get stuff done

Focus at Work – Keep the Main Thing the Main Thing and Get Stuff Done!

In the last post, I wrote about how deep focus might be the key to actually get stuff done in your craft or industry. Focus on the 20% of the effort that makes you the 80% of your income. You simply don’t have the capacity to do everything under the sun.
Since that post, I’ve had a few readers of that post message me and ask why I was going against the traditional advice of building an online business.

And as I thought about it, I realized that while I might be going against the more traditional advice of building a digital business, there are examples in the real world that suggest that less can be more.

So in this post, we’re going to look at just a few such examples.

Is Less Always More?

Now you might be thinking, there are plenty of examples of businesses that have grown after they offered more products and services. One such example is Amazon. Without knowing their history, you might think that they’ve always sold all the products and online services that they offer today.

However, this wasn’t always the case. When the company first started, it was an online book store based out of Jeff Bezos’ garage. Did he know that it was going to become what it is today? Probably not. But as the company offered more products and brought more people on to help manage those products, it is definitely an example of “More is More”.

Sometimes Scaling Doesn’t Always Work as Expected

But for every Amazon who scales correctly from the beginning, there’s also going to be examples where adding more to the menu might not be the best course of action.

Example 1: McDonald’s

Take McDonald’s for example. I remember in the late 00’s when McDonald’s was losing out on customers because people started to get smarter about what they were eating. It was during this time that chains like Panera, Starbucks, and Subway grew like bandits. In fact, it was pretty common to hear about places in large cities that had a couple of Starbucks on the same street.

These companies were eating McDonald’s lunch. So what did the golden arches do in response? They grew their menus and model to include some competitive products to what these other places were offering. By 2013, it had 145 items on its menu.

This was nuts and completely unsustainable. It’s no wonder that they were losing money at this point.

In an attempt to right the ship, they hired their most recent CEO, Steve Easterbrook. What Steve ended up doing was removing the items that weren’t selling as well and went back to the basics of the business. This seems to have worked because in the last year or so, their stock has actually risen.

Example 2: Apple

While this might not be the best recent example, it wasn’t too long ago that Apple was the tech company to watch out for – as an investor and a competitor.

In the Beginning…

Personally, I’ve always been an Apple user. My first computer was one and currently I’m writing this on a Macbook Pro.

During that time, the company has seen its ups and downs. I remember when I was first learning about computers, I found out the hard way that Windows 95 would not work on my Mac. How could this be? I thought everyone was going to be able to use it!

Nope, I was in the minority. Windows based PCs were what everyone else had. I can’t tell you how many conversations I had in high school answering questions about why I had a Mac… even when Steve Jobs came back as the CEO!

As I got involved in the Purdue University Mac Users Group (PUMUG), I started to learn how awesome of a group Mac users actually were. I had found my people! But interestingly, we were still a small group. All the clones had been taken off the market by that point. Those of us who were still users were because we were creatives or simply loved the Mac.

The Epic Growth of Apple

However, it was also during this time that the iPod was released. And interestingly, this was about the same time that I started paying attention to the stock market. I remember in 2001 watching the AAPL stock rise almost 50% until 9-11. 

Of course, stocks were down for just about everyone at that point. But as new and better versions of the iPod came out, their stock rose. And then, the point where everyone became familiar with Apple was in 2007 when the iPhone debuted. Wow… I really should have got some shares then. (Unfortunately, I thought I had already missed the boat. Ha!)

But there’s a point in me telling you this personal story of watching Apple rise. No one would have believed it would happen when I first got my computer – an Apple Performa 575. Had they stuck around trying to compete directly with Microsoft PCs, I think the company would have folded. Even to this day, but especially back then, they were known to jack up the price on products that were matched by less expensive PC options.

But it was because Steve was able to focus on building the next best thing (as he originally did with the original Mac) that they were able to be as great as they did during his time as CEO.

On a Smaller Scale

So, there’s a couple of examples of large companies that righted their ships after bloating to try and be everything to everyone. But it’s not something that just companies that size have to deal with. There are much smaller companies that struggle simply because they don’t focus on keeping the main thing the main thing.

And because they often don’t have the necessary resources or connections to keep going, they tend to not have the time to get their act together in time.

