Quiet Confidence: Everything Needed to be a Class Act in Marketing

(I know you, like most entrepreneurs, are a pretty busy person and don’t always have time to read things in-depth. For that reason, I’ve made it simple – if you just have time to skim this post today, read the bold parts and you’ll save 10 minutes!)

If you’re finding yourself shying away from boisterous marketing tactics, good for you.

You’re ahead of the curve.

Yes. That’s right. You’ve probably felt this way for some time: hesitant to toot your own horn. You find yourself hesitating to add low-value to the self-promotion parade of LinkedIn. You don’t feel like calling people in to your business – why is it that restaurants that “holla” at passers-by remind me more of carnies than of restaurants?

There’s a new shift in the marketing world I’ve been privileged to witness and help chauffeur in: quiet confidence.

Coming out of a period of great hubris, I’ve seen definitive signs that quiet confidence is winning where boisterous behavior cannot.

So what, exactly, does quiet confidence look like in marketing?

It’s the business owner who steadily puts one foot in front of the other, training their focus on doing good work. They get more good work to do.

It’s the start-up who develops the habits of consistently communicating well externally – to funders and fans – responding to comments and incorporating feedback.

It’s the seasoned business owner who never, ever forgets that a customer is a person and not a wallet. practice makes perfect concept

In each of these scenarios, quiet confidence develops from consistency, from practice. 

Be patient with yourself during your practice.

For me, it’s remembering that although things appear to be is a constant state of mess, that’s always what they appear. My work is in not judging the mess, but instead training my focus to find the places that have movement, and inspiration, and meaning. I reconnect with the people I love working with. I lose myself in service. I allow myself to forget the mess when I’m creating or helping a client on their path.

If you’d like to share your practice, feel free to share below or email me at Rebecca@Tri-LineMarketing.

Keep your head up and your heart open,
R

How to Market with Half-Baked Ideas

(I know you, like most entrepreneurs, are a pretty busy person and don’t always have time to read things in-depth. For that reason, I’ve made it simple – if you just have time to skim this post today, read the bold parts and you’ll save 10 minutes!)

Whether sparked by a timely news story, in conversation, by a competitor, or by the idea-manufacturer called a shower, I’m willing to bet you have insights multiple times a week: brilliant ideas that are simply clawing to get out.

The trouble is, the freedom to focus on executing an idea (like the original idea that launched your business) has been gobbled up by the running of your business. Thorough entrepreneurs underway in executing prior ideas no longer have the conditions to fully bake new ideas.

Newly-minted entrepreneurs have the luxury of trying on ideas while established entrepreneurs are notorious for carrying around an embarrassing glut of unfinished ideas. As perpetual and thick as London fog, these half-baked, brilliant, ideas hover in the backs of minds and on hard drives, clamoring for execution.

Every entrepreneur I’ve ever worked with – from heart surgeon to software developer to inventor – has revealed incredible ideas that are begging to be made real. They also are short on marketing.

Rather than be burdened by the steady stream of ideas, here is a proven way to take any idea and turn it into marketing.

Boil down the idea to it’s core

Getting comfortable with what’s at the “core” of your half-baked idea. For instance, the inventor who wants to expand her first product into an entire line of brilliantly designed new products can focus on the difference she wants to make in a stuffy, male-dominated industry.

Colorful Lightbulbs - Medium

At its core this one idea can launch a thousand important and valuable blog posts, social media shares, or a complete speaking platform, or even a book. Giving the idea a different outlet means that you are able to engage with the idea now, instead of letting it weigh you down, withering away on the vine.

Bonus Exercise

Share your ideas and then notice. Give your ideas permission to be communicated with people. Especially people who make things happen in their own world.

Often, entrepreneurs hold their ideas close to the vest, afraid it will be picked up or otherwise stolen. While that’s smart when dealing with large competitors who have an abundance of resources, chances are busy people are just like you: they don’t have enough time to properly execute their own ideas, let alone the ideas of others.

When you’re sharing, work on using the conversation around what my friend Liz Leminevski calls what “sticks”. Tell them your idea and listen to see what “sticks” for them.

