How To Get Famous People to Endorse You Online


As evidenced by this image, I’m just another guy wearing a plastic popcorn bucket on his head while playing “Star Wars” with my boys at home.

My point: I’m just a regular guy, a virtual nobody.

And yet, I’ve been able to get New York Times Bestselling Authors, internationally known business icons and other “big shots” to promote my LinkedIn online courses and trainings to their massive audiences.

The list includes, among others:

  • Chris Brogan
  • Bob Burg
  • John Lee Dumas
  • Ray Edwards
  • Jairek Robbins

And I want to spend the rest of this post teaching you how to do the exact same thing – even if you’re a virtual “nobody” like me!


LinkedIn Has Killed The Gatekeepers

The first – and most important – step in this process is understanding how to go about contacting your ideal “big shots” in the first place.

In every instance, I’ve found LinkedIn to be the most effective method.

Here’s why: LinkedIn has killed the gatekeepers.

When you send someone a direct, 1-on-1 message on LinkedIn, not only does the person see it in his or her LinkedIn inbox, but he or she also might get an alert on his or her phone (if they have it enabled) along with getting an email sent to his or her primary email address.

(Almost everyone who originally set up a LinkedIn account, even years ago, used his or her primary email address. This is key!)

Red Carpet

With that in mind, here are several ways to connect with your “big shot” on LinkedIn:

  • Send a personalized invitation to the “big shot” inviting him or her to connect.
  • With the text of your invitation, treat the big shot like a normal person. Don’t fawn and gush over him or her. Instead, acknowledge what you like about his or her work, why he or she will want to connect with you and why you’re reaching out. Save the hype and hyperbole – be straightforward, friendly and professional in tone.
  • If the “big shot” doesn’t allow random connections (meaning you have to have his or her personal email to send a LinkedIn invite), use a LinkedIn InMail to send a direct note.

Either way, LinkedIn affords you several methods to reach your “big shot” directly.

In my case, I reached out to a handful of “big shots” on LinkedIn, and almost all of them mentioned in their replies to me that they noticed my message personally.

Many then handed me off to an assistant or employee to work on the details of our new relationship, but my point is this: they engaged with me! I had the start of a relationship to build from.

The next section is going to show you what you must offer the “big shot” in order to get him or her to not only take notice of you, but also want to reply as quickly as possible.


Be Creative. Establish Credibility. Bring Real Value. Repeat.

In approaching a big shot, you’ll want to be creative, credible and quick.

One of the A-List business celebrities who has given me permission to talk at length about our relationship is Chris Brogan.

Chris is a New York Times and Wall Street Journal International Bestselling Author, Speaker and Consultant who works with clients including Google, Disney, IBM, Microsoft and many more.

To paraphrase Will Ferrell’s character from “Anchorman,” Chris Brogan is “kind of a big deal.”

He’s also humble, genuine, self-deprecating and one of the nicer human beings on the planet.


I approached Chris cold on LinkedIn and told him that I wanted to rewrite his entire LinkedIn profile for free. I also explained that he didn’t have to invest any time or effort in the endeavor!

Instead, I’d take all the risk – I just wanted his permission to try.

I’d send him a Microsoft Word document with my suggested changes, text and notes on how to improve his LinkedIn profile. He could take what he liked and leave the rest. Or just ignore it completely.

In short, I was taking all the risk and asking nothing of Chris Brogan.

You Must EARN the Time and Attention of Others Online

This is important! Too many of us are out there with our virtual hand out, asking for free advice, asking for someone to promote us, asking for someone to buy from us … and we’re doing it without first earning the right to make that type of ask.

I knew that with someone like Chris Brogan, I had to earn everything.

I started by trying to earn his attention with a creative, credible and quick invitation to do something I thought he’d find valuable.

Next, I needed to earn his respect and additional attention by actually delivering what I promised – a great LinkedIn profile rewrite.

What I found interesting in reaching out to Chris and other influencers at his level was that nobody else had offered this type of service to them.

“I’m going to take you up on your offer, John,” one of the other “big shots” told me in a message. “It’s funny, because I know a ton of LinkedIn ‘experts’ who are good friends, but none of them have ever offered to actually rewrite my profile for me. So, sure, go for it!”

Do Your Best Work and Deliver the Goods!

When you get the permission to do someone like Chris Brogan a free favor, do it like they are paying you top dollar!

I spent hours researching Chris Brogan’s brand and backstory, doing my best to get into his professional and personal head so that I could create a revamped LinkedIn profile that was both authentic to who he was and helpful to his business goals.

I did the same with the other “big shots” I approached.

Remember: If you want to get someone’s attention, do great work! Dazzle them. Impress them!

If you do, people feel socially and professionally obligated to return the favor.

It’s proven that when we give someone something for free, and without (initially) asking for anything in return, the law of reciprocity works its magic.

The bigger the favor we do, the more obligated the person feels to pay you back.

Leverage, Leverage, Leverage!

After I’d earned Chris’ attention and proven my worth by delivering a killer profile rewrite, I made a couple of key “asks” when the time felt right.

The first was to ask Chris to share word about my free LinkedIn webinars with his audience, which he did in a very generous way via his email list and social media channels.

The second was to ask him for a public testimonial, which he again did:

The third was to ask if I could drop his name in approaching other “big shots,” and he again agreed.

It was much easier to land additional “big shots” once I could say, “Hey, I’ve worked with Chris Brogan, you can ask him all about me. He trusts my work and will vouch for me.”

Happy Endings? Not Always.

In addition to working with Chris, I’ve reached out to dozens of “big shots,” and I’ve rewritten dozens of profiles that took countless hours. All without getting paid a dime.

In some cases – like with Chris – my efforts resulted in huge, game-changing wins for me and my business.

As one of Brogan’s followers mentioned to me in a note after Chris promoted me to his tribe, “John, congrats on the anointing!”

Despite putting in the same type and quality of work with several other “big shots,” results weren’t always so grand. But that’s okay. I learned a lot about what people at the “A-List” level are like in the business world – what makes them tick, what to watch out for, and much more.

And while some “big shots” didn’t want me to publicly mention I rewrote their profile, they did agree to serve as a private reference when I approach other “A-List” types in their area of the business world.

Like anything, every single attempt doesn’t always result in a home run. But I learn something in each instance, and improve the next time out.

With that said, I’m already busy cultivating several more relationships with “big shots” that I think will catapult my business and brand to “A-List” status, and it’s not by accident.

The Reality of Becoming an “A Lister” Online

You must put in the work. Nobody owes you anything! Be smart, be creative and be great at what you give these people.

In researching the stories behind so many of today’s biggest business authors and influencers, I’ve also seen a common trend: They all started small and worked their faces off to get where they are today. Nobody handed these guys anything.

Why should you expect your journey to be any different?

One final thought – you only have so many hours in a given day. Swing for the fences with your life and business! Reach out to the influencers in your profession, and follow the blueprint I’ve outlined in this post. Whatever it is you do, you have something of value you can bring to others, no matter how popular or famous they are.

Figure out what that is, and then deliver it without asking for anything in return. Then, once you’ve built a relationship and demonstrated your value, figure out some “win-win” type “asks” you can make of those celebrities.

Once you do, it can change your professional – and personal – fortunes forever!