Are you struggling to spread your ideas?
It’s not easy to get the attention your ideas deserve. There’s a lot of competition to attract the eyeballs and affections of the people you want to reach.
It’s a noisy world out there. It seems to get noisier every day. Through our phones, computers, ads, posters, billboards, and people selling essential oils, we are hit with thousands of marketing messages a day. We’ve all had to adapt by tuning out most of it.
I’ll show you how to get around people’s attention defense systems so that they actually look forward to hearing from you. It’s time to get the ever-precious attention you need to get your ideas to stick with people.
There’s a way to speak up so that the right people will listen. There’s a strategy you can use and tools you can deploy so you’re getting noticed by the very people who need to hear you most.
It’s Tough To Watch Competitors Succeed
I’ve watched other products and businesses that I knew were either worse or at best, equivalent to my idea get noticed. I know the heartbreak of feeling like you missed a great chance, maybe even a once-in-a-lifetime chance.
I know the sorrow of feeling like success has swept up everyone around you and left you behind.
It’s awful, and I don’t wish it on anyone. Here are five principles you can use to see your ideas spread.
1. Start With Who
You need clarity on who you're talking to. If you try to be everything to everyone, you'll end up meaning very little to a lot of people.
You have likely already done this but you need to clearly identify in your head who your target audience is. Who needs your idea?
It's your responsibility to become their guide, their thought leader, the authority they turn to for help, support and to win.
You have some things to tell them. You are expected to engage now with someone who might have a question, wants some coaching, etc.
Interested in learning more, check out a TEDx talk I did about this:
2. Build On The Foundation Of Your Website
You may never visit your website but other people are and will. I've watched it happen over and over again. Someone has a question about a company. They Google the company and then go to the website.
It's just what we do.
We may be told never to judge a book by its cover but we all still do. We judge people by their clothes and we judge companies by their websites.
You need to pay attention to how your website is set up.
- Does it look good with nice design, an appealing color palette, high-res images, big, bold headlines and some white space to let the eyes breathe?
- Are your words clear? Do you use simple language that is easy to understand?
- Can we through the page understand what you're offering and what you want us to do?
Too many people are missing opportunities to spread their ideas because they have lousy websites.
You may be trying to ignore your website, but potential customers are not.
Your own site is huge for controlling what is known and shared about your brand.
On your website, you control the narrative. You want always to be directing traffic there where you will be able to create new content for them to see.
Also, while they're on your site, find a way to grab an email address so you can continue to talk to them. Email list building is, as you may have heard or experienced, the gold standard in marketing - even today!
People still check their email every morning religiously.
If you're looking for a site that you can grow to help grow your brand, check out what my friends and I are doing at Get Clear Sites. There's some exciting stuff happening in the world of website design and what you can do yourself.
3. Give Stuff Away as Much as You Can.
People expect content for free. They might not always. But they do now.
If you do not give away content, people will find it elsewhere. After a long while, if people go to you for content, they will feel like they owe you something in return. Gary Vaynerchuk says in his book, "Jab, Jab, Right Hook" that you need to give at least three things before you can ask for something.
For me, this meant giving away chapters or the entire digital version of my latest book.
The hard copies that we sell are just part of what you are trying to do so don’t sweat giving it away. You may pick up a client and that would be well worth a PDF give-away and the loss of $15 because of it.
Be generous with your ideas. Don't give away everything but don't hold it all too tightly either. Generosity is good for your brand and it is good for your soul.
4. Get Yourself Out There
It's so easy to think we can spread ideas only by sitting behind a computer. Of course, we have more opportunity to do that than ever before, however, it's also great to show up "in the flesh." Be a part of a networking group that needs a presentation every week - you can do that. Volunteer to speak at lunch and learn. Call up conferences offering to speak on your topic.
The power of being somewhere physically might is still the best way to build relationships. The value of showing up at an event somewhere will be huge.
Here's my point: You've got to get out there and meet some people. Word of mouth is still the time-tested way to spread ideas.
Some companies can just stick to ads if they have millions of dollars of budget to spend.
But the rest of us have to get outside and meet people.
5. Take Advantage Of Great Tools
You can also take advantage of new tools that allow people to connect. Consider starting a podcast. We did. It's an amazing way to grow a network and spread your ideas.
You can also be a guest on a podcast. Podcast hosts carry the burden of having to find a steady stream of interesting guests to feed their content flow.
Getting on a podcast is a rising opportunity and you are allowed to promote your ideas there. It's even better if pick a category you know your Whos are listening to and have an agent/admin who can contact all the hosts for you. There is no better way to get on a podcast than to write to them and say what you offer. You have to tell the host how you can help them, what you can talk about that is interesting, and what kind of questions they should ask.
If you do most of the work for them, they seem to appreciate that.
We live in the most exciting time for communicating and spreading ideas. People are connecting more than ever. The Internet has far surpassed the printing press, telephone and television combined for getting your ideas out there.
Despite this communication revolution, too many great ideas are still being ignored by the very people who need them most.
If we have the ability to connect with anyone, anywhere around the world, at any minute, why is it so hard to capture attention still?
This post has given you four principles you can use to make sure your ideas get the audience and the traction they deserve.