Have you heard something like this lately?
“What you DO need however is the right strategy.
Strategy. Is. Everything.”
Those words are from an email that hit my inbox this morning.
As I read it, I realized that I have been hearing this word “strategy” a lot lately.
Last week, an applicant for a licensee program to teach our real estate courses asked, “What should my main strategy be to get a good ROI on this?”
I asked, “Do you like teaching and helping people?”
His reply was quick: “Not like you do! You seem to live for it. I want to use the right strategy so I don’t have to spend a lot of time doing this.”
I politely ended the conversation suggesting he pursue something that he will be more interested in.
What DO you like to do?
I heard an interview on CBC with Elizabeth Gilbert, author of Eat, Pray, Love and, more recently the fabulous book called Big Magic, and she asked:
What did you love to do when you were a kid, before someone told you that you weren’t good at it?
My parents hung a giant green chalkboard in our patio room for me to use as a little kid. After school, I would either be at my desk writing a story, or I would sit my younger brother down in front of that chalkboard and teach him the cool things I’d learned at school that day. If he wouldn’t ‘play’, I lined up my stuffed animals and taught them.
People often think I am more strategic in business than I actually am.
I am organized in my thinking. When I commit to doing something – I do it. I am disciplined by nature. I care immensely about other people – especially people who place their trust in me. This isn’t a business strategy though – this is who I am.
If you’re getting into coaching and training because the money is good, you won’t succeed. Most people will sense that you are in it for the money.
Even if you do make a great ROI, you’re going to be doing something you don’t enjoy. Is that really success?
I have a friend and client who loves to write. He used to write a newsletter out of enjoyment. He stopped because he didn’t know if anybody was reading it, or getting any value from it. When I suggested he bring that back, he wondered what the strategy would be for doing it.
I get where he’s coming from. The message that you need to be strategic is everywhere. I’ve even used it in my own marketing without thinking about it! But, I think the pursuit of the right strategy is failing a lot of people.
Strategy. Is. Not. Everything.
There’s a lot of sales copy, marketing, and business consultants that will tell you strategy is everything because that sells their services and programs.
If you don’t like to do something – the right strategy won’t change that.
For every ‘surefire marketing strategy’ you learn, you’ll find people succeeding who do it in an opposite way. You’ll find people implementing the strategy perfectly, and not succeeding.
There are marketing reasons to write a regular newsletter, but that isn’t the first reason to do it.
We launched our first newsletter in April of 2006. We didn’t make a single penny from that newsletter until 2009. And, frankly, even if we hadn’t turned it into a business, I’d still be writing a newsletter.
I want to do it. I want to share and I hope it helps you.
If you don’t want to do it – find another way to get where you want to go.
If you hate writing, hire a great writer and get what you need done by someone who loves to do it.
If you don’t like to write, don’t do it. Definitely don’t commit to a regular newsletter that YOU have to write.
No strategy in the world is going to make it easier, or make it worth your effort.
To those who hate the thought of filming videos or recording a podcast, I say:
There’s no business rule that says you have to do it, but have you tried it? I have pushed some clients to shoot just one video and they found they actually loved it!
We’re all afraid of looking bad or sounding dumb (and there are times where my YouTube commenters are quick to point out my imperfections … like when I use AWESOME too much or apparently have a dog face?), but you might find that doing it is way more fun than you thought. And, you’ll quickly realize that the people who DO make fun of you aren’t the people you care about anyway!
The same might be the case with public speaking. Speaking is one of the most incredible ways to have a powerful impact on other humans and actually see it happen. When you connect with an audience, it’s a rush. You just might get hooked!
Speaking, shooting videos and writing are things that benefit my business, but I do them because I enjoy them, NOT because I think they are a good strategy.
To those who hate social media but Tweet, Pin and Facebook because they feel it’s part of a sound business strategy, stop it. See if someone else likes it, or stop worrying about it. Yes, it can be great for a business, but not if the person doing it sees it as a chore! There’s far more important things you can do.
Maybe you like meeting new people, hosting parties or playing sports. Have you ever thought of how you can bring those things into your marketing? Maybe you love painting or singing, have you considered how this could be brought into what you do?
Look at Marie Forleo’s videos. Her love of dance, music, zombies and knights makes her business advice even more fun and engaging. She delivers value and shows us some of the things that make her Marie Forleo.
You probably have some cool talents, interests and personality traits that would make you magnetic if people were given the chance to see them.
You don’t need a new strategy.
You need a new approach that fits with who you are and what you like to do.
There are enough things to do in business because it has to be done – like sit on hold with tech support when your computer stops working, paying bills, reviewing financial statements, paying taxes, and setting up systems so things work properly. These things have to be done. Maybe the right strategy would help reduce the suffering in some way, but I do these things because ultimately they allow me to do more of the things I really like to do – write, speak and teach.
You’re Not Batman
I was at one of Philip McKernan’s events when someone tried explaining their challenge by saying, “Well, I have to be a different person at work than I am at home.” In a quick reply Philip, with his Irish accent he says “Who are you? Batman?”
I’m not suggesting that if you be yourself you’ll make a lot more money. You might, but you still have to deliver value. You need to know your audience, and connect with them in some way. You have to be able to sell yourself and what you do. There will still be work to do!
What I am suggesting is that you probably don’t need a new marketing strategy. You’re probably thinking about strategy way more than you need to. What you need is to connect to the things you like to do a lot more, and disconnect from more things you really don’t like to do.
So, what do you love to do? Can you bring that into your business? What your business needs a lot more of is the real YOU.
Still Want More Strategic Like Ideas? Well – Here Are Some Articles You Might Like:
- 5 Ways to Think Yourself to Success
- How to Free Your Mind and Life from Mediocrity
- Can We Really Trust You? 5 Things That Are Making Us Wonder?
- What to Do When Someone is Just Plain Wrong
- Why Your Follow Up Sucks
Image 1 Credit: © Arne9001 | Dreamstime.com
Image 2 Credit: https://www.youtube.com/user/julieabroad
Image 3 Credit: © Aleksei Skalkin | Dreamstime.com