Example 3: Marsh

One such example is a local grocery store chain here in Indiana which was named Marsh. Like many local groceries, it folded in the last couple of years. It couldn’t find its niche in the market. I believe the main reason is that they tried to be everything to everyone. Instead of focusing on having its stores in certain profitable locations, it kept trying to keep open stores that were underperforming due to local competition – no matter what the cost.

Even after the company folded a couple of years ago, there are still locations that have not been bought by other chains. When I see them, I’m reminded of the struggles they had before going belly up. 

Interestingly, though, the places that were bought by other chains seem to be doing pretty well if not better than they did while they were under the Marsh banner. Some were bought by Kroger while others were bought by a regional chain called Needler’s. In fact, the Needler store in downtown Indy is considered by many to be one of the best groceries around!

Had Marsh realized that they should just cut anchor and focus on these stores that were actually making them income, they might be around yet today!

Action Steps

So, hope that gives a little more perspective on why it’s important to focus. If you’re good at building sales funnels, do that until you can outsource it. But don’t try to do that AND build a Fulfilled By Amazon (FBA) business AND build a podcast AND build a YouTube channel.

Pick one, get a handful of clients. Once you’ve done that, scale that business using ads on social media. Then from there, you can think about doing something else when the first job is sustainable.

personal motivation

Andy Dix – Be the Best Version of You: The Importance of Understanding Our Own Personal Motivation (AoL 154)

Having the knowledge about different personalities is a bit of a super power. When you know someone’s personality and personal motivation, you can understand what makes them tick. However, a lot of people simply don’t have this knowledge. They get frustrated when other people don’t act the way they do or don’t set an importance on various things like they do.

Today’s guest, Andy Dix, helps individuals and teams figure out what motivates them through the Reiss Motivation Profile.

As a leader, it’s important that not only do we know the makeup of any one person, but we also understand how others are going to engage with them.

If you don’t have much knowledge about how personalities and motivations work, this is a great conversation to start at!

So, join Harrison and I as we learn why Andy chose to work in this field, what he’s learned, and why he started his The Hopeful Hoosier Podcast.

Enjoy!

SPECIFICALLY, YOU’LL FIND OUT MORE ABOUT:

  • How’d Andy get into what he’s doing today? 8:40
  • What’s the Reiss Motivational Profile and how does he incorporate in his work? 13:01
  • Has he been surprised by the profile results of any one person or people? 16:13
  • Does the Motivational Profile prove the truth of “natural born” leaders and entrepreneurs? 25:12
  • What motivated Andy to start his podcast “Hopeful Hoosier”? 27:12
  • What kind of things is he looking forward to the rest of this year? 36:43
  • Who are Andy’s top three people he’s been influenced by? 38:13
  • One thing under $100 that has changed his life? 40:08
  • Is there advice out that he hears adults giving kids that he’d call BS on? 40:43
  • What does Andy do when he becomes overwhelmed or unfocused? 41:39
  • How can someone be a difference maker in their community? 42:35

ITEMS and PEOPLE MENTIONED IN THIS EPISODE:

Right click here and save-as to download this episode to your computer.

SHOW NOTE EXTRAS:

Andy Interviewed by Engel Jones:

Steven Reiss on his book The 16 Strivings for God

Andy’s Webinar on Using the Science of Motivation Within an Organization

NPR’s Talk of the Nation: The Art and Science of Motivation


Thanks for Listening!

Thanks so much for joining us again this week. Have some feedback you’d like to share? Leave a note in the comment section below!

If you enjoyed this episode, please share it using the social media buttons you see at the top of the post.

Also, please leave an honest review for The AoL Podcast on iTunes! Ratings and reviews are extremely helpful and greatly appreciated! They do matter in the rankings of the show, and we read each and every one of them.

If you have any questions feel free to email them over via the email mentioned in the show or by our contact form.

And finally, don’t forget to subscribe to the show on CastboxiTunesStitcherPodBean, and/or Google Play Music. It’s absolutely free to do so.

A huge thank-you to you guys for joining us!

Cheers!

self growth

How Self Growth and Your Filtering Process Affect Your Life and Business

They always say, you attract who you are. When I was at the start of my self growth journey, I really didn’t know what this meant. I remember exactly where I was when I first realized it though. I was in grad school. And, interesting to me, it wasn’t too long before I realized that not everyone is looking to climb a mountain in their career.

