1. Your conversations about your product are taking a tangent away from what you want
2. You can't get through to people because they make a quick judgment about what your method/product/approach
3. People understand what you do but don't take action on it even though they're a good fit
Then you're likely;
1. Boring them
2. Confusing them
3. Or making what you're saying un-relatable to them
All of these are a result of trying to inform your audience about what you do 🗯(features & benefits etc.) before inspiring them to listen.
The reason its so important to inspire people before informing them is because humans take action based upon how they feel about things and then back it up with logic. This is why impulse buying is a thing. This is why what we do in mattes of "love" doesn't always make sense. If we expect people to act on what we have without first feeling inspired by it, we'd be spinning our wheels.
So how exactly do you inspire before informing?
1) Create Belief:
By sharing our personal (and therefore business) WHY, Vision and core values before we start saying anything else, we automatically reveal the soul of our company to people. If it is something they resonate with, they will feel a much deeper connection.
To do this fill out the following:
"I believe in a world where (Vision), so everything I do is based around (my WHY/main driver)"
For example, mine is "I believe in a world where we all have a massive impact footprint, so everything I do is around inspiring and equipping people to take deep-seated action".
To find out more about this I would reccomend you watch Simon Sinek's Ted talk "How great leaders inspire action" ( https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qp0HIF3SfI4&t=13s ) and read his book "Find your WHY".
2) Clarity and simplicity:
If people are confused, it takes too much energy to try and make sense of what you're on about so they will shortcircuit and switch off. You need to be able to explain what you do simply and with context.
To do this fill out the following:
Most [YOUR NICE], experiences [THE PROBLEM]. So we [YOUR SOLUTION] so that [RESULT/IMPACT of that solution on them and society].
e.g. Most people aren't able to easily access the medical support they need due to the massive inefficiencies in the british healthcare system. So we digitalised as much of the healthcare process as possible so that anyone anywhere can access the medical support (early or secondary) they need.
3) Use your story:
It's easy to want to try and repeat the story you think you're audience is experiencing but its so much more powerful to share your own founding story because your story has lead to the solution you have at the moment. If you tell someone why your product is important, that's your realisation you want them to believe. If you share your founding story, then you take them through the emotional journey to own that realisation themself.
Here's to inspiring before informing so we can increase our impact footprint!
1) WHY should I care? (Without context no one cares about what you do!)
The 3 sub questions you need to answer to effectively for this are:
- What is our WHY? - our core values
- What is the future that we believe in? (What is the future I'm buying into when I interact with you?)
- Who is our people/ our tribe and why are we different? (This is different to your your Target Market - see previous post "Your Target market aren't your people" for more on this. This is about creating a sense of belonging which is where loyalty comes from!)
2) What do you do?
This is not your chance for you to show off how smart you or your systems are. It should be explained in max 2 sentences that should be understandable by a grade 3 kid.
The 3 subquestions you need to answer for this are:
- What conflict/problem is the world experiencing (that we decided to solve)?
- How are we solving it?
- How does that solution affect your life? (Whats the happy ending?)
See my post "The habit that's costing your tech startup a fortune" for more detail on this.
3) What is the benefits of what you do, to me?
4) Why are we different? What should I not just got to someone else?
If you'd like some feedback, drop a link to your website below and I'd be happy to give you some personalised feedback on where you can improve (worth $200 with my clients).
PS: I'm thinking about re-opening some limited spots up for my ROAR Transformation Program which helps you implement all these principles to create an emotional connection with your audience. If I did, who would be interested?
Stop talking about your business it like it's some kind of emotionless "thing" - or people might just start approaching it like one
I was on the phone the other day to this founder of a cyber security system. He was obviously super passionate about it and was solving a big problem but the conversation kind of made me feel like a rabbit in headlights. The product, features, benefits bla bla bla (Techno-babble). I understood (kind of!) what his product was about and what he did but I had no incentive to want to know more about it.
Tech businesses fall into this trap so easily. People understand what they do, they acknowledge it's important but don't want to have anything to do with it 💔
I thought so. And it's bloody frustrating. More so than anything because you know what you have really does have the power to impact so many people, but no one seems to see it.
