#68: 3 Stories Entrepreneurs Must Know [Interview with Mike Kim]

Storytelling is the foundation of good marketing, and every business needs a story.

Actually, you need three!

Our guest today, Mike Kim, is an expert in storytelling and branding, and he will reveal his secrets for making a business stand out with the power of stories.

Welcome to The Creator's Adventure, where we interview creators from around the world, hearing their stories about growing a business.

Mike Kim (@YouAreTheBrand) is a brand strategist for business thought leaders, coaches, and authors who want to create an impact with their ideas and get their message heard.

Mike’s refreshing approach has made him a sought-after speaker, online educator, and consultant for top thought leaders. His clients include New York Times bestselling authors and experts featured on PBS, TED, CNN, and Fox.

Mike is the author of the Wall Street Journal and USA Today bestseller, You Are the Brand. He has been featured in and written for Inc., Entrepreneur, and The Huffington Post. He has spoken at industry-leading events, including Social Media Marketing World, Tribe Conference, and Podcast Movement.

Learn more about Mike: http://www.mikekim.com


Bryan McAnulty: Welcome to The Creator's Adventure, where we interview Creator's from around the world, hearing their stories about growing a business. Today I'm talking with Mike Kim about storytelling. We're gonna talk about the best way for you to tell your story as an entrepreneur, and the three kinds of stories that you need to be able to tell about your business.

Hey everyone. I'm Bryan McAnulty, the founder of Heights Platform. Let's get into it.

Hey everyone. We're here today with Mike Kim. He is a brand strategist for business thought leaders, coaches and authors who want to create impact with their ideas and get their message heard. Mike's refreshing approach has made him a sought after speaker, online educator, and consultant for top thought leaders.

His clients include the New York Times bestselling authors. Experts featured on pbs, ted, D n n, and Fox. And Mike is the author of The Wall Street Journal and u s A Today bestseller. You are the Brand. He has been featured in and written for Inc. Entrepreneur and The Huffington Post, and he's spoken at industry leading events including social media marketing, world Tribe Conference and podcast movement.

Mike, welcome to the show.

Mike Kim: Bryan, it's an honor to be here with you and everybody tuning in. I hope to be of some use and value today, so thanks for having me.

Bryan McAnulty: Yeah, of course. So my first question for you is, what would you say is the biggest thing that either you did or you are doing that's helped you to achieve the freedom to do the things you enjoy?

Mike Kim: Great question. I think probably the biggest thing has been creating content consistently. Just getting my ideas, my expertise, trying to solidify my reputation, showing a little bit of my personality, through that content has been number one, hands down, the biggest mover. And when we talk about marketing and branding, like especially with people, I believe that people are the most powerful brands.

You know, this is the world's, we're the world's most powerful brands. If you look at the biggest brands, out there, they're all started by somebody, right? They all, they all involved some level of persuasion and using what we now call a personal brand, to get things moving. And I think content. I started blogging in 2013, so it's been 10 years, right?

I started podcasting in 20 14, 9 years ago. I've, I don't know that I'm any kind of celebrity or alister. But consistently creating that content has allowed me to consistently grow an audience and consistently make offers and consistently find clients and consistently build relationships. And that has been the number one thing, hands down.


Bryan McAnulty: So is that something like, along that journey, like I. Is it something that you ever struggled with in like staying consistent with it and like were there any, I guess, fluctuations in that and what's the difference of how you look at it now versus like 10 years ago as far as how often you create, or like, do you think you should create even more now or is it the same or can you create less because you've made so much?

Mike Kim: Yeah. Is that great? No, abso So to start, first of all, yes, it was, it was a struggle. Absolutely. Like sometimes it's like, what do I have to say? And then other times it's like, here's what I have to say, but how do I say it, right? Mm-hmm. And then it's like, here's how I'm gonna say it, but will anybody even read this?

So in 2013, when I started blogging, I, I, I, I came out of a career change and I felt like I needed an outlet for self-expression. So I started blogging a little bit here and there, and I realized nobody was reading any of this stuff cuz I didn't really know what I was doing. And so I went online, I googled how to blog, probably something like that.

And some guy came up and I followed some of his advice and it was really helpful. It gave me some tracks to run along and then it was a matter of like really committing. And so I remember like in 2013, I said to myself, hell or high water, I will publish a blog post every Monday. I don't even care if anyone reads it or not.

