Earlier this week, my mentor Ray Edwards produced a podcast called “What Is Your Personal Code of Conduct?”
In this episode, he challenged listeners that the way we think today controls how we live in the future.
This train of thought aligns with the saying "as a man thinks, so he is."
Back in 1903, James Allen wrote a book on this concept.
There’s even a verse in Proverbs that speaks to this. (Proverbs 23:7)
No matter what philosophy you follow in your personal life and business — you can count on the fact that whatever you put into your mind and body will shows itself outwardly.
Making a Life Change
I’m reminded of this lady who was approaching her 50th birthday and was the heaviest she’d ever been in her life.
She was fat and miserable.
With that milestone birthday quickly approaching, she knew she had to make a choice.
She could live life "fat and 50," or "fit and 50."
Determined to make a change, she:
She did more than think about the plan. She took action on that plan.
The goal-seeking place she found herself in was uncomfortable.
The new plan she embarked upon was hard.
Every day was a challenge.
She found herself doing the Texas two-step - taking one step forward and two steps back.
Some people tried to discourage her, while others encouraged her to cheat.
No matter what happened — she was determined to stay the course.
The journey took her almost two years, but she finally reached her goal.
She went from a ladies size 18 to a ladies size 4-6.
She reached her goal by changing her food intake to a health-focused lifestyle, and working out at the gym five days a week. (Translation for guys: She lost almost 100 pounds.)
The feeling of success was empowering and life-changing.
I know this to be true because that woman was me.
Here I am almost five years later, and I can genuinely say I’m not that fat and miserable woman anymore.
Achieve Success By Setting Goals
I’ve learned that by changing my focus, making a plan, and sticking to it — I can and do achieve results.
The beautiful thing is that this concept applies to all aspects of my business and my personal life.
As Ray said in the podcast, “Change your thought patterns to shape the life you want.”
A Challenge for You
Do you have something you need to accomplish in your personal life or business?
Are there goals you know you need to create a plan to achieve?
One way to change your mindset is to create your code of conduct.
There is no set rule for the length of your list. Try to write out 7, 10, or 20 goals.
Make it as long as you need it, but no longer than that.
If you haven’t created your code of conduct before, let me challenge you to stop right now and write out your list of goals.
How to Stay the Course
To make the most of this exercise, take this a step further and:
Try these steps for 21 days. I guarantee you can and will see transformation occur in your personal and business life.
My Personal Code of Conduct
Feel free to use my own list as encouragement, a starting point for your own list, and to hold me accountable.
Here is my code of conduct.
Need help writing your code of conduct? Want someone to help keep you accountable?
Let's connect and help each other achieve success.
Many business owners and entrepreneurs are focused on building their lists. (Aren’t we all?!) Growing email lists is the holy grail of online marketing.
One effective way to grow your email list is by creating a lead magnet.
But What is a Lead Magnet Anyway?
You’ve probably heard the term, but do you really know what it means and how to use the lead magnet once you’ve created it?
A lead magnet is free valuable content you give to your target audience in exchange for their email.
It is important to note that the actual form where people write their email address is not your lead magnet.
Your ethical bribe targets a problem that a specific audience needs solved with insights they can quickly implement.
There are many types of “free gifts” or “irresistible bribes” you can offer including, but not limited to, checklists, cheatsheets, discounts, eBooks, free consultations, reports, resource guides, short online video training, swipe files (aka templates), etc.
No matter what kind of opt-in incentive you use for your freemium content, you need a strategy to determine the best way to get it into the hand of your potential customers.
Before you create your lead magnet or strategy to distribute it, pause to determine what type of lead magnet might attract your target audience. You want to make sure you create something they are to certain to find useful. If it doesn't attract them - it won't work.
Once you’ve created the opt-in, you can promote your lead magnet in a wide variety of ways. Let’s look at some options to consider for both your website and your social channels.
Promoting On Your Website
Since your website is your own personal platform that you control, you want to use it to promote your “free gift” as much as possible. You can place your lead magnet:
Promoting On Your Social Outlets
You can also promote your “freemium” through your social channels.
But keep in mind that social media outlets should be used as a mechanism to drive traffic to your landing pages and website. They should not be used as your primary platform.
Why? Because social media platforms are always changing the rules for how they operate.
You could invest a lot of money and time working within one-or-two of your social channels, only to have the platform change operations and lose all the hard work you’ve done. (Think about what Facebook recently did.)
Here are some ways to promote your "ethical bribe" through your social channels:
Don't Focus On Advertising While Growing Your List
Notice that I didn’t mention spending money on social advertising to promote your lead magnet. This was not an oversight. I left it out on purpose.
Promoting your lead magnet to grow your list requires strategy, time, and A/B testing. And your lead magnet should be just ONE part of your overall marketing strategy.
Paid advertisements can work once you’ve developed a strategic plan for something like a full-blown product launch.
