Hey Rainmaker, I want to be very transparent today.
I’ve been following the work of Alex Charfen a lot recently.
About a month ago, I shared his video about How Entrepreneurs Think, and The Entrepreneurial Personality Type.
If after today’s post you want to learn more, you can also listen to his podcast, visit his website, watch more videos (including full 8-hour workshop) on his YouTube channel, or even read his regular contributions to Huffington Post.
Anyway, I’ve gotten into some interesting conversations with Alex. And in conjunction with a lot that’s happening in my life right now, it’s got me thinking about the impact I want to have on the world.
And I want to share some of that today.
First, a disclaimer…
If you’ve put me on a pedestal as some high-falutin’ marketing guru, some of the following may damage your image of me…
And frankly, that’s okay.
One of the things I (fortunately) learned very early on is that every human being is flawed.
Every single one.
Even Ghandi and Mother Theresa. All of us.
If we totally hide our flaws, we’re just lying. To ourselves, and the world. And that’s not fair.
First, because hiding the truth is just the wrong thing to do.
But second, because if we present some falsely-glorified image of ourself to the world, we’re setting up an unrealistic expectation for others.
I’ve accomplished a lot of amazing things… AND I really suck sometimes, too.
I’ve stacked up my accomplishments, and worn them like a badge of honor.
Rightly so, too. These are real accomplishments.
I went from answering phone calls in a gas company’s customer service call center to running the marketing department at a publishing company. And in the next couple years, we more than doubled the business, and put them on the Inc. Magazine list of America’s fastest-growing small businesses.
When I started freelancing, I got some amazing clients right out of the gate. Not the least of which was Ken McCarthy, basically THE guy who built the bridge between direct marketing and the internet, and taught all of today’s internet marketing gurus most of what they know.
Before I even launched my full-time copywriting career, I was also working for AWAI, the folks who teach people how to launch their copywriting careers. One of my first major projects for them was the biggest launch of its type in the company’s decade-plus in business.
I then broke into the financial direct response field at rapid speed, and at my first client ended up both writing my first million-dollar promo, AND becoming a copy chief for the first time.
I’ve repeatedly created campaigns that generate windfall profits for clients, often doing in weeks what other copywriters have taken months or years to pull off.
Oh yeah, and then there was the Titans of Direct Response letter, which got praised by no less than the great Gary Bencivenga himself, filled the room with the world’s best direct marketers, and helped Brian Kurtz launch his Titans Marketing brand.
But here’s what you have to remember.
As much as I’m in the copywriting business, I’m in the self-promotion business. Or, as Gary Halbert called it, the self-aggrandizement business.
I market myself as well or better than I market my clients. (You should, too.)
What I don’t often tell you is how many times I fall down…
There are a lot of controls I haven’t beaten, in head-to-head tests.
There are a lot of campaigns that didn’t perform quite as well as hoped (although if a client follows my recommendations they pretty much always come out ahead because they hired me).
And the thing that’s been bugging me the most recently actually echoes advice I got years ago…
When I was finishing up my 18-month stint working exclusively with that first financial client, I was having a chat with Michelle, the colleague who I’d worked most closely with while there.
She knew about all my work with them. But she also knew about my work with other clients, and all my personal aspirations.
She told me, “If you ever FINISH any of your hair-brained ideas, you’re going to be unstoppable!”
It hurt because it was right.
In spite of all the success I was having and have had since, there’s one thing I totally suck at…
I’m a stereotypical ADHD entrepreneur.
I have a million good ideas. And I’m great at starting them. But when I’m left to myself to follow through, I’m actually not very good at it.
This is actually a lifetime problem. It caused me to not do well in classes I wasn’t excited about in school. It admittedly held me back in jobs (although miraculously I’ve always been able to keep jobs, somehow).
And as an entrepreneur, it’s led to a huge imbalance between things I start and things I finish.
Some of my best ideas are sitting in stacks of papers in my messy office, or lost in files on my hard drive.
I have been consistent in writing these daily emails.
But in other ways that I could have been serving you, I’ve maybe fallen short.
And not just you…
I have entire markets that I believe I can make an ENORMOUS impact in, that don’t even know my name.
Not because they shouldn’t. But because I haven’t followed through to make sure they do.
Alex says that this is the path of so many entrepreneurs…
Maybe everything I’m saying feels familiar to you.
If that’s the case, I encourage you to follow Alex’s other advice.
What entrepreneurs like us need is protection and support.
We have a greater purpose. We have momentum to create. Not just for ourselves, but for our families, our loved ones, our teams, our communities, the world…
And we have every strength we need to do so built-in.
The only challenge is when this other crap gets in our way.
And that’s when we reach out.
When we ask for that protection from those who can provide it. For support from those who are able to give it.
And it’s only with that protection and support that we’re able to fulfill our greater vision and mission and purpose in life.
I’ve started reaching out for protection and support…
I’m doing things to create a bigger impact.
I’m working to grow personally, and grow a business and a team that can help me make a HUGE impact in the world. For you. And for so many others.
I’m looking forward to it.
Have a great weekend.
Yours for bigger breakthroughs,
Editor, Breakthrough Marketing Secrets