But I'm gonna, I'm gonna publish a blog post on Mondays and I was really consistent with that. And because I joined this guy's blogging community, I at least had some other people who could check out my stuff here and there. They might not have been my target audience, but I felt like there were people that I could grow with.

And you mentioned community builders, like we have probably a significant amount of people who are trying to build communities and grow their communities here. And that's where I got my start. Ryan, like I was in a community and we were building things together. We were building our blog together. That was really helpful cuz no one in my normal world knew what I was doing.

They thought I was crazy. Right. Then in 2014, I added podcasting to the mix and that was probably significantly easier to do because I'd been blogging for a year before. Hmm. So I got used to creating content. I got used to writing headlines. I got used to using WordPress, which was where my blog was at the time.

And I understood a few things about social media and how to get this stuff published. And it made podcasting easier. And then I started to grow following. And every year, 20 13, 20 14, 20 15, 20 16, like I added one significant thing. To my overall personal brand process and they all sort of skill stacked.

Now when I look back, do I feel like I need to create as much content as I did back then? I do. I still, I am pretty consistent. It's just the things that I do have changed, so I don't blog every week anymore. But I do write my email list every week, and that's sort of like a mini blog post. And I still podcast every week.

And now I'm trying to get really, really intentional about YouTube and publish videos like once a week and three YouTube shorts a week. And part of the reason for that is because YouTube is just more conducive to discoverability, right? It's just easier for people to stumble upon you and find you and follow you.

And so I'm playing that game, but. I would say when you fail to plan, you plan to fail. I know that's a cliche, but now I, I like write out, all right, what are my episodes for like the next three months and what am I gonna talk? Is there an overarching theme? And like, I have to do that, otherwise it just doesn't get done.


Bryan McAnulty: Yeah, I think that's helpful. I'm, I'm, working on that now and I feel like I'm starting from scratch again because I did a little tiny bit of YouTube and, then, I had a baby daughter and I had to figure out, well, what's, what's going to have to give here because I need some extra time away from the business.

And, that was the YouTube. I continued doing this podcast every week, but I had to figure out what I would do with YouTube. So now I'm getting back into that and I'm finding the same thing. I have to figure out, okay, well what am I going to actually do for the next few months of content and like, structure that so then I can just sit down and record it.

Mike Kim: Yeah, yeah. Sometimes CR constraints, cly actually breed more creativity. Yeah, definitely. I definitely, when I was growing up, I did a lot of art and I remember my, junior high art teacher one time was like, Okay, we're gonna do, we're gonna, we're going to all, you know, draw an illustration and you have to use your non-dominant hand.

It was so frustrating. I was like trying to draw a picture with my left hand and that was the constraint. But it made me think very, very differently. First of all, it makes your brain work differently cuz you're using your non-dominant hand. I always remember that and I'm like, okay, if I can just talk about whatever I want, it's not always easier.

Then putting constraints on what I want to talk about. It's like going to a restaurant and they don't have a menu. You know, you have decision fatigue and you end up like not ordering anything. So. Yeah. Yeah. I love that.

Bryan McAnulty: I mean, even a restaurant with a big menu, it's just the same problem almost.

Mike Kim: So Yeah.

You're like overwhelmed, like Cheesecake Factory, like how many items do they have on their menu? It's ridiculous.

Bryan McAnulty: Yeah. Cool. Yeah, I completely agree with that. I think the constraints are really important. That's something I mentioned on, on the show and, and talked with other guests before as well, that, like I'd say like forget about like, instead of sitting there and thinking like, oh, well I have these constraints or, or this, this time, this, whatever, that you have to work within that other people don't like, use that to your advantage and say like, okay, well this is what I can do and then do it within that.

And often that can actually. Help you move forward and even create something potentially better. Like, I like to look at it as like a constraint, like as far as like product and like software development, like the constraints make the product, that's what makes the product different from something else.

Like Apple's really was really strong on that in the beginning of like, there was so many things like that iPhone couldn't do, and yet the things that they focused on that, that helped it, become what it is.

Mike Kim: Yeah, absolutely. Absolutely.

Bryan McAnulty: Cool. So we noticed, on your YouTube channel, if somebody visits it, the highlighted video, you have this explanation of how to use storytelling in brand development.

