06 Feb Craft Your Story to Communicate and Connect
In order to communicate and connect, one must make conscious decisions.
In this week’s Manufacturing Ecommerce Success Series, our guest speaker was Amy Blaschka. Amy is the Social Medial Ghostwriter & Career Storyteller at AmyBlaschka.com. Amy has turned the art of storytelling and her passion for leadership into a content production business that helps executives find their voice and inspires people. Amy shares this information and her thoughts in her Forbes articles 5 times a month and the two blogs she curates.
The conversation of the episode started with Curt introducing Amy to the show. After this Amy shared her experience in her own words. She said that initially, she majored in filmmaking and media. However, when she graduated from college, she realized there were little to no jobs in her field.
Hence, this is when she decided to do something related to it. At this time, Amy joined a small marketing firm where she had learned a lot of new things also had to do most of the work on her own. According to Amy, where she gained a bit of experience and then she went on to the next company where she started working on copywriting as well.
During this time, a friend’s husband discussed a job opening for the CEO of a travel company with her. At this point, Amy gave an interview and got hired. Being a creative person Amy didn’t like her own working style at this point. However, all these experiences improved her storytelling abilities and helped her learn how to communicate and connect.
After this, Curt asked Amy to elaborate on how she feels after transitioning towards entrepreneurship. Answering this, Amy responded by saying that for her being an entrepreneur is good because she likes the autonomy it gives her.
Moreover, according to Amy, this also allows her to communicate and connect with her customers in a better way. Further into the conversation, Curt asked Amy about how she evolved as a content creator. Answering this, Amy said that she is from a time when LinkedIn did not have many content creating options.
In fact, according to her, at this time LinkedIn had a few options of their own. However, when they opened it for the general public, this is when Amy started creating her own content. At this point. She realized that this is her tribe and what she really wants to do.
By the end of the conversation, Amy said that it is all an effort to communicate and connect. She said that initially, she did a lot of different kinds of writings and had various clients. However, with the passage of time, she found which writing style she was best in and then she narrowed down her niche to that as well. This is how Amy is now running her own company.
The conversation ended with Damon and Curt thanking Amy for her presence.
Amy Blaschka is the Social Media Ghostwriter & Career Storyteller at AmyBlaschka.com. Aside from this, he is also a contributor at Forbes. Before this, she was the President and CEO at Visit Tri-Valley. Moreover, Amy was also the Senior Account Manager at Enterprise IG before this.
Additionally, Amy has been the Branding Consultant at Landor Associates. At her first job, Amy was the Account Coordinator at Young and Rubicam. As for her education, Amy has a B.A. in Visual Arts from UC San Diego.
Moreover, she also holds a lot of volunteering experience.
About the Manufacturing eCommerce Succes Series
The Manufactuing eCommerce Success Series shares insight on topics from talented people in manufacturing. We highlight people and share information to help manufacturers embrace technology, complete their digital transformation, and generate sales from traditional and ecommerce channels. Curt Anderson and Damon Pistulka host the Manufacturing eCommerce Success Series Fridays at 10:32 Pacific Time.
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Craft Your Story to Communicate and Connect
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Amy Blaschka, Damon Pistulka, Curt Anderson
Damon Pistulka 00:05
All right, here we go I’m nervous. There we go Kurt alright everyone Welcome once again the manufacturing ecommerce success stories. I’m your co host Damon for stalcup Man Do we have a show for you today? Special guests, man, Kurt and I are just just can’t even hardly speak this morning. You tell from that the pause at the beginning we don’t know what’s going on here. We forgot where we’re at and everything. We’ve only done this like three times now I think But Kurt, take it away. So happy to see everyone drop the comments Sorry,
Curt Anderson 00:41
I’m, I’m I’m I’m like just total starstruck right now. So I’m gonna get my composure together. Ready? Here we go. Happy Friday, everybody. Welcome to this amazing, incredible show. We’re at the end of January already believe me. Wow, Damon, look at this lineup we’ve had like we’re just talking baseball. Look at this lineup. We had Carrie Smith, thought co founder of big ass fans.
We have Scotty Oh, the editor in chief of Ink Magazine. We have our our our soul sister Elson afford last week. And today. Are you sitting down? Are you sitting down for this? ain’t ready. Hey, Amy. I’m gonna do it. I’m just ripping off the band aid. Right, Amy? Blaschke how’d I do? Did I do alright laska is with us today. Amy. Happy Friday. Welcome to the program.
Amy Blaschka 01:28
Thank you for having me. And thank you for that like lead up. I feeling a little pressure. For now. Here.
Curt Anderson 01:35
This is like I am so me. So I have to admit I you know, we’re gonna it’s social media. So it’s not it’s not stalking if you follow people on social media, right? It’s just fans or followers. I’ve been following Amy for years on Twitter, believe it or not. So I took a little hiatus on LinkedIn for a few years. And I’m just kind of hanging out in Twitter. Amy in this wonderful office that she’s in and used to do all these videos like she would write Amy.
Right? She would do all these videos. And I’m like, Man, she is just so cool. She was so inspiring. So captivating. She is a Forbes contributor. She is a ghostwriter. Yes, this is a real thing. According Amy, you are a content machine. So Amy, let’s just dig into things. Man, we just have so much to cover today. I’m going to stop chatting. Share a little bit your background like I know UC San Diego when you’re off of college, did you realize you’re going to be such a content creating machine? Share a little bit about how did you get this journey started?
Amy Blaschka 02:34
I know I don’t think anyone thinks that. But you know, when I when I went to school, am I graduated with a film and media degree thinking I would be a filmmaker. You know, I the idea of working with a group of people collaboratively to tell a story and bring something to life that’s really meaningful to me that idea of taking something just an idea and like seeing it blossom and then come to fruition. So it seemed like a natural fit.
And I consider myself a creative person. So you know, but shockingly, after I graduated, I could not find a job as a filmmaker Much to my parents chagrin. Oh, okay. What else? So? I did. I’m like, Okay, well, what is a creative adjacent like, what is you know, what could I be doing? You know, whatever. And I landed a job in a very tiny little kind of marketing firm. And I say tiny, I mean that they’re like two co founders to women. And like me, you know, the beauty of that is that when they’re not a lot of people, you do a lot of things right.
