Published by Matt Church – Founder on 24 February 2021
As you know Lisa O’Neill and I are taking turns sharing thoughts on what it takes to be commercially successful as a thought leader running a practice.
This week I wanted to share some thinking on the subtle ways we can position and invite people into our world. Two favourite strategies of ours are case studies and interviews.
Let’s suppose you are moving into a new market or feel that a direct ‘please buy this’ is uncool (which it most often is), then you need subtle ways to engage with the market, gentle activities that respect the buyer’s sovereignty. Remember, you don’t need to convince anyone you are of value if you stand in the conviction of your value. Our Push/Pull Authority Model outlines this process visually.
Back to the two subtle positioning activities every thought leader can employ.
The Case Study: An email signature at the bottom of a newsletter or a social media post that says something like: “Hi everyone, we are looking for 5 clients to become case studies in our new XYZ program. Just realise we are exploring this as a new idea and as such will be asking you for feedback and appreciating people with an open mind joining us.”
You then get to run a pilot, what we call a ‘busking out’ and along the way you get to perhaps convert some to other programs, and at the very least to get some testimonial and emotional social proof. The currency here is experience.
The Interview: Perhaps more directed than the Case Study strategy is the request for interview or review. In this instance the person you approach is known, perhaps a little professionally famous and someone who you would like to know about your work but who does not really know about your work yet. The currency here is positioning.
The approach might be: “Hey Matt, you don’t know me but I have to say when I ask people about leadership development every conversation comes back to you. I am writing a new book on leadership that focuses on XYZ and wondered, with you being an expert in the field, whether you would consider being one of the leadership experts I interview for the accompanying podcast. Totally get you are busy and will do everything I can to fit in and around your schedule, just would be honoured if we could make some time for this talk, we would learn so much from your insights.”
In this case the guy (Matt Church) should be honoured and chuffed and will take some time via the process you set up around the interview to get to know you. This is a prime example of subtle hustle. You can do the numbers, make the calls, handle rejection and/or you can also be subtle, cool and graceful in your invitations, both work.
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