And you said that there's three kinds of stories that entrepreneurs need to be able to tell about their businesses, the founder story, the business story, and the customer story. So starting with the founder story, can you kind of explain what that is and. What it should be about. And also maybe as an example, like what's your founder story?

Mike Kim: Yeah, so the founder story, if we use like a corporate example, sometimes that's easier for people to understand. So you look at Jeff Bezos or Steve Jobs, like you just mentioned, apple, and we know those founders and they have a separate story than the companies they launched. You know, they're synonymous with one another, but they're not the same thing.

So we know like Bezos and Steve Jobs, like they started these companies in a garage, right? It's like this cool origin story and why, why did they care about this stuff? Like why did they do that? That's really the founder story. And when I look at the founder story and I help clients write it and like kind of dig through that, I asked them, And this is one of the frameworks that I teach in, in, my book and the things that I, I normally walk them through, but sometimes questions bring out the right answers.

So I ask them, it's, it's a little rough, but I go like, Hey, what pisses you off? And what breaks your heart? Right? And that's really the founder story. That's why they're choosing this line of work rather than something else. Like we have. Folks who are tuning in today, they're course Creator's. They're solopreneurs, they're community builders.

If you wanna make money, there are a hundred other ways to make money that are easier than doing what we're doing. This is a lot of work. Like this is, it's very competitive. It's very expensive. It's hard to get attention, right? If you just wanna make money, you can go flip properties. You can, you can. You could do a million other weird things online, honestly, Bryan, right.

We're not gonna go there. But there are other ways to make money. Mm-hmm. There's clearly a reason that our audience today wants to be a solopreneur and wants to do that kind of work in the industry that they're particularly in. You have to share that. So when we talk about the founder story, that is giving context for the content that we create.

We want to know who we're listening to. We want to know who we are talking to and learning from. I think trust is incredibly important and will be even more so in the next. One to three years as we're seeing AI and all this weird stuff happening tech-wise, and people are starting to wonder, is this a real person?

You know? And for us as personal brands, as solopreneurs, we are gonna become trust filters in a sense. There's gonna be so much more information, it's gonna become so much more overwhelming. Like a restaurant that has too many items on the menu. We, we are gonna listen to less and less people. And we're gonna trust those people more, right?

So people need to know why we're in it. The business story is what's the big problem your business is trying to solve, right? Like, what's the big problem you're trying to solve? And so when I look at my business as a marketing and branding consultant, I've worked with personal brands, I've worked with brick and mortar stores, and I've worked with some.

You know, really top level A lists, you know, business thought leaders selling their programs and their products, and so on and so forth, and everything in business comes down to a problem that you solve. Business is nothing more than solving a problem for a profit. If you solve problems for no profit, you're called a nonprofit, but you're still solving problems.

So there has to be some sort of problem that you are solving. If, for my general audience who listens to my podcast or reads my book, you know, watches some of the YouTube videos that I try to create, I'm trying to solve the how to market yourself problem. That's it. How to market yourself and make money.

Based off what you know off your personal brand, your ideas, your expertise, your reputation, your personality. I don't, I can solve problems for like the local juice bar and the local gym, and I can market those companies, but that's not what I broadcast like online, right? So, I'm trying to clearly articulate the problem I solve and then the customer story, Ryan, is really.

Who have I helped and how have I helped them? Like what's the transformation that they've, what's the before and after? Like, how have I changed their condition for the better? And those are case studies and testimonials. So the founder story, the business story, the customer story, those are really those three things articulated.

And if you can say those three things, it's sort of like a tripod. Really good strength, like really good, strong base for why you do what you do in your marketing. Yeah.

Bryan McAnulty: Yeah. That's excellent. I think that like, this is such an important point and that it's such an important exercise to go through because there's probably people listening to this and saying like, oh, yeah, I, okay, I, I get that.

Like I, I know kind of in my head what you're talking about. Like, I have those ideas, but the, the thing to realize is like, are you actually communicating that in your, your content, your website, wherever it is, because if your audience doesn't understand it, then. You still, you haven't actually done it.

Right. So I think that's, it's really important, and I've been thinking about it more myself, that like, I realize like on a podcast like this, it's kind of like it's the interviewer's job to as best as they can help extract like the best story from their guest. Right. And what you have to consider as an entrepreneur is that, let's say like you're going to be on the podcast or whatever.