Then What?

Then your goal is this: do NOT engage in what they are saying. Instead, practice listening to what feedback you’re receiving and noticing your reaction. Do you love what they’re saying? Do you feel unheard? Do you feel frustrated?

I guarantee that the way you are receiving feedback from people about your ideas is an accurate reflection on how you run your business and how you deal with marketing.

For instance, the over-amped and exhausted entrepreneur who feels like he’s always behind may at first find himself frustrated, irritated, or stifled at these conversations. Upon noticing his reactions over several weeks, he discovers that he feels drained and is expecting people to help him feel restored.

In reality, the his current business is already weighing him down. In the noticing, he gives himself the gift of at least being able to share and restore some joy in the early stages, getting ideas off the vine and into dialogue. In noticing, he will find himself making brilliant connections which can be used in his current marketing or communicating.

Instead of leaving brilliant, half-baked ideas to wither on the vine, get in the practice of using your ideas for marketing your business to get traction on both.

Why what’s in your Facebook feed might predict your brand.

(I know you, like most entrepreneurs, are a pretty busy person and don’t always have time to read things in-depth. For that reason, I’ve made it simple – if you just have time to skim this post today, read the bold parts and you’ll save 10 minutes!)

How would you describe your brand? You know, the thing your business means to people. Beyond what you DO for people, beyond what you SELL to people, your brand has quirks and a personality of its own.

Is it playful? Serious? Helpful? Tough?

If you think your brand is non-existent because you haven’t spent time consciously building it, think again…

Your brand is everywhere. Hello I Am Your Brand FB Like

Your brand is a culmination of every interaction you have with your customer. For those of you who haven’t had many interactions, or who haven’t thought that those interactions were building a brand, let’s take a look at a secret branding maelström: your Facebook feed.

Bear with me. Facebook can be a land of distraction and light-handed stalking, but more than likely you have a pretty tailored feed going on.

You’ve liked things, hidden things, posted stuff and Facebook has refined the process.

Figure out your brand on Facebook

Take a stroll down your feed looking for the similar themes.

Here’s a compilation of a 15 minute posting stream in my feed. Lots of joy. Lots of learning. Lots of not-taking-ourselves-too-seriously.

 

Using-Facebook-Feed-for-your-brand

That’s a pretty accurate description of the company I try to shepherd every day. Heck, now that I think of it, that’s a pretty accurate description of the life I try to lead.

Stumble over to your Facebook (btw we can totally be friends if you think it’s not weird) and do a brand-scan. What your feed say about your brand?

And you don’t have to tell the world about it… but you can tell me. I’d loooove to know.

As always, emails stay private and comments below let us let the discussion help someone else down their path. Your choice.

Keep up the brilliant work,
R

How blatantly WRONG advice helped me level-up my customers.

(I know you, like most entrepreneurs, are a pretty busy person and don’t always have time to read things in-depth. For that reason, I’ve made it simple – if you just have time to skim this post today, read the bold parts and you’ll save 10 minutes!)

I’m a reformed people pleaser. Anyone with me?

Little used to make me happier than making other people happy.

Raised to please

Being raised in retail can do that to a person. I’m not exaggerating about being raised in retail. My pack-and-play (which sometime in the last two decades was rebranded from its formerly name of a “play pen”), was just to the left of the register of my parents’ store.

I learned to hold full conversations by 16 months. And once I was able to help customers check out at the register, my people pleasing was in full swing.

They come to us with a need. We do our very best to solve the need. They leave. We repeat with someone else.

So in my own business, when it became time to start leveling up my clients, I was at a loss. I knew I was good at servicing the people in front of me. I could do it all day, every day. And yet now I wanted to do different work.

Could I do both?
Could this crazy idea of leveling-up my work actually work?

Making the leap ????????????

At first, I felt like a huge flake. I’d spent five years doing one thing (marketing implementation – actually implementing marketing tactics for my clients) and here I wanted to now build strategies instead?

