PLH 104 | Celebrity Influence

 

The marketplace has indeed evolved, but one thing that remains the same is the influence. We all know the power of having celebrities to be your product endorser due to their wide influence in the market. This is what led Sarah Shaw to craft this trend of endorsement and marketing into a new mold. Sarah talks about the Celebrity Product Placement Process which actually works for more and more entrepreneurs. Discover how you can scale your business by getting celebrity access for your products. You may get these influencers to use your product, be photographed with it, and get them to talk about it. You’ll never know when one of these famous faces can eventually make a huge difference in your bank account.

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I have an interesting guest to bring you. I have Sarah Shaw. She’s an entrepreneur, designer, and CEO of Entreprenette. She has a background in the product business. She had her own product business. She’s got an interesting edge that I wanted to bring you. She has a celebrity placement program. She helps get you celebrity access for your products where you might get a celebrity photographed with your product. You might get them using it. You might get them talking about it. You never know. Maybe they’ll take a picture on Instagram. It’s not always a clear cut and dried that this is going to work out perfectly. She has got a system that works for most products. Not every product that you have invented, some of them are industrial and some of them aren’t quite right for this retail model. The ones that are ripe for retail are ripe for celebrity influence.

She’s got a great both coaching and done-for-you service in which she does this. She started in media and has a background in that. She understands the entertainment industry. She has launched her own products. She gets what you’re going through. She had a successful handbag and home accessories line. She also has a podcast, Get A Street Smart MBA, of which I’ve been on. Sarah Shaw is such an interesting person. I wanted to bring her to you. Let’s listen all about this celebrity placement idea.

Sarah, thanks so much for joining me.

I’m looking forward to talking to you.

What I think is so interesting is that we’ve both been in this marketplace for a pretty long time. We’ve seen a lot of shifts, but influence hasn’t changed. It’s changed how and where the influence is coming from. Tell everyone a little bit about how you got started with your first product.

My first line was a handbag line that I started back at the end of 1997. It was on a whim. My boyfriend actually dared me to get this idea going. I had never ever in a million years thought I would be an entrepreneur. I was working in the film business. I thought that was like my live and die job. I’m actually a fourth-generation entrepreneur. All my siblings are entrepreneurs.

Which probably made you not want to do it more.

It seemed like everyone was doing well with their life. I didn’t have that bug hit. You have to get hit by the entrepreneurial bug or you don’t wake up one day and go, “I think I’ll try that.” You have some idea or something that prompts you. I started this handbag line. It was a big disaster for a few years.

We’re all about the hazards and what goes wrong here. Why do you consider it a disaster?

I wasn’t making any money. I was selling a lot. It’s a big problem. I didn’t know anything about margins. I was guessing how much I should sell my stuff for. I didn’t know to look for a formula or to figure out like how much leather or fabric was I using? I knew how much they cost to sew because I wrote a check to the manufacturer. I was buying all the fabric and the leather. It was airy-fairy to me, “It’s maybe about this much.” That was how I did things.

That’s not uncommon. You’re talking 1997 so it’s not like we had Google where you could Google formulas. It’s like, “What’s margin?” You had to go buy a book, figure it out, and get an advisor. It wasn’t as easy. It’s not surprising and I felt the same way in our first business as well.

You’re winging it. I didn’t know like what the process was. I would call stores, “It’s Sarah Shaw. I have this new line. Do you guys want to check it out?” I’m sure that’s what I said. We were having some guy who knew how to use Photoshop. It was so expensive. It was like hundreds and hundreds of dollars for this line sheet. I winged it. My office was in downtown L.A in the garment district. I would walk over to the California Mart where all the showrooms were during the market week. I finally figured out there was a market week. I would go and steal everybody’s line sheets and postcards because I didn’t know how else to learn. That’s how I would figure out what they were doing. The ones that were popular, I was like, “I’ll copy that. This is how I’m going to do it.” That was my Google. Push comes to shove, I ended up getting a showroom in New York in my second year, towards the end. They catapulted my line. My handbag line was very unusual and different. In the first year, I had done about 120,000 myself. By the end of the second year, I’d done $500,000 in sales.

