As a beginner you should be charging at least $2500 per keynote. If you are an intermediate, then at least $5000. Even if you get 10 full fee events a year, you’re only talking about $25,000-$50,000. So you will either need to stay on the road to make money, or combine your keynotes with the following…
You can host these for events you speak and train for or for your own personal audience you build through email marketing. A buddy of mine charges $7,500 for three follow-up webinars after the event. it allows the buyer to take the information of the talk and apply it specifically to the organization.
#3 Product Sales
Your keynote should come in the form of an online course or even a physical product. At minimum you should sell the audio version and transcript of your keynote. Personally, I feel you should have a $97-$997 product for sale on your site. If you’re not sure how to create one, then click here.
#4 Affiliate Sales
Are you recommending related products for a commission? One of my products is Launch Your Year. It relates to my 5 Stones Achievement keynote. However, I also recommend products that have a similar personal development theme like Michael Hyatt’s Best Year Ever or Gary Ryan Blair’s 100 Day Challenge.
You’ve heard the typical advice for writing an article, right? It goes a little something like this…
Write an introduction that tells readers what they’re going to learn. Use the main article to deliver on the promises you made in the introduction. Create a conclusion that reminds people of what they just learned.
Sure, that works, but it’s pretty basic. And when you’re writing an article for a blog, you need to do a little more to keep people reading. So here’s my system for writing a great B.L.O.G. article:
Begin With Benefits
Lock Readers In
Generate a Response
How does each step work? Take a look…
Step 1: Begin With Benefits
You need to start off on the right foot with a “blow their socks off” title. This is a title that presents a big benefit and/or arouses curiosity.
Here’s an example of beginning with benefits: “Here Are the Seven Secrets of Winning Your Next Marathon.”
Here’s another example that arouses curiosity: “Are You Making These Marathon Training Mistakes?”
The beginning of your article should continue promising benefits for those who keep reading. Obviously there needs to be a payoff, so make sure the body of your article delivers on the promises you made in the title and introduction.
Step 2: Lock Readers In
If you just write your article like a boring lecture, you’re going to have people clicking away faster than you can say, “But this is good information!”
So yes, obviously you need to provide good information for readers. But you also need to provide it in a way that keeps them hanging on your every word. In other words, “edutain” them – entertain them while you educate them.
Here are two tips for achieving this end:
Connect emotionally with your readers. A good way to do this is to tell a personal story. Because once you hook your readers emotionally, they’ll feel more compelled to keep reading.
Write in a conversational manner. Throw out any ideas of trying to write formally and in a stuffy manner. We’ll leave that to the college textbook authors. Instead, imagine you’re writing to a good friend. Write in a light, conversational manner. Don’t be afraid to toss in a little humor here and there.
Step 3: Offer Examples
Perhaps you’re offering step-by-step instructions for completing some process. To make your article even more useful, you should also toss in tips and examples. If you look back on this article, you’ll see I gave you two examples in the first step and two tips in the second. You should do the same sort of thing so that your readers walk away from your article with a good understanding of the material.
Step 4: Generate a Response
Once you hit your conclusion, you’ll probably do a quick recap of what the reader just learned in the article. That’s great. But you don’t want your reader to walk away without taking some specific action. So that’s why you should seek to generate a response such as:
Anytime you start a new process you work on learning/mastering the steps. But that’s the problem there are steps and there are multiple instructors with multiple methods.
Chances are high that if you decide to to do something like… “start an email marketing list for my blog” that you will… 1. Buy a course or several to help you. 2. Get confused with all the technology and steps.
All of that will hit your brain, which will see no linear process, so it will shut down and block you from moving forward because “I don’t know where to start.”
Here’s how you ease information overload and start moving forward in peace.
#1 What do you want to accomplish?
#2 What can be done later?
#3 What’s the ONE thing to be done now? (First step.)
#4 What are the instructions for getting from where you are to that ONE thing?
#5 Can that be simplified even further?
To “start an email marketing list for my blog” you need an autoresponder service that allows you to capture, store and market using their system. There are about 20 steps to get up and running completely. BUT the ONLY step to do first is open an account. You do NOT need to worry about a widget when you don’t even have an account, right?
I can’t tell you the number of people I work with on something like this who ask, “How do I get my signup form in my sidebar on my blog?”
Me “What autoresponder service are you using?”
Them “I don’t have an autoresponder service yet.”
Me “Then why are you concerned about something that’s an impossibility right now?”
Here’s how it might look…
#1 What do you want to accomplish? (Set up a opt-in funnel based on 20 steps.)
#2 What needs to be done later? (Steps 2-20)
#3 What’s the ONE thing to be done now? (First step.)
#4 What are the instructions for getting from where you are to that ONE thing? (Open an account)
That’s it. Is there more to be done? Yes, but you do the pressing and ignore the stressing until those things enter the process.
Wouldn’t it be great if I could give you a formula to protect your heart from ever being hurt by judgement and criticism, which leads to feeling rejected? That’s would be awesome! Not sure it exists, BUT you can…
This post was drawn from the teachings contained in Duct Tape Selling – Think Like a Marketer Sell Like a Superstar by John Jantsch
No matter what field you are in, relationships play a big factor in your success. The more relationships you have, the greater the possibilities of growing your business. And one way to do that is to work on expanding your connections and going deeper into your customers’ networks. Once you make all these connections, you’ll want to be able to offer something in return and be proactive about it.
The practice of making introductions within your network of contacts truly opens the door to more prospects and builds your reputation in a positive light. If you step out on a limb and connect people who are in need of something and you happen to have the answer, it will shine highly on you. Putting people in touch with each other like pairing members of your IT team to work with a client’s IT team on a shared project or introducing two or more strategic partners together because you know they would hit it off only adds value and differentiates you from the pack. Introductions are like networking gold and can sometimes even be better than your typical referral.
There’s a productive way to make an introduction that takes the pressure off the two people you are connecting. Here’s an example that shows what I’m talking about:
By Way of email, I’d like to introduce you to my friend, Gary Smith. Gary is an expert on how to build partnerships with the media. Currently, he leads Media Buzz and just came out with a new book, How To Land PR By the Truckload. In addition, he helped me start Effective Financial Planning, my coaching company for financial advisors. He’s very interested in leveraging his talents to build a higher profile as well as an information marketing solution.
So instead of the typical just passing the email addresses along or making a remedial introduction that is bland and quite effortless saying, ‘Gary, this is John…’ he explained who the person was, told me about his expertise and credentials, and gave some background on how they knew each other and what he was looking for. He also described me in a similar way to Gary. This way of introducing allowed us to establish right off the bat who the other was and gave us a starting point for a conversation to begin. Keep this in mind when you are connecting people to each other because it will increase the value you bring to every interaction.
Build Your Own Leads Group
Lead groups are different from your typical networking group because they focus on passing active leads to members of the group. They can be very powerful at generating leads but there can be a lot of time commitment and meetings in some of these groups and you hear of there being problems controlling the quality and quantity of the leads. So, why not take the best from what works in this format and create your own lead group?
Handpick your team
Start with your current customers and find out who they like doing business with and who they most often refer. You will already have the common bond with the companies you are reaching out to because you share a client.
