Have you read my book, Sharing Superheroes, yet? If you’re among the 8 who have, move on. You already know the one thing that’s holding many businesses back. And I trust you’ve used it to your advantage.
However I’m going to assume you’re one of the 6.9999999992 billion unfortunates who haven’t had their desks graced by that marketing playbook. Instead of chucking a copy at your face, I’ll give you what you came here for. I save postage, you save face.
If you’re in the service industry, chances are there’s something you’re missing out on that would make you grow vastly more quickly than your competition. Like you, they’re probably fearful of what the future holds.
But you – you don’t shirk change. You embrace it. And here’s how you’re going to do it:
You’re going to give it all away.
If you’re a chef, I want you to record a series of YouTube videos showing people how to make the dishes for which your restaurant is famed.
If you’re a knitting expert, I want you to give your designs and blueprints away.
If you’re a coach, I want you to share with everyone the process you follow every time you welcome a new client to your practice.
If you’re an architect, I want you to tell us explicitly how to create the perfect home.
If you’re a web developer, show us step by step how you put together your latest app so I can do it myself.
Am I trying to bury your business? Absolutely not.
Am I trying to bury your competition? Betcha.
People say testimonials are the best marketing you can get. I disagree. It's not what people say - it's what you DO that wins the game. And the more opportunities you generate to show people precisely what it is that you do, behind the scenes, to create these outstanding products and services you sell, the better for everyone.
The best bit about giving everything you know, away, is that it frees up your mind to focus on producing your best work yet. By the time you’ve given it away you’re already on to the next project – which is bigger and better than the last, because that's the way life goes.
Whether or not you believe in karma a beautiful symmetry exists in the more you share, the more they care.
And in case you're worrying about the competition stealing your ideas - don't. 99% of people won’t do anything but admire what you’ve done. This is probably the single most shocking fact about human behaviour. No matter how great the opportunity, there are few who would actually make the effort to seize the day and be remarkable.
Sure, you’ve done the hard work – and you’ve deprived them of the sleepless nights it took for you to get there – but even then, short of force-feeding greatness, your secrets of success are still very much safe.
And in many ways, giving it all away is the ultimate feat of generosity. I'm always skittish about what legacy I'll leave behind - when in actual fact, I'm building that monument all the time just by taking my years of experience in building better businesses, and giving it all away.
Remember that famous saying about teaching the art, versus simply giving a man a fish? By going long on sustainability, you're making a big difference to thousands, and maybe millions, of people.
The simple fact of 21st century business is by giving everything away, you’ve nothing to lose.
Ideas are just that; it’s execution separating winners from the pack.
Image via Flickr Creative Commons