Skype Interview with Shira Lazar
Sarah how are you? Good. Did you just have a show this morning? No, you're actually something from digicon like the com economy tio so uh, right now taking down our studio we're setting up a booth we're kind of in a production transition right now. Hey, well, I'm I know that you're really busy so thank you for joining my class today. Of course no thank you for getting the opportunity here. I'm a big supporter and thin so always here to help. No, thank you. Well, so what we're talking about we're talking about networking and I've told the the class and all the online viewers that you really charted your own course and you created what's trending your your online show really with a lot of passion and determination. And so what? What I'd like to know you were right out of school. You took all these red carpet gigs and made a riel how did you get up the courage to really boldly go out there and network and go for your dreams? I guess one of those things it's like in your jeans or dna or is...
n't I definitely think I see people that have evolved over the years and made through finding their passions and not really having a choice of whether to pursue them or not that boldness just comes through it's hard to dismiss someone who is super passionate and it's not only it's not just about passion, but it's not working hard at building and working on that craft. I'm in continuing to challenge yourself by learning and surrounding yourself, mentors and people that you look up to and inspire you at other levels in their career that you look up to. And so I think people saw that passion, and that was the foundation, and for me, it was I never had a choice, it was like my art, the way I express myself was through broadcasting and storytelling and meeting people through interviewing, and I wasn't lying to wait around for someone to hire me for that. Yes, I went after those big gigs, you know, those dream gigs that we all look for in any industry, but I think it's about looking and having those goals is big goals have been saying, what are those little things I could do in the meantime to help me work on my craft? So when that opportunity comes and maybe in my comment might never come that I'm ready, because I've proven myself in my own way to work on their skills, and if anything, we're in a time where never before, where we can't do that on dso, so, yeah, I'm like going back to your question, I think an indian it start with a passion, and really saying like this is who I am and what I want to do and be not been sick about it then really going into that community and surrounding yourself by people in that community who are either you know that are already there and the more embedded you are in the community, the more value to you bring to it you're not just taking from it, you'll see I'm on evolution happening and you yourself will become more of an expert in that community in that niche instead of just trying to be everywhere and cling on to everything, it doesn't really mean anything to anyone and it won't really mean it. I'd love that great advice tell us about a time cause you've interviewed, you know, on your show, you've interviewed a lot of famous people and celebrities and vips do you? Is there a moment that you recall where you were like, I can't believe I secured this interview and I can't believe this happening and and tell us about that yeah, I mean it's so funny because people like snoop dog or cuban or richard branson will be on the show and oh my god that's so cool that you got there realized it that all came maybe a year of running after that person it wasn't overnight and it happens that it was timing and schedule and things promoting their all it's like everything aligning on dh so I definitely think you know, being part of some of the oscars livestream grammys livestream like big at first of its kind experiences those things I look back at it oh this is really cool like I'm not part of your entertainment tonight are all these things I thought in my head like that would be e criteria for success but then I started seeing something a pattern where I'm part of a first and that became more important to me and being part of something that I looked at or mainstream you know, people looked at as that was the level that success and I think the more you establish your own criteria after success I'm your filter the more that becomes like a real thing and you become almost a pioneer in that path on dso being hard things like that and injury richard branson having thirty minutes with him is incredible like when I got to the point where it wasn't just being on a red carpet with someone and then getting us down but and being on the outside looking in but on the inside and relief I'm seeing that I was providing a value not just, you know, part of a junket like and that's what it is a lot of these things you know you're like sheets they're hurting the sheet and I wanted to get out of that because it just felt so it's non fulfilling and I was I was like what am I really bringing to other people if I'm just like another commodity I'm just another person that they're talking at on so I think finding my niche in being that medium between the entertain worlds in the tech world's and and humanizing their stories from at that and making the celebrities you know have more fun and be more thoughtful because they were only at the time being given these they're searching and people get it more but when I got into covering entertainment space beside of technology no one was really doing that and to celebrities wanted to talk to me that they have a place to do that so that goes back to kind of finding uh in a gap that no one is feeling right and you know it's hard because you see things that people are doing that are successful and there is definitely a model there so why not just repeat that model