Set Goals and Expectations
As you are selecting your team, let everyone know how you want this group to work. Establish your goals and expectations and what they will need to do to stay active in the group.
Time is something most of us lack these days and that’s what people find frustrating about other leads groups- the required time commitment. Some of them have mandatory 90-minute meetings each week. While it’s still important to have face-to-face time, a way to meet in the middle is to incorporate a tool like LocalBase or Loops from passingleads.com to help facilitate leads tracking, sharing and scoring. This way, people don’t have the pressure of getting penalized for missing the weekly meeting but they can share and track their leads in real time.
Make sure that you still keep the “in real life” aspect of your group by having at least one meeting a month so they can share leads and brainstorm on ways to expand the group. Also think about turning them into possible networking events and encourage your members to invite other people who could potentially be added to the group.
Creating and being in charge of a group like this raises your profile and credibility within your community and happens to create authority as well as leads. Have the setting be one that speaks to who you are and how you want this group to run. Since you’ve created it, you get to be the one to set the rules!
John Jantsch is a marketing consultant, speaker and author of Duct Tape Marketing, The Commitment Engine and The Referral Engine and the founder of the Duct Tape Marketing Consultant Network. His latest book, Duct Tape Selling – Think Like a Marketer, Sell Like a Superstar is available online and in bookstores May 15.
Thank you for showing all these benefits and so easy.
Paul why would a person use a double opt-in, what would be the purpose? Just curious…thanks
I noticed you have several email service providers..is it for different reasons?
What are pre-cart pages?
Paul, what’s the difference between with the marketplace templates?
Why do you usually suppress Facebook?
Paul, is the Legal Information beyond that link something you have customized, or does LeadPages have standard language there?
Paul, where do you store your PDF’s and how do you protect them?
What is the best opt in page where I can use a video?
Could you show an example of how to integrate a thank you page to a lead page?
Paul, for a marketer that is starting to build a list, how they can best leverage lead page to build the list?
What are the top 3 Leadpages templates you use? You mentioned 2 part give-away – what others?
Paul – If you use leadPages – what are you using as list build your right navigation (all your WP pages incl blog posts, etc)
Have you used a 3 part video learning series template? if so what are your thoughts?
Do you need to link the template to your website, or just leave as is in lead pages? I thought Carrie worked with lead pages only at one time in the past when she had problems with her website?
I never understood about Lead Magnets… do now 8o)
I’m struggling with how to do the line-up for a paid webinar (course) with Go To Webinar integration– optin to sales page to PayPal to registration…..? When I’ve tried setting them up they went straight to Go To Webinar registration… skipping the $$ part!
Where do you get/make your 3D book images?
Did I see that LeadPages does not integrate with Infusionsoft?
When you have a template that has bullets – like little check marks by a list of what a product contains or covers – is there a way to add more bullets to the template?
What what would you use to sell a affliate offer? So for my audience using a video for a special offer if they purchase from my link?
Are there any analytics to do with Lead Pages? Thank you…Scott Great webinar!
You changed the vieo specs- won’t that distort it?
So…could you use that video template to deliver a video “course?” If so, is there a way to make it so they can’t simply share the URL anywhere they want?
When they click “Get instant access” on a LeadBox, does it THEN take them to another page, or just close so they stay on your site? How do YOU like to deliver the pdf, ebook, etc. that you offer from a LeadBox?
What is the plug in for Word Press?
How do you choose which templates to use? Do you just look around and see which one you like, or do you go by the highest converting page according to leadpages
Do you ever do split testing on lead pages?
AWESOME! You’re AMAZING COACH, MENTOR and I feel you are a friend too. Come to LA?
This was AWESOME training Paul – Thank you… You are so becoming my FAVORITE person!!
Thanks Paul – – love the difference between education & training definition. this training has been very helpful to provide more clarity around leadpages – thank you!!!
Thank you so much Paul. I am delighted you volunteered to do this
Great training Paul as always. Very generous of you:)
Here’s the #1 question I get when it comes on being a digital entrepreneur…
“How can I make six figures or more online without working hard?”
You can’t. Have you lost your mind? Are you reading those 1,128 page sales letters with the picts of the guy sitting on the beach drinking from a coconut?
“How can I make six figures online by serving a market?”
Ahhhhhhhh. I can show you how to do that!
Usually, I’m reluctant to talk about actual amounts when it comes to online business. The main reason is that people think it’s a promise…
“Paul said I would make a kagillion dollars!!”
No I didn’t you silly bird.
In this outrageously long article I am going to show you how to create a $100,000+ year business using nothing but your laptop and stuff in your head and heart.
However, if your goal is to get your site or blog up and running so you can share your message with the world, you can focus on Steps 1-5 and skip step six.
The steps on this page have a 100% success rate in helping people get their online business up and running. 100%.
Most people who make the “attempt” to make money online will never make much if anything at all. By faaaaaaar the vast majority never make a dime.
(And it IS important you know why. Otherwise you will look at these instructions and think, “I can do that!” Only you won’t. So don’t skip what’s next.)
Like I was saying, most folks will never make a dime. Why? Same reasons folks won’t stick with a diet. Same reasons folks sit in a chair with a bag of chips instead of running. Same reasons folks set those New Year’s good intentions and fail to attain them.
I say reasons because there are 2
Nothing works out the way we plan. We purchase a system and think if we follow the instructions then we will come out the other side perfectly.
Liiiiiiiiisten. Most of us cannot successful follow a recipe the first time and get our food to taste right much less get all the online business steps right.
I tried to fry some clams last night. Disaster. Not good. I’ve never fried anything. It seems I am a master of eating fried things not actually frying them.
You’ve probably gone to Pinterest and retrieved a recipe. (Not me of course because I’m a dude and we don’t go to Pinterest. I don’t even know what Pinterest is!)
Anyway, YOU’VE probably been there. You saw a picture of a blackberry tart with cream cheese icing. It looked amazing. You drooled right onto your keyboard. You could actually smell the delicious in the air.
You ran to the store. Bought the ingredients. Painstakingly you followed the recipe. Even the part that said you would get better results by whipping the icing with an eggbeater while your wrist is bent 35.8 degrees.
After 14 minutes at 375 you pull the tarts out of the oven. Hmmmmmm. They don’t look like the photo. But that’s ok, you know with the icing they will taste just the way your brain imagined a scant hour ago.
You drizzle the tarts with icing and let it cool a bit.
You take a bite. Strange. The icing hardened. It became crunchy. Your teeth break the crust and the blackberry juice enters your mouth.
Uuuugh. It’s sour. Then it’s bitter.
“What happened??? I followed the recipe!!!!!!”
Online business follows that same pattern. There are mechanical aspects that EVERYONE can get right. (Getting a website up. Facebook page. Etc ANYONE can do those.)
If you follow the steps in this post you WILL have your online business up and running. GUARANTEED. Not playing. Not joking. You WILL.
Then there are the missional aspects. Traffic, sales copy, social media, conversion strategies that ebb and flow. These are more science than definite. This is also where most people get discouraged.
There has always been fear in releasing “US” to the world. There always will be.
