podcast, pitch, people, guesting, guests, approach, certification, alastair, helped, person, bit, interview, strategizing, visibility, personally, transactional, taught, focus, podcasters, create
Alastair McDermott, Voiceover, Mai-Kee Tsang
Mai-Kee Tsang 00:00
So what do you look for in a really good guest and a yes-worthy pitch and they told me what they were. And I started finding the patterns again. And I just kind of like found myself having a record of all of the feedback and then I consolidate it into my now proven process Pitch with Purpose, which isn’t just about pitching that is really about the holistic process of guesting because podcast guesting really isn’t about writing a great pitch. And that’s all it is, is actually everything before and after. Because podcast guesting, the true power of it is actually in the relationships, not just how many podcasts you’re on.
Welcome to The Recognized Authority, a podcast that helps specialized consultants and domain experts on your journey to become known as an authority in your field so you can increase your reach, have more impact and work with great clients. here’s your host, Alastair McDermott.
Alastair McDermott 00:53
Today my guest is Mai-kee Tsang. Mai-kee is the founder of The Sustainable Visibility Movement. She is a podcast guesting strategist and she is the host of The Quiet Rebels podcast. She helps underestimated and underrepresented women in business to be consensually seen as they become more visible to share their message so they can grow their impact, fuel business on their terms for the long haul. So Mai-kee, the first thing I’d like to ask you is how did you become an expert in podcast guesting?
Mai-Kee Tsang 01:25
Oh, yes, that was by complete accident, it was so unintentional. So very, it just turned out this way. So basically, in June 2019, I basically reap the consequences of relying too much on referrals and not focusing on any other ways of marketing myself. So I got too complacent. And let’s be honest, a little lazy, with marketing myself, and it really kind of hit me. So I kind of had a mini panic. So I spoke to a couple of my mentors at the time. And they all told me the same thing. They said, Mai-kee, you should consider guesting on podcasts, you need to build your authority, your credibility and fill your pipeline. And that’s pretty much all they left me. It was kind of like yep, okay, this way, what you do, just go do it. And the thing is, I have been trained in such a way where I don’t know how to do something, I’ll figure it out. And I thrive extremely well on challenges. So I challenged myself to pitch to 101 podcasts in 30 days.
Alastair McDermott 02:32
Mai-Kee Tsang 02:33
In the summer of 2019. And I do not say that to brag, because I actually don’t recommend that to anyone. Now, and we can we can dig into that later as well. But I challenged myself and I honestly, the reason why I chose such a high number is because I honestly didn’t think that I would actually get that many yeses. But to my delightful surprise, I do attribute a lot of my copywriting skills for the fact that I actually managed to receive a 33% booking rate.
Alastair McDermott 03:03
Wow. Okay, that’s much higher than expected.
Mai-Kee Tsang 03:07
Yes, so one in every three and the industry standard is around two to 3%. So I, I knew that copywriting helped. But I also knew it was the intentionality that went into each of these pitches, because they weren’t copy and paste and just swapping out the names of own or anything. I really looked into each of their podcasts and you know, find that common ground between each of the hosts and myself. And that is what really helped me to learn what they really look for, because I started to notice a pattern. And I actually asked the host. Hey, so what do you look for in a really good guest and a yes-worthy pitch and they told me what they were. And I started finding the patterns again, and I just kind of like found myself having a record of all of this feedback, and then I consolidate it into my now proven process Pitch with Purpose, which isn’t just about pitching that is really about the holistic process of guesting because podcast guesting really isn’t about writing a great pitch. And that’s all it is, is actually everything before and after. Because podcast getting the true power of it is actually in the relationships, not just how many podcasts you’re on. And that is what eventually made me really want to learn and study more and to really connect with these hoes and to really understand, you know, how can I bridge this gap between fantastic hosts, fantastic guests, like how can I help them bridge that gap? And that’s pretty much how it all started.
Alastair McDermott 04:37
Right? And just to take a step back, what were you doing before then the business that was over dependent on on referrals? What was what were you doing at that time?
Mai-Kee Tsang 04:47
I was a loan strategist and a copywriter. So I specifically worked with course creators and those who hosted group coaching programs. So you know, helped them a lot of their launches and strategizing, and it also had the the kind of the skills of actually running the launch, not just not just strategizing and thinking that overall thing, but actually getting into the trenches and doing the thing as well.
Alastair McDermott 05:10
Very interesting. And when you pitch those, did you manage to hit the goal of 101 pitches in 30 days?
