How to answer the infamous “So what do you do?” question

The Toothless Tiger Palette

I think I speak for every entrepreneur on the planet when I say there’s one question we we get a lot: the infamous “so what do you do?”. It’s also something that we all try to answer to our best ability, depending on who we’re talking to. I vary my “what is it you really do” every time. So to some people I do “cutting-edge marketing PR and branding projects for companies” and to other people I am a “writer looking into the latest tendencies around influencer marketing and content marketing” - next year it will be some other buzzwords and basically what I do – stays the same.

Keeping it contemporary. 

There’s going to be a ton of new people getting into these terms and trying to “coin” them so they can make big business around it, but in 6 months they need to use the next buzzword in their description or company name, and it goes on and on. It’s just a part of the game. And you can’t help but sit and smile a bit – in a laid back sort of way and think to yourself: “Great new word – but that’s what some people have been doing for ages”…

So what is it I really do ? We have really busted our chops to explain it over on Toothless Tiger.  The image you see on top of this article is the Toothless Tiger Palette, where we’ve really spelled it out and we’re evolving it accordingly.

But here’s what I really do :

I listen a lot. I write that down including my own input. I use that on my blog, in my books and in my client projects and 1 on 1 sessions around branding/PR and marketing.  I have over 3000 blogs I follow daily as well as seeing what’s going on, in my network.
I speak about what I’ve heard at events.
I create things and models around it.
And I add those things I’ve heard to my own experience that has been built up for years and years.

I boil that down to “cutting-edge PR, Marketing and Branding for companies”.

So how should you answer the “what do you do” question?

Having a couple of different solutions in your head is a great idea. I base mine on how much they know about my subject already:

If I am at a.. shipping conference (what in earth would I do there.. ) but then I would do “Marketing,PR and branding for companies”.

If I am at a marketing conference I would probably do “cutting-edge marketing, PR and branding with a thumbprint of digital”

And if I am among the digital marketers I would be “creating the best projects and writings on the latest tendencies in our field”.

So I think you should be as specific as possible – and also as targeted towards the people you are around as much as possible.

 

 

Let us revolt on the international workers day

revolt

Today has always been a special day for my family. Especially when my grandparents + my great grandmother was alive. It was a day of appreciation and gratitude and caring for those who didn’t have the same rights: a day of thinking big about revolutions.

My grandmother and my great grandmother they worked at Tretorn in Helsingør and my grandfather was a bricklayer, my great grandfather worked at the shipyard. In some ways they worked their whole life to better the rights for generations to come, which means me.

So what should we revolt against on this may 1st? I think indifference is the biggest thing to fight these days. Everything is allright but things can always be better. It’s important for me personally to believe that, even though we’re doing ok and well, there’s still so much left to fight for.  I think we should fight against climate change and for data protection. Fight for better rights for workers around the globe (hello fashion industry fx). Human rights and Health.

1st of may for me is spend with family in appreciation for the global society we have, the many solutions we’ve come up with and the big problems still facing humanity, workers, climate, health etc.

rock on henriette weber

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On being nominated for the danish internet pioneer award 2014

nominated for the internet pioneer award 2014

Sometimes you go by your daily life and something happens. Something unexpected that sends shivers down your spine and makes you feel humble. Today was one of those days. While currently being under self-proposed “house-arrest” because of my hypersensitive lungs I found out that I was nominated for the danish internet pioneer award 2014 in the category “rethink”.  I must say, that it’s a tremendous honor. Without knowing a lot about this relative new award, I feel like my work over the years around the internet, internet knowledge, branding social media and digital tendencies has been recognized and that’s always an nice thing. Being listed for an award with these awesome people? Is completely kickass. There’s no words I could rather speak about it. Kickass at minimum.

So this being reflective musings on entrepreneurial life – what have I done to be able to be nominated for this?

hmm. I think my take on the internet always have been to take it offline. Meet people and have people meet each other, facilitate networking between people. It’s something that’s deeply integrated within me and has been the core of both BarCamp Copenhagen, Social Media Club Copenhagen, Geek Girl Magazine, Toothless Tiger and myself. True connections happens in past midnight in a bar with one too many bottles of champagne or over excellent coffee and cupcakes. That’s networking the Henriette Weber way for you. I haven’t been wildly succesful in having my companies being acquired. (had a bunch of clients at Toothless Tiger that has though)  I haven’t had a large voice in the danish internet agenda (at least not deliberately) but I have made people meet each other and I have gotten friends because of it. I think it’s a key thing of mine. It’s something that I always end up doing. Getting people together – both as a person but also through my work in my brand studio Toothless Tiger.

give peace a chance

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When your whole life is up for revision

 

life revision

 

Those of you who follow me on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook know that I have had a ruff couple of months. Everything has been up for revision. I am in the process of getting my health better, and I am slowly making progress. A lot of stuff has been put on pause.  A lot of relations and projects doesn’t even matter anymore. All that matters is my health and my family. That is what happens when you suddenly get really ill. This is what I’ve learned so far:

Breathe in the good shit
Breathe out the bad shit

Review everything. Do what’s truly you. Don’t waste time on people that are not important. Forgive. Forget.

