counts for something.

Speaker 2:

Yeah. I think the world we live in, perfection is overrated. I’ve never been a perfectionist. I’ve always been grateful for that. I think progress is a much better metric. They often say perfection is the enemy of good, and I think that’s true, especially in the marketing field where it’s very much this idea of you have to constantly evolve, put things out there, edit, evolve. I consider myself an editor and I think that’s a much better suited role or job title or even lens for the world that we live in right now.

Speaker 3:

Yeah. No, absolutely. Do you think that’s been one of your keys to success, when it comes to helping your clients and being able to grow a Marketing Zen to where it is today and everything that you’ve accomplished? Do you believe that’s one of your factors to getting there?

Speaker 2:

Yeah, absolutely. I think hands down being an editor and not feeling like something has to be a hundred percent great to put it out there. To know that as long as you’re providing value and you’re getting better and you’re keeping up, I think that’s the best that one can expect from themselves. I think as long… To me, it’s always about providing value, and if it’s helping people, it’s getting things to the next level, then that’s the direction to go in.

Speaker 3:

Absolutely. Now in the beginning, I know you said you wanted to be in journalism. Now you’re digital marketing, helping companies grow. How did you come up with the idea to start a digital marketing company? Did you build a business plan and just hit the phone, hit the pavement? What did you do, in those very beginning stages, to get your company off the ground and build it to what it is today?

Speaker 2:

Yeah. I think it’s interesting that I didn’t start out to say I wanted to build this digital marketing firm that we have today. It very much started out with meeting demand, and I think that’s where some of the best businesses come from, is you notice demand and then you find that sweet spot in the marketplace. I think demand also to see, how is that being fulfilled today? If I was starting today, it might look very different. I might have a different perspective than when I did, how many, like 10 years ago. I think it’s about studying the market, what does it look like, and then finding that intersection between your passion and what you love and what the market wants. Arguably, Mmarketing Zen was one of the first social media marketing firms in the world.

Speaker 2:

This is a time where social was really new. My book, The Zen of Social Media Marketing, which is now in its fourth edition and is used in many colleges as a textbook. Just before Momentum, my second book came out even. It’s just funny, it was one of the first books on social media, so we think when you’re that early into any industry and field, you don’t quite know what you’re building towards. You’re more looking again to meet the demand of the marketplace or the audience. At that given time, people really were hungry to know, “How do I use Facebook? How do I understand Twitter? Or how do we blog?”. Of course, over time, that’s evolved to being much more sophisticated.

Speaker 2:

Today, we’re a global marketing firm. We work with brands across the world, different countries. We work with everyone from the Navy to Chase business, so our clientele is extremely diverse and a big part of that has been continuing to grow and develop. I think it’s not being able to stay in that box, because eventually people figured out, “Okay. How do we use Facebook, Twitter.”, and then, it’s now more to me about the connected consumer. How do you really understand and engage how people think and work? I think in part of it, it’s like being… I feel like my job has two parts; being an anthropologist and looking at almost the history and where we’ve come from and how people respond and react, maybe a little sociology mixed in and then a futurist. Thinking about knowing this, where are we headed now?

Speaker 4:

How is your approach to marketing and social media unique? How does it give an edge over other people? Because what we’re seeing now is, it isn’t just about selling clothes. It isn’t just about selling soda. It’s about selling people and part of that, it gets branded politics, so how is your approach unique than what we see everywhere?

Speaker 2:

Well, I think what’s really important is understanding that it’s not about what your brand says about you. The longest times, companies did this madmen era as the perfect example. What does our brand say about us? And this is really much more of the focus on what does doing business with us at any level, communicating with us, interacting with us, allow our customers to see about their brand. It’s a very different perspective.

Speaker 5:

Interesting.

Speaker 2:

It’s even the people watching the show right now. It’s “Yes, this show might be about XYZ, but what does it say about them watching the show?”. They like to stay in touch with current affairs. They like the perspective. They’re avant-garde in some way.