Writing a book. Selling an information product. Hosting a workshop. It’s scary because someone might not LOVE it. Someone might, gasp, ask for a refund!
And because we fear critique we always find something to tinker with. We find a way to remain hidden. We take extended breaks. And we don’t finish.
The longer you stay silent, the less people receive help.
Make me a promise, will ya? Please complete the steps below and finish getting your online business setup.
HOWEVER… it will NOT be FREE
It will cost you 3 things…
This just won’t happen automatically. BUT the good news is… it doesn’t take long to get going. You can have your site set up and a product selected in less than one hour. You heard me! One hour.
Next to “Can you show me how to get rich online?” the most asked question is “Can you show me how to get rich for free?”
Here’s the way I hear that question, “Hey. Can you show me how to get rich online. I don’t want you to make a penny while you show me how to make a bunch!!!!!”
That’s just crazy talk.
Having said that, this plan is free, but some of the things will take money to operate. I will get paid a commission on some of the things I recommend below. Nothing will be outrageous or expensive. If you cannot afford to invest $50-$100 a month to build your business, then I suggest you start a free blog and progress from there.
#3 Heartache and Aggravation
You are going to get frustrated and sad at times while trying to get things up and running. That’s just part of it. You’re not dumb or slow, these things happen to everyone. You are not alone.
Heck, if we can’t make a blackberry tart perfectly the first time, then we should give ourselves a little grace with a website and a shopping cart.
You might have inadvertently skipped a step when setting up your blog. Might have clicked the wrong button. No big deal. You’re not going to break the internet. You’re not. I promise.
6 Steps to Six Figures
This plan will help you design and deploy an online business that fits you. That’s suuuuuper important. You want to operate in your strengths. You want to make the process as natural for you as possible.
Step #1: Market
Your market consists of people interested in a subject that they are willing to spend money on.
If you want to spend your days blogging about albino mice, you can, I’m just not sure you’re gonna make your living from that.
Here’s how to determine your market…
“I love to help people ______________.”
Do you like to help people plan trips, get fit, get debt free, raise their children, learn to fly, speak Spanish, blog, set up Facebook, find deals on Ebay, create a brand, coach, garden, potty train puppies, write, get published, play golf, etc???
If you could spend your life helping people do something, what would it be?
What makes you happy to help other people learn or do?
Ex: When people email me and say, “I got my first website up!!” That makes me happy.
Here at PBE I help people in 3 ways…
ACHIEVE: I love to help people set and REACH their goals and to become a better person. That’s why I created 5 Stones.
ENGAGE: I love to help people connect with their audience and even get paid for it if they choose.
BUILD: I love to help people design and deploy their online platforms for profit. Like I’m doing right now in this article.
Before moving on complete this first step…
“I love to help people ______________.”
If you come up with a dozen or more then just choose one. If you would like me to help you then we can schedule a session to work through your list and discover the best one for you. More on that at the end of the article.
Step #2 Message
Your message is a closely held belief that you want to share with your market.
ACHIEVE: Success is NOT an Accident
ENGAGE: Avoid Becoming a Human Tranquilizer.
BUILD: Architect Your Economy
Message is important for 2 reasons…
First, it anchors you. It helps you remain focused and on fire for your market. Without it you will drift and get attracted to all sorts of unrelated nonsense to helping your market.
“Ooooo. Bright shiny! I want”
Then a year from now you’ll be back at this page thinking… “Why didn’t I just do this a year ago?!”
Remember the goal – “I love to help people ___________”
Second, your message becomes portable. People carry it in their hearts. When your topic is mentioned, they think of you because your message is clear.
You may not come up with the perfectly crafted message right out of the gate. “Success is NOT an Accident” isn’t where I started. That came over time. At the very beginning of helping people achieve, all I really thought about was people being committed and taking personal responsibility. I was sick of seeing myself and others blame circumstances and make excuses for not reaching a goal.
That’s the easiest place to begin. What makes you sick in your market? What breaks your heart? What cause can you rally behind, then take the lead?
Are you sick about the high rate of obesity in children? Are you fed up with the lack of free breakfasts at high priced hotels and want to help people eat breakfast for free wherever they travel? Are you sick that everyone on the planet is not absolutely in love with bacon?
(I’m writing this in the morning and haven’t eaten yet, can you tell?????)
Complete this phrase…
I love to help people ___________ because I am tired of seeing _____________.
Here’s my version…
I love helping people architect their perfect online business because I am tired of seeing people spend a fortune on products that won’t work for them.
Your message does not have to be long or complex. The simpler the better.
Step #3 Model
Your model is how you will monetize your message.
There are dozens of possibilities, but I’d like to give you the easiest. The most natural.
1) Share your message to you market through a your personal website.
2) Grow your audience. (Steps 4-5)
3) Recommend resources or provide them yourself. (Step 6)
To share your message to you market through a your personal website follow these steps. You can literally have your site setup in minutes!!
Here’s how to share your message in your description, update your settings and make your first post.
If your goal is to start a blog and share your message with the world, guess what? You’re all set! Start writing. Start sharing.
Although, I still think its best to follow the next two steps to Enlist and Engage. But if you decide not to make money, that not problem. Getting your site online is soooooo much more than what most ever do.
Step #4 Enlist
Enlist means you get your audience to say, “I’m in!”
You give them a way to show they are interested in your topic and raise their hand to get resources and recommendations from YOU.
The best way to do this is…
1. Offer a report, video, checklist that matches your message and helps your audience.
2. Ask your guests for their email address in exchange.
3. Give them what you promise.
4. Follow up automatically with more that will help them reach their goal.
You might be thinking something along the lines of, “I’ve heard that before.”
Or did you hear something like…
1. Set up a squeeze page
2. Give people a “bribe” to capture the opt-in
3. Fill your autoresponder with offers
4. Make money
Those two systems are NOT the same. Reread both of those lists. Now write down the KEY differences.
Yes there are other email contact providers, but I don’t use them personally. I’m telling you the easiest way. If you want to go and research all the different options you are more than welcome to. I’m trying to get your business up and running as fast as possible.
I use Leadpages to create great looking landing pages, squeeze pages, webinar registration pages and more! You still need a service like Aweber, but LeadPage makes it simple to design great looking pages with high conversions as you enlist your audience.
Engaging your audience builds connection and commitment. You’ll get a lot of difference advice on this one.
Some will tell you to post daily. Some will say post multiple times a day. Some will say email once a day. Some will say once a week.
You’re probably thinking…
“I don’t want folks to get tired of me. What’s the perfect ratio between content and offers?”
There’s no such thing.
Your audience will accept whatever you do as long as it is in their benefit and your relationship is real.
I don’t get tired of my best friend calling be everyday, do you? I wouldn’t mind someone emailing me everyday if they had something helpful, would you?
That’s the secret, stay true to your “I love to help people _______________.”
However, if you get all desperate sounding and all you try to do is to “use” people and not help people, then no one will want to hear from you.
Just a few minutes ago I was checking my email and got this “critical” message…
You will hate me if I don’t make sure you understand how important this is!
For just a minute, I want to read this
carefully, and pay attention.
This last week, I know I’ve been hammering
you with videos for ‘The Magic Internet
Truthfully, the reason why is because
I know Rick Strophers.