So I had exposure to you. I was doing marketing, I was doing advertising. They had me writing stuff, because my minor had been communications. And I’ve always loved to write. And in fact, in school, I was going back and forth vacillating between my writing is the degree or, you know, should I do the film and I went back and forth and even had a creative writing class I had ahead of Professor pulled me aside after class and said, Amy, I really think you should consider changing your major and whatever.
Whatever she she knew better than I did at the time. But anyway, I worked in that small firm down in San Diego and then I moved up back to the Bay Area where I had grown up and where I live today, and worked in advertising the big firm called Yoruba cam. And it was like, Oh, this is really cool. I love that and and worked around different things. It just all sort of in that same arena. And then I went and worked at Wine our sister company called landour Associates, which was a branding firm. And this is like, forever ago, right?
I’m no spring chicken. So I’m like branding. What is that? You know? And I’m like, Oh, this is something I can get behind because it was really about every touchpoint right? Visual verbal, how you present yourself to the world. And when I say you, I’m talking specifically I was working with Companies and with brands, right? So it would be you know, products and different things, that the concept is still the same. It’s the way that you present yourself, the way your positions the way you are trying to attract your ideal customer, you know, what do they think about you and you have the chance to shape that through a visual means and through verbal means.
So I loved that. And I did that. And also in another firm, similar. And then, um, had our first daughter we have to, and you know, before I was traveling all over the country. These are the days like, you know, pre 911, right. So like, you can, like, when drive to SFO, take a day trip to Minneapolis, he would be quiet, not 330 flight to get back to SFO to get and that was like a date.
It was crazy. Um, but I knew I couldn’t do that after we had kids. So we had our oldest daughter, and it was like, okay, you know, what, am I gonna do a maternally I decided not to come back. Nobody believed that I would like be a stay at home mom, which I did. I did for a while. And then both my daughter and I needed to talk to people our own age, we decided, okay, come on and find something. And because it was a mom, I was like, Okay, I know, I can’t do the travel schedule. Is there something close? And you know what? It’s been forever since I’ve interviewed.
So my best friend’s husband was the chairman of a board of this thing called a Convention and Visitor’s Bureau, which I’m like, tourism travel. What does that okay, well, he was only me. He’s like, the CEO just left. And he’s like, oh, and it was kind of under bad circumstances. But you don’t you should interview for this. I was thinking, Alright, I’ve never done it. But I’ll just put myself out there, I’ll just see, I’ll get my thinking. Nothing will call this other than some experience or whatever. Well, I ended up getting the job offered to me. And I took a leap of faith and like, you know what, I can do this.
And one of the reasons why people go, that’s completely different. But the common thread that string it all together was this power storytelling, right? It wasn’t, you know, it wasn’t selling beer, or a theme park, it was a destination, right? Same principles of branding. It’s no destination branding, it’s doing that. And again, working with a team. So I was the CEO, building this team, building it up doing all these things. And so it appealed in that way. But I did that for about a decade. And I say I stayed in that industry forever. Because it was really, it’s hospitality, it’s about service. It’s the good people, right. And that was very appealing to me.
But the longer I worked there, the farther I got from sort of what I call creative, Amy, because, you know, great, I could put together a budget, I could secure funding, I could do this, we could do whatever. I was great at it. But I was dying inside because there was no creative aspect to it. And I see creative meaning like actually, like me writing something out or creating something. So I left there, I consulted for a while was very low hanging fruit to be able to do this, but I was like, What am I going to do? And they’re cut to a point where I’m like, Yeah, I can’t keep doing this anymore.
And at the urging of a good friend who’s a writer, he’s like, Amy, you’re a writer, you need to write. And I think it just that turning point was me just accepting it actually calling myself like, I have no problem doing that today. But I’m like, I am a writer and actually saying it out loud and believing it and then doing it. So you know that that was a, it was a long nonlinear career journey. But I will tell you, like most things, all of that sort of experience informed who I am today, how I view the world how I move through the world and what I write about. So I say it’s it none of it was wasted was all good. It made me today,
Curt Anderson 08:32
man. Wow, okay, this so good. All right. So start out, you know, out of college, you know, took a little, you know, little career turn, you know, you this professor says, you know, maybe you should take a little change of pace here and that the writing thing might not work out for you. So well. Love to see that Professor today. Right now. She
Amy Blaschka 08:50
actually she was the one
Curt Anderson 08:52
who said you shouldn’t do it. Oh, should do it. My bad. But
Amy Blaschka 08:55
I tell you, I had my AP English teacher in high school, laughed at me, I wrote something was a creative assignment. And he read it out loud to the class and laughed at me. And now I was mortified. So I was like, I will be a writer. You know?
Curt Anderson 09:11
Yeah. Suck. So and even when you did when you were doing branding, I know like you you’ve worked with, like major companies, major Fortune 500 companies, like you said, flying all over the country. I think I saw Clorox and some other big brands that you worked with in the past. Sounds like that nonprofit was a perfect fit for a young mom, you know, building out your career and kind of juggling those different roles what have you.
So let’s talk about 2011 Okay, so 2011 When you leave this CEO and again like as CEO like you could probably you know, you you know your board loves you you love your board, you know you love your your the your path, you know, you didn’t have a passion that was what was missing. Talk about what was that leap of faith? You know, what did that feel like jumping into entrepreneurship when you you know, big corporate, nonprofit? What did that feel like kind of going over the legend? Entrepreneurship.
Amy Blaschka 10:01
Well, it was scary write it, but it was one of these things like you look at it one of two ways. It’s, it’s frightening, but it’s also exciting. And what I learned about me is that I really value my freedom and autonomy. So if I’m, you know, I’m gonna make it, it’s up to me. And that’s, you know, when I figured out that actually, I could deliver on that promise to myself, it was hugely empowering, right?
So whether I was still consulting and doing the tourism things, but then when I, you know, finally kind of switched over to a strategic writing practice, that was like, hey, you know what I mean, so much of, you know, what we do, we wait for someone else to give us permission, you know, and we don’t need to you just, you just do it, start doing it. And you know, you don’t have to wait whatever it is, just start doing it, you know, because stop talking about it, you know, when something happens, present tense, you are a writer, or you are an accountant, or whatever you want to be you are just do it.
