I Can’t Stand When People Are Vague

by Cathy on February 8, 2015

You know what really pisses me off?

When coaches tell you what to do, but not how to do it.

So here’s part two of last week’s topic:  How Much Is Too Much?.

And if you weren’t interested in the topic the first time, then you sure don’t need to read this.

For everyone else, some more about promoting your offers because it’s an important topic and if it’s not done well, it can kill the success of your program.

Here’s the big mistake so many entrepreneurs make in their business—they don’t take the time to cultivate relationships and offer value to their list on a regular basis so that when they have something to sell, it feels salesey to send e-mails to their list multiple times.

Because then you’re just showing up in their inbox to ask them to buy from you.

And when you’re in a helping or healing service that just doesn’t feel right.

I can’t tell you how many people I see who just use their newsletter when they’re promoting a program.

If you’re marketing correctly—you’re providing value to your audience on a regular basis and when you’re promoting a program, you should still be providing value.

If you write a newsletter with information and takeaways about the topic you’re covering in your program then it shouldn’t feel weird to send it.

You continue to provide value, and have a narrative in all your e-mails about your program.

Your newsletter should offer one of following three things ALWAYS—

education
inspiration
entertainment

If you’ve taken the time to communicate with your list on a regular basis (whether it’s once a week, twice a month or once a month) they don’t mind hearing from you when you’re promoting a program even if the program is not of interest to them.

They know you care about them because you’ve shown them that through your communication.

Here’s the thing that doesn’t work: promoting a paid program on social media.

The strategy I’m giving you here is when you’re doing a small program and only promoting to your list which is a soft-launch.

If you want to go outside your list and are doing a bigger launch, then there’s a different strategy.

And I’ll be going over that in the next newsletter so stay tuned.
Questions, comments?

Let me know what you’re struggling with in terms of promoting your programs in the comments below.

 

 

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How Much Is Too Much?

by Cathy on February 1, 2015

IMG_2536I’ve been doing some speaking lately on my favorite topic of Painless Promotion and I’d like to share some of it with you here.

I’ve had many clients come to me after they’ve put together great programs that no one signed up for. They’re usually in despair because they’ve made the assumption that people don’t want what they’re offering.

If you’ve got a good offer and it’s supported with compelling copy, people still might not buy and there are two reasons for that:

  • Not enough eyeballs have seen it
  • Those people haven’t seen it enough times.

It usually has nothing to do with the content or topic.

It just wasn’t promoted properly.

I have a client—who is like a lot of the people I work with—who offers a service to people that not only helps them but makes a huge difference in their lives. She’s very good at what she does and is a tremendous resource for information about her industry. I have nothing but respect for her.

And yet, she—like a lot of my other clients who are in the helping professions—is very trepidacious about promoting herself. When we started our work together she told me that she was sending her newsletter once a quarter.

“Once a quarter? Really?” I shrieked.

“Well, I’m on lists where I’m getting e-mails once or twice a week from people and it’s just more stuff to read. I don’t want to be the person to clog people’s inboxes —I don’t want to be off putting.

I’ve Heard This A Lot

This is one of the big reasons why a lot of entrepreneurs aren’t successful. They think if they send more than one e-mail about a program that they’re being pushy.

So I asked her, “what do are you afraid is going to happen if you send out a newsletter twice a month or once a week?”

Her answer was that she thinks people will get pissed off.

“And if they get pissed off, then what?”

“They’ll unsubscribe from my list.”

“So you’re assuming that’s going to be their reaction.”

“Yes.”

“But you have no idea if that’s true or not right?”

“Right.”

“So you’re going to base marketing your business on a couple of nameless faceless people on your list who MIGHT behave in a certain way?

I could hear that it was making sense to her. And I continued:

I’m wondering how much of the actions you take to market your business will continue to be based on what you think people might do.

If what you’re doing to market your business is annoying to someone on your list then you don’t need them there.

You only want people on your list who are interested in what you’re putting out and who want to hear from you on a regular basis.

Otherwise what’s the point?

Here’s the thing, if you’ve been staying in relationship with your list over time, offering education, entertainment, or inspiration—then even if they’re not interested in your current offer, hearing from you about it isn’t going to make them unsubscribe.

On the other hand, if you’re only sending stuff out when you’re promoting something—those who aren’t interested might unsubscribe.

Good marketing is nothing more than cultivating a relationship.