I know his results and the money he is making daily.
Which to be honest – are more than
His income in 2013 with us alone
was close to three million dollars.
And tomorrow (Monday) at exactly
12 EST – the cart is opening up for
the Magic Internet Formula.
Click here at exactly 12 EST tomorrow.
Let me tell you why it’s important to
get in ‘early’ and why you need to click
that link NOW to catch up – and why
it’s URGENT for you to schedule this,
and click at exactly noon EST tomorrow.
Does that sound like I’m being helped or being set up? Right, set up. Look at the language of the email, I wouldn’t sent that to my granmother would you?
“Hey Grandma! You will hate me if I don’t make sure you understand how important this is! For just a minute, I want to read this carefully, and pay attention.”
If we did that, Grandma would tell us to go get a strong switch and then she would blister us! You don’t treat Grandma that way or your friends or people trusting you to guide them in a particular direction.
There are 3 ways to ENGAGE your audience and build rock solid relationships.
You publish content relevant to your market and those enlisted. What do you enjoy the most?
If you like to write the most then focus on blogging, and continue to grow as a writer.
If you like video the most then create your channel on YouTube, and continue to grow as a video geek.
If you like audio the most then podcast, and continue to grow your voice.
“But Paul, I want to reach everyone don’t I need to do all 3???”
You can if you want, BUT don’t let that keep you from moving forward. EVERYONE has the skill right now to write and make a post.
Reminder: you are not engaging just to make money. You are engaging to help your audience, your subscribers, your readers. When money becomes the sole focus its easy to compromise on the goal of serving.
When serving is THE goal then your publishing, personal contact, and promotions will be pure.
Decrease the distance between you and your audience. Be available and within reach. Fortunately it’s easier than ever before.
All make it super easy to connect with your audience. One of the best ways is a private Facebook group designation ONLY for those who opt-in for your free giveaway. In fact, your private Facebook group could be your free gift for optin.
Don’t quake in fear. Some of you true artist types are like, “Bbbbbbut I don’t want to promote. I want to write a beautiful, warm article and then at the end I’ll place an appropriate suggestions such as: If you liked this article and want to learn more about this here is a link, which if you click and buy I will make $12.32, but you are under no obligation to click that link unless you want to. Please don’t think I am trying to talk you into anything. This is totally up to you. Please do not let this mere suggestion shatter your view of me. Please do not think I am a greedy internet marketer. Please still love me in the morning.”
You can promote without being sleazy or selling your soul.
Would you be offended by something like…
Everyone says content is king. The better you write the more engagement you’ll get and the more people will pass along your work.
I’ve never been much of a writer, but that changed after I met Jeff Goins. I saw how fast he grew his influence and impact through writing.
So you know what I did? I signed up for his Tribe Writer’s Course. Now I proudly call myself a writer (even if I continue to ignore all rules of grammar!)
Since you write too – blog posts, Facebook, and, yes, even tweets – don’t your readers deserve your absolute best?
p.s. Jeff has a forum where writer’s interact and learn together. I hope to see you in there. I’ll be hanging out at 3 pm CDT today for a couple of hours. If you go give Tribe Writer’s a shot, please say hello in the forum. I’d love to talk to you.
Now then. Was that offensive? Was that snake oily? Did you at least think about checking Tribe Writer’s out?
I’d even send that to my Grandma.
We’ll talk about WHAT to promote in Step 6!
Step #6 Economy
Your website should create an economy. It should allow you to…
Give to charity
Fill in your blank. I want my website to allow me to _________.
Let’s get something out of the way for the “artist.”
It is NOT wrong to charge for your art. You do not need to die before becoming famous for what you provide.
There’s been severe course correction when it comes to making money online. There’s a mass of blogger types and writers who feel that it’s wrong to charge money for their value.
They are so scared of getting lumped in with the online scammers that they avoid any direct selling. But behind close doors they cry about their site ads not getting more clicks and how their monetization results are weak.
Of course they are. Whatever is in your heart seeps through. If you think it’s bad to make money and charge for your value then you will communicate that through your writing and even the way you set your site up. You will talk and talk and talk and talk about how you give and give and give and give. You’ll post about how some people are just doing things to make money, money, money. You will paint yourself as good and others as evil. And readers will accept that from you and they will never buy from you because you’ve made it clear that making money is wrong. (However, they will buy from others.)
Yes, give your work away through your content publishing. But don’t broadcast that you are somehow better than everyone else because you don’t chase filthy lucre.
Just become anchored in WHY you want to make money. It’s ok not to want the yacht or mansion or sports car. Maybe you want to give thousands to build an orphanage.
It’s still going to take money.
In the past few years I’ve traveled to 12 countries doing mission work. Guess what? You won’t believe this. But the airline did NOT give me a free ticket because I was flying to do good. Guess what? The hotel did not let me stay for free. I know, insane. Doing good costs money.
The more money you make the more good you can do. So get over the thought of money being bad. It’s neither. It’s inanimate. It has no feelings. Only the person with the money controls the good or bad.
With that in mind… let’s make money!
Products are one-time sales such as a book or a report or a video series or a microphone or any other thing.
The absolute easiest way to get start is by being an affiliate for an existing product.
This means you make a recommendation and if someone buys you get paid.
You do not deliver the product.
You do not handle customer support.
You do not need a checkout system
You provide an affiliate link to something your market would like and then they go look at it. If they buy, you get paid.
How much? It depends on the product and the provider. If you recommend something on Amazon, then you will probably make around 5%. If you recommend an information product from someone who provides courses online, then it will be around 50%. Yes, 50%.
For example: You could sell my Perfect Presentation course and make right around $45 per sale after all fees.
You could literally tell your people… Hey! You want to get rid of your public speaking fear and have your audience loving your speech? Then go get Paul’s Perfect Presentation system. I love it and you will too! (Affiliate Link inserted right here.) Signed, Your Name.
See how simple that is?
Here’s how an affiliate link works…
You register for an affiliate program.
You login to get your affiliate link for the product(s) you want to recommend.
You send that link out. Although I suggest you make it look like your site.
Watch the video for a run through on signup, and grabbing your link. This will use my affiliate program as an example. In fact, I just added the article you are reading right now to the affiliate system. If you desired to become an affiliate you can send people right to this page.
Obviously you don’t want your link to look all squirrely like that. Here’s how to use the Pretty Link Plugin to make your links match your model.
Affiliate promotions are the easiest way to get started and I think you should begin here because you can do this right now.
Personal products range from $5-$100. They can be in any format:
Physical or digital for instant download
CD or MP3
Book or PDF or Kindle
DVD or Online Video
Most people start with a PDF ebook or report they sell from their site that solves one specific problem.
If you focus on fitness and want to give your people a 10 Day Body Cleanse Program then you could open up a Word document. Type it out. Then print it to a PDF. You literally have a product you can sell for $X.
Do not over complicate this. You’ll want to. You’ll want to get all up in your head and envision some grandiose plan about it dominating the world’s body cleansing market. Keep it simple.
However, you will need a way to collect payment and a way to deliver your product.
One of the most used payment processors on the planet is PayPal. Use this link to et up your payment link for your product.