Speaker 5:

That’s interesting. That’s very interesting.

Speaker 4:

Dig that. When you look at the businesses of the United States or of the world, how would you say they’re using social media correctly or incorrectly?

Speaker 2:

Yeah, I think so much of this is a process, is that… This is true for everyone of us. At my office, the jokes always like, “What changed while we were sleeping”, because that’s the only guarantee is something changed. We just need to figure out by noon what it is, so we can make sure that our clients are in the loop. I think part of this is an evolution. It’s not so cut and dry. It’s not like you get up and you realize, “Okay, well, this is how it’s going to be.”. It’s more learning to realize that this is an ecosystem. It’s not about the tools we use. People get so caught up in that. Like, “Is it Snapchat? Is it Instagram?”, and really, it’s this broader idea of it’s this ecosystem and so how do you really thrive in it?

Tell Me About Yourself – A Good Answer To This Interview Question

Shama Hyder:

So, “Tell me about yourself.” The best way to answer this is to actually open with something personal and a funny anecdote. Now, here’s what you don’t want to do. You’re not going off some long story. They’re not asking you this to say, “How many kids do you have? How many pets do you have? What state do you live in?” No, no, no. This isn’t about your life story.

Shama Hyder:

Hey guys, it’s Shama Hyder, and I wanted to address a question that, at some point in your life, I promise you will have to answer if you are ever interviewing for a job, or really any type of position, even board positions, so forth, and it’s this question, okay? It’s, “So tell me about yourself.” And before I tell you exactly the formula, the perfect way to answer this question, that will impress any employer and put you heads and tails ahead of the pack, I want to tell you why employers ask this question. And I’m sharing this perspective with you from an employer’s perspective, right? So as CEO of Zen Media, I do tons of interviews, I interview people all the time. I really like interviewing still because I feel like people who are entering our company, that culture is important. So until we hit our thousandth employee, I’m going to do my best to interview people. And so here’s the honest truth of why I start interviews often with, “So tell me about yourself.” And here it is, okay?

Shama Hyder:

It’s an easy question for the interviewer. That’s the only reason most interviewers are asking it. It’s an easy way to start a conversation, right? You don’t jump in and say, “So tell me about your salary expectations,” or, “Tell me, why did you apply for this position?” People, as human beings, and in an interview, right, we are still human beings, they’re trying to set up that camaraderie. You’re trying to set up a relationship, the cadence for this interview. What direction is this interview really going to go in? And believe it or not, the interviewee has a lot more power than the interviewer, okay? So when I’m sitting there and I ask this question, it’s because I’m trying to open a conversation. I’m trying to see what is … I am trying to get a sense of someone’s personality and I’m trying to see how will they answer this in the best way possible. And now I’m going to give you the formula. And if you ever interview with me and you answer this way, I’ll know you watched it, but I promise you, this will impress interviewers, all right?

Shama Hyder:

So when someone asks you, “So tell me about yourself,” the best way to answer this is to actually open with something personal and a funny anecdote. Now here’s what you don’t want to do. You’re not going off some long story. They’re not asking you this to say, “How many kids do you have? How many pets do you have? What state do you live in?” No, no, no. This isn’t about your life story, but it is an icebreaker. And it’s important to acknowledge this and put the interviewer in a comfortable position too, right? So as an interviewee, if you can make the interviewer comfortable, if you can get them relax and say, “Okay, this is going to be an easy flowing conversation,” you have the upper hand.

Shama Hyder:

So what you want to do is start with a quick little personal anecdote, something that they can think of when they think of you. Remember they’re interviewing maybe hundreds, thousands of people. So if you say something funny or something that differentiates you, like maybe, “Well, I could tell you about how I spent my morning chasing my three-month-old puppy around,” right? Or, “Well, I could tell you about the time I helped my high school team win the championship,” right? At Roller derby or whatever it is. Something quirky, something fun, something that shows your personality a little bit. “Well, I could tell you about the book I am binge reading right now. Well, I could tell you about my favorite podcast.”

