You need to be a fanatic
So you want to beat out the competition and be considered the authority in your industry/field/niché – then you need to become a master of what you do! Not only that, but you need to have the level of awareness and branding that leaves no doubt of your mastery in the minds of your customers/clients.
Welcome back to the Dream Wit Dan blog everyone. I hope you’re all doing well. For those of you reading this ‘hot off the presses’ it is Monday! The day of the week where we all get back to ‘it’. Whatever ‘it’ is of course.
So many of my clients are business owners of one stripe or another. They all either want to get something off the ground, or take what they have to the next level. What they all want (or say they want) is to grow their business to the biggest it can be, affording them a life of abundance, purpose and joy.
Great! But how?
Well here’s the thing: no two businesses are really alike. Just like the individuals who make them up. Though obviously two can operate in very similar spheres and offer, for all intends and purposes, the same service.
What if you want to be the authority though? The Google, the Amazon, the Accenture Interactive…? How do you become the de facto port of call, for someone seeking the solution that you provide?
You have to become a master.
Now I suppose I ought to take a quick detour and tell you all about what inspired this article. I recently have the great opportunity to interview Josh Elledge for my Beyond Success Podcast. Josh is a master in his own right, conducting some 30 podcast interviews PER WEEK!! He is the founder of upmyinfluence.com a highly successful platform, designed to turn six-figure consultants into seven-figure rock stars.
Suffice it to say: he was a fabulous guest and there’s lots to be gleaned from our episode, besides today’s topic. I’ve put together a snippet from the interview here for you that talks about mastery:
As Josh talks about: becoming a master at something requires a fanaticism that goes beyond what most, or indeed all people would consider normal. In fact, it has to go further than that.
You have to be willing to cultivate what you do is such detail, that you’ll spend hours devoted to perfecting the imperceptible. Just as a world-class musician sweats over aspects of their technique that we can’t comprehend, you need to be that obsessed. Hone, refine and perfect. Dive as deep as you can!
What this affords you long-term though, is time. As with the story of the billionaire who had time to become the number one ranked player of Wii Tennis in the world; if you’re that good at what you do, you won’t have to spend much time doing it!
There is so much learned from mastery of a particular skill. This is how you become invaluable to your clients, especially in a B-to-B business, but the same applies everywhere really. If you can solve their problem effectively, efficiently and conclusively: they’ll never go anywhere else.
You have to be that person though! This is why I say: become a master, don’t chase another one.
Yes of course, we have to invest in our development and have mentors. That’s vital also, but it’s not the same as chasing someone else in your industry. If you look at the most recognisable brands or captains of industry, do you think they emulated someone else in their field to get there?! No. They saw others in their space and though: “how can we not only do it better, but do it so well; we become synonymous with what we do.”
It’s like Hoover right? Or I guess: Dyson is a more 21st century example…although I’d argue that’s really still a niche within a niche. Anyway: when I was growing up anyway, your Mum (or Mom in the US) would say: “get the Hoover!” or “Hoover your room!” She didn’t say: “Vacuum clean your room would you Daniel?” The brand was not only synonymous with vacuum cleaning, it’s very name became common parlance as a verb!
Today we say “Google it” rather than “look it up” or even “search for it online”. If I ask you “who makes the best watches in the world?” Without thinking you’ll probably say “Rolex”. Now this may or may not be true, but it’s a level of brand recognition that transcends the mere provision of goods or services.
OK – I know you’re probably not shooting for those heights (although, there’s nothing to stop you from doing so, least of all: me) but nevertheless the principal holds true.
What also holds true is that, in addition to becoming a master of what you do; you also have to invest a huge number of resources in marketing. This could be money, or your time, or skills – but unless people know about what you do, they can’t ask for your help.
Take the afore mentioned Rolex as an example: their success is largely due to their marketing. They tapped in to the pioneering spirit, making sure that their watches were on the wrists of pilots, divers, cross-channel swimmers, explorers and other highly visible, competent masters of their own field.
James Bond even wore one, though this was not a product-placement deal as you might assume these days, but more a happy accident. That said: it wouldn’t have happened had they not been the go-to brand for rugged, dependable timepieces. The watch you had if you were the best at what you did. Not “had to have” – had.
From there, they became a way for people to celebrate milestones in their life and/or careers. If you’re successful: you wear a Rolex. That’s the identity they’ve been able to craft for themselves.
There are other names in the luxury wristwatch game, many of whom offer more luxury, exclusivity and status…to those who know. But Rolex continues to and will always wear the crown (no small coincidence that their logo is one) because they absolutely nailed their brand awareness.
You have to do this too: become a master of your narrative and of your brand awareness.
Now this isn’t just about advertising, right? As Josh says: “advertising is a tax for being unremarkable.” This doesn’t mean that you don’t advertise, but it shouldn’t be your soul focus when it comes to soliciting for new clients. Advertising is the ‘action’ and as I’m always saying: this is the most and least important part of execution.
Least; because blind action is fruitful only be accident, and most; because nothing can happen without it.
You have to nail your narrative. What’s the story of what you’re selling? In the case of Rolex it was: be the best at what you do and demonstrate it by wearing one of our watches. In Josh’s case, he started with something a bit more humble. He knew that he didn’t have the money to throw at advertising, but he needed media coverage of his business to spread the word.
He had started out by solving a problem that he had and then leveraging that knowledge.
So he focussed on the story. He made his business newsworthy. He wanted a way of knowing when coupons were available and timing them with store sales. Simple. He created a system (Savings Angel) that did that automatically for people and that solving of a widespread problem for so many people, was a story worth telling.
As so many marketing experts will tell you: you’re selling who that person can be with your product or service. In this case – better off financially because you’ll pay less for what you buy from the store! In your case: you might simply be affording someone more time, because they can hire you to do a job that they don’t have the time for.
The next step up from that, and the one that is really scalable is skill! and this is why I say: become a master. Be the billionaire who has time to become the best in the world at Wii Tennis, because you’ve up-skilled to such a degree that your knowledge is invaluable to people (but of course, you can put a value on it).
Find a way to make it scalable (i.e. you don’t have to spend your time actually doing it, maybe because you’ve created a guide, written a book or have a team you’ve up-skilled to the same level) and you’ll have all the success, abundance, resources and time you need to become a master at something else.
Thank you so much for reading this blog, from the bottom of my heart! If you enjoyed this, I produce regular Do It With Dan blogs, podcasts and videos. I have three books published now: Stepping Beyond Intention, The Dreamer’s Manifesto and From Time-to-Time (a really great book on time mastery). All of these are here to serve you and make you part of the journey as well.
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