Dare To Be Different And Get People Talking | The Melting Pot Newsletter | #65
WHY YOUR COMPANY NEEDS A ‘TALK TRIGGER’
Creating a buzz. Getting people talking. Doing something remarkable. This is what you want for your business. In a world where 90% of purchase decisions are influenced by word of mouth, you need something that sparks conversation and galvanises action. You need a ‘talk trigger’.
I came across this idea quite recently, when I was interviewing Graham Davies, the accidental orator, for my Melting Pot Podcast. One of his book recommendations was ‘Talk Triggers’ by Jay Baer and being an avid reader, I demolished the book in one sitting. It’s brilliant. It lays out a strategy for generating crucial customer chatter. Using Baer’s words, ‘same is lame’. Nobody says, ‘Let me tell you about this perfectly adequate experience I had last night.’ Businesses need to dare to be different.
This was a lightbulb moment for me. It put a new perspective on some of my own experiences as MD of Rackspace and Peer 1. I’m now adding it to my coaching conversations with clients. It’s not enough to have a differentiated strategy. You also need to identify your talk triggers.
Overcoming Imposter Syndrome as an Entrepreneur
Todd Palmer is the president and CEO of Extraordinary Advisors, a business that works with entrepreneurs to help them work on themselves as leaders, in order to make changes within their own business.
“It’s like a friend of mine tells me, I help leaders get their act together so they can get stuff done in their business.”
Todd carved out his career placing highly skilled individuals in Detroit during a recession. But it wasn’t always plain sailing to get included in the Inc 5000 five times out of six. He suffered badly with imposter syndrome, “I thought I should have all the answers for all the people and all their issues all the time, and I shit all over myself thinking I should have all these things, when in reality nobody has all the answers to everything that comes up.”
He began working with a business coach and quickly realised he’d hired a toxic group of employees and had to fire them, restarting his company from scratch. Since then he’s gone from strength to strength and now coaches other entrepreneurs, helping them overcome their own insecurities and feelings of imposter syndrome, in order to fix themselves and ultimately their business.
And because Todd’s in the recruitment game he and Dom talk about how to hire and retain great talent, as well as the common mistakes entrepreneurs make when hiring talent. This is a great conversation, we hope you enjoy listening to Todd as much as we did.
Follow Your Different™ Podcast is a celebration of people, ideas and companies that stand out. A leader in the category “dialogue podcasts,” it feels like eavesdropping on a surprisingly captivating, candid, insightful, no-BS and conversation. Christoper Lochhead features legends whose names you will know and everyday legends who you’ll love getting to know. New York Times Bestselling author Hal Elrod calls it “one of the best podcasts of all time”, NBA Legend Bill Walton calls Lochhead “an exploding star – a quasar across the sky”, Fast Company Magazine calls him “a human exclamation point”, The Marketing Journal says he’s “one of the best minds in marketing” and The Economist says he’s, “off-putting to some”.
When I’m building a new organizational structure together with a leadership team, someone usually makes this observation: “In this new structure, who actually owns the customer?” I hear this often enough that I want to address it. Before responding, I first try to get a shared definition so I’ll ask them them to clarify: “Great question. What do you mean specifically by ‘own the customer’?”
Businesses put an awful lot of effort into meeting the diverse needs of their stakeholders — customers, investors, employees, and society at large. But they’re not paying enough attention to one ingredient that’s crucial to productive relationships with those stakeholders: trust.
In the past few decades, the fortunate among us have recognised the hazards of living with an overabundance of food (obesity, diabetes) and have started to change our diets. But most of us do not yet understand that news is to the mind what sugar is to the body. News is easy to digest. The media feeds us small bites of trivial matter, tidbits that don’t really concern our lives and don’t require thinking. That’s why we experience almost no saturation. Unlike reading books and long magazine articles (which require thinking), we can swallow limitless quantities of news flashes, which are bright-coloured candies for the mind. Today, we have reached the same point in relation to information that we faced 20 years ago in regard to food. We are beginning to recognise how toxic news can be.
At a young age, Nigel Bennett was shocked to witness first-hand the real impact of oil spills on our natural world. After almost being shot down by FARC guerrillas on the Venezuela-Colombia border and being forced to escape Egypt while working for his father’s oil spill contingency planning company, he decided to break away and start Aqua-Guard Spill Response. Aqua-Guard now provides equipment and services that protect water, the planet’s most precious resource, in 104 countries.
Take That Leap recounts Nigel’s unanticipated adventures as an entrepreneur, emerging philanthropist and always avid outdoorsman. Get inside his head as he negotiates deals with the big boys and wrestles with the myths surrounding work/life balance and being an entrepreneur. Follow this daredevil as he tests his limits in extreme outdoor adventures, builds homes for the homeless with his wife and children, and discovers his big “Why?” with the indigenous people of the Amazon.
You probably hate giving presentations. You probably hate listening to them too. Why? Because most business presentations are too long, too detailed, too boring…and submerged under a blizzard of PowerPoint. But the single most important presentational tool known to man isn’t a slideshow. It’s you. Whether you’re speaking to one person across a table, 20 people in a boardroom or 1,000 people in a ballroom, it’s all about the words you say and how you say them. The Presentation Coach shows you how to use what you’ve already got to give you clarity, confidence and impact in every speaking challenge you will ever face.
MEANINGFUL ACTION FOR MONDAY
Understanding your core customer will set you up nicely for growth in 2020. It’s the keystone of any strategy to start with your customer. ‘The riches are in the niches’ as our American friends would say. Don’t focus on your average customer or even your biggest customer – work out what your ideal customer would buy from you at maximum profit and move forwards from there.
At Peer 1, we created a compelling proposition for hosted e-commerce clients and at Rackspace we honed in on the customers prepared to pay a premium for better service. One of my Roundtable clients, T-Tech, are an MSP that found rapid growth by positioning themselves in front of accountancy firms. They doubled their business because they were no longer generic.