Episode 43 – Creating a Movement with Nicole Dean

Nicole dropped additional nuggets of sales and marketing goodness in the EXTENDED Interview. Be sure to click here to access all of our great extended interviews, transcripts and more within our Insider's Club.

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imagesNicole Dean is a Published Author, Popular Speaker, Successful Blogger and Podcaster, and a Business Consultant to really smart people.

She is frequently asked to teach about the topics of Blogging, Outsourcing, Passive Income, Working from Home Successfully, Content Repurposing, Running a Profitable Affiliate Program, Creating infoproducts (as she’s released hundreds of her own), Productivity, and List Building – among other things.

Nicole has been featured in several books, and has published her own books as well. One of her greatest talents is getting other successful and talented people to write content for her – for free. In fact, her book series “Expert Briefs” is mostly written by her colleagues.

She teaches her students to set financial goals, but to also write down their lifestyle goals, as well. This ensures that they are building a business that aligns with the way they want their lives to look in 5 or 10 years, rather than creating a job where they are working for a crazy person – themselves.

Join The W.W.A.Y.D. Movement

Podcast Transcription

Brian Basilico: As most of you peeps know, that one of my favorite words which I say in my podcast all the time is “awesome.” As a matter of fact, my wife thinks I say it too much, but you can't say it too much. Today's guest is Nicole Dean and she is awesome and she started something called “What Would Awesome You Do?” We're going to get into that a little bit. Hey, Nicole. How are you doing?

Nicole Dean: Hey. I'm doing, well. Awesome!

Brian: I love it.

I want to start off by introducing you to my audience and let them know how you got started on internet marketing, and online marketing and what's your back story?

Nicole: And that I actually have some credibility other than I'd like to say the word “awesome”?

Brian: It helps. Yes, there you go. You got way more than that.

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Nicole: Well, we'll go back to the beginning because that's always a very good place to start. I started messing around online after my son was born because I was kind of looking for something to do, some ways to make some money. I was pregnant with my daughter in 2001 and I started making baby bracelets, selling some books, just looking for my greater purpose and she was born on September 2 of 2001. So, nine days before she was born was September 11, 2001, which obviously changed all of our lives forever.

Brian: Oh yes.

Nicole: I just kept saying, “Don't be born. Don't be born. Don't be born yet.” She was born nine days later into – and I don't even think planes are flying yet even then. It was a very weird time for all of us and then my husband work for fortune-100 company and they decided, a knee-jerk reaction to downsize. That was like a week after she was born, so we went from one very nice income to no income overnight and one child to two children. I just watched my husband go through that and it did what it does for a lot of us, it lit a fire under my butt and it got me to actually start looking seriously at creating an online business.

So I started to look around and I couldn't find anything that made me not feel like I needed to take a shower afterwards because this was back when the internet was still fairly new and there were scams like crazy and nobody was monitoring it. It's a pretty scary stuff. So, I started a site back then called Showmomthemoney.com, back in 2003 and I found that I enjoyed writing and people learning from me, and I kept learning, and I became an affiliate marketing manager for four years for one of the bigger gurus back then and who is still a great guy, Jimmy D. Brown.

And I became a speaker, and an author, and it just kept growing, and growing, and I created more businesses and now along with my own business, I have Coach Glue which is a website that helps coaches to make their clients stick to them. It's called, “Coach Glue. We make your clients stick to you.” That grew like crazy and we never expected that. We just rebranded it because we just threw up a site quick and then all of the sudden we're making hundreds of thousands of dollars and we went, “Okay, it's really ugly. We got to fix this.” So we just rebranded that.

Then I'm also co-owner of Beachpreneurs, which is, “We make bold business breakthroughs at the beach, and it's a ladies-only event.” We get together at the beach and mastermind, and we have beach camp, beach house and beach haven, and it's very cool, and I love getting paid to hang on out at the beach with brilliant minds.

Brian: That's awesome, but I'm also very jealous because you guys get go to that so I went out and I bought “Baconpreneurs.” I'm going to do a bacon fest for guys. How is that?

Nicole: That's fair. That's fair.

Brian: So we're going to sit around and chew on meat while you guys are sipping margaritas or whatever that is.

Nicole: Oh, we do that.

Brian: Oh, I'm sure.

So you started this thing. You've just got done giving a keynote speech at NAMS. Is that your first keynote there?