It's not your fault. That fire in your belly is real - it's not just a hopeless enthusiasm. It's just that the part of our brain in charge of emotions is crap at languages. So naturally we find comfort in talking about the logical parts of our business which is so much easier to articulate.
But here's the thing;
Your business is an amplified version of YOU. Your core values, your drivers, your WHY. The more you can communicate THAT to your audience, the more your TRIBE is going to be inspired by and attracted to your cause. When they feel an emotional connection, that's when your people want to be a part of it.
There are 3 simple questions you need to answer to do this;
1) "What drives me when I'm at my best" (Your WHY & core values). Articulate your WHY and WHAT you do will start to resonate so much more.
2) "If i was to live in line with my WHY every single day, what would be the impact of it on the world?" (Your vision - note that this is not about the benefits to your user, it is about the world you're creating). Paint a clear picture of the future you believe in and the right people will go out of their way to get onboard your "vehicle" to get there
3) What is your founding story? The reason you care so much about solving the problem you solve is because you once had an epiphany that made you realise why this problem specifically is so important. By sharing your founding story with your audience, you're guiding people to have their own epiphany about why it's important.
So you might be saying to yourself right now "Yes, but Alara - I know the answers to this already!"
You may FEEL the answers to them in your gut, but as long as you're not communicating it to your customers & stakeholders - they will continue to see your business as a "thing".
Your business is not just a "thing". So start to translate that fire in your belly into the way you communicate your business and watch as people are magnetised to you.
If you'd like some feedback about this, drop a link to your website below and I'd be happy to talk about where you can improve!
We've all had situations where someone asks you "Hey! What do you do?" or "What's your new *app* about?" 🙄
So you whip out your elevator pitch and one of two things happen. 🌟 Either their eyes light up and you dive into a dreamy state of having a super inspired conversation OR 🤐 they show a slight sign of interest before deviating the conversation to someone or something else giving you no choice to move on and leaving you feeling like you've missed an opportunity. 💣
Imagine if every time that question was asked - you had a super inspiring conversation - what would be the impact of it?
More people talking about what you do. More people coming onboard with your vision. More referrals. More sales. More funding. More inspired employees.
More people staying loyal to you over other people.
All because, you established a genuine emotional connection with them.
In order to have conversations like this EVERY time there are 2 stages you need to focus on:
1) To INSPIRE, not inform
If you only have logical conversations, you're going to get a bunch of people that conceptionally understand what you do. To get people to emotionally connect to your product, you need a reliable way of igniting inspiration and the easiest way to do this is by genuinely being passionate about your work and showing them your glow 💗
In a conversation this is how you would do this:
Snap into the 7 year old CHILD in you and speak from there the whole conversation:
Next time you someone asks you "What do you do?" notice where your mind goes. As much as we don't want to admit it, it usually starts thinking about the possible outcome/benefit of this conversation which makes the person asking a target. People feel when they're being targeted, hence they deviate the conversation topic!
But inspiring conversations aren't born from desperate intentions, they're born from a shared excitement. And who better to do this than the 7 yr old you? So find a phrase that snaps you into your childlike excitement and start your answer with that. Mine is a quick "Oh my God!" - and I'm thinking from my child mind. Or picture yourself speaking as a child.
The change that this step alone will create in the atmosphere is the difference between being sprayed with a firemans hose to walking by a lagoon that looks so inviting you want to jump in. One you want to deviate and run away from, the other you can't get enough of!
Have fun and make it entertaining so they have a reason to stay in the conversation!
Before you dive into a pitch of any kind, set a fun atmosphere.
"Oh my God! If you were to ask that to me 3 years ago you would have thought I've just come out of a funeral!"