And I think that there’s so much fear around that, that prevents us from really going after what we want. We blame it on external forces, right? Oh, well, it’s a pandemic, or my boss box, or, you know, whatever. But it’s always internal, right? It’s limiting beliefs that it comes down to or somebody else’s, like that horrible English teacher I had that had that circling in my brain thinking, leaving that was truth. And it’s not you make your own truth, you know, and do your thing.
Curt Anderson 11:31
And the awesome thing is like your business, you label it now as you so you are a SASS company, if I’m not mistaken, write stories as a little sass, right? So I absolutely love that sort of stories as a service and delivering powerful stories as a service. And I know you’re huge, guys is matter of fact, you have to go to Amy’s website. We’re gonna we have all sorts of cover today. Yes, Amy’s website, please connect with her here on LinkedIn, of course.
But me you talk about your why. Right? Right. If you have an awesome bio on your website, it’s very effective. And she has like two different ones. She’s like, if you want my casual kind of my just add one. And then if you want more serious one, you click here, you get her series one. But you talk about your why Amy talk about your why. And my inspiration is so important to you when delivering this passion.
Amy Blaschka 12:17
So my why of all a Simon Sinek, right, like what is kind of grounds me and what I keep coming back to is inspiring transformation. So I get so much satisfaction out of being an active participant in any sort of transformation. Now, I mean, this can be literally like, I’m a big, like Home Improvement person, I’m very handy, right? I can change a light bulb, I can see this, I can do that. Not just a light bulb, but I can’t like put a new light fixture in, right.
I don’t do plumbing. But I mean, I do all these other things. And I think part of that is that transformation process, I have the vision to see what’s possible, I’m very much about potential, and seeing kind of the best in others. I mean, that comes back to that branding, or whatever it’s like, they’re oftentimes that I’m talking to someone and they don’t realize sort of that like special, sort of their little nugget of, of brilliance. I’m like, you know, this, right?
This is what and they’re like what, you know, I think we you know, we tend to discount things that come very easily to us and natural things, you know, everybody can do that. That’s not very special. It’s like, no, it’s a special thing. So, I mean, that transformation is so powerful, right? I mean, in somebody’s life, I’ve gone through several of them.
So I’m a big proponent of that, when I can be an active participant in one of those, something that I wrote, helps inspire someone to make a positive change, it gives them that little encouraging nudge, I mean, the highest compliment you could give me or one of them is, you know, your words helped me you inspired me to do something. And I’ve been fortunate to be on the receiving end of those several times, often, they’ll come from somebody in a private message or an email that I didn’t even know was listening, right? Because that’s the thing about our stories, and we people know, it’s not very important.
Who cares? Whenever someone is always listening, someone’s always watching, you don’t know how your words will impact somebody else. And I guarantee they will always always land with at least one person and probably more, you know, so it’s really important to share kind of our journeys and our perspectives and our things. Somebody out there wishes they were where you are right now, right? So you can help them and so that idea of inspiring transformation, for me is essential to my core, it’s why I do what I do. It’s why I’m addicted to HGTV. You know, it’s really all about sort of the possibilities and living in that world and very future focused on what could be.
Damon Pistulka 14:49
So that just makes me laugh because my wife would wait if she could delete HD in discovery in the Learning Channel. She would delete them off because that’s all I want to watch. It’s so funny.
Curt Anderson 15:01
So All right, so this is a perfect segue. So you just celebrated your 10 year anniversary of entrepreneurship last year. And so when you took that leap of faith and you know, you’re like, who knows what you’re getting into, you know, that’s what entrepreneurship is. It’s all about hope.
And so like, you know, Dave and I, we love working with entrepreneurs, I’ve never met an entrepreneur that went into business planning to fail, they’re off half full, super optimistic, you know, sometimes maybe a little, you know, we’re all a little delusional at times. But what I want to talk about is like your journey over the past 10 years, okay, we’re gonna take a deep dive into you write for Forbes five articles a month,
Damon Pistulka 15:40
payment a month, a month, 12
Curt Anderson 15:43
months a year, that’s 60 articles a year. She’s been doing it since 2018. So she, that’s just in Forbes. She has a new newsletter called Momentum. We’re going to talk about that she has another newsletter illuminate me. So let’s talk about like, as you started putting out your content 10 years ago, like talking like how, what was going on then when you first started? And how did you evolve as a content creator ghostwriter, like what’s been your evolution to get here?
Amy Blaschka 16:10
Well, I when LinkedIn, remember, I’m old enough to remember that LinkedIn didn’t always allow everyone to just publish. Yeah, yeah, it was in the beginning, they had their influencers, right, titans of industries and people. And so we go on, they just, like read things about it. And, you know, but then they opened it up, I want to say it was 20, I don’t know, it was it was a while back, and they opened it up. And when they did to code on the general public, I was like, Okay, well, why not? You know, just put it out there. And, you know, this is like, nobody else is doing it, whatever you do it.
And what happened was, I found that when I started sharing my ideas, and content and different things, I kind of found my tribe, you know, you find other people that resonate with what you’re saying, and made some very good friends that I would meet in person much later. But you know, it’s that that idea of like, okay, there’s a community online here, and there’s an audience, there’s somebody that did, and these are people not necessarily that became my clients, but it’s the, you know, become sort of that group of people that are like, okay, and I like the way you think, I like the way you move through the world.
So, you know, when you have that sort of feedback, and you find that, okay, so what I’m saying isn’t, like boring, everyone or whatever, your your, you know, at least I was sort of encouraged to do more and put out more. And, you know, in the beginning, it wasn’t like today today, I publish content on LinkedIn and other platforms Monday through Friday, right?
And then with my newsletters and other things, too, but it’s, I’m very consistent in doing that. But in the beginning, you kind of dip your toe in and go, okay, yeah, you’re everyone was trying to find their way, there wasn’t even this idea of like, oh, the creator economy or anything like that. So I just kept going, and doing it more frequently. And, you know, when you do something again, and again, that practice getting in the reps, you’re going to get better at it. And it’s not, you know, my level of writing got better, I would like to take, but it was also that I just, you know, was smarter about like, okay, not just throwing out any whimsical idea, but being very intentional about it.
And, and having sort of this framework and structure, it’s like, okay, if somebody cares, I have to say, let it be meaningful, and I want it to be centered around some things that matter most to me, rather than just be a shotgun approach, like, yeah, and it’s not that I do this, but crypto er, I’m going to talk about this popsicle. I’m going to talk about this, you know, to make it really more focused, and niche. And as I was doing that, my writing business also started to wide and kind of, you know, narrowed down, because when you’re first starting out as an entrepreneur, I mean, let’s be honest, you just like, I need to make money.