Mai-Kee Tsang 05:18
Yes. And it was exhausting. Which is why again, I do not actually recommend anyone to actually have such a high number, because I will be extremely honest with you, Alastair, there was a point where it felt transactional, where I literally was like, Oh, my God, as if I was dragging my feet, like, Oh, I need to send out 10 pitches this week, I really don’t want to. And the thing is, whenever I felt that I had to stop, and I couldn’t, and I wouldn’t let myself send out any pitches with that. Because then I stopped seeing the podcasters as people, I only saw them as platforms. And I knew that this wasn’t the way that I wanted to start any collaboration. And so that’s why I had to be very in tune with that, if that ever came up with like, nope, stop.
Alastair McDermott 06:02
Yeah. So it’s, it strikes me that if you treat it like a numbers game, it’s going to be a numbers game. And if you treat it the way that you did, then you’re going to have much more success. But like you said, it’s also exhausting, which I think is where you came up with the next step, which was to help people who want to have their assistants trained in doing outreach for them, right?
Mai-Kee Tsang 06:27
Yeah, that was the fourth step actually. The after I really solidified myself and became this accidental podcast guesting strategist, I started teaching it for people to DIY it for themselves, then I started to pitch for other people. So I did it for myself, then I taught people how to do it for themselves that I taught. And then I did it for other people. So knew that this process was validated in several different contexts. And then it’s, it was the fourth step, which is what you’re referring to as the Pitch with Purpose certification, where I really wanted to help people to kind of almost build their own internal like, podcast guesting PR person. Basically, I wanted to create that because along the way, as I became, you know, a podcaster, myself, I’ve had my Quiet Rebels podcast for over two years now. And I’ve been increasingly shocked and very disappointed and sometimes angry with the caliber of pitches that I’ve received from booking agencies. And it really disappoints me to know that these pitches are being sent on behalf of clients who have paid them hundreds, if not thousands of dollars per month to do this. And it makes me feel like there’s such an injustice there. And I can feel that it’s a very transactional approach, which is why I really wanted to do something about it, because I actually retired my Done for You services at the end of 2020. Because I can see myself focusing on The Sustainable Visibility Movement, which was also founded in 2020. So I really want to focus more on having this trauma sensitive approach to visibility to help more people to show up and be seen for themselves. So new podcast, guesting was just a part of what I do, but I didn’t see it as being like my focus for the next 10 years. And so that’s why before I kind of left, I guess I really wanted to pass the torch on to a couple of people, a small handful of people who would really take this work into their own hands and expand this approach of intentionality, and connection instead of this transactional approach that I seem to see a lot in the industry.
Alastair McDermott 08:43
Right? Absolutely. And just on the topic of those horrible pitches, I just pulled up a couple, just to remind myself while you were talking there, I just pulled up my email, because I get these now, since I started the podcast, and what what strikes me by that is, I’m looking at the one here, and it’s it’s, it’s not addressed to me by name, it’s saying, I hope to propose this person for a podcast name. And then everything else is just a copy and paste. So they managed to get the podcast name in there. But that was it. And it’s just all about this, there’s nothing relevant to the podcast. And, and this person clearly has, has paid for this outreach. And then and then there’s a follow up and it’s just kindly checking question mark. That’s the follow up, you know, when I when I didn’t reply. So yeah, I can see why you would actually get angry about that. I mean, I feel like reaching out to this person and saying, Hey, you know, this is the quality of research people are doing on your behalf, and maybe sending on the sending them to your way because this is just shocking. So,
Mai-Kee Tsang 09:50
Actually, it’s funny that you say that because a couple of my friends are also podcasters. And whenever they get frustrated with these pitches, they actually send them to me, they forward the pitch to me. And they’re like, Oh, I wish I could just send them to you. And I was like, Yeah, why don’t you?
Alastair McDermott 10:05
Mai-Kee Tsang 10:06
It became like this, this came this running joke. And then I was like, Oh, actually, maybe I should create something where they can send someone to me so I can train them up. So
Alastair McDermott 10:16
Do you have that? Okay. So as I was gonna say, I will literally send this to you know. Some people listening to this might know that Aiko is my assistant, she’s she works in helping with the podcast production, she works with me full time. And so she’ll be doing, she’ll be listening to the transcript of this. She will be fixing any mistakes in the transcript from the automation, she will be creating all of the graphics and things that will go on that will send on to you. But one thing that we discussed was having her do some outreach for me and it because looking at, you know how to do it and how to scale it up, it’s, it’s difficult to, to find the time as a business owner to do that. And so when I came across your program, I said, Okay, this is this looks like it’s, it’s right up our street. So, so I actually signed up, Aiko with you. So can you talk a little bit about what the program is and how it works?