Nicole: That's my first keynote at NAMS, yes.

Brian: Awesome. So, tell us about that. How did you get into doing the keynote and what was your whole topic and purpose?

Nicole: The funny thing is David has been asking me – David Perdew, the owner, the creator of NAMS – he's been asking me to do a keynote for a couple of years and I keep kind of [humming and howling] about it. I just didn't have something that was making my heart jump out of my chest and make me feel like, “This is my message. This is what I want to share. This message has to be told and if I don't, it's going to drive me crazy.” Then all of a sudden, it happened and I got this message of that, “I wanted to help people awesomize their businesses, their lives and the world.”

My keynote, the name of it was a freaking Double Dog Dare You to be Awesome, because I feel like as entrepreneurs, we have three main parts: our business, our life and the world. If any of those three are being neglected, then we can't possibly reach our full capacity for awesomeness. And if we're just focusing on business, then our lives can fall apart, and I've seen that happen with my friends, and it's sad, or hell falls apart, or marriage falls apart, and it's hard to make money if you're not healthy, and you can't think clearly.

Then I just feel like we have such an opportunity because we're entrepreneurs that we can change the world. We really, really can impact the world in a huge way. As I said in my keynote, I think it's our duty, and our obligation, and our responsibility to do so. We have this platform of people that are listening to us. Look at right now, we have an audience of people that are listening to us. It's our duty and our obligation to make that impact that we have on our listeners and on the people reading our blog post to make that a positive thing and to encourage others to be awesomizing the world with what they can do in their business – whether that's like I talked about in my keynote, leading by example and then sharing it, or whether you're just doing small things every single day and that impact adds up. But man, we have this platform, and we have followers, and we can do so much good. It's just really exciting to me.

Brian: It is. It's totally exciting. I thoroughly enjoyed and get it. One of my favorite things that happens every once in a while is you kind of pull up to Starbucks and the next thing you know, somebody has paid for your drink ahead of that. It's the little things like that. It's holding the door for somebody. It's just getting outside of yourself and thinking about other people that makes the world a better place. I loved your keynote. It was all about that kind of stuff and yes, we do have a responsibility. It's our job to get the message out there and we have a platform. We've got people like you said, that listen to us on this podcast, which I absolutely love and the whole purpose is to bring people like you in front of an audience that wouldn't even know you exist. So, they get to hear your awesomeness and they get to get inspired by you and all those things. That's why I love doing this and the blog, and all that stuff.

Let's talk a little bit about the WWAYD. Now, April begins with A and you've turned it into “awesome” month. It is, “What Would Awesome You Do?” What's the story behind that? How did that come about?

Nicole: Well, I would love to tell you how that came about. I was at NAMS a year ago and there was a man there named James Dearing from Betterpiano.com, and I was not feeling well at all. I didn't know it, but I was about to have massive stomach flu. So, I had a very, very brief conversation with James in the lobby as I was heading upstairs to lay down. I just asked him I'm like, “James, how did you lose 70 lbs? How did you revitalize your marriage? How did you become a better father and start a business in 18 months? How did you do it?” Because I knew he had done these things, but I wanted to be more awesome, so I asked him.

He looked at me in the short conversation and it changed my life. He said, “Well, I decided that I wanted to be awesome James and not be average James anymore. So, what I did is I started to think about what awesome James would be like. Well, what do you do on a daily basis from the minute he woke up, to the minute he went to bed at night? Awesome James would do certain things that average James did not do. So then, in every minute of every day, when faced with a decision of what should I do next? I would think what would awesome James do?” He said, “When I set the alarm at night, I set it for an hour earlier so I could go on for a walk and help my wife get the kids out of the door because I knew that that was a stressful time for her. That's what awesome James would do, so that's what I did. When the alarm went off, average James wanted to hit the snooze button, but I thought what would awesome James do? Awesome James would drag his butt out of bed and he would go on that walk and then he would help his wife get the kids up to school.”

Then for lunch he would think, “What would awesome James do? Awesome James would not go through McDonalds, he would go and have a healthy lunch.” He'd get back from work and say, “Okay, I just want to flop on the couch. You need to say, no, wait. That's what average James would do. My wife has just been home with some of the kids. She has had a long day, too. The dishwasher needs to be emptied. I'll just run over there and unload the dishwasher. That's what awesome James would do. It will take me two minutes, it will make dinner time easier for her and she deserves that.” Just these tiny little decisions over 18 months changed his life.