Optional: If you want a more robust system then get PaulCart! 😉 Actually, here’s my affiliate link for the shopping cart I use. It will allow you to take payment, deliver your products, create customer email lists and even has an affiliate program built in for all your products. There are plenty of tutorials that show you exactly how to set everything up. If you sign up through my link I will help you personally if you get stalled by anything.
A Signature Product is one you become known for and you charge $100 to $1000 or more.
If you are brand new to getting started online it’s still NOT too soon to create a Signature Product. Sell 100 of your $1000 products a year and you’re at 6 figures.
Most likely you’re thinking, “I can’t do that?”
What? Take it back, right now!
In fact, here’s a free video series that will prove you can and should have a Signature Product!
One of the most attractive aspects of a traditional job is a predicable paycheck. Your online efforts need to have this component as well.
A product sale is a one-time transaction. However, a perpetual offer will be recurring and you will get paid each and every month.
Let’s say you commit yourself to writing one report a month for your market. You could sell it for $25 or you could create a program where people say, “Yes, send me your report every month automatically. Instead of paying $25 for each report I will pay only $15 a month.”
A person will checkout once, but pay you each and every month until they decide to cancel. If you had 100 people doing that, you would have a guaranteed $1,500 a month each month. And you can grow it from there.
Through the years I’ve had various recurring payment sites.
Two sites had over 1,000 subscribers each and members paid $29.95 a month.
Another site has 3,000 members with members paying $10 a month.
I would much rather have the same 1,000 people paying me every month than trying to find 1,000 new people and attempting to sell them a $10 product to get the same revenue.
This is another area where people want to overcomplicate the process and create the best membership site in a particular market. Don’t do that. Offer your people something you LOVE to deliver.
For public speakers I have ENGAGE. Members get a new video every week. The videos are only 5-10 minutes. And they content is sent out through my auto responder. Super simple.
My favorite membership software is Wishlist Member.
Webinar coaching: Use a service like Google hangouts, Go To Webinar, or Adobe Connect. This allows you and your client to share your screen for more interaction and more step-by-step work through sharing documents and online work. Plus, the entire time together can be recorded and your students can watch over and over and over.
If we got together in a webinar room and you watched me set up YOUR autoresponder step by step from within YOUR Aweber account, wouldn’t that be helpful? Of course it would.
If you’re in fitness and you helped someone develop the perfect diet and exercise program on a live webinar, wouldn’t they love that? You know it!
VIP day: This allows you to work one-on-one with a client for a day. You agree to meet at a location where you coach them for the day.
Pricing at the Premium level is not the easiest so here are general guidelines…
Email coaching: $200-1000 a month
Phone coaching: $100-500 an hour
Webinar coaching: $200-1000 an hour
VIP Day: $1000-$10,000
You could literally build your business solely around VIP days and just do one a month. Everything else you do could be free. You just focus on selling the VIP Day.
Here’s a course Carrie Wilkerson and I taught together on creating high-ticket products. In it I share how I set up and coaching program that fits me perfectly and how you can set yours up to fit you.
Most of us won’t do that because we don’t want limit the number of people we can help. A lot of folks can’t afford a $10K day. We want to help as many as possible, right?
So the best route is to offer several opportunities to do business with you.
Let’s put this ALL together for your Six Figure Plan…
Six Figure Online Business Plan
Get out a sheet of paper and complete the following steps. Writing down that you are going to create and how much you are going to charge will be extremely powerful. Chances are high you have thought about selling products before, but never actually wrote down the numbers.
I love to help _______________
I am sick of seeing ____________ in my market and here’s what I am going to do about it ______________________.
I will give away __________ in exchange for an email optin.
I will (circle one) post, podcast, videocast _______ times a week to connect with my audience.
I will email my audience _____ times a week with relevant, helpful content and recommendations.
Affiliate products I will recommend and how much I will earn per sale:
Products I will create and what I will charge:
A Signature Product I would like to create and the price point:
A Perpetual site I feel would be fun to start is _______________ which would help people _______________________.
I want ________ number of members at $_______ per month.
The best Premium access offer for me to begin with is (circle 1 and add your fee beside it):
Listen close. Follow the steps in this post and your business WILL be set up. You have zero excuse. I have given you a process and even step-by-step video tutorials to help you get started.
Here is a minimalist approach:
1. Set up your web address and hosting with BlueHost. $4.95
2. Set up autoresponder system with Aweber. $1 trial for 30 days.
3. Select a product to sell. Affiliate products are the easiest to begin with.
Nothing should be holding you back.
Success is NOT an Accident!
[Added note: Reader’s have asked if I would be willing to coach through each of these steps. I’d love to help you personally. Click here for BUILD coaching.]
Once you have completed the steps above and have your plan in hand I want to show you how to build your audience, your followers, your tribe… in more traditional language… how to get a bunch of folks who want to buy from you. Once you have that in hand, then Click Here.
1. Please share this article on Facebook.
2. If you have questions or comments, feel free to add them below.
The Voice on NBC features blind auditions. This is supposedly waaaaaay better than sight auditions where a person’s attractiveness, or lack of, could cause their vocals to take on a different quality to the listener. It’s crazy how the eyes can override the ears like that.
Coaches on sight audition programs like America Idol have been heard to say things like “Uhhhhhhhhhhhhh. Was he singing?” as they wiped their mouths with a napkin after a good looking contestant gave it all they got.
Blake, Usher, Adam and Shakira don’t get to use their eyes in round 1, so their choices are pure. Once they turn around, you immediately find out what they think about the rest of the package. When looks enter the picture, questionable calls can happen at any moment.
Just because someone can sang good doesn’t actually mean they will get to advance. There are two primary reasons good singers go home – even good looking singers…
Number one, they sound like the person who recorded the song they performed for the coaches (and all of America!)
Yep, some of these singers have the audacity to reproduce the exact style and tone of the person selling 1.3 gagilllion downloads of the single. Can you believe it? Wanting to sound like someone who has enough money to buy a country and then fill said country with inhabitant based solely on fan base? Crazy, right?
Contestant sings “Dude Looks Like a Lady” by Aerosmith. He sounds just like Steven Tyler. On top of that, dude actually looks like a lady. You would think that would be a double whammy of positive outcome. There’s no way this cat can’t win.
Blake, “I don’t know. You really look like a lady and all, which I find attractive and so does Adam, but I couldn’t hear YOU. I just heard Steven Tyler. Maybe if you’d had a scarf draped around you, it would have been better for me. But what do I know? I’ve only won The Voice 3 times and have a bunch of Grammys that are under my butt right now just in case I fight for one of you guys.”
Number two, they don’t sound like anyone. This is sorta unfair. One contestant gets reamed for sounding identical to the original artist, and the next is told they don’t stand out. They don’t have a unique sound.
Moments later they stand in front of the camera fighting tears while exclaiming that it was a honor to be on the show, but deep down they will always remember those words, right?
“You’re trying to sound too much like famous singer who’s mega-rich.”
“You don’t sound distinct. What’s your name again?”
You know what? I think those two reasons are the same reasons we used to go home and stay home instead of releasing our voice.
