If You Stopped Sharing Your Voice Tomorrow What Would the World Be Missing?


My friends play a game with their young children at the dinner table every evening called: High / Low. Everyone takes turns going through the day and explains what the highlight was and what the low point was of the day. It’s a great way to find out things about your kids that you may never have known. And I highly recommend you try it at your next family dinner, or even at a dinner party.

I Want to Share My Summer High / Low With You

My Highs Involved Powerful Women From 3 Generations:

I taught a family best friend in her 80s (and more vital and active than most women my age) who is dying of brain cancer how to leave her legacy behind on the Internet.

I had weekly strategy calls with a fabulous client in her 60’s around showing herself as the powerful woman that she is. She was so paralyzed with fear because she didn’t want to look like she was “bragging”. She was completely stopping herself from sharing her gifts.

I helped launch an amazing arts festival involving 140 artists from around the world in all disciplines, feeling proud because I coached the founder, age 40 through her crowdfunding campaign where she raised over 100K to make her dream a reality.

My Lows Involved Feeling Stopped and Scared

I spent weeks feeling frozen and scared and then I got really angry at myself because I wasn’t blogging enough and I wasn’t sending my newsletter regularly.

The reason: I have been focused on musicians for so many years that transitioning away from this comfort zone felt so uncomfortable I couldn’t fully get out from under the fear.

And there Was Also My Thought Leadership Quandary

Last summer I decided to explore a new topic: thought leadership. In my mind it was a key element that many need to get an edge. I started interviewing great thought leaders, and presented what I was learning at Creativelive, in London at Campus Party at the O2 Area, and at 85 Broads / Ellevate. It was really taking off.

It didn’t take long for me to realize people hate the term thought leader. I started to see this during interviews. People would physically recoil or dispute the term or try to deflect it away from them.

But this wasn’t the only thing that happened. The crew I hired to film forgot to turn the microphones on, they didn’t find quiet places to shoot, and there were weird lights flashing all over the O2, (and they never mentioned shirt was bizarrely not fitting and my hair was sticking up). I hired my favorite editor to try to salvage the footage… and even with her magic I didn’t love the way it looked and that’s when my little “not good enough” monster started to take over.

And then David Brooks came along with his New York Times Op Ed

That op-ed blew up and I NEVER wanted to see the term again.

Here’s what he said: “The Thought Leader is sort of a highflying, good-doing yacht-to-yacht concept peddler. Each year, he gets to speak at the Clinton Global Initiative, where successful people gather to express compassion for those not invited. Month after month, he gets to be a discussion facilitator at think tank dinners where guests talk about what it’s like to live in poverty while the wait staff glides through the room thinking bitter thoughts.”

When The Intelligencer reached out to Brooks for a comment. He responded, “I was just trying to be amusing about the life people like me lead… Nothing more”.

But the damage had been done it was picked up in NY Mag, Salon, Esquire and on thousands of blogs.

I lost All of My Courage to Continue

So… the footage sat on my desktop – until now.

As I agonized about what I wanted to share, this dawned on me:

I taught my dear family friend with brain cancer, my client who was stuck, and the woman who raised $100,000 this:

(choose the one you like)

effect (or effectiveness)

thought leadership

What I’ve realized is after almost 20 years of being a successful entrepreneur is:

If you want to get ahead in any desired field for any reason you must have some influence.

People used to believe that influence came from someone else, perhaps by getting an article written about you or being interviewed on TV or radio. We now know that the new model proves that when you create a sphere of influence you can dictate your own success.

However there’s a lot of noise out these and there’s plenty of fear around showing yourself because to be a great influencer you have to show yourself.

To show yourself you have to be brave enough to fight some inner demons, and possibly some external haters who may not agree with or like what you are saying, or they might not love the words that you choose (like thought leader), or they may not like your shoes (its’ the internet after all). These demons can sabotage you just as you are about to do something big.

