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Sally Hogshead

Renowned Marketing, Brand and Influence Expert; Author of New York Times bestsellers FASCINATE: How to Make Your Brand Impossible to Resist and How the World Sees You

Drawing upon her branding expertise, Sally created The Fascinate Test®, the first communication assessment that measures how others perceive you. She is a frequent spotlight in major media including the Today Show and New York Times.

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Travels From: Florida | Fee Range: $25,000 - $40,000

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What separates certain professionals from the rest of the pack? Is it skill or knowledge? Expertise or seniority? Or is it simply charisma? Turns out, it’s none of the above. In her decade of research inside hundreds of companies, Sally Hogshead discovered a new trend. High-performers communicate differently and the most valued professionals consciously decide to over-deliver in select ways. As a result, they become difficult to replace, because they emphasize their natural traits. They earn advocates in the workplace and customer base, and become irreplaceable. In the case of entrepreneurs, they remain in demand even after raising fees and prices. Just as the most successful brands differentiate themselves, so do the most successful people. According to the Carnegie Institute of Technology, 85% of financial success is due to your personality, ability to communicate, negotiate, and lead. Shockingly, only 15% is due to technical knowledge. Increased competition and decreased attention spans make it harder than ever to stand out and win. It’s not enough to be the best, if nobody knows you’re there. But when you apply your most authentic and naturally fascinating traits, the world sees you at your best and you’re recognized for your accomplishments.

What if you had a tangible way to show every single member of your team how they can perform at a higher level? It comes down to helping your employees tap into their natural communication style. According to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, “50% of the difference between low-performing and high-performing teams is the quality of communication.” In Sally’s decade of research, she found the best way to build a culture of involved and energized employees is to help them understand how they are seen at their best. Think of your team members. What is each person’s most valuable quality? How could they communicate most effectively? How can you and your co-workers bring out the best of everyone’s natural abilities?

The research shows engaged employees:

  • Deliver a better customer experience
  • Generate profits for the organization
  • Have higher morale and are more motivated – Are more loyal and committed to their company
  • Have less conflicts with co-workersEach of us already has built-in differentiators. They don’t have to be brash and flamboyant. In fact, subtle personalities can often have the most distinguishing features. No matter what your natural approach, you must learn how it’s being perceived by others. Great teams are built on differences, rather than similarities. Differences create diversity and make a company stronger as a whole. Diversity strengthens a team and makes it more multifaceted, as long as each person understands and develops his or her communication style. In her decade of research, Sally found that the best way to build a culture of involved and energized employees is to inspire them with a vibrant culture of optimism. Measure what people are already doing right, and they’ll do more of it. Sally measures communication advantages within teams to uncover gems of potential. When team members are fascinated by their work– in other words, when they are deeply engaged with their work, they feel differently and perform differently. They literally earn more, for themselves and their company.

You have a choice: either have the biggest budget, or be the most fascinating. If you have a bigger budget than any of your competitors, must be nice…but few of us do. What if you’re a small business with a frugal budget or competing in an intensely crowded space? Then you must fascinate. Until now, branding required years of study or a team of experts, but in her decade of working inside world renowned brands, Sally Hogshead discovered the algorithm behind it all. By combining science with branding principles, she unlocked the formula for fascination and, once you can identify the patterns, you can make any message more memorable. In this keynote, based on her 2016 New York Times bestseller Fascinate: How to Make Your Brand Impossible to Resist, Sally reveals the formula for fascinating anyone.

Fascination is the single most powerful means of persuading and influencing behavior. You can make any brand or message impossible to resist…once you unlock the formula. Sally’s extensive market research reveals just how much fascination drives emotions and behavior. For example, when fascinated by a product, 80% of consumers experience a faster heart rate and other physical responses; 46% talk about it to others; and more than 1/3 do in-depth research on the product. Once you fascinate customers, they’ll become intensely focused on you ⎯ your products, your services, and your marketing. They’re more likely to believe, care about, and retell your message – as well as buy your products. Today, it’s not enough to just interest customers. You need to fascinate them, so that they’re intensely focused on your message.

Most personal branding techniques give generic tips about how to make a good first impression. Yet, the whole point is to stand out and rise above the competition with your authentic traits. Avoid following onesize-fits-all techniques or else you just blend in with everyone else. David Ogilvy, one of the smartest branding minds in history, said this: “Tell the truth, but make the truth fascinating.” When you know the truth of who you are at your best, you can be both authentic and fascinating. Your customers and coworkers don’t want the plastic version of you. Nobody wants to talk with a fake cardboard cut-out. Your personal brand is NOT the same thing as your marketing or resume. It’s not your business card, or your blog, or the color of your website. Are you focusing so much on the other person (your customer, your client, your manager) that you’re losing your you-ness? Don’t focus so much on what you think someone else wants, that you lose who you actually are. Identify who you are at your best and the advantages that highlight your greatest value. Build your brand around those core qualities and you’ll never feel like a manufactured persona. Everything falls into place when you have a clear focal point for your communication. You can stop struggling and start doing more of what you’re already doing right.

The greatest way to empower a woman is to help her see her own highest value. With engaging research, touching anecdotes, and a defined plan of attack, Sally’s program ensures every participant leaves energized and focused, knowing how to stand out and make a difference in the world by empowering the women in their community.


Drawing upon her branding expertise, Sally Hogshead created a method to identify how each person is able to captivate their listeners. The Fascinate Test® is the first communication assessment that measures how others perceive you. After researching over one million professionals, her algorithm can pinpoint your most valuable differentiating traits. The science of fascination is based on Sally’s decade of research with dozens of Fortune 500 teams, hundreds of small businesses, and over a thousand C-level executives.

Her two most recent books, FASCINATE: How to Make Your Brand Impossible to Resist and HOW THE WORLD SEES YOU: Discover Your Highest Value Through the Science of Fascination, were both New York Times bestsellers. Sally writes a weekly online column for Inc. on issues around personal and corporate branding. She is a member of the Speaker Hall of Fame and Word of Mouth Marketing Association (WOMMA) Hall of Fame. Named a Top Brand Guru, her practical marketing system now lives inside organizations such as IBM, Twitter, the YMCA, as well as thousands of small businesses.

Early in her advertising career, Sally skyrocketed to the top becoming the most awarded junior copywriter in the U.S. by age 24. Her campaigns for brands such as MINI Cooper, Nike, Godiva and Coca-Cola have fascinated millions of consumers. At 27, she opened her first ad agency and her work is on exhibit at the Smithsonian Museum of American History. She frequently appears in national media, including NBC’s TODAY and the New York Times.


"Her presentation alone made the entire 3-day conference a smashing success."

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