Mai-Kee Tsang 11:15
Yes, absolutely. So I have taught many, I’ve taught at least a hundred people the DIY process of how to pitch yourself on to podcast. And as a past copywriter myself, I can tell you that writing your own copy versus writing copy for someone else are completely different ball games. So even if it is similar, if it’s similar content is a very different context. And so that’s why the certification program is where I will teach not just a strategy, but the actual skill set that is required in order to pitch on behalf of another person. Because again, it’s very different. It’s kind of like, you could be an incredible surgeon, but you cannot do surgery on yourself. Right, you need someone like pretty much just as good as you or you know, someone who knows you better than you know yourself to actually do the process as necessary. And so the certification, it really follows the three step process of my pitch with purpose framework. And this is what makes it a holistic process as well. So the first phase is purposeful strategy. So we focus on this, because I find a lot of people really want to rush into pitching because they want the interviews as if they were done yesterday, right? They want them ASAP. And I understand that because I’m not gonna lie, you know, it’s a nice little ego stroke when you get featured on a podcast as a great and wonderful thing. But if you manage to kind of like get an incredible opportunity, but you don’t have your business set up to receive the volume and take care of the people who come into your space, then it’s almost like a missed opportunity. Not quite, almost. And so that’s why in the first phase, we focus on strategizing with what you’re going to be eventually wanting to sell to new people, and reverse engineer that process. So you got to focus on your offer, then you got to reverse engineer, what the freebie that you’re going to offer that you’re going to offer at the end of podcast, and what topics you’re going to need to talk about in order for that freebie to be the natural next step. And then before that, you need to kind of find that common ground between yourself and the host. And so that is the first phase really focusing on purposely strategizing your business to be ready to receive. And then phase two of the process is personalized pitching, which is exactly how it sounds we pitch personally, we will focus on the seven elements of a yes-worthy pitch and we’ll go through it like step by step and like really understanding how to beat the podcaster where they’re at. Because the problem Allister is, I find the approach as the opposite is almost as if when someone pitches to your podcaster they’re trying to get the podcast to meet them where they’re at, in their own journey, when in reality, it needs to be the opposite.
Alastair McDermott 14:01
Absolutely, yeah. And and again, I see that in these pitches, because it’s all about, here’s the topics that my proposed guest is an expert in. There’s nothing about. We heard that, you know, you talked about this on your podcast, your audience likes this, you know, nothing like that.
Mai-Kee Tsang 14:16
Exactly. So that’s why the personalized pitching piece is pretty much creating that first impression. Because here’s the thing, first impressions are difficult to shift. It’s not impossible, but it’s difficult, which is why especially if it’s going to be the first time that you’re connecting with someone, you need to make a good first impression, because you may send the most amazing pitch. But if there are factors outside of our control, like their scheduling, or they’re on a hiatus or something, you know, they’re gonna say not now, if you give them a great idea, but it’s not a great timing, because you can absolutely re pitch to them, you know later on down the line, but if you reach out with a sort of self-worth, self-serving sort of approach, then it’s almost like you kind of sever the potential connection, you know, to have with this person, if you kind of like come across that way in the pitch style.
Alastair McDermott 15:11
Yeah, yeah. It’s just it’s it’s it’s a closed door. It’s not. It’s not open to the future. Yeah. Yeah.
Mai-Kee Tsang 15:18
Exactly. So if the doors, if the doors kind of closed on the opportunity, that window can still be open for later.
Alastair McDermott 15:24
Mai-Kee Tsang 15:25
Alastair McDermott 15:25
So I just want to recap that. So the first thing you work on is kind of like the strategy behind it, having some sort of lead magnet or free offer, if anybody’s not familiar with the term lead magnets, it’s usually some sort of incentive, a free download, or a free training course or free video, something that you offer people as an incentive to sign up for email for your email list. So, so the strategy and also the ability to service new clients that come in, that’s, that’s important, as well. And we saw that in the hey day of Groupon, and if the listeners don’t know, don’t even know what Groupon is, in the heyday. They used to oversell and, and so so the businesses couldn’t handle the amount of sales that they had coming in. So the ability to service new business, that’s really important. The second part, then is the personalized approach and and that from the point of view of the podcast that you’re approaching and the podcast host. And then also within that, is that also where you’re talking about the writing in the style of the guest.
Mai-Kee Tsang 16:34
Yes. So in my certification program, in particular, I’ve got a guest coming in, who’s going to teach everyone how to write in their client’s voice, because I have spoken to quite a few podcasters. And they actually prefer hearing from the person themselves, or at least someone who’s representing them, as opposed to be like, Oh, hi, I’m the VA of so and so I’m going to put them forward to you. It feels a little bit impersonal when that happens, which is why I’m teaching my students to pitch on behalf of their clients as them. And that takes again, that is a pretty impressive skill set to be able to obtain. So that’s why we made sure to include that in the program.