One the one hand, we clone people. We read an author and feel like we can write that way. We hear a speaker and want to talk that way. It’s natural.
On the other hand, we don’t feel like we have anything special to say. We feel nondescript and monotone.
I’m gonna help you find YOUR voice.
Huh? No. I’m not lying. I’m gonna do it!
Why would I give you such a gift?
Cause I am super nice that’s why! Just ask the three friends I will personally direct you too, and you’ll see it’s true.
Another reason I want you to “find” your voice is because you and the world will be better when you do. You’ll stop whining about not being a snowflake, and you’ll be happy since snowflakes melt in heat and don’t last long in general. You’ll survive every season as YOU.
My gift to you…
5.5.5 Voice Finding Maxims
(For those of you who don’t know what a maxim is, it means fundamental principle. I actually had the word principle right there, but used my handy thesaurus to sound smarter than I am, so you get Maxims!)
1 Your Voice Isn’t Lost – You’re Ignoring It!
You can stop reading after this point if you want. This is really all there is to it.
You’ve used your voice every single day since that first “Mama.”
Every. Single. Day.
You’ve mastered your voice. You know what you think is funny. What you react to. What you love. What you hate. What you find interesting. What you find boring. What you loooooooove to talk about. What you wish would never be mentioned again.
You watch a movie you like and immediately text your friends or, gasp, post it on Facebook for the world. You’re not scared of sharing that. You only lose your voice when you think you’re sharing something important. Then you shift your voice. You try to sound “professional.”
Write. Sing. Speak. – just like you do with your friends. Just like you do every single day.
That’s your real voice. Period.
At least that’s you’re voice right now. If you don’t like it, then proceed…
Those blasted judges. Our fate is in their hands! Curses!
If only we can impress them enough to turn their chairs around.
Oh, Wait. They’re really aren’t any judges.
No one waits by their computer to rate your next blog post or Instagram shot. (If they do, they are deranged and need to take some tablets, and you need to block them. I cannot express fully the joy of blocking someone who waits just to trash other folks.)
You THINK everyone stands with rejection stamp in hand.
“Boring post!” Slam! Rejection.
“Boring speaker!” Wham! Rejection.
Lean in here.
Here’s the secret…
There are no judges. Not until you become a NYT bestseller – then everyone who’s never written a book thinks they can boot you. 😉
Until then quit inventing imaginary magistrates.
3 Practice in the Shower
Why the shower? Because you’re alone and hopefully the water is drowning the bad notes, and the echo is glorifying the good ones. However, if you have kids there is no alone space. Ever. Not even the shower. How in the world do they learn how to pick locks at age 2? It’s downright spooky.
Anyway. The shower let’s you let go.
The shower can be literal if you’re singing or an analogy if you’re doing something else.
Here’s an example of a shower if you’re a blogger… get a disposable website. Buy a domain. Set up WordPress. Blog. No one has to see it. Ever.
“But Google will find me somehow and then the world will be reading my stupid.”
Nope. It doesn’t work like that.
That little undisclosed blog will give you the greatest creative gift you could ever wish upon a star to receive…
Permission to write what you want the way you want. Permission to say what you want the way you want. You know you’ve always wanted to. You’re whole life you’ve wanted to be a free bird. (That’s why it’s the most requested song ever, even at Miley Cyrus “concerts.”)
If you’re a little slow, the point is this: You need a place where you get to practice without critique.
4 PRACTICE in the Shower
Ready to be blown away? Ready? Those coaches on The Voice, they can really sing. They can carry it. They can bring it. If you’re from the 90’s, they’re the bomb. If you’re from the 80’s they are for real. If you’re from the 70’s it doesn’t really matter because the dope has erased that decade.
Those judges/coaches can sing.
The insane part? They practice. But not practice. They PRACTICE. They work on their craft. Breathing exercises. Riffs. Rolls. Lip beaters with trills. And not a single one of them can look cool while doing any of those drills. It’s impossible because all singing drills look and sound silly.
One of the exercises my one-day vocal coach has be do sounded like a mix of Ray Ramona and Yogi Bear. I fired him and went out in search of my manhood.
The pros don’t care. They hit it hard with the silly, so they can SING. It’s not just talent on the loose. It’s trained, honed, bleeding vocal chord talent.
Are you willing to put in the hard work to make your voice great?
Answer the question.
Did you answer, “Yes!”?
I’m not surprised. Everyone answers yes. Everyone says they will.
Not to hurt your feelings, but it’s a little fib we all like to tell ourselves. The truth is we’d already be working our tails off if it were a true “Yes.”
To get a great Voice is gonna take more than you’ve ever given in your life. Some days you will radiate glory and the next you will be crumpled on the curb with your head leaned in the street as you dare the oncoming traffic.
Too graphic? Not if you said, “Yes!” You’ve gotta be willing to face it all. Finding your voice is a cinch. Honing your voice requires blood, sweat and tears. Sometimes all three at once.
Stop studying the masters. Stop buying all the stuff that you hope will automatically transform you.
Write. Sing. Speak. Paint. Build. Ride. Climb.
Whatever your voice does, do it.
Do that thing you’re called to do the way you do it.
5.5 Listen Back
We live in advanced times. You can get microscopic wireless ear buds for your listening pleasure. But you go to the studio and the pros have on those earphones the size of the Empire State Building. King Kong could wear those suckers listening to Run DMC, while he’s scaling the building with that woman in his hand.
In today’s advanced age of technology why in the world are artists wearing phonographs?
They do not want to hear anything but the voice. The music. The song.
We loooooove distraction. Squirrel.
Twitter and Facebook stream. Youtube screams. There’s a constant invitation to distraction.
Result? We don’t hear too well. We don’t listen close to our own voice because there are soooo many other voices surrounding us. And they’re loud. Baby at 2 am loud.
Put on your 1956 headphones. Block out the crap. Listen to you. Evaluate. Make adjustments. Tweak. Edit.
You gotta go public.
You gotta let others hear your voice.
You gotta be ok with the results as you continue to grow.
Everything can’t be great. Oh, I’m sure there’s a book out there saying every moment of your life can change the world, but that’s poppycock.
Heck, the same dude who wrote and rode “Thriller” and “Billie Jean” to #1 also released “Butterflies.” Everything can’t be a hit.
Our voice is designed to be shared not stifled. You’ve probably already mastered stifling. Cut it out. Let it go!
Whew! Well, I think that’s just about enough. You’re probably tired of hearing my voice by now. I know I am.
Boring drugs the audience. It automatically induces a big ol’ case of the drowsies. Transports folks directly to droolville. (And believe me, you do not want to have to hand out napkins with your presentation.)
That photo was snapped during my “Tricia” story at Carrie Wilkerson’s BOSS Event. Even the guy on the cell phone is laughing.
Here are 5.5.5 ways to avoid becoming a human tranquilizer. (You can get even more ways in my free ENGAGE video.)
#1 Be Funny. No, don’t tell jokes, just be humorous. Nothing keeps the audience engaged better than laughter and smiles. Period. You don’t have to be a comedian – you just need to be light when the moment is right.
#2 Be Interactional. Include the names of people you’ve met in your talk. Use them as positive examples. Prove that the people in the seats are important to you.