I’m gonna get back to doing something big… by rolling out this series.

Amelia Torode has got some fascinating things to say about how your business impacts the people you choose to share it with and the world at large.

My favorite parts are where she gives a killer definition of thought leader and she asks a really important question:

If you stopped sharing your voice tomorrow what would the world be missing?

This my friends, lies at the center of influence.

Follow Amelia Torode on Twitter at @Amelia_Torode

I’m done beating myself up now, I’m back and I look forward to a fabulous fall with all of you.

Want to book a strategy session or a VIP day with me to expand your influence?
I’d love to talk to you.


Where it says: Additional Notes Regarding Your Project write – call / day with Ariel.

How Do You Lead? Cyber PR’s 14 Thought Leader Archetypes [INFOGRAPHIC]

Do you wonder what kind of thought leader you are or should become in the online space? Start with asking yourself two crucial questions: what is the meaning in your work and what change do you want to make in the world? Answer these and your thought leader archetype will emerge.

More than likely, you will fall into one of the below thought leadership “types:”

(Don’t forget to download the full infographic at the very bottom of the page!)

Businessman 1

ExamplesBill Gates, Steve Jobs, Barbara Corcoran

This Is Your Archetype If…
You probably already have (or have had) an established business. This means you have a lot to say or advise from the point of view of the business leader, founder, or CEO.

Inspiring Quotes:

“Change the world, or go home.” – Bill Gates

“Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma — which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.” – Steve Jobs

“Finding opportunity is a matter of believing it’s there.” – Barbara Corcoran

Media Mogul 2

ExamplesOprah Winfrey, Arianna Huffington, Martha Stewart

This Is Your Archetype If…
You have a popular (or soon to be popular) blog, podcast, or video series or a combination of all of these. Media mogul archetypes are ahead of the game when it comes to content marketing strategy because they already have the content, and just need to focus on expanding their audiences and outreach.

Inspiring Quotes:

“You will find true success and happiness if you have only one goal. There really is only one, and that is this: to fulfill the highest, most truthful expression of yourself as a human being. You want to max out your humanity by using your energy to lift yourself up, your family, and the people around you.” – Oprah Winfrey

“Leaders need to redefine success. Right now success is defined in terms of two metrics: money and power. But it is like a two-legged stool, at some point you’ll fall off of it. Leaders need to consider other metrics such as well-being, inner wisdom, our capacity to wonder and celebrate life, and give back.” – Arianna Huffington

“Once you realize that you have identified a passion, invest in yourself. Figure out what you need to know, what kind of experience and expertise you need to develop to do the things that you feel in your heart you will enjoy and that will sustain you both mentally and economically.” – Martha Stewart

Self Improvement 3

Examples Tony Robbins, Brian Tracy, Marie Forleo

This Is Your Archetype If…
People find you inspiring, look to you for advice and expect you to teach people something that makes them better. You probably also have a propensity for sharing how you have overcome great obstacles through your own path. This is a fabulous secondary archetype as you could add a great deal of useful advice to your primary archetype that truly helps people.

Inspiring Quotes:

“Long ago, I realized that success leaves clues, and that people who produce outstanding results do specific things to create those results. I believed that if I precisely duplicated the actions of others, I could reproduce the same quality of results that they had.” – Tony Robbins

“To be truly happy, you need a clear sense of direction. You need a commitment to something bigger and more important than yourself. You need to feel that your life stands for something, that you are somehow making a valuable contribution to your world.” – Brian Tracy

“When you love your clients, marketing becomes a vehicle to express that love in such a way that you inspire them to action. Action that ultimately, is in their best interest.” – Marie Forleo

Spiritual 4

Examples:  Deepak Chopra, Marianne Williamson, Eckhart Tolle

This Is Your Archetype If…
You are religious, spiritual, or believe in a higher power, and want to share what you believe and feel with your own spin. Your content undoubtedly reflects your faith and beliefs.