Alastair McDermott 17:15
Right. Okay. Yeah. So. so that’s the first two parts. What’s the third part? Then? You mentioned three, right?
Mai-Kee Tsang 17:21
Yes, you did. Oh, rather I did. Yeah. So phase three of the process is pre interview prep, and post interview promotion. Because there are too many guests, Alastair, who ghost the host.
Alastair McDermott 17:35
Mai-Kee Tsang 17:36
Yes. Ghosting the host. What I mean by that is when they do the interview, and suddenly they are nowhere to be seen when they’re needed. ie when the interview goes live, suddenly the guest is nowhere to be seen to do any promotional efforts to help spread that interview. And it’s kind of like, Alright, I feel a bit like a use tissue for you know, So the phase three is very rarely really focused on “Okay, you got the yes from the pitch. Now, let’s make sure that everything you said is everything you’ll be” so is prepping yourself to familiarize yourself with the podcast, and basically reflecting what you’ve said in your pitch on the actual interview, showing up doing your thing, deliver value, and then at the end of the interview, saying that you’ll be there. And then when crunch time comes the fact that you are there, because I’ve actually checked before, before we jumped on to this interview, Alastair. I looked, I went incognito on my google and type my name in Google. And my podcast interviews goes back eight pages on Google.
Alastair McDermott 18:44
Mai-Kee Tsang 18:44
So they are like forever up there.
Alastair McDermott 18:47
Mai-Kee Tsang 18:47
Pretty much. And that’s the beauty of podcast guesting is the fact that is not fleeting, it’s always there, you can always be found by that. And so that’s why we don’t need to focus so much on constantly getting on like 10 podcasts a month because the reality of is, are you going to actually promote all of them, you know, are you going to be there are you going to be consistent with that, or to just kind of a flash in the pan sort of thing, because that’s what again, it creates this transactional approach, when we’re podcast guessing if we’re focusing just on the numbers, but if we focus on the people and just showing up just as you would a friend, then that’s what’s really going to make this more impactful So for example, that being put in front of someone’s paid audience that’s a big deal, because that takes way more trust than being in front of someone’s free, unpaid audience. You know, I mean? because it’s, I think, it’s like the first layer of reward, I guess, or results of this process is being able to Yes, expand your reach by reaching a new audience. But then next few layers are cultivated from the trust that you have built throughout this process. And when someone trusts you in business, your opportunities open up. They are opportunities that not just anyone can get onto or be a part of, you are offered them because they trust you.
Alastair McDermott 20:06
Mai-Kee Tsang 20:07
That’s why I really want to take this relationship approach to podcast guesting that really takes away the transactional elements that seemed to be infiltrated in the podcasting industry today.
Alastair McDermott 20:20
Yeah. So, okay, there’s a few few interesting things to dig into there. One thing I just want to mention is that, so I think this will probably be about Episode Number 30 of my podcast, so. So it’s gotten over that hump of where people kind of fade away early days. And it’s gotten to the stage where we do it for a while, but I’ve seen a lot of different things.
Mai-Kee Tsang 22:10
Yeah, so I actually looked that up before we jumped on, because I really want to kind of see the back. Kind of like the trace, basically. And so the podcast you heard me on was Belinda Weaver’s hot coffee podcast. She also runs this podcast was key tune. That’s right. And it’s interesting that you said just now about you know, your most popular guests did the did the greatest sharing. Belinda, she ranks number two, like my second most popular episode of all time on my podcast, because she also did that. So shut up. But yeah, so I, because I did not know you personally. I had my assistant reach out to you to actually jump on a call with you remember that? Yeah, I
Alastair McDermott 22:55
- Yeah, absolutely.
