This Week’s Guest: Brian D. Evans
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On this episode, we have an amazing guest: Brian D. Evans, the founder and CEO of Influencive. The site is so popular that you’ve probably heard of it, but in case you haven’t, it’s an online publication sharing unconventional wisdom about entrepreneurship, business, lifestyle, culture, travel, life hacking, and mindful living. The contributors are all thoroughly vetted, as Brian explains in this episode.
Brian himself is an Inc, 500 entrepreneur who Forbes ranked as the #7 ranked marketing influencer in the world. He’s a startup advisor, business coach, and marketing strategist with a deep enthusiasm for inspiring people to believe in themselves and follow their entrepreneurial dreams. As you’ll hear in this conversation, he has incredible insight into the entrepreneurial journey, and he’s eager to share.
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Part 1 of 2: We learn about Brian’s life, including his struggles with formal education. He also talks about the early days of Influencive, how he started the company, and what he thinks about writing on a set schedule.
5:16 – Brian starts things off by telling us more about himself and how he got started as an entrepreneur.
7:42 – We hear more about Brian’s experience at school, where he struggled quite a bit. He went to college three times, and dropped out each time, he tells us.
9:52 – Brian adds a caveat to what he’s previously been saying about education, then explains why formal education wasn’t the right choice for him.
[11:42] – We learn about why Brian created Influencive, and how he started it as a place to put his own content rather than with the intention of making the site what it is today.
[15:18] – Before allowing someone to write on Influencive, Brian puts people through a specific application process, which he describes here.
[18:09] – Brian talks about his previous projects, including an affiliate marketing blog that did pretty well.
[20:06] – How often was Brian writing content in the early stages? In his answer, Brian discusses why better content can result from not having deadlines.
[24:07] – What are Brian’s recommendations in terms of writing frequency for someone just getting started? He addresses the topic of writer’s block as well, giving tips on how to get past it (or prevent it).
[28:01] – Brian talks about the early days of Influencive, and the importance of listening to your audience.
[32:18] – We hear more about Brian’s uphill struggles, as well as the reasons that he doesn’t like to use the word “try” and prefers “test” instead. He also talks about goals and emphasizes the importance of writing them down.
[37:50] – Brian discusses his use of social media, including how he got verified on Instagram and Facebook. In his answer, he mentions Dan Bilzerian as an extreme example of someone who people might not want to publicly follow, but still want to read.
[44:20] – One of Brian’s happiest moments in the journey has been realizing that he’s been an entrepreneur for over half his life. He mentions The Universe Has Your Back by Gabrielle Bernstein.
Rocket Round Q&A
- What’s your favorite topic to write about? Entrepreneurship, with an emphasis on inspiring people. He mentions Andy Frisella and his inspirational story.
- Who is your entrepreneurial idol? Tony Robbins, Oprah, Tim Ferriss, and Lewis Howes.
- How do you define success? “Being able to live my life on my own terms, how I want to.”
- What book impacted your life, especially in the early stages of building Influencive? A New Earth by Eckhart Tolle, and any book by Tony Robbins.
- What do you enjoy doing in your spare time? Sometimes, Brian has to just shut everything off and do nothing. He also enjoys jiu jitsu.
Part 2 of 2: Brian talks about the importance of a circle of influence, as well as his best practices for networking and meeting new people. He also talks about tools and tips that have helped him make Influencive a success, and shares an important way in which your brain is actually trying to get you to fail.
54:22 – Brian shares his thoughts on having a circle of influence. He shares his advice on how to build a network effectively.
59:07 – Social media has been a great networking tool for Brian, he explains. The warmer the introduction is, the higher its chances for success.
61:50 – Brian talks about ways he’s gotten influential people to contribute to Influencive.
63:31 – How is Brian reaching people for Influencive? He gives his suggestions for meeting people, which involves reaching out to people you already know.
65:58 – Tools Brian uses include Evernote, Grammarly, and Hemingway. He explains the benefits of Grammarly and Hemingway in particular, explaining how each can contribute to better content.
68:22 – Brian gives listeners three pieces of advice. First, listen to everybody, but follow yourself. Second, learn to say no — not only to other people, but also to yourself. Finally, train your brain for success. This means rewiring your brain to do unexpected things, because its desire to keep you alive means it automatically resists doing new things.
73:14 – Your mindset is extremely important, Brian explains.
74:24 – Brian explains where to find him, and how to apply to write on Influencive.
75:02 – Where would Brian like to see Influencive five years from now?
Here’s where you can find Brian: