Book Review “The Learner’s Journey – Storytelling as a Design Principle to Create Powerful Learning Experiences.” Written by Bastian Küntzel Review by Matthew Hill

“Identity is the story we tell ourselves”

Bastian Küntzel, Interculturalist, trainer and volunteer, has pushed himself to produce a practical book, that reflects its subject matter, is fit for purpose, and, keeps the audience engaged all the way to the end. Just like a good story.

Success – The book works. Imagine if this tome had failed to keep the reader turning the pages or left the trainer / coach / presenter more confused than when they started!

A journey to wisdom

Tone – The author adopts an intimate style with self-deprecation, revealing honesty and scattered references to Hollywood films that we all know – Harry Potter, Die Hard, Lord of the Rings, Iron Man, etc. We are drawn into this cosy fireside chat (the worked examples in the book’s appendix include old barns and wood burning stoves to add to this feeling), as we begin to join Bastian in his story and journey.

With references to the works of Daniel Kahneman, Joseph Campbell and Yuval Noah Harari, the author provides evidence that he has read widely, dived deep, and, is up to date with his sources and research. The authors are sited in footnotes at the bottom of each relevant page. A bibliography at the end would have been a nice addition.

He deconstructs their models to form his own philosophy around identity, learning, motivation and change, and, does so in a clear, rational and appealing manner.

The Hero’s Journey – We start with the 17 common elements of all stories as collected, analysed and explained by the great Joseph Campbell. With liberal reference to George Lucas who famously used Campbell’s schema to produce the most successful film franchise in the history of cinema – Star Wars, we understand why Bastian adapted the title of Campbell’s most famous work and named the book – The Learner’s Journey.

We then move to Dan Harmon’s updated and truncated model with 8 phases of the voyage.

1. Protagonist

2. Need

3. Go

4. Search

5. Find

6. Take

7. Return, &,

8. Change

The supposition is that this universal structure, found all over the world, in all cultures and throughout time, provides a robust template for training design.

To prove this point, the author spends the rest of the book matching Harmon’s stages to the student’s learning journey and suggests activities, criteria and pitfalls for each step along the way. This unique approach aims to help the classroom pupil to change, transfer and re-integrate into their workplace.

There are some fun moments – The holding of a “Fuck-up” night during an off-site multi-day training – A sort of improv, open mic session where story telling on the theme of how it all went wrong leads to bonding, positive vulnerability and the parking of egos for the duration of the course.

Criticism – Whilst the book is a light, informative and a well-intentioned effort – the model does not always fit the facts, the training purpose, or, the audience. The 3 examples at the end mostly fit but do not 100% conform to the stages of Harmon.

Audience – This book will appeal to those trainers, facilitators, teachers and coaches, that have enough experience to be able to put together a course for themselves – A beginner may be overwhelmed by having to adapt to the various stages and resign, disheartened.

Personally, I identified with the stages and found myself beginning to brainstorm activities and exercises that would fit the 8 parts and found plenty of ideas to insert into each stage.

Conclusion – This is a clean, simple and useful book that will help the passionate trainer, looking to improve or perfect their design craft to take their classroom delegate’s experience to the next level.

There are enough warnings and sorry tales contained within the pages too to act as a vicarious instruction manual for the newer designer.

All in all, The Learner’s Journey is a recommended read for the progressive and open-minded trainer who wishes to gain entry to the hearts and minds of their audience, move them emotionally, and, achieve a learning transformation that is worth reading about.

The book is accompanied by a resource centre – www.learners-journey.com and is available in Kindle and paper form.

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The 7 Benefits of Developing A Killer Keynote Speech. A presentation skills post by Matthew Hill

Or, how to construct a speech that will work for you, pay back handsomely, and, improve your life, and, the lives of others.

1. Know your subject to own your topic – For many mild-mannered experts, their very depth and breadth of knowledge can make them hesitate when answering an intelligent audience question. They scour their vast mental library, struggle to gather all the points together, and, construct a punchy response.

The outsider, failing to appreciate this process, can easily conclude that they are less an expert and more a ditherer – Tragic.

Do they understand you?

The discipline of preparing a speech involves writing down and presenting your key points is an ordered way. You, the keynote speaker, have the opportunity to simplify your “mind palace” and craft an appealing “starter”. You would not attempt to serve a vast main course before your guests are ready to enjoy it. Working on constructing a meaningful presentation will reacquaint you with your material, and so, allow you to chunk down complexity to bite-sized and understandable units of entertaining and informative communication. These will intrigue your audience, warm them up and prompt them to…ask for more.

Benefit – The ability to package vast quantities of data, research and experience into digestible blocks, frees the expert to enjoy audience encounters, with the boosted confidence of a great communicator – And, this makes them irresistible to their audience.

2. Clarify your thoughts – Most experts form their professional opinions and conclusions early in their careers. A problem then arises, if the field moves on. They slip behind current thought and look old fashioned.

Preparing and researching to construct a new and up-to-date keynote speech, offers the opportunity to make sure you are ahead of the curve, on top of latest developments, and are thus, preparing something that is bullet-proof to critics. There is nothing worse than an old soldier grinding out stories that are no longer relevant or peddling models that have been disproved and dismantled long ago. It is embarrassing and unnecessary.

Benefit – The structured thinking and “audit” of your work, that is required when forming a new core presentation, keeps you abreast of wider developments and will save you that red-faced moment, “Have you taken new theory X into account?”

With due diligence and thorough preparation, you will now answer, “Yes. And here is how theory X will impact you.”

3. Broadcast to the word – Every month I meet intellectual giants who are private heroes and heroines – They have the answers but they are not spreading their wisdom widely. A keynote speech is the perfect vehicle to build and expand a tribe of fans and followers, share your key messages with a wider group, and, generate momentum and action.

It is no use being silently right. To be consequent is better. And, to have followers adopt, act and start the revolution for you, is best.

Benefit – When structured correctly (See me for further details), a great keynote speech, gets your vital message out into the world, changes perceptions, alters behaviours and provokes improvement that saves lives.

Hello – I’m spreading a message

4. A starting point, helping you develop your collateral – Not many people would start building their “library” of Intellectual property and informational product assets with a keynote speech.

But, why not?

When you have a gem and take it on the road, the audience, their questions, and, the input they provide after the “show”, can spark 100 ideas for you to solidify in further posts and pieces. If you listen to your listeners, they will help you create a battery of products that can become a resource for everybody. Remember, publishing 100 new written posts is just another way of saying, “Here is my new book.”

Benefit – Your presentation becomes the catalyst for other IA – Informational Assets – Stand-alone products and properties that work to start making you famous and spreading your credo. They do this via social media, even when you are sleeping.

May I present…

5. Positioning yourself – Do you want to be (Daniel Priestley’s concept) A KPI – Key Person of Influence? The authority granted to keynote speakers is extraordinary. My speeches have generated income, invitations and infamy, and, in a short timeframe too.