Mai-Kee Tsang 22:56
And the thing is you actually booked onto my, my calendar yourself, because you’re interested in a certification program. Right. Yeah. So that certification program cool was both a get to know you call and also, you know, enrolling you into the program. And so it was around then when I really got to kind of like, see what you’re focused on. Because actually, the questions I asked you about the program itself, and like, Oh, are you willing to do this? Are you willing to do that? And you said, Yes, of course, I’m here to collaborate, I’m here to do my part in this. And when you kept saying that, and I can genuinely feel someone’s being genuine about that. And so when you were, I was like, Yeah, I can collaborate with this guy, you know, on The Recognized Authority. So that’s what we did. And so that’s why I insist on jumping on calls with guests, I don’t know, or brother podcast is that I don’t know. And I do the same with my own guests. If some, if I know of someone, they still go for a preliminary interview, unless I personally invite them. They’re the only people who get to skip the the prelim. But even if someone is really amazing that like, I don’t know that they’re a recognized authority in their own right, they still go on a preliminary because that’s how much I care about who I bring onto my platforms. And that’s why I really respect the process that each podcaster has when they bring someone else onto their platform. And I said, though, I said that about your own process. You had this like, awesome, like, FAQ page, and I was like, dude, I think I need to kind of up my game a little bit. I didn’t have an FAQ. I mean, I have like some tips on how to be good guests and everything, but not much beyond that. So yeah, I didn’t do too much of a background check on you personally, because I knew that we’re going to jump on a call and I normally draw a lot from that conversation. Yeah,
Alastair McDermott 24:46
the reason I asked that is because I know and, and this might touch on some topics that are a little bit more difficult to talk about, but but I know that that you are very careful about a bad place. you’re placing people who you work with on podcast big because some of them have had a negative experience with that before. So yeah, so you did talk about that in, in your episode of on your own podcast where you talked about the certification program. You taught you just briefly mentioned that. So I’m just wondering if we could talk about that for a minute about it by just being careful which podcast you go on. And that was when I asked you about the background check. I was interested to see what you actually did. So So that’s, that’s, so can I just can just talk about that a little bit. But being careful about that?
Mai-Kee Tsang 25:35
Yes, absolutely. And I’m glad that you brought this up, because that is actually something I also did. I also looked at the kind of guests that you had on as well, and just like the interview topics, and I tuned into a couple of them for for a few minutes just to kind of like get the vibe. And if I, if I saw someone who genuinely who I personally really conflict with, then I may have stepped back. You know, at this time I didn’t. And the reason why I do that is because I’m very mindful of who I show who I show up with, because every podcast that I’m on, to a degree I’m advocating for you. I’m basically saying to my audience that hey, like Alice does a good egg check. And that’s the same for every single summit that I’m on every single podcast that I’m on, and just any collaboration that I do. So that’s why I don’t, I’ve received a lot of summit invitations for the last couple of weeks. Now I have like, probably at two summits for like, every month for the rest of the year. But every time I always ask them, like, why are you doing this? Why me? And who else are you having on and why? I really want to see the diversity, the diversity of their guests as well. I asked them very straightforward question about their commitment to diversity and inclusion, and what does that look like? And all of those sorts of things. Because I, I’ve learned a lot this year around the importance of advocacy, and how there are a couple of things that went down in the online course industry. For example, when there was a, I’m not gonna say the name, but a person who caused so much harm to a lot of minorities. And there was someone who I really looked up to who was this person’s brand partner. And I was really disappointed to see that this person who I really trusted in, kept advocating for this for the other one. And I understand that with brand deals, you’ve signed contracts that I do understand from a legal standpoint, you know what you need to do, but that’s why I’m extremely mindful with any partnership I end up in whether it’s paid or unpaid, it doesn’t matter. It’s the fact that I want to know who I’m rooting for.
Alastair McDermott 27:51
Yeah, I think that was one of the reasons why I was interested in working with you. Because I think that we all have to be aware that we are in a way, advocating or endorsing when we appear on some of these podcasts, or we when we have them as guests. And I mean, you don’t want to find out that somebody is a horrible racist after you’ve had them on your podcast, and it’s published to the world. You know, you don’t
Mai-Kee Tsang 28:13
know I wasn’t published, I’d be like, sorry, this was inappropriate. I’m not publishing I would do to someone.
Alastair McDermott 28:19
Yeah. But if you find that after, after the fact, that’s, that’s too late. You’re on your own. It’s out in the world, and you can’t pull it back then at that point. So that’s that was just some of the things I was thinking about. And like, I can tell that you really care about this and that you you are really careful. And careful is the right word. But you know, you remindful unconscious. Yeah, yeah. So the other thing I wanted to dig into is, is maybe a bit easier to talk about, but I’m sure you’re gonna be very opinionated on this. You specifically made this a certification program. And I know that you come from the world of online training and stuff like that. So it’s really interesting, because a lot of people do create these training programs online. But not many people think about creating as a certification where you have exams and things at the end. So can you talk a bit about that decision?