For those who don’t know because you’re new to this and everything, the showroom model makes a big difference because what was happening was that there wasn’t a directory. Especially in New York City, but in Los Angeles as well, as long as you were in the right district. There was not an online shop. There was not a way to search for people. If you were going to go to this district or this building, you know you were going to be found by the right buyers. We don’t have that anymore. It’s gone. It doesn’t work like that. There are directories, online listings, and everything, but there are this screening and filtering and all sorts of stuff. They don’t walk by and then go, “That’s cool.” You may never even show up in their list because you didn’t use the right keyword. It’s so different. I feel like some amount of merchandising retail buying has lost that edge that it used to have when we used to walk into these buildings and get inspired and say, “I know my customers are going to love this.”

It’s so different. It’s night and day. Back then, buyers weren’t on email. We actually had to mail them a line sheet. We had to mail editors our line sheets as well and press kits. It was so expensive. We’d have press parties in the office with beer and pizza packing 400 or 500 envelopes.

Let’s fast forward a little bit. How long did you do that business?

I did it for five years. After 9/11, my investors pulled out. I ended up closing the company in 2002. I did some other things. I did some random consulting for people who called me. About a year later, I patented a closet organizer for handbags. That was a whole new category. There had never been anything like it. Taking everything, the good, the bad, and the ugly that I learned over those five years. In the first two years with that company, I did $500,000 in sales out of my garage. There’s still wasn’t any social media. Facebook was coming on at the end of the first two years. At least buyers were on email then, but it was still a lot of personal contact with people, which I still think that it’s important. I probably closed all of those sales on the phone. It was probably rare that somebody got an email and went, “I’ll take 24.”

PLH 104 | Celebrity Influence

Celebrity Influence: Influencers are very different because they have followers who are looking to them not being filtered through that editor lens.

 

The relationship building is key. What we don’t realize is that because we were so comfortable with all of our emails and all of our directory listings, how we filter, and how we search for things, you have to realize there’s no trust in that process though. When I walk into retail buyers and they know I have a track record of success, it’s a very different conversation about, “What are you seeing? Where is it going? Let me take your advice.” That has a whole different catapult than it would be if you got a random email. That’s where that relationship building, the right rep, the right advisor, and some connections can make a big difference in moving you forward. Let’s talk a little bit about what you’re doing now because it’s interesting because one of the successes that you hit on in your handbag business was that getting the right person to be photographed with your bag was useful.

The famous face can make a difference in my bank account. With my bag line, I started getting products to celebrities and making bags for movies. That changed the whole face of our business. We went from probably $500,000 to $1 million in sales within a year. I teach other women, mostly women, men too, how to do that. That’s the lynchpin to my business. I teach people how to get their products into small stores. I come from a background of getting your products into hundreds of boutiques because those are usually sure sales. You can have easy direct contact with those buyers. You can move into big box or department stores more as like icing on the cake where if one of them returns an order, you’re not going to go out of business the next day. I’m using celebrities and gifting celebrities as a way to get into more stores because it builds your credibility, sell online, and then also get into magazines.

Have you found over the years, though, that it’s gotten to be such pay to play model and that it gets more and more difficult?

No, not at all. We have a great track record in getting products to celebrities. If we reach out to 25 celebrities for a client, for example, we’ll probably get back ten to fifteen yeses in a week or two weeks.

Most people think of it as like this whole influencer marketing thing has made it ugly in a way.

There are two different categories. There’s the Instagrammers, who do it for money. Whereas what we do with gifting celebrities, they’re not endorsements because endorsements indicate there’s money exchanging hands. This is a gift. It’s free. You’re sending them a present, “I thought you’d like my pink t-shirt because you’re always on t-shirts. You always wear pink,” or whatever you’re sending them. Finding that connection to the celebrity and how your product will make their life better or make them happy or whatever reason you’re sending it to them. A lot of people don’t pay as much attention to the actual connection that you need to have with people. If you watched the Facebook movie, you go back to why they started it. It was to make that social connection easier, how you communicate with people. That’s still a lot of what social media was built on. Now it’s built on making money in ads. The crux of it is still that relationship building. Whether you message people, post on their page, read or comment or something, you’re interacting all the time.

