Evolutionary Blog

Distinctions to accelerate your personal and professional evolution

Social Media and You | In-Depth Analysis and Recommendations

 

In the modern marketplace, if you are in business for yourself or at a high level within a company you work for, it is impossible to avoid social media and its use if you truly want to thrive. That combined with what I believe is an emerging Age of Authenticity ... well, you get the picture.

Just scratching the surface of the broad strokes, it allows you to:

  1. Provide value to others
  2. Manage your brand
  3. Market inexpensively and freely
  4. Show your human side
  5. Stay connected to others, events, and your own reputation
  6. Other fun and cool stuff

 

This is why I cover social media in depth in the technology module of the Evolutionary Sales course.

But recently, I have stumbled onto a few resources I thought some would find useful and valuable, and I wanted to recommend them to you.

The first is a wonderfully in-depth book I read about a year ago: Tactical Transparency: How Leaders Can Leverage Social Media to Maximize Value and Build their Brand. Whether you are a solo-preneur or you are in charge of PR for an enterprise level organization, its content will be very, very useful to you. Chock-full of examples of both the dos and don'ts and great advice for best practices. I recommend you pick it up at Amazon at the link above.

And since social media is all about sharing, here is an incredibly useful article: 9 Reasons Why Your Content Is Not Shared on Social Networks: New Research. Again, very useful stuff backed by a respectable amount of research. Links to follow in that post as well.

And if you are looking for full education around social media for small or solo businesses, I can not recommend Laura Roeder enough. Just a great person who really, really knows her stuff and is on a scale the rest of us can relate to. She gives away a ton of free valuable content if you subscribe to The Dash.


On blogging [and really, email marketing as well] here is a great piece intended for students, but equally as relevant for solo-preneurs in re blogging, articles, and email marketing on how to write great headlines and subject lines, using, one again, using some of Guy Kawasaki's Genius.

And finally for this post, I thought I would round it out with something humorous/light/fun and also very useful. So many people ask [especially now that Google+ is out to a wider invite pool] which social media service they should join, or what is suited for them, or what is the differences among them, or even, "what's the point". So, via the genius of Guy Kawasaki comes the Social Network Decision Tree. Have fun with that.

UPDATE ::: several people have asked me about facebook fan pages. Without intending the pun, I am not a fan of fan pages on facebook. You can read a prime example of why I do not recommend them »HERE«.

And in general, I have a long-held aversion to running anything in re business where I invest a lot of time, energy and/or money when I do not "own" the data and the DB. I have known a couple people who have lost everything in biz groups as a result of a facebook "oops". You do not really own your data, and your ability to administer it is at least limited on facebook [or any other social networking site].

At the same time, the service is free--you get what you pay for--and we have no right to complain about such a great platform that is offered to us at no cost.

Having said that, it does not mean I will build my business on it in any signifigant way.

How I think facebook pages can be useful is to interact with followers on a platform they are already subscribed to, but I still think the pages should be used to drive traffic to our actual web sites outside of the closed eco-system of facebook.

Update 2:   in re who reads what [links you share, emails you send out, etc. Again, via Guy Kawasaki ::: "Fascinating study by Bit.ly about the lifespan of tweets and updates. It found that the half-life (how long it took for 50% of all clicks to occur that a link would ever get) was 2.8 hours for Twitter, 3.2 hours for Facebook, and 3.4 hours for direct messages (such as email)."

Check out the research » HERE« And speaking of the stream, readmore about the art of the Tweet repeat » HERE«

Update 3: Also ... be sure to check out How to Avoid the 7 Deadly Website Sins.

Update 4: I have been asked about scheduling tools for social media. The tool I currently recommend is Hootsuite Pro. It allows you to scheudle your entire markeitng day [or your social stuff while you are off the grid] in advance. I used to recommend TweetDeck, but sice twitter bough them and took over development, they stripped it of a lot of its functionality.


And if you have not read the email charter, do that » HERE « 

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Coaching The Life Coach | The 16 Week Course

One of the things that am committed to changing in the world is the painful separation of Spirit and wealth acquisition.

So many people think they have to sacrifice their spiritual life to make money. And so many people think they have to sacrifice wealth to be truly spiritual.

The truth is quite the opposite. Not only *can* we integrate them, but we must.

I think we can all agree, that if these were integrated--if people were acquiring wealth AND living a robust spiritual life in the same moment, then so much of the unethical stuff we have seen in the financial markets in the last few years would not have happened.

For our world to solve so many problems it has, not only can we integrate spiritual sensibilities and wealth acquisition ... but we must.

Why am I sharing this in this email? 

As many of you know, I have been working on an on-line version of my live Coaching The Life Coach program for  ... well … years now.

It is finally finished. 

A 16-week tour-de-force covering everything from your emotional blocks and defining your purpose to SEO and v4.0 of Evolutionary Sales™ with the purpose to have you integrate your purpose and your prosperity and be well on your way to be making over 6-figures by living your purpose.

For being here, you get a coupon code that will give you about 25% off each month.