Yeah, have some income. And yeah, I’m a writer. So within any button, there’s a million different types of writers, right? Like, oh, Amy, can you write my web copy? Can you write this thing, yo, whatever. So I took on a lot of projects that, you know, today, I would decline. But I think part of that is putting yourself out there trying it doing it. And again, even if you’re good at something, it doesn’t mean that that’s kind of what’s going to be most meaningful to you or be the highest and best use of your talents.
So as I went through this process, and had different types of clients, and different kinds of assignments, kind of narrowed the focus on you know, what, you know, given my history of storytelling, giving my, you know, experience in branding people or places and products and companies, would it make more sense to focus on individuals, because that’s where I have this ability to kind of talk to someone and pull out from them one of the best and help them find the clarity and help them find sort of, what are you really trying to say?
And so we’d have conversations and it would be they talk and talk and talk and talk and I’d say so do you mean this What? Yes, yes. So a lot of what I figured out that comes naturally me is helping other people find their clarity and kind of what matters most to them and pulling it out. And then helping them stay organized in that framework, deliver it in a way that will be meaningful to their intended audiences.
So you start broad you go, Nisha, now I’m a social media ghostwriter. Which means that I’m writing updates and, and articles for my leaders. And they are typically CXOs. And founders, that entrepreneurial mindset where they know it’s like, you know what, it really, it’s important for me to put my thought leadership out there to let people know how I think either because I’m trying to attract talent, or partners or investors or whatever, but I don’t have the time or the wherewithal, it’ll take me too long. I just need a partner, a thinking partner that can I can talk to you weekly, and help me get stuff out.
And so that sort of became the evolution of what I do so, but judging them for success, and then keeping them on track pulling in sometimes, you know, entrepreneurs, I included lots of great ideas, right? It’s terrific, but we need to keep you what’s your goal? What do you want? And then I can help you kind of stay on track,
Curt Anderson 21:12
man. Yeah, there was just there. That’s yeah, that we need to uncover. Yeah, let’s cut let’s. Alright, one of our favorite lines, Damon, niching. Down, Right. Yes, we preach niche down niche down niche down and I like to say, niche down till it hurts, right. But then to finish off that sentence niche down until it hurts so good. So like, when you started your business, Amy, you know, it hurts to say, No, Mister missus, entrepreneur, that sounds good. Because you know where to start. You know, you need that revenue, need those dollars, so on and so forth. So God bless that you’ve reached this point, you drop the word clarity couple of times, I’d like to run right into your trifecta.
If so, let’s just take it away. What is your trifecta? And let me just say this super quick. Okay. So when when you take Okay, again, you know, small company, brain Corp, big corporate branding guru, you become a CEO and a nonprofit leap of faith and entrepreneurship. So I mean, you’ve really covered different gamut through your career, you’ve seen all different walks of life. And when you start out in 2011, who knows what, what’s what’s ahead, right?
We just don’t know what’s ahead. And you just became a relentless machine on content, focus and practicing what you preach and niching down. And so would I, as you as you share your trifecta. I’d like to talk a little bit about your journey on like, how you felt you, you could see yourself getting better, and practicing what you’re preaching and how you brought that to your clients.
Amy Blaschka 22:41
Yeah. Okay. So my, I call it my power trifecta. Yeah. And it includes clarity, consistency, and discipline. So no matter what you’re doing, whether it’s like deciding what to write content, your career, your life, what you want to do, if you don’t have clarity, it’s gonna have a really difficult time reaching your goal, right? You need to know like, what do you want? Right? It sounds like such a simple question. But I will tell you, if I asked anybody, what do you want, be like? And it’s not like, oh, I wouldn’t want for lunch? Like, what do you want?
Really, people have to think about this, because oftentimes, they’ll say something. It’s very superficial. And it’s like, that’s not what you want, what do you really want. And so when you find that, you get to that point where you have clarity, and I tell that I won’t work with someone until they have that clarity, because it’s impossible, we’ll go round and round in circles, and you’re never going to find it. It’s like, what do you want?
So clarity is super important. Because once you know what you want, then you can devise a plan to get there, right? And if you know what you want, you’ll also know what does this get me there? And does this take me away from it? So that’s it’s really important to have both sides of that. For me, it became very clear, no pun intended, that it’s like I can’t I don’t want to and I want to just focus on you know, social media, ghostwriting? I want to have sort of this focus, I want to work with individuals.
I don’t want to do content for companies. I’m better served one on one with the leader. You know, that’s everything I do. Even my Forbes articles are very much focused on an individual, what can you do to grow as a leader? What can you do to better yourself? Because again, that’s inspiring transformation. Right? That’s coming back to my why. So having that clarity and having the alignment of what you’re all about, will make your life infinitely easier. Right. So and saying no becomes easier to when, you know, this is what I want. Right? And this does that.
Help? No? Oh, you know, and there’s a nice way to make it easy. You know, I mean, I can say no now because I’ve gotten to a point where I’ve really kind of focused and consistently done this. In the beginning, it was much more difficult to say no to things because you’re trying to find your way. Yeah, well, that’s clarity, consistency, man. Oh, man. You know, this is the most unsexy but effective thing there is. Nobody wants to hear it because everybody wants a quick fix. Everybody wants this shortcut. Everybody wants to how do I trick the algorithm? Amy? I don’t what?
You don’t, I’m sorry. And if you’re not willing to put the work in, you probably won’t get the results. You can ask any entrepreneur that will tell you, right, there’s like it’s many, many, many years. There’s work. It’s hard work is the shortcut, right? Consistency pays dividends. And I will tell you, as a social media ghostwriter, I can’t share because of confidentiality, I can’t share when someone says, oh, Amy wouldn’t share me, you know, what have you done for other people? I can’t, yeah. If you’re on LinkedIn, you’ve seen all my work for my clients. Right? But you don’t know.
And I won’t do that. So it’s really important for me to practice what I preach to my clients and have the consistency. So why does he write five articles a month for Forbes consistently? So she started becoming a contributor? Why does she put up content Monday through Friday? Why did she do a week two weekly newsletters now? because consistency is the way and if I didn’t do it, who wants to hire a writer who talks this way? And doesn’t do it herself? I mean, it seems ridiculous. Right? So I mean, you need to have that consistency. And then discipline, right? Discipline is?
