The Oprah Effect

Millions of people tuned in each day to connect with their good friend, Oprah.  

Well...maybe they weren't friends in real life, but she sure seemed like everyone's best friend.  She also happened to become one of the most successful women on the planet.  So how did she do that?  How did she gain our trust?  How come so many people connected with her?  

The answer:  People Related to her!  

Oprah kept it real.  When she struggled with her weight, EVERYONE knew about it.  She was vulnerable & was transparent about her life.  Most people want to hide the things they’re embarrassed about due to possible judgement.  But she just put it all out there...and that was the Golden Ticket!  People were comfortable watching her show, and she seemed comfortable sharing information with us.  Being Relatable is about being Real.  Once you’re Real, people can relate to you.  Cuz let’s face it...nobody connects to your First World Problems.  “Ugh.  I can’t believe our private jet is being maintenanced and I have to take a commercial flight!  First Class has all those people crammed in there.”  Crickets.  Nobody relates to that.  Of course, Oprah sometimes shared her high-end life with us.  But by then, we already felt close to her & felt like we knew her.  We already liked her & she had gained our trust.

Oprah's my BFF!

We felt like we really knew Oprah.  She was such a big part of so many peoples' lives,  In fact, we feel like we knew her because she shared so much with us.  She shared details about her personal life, she shared information that helped people with finances, she brought information to us that fascinated us & taught us a lot about what was going on in the world, and so much more.  She poured so much into connecting with us, her peeps.

Who's her best friend?  Gayle...duh, everybody knows that.  Well what about her significant other?  Stedman Graham.  Knew that too.  Who's TV careers did she launch?  Dr. Phil, Dr. Oz, Gayle King, & Nate Berkus.  Where did she shoot her show?  Chicago.  What's HARPO?  Does she like dogs?  See...we know random details about her life, but also feel like we really know her.  

How can you connect with your audience the way Oprah did?

You may not have your own TV show with an enormous audience.  But, the audience grows when you actually connect with people.  Think about the people in your life that you're close to.  Why do you connect with them?  Are they relatable?  Are you comfortable around them?  Can you be yourself?  Do you feel understood?  Do you feel like you know them well?  

Now, what about the people that you're not very close to...do you share much with them?  Do you feel completely understood?  Do you feel comfortable being vulnerable with them?  

Once you know WHO you want to connect with, it becomes easy to be relatable.  You just have to be open & vulnerable.  You need to share.  You need to take the time to understand them & know their pain points...and be able to speak to those areas in their life.  Allow them to get to truly KNOW you.  And provide quality content, information, & friendship.  Gradually, they'll like you & trust you.  Then...they'll be your peeps.