So how can you make a lead magnet work for you to grow your list? Work with your marketing person to methodically plan out the best opt-in content for your audience, create it, then strategically place it in the places previously mentioned.
Over time you are certain to see your list grow, provided your free lead magnet solves a problem for your target market.
Remember when your vision was just an idea? It probably seems like a long time ago.
Now you’ve invested your time to create a viable offering that solves problems for others in a very unique way.
Your brand is poised for success and on the runway for high growth. But how do you spread the word and connect with your customers?
You’ve tried writing your own blog posts, emails, and website copy—but the words don’t flow.
Let’s face it, you’re an expert about your business, but not the best at writing copy.
You need a copywriter who can help you build brand awareness and open the top of your sales funnel.
Let’s look at why you need to hire a copywriter:
You’re Too Busy.
You are focused on keeping the various aspects of your business going. You’re a visionary who likes to create and move onto the next thing. Writing adds one more task to your already full plate.
Imagine all that you could accomplish if you delegated copywriting to a professional.
You’re Too Close to Your Solution.
You’ve created everything about your product offerings. You know it forwards and backwards. But you’re so close to it that you have a difficult time summarizing the finer points in easy-to-understand sound bites.
Imagine having a reliable copywriter who can create compelling content that connects with your audience in a way they understand.
You’re Focused On the Wrong Thing.
You love having conversations about your business and why your product is awesome. In fact, you'll tell anyone that listens. But you don’t understand why people tend to glaze over mid-convo. As Dale Carnegie said "People aren't interested in you. They're interested in themselves." You need a well-trained copywriter to help you deliver valuable content that speaks to your customers needs and wants.
Imagine your sense of relief when you allow a copywriter to help you address your customers problems and aspirations.
You Have Good Intentions, But…
You keep putting the copywriting tasks on your plate, but they keep getting pushed to the bottom. You know they need to get done, but something always manages to take priority.
Imagine how productive you’ll feel when you allow your copywriter to take the writing albatross off your plate.
You Need to Stand Out From the Crowd.
Your message is good, but it sounds like everyone else. You need to make sure your offering is uniquely positioned, so the right customers are drawn to you.
Imagine hiring a copywriter knows what makes your brand different because she has researched your competitor offerings and customer needs.
You Need to Hire a Copywriter.
Your business success depends on your brand’s ability to connect with your customers.
Increase your brand awareness and bottom line by hiring a copywriter that produces results.
I’ve spent years turning high-level vision into actionable soundbites by clarifying messages and creating value-added content for business owners and entrepreneurs.
I can do it for you, too.
Stop staring at the page waiting for words to appear magically. Schedule a discovery call with me today.
Here’s what to do next:
I look forward to connecting with you.
Have You Read Any of These?
Entrepreneur James Altucher once said, “Read every book, blog, website, whatever, about what you want to be an expert in.”
When I dove into full-time copywriting and marketing, books became some of my best friends. They spoke to me in ways others could not. Books are constant companions when there is no one on the other end of the phone to call. They are a click away on my iPad when I travel and while I stand in line to buy my bottled water.
Here are some of my favorites. Whether you’re looking for a fresh source of inspiration or education, you’ll want to check these out. There are tons of great titles out there, but these have been really meaningful to me.
Book 1: How to Write Copy That Sells by Ray Edwards
Writing copy that sells without seeming “salesy” can be tough, but is an essential business skill. How To Write Copy That Sells is a step-by-step guide to writing fast, easy-to-read, effective copy. Inside, you'll find copywriting techniques for email marketing, web sites, social media, sales pages, ads, and direct mail.
Two of my favorite insights from Ray’s book are:
“Email marketing is not dead. Email is still the number one way to get things sold on the Internet. Email works because it is personal. Used properly, email can multiply your business results.”
“Bullet points are crucial to the success of your online sales copy. They are one of the most under-used, yet most powerful persuasion weapons in your copywriting arsenal.”
I highly recommend Ray’s book. It took my writing to a different dimension. You can get it on Amazon. Here’s the link.
Book 2: Launch by Jeff Walker
"Launch" will build your business---fast. Whether you’ve already got a business or you’re itching to start one, this is a recipe for getting more traction.
One of my favorite quotes from Jeff’s book is “There’s an old adage among direct marketing copywriters that if you have a hardware store and you’re selling drills, you’re not really selling drills—you’re selling “holes in wood.” People want to buy an end result. It doesn’t matter what you’re selling. People aren’t so interested in the actual tool. The tool is just a means to get that result. And that’s what you want to sell them.”
While Jeff’s book focuses on launching a product, it is ultimately about copywriting. You can find it on Amazon. Here’s the link.
Book 3: Building a StoryBrand by Donald Miller
Donald Miller’s StoryBrand process is a revolutionary method for connecting with customers. It provides the ultimate competitive advantage, revealing the secret for helping customers understand the compelling benefits of using your products, ideas, or services.