Deeper breaths.

All these clichés that people post on social media, all these poster type of things, all this health research and meditation practices and food diaries and taking health seriously:

These things that I have promised myself I will do one day when I have time? Well now is the time. I feel like most of these clichés are some that I have to live through. I have to trust the universe. I have to get better. I have to keep up my positive thinking, eat healthy, meditate and have my twice daily training practice for the lungs. I have to live in a clean house without clutter because if I don’t do this, I am really sick. My hypersensitive lungs reacts. Yeah and that’s what’s the matter. I’ve got hypersensitive lungs right now, so I basically react to everything airborn. I don’t even know what conditions will put me in the hospital again and what wont. It sucks, but it’s my reality these days and it’s slowly getting better.

life revision 2

Words without actions are… just words.

So my take on it ? It seems like the universe is playing a game, a game that has been played with me since childhood. It’s called weird lung-deceases and this is the third lung decease I have to battle and live with- the first one was legionella, I was 5 years old, possibly the first person in Denmark ever to get the decease and I survived. The second one was Asthma that I had as a teenager and for 20 years nothing really has been wrong with my lungs. However I knew something was up in November when the symptoms started. Everything is slowly getting better, but I have literally put myself under housearrest. Yes. I have locked myself in my own house and my garden where I know my hypersensitive lungs are not reacting to anything wild. And that’s where I’ll stay for the time being. Healing.

Thank you for your wellwishes and comments across platforms – it truely means the world to me.

rock on henriette weber

 

 

 

 

Hands down! I’ve had some ruff months

The last couple of months has been hard on me. And I am ready to come clean. I have been hospitalized (twice) and I still deal with some hypersensitive lungs that are reacting allergically to something in my surroundings.

This is how I communicated my situation out over on Facebook:hypersensitive lungs

 

It has been hard, but it has also given me time to think and stop the things I shouldn’t be doing to myself.

rock on henriette weber

Social media ethics everybody should be practicing

 

 

social media ethics

Social media ethics is something that is left untouched by a lot of people on the internet. I think Social media ethics is a really important subject in relation to social media. After all, it’s defines our behaviour, how people see us, or if you’re into business talk: your personal brand. Ethics are not what you preach, but what you practice.

Here’s some social media ethics that I think could make the world a better and more loving place if we all used them:

“Via”

I absolutely hate it when I have found something good and then somebody else links to it or shares it without mentioning where they got it from. That’s why I always put in a “via” – the internet and the people on it loves links – so spread the love !

Sharing pictures on blogs

If I use a picture on my blog – I mention where I got it from. Social media ethics ftw! – spread the link love rockers!  Most people don’t mind that you’re using their stuff if you tell the world where you got it from. And if I find a drop dead gorgeous picture that I want to use in a presentation for a public speak, and it’s protected by copyright, I ask the person if it’s ok that I use it anyway. Haven’t gotten a no yet on that account.

Discussions

Remember that what’s stated on social media is often very black and white. You can’t really be in between. Just keep that in mind when you discuss. My all time worst discussions are political discussions. There’s just no way to tell people to respect that people have another opinion than you. I often say that on the internet we speak in what I call our “ultimate truth”. Most times these discussions are text-based so either you agree (and tell it to the world). Strongly disagree (and tell it to the world). but if you’re indifferent about something you often just browse on through the emails or news feeds. That’s why it comes out like ultimatums. Keep that in mind.

Invites

One of the things that really gets to me, is people who keep adding me to groups without me approving it. I know you can do that on Facebook, and there’s no way (yet) that you can block people from doing it (you can with event invites, apps and pages). To me it seems like a hole in permission marketing that some people take advantage of. Adding people again and again to new groups, creates more bad- than goodwill in my opinion, so watch that invite button.

Seeding (or people who shares their content everywhere)

You know those people who seeds everything they create into groups just because they can? It reminds me of a link baiting scheme. Making the rounds when you need traffic for your website or you have a particular call-to-action you want to push.  It is a big mistake to do this on a continuos basis. Especially if you’re not contributing in the group apart from doing your seeding each time you have something you need to “launch”.

I do it myself though, on my own channels where people have actively signed up to hear what I have to say. But in my point of view there’s a big difference between sharing on your own social media “embassies” and then sharing stuff in groups where people haven’t signed up to get your… well – should we say.. close-to-spam?  As a moderator of several groups on the internet, seeding can really piss me off. There’s a lot of discussions going on about whether or not it should be “allowed” if the content you’re sharing is of value to the people in the group.

I say nay. Not if it’s simply a part of a scheme. I think everybody owes to themselves to listen to their gut feeling whether or not they should be sharing their oh-so-valuable content. If it’s something you’re over the top about and you simply can’t resist because it’s that good – go for it!

Oh, and – as a moderator, I think that people should be happy when you mention to them that they should watch the seeding of their own content in a group, because again, if you seed too much, or you over-share several times a day, your brand will also go from “valuable input” to “spammer” in a matter of updates. Or from good-will around your brand to bad-will.

rock on henriette weber

 

 

 

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I needed to be blown out of the entrepreneurial ballpark

I know there has been radio silence on henrietteweber.com when it comes to posting frequency.