Yes, it’s, it’s showing up? You mean, you don’t feel like it, write it, that’s part of it. But the other part of discipline, at least in terms of content, and writing is staying in your lane. Now. What I like to do with my clients is say, what are the three buckets? Right for your thought leadership? And you know, they can be broad, like leadership, right? That that’s a pretty broad sort of bucket. But what you know, I don’t want is that, like, have all these ideas where I want to talk about this, or I want to talk about that. It’s like, okay, does it align and fit in one of those buckets? No, like, okay, then you probably shouldn’t put it out there. I’m not gonna write it for you.
I’m inviting you against that. Because you want to be intentional with your messaging. You want to be intentional with your content. If we’re talking about thought leadership, and if you’re working with me as your social media, ghostwriter, that’s what it’s about. I am going to say, Okay, what do you want? What you know, what, you know, what are your three buckets? And then, okay, let’s talk about how, what you how you move through the world, and how that what your experiences and stories? How do they fit into those three buckets? And that will become your content?
Because you can decide those buckets, right? I mean, it’s not like somebody puts a label on your head. No, you can only talk about this. Yeah. But you need to have the discipline to stay in those things if you want other people to come to associate you with those things, right. So that clarity, consistency, and discipline helps me personally because I, like, it’s on my whiteboard, I preach it right till I’m blue in the face. But it’s like, whenever I’ve had issues, it’s because probably I’m veering too far from one of those three things of my power trifecta. And I tell my clients the same thing.
Damon Pistulka 27:47
That’s incredible. It is because, man, I’d tell you that the consistency part of this is where people, the people fall down. And it’s just because I don’t care if you’re building a business. You know, you’re out building a manufacturing business, you’re building a, you know, software company, our personal brand, you got to show up, and you got to do it.
And Gail, Gail says, we’ll go Robertson, you know, she always talks about showing up and it’s so so key just to be there and do it. And nobody got there. I mean, because I I’m just gonna ask you one question. How many people do you know, that really got where they are that you go? Wow, they really they’re, they’re well known or a leader in their field that didn’t? wasn’t consistent wasn’t showing up? How many people do you really know like that?
Amy Blaschka 28:39
You don’t you don’t know. Somebody who finds fame for something that isn’t consistency based? That’s pretty short lived? Yeah. Or famous for being famous?
Curt Anderson 28:51
Yeah, maybe the Kardashians? I don’t know about but that’s maybe one person to come up with one group that anyway. So Amy, this is guys, let’s just recap this again. If you’re just if you’re cutting out I know we’re coming. And we’re gonna be here all day. Now. I’m just Yeah, we have so much uncover so I know it’s top of the hour. If you’re leaving, please connect with me. Please follow her. She has two incredible newsletters 101 on her website.
So again, if you guys are cutting out have an awesome weekend. But please stick with us because we have so much more to cover in I just wanted to. So for kids at home taking notes. All the cool kids are here today, by the way. Cool Kids. Number one, clarity. Number two, consistency. Number three, discipline you’re putting out an enormous amount of content. We have folks that are manufacturers, we have folks that are supporting manufacturers we work with manufacturing, ascension partnerships, Diane if you’re there, the our tech program, right?
So there’s all these different agencies out there, and they’re like, you know, sometimes they get discouraged me where they’re like, You know what, geez, I’m doing this once a week or I’m putting this out or putting this out. You know, Were there times share a little bit. Were there times where you’re like man is like I’m putting all this content out. Is this worth it? At night, and I know as an interviewer I’ve read somewhere, don’t ask two questions. I’m going to break that rule. I’m gonna ask you two questions. Was there a time where you’re like, is this really working?
And can you slide in? Was there a moment of like an aha or a tipping point of like, I’m really building a tribe like I’m, you know, you are so humble. so modest. I don’t know, if you want to consider comfortable calling yourself an influencer? I feel you’re an influencer, you’ve had an enormous positive influence on me from all distance for years. Was there a point where you like, is this working? And did it slide into like, like, when was that tipping point of like, I think I’m onto something.
Amy Blaschka 30:37
So I think there’s a couple things here. So I will tell you I go even though I’m like, comfortable and calling myself with authority, like, I’m a writer. I’m here when I go through bouts of imposter syndrome still today. Like, who cares what I have to say? Yeah, that’s what I wrote was a piece of garbage. You know, it’s like, yeah, I love that. And the truth is, not everything will be a homerun. Right. When you’re putting out, you know, talking huge numbers of things, you can’t possibly have everything be like, stellar, right. So there’s gonna be a range, there gonna be some things that you know, take off. And what happens is that, oh, sometimes I’ll write something super fast. Nothing.
Not very long, whatever. It’s something. And for whatever reason that, yeah, yeah, I’ll spend a ton of time on an article thing, and it just sort of falls flat. You never really know. And I think you need to be comfortable. The fact that it’s like, coming back to just kind of consistently putting something out there. I think, for me, when I’m feeling sort of crappy, or I’m feeling kind of like, you know, I’m all right. I mean, I’m one of the bajillion content creators, right, is it’s not that I need this to kind of keep doing it, because I, you know, disciplined enough to kind of keep showing up and doing what I do.
But I will tell you, when I get a comment, or more likely a private message, somebody says something to me, and says, Amy wow, I loved your your article, or your you know, update or whatever I put out there some piece of content, it really struck me as something and it means the world to me, and and they share a little bit of their own story and what they’re going through. And you know, you inspired me to make a change or to finally do something I had been hemming and hawing on. I mean, that is what keeps me going.
That is what really fuels might be like, okay, you know, so you said something that you can say, I don’t consider myself an influencer. And by the way, anyone who calls himself an expert or a guru or an influencer, that’s something that stood upon you. That’s nothing, not self appointed. I mean, that’s, I mean, that’s, like, so like, but, but I mean, I would rather be someone who has a massive impact, right? Yes. That’s about positively impacting the world and people through my words, that’s, you know, what I want to do, then, you know, I’m an influencer.