In fact, a good presentation to an invited and relevant audience is the single quickest way to demonstrate your worth, qualify out the timewasters and qualify in interested parties. It generates the number of emotional and intellectual touches (see elsewhere) necessary to have decision makers rush the stage and beg you to do the same thing for their audience. The gravitas and marketing power of great public speaking cannot be understated.

Benefit – Some of the credibility of the event, the sponsors and the other speakers at a conference will rub off on you. If you are new to the game and work hard to become competent in your presentation skills (See elsewhere on the site), you will become equal in status to the best people in your field. And that is exciting.

6. Spread the word – We have covered some of the ways that message multiplication happens. Audience members ask you for a repeat performance. Conversations lead to further written and published posts. And, there are other ways to reach more people too. The obvious one is video.

When you have reached a competent level in your presentation skills, you will be ready to record and edit your efforts, and, put them in a “show reel” to generate more speeches, or, start a YouTube channel to showcase your message.

Benefit – When you capture your keynote speech in digital form, you can insert highlights and clips in your posts, newsletters or E Mails, to wow your growing crowd of followers. This will help you win the competition against all the noise and distraction out there, and, will vastly expand your reach and appeal.

7. Maximise your day job – There is nothing as attractive as a great public speaker. You will rarely get more attention than when saying something pertinent to your audience. You will experience a peak of appreciation when taking in the long and loud standing ovation generated by your amazing keynote speech. A memory that will not fade.

Benefit – If you want to feel alive, make a difference and generate more excitement in your life – You know what you have to do next…

Conclusion – The process of preparing your keynote speech can be as profound for you as that speech is impactful for your audience.

Building your speech presents you with the opportunity to refine your message, refresh your research and to craft your pitch to be optimally appealing and moving to your audience. Because, in the end, it is all about your audience.

Great speeches are a time-effective way to interrupt for attention, demonstrate your depth and value, and, move a wider audience. Your tribe will get to know you, like you, trust you, and, reach out to get in contact. Speaking in public leads to invitations, sales, friendships, and, the amplification of important messages, that make a difference in the world. It is only in this way that anything changes.

Action Time – How do you feel now? Are you ready to do the work and put your own keynote speech together? Do give me a call and tell me what topic you are passionate about. I would love to hear from you.

And, do you want the stars in your team to structure their thoughts and knowledge to help your company expand and reap the financial rewards of their expertise via great public speaking?

***Either way – Do take action and get in touch today***

About the Author – Matthew Hill is an author, keynote speaker and presentation skills facilitator. He works with corporate executives to uncover their hidden presentation talents, and, develop their speaking and writing competence, to make them maximally effective in converting cold but qualified audience members into followers, raving fans and customers.

He can be contacted on 07540 65 9995. International +44 7540 65 9995.

Gary Thomas of International HR Offers 2 Freelearning Webinars In July #unconsciousbias #marketing

To give you the opportunity to get to know some of our topics and to give you an impression of how we work, Gary offers regular free webinars on contemporary topics. All you need to participate in our freelearning webinars is a computer with internet access. The link to register is at the bottom of this post.

The freelearning webinars are limited to a maximum of 14 participants and registration is on a first come first served basis.

Unconscious Bias – 23rd July 2019, 9AM German time / 8AM UK.

In this interactive free-learning webinar you will learn how implicit, unconscious bias influences your daily business. You will discover how your brain often tends to make wrong decisions.

Marketing for Trainers – 23rd July 2019, 11AM German time, 10 AM UK.

Many freelance trainers rely heavily on word-of-mouth without focusing on their own market position. In this webinar we will examine the components of a practical marketing and sales concept.

Action – Simply fill in the contact / Kontact form’ https://www.international-hr.de/en/kontakt/

Most expats don’t think they will stay so long in Switzerland

The Local’s Naomi Tsvirko interviews an expert Heike Reinhart – Internationalgermanteacher

https://internationalgermanteacher.wordpress.com/2019/05/19/most-people-dont-think-they-stay-so-long-on-switzerland/

Many language students often feel overwhelmed when learning a new language – What to do when you feel like giving up on learning German in Switzerland?

It’s no secret that learning High German in Switzerland can be difficult, but what do you do when you hit a learning wall? When you feel frustrated that the language you are learning is not even what the locals regularly speak? How do you persevere with your language learning goals?

When I first moved to Switzerland I was so excited to learn a new language because I wanted to be part of the community. As a resident of Basel Stadt, it seemed like even the Canton was keen on me learning German as I was provided with six weeks of free High German lessons.

After a few weeks of intensive lessons at A1 level, I was frustrated with the ‘full immersion’ process (you’re only allowed to speak German in class), but I was speaking basic German in a short time and I was determined to keep learning. Although my accent was terrible and the German sentence structure still confused me, I was eager to keep learning after my six-week course ended. I continued learning German on my own accord – but then things got really tough.

Learning in Basel

The teacher introduced me to difficult German grammar known as ‘German declensions’, so I decided to stop going to intensive lessons. Instead, I opted for two lessons a week and a year later after moving to Basel I am halfway through the A2 level course and am feeling very discouraged.After speaking with other international residents and my former classmates, I learned the obstacles I faced were all too common – especially for those affected by Switzerland’s new language requirements for citizenship.

Common obstacles to learning German in Switzerland:

1.    The local Swiss community speaks Swiss German, a totally different dialect to High German which makes it difficult to practice in day to day life

2.    Most people in Switzerland speak English so it’s easier to explain things in English (when foreigners attempt High German, locals often respond in English) 

3.    As with most languages, German is not easy to learn as an adult

According to international German language teacher Heike Reinhart, many of her students have expressed the same frustrations but these ‘obstacles’ should be dismissed as limiting beliefs.  “Many foreigners often give up on learning a new language in Switzerland because they believe they will return to their home country, but 70 per cent of people actually reside in Switzerland for longer than they intended. That’s why it’s important to work out your desired language outcome and not give up,” says Reinhart.

As an expert who has worked with German language beginners, she says to overcome learning stumbling blocks, language learners must realise that the process is similar to buying something new.  

Contact: Heike Reinhart /Instagram @international_german_teacher.

“You pay a lot of money for your German classes and in a sense, the journey is similar to that of buying a waffle maker. When you first buy the waffle maker you want to use all the time, so it’s exciting. But then your enthusiasm fades and slowly there are no waffles and then you stop using the waffle maker, this is the same when learning German,” explains Reinhart.  

Reinhart says for many learners the curriculum is too difficult and not aligned with the specific needs of a student: “Often what you need is not what you learn and textbooks can be grammar based and irrelevant to your needs.”

First published in the local, https://www.thelocal.ch/20190517/what-to-do-when-you-feel-like-giving-up-on-learning-german-in-switzerland

Matthew’s Going for Growth Bootcamp Day in Basel, Switzerland – Saturday 6th April 2019 – With Early Bird Deal

For Independent Trainers Who Wish To Experience Faster Growth And Enjoy Higher & Sustainable Income

Matthew's Going for Growth Bootcamp, Basel, 6th April 2019

Matthew’s Going for Growth Bootcamp, Basel, 6th April 2019

What is the Going For Growth Bootcamp?

We intend to deliver an intense one day Bootcamp group training / learning day in Basel on 6th April 2019. And, to make the day effective, we will also provide you with supporting materials and guidance before you arrive, in the form of simple, remote pre-work. You can do as much or as little preparation as you like before you attend the day.

On the day, we will look at your professional identity and brand, illustrate how informational products and social media can help to build your tribe / crowd / database, and, see how your philosophy can be expressed in the best way through your communication, to get your message out and attract the best people to your offering.

Our support package includes short handbooks, coaching, an action plan and a library of materials including helpful films. You can book just the day or buy the package and the day. The choice is yours. Are you an experienced professional, possibly with no published informational assets yet, and, not quite enough clients? The Basel Bootcamp day will teach you how to become a more confident, independent solopreneur / entrepreneur – Owning your own bundle of knowledge based assets, a functioning and proven marketing / sales process, and, thus benefiting from a healthy supply of warm incoming business enquires supporting the growth of your profitable independent business.

The Going for Growth Bundle and Bootcamp will enable you to experience a good quality of life – QOL, in which you feel time-rich, financially well rewarded for the work you do, whilst being independent, happy and fully expressed in your professional life.

Is this you?

Are you an independent solopreneur trainer or coach, a passionate service or product provider, keen to expand your businesses (and, a speaker of English!)

When should you come to the Bootcamp?

You have already started your business, found your first customers and delivered your first product / services. And you have now accumulating enough work experience to be effective independently and wish to accelerate your rate of growth. And, you are hungry to get “start to finish” help that will ensure that you do the right things, avoid the wrong things and have assistance and support, as you move from “newbie” to establishing yourself and your business in your chosen field.

What is the benefit for you?

As far as we are aware, this is the ONLY complete system on the market that has a beginning, a middle, and, an end, allowing the individual to actually build all that they need to generate a warm, current and qualified pipeline of incoming business enquiries.

We think it is the ONLY template available that allows the independent operator to construct a viable business in 60 action days, meaning that you can plan when you will work on building your informational assets, your marketing and selling structures and you can confidently predict your own end-date for this building process.

And, it is the ONLY offer that comes with live access to experts when required. This is not a “remote guru” programme where the main expert is separated from the learners.

Matthew's Going for Growth Bootcamp, Basel, 6th April 2019

8 presents for you in 1 great bundle

Going for Growth Bundle Offering – The Offer Support Materials List;

  1. Going for Growth in 2019 – A short 13 Part Handbook including 130 guiding coaching questions
  2. Matthew’s 5M Marketing Success Model – The Business Growth Accelerator Elements
  3. What’s Stopping You? Audit – A resource to get the independent business owner beyond their Self Limiting Beliefs – SLBs
  4. Marketing Effectiveness AuditA quick test to see what has already been created.
  5. 60-Day Business Build Action “Postcards”The Template for building a business from nothing to generating warm incoming enquiries
  6. Coaching Support – A number of live 45 to 70 minute coaching sessions helping independents to get passed their issues, blockers and problems
  7. Mastermind Group Clinics – A Remote deep dive into specific topics that the group are struggling with
  8. Basel Bootcamp, Saturday, 6th April 2019 – The Bootcamp experience that brings great people together, supported by The Going for Growth Bundle

TAKE ACTION – Contact Matthew if you are interested via matthew.hill@hillnetworks.com today

More Details on the 8 Parts

  1. Going for Growth in 2019 – Short 13 Part Handbook with 130 coaching questions

Outlining the concepts of the 13-Step Blueprint that EVERY successful business must follow, build and maintain to survive, grow and make money. This book will help you get your head in the game and show the scope of the work that is required. It contains gentle and reflective coaching questions at the end of each of the 13 parts to help you expand awareness of what your business requires before you start your big build.

2. Matthew’s 5M Marketing Model – Business Growth Accelerator

MP4 Film expanding on the 5MsMeet – Your identity pitch, Message – Your published book stating your credo, essence and offer – Make – The importance of creating assets – products that transfer value – Market – A marketing sequence that generates warm enquiries for you – Mastermind Group – Joint Venturing and collaborating with complementary operators in a related field. This film aims to educate and inform you about what is required in the next phase. Punchy and to the point, you will learn more about the 5 Ms and what each element can do for you to help you create the business you want.

3. What’s Stopping You? Audit

This book represents an invaluable tool to help you complete your journey. From identifying the thoughts that are blocking you to overcoming and getting over your doubts and fears, to leap forward toward action, product creation, funnel design and profitable independence. Some say that this is the most freeing part of the whole programme.

4. Marketing Effectiveness Audit

Your Marketing Asset Checklist

You will be surprised at how much of the list you have already started, created or have “somewhere”. You can build upon this and finish quickly once you understand the whole picture, what your assets do and what is required to complete your business build.

5. 60-Day Business Build Action “Postcards”

The aim here is to guide you through your build in the LEAST POSSIBLE TIME AND NUMBER OF STEPS

We set you up ready to;

  1. a) Plan your next months with a paper calendar placed somewhere visible, such as on your fridge, with your 60 highlighted action days.
  2. b) Schedule your power postcard workdays on your fridge calendar. One a day, 3 a week or whatever will fit with your work schedule, family life, travel plans, etc.
  3. c) Get your partner and child to bully you into keeping discipline, preparing to do the work and staying on track to complete your active build to completion 60 Day Business Build Calendar on your fridge

Where does this fit in? You will have expanded your marketing mind in the first section (Going for Growth etc.) and will be broadly aware of what you need to do, who you are, etc. The 60 – Day Business Build is the time to commit and hold firm to a practical and powerful SCHEDULE, working in a focused and professional way to build up your marketing and informational assets.

Every week you will receive a specific set of task instructions that will take you from, “I don’t have a clear idea of what to do” to, “Wow, I have just built a business in just over two months.”

6. Coaching Support

You will probably run into some blockers or technical issues around Sequencing, Identity & Brand, Offering or Target Audience. Most people do.

At this critical phase, you will receive the support you need with 2 45 to 70 minute coaching calls to move you passed any blockages, obstructions or issues. Just schedule a Gotomeeting session and an expert will help you through.

7. Mastermind Group Clinics

The topics to be discussed will by chosen by YOU – The Mastermind Group Members – 3 to 7 people in each cohort.

These interactive, educational deep dives aim to explore specific subject areas in greater detail, lay out the actions required with clarity and pragmatic simplicity to get the group beyond any mental or technical issues that they are experiencing.

Come to sunny Basel

Come to sunny Basel, 6th April 2019

8. Basel Bootcamp Event

Matthew’s Going for Growth Business Bootcamp, Saturday, 6th April 2019, An intensive session (IN ENGLISH) to help you work on, complete and accelerate your build, start your marketing sequence and fill in any gaps that you have.

