Roger Ebert, the movie critic, hates my favorite movie.
October 15, 1999
"Fight Club" is the most frankly and cheerfully fascist big-star movie since "Death Wish," a celebration of violence in which the heroes write themselves a license to drink, smoke, screw and beat one another up.
Roger Ebert (2 stars)
But, how can this be?
I've seen this movie at least 200 times and I still love it. It's considered a "cult classic" and it has been said that it was the "highest point in the careers of all those involved in the making of a masterpiece."
Rolling Stone said this:
The film’s bold, bruising humor leaves marks on a wide range of hot-button issues: It’s about being young, male and powerless against the pacifying drug of consumerism. It’s about solitude, despair, and bottled-up rage. It’s about how not to feel dead as Y2K approaches. It’s about daring to imagine the disenfranchised reducing the world to rubble and starting over....
I know how you can compete in the crazy modern marketplace.
With the rise of shopping platforms like Amazon, search engines, email spam, and social networks, choice has never been greater for businesses and consumers.
You need to think about the opposite side of this scenario.
As the business, you have (basically) endless potential customers.
If someone doesn't like your product, find someone else who does.
If a client relationship is not a good fit, that's OK!
See what you can learn from the process and see if you can change how you are prospecting. Or maybe you need to work on your delivery and execution?
Whatever it is, move on and find someone new to talk to.
There is nothing you can do for your business that will have more impact than defining how you are different from your competitors.
NOTHING is more important in a world of infinite choice than standing out.
If you fit in, you are just a part of the background noise
If you're like me, you approach business and life a little differently than others.
For me, it's probably because I started out "slinging fish," which is what we called working at the Fish n' Chips shop when I was a teenager. Many people who started in the service industry understand work ethic and are used to taking a lot of crap.
Maybe it's my time pressure-selling electronics at commission-only shops for years before moving into technical support and eventually becoming an IT contractor for marketing organizations.
Your path was different but probably equally random.
But I can tell you this...
We've all had a pretty wide experience with customer service.
A few years ago I had so many back-to-back terrible customer service experiences that I started writing a book about it.
and Chapter 1 is titled....
This conversation happened this morning at my house.
Me: Hey Kari! Have you ever heard of Dread Zepplin?
Kari: Um, no.
Me: ALEXA! Play Dread Zepplin!
Me: It's Led Zepplin songs played by a reggae band with Elvis singing!
For a small subset of the music scene in the 80s and 90s, Dread Zepplin captivated their audiences, playing more than 2000 shows.
There is even a documentary currently in production about the band.
This is the untold story of Dread Zeppelin, a pioneering band and pop-culture phenomenon that performed reggae versions of Led Zeppelin songs, sung by a 300 pound Elvis Presley impersonator. Conceived as a joke in late 80’s Pasadena, CA, their send-up of rock mythology and tabloid culture unexpectedly took the world by storm when this “ultimate tribute band” was signed to IRS Records.
Immediately endorsed by Robert Plant, audiences and critics alike were forced to question whether they were "one of...
Every time your potential customers visit your website they are telling themselves a story. It's a story where they are the "hero" and they are trying to overcome some kind of difficulty.
Our job in marketing is to take potential customers from a less desirable "before state" to a more desirable "after state."
- Business author Ryan Deiss.
The problem is there can only be one hero in a story, and the hero is your customer. If you are talking about yourself or your business and how great you are, you are making yourself the hero of the story.
This creates confusion and reduces your customer's desire to take action.
You are the Guide, Not the Hero
Most businesses talk about themselves and try to tell potential customers about how wonderful their business is.
And I get it.
You want them to know your product is great and you're a great company, but you can do that after you tell them how you can assist them in solving their problem.
People are continuously telling themselves a story in...
Sometimes providing products or services can be a real drag.
For every group of wonderful customers you have, there's always the one who doesn't get it.
Maybe they have unreasonable expectations, maybe there was an unforeseen circumstance that made providing their services difficult, shipping issues... or maybe they're just an a-hole.
But I want you to remember, "Your Why," and if you don't have a well-articulated reason why you do what you do, this is how you create one.
They have a problem, you have a potential solution.
Another way to put it is this:
They have an unfavorable "before state" and want to be in a more favorable "after state."
Your job is to move them from before/unhappy to after/happier.
When you provide a product or service, no matter how small a change you think that is, you are improving someone's life.
If your chocolates put a smile on a child's face, you help someone insure their car from damage or...
It was the 80’s and the TV show Dynasty was all the rage.
Alexis Carrington was portrayed by Joan Collins and was the fashionable, powerful female character who was feared by women and pursued by men. She was the kind of character who got her way and settled personal scores at any cost.
The teacher in the class on day 1 of each class reads out attendance to ensure everyone is accounted for.
Jim — here.
Sandra — “I prefer Alexis” (ok)
Roger — here.
Janice — here.
Lisa — “You can call me Alexis” (um… ok)
Why were the girls in my school trying to emulate a TV character?
Urban Dictionary defines the term “basic” as “someone devoid of defining characteristics that might make a person interesting, extraordinary, or just simply worth devoting time or...