2 Marketing ideas from a very weird experience


The weirdest thing just happened to me. And once I explain what happened, I’ll share 2 useful ideas from my experience, to help you grow your business.

I switched on my MacBook Air earlier. I hadn’t used it for a week and immediately noticed that the screen looked terrible. It’s usually bright and everything looks crisp. Today, it’s dull and everything looks grainy.

What makes this weird, is that I know the screen is exactly the same as it was the last time I saw it!

I have changed

No, my eyesight [thankfully] hasn’t got worse. What happened is that I’ve spent a week working with a new MacBook Pro, with a brighter, higher resolution screen. I have become accustomed to a better quality display. What I was delighted with a week ago, is now substandard.

A better quality alternative has raised the bar on what I expect. I’m now dissatisfied with what was the status quo, just 7 days ago.

So, what can you learn from this, to help you and your business?

2 valuable marketing ideas

Firstly, just because your clients love you today, does not mean they will love you tomorrow. That’s why you need to continuously improve the quality of your work. You need to make your service so outstanding that:

  • Your current clients will want to stay with you [and recommend you].
  • Your prospective clients will see what you offer and become dissatisfied with their current provider.

Secondly, if you develop a new product or service, which is massively more valuable than your current one, a subset of your clients will demand it.

The fastest way to dramatically increase your revenues and profits, is to find new services for your existing clients. These people already know you. They have an existing business relationship with you. And most importantly, they trust you. It takes a lot longer to find new clients for your existing services.

I hope you found these ideas useful. More importantly, I hope you do something with them.

Tip: Read this and learn about offering new services to your existing clients.

It’s time for your business to get edgy. Here’s why!

business development, biz dev, marketing

Today, I have a quick, yet extremely effective idea to share with you. It’s simply this:

Success comes to the business owners, consultants, freelancers and trainers, who embrace the edges.

Allow me to explain what this means to you and your business.

Why it pays to embrace the edges

Clients will eagerly hire you if your service is measurably better than the competition. The best providers are few in number. They are always in demand. This means they earn the best fees.

Other clients will eagerly hire you if your service is measurably faster than the competition. The fastest providers in some industries are always in demand. The 2 hour dry cleaner. The express delivery service. Providers like these are always busy and can charge more, because they solve a problem fast.

And some clients will buy from you if you’re cheaper than the competition.

Avoid the middle ground

Most business owners choose to cling to the middle ground. They’re neither better or faster or cheaper. And as a direct result, they make it impossible to grow their business in any meaningful way.


Think about it: There’s nothing to motivate a prospective client to hire an average provider. Nothing. Average businesses are everywhere. They compete on fees or prices and make life extremely hard for themselves. This is why the average business struggles [at best] or struggles for years and slowly goes broke.

A better approach

One of the first things I do when I work with a new client, is to show them how to get their business from the middle ground to the edge. Once we have done this, we have a massively more motivating proposition for their marketplace. It becomes easier for us to market their services and they can charge higher fees. Win win.

In short, every one of us needs to choose where we position our business. I strongly recommend you embrace the edges and avoid the over-crowded middle.

Read This: Here are real world examples of how to embrace the edges, starting today.

Mind your own business!

Business development, marketing tips, biz dev

If you want to rise above your competitors, you have a couple of options open to you.

  1. Destroy the competition: Bad-mouth them. Spread nasty stories about them. Call them out when they screw up. Try to ruin their reputation, so your business looks better in comparison.
  2. Mind your own business: Look for ways to improve what you do. Become a respected innovator.  Out smart and out care your competitors. Make your service so uniquely valuable that you have no competition.

The best way forward, is to focus on your own business. Pay attention to what you can control. Do everything you can with everything you have. If you mind your own business correctly, you’ll never have to worry about the competition again.

Here are some ideas to get you started: 10 Powerful Ways To Get People Talking About Your Business.

Are short blog posts a good idea?

blogging, content marketing, blog tips, marketing

Olivia noticed that my previous blog post is just 54 words long. She said she really enjoyed it, but wanted to know if it’s a good idea to write such short posts.

Here’s my answer. I hope you find it useful.

54 word posts are a bad idea

If you write for SEO, 54 word posts are a bad idea.

If you want to defend every point you make, to try and appease the critics, 54 word posts are a bad idea.

If you are too lazy to condense your thoughts, so they don’t waste the reader’s time, 54 word posts are a bad idea.

54 word posts are perfectly fine

If you write for humans rather than search engines, then 54 word posts are perfectly fine.

If you are brave enough to write what you think, then 54 word posts are perfectly fine.

If you are prepared to embrace brevity and eliminate the fluff from your message, then 54 word posts are perfectly fine.


If you want to connect with people, then write for people. If you want to connect with Google, then write for Google.

If you think you’re doing both, you’re doing neither particularly well.

Word of Mouth referrals: The unbreakable rule

word of mouth, marketing tips, referrals, stand out

Word of Mouth spreads between the people in your marketplace.

  • It goes from person to person.
  • Not from you to them.

So don’t interrupt people. Don’t pester people.

Instead, invest your time creating a story worth sharing. It’s a far better way to spread the word than pushing an average marketing message at people.