Maybe people don’t notice it so much anymore because it’s become something you do. You get up and check your Instagram or your Facebook and who’s talking and whatever. It’s that same relationship building that you’re doing all the time. What I think of influencers, I think of more people who have that social media presence who can post something and eight million people see it. Even 3,000 people might buy something from you if the right person is pitching the right product to their people. It’s the same with celebrities. People look up to them and admire them and want to be like a lot of them. When they are wearing something or showing something in a magazine or on their social sites, people want to buy it.

This is something interesting that I found over the years. As we’ve started seeing this influencer market emerge and grow, is that the celebrities, it’s a little bit different. There are editors of these magazines and publications who are watching them all the time. It’s like, “Celebrities are like us. They shop at Whole Foods or Costco or wherever.” They’re always getting these random pictures taken. What they’re also doing is being analyzed. What are they wearing in their off time? What are they drinking? What bag are they carrying? That’s more of a sign of who they are and what they like than it is what they wear on the runway or what they are wearing out in public for their next premier because that’s all structured and orchestrated.

You have to get hit by the entrepreneurial bug. You don't wake up one day and go, I think I'll try that. Click To Tweet

For big publications, when you watch for that, you’re getting a better sense of what’s trending and what should I be presenting in my beauty product section or what should I be presenting as hair accessories, whatever that might be. It’s giving you a better idea. The trend editors, the beauty editors, and the fashion editors pay very careful attention to those photographs. That’s actually your best into getting the publicity. It’s not the picture of the celebrity, it’s who sees that picture, who is influential that is powerful to you. I wanted to put that into context for people where the influencers are very different because they have a following who’s looking to them not being filtered through that editor lens. That’s why it seems like it’s more direct.

At the same time, the bigger the influencer gets, the bigger the following gets, the less conversion you get and the more money it costs you, ironically, which is the worst part about it. It’s costing you more because they have eight million followers. You’re going to get a way lower return on investment than if they had 800,000. Too many brands skip those smaller influencers that are on their way up. That’s where the big mistake is because the smaller your influence base is, the more you’re having a direct relationship. It goes right back to that thing. The more people are then saying, “I’m listening and I’m acting on it,” because the bigger they get, they’re constantly sold to and they’re like, “I like that. I don’t like that.” They actually are filtering it for themselves. Tell me a little bit about how you got into the bigger picture helping more product entrepreneurs.

It was a total fluke. Some friends hijacked me one night and took me out for a drink and told me I needed to start this business. I thought was the dumbest idea I’d ever heard. They said, “Look at all the life coaches out there.” This was ten years ago. Life coaching was coming on the scene then and making a big splash. They were like, “You’re actually teaching people something tangible. Life coaching is a more airy-fairy. What do you want to do? Let’s talk about your life.”

You have to take a lot of work on it. This one you’re like, “Here are steps.”

One through ten, this is what you do or one through 1,000. I investigated and hired a business coach. She taught me how to put packages together because I didn’t know how to sell what was in my brain. I was like, “Can I tell people?” I had been doing a little random consulting here and there. I had thought it was fun, but I never thought about making a business out of it until my friends sat me down. That’s how all my businesses have started.

You’re getting dragged into it.

Everyone is like, “That’s a great business idea.” I’m like, “Okay.”

It doesn’t always excite you. Do you see a lot of ideas and you go, “No celebrity is ever going to carry that,” or do you see a lot of good ones?

I see a lot of great ones, but there are the occasional hairy ones. I’ve had to turn people away before because I know I couldn’t help them get their products to celebrities. The media would never be interested in it.

PLH 104 | Celebrity Influence

Celebrity Influence: One of the easiest ways is to make friends with these celebrities right away because they’re mostly usually overlooked.

 

What are those characteristics where when you look at something you go that’s not going to work? Are there specific things that make it not a fit for celebrities?

I don’t think specifically that it’s not a fit. It’s not a fit for anyone. It’s too small an idea or way too niche. It’s like one billionth of the population or something would be interested. I feel more comfortable working with people who have more of a mainstream product. I don’t mean it has to be on the shelves of Walmart to be mainstream, but something that the general public would be interested in.

When someone comes to me, usually it’s an inventor. They all say, “I have this amazing thing. Everybody loves it. I am the only one who’s ever created it. There’s no competition out there.” All the red flags go off. All the bells are going off in my head like, “This does not have legs,” because when you have no competition, that’s the sign of no market.

