She broke my iPad.
My daughter Bella was two at the time and when I caught her playing with my iPad she got scared and threw it. And it cracked.
(It was a good lesson to discover early on as a parent… when you discover your child doing something wrong, don’t let them know you are in the room until you are close enough to rescue/catch/secure/fix the situation. A Ninja 101 Lesson I apparently missed in Lamaze class.)
Later on that evening, I went to see if I could get the iPad repaired and on my drive to the mall I listened to an audio program from my early mentor, Dan Kennedy’s Marketing Association. They still sent their programs via CD so it was only when I would go for drives that I would get to hear them. Since I worked from home, this didn’t happen very often.
On the CD, Dan announced a contest to become Marketer of the Year, and if you won you’d get an all-expense paid trip to a “Winner’s Weekend” where he would work on your business with you.
I knew this could be a chance to level up my connections and company, so I was going to do whatever I needed in order to win this contest.
At the time, I had more hutzpah and hustle than cash in my pocket.
And, to make up for my big dreams and lack of budget, I went the extra mile. Again and again.
Why? Because it is a lot less crowded when you walk farther than anyone else is willing to go.
This time would be no exception.
The problem was, I was listening to the program weeks after it had been released. So at the time of listening, it was literally the last day to apply. The LAST DAY. And the only way to submit an application was to fax it in. Yup, fax.
Problem was, we were out of the 80s and this modern gal didn’t have a fax machine.
But when one meets a detour it doesn’t mean you retreat. It means you find another way.
So, I started googling for solutions and uncovered that I could use my email as a fax machine to send in my application. Problem solved.
Now to write the application… with only a couple hours to go until the deadline.
I wanted mine to stand out from the crowd and ensure I would be chosen to compete as a finalist.
How could I do that?
I needed to make my application less about me and more about him.
So instead of including a list of all my accomplishments in the last year like the application asked, I included a list of the things I had learned from Dan and how I had applied them to my business and the difference that made in my bottom line.
What I wrote was legit because I had learned a lot from him and it had made a huge difference in my company.
I figured, even if I didn’t get chosen, he would most certainly use that piece as a testimonial in something, so I’d get publicity out of it somehow.
I also snuck in a picture that I had taken with him at one of his big conferences so he could begin to get to know me and so I could make a lasting impression through the process.
And it worked. I was chosen as a finalist to compete on the “Diamond Marketer of the Year” Call. Instead of just pontificating on my success, I again related my wins to what I had learned from him. I even created a website just to promote the whole thing – Iliveonplanetdan.com. (I still own it but it now directs to this site.) I took a lot of time preparing my presentation but knew that alone would help me to stand out.
Alas, I didn’t win. Someone who had applied Dan’s strategies to a Manufacturing Business won since it was so out of the box.
But all was not lost.
While I didn’t win, Dan did mention that it was a close one between me and the other guy and so he invited me to come to the Winner’s Weekend anyway. I would just have to pay my own way. I only needed to fax in a message to say I would attend.
Which I did approximately 2.3 seconds after the call ended.
Even if I had to sit in the middle seat of Spirit Airlines and make 5 connections to afford the trip, I was going.
And I wasn’t going to waste the experience by simply using my hot seat to explain a problem I was having. I was going to showcase what I thought he might find most interesting.
I was going to go the extra mile.
So I squished into my carry-on handouts for everyone at the event with a copy of my book, a presentation of campaign highlights, and a few little gifts.
And it worked.
Most hadn’t prepared anything to present. A few had handouts. No one else had an entire presentation.
Not only did it get Dan’s attention, but I landed a few clients from the event. And Dan started sending me work from his private clients. He eventually would invite me to speak at one of his private mastermind events which then led to me to co-authoring “The No B.S. Book to Direct Response Social Media Marketing” with him.
This book has brought me thousands in book residual payments, dozens of clients, hundreds of Powerful Professionals members and millions of dollars.
And it all happened without a spending a dime on advertising.
Instead I followed a system of using hustle and hutzpah that produced results every time.
I will share over a dozen strategies you can use to grow your business at the Power Summit 2019 – License to Profit event in my session entitled, “Dr. No: Awareness Campaigns are Stupid and Other Truths Behind Million Dollar Campaigns.”
But here are a few you can use right now:
- Always make the message about the other person, not about you. When you don’t have a relationship with someone yet, how can they be expected to care about what you want? They won’t. But they do care about how something impacts them. So in your messaging to prospects, customers, referral partners (and contest judges), make sure to focus your marketing message on them, not you.
- Be prepared. Always. Even if you are great at “winging it,” don’t. Most people do just that, so by showing up having done your research and preparing a thing or two, you will be light years ahead of your competition. I can’t tell you how many interviews I have conducted when the interviewee hadn’t even bothered to visit our website and read anything ahead of time. 99.9% of them. Those who did, are currently working for me. I always show up prepared and with something to hand out and it has helped forge relationships and open doors that had a lasting impact on me to this day. Some of my biggest clients I landed, the ability to sell my firm, members of my Powerhouse Mastermind… it is incredible how “lucky” you are when you show up prepared.
- Thank often. I have been so incredibly blessed in my journey with mentors and friends who have been generous with advice, connections, time and talent and have lifted me up along the way. I never take this help for granted. Instead I am sure to say thanks in meaningful ways. From taking those who are part of my success circle to nights on the town, to getting others media or on a podcast, to sending gifts that are meaningful… just doing something sets you apart. I happen to love the art of gifting and it brings me great joy to do it. I would gift even if it didn’t pay off, yet it always does. At our recent Powerhouse meeting, one of the attendees shared that she remembered a candle I had sent her five years ago and how much she loved it. A candle. Five years ago.
No one gifts anymore. But you can.
If you are ready to “go the extra mile” and drive in six to seven figures in profit without spending a dime of advertising, join me at Power Summit 2019 – License to Profit and enjoy my session entitled, “Dr. No: Awareness Campaigns are Stupid and Other Truths Behind Million Dollar Campaigns.”
I can’t wait to see you there.