Up until that point, I thought just about everyone worked like I did.

I couldn’t have been further from the truth.

What I’ve realized since then is that there are different personalities, different motivators, and even different needs that we have to consider when we’re interacting with other people.

Because of this, we have to be aware of where we are on this personal journey so we can understand how they see us.

The better we can use this power, the easier it is to get what we want in the long run.

Or as Zig Zigler said, “If you help enough people get what they want, then you automatically get what you want”.

Here’s a few things to think about…

You Attract Who You Are

Recently, I was listening to a lesson that fellow John Maxwell Team member and future guest of the AoL Podcast, Jeff Gamble, was talking about on his FB Live show “Going Executive Director”. 

In the video, he was talking about how people tend to attract others like themselves. 

Here’s the thing. Jeff might have been using the MLM world as a reference, but it’s true across the board. And it’s especially true in life and business.

For example, when I was in college 10+ years ago, I was pretty insecure about my future. Like many engineering students, even though I liked having a good time, I learned to prioritize studying. I never had time to party.

Many of the friends I had in college were that same type, especially early on. 

After I changed majors, I felt more at ease and because of that, I started attracting new friends who didn’t fit this previous mold. They were confident in where they were going. And because of this, I started to see that I had decent control over my own future.

It was during this time that I started getting involved in clubs and other organizations on campus. Interestingly, I started to understand that not everyone is wired the same way I am. And like Jeff was talking about, I started to understand that not only are there different personalities, but different people have different needs.

Start with Your Needs

In the video, Jeff talks about Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs and Tony Robbins’ 6 Human Needs. It’s uncanny how similar they are:

self growth

Early on in college, my esteem took a beating. It seemed like no matter what I tried, I just couldn’t be the student I was used to being in high school.

What I later realized is that I just had no idea how to study. And once I figured that out when I changed majors, I’d put in the needed work to fix that. As a result my confidence rose and I allowed myself to venture out and do other things. Interestingly enough, I started trying to connect with other students around me by becoming part of different organizations (that’s the next level of needs!)

So, here’s my question for you. Where do you fall? Do you have the basics figured out? Do you have safety figured out? How significant do you feel?

If you’re still in search of those, as Jeff was saying, you’re going to attract those people into your life – either as friends or as clients.

Setting Up Your Business for Success by Filtering

That being the case, as a business owner, you might not necessarily want to attract those who are in your own situation.

This is where the importance of setting up a filter comes into place. 

A filter is nothing more than a system used to qualify potential matches. Most businesses should use a filter when they’re trying to fit people to certain roles.

Here’s a few examples of where filters could be used:

Recruiting In Direct Sales

For example, if you’re affiliated with an MLM company like Jeff was talking about, then you’ll want to filter the right people in. You’re looking for people who want to learn about the system and how to leverage it properly to grow their own business. What you’re not looking for is people who are naturally not coachable and rebel about everything. You want to surround yourself with other students of the craft.

As a Consultant

Likewise, if you’re a consultant, then you’ll want to use a filter to see if someone really wants to achieve a new version of whatever you’re helping them with. You’ll need to learn how to ask them qualifying questions about themselves, their business, and what they’re looking to achieve.

As a Doctor

Another example, let’s say you’re a doctor. You’d need to filter people based on their needs on whether or not you can help them. If you misdiagnose someone and give them bad advice on their next step, there’s a good chance you might be sued for malpractice.

In an Everyday Situation

Or here’s a final example. Let’s say you’re actually in HR for a company. Do you think you should hire people like yourself to fill in jobs in the company, or should you hire people who fit the characteristics of the role that needs to be filled. Obviously, you want to hire to the role and to do that, you’ll need a filter to find out if they fit. Otherwise, you’ll hire someone and they’ll either quit or be fired.

Action Steps

So, I hope those examples give you a bit of an idea of the importance of a filter in your business and perhaps in your life as well. My trajectory changed completely for the next 10 years after college. If it wasn’t for the input I received those years, I wouldn’t have started on my current path.

And because of that, I wouldn’t have been able to eventually realize that these people had used a filter on me – whether consciously or subconsciously.