We will make products, hone your brand and take you from 35 – 70% of the way there to almost all of the way there (And, ALL the way there, if you manage to complete all your homework!). BTW – In this way, the get together generates the most productive of outcomes for you.

Money – Back Guarantee

If you join the programme, complete the course work, and, after 9 months, have not made back at least twice the income that you paid for the programme in customer revenues, then, Matthew will be return to you, what you paid for the bundle and bootcamp. So, there is no financial risk.

Cost – We provide two options? –

A, Just the Basel Bootcamp Day – Price – £395.00 Or,

B, The 8 Element Going from Growth Bundle AND Bootcamp, including the event, coaching support, Bundle Materials and your full money-back guarantee – £895.00

Super Early Bird Offer – If you book TODAY, we offer you this one-time special price of £295 for, just the Bootcamp day, (or), £495.00 for the whole programme and 8 part package Please. Note; to qualify for this discount, you must book and complete payment of the PayPal invoice we will send you, by the 5th March 2019.

Conclusion

We think we have thought of everything that the new and growing business owner needs to know to successfully build up their independent training business to completion and to generate a valuable in-flow of warm new customer enquires.

Action

If you wish to have a personal one-to-one conversation with Matthew to discuss whether this is the right course for you, simply E Mail to matthew.hill@hillnetworks.com to set up a brief call or call +44 7540 65 9995 and leave your details.

Matthew's Going for Growth Bootcamp, Basel, 6th April 2019

Matthew’s Going for Growth Bootcamp, Basel, 6th April 2019

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Is OLD Marketing Holding Back Your Growth? Here Are The Top 10 Out Of Date Marketing Mistakes Many Are Making Today? (Along With How Your Marketing Efforts Can Easily Become Effective Again?)

How Many Of The 10 OLD Marketing Crimes Are You Guilty Of?

With the rampaging march of technology, social media and ever diminishing audience attention spans, it pays now, more than at anytime in the last 20 years, to keep on top of your marketing output. We are all competing with more suppliers over a greater area and need to stay ahead of the, “Not them again” fatigue that causes poverty through customer irritation.

In no particular order here are the TOP 10 MARKETING CRIMES – Do keep score of how many old habits you are guilty of as you read and check your results at the end. Be honest now. Good luck…

Hill Networks Marketing

1) A Newsletter carved in stone. You stressed and worried about the first one you launched to 50 people all those years ago and were so proud at receiving your first pleasant response. Do you remember? You may have even received an order for business from your first few issues! Wow.

But

Several years later, you have fallen into a routine. You haven’t updated your format. And, the content is all about you. The text is repetitive and tired and you are going around the block for the umpteenth time giving out educational advice that, in your heart of hearts, you know most people either already know, are not interested in, or, think is slightly quaint and, itself, out-dated.

Action – Start again. Ask, “Who will be my paying customers over the next 2-3 years?” Where are they? What do they read / listen to / watch? What channel works for them? And, where is the GAP today in their knowledge or wisdom that I can fill with insights and service?

(More on this in a moment)

2) The Repeating Repeating event. Again, do you remember feeling like you had just discovered penicillin when you held your first Breakfast Briefing, Monthly Mixer or Multi-Speaker Do? And, good for you. You put your all into inviting senior decision making people to a high value demonstration of your wisdom and originality and it was probably lapped up by your audience and generated a healthy return on your invested time and money.

But

Times have moved on. Now everyone seems time scarce, attention scare and oh, so cynical. Your prospects now send juniors who spend too much time looking at their phone. Your venue costs have gone up and your returns have all but disappeared. And the quality of speaker you can attract to help you out has diminished too.

Action – Once more – Is it time to think again? – Do you need a physical event? If so, what about partnering with a complimentary service or product provider and splitting the cost whilst enlarging your potential base? Who could dove-tail with you and bring a wider and fresh audience? As customers become more scattered around the globe, is a remote version of this event a good idea – A webinar or filmed demonstration? It is definitely time to change your whole approach?

3) Your Dusty Flat Website – It was so exciting when you updated your old 5 page brochure site to include rotating pictures, a call me back button, or even added a news feed. Wow – Nosebleed territory.

Hill Networks Marketing

But

Your returns on the website peaked many moons ago and people are finding you through other means now. As you read through your site today, you realise it all about you you you. It is overly factual and your copy fails to engage the customer or prospect. It does not interrupt them and take them on a journey. There is no story, no insight and no call to action that is compelling enough for them to – CALL YOU. And, you have a list of teaser happenings to lure new customers in that makes two assumptions –– That you have enough traffic to make this work for you, and, that they don’t mind the thin content you are providing as bait.

Action – Let us get real. Unless you are going to spend real bucks on getting something web-tastic with a shopping cart, then we are probably wasting our time here putting all our eggs in the website basket. Whilst websites are no longer number one, why not think about an intelligent strategy to proceed with. There are cheaper and more flexible versions of websites via WordPress that incorporate blogs, measure responses and allow for far more interactivity. And ones that allow opt ins for joining your list that can be connected to your newsletter via an autosponder sequence to take new joiners on a relevant and escalating journey of engagement, and, with a proportion of them, will lead to an initial sale – an automated journey that does not require human intervention and the salary that accompanies it.

4) Words Words Words – Not SuperCopy – It still amazes me that plenty of otherwise bright company executives (over performing in their core areas of expertise), continue to operate with a complete blind spot to accepting that persuasive and well written copy actually generates action, a response and represents a return on time and the marketing money you spend! Instead we see 1000s of words about me me me, facts, features and detail that bore readers, turn away needy customers and fail to promote the company’s best assets – Their product / service, the quality of your interaction, or, your unique selling advantage.

So

The answers are out there enabling you to learn about key influencing copy devices that will move your observer prospects up to an energy level where they take action; that will shift those passive but needy customers to reach out and get in touch with you. And, with automated systems, they will do more than half of this whist you are getting on with delivery.

Action – If you can’t wait until number 10) then do call me (Matthew Hill 07540 65 9995) with your details and we can talk through the immediate actions you would be wise to contemplate, decide to do and get started on.

5) Non Selling Sales People – When you employed that merry band of brothers and sisters in your sales department, you did not realise just how sales-phobic they would become and how quickly they would chose to grow cosy and cosseted in that comfortable office you provide, making nice warm calls to already warm connections whilst failing to break new ground and look for new players on the block.

Fotolia_203276020_XS.jpg

And

Given a chance to change, you find that they defend their cosy “keeping in touch” non-selling version of communication… to the death, and, resist your pleas for them to step up their game and do something challenging and relevant.

Action – Is it time to challenge your whole sales and marketing process and simplifying it down to something that works?!?! Your new successful process will emerge as you study the sales decision making process of your median customer? Where do they begin, enquire, question? And, What do they need? What assurances work? What demonstration and proofs convert? What words work? And, What is the quickest or optimum route from “Don’t know you” to “Know you, like you, trust you and let’s buy from you on multiple occasions”? When would now be an excellent time to start asking these questions?