What would they think? At the best they might think I was a flake, or at worst, a fraud. At any rate, they wouldn’t be pleased.

And what would my new clients think? I had no real demonstrated success at strategy, so how could I enter into that realm?

And after FOUR years of dealing with this internal struggle, I realized there one HUGE marketing no-no that could actually be brilliant business advice.

I had to stop thinking about my customers.

Let me explain why this huge WRONG piece of marketing advice is actually brilliant business advice for an in-transition business owner.

In marketing, it’s all about the customer. What they like, how they should feel, target market, persona, user experience, yada, yada, yada.

But for a people pleaser, you’ll never be able to grow your business the way you want to if you let your customer dictate your business.

Customers and clients are immensely helpful and integral to our success, but we cannot ask them to make the big, internal decisions in our businesses like what services we provide, who we work best with, and what we sell. That’s not their job.

If I left my business up to what the market (re: the people in front of me) wanted, I’d still be working on installing WordPress widgets and writing copy for flyers.

That work helped get me far, but it was up to me to take it farther and instead of listening to what the people in front of me wanted, I had to step away and get clear on the work I wanted to do.

So to spare you four years of questioning, ask yourself:

When you stop thinking about your customers (and your current situation), for just a moment, and think about you and what you want, what comes up?

If you’re not yet sure, that’s okay. But keep the question somewhere present.
For those of you who have already made the metal leap, this question may help you add in details.

Once we get clear on the work we want to be doing, we can go right back to thinking non-stop about our customers and clients. It’s the best piece of marketing advice you’ll ever get (just don’t confuse it with business advice!).

Let me know what answers you’re coming up with. As always, your notes will stay private if you email me, or you can share with the community below.

Hugs,
R

Want your marketing to feel potent? Answer this one question.

(I know you, like most entrepreneurs, are a pretty busy person and don’t always have time to read things in-depth. For that reason, I’ve made it simple – if you just have time to skim this post today, read the bold parts and you’ll save 10 minutes!)

If you’re not marketing with gusto, it can often be because you feel you have nothing to say that’s important enough to make it into the world. With all its hectic-ness, your still-small voice in your business may feel like it will be crowded out. You may think to yourself, “I know what will happen, no one will hear me. Why bother.”

Another type of entrepreneur senses that talking about their product or service might come across as sales-y, or downright icky and too self-promotional. So to avoid any negative repercussions… they do nothing.

Both entrepreneurs will see their competitors (who more than likely are no better than they) making traction, gaining momentum, followers, likes, and opportunities.

It can be a frustrating, and (if you don’t curtail it with action) vicious cycle.

Breaking the cycle

So before you trust your assumptions, before you discredit your voice, before you leave an amazing genie in the bottle, I want you to answer one question:

Why did you start your business? Tell them your story

It wasn’t from a selfish desire. You already know that. You know why you began. Let’s start there.  

But more than just think, begin telling your story.

Let’s return to the core of how you’re going to help change your corner of the world through your business. Potent marketing begins with the magic you already possess.
- R

p.s. And if you feel like sharing – and want to show the universe that you’re again marketing – share with me what compelled you to start your business. Email me. Or post it here. Or just share one word.

To (re)start your marketing, first stop these three pitfalls.

It’s not uncommon for business owners to balk at (re)starting their marketing. They’ve taken courses, watched webinars, masterminded, acquired a whole stash of pricey (and an even bigger stash of free) tools, and yet… there’s serious resistance to beginning again.

Feeling (un)stuck

Entrepreneurs often stay stuck in the cycle of never-starting because their go-to solution to spark their marketing is to turn to new tools.

And like a new diet, new tools usually reactivate the spark at first. But then, they lead to even more overwhelm (and frustration) because any new tool requires a strong foundation to work fully.

This reminds me of the business owner who isn’t getting leads. She blames it on not having the interest in doing what she’s already tried. Instead, she turns to Facebook ads. She finds out that there were three conversions for the fifty bucks she spent. And none of them bought a darn thing.

New tool. New promise. Same foundation. Same results.
Cue disappointment and frustration.