#3 Be Clear. No one likes a rambler. People like points. They like to be able to take notes and go home with specifics.
#4 Be Fresh. Speak with an “I just discovered this” attitude. The 500th time you’ve given this speech? It’s my first time hearing it, so give me your fresh.
#5 Be Passionate. Passion bleeds. It helps others, delivers results, cannot go unresolved and makes you and others better off. Speak with passion or just leave me a note.
#5.5 Be Authentic. Gestures, voice, style should be the same on and off stage.
Two years ago I sat captivated in an audience listening to one of the best speakers on the circuit. He almost hypnotized us with his cadence of style and charisma. Leaning toward the stage I began to study his methods in order to learn and apply some of his techniques. He seemed to possess every tool of a top presenter.
Halfway through his message, however, uneasiness began to bleed over me. A couple of his illustrations were familiar. He told them in first person, but I knew the individuals to whom these accounts actually occurred. Changing few of the details he plagiarized a story in front of over two thousand attendees.
Leaning back in my seat I listened to the rest of the speech. I was not nearly as impressed as before. In fact, more skeptical, because no one likes to be taken for a ride on a Ferris wheel when they thought they were boarding a roller coaster. I did learn a lot that night, but not in presentation skills. I learned that no matter how great the speaker, no amount of talent can save you from ignoring the two unbreakable laws of speaking.
Unbreakable Law #1: The Law of Character
Mom always taught us as kids, “Actions speak louder than words” (No, this is not an article about gestures). How we live always speaks louder than what comes from our lips.
You want to trust the person speaking to you, and you want to be trustworthy when presenting. Character lends strength to your message before the first word is spoken. Before the first note is taken. Before the first laugh comes from the audience.
Think about it. When someone approaches the microphone you want the person to be good. Skilled. Interesting. Exciting. Magnetizing. You want to be those things as well. You want to be the best speaker or presenter that you can be. That is why you participate in Toastmasters. You know the feedback, experience, and credibility delivered from the association will catapult your communication. But…
Even more critical than the ability of the presenter, you want to know if the person is credible. If a co-worker steps to the podium to present a talk on office ethics and you know she is slipping supplies in her purse for personal use what will your response be? When you see a flyer on the bulletin board: Bill Whatshisname, speaking today on “Team Work,” but you know that he runs his company like a dictator, what happens inside of you?
W. Somerset Maugham says, “Don’t be short-changed by choosing personality over character.” Somerset is right. Isn’t “short-changed” exactly how we feel after we discover that the speaker is not all he claimed? On the other hand, when a person of character speaks we feel rich even if the presentation was not the best.
A simple test of character is revealed in the old adage, “Character is who you are when no one else is looking.” That effortless phrase contains true power. The goal is for us is to be the same person when everyone is looking as when no one is looking. Who you are cannot be separated from your message. Your spirit, character, and genuine heart will come through your words and actions.
After exiting the civic center two years ago I began thinking about the speaker’s message. I remembered the stories (even the ones out of context), but I did not remember his point. The more I reviewed, the more I realized that although over an hour was spent talking, little valuable information was shared. Only after reflecting did I notice that he broke the second law.
Unbreakable Law #2: The Law of Content.
Charisma might deliver style points to listeners, but content delivers mind points. Of course, you want to become the best communicator you can be, but remember this: A bad day on the platform with poor content will leave an unrecoverable impression. But a bad day on the platform with strong content can still leave a favorable impression.
Consider it the rule of the walk-away. The speaker I heard, though entertaining, provided no walk-away information. As you prepare, look over your presentation and ask, “What is the walk-away value of this material?” Another way to think about this is, “What will the audience remember when they get home?”
One sure way to accomplish this is to have your content so securely tied to your theme that it cannot be forgotten. Every point should reemphasize the premise of your presentation. They should support it to the point of being inseparable. If possible, the content should be so strong that the audience would feel foolish for ignoring it and leaving it at the meeting. When you see people taking notes, you know you have content, because it is impossible to take notes on nothing.
Nothing…that reminds me of that speaker again. Maybe I should look him up and thank him for making me think about what really counts in a presentation. Character and Content. Break these two laws at your own risk.
Paul Evans is the author of six books, a professional speaker, and the creator of Instant Speaking Success. Paul has helped over 35,000 speakers of all levels.
Permission to reprint the above article to your blog, email, etc as long as it remains in tact and complete byline is included.
The difference in a powerful and pitiful presentation is usually a few essential basics. The following seven reminders must be part of every speech.
1. Audience Awareness.
The better you know the people in the seat, the better your presentation will be. Too many speakers are self-centered. They design a message that sounds good to them.
The audience-centered speaker provides what the people need. Information to help them grow. Motivation to aid the desire to apply.
2. Positive Preparation
Do not prepare in fear. Forget worrying about the possibilities of what can go wrong. Instead, think about the positives. Note everything you can’t wait to share. Pinpoint the most powerful aspects of the speech and look forward to releasing them.
3. Confident Content.
Too often we draw our confidence from our delivery style. Listen, that’s overrated. Who cares if an audience is wowed by delivery if no content comes with it?
The less confident you are with your delivery the more critical it is that you are confident with your content. Know exactly the benefit the audience will receive from the information you share.
4. Test Technology.
Check the microphones, laptop, etc. before the event. Inspect it with enough time to repair it if needed.
Last Wednesday I spoke at a meeting and we were not sure if my laptop would be compatible with the projection system. In the end we switched cables and all went well. But if I hadn’t been there forty-five minutes early it might not have went as well.
5. Validate Value
This ties the previous four points together.
Value the audience. Remember that you are talking to people with fears and also with dreams.
Value preparation. Don’t try to wing-it and don’t over prepare thinking it will make you perfect.
Value content. Have a clear message that cannot me missed. Also, make it practical so it can be immediately applied.
Value technology. If PowerPoint strengthens the message use it; if it doesn’t then don’t. Only use technology that will enhance the message.
If you know those four areas the fifth – validate value – will be guaranteed. You will know what you are going to say, who you are saying it to, and why you are sharing it.
Paul Evans is the author of six books, a professional speaker, and the creator of The Perfect Presentation. Paul has coached over 35,000 speakers of all levels.
Permission to reprint the above article to your blog, email, etc as long as it remains in tact and complete byline is included.
You get super close to your audience when you speak the same language. A language that may almost seem foreign to those not in the circle.
Fitness for example. I used to own a gym and we’d talk about…
Getting ripped to the gills
Or with online business…
What’s the language of your audience?
If you don’t know then….
#1 Buy Their Magazines
Mags are current and relevant. The latest jargon and idioms are used.
#2 Read Their Books
Yes, this take more time, but you get to the heart of the audience. Magazines are great from a surface point of view. Books are great to increase depth perception.
#3 Listen to Their Speakers
These should be people from within the industry. Folks who possibly create the language.
#4 Join the Masses
I feel it’s easiest to write and speak to people I have a bond with. It’s much easier for me to speak to a business group than a physicians group. Business is where I spend my time. Where I invest my money and energy. So naturally it’s the place I feel most connected.
When I speak to a group of business owners I do so as a fellow owner – not simply as an employed speaker. I know the language and can speak it naturally.