I was inspired by James and yes, James is in the group that we're going to be talking about. I was inspired by him and so I was actually going through a hard time because I battled depression pretty much my whole life and sometimes it's been really bad and sometimes it's not. I was having a really hard time in January to the point where I was considering canceling my keynote at NAMS because I thought, “I can't get up in front of those people and talk about being awesome. I'd be a phony.”

Brian: Oh no!

Nicole: Yes. So it reminded me. You must have missed the beginning of my keynote because I shared that story. I have shared a really hideous picture of me, too, because I'm transparent. What I did was I thought I'd have to cancel my keynote or I have to get into re-awesomization mode. Then James' story came back and I thought, “Well, I can do little things. I can make a commitment to do little things everyday and those little things will add up. If I can get my act together, then I will not cancel. If I can't, then I will cancel.” And I set a date and so in a month's time, I lost over 20 lbs and I started making more money in my business, I became a better mom and I did a lot of the same things like James did and I was able to show up at Beachpreneurs event at the end of February and rock that because I was back. I had re-awesomized myself.

That's where this whole movement came from because sometimes we're awesome and then we slip. But like I say, I was awesome once and I can be awesome again because it's in there. It just needs to come out. If I can't do that mentally, then by doing awesome, it can help me to feel awesome again. That's what I found happened.

Brian: Fabulous, and you are awesome. There's no question about it. I was probably putting pictures of you up on the internet at the beginning of your keynote. I was there.

Nicole: It's fine. Awesome Nic doesn't care, seriously. It's good. I was just happy you were there.

Brian: Yes, it was great. So then, how did that turn into this whole movement thing where you have a website and a Facebook group, you're bringing people together. What sparked that?

Nicole: Well, it was part of my own re-awesomization that I wanted to be accountable somewhere somehow to continue with my re-awesomization. But to be perfectly honest – because that's what I do, I just saw a lot of people floating through life like a leaf on the wind. Time was just going by and they're not reaching their goals, they're not awesomizing their business, they're letting it slip by. They're unhappy and they're not making the impact on the world that they wanted either. So these are people I care about and these are people I see in other groups and I've known them for years, and nothing is changing because it's all in their heads and they're not taking the action because they're overwhelmed. If we can just do tiny awesome things everyday, they don't have to be overwhelming. That can be a one tiny step towards a goal. Then, those do add up.

I've lost 27 lbs now and all I've done is make tiny little changes. It's not that hard when we actually think about what would awesome you do in every moment of every day and awesome Nic definitely wants to eat well, awesome Nic wants her business to grow on, awesome Nic… I want to make a huge impact on the world, so I thought with this program, that I could try to get 100,000 awesome acts in one month in the month of April, for April awesomization.

Brian: And you've come pretty darn close to getting it started. It's amazing how many people have joined the group. The other thing that I've noticed from this, too, is there's a real buzz that I haven't seen coming from a conference, I think, ever. Because people are like all of a sudden excited and one of the things that I heard in a different interview, was there's a lot of people that go to these conferences and they're all fire and brimstone, ready to rock and roll and a week later, it's just all kinds of [inaudible] down to get back into reality.

This one is different. I'm definitely sensing that people are more open, they're more motivated, they seem like they're more excited, there's a lot more reaching out between people and communication-wise, and I think you've sparked the movement. You've done it and it hasn't even started yet.

Nicole: I know. That's the crazy part. That's the part that's just blowing my mind is we don't even start until April 1st and everybody wants to be awesome. They just needed an invitation to do so. I am just so excited because they're going crazy. Stuff is happening. People are outlining their books that they wanted to write forever, they're making connections, we made this connection for this podcast. I am just amazed. People are finally picking up the phone to find out about local women shelters in their area that they can donate their clothes to.

“They're not doing many good in the closet.” Yes, you're right. Get them to someone that can use them, that will get down on bended knee and thank God that they have these clothes to wear at a job interview. I mean it, why let them collect dust in your closet and worst than that, feel guilty about it because you've got clutter in your closet with clothes that you may not even fit in right now, so everytime you look at them, they make you feel bad when they can make someone else feel good. It's the simple things that add up to making our businesses, our lives in the world just more awesome.