Inspiring Quotes:

“Instead of asking ‘what’s the problem?’ ask ‘what’s the creative opportunity?'” – Deepak Chopra

“Success means we go to sleep at night knowing that our talents and abilities were used in a way that served others.” – Marianne Williamson

“Instead of asking ‘what do I want from life?’ a more powerful question is, ‘what does life want from me?'” – Eckhart Tolle

Cultural 5

ExamplesMalcolm Gladwell, Ray Kurzweil, Hanna Rosin

This Is Your Archetype If…
You have been called an early adopter, a futurist, a visionary, or a pioneer. You spot trends before they happen and get big. You do something for a living that allows you to see things unfold before the masses do.

Inspiring Quotes:

“Truly successful decision making relies on a balance between deliberate and instinctive thinking.” – Malcolm Gladwell

“A successful person isn’t necessarily better than her less successful peers at solving problems; her pattern-recognition facilities have just learned what problems are worth solving.” – Ray Kurzweil

“So the image I like to think of, instead of glass ceiling, is the high bridge. It’s definitely terrifying to stand at the foot of a high bridge, but it’s also pretty exhilarating, because it’s beautiful up there, and you’re looking out on a beautiful view. But the point about the high bridge is that you have to have the confidence to know that you deserve to be on that bridge, that you have all the skills and experience you need in order to walk across the high bridge, but you just have to make the decision to take the first step and do it.” – Hanna Rosin

Wellness Guide 6

ExamplesDr. Weil, Alice Waters, Jamie Oliver, Michael Pollan

This Is Your Archetype If…
You cured yourself of a disease (or perhaps you’ve beaten the odds around your own diagnosis), lost a lot of weight, studied nutrition, are a yogi, movement teacher, dancer, or have your own spin on what’s effective that people will want to know.

Inspiring Quotes:

“I think one of the real secrets of happiness and success in life is to understand that while we can’t control what happens to us, we can control how we react to events.” -Dr. Andrew Wei

“I’m trying to focus my energy on the people who can win this race.” -Alice Waters

“My aim is to achieve sustainable change, not just make a cute little makeover.” -Jamie Oliver

“This is part of human nature, the desire to change consciousness.” -Michael Pollan

Do Gooder 7

ExamplesAl Gore, Scott Harrison, Angelina Jolie

This Is Your Archetype If…
Whenever you do something you do it with others in mind. You are globally responsible, and advocate for your favorite charities; you walk for cancer, run for autism, are on a rescue animal mission, sit on boards, or volunteer your time to help others. The do-gooder is a fabulous secondary archetype that fits in perfectly with so many others.

Inspiring Quotes:

“No matter how hard the loss, defeat might serve as well as victory to shake the soul and let the glory out.” – Al Gore

“Simplicity is key. Be able to tell your story simply.” – Scott Harrison

“People say that you’re going the wrong way when it’s simply a way of your own.” – Angelina Jolie

Political 8

Examples Gloria Steinem, Michael Moore, Eve Ensler

This Is Your Archetype If…
You marched on Washington, worked on the Hill, been arrested for something you believe in or are the person on Facebook encouraging (or even discouraging) your friends from a political philosophy or perception.

Inspiring Quotes:

“Without leaps of imagination, or dreaming, we lose the excitement of possibilities. Dreaming, after all, is a form of planning.” – Gloria Steinem

“I may be preaching to the choir, but the choir needs a good song.”
– Michael Moore

“I think that anytime you get clear about what your mission is or what your focus wants to be, things start to come together in your life.” – Eve Ensler

Philanthropist 9

Examples Warren Buffett, George Soros, Melinda Gates

This Is Your Archetype If…
You’ve made yours and now you want to give back. Even if you didn’t make a fortune you always give back through volunteering or through sharing acts of kindness.