6) E Mailed to sleep – Whilst E Mail has been around for 25 years, it’s abuse and massive overuse has lead to GDPR, spam screening and a vast decrease in the power of any single E Mail.

And

The average marketing executive still thinks they know how to write a compelling and hip message that will work. OMG.

ActionIf there is one thing to commit to doing in the next 12 months, make it be this – Find out how to write compelling, sincere and action inducing E Mails that work. Please, pretty please and please with a cherry on the top do this one thing.

7) Brochures – There was a time when having your own bespoke, designed and professionally printed brochure was a sign of status and kudos. With studio package shots and agency copy, they were a thing of beauty and value.

But

Now everything moves quickly, is on-line and uses realistic looking E mock ups of printed books and boxes, making your product look even better than it does in real life. So, what is the point of a brochure? And how much does it cost to print and send out one copy? And, does anyone read them anymore?

Action – Break that habit. Add up the real cost and ask yourself if it is the way to go? Dan Kennedy, the undisputed king of marketing, would advice moving that budget into flyers, newsletters and offers. And, who is to say he is wrong?

8) Trade fairs – Do you remember 2 or 3 recessions ago, how much fun trade fairs were? We had gift bags that contained things we wanted! Alcohol flowed freely. There were gimmicks and gadgets and, the pace of change in some industries was so fast you HAD to be there, to get the education and new contacts you needed, just to keep up.

Matthew Hill culture author leadership

But

All of that has gone. The budgets are slashed, the attendees are now juniors and not decision makers, the speeches are pat and less inspiring, and, the gifts are not worth collecting.

Action – Let’s get back some of the magic of the olden days with a bit of pizzazz, some energy and humour and a speech that has a CTA – Call to Action at the end of it. And, let us make it super-professional. Save money by designing your communication pathway to qualify out the time wasters and tire kickers. And, actively qualify in your real prospects, engage with them, warm them up, and, follow up proactively, professionally and with purpose. Have them remember that first meeting with you at the trade fair as the start of something exciting and exceptional.

9) Social Media

Do you remember your first brave steps on Facebook and LinkedIn? And do you remember your first successes? Oh, treasured memories.

But

Oh dear – If there were just one Crime Sheet area that had to be pointed out, this would be it. – A litany of FB and LI groups with 72 members. Me Me Me posts that singularly fail to connect with your customers. Twitter accounts with 17 followers. I could go on…

Action – Stop your awkward half-hearted presence campaigns on social media now before you embarrass yourself. And, start the whole thing again. Curate meaningful content, test your text, write from the perspective of the reader and not your company, and, don’t just scatter your seed to the wind – Ask for opt ins and exchange a small meaningful product for your target’s contact details and permission to communicate with them.

10) Database – My regular readers will now be mouthing my following sentence – “If you don’t have a database, you don’t have a business”. And by database, today, we do not mean a list typed in from that dusty collection of business cards kept in each marketing employee’s desk. And, we don’t mean the list you call a database that the Trade Fair gave you – That is a spam list of people who actively don’t know you and are becoming increasingly irritated at getting random offers and interruptions just because they visited the Excel centre once and came away a some lousy bag full of pointless brochures and low quality gifts.

And,

All data was not created equal – The undifferentiated pile of contacts!!! – Are they hot, warm or cold? How old are they? Are they prospects, suspects, peers or competitors? What contact have you had with them? Do you have permission to contact them? Have you qualified them IN or OUT? – NOBODY KNOWS.

Action – Start again – Use your intelligence to start a completely new database with a big set of doors on it. Only let in warms and hots. Qualify and examine each dataset on the way in. Have one plan for the warms, and a more energetic one for the hots. Automate the generation of new enquiries and spend some time working with each one to get those all-important first encounter touch points right.

Go back and ask, “Who do you best serve?” Who will benefit most from your wisdom and experience? And, build a funnel to contact and develop all warms and hots in an intelligent, legal and optimally effective way.

Do forward this post please to someone who urgently needs to get with the programme.

Add up your score – How did you do? Any sweaty moments? (Have you been totally honest?) – Where are you falling short or finding yourself stuck in bad old habits and the past? Please now read on about what to do next, based on your results…

Score – So, what is your Crime Sheet number?

***3 or Less – You are in the modern era. You are keeping yourself abreast of modern methods, investing in knowledge and marketing. You are on the ball – We know you will do well this year and next. Good for you.

***4 – 7 – OMG – Call this emergency hot line now! – Matthew Hill 07540 65 9995 – You are at the edge of the cliff and it could crumble under your feet sooner than you think. Growth is by no means assured for this year or next. Now is the time to take action.

***8 – 10 – Don’t worry – Whilst you are beyond help, you will have hopefully bagged enough cash when your old marketing delivered cash and peaked in a bygone era and you do not need to be competitive in the modern era. We wish you well in your hobby company and upcoming retirement.

About the Author

Matthew Hill helps organisations and solopreneurs spruce up their marketing efforts to quickly, cleanly and effectively leap into short sequence, copy driven and ethical marketing endeavours that seek out active customers, interrupt prospects respectfully and exchange value-for-access to allow for a speedy and dignified accent from “Who the hell are you?” to “Ah, great to hear from you. I am looking forward to learn more about how you will be helping me this year”

Matthew has worked with some of the largest companies in the world and now concentrates on small and medium sized training services businesses that wish to turn around their “survival” mode of existence and start to grow top line income, the quality of their target customers, and, begin to create super-fan clients that are happy to rave about you, advocate for you and help you become positively busy, happy and successful.

For a f’ree conversation with zero obligation, do take action now and call me – Leave your details with Matthew Hill on 07540 65 9995. Thanks and speak to you soon.

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Collaboration Post 3 – 15 Collaborative Behaviours To Change Your Group’s Outcomes

Collaborate or Die

We are meant to play nicely, work as a team and respect each other. In Part 1, we expanded on 10 reasons why this often fails to happen.

In this Part 3, we now look at the key desirable behaviours that, when practiced mindfully and regularly, WILL produce a team breakthrough, get the group to the goal and leave everyone alive, and, at least on speaking terms at the end.

As you move through the behaviours, ask yourself, “Do I do this? “Can I start doing this?” And, “Will I step up and do this regularly?”

15 Strong Suggestions

  1. Interrupt your dark defensive moments and fill them with light.

Experienced in so many ways as sarcasm, denial, anger, avoidance and justification, defensiveness – This is the burden suffered by most teams attempting to become more collaborative and effective.

Action

Borrowed from anger management training courses, the best method is to spot the symptoms of early on-set defensiveness and divert the behaviour, diminish it or reverse it. If you are beginning to feel your blood boil, take a walk to the balcony, go smell the flowers and take your imagination to a place of cool, calm tranquillity to “reset” your body’s distracting chemicals.

Young attractive business people - the elite business team

  1. Coaching your colleagues through any resistance.

The majority of people will not instantly get behind a fresh idea or new change. They will choose to wait it out, criticise it, or, mount an attack.

