The more you do simplify, the easier it gets.

I’m sore today, because I started a new workout routine yesterday.  But I know within a week or two, I’ll need to change it up again, because my muscles will have adjusted.

Cleaning out the closet, or cleaning up our lives of non-essential tasks, has something in common.

The first time through, I’m taking out anything I haven’t worn in 2 years.  That helped a lot.  Now I can really see in there.

And what I can see is interesting.  I separated all the things I know and love – the things I reach for continually – things I get compliments on and I feel good wearing.  Things I love.

Then, I move everything else to the right.  If I don’t wear them during the next appropriate season – they’re going to move on out as well.

That creates room.  Room for new relationships, new business, new ideas, new

At first it’s hard to let things go.  But then, even if the item fits, is it in style?  Did it look better on me 5 years ago?  Do I even go to events where it would be appropriate?  Cute but itchy?  Love it, but it’s pilly?  Good, classic, but needs update accessories to make it work?

The interesting thing is that once I started the project, I was done in a few hours. And it felt great, and allowed me more time to get ready, since I could see all that’s in there.

The same thing is true with your life, whether it’s work or private.  Most of my clients are overwhelmed by their marketing programs.  They’ve copied it from someone else who’s had success, but

Doing Less – The Secret Sauce of Great Marketing Results

Do less marketing?

Yep.  Even though it may seem counter-intuitive, it’s true.  I’ll tell you why in a second, but first, let me ask you a question.

Have you ever tasted a really superb sauce?  One that you can’t stop thinking about days after you ate it – sometimes years?  The delicate balance of flavors, the perfect consistency – the perfect blend of the very best ingredients.

The trick to a great sauce, is to combine the very finest ingredients and simmer them until their flavors blend into a velvety choir of angelic culinary voices.

The process of simmering reduces the sauce, intensifying the flavors.  The result is the richest essence of the ingredients, the very best version of itself.

The same thing happens when we reduce our marketing efforts, and create an irresistible combination of who we are, who we serve and what we do.

Most of entrepreneurs and business owners I talk with are overwhelmed with marketing.  It’s not their strength, they say.  “I’m the inventor, the creative, not the marketing expert.  I can’t do it all and trying to figure out how to manage it all is driving me crazy.  I can’t sleep at night.  I’m constantly waking up in a social media nightmare, thinking if I don’t do it all, I’m leaving money on the table.”

Most business owners are doing an awful lot really well.  And before digital marketing, it was easier to decide how to get your message out there.  Print, direct mail, TV, radio.

Today, there’s all that, plus a new social media platform emerging every month, and a marketing expert to tell us how to capitalize on it.  It can be overwhelming to keep up.

So first and foremost, marketing is communicating to other people the service or product you provide, and why it’s better or different than other services of products they might come across.

So, to state it simply, there are three factors – or ingredients – involved.  You, your product or service, and the people who you serve with your product or service.

So how much you do is really just a matter of personality.

Do less.  Here’s how.

  1.  Boil your key marketing message down to the essential thing.  What is it your product or service does for your customers, patients or clients?
  2. Know what you’re trying to achieve – your own personal goals for your business.
  3. Choose the marketing method which best suits your personality, meets your customers where they are, and produces the results you want.
  4. Do less, but do what you love – if it’s talking, get out there and speak.  If it’s on camera, bring on the video.  If it’s writing, create a content schedule and stick with it.  But make sure it oozes with you – it’s the chocolatiest version of who you are.  Expose yourself – the thing that makes you who you are – why your clients love you.  Maybe it’s that you’re mean and hornery.  Depending on your profession, that just might make you awesome.  Are you kind?  Unconventional? Irreverent?  Excentric? Brilliant?  All of the above?  Bring it on.

When your marketing message is boiled down to the essentials, it immediately resonates with your clients.

So take the time to create your own secret marketing sauce.  When you find the perfect combination of where your customers are, your message and your personality, the joy returns to marketing, your passion for you business reignites and your customers can feel it.