Inspiring Quotes:

“It’s better to hang out with people better than you. Pick out associates whose behavior is better than yours and you’ll drift in that direction.” – Warren Buffett

“Well, you know, I was a human being before I became a businessman.” – George Soros

“We have to be careful in how we use this light shined on us.” – Melinda Gates

Digital Innovator 10

Examples Mark Zuckerberg, Chris Brogan, Seth Godin

This Is Your Archetype If…
You’re a social media nerd, you love Google analytics, you Google+ hang out with the best of them, and you know your last newsletter open rates percentage cold! People want to learn these things and you teach and share these things happily.

Inspiring Quotes:

“The biggest risk is not taking any risk…In a word that’s changing really quickly, the only strategy that is guaranteed to fail is not taking risks.” – Mark Zuckerberg

“Ask yourself this questions CONSTANTLY: where can I add the most value to what matters most to me and the people who care about me?” – Chris Brogan

“The easiest thing is to react. The second easiest is to respond. But the hardest thing is to initiate.” – Seth Godin

Artist 11

Examples Bono, Amanda Palmer, Steven Soderbergh

This Is Your Archetype If…
You create art, you share your art online, and you take your fans for an interactive creative ride. You also have a lot to say about the artistic process or about other artists.

Inspiring Quotes:

“You see idealism detached from action is just a dream. But idealism allied with pragmatism, with rolling up your sleeves and making the world bend a bit, is very exciting. It’s very real. It’s very strong.” – Bono

If you want the world to pay for projects, you have to be able to display why you’re worthy.” – Amanda Palmer

“The great thing about the business is how Darwinian it is. We have to swim or die. If you are found wanting over a period of time, you’ve either got to change what you’re doing or find something else to do.” – Steven Soderbergh

Fashion 12

Examples Diane von Furstenberg, Donna Karan, Bobbi Brown

This Is Your Archetype If…
You love fashion, trends, clothes, and style. You’re the friend your other friends want to go shopping with, you write the blog people want to read for fashion tips or maybe you have great style, but you never thought that could be part of your online archetype… guess what stylie, think again ;).

Inspiring Quotes:

“That wonderful and terribly frightening journey of self-discovery. That process of growth, of being an independent person, of learning who you are and what you want from life, is the real secret of life, happiness and beauty.” – Diane von Furstenberg

“Everything I do is a matter of heart, body, and soul” – Donna Karan

“A year after I started college, I had no clue what I wanted to do. My mother said, forget everything else—if it were your birthday today, what would you do? I thought, I would play with makeup at the department store. So she said, do that!” – Bobbi Brown

Culture 13

Examples Daniel Pink, David Brooks, Thomas Friedman

This Is Your Archetype If…
You love big ideas, you like to explore what makes people, companies, and countries think. And you want to talk about it.

Inspiring Quotes:

“I think the more important task for a young person than developing a personal brand is figuring out what she’s great at, what she loves to do, and how she can use that to leave an imprint in the world. Those are tough questions, but essential ones. Answer those – and the personal brand follows.” – Daniel Pink

“The message of the summoned life is that you don’t need to panic if you don’t yet know what you want to do with your life. But you probably want to throw yourselves into circumstances where the summons will come.” – David Brooks

“Big breakthroughs happen when what is suddenly possible meets what is desperately needed” – Thomas Friedman

Parent 14

Examples Heather Armstrong, Davis Guggenheim, Kandi Lightner

This Is Your Archetype If…
You’re a parent, advocate for children, or an exposer of truths.
You love helping children learn better, live better, or play better. If there is some injustice happening in the world for children, you want to set it right.

Inspiring Quotes:

“I usually approach things with the idea that I will take something out of everything I do.” – Heather Armstrong

“To me, at the heart of every good story are people you want to root for, people that have big hurdles they have to overcome.” – Davis Guggenheim

“I truly believe that whatever it is that you do, if you look at it a certain way, it is going to help or benefit or do something good for somebody.” – Candy Lightner


Cyber PR’s 14 Thought Leader Archetypes




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