This sets the tone for your inspiring conversation and breaks the ice. So find a little sentence/insight that you follow your "child state triggering phase"
Peak curiosity and wonder:
Instead of telling them what you do and the details of it and how it works and who it's best suited for, at this stage ONLY share the most recent and exciting part of what you're doing and connect it to the impact it's going to have on the world:
"Oh my God! If you were to ask that to me 3 years ago you would have thought I've just come out of a funeral! (laughs). Right now I own my own company. We're about to launch a new app which is all about creating moments of magic in families that normally feel disconnected"
Note how I've only given the most recent information and have not talked about WHAT I do yet. If they already know your most recent exciting venture and are asking "Hey, what's your new app about?", then just answer with the VISION part. "Its about creating moments of magic in families that normally feel disconnected"
This does 2 things: It helps you filter the right people for you from the wrong. If someone believes in your vision, this is the point you will find out because they will ask something like "Ah how are you doing that?" "That's really cool. What got you into that" etc. If they still deviate the conversation, they were not a connection worth having or spending anymore energy on. Save your energy!
2. Lead them to their own EPIPHANY by presenting your elevator pitch in story form:
The reason you are passionate about what you do is because you do is because something made you decide "This is important and I can't ignore this anymore". You had an epiphany. But when we market on a day to day basis we expect people to just hear our pitch, hear about the problem we solve and have the same realisation as we did.
In your conversation; guide them through your story to have the same epiphany as you did and they will start to feel the fire you do.
Explain your own experience of when you were first exposed to the problem and it's effects:
"Well, you see, I was brought up in quite a big family. Both my mum's and dads side was big. But because of that there was always drama going on and we all felt pretty disconnected. Which meant that when I went through some really hard times in my life, I didn't really feel my family was there for me at all. The lack of support made me feel lonely"
Explain where this problem is coming up outside of your own story:
"After talking to other members of the family I learnt that they felt the same way too. And I started to notice that there are a lot of people who feel disconnected from their wider family"
Explain the solution you have:
"So the app we developed creates personalised story books where the characters faces are faces of the family members - even pets..."
Explain the result of your solution:
"... so that families that feel disconnected can have little moments of magic to connect over."
Explain the wider impact of that result and how it ties into your vision:
"And the thing is, the more of these little moments of magic we, create, the easier it becomes for these moments to override the underlying drama and create family where people feel connected to again"
REMEMBER: Always speak at their level. Your product may have loads of technical words in it but the thing is, no one cares how smart you are or how fancy your systems are. Allow your sole focus to be on creating a inspiring, human conversation (like the 7yr old you would do).
This is the exact process I will teach my clients. One of my clients took this so seriously that he ended up with too many customers! He had to start picking and choosing who he worked with!
The childlike spark in you is one of a kind and people love to jump aboard trains they're excited by the destination of. So now, get a pen and paper out and customise this to your own product. Then practice it over and over again (with a friend and in real life).
Your vision coach,
A close friend of mine contributed to writing the article "What is the ROI of a Loyal Customer?". It is absolutely mind blowing! 5.2 Million over 10 year! ( read the full article here: https://martech.zone/what-is-the-roi-of-customer-loyalty/ )
But how do you create loyaly? Loyalty comes from when people feel an emotional connection to you and your company. Emotions are what drives behaviours. So when you can establish that connection, suddenly you lift the burden of needing to constantly rely on price/time incentives or persuasion tactics to get people to keep coming back.
But how do you establish an emotional connection. People feel an emotional connection to something they believe in. "People don't buy what you do, they buy why you do it" - Simon Sinek. You need to communicate your purpose, your story, your vision and impact so clearly that they can sell it.
Everyone has a WHY which means every business has a WHY. In fact, yours is probably incredibly inspiring. You have something with the ability to change the world massively. But most businesses have no idea how to communicate it to their prospects (or even to their employees or venture capitalists!) so they retreat to the safe space of talking about WHAT they do, it's features & benefits etc. (running away from establising an emotional connection back into the "logical" realm).
To create an emotional connection, start with yourself
Ever feel like you have so much brain fog you feel you need headlights for your brain?
That sludgy feeling of procrastination which is quickly followed by its good friend, guilt... Not long after guilt, do you find your self trying to multitask. And before you know it you're overthinking, so you end up reaching for a quick way to numb the pain!🍷
Hell! You've probably felt that today...
Yup, you're overwhelmed.