So let’s be clear: adding to the pile of to-do’s will not jump-start your marketing.

In addition, the daily business activities entrepreneurs take care of keep marketing from (re)starting strong. These tasks are un-ending: Answering emails. Serving clients. Filling orders. Fiddling with a report or PowerPoint presentation. Picking out computer ink.

So when you find yourself turning to the new tool, a time-management article, or cleaning up your inbox, consider why you’re avoiding re-starting your marketing. Start with your honest reasons and, without judging, as yourself this one question:

In the past, what’s worked to get you to love marketing again?

Is it writing? Is it speaking? Is it having a powerful conversation with someone who “gets it”?

Ready to start

Getting started

Instead of searching for a tool, or getting distracted by busy-work, start with what you already know works for you.

Write something.
Teach someone.
Have that conversation.

You already know yourself. You know what’s worked. Let’s start there. More than just think, begin. We must (must, must!) get you in motion.

And if you’re feeling like sharing – and want to show the universe that you’re once again marketing – share with me what has made you love marketing. Email me. Or post it here. Or just share one word.

Because in marketing, the way we do one thing is the way we do everything.

- Rebecca

p.s. Need help getting into that grove? Don’t have someone with whom to share that conversation? My (zero-cost) Liftoff Sessions may be just the conversation you’re ready to have.

 

Booth Sleuth: make the most of your presence at trade shows, expos, and fairs without losing your mind (or your shirt!)

Have a trade show malfunction or preparing for something in the near-future? Shoot your tradeshow questions to me at Rebecca@Tri-LineMarketing.com and we’ll answer you directly or in an upcoming blog post.

Participating in a trade show, expo, or festival/fair can take significant preparation. It’s like setting up a mini-storefront; often without the commerce.

Done wrong, these events can be feel like a frustrating exercise in tolerating the mundane. The opposite of the thriving marketing tactic they appeared to be when you signed up.

To avoid registration regret, and to get the most out of an event as a vendor, here are some seriously helpful hints.

Pack a Brilliant (+ Self-Contained) Differentiator

As early as age six I manned booths for the family business. By eleven, I was running them solo for eight hour stretches.

My siblings and I would go to the extra effort of bringing a bunny or chicken for the table. (The family business is a plant nursery, so animals are all around.) Tucked in an enclosure, the animals were instant draws at street fairs. I didn’t need to hustle or call people over (which is the worst, by the way. No one enjoys that kind of hustle.). Kids would drag their parents and while the kids were mesmerized, I’d engage with the parent. If the parent was mesmerized, I’d engage with the kid.

For us, small animals were a genuine differentiator–they really were our chickens and bunnies–and gave people a taste of chat they would see at the nursery. Bunnies and chickens were also self-contained: meaning, there was no handling, mess, crowding, or other traffic blocking.

Animals aren’t for everyone. You may find that displaying tools of your trade (whether antique or modern) or a time-lapse vignette displaying the results you offer will spark thoughtful conversation.

All Hail the Mighty Flow

The number one way that booth owners miss out is by not preparing for flow. When hosting a table at an event, there is one of you to many attendees. Ensure your booth has enough space to let people in and out. Deep booths are discouraging (to visitors it feels like they’re entering your personal space without permission). And plain tables discourage interest, because they look so… plain.

Width is usually the big constraint at these events. Use height to your advantage with standing/hanging signs or other pieces of interest either behind you or to the left or right sides of your table, set back from crowds. If your event is family-friendly, consider using trunks or low tables to display wares. A treasure chest at kid-height is always a big hit: and it provides a point of interaction for the children, while allowing you to talk with the adults.

Know whether you’ll have a corner booth, or a middle table. Prepare for one-direction or two direction traffic by tilting monitors or boards/displays to the direction of flow. If it’s first-come, first-choice, booth selection process, arrive early and scope out a place near the entrance (when eyeballs are fresh) and away from any blaring speakers.

Capture

With attendees flowing by, how do you capture their information so you’re able to follow up later? Respect, convenience and ease here is the highest priority – in that order.

