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ADAM’S BLOG

All posts from November 2019

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707: Worth Is Relative

How much is your furniture worth?

I’m about to move countries. So there’s furniture for sale. How much is it worth?

You couldn’t sell the furniture you bought yesterday for the price you bought it, because you don’t have the brand that the furniture store has. The trust and commitment is different, so you make less.

You may sell your things for less than you think they’re “worth” because you’re buying freedom to move, rather than selling a great experience. You’re still the buyer. The experience and focus is different, so you make less.

Yet you could outshine the original store by becoming a trusted, niche advisor, because you have more trust and provide a better experience than the furniture store ever could. Because that is your space now. Because you’re uniquely focused on making a great experience for a very particular body of people.

Worth is relative. It’s not about the item on offer. It’s about the relationship, the focus, and the commitment to those in your care.

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706: You’re Pushing Them Away

Did you know you’re pushing those you wish to serve…away?

An old friend did a yard sale earlier this year.

While they were setting up their (very lovely) wares in their yard, there was a concern about whether or not the signposts should be put out on the street before or after setup was complete.

The concern was this: “If I put the signposts up now, I might start drowning in punters before I’m ready.”

So the signposts weren’t set up until much later, after many yard-salers were done with their search.

We do this in our businesses all the time.

“We don’t use SMS, WhatsApp, Messenger.” Fear of being overrun with contact? That’s unlikely to be your problem. More than likely, many in your audience are living their lives and aren’t thinking about you most of the time. But when they are, you could be there to help them.

“We won’t talk to you on that platform.” Fear of getting lost in so much communication? That’s unlikely to be your problem. More than likely, your disorganization will be revealed. You could be limiting contact with those you wish to serve because of your issues.

“We don’t like it when clients call us.” Fear of having your day derailed with calls? That’s unlikely to be your problem. More than likely, if those in your care need to talk to you, you’ve a service begging to be offered. You could be willfully ignoring product development opportunity.

Are you pushing your audience away? Why?

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705: Make Them

When you write a blog post and publish it, it becomes live for the whole world to see.

Surely, then, people who have the problem you’re presenting will read your post and move forward with your call to action, right?

However, the problem is this:

“People” aren’t reading it.

The moment you hit the button “Publish” is not necessarily when others need your support. Even if you were to post a tweet with a link to your new blog post, that tweet is visible for only a few minutes of a single day in one timezone and then poof, it’s gone.

Other people spend as much time trawling through week-old tweets as you do.

This means you’re putting in a significant amount of work, only for a few mere minutes of potential attention, for those who happen to follow you or be looking at that particular hashtag search…

Does this sound like an effective way of helping those you wish to serve?

People aren’t listening.

If you can save them… make them.

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704: Are You Automating The Wrong Things?

Automation is great. Sometimes.

Others, you’ll try to automate something and the reaction will be painful:

  • “That wasn’t for me”: A great marketing message should never hear a response like this. If you run an ad and someone thinks this then your targeting was off, but if you email someone and they think this, then you messed up. Email is a personal space – “spam” can be quantified as “that wasn’t for me”.

  • “That wasn’t you”: There are some things that you bring to the table that people find really special. When you don’t do them, people will take notice. Virgin isn’t Virgin without Richard. What are you trying to let go of that you should instead be leaning more intimately into?

  • “That wasn’t worth it”: The ultimate punishment for the sins above is this statement. Automation should equate to an enhanced experience, not a diluted experience. If people thank you for your automation efforts, you succeeded. If they leave or feel disappointed in you, add back what was lost immediately, before you lose that which makes you, you.

Automation and delegation are important for meaningful work’s pursuit to touch more lives of those it can help transform. But only if it remains meaningful work, and the lives it touches are still experience just (if not more) transformation as a result.

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703: Essential Tools For Your Journey

One-off purchases, monthly subscriptions, we all have them…

But which are the truly essential tools for your journey?

Let’s use an airplane metaphor to unpack what matters most:

Comfy seats are nice to have. This is what many people spend a lot of their time thinking about; where on the plane they’re sitting, what meal they’ll be served, and how much leg room they’ll have. This is your company car, your wristwatch, your fancy suit. Many strive to achieve these things, despite being the least important facet of this metaphor.

Wings and engines are for survival. You won’t maintain altitude without them. Without fuel you won’t stay in the sky, but you’ll at least have a chance of gliding down to safety. This is your product, your craft tools, your ops. Without these, you’re dead – yet so many spend so much more time dreaming of comfy seats.

Fuel is for getting where you want to go. You have the things that keep you in the sky. Marketing and advertising, training and learning, product development. Do you have enough fuel in the tank to definitely get you where you want to go, or did you pump less so you could have a nicer seat?

The cargo is the point. You’re taking something to somewhere for someone, aren’t you? Without this, what’s the airplane ride even for? If you’re on a mission to solve problems for people who really need it, this needs as much enthusiasm as the integrity of the vehicle and the gas in the tank. Do you remember – and remind your peers daily – why you’re in the air?

Is the goal to get the cargo where it needs to go – to accomplish the mission you set out to achieve – or is the goal to have comfy seats in the sky?

Remember why you’re making the trip. It’ll help ensure you get there, and in one piece.

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702: It’s Your Job To Make Them Interested

Why are they talking to you? Because you might be able to help them solve a problem.

Why are you talking to them? Because you might be able to help them solve a problem.

If they’re not interested, you’ve not connected with the problem, or that it can be solved.

The goal isn’t sales, or conversions, or signups, or any other selfish metric commonly tracked on conversations that involve sales, conversions, and signups. The goal is to help them move forward, if you’ve a way to genuinely do that. And not just any old way, but in the best way for them, at the best frequency, in the best quantity, with the best team, all for their benefit.

Empathy and understanding helps make sure you know the problem. Your expertise and commitment to your audience makes sure you have access to the solution. Connect those dots for those you wish to serve.

  • Interesting means you’ve connected: If they’re not interested in you or your products, but in themselves and getting their problems solved, interest means you’re onto something. Lean into it.
  • Interesting is not linear: Don’t be boring while trying to be interesting. Is there a basket of cookies available on each call with you if they can spot a word you were tasked to slip into conversation without them noticing? Is there a Starbucks gift card in their inbox ahead of your next video session so you can ‘have coffee together’? If not, why not? There’s no use in being boring when trying to create interest.
  • It all starts here. If they’re not interested, you aren’t able to help them solve that problem. If you’re unable to do that, they can’t move forward, you can’t make a difference in their lives, and you’re not in business.