And yes, you can also be offering value to your list and still over-promote. I don’t need to get an e-mail every day on the week prior to your launch reminding me to sign-up.

Yes, there is such a thing as overkill.

This is never the problem with the people I work with.

It’s always the opposite.

I notice that those who are really doing something amazing are the ones who have the most difficult time putting their work out there. I understand the vulnerability there, I really do, but I’d like to offer a different perspective. Instead of worrying about how people will react to getting an e-mail about your program or services, I’d like you to think about the following:

There are people out there who are looking for exactly what you do, exactly the way you do it. And if you’re not visible they can’t find you.

People need to see something multiple times before they take action on it.

Information overload. Everyone is so busy that it’s easy to lose track of things. If they’re on your list, they’re interested in what you’re doing and they’re glad you’re reminding them.

If you have something that helps others, then not letting people know about it is actually with holding help from them.
When you’re feeling like you don’t want to put another Facebook update about your program or send that e-mail again to your list, please…

Send It Anyway.

Just remember—your work could be the answer to someone else’s prayers.

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What Jeff Daniels Taught Me About Perspective

by Cathy on December 24, 2014

2014-01-18 11.50.11
Recently I read article in New York Magazine about the actor Jeff Daniels.  You know, Jeff Daniels, star of the HBO series Newsroom and all around amazing actor?
Yes, that Jeff Daniels.
I was surprised to learn that prior to starring in Newsroom, he considered his career to be marginal.  Even after lead role in the movies Terms of Endearment, The Purple Rose of Cairo, Gettysburg, Dumb and Dumber, and Something Wild he’s felt disappointed, exploited and underpaid.
He describes himself as someone who wasn’t sought out for his ability, but used to fill a role.  He accepted $75,000 for his role in Dumb and Dumber while Jim Carrey was paid $7 million.
Really?
How could this amazing artist who is also a celebrity have been feeling so disappointed in the trajectory of his career?
How is it that I see such a different version of him than the one he sees?
And then I thought of the many, many conversations I’d had with friends over the years regarding my business and my life and how I’d been seeing things from the same bizarro perspective as Jeff Daniels.
Totally twisted.
When I was working at my last full-time job, I decided to do my one-woman show because I wanted to feel like that job didn’t own me—I wanted to reconnect to that part of myself.  So I got a director and went through the four week rehearsal process nights and weekends and put on the show.
Afterward, one of my friends said to me “I think you’re amazing and I really envy you.  You’re the only person I know who is disciplined enough to have a day job and still do their art.”
And instead of taking that beautiful compliment, all I could say was, “but I feel like a loser still working at this day job.”
I’ve spent so much time judging myself and it always comes down to the same thought:
You should be further along than you are.
The Buddhist teacher Steven Levine is quoted as saying
“Hell is wanting to be other than where you are.”
There’s a part of me that wants to say that’s a little harsh, but if you’re on a spiritual path, you understand exactly what this means.
It doesn’t mean that you never want more for yourself but instead that you are fully present and appreciative of where you are in any given moment.
It’s about walking in gratitude and seeing everything as a gift–even the difficulties.
I was at a ceremony for the Winter Solstice on Sunday led by a shaman and one of the things she said was:
Don’t be stopped by the place you occupy in life, instead tune into the fire in your belly and let that lead you.
And it made me think, it’s not the place we occupy in life that stops us, but the story we tell ourselves about that place.
It’s how we judge that place and compare ourselves with others that keeps us small, scared, and stuck.
And then we become trapped in the story and it becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy.
When you’re in a soul business–you are the parent and your business is the child.  How will a child thrive if the parent is critical and not accepting?
What story are you telling yourself about your place in the world that isn’t serving you?
What would you need to let it go?
If fear were the biggest illusion and the greatest lie of all time, how would you choose to live your life?  If you knew failure is impossible, what would you do? - Jackson Kiddard
I’m wishing you the same thing I’ll be working on for myself which is not just acceptance of where I am, but appreciation.
Appreciation for all that you’ve done, all that you are, and all that the world has yet to acknowledge.
Don’t wait for the world or circumstances to validate you or  show you appreciation.
Do it for yourself.
Now.
Love,
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Anyone who knows me is very aware that winter is a real struggle for me so I’m on the look out for things to be happy about.  :)
The show that nature puts on every single night outside my bedroom window is pretty amazing.  I’ve made a ritual of going in there at sunset and watching.
So gorgeous…
Lately, I’ve been thinking a lot about what really stops a person from going for what they want in their business.
Where do they get stopped, and what’s really underneath the issue?
 