First, give them a (truly) appealing reason to sign up. They don’t want to hear about special offers… people receive scores of junk emails. Instead, find out what from your usual customers what your big draw is. For one client, it was that they worked with start-ups. So her conversation would lead to an offer of a free consultation for startup businesses. Not everyone was in this group, and they were not suggested to sign up. More is not better, especially if the leads are unqualified (you’re just making more work for yourself later).

Another client I worked with had three check boxes for interests and she’d record their answers.

Have a (mini) VIP Lounge

This is my most-favorite tip, by far. Prepare for interactions with special VIPs. You never know when you’ll get into a promising discussion with a fantastic lead. I always recommend having cold bottles of water easily accessible to offer your VIP - an especially welcome gesture at drying, air-conditioned indoor events where bottles of water cost $6.

Ensure there is a bit of room to your right or left (to the side of the table, not behind it) where you can shepherd your VIP. You never want to put them behind your booth, but an out-of-flows-way place to your right or left allows you to tilt your body towards both your VIP and the passing crowd.

This VIP section also works great for the ongoing chatters who are tying you up when you really need to be interacting with the throngs passing by. Steer chatty charlie to a side and you’ll be able to balance conversation with the passers-by.

Like a Good Neighbor…

Bring extra bottles of water and some fruit or energy bars to warm up to your neighbors. Competitors or not, every solo booth attendant needs to use the facilities. Make a buddy who will watch your purse, bunny, or fliers.

Think your Paper Materials Through Fully

Don’t want your handout/leave-behind/flyer to end up in the garbage? Then for the love of all things holy, DON’T print it on white, letter-sized paper. EVERYONE does that. Pick a different color, a different size, a different shape… anything to stand out so IF an attendee wants to find your information, they can. An easy, low-cost differentiating concept you may want to try is to have your handout match the color of your company shirts. Add the same color accents to your booth for colored branding.

When all else fails, talk about the event

Folks come to events like these not because they’re thrilled to be pitched by people standing behind 8′ tables. They come for the education, networking, live music. Limit yourself to checking your phone once an hour, and instead read up on the day’s activities so you can point folks towards what they came to see. And if you have any events or big demo’s scheduled, make sure they’re planned for times outside of the big event. Remember, at Disneyland, the rides close for the parade. Work with the draw, not against.

Bonus Tip: A Late Follow-Up is Better than a Prompt One

I usually recommend that you wait ten days to follow up with leads. Why? Because poor attendees are being barraged by every other vendor at the event for at least a week following the event. You can even poke jest as the situation. One client I worked with said something along the lines of: “Have you stopped feeling popular after the seven thousand follow-up emails from everyone selling everything at ACME Expo? We’re here to tell you you’re still homecoming king/queen in our book!

Also, civil phone calls after this amount of time have passed can be a welcome point of contact, if it makes sense for your resources.

Have a trade show malfunction or preparing for something in the near-future? Shoot your tradeshow questions to Rebecca@Tri-LineMarketing.com and we’ll answer you directly or in an upcoming blog post.

Breaking a Bad Biz Habit (in front of a LIVE audience)

Find yourself sporting an obnoxious habit? The pesky (or even downright rude) mannerism in others that drives you crazy jumps into utter abhorrence when you catch yourself doing it.

Unbearable habits may be a talking mouth (full of food), callous commands to waitstaff, or the maniacal clicking of a pen.

When you’re a business owner, the line between personal and professional is thin and I’m arguing there’s no room for unbearable habits.

As entrepreneurs observing and owning a rude habit in ourselves carries even more weight because the “what ifs” appear magnified. Flaws mess with our livelihood: causing us to lose leads, lose contracts, lose referrals. All the lifeblood of your organization’s success.

So what’s an entrepreneur to do when she realizes she’s got an Unbearable Habit in full effect?

BrokenChain

I decided to break it in front of a brand-new audience. Live.

Let me explain.

Three days ago I admitted to myself I’ve developed the nasty habit of cutting people off in conversation.

My not-listening has been chronic. I was ready to fully face it.