Action

Here, a coaching approach can be effective as you focus inside your colleague’s head to access both their imagination and logic circuits to help them do the work of processing change and getting on board for themselves. Questions that help to create different and contrasting futures are good – “What if we carry on as we are? What are the risks of this?” “If we had 10 times the resources available, what should we do next?” “If you were the team leader now, what course of action would you recommend?” Etc.

  1. Actively listening to your concerned colleague.

The problem with teams is that the confident, privileged and beautiful get most of the airtime. And this dynamic is actually reinforced by everybody in the team – even the oppressed, the shy, or, the outsiders. The reflectors, quiet geniuses and shy analysts are not prone to speak up, do not feel they have permission to speak and, thus, do not take up their share of the microphone.

Action

Related to coaching but intruding less, listening is about getting the whole story out of the coachee / colleague. We can employ minimal encouragement – “That is important, please tell us more” “You were saying…” “And, what does this mean for our team?” Quieter members of the team may be more sensitive. If you overdo it they will clam up – Maintain a positive, still attention with minimal non-verbal, para-verbal and verbal prompts. This will be good for evening out the group’s share of voice, listening to all and including their ideas and concerns as well as counting the vote of everybody to form an inclusive group dynamic that will be effective in taking a diverse group all the way to a stretched goal.

  1. Building muscular resilience.

We can see resilience as the ability to bounce back from pressure, stress or becoming knocked off balance, AND, still being about to function effectively. In the politics of the team, possessing greater resilience can take people all the way to the top. And a lack of resilience will see someone being relegated to the oppressed group, or demoted to basic executive duties. They are sent to eat at the children’s table.

Action

Resilience comes in 4 flavours – Physical, emotional, mental and spiritual. Teams or individuals can be encouraged to participate in simple and repeated exercises to stretch and build their resilience muscles. Physical – Regular exercise, monitoring diet and alcohol consumption. Emotional – Developing the habit of experiencing positive emotions through appreciation, gratitude and laughter. Mental – Simple maths exercises. Spiritual – Practicing your faith or thinking pure thoughts.

  1. Learning to resolve difference intelligently.

It is easy to sulk, withdraw and dismiss a different opinion from your own. This actually represents a form of defensiveness and will not allow a team to become optimally collaborative.

Action

Imagine learning to reconcile difference to a level where, “I am OK & You’re OK”, becomes the default setting for the group. (We discuss a positive exception to this later).

What difference would this make to the atmosphere and energy in your team? The simplest method when two parties are on opposite sides of an argument or behaviour style (e.g. direct communicators v indirect communicators), is to reconcile the difference. We ask first, what is the benefit and contribution of each style, acknowledging that a diversity of approaches is actually NECESSARY for success. We then work on how we can accommodate those two benefits in team communications or by putting them into the project plan. E.g. direct people tell the unvarnished truth, which can be invaluable when a crisis is looming. Diplomatic indirect people keep the channels of communication open, maintain higher levels of trust and ensure the probability of long-term communication. It is easy to see that both styles are required. The task then is to design simple protocols that allow both styles to operate with respect and appreciation within the team.

Colorful 3D rendering. Abstract shape composition, geometric structure block. Wallpaper for graphic design.

  1. Two heads are better than one when solving a problem.

If you are a hammer, your default mode is to bash things on the head. Not great when changing the batteries in your watch. Again a diversity of approaches will be more effective.

Action

Practicing problem solving can be a bonding process that deepens the respect and positive emotions of all team members. Weekly intellectual challenges involving abstract problems can be a fun team building activity that is secretly growing the team’s capacity to handle complex issue, resolve involved messes, and, operate smoothly and efficiently when a live business problem comes along.

  1. Trust underpins it all.

Without trust we have defensiveness, solo silos, and Machiavellian plots.

Action

There are 3 components to trust – Ability, Benevolence and Integrity. Each must be in play to ensure positive vulnerability and promote trust in a high functioning collaborative team. Ability – Giving recognition to the skills, competence and experience of each team member is a way that quickly establishing better communication and inclusion in any team. X becomes the go-to person on subject Y. Benevolence – By this we mean that each member declares and proves that they are not wishing a negative outcome upon their colleagues. They wish to allow a beneficial or, at least, neutral state to exist. Integrity – My word is my bond. It is essential to continually keep your promises in order to maintain confidence in the overall performance of any team. If there is a weak link, the whole side will feel let down.

  1. The Licensed Pessimist.

The risk to any team is Groupthink, where a strong personality is accepted as leader and their ego expands to a level where they propose actions that represent foolhardy risk taking. The compliant and passive nodders around them, allow and encourage adoption of this fast-track route to disaster.

Action

Challenging the precepts of 7. we deliberately create a rotating and official role that allows and encourages a critical view and gives full permission for that person to voice their concerns – The Licenced Pessimist. “What if the market does not recover? What then?” “Those numbers appear way too optimistic. How did you derive them?”

When immunity from revenge and animosity is established in the group’s ground rules, the role becomes effective and essential in stress testing all new input to quickly separate the wheat from the chaff.

Team building. Group pf colleagues sitting in a circle and playing games and having fun.

  1. Holding everybody accountable.

Like a sulky child, the wayward executive defends their actions by saying – “Well I didn’t agree with the decision to go this route in the first place.” (Though they remained silent or did not actively disagree, when given the chance before the decision was made.) It is this lack of ownership that will lead to a suboptimal quality of work and poor outcomes.

Action

Asking everybody to say the word, “agree” can be enough to reduce the number of passive passengers on the bus and encourage everybody to process the information to form an active and personally held view. More people are then included in the process of building strategy, planning and problem solving.

  1. Regular Brainstorming.

Habits are quick to form and hard to change. It is easier to repeat what you did yesterday than take a different approach today in order to get a stronger result tomorrow. We are conservative, risk avoidant and take comfort in repetition. The zone we live in is far from comfortable – We stay in horrible jobs, relationships or houses not out of comfort, but out of habit.

Action

This activity will also count towards your resilience exercises. Brainstorming is about expanding the creative connections that you allow your imagination to make by expressing yourself freely. Exempt from criticism and editing, brainstorming moves in waves. There will be a burst of output, a lull, a second burst, and then a second lull. Keep going. It is often in the third burst that the gold is to be found.

  1. Turning passive to active.

What is written on the tombstone of most failed companies, “Well, we tried”. Not hard enough. Underperformance is supported in meetings and work by grey language, low energy sentences and half-hearted commitment. “I’ll try” is at the heart of all of them.

Action

Challenge sluggish, monotone responses to requests. Do not take “Maybe” for an answer. When you are asked, “How you are in the morning?”, upgrade your answer from a monotone, “ffiinne, I suppose” to, “SUPERB AND FANTASTIC. THANKS FOR ASKING.“

  1. Get rid of blame.

The best companies react intelligently to crisis, drama and adverse external circumstance. They do not start to defend, point the finger or avoid responsibility.