The, the interviewer may not necessarily be good, they may not be able to ask you those, the correct questions at all. So you have to be really clear on your own stories and you might say, okay, well it's, it's my life. Like I know it. Yes. But do you, if you think about it, do you really know it the, the best way to communicate those Right, right parts, even if you're not ans asked the right questions, I guess.

And so that's something I've been personally thinking about of how like, I haven't done enough like media appearances myself, so I have to be very clear on that, even if somebody's gonna ask me the wrong questions, I guess. And I think that it's a really good exercise for everybody to go through and like figure out these three stories as, as you've talked about, because it will help in, in all the marketing that you do.

Mike Kim: Yeah, I've been, I've done interviews where I've run into people who didn't really know a lot about me, and so they didn't necessarily know what questions to ask. And then I created a press kit of like, Hey, if you don't know what to ask me, here are a couple of suggested questions. Right. To try to make it easier.

Mm-hmm. But a lot of the, a lot of the people that I, I coach, and I love that you said this because it's exactly what I say to them. I'm like, you have to think like an athlete doing a, doing a post-game interview. Right. Like sometimes they're asked questions. You're not supposed to necessarily always ask the question, cuz it might not be a great question.

You just say what you need to say to add value or if you're an athlete or politician to stay outta trouble. Right? A lot of times people will ask because they don't know what else to ask. So, Mike, what's your story? I'm like, what? This is like a huge, broad level question. And so I don't try to, I don't try to answer that question.

I just go and, well, here's what I, here's what I help people do and I, I, I share like my founder story, it's like, you know, here's what pisses me off and what breaks my heart and why I got into the business. I started, I don't go back to, well, I was born in Berkeley, California and you know, I moved to New Jersey and not valuable.

So you learn how to kind of take control of the narrative and make that add value to that. Opportunity or that appearance no matter what the situation is. And you can always draw from this bank of stories and that's why it's, it's really important to build it and then practice it. Like put it into practice.

Bryan McAnulty: Yeah, yeah, yeah, definitely. Because even, even though it is something that, that happened in, in your life and, and it's your beliefs that, that you feel strongly about, it does still require practice to, to be able to make those connections and realize like, okay, they're asking me this. But this is where I can tie into, like it wouldn't be helpful to talk about where I was was born and how I grew up, because that doesn't relate to giving value to whoever's listening.

So this is where I can connect the founder story, as you said.

Mike Kim: Yep, totally, totally.

Bryan McAnulty: I cool. As far as like the customer story you mentioned, like that could be something like testimonials and things like that. How would you define like a successful customer story? Like is it something that you believe like should be really specific and analytical?

Or more like emotional?

Mike Kim: I think it depends the industry that you're in. But I always, when I'm writing a story, and this is one of the things I say, and I come from a copywriting background, so I always tell people, be specific enough to be believable and universal enough to be relevant. So we all love a rags to riches story that's pretty universal.

We all understand a rags to riches story, right? A complete transformation that somebody's made. And I live in New Jersey right now and, and I tell PE I joke like this all the time. I'm like, Hey, that's a great universal theme. But if you don't put specifics into that story, you sound like a New Jersey mobster.

Like a New Jersey mafia guy, you know? And the way they tell, Hey, did you do the thing with the guy that had told you to do the thing with, you know, I'm, I'm, I'm having fun here. But it's like, wait, you mean that guy or the other guy? Right? No, I meant the other guy. Did you do the thing? What thing? The first thing, or the second thing is like, you know, the Sopranos there, something like, which was filmed here in New Jersey.

I love that show, right? Yeah. Yeah. And like that is terrible marketing. That is terrible communication. So what I tell people is, Well, what year did you start blogging? And I did this intuitively, I said 2013. Right? And just by virtue of listening to this interview for the last 20 minutes or so, like people know that I started blogging 2013 and I started podcasting in 2014, and that I live in New Jersey and that I was born in Berkeley, California.

And the, even though if you've never been to Berkeley, California, or you've never been to New Jersey, those specifics make. The story believable. Mm-hmm. So a lot of folks, they discount those little details and they say it does. I'm I, I grew up in some podunk town in the middle of West Virginia. Like, no one cares about that.