Where I used to go to the place of self-scolding and berating, I’ve finally learned that it’s okay to be embarrassed, but the important thing is how it gets fixed.

Like the other habits I mentioned above, my habit of interrupting is a result of impatience. It’s me. Putting myself ahead of someone else in the conversation line. Because why? Because I’m special? Because I’m smart?

Gag.

And egad.

Egads not just because of the personal implications of losing the privilege of people opening up and conversing with me. Egads because in my profession, as a marketer, I fundamentally must listen to everything in order to hear what’s really being said, and what’s not being said.

How I Broke the Unbearable Habit

In an effort to shock myself into stopping the unbearable habit of interrupting, I walked into a workshop I was supposed to facilitate with one goal in mind: I was not allowed to assume I knew what was going to come out of the mouths of participants.

No premonition. No predicting. My work was to be honest with what I did know (and what I was hired to cover), to show up, to ask questions and then to shut my trap. Listen for whatever miracles or messes that might emerge.

Unattaching from the Unbearable

Going in and un-wrapping myself from managing the conversation was about as comfortable as sitting in a nearby raft watching the Titanic sink.

I walked into a tense meeting room. I could absolutely tell that a lot had been unearthed seconds before I walked in the room and was still being processed by attendees. The facilitator reiterated my suspicions (kudos to her!).

My first (nearly uncontrollable) urge was to say something, anything, to fix the room. To use humor. Of the self-depricating variety, to distract or gloss over something I had no real understanding of.

But rather than give in, I simply introduced myself and took a seat. All placid and calm face-like.

Under the table, I was digging my thumbnail into my index finger, commanding myself to simply sit quietly and listen for the spoken and the unspoken.

My brain screamed “FIX THIS! THEY BROUGHT YOU IN TO FIX THIS!”.

And as much as I wanted to obey the order to fix, I was actually brought in to talk about marketing. Not fix anything else.
Plus if I’d followed the order, I wouldn’t be holding to my goal of not-assuming.

As the workshop lurched forward, the attendees spoke with honesty about marketing. Describing it with words like “coercion”, “manipulation” and “feeling bad”.

Boy did I want to stop them. I wanted to tell them how their perception should be changed, and why, and manufacture results right then and there. The way that I done in a hundred other presentations.

Holding Steady

During the course of the evening all I did was listen. To the bad, the good, and the ugly. My mind was like an Etch-a-Sketch that started to predict where an attendee was heading with her line of talk. And like an Etch-a-Sketch I simply shook it to clear it and to again open up to whatever was said next.

As hard as it was to not predict or manage or smooth over the conversation, I realized that because I was more present, each participant stayed present.

They used one another and the group for management, following the cues of the person before them, and adding their own language about the project’s mission, vision, and what they wanted their end-goal to be.

They also did a tremendous job when their target market came in to the meeting for an initial round of market research.

While many of the questions to the target were leading, the participants were receptive when instead of cutting off or predicting, I let the questions float out and down to the table, reframing them slightly for the target market (more translation than interpretation).

By the end of the workshop, it was apparent that the concept of marketing was something the group were open to re-exploring, with renewed enthusiasm. The same end-goal I usually strive for. But this time it just happened.

Benefits of breaking the habit in front of an audience:

  • I didn’t have to force or manipulate the room into reaching that a-ha. They found it organically, and let their own honest truth and thoughts into the room. And I got to witness it.
  • I talked about 60% less last night than normal. And the same outcome came out. Even better because I didn’t manufacture it.
  • I didn’t have to think it through, didn’t have to manage, and didn’t have to force. And coming home after the workshop I had enough energy to write the first draft of this blog post – something very unusual for me.

Breaking the unbearable habit is going to take ongoing practice, but by practicing bold breaking it in a very public environment is something I know gave me a strong head-start.

What’d you think? Are there any habits you’re breaking? Do you have any creative solutions? I’d love to know.
-RTB

Attentive Space – what is it (and are you giving it to your customers)?

If you stand at your local craft store, as I was doing last Sunday, you’ll witness the pull-down, put-back of product — reflective of people thinking about starting projects. Pot holders kits. Holiday wreaths. Candy molds.