Shama Hyder:

But, and this is where you pivot. So you open it up and in a way that’s personal, that’s fun, that’s fresh, right? Piques their interest, “Well, what’s this about?” You create an intrigue. So you say, “Well, I could tell you about this,” something personal, positive, fun, and then you say, “But, let me answer this in a professional context.” This shows that you’re acknowledging that the question they’re really asking, that you really here to talk about a professional context, right? They’re not looking for your life story. So yes, you’re an interesting person, you do fun things and you’re answering their question in a way that you know really speaks to the heart of something.

Shama Hyder:

Now, when you’ve pivoted to that, keep these three P’s in mind, past, present and future. So you want to start from the beginning, if you will. Now given, beginning being whatever’s within the context of this position. So if you’re a 20 year career veteran, don’t go all the way to the start maybe, but start where it’s relevant. So you could say, “Well, in my previous position, I was working at an agency and my first year there I helped close $2 million in business. And then I was working with a client I loved, they recruited me to come work for them in-house. I absolutely loved it. I helped sell and close our biggest client to date. The company’s been around for 25 years, and I helped land a really exciting client working with my team. And I’ve had a great time and now I’m looking to expand into more marketing. I’ve got a great sales breakdown and really excited about this opportunity. And when I read your job description, or whatever it is, it really intrigued me that you’re offering this opportunity.”

Shama Hyder:

And again, guys, I’m giving you broad framework, right? Speak to the ad, speak to the job description. So as you pivot, remember, you’re talking past, where you started, your achievement, your present, where you are now, and then you’re pivoting it to the future, right? Which ideally links it back to them. So, “What I’m really excited about is that this position, it seems like, would allow me the opportunity to explore the marketing side of things, which I haven’t. I’ve done more the sales side of things,” or whatever it is. So you answer it in a full circle way.

Shama Hyder:

What this does is it also gives the interviewer now … So think about this like throwing a ball back and forth, right? They’ve thrown you a ball, you’ve caught it, you’ve answered it, and you’re throwing it back. You want to keep that conversation going naturally. So now you’re bringing it back to their job ad, their position, which allows them to say, “Oh, I’m so glad you said that. Yes, that’s right. This position is very much geared towards marketing,” right? And then you move on. So this is such a great question. And you’ll hear it so many times in life. It’s always this, “What?” “Tell me about yourself.” And it can feel it so daunting.

Shama Hyder:

What you don’t want to do there is one, not be prepared. So have your answer. You don’t have to rehearse it a million times, but know the general context of what you’re going to share, right? Don’t sit there and um and ah about it. Don’t say, “Um, well, I could tell you about … Boy, what do you want to know,” right? Or, “Well, I was born in Michigan and then I moved to California,” right? What you really want to focus in on is what they’re asking, which, really it’s very simple. One, they’re giving you a soft ball. It’s an easy, easy way to open a conversation. Do you have personality? What kind of person are you? When you share that, when you open with that intriguing, something fun, something curious, something quirky, is totally fine.

Shama Hyder:

Now don’t go too offbeat, right? You don’t want to go way off color here. But something within the realms of PG, PG 13 is totally fine, and it just creates that connection with the interviewer. It may be something that really speaks to who you are as a person, but you don’t stay there. Just share that little bit and then you acknowledge that really what they’re looking for is the professional context. So here it is. Here’s where you started the journey, here’s where you are right now, and bring it back again to them, here’s where you are looking forward, thinking future. Here’s why this stuff is so key guys.

Shama Hyder:

Interviewers, and I will tell you I’m guilty of this, we make up our mind very quickly. I can have a very quick sense of what someone’s like and they’re not always the right impressions, I’m not saying it’s always right, but you do feel, people do rely a lot on gut instinct and saying, “Do I click with this person? Does this person feel like they would be a good culture fit?” And then everything else in that interview that follows, they’re either validating how they felt or you’re really creating that friction where they were like, “Man, I thought this, but now it’s going in a different direction.”