Mai-Kee Tsang 29:11
Yes, absolutely. It’s because I really wanted to know who was willing to do the work, and who will I very proudly advocate for and refer people to because they that everyone who’s come into this program, I’m essentially giving them my baby, because there’s this pitch with purpose framework that was born out of hundreds of pitches, being in the trenches doing the thing and not having a PR background I had to go in from the other way when you kind of go from the ground up. And because of that work, I knew I just didn’t want to pass this knowledge on to just anybody because I also know that anyone I train can do harm. If I if I you know, allow that which is why it was also an application process. I needed to speak with every single person And to know, you know what their intentions are. And granted, there are going to be plenty of things I will never have control on. But I can try to curate just a little bit more, because I really, really wanted to kind of have people very thoroughly trained, because it’s an extension of my own work, and they’re doing the thing that I don’t have the bandwidth for anymore. Right. And because it was kind of like my salutes almost to help expand the approaches for podcast guesting because I won’t lie, the pictures that you and I get frustrated with, sometimes it does work. And that’s quite frustrating, frustrating itself, to be honest. But I’m not saying that my approach is like the only approach that works, because that’s not true. It’s the approach that I personally think is best from real life experience face to face and actually being there for the results and things. So that’s why I didn’t just want to create a program that people will just go through and may or may not implement it. I wanted to train people up, like literally take them under my wing, share with them everything I know. So they can be a force of good and really help to amplify the voices that value these things. You know, they value the relationships over the transactional approach, and they care about the people who they advocate for. And as someone who is I hold multiple marginalized identities. And this also helps enable the sense of safety. Because while I, the reason why frustrates me so much when they’re the misaligned pitch that gets sent to me, is because I can feel that lack of intention. And it makes me think, what if their client, the guest that they’re pitching, has something that they haven’t disclosed to this agency, and they’re pitching onto your podcast, I can do them harm. You know, it just feels like okay, I really wanted that extra layer of consideration to be involved, which is why the examination piece, which I just described yesterday, because yesterday without kickoff call, the examination, it’s gonna, it’s gonna be tough. And I am getting three attempts for a reason. Because there’s, there is definitely room to not pass in this because I want to make sure that everyone who gets the certification in the end is someone who I’m very, very proud to showcase. Excellent. Yeah, I
Alastair McDermott 32:23
like that. And the other thing that you mentioned is you mentioned your own lead magnets, so can just tell us what that is?
Mai-Kee Tsang 32:29
Yes, absolutely. So this is called be our podcast guests. And this is where I collaborated with 24 podcasts, because I’m actually the 2024 podcasters on there out of the box piece of advice to help people, you know, get more yeses to pitching opportunities. So when I say that, I’ve talked to a lot of podcasters. I really mean and here’s the so it’s a really fantastic resource, if I do say for myself, and it really shows you what we all believe in when it comes to these collaborations. So if you want to get your hands on that, you can go to make a fan.com forward slash 25. Experts aching, grab that for free. And it’s a really, really, really great resource. Again, if I do say so myself.
Alastair McDermott 33:14
Actually, we will link to that in the show notes.
Mai-Kee Tsang 33:17
Yes, please do. And if you know, let me know how you’re getting on with your pitching efforts. Or if you want to have more conversations around podcast guessing or stainable visibility. If you would like to do that, you can just DM me anytime over on Instagram. So my handles just making slang. So I’m super easy to find.
Alastair McDermott 33:34
Excellent. Thank you. Okay, so let’s, let’s shift a little bit. I want to just talk about what your journey has been in terms of business and what you’ve been doing. So can we go back to you were talking about copywriting. And you were talking about launch strategy and and course creation, right. That’s that that was that. That’s where you started?
Mai-Kee Tsang 33:59
Yeah, that was it. I’ve had several. And several have failed, like from the very beginning that I’ve been in the online business world for six years now. And at the very beginning, I did not do well. So we could talk about that if you want to.
Alastair McDermott 34:16
What were the things in hindsight, looking back, what were the things that you were doing wrong?
Mai-Kee Tsang 34:21
Okay, so I graduated from university with a psychology degree. And at the same time, I also trained to be a health and wellness coach. And I think like a lot of coaching certification, they teach you how to be a great coach, but they do not teach you how to be a business owner. So I have trial and error a lot over the course of these last six years. And so at the beginning, I think I didn’t have my foundation set and I was kind of like shooting for things higher up on the rung of the ladder when I should have been focusing on just taking my first few steps at the bottom. So I made very little money in my first couple of years. So thankfully I had a part time job at the time, which I quit on, you know, for a challenge. But anyway, that’s another story for another day. But yeah, so my biggest mistakes at the beginning was definitely not having those foundations in place. And
Alastair McDermott 35:17
so lack of business acumen, that kind of thing. Yeah, really, I wish Same place coming from the world of software engineering. But, but, ya know, I was lucky enough to stumble accidentally into a mastermind group, which really helped me. Did you have something like that that helped? Or did you realize that you needed business coaching?