Right? I mean, because that term, I think there’s good intent with that term. But it’s so bandied about now that it becomes it’s lost some of its luster for me. I appreciate if somebody says that I’ve influenced them or in some other way, that’s, that’s amazing, you know, but my aim is always to have and leave a positive impact, write more about the legacy than it is about, you know, Hey, aren’t I great? You know, because if I can inspire someone else to take action, then I’ve done my job.
Curt Anderson 33:36
Yeah. And you definitely do that. And you just, I mean, like, people just adore you. And again, I appreciate your humility. But when you look at your posts, and again, guys, follow me she posts five days a week, and even when you follow your posts, I mean, you are a content machine. So I just I, I’d love to know how you pull it off, you know, obviously, you’d never sleep but I just don’t know. I’m going to share some some of the headlines.
I feel like you have truly mastered your craft number one at the content number two at resonating and connecting and again, I’m I’m speaking firsthand, I know we goof around a lot, but like I’ve been following you for years, you know, for a night, you know, I just connected this two months ago. I mean, like so for years, been like following your videos, your content, your articles, your Forbes articles. I see all the love that you get on your posts.
You know, we mentioned some names David Brier and a bunch of other you know, we I won’t use that word influencers but other positive folks on LinkedIn, you really have created a nice following a nice community. It’s a credit to you of just that positive energy that you put out. But let me just share a couple of your headlines here. Five best people to add to your inner circle and three people to kick out so and I’m hoping I’m not good. I’m hoping I’m not one of those three ways to create, build and maintain career momentum. I want to talk about momentum in one second.
Write a letter to your future self. For questions to gauge your level have intellectual humility Daymond, you and I were just talking last week about our friend Wayne Dyer, the Famous Wayne Dyer. And he used the term radical humility. I love that you have inner intellectual humility. Let’s talk about this real quick, Amy, that letter to your future self. I just I love that article, the comments, were just off the charts, it just really resonated. Sure, with folks that missed that article, what is this letter to your future self?
Amy Blaschka 35:24
So, you know, in the idea of writing a letter, your future self, there’s a couple things, you know, right around, you know, the holidays, everyone makes resolutions and New Year’s things. And I’ve never been big on that. And science shows that, you know, even with the best intentions, people fall short by, you know, mid February, right?
And then you end up feeling crappy. It’s like, who wants that? Why do you keep putting yourself through that cycle. So the idea of writing your letter to your future self, there’s part visualization, it’s sort of the potential and possibilities. So you write a letter that says, like, dear Amy, and you know, this is me to Amy, a year from now, your five year you can decide, right? The beauty of that, you know, and what you do is you write it as if you’ve already accomplished all those things that you want to accomplish, right?
So it’s already happened. And you can date it, you know, like, say, it’s a year from today. So you know, and I’m reading this, and you have that, and I think the exercise itself of going through and talking in the present tense or the past you you’ve done this, you know, congratulations, you, you know, wrote a book, you got a new job, you did whatever you did, and you can have multiple things, but did that it’s very empowering. It’s uplifting. And then it’s, I’m really big on a tangible, right.
So I’ve done this, and I literally have one kind of stuck, you can’t off camera behind my computer here. Just because I feel like when it’s there, it’s that visual reminder of like, okay, yeah, and because I’m a very future focused person always about what’s possible. What’s, for me, that really works.
I think, for other folks, if you’re feeling stuck, or feeling sort of, like, you know, this is a way that can you can put those sort of your goals and everything into a format, and go through that exercise, writing things out to say, Okay, this and then you know, what’s really fun is a year from writing that letter, you go back and revisit it. And what happens is, even if you didn’t accomplish exactly what you thought it’d be, you’ve done so much, you know, you graduate yourself, you can kind of, you know, I said this, but wow, I did this, or you know, many people right now in the last several years have pivoted right because of COVID.
Because different things, they’ve had to be adaptable and new. So it’s highly likely that maybe something shifted, but it doesn’t mean it’s bad. It just means you did and that way you can then celebrate that progress, whether you fall into it to a tee, which is rare, or you know, something else happened instead, that’s also worth kind of celebrating. So I think it’s a nice exercise to do that. And a great alternative to New Year’s resolution.
Damon Pistulka 38:02
Yeah. So one of the things I got to back up just a little bit. I hear you talk and and hear this passion behind what you’re doing. And, you know, you talk about clarity, consistency, discipline. Do you think your passion is one of the just the keys, that passion behind that for leadership and bettering yourself and the people around you and humanity until you think that passion that really gets you going in the morning? Is kind of like that fuel behind it?
Amy Blaschka 38:36
I mean, maybe this is how I’m wired. Right? Yeah, I mean, you know, but I will tell you, I’m a lot more excited and enthusiastic and happy because I am using my talents to their highest use, right? So I mean, if you’re out of alignment, your energy level is gonna be lower, you’re gonna feel crappy, you know, because you’re just doing I’m just going through the motions, I don’t want to I don’t want to live my life going through the motions.
I spent, you know, a few decades kind of doing other things. So I mean, I feel like what you’re getting what you see is what you get with me, always. So if I was upset, you would know, but I’m generally wired to be a happy person. And because I truly am happy, and I really like what I’m doing and believe in what I’m doing. This isn’t a show.
This isn’t a facade. I mean, like I said, like, I practice what I preach, and, you know, maybe I’m not for everyone, and that’s okay, too. But genuinely, um, you know, I do want to help, you know, inspiring transformations by why I want to have a positive impact. I think about legacy. I’m old enough where it’s like, I know the world isn’t about me. So, you know, I would say, yeah, that definitely plays a part. And, you know, if people respond to that good energy, then that gives me even more, you know, so I think
Damon Pistulka 39:53
we’ll go ahead and just one, one second, just clarity, consistency and discipline. One of the things I see in that I just don’t think you have the energy unless you have the fuel behind it like you do. Because you can just like you said, before I can, I can have clarity. And this is what I need to be doing consistently and do the discipline, but you just don’t have that, that extra piece that comes through in your work. And doesn’t matter what kind of work you’re doing. Here.
Amy Blaschka 40:22
Yeah, I mean, if you’re not feeling it, then maybe you’re not clear on what you really want, you know, so I mean, you might have to go back and revisit that too. And, you know, because oftentimes, we think we know what we want. And it’s not really what we want if we dig a little deeper. So you know, not every you can’t be, it’s not all, you know, look, I’m like a positive person, but it’s not all rainbows and unicorns in my world, right?