Shama Hyder:

What you want to do is set the tone really positive and keep it positive, where they feel like, “Hey, this is a cool candidate. I’m enjoying this conversation.” And then they see more and more that makes them feel more positive about you. So this is really important, tell me about yourself. And by the way, quick fun tip, when you follow-up, and please, please, please, tell me you follow-up, you always send a thank you, all right? Regardless of whether you had a great interview, terrible interview, always, always, always send a thank you note. Can be an email, just send a thank you thanking someone for their time. It matters. It makes you stand out.

Shama Hyder:

And in that thank you note, you can definitely reference whatever it was that you mentioned, that quirky thing, “Hey, interviewer X, thanks so much for your time today. I really appreciated learning more about the opportunity. I know you probably talked to a million people, right? I was the one with the puppies.” Whatever it is, something that gets that interviewer to say, “Oh, okay. I remember that. That was fun. That was quirky.” What you’re really trying to do here is be memorable. And what I really want you to do is nab that job. And I promise if you do this, you will be head and shoulders above the other guys. Hope it was helpful.

Shama Hyder:

Hi there, this is Shama Hyder again. Thank you so much for watching my videos. I super appreciate it. Please share it if you find this information valuable. Do comment. I love hearing from you. And be sure to subscribe, that way you don’t miss a single thing.

The ULTIMATE Advice For Every 20 Year Old

Shama Hyder:

Parents, right. It comes from your parents. And here’s the thing about parents that you have to absolutely know. Your parents want you to be safe. Every parent out there wants safety for their children, more than they want for them to be successful.

Shama Hyder:

Hey there, Shama Hyder here, and I want to talk to you about a topic that keeps coming up. I’m getting so many messages, especially these days. My DMS are full, my emails are full, from 20 year olds asking me, “What they should be doing right now?” Right? And I get this question so often from people that are 22, 23, 24, 21, and they all want to know, “What’s the advice?” What advice do I give to people who are starting out in their careers, who are trying to figure out college majors, who are maybe just graduating and trying to figure out how to enter the workplace?

Shama Hyder:

There’s so many different variations, but what I find fascinating is that it always boils down to the same thing, which is this, right? They’re dissatisfied. So something is making them unhappy and they’re trying to fix it. So it’s always the same thing. And here’s what I find really, really fascinating, and maybe if you’re watching this, you are one of those 22 year olds, 23, 24, maybe you are in your twenties, and that’s why you’re watching this, and you’re looking for those same answers, and here’s what it really boils down to. All of them are trying to achieve something that they don’t have yet. Right? Which is very common. In our twenties we all, I think, feel some unsteadiness, some sense that we were meant for something more, and that’s completely natural. That’s completely normal.

Shama Hyder:

It’s so funny. I remember being in my twenties and feeling that way, feeling like, “Why isn’t stuff moving faster, Why isn’t more happening right now in my life? I’m working so hard.” And maybe if you’re watching this, you are among that core people in their twenties, who are also struggling with these very similar things, right? Something in your life, or you’re dissatisfied, that you’re really trying to find the answer, trying to figure out how to get there, wherever that is. And in my experience, here’s what I found. Here’s what it always boils down to, whether it’s about relationships, it’s about business, whether it’s about success, how to get there. It always boils down to the exact same thing. Every conversation I have, and that’s this. All right? You paying attention? Good. Expectations. That’s what it’s all about. It’s all about expectations, understanding expectations, managing them, and keeping yours in check.

