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The CEO Who Ghosted Me in Rocky Mountain National Park

I was on the return trip of a TOP 5 of my life hike in Rocky Mountain National Park.  As I looked out over the majestic view I wondered, “can I think about work now if I want to?”  I know, kind of weird, but I wanted to see how I’d answer the question in the moment.

I considered a current challenge: a powerful CEO who had made a commitment to a deal and is now ghosting me. As I looked at the view you see here, I thought to myself, “that deal doesn’t matter very much now, it won’t matter at ALL in a few years, and it will have ZERO meaning to the world.”  If I had been sitting at my desk, I’d have been stressing about it.  Here, in this setting, my mind became free to choose to meet new people with whom I want to want to engage.

 

Lazy Selling Doesn’t Work. This does.

I received this (paid) message on LinkedIn.

The ridiculous irony here is that it’s from a guy selling marketing services.  His “proven method” offer is pure spam!  Unless spamming is what he’s selling, he’s not doing a very good job.

Seth Godin famously writes about “interruption marketing.”  I know when I reach out to prospective customers, I’m interrupting them.

I’ve been working harder to smartly engage people I’m interrupting with a thoughtful, highly relevant message that offers value.  My rule of thumb is to ask myself, “Am I ready to make a call/send an email this person will want to receive?” If not, I work at it until I am.  It’s hard – and it’s gratifying as fewer high-quality contacts are yielding better results.

I Sold You So

I got a courtesy call from a Dell salesman to follow-up on a $2,000 laptop I’d recently purchased.  He introduced himself, “Hi, this is Jim, the guy who sold you the laptop – how’s it going?”

Yuck.

I don’t want to talk to a guy who thinks he sold me something.  Jim should have called and said, “Hi, this is Jim, from Dell.  How’s that great laptop you chose treating you?”

I’m the customer.  Make me feel like the smart and successful part of the transaction.

Sincerity only achieved by solving SOMEONE ELSE’S problem

(When a baby bear gets my attention on LinkedIn, Part 2)

In Part 1 of this blog, I reflected on getting attention in today’s noisy marketplace. A social media expert’s advice comes to mind: “Talk about your audience 10 times more than you talk about yourself.” People are taking this approach – so many posts celebrating, appreciating, liking what others are doing – and why?  Because those posting often believe this reflects favorably on THEM: “Look at me!  I’m talking about you!”  It’s a cacophony of BS.

Sincerity is only achieved by solving SOMEONE ELSE’S problem.

I’m reading Seth Godin’s new book, THIS IS MARKETING – You Can’t Be Seen Until You Learn to See.” He states there are three sentences we must complete (well) to be effective marketers:

My product is for people who believe…

I will focus on people who want…

I promise that engaging with what I make will help you get…

This creates alignment of people for whom we can solve problems.  That’s sincerity, and focusing on THAT will get us more of the attention we want, and we’ll deserve it.  Want more inspiration?  Read another of my book recommendations:  Bluefishing, the Art of Making Things Happen.

What the CU Buffaloes Are Showing Me About Customer Acquisition

I went to the University of Colorado football game last weekend along with 52,000 other people – the most fans in 20 years.  Winning attracts fans.

photo courtesy of Evan Semón Photography

I’ve been thinking of how I can “model” what a winning team does and use that to attract more customers:

Win.

Customers have to see this.  When I started my business I practically gave away the work, and then way overdelivered.  Why?  So that I could show the next customer that my customers were winners.

Keep winning.

Sounds simple and of course it’s not.  Winning teams don’t tolerate long cycles of failure.  After a loss they redouble their efforts.  After a losing season, they change coaches, change players, do what it takes to get back to winning.

Be humble about winning.

Fans are massively attracted to a winner, but not an arrogant winner.  Coaches thank players.  Players thank fans.  Businesses thank customers.

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