Momentum Podcast: 812
Avoid The Influencer Takedown
by Alex Charfen
Thank you for listening to Momentum! This week, I found out that the momentum podcast is in the top .5% of podcasts. And we recently hit three million downloads. We could not have done this without you.
In today's episode, I cover a topic that is happening more often and becoming more of an issue.
The influencer takedown.
Unfortunately, today's entrepreneurial culture encourages business owners and influencers to set themselves up for a takedown. I will explain what I mean in the episode if you haven't heard or seen this. If you are a business owner of any kind, this episode could save you from a tremendous amount of future pain.
Full Audio Transcript
This is the Momentum podcast. If you've been listening to my podcast for a while, you've probably heard me say that I'm one of the people that when an influencer is having trouble or when a friend of mine is having a challenge, or when someone I know is dealing with something, they will often reach out to me. And I think this is a matter of just the experience I have and how much I've personally been through and. It gives me a unique view of the issues and challenges that entrepreneurs are dealing with. And over the past couple of years, I've had more and more people reach out about influencer takedowns. In fact, it just happened in the last couple of weeks. I'll share the story with you and tell you how you can avoid this and just how challenging it can be in this episode of the podcast. I'm Alex Sharpton, and this is the Momentum podcast. Speaker 2 [00:00:53] Made for Empire Builders game changers, trailblazers, shot takers, record breakers, world makers and creators of all kinds. Those among us who can't turn it off and don't know why anyone would want to. We challenge complacency, destroy apathy, and we are obsessed. Speaker 1 [00:01:08] With creating momentum so. Speaker 2 [00:01:10] We can roll over bureaucracy and make our greatest contribution, should we pay attention to their rules, but only so that. Speaker 1 [00:01:16] We can bend them, break them, then rewrite them around our own will. We don't accept our destiny. We define it. Speaker 2 [00:01:24] We don't understand defeat because you only lose if you stop. And we don't know how. While the rest of the world strives for average and clings desperately. Speaker 1 [00:01:33] To the status quo, we are the minority. Speaker 2 [00:01:35] The few who are willing to. Speaker 1 [00:01:37] Hallucinate. Speaker 2 [00:01:38] There could be a better future. And instead of just daydreaming of what could be, we endure the vulnerability and exposure it takes to make it real. Speaker 1 [00:01:46] We are the evolutionary hunters, clearly the most. Speaker 2 [00:01:49] Important people in the world. Speaker 1 [00:01:50] Because entrepreneurs are the only source of consistent, positive human evolution. And we always will be. Before I get started on today's topic, I just want to thank you for being a podcast listener. I think I might have mentioned this before, but I recently found this search engine called Listen Notes, which allows you to look up a podcast and see how it ranks in the world. And I'm proud to say I'm actually super excited to say that. I am proud to say that the Momentum podcast, the one you're listening to right now, is in the top half of 1% of podcasts worldwide. And it wouldn't be without you listening and you being here. So thank you. Thank you for helping me, helping my team put this out there in a way that people are listening to it and getting to the top half of 1% just feels amazing. So thank you so much for listening and for subscribing and for if you have leaving a testimonial, all of those things count towards rankings. And so I just want you to know I appreciate you. So today's topic is an uncomfortable one. It's actually a really uncomfortable one. It's one that over the past few years has come up more and more. And I'm calling it the influencer takedown. And what it is, is when there is an entrepreneur, a lot of the time in the online space, an online personality or an online influencer or just an entrepreneur that runs a business who is in the public eye. There are now YouTube channels and individuals that are dedicated to taking people down to saying, Hey, this person's not telling the truth. This person's marketing in a not transparent, not integral way. And the few that I know of or a few that I know of are one is Baller Busters. It's an Instagram channel that is private. You have to actually ask to be able to follow. But this one's hilarious. They take down some of the most outlandish stuff out there. But two, that I have some respect for, not for everything they've done, but for a lot of it are coffee zilla Steven and Spencer Cornelia on YouTube and not their entire channels. But a lot of their channels are dedicated to finding people who are making things up, to finding people who are making up their background, who are creating this persona, who are what a lot of people would call faking it until you make it, but doing it in public and creating a level of credibility that just isn't there. And I know Steven and Coffee Zilla personally not. I don't know him personally. I've actually talked to him one on one, though, because at one point we had an entire body of content called the billionaire code copied by a guy named Dan Locke. And I put it on