Marie Forleo: How She Grew Her Brand To Oprah Status
Marie Forleo is a marketing and lifestyle expert and a bestselling author. Through her popular website, marieforleo.com, she reaches over 190,000 readers in 191 countries worldwide. She also leads dynamic training programs that teach individuals to succeed in business and life. Marie is the author of Make Every Man Want You: How to Be So Irresistible You’ll Barely Keep from Dating Yourself!. She was interviewed by Oprah and Tony Robbins and has mentored young business owners at Richard Branson’s Centre of Entrepreneurship in South Africa.
In this interview, Marie talks candidly about her biggest mistakes, how she’s grown her online community from nothing to something in a short period of time, what happened when she caught Oprah’s attention and more.
When you were first starting out, what were your three biggest mistakes?
1. I tortured myself trying to choose a niche too fast because that’s what all the business experts said I “should” do. While narrowing down can be sound advice, it doesn’t work for everyone – especially multipassionate entrepreneurs at the start of their journey. Many of us need to pursue multiple paths simultaneously before we discover our unique convergence point.
2. I stayed in a dead-end relationship waaaay longer than I should have because I didn’t fully trust my instincts yet. When your personal life is off track, but you’re afraid to make a change, it can derail your business growth.
3. I wasted a lot of time trying to figure out a way to describe myself instead of just focusing on doing the work: creating incredible content and changing lives. I was self-conscious about calling myself a “coach” because I thought the word was cheesy.
What have you done to help grow your online community that people can learn from?
Be consistent. Before MarieTV, I didn’t have a regular blogging or newsletter schedule. While I rarely went more than 10 days without communicating to my audience, everything changed when I committed to my Tuesday show. It’s been 2.5 years of consistent content each week and that consistency has radically grown our online community.
Be kind and appreciative. With so many critics, haters and heart-crushing negativity online — being kind and genuinely appreciating people in your community goes a long, long way.
Give a damn about who’s already there. It may sound obvious, but, rather than obsessing about growing your numbers, ask yourself: how can you show more appreciation and love to the customers and community you have right now?
How did you originally get in touch with Oprah and what did that appearance/connection do for your career? Do you see yourself as the next Oprah?
Oprah’s team got in touch with me over the phone and it was a nerve-wracking and exhilarating experience. I’ve loved and watched Oprah since I was a little girl, so being interviewed by her was surreal — a dream come true. In terms of my career, I’m deeply grateful for the exposure to a new audience and to get to know her team. And no, I do not see myself as the next Oprah. She is one of a kind, baby!
In what ways to do you use social media each day? What is your daily routine?
My social efforts are focused mainly on FB, Twitter and Instagram. Because each day is different, I don’t have a static routine. I check in and reply from my iPhone when I’m on the road. For days when I’m working from home, I’ll build in 10 minutes here and there to dive into the social conversation. Of course, when I see something beautiful, inspiring, fun or worth sharing, I get it up and out.
What are your top three career advice tips?
1. Outrageous success comes from thinking different, being different and having the confidence to always do what feels right in your heart.
2. Stay on your hustle & have patience. Focus on long-term success not a short-term ego trip.
3. Remember that nothing has meaning except for the meaning you give to it. Why not interpret everything as a gift?