Action

The next time you have a company fire to put out and you follow the charter (point 15.) you will experience a difference in atmosphere and will have the chance to see the benefit of full-on collaboration in action. When people are scientific in their description of events this can be captured on a timeline. When they are objective in outlining the symptoms and measured in their analysis of likely causes, then you will experience the pay-off in investing to build collaborative mechanisms in your team.

  1. Moderation and facilitating collaboration.

The accidental hero boss can unintentionally ignore valuable input in order to maintain their hero brand. The neurotic and scared boss may shut down intelligent challenge, not because of the quality of the input, but due to their own insecurities. And, the time-scarce leader can move the meeting along, unconsciously, only asking group thinkers and fans for input, driven by a misguided and dangerous perceived need for peace and pace rather than quality and challenge.

Action

The job of a great moderator is to even out the debate and include a wider base of people, delivering a more diverse and representative contribution – Sampling a diversity of opinion and actively encouraging the quieter sources of wisdom to share their contribution, speak up and be heard.

  1. Good Conflict.

Many companies employ “nice” people who are expected to be “nice”. What actually happens is they become avoidant and this allows stupider ideas to become policy in action, leading to disaster.

Action

Promote the licensed critic, the robust challenger and include different opinions (and integrate these exotic gems via the process of reconciliation.) The smart move is to establish a protocol for allowed any civilised challenge within a robust but protected environment, to produce better suggestions, better processes, more considered solutions and a better customer experience. All this is done to generate improved products, services and engagement, the end result of which, will be experienced in higher income and healthier levels of profit.

  1. Capture collaboration in a charter    How many great training initiatives generated on a Friday are quietly killed off at the 8.30AM reporting meeting on a Monday? A. Most of them. It is easier to let innovation, change and challenge die on the vine and to go back to those old habits that are, actually not serving you well, but feel like an old pair of shoes – At least familiar. The problem is, they represent a slow company suicide.

Action

The formulation of a charter for collaborative team behaviours, formed collaboratively. Is that too obvious? It does not start with a stone tablet issuing from the CEO’s office. It does not come from an expensive off-site weekend jolly for Directors only. It comes from the floor. It evolves. It represents the voice and heart of everybody. And, it is signed up to by everybody – Volunteers stepping up, not coerced group thinkers just nodding along.

About the Author – Matthew Hill is a facilitator, trainer, writer, and public speaker, working with UK and International teams to get them beyond their blockages to create durable results in an exciting peer-to-peer atmosphere of exchange, fairness and excellence.

Contact Matthew on 075 40 65 9995 for a short conversation.

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Great Presenter Top Tips – Hesitation, Deviation and Repetition – Just a Minute! by Matthew Hill

Don’t hesitate……….Don’t hesitate. Did I mention not hesitating? And, another thing…

The BBC’s long running radio parlour game on Radio 4, “Just a Minute” asks charismatic celebrities to entertain the studio and radio audience by talking for 60 seconds on a topic that is spontaneously chosen and allocated to them.

They are asked to talk non-stop with out hesitation, deviation or repetition.

But, are they right? Is this what great presenters do? And, is it what aspiring presenters should be aiming for?

NO! And, here’s why;

1) Hesitation

The pause is a critical part of spoken communication. There are 3 basic forms of silence in conversation and its opposite, interruption or overlapping chatter. Let us look at them and what they signify. A) The Northern European way – one person speaks at time, interruptions are rare and over-talking can be viewed as disrespectful. Gaps are dangerous and tend to be avoided – This is one reason why we get so many uhms and arghs in speech. The brain is desperate to fill any space that could cause a delay in delivered conversation. B) The Latin overlap – multiple players compete, collaborate and finish each other’s sentences in a display of empathy and contextual comfort. Here passion drives speech. The interruption is perceived as sympatico assistance, moving the emotion and dialogue along. Finally, C) The respectful silence of Japan or Finland, where silence is a valid unit of conversation – signifying reflection, respect and that the listener is taking the content of the other speaker seriously.

Man Giving A Speech On Stage

Silence is Authority

More evidence – I remember the opening of a large conference in Sophia, Bulgaria when a disparate group of academics, trainers and coaches came together having not seen each other for a couple of years. Add to this volatile mix, a vast spread of inviting food and good Bulgarian wine at the back of the room, and, we had the perfect cocktail for naughty schoolboy and schoolgirl behaviour and a room about to get seriously out of hand.

The courageous conference leader stood on the stage at the front and used a trick that worked. She just stood there, centred, still and silent. The naughty children (conference delegates) noticed, reacted reflexively and, row after row, sat down, shut up and paid attention.

Punctuation

How do we translate the words on the page into representative spoken form? What does a comma, full stop or paragraph sound like? They sound like a silent pause.

Action

Have more faith in silence and use it to boost your authority with the audience, give them time to absorb your wisdom, and, show that you are a confident presenter in charge of your body, your topic and the room.

2) Deviation

Whilst we are with the BBC, Do you remember Ronnie Corbett’s rambling stories, sat in that scruffy old chair every Saturday night? Appearing spontaneous, this rehearsed and masterful performance took the audience down many side roads, twists and turns – so many, you thought he would never get to the destination. What was, in fact, being delivered was a layering of content, a weaving of related references and the painting of a larger, textured story canvas. This was a mini-novel that allowed you to participate, experience and suspend your cynical perspective, as a critical and logical observer, and, to immerse yourself in the sights, sounds and smells of Ronnie’s constructed world.

Great speakers are deviants!

When you lace your speech with local landmarks and historic event or call out the last presenter’s content, you are branding yourself as a confident, present and aware performer at the top of your game, and, at ease with your core material. So, it is the drift from your script that is human, charming and impressive, not just sticking to the oft-repeated script of a keynote.

Action

Be prepared to inject a reference or two about the venue, the audience or the preceding entertainer, in order to elevate yourself to the level of super speaker.

3) Repetition.

We are told not to repeat ourselves. The irony is that repetition, and, repetition of the thing we just repeated, works. It reinforces the message, makes it stand out and breaks the listener’s ineffective patterns of remembering. Location Location Location. Education Education Education – You remember what those phrases refer to. “You turn if you want to, but the lady’s not for turning.” (No judgement.)

What?

When we speak to international audiences, it is an act of kindness to repeat key words. In a noisy environment, it is advisable to repeat key messages, and, in the army, the instructors are giving the following instructions, “Tell ‘um what you are going to tell ‘um, tell ‘um it, and, then, tell ‘um what you just told ‘um.” – Words to live by.

Action

Load up your call to action sentence with repetition and see what added response you get. You may be surprised at the benefit of repetition to your outcome.

So the skill of the BBC parlour game was, in fact, to go against what is wise, when speaking in public. Ironic me thinks.

About to present? Take action now!

Call Matthew Hill on 07540 65 9995 for a no c ost, no obligation coaching chat to boost your performance on the big day.