No one's ever been there. I'm like, no, but you need to put that in because it makes it more believable. But those specifics that you're willing to share these details, bring the story in. All of us have watched movies or read books. Watch TV shows that took place, took place in cities or time periods that we've never been to.

But it grounds the story. So that's why it is really important that when you can give specifics just a few, it goes a long way in making your marketing more believable. I've had people come up to me, Bryan, and be like, Oh my gosh. I love your dog Fuji. She is so cute. Is she? Do you think I'm like, we, how what?

Well, that's cuz I put her name on my Instagram account and that brands me in some way, shape, or form. There's a lot of psychology happening there. So when we talk about a customer story, I'm looking at that transformation, but I want to add in specifics. So what I'm really looking for in a case study is like the top.

Maybe the top 15% of clients that I've served, that, that shift, that transition that's been made. If I can do a, you know, borrowing from the weight loss industry, before and, and after. If it's as clear as, Hey, look at their website before our team took it and look at it after, it's a, it's a world difference.

Or if the case study is more about numbers and copywriting and like we were able to increase their sales by improving their sales copy by 45%. I'll use those numbers, but I have to talk about the specifics of. That person. So it'd be, and if the, if the client allows me to share the case story, I can, I can share their whole name or it might be like, Hey, look, Carrie from Orlando was getting, was making this many sales and we noticed that her sales page copy was not really dialed in.

And we took a stab at that. And when she did her next launch, she increased her sales by like 45%. That's a huge deal. Yeah, and ju like, and she's in the health and wellness industry, like even those little details can help ground the story. Otherwise you sound like, a New Jersey mobster from the Sopranos.

Bryan McAnulty: Yeah. I like the example you gave of like the, like TV shows and movies and everything too, because if you think about it, like when you don't have context or details about a character, you don't care about them. So I'm sure like everyone listening or watching can think about. Something that they, they watch the movie or a show and there's some character, and the character dies or something like that, and you don't really care because they were some side character.

You have no idea about that character, but like the main character when you, you know, everything about them and their beliefs and their motivations and you're invested in them. Now, it's a lot bigger thing, like if that character's gonna gonna die or something like that in the, the course of the show or the movie.

And so you have to, you have to do the same thing in providing that context to. To, to get the, the person looking at that customer story to be a little bit more invested in it.

Mike Kim: Yeah. And it's, you know, I love that you mentioned that because, and I, I say this a lot too, but it's why we like certain actors and actresses for a while.

Hmm. Like, if a certain actor or actress builds enough rapport, they've put out enough good movies that we like, we'll go watch that movie simply because they're starring in it and there's a level of trust because we care about the actor. Yeah. So even though they're playing a completely different role in the movie, we're like, Hey, I'm gonna buy in, even if this is a bad movie, or it doesn't take off right away in the first 10 minutes.

Like, I don't really care about this character. I like Al Pacino or Robert De Niro, whoever it is. Right now in this day, like Keanu Reeves, like everybody loves this guy. Mm. He's like this social media star cuz he's like this big time actor. And then he'll ride the subway. And everyone was like, oh, Keanu, Keanu.

And we started using like, but there was a time in his life, in his career, like people did not care about him. They thought he was lame. He, they thought he was a loser. Then he does the Matrix movies, then he disappears for like 15, 20 years and it comes back around and like these social media stories and posts about him, like taking the subway or giving money to a homeless person.

It's like, We love Keanu and they do the John Wick movies and it's like totally senseless violence. But he loves his dog and we love these movies. Right. And it's really interesting if you think about this, like from that standpoint, the ebb and flow of these actors and actresses that go in and outta style, right?

Like you look at Will Smith and he slaps Chris Rock at the Oscars and he is his career's basically over for the next 10 years. Like people are gonna have to forget that that happened in like a decade. And maybe when he is old and gray and looks completely different, he'll come back around like Keanu Reuse did.

Right. And you, and you see these people go through the Abbot, will Smith was like the hottest actor in the world and when I was growing up. Yeah, yeah. And you know, and now look at Nicholas Cage. He's coming back and he just made a ton of bad movies for 15 years. Now he's this old kind of kooky guy. And they're capitalizing on it.