Check out the course hoopla page here:

http://coaches.evolutionarycompanies.com/clc-4-sales-page

And the course visual overview here:
http://coaches.evolutionarycompanies.com/clc4-course-outline

 

Your coupon code is:

community50

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[Updated ::: v4.2] Wherein I Explain the Cycles of My Facebook Updates

For many, many months, I have re-posted this note on my facebook wall. Given the positive feedback I have recieved, I thought I would post i there for your benefit.

 

--

 

"I am a mouth for a process that many of us are going though. The more intimately I deal with how it is for me, the more intimately I am sharing how it is for you." -Ram Dass

 

 

Some have asked about my updates. The are sexual/primal. And then emotive [poetry shares] and then cognitive/political and then spiritual/ethereal/transcendent. Huh. Yeah. Weird, huh?

 

What's up with this guy? Where is The.McClain comin' from?

 

As I have written before, it is not transcend and deny, it is not transcend and suppress. Rather transcend and *include*.

 

I assert being fully alive is to be sexual and primal. To be emotive and love. To be cognitive and mentally sharp and discerning AND yes, of course to be Spiritual/transcendent/ethereal. ALL of it. ALL fully flowing ::: ALL channels open. All channels awake. All channels channeling.

 

I have also found that the more I give voice to the darker more primal drives, the more comfortably my students and clients are willing to share and examine those places within themselves -- the more they are able to feel safe. AND within that, they can accelerate the dissolution of those aspects to the degree that it is appropriate. For them. For the very process of evolution. The evolution of conscious evolution.

 

And it all begins by shining the light on the "shadow" aspects of ourselves. The unspoken [and "inappropriate" aspects of ourselves. The politically incorrect. The lecherous. The murderous. The rageful. The ... well you get it. Consciousness, when it is at full, is *all* of it.

 

It is all, of course, part of the human experience.

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Extensions, Testimonials, Referrals, ... and Bears. Oh My!

A student of my material sent an email with some very good questions for client management including how to handle contract extensions, referrals, testimonials and general end-of-contract dynamics and structures.

I have re-posted relevant portions of the email exchange below for you.


I've listened to your recordings from previous coaching programs and have found them to be insanely valuable. I've signed 8 clients and raised my rates already in the first few months of the program, and I attribute it to following your sales process to a "T".

A HUGE thank you.

My pleasure. I am delighted to hear they were useful to you.  

 

As a couple of my 6-session coaching packages are coming to a close, I have questions around how you structure the end-of-package process. Here are some specific questions:

Do you formally review outcomes with your clients at the end of a package? If so, how do you structure this conversation?

 


Yes we do. Twice in fact. We review their outcomes and the stated evidence for those outcomes about 2/3 of the way through the process. This review is important so we can see where we are on track, see where we already achieved the outcome(s), and see where we need to focus out remaining time together.

Additionally, in the final session, what we do is review their outcomes [mostly I print them out and hand them the assessment we made together] and with those, I have them fill out an extensive feedback sheet or "exit survey" as I like to call it. 

When do you raise the issue of referrals? I love how you talk about referrals on the FAQ page of your site, and I'm wondering how else you support those ideas and maximize the chance of the client biasing toward action.

I never really raise the issue of referrals along the way. For two reasons really, 1) I find it a little off for the Evolutionary Sales™ approach, and 2) I usually I do not have to because they do--and when they mention this friend or that colleague, I tell them how to refer people to me--get their permission to give me their contact information and leave the rest to me.

Additionally, because referrals are part of the agreement they signed, the exit survey gives them an opportunity to write down two names and phone numbers for referrals they have permission from to do so--which re-presences it for them if they have forgotten; it is right there on the last page of the feedback sheet.

Do you collect testimonials from clients? This seems like it would be good material for my website, which isn't up yet. If so, how do you frame it? When do you ask for it (i.e. at the end of a package, when the client is at a peak)

Yes, of course. When they write or say something that is a peak or they are acknowledging me about something I simply ask, "can I quote you on that?" with a friendly chuckle. Then I ask them if I can edit it and send it to them for their approval before I publish it. Sometimes they want anonymity, but I then just use it and us this attribution:  " --Anonymity Requested".  

The truth is, I have no interest in the compliment personally [as in an ego boost or a pat on the back--no interest in that]. However, practically and professionally, you bet I want to hear that--as long as I can quote them on it. Compliments are of no value to me. Testimonials are.

Often, when they say something that would make a great testimonial, typing it up is the thing that is in their way and delays it becoming a testimonial. That, and they are worried about writing it well or "doing it right". So I offer to type it up for them to capture their sentiments and send it to them for their approval.

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The Top 6 Mistakes Coaches and Practitioners Make [and Their Solutions] (Part 1)

It is amazing how many coaches, solopreneurs, massage therapists, lawyers, etc. are competent at what they do--yet suffer financially. They are doing good, but they are not doing well--that is, they are struggling financially, mentally, and emotionally.

 

There are reasons for this. I have identified the top 6 reasons--and their solutions-that I have found in my experience in my own business as well as observing those who still have a "practice".