Bon appetit!

If you want some help refining your marketing recipe, let’s talk.

concentration

intensify, magnify, strengthen, sharpen, heighten, increase,

 

Mary Poppins and the Secret to Exponential Business Growth

“Mary Poppins, practically perfect in every way.”   And she is, too.

Disney’s movie version of the Mary Poppins story may have been a lighter take on P. L. Travers’s books, but our family loved it.  We watched it, quoted it, and sang every song in it.

It’s such a family favorite, in the last few months of my dad’s life, we would watch it together, and he’d conduct the music with his index fingers and smile.  It was a source of comfort to him and to us.

So what is it about Mary Poppins that makes us feel so good, so safe and secure?

In a word – commitment.

Mary Poppins is unfailingly positive, certain and committed.  She comes floating in on the wind, takes on the problems of the Banks family, and doesn’t leave until the problems are solved.

You can count on Mary Poppins.

She teaches commitment to the children, and Mr. and Mrs. Banks, too.

In the parents’ case, she helps them understand what being committed to the family and the children truly means.  For the children, it’s learning to be committed to doing the right thing based on the fact it’s the right thing, and not one’s feelings.

When Michael, who’s about 6 years old, asks Mary Poppins, “Will you stay if we’re very good?”  She replies, “Oh!  That’s a piecrust promise, easily made, easily broken.”

So what does this have to do with success in business?

Here it is.  Success in business – whether you’re an entrepreneur or employee – is directly related to the commitment made and lived.

A commitment is a promise.  It’s an agreement that something will absolutely happen.  It doesn’t depend on feelings or excuses.  It’s NOT a hope, or a want or an attempt.  It’s a guarantee.

It’s 100% dependable.  And it doesn’t crumble to pieces under pressure.

So if you aren’t experiencing the success you’d hoped or wanted, ask yourself, “What am I committed to doing and being?”

Chances are you’re very committed in some areas of your life.  Your marriage, your relationships, your fitness, a sport, a TV show, but if you’re not experiencing the success you want in your business, dig a little deeper and see if you’re really committed to achieving that level of success.

Here’s what I’m learning (because it’s a process, right?) – in any area I haven’t yet reached my potential, I’m probably lacking commitment.

I’ve certainly made a lot of piecrust promises to myself in the past.  And I accepted excuses for my lack of activity, and lack of  being the best I could be.  And my income and business life reflected it.

But the moment I realized how undependable I was being to myself (and if I can’t rely on myself, who can I rely on?) and really committed, my income shot through the roof, my relationships improved on every level, and I started seeing opportunities pop up everywhere.

Why?  I think it has something to do with the Mary Poppins syndrome.  I was being Mary Poppins-ish – dependable, positive, certain of the future.  Because when I’m committed, I know I’ll stay until the problem has been solved, the next level is reached, the goal is accomplished.

Truthfully, I like myself so much better when I’m committed to being my best.  I enjoy being who I am and sharing my gifts with others.  And that brings us to the bonus free gift which comes along with commitment.

Joy.  A spoonful of sugar.  Corny?  Yes.  True?  YES.  Can’t we all use a little more joy?

So try it.  Set yourself a goal – something attainable.   Maybe it’s making one follow-up phone call, writing an email or thank you note, reaching out to a prospect, walking for 15 minutes – but choose something you need to do on a regular basis, and for the next three days, do it.

If you’re going to be successful, you can start acting like a successful person right now.  Literally be the person you’re committed to becoming – right now.

And after three days, I guarantee you’ll start to get kind of addicted to this commitment thing.  There’s nothing more motivating than being able to count on yourself.

So no more piecrust promises for you!  No excuses!  No yearning and wanting and desiring!  Just quietly and calmly set your goal and COMMIT to it.

Because in the face of all that positive force, all that certainty, all that consistent commitment, all that doing and being, things have a way of working out.

And that’s the secret.

Thank you, Mary Poppins.