You're overwhelmed because you're operating from your "fight or flight" mode [triggered by some sort of situation, person or task(s)] 🏃♀️
The reason why this is so paralysing is because your brain thinks YOU'RE DYING! Really! So it prioritises survival over long term gains.
As you might have guessed, when your brain thinks you're dying, it's kinda hard to be productive. 🗒️
But the good news is you don't have to give away your power and just watch yourself either like this.
You can smash through it (like a wrecking ball!). To do this you need 2 things; ✌️
👉1) PERSPECTIVE: Is this thing I'm trying to do really serving me?
How - Sit in a quiet place separated from where you're feeling overwhelmed. Think of the task(s) that you're trying to get done (if there's more than one, do this one at a time). Tune into your body and notice as you think of the task, do you have an EXPANDING feeling or CONTRACTING feeling in your chest. Trust what your body is telling you. If it's an expanding feeling move onto step 2 . If it's contracting - stop doing the task. It is not serving you.
👉2) TOOLS TO REGAIN FOCUS:
Tool 1 : Re-activate your rest & digest mode
How - Belly breathing. Lie down flat on your back. Place your hands on your belly and breathe into your hands with a sense of expansion in your belly. Exhale naturally. Continue this at your own breathing speed until you feel your rest & digest mode kick in and the world slows down.
Tool 2 : Make decisions from an immense state of presence
How - Push yourself physically. Either through a short sharp burst of exercise or through a breathing sequence of short, sharp, deep breaths (inhaling as you raise your arm and hands, sharp exhale as you pull your hands down to your chest in fists - repeat for 5 mins). Make your decision and take action during the buzz you feel afterwards.
Tool 3 : Empower your mind with the food it needs
How - Put on a song that gets you into a state of dreaming about the future. Lie down while listening to it. Close your eyes and visualise in great depth a perfect day in 3-5 years time. Positive affirmations are also powerful way of feeding your mind the right food.
You're a powerhouse. So gain your power back.
Have you ever had one of those days where you've done NOTHING with your day but feel we tired at the end of the day?
Or the other way round. You've had the best day ever and you feel so energised but you don't know why?
There's a reason for that and it's because energy that doesn't flow, rots.
The other day, I woke up and for some reason had this weight weighing down on me. I felt stagnant, drained and my mind was in overdrive. This was my day off and I wanted to make the most of it, so I grabbed Josh by the hand, put on some Taylor Swift and started dancing. I closed my eyes and just let my body do it's thing
Shake up, shake down, turn around, some back and forth boogies, SONG CHANGE, switch to rock & roll, funky dancing, smooth dancing, moonwalking, hair swivels...
For half and hour we danced from one song to another and finished totally out of breath and smiling. I physically felt the weight lift off my body.
Now the reason I shared this with you isn't so we all get up and start dancing together, (though I would love that!), it's because this applies to so many areas of our life.
When energy flows it ENERGISES, when it's stagnant it rots. Just like the gunky water of a lake vs. the clear water of a rushing river. We are a part of nature. We ARE nature. So it's no surprise that nature mirrors what's true for us.
Every interaction we have with people is an energy exchange. But the difference between that interaction being draining or energising is wether we're in a state of FLOW or not.
👉When our body expresses itself, were in FLOW.
👉When we speak our truth, were in FLOW.
👉When we're helping people from our heart, we're in FLOW.
Being in flow is energising and energised people are MAGNETIC!
With my clients who feel drained, we identify WHERE their energy is stagnant and bring it back into flow again. Even though it's unique to everyone, the most common things it boils down to are these 👇
➡️ Mental Stagnancy:
Confused about WHAT to do and the confusion is draining you.
For this you need clear priorities, simple and distilled information, thought out goal setting and relentless consistent action.
➡️ Emotional Stagnancy:
You know what to but the lack of motivation is draining you.
For this you need to check the clarity around your WHY, remind yourself of it and align with it. Ceck for and heal beliefs that are sobotaging you. Create an energising daily routine.
➡️ Physical Stagnancy:
Your body feels weighed down and it almost feels like it's out of battery (commonly comes with a craving for coffee, nicotine, sugary/fatty foods)
For this your body needs to express itself, in one way or another.