So don’t throw people at the wall and see what sticks. Otherwise, you’ll get more people like yourself. If you’re trying to become a new version of yourself, that might not be ok.

Instead, learn to consciously use filters in your day to day life. If someone isn’t going in the direction you are and doesn’t have the same standards that you want, then there’s a good chance they’re going to be a drag on your life and your business.

Save Money, Feed People, Grow Your Business – How LVRG.IT is Helping the New Entrepreneur as a Social Venture with Cam Martinez (AoL 152)

Back in session 55, Laila and I had the opportunity to pick the brain of Summer Edwards. Outside of Veronica (who was still running her tech company), she was the first entrepreneur I had on the show who we could label as a social entrepreneur. This type of entrepreneur is someone who not only creates a business, but that business could be called a social venture – a business that has a social mission empowering it.

Since then, I’ve met all kinds of social entrepreneurs and they all have one thing in common. They’re creating something by themselves or with others that not only affects a large amount of people in a positive way, but is sustainable.

Traditionally when many nonprofits start out, they do so thinking that they’ll be funded by governmental grants or strictly through donations and fundraising. However, they tend to leave one concept on the table – partnering with companies who care about their cause.

In this session, we find out about a company which not only offers a great service through their membership, but has a passion in feeding people around the world. Obviously, they can’t do the work themselves, so that’s where a nonprofit who is already doing that comes into play.

It’s a win-win for both organizations.

So join me as I speak with one of the founders of LVRG, Cam Martinez, and learn more about his journey as a young entrepreneur and where this great idea came from.

Enjoy!

SPECIFICALLY, YOU’LL FIND OUT MORE ABOUT:

  • Has Cam always seen himself as running his own business? 10:43
  • What was it about Tai Lopez that restarted his interest in developing his own business? 13:12
  • What kind of barriers did he experience getting started in the business world? 16:06
  • How did Cam start his relationship with his future partner Sylvania in making lvrg.it? 18:46
  • What process did Cam and Sylvania utilize to find the right partner companies? 25:50
  • When did Cam realize that leveraging his network was vital to having success? 29:46
  • Why did Cam and Sylvania specifically partner with the nonprofit that they’re working with? 33:49
  • What’s Cam looking forward to in the near future? 38:21
  • If he could add a song, a book, and a film to the national curriculum, what would they be? 41:10
  • What message is out there which a disservice to youth? 42:54
  • What is something he believed when he was 18 but doesn’t believe today? 44:41
  • What tip does Cam have regarding traveling? 47:02
  • How can someone be a difference maker in their community? 48:41

ITEMS and PEOPLE MENTIONED IN THIS EPISODE:

Right click here and save-as to download this episode to your computer.

SHOW NOTE EXTRAS:

What is the 6 Figure Roadmap Podcast?

Andrew Deitsch interviews Cam

Cam Interviews Ryan Levesque

Cam Interviews John Lee Dumas


Thanks for Listening!

Thanks so much for joining us again this week. Have some feedback you’d like to share? Leave a note in the comment section below!

If you enjoyed this episode, please share it using the social media buttons you see at the top of the post.

Also, please leave an honest review for The AoL Podcast on iTunes! Ratings and reviews are extremely helpful and greatly appreciated! They do matter in the rankings of the show, and we read each and every one of them.

If you have any questions feel free to email them over via the email mentioned in the show or by our contact form.

And finally, don’t forget to subscribe to the show on CastboxiTunesStitcherPodBean, and/or Google Play Music. It’s absolutely free to do so.

A huge thank-you to you guys for joining us!

Cheers!

film distribution

Ray Murphy – That’s a Wrap! – An Insider’s Look at Production, Festivals, and Film Distribution (AoL 151)

As we learned in session 149 with the Shohawk Media founders, the film world can be amazing experience. But one thing is clear: it’s vital that as a filmmaker you take advantage of the right opportunities to get ahead and get things done. This includes properly funding your production, going to film festivals, and knowing the inner workings of film distribution.

For many new filmmakers, these things can seem overwhelming. Many questions come up. How will I fund this project? How will I find the right people to partner with to get it done? When it is done, how will I get it out to the masses?

