Valenti SanJuan was an extremely interesting guest speaker. Before hand, I read a few articles about him and discovered that he travels around the world recording marathons he participates in. About 15 years ago Valenti SanJuan began his journalism career with a Catalan radio program.
In “The Ironman who changed a life” the author explains, “The story of Valentí Sanjuan is that of a movie character who loses his job, a business opportunity with friends, a
girlfriend who leaves him for another and a mother that the sky claims too soon and almost without warning.”
After a rough time, he turned his life around and became his own boss. Valenti SanJuan has participated in multiple Ultraman’s including “the Ultraman of Wales, the Marathon des Sables -cruzar the desert in seven days-, the Titan Desert bike and -hacerlo Longer distances-, the Costa Challenge – crossing the jungle of Costa Rica running, traveling from Tarifa to Barcelona carrying out five Ironmans or making the Camino de Santiago running from Jean Pied de Port (France), where he arrived by bicycle from Barcelona.” I can’t even run a mile without being out of breath I cannot even fathom this dedication.
During his speech, Valenti SanJuan discussed multiple important concepts. The first was becoming his audience. This is extremely important because when he began with regular journalism, he needed a platform such as a newspaper, television, or radio in order to gain his audience, but times have changed. When Valenti SanJuan he needed the network to help grow the show. When his first show aired, there were more people on the stage than in the audience, and the people in the audience may have had something to do with the free beer. With a little perseverance, the audience grew because of the show and the content. This is exactly what happened with his own brand brand. The beginning started slowly, but now with a story and curiosity to discover something great it can grow enormously. With the use of a camera and his own skills he built an an audience, which is evident in that what began with the two YouTube channels, now has became four with over 1 million followers. The original one has more than 100,000 subscribers and each video between 100,000 and 300,000 views and the other more than 70,000 followers and videos are viewed by an average of 20,000 people daily. This is incredible. Soon he is going to Mexico to continue to grow his network and if all goes well, eventually will expand to South America.
The next thing he touched on was that he became his boss. Instead of a traditional boss, his audience and social media became his bosses. The need to have people interact with him, be inspired, and share his videos is crucial. While Valenti SanJuan uses multiple platforms, his main network is YouTube. What was television 10 years ago is now YouTube.
The most important idea Valenti SanJuan explained was the people and stories that went along with the races. One race he participated in was where he runs with someone in a wheel chair. Another race was inspired by a man who lost his arm and leg in a motorcycle accident who now is a world champion in the special Olympics. It was truly inspiring hearing the stories of the people he met.
Overall, the most important thing I learned from Valenti SanJuan is to find a topic that one truly has interest in and follow it. I am truly impressed not only by his courage to start his own brand and his journey so far. While the language barrier is a little difficult while watching his videos, I cannot wait to see what else is in store for the great Valenti SanJuan.