I’m going to play devil’s advocate because when I invented my handbag hanger, there was no competition for it. It was something brand new.

There was a huge problem and people were probably making stuff. It wasn’t as apparent because you didn’t have social media. You couldn’t go check Lifehacker and see what people are making or go see some Pinterest of people hacking together regular hangers and trying to organize your stuff. You would have seen evidence of it whether or not that exact product existed. “I searched, there’s nothing,” that’s what I get. I’m like, “No, there’s probably something and you probably missed it.” It’s the first thing I usually recognize. If there truly was nothing, then there’s truly not a need.

I love it when you find something that people are hacking together because that’s a good sign that you’re early on the need. You have a better chance of having a long life cycle on your product. That’s my point. For the most part, it’s like, “You didn’t look hard enough. You didn’t Google it. You didn’t go on Amazon. I could find twelve things that are like that.” A lot of them will go to their lawyers, but legal research is extremely different from shopper research. You’ve got to realize the difference there. Does patenting products help when you’re presenting stuff like, “It’s unique.” Does it make a difference?

I don’t think so. There are certain places that might be interested because it has a patent or more. It might pique their interest to even look at it. Unless you’re a gazillionaire, you can’t afford to enforce your patent anyway, and that you’re hoping it buys you more time.

I look at it as a business strategy. It’s a behind the scenes. It’s an asset builder. It’s not something that most consumers care about. There are very few niches where that matters to anyone. I see people all the time like that’s the big deal to them. I was like, “Your focus is in the wrong place because the big deal should be who’s buying this and how can I get more of them?” Where are they? How can I get to them?” What makes the right stage of product? Because sometimes you get things that are maybe a little too early or maybe even too late. What’s the right stage of the product to be starting to look at celebrities as an influence?

The smaller your influence base is, the more you're having a direct relationship. Click To Tweet

You need to have a finished product so that you can send it to them because you don’t want to wait. I wouldn’t say to people, “Go out and use this as a testing field. See if celebrities will take it and then run out and make it. Six months later send it to them because you’re done.”

The minute somebody finally picks it up in a publication that it’s all there, you want to have that available in orderable and ready to move. The timeline for it, let’s talk a little bit about that because that also has a problem with something that might be too seasonal. If you’re making a limited run of something or you’re making something that’s fall specific, you run into like, “They don’t pick it up and the photograph doesn’t get happened until April. Now you have no more of it because it’s gone.”

Here’s a little trick. If that should happen because it happened to me, I don’t think anything hasn’t happened to me. What you can always do, let’s say you have a bag that you sold for fall and you got it to a celebrity. You did it in fall of this past year. This coming summer, they show up in a magazine. You’re like, “Oh, my God.” You put it back up on your site and put a little sign that says, “Sold out due to our placement in whatever magazine,” and nobody will be the wiser.

You’re like, “But we have this new model.”

You’ll see that they will go buy other stuff by you especially if it’s a style, like maybe your signature look or something, they’ll go buy the other thing. That happened to us when I was on The O List once. They forgot to credit check. It like slipped through the cracks. The magazine dropped. We had two left of this product. We couldn’t get any more fabric. It was, “Oh, my God,” and we put this little notice up. We still sold 5,000 different colors. It didn’t matter.

It’s a very good tip. What other things make it ideal for a celebrity?

The biggest thing it comes down to is researching how your product would affect them as a person because they’re people like us. They eat, poop, and sleep. They happened to be famous. If they’re a movie star, you see them ten feet tall on a screen. They grew up as we did. They’re normal people. You want to look into their life. It may be if they had a baby and you sell a baby product, you might send them a blanket or whatever you sell, clothes or something. It can be, “I see you go to the park all the time. There are pictures of you at the park and I thought you might like these play clothes or something for your kid.” It’s that relationship. It’s finding a way to connect with them so that it feels like you are being friendly about it. That it’s not, “Here’s my diaper bag.” There’s never been a picture of that person with a diaper bag ever. Most likely they’re never going to use it. You want to look at photos of them and do some of your own research on Google. There are gazillions of pictures of every celebrity doing everything like you were saying, coming out of Starbucks, walking into yoga, whatever they’re doing.

It’s so much easier now. We don’t have to sit through and troll all the magazines and who was being photographed and everything. Now you can google it.