The reason for this is that I have taken a much needed break from everything and I am starting to figure out how I want to do things smarter. In retrospect, I can see that I have been running around without my head and heart in things and trying to get ends to meet for far too long. Kind of like a curly digital guru who doesn’t know who she is or what she should be doing, but she needs to get more followers and likes and because it matters for business. I lost track of my core and it almost got the best of me.

It all changed when I met with my spiritual coach for the first time: the ever awesome and totally amazing in everyway: Mariakaisa Bruun. I met with her to get a better sense of direction from all the things I was doing: Toothless Tiger, henrietteweber.com (including writing books, articles, and doing speaking gigs) and geek girl magazine. She told me… that I had to pause right now and breathe. That I needed to get some energy back in my cells because otherwise there was a rockbottom out there called “stressed out of my mind and not functioning in anyway” and that I couldn’t allow that to happen, because the universe had bigger plans for me. After she said that, I found out that she was right. I was SO unhappy. I was SO into the whole race that I forgot my own brilliance. My specialness. The business avantgardist.

This is a learning curve. A different one for me than I have ever been on before. It’s a learning curve called “I need to get my shit together to be all I can be, and I can’t become a complete stress victim before I am 35″ .

Since november, there’s so many things I have said goodbye to. Things I don’t miss. People I don’t miss. I am so much more focused and more true to myself.

That’s a gift I have found in this process. Because I had lost track.I had no idea what I was doing except for surviving. Surviving is not living. I have been trying to keep entrepreneurial spirit floating, trying to stay true to myself and at the same time making ends meet.

The past couple of years have been dead hard. We have gone through financial hell. And I have kept what I thought was my core intact because otherwise I would have been selling out. I should probably have sold out and gotten a job a while back, but I just couldn’t. I thought I needed the to wave the entrepreneur flag high.  I thought I needed  to keep producing and performing…

…I ended up killing the idea of “the digital guru icon” inside of me all together. I guess I just got too caught up in the game. I forgot myself. I forgot my brilliance. I just became a 5 step mashable article, because I thought I needed to be retweeted. I thought I needed to be the entrepreneur because everybody wants to be her. She’s cool, she’s popular, stylish, curly,  and  she’s doing her own thing.

Now… I am back at just doing my own thing. Working on finishing a bunch of projects that are important to me, but hasn’t been touched for ages. Working on polishing some others off. Taking my space. Claiming my ground. Not being an entrepreneur for the sake of being the entrepreneur. Not being an entrepreneur because it’s what you need to be these days. But just being me. Loving myself. Cherish what I have already given to the world of inspiration and build an empire on that. And just stop and take a walk in nature for once in a while. Taking care of myself.  Oh yeah and get those brilliant curly digital guru ideas back again. Because trust me, they are coming back again.

rock on henriette weber

 

Speak geek and enter!

Speak Geek and Enter

Something happened last week. I was nominated for the danish award “Ivækstprisen” together with editor-in-chief, Maria Fynsk Norup because of my work with  Geek Girl Danmark  and our startup Geek Girl Magazine. It was an extreme honour to be nominated – but what was even more extreme, was the response from the network – something I have been living high on ever since. It seems like I’ve struck a chord and it keeps humming.

Just wanted to thank you all and remind you that you can cast your vote for us here (even if you don’t speak danish – you just have to find my name and press “stem” =)

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“Don’t be so accessible when you’re a public speaker” he said

 

accessibility rocks

A couple of years back, I had a talk with a person who specialized in coaching personal brands to become better public speakers. After a while I found out that he was a truly great coach, if you where into being a mainstream public speaker.

But for me, a curly creative business avantgardist who had NO interest in becoming a public speaker who spoke for hundreds of people at the same company at once, about happiness in the workplace or motivation, it didn’t really work out.

He didn’t know what box to put me in. However he said one thing that I still think a lot about. He thought I was too accessible. He didn’t think I could become a  public speaker or a huge personal brand being so accessible. I mean everybody could get into contact with me everywhere right? on social media, on the streets, book a 1-on-1 digital feedback session with me.

I even had my email listed on my webpage instead of having a contact form!

To him it seemed unprofessional. Relating to people eye to eye. For me it made me wonder; is some personal brands build on inaccessibility? On people not replying to other people? On people not being able to book a meeting with another person because that person is too busy to relate ?

Well I disagree –  there’s a new kind of rockstar public speaker in town – she’s called  Henriette Weber and she’s SUPER accessible.

7 things about visionaries who puts purpose before profit

7 things about visionaries

- Visionaries does, almost by definition, sell more in the long run, compared to those who are all about profit.

- Visionaries can be woken in the middle of the night and answer the question “what are you fighting for” in one question- where some people can only give you their value statement.

- Visionaries knows that creativity is the most rebellic thing ever – together with creativity’s just-as-equal right hand: action.

- Believes in the power of relationship instead of cold (dead?) canvas when it comes to sales.

- Stays curious and is eager to learn new stuff

- Look at problems as opportunities for growth

- Know that babysteps will get you there too