Shama Hyder:

All right guys. If you are in your twenties and you are watching this, and I really hope that you are, I hope you’re in your twenties. I hope this helps you because it’s so useful. I wish that someone had sat me down when I was 20 and said these exact things that I’m about to say to you. So these exact words. If you are watching this and you know a 20 something year old, that could benefit, please share it. I’m not even going to ask you to subscribe to my channel right now or anything. All I want you to do is share this video, because this is gold guys. If you’re really, really paying attention to this video, if you watch nothing else on my channel, but you watch this one video, and heck, if you’re 30, if you’re 40, I think this still applies, but it really, really applies… If you’re 60, it applies, but it really applies, I think when you’re in your twenties, because as you get older, hopefully in an ideal world, you started to figure this out a little bit and unravel it. All right?

Shama Hyder:

So let’s hit this head on. It’s expectations. Let’s start with often where these expectations come from, which is, ring the bell, parents, right? It comes from your parents. Trust me, we’ve all do been there. And if you’re like most 20 year olds, at some point you felt some sort of expectation for your parents. In fact, I was just talking to a wonderful young man who started this really cool app, and when we were talking, he was all about monetizing this app. And it was for mental wellness, it was something he’d been struggling with himself, that he created something awesome to help people.

Shama Hyder:

And as I talked to him, let’s call him Josh. I said, “Josh, this is really cool. But you keep asking me about monetization. Why do you care so much? Why does it have to make money for you right away?” And as we dug deeper, as I dug deeper and asked him questions, it came down to this very simple thing. He wanted to make his parents proud. He wanted to make them feel good. He wanted them to be proud of him, but he wanted to show them that he didn’t have to go to college, that he could blaze his own path. And here’s the thing about parents that you have to absolutely know. Your parents want you to be safe. Every parent out there wants safety for their children, more than they want for them to be successful. Right? This is the God honest truth.

Shama Hyder:

I am a mom now. So I can tell you being on this side, that what I want for my son, is I want him to be safe, right? Risk for most parents is risky. Most parents don’t have a high threshold for risk. Now you might be different. Maybe your parents do it, and that’s great, and that’s awesome. And maybe you’re struggling with this in a different way, but it does come down to expectations. If it’s not work expectations, it might be relationship expectations. Your parents expect you to get married, do certain things, be with a certain type of person. And it really comes down to these expectations, because here’s the heart of it, every parent out there, no matter what kind of parent you have wants happiness for their children, right? They want their kids to be safe. They want them to be protected.

Shama Hyder:

It is innate. As a mother, I can tell you, I would throw myself in front of a bus, a truck, a train, to keep my kids safe. All right? And so what I want for him is safety, most parents do, and they just stop there, and they might encourage you to do certain things. But remember, they’ll always want what’s safe for you, because it’s very innate to being a parent.

Shama Hyder:

Success sometimes requires… Well, I take that back. Success always requires some amount of risk, whether it’s risk talking to your boss, whether it’s risk starting a venture, there’s risk involved. So, part of what you have to learn is how to unravel yourself from the expectations of your parents, while still being immensely respectful, and grateful to them. Let’s face it, you would not be here if it wasn’t for your parents. All right? Even the worst parents, I put this in quotations, because even the worst parents at some point had to manage to keep you around. And let me tell you as a mom of an 11 month old boy, that is a hard job. I never realized how much it goes in to keeping a human being alive. I’m constantly mesmerized, that there’s so many people walking around on the planet because it is hard. And so even the worst of parents, want the best for their kids. They want them to be safe and they’ve done right by you.

Shama Hyder:

And it’s very important to keep that in mind and be immensely respectful of that, right? You owe your family, you owe your parents, a gratitude, a debt that honestly you can never repay. So here’s the good news. Stop trying to repay that debt and start thinking about how you can still be respectful of them, love them, give back to them in every possible way, shape, form, and unravel yourself from their expectations. Okay? Because their goals, their beliefs, are going to be different. And you know, it’s very easy to look at someone and say, “You’re wrong. That’s wrong.” God, we see it in our culture right now, all the time. Very easy for us to point to someone else and say, “You’re wrong about this.” So you might find yourself, in that rut with your parents, where you constantly feel like, “Oh, their beliefs are so outdated.”