Mai-Kee Tsang 35:35
Yeah, I had a lot of mentors at the very beginning. I think right now, six years later, is my first time where I’m actively choosing not to have a mentor for a few months, just to see what I can do when I’m not under someone’s wing. Because I think it’s become a little safety net, you know, for me to be under someone’s wing. And I’ve always appreciated what my mentors have taught me. And I think it was around four years ago. So I guess two years into the whole journey, where I was taken under a mentors wing in a very different way. He actually brought me on as a mentee at first and then it shifted into me being a member of his team, his first team member, and then we took his business from literally zero to six figures in 12 months. And I got to try everything from behind the scenes. I got to learn sales, marketing and copywriting. I even did video animations for him and for millions of views on his YouTube channel. Yeah, literally everything community management of community of over 10,000 people that grew to 30,000 in a few weeks, and it’s a lot of things I got to try. So I think I’ve got to dip my hand it’s a lots of little honey pots in that opportunity. And that’s when I really started to kind of niche into my skill set. And then I niched further into the ethos of the kind of people I want to serve. Because I always felt myself like anyone who wants to niche they want to help everybody, right? Yeah. But sometimes you niche by industry, you’d niche by service, but then I’ve wound up meshing via ethos, like the people who I want to serve like what they have in common, because they were my only common thread between, like my clients who I loved serving and who I got great results for. So
Alastair McDermott 37:17
really interesting that that niching down. You said that before he means by ethos, what did you how did you stand first imaged him in terms of skill set?
Mai-Kee Tsang 37:29
Yeah, I started off with skill set. And then I didn’t want to niche by service, because I’m not sure whether you’ve talked about human design yet on the on the podcast so far. But just like any other personality test, right? Human Design is actually based on your birth information, and I won’t go too deep into it. But I do know that my type is what we call a manifester. And a manifester is basically someone who thinks as if there is no box. So we, we naturally innovate, because we kind of like really lean into those creative urges that we get. And we don’t stifle them based on what we think is realistic. Even if it’s unrealistic. It’s like, well, let’s try and see where we go. So that’s why the sustainable disability movement, it is what it is the podcast guessing certification program, it is what it is, because my approach focuses a lot about representing the underrepresented you know. So there are like new approaches that I am afraid to try, but I still do it anyway. Because I can the coexistence of being afraid and yet being brave. It exists for me.
Alastair McDermott 38:35
Yeah. Let me ask you that about sustainable visibility. Can you talk? Tell us a little bit about that? We’re, we’re coming close on time we got we got five or six minutes left. Can you just give a quick overview of what That’s right.
Mai-Kee Tsang 38:49
Absolutely. So just like with the podcast, gifting certification, it was kind of like the antidote to the gap that I saw in the industry. And it’s the same when it came to visibility, because I have a history of trauma. And I think a lot of people actually do, whether they are consciously aware of it or not, which is why sustainable visibility is a trauma sensitive approach to those who really, really want to be visible, but they actually find themselves being triggered at the thought of being visible. Because the majority advice out there is pretty much like put yourself out there, jump before you’re ready is very forceful, and it can work for some people who are ready to go all in. But it really dismisses the lived experience of someone who has experienced trauma and is living with that trauma, and they’re working with it. And so that’s why I’m also training right now, to be satisfied in trauma sensitive leadership, because I need to be aware of how trauma impacts people and their perception of disability. So yes, we do talk about the strategy and stuff first, I’m sorry, no, we don’t do a first we do strategy, pretty much towards the end of the process because we need to focus on the person and have helped them to kind of peel back the layers that they’re comfortable. were showing as they are visible. So the sustainable visibility movement again is like a different answer a different way of how you can be visible but without traumatizing yourself or re traumatizing yourself, or kind of breaching your own boundaries just for the sake of being seen online.
Alastair McDermott 40:18
Right? Yeah. Yeah. I know, a lot of devices just to push through. You know, if you’re finding it difficult, just push on through, and you’ll be fine. But that’s not going to work for everybody.
Mai-Kee Tsang 40:28
Absolutely, yeah. Yeah.
Alastair McDermott 40:30
Okay, so So let’s see, I like to ask people about books and resources and things like that. Do you have any resources, any books that you would recommend to people who, who are, you know, independent consultants, and they’ve got their own business? Is there anything that you that you’ve read that you’d recommend?