Brian: Yes, I mentioned this to you and I also mentioned it in the group. My mentor, his name is Al Ritter, and he wrote a book called The 100/0 Principle. The whole concept of that is give 100% of yourself, 100% of the time, expect nothing in return and watch what happens. The amazing thing about that, it's really about what's known as “servant leadership.” By taking the energy to go get that closed hand to somebody and expect nothing in return, it's amazing, that kind of thing to happen. Right?

Nicole: Yes.

Brian: Yes. So that's what I love about this. The purpose of the movement – this is at least what I'm getting out of it – is that it's to take people away from being self-focused and self-aware to being world-focused and world-aware so that you start to sense that there is a lot of awesomeness out there and to feed off of other people's awesomeness at the same time. Would you say?

Nicole: Exactly and to stop beating on ourselves because we're not accomplishing things and to start doing so that guilt and that yucky feeling gets lifted. You know what I mean? Because beating up on yourself does not do anyone any good. People get into those spirals of waking up and, “What am I going to do in my business today? Oh, I might as well eat these cookies I did yesterday.” Stop it. Just stop it. I'm really excited about this because people are being more aware and more awake of the potential around them. Like I said, we haven't even started yet. I can't believe this.

Brian: But the other cool thing about it, too, is what you're doing is you're helping to attract positive energy, like-minded people into this group. It's part seeing how other people approach it, but also, it's part accountability, too for each one of us. Right?

Nicole: Definitely. Absolutely. That was one of my biggest goals in doing this, was I wanted a community of people that wanted to be better, that wanted to have better businesses, that wanted to have better relationships in their families, that wanted to have better health, and that wanted to have an impact. So that's actually the reason why I'm charging a nominal fee to get in because I want only people that feel a deep connection with this message in the Facebook group. So far, I'm blown away. I'm absolutely blown away by the quality of the people in there, in their hearts. Their hearts are so big.

Brian: Yes, there are so many great stories, and it's just so fun to watch, and it's exploding. Like you said, the group is just like, “Bing! Bing! Bing!” As soon as somebody post one comment, there is an encouragement that happens where everybody's jumping on going, “Go girl! Go do your thing.” It is so cool to watch.

So with this whole movement, the end result is we need to take a snapshot now of where we're at and then we need to get through the entire month and take a snapshot at the end. How do you suggest people measure the success of all this?

Nicole: Well, I will have a printable sheet that they'll be able to print out and to mark down their awesome things that they've done everyday, so that at the end, they can see physical proof of what they've done, but also I'm hoping to get a counter set up where people after they post in a group can go in there and click it for all of the awesome things they've done so we can keep a running total. I'm working on that and I'm hoping it will be ready by Wednesday.

Brian: That's fantastic. You'll get all the feedback from everybody at the same time as they start to go through this.

What other kinds of communications are you using to help build this movement? Are you using email? What else are you doing?

Nicole: For the actual members?

Brian: Yes.

Nicole: Yes. Members will be getting emails with all kinds of goodness. I've got friends donating products that they sell elsewhere, I've got inspirational videos, I've got action plans, all kinds of things that they're going to get access to everyday for the month of April.

Brian: That's fabulous. So if people want to join this movement, what's the best way for them to get involved?

Nicole: The best way would be to join the actual group, which I assume you have a link for that in the show notes?

Brian: Yes. I have a link and it's right underneath your bio on the Expert Interviews. Yes.

Nicole: Okay, perfect. Join there. Once you do, then you'll get a link to access the Facebook group and you'll also get a confirmation email that you need to click to make sure that you'll get the emails for the month of awesomization.

Brian: It's fabulous. Yes, so people, definitely go out there, join the group today, join the movement. It's something I think that you will thoroughly enjoy and definitely get something out of.

Nicole, thank you for joining us and if somebody wanted to get a hold of you, what's the best way for them to do that?

Nicole: Probably on Facebook would be the best. It's Facebook.com/Thenicoledean. Brian: “The Nicole Dean”? Wow. You know you're important when you have a “the” in front of you.

Nicole: Well, another Nicole Dean had the other one, so I had.

Brian: That, my friend is awesome. Thanks for joining us, Nicole. This has been fabulous. Really appreciate you coming on and sharing the story.

Nicole: Thank you, Brian for having me. I really appreciate you so much.

Brian: Thanks.

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