Conference Speaker Marketing Tips – Getting Ready For Your Star Turn As A Conference Speaker

Conference Speaker Homework and Pre-Work

The biggest single opportunity for any freelancer is to be found on stage. When you are invited to speak, there will be plenty to preparatory work to get on with. It is not just about getting your presentation in tip-top condition for maximum impact and return. There is content creation, marketing and relationship warming, ahead of your gig, to consider too.

Here are 8 things to concentrate upon when you have received that special call.

  1. Your profile for the event (and on LinkedIn too.) Most people will have a medium to long list of institutions, qualifications and achievements for the poor conference delegate to wade through. THIS MISSES THE POINT. Your speaker profile can be a brochure not just your CV. The opportunity here is to market yourself to get known. Why not connect to your audience ahead of time with a pitch that is authentic and penetrating. Something like…

PITCH PROFILE “I help (specific target audience within the general conference audience) to achieve (their specific desired and needed outcome / result) by providing (unique and differentiated services with personality, power and a twist). I have worked with (global customer 1, regional customer 2 and local customer 3) and worked (in a way that is unique, exciting and positive).

  1. Honing Your Content to Post On-Line – You will have, at the heart of your experience, extraordinary solutions, methods and ideas that can really accelerate the progress of your customers. Now is the time to dig out and re-write the best of your past published efforts and re-purpose them for your fresh conference audience. What do these new prospects fear, lack or not know? What do they need to do, know or change? Get that content out there on social media and, particularly, on the channel where the event is being actively promoted.
  2. Database – I have said this many times – “If you don’t have a database then you don’t have a business.” Do you have a database? Are they all opted in, legal and GDPR compliant? AND, have you segmented them into HOTS, warms and colds? Now is the time to do that.

At the conference itself, you can meet people, collect their cards, if they qualify, and ask permission to send them a P4P – Product4Prospect – An informational gift that is brief and of perceived value to your new contact. This ticks the box for opting in, creating a sense of reciprocity and helps establish you as a generous expert. There are two forms of doing this – the product and the newsletter.

Developing new strategy.

  1. P4P Product – This might be in the form of a helpful tips sheet, a white paper, a tick sheet (have you done the following?) or a link to a film or resource bank that you control. It should be brief, relevant and have your mark and contact details on it, along with suggested next steps i.e. A Call To Action – CTA.
  2. Newsletter – The majority of people I work with do not START out with a newsletter and I understand why. It appears to be a lot of work. And, they will only have 10 people to send it to, etc. etc.

Now let’s get down to content creation. Do we really have to make such a big deal out of it? From conversations you have held in the last 90 days, what were the topics that revved up your passion levels? What did you read that set you alight? These are the topics to write 250 or 500 words on. Just two posts will be fine for now. Turning the top tips sheet accompanying your speech into the a meaty first newsletter post makes a lot of obvious sense too.

  1. Fill Your Table – I have written elsewhere about filling your blue velvet event table with content, if you have been allocated one. This will help establish you as credible, an expert and being ready to deliver.
  2. Share specialist content. As with point 2., you need to fill the right channels with quality content. It does not, however, all have to be your own. When you curate the content of other people, you gain a little reflected glory from these other specialists and their magical words. And, you gain brownie points for saving people the bother of looking it up themselves. Simply find the best material out there, add some intelligent analysis on top and post it. You will then be seen as better by association.
  3. Capture your assets. The first time you do this before a conference speech, it will seem like a lot of work. Find the golden hour slot in your day, when your brain works at its best and block out that space, EVERY day for one, two or three weeks until your preparation is complete.

And, do create a space where you can store all of the IP and marketing collateral that you have just created, to be adapted quickly and used next time. The next time you run through this process before a conference speech, it will take only HALF the time and your materials will become richer and more focused, serving the needs and gaps that your audience are crying out for you to help them with.

Action

So what will you do now?

Call Matthew on 0754065 9995 for a 15-minute coaching session (no c ost and no obligation) if you are serious about making the most of your next conference speaking invitation.

 

What Marketing Do You Need To Think About NOW To Have A Great 2019?

Now is the time to build your returns next year

Whether you are an independent Intercultural Trainer, Coach or Mediator, It is what you think about and prepare this year, that will determine your business results next year. And, a moment’s pause over the Christmas break will definitely be too little and too late. Now is the time to do some deeper work.

4 Marketing Areas to Consider – Identity, Audience, Product & Tribe

Young women planning vacation trip and searching information

It’s what you do this year that will make the difference next year

1) Identity – Imagine you are in a taxi, driving away from your best day in 2019. Yes imagine it. I have a philosophical question for you. You look down at the 10 / 10 feedback. Great. You feel sweaty and fabulous. You know that you just peaked back there. You are in flow and buzzing.

So,

Who were you? What persona or aspects of YOU were you choosing to emphasise? What part of your essence did you connect with your participants in order to feel this good? What did you draw upon from your experience to light up that room?

Are you thinking of the answer? – I hope so – Because that is your winning commercial identity for 2019…

2) Audience – If you had to pick just one recipient type for the whole of 2019 and stick to it, what facets would become important to you? What would you demand was in the room? What character / background / education and demographic would be most exciting for you to work with? Who would keep you excited as a trainer / coach / mediator? Who would bring out the best in you? Who would benefit the most from your life experience and expertise? Who would you make shine?

Got it? Found it? Zoned in on it? Do you want to own that space? Do you want to go deep and be THE EXPERT here?

That is your ideal audience for 2019.

3) Product – You have a little time to repurpose your life experience, training and education into whatever form you wish. What will suit you best? – Classroom / webinar / virtual coaching / blog channel / public speaking from a stage / pre-recorded remote E Learning package / book / film / audio?

Technology is rushing toward us and eliminating complexity, cost and many barriers to entry.

Almost anybody today can make almost anything.

So what form will your offer take in 2019 and what do you need to line up now to make that happen? What do you need to learn about? What do you need to prepare? Who do you need to rope in to help? Where will you make this splendid thing? What time, money and effort will you invest in the project?

That will be your new product for 2019.

4) Tribe – No, I am not repeating 2) – That was your avatar. Tribe / crowd / list / database / contact list / warms – These are names of the new people who will become your paying customers in 2019. Today, many do not know you exist. When you get your marketing right, they will come to you, listen to you, get to know you, like you, trust you, purchase a product or service from you.

AND,

If you really get it right, they will pay what you ask and do what you say!!!!

Marketing to build your tribe – So, how will you interrupt people this year? How will you get their attention? How will you bond with them? What will you give to them first to gain their trust? What small offering will you provide to move them from being critical observers to becoming first-time customers? And, what follow-up offering will you make to bring them all the way in? And, what second offering will you create to keep them as valued customers?

The winners next year will work on their marketing THIS YEAR. So, what are waiting for? What are you going to do today?

Call Matthew for a 15-minute coaching (no cost and no obligation) if you need a little help in narrowing down your answers to the questions above. 07540 65 9995

Thanks and here’s wishing you a really strong 2019.