Facebook, Steven reached out and he did a video about it, about not just how we had been copied, but so much of Dan's content has been copied from someone else or appropriated from someone else without any level or any form of attribution. In fact, when he copied us, he even copied the custom icons our designer made. So we knew it was an exact copy. When you put them side by side, it looked kind of ridiculous. So in a lot of ways, Stephen Spencer or some of these other people out there, they become really proficient investigative reporters who will look into backgrounds and who in some ways are doing a service of saying, Hey, this person is not everything that they're representing themselves to be. And so the call or the message that I got this week was from an entrepreneur that I've known for a while, and they said, Hey, you know, I got a call from or I got a message from Spencer Cornelia and he's planning on doing a video about me, about my background, about who I am. And he has indicated that he plans on exposing that. You know, some of the stuff that I'm saying out there isn't necessarily true. And what this entrepreneur said was, I've talked to my publicist and my attorney and they both told me just to ignore it, not to give any information back, not to not to even pay attention to it. And I wanted to know what you think. And my advice was the absolute opposite. If somebody like this reaches out to you and what you've said in the public eye is is real and it's true and you have proof for it, then you should always reach back out and say, Hey, here's what I've said. This is the background. These are the details I can show you. You know what I need to show you so that they can see that you're for real. And in the case of the person who reached out to me, I'm pretty sure that's what's going to happen, that they'll be able to defend this bye with the truth. Now, here's the challenge that we have in the entrepreneurial world today. You know, there's this whole aura of fake it until you make it and exaggerate your background and, you know, make things sound like they're more important than they are and maybe even put some stuff out there that isn't really true. In fact, I cringed a couple of years ago when I was at an event where there was a bunch of speakers, and right before one of the breaks, the person running the event got up on stage and said, Hey, you know, we're going to have a break, take some time to talk to the people around you. There's a lot of amazing people in this room, by the way. If you want, you can come up on stage. Some of you are going to want to speak and do some speaking in public. So jump up on stage and have someone take some pictures of you for credibility for your website so that it looks like you're a speaker. And I just cringe. I'm like, Don't fake that you're a speaker. Don't pretend like you spoke at an event. There's there's, you know, there's records whether. Speaker 2 [00:07:13] You did or didn't. And when we start to make up our backgrounds. Speaker 1 [00:07:17] We expose ourselves to people like this. In fact, over the past few years, I've seen a ton of this. You know, all it takes is to irritate or frustrate or put one person in the wrong orientation towards you. And you'd be shocked at how much time people will put into investigating your background and seeing if you're for real. In fact, I know a handful of entrepreneurs out there, a growing handful of entrepreneurs out there where people have actually created custom websites against them saying, Hey, this person isn't who they say they are. And you would be shocked at the level of detail that people are willing to go to to expose someone. And in some cases, the entrepreneur who is being exposed doesn't even know the person is doing it. They've never done business with them. It's just there's this people there are people out there. They get frustrated and irritated with influencers making stuff up. And so they're willing to put a massive amount of time into taking them down. And the people who publish websites and stuff, they're just putting it out there. People like Coffee, Zola and Spencer Cornelia have created YouTube channels around it where they're monetizing and they're making money. They actually make their money taking down influencers. And so the reason I'm sharing this with you is that the defense against ever having this happen to you is to tell the truth and to stop exaggerating about your background in any way and stop like trying to make this story better than it is. Because I think that is kind of the entrepreneurial culture that we've entered into where we exaggerate things. We're making sound like they're more than they are. We make ourselves sound better. We take pictures on stage and say, we're a speaker, those types of things. And that is a ticking time bomb waiting to explode if somebody like this gets involved. In fact, recently I saw one of these custom web pages against somebody, and the person who published the page went back like eight years in their background to say, look, these are things that couldn't have happened and the timing was wrong here. And this person said one thing on this podcast and another thing on this podcast. And when I see something like that, I always think to myself, you know, this is that culture of fake until you make it. This is that culture of exaggerate your background. This is that culture of, you know, you