Cure Your Fear of Marketing (and Spiders!)

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Recently, I found myself engrossed in a novel about intelligent spiders. (If you like science fiction, check out Children of Time, by Adrian Tchaikovsky.)

I’ve never been a huge fan of spiders, but the way this book is written has me feeling for them and even rooting for them.

At one point, I realized…

The author is doing exactly what I’m trying to do.

He’s trying to shift the way you think about spiders.

From fearing them…

To having empathy for them.

Of course, I’m not about to change your stance on arachnids - though the book might!

But I am trying to change the way you think.

If you tend to avoid marketing your business out of fear…

That people will “see” what you’re doing…
That you will come off the wrong way or say the wrong thing…
That you’ll somehow “mess up”...

Watch this short clip from our recent Office Hours and I’ll share how using empathy can eliminate that fear. (Useful if you’re afraid of spiders, too!):

Using empathy to find your potential clients’ pain points is what will dissolve your fear of being “seen” in your marketing.

And there’s another big benefit of doing this, too…

When you shift your focus from:

Am I good enough?
What will people think of me?


What problems do they have?
How can I help?

It also gives you endless topics to bring up in your content marketing.

And if you consistently publish content that solves problems…

When your potential client is ready for help solving their problems - they’ll think of you.

If you’re not sure how to turn clients’ pain points into helpful content, you can use my “Pain Points into Content” worksheet – it comes with the Simplest Marketing Plan.

You also get a weekly schedule, so you can check off just one marketing task a day. Grab it here.

Read the transcript of the video clip above here:

Hello y’all. Welcome to the simplest marketing plan office hours for March 2023. We’re still focused on content marketing, the first tool in the Simplest Marketing Plan. I want to give a little bit of practical focus on that, but I want to start with philosophy. I like to think philosophically and think a little bit more deeply about these things.

I’m trying to change the way you think. I am trying to change the way all of y’all think. And the reason I’m thinking of it that way is because I’m reading a book called the Children of Time by Adrian Tchaikovsky. It’s a science fiction book. And it’s about a planet of evolved spiders. And in it, he says that he chose spiders because he is trying to change the way people think about spiders. To go from fear of spiders to empathy for spiders.

And I thought that’s what I’m trying to do about marketing!

I want you to go from fear of being seen your of clients, fear of the money conversation, whatever you're afraid of, to empathy for your clients, so that you know that they are just people like you are. They’re not in charge of you. Your life doesn’t depend on them. And the most important thing really to know about clients is that they don’t have it all together. That’s why they need you. That’s why they need the services that you offer, no matter what those services are.

I’m hoping that people are already starting to think that way and so that of course leads me to pain point and pain point content marketing. So I want to talk a little bit about what I mean by empathy, and what I mean by pain points.

Often people say. ‘Oh no, pain points are negative and I don’t want to be negative.’ That is totally not necessarily the case. And I would use myself as the example, actually.

My elevator pitch, as some of you know, is ‘I teach creative professionals how to get better clients with bigger budgets,’ which has a pain point embedded in it, but it doesn’t say, ‘Get rid of your bad clients with bad budgets’, right? It says, ‘Get better clients with bigger budgets’.

So how do you focus on the positive, the solution, the cure to the pain?

That’s one of the questions to be thinking about. Understanding the pain, understanding the needs, and, yes, understanding the goals. as well, is what I mean by empathy and pain points.

So, for example, what keeps them up at night? That is a phrase you can use on your website. "What keeps you up at night?" It’s a question you can use in a poll on LinkedIn. Or, "What do you struggle with?" Keep it open. Or, "What are the obstacles to (fill in the blank)?"

It could be related to what you do for them, but it doesn’t have to be. It could be much broader, and I do want you to think more broadly because sometimes when you are thinking about the pain of the people that you work with, it isn’t necessarily about the writing or the design or the coaching, or whatever you do.

It could be they just have too much work and not enough time, and they need help. So how can you help them? How can you help remove the obstacles to going where they want to go and achieving what they are trying to achieve? So think really broadly about this.

How have you found your market’s pain points?

Some people say, ‘How would I know what their pain points are? If you don’t have testimonials, if you don’t have too many past clients already, there are lost of online forums: Slack channels, Facebook groups, LinkedIn, right? People are constantly talking about what bums them out. What makes them mad, what gets in their way. You can turn that into pain point content and focus on the positive side.

The example that I could share is my own homepage, [which says], "Build the Business of Your Dreams Without the Marketing Nightmares." That speaks to, and implies, a nightmare, when it comes to marketing. It’s a little dramatic, but drama sometimes works. And it focuses on the aspiration and the goal that, hopefully, all of you are aiming for.

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