Yeah. I mean, I have crap I got to deal with on a daily basis, just like every other human. Right, you know, I choose, right, I choose to have a certain mindset I choose to show up in the world because I feel like, you know, I want to add, goodness, I want to add positivity, I want to be intentional with the energy that I put out there because God knows, especially on social media, there’s plenty of divisiveness, and every poverty and people tearing each other down.
I don’t want any part of that. I’m not going to do it. You know, I’m awesome. I mean, the inverse of that, you know, I want to cheer people on, and I genuinely excited with my clients and, and my friends do something. It’s like, it’s that, you know, difference between sort of a scarcity mindset versus abundance, right, I’m not talking Oh, whoo. But just generally, it’s like, there’s enough for everyone. You know, you don’t have to get defensive, you know, just like, you know, you do you, I’ll do
Curt Anderson 41:40
you, you this is good enough. So as you get, you’re just getting a taste of what I absolutely love. You know, there’s a lot of folks that can create content Amy, what I love what you know, like you just said Damon backing up a little bit, you know, you are a coach, like you are firm, you’re like no niche, you know, you’re you’re encouraging your clients to stay in their lane, stay in their strike zone, we’re big baseball fans, you know, hit those homeruns, except those strikeouts, as you’re saying, you know, you put out that one post, you think it’s gonna you’re going to crush it, and vice versa. Let’s talk about momentum. Okay, so now you’re writing all sorts of content.
So again, guys, she’s on Forbes five times a month, I can’t even imagine, if I was just, I was talking to a group about like putting out one article a month, and I’m gonna do that. So five articles on Forbes. So that’s one audience. You have your illuminate me your other newsletter, and you just started your like three weeks into momentum on right here on LinkedIn. 15,000 subscribers already, on your newsletter here on LinkedIn, talk about momentum, what this word means to you why it’s so important. And why are you putting this newsletter out?
Amy Blaschka 42:44
Well, I’ll start with the name. Okay, so momentum, momentum is my word of the year for 2022. And I mentioned already that I’m not a big fan of New Year’s resolutions. So what I do instead, is I always choose a word to guide me for the year ahead, right? Because my Northstar I visual person. So I had on my whiteboard, I have it, you know, I created a graphic around it. And the 2020 ones word was illuminate. Right. And so I created a newsletter called illuminate me because I want it to be action oriented. Illuminate. It has many different meanings. It has it, you know it, but it’s really about sharing and shining a light and it very much aligned with who I am.
And I was feeling momentum. I may be one of the few folks who had actually really great professional year last year and the year prior, I’ve actually been able to kind of do well. And so I’m happy about that. But I never want to take it for granted. I don’t want to get complacent. And the idea of maintaining and building momentum seemed to be the perfect sort of word for me for this year is sort of like okay, you’ve done this, what else I want to keep growing, I want to keep challenging myself, it’d be very easy to just sort of kind of go hey, let’s Coast we’re good, right?
But that won’t sit right with me. I have to keep doing it. I got it. It’s scary sometimes put yourself out there to try new things and I will be trying some new things. One of them was like doing a LinkedIn newsletter which I know two people go well she said writer, why is that scary? Well, because I’m still like, oh my god, what are people gonna say, you know, you still have that sort of bit of like, seed of fear in you. So, you know, momentum is about building and that again comes back to this idea that clarity, consistency and discipline, right?
It’s like, following keep doing it and you know, there’s always momentum when you have that mindset of like, I consider myself a lifelong learner, right growth mindset where it’s like yeah, I I’m super curious. Like that’s one of the best things I think trait that I have is the curiosity because I’m genuinely curious about people what makes them tick, what motivates them what scares them? Like, if I hadn’t been a film major or right you know, doing the writing, I’d probably be psychology just because people fascinate me, you know?
So I mean, there’s that curiosity. And then it’s like, okay, well, why, how can we get better? Why do we do the things we do, and I love you know, so I read a lot, you know, read a lot, I watch, you know, you know, documentaries and videos and movies and, and all sorts of things and listen to podcasts and all this stuff, there’s a lot of information because there’s always something that we can be learning. So momentum is about, you know, taking positive forward action, right, and it doesn’t come in huge leaps, but it’s gonna come and those little steps taken again, and again, and again. And again.
That’s how you maintain momentum. And so when I put together my LinkedIn newsletter, it was really around that idea. So I share, you know, an action of an article with actionable things that people can do and part of my momentum newsletter on LinkedIn. Also, as a bonus, I’m like, oh, you know what, they get this on a Friday. I can link to all my content from the that earlier week. So you’ll get you get links in Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursdays content as well, to kind of keep going.
Curt Anderson 46:02
Yeah. And then, and then your newsletter on Sunday is illuminate me and it’s in it’s a different message that you’re putting out on Sundays.
Amy Blaschka 46:11
Yeah, so Sunday’s newsletter is a substack newsletter still free. But it’s, it’s, I mean, it’s similar content, but you’ll get more alienness. Right, it’s, you’re gonna have personal stories and things. But I promise I weave it together in such a way that you still going to get some actionable things to take away, right?
It’ll, it’ll be some it might have a random headline, they’ll be like, What is that about? But I’ll show stories. I’m real, you know, it’s like what happened, whatever, and, and then there’ll be something actionable. And then I will typically at the end of that, because it comes out on Sunday mornings, I’ll link to my latest Forbes article that I share publicly on Monday. You know, so it all it all sort of feeds each other.
Curt Anderson 46:54
That’s cool, man, this. So Amy, how I could listen to you all day, man. I mean, this is just so phenomenal fun, as you are, you know, and I appreciate your humility. And I agree with that the influencer word, please accept you are truly a gift. You are a blessing to literally an eye. And I know you know, this, you know, literally 1000s of people are out there enjoying your messages. One one more title I wanted to share.
And I might butcher this a little bit, but seven questions, ask yourself to develop grit. And so like somehow, someway, like you really have perfected your craft, whether God given talent or whatever, of putting out these positive messages that people want to see. You’ve really your your headlines are captivating. You know, it’s like, Man, I have to read this. And they’re fun, they’re snarky. They’re powerful. They’re helpful. And it’s just Amy Right. It’s all about just Amy. Amy, I know, I could keep you here all day. I know. You’re super busy. Man, this is like, why this was so good.