It’s back to the relationship. It’s all in how you can try to build that relationship with a letter and a gift.

PLH 104 | Celebrity Influence

Celebrity Influence: Everybody wants to feel important.

 

This is something that happened to me was that somebody gifted me a bag because I carry cute bags when I go to trade shows. I’m always interviewing people. I ended up with a photograph somewhere in it. I’m usually holding my bag. I was like, “I’m not an influencer. Why would people care?” I’m up on stage all the time. Within that community, there are a lot of business women in the right profile who see me. I get comments. I got this adorable bag from my mother-in-law for my birthday. It’s a Star Wars bag. It’s geeky. I cannot tell you how many men and women have asked me, “Where did you get that?” I’d be in Starbucks. It’s this random thing. Do not discount the level of celebrity you’re looking for. If they’re in contact with many people, that’s a good way to go.

I get swag all the time and I always post pictures on my Instagram.

Let’s talk a little bit about that because I belong to a group that I absolutely adore. It’s about servicing celebrities. All of us have celebrities as clients in some way, shape or form. We brainstorm and we discuss how their teams are issues a lot of times, their teams are blocks, but there are also aids in that process. It comes up all the time. The biggest problem we see with working with celebrities if you’re a service provider to them is that their teams are very uninformed sometimes. They also are the ones with all the access. You have to learn to work with them. How do you work with these teams? How do you get through these teams?

One of the easiest ways is to make friends with them right away because they’re mostly usually overlooked. They’re overworked and overlooked, over everything. Their boss is a gazillionaire, especially compared to them because they’re usually way underpaid. What we like to do is make friends with them right away and offer them some freebie as well. Maybe not the expensive handbag. Maybe you offer them a wallet. They start to feel wanted and needed right away and important. Everybody wants to feel important. That’s one of the little tricks that we do to try to win them over in the beginning because like you were saying, “They hold the key to the castle.” They can be like, “She’s a b*tch.”

This used to happen. Sometimes I would get things and I would be like, “My nieces and nephews will love this.” I would hand them out. The next thing like they’re being photographed and stuff like that. You never know. Because of that, there’s a Law of Reciprocity that we need to talk a little bit about. Do you want to mention that?

If you give, you have to give to receive. The more you can give, which is again why we like to offer the gatekeeper something is so that they feel like they want to help us.

There’s always this sense of, “You’re calling me again and you’re mentioning that you’ve got another thing for me. This time I’m going to make sure that the celebrity gets it. It’s because I know what you need. It’s not that it’s very obvious. You need me to make sure that she gets at this time or he gets this time.” It’s not, “I got to write out a check back to you,” or anything like that. It’s not a big ask. This is something that happens to me all the time as a columnist. Very often I get a lot of authors and people who want me to write about them. The ones who give me their course are much more likely to get written about than the ones who are very closed about it, saying, “No, you should write about me. I’m amazing.” It’s like, “No, I know you’re interested. I know you have an interest in this. I can see it from reading your column. I’m sending you my book. I don’t expect you to read it. I know you’re busy.

If you or anyone you know would like it, then I wanted to make sure you had it.” I’m like, “That was a great no expectations gift.” A lot of times if it is truly of interest, I will pick it up and I will read it. The next thing you know, they’re getting a call saying, “I’d like to interview you.” There’s some power in that. You got to do some research to make sure it’s a fit. Otherwise, I’ve got a stack of books behind my desk that have nothing to do with what I’m going to write about. “Where do I get rid of this? Donate.” It would be so amazing if we could track some of the products that you have sent out over the years and up.

It's not the picture of the celebrity; it's the one who sees that picture who is influential that is powerful to you. Click To Tweet

They have a little tracker on them.

The life with this bag. Where did it go? Who knows? It may be in someone who appreciates it. I have no idea where it came from.

The only place I see my bags is on eBay.

I found out from some people that they didn’t know that their courses were being resold on eBay. When you used to do a box set of courses, they are like $50 on eBay now. You didn’t know that. I was like, “Yeah.” If you’re wondering why you’re not currently getting bodies in seats is because it’s available on eBay for $5.99. It wouldn’t be Product Launch Hazzards if we didn’t talk about some of the hazards. What are some of the big pitfalls that people fall into when they’re pitching celebrities or when they’re trying to get through this process of getting that placement?