Shama Hyder:

But here’s the thing, you can still love your parents and have separate beliefs. You can still respect the fact that they believe what they believe. Maybe they believe the nine to five is the safest best way to live life, and you don’t and that’s completely okay. You can love mom and dad and still do your own thing, and the sooner you figure this out, the better. All right? And here’s the flip side of that. When you do that, inevitably, you will make your own mistakes. The key when you make those mistakes, is to take responsibility and not the end up back at mom and dad’s doorstep expecting them to bail you out of the mess, right? That you created, and mess, lesson, call it what will, it’s yours to deal with.

Shama Hyder:

And I have to tell, I grew up in a conservative household. My dad was super conservative, love him to bits, huge daddy’s girl, but there were no boys allowed. You had to be home before sunset. I grew up in a conservative household, I don’t know how else to say that. Right? And there were certain expectations of me, and I can tell you that I did not adhere to those expectations. I had my own beliefs, my own way of approaching life. And I will tell you how I got my parents to respect it. Right? And I’m very lucky, my parents prioritized my happiness above everything. I hope that as a parent, I can do that for my son.

Shama Hyder:

So part of all of this is, that they really stood by me, because I stood by myself. And this is what I mean by this. When I made mistakes, when I didn’t have clients, when I was trying to build my business, I didn’t go to them and say, “Guys, can you pay my rent? Guys, can you buy me this car? Hey, can you pay my phone bill?” Nope. Nada. Never. If I couldn’t afford it, I didn’t have it. Right? They knew that I had so much belief in myself, my expectations, it was my bar, and they were my mistakes to make, and my lessons to learn, and I never put that on my parents.

Shama Hyder:

This is absolutely key. If you are going to march to the beat of your own drummer, then you have to do it wholeheartedly. So don’t expect that entitlement. Don’t have that entitlement with your parents. Love them, respect them, but make your own beliefs. Choose your own beliefs. So many times the things our parents believe, we don’t question, right? Because they’re our parents, but the truth is if you actually dug deeper, you’d find they believed it because their parents believed in it, and so forth. Right? And so I think we live in cool times where you get to question the beliefs that you hold true. What is the story you keep telling yourself? And it does not have to be the same as your parents, and you can still love them. You can still be a part of their lives.

Shama Hyder:

I have an outstanding relationship with my parents. I can tell you that my life has turned out nothing like they thought it would, and they see how it’s very much in line with what makes me happy. I’ve charted my own waters. I’ve made my own mistakes. I’ve fallen a million times, but guess what? I have picked myself up a million and one. Right? And that’s what I want for you. I want you to really put those expectations in check.

Shama Hyder:

The other thing, let’s talk about expecting success, because this is so big. Again guys, this is so valuable. As I say this, I’m like, “Man, why didn’t someone say this to me when I was in my twenties?” Don’t expect success, but work hard every single day. I’m going to say this again. Don’t expect success, but work hard every single day. And this is hard, because we live in an era of Tik Tok stars, and Kardashians, and Jenners, and it’s very easy to look at all these people and go, “Oh my God, look at what they have.” Right? “I want to be successful. I’m working so hard. Why am I not successful?” It doesn’t work that way, guys.

Shama Hyder:

I still remember, this is a fun little story, little detour for you. But it’s important. I remember when I made Businessweek’s Top 25 Under 25 Entrepreneurs, someone had nominated me, didn’t know who, didn’t know how that had happened. I made their list and it ended up on the homepage of Yahoo. Okay. And this was when people actually read Yahoo a ton. It used to be quite a popular site back in the day. And I remember that my business absolutely blew up, always been a huge believer in PR. Obviously, look at what I do. I remember the phone walling up, people wanting to work with us, people coming out of the woodwork, right? To say, “Oh my God, I always knew that you would end up here,” or all this stuff. It’s just crazy what happens when something like that happens. And guess what I did the very next day. Heck the same day. I got back to work. I got back to work. Right?