Mai-Kee Tsang 40:49
Oh, yeah, this is one of my favorite books. And I’m, it’s, I always played it in front of me, because the title, it reminds me of what’s important. So the book is called “Rejection Proof”. And it is by an author, his name is Jia Jiang. And I believe he’s, I believe he’s Chinese. I’m sure he is. So his story is basically of how he purposely sought rejection for 100 days in a row. And he documented it on and he found that I think it’s kind of similar. Maybe that’s where I got my own pitch challenge from kind of doing something for 100 attempts or 100 days. In his case, he was 100 days of seeking rejections. So he, you know, wanted to find rejections. So he would ask some really absurd requests, like, I don’t know playing football in a stranger’s back garden or asking the the cabin crew on an airplane, if he can make the announcement, or asking a Krispy Kreme person to kind of like form the donut in the shape of the Olympic rings. They were really upset request. But he found that he actually started getting more yeses than he did nos. And so is, is really that journey of being able to become rejection, prove yourself, because it’s very easy to take rejections personally.
Alastair McDermott 42:00
Mai-Kee Tsang 42:01
And that’s fine, because we’re human beings. But when it becomes debilitating, and when it makes you feel like you don’t want to go on because it’s that painful. I always go back to this book, because I just read the stories. And even if I can’t personally relate to them, they’re pretty entertaining. And the message is very clear of how you can only know if you try. And if you sit there and wonder that’s that in itself still takes up energy.
Alastair McDermott 42:23
Right. Okay. And that’s “Rejection proof”. That sounds really interesting.
Mai-Kee Tsang 42:27
Yeah, it’s a great book.
Alastair McDermott 42:29
Cool. Yeah. I love finding out about new books. What about fiction? Do you read any fiction?
Mai-Kee Tsang 42:36
I actually read with the business books. I’m a bit boring.
Alastair McDermott 42:42
That’s okay. Are you big into movies or tv or anything like that?
Mai-Kee Tsang 42:46
Yeah, I watch a fair amount of TV.
Alastair McDermott 42:50
Mai-Kee Tsang 42:51
Huh? Okay. So, this may sound a bit strange, though. At the time of this recording, I am not a mother yet. And I think I will be in the next five years or so. But I’m actually almost on the hunt of kind of like great TV shows that I can watch with my kids that will teach them really great lessons. So there’s a TV show that aired back in 2008. And it’s something that I just go back to because it’s got such a great message, especially for a kids show. It’s called “Avatar”, it’s called “The Legend of Ang”, or “The Last Airbender”, depending on where you’re situated in the world. I’m based in the UK. So it’s called the legend of ang. And it was about is basically about the story of these kids who support the grand like uniter of all of the nations that were divided during a time of war. And it was really about seeing the strengths of each nation and how they can come together despite their differences. And it was just really, really, really inspiring sort of animation, actually. And so that’s definitely one for the history books when it comes to watching with my children.
Alastair McDermott 43:55
And that is some impressive pre planning.
Mai-Kee Tsang 43:58
So thank you. I try.
Alastair McDermott 44:02
Very cool. So this, this is where I asked you if people are interested in finding out more. So I know that the Pitch for Purpose certification is now closed, but people want to learn about working with you on that. I think you have some other options available. Can you tell us about that?
Mai-Kee Tsang 44:18
Yes, absolutely. So if you want me to help you train your team with pitching podcast for you and really sitting down and strategizing with me personally, I do offer VIP spotlight days where we can do just that. Alternatively, if you want to do a DIY approach, and just like see what that’s like, and I’ve had some people buy that workshop series, you know, for their team as well. It’s not quite the same as a certification, but some of them still try anyway, so if you would prefer the DIY approach, I also have an on demand Ultimate Podcast Guesting workshop series that you can get straight from my website, maikeetsang.com/upg.
Alastair McDermott 44:56
And I would recommend that people check those out and definitely listen to you on blenders podcast as well, which I will link to that episode in the show notes. So thank you, Mikey. It’s been a pleasure having you on. And yeah, if there’s if there’s any last pieces of wisdom for our audience that you have, I don’t know. Is there anything that we should have asked?
Mai-Kee Tsang 45:22
Oh, that’s a good question. Well, I will say this, whether it’s podcast guesting, or any form of collaboration, if you just remember this phrase, then I think you’ll be fine. Because it’s something that I always go back to to rehumanize a process that may become a bit when it comes a bit dry or feels a bit robotic, and it feels like you’re dragging your feet. Just remember, service over self importance. And with that, you will come across really wonderfully towards the people you want to collaborate with and they will more likely to give you a chance than if you do the reverse of self importance before service because if that comes across and you may very much have a lot of doors close on you, but you can keep those windows of opportunities open if you always lead with service before self importance.
Alastair McDermott 46:17
Super. That is a great message. Make a saying thank you so much for being with us.
Mai-Kee Tsang 46:22
Thank you, Alastair.
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