I would say the biggest pitfall goes back to the reciprocity. They’re more talking about themselves and not how the product relates to the celebrity. We like to do it. This is why I invented two or three lines. This is why we think you’ll like it.

If that message is a fit for this particular celebrity, then you say it. Otherwise, you want to start all about them.

The other thing is we don’t encourage people to pitch anything that isn’t a great match just because they might like it or think it’s cute, but then it’s going to the housekeeper. We want to send something that they’re actually most likely going to wear or put on their kid or put on their mantle or hang on the wall or whatever it is you’re sending. That fit of, “This is why we created this and this is why we think you’ll like it,” our formula seems to work.

Because it’s personal. It shows interest in someone else. There’s a quote by Dale Carnegie, “You can make more friends in two months by being interested in them, than in two years by making them interested in you.” That in and of itself though is a problem I hear so consistently. They get all in their heads about their invention or their product. It’s all about that. The reality is it’s not. It’s about whether or not it would fit my life and I want to use it.

It’s the same philosophy when pitching store buyers or magazines. Why is it good for the store customer? Why is it good for their magazine readers? Why is it good for the celebrity?

PLH 104 | Celebrity Influence

Celebrity Influence: The biggest pitfall goes back to the reciprocity when you are more talking about yourself and not how the product relates to the celebrity.

 

I also want to touch on one thing that you said about those small store buyers. We tend to have people who skip that so quickly. They’ll be like, “Direct sales are so much faster, so I’ll do it online. I’ll be big enough to get into the stores.” The reality is that there is so much learning that happens about margins, messaging, branding, and so many things that you could scale through without a lot of risk at those boutique levels. You have more direct conversations instead of at the retail big buyer level, we just get, “Yes, no.” There’s not much time for conversation. When stuff fails, we don’t know why. We don’t understand it.

You also at the big box level can’t say, “Test six of them in your store and see how it goes.”

You can’t scale yourself either. I love that to walk, crawl, walk and run. Let’s take it at the right pace of it. This is something that my friend Brian Smith, the UGG Founder, he says, “You have to grow a brand. It’s the birth of a brand. It has to go through infancy, toddlerhood, primary school, teen, angst,” which is usually right about the time that you try to get into the stores.

He’s a great example of celebrity success.

It was a celebrity success that did not happen overnight. It took fifteen years. This is not a fast route. That’s the last thing we should talk about here. This is not fast. It’s effective, but it’s not fast. Let’s talk a little bit about why.

It can be. There are times where you can send something to someone and it’s in a magazine two weeks later.

It resonated and it hit.

The person loved it. You sent them a t-shirt or a handbag or a baseball cap or some shoes or whatever. They’re out there, “I love this.” They’re writing to you and asking for more. Those things do happen, but it’s less often than it could be a long lead. The first time one of my bags ever showed up in a magazine, it was nine months after I sent it to someone. It was the very first celebrity placement in a magazine I ever got with my handbags. Another client was nine months before Angelina Jolie and her kids showed up with the product in the photo. Now, it’s everywhere. It’s so global. It can turn viral.

A famous face can make a difference in your bank account. Click To Tweet

Thank goodness we don’t have to wait for print magazine cycles. Now at least it might appear online somewhere appearance, somebody’s Instagram feed, Pinterest. How do you capitalize on that when it happens?

You have to be on it immediately. You want to send an email to your online shoppers, get it on your website, send it to any media editors that you’re hoping to get into those magazines. You want to send it to other celebrity magazines. If it comes out in People, you could let other magazines know about it unless the photographer sells them the photo, they’re probably not going to run it. Redbook or Vogue or whoever your target is, they would be interested in it if it came out in a celebrity magazine or if there’s a photo of a celebrity online or on social media. You have to be prepared to get that out immediately. Have your email templates ready to go and you probably have something you could use right away because you’ve been emailing the media anyway, hopefully. Your online shoppers. It’s all about that celebrity like nothing else.

Here, you wait. It appears and now you have to rush because of timeliness and what you have to do in response to that to capture the momentum.

If you don’t have a celebrity section on your website and you have all these celebrities that you’ve gotten products to, sniff, snore. Nobody knows. You know, you and your mama, but nobody else knows and that’s not going to bring in any sales.

