50 Peter Shankman Quotes for Success

Peter Shankman, the founder of HARO, or Help a Reporter Out, is a social media entrepreneur and influencer.

Recognized worldwide for new ways of thinking about the customer experience, social media, public relations, marketing, advertising, and ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder), Shankman often keynotes events.

Photo Credit: Peter Shankman

The New York Times and others have quoted Shankman in advice and “how I got here” stories like this one on how to best work with journalists.

His comments are TED-like so any business person would benefit from them. Here are 50.

  1. If you don’t write your own story, you’ll be nothing but a footnote in someone else’s.
  2. You don’t control the direction of your company. You are controlled by your customers.
  3. Find your weakness. Wrap yourself in it like an armor and it can’t be used to hurt you.
  4. Stay healthy.
  5. I’ve learned to set up certain life rules for myself which work to keep me on track. Getting up early, always exercising first thing in the morning no matter how tired I am. (and I’m usually doing it at 4am), and eating as healthy as possible.
  6. If you’re the smartest person in the room, you’re in the wrong room.
  7. While others are looking for fire, spend your time and energy looking for wood that’s yet to burn.
  8. Contact people at the time of day that they prefer.
  9. Two things happen when you’re nice. Number one is that people remember you.
  10. Get together with people in the way that they prefer. With Peter Shankman it might be running in NYC at 6 AM.
  11. What matters to customers, regardless of their economic background or expectation, regardless of whether you’re a corner deli or a 7-star resort…is the same thing that’s always mattered: TRUST.
  12. Being willing to try new things — I’ve started and sold three companies with nothing more than the experience I gained from the last one.
  13. Keep an eye on your friends’ mental health. (He mentioned in a public relations group event that, sadly, two of his entrepreneur friends committed suicide.)
  14. Dopamine comes from good experiences. It’s why I sky dive; it’s why I do Ironman triathlons.
  15. Hire good people.
  16. Allow your employees to work in the way that they can perform at their best.
  17. If you are ADHD working at home works well.
  18. Tell great stories.
  19. Be authentic when you answer a journalist.
  20. Don’t B.S. when you give comment for a news story.
  21. Listen to everyone but be keenly aware of whose advice you take. Be brilliant at the basics. That’s all you need to succeed.
  22. The entrepreneur economy is bigger than ever.
  23. Ease of use and video are two huge factors that are going to move the needle for communicators in the modern world.
  24. Understanding your audience is more important than ever.
  25. Understanding your clients and employees is key.
  26. Your audience is more important than ever before.
  27. Trust is the biggest thing that leads to purchase.
  28. Answer fast, like in 10 minutes if responding to a HARO, Help a Reporter Out, a company that he founded.
  29. You have to know your audience. That is a major key to getting social media right.
  30. Find the best time to call people, for example, that might be 4 AM for me right now.
  31. Be slightly better than the norm.
  32. We can earn and work from anywhere (now.)
  33. Little moments equal massive effect.
  34. The little things you do add up quickly.
  35. Doing little things is the basis for any improvement you ever hope to have.
  36. You can’t make anything viral but you can make it good.
  37. I wasn’t just managing my ADHD. I was using it to my advantage.
  38. There is no personal or professional anymore. There is simply your brand.
  39. Everything you do affects your brand.
  40. The pandemic has shown us that workers don’t need to be in the office every day.
  41. Be a zombie loyalist. Use great service to attract rabid fans.
  42. OH MY GOD I LOVE THIS! (In response to a cool image of him someone posted on Twitter)
  43. Be transparent, be relevant, be brief, and be top of mind.
  44. No one believes how great you are if you’re the one who has to tell them. You want your customers and your employees doing your PR for you and telling the world how great you are so you don’t have to.
  45. I don’t drink anymore because I only have two speeds — off and all the way on.
  46. I like to put 10x more help into the universe than I ask for. That’s the best way to live, I believe.
  47. Listen to your employees and let them work the way they want to work.
  48. Imposter syndrome is a real thing.
  49. Doesn’t matter how much success I’ve had, I wake up every day sure that today is the day that I’m found out to be a fraud, and when I’m not, it’s obviously because I’m not important enough for anyone to waste their time investigating me. Over and over.
  50. The majority of things I do aren’t normal but they work for me.

Here are two of Peter Shankman’s social media profiles:

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/petershankman/

Twitter: @PeterShankman


Michelle McIntyre, a PR consultant and IBM vet, runs her own consulting practice and works for Aircover Communications. @FromMichelle on Twitter

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