but I think that gets and that's not gonna be that night maintain you and make you mean so but it's not really going to make you stand out or you know get out blades or gain real respect you're just copying and obviously I love I remember when we had the interview for the book but I was down in l a and we had coffee one thing that you shared with me when you're not shy about asking for the interview but you were also looking for the warm introduction and then you would also circle the ask where it would be like you know if you know that person can you just about true me and tell them that I'll do a good job and that I'll repurpose content so you really when you're talking about taking a year you probably had a year and about you know, ten people all trying to help you with interviews yeah, I mean I always say like and it's also the challenge now for me and this is just kind of like my weird and it's a bit of journalists and media the news grind at the producer and me like I love you know for someone to say oh you'll never get in touch that person if I know I need tio figuring out how much I'm a degree separated from someone you'd be surprised how small the world is that I didn't try this out I try to have actually far that I was that for happy hour on friday where I met a stranger and I said let's play a game with c if we know anyone I'm like I don't know your hole and we ended up knowing a group and he's I'm from l a he happened to be visiting so I do believe in and we're seeing this work through social networks that you are a degree separated yeah from people and that could be from what we consider your people or celebrity and I think that the more you're open to connecting and networking not in times of need the more you'll see those people maybe they're not in that moment you need them calling quote but years later you're black oh my god hey when we had that awesome night together or a great conversation that lasted even like thirty minutes but it was since your conversation they want they'll want to continue that connection because I'll see that can act think chamber mrs your face it wasn't like right away you're like well what can you do? He said I think it's about always going the traditional route like the pr definitely all this but I always if I can get in touch with someone I'll definitely put it onto her facebook being like him turning in touch of this person and you went out you can actually help me out yeah, you know another thing I remember you saying that you would a lot of times when you'd meet people to get their contact information you would say low let's take a picture and posted on twitter and then you'd be able to get their twitter handle immediately so that you would you take them on it that I thought was a fun little tip I want to ask you something though it's it's um or you know specific I think that what what I've always recognized about you is that you work incredibly hard, and you, you keep at it, even when there are challenges, and so, because I've known you for a couple years on dh it's in the book, but there was a time when you had us a six figure contract that was canceled with one of the major networks, and so there's been hurdles where it hasn't all been easy. And so how did you keep your passion going? And how important was your network when you had to kind of go through this hurdle? Yeah, it was, it was huge, and it was a moment where I said to myself, like, what was the point of me putting enough side work if this was my destiny, where everything was just going to be fall apart? And it was one of those turning points where it also I had to question my how much I really wanted this? And, you know, because I could have just taken the money I had left and gone on vacation travel, and you said, ok, let's, just take a breather, move and and move on with something else. But time, it's funny, we sat down with mark cuban, and and I even said to recently here in the huge he didn't hear the side of the story for me, but I tell this a lot where he goes, well, do you believe in what you're doing? And you go well, yeah, you aren't doing it, someone else would be any good, and you continue and, you know, it's not like he wrote a check and maybe thought when we sat down with them, same speculating to that, but it was one of those things that was invaluable lesson coming from him and that's, what made us continue on? And yeah, it was in the end, the people that we trusted around us and that we're you know, our network and our community that allow this to continue because we actually after we separated from the network you're part of we are you viewership increased, and that was because, you know, we had amazing guests we've brought way just I kept on working hard and also neil strauss, who has written a bunch of amazing, your ten bestselling books and by griffey's, he even said to me, and I asked him for npr damages like what I do just keep on working hard and he's like, you can't debate someone who creates great like, great stuff and works their ass off like, and that will hard work and good will survive in the long run. I think people saw that and hopefully they respected that and endurance and that it wasn't even about me at that point I wanted it and you put in but from other great stories and other great people and so once I took it I took the attention off me I'm continue you know running and a community built around that and all the people that you know I had an aspirin papers or support or help you know in the past but I was sincere we had a connection with them those people all rallied around me and it really proved the power maintaining with chips in a real way how how honest were you share it with people about it being challenging or hard like you know it was it kind of straight face or were you really truthful about while this is a challenging time I think behind the scenes