Here they are, in a store (a store, mind you, is by definition a physical place to get sales) evaluating something new. Evaluating whether the new thing will fit into their current (or future) reality. Several people walked away empty-handed.

Does the person behind the counter panic when someone walks away without making a purchase? Do they loathe themselves?

Nope. They ask the customer if they need help, but oftentimes the customer is “just looking” — they’re gathering information around whether (or not) they’re ready to take on something new. It takes a ton of effort to start something new.

If the customer isn’t ready, they let the customer leave. Thanking them to come in.

When and How to Give (Attentive) Space

As you look at your customers coming to you, give them what I call Attentive Space: the freedom to “just look” around and ponder. Customers will do this whether or not you give them the space. They’re going through a complex decision making process of whether they want to start a project – projects that may involve you or your offering.

People likely “just look” by reading your website, your blog, or by looking (or picking up products) at your store or booth at a trade-show or table at a craft fair. All the while, they’re evaluating whether or not you’ll fit into their current reality, and their desired reality.

When and How to Inquire

It’s normal to provide the opportunity for interaction via a contact page.

But if you really want to know if you can help, make sure that your contact page truly reflects the fact that you care (and will get back to them!). There’s little more ridiculous than a contact page that’s neglected and boring… when all of the other parts of a site are well developed. It’s like asking “How can we help?” and walking away, directly, before the customer can form a sentence.

Process, Interrupted

During this time, they’re also being interrupted. At my local craft store, interruptions looked like tugging children, buzzing phones, and the obnoxious overhead PA announcements.

Your customers have emails, text messages, and calls arriving. They may be waiting for their turn in line at the DMV and you’re actually a distraction in someone else’s transaction.

Bottom Line
Your customer has a process and even when they show up a the place of conversion, they may still not be ready to buy. No one runs around with their credit card above their head, ready to swipe. They’re gathering information and we want to give them the Attentive Space to learn. They’ll thank you for it.

Easily fill your next workshop

Do you ever go to events? To get out of your rut? To learn something new? To meet like-minded people who pep you up and help you spiral upward?

It’s pretty common for entrepreneurs to see the benefits above, and it doesn’t take much time until they want to host an event or workshop to generate new leads. Business owners I meet often have workshops or events on their list of things “I should be doing” for their business.

And absolutely, they can be great avenues for exposure.

If you’ve never hosted a workshop before, or if it’s been a while since your last one, the surprising fact you may not know is that it’s way easier to come up with content than it is to fill the room.

No matter how interesting your topic, you can expect to get about one percent of people who see your free event in a general listing service (in San Diego that’s the SD Reader, the Union Tribune, Craigslist) to sign-up. And 2/3 of those who sign up for a free event don’t show up.

That’s the effectiveness of cold advertisements: .0033% chance you’ll get someone in the door. Or let’s put that another way: you need to guarantee that 10k people to see your event for 33 people to show up. For a FREE event that you’re trying to advertise yourself.

Don’t give up on this tactic, instead find creative ways to have someone else help you fill the room.

Partner with Someone who has a Mouthpiece

Invest in a local organization and after committing to volunteering and getting to know their operation, ask if they’d be comfortable co-creating and co-promoting a topic for you to teach.

Partner with Someone with a Space

Additionally, if there’s a location where your target congregates, consider partnering with them. Learn how you can help educate the bodies they already attract, adding value to their mission, along with gaining experience.

In each of these potential opportunities, you’ll want to make that their audience is has enough similarities to your target market.

To go to a bunch of effort to partner with a local library may not provide you with the audience who is likeliest to buy, as there is a fine line between making compromises with an organization with a qualified audience and talking for free to people who have no need or ability to buy.

Approach these events with a willingness to start at the beginning – we are drawn to restaurant moguls who started out as the dishwasher, right?  So know that sometimes being at an intro event is exactly where we have to start.

The cool thing is that opportunities unfold quickly once our presentation skills are tested and ready and we’re out there in front of people.