May 15, 2014

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Warning! Antidote Required For The Failure Virus WARNING! There is an illness that spreads quickly across your business. It can be devastating. It can ruin your plans for success. It is awful. And the worst part.....it happens when you are not looking...It is called the Failure Virus. It invades your brain and changes the definition of one of the words that you have learned. Now don't worry you can spot the symptons early and provide the ideal remedy....but let us identify the word that is affected ACT We learned that to act, within a business context, means to take action BUT the failure virus rewires your brain and when you see the word action it replaces action with acting. What this means is that we talk through action points. We talk about what action we will take. We create action lists. We say we are taking action. However, what actually happens is that we pretend...we act as though we are but the reality is that we are putting on a great performance that Dame Judi Dench would be proud of...rather than actually taking action. You see acting like you are being social, acting like you believe in social marketing, is NOT taking action. It is ultimately 'doing' without the commitment that will deliver customer engagement. Consumers can see through acting. They see through automation. They see through sales pitches. They see acting...not action. And internally, we may appear busy but it doesn't generate leads, increase revenue or customer engagement. Why? Because it is acting as if we are doing something, rather than taking action to create success. And this failure leads to disillusionment. It leads to a sense of powerlessness. It leads to people thinking that no matter how hard they try, they ever achieve success. However there is an antedote to this business disease. There is a way of protecting your business from this failure virus....there is the action antidote! The antidote is the realisation that you are deciding 'what' needs to be done without Really understanding the 'why'...and it is the why that creates the motivation to do it. Really understanding the best 'how'....and this renders the action a dream rather than a goal....and dreams rarely come true! Really understanding the right measurements to ensure action does not slip into acting. And by NOT adding these ingredients the failure virus creates busy-ness without results rather than results for your business.
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Let Rip - Social is About Being You! You can hold back. Your worries can stop you from acting on your gut instinct, that same gut instinct that got you this far. Our desire to get it right, gets in the way of releasing our passion. Yet we know passion sells. How do we balance our gut instinct with the desire to get it right? Risk is a natural part of business and if we are close enough to our customers, close enough to our market then risk should be part of our gut instinct. We can destroy any idea by overthinking. Yes, we need to think and reflect before a decision however we also need to learn to trust ourselves. Patti LaBelle is renowned for her performance on stage...of what she calls just "letting go". She argues that "If you hold back, you lose it and your audience knows it" What if we just let go and let us be the social animal that we naturally are? What if we released ourselves to be ourselves? What if we released others around us to be themselves? What if we let rip and just tried things.....we can always stop, reinvent or change if it doesn't work out? What if we forgot about branding and let our voice be the brand? (Tweet this) What if we concentrated on getting the right people, with the right values and holding them to those values...and then said " I trust you all. Go, let rip...be yourselves?" Many entrepreneurs that I work with, know WHAT to do. Many entrepreneurs don't back their own judgement. Many entrepreneurs start their company and then start playing it safe. I understand why, of course I do.....BUT remember playing it safe is risky. Playing it safe was not the reason you started the business; playing it safe is not the same as playing the percentages. You are the soul of your brand. You are the main reason why people chose to work with you..... Business needs freedom but freedom with boundaries. The boundaries are the market that you serve, the values that you live by, the services that you offer. Within those boundaries should lie the freedom to express the HOW. Here is a challenge.....when was the last time you just let rip? When was the last time you backed your own judgement? When was the last time you tried even though it might fail? When was the last time you released yourself from being a business person and being the person who helped build this business? You know how to be you better than anyone else. Social is about being you. (Tweet this) You know your market better than anyone else. Demonstrate it. (Tweet this) You know your limits but there is plenty of space to play up to those limits! (Tweet this) Back yourself. Let rip. Start passionately loving your work. Passion sells. (Tweet this)

Anna Farmery

Social Marketing Architect, Speaker, Author and in spare time completing PhD on the future of the social business model

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