What I’ve Been Up To and Where I Am Headed: Part 1 – A Call Too Faint to Follow

I know I’ve been quiet lately. Some of you have written to ask if everything is ok.

Over the last two to three years, I’ve been changing and so has my work. I’ve mostly posted or emailed when one of my events was coming up. I turned the volume down on my business activity.

But behind the scenes a lot has been happening.

About three years ago, I sensed that something new wanted to come forward in my work. Not a radical departure from my messaging work, but some new quality. A new energy, a new focus. Something emerging that I couldn’t quite put my finger on.

The best I could name it was to say that I wanted to focus my work less on effective business communication and more on something I named Expressive Power. A way of being in the world with a fullness of expression, with a power and clarity, with a deeply grounded sense of yourself that goes way beyond having clever or competent copy.

But even though I was sure this was my new direction, I couldn’t force more than that vague sense of shift into focus. I couldn’t see any form, any concrete way to bring it forward. I didn’t even know what more to say about Expressive Power beyond a first few sentences, a few short Livestreams.

So after a few months of agitating, I surrendered.

I accepted that this new body of work would have to arrive in its own time. Not now because I wanted it to. Not now because I was getting restless. Not now because I thought I should monetize this new impulse.

Like a shy woodland creature, it would come to me in its own sweet time and of its own accord.

So, I resolved to keep doing what I had been doing: my Mojo groups, my Action Circle, my new copy class, my private clients.

But it became abundantly clear that I could no longer market the way I had been – three part call series, big launches, email campaigns. I didn’t have the stomach or the energy for it any more.

I decided to do the opposite of what our business culture says. Instead of pushing for more growth, I decided to find out how little marketing I could do to maintain the business I had. How simple I could make my preview calls. How few emails I could send and still fill my group.

I was fortunate. I had years of being out in front of my audience, a good reputation, and so even with much less fuss, I kept enrolling my groups and showing up for clients.

The truth was I was detoxing from all the high-end coaching and online marketing strategies I had absorbed over a number years. Strategies I’d taught. While using those techniques had helped me grow a thriving, well-established business, they increasingly felt contrived, misapplied, alien to me.

I began questioning the assumptions of so many of these techniques. Are these the only ways to market? Are they the best ways? What is the cost of reaching out to people in this high adrenaline, heavy- handed, screaming-for-attention kind of a way?

I realized that many of these online marketing techniques are based on assumptions that don’t apply to my business, to my clients’ businesses. They assume that volume of sales is more important than quality of sales. That your business model is based on reaching a mass market, on appealing to the maximum number of people possible. They assume you are using SEO or doing mass mailings based on demographics. They rest on the belief that the ends justify the means, and that selling someone is always a service to them.

I saw the landscape of online marketing changing. Email open rates dropping. Big launches flopping. Suggestions that approaches that used to work like gangbusters were no longer producing results. I recognized in myself and all around me profound fatigue with telesummits and preview calls and video series and free reports.

People weren’t hungry anymore for free information. Everyone, business owners and consumers alike seemed worn out.

I made changes. I aimed to be more straight forward. I made my preview calls no opt in. I declared them true preview calls – stating up front they were about my upcoming program. I stopped strategically pitching the calls as some super useful education into which I would slip a sales pitch.

I started shaping my calls around bigger ideas like “Transformative Business Communication” and “Potent Expression” instead of more practical, client-bait topics like “How to Stand Out from a Crowd” or “How to Profit from Your Life Wisdom.”

Stay Tuned for Part 2 – where my personal life takes center stage and things start to shift on their own.