Product Launchers out there, I want you to be aware that social proof matters. Celebrity proof says this is on trend. This is valuable. It’s the same thing when you have your website and you get written up in Inc. If you don’t put the logo on your site, you’re missing the opportunity for the proof that you were valuable enough to be written about. You are valuable enough to be photographed. These things are important to not skip. I see it happen so often. They’re all excited about it, but then besides posting on social media, they do nothing with it. There is long-term residual value in that. It does have tremendous value to the buyers in the future. When you say, “Look at over the last year, every time I’ve introduced new lines, they’ve been picked up by somebody. This must be someone I definitely want to take a meeting with.”

It proves your staying power.

There are short-term and long-term benefits. It’s not always about sales. That’s the message that Sarah does get across well when she’s talking with you is that there is residual value here. It’s not always going to directly translate into sales.

It’s still that credibility factor still works for you.

Are you as excited about what your work is as you were back when it was your own product? Did you get excited about other people’s stuff?

PLH 104 | Celebrity Influence

Celebrity Influence: Don’t pitch anything that isn’t a great match because they might like it or think it’s cute, but then it’s going to the housekeeper.

 

I do. I love developing products and watching these brands grow and seeing pictures of celebrities with people’s products. It warms my heart. It makes me smile every time I see it or think about it especially you send out the 25 emails and you get fifteen yeses, let’s send it. You’re like, “Yes, all right. This is so awesome.” Especially if the celebrity’s gatekeeper wants one as well, to me that’s an even better sign. If they don’t want one then I’m like, “Maybe it’s not great.”

That was something Brian Smith said when he gives a talk all the time is that evidently, Sting’s wife used to place orders for her team every year. One year he gets this rush requests for a totally different size than they’d ever gotten before. It was for another celebrity. He was like, “This is good.” Him being accommodating over the years to her made it so that it was that could happen. Tell me a little bit about the types of service because you don’t do this done-for-you. You have a whole bunch of different services and ways that you help entrepreneurs.

I do the done-for-you. It’s the only celebrity program out there.

It’s the only one I’ve seen. That’s how I found you.

It’s called Celebrity Confidential. It’s a six-week training program. It takes you behind the scenes on how to do everything. It’s a video training. It’s got downloads and templates. Write this exact sentence and this is how you do the research. We also show you how to promote your celebrity when you get one and how to write all those emails.

That leverage we were talking about.

How to send it out to magazines and to your online shoppers, because that’s right where the money can be immediate.

What she’s offering you is the opportunity to learn how to do this especially when you’re a startup and you’re trying to get yourself going, you don’t have as much money, but you maybe you have some more time because you’re trying to build this brand. That’s a great program for you. The done-for-you services she provides is valuable to those of you who have so much else in your business that you need to concentrate on. You need an expert like Sarah to be taking off because remember here at Product Launch Hazzards, we’re all about the right things in the right order with the right resources. Your order sometimes is what stage are you at and what are you ready for? I want you to avail yourself of Sarah. You’ll be able to connect directly through to her website, to this courses that are there and all of those things that all of the services that she offers there. Product Launchers, get in touch with Sarah if your product is a right fit for celebrity placement. Thank you, Sarah for your time.

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About Sarah Shaw

PLH 104 | Celebrity Influence

Translating ideas into action is Sarah’s strength, and she lends her wisdom willingly through her company Entreprenette, in which she coaches female entrepreneurs through the process of taking their fashion, home, lifestyle or accessory product ideas from concept to reality. Sarah provides private one-on-one coaching packages that give entrepreneurs the overall know-how to create and launch a product as well as the strategies she used to grow her own million-dollar company. One of her special areas of coaching is teaching clients how to get their products into the hands of celebrities and then leveraging their celebrity clientele for press and sales. (Fans of Sarah’s products include Jennifer Aniston, Courtney Cox, Debra Messing, Cameron Diaz, Katie Holmes, and Academy Award-winners Gwyneth Paltrow and Marcia Gay Harden.) Additionally, Sarah provides her clients with advice, systems and concrete information as well as creative input and even strategies for efficient time management, which is a must for her busy clientele, many of whom are mothers like she.


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