I’ve been blessed in the work I do to be privy to so many business back-stories.
Whether it’s from clients I’ve coached or friends who are also entrepreneurs I’ve noticed that when people get stuck in their business it usually is for one of two reasons:
  • They don’t know what strategy to use.
  • They have a  fear of being seen and because of that, they don’t put themselves out there.
I think there can be a lot of reasons why someone is afraid to be seen.
They’re afraid of being criticized, ridiculed or challenged.

No One Really Cares About My Work

But the thing I see with so many of the people I work with is that they don’t want to put themselves out there because they think that their business is just another version of what so many others are doing.
They don’t want to add to all the noise that’s already out there.
They think others who are more visible have already said what needs to be said.
And because of that they’re discouraged.
And I totally get it.  
The thought, “nobody is going to care about this because it’s already being done” stopped me dead in my tracks more times than I’d like to admit.
It’s the reason I would decide at the last minute not to go to networking events.
It’s what fueled my writer’s block…for YEARS.
Not having a way to differentiate myself from all the other business coaches out there undermined my confidence as an entrepreneur and held me back for a long time.
Think about it, if you were the only person in the world who did the work you do, how would that change the way you run your business?
Pretty liberating isn’t it?
When you’re the only one doing what you do you automatically stand out.
And when you stand out you feel confident about promoting your business.
And when you promote your business, the people who need you find you and you make money.
It can be hard to articulate what makes you different or to identify your unique point of view on your work because you’re not seeing it from an objective point of view.
It took me years of trial and error along with begging for feedback from people about my work for me to finally start to get some clarity on how what I did was different from what other coaches were doing.
It was a long frustrating process.
And the same thing might be happening to you.
What does it actually look like in your day to day life?
  • You feel totally lost and have no idea don’t know what to do to take the next step in your business.
  • You know what you need to do but can’t get yourself to do it because you can’t focus on anything.
  • Something just feels “off” and you don’t know what it is.
I have worked with many people who were just trying to get clients when in fact the work they were doing was so much bigger than that.
Many of them were stewarding a movement.
But they weren’t able to see it from the perspective they had at the time.
And because of that, they weren’t taking the right actions in their business because they didn’t see where they were headed.
I want to help you stand in the power of the work you do, connect to your biggest vision, and help your business stand out from everyone else who does the same thing.
Wishing you the vision to see all that is possible for you-

Love,
Cathy

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How To Come Up With Something That’s Never Been Done Before

September 13, 2014

This is a photo my husband took this summer when we were in Monument Valley. There was something about being in such wide open space that allowed me to let go of anything I was worrying about and just be with the experience. It was the best place to begin the summer of I don’t […]

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What’s The Burning Need To Be Successful Covering Up In Your Life?

September 6, 2014

It never fails—every time I’m fearful about putting something out there, it ends up getting an enormous response. After a long hiatus from my newsletter, I wanted to let people know where I’d been all summer. I was very reluctant to tell the story but I did. Based on what came into my inbox after […]

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The Summer of I Don’t Know

September 4, 2014

Just as many of you are in the midst of vacation, I’m finally returning from an almost 8 week hiatus from my business. I’ve taken this time off to disconnect, get some distance and take a long hard look at where I am and where I see myself going with my business.   I wanted […]

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Are You Missing This Important Branding Strategy?

March 13, 2014

Why Trusting Yourself IS a Business Strategy… We are all at our core deeply creative beings.  Cooking a meal, arranging a closet, taking photos, all of these are engaging our creativity.  Some of us live operate from logic (left-brain) and some of us live from our creative side (right brain), but regardless of what hemisphere […]

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Quit Doing This, It’s Killing Your Business

February 28, 2014

I had a big shift in my business at the end of 2013 and because of it, I’ve had an influx of clients, and opportunities in the last three months without having to put in a lot of effort. OK, I actually put in no effort. No kidding. So what WAS the shift? In my […]

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How Come You’re Still Doing Your Own Marketing?

February 27, 2014

In the last couple of months I’ve come into contact with a few people who, when they heard that I’m a marketing coach responded with:  “Oh, I don’t want someone to teach me how to market my business, I want to find someone to do the marketing for me and then I just do my […]

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