When I share stories, examples and points using common language the audience gets that “he’s talking just to me” feeling. Which is the goal of this entire series, right?
Warning: Don’t just pull some terms and slide them in. You’ll come across as fake and insincere. Make your use of language as organic as possible and you will know you’re audience and they will know you.
I watched cartoons as a kid on Saturday mornings – how about you?
I remember climbing trees and my mom begging me to come down and bring a switch with me! How about you?
I remember opening the cereal box from the bottom to get the prize – how about you?
I remember my grandfather taking me fishing – how about you?
While those may not be exactly what you have experienced I bet you had a trigger or a link to a memory.
That’s the power of a universal story.
Shared “like” memories that help people feel connected.
We engage our audience at a deep level when they feel we are similar. And since we’re all human we are.
The posts, podcasts and presentations we dislike the most are often those where the person comes across as superior. Mom always said, “Nobody likes a know it all.”
In my experience, there are five ways to create a common bond through universal stories:
Hey! We were all kids once. And most kids were the same…
Playing with toys.
Children are innocent. Fun. Precocious. Honest. Alive.
Stories from childhood deliver warmth and security.
Fireworks on the 4th.
Thanksgiving turkey gone bad.
And everyone seems to have a Cousin Eddie at Christmas.
Or how about the family trip to Disney.
You might think Disney doesn’t count since everyone has not been. But people are familiar with the images. They feel the fun even if they have not been there personally.
We’re not just tapping into common experiences; we’re tapping into the memory bank even if it was created from movies, photos or even Facebook.
In the first article in this series, Know Your Audience, I hit burgers, pizza, bacon. I could easily talk about peanut butter and jelly as a kid and most people would immediately click with that.
Also, what about strange “delicacies” only your grandmother made? Almost every family has some odd or special meal they eat together. Again, the story doesn’t not have to be identical, just universal.
And since all of us EAT… guess what? Food stories bring smiles and a watering mouth!
This one is tough and you have to be careful.
When I talk about the passing away of my first wife, Sherri, people feel it. They connect with the emotion of loss. Almost all of us have been touched by death. It hurts. It’s painful.
When we tell stories of success everyone cannot relate. When we tell stories of loss everyone can. Suffering is a universal thread in humanity.
Take care when you share. Everyone wants to see the wreck – no one wants to see the blood. Remember that your audience is not your therapist. Your goal is to tell a connective story, not to solicit sympathy.
#5 Self-deprecating humor
I use a lot of short jokes since I am 5.5.5., or 65.5 inches. In three generations… my grandfather, mom and myself – none of us have ever seen over the top of a steering wheel!
As long as the humor doesn’t come across as insecurity, you can build massive good will and connection. No one laughs with an enemy and when people are laughing WITH you, you end up with a room full of friends. You get an audience who feels like they know you and you know them.
What universal stories do you currently tell? What new stories do you have? Take the five experiences above and list at least 3 stories beneath each one.
Sometimes you don’t have time for a long formula or to sit down and work through a process. There are times where you need confidence fast, instant confidence. Here are 5 of 25 ways to get an instant boost of confidence.
Be on the listen out, not just look out, but listen out for compliments. When people tell you that you look good or you dressed well or did you lose weight, instead of shrugging it off like we all tend to do, absorb those, listen to those and go “Wow, he is picking up on something here” and allow that to get in your head.
We’re so scared of arrogance, that we put a block on all our compliments. Don’t do that. Absorb them to give you a quick boost. Go ahead and file those mentally and when you’re not feeling good about yourself, or you don’t think you speak well, then think back to when someone said something positive about you and replay it.
Log all your successes. You need to write them down.
When you told a joke and it went wild and everybody loved it, remember that. That’s what I do: I try to remember anytime anything seemed to go perfectly. When the punch line came out perfectly or more people than usual wept at the sad story. I remember all of that and when I’m feeling, “Well, I don’t know if that story is really that good or if I need to use it again?” I’ll think about the audience reaction.
Or if I think, “You know, is that joke really funny?” I’ll think about the audience reaction.
Even entire speeches. If I’m invited with, “We want you to do your speech about your first wife’s death. Will you come and do that?” And I’m thinking, “I’ve done that so many times.” I will think about the successes. I’ll think about the value that ten of thousands have received from that message.
You need to do the same thing. Write down your successes, log those mentally and replay them when you need a quick boost of confidence.
That’s right, failure can actually boost your confidence because it is so beneficial to fail and determine what needs to change.
In the book, “If You Want To Walk On Water, You’ve Got To Get Out Of The Boat” John Ortberg sites a study of pottery students. To one section of the class they said, “You have got to make this pot perfectly. You get one chance.”
To another side of the class they said, “You get to make a pot. You get to fail as many times as you want, but you don’t have to make a perfect pot. You just make a pot.”
One side had to make the perfect one, the other side got to fail as many times as it wanted and just make a pot. At the end of the process, the side that got to fail was the side that had the most perfect pots. We think we’ve got to do everything perfectly the first time in order to succeed. We don’t have to. Failure is so beneficial as long as you don’t allow it to overwhelm you.
So think back on some of your failures and vow, “I’m not going to do that again.” And gain confidence, let it boost you because you know what not to do. Without failure to learn from none of use would become better.
What are your abilities? What are your skills, things that you’ve been trained to do?
I talk to people all the time who say, “You know, I really hate my job. I’d like to quit, but I don’t know what I would do.” There are so many things that people can do, things they’ve been trained for.
What have you got within you that you can do that is beneficial to other people? Even beyond that, things that you enjoy doing? That will give you an instant boost of confidence because you can look at yourself and say, “You know, I really am good at __________.”
I look at this a little bit different than abilities because an ability is something we’re all going to have to be trained in. Whereas a talent comes naturally. I’m into talent because I like ease. The easier it is the more I’ll do it.
What are your talents? What has come naturally to you all your life? Has speaking been natural? Has drawing been natural? Being humorous? Being serious? Being contemplative? Those are talents that you’ve been given or that you were born with, or however you want to state it, I don’t care, but you can’t really take credit for, it’s just something that is within you.
Remember those in times when you feel insecure or you feel overwhelmed. Replay some of your talents and say, “I’ve got real talent. I know I can ________” It’s something that doesn’t come and go, it’s there all the time.
People who know me don’t have a hard time gifting me…
5 Guys Burgers and Fries
Pretty basic. Simple. Yet specific.
But when you don’t know someone, you gift generically. You go broad. Gift cards to places like Target. Because just about everyone can find something they like at a store like that one.
To engage your audience you have to know your audience. If you don’t, you…
Speak in generalities.
Hope to connect.
When you KNOW, then your people get the “it feels like he’s writing/speaking just to me.”
So how do we get there? How do you get to know someone?
1. You share “universal” stories.
2. You eat together (and you do not have to like the same food).
3. You hang out.
4. You tell secrets and even dark truths.
5. You speak a common language.
We’ll cover each of those in coming articles and podcasts.
For now – think about your audience. The people you write to. The people you record for. The people you present to. What are their lives like? What are they hoping you will do for them? What are their hopes, their dreams, their struggles?