What differentiates the people who take their business to ‘the next level’ from the people who seem to consistently be struggling or not moving forward? (I’m just going to warn you right now that I’m writing this post from a place of curiosity, so it may be part 1 of who knows how many posts).
I’m writing this post in Scotland, where I’m on vacation with my kids (and no, I’m not on the computer the whole time. We’re staying with friends and my friend has a similar business. It’s day 3 of our trip and my kids are still asleep and it’s almost noon. We haven’t quite acclimated to the time change. *Update: It’s now day 12 and we go home tomorrow*). I’ve been talking with my friend this morning about different marketers we follow, what we like about this one, why this one bugs us, etc. (you know the type of conversation I’m talking about). What’s different about this conversation for me now though is that I’m looking at things from a completely different perspective. It’s not just about “liking” or “disliking’ someone, I’m totally curious as to why one person seems to be killing it and why someone else, who may even seem to have more to offer, is still in the same place they were a year ago?
A little detour.
I’m reading a book titled “The Slight Edge” (recommended to me by a good friend), by Jeff Olson. So far there isn’t anything necessarily earth shattering ( in terms of new content or ideas), but that’s really what the “Slight Edge” is. It’s not monumnetal crazy shifts in things, it’s doing the little things, consistently, that gives people a “Slight Edge” over their counter parts (or competition).
I know for myself that when I started my business I didn’t have a definitive plan or strategy, I just stuck with it.
Now that I’m five+ years in, creating a strategy is easier. I know what I like to do, what I’m good at and where I get the best return on my time and money.
Back to my question.
When you subscribe to people online do you pay attention to how they’re doing things or are you just subscribing because you like them and their message? (No judgement in that question, I’m truly curious about this). If you’ve ever paid attention to a product launch (well, a good one), regardless of whether or not you purchased anything, you probably realized that you can learn a LOT simply by paying attention and taking notice of how the product launch was done.[icon name=icon-expand]What type of content they provided [icon name=icon-expand]The length of the launch [icon name=icon-expand]Who else was promoting it [icon name=icon-expand]What they gave away during the launch, etc.
You can get a good idea of the quality of the product based on the quality of the launch, if in fact there is a launch (I think the product launch ‘thing’ has worn itself out a bit. It’s still a great idea, but it seems to be occuring less and less).
For the most part, why I subscribe to a site or marketer has completely changed.
When I was getting started in my business I subsribed to every site I “thought” I should subscribe to. Every big name (that I knew) that seemed to be “making it online”. I downloaded more free CRAP than I care to admit, which usually went into a folder titled ‘ebooks’ and pretty much stayed there.
Today, I subscribe to sites and people I LIKE.
Some of these sites have compelling opt-in offers, some don’t. Some just have great content that I don’t want to miss. But the BIG deciding factor for me now WHO these people are and how they show up online (and when I say ‘WHO’ these people are I’m not referring to whether or not they have a “name” people know). When I refer to showing up online I’m referring to blogging, social media and anywhere else you can get a feel for who is behind the brand.
One of my biggest determining factors:
How they share and show up online and What they share.
Let’s start with the How first.
It probably goes without saying that I’m a huge fan of blogging. It took me a while to become a huge fan because for too long I wasn’t showing up as myself in my writing. Once I let go of how I thought I was supposed to blog and simply started trusting myself I realized I had a ball writing and sharing.
So I gauge the How on “How” they show up on their blog. If I feel like I’m reading regurgitated marketing BS or someone is talking at me? I’m done. You’ve heard me refer to ‘old school marketers’ before and this is something I see a lot of them doing. It doesn’t mean it’s not working, but it doesn’t work for me.
What do they share online?
This is probably my BIGGEST pet peeve.
Life is NOT a bouquet of roses everyday! It takes courage to show up and share the less than pleasant stuff. There’s a fine line between personal and private, so I’m not looking for the private stuff, but no ones life is perfect all the time. It’s not negative to share the disappointments and challenges.
The other piece of the “what” they share online is whether or not they only share what they’re doing.
Share Other People’s Shit!
I rarely swear here, but this one makes me CRAZY! Talk about a FEAR based mentality. If you value your audience, your subscribers, your followers… share valuable stuff.
End of story.
Regardless of who wrote it or created it.
Oh, and I don’t mean just sharing the ‘safe stuff’. We can all share the ‘big names’. The Seth Godin level of big names. Because that’s safe, right? Obviously we can’t compete with that (I’m not saying any of this is a competition either, don’t read too much into that word).
BUT… here’s the rub.
A lot of people don’t share other people’s shit. They talk about themselves non-stop. They have a HUGE following. They’re making a hefty income (define that however you want). So what’s the deal?
What differentiates them from other people?
Why have they been able to take things to the ‘next level’?
That’s the million dollar question, isn’t it? Some of these methods they’re using may not be my cup of tea, but maybe it’s authentic and real for them. I think this is one of the BIGGEST determining factors.
That’s what has changed for me this year. I’ve chosen to trust myself and show up in a way that works for me.
Before I end this post I just want to share one more point that I’ve noticed with some of these marketers who only share their own stuff. Ready?
There’s nothing new to what they’re doing/sharing.
It tends to be the same content (possibly repurposed) with a different spin. Nothing new. Nothing fresh and innovative. More of the same stuff, just a different name. Which (totally just had an ‘a-ha’ moment) may be why they don’t share other people’s shit?! hmm…
What do you think?
Do you ever wonder about this? I’d LOVE to hear your thoughts on this, truly. Leave me a comment below & let’s continue the discussion.