 

The first 3 are presented to you below. The next three will be in Part 2 in a couple of weeks.

 

Mistake #1:  Thinking "Money and Spirituality are in Conflict"

 

For some, "capitalism" is a bad word. Which makes sense. "Capitalism" was a phrase coined by the biggest enemy of the free market and free enterprise to ever live--Karl Marx. Yet, we keep that inaccurate and pejorative moniker. We were taught for thousands of years that to profit was bad--and then this meme was punctuated by the evils of capitalism laid out by a failed mathematician who had no foresight into the services industry--never mind respect for private property and Natural Law and was therefore essentially a thief on a grand scale. Even though with the rise of capitalism in the mid-1800s, our standard of living has more than trebled, never mind that our life expectancy has doubled in a short time as a result...it...is...bad.

 

While there was a a time when one could only profit by exploitation and manipulation or by inheritance or plunder, this has not been accurate for nearly 300 years.

 

[Before commenting on this, please read my series of articles on Spiritual Capitalism, found here: Read First || Read Second || Read Third.]

 

Maybe we should consider throwing off the chains of thinking birthed centuries before the Enlightenment and even before the founding of this Country and came to a head--and have been proven to be inaccurate, ineffective, and fundamentally broken in the last Century.

 

The truth is, it is not only possible to come from service and contribution in a "for profit" environment--that is to live a purpose-filled life--but also to profit well from it and to live prosperously. It takes some personal work--being mindful of your thinking, cleaning out your unconscious imprints of guilt and shame, and to constantly be of service while having sufficient esteem for your self to recognize the value you are bringing to another's life and to have them provide that value monetarily in exchange. It takes a lack of attachment to "closing that deal" and being more focused on service and "opening relationships"--and much more.

 

Actually, I have found what can be provided to our clients lives is priceless to them. Fees are insignificant when weighed against what the work we do in their lives will make possible. It is not a commodity. It is a gateway to greater freedom and happiness. We can live a spiritually oriented life--and integrate free-market, service-based principles into that.

 

By doing so, we integrate our spiritual and our financial life. This frees us from guilt, shame, and allows us to flourish spiritually while prospering financially.

 

Mistake #2: Underdeveloped Skill: Sales, Marketing, and Ethical Influence

 

We have all had negative experience with sales people. Not sales professionals, but sales people--that is, people who want to "close a deal" rather than open a relationship. And most sales trainers teach techniques with little regard for a philosophical base or grounding. I do not support that.

 

I used to think sales was a dirty word. That was until I realized that until I could influence people to take action in their lives--leverage them beyond their limitations--I could never really do much good in the world. You can only be a positive agent for change if you can inspire others to move beyond their current thinking--the thinking that has them in their current life situation and has stopped them from being fully free and thriving.

 

Therefore--if you truly want to do good in the world, it becomes your duty--yes, your duty--to assist others in overcoming their limitations. That means learning to sell and market your services in a compelling way that comes from service and contribution while combining that with powerful tool of influence.

 

You must gain those skills if you want to make a difference and be prosperous.

 

While it may be hard to swallow at first [took me years to accept] you must be a sales person first--that is you must be able to enroll others in a vision--to live your purpose and prosper.

 

Mistake #3: A Lack of Structure: Service, Sustainability, and Packages

 

One you are coming from service and contribution, you begin to consider what would best serve the client. Most practitioners have session-by-session practices or monthly packages, but they do not have comprehensive packages that have stages and phases in them. How many people out there have dabbled here and dabbled there and never really bucked down and did the deep work to reveal greater depths within themselves? I have found most clients approach their personal development this way. "Well, I have tried this and I have tried that...", [but I never really got what I needed that was deeper].

 

The best thing you can do as a coach or a practitioner is to find a way to create a compelling 3-stage or 3-phase offering that allows the client to reveal greater and greater depths or to attain greater and greater heights. For a massage therapist, this may mean something like:

  • Healing
  • Activating
  • Opening
For a Coach it may mean something like:
  • Clarity
  • Tool Gathering/Education
  • Purpose/Action
I am just pulling these out of my pocket and tossing them out there. The point is that if you truly want to be of service to your clients, you will develop a phased program so that they finally make a deep commitment to themselves--and they finally achieve that elusive transformation--mentally, emotionally, and perhaps spiritually, they have been looking for for years. In the process, you create a sustainable practice with monthly payments coming in--and you get to then relax and be certain you are always acting with integrity and acting ethically. People only get slimy when they are desperate. You owe it to your clients to create a deep compelling offer that is only offered with integrity--and you owe it to your self to be prosperous as a purpose driven helper. Everyone wins. And wouldn't you like to be in a position to say to to a prospect you really do not want to work with? Of course you would. Wouldn't you like to always operate with full integrity and ethics intact coming from service and contribution? Of course you would. Wouldn't you like to provide comprehensive solutions to your clients so you can make a deep and lasting positive impact on their lives? [The next 3 top problems/errors and solutions will be handled in part 2]

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