Shama Hyder:

And so success is nice. It’s nice to be able to have that moment, to know that someone appreciates it, to be able to have validation from your marketplace. But I don’t expect it. I don’t expect it because I love what I do. And I think that’s the difference. When you find something you’re really passionate about, you love what you do, then success becomes something fun, but not something you expect to show up at your doorstep. It’s almost like when it does, you’re really excited. You’re thrilled. And then you get back to work. So many times I see people in their twenties, and maybe you’re one of these people, and it’s totally okay if you are, where you think that you should be successful like this. And I don’t know, it happens for a few people, yes. But that is not strategy guys. That’s luck, right? And yes, that’s like buying a lottery ticket, because you win it, sure. I don’t know if you’ll be happy. Apparently most people who’ve won the Lotto aren’t happy.

Shama Hyder:

But I can tell you that I am happy. And I work a ton. I work a ridiculous amount, but I love what I do. And part of this, part of these expectations and unraveling yourself from this, is finding what you love, finding your passions. That’s the other question I get a ton. “Should I be exploring my passions Shama? Or should I stick to one thing and double down?” Listen, the sooner you stick to one thing, and double, triple down, the better you’ll get at it. Right? If you’re a writer and you’re writing every single day, heck, by the time you’re 30, 40, you’re going to be a great writer, because it’s what you’ve done. At the same time it’s pretty important to explore, to make sure that you’ve found your heart’s calling, that you’re trying different things. That you don’t feel like, “Hmm, what if I’d done that? What if I tried this?” Try it. Right?

Shama Hyder:

Twenties are great time to explore, but don’t judge exploration by the same metrics that you would do, if you were doubling down on something, right? Completely different metrics. If you’re exploring, the goal, success for exploration looks very different than, “Hey, I’m doing this every single day.” It’s so true what they say guys, “Overnight success is decade plus in the making,” right? Enjoy the process. Enjoy the opportunities that come to you and unravel those expectations. It’s so absolutely key.

Shama Hyder:

The last note I have on this subject, because it’s so dear to my heart is don’t expect people to read your mind. I think so many people in their twenties expect their boyfriend and girlfriend to know what they’re thinking, their friends to know what they’re thinking. “Oh, my boss should know, of course, it’s obvious.” No, because the world does not revolve around you. Right? People have lots of things on their plate. So don’t take it personally, and don’t expect people to know what you’re thinking. This can really cause you know, miscommunication in the least, and at worst it can cause years of bitterness and resentment. Speak your mind. Don’t expect people to know what you’re looking for, what you want. Speak your mind, be patient, and have your own expectations. Have your own bar.

Shama Hyder:

Please, please share this with someone else in their twenties, if you think that this was valuable. Again, I really wish someone had sat me down and said these things to me. I want you to succeed. I really, really do. And it really does, it starts in your twenties. So I hope you found this useful.

Shama Hyder:

Hey there, this is Shama Hyder again. Thank you so much for watching my videos. I super appreciate it. Please share it, if you find this information valuable. Do comment, I love hearing from you. And be sure to subscribe, that way you don’t miss a single thing.

5 Ways You Can CHANGE Your Business Today

Speaker 1:

Shama Hyder covers technology for Forbes, and she says education finally is getting some creative [inaudible 00:00:07]

Shama Hyder:

Absolutely is. There’s never been a better time than to be in education, whether you’re a teacher, whether you’re a student, or you’re a parent, and you have so many options these days.

Speaker 1:

But the teachers worry that, “Hey, this computer is going to replace me.”

Shama Hyder:

The technology today is not meant to replace teachers. In fact, it’s making their job so much easier. It’s making it better. So do you remember when you were in school and it used to be that you would go listen to the classes and then you would go do homework? So many of these models are flipping that around so that you go home and listen to the boring lectures, and when you come to the classroom, you’re actually doing homework with a teacher where you can get one on one attention.

