To all the things we can (and can't) control

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The truth is, a lot of what works when it comes to marketing is a result of timing and serendipity -- in other words, things we can't control.

However, there are things we can control to increase the odds of good timing.

Watch this 3 minute video to hear about two common situations you probably find yourself in often, and what you can do to increase your odds of being in the right place at the right time. 


Here's the transcript of the video...for those who prefer to read.

I've been thinking about the differences between what we can and cannot control. I talked about this last year right before the pandemic, actually, when I had been reading, "A Guide to the Good Life" by William B. Irvine, which is a book about Stoicism and which applies Stoicism to the modern day. He wrote another book that I recommended, "The Stoic Challenge," which was kind of perfect for the pandemic.

In "A Guide to the Good Life," he talked a lot about the difference between internal goals and external goals. And that is the difference between what you can and cannot control.

We control our internal goals; we don't control our external goals,. I was thinking a little bit more about that idea this week so I just wanted to read you the little bit that I started writing -- it's not a blog post yet but it eventually will be.

Example #1: The new client who found me because one of her esteemed colleagues kept sharing my content.

Now, within that example, and you may have your own examples of a new client, who found you because someone they knew was sharing your content -- hopefully, that is, if you are creating content, as one of the marketing tools. And so, in that small example, what can I, and can't I control?

I can control my visibility via social media and I can control how much social media I do. And when enough is enough, because you really can do too much, and I err on the side of just enough. I don't want to do more than I have to truthfully.

However, what I can't control is, who sees it, and when, and especially who shares it, and who sees that.

And that's the part where marketing is just serendipity and timing, and just being out there. But one of the fears -- several people for some reason this week said to me that one of the fears is putting themselves out there.

I'm again curious about that -- what exactly is that fear?

They're gonna say, "Look at that stupid, bah, bah, bah!"

What is that? I don't know -- it's words in the head. But the truth is, if you get rid of that, then what you can't control could actually happen, which is that your contacts share your content, and other people see it and they come to you, and that's where the magic happens. And that can only happen through marketing. 

Example #2: This is the prospect -- we've all had them -- we probably have them regularly -- whose project seems "good to go," as it were, and then you send your agreement, and your request for deposit and the invoice, and then you never hear anything again.

We've all had that happen. That is normal, so don't think you're special if that's happened to you.

So what can you control in that environment?

You can control your follow up, and what I call "patient persistence." You must be patient, but persistent, for as long as you have to, unless they say, "You know, this is not going to happen so stop reaching out to us."

Because you must not give up on them. When you are patiently persistent that means you are not giving up on them. That's the way to think about it.

What you can't control is their pace, their process, and their constantly shifting priorities, which is sometimes known as chaos.

So be thinking in your own situation about what you can and cannot control, and how it relates to your marketing.

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