Two of my favorite quotes from this book are:
“Your customer should be the hero of the story, not your brand. This is the secret every phenomenally successful business understands.”
“Brands that realize their customers are human, filled with emotion, driven to transform, and in need of help truly do more than sell products; they change people.
At its core, StoryBrand is about clarifying your message and writing copy that gets results. Get your copy of StoryBrand on Amazon. Here’s the link.
What are some of your favorites? I’d love to hear them — especially if you’re in a season of transition. Leave a comment below!
In case you’re just getting to know me, let me catch you up.
I’m a professional copywriter and marketer that helps connect brands with their customers. But I’m also an avid scuba diver and underwater photographer with more than 600 dives under my belt. In other words, if there is a warm body of water with a reef nearby, I’d much rather be exploring it than walking on land.
Now scuba diving is probably the last thing on your to-do list. I realize it isn’t a common hobby. Every person is drawn to different hobbies and pastimes that make us do a happy dance, which is what makes the world go round.
Think about these facts for a minute: 70% of the earth is covered by water. Of the 7 billion people on the planet, only 6 million are scuba divers. This fact means that a lot of people are not playing underwater tourist. (Guess that keeps the underwater-ways less crowded, huh?!)
As life tends to provide pivots and turns that are out of our control, this avid diver ended up on land without diving for six long months from the fall until recently. So you can imagine my deep desire to get back into the deep blue.
We planned our first dives of the year to occur Memorial Day weekend at our favorite “local” dive spot — Jupiter Dive Center — which is currently a quick 7.5-hour drive away from our house. Unfortunately, the forecast showed a possible tropical storm that could make diving a bit of a challenge.
Making a Choice
Just like every business faces continual decisions, we had a choice to make about our diving trip. Should we steer clear of the ocean altogether based on the inclement weather forecast, or should we push forward to see what would happen?
An analysis of the options helped us decide to stay the course and make the drive from Charleston to Jupiter. While that may sound simple, it wasn’t. Driving this distance for diving requires a dive gear checklist, as well as advanced planning to coordinate multiple things, e.g., the hotel, the dive charter, packing for ourselves and furry sons, etc.
Facing Your Fears
With choppy waters and 3-4 foot waves, the 40-foot boat took us away from land into an overcast day with patches of rain on the horizon. Like any business situation, at every step of the journey, we had a choice of stopping or preserving through the less than ideal situation.
Our three-tank dive started by diving the Deep Ledge. This dive site is where the big fish (aka sharks and Goliath groupers) are known to hang out.
This is also the same place Robert and I dove last year where I unexpectedly plummeted to the bottom of the ocean and got a nosebleed in my mask as two huge bull sharks were passing by. This experience brought on a bonafide panic attack that found me reciting every scripture I’ve ever memorized to get me through the situation. (You can read about that past adventure here.)
I knew that if I didn’t jump back into the blue and face my fears—I would never grow and learn from the experience. So I did just that, I dove in with a new mindset to overcome any previous challenges.
Oddly enough, while everything went smoothly, we never saw any sharks or Goliaths. In fact, the only thing we saw were …. other divers floating in the abyss. It was an odd feeling. Oh, and the water temp was 12+ degrees colder than we anticipated, which created an entirely different dynamic.
Amazing Dive Stories
When all was said and done, we chalked up this three-tank diving adventure to one of those amazing dive stories you share with others who will listen. You know, the kind of stories that begin like: “Remember when we decided to dive in a tropical storm?”
Of course, that raises eyebrows, and people typically lean in closer as they want to hear more. This is the pivotal point where you can embellish your “fish tale,” or tell it like it really happened.
In our case, we honestly had no idea the tropical storm—that was nearly 250 miles away—would have an impact on the waters we were exploring. Unfortunately, it did in, and in a big way.
The waters were cold. This is especially challenging when warm temps are expected. The visibility was cloudy, and it was dark like diving at dusk. The impending storm made the sharks ping around the reefs like popcorn. In the end, there were no underwater photos worth sharing, Robert got hypothermia, and I felt like a popsicle.
Planning Your Next Adventures
When you have experiences like these, you have a choice to make. You can stop dead in your tracks, sell your gear, and never go diving again. OR you can chalk it up to experience, reflect on what you learned, and start planning your next adventure.
Perhaps you’ve had similar experiences in the workplace? Have you prepped for a meeting with an important client, boss, or prospect—only to have hidden agendas appear out of nowhere. (Yeah, I thought so.)
Whether you’re in the ocean diving or the office meeting with someone—you must learn to face your fears, evaluate your experiences, and plan your next moves.
Here are some quick tips you may want to consider:
No matter what the situation in business, life, or the actual ocean—you can always persevere against the odds.
Does your copywriting and marketing help your business navigate your sea of customers? I can help you with that, by doing it for you or coaching you through the process. Let me help you.