These three are not isolated from each other, but it's helpful to see them in that way for the purpose of understanding!
The other day I went to see my GP AGAIN about a stubborn skin condition I had. I had dealt with it before but it just kept on coming back again and again. Every time it came back, it would be more than the last time.
When I saw someone about it previously, they gave me some medicine to treat it at home. It was some gnarly medicine, almost dissolved your skin in the process, but it did what it was meant to do.
Got rid of the symptoms that came up.
Fast forward 6 months though and it would come up again, even worse that the last time!
How many times has this been happening to your in our life? Where you just try and get rid of the immediate pain you're feeling at the moment. Either through;
👉Numbing (e.g. alcohol, chocolate, food, smoking),
👉Distraction (Tv, overloading yourseld with other tasks which you've ramped up the importance of, scrolling through social media mindlessly)
👉or through a "Quick Fix" of the immediate pain.
And what that eventually leads to is, the core problem growing and the symptoms getting stronger and stronger until they're too painful to numb, distract ourselves from or find a "Quick Fix" to.
It usually feels a bit like:
- Being spreading incredibly thin
- Focus all over the place
- Lack of direction
- Don't want to get out of bed in the morning
In NLP (Neuro Linguistic Programming) we have a saying "Find the difference that makes the difference".
So if you're feeling agitated, unfocussed and unpassionate about what you're doing it might be a sign to look a bit deeper.
Generally speaking there are 2 ways to understand the core cause of a pain you're feeling:
1) Seperate yourself from the chaos and observe from a distance what is happening objectively. People who practice meditation get extremely good at objectively being the witness of their thoughts. But even if you're not a yogi; journalling, monthly reflection systems or simply a break can work as amazing reflection tools.
But sometimes we're in it too deep to understand the core cause just from reflection. So then;
2) Consult an expert. Their ability to facilitate a reflection process for you, combined with their specialised experience and their toolkit/skills will speed up the process hugely for you.
When you understand the CORE cause, even before you do anything about it suddenly you feel incredibly clear and incredibly motivated about what you need to do.
In my life I come across so many people who have an incredible potential and a secret desire to have an impact on the world, but they're tangled in the net of treating symptoms and so are stagnant, bored, unfulfilled and unfocussed. And the thing about treating the symptoms, like my skin condition, is that it's NEVER ENDING!
In my experience there's 3 core causes of feeling like this:
1) Unclear and un-articulated vision/purpose (so focusing on the instant rewards that when you achieve it you just want more of it)
2) Self sabotaging core beliefs & habits
3) Lack of knowledge/tools to move forward
That's it. Once you identify what it is, that's half the game!
So THEN what do you do?
DEEP SEATED ACTION.
Act on the core cause and watch the symptoms dissolve. I see this happen every day in my 8 week transformation course and see the blossoms of inspiration, longevity of relationships, internal peace and the building of your legacy <3
However, be warned knowing the core cause isn't some kind of magic wand. DEEP SEATED ACTION is. One is awareness, the other is change, a transformation.
I was talking to a really interesting guy the other day. He runs 4 businesses and takes the weekends off religiously to spend time with his family. 👨👩👦👦He's had to get one of those gadgets from Amazon that lock your phone away and don't release it until the time you set it to arrives 📱
Anyone know what I'm talking about?
But then when he's working in the week on one of his 4 businesses, he's constantly guilty that he's not spending more time with his kids or his wife. So he makes himself SO busy, that his sympathetic nervous system (fight or flight mode) kicks in and he physically doesn't have any time to think about anything else. 💼📈📉📊🕴️ He actually loads more work onto himself than needed to be able to focus!
Then he goes out for business drinks with his clients in the evenings. 🥂 And thinks to himself "I should be going to the gym more... and not drinking so much. Why am I here?". But then he drinks more and gets drunk to forget about it all and actually relax with the client.
I mean when you look at it from the outside, there's nothing wrong with what's happening here. At the end of the day, he's with his family every weekend, running 4 businesses in the week and relaxing with his clients when they go out for "casual" meetings.