Today’s guest is someone that has the chance to get to know the film industry inside and out. With 30+ years of experience, Ray Murphy has seen it all. From starting off in security to becoming a producer to now helping with distribution, he can help those projects that won’t get the time of day from the big studios.

In this conversation with Ray, we talk about that journey of his.

Not only is he a great resource for young and veterened filmmakers alike, but he does a great job of shining the light on parts of the industry outsiders, like myself, might not understand.

Enjoy!

SPECIFICALLY, YOU’LL FIND OUT MORE ABOUT:

  • Growing up in Brooklyn, NY, did Ray ever imagine seeing the level of success he’s seen in his career? 6:27
  • What was his first experience like in the film industry? 10:25
  • What are the definitions of the various titles of producer? 14:24
  • Has Ray ever considered being a director himself? 17:40
  • How can young film producers take their career to the next level? 25:06
  • Where does Murphy Media Distribution come in to help film producers? 27:40
  • What types of individuals is Ray looking to work with? 37:42
  • What’s going on in 2019 for Murphy Media Distribution? 41:40
  • Who are the three influencers who have helped Ray get to where he’s at today? 49:28
  • Is there anything Ray considers a waste of money that others buy regularly? 51:40
  • What advice does he hear adults giving kids that he calls BS on? 52:44
  • Is there anything he’d like to do that no one knows about? 54:29
  • Three truths that he’s learned over time that he’d want others to know? 55:30
  • What’s it mean to live a life of abundance? 57:49

ITEMS and PEOPLE MENTIONED IN THIS EPISODE:

Right click here and save-as to download this episode to your computer.

SHOW NOTE EXTRAS:

A Day in the Life of a Production Assistant

What does a Producer Actually Do?

How to Shoot a No-Budget Film

How to Start and Grow Your Own Production Company


Thanks for Listening!

Thanks so much for joining us again this week. Have some feedback you’d like to share? Leave a note in the comment section below!

If you enjoyed this episode, please share it using the social media buttons you see at the top of the post.

Also, please leave an honest review for The AoL Podcast on iTunes! Ratings and reviews are extremely helpful and greatly appreciated! They do matter in the rankings of the show, and we read each and every one of them.

If you have any questions feel free to email them over via the email mentioned in the show or by our contact form.

And finally, don’t forget to subscribe to the show on CastboxiTunesStitcherPodBean, and/or Google Play Music. It’s absolutely free to do so.

A huge thank-you to you guys for joining us!

Cheers!

internet business

Generation Freedom: Telling the Story of Online Entrepreneurs & Internet Business with Michael Hall and Chris Sakr (AoL 149)

For many, internet business is something that is pretty simple to understand. Create a digital product or service, get a couple of clients, and then scale. If done right, you can build yourself a great lifestyle.

The problem, however, is that the majority of the population doesn’t know that this opportunity is available. In fact, your own family or friends might still wonder about “that thing that you’re doing”.

Today’s subject and interview might just help people you know get a grasp on that thing.

In the documentary Generation Freedom, creators Michael Hall and Chris Sakr give us an overview of what it means to be an online entrepreneur.

Does it look entirely the same for everyone? Of course not. But there are certain ideas and concepts that we all have to know to comprehend the true powers of internet business.

In this chat, Harrison and I have the opportunity to chat with Michael and Chris and find out more about why they made the documentary, how they made it, and why they started filmmaking in the first place.

Enjoy!

SPECIFICALLY, YOU’LL FIND OUT MORE ABOUT:

  • How did Michael and Chris get into filmmaking so young? 8:54
  • What kept them from giving up on their aspirations? 12:35
  • Is there anything they would say to their past filmmaking peers who have put their dreams on the backburner? 17:06
  • What’s their view on the current state of Hollywood? 19:38
  • What do they think about leveraging Netflix and YouTube to get films out? 21:50
  • How did Shohawk Media get started? What kind of work can we expect from them? 26:59
  • How were Michael and Chris able to distribute the Generation Freedom documentary? 29:29
  • What kind of advice would they offer someone who’s struggling to make money from their art? 33:31
  • What was the process like for putting together the documentary? 39:12
  • Where does Michael and Chris see Shohawk in the future? 46:57
  • What song, book, and film should be added to the national curriculum? 50:08
  • Who’s their favorite filmmaker? 54:45
  • Is there an issue that more people should be talking about? 55:52
  • Something that has cost under $100 which has changed their life? 57:36
  • Are there any pieces of equipment that up and coming filmmakers should look into? 58:33
  • What’s the secret to achieving personal freedom? 1:01:04

ITEMS and PEOPLE MENTIONED IN THIS EPISODE:

Right click here and save-as to download this episode to your computer.