Shama Hyder:

This generation is the most educated generation in the history of the U.S., of the world. Isn’t that amazing? The most educated generation ever. And an educated generation means that they are naturally more skeptical, they ask more questions, and they want to be better informed. They’re also richer than Gen-X. Did you know that? The Gen-Xers in the room are like, “Sure, why not? Take that too, Millennials. You got everything else. Just go ahead and take the money too.” But of the 15% … So if you look at America and you see how many people have wealth more than $2 million, right, accumulated wealth, 15% of that population is Millennials. So this idea that Millennials don’t have money is absolutely not true. Now they’re more careful in how they spend it, they ask more questions, they do their due diligence, but this is a well off generation. They’re also socially savvy, they’re connected, they want to know what’s happening in the world, they look beyond just kind of what you’re trying to show them.

Shama Hyder:

I’ll share a funny story with you. I think as consumers have gotten demanding more and more, we as producers and marketers have to rise to meet that same demand that we as consumers have created. But I’ll give you an example [inaudible 00:02:02] book called The Zen of Social Media Marketing.

Shama Hyder:

It’s now coming out in its fourth edition but when the second or third edition was coming out I … This was right when the iPad came out. Right when the iPad came out and this gentleman emailed me and he said, “Hey, Shama, love your stuff. So disappointed that I can’t read your book on my iPad.” And I talked to my team and I was like, “Guys, didn’t it come out yesterday? Like weren’t you … Some of you like Mac people standing in line?” And they were like, “Yeah.” So I responded to him and I said, “Sir, do you mean the iPad, the device that came out yesterday?” What do you think he responded with? “Yes.” He responded with, “Yes”.

Shama Hyder:

That’s just how quickly things change and how we’re used to getting … How quickly we expect that we get a new device and everything should just work seamlessly on it. These are the choices that we’ve grown accustomed to. Right now for example, some of you are hearing this live, how many think, Hey, I’d love to get that deck later. You know, I’d love to see the slides later. How many would love to see this as a podcast that you can listen to while you work out? More hands. How many would like a video of this to watch later? Fantastic. How many of you would like me to print this, transcribe it, print it, and put it on your desk? You know, I will say it’s an organic process. So I would say that half of the stuff we try doesn’t work, but we’re very quick to pin it.

Shama Hyder:

So I think the trick is knowing how long to try something before pivoting. So some things, they take a while. Like certain influencers are like, man, if you could just get this one person for our client, like that would be golden. And it might take four months for us to continuously keep doing that. I think the broader question … To answer your broader question, a lot of it is providing value consistently and we do that through content. So we like to think that we out educate anyone else trying to build a community. We have more blog posts, better blog posts, we’re like … We’re always raising the bar for ourselves, right? And I personally see myself as sort of chief value officer. Like my job is to create good value for my employees, for the greater audience, for our clients. And then that gets disseminated across all our social platforms.

Shama Hyder:

But we always start with good content. Like how are we constantly providing value? And how do we do it in different ways? So not just, hey, we’ve got written content, but infographics, videos, podcasting. How do we take this information and give it to people in the way that they want to absorb it. This is the number one I think mistake people make in marketing in general is a lack of consistency. Whatever you do, you have to do it consistently. It’s rare that you’ll say, “Oh, I set up a Pinterest board and got a couple of pictures and yeah, that’s it.” You know? And it doesn’t work that way. It’s really about doing something consistently that helps build your brand and visibility.

Shama Hyder:

You know cross-pollination is this idea that you can’t see things in silos and that you have to be able to pick different ideas from various areas internally and externally, right? And what I mean by that is you have to be able to look at the broader picture. For example, your employees can be your best source for sharing information, for getting social media posts shared, for distribution. But so many people don’t think about it that way. They’re like, “Oh, they’re our employees. That’s not …” But your employees can be your best marketing force.