Be the author. Not the envelope

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It’s hard to attract people’s attention, when you have nothing new to say. But that doesn’t stop business owners from trying.

Social networks are flooded with famous quotes, posted by people who have nothing to say for themselves. They lack either the creativity, the guts [or both], to tell us what they think. And in doing so, they rob themselves of their voice.

They are simply a carrier. A delivery mechanism. Much like an envelope.

What happens when you receive a letter? You throw the envelope in the waste paper basket. The message matters. The author matters. But the envelope has no lasting value. Even so, the massive majority of business owners choose to be the envelope.

Sharing a famous quote is simple. Think about it: whether a letter inspires you or pisses you off, you never blame the envelope. You blame the author of the message. The author is responsible.

So we each have a choice to make

We can be a voice or we can be an echo. We can be the author or we can be the envelope. We can be noticed or we can be invisible.

That’s not much of a choice. And if we want to be noticed, there’s no choice at all.

Important: If fear of criticism is holding you back, here’s how to overcome it!

What type of clients do you choose to work with?

marketing tips, marketing advice, advise,

Are you working with the right type of clients or customers, doing work that inspires you and rewards you on every level?

Well, you should be. And you could be!

The challenge here, is that many business owners and consultants are not choosy enough. They focus on what they fear [going broke] rather than focus on what they want. So, instead of only working for great clients, they decide to work with pretty much anyone who will pay them.

In doing so, they create a cyclical challenge, which many never recover from.

The cycle looks like this

They find themselves doing work for people, who don’t give them the freedom to do amazing work. After a while, the great clients won’t hire them, because they want to hire the ones who ARE doing amazing work.

I was prompted to write this, after receiving an email from a reader whose business is really struggling. She told me that she feels she has to take whatever work comes her way, because she “can’t afford to be choosy”.

She then explained what her cycle, was.

She said she was working extremely hard, doing crazy hours, yet she’s so broke that she can’t afford to turn away the low paid work that’s destroying her business. So, she accepts more low quality work and ends up undervaluing her time and doing work that makes her unhappy and pays poorly. The cycle then repeats itself.

Thankfully, any of us can break that cycle.

It’s your business: Take control!

Sometimes, especially when business is sluggish, it’s easy to forget a few critical facts:

  • The marketplace doesn’t set your fees. You do.
  • The marketplace doesn’t determine how much unique value you provide. You do.
  • The marketplace doesn’t decide who you choose to work with. You do.

At any point, you can choose to draw a line in the sand and decide to reject low value or average clients. You can decide to solve better problems and charge better fees. You can decide to fix the marketing errors, which are holding you back from attracting the best clients.

Or you can take the easy route: To do nothing and then complain because your business is going nowhere.

The key here, is that YOU get to choose. More of the same or something better? It’s your move.

Marketing Tip: Solve better problems

marketing tips, marketing advice, advise,

One way to grow a super-successful business, is to intentionally seek out challenging work. I’m talking about the tricky stuff. The work that requires more thinking and more creativity.

Here’s why it works: You attract better clients, better projects and better fees, when you solve better problems.

You also have far fewer competitors, because very few service providers seek out the hard work.

Easier said than done? Sure. But do you want an easy business or a successful business?

Tip: Read this – How to grow your business with agile thinking.

Are you a marketing dinosaur?

Professional development, marketing tips, business

How well do you understand digital marketing and is it providing you with regular, high quality clients or sales?

I was thinking about this recently, when a friend drove me into Lincoln for lunch. We’re around the same age [I’m 50 in a few weeks]. I noticed his car radio was on a station, which plays tunes from the 1980’s and 1990’s. He explained that he only listens to oldies. If you ask people over the age of 45 what they tend to listen to, you’re likely to be told something similar.

It’s as if some people reach a certain age and then close their mind to new musical influences.

Worryingly, I find that many business owners have a similar attitude when it comes to digital marketing.

And it’s losing them a fortune.

Digital dinosaurs

I call these business owners digital dinosaurs. That’s because they are slowly becoming extinct.

  • They know what social networks are, but have no idea how to use them as marketing tools. So, they spray them with links and wonder why nothing happens.
  • They’ve heard it’s vitally important for their business to have a story worth sharing. But they market their services the same way businesses did a decade ago. They end up selling based on price, working for average clients and average fees. IMPORTANT: Here’s why your business must have a story.
  • They know they need a website, but their site looks like a 1990’s brochure — when it should be a lead-generating machine for their business.
  • They think networking is about meeting a room full of struggling business owners over breakfast. They’re unaware that the internet is a huge connection machine. They can now network with massively more valuable contacts, without leaving their desk.

By failing to understand how digital marketing can work for your business, you give a huge advantage to your better informed competitors. They will be faster than you, have lower marketing costs than you and reach massively more people than you.

That’s unsustainable.

How to achieve more by doing less

business development, biz dev, marketing

Sometimes it pays to do fewer things.

  • Fewer missed deadlines, equals more trust.
  • Fewer dodged decisions, equals more respect.
  • Fewer broken promises, equals more belief.
  • Fewer hours wasted, equals more productivity.
  • Fewer angry words, equals more happiness.
  • Fewer unfinished projects, equals more clarity.
  • And fewer excuses, equals more progress.

Less can be more.