Mar 12, 2021
Do you think that hyping up
yourself or your business is a good thing, or does it feel a little
shady to you? Join me in this episode of The Brainy Business as I interview Michael F. Schein, author of the
book The Hype Handbook: 12 Indispensable Success
Secrets from the World's Greatest Propagandists, Self-Promoters,
Cult Leaders, Mischief Makers, and Boundary
among many other topics, discusses his take on that and how he
personally believes hype to be a good thing.
After Michael featured
The Brainy Business
Today as the #1
psychology podcast that every businessperson should listen to, he
was also kind enough to send me an advanced copy of
Handbook, which is full
of great stories across history and different disciplines. I read
the book and loved it and couldn't wait to talk with him on this
podcast about the 12 ways businesses can use hype to find their
audiences and create a dedicated following.
In today’s episode, Michael
offers invaluable tips and advice such as positioning yourself
against ideas with which you disagree, packaging and branding
yourself effectively, being confident in your own unique way,
embracing theater and drama, using facts and figures in a way that
is not boring, and so much more. We also touch upon topics that
have been discussed in past episodes of The Brainy Business, such as herding, biases, framing, and many
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- [0:00] – Introduction to this
episode's guest, Michael F. Schein.
- [3:15] – Michael shares his
background, explaining how he got into the business he's involved in now and why he wrote
- [5:51] – Melina praises
Handbook, pointing out
that she loves the connections that it makes throughout
- [8:29] – Melina and Michael
comment on the problem with trying to copy what others have done in
that it's not going to be innovative when you do it.
- [10:48] – Michael explains why
he used the word hype in his book title and what the word means to
him, giving hip hop music as an example of something that has had
to use hype to succeed.
- [13:18] – Melina mentions
favorite TED talk
and talks about the importance of
appreciating your first follower.
- [14:02] – Michael offers
abstract art as an example of something that was generally hated
when it first came out but is now so popular it’s almost
- [15:48] – Michael discusses the
first strategy from the book – make war, not love – emphasizing that it's the foundation on which
the other 11 strategies are built.
- [19:04] – Michael suggests
positioning yourself against an idea that a lot of people seem to
share in your industry, which you fundamentally disagree with
(there are followers waiting for whomever is first to speak
- [20:10] – Michael shares
Basecamp as an example of how
positioning yourself against ideas works and is
- [22:56] – Melina points out
that even though Basecamp is user friendly, some people do still
prefer more complex systems.
- [24:15] – Michael expounds upon
another one of his strategies – packaging and branding.
- [26:18] – We learn that we
should focus on our weaknesses rather than our strengths and see if
there is a way to turn the weaknesses into strengths.
- [28:47] – Melina and Michael
agree that confidence in things such as pricing is
- [30:55] – Michael mentions
article in which he named The Brainy Business as the #1 psychology podcast businesspeople
should listen to.
- [33:44] – Michael provides his
insight on survivorship bias and the importance of hyping yourself
- [36:24] – Michael offers Tony
Robbins as an example of someone who fits his strategy of embracing
theater and drama.
- [38:14] – Michael explains his
strategy of making things scientific and using facts and figures in
an interesting way.
- [40:16] – Michael provides an
example of branding yourself as an expert by using scientific
- [42:58] – Michael comments on
behavioral economics and how Melina has made use of it using his
first strategy: make war, not love.
- [45:01] – We learn about how
Simon Sinek has used a simple
slogan to sell his
- [47:27] – Michael further
discusses Sinek and his video about millennials.
- [50:00] – We discover how we
can connect with Michael online by joining HypeReads (and many more links in the list
- [51:28] – Melina encourages
everyone to reflect on whether or not Michael's take on
hype has changed how you think of it.
- [55:16] – Melina shares an
interesting story about Michael’s serendipitous timing in reaching
out as she completed her new book, What
Your Customer Wants (And Can’t Tell
You). Now on
presale – will you help spread the word?
More from The Brainy Business:
Get the Books Mentioned on this Episode:
Connect with Michael:
Past Episodes and Other Important Links:
Check out (and preorder!) my
upcoming book, What Your
Customer Wants (And Can’t Tell You) on Amazon, Bookshop, and Barnes
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