Slight glitch though if you haven't seen it allready!
He feels shit. He's constantly tired and can't fully enjoy anything he's doing.
He achieves that image with external stimulation whether it's the Amazon phone box gadget, an overloaded schedule for himself or it's alcohol.
The cost of this is, NOTHING he does gets the BEST version of him. You know, the part of our brain responsible for multitasking and switching between thoughts takes up 10% of our brain capacity (our frontal lobe). Imagine giving everything you do, only 10% of your potential!
So the difference between this guy and someone who fully ENJOYS his life and business is their ability to stay present. Being fully present means knowing and believing in the purpose of what you're doing and dedicating a 100% of ourselves to it.
Of course, this like everything else takes practice. Our brain is a muscle and needs practice on staying present. What you practice you get good at. And when you're good at something, you see results.
In my 8 week transformation program, I create custom meditations for my clients to practice this daily.
4 hours after sending Heba her's, she messaged me saying "I've just finished listening to the meditation you sent me... for the 7'th time in a row! I just LOVE it! If the whole course was just about this meditation I would be satisfied. I just LOVE working with you <3 "
After 2 sessions with Rie she informed me that the charity fund raising that she had been putting off organising for ages, she finally gave her all to it and surpasses the target amount. She says "The two meditations changed the way I looked at the whole thing. I feel the world or universe it behind me. Where can I get more of your meditations?"
What are you holding back by giving only 10% of yourself to what you do?
Would you like to be a 100% in everything you do personally and professionally?
If NO, I doubt you would have made it this far in the post! :D
If YES, book a call with me.
It's a totally FREE call with no strings attached where we dedicate a whole hour to getting to the core of where you've been getting stuck and the steps custom to you to get your spark back.
It's a total steal and will honestly give you, at the LEAST some immense clarity.
You know, I recently spent 2 weeks in Spain competing in the World Championships of Freestyle kayaking. When I got back I was so tired, physically. All my muscles ached and sleep didn't seem to be enough.The good thing was though, that I could still work on my business while I was out there. And it was such an inspiring, fresh environment full of explorations, new challenges and connections that in the sessions I had with my clients, I was incredibly energised and had some amazing session while I was out there!
Have you ever felt so physically drained but emotionally you're on a high so you just keep going. Like you're connected to this unlimited source of energy?
Who has felt that way?
But perhaps you've also felt the opposite?
When you've ate well, slept well... but you just feel drained. You wake up anxious, got no motivation to do anything and can't focus on what you're doing. Mentally and emotionally drained!
If yes, then you know how heavy it feels!
The amount of responsibility we take for energising ourselves, directly correlates to the performance of our business, the culture we create and in the long term - the legacy we're able to leave.
So if growing an amazing business and leaving a legacy is what you want to do, you're going to need energy for that.
So how can we avoid being totally drained?
There are 3 ways we get our energy. We need to be on top of all 3 of them to thrive. Sometimes, when one is particularly high - it can make up for the lower two, but to be at our very best every single day, we need to know how to energise oursleves in all 3 ways every day.
What energises our body is PLAY and NOURISHMENT. So run, dance, jump, sing... do what you need to do and give your body REAL food it needs.
An energised mind is a focussed one. This doesn't happen when you don't know what to focus on.
"So we set goals?" I hear you say. But blindly setting goals doesn't bring focus on it's own. Knowing WHY you set those goals is what's going to give you the CLARITY your mind needs to be laser focused.
What we focus on is what we act on. And what we act on creates our reality. So feed your mind NOURISHING thoughts through visualisations and affirmations.
What we think affects how we feel. But the more we practice stabilising our emotions, the less power our thoughts have over how we feel.
Meditation, nature and moments of stillness are the keys to mastering finding CALM, being fully PRESENT and finding emotional energy.
Do you have the routines in place to energise yourself daily?
If you'd like some help with it reach out!
Alara is a WHY discovery coach, NLP practitioner, a Rite of Passage Facilitator and a Yoga/Meditation teacher. She specialises in helping business owners find and articulate their vision.