Now. He's doing hit movie after hit movie. It's so weird, dude. But that's what happens. Like, and so in some ways, like you wanna make sure that you as a personal brand, like you are that person that people care about, like they that, and they're going to, they're just gonna give you the benefit of the doubt and be, Hey, I don't know where Bryan's going with this podcast, or this new YouTube channel, or this program, or this coaching program, or this course.

But I'm willing to pay attention for at least the first couple minutes based on his background. Right. And, and that's it. You know? Yeah. And you try not to slap anyone at the Oscars and do something stupid, you know?

Bryan McAnulty: Yeah. It's an excellent point. Okay. Well, I'm curious then, what would you say to like a creator or entrepreneur watching this and saying like, who, where they say like, okay, I know what my stories are.

But I don't necessarily feel like it's really interesting or convincing enough to, to say to anybody. I, I think maybe they, they, they get some of the idea of why it could still be valuable based on what we just said. But what would you say to like address that per kind of person?

Mike Kim: Yeah, it's, the point of the backstory is not to be interesting.

What's interesting is who you are now and who you're becoming. So like, let's just take more examples from famous backstory. We know I love Batman and the older I get I'm like, his, his backstory's not interesting. Okay. Like his parents got murdered in an, in an alley. Like that happens a lot. I'm not trying to minimize like how traumatic that would be.

Like gladly. We're not talking about a real person right now. That's not an interesting backstory. What's interesting in this, this really rich dude decided instead of using all his money to improve education and the political system in his city, he chooses to dress up as a bat and beat people up.

Mm-hmm. You know, that's weird, right? That's more inter like. There are some people, Ryan, that I work with, and they say, Mike, like I am a chiropractor today. And I never had that kind of Batman moment where I lost everything and that's why I decided to go. I've known since I was six years old that I wanted to be a chiropractor.

How's that? Interesting. I'm like, it's not, but you just need to tell people. I feel like I was born to be a chiropractor, cuz since I was six years old, I used to play with the skeleton things in my dad's doctor's office. That's enough. That's that makes people, oh, that's why he or she does what she does.

Okay, cool. I'll listen. So, I used to envy the people who knew what they wanted to do with their life as soon as they were born. And then I went through a phase where like, oh, well my story's a little bit different. I've pivoted in a lot of different careers and stuff like that. But now I look at it, I'm like, no, your story's just your story.

And the more you share it, it just gives people, because people aren't looking for someone who's similar to how they grew up. They're looking for people who are similar to what they're doing now. Mm-hmm. And where they're going now. And it's why, oddly enough, a lot of us don't have childhood friends. We're not still friends with the kids we grew up with.

We had the same background. We grew up in the same town, went to the same school, had the same teachers, maybe even went to the same college. But you diverge paths. So your origin story doesn't necessarily guarantee that you're gonna be with these people forever. Right. And you just mentioned like you have a baby girl, like your friend group is gonna change now, right?

Hmm. You're befriending other parents and like how do we find other people at the park that our daughter's gonna end up playing with or like after? And it's just gonna change. And so like I have very few friends left from where I grew up in that period in my life. And I have more friends today and in the last, you know, eight years since I started my business where we're aligned with what we're working towards.

And so I would just hopefully share that in, in hopes of comforting. Those of you who heard like my backstory's not interesting. It's not supposed to be interesting. It could be interesting, but it's not the focal point. The focal point is what you're doing now. What problem you're trying to solve, the transformation that you can help clients attain.

That's what's interesting, and that's what you wanna articulate. Awesome. Yeah, that's an

Bryan McAnulty: excellent point and an interesting way to think about it with the, the concept of like the childhood friends. I, I didn't really think about it that way. Mm-hmm.

Cool. All right. Well, on the show, we'd like to have every guest ask a question to the audience. So if you could ask our audience anything, whether it's something like you're curious about, something you kind of want them to think about, what would that be?

Mike Kim: Yeah, my question would be, who do you have to become in order to serve the people you wanna serve?

And, that's actually the title of the first chapter in my book. And I chewed on this for a long time because when I went through this entrepreneurial journey, I knew I was like a strong writer. I, I was okay with creating content like you asked about that, Bryan. It was still hard, but like, I was like, I, I can, I can do this.

But then I realized like I had to start thinking like a business owner, not normal to me. And I had to delegate things to people, not normal. Right. It's hard for me to relinquish that responsibility. I had to become a marketer. I. I had to become a better storyteller. I had to become a better salesperson.