SHOW NOTE EXTRAS:

Generation Freedom Trailer

Who is Shohawk?

WhiskeyFest Northwest Promotional Video

Episode 1 of the Make This Movie Podcast


Thanks for Listening!

Thanks so much for joining us again this week. Have some feedback you’d like to share? Leave a note in the comment section below!

If you enjoyed this episode, please share it using the social media buttons you see at the top of the post.

Also, please leave an honest review for The AoL Podcast on iTunes! Ratings and reviews are extremely helpful and greatly appreciated! They do matter in the rankings of the show, and we read each and every one of them.

If you have any questions feel free to email them over via the email mentioned in the show or by our contact form.

And finally, don’t forget to subscribe to the show on CastboxiTunesStitcherPodBean, and/or Google Play Music. It’s absolutely free to do so.

A huge thank-you to you guys for joining us!

Cheers!

organic marketing

Organic Marketing Methods for the Artist and Musician

As an artist or musician, should you be using paid or organic marketing? Short answer: it depends. But let’s look at what might work for your situation.

Last night at this month’s Amplify Indy Experience, we showcased 2 speakers and 2 performances. The speakers consisted of an artist who works with steel as a canvas for his paintings and the president of the Indiana Filmmakers Network. We also had a couple of segments of future play performed as well as a band.

It was a pretty fun event!

As I was watching the event unfold, it occured to me that these individuals were very passionate about the work they were doing. Unfortunately, as I looked them up after the event, I realized that some of them weren’t doing much service to their work. They weren’t really getting the word out to the public that they existed!

Getting the Word Out

Since there’s not much difference from a business which fulfills a personal mission to being an artist, there are a lot of transferable skills and ideas that each side can teach each other. And to be frank, in the end, both want to do things they care about and they also want to make a living doing it.

So when it comes to getting the word out on what they’re doing, what can these artists learn from the online business world?

Well, as we know, there’s currently two types of marketing methods being used today. There’s paid and organic marketing. If you use Facebook and Instagram as a creative entrepreneur, you’ll probably see a lot of hype about paid marketing methods. But interestingly, a lot of people that started their online businesses 10 years ago used organic methods to to get the word out.

So which one should you be using to get your work out into the world?

I think it depends on what you’re trying to accomplish and what kind of resources you have available to you.

PAID OR ORGANIC marketing? WHICH should You use?

Let’s say that you’re just starting out like some of the artists from last night’s event. You’re going to approach things much different than someone who already has a following and money to spend.

For one, since you’re not pulling in much income from your work, there’s a pretty fair chance that you’ll be frugal about where you’re spending your time and resources. Since that’s the case, paid marketing might not be the best idea.

Another thing to consider is that even if you have a budget to spend on advertising from say a previous company or work, you have to consider if you have the systems in place to deal with a huge influx of interest and leads.

If you’re a painter like our artist, for example, then having this big campaign for your work might not make the most sense.

Why?

For starters, you can only physically produce so many pieces. However, if you were doing prints of this work and had a website set up that automatically took orders, then that might be a better match.

Of course, you’d have to think about how you’re making those prints. Are you physically making each one yourself or is a third party doing it? (Just make sure that third party is up to your standard in quality.)

Something else to consider is exclusivity. Do you want to even have prints and/or copies of your work out there? If not, then you’ll definitely want to work in the organic world vs blasting it out to a million people on Facebook and Instagram.

Types of Organic marketing

So, as we’ve looked at why you probably don’t want to touch paid marketing yet, let’s look at the options you have in organic marketing.

Simple Posts and Videos

You need to start somewhere. But where? Well, that’s a good question. There’s several answers to this, but a common one is start where you can post for free. There’s nothing wrong about posting on your FB personal profile or Instagram account. If you’re an artist, post about your process of creating the piece. Break it down about why you’re creating the piece that you’re creating. It has a story, share it.