were on stage for 2 minutes at an event and then you say you were a keynote speaker. Those are things that you are literally planning like landmines for yourself in advance, that you're going to come back and get you. And so here's how you protect yourself from this. Speaker 2 [00:09:51] Tell the truth. Don't exaggerate about your background. Be real, be vulnerable with people. Speaker 1 [00:09:56] I believe we are in a time in entrepreneurial history where the people who follow entrepreneurs like us are looking for vulnerability. They're looking for reality. They're looking for someone who tells the truth about what's going on with them. They're looking for someone who shares the good and the bad and the challenges. And that is how you build genuine relationships with people. And if you start exaggerating and not telling the truth. Speaker 2 [00:10:23] Here's the biggest issue you have to remember every lie. Speaker 1 [00:10:26] And let's make no no knowing that no misconceptions here. It's a lie. You have to remember every lie you've told. And once you. Speaker 2 [00:10:32] Start that ball rolling, it is so. Speaker 1 [00:10:36] Hard to remember everything you've said and then be consistent on podcast and be consistent when you're interviewed and be consistent when you talk to people. And so the defense for this is to just be honest and truthful and real. Speaker 2 [00:10:50] And I completely and totally believe. Speaker 1 [00:10:54] That that is going to have the right people follow you, that is going to have the right people come forward to you. Stop exaggerating your background. Stop making things sound like more than they are. Tell the truth and be honest and tell people what's really going on. And if you do those things and then somebody like Spencer or Stephen contacts you, you can say, Hey, let me show you reality. And I don't ever want to see anyone I know be subject to one of these videos. But it's happened a few times, and in some cases the person was able to go to to one of these people who are like these independent investigative reporters, show them their backgrounds, show them proof, show them receipts. And the video was taken down. But in more cases, what I've seen more often, unfortunately, is that that information is not there. There's been some exaggeration, especially when somebody was getting started and those videos are still open and that artifact lives online as a testimonial against you in a way that is incredibly damaging. And so the protection for this is. The protection for this is being transparent and vulnerable and real. And I truly believe that's how you're going to build the audience you want. That's how you're going to build the business you want. That's how people are going to relate to you in a way that is genuine and real. And that's how you build a lasting reputation in our industry. So be careful with this. Influencer takedowns are happening more and more often. And like I said, I don't agree with everything that these guys have said, but I've watched some of these and I think, man, you know, that person shouldn't have said those things. That person shouldn't have made things up. In some cases, you know, they've even interviewed people on their channel. And in the interview, you can see that the person loses their place and doesn't understand what they're going to say next. And they've clearly been exaggerating. They clearly been making stuff up. You know, that's not smart marketing. That's really just making things up. I mean, you could go as far as to say it's fraud. And so influencer takedowns are happening more and more often. I don't want to see it happen to you. Speaker 2 [00:12:57] Be vulnerable. Be real. Speaker 1 [00:12:59] Tell the truth. And you will build the following you want. And you will build the audience you want and the business that you want. And if you are an entrepreneur who's growing a business, and especially if you're working with a virtual team and you want help with the structure and routine that will help you grow that business faster. The company that I run, simple operations house entrepreneurs install what we call the simple operations system so that you can plan with your team, execute predictably, and get what you need to get done and grow your business over time. If you'd like to jump on a call with us, go to Simple Operations dot com, fill out a quick survey and we'll jump on a call with you to see how we can help you. And in an hour, we will help you evaluate your business, see the opportunities and roadblocks that are there. And if we are a good solution, we'll explain to you why. And maybe we can even help you grow your business. And if you are in the public eye, you know what? I can't I shouldn't even say if as an entrepreneur, you are in the public eye. The day that you declare yourself an entrepreneur, you become a commodity that people are judging, that people are looking at, that people are following, that people start to build a relationship. Speaker 2 [00:14:04] With so be vulnerable, be real, build real. Speaker 1 [00:14:07] Relationships, and you'll see your business grow. Thanks for being here today and thanks again for being the listener and helping us get into the top half of 1%. And recently we just hit 3 million downloads on the Momentum podcast. Both of those things make me so excited and fill my heart with gratitude for you. So thanks for being here today.