Forbes Riley is an advertising queen. You may not recognize the name, but it’s almost guaranteed that you have seen one of her many infomercials or product spotlights on QVC or the Home Shopping Network. She has been on QVC for almost 20 years, HSN for the past three years and is known for the amazing way she sells her products. Riley has even become known as the Julia Roberts of infomercials.
According to Riley, one of the most important things you can do, whether you are still in school or just out of college is brand yourself.
Riley says, “Look at yourself as a product. What do you want your image to be? Be what you want to be.”
It doesn’t matter what you think of yourself; however you are perceived is reality.
“Products are not born, they are created,” believes Riley.
Riley went onto say that you can be branded as the reliable one, the slacker, the go-to guy/gal or whatever you want. It’s easy to forget that people are constantly watching you. Because first impressions can be very difficult to shake it’s important to make the first one a good one.
For Riley her goal was to have an amazing career. Along the way she found she had an uncanny ability to sell products. People bring her products when they have no idea how to sell them. Because of her background she knows how important it is to find the perfect market to sell products.
Like a product, Riley says to find your perfect market. Figure out exactly what you want and brand yourself to be “sold” to that market. Riley has six secrets to success. They may not guarantee you’ll be a millionaire, but you will at least be happier and more successful than you would be without trying them.
Forbes Riley’s Six Secrets of Success:
1. Brand yourself. Fundamentally you need to decide who you are and what you want. However, what’s nice about being a person instead a product is that you have the ability to change. You don’t have to stay in the same career forever; you can always re-brand.
2. Love what you do. If you love what you do, you’ll never work again a day in your life. There are so many more career choices than your guidance counselor ever told you about in high school. The Internet has changed things as well. Research what you want to do and embrace the networking element of the Internet.
3. Understand the fundamentals of a conversation. Do you have an elevator pitch? Your elevator pitch is that brief 30-90 seconds of what you want to do and who you want to be. It should be short, powerful and inspiring. If you don’t know where you’re headed, you won’t get anywhere.
4. Have a plan (goes along with the elevator pitch). What would you say to someone about you? You could get that prime opportunity and you could blow it. When you write a business plan-you have to answer a lot of questions, but at least once you write it, it’s ready. Write down your personal business/career plan and be ready to execute it.
5. Quit following the path your on if your not happy. Most people are so consumed with what they think they are supposed to be, they never get a chance to be what they could be or what they want to be. Only you can change your destiny. If you never wanted to be a doctor, why are you in medical school?
6. Expect the unexpected. All this planning and all this foundation are important, but if you are not at least a little flexible you could miss the opportunity of a lifetime.
For more information on Forbes Riley, please visit www.forbesriley.com.
Photography by More Than Photographs.