Vanessa Van Edwards, Dr. Valerie Baker, and More Badassery

Fun Fact #1: I did the casting for Dr. Paul Ekman’s instructional vids. If you’ve never heard of the dude, he’s the expert whose work was behind the Tim Roth series Lie to Me.

This work is about reading microfacial expressions to determine what someone’s actual emotions are when they’re speaking to you. As a part of Ekman’s training series, there are actors playing out scenarios that law enforcement, jury selection advisors, and basically anyone who wants to know what to look for to find out what’s REALLY going on study meticulously.

Obviously, as a part of my work finding the right actors to play out these scenarios, I did a bit of a deep dive on Ekman’s work to be sure I understood the level of meticulously detailed and subtle body language requirements we’d be expecting of the actors we ultimately cast.

During the process of doing this casting, I learned things about how *I* should communicate nonverbally in order to express more fully what it is I’m looking to get across.

Fun Fact #2: When you see my hands fly up into frame during any of my kabilliondy livestreamed vids, it’s not because I don’t understand the limits of my frame. It’s because I DO understand my brand. (Just look at all those thumbnails. Hands everywhere!)

I’m demystifying the industry. I’m pulling back the curtain. I’m revealing things with transparency. I’m showing you my hand, quite literally. And because it’s an authentic movement at an authentic moment, you trust me more every time you see the palm of my hand. (If it were choreographed, you’d pick up the opposite vibe, fo’ sho’.)

Now, I always talked with my hands even before I learned there is actual science behind its effect on viewers… but now I know it’s okay that I do so. It’s actually GOOD that I do so.

And before I knew about the science, I probably could’ve been talked OUT OF talking with my hands so much by a well-meaning advisor who thought it could be distracting.

How many times have you taken advice that was probably decent, but that was actually — FOR YOU — quite poopy?

Ugh. No more of that.

More recently, I’ve been digging the work of Vanessa Van Edwards, who is a modern-day Paul Ekman with her lab, The Science of People.

Just last month, she and one of my very favorite people — Noah Kagan — got together for a short chat that actually made me stop, rewind, rewatch, and watch again later. I took notes. And y’all, I’m usually pretty good about retaining what I have even the tiniest bit of exposure to, so it’s impressive when something is so info-dense that it has me doing this much note-taking.

Wanna see what did it? Here’s the vid.

Whoa.

That’s some ninja targeting for getting your vids into the “watch next” queue at YouTube she drops about halfway through. It’s like taking the Self-Management for Actors targeting work outlined here and applying it to playlists.

I don’t need to tell you what a big deal this is for content creators, right? Holy wow!

Another thing I took away from Vanessa’s time with Noah is that she and I have a similar way of being very clear about who we are in the world… especially when it comes to what we’re selling.

Look, we’re ALL selling something. You’re selling that you’re a fantastic actor of a certain type and style of storytelling as your bullseye, worth taking a chance on. I’m selling that I’ve got phenomenal advice that will rock your world if you’re willing to do the mindset work that makes the tools-related stuff worth a damn.

Fun Fact #3: I run all my sales material (every email, every webpage, every speaking engagement, every broadcast or podcast or interview out in the world, including what you’re reading right now) through a little check to be sure that NOT ONLY will it attract the *right* people like crazy but also REPEL those I don’t want to work with at any price.

Basically, I have what I call an asshole filter.

And if you get caught up in it, you’re the type who isn’t going to be a success story in working with me anyway, so it’s better that you’re repelled by my long-ass posts, my long-ass livestreams, my propensity for casual swearing, my ridiculous overuse of analogies and commas. 😉 Bounce out BEFORE you somehow talk yourself INTO buying something from me.

Because you’ll be one of those jagoffs we WISH had never forked over a dollar. You’ll be someone we struggle with at every turn… who then shrugs and says, “Yeah, I *guess* SMFA is… okay. Didn’t really work for me.”

We don’t want that. We want over-the-moon, OMG-I’m-a-ninja, glee-filled success stories out there. We want people who LOVE saying, “Everything was just fine ’til I worked with Bonnie Gillespie. Then it’s like a light came on, the clouds cleared, and it’s been rapid ascension to higher and higher tiers — in a joy-filled journey — ever since.”

Just like you want those who cast you to say, “Putting you on the set was my BEST decision! I can’t wait to do it again AND to tell everyone else that they should cast you too,” right? Right.

And that means the clearer we are from the beginning with our, “This is what you’re going to experience with me — whether shallow or deep, long or short, surface or to-the-core is the style of our interaction — so if you’re thinking you need to talk yourself INTO working with me, please don’t,” info, the better.

I want to only work with people who land on my stuff and say, “Oh man! THIS! THIS is what my gut has been telling me all along and I never knew there was someone out there who could show me WHY my gut feels that way *and* confirm when I’m right and tweak slightly when a more refined approach would be better. Yay! Thank you, Bonnie!

And in general, I *do*! 🙂 Because everything I put out there is dense and detail-oriented and not some fill-in-the-bank Mad Libs style template for how to write the “perfect” (OMG, everyone can smell a template) cover letter.

I could get paid a LOT to create customized target lists FOR actors.

Nope. I’ll teach *you* how to do it. Because if you don’t get the WHY behind the WHAT in all this SMFA goodness, it’s only gonna take you so far anyway.

What can you take away from this awesome talk Noah had with Vanessa? Are you down with the YouTube playlist targeting game? What can you do that’s bait for the right buyers and an allergy for the wrong ones? Did you land on the Self-Management for Actors tools and go, “OMG! YES!” and it’s just a matter of the stars aligning for us to jam further or are you sitting here — having skimmed this — trying to talk yourself into wanting to work with me someday because you really don’t GET what the SMFA fuss is all about?

What can you create that shows the RIGHT buyers who you are and that will make them sit up straight and proclaim, “YES! THIS!!! This is the creative storyteller I’ve been looking for!” when they see your stuff?

Pop your strategy in the comments below! I’m excited to see what you’ve come up with!

If you’re one of my lifers who loves showing up for what I put out in the world, let me introduce you to this episode of Her Success Radio I did with the amazing Dr. Valerie Baker. Members of the Get in Gear for the Next Tier private Dojo Facebook group already know the magic of Dr. Valerie (and I’ll be sharing more, as we’re collaborating on some very cool stuff coming up here soon).

I encourage you to poke around not just for my episode but also others she has available here. Especially check out Marie Forleo and Denise Duffield-Thomas! If you’re clicking with Dr. Valerie’s message — that it’s a revolutionary act for women to be SEEN in the world — we’re gonna have SUCH a blast jamming together on some really powerful things! Stay tuned!

Hope your weekend is off to a phenomenal start! 🙂

I’ve been enjoying my first few days of bedrest doing some scheduling for my upcoming tour (booked NINE flights, y’all). As we continue to lock in locations, dates, and details, I’ll be sure to share. Excited for getting out into the world… once I’ve healed enough to get out of the dang house for a bit. 😉 Thanks for your good vibes!

All my love,


Bonnie Gillespie is living her dreams by helping others figure out how to live theirs. Wanna work with Bon? Start here. Thanks!

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2 Comments

  1. Joanna Cretella February 9, 2018 at 12:00 pm

    OMIGOSH I just fell in love with Vanessa Van Edwards. Now I want to learn more about “solving” people and conversation! After Day 13 of SMFA I bought tickets to the opening night and reception of a film festival, and I’m still terrified for the networking aspect of it. That concept seems right up my alley!

    Reply
  2. Erin Zapcic February 10, 2018 at 9:26 am

    So glad you got a lot out of that video, Joanna! WERK that film festival! 🙂

    Reply

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