Here’s my last question for you. Okay. And I’ll probably say this, like five times, but anyway, I hope I won’t. But anybody out there. So like, again, we work with manufacturers who are like finally, you know, in the past, like, we don’t even need a website. We don’t need we go to trade shows, sales reps on the road. We don’t this whole content thing. Everybody COVID everybody’s life changed, right? So people’s people are intentionally doing content, they are podcasting. They are putting things out there. That’s a little bit scary taking that leap of faith. Right. Okay.
So for folks that are out there, they have a podcast on their radar, maybe Netflix talk about that future letter to themselves. Okay. That future letter says, Hey, man, why don’t you get out there and like blog just once a month? How about start a podcast? Or do a video button, you know, so and so forth? Go back to 2011 aim. What advice do you have for that person out there? Who is they have a story to share? But maybe they’re just a little fearful, a little scary, you know, hitting that submit button for that first time? What advice do you have for folks out there to get their story out there?
Amy Blaschka 48:57
Well, first of all know you’re not alone. Everybody feels that same? Yeah, yeah. Scary to put a piece of yourself out there and make no mistake when you are sharing sort of your insights or your you know, experiences. Yeah, that is a piece of you. And it shouldn’t be personal. Because it’s you. There’s only one you and that your perspective, what makes it magic, right? So I would say, you know, no, you’re not alone. push past your fear and just start anyway, start small. I mean, I swear the hardest is that first, first time you post and you’re thinking, oh my gosh, the world’s gonna end and then you’re, then you’re waiting, is anyone going to comment? Then we will get 00
Damon Pistulka 49:34
likes, not even a like, and then you know, just
Amy Blaschka 49:37
keep doing it. So people know. But I think the important thing is to is, you know, know who your audience is, who you’re trying to reach, and then go where they are. Right. So my clients are all b2b. So their client, their, you know, people, their customers, their audiences, they’re the talent they’re trying to find the partners are all on LinkedIn primarily. So that’s where they choose to, you know, put stuff out there. So if you are looking for, you know, arguably I mean, it’s the professional network, right?
That’s what we talk about. It’s not to say you couldn’t find the same people on Twitter or maybe Instagram or Tik Tok, if that’s your thing, but I would say, you know, it’s a fairly safe that to put something out there that’s related to your industry, your thought leadership in that industry, how you do what you do behind the scenes, whatever on LinkedIn.
So start there, it’s a fairly kind audience. There are exceptions and trolls. But I would say start there and know this too. And I said this earlier, somebody needs to hear your story. Yeah, somebody you don’t even know yet that you don’t even realize needs to hear it, and you will help them so if not for you do it for someone else. Because you know, and that might set you over that hump and get you past it is that you’re doing this it is a service to others when you share your value with other people and you share your story.
Curt Anderson 50:56
Moment of silence. Or just, we let’s just we’re not gonna say word for a minute. Let’s just take it in. Yeah, I guys, Friday, it’s it’s we’re coming into time. Aimia Oh, my gosh, are you incredible? You are such a blood. This is like the fastest our Daymond like I could Yeah, our right now. So this was so fun.
Damon Pistulka 51:17
Well, the thing I can feel I can feel what I read, I can feel it coming from you now. And I mean, and this is, this is the thing that I that I love about reading your stuff. And it’s so great to get to talk to you here too. Because you can feel your passion, you can feel that energy. And you can feel that. And I think that if people, when they’re when they read something, or they think about something and they’re thinking about trying to develop content, just just use that, use your feelings. And if it feels like that to you just let it go. And you do such a good job of that I just did an addition for all by when I read.
Amy Blaschka 51:50
Thank you Well, and then you said something that I would like to remind people of too, if it sounds like me, right? The way you speak, right? You don’t have to take on some air and academic or whatever. It’s the whole point of putting content out there is to connect with others and communicate and you’re gonna do that if you just write the way that you speak. I mean, sure, grammar, all that Yeah. But you know, use the voice that you have, because that’s unique to you. And that’s what connects you to people you know, offline. So use that same voice and that same tone in your writing. Awesome.
Curt Anderson 52:22
All right, everybody out there. How about little standing ovation for our dear friend, Amy just Amy in her in her luxurious office. Right Amy? Hanging out my basement. So Amy, let’s wrap up on this. So guys, please follow Amy. Check out her Forbes articles. They are off the charts. They are phenomenal. Follow her on any social obviously here LinkedIn, Twitter, wherever you want it wherever you hang out, hang out with Amy. Foul sign up for her newsletter. Boy, you bees are grateful, so thankful you want to momentum if you’re looking for momentum this year. And if nothing else, you know, for folks that are just getting on LinkedIn and like maybe your audience a little bit small.
And and I always tell folks, you know what, find someone like Amy who is super active because the folks that are hanging out and Amy’s and her tribe that are posting, those are the types of folks that you want it you know, high quality professional people, engaging funny, snarky moving the needle. We’re all in this together. So, Amy, God bless you. Thank you. Thank you. I am so honored to spend this time with you today. We are so blessed to have you on the show. So, man, we got to have you back. This was
Amy Blaschka 53:29
I would love that. Thank you guys. It didn’t go fast. Sorry. If I was like, Yeah, we’re
Curt Anderson 53:34
great. I like I’m actually I’m going to delete Damon. I’m going to go back if we edit this. I’m going to delete everything I talked about. It’s just Amy. We’re just going to nobody cares about your aim. So alright, guys, let’s close out on this. If you aren’t inspired if you aren’t motivated if you aren’t striving for momentum from this conversation, man, we need to have a one on one. Amy because we need to get you in shape.
So guys go out there be like what an inspirational story here. Get out there. Keep crushing it. People need to hear your story. Get just fired up. So guys, we have a great week come in next week. Damon we’re back on Monday with our manufacturing Monday motivation station. We’ll be back here on LinkedIn live, guys sign up for Amy’s newsletters. She has a killer week ahead of you coming up. guys have an awesome, awesome weekend. God bless you Damon, take it away, brother.
Damon Pistulka 54:23
Wow, I don’t know how to follow this up. But thanks so much. Thanks so much everyone in the comments. They were rolling. Amy, if you haven’t seen the comments, they’re just they’re gone. And Kurt and I are so blessed to have you on today. Thanks so much. We’re gonna be back again next week. Have a great weekend, everyone. Thanks for having me, guys.