I had to become a better, operations and management person, but also I had to really work a lot on my mindset around what was possible. I don't come from an entrepreneurial family that I know of. My parents were not entrepreneurs n neither of my grandparents were. Who knows, maybe hundreds of years ago, I had some entrepreneurs in our family line, but I don't know about that.

And I had to think about money differently. You know, we didn't grow up wealthy, we didn't grow up even having a lot, and I was bumping up against these, you know, narratives like, no, our family, like we don't do well with money or we're not. Gonna do well ever. You know, and I had to work a lot on my mindset and I had to become kind of like embody this higher version of myself.

And I'm not super woowoo. I might be woo adjacent, right? But I'm like, Hey, I gotta learn some of this stuff. I gotta confront the guy I see in the mirror. That is my biggest competition. And it sounds very cliche. I. But every time I've run through good times and bad times, I can attribute it back to my mindset and the work that I've done on myself or haven't.

I love, like, I don't know where these, these, these sayings came from. They're like sort of like up for, up for debate, debate. But it was like the Sanskrit rules for being a human. Right. And there's like 12 of them or whatever. I'm not gonna go through all 12, but like, they really spoke to me and like several of them were like, you know, one of the rules of life as a human being is that you will learn lessons.

And then the next lesson was, the next point was like, there are no mistakes, there are only lessons. And then the, the next one was like, a lesson will be repeated until it's learned. And I'm like, oh yeah, I've been there. I, I've, I've eaten that crud, I've eaten that humble pie. And I think it just boils down to like, I.

Who do you have to become in order to serve the people you wanna serve? So ask yourself that question. Reflect on it. It's probably not a matter of how good you are at something or your expertise, it's probably more of who you see yourself as. Yep. Especially as a solopreneur, it's just you. So ask yourself that question and have fun with it and, and apply it and grow, you know, that's what I would say.


Bryan McAnulty: Yeah, I think that's an excellent question. And it's really interesting as entrepreneurs. We, we really get to, it's difficult, but we really get to grow and expand ourselves by going through things like this. And yeah, it's, it's more about like realizing these different beliefs that you have and how, how those things have to change and yeah, what you have to become.

That's a great way to put it. So I really like that. Cool. All right, great. Well, Mike, thanks so much. Before we get going, where else can people find you online?

Mike Kim: Yeah, you're listening to a podcast, so you can give my podcast a try. I know people listen to about five to seven podcasts a week. Typically, that's what the stats say at least.

So if you want to give my show a try, it's called, you Are the Brand. It's the same name as my book. You are the brand, but you're listening to a podcast, so that might be. Easier to jump over and check my show out if you like it. There's more ways that you can find out how to kind of find out what I do.

But yeah, gimme my podcast. You are the brand to try and if you like reading, check out my book. You are the brand. You can find it everywhere and hopefully it'll help you. Awesome.

Bryan McAnulty: Thanks so, so much, Mike.

Mike Kim: Well, thanks Bryan.

Bryan McAnulty: I'd like to take a moment to invite you to join our free community of over 5,000 Creator's at creatorclimb.com.

If you enjoyed this episode and wanna hear more, check out the Heights Platform YouTube channel every Tuesday at 9:00 AM US Central. To get notified when new episodes released, join our newsletter at The Creator's Adventure dot com. Until then, keep learning and I'll see you in the next episode.

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About the Host

Bryan McAnulty is the founder of Heights Platform: all-in-one online course creation software that allows creators to monetize their knowledge.

His entrepreneurial journey began in 2009, when he founded Velora, a digital product design studio, developing products and websites used by millions worldwide. Stemming from an early obsession with Legos and graphic design programs, Bryan is a designer, developer, musician, and truly a creator at heart. With a passion for discovery, Bryan has traveled to more than 30 countries and 100+ cities meeting creators along the way.

As the founder of Heights Platform, Bryan is in constant contact with creators from all over the world and has learned to recognize their unique needs and goals.

Creating a business from scratch as a solopreneur is not an easy task, and it can feel quite lonely without appropriate support and mentorship.

The show The Creator’s Adventure was born to address this need: to build an online community of creative minds and assist new entrepreneurs with strategies to create a successful online business from their passions.

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