Obviously, if you’d prefer to do it in video format, you can do that too on YouTube. There’s plenty of makers who do one project, talk about the process, and then move onto the next project.

Direct Outreach

So maybe, posting all the time on Facebook or Instagram isn’t your thing. Sure you might post something here and there, but you don’t want to run on some “fake” schedule. Maybe you don’t want to document EVERYTHING. Or maybe you’re more introverted and only want to talk about your work with those you think might benefit from it. If any of these sound familiar, then you might want to consider using my personal favorite of marketing, direct outreach.

Just like in the real world, there’s tons of groups on Facebook and LinkedIn. If we’re going with the painter example, search for a handful of groups that interest you. (Make sure you stick to only a handful however, you don’t want oversaturate your feed!!) Start participating in those groups regularly and before you know it, people look at you as an expert in your craft.

Once that’s the case and people are pretty familiar with you and your work, they might actually ask to have a commission done, or if your a musician, buy your album.

Make People Take Notice

When I was growing up, I remember receiving samples of products in the mail. Cereal seemed to have made it through a couple of times. Toothpaste was one we received at one point as well. And if I remember right, bars of soap were sent a couple of times as well.

What’s interesting is that I remember these particular products because they were in the mail. They stood out from everything else.

Back in first half of the 20th century, there used to be all kinds of ads that were placed on the side of the road. One of which I remember in particular was a product called Burma-Shave. They would have multiple red little signs spaced far enough apart that would only make sense if you were going 35 mph or more. These signs would actually spell out a short sentence and at the end of the series of signs there was always one that had the logo on it.

What do these promotions have in common? They were noticeable. They weren’t promoted like other items similar to them.

So, as an artist, how might you stick out from the pack? Perhaps if you’re a painter, you might go to an art fair. But on top of that, why don’t you paint while you’re there? Or if you’re a musician at a music festival, go out and meet the crowd before you play.

Leveraging Pre-Existing Networks, Local TV and Publications

If you’ve been in business before, you might have heard that it’s a good thing to own your own list. This is true for anyone who’s trying to make a living from their work.

For example, when Dane Maxwell started his music career a couple of years ago, he didn’t start from scratch. In fact, he used the list that he had already developed as he was building The Foundation. While on the surface the fans of each not be the same, there was in fact a lot of overlap because people knew Dane and wanted to see what he was up to next.

If you don’t have your own list, then there’s nothing wrong with using those of others. Whether it’s through an appearance on TV, or an editorial in a local magazine, take these opportunities to show your work. You never know who’s going to be in the audience!

Collaborate with other Artists

I’m sure you’ve heard songs over the years that are credit for one singer but are “featuring” someone else. Just like the previous examples, musicians often times partner with people who are more well known than they are. This gets them exposed to a larger audience.

Likewise, perhaps you’re a painter. Remember that thing about being noticed? Perhaps you can collaborate with other painters to make mural in your city or town? Or perhaps you can help host an event?

In the online entrepreneurial space, we would call these doing joint ventures. However, as a real world artist, you have so many more ways of working with others!

Action Steps

So there have it, folks. A few ways to get out into the world as a new artist or musician. If that doesn’t describe you, don’t worry about it! All of these are ideas that can be used in a regular business as well.

Again, I’d use these methods to build up whatever it is you’re doing before you start with the paid methods.

For one, you want to make sure that people want what you’re offering.

But two, you want to make sure that you have the structure (systems) in place that would allow you to benefit from it.

For example, if you were to do a webinar for a list of people who knew you from something else (like Dane), there’s a good chance they won’t buy your new thing. It’s not that they don’t like you, they’re just not interested in your new project. (There’s nothing wrong with that… not all of Dane’s followers from The Foundation days follow his music.)

However, if you were to use that same webinar with a well placed Facebook Ad which targeted the right demographic of people, then you might actually see a good ROI initially. Problem is, if you’re doing things manually on your end, it might be awhile before those folks who raise their hands as interested hear back from you. By the time they do, they might have moved on to something else. So, what looks like it was a great campaign at first, may end up not being as great because you weren’t able to follow through quickly.

Anywho, as usual, I could go on about this topic. But I hope that helps some of you struggling artists out there get your work to those people who need it!