when he would ask me I would never just avoid it like and I'm not that same person I tried it I try to be human like I think naturally I'm lovey dovey, soulful spiritual person on dh so I didn't need to know professionalism instinct and when I'm okay just to be real and you know what? I have nothing to fear nothing to hide it and so it's kind of one of those things like you either want to work with us because doing awesome stuff or you want to be judgmental and and I don't want the mask because it sort of baby per official gossip er and if you feel that way, you find out someone out of work anyway in the line so I think we're honest but the same time we said what we needed to say and you were gone we didn't I could have done articles about you know that reince all that and it was kind of like it was already dealt with wheat we apologize, we said how important the loyalty and trust community was going forward and we just kept on going like I think it goes back to like, why I do what I do, which is like spend more time being interested in interesting and I think some people take that gossip magazine celebrities, they take situations like that and make it about themselves and I thought that was that wasn't what I wanted to do because it would just perpetuate talk and gossip that feed the beast and I just wanted to move on him and keep on building in creating so for somebody that wants to start building their network, you know, maybe doing content, what advice would you give to people you've talked a lot about? Passion is is that the main thing to find your passion or what advice? A lot of your they're passionate and that doesn't think it's a mixture of passion and then being an odd turn, looking at what you do is up I think hollywood is now starting and the entertainment business is startinto we'll get companies like that was before it was like, oh, I'm needy producer, I'm just the challenger, I'm just this, in your opinion, just for that contract it's like, no way, reason why, you know, I would say entrepreneurs and founders are rock stars now looked at because and they're building huge, incredible scaleable companies that are really once in the way we all live is because of their is their passion on their vision, and I do believe the startup mentality is something that industry should be taking on, and I tried to bring it into what we do, and so look at yourself and or your brand that you're creating it's, you know, it is a start of even if it isn't contents and entertainment, and I would say, you know, what are you trying to do? Why? And then really, I would infiltrate the community that is around that, like the part of everything, whether it be the content of that community is sharing to the bets off line, be figure out ways to collaborate with the leaders and start that stars that are already stars in that community, but don't just come from a place and take take, take I would say you know anyone we're starting more u two stuff which I say was like four years ago which still in muted time and even though that seems ever go like we're still coming in two years later than some of the early adopters and it was one of those standing will lead us there where these people come in so we had to build a trust within that community and that was from showing what value they bring to them it was just like being a video and and get that more and more there's more noise now so really like figure out what makes you stand out and I would say don't wait around like start experimenting with the bottle on and get creative and collaborate and and have thought, you know wanna be around like people that are there so serious that it feels like you know, indian we're all living in reading this like life and work are coming to have their more and more than ever before so you know you need to be intensive business savvy and want to build something really but the same time being you know that you're having fun and enjoying yourself, right? Well, you know, I really appreciate your time I want to just if there's any question from the global audience was with people around the globe watching today, so any question for sherra from our online viewers absolutely sure this is russ I'm one of the host here at creative life thank you so much for joining us we really appreciate it I just want to read a question from yes and the girl who joins us from the black forest in germany, she says what do you think creative people need to understand and develop most when it comes to social media and technology creative people? Well, I think one I think storytelling in creativity is at mixed in with the start up mentality and hustle mentality is like the best recipe I see sometimes and even people with power their suit created so creative they're not thinking about, um you know it beyond their bubble on dh so I think you need to think about, you know, bringing value to conversations through social collaborating like how do you create those connections with the people that are already at the top of their fields? I'm creating shira ble content like thinking like, does this spark an emotion in me? Whether it's sadness is funny? Um it's just give me the you know the show is whatever the chills, but those are you know, the basics of creating interesting engaging content then now it's like the next step of this that buzzfeed and the success of that is is the sheriff or whether it be a tweet or video are one andi, I think you know, I've created a lot of connections because, you know, it was definitely, you know, gary vaynerchuk is the other way where it's all about you know, his voice to me at such a strong voice that it's just infectious and you're all right, I just want to know this guy for me, I would never think that I was just gonna like, rant and rave in front of a laptop or in the audience for hours, but I was interested in donating story, so I felt