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Short, visual daily posts on listening to the right voices in your head about marketing and business.
January 13, 2021 Daily Post
Awareness is attention that you took. Engagement is attention that you earned.
Many ads take awareness. They only deserve what they took if they did the work of engaging and moving you.
Many referrals take awareness. They only deserve what they took if folks engage because you lived up to expectations.
Setting yourself on fire in Time Square takes awareness. It only deserves the attention if others engage by setting themselves on fire too.
Do you want your work to be seen, or do you want it to engage people?
January 12, 2021 Daily Post
You’ve probably heard these two phrases before. Here’s what they could mean for you:
“Plant the tree before you need shade.” Building a media platform, extending good will, going first, mastering a skill. These are things folks often leave until they need them. Have you?
“Fix the roof when the sun is shining.” Once things are up and running, leaving system errors, infrastructure problems, suboptimal marketing and recruitment bottlenecks unsolved means they’ll bite you in the butt at the worst moment. Will they in your work?
Most of us know the phrases.
Most of us haven’t heeded their warnings.
Shall we do something about that this year?
January 11, 2021 Daily Post
“I don’t have time for that.”
Ever thought this to yourself when you stumble upon a great opportunity to level up your business, team, or project?
What you make time for is what you get more of. Putting out fires today? Got time for that but not spending it on that new product opportunity? Then expect more of the former and less of the latter.
What you don’t have time for will never happen. Great new marketing campaign opportunity? Product development or innovation opportunity? If there’s no time, there’s no chance.
Making time sometimes means literally carving empty space into a calendar, and protecting it.
Now there’s time.
What will you spend it on?
January 10, 2021 Daily Post
There are always a flood of articles about what you must do in any new year. These posts are likely going to be arduous regurgitations or whatever the trends are at the time.
Chasing trends isn’t a path to success. Good marketing isn’t about blending in and doing all of your competitors are doing. It’s about doing what your audience needs from you, regardless of what has your competitors attention.
If the trends say you should use Facebook Messenger bots but your audience isn’t on Facebook, don’t use Facebook Messenger bots. If they’re like receiving physical mail best and your competitors are obsessed with sending emails, where do you think your opportunity lies?
Every year that rolls by, I wonder if anyone is going to add the importance of good communication to their list. They never do. What if you took an existing effective channel and improved your messaging skills, do you think that would make it more effective?
There’s a new marketing toy available seemingly every week. Ignore the noise and invest in things that last. Leave the freneticism to your competition.
January 09, 2021 Daily Post
We know when it stinks:
When Boris Johnson’s government dithers between lockdowns and tier-systems while tens of thousands of Britons die from the global pandemic, we smell people-pleasing agendas for a hostile-dependent culture. We don’t smell leadership for the commonwealth.
When Joel Olsteen’s ministry enjoys over $4 million in undistributed aid while the average American receives $600, we smell the tax-haven prosperity gospel ministry’s goals. We don’t smell faith.
When Amazon becomes a trillion dollar business in 2020 while its workforce struggles to afford the gas required to delivers its packages, we smell the harvesting of marketplace after marketplace. We smell it on ourselves when we buy there.
We smell most brands on ourselves when we buy them, no matter the brand.
The smell is that of your priorities, your values, your mission.
What’s your scent?
January 08, 2021 Daily Post
Do you delegate?
Do you delegate results?
Some people on a team seem to naturally take full responsibility for outcomes, whereas others look for tasks to mark ‘done’.
The former moves things forward. The latter leaves gaps for someone else to have to go in and keep things moving forward.
When we delegate results, we remove the latter. We’re able to trust folks will get ‘the whole thing done’, rather than waiting for someone else to move things along for/around/in spite of them.
Our teams use “Result Statements” for this:
Don’t just make a task. Define a result. Give it a name. Give it to someone. Give it a start and end date.
Give it a clear articulation of the problem being faced, and one of the solution you seek.
Give it the steps involved in achieving it to the best of your knowledge, to give them a rolling start.
If needed, have them choose a team to help them achieve it, and have them lead that team to the desired result.
That’s how we delegate results.
If you delegate, consider gifting people with the opportunity to do more than check boxes. Gift them with the opportunity to succeed at something.
January 07, 2021 Daily Post
“Can you also do _____?”
This question is the catalyst of dilution for product and service projects alike.
“Add this feature, someone asked for it” is the way to make a product unfocused, bloated, and unable to clearly resonate with the specific people it was designed to support. Confusing those you wish to serve serves no one.
“Include this service and we have a deal” is how service teams stay small. Progressive mastery in an area of genius requires spending more time solving the problems your choice of market is faced with. That means saying ‘No’ to the outliers who lure you away from your focus and your ability to be the best at what you do for whom you do it.
‘No’ is rarely an admission of insufficient skill or care.
But ‘Yes’ is often an admission of insufficient focus and care.
Take pride in what you do. Take pride in not doing what you don’t do.
January 06, 2021 Daily Post
Unplanned projects are adventures that probably would have benefitted from an end, weren’t planned properly… and so they simply sit on the shelf, unfinished.
Unfinishable projects are adventures you embark on we’re designed to not end. There’s a place for these.
A daily blog (like this one) is an Unfinishable project. It was designed to be daily. It doesn’t “finish”, it simply evolves as an ongoing adventure.
So is showing a significant other that you love them; it can be an Unfinishable project, designed to be pursuit with ad much enthusiasm today as it is in 10 years time.
Sometimes, our pursuits of important work (and of those important to us) benefit from projects designed to have no end.
January 05, 2021 Daily Post
There are many great web developers, but perhaps your insight and perspective could move the collective conversation forward, or offer a different direction also worth pursuing.
There are many great entrepreneurs, but perhaps your experiences or ideas could change the subculture for better, such as by bending things toward the triple-bottom-line or toward an appreciation for new ways of producing ethical advantage.
There are many great artists, but perhaps your way of seeing the world represents a convergence of ideas not previously seen before, indeed that’s what makes any great artist great.
“Someone else knows better” is a lousy excuse for not participating.
We want to see your ideas.
January 04, 2021 Daily Post
There are certain things you shouldn’t do, because you were told not to.
Some make sense. “Don’t drink that cup of bleach” is a wise exclaim worth listening to and remember in future.
Others make sense for most people, but not others. In your pursuit of creating important bodies of work, watch out for these.
“VPs don’t do customer service” is one example. It’s often true, except if you’re Umpqua Bank – every branch has a phone that connects straight to the CEO. Anyone can pick up the phone.
“CEOs don’t get caught up in things like content creation” is another example. It’s often true, except if you’re Richard Branson, who writes all his own blog posts. Or Gary Vee, who posts all his own social content.
There are lots of things we “shouldn’t” do. Don’t rule them out just because someone said so.