The One Big Illusion
by Robert Middleton
I talk a lot about “Marketing Mindset” in the More Clients eZine.
It’s because what I notice that stops people from effectively marketing their services is rarely the technical components of marketing, such as networking, speaking and writing.
No, it’s all the thoughts, emotions and attitudes that prevent us from implementing these things.
The greatest illusion is that virtually nobody, including you, dear reader thinks this is the case. Everyone thinks it’s one of the following reasons why they are not good at marketing:
1. I don’t know what to do or how to do it.
2. I am just not the marketing type.
3. Marketing doesn’t work for my kind of business.
4. I don’t have the time to do marketing.
5. Most marketing leads to rejection, anyway.
6. Marketing is an interruption that irritates people.
7. If people need what I have, they’ll call me.
OK, so I’m willing to bet that if you are not having much marketing success, that you believe at least four out of seven of the above statements.
What nobody realizes is that these are not statements of “fact.” Far from it. Every single one of them is a mindset. What I mean by a mindset is an “established and fixed attitude held by someone about something.”
And mindsets literally construct your reality. They shape your thoughts, feelings and behavior. And they appear to be true, so true in fact that they are almost never questioned.
A mindset acts much like a hypnotic auto-suggestion.
You say it, think, it believe it, feel it, and act consistently with it and then have evidence to back it up that it’s true. You are so identified with your mindsets that to you they are not mindsets at all, they are the unvarnished truth.
And if that’s all true, you are in a real pickle, because how can you escape from a mindset that you don’t even think it a mindset? How can you wake up from a dream that you are totally convinced is reality?
Well, first of all, you need to accept that maybe, just maybe, what I’m saying might be true. You just might be stuck in mindsets that are holding you back from marketing yourself successfully and that nothing external whatsoever is holding you back.
Tough to accept, I know.
The next thing to notice is that when you identify with a particular mindset, how does it make you feel? Does it make you feel alive and excited, full of opportunity and promise?
I don’t think so. These, what I call “constrictive mindsets” feel stressful in some way. They feel like excuses, they feel like cop-outs, they feel that they are opposing your goals to get the word out and make a difference in the lives and businesses of your clients.
Let’s just take the somewhat benign mindset: “I don’t have time to market my services.”
Not too inspiring, right? You may be able to justify it, but it’s not fulfilling, is it? No, it feels frustrating. It’s a statement of defeat. It certainly isn’t motivating you to get out there; it’s stopping you in your tracks, often before you even start.
So if expressing a mindset feels that way, you know something you didn’t know before: That mindset is a lie. It’s not true. It never was and never will be.
It’s a lie that you don’t have time to market yourself.
And look at what happens when you believe that lie. You make excuses, you avoid doing things, you don’t organize your schedule to fit in marketing. In fact you do everything in your power to justify that mindset, despite the fact that it’s not helping you one iota.
Can you see that?
Well, what if you could no longer identify with that mindset anymore? I mean, what if you couldn’t even think that it was true? Even if you have a lot of other priorities and were very busy, you couldn’t believe it was true anymore.
Then who would you be? How would you react? How would you behave?
Wouldn’t it be completely different from how you’re reacting now? Wouldn’t you find a way to fit some marketing activities into your schedule? Wouldn’t you stop making lame excuses? Wouldn’t you stop looking for “the perfect marketing opportunity” and just do what you could, such as follow up with that prospect you’ve been avoiding?
The first step in all this is to identify those mindsets that are holding you back. What are you always telling yourself about marketing? And how are you feeling about those thoughts? If you’re not feeling great, then they’re probably lies.
So take a little time to look at the consequences of those lies. Are they undermining you, holding you back, making you small, preventing you from getting what you want?
If that’s the case, the good news is that there’s such a thing as expansive mindsets. And in the realm of marketing you may not be so familiar with them.
Expansive mindsets get your creativity flowing, enable you to see opportunities, open up new possibilities and make you take risks that feel fun and exciting.
Let’s turn around that mindset list:
1. I can learn what to do and how to do it.
2. I’m the type who can share the value of my services.
3. I can find a way to market my services appropriately.
4. I can find the time to do marketing.
5. Marketing can lead to people who need my assistance.
6. Marketing can we a welcomed conversation.
7. If people need what I have, I can follow-up with them.
Aren’t these possibly just as true, maybe truer than the original list? One thing is for sure, they feel better, don’t they? Well, then try them out and see where they take you.
Copyright 2012 Robert Middleton
All Rights Reserved
By Robert Middleton of Action Plan Marketing. Please visit Robert’s web site at www.actionplan.com for additional marketing articles and resources on marketing for professional service businesses.
2 thoughts on “The One Big Illusion”
This was excellent. I do (did) this, and now I recognize it, I can correct it. Thx.
My pleasure, Pamela. It’s a great article and I’m glad I was able to share it.
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