like, you know that now, so let me to meet people in developed stronger relationship to those people because I was stopping on them. I'm so interesting like, hey, can I pick your brain for a second? Like through my work? I got their brain, so they speak created because the best the nation's mental companies like path, but be willing to use technology tio amplify creativity anyways, it's great advice. I know that you're really busy by last question for you is if people want to get involved, they want to follow you like, how can we support you and find out more about what you're doing? Well, I'm actually lose are on twitter youtube dot com slash what's trending what's trending dot com subscribe to our newsletter we biweekly newsletter is giving you like a look at what's hot online shop using share we also bring story violence videos were like we're twenty four seven machine so everywhere and feel free to tweet needed and questions and I'm always around and you're always working. I will they will say that that whenever I tweet you, I think you tweet back within about thirty seconds, so I know how hard you work and I'm really proud of all of your success in your efforts, so keep it up. You guys are great and thanks for being part of the show today thank you so much, having that really appreciate it and then sell me for watching and for two runs thank you. I love the interview segments, they're so much fun, I just I have so much respect for her and you can tell when people really love what they're doing and they're working hard and I think it's always something just to think about like, am I really passionate about what am I, what I'm dealing? Do I want to give one hundred fifty percent? Because people can tell the difference, right? They can tell when you're really into it and I love also that she's into kind of the first and so what can I do that is different? What can I do? That's what first or better different so any thoughts or questions about that interview with shira I know that people online really enjoyed it merely said it was a lovely and powerful message I just loved effect and then barnes d a two thousand one is it cheryl awesome quote and it's really just a good guiding point like is it share a ble? Well that's because it's good doesn't mean it's sheriff that's a very good segue way for the next story that I'm going to tell you and this one I was on a plane and as I've mentioned to people I do talk to a lot of people on planes a lot of that started because I wanted to learn more about people's reactions to virgin america and one day I was sitting next to this gentleman hints name was jason zada and we started talking and he said, you know, I'm in the film industry you know, do commercials, et cetera and I said, well that's, you know, interesting and we started a facebook friendship where, you know, we ended up being coming facebook friends and it was probably about two and a half years ago it was right before halloween, but I started seeing all of sudden these posts coming up for this website called take this a lollypop to sit some familiar to anybody yeah, well take this lollipop was one of the first videos that integrated the social media facebook a p I with video so it has thirteen million views on it probably now today but it's at the website take this lollypop dot com but what happened was it was jason's experiment he put it together right before halloween it was a creative project that he did for you know, sweat equity and he just really wanted to do it and see what would happen and it was exploring the idea of privacy and social media and how much of our information is online so we're not sharing the video here but I encourage you guys to look at it because it's one of those things where you're like wow like he really pushed it he put himself out there and so what happens is you sign in through facebook and then video that's customized pops back out and it may sound scary but it's you know a stalker who is looking at your facebook information and follows you and it seems you know very very specific because your profile photo turns into a picture on the dashboard etcetera so what happened though is that this turned into a viral sense station rate around the halloween period and people were actually then posting videos of themselves watching it and their reaction like oh my gosh I can't believe this is happening so you had this whole community building around this element so what I want you to think about was this was him being a producer right? You're not really thinking about this as networking but what happened was its the analogy I would use is if you're a magnet and when you're networking when you have to constantly go to the context with jason this project became his calling card so immediately what happened was he was attracting all this interest he was doing something that was different so people in hollywood started calling him he ended up getting an agent from this and so again you never really know what is gonna happen after you put yourself out there but you really have to believe in yourself and say hey, I'm going to take a risk and you know sometimes people gonna like and sometimes they're wrong but that when something hits amazing things could happen so you know funny I met jason on a plane I saw that this was happening so I wrote an article about take this lollipop um ultimately what happened was we never met in person we talked on the phone once and we do live both in marin I never ever saw him until again I ran into him at the airport so you know it's another way that conversations khun lead teo you know ah blogged posts that I wrote and really interesting so I think he's a great one to think about so what I want you to think about is what can you produce your ideas your products creativity brainstorm sessions what can you d'oh that's a value that you can bring to your community