My 3 Digital Content Rules
When we fire up our mobile devise or laptop and begin to hunt for great content on the Internet, we’re doing it because we either want to CHANGE something in our business or help our team change something in their careers. We sort through all of the content, blogs, podcasts, videos, etc. looking for something we can ROB & DUPLICATE, put into play for ourselves, or the people we’re coaching.
We want to truly LEARN something (and possibly teach it) so we can change the results! But, lordy…there is so much stuff out there. So…how do you sort through it all and find the stuff that’s REALLY GOOD?
I’ve actually developed a few digital content-information rules that I apply to all of the stuff that hits my inbox, and I want to pass these 3 rules on to you.
DIGITAL CONTENT RULE #1 – I only follow REAL PLAYERS
What I mean by this is that the person creating the content has to have actually been in the game, and not just that…they also have to have dominated their space over a span of time! Why would I waste my time listening to anyone else?
Look, over the last three years, (since I’ve been writing, speaking and coaching) I’ve been exposed to a rather large number of authors and trainers who claim to be an “expert” in a given field. A small percentage of them actually are authorities, but the vast majority are pretenders.
I’ve met these folks (both kinds) at industry networking events or advanced training sessions. The experts are fairly humble, but self-assured. The pretenders are usually the more vocal ones, tending to be pretty aggressive. They always want to “collaborate” or partner with me. That’s code for, they want to tap into my audience and sell their stuff.
It humors me up when a ‘pretender’ approaches me and starts pitching. They learn that I have thousands and thousands of followers on the various digital platforms and they attack. “Hey we should do some work together.”
I always ask them the same question:
“Tell me about what you built when you were in the game. You teach or talk on the subject of ______. So, tell me about the business or team you assembled while you were doing ______, and tell me what you were able to accomplish.”
I don’t ask the question to be nasty. I’m actually asking it because I am genuinely interested in knowing if the person I’m talking to is the real deal. I want to know what their background is—if they actually spent years and years honing their craft—enough time, experience and success to be called an “expert.” In some cases I’m pleasantly surprised. Sometimes they reel off a number of business accomplishments that are quite impressive.
But often times they stammer out some real BS. They can’t tell me what they’ve actually done or built.
I know that one of the reasons you subscribed to www.JoeBuzzello.com is that you know that I’m teaching the things I’ve actually done. I’ve been in the trenches and had great success, financially and otherwise. I’m not some guy who had a mediocre career in sales, leadership or entrepreneurial ventures, got burnt out, and decided that becoming an author or speaker would be an easy way to make some money. In fact, if you do it right it’s not easy at all. Writing great content is very tedious and time consuming. Speaking on stage is great (while you’re up there on stage) but you have no idea how much marketing and prep time there is before an event. It’s really hard work and you have to be doing it for the right reasons.
So I only follow gurus who are the real deal. I look at their BIOs and dig a little on them. If they have a thin resume or haven’t been in the game a long time I’m not a fan. I don’t subscribe to their mailing list.
So rule #1 is only follow the real players—people with game!
DIGITAL CONTENT RULE #2 – I want some FREE stuff + No ‘salesy’ BS
The truth is, the online information business (especially for the entrepreneurial world) is so crowded and so competitive that even a seasoned and reputable coach or trainer has to give away some of their premium content to cut through the noise and get noticed. So, as a result, there are some great trainers out there that put some darn good content on their site for free. Usually, all you have to give up is your first name and email address.
This is an easy way for you to kick the tires—take a look at their content and not have to pull out your credit card.
If I get emails from someone, and then I can’t easily download a complimentary PDF report, audio or video from their site…if instead, I have to purchase content first, well…screw them. I move on. I don’t care how popular a speaker, coach or trainer is, I want to sample the goods first. If they aren’t willing to give some decent content away up front to sell me on their platform—what they teach and how they teach it, I’ll take a pass. The three reasons I pass on them are:
#1 It makes me think they’re hiding something…their content isn’t that great
#2 I get the impression they are stingy—not willing to share and give without strings attached
#3 There are 100 other people like them willing to give away content up front
I simply don’t waste my time with these clowns. In online marketing, the promotion rules are, you give before you ask. If they aren’t even clever enough to leverage this proven marketing strategy, then I probably wouldn’t be impressed with their stuff anyway. They also lose me real fast if every email I get from them is a sales page with headlines such as, “Last chance,” or “You’re blowing it.” or “I can’t believe you didn’t buy this program yet.”
If I get the sense that they care more about pumping my credit card versus nurturing a long-term (mutually beneficial) virtual relationship, I tune them out. Permanently.
DIGITAL CONTENT RULE #3 – I SKIM, and it’s gotta be GREAT!
So, my last rule for sifting through all the online digital coaching noise is pretty simple and straightforward. I don’t spend a lot of time figuring out if I like their stuff. I look for some nuggets. I try to identify some thoughts or strategies that resonate with me. I ask the question, “Is there anything here that I could apply in my business within a few weeks/months?”
Again, there are so many gurus out there, that I’m looking for some “wow” stuff, or simply some solid content there that makes me go, “Hmmmmm…I can use that.”
There has to be a “there” there. If there’s nothing there…well, I’m done quickly.
If I read one blog, listen to ten minutes of a podcast or audio, or watch thirty seconds of a video and I’m not fairly impressed with how their content can work for me, I’m done. I trust my first instinct. By the way, if they are smart, their complimentary content should be a snippet of their best stuff. If they are stupid enough to put out mediocre content up front—the stuff that’s supposed to hook you in—then I don’t want to follow them and waste more of my precious time, because their content won’t get any better.
Look, you are smart to comb the World Wide Web looking for new ideas, tactics, methods, mindsets and strategies. There is a ton of good stuff out there—free and paid. But you only have so many minutes in a day to surf the web and take a bite. My Digital Content Rules make it possible for me to discard the mediocre stuff and focus harder on the best providers of content. I have more time to spend on the best stuff. I can go much deeper into their great content.
Okay…hope this helps and I hope I’m in that category of stuff that doesn’t suck.
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Joe Buzzello is a nationally recognized expert on the roles of direct selling, entrepreneurialism and leadership. He has built legacy sales teams and experienced unprecedented success in individual and business-to-business markets as well as the network marketing industry. Joe has held executive level positions for Fortune 500 companies, but he has never strayed far from the art and science of selling, which he loves. In early 2014, Joe began writing, speaking, and coaching through his platform, www.joebuzzello.com and The CAP Equation©.