I have an online friend in this battle, he is well-known, has built a large online following, written 6 books, and a host of other things, after all of this, he is looking for a full-time job. He admits that he hasn’t been able to make it on his own (but still wants to), so he is looking for a job, but a specific kind of job. Which raises the question, should you seek a job (full-time) or step out the way of self-employment?
The question raises many other questions of whether you’re in a place to go self-employed or to continue working a job, but only you can answer them, it’s all a risk at some level. I have been on my own the last 7 years, it was exciting at first, but it got gradually harder, and I found myself wishing for a full-time job so I didn’t have to go through the pain. The fact is, some of us are not able to be self-employed, for a lot of reason’s, but you can learn to, and find ways to survive through the down times. Surviving is not why we start a business, or make the decision to be self-employed, we hope for greater than what we had in the job, its human nature.
I’m writing this here because I want to help him, I admire this person’s transparency, his willingness to put himself out there, to be humble enough to ask for help in a very public way, his name is Jesse Stay, I’ll let him appeal to you:
Yes, I’m looking for a full-time job. Know anyone that’s hiring?
The truth is, it’s embarrassing to say that. As someone who has written 6 books on social media and continually gets approached for more; As someone who has almost 80,000 subscribers on Facebook, 65,000 followers on Google+, and 40,000 on Twitter, along with Facebook Pages in the hundreds of thousands; As someone who has helped pioneer social media and audience/reach for organizations like the LDS Church, Deseret Digital Media (a top 25 news organization in the USA) and even worked with Facebook, Inc. herself; As someone who has built Twitter tools with users in the hundreds of thousands; As someone who was described by Mashable as one of the top entrepreneurs, and top developers to follow on Twitter, I just couldn’t make going on my own work.
Raising a family of 8 on your own, with no full-time employment is HARD! While I’m constantly getting new clients (and still seeking more, unless I get a job), it just doesn’t seem enough to make what I need to support my family. Maybe I’m doing something wrong. Maybe I just have more expensive needs with my large family.
I’m often told and described by others who introduce me as “one of the best social media experts in the world.” Those are not my words. It’s hard for me to believe them when I can’t bring in enough clients on my own to justify that title. Those that work with me love what I do for them, but I’m not doing something right, because I still don’t have enough clients paying regularly to keep me afloat. I think I’m just not cut out enough to do this thing on my own – I either need someone who’s picking up the slack in the areas I’m missing (aka someone to tell me what to do while handling the sales/budget/finance – know anyone good?), or I just need to work for someone else.
It’s tough for me to share this – I have to swallow my pride. I don’t enjoy admitting defeat, and maybe I haven’t fully, but some how I’ve got to pay the bills, and I’m ready to make a change in direction to do so.
If you know anyone hiring Director-level or above in digital or social media strategy (can even have a technical-leaning, as I started out as a software developer), or even emerging technologies and finding disruptions within a company, Bitcoin and cryptocurrency included, please send them my way. I’m really looking for introductions more than job postings. I’ve found a million job postings and without a close friend that knows my skill-set introducing me to the hiring manager and pushing them to hire me it really doesn’t do much good in such a competitive market. Also, while I’d love to stay in Utah, I’m really open to working anywhere (especially internationally!) if it gets me employed. Send them my way!
Oh, and please feel free to check out my LinkedIn profile to see my clients, work performed, skills, endorsements, and recommendations: http://linkedin.com/in/facebook
If you can help him, I recommend you reach out to Jesse, you’ll find him easy to contact, and he is always willing to help.
Social networks now behave like mainstream channels. I’ve spent several years on Social Networks, and have notice that they all have become mainstream. They’re no longer different from TV, Radio & Newspaper, all you have to do is watch all the yelling, telling, and fire hosing of ads and links to selling products and services. Many would claim that’s just what they’re all for, I’m not convinced.
We live in a connected economy, we no longer fall for mainstream tactics, because they don’t work well for connecting. The biggest reason it fails, we all have control over our most prized asset, our time. We don’t want anyone to waste it, or take advantage of it. So why is it still happening, two reason’s might be, it still brings results, or connecting costs too much, time & money. Or, they figured out what quality story telling is. Quality story telling always wins. The story telling looks and feels differently on each social network, because we don’t act the same way on all of them, we talk differently on FaceBook over Twitter. So the easy thing to do, just blast, just let the fire hose go full on, on all social networks. But the audience is not the same on all social networks, success with each of them requires you to do some research and looking at data, what’s really happening.
Remember when we were told, God gave you two ears and one mouth, use them proportionately. We have fallen to our old habits, we like to talk more than we listen. People today, want you to listen, they don’t want to you to talk so much they can’t get a word in edge wise, they want to take part. It’s not just TV, Radio and Newspaper that yells at you, all the social networks are doing the same thing. They’ve all become mainstream, and I’ll bet, you think nobody is paying attention to your activity on social networks.
The secret, the way to win, is quality story telling, but the way your subscribers, your readers, your visitors, and your customers want it, NOT the way you think it should be, and that’s the hard part. You already have what it takes to tell your story in a quality way, the world and those who are paying attention to you, want to hear your story. So tell it!
Considering all that is changing, how business is changing, how global and yet how locally our businesses must be, does your business line up with that future? Is your business social, or is it traditional? Does your business advertise on the Internet as part of its marketing mix, or do you stick with traditional modes of advertising. There are many questions to ponder when starting a new venture, but the main questions is, what kind of business, what structure, what type, and will it meet the needs of the economy.
The new economy is a connection economy, how does your business connect consumers, how do you connect to other businesses. Just using social networks is not connecting, depending on how you use them, most use them as another channel to yell, flood, to do what you’ve always done. You use them with a traditional mindset, it’s not connecting, it’s telling.
The traditional way, meant you had to have ads in the yellow pages, maybe you ran radio commercials, and you mostly used Newspaper. You never had to consider the Internet as part of your mix, and most still don’t have a clear understanding of how it works, and how to you use it for business. Today you have to think about where to best spend your time & money, adding the Internet as another way of enticing consumers to your business, to buy. But consumers act differently online, or do they?
More than ever , there is much to consider, it’s not black & white as it was back 30 years ago. The Internet is 25 years old, and brings with it challenges, and incredible opportunity. Asking yourself if you’re on LinkedIn, FaceBook, Twitter, YouTube, Google Plus is the new normal today, knowing what to do on them, and how to leverage them, is not normal, not like Radio, TV, and Newspaper. But you’re already figuring that out aren’t you.
Business is getting much more complicated, it’s causing you to rethink what kind of business. Traditional or The Connected. And what does a connected business model look like, it’s the Open & Free Business Model. And that you can learn here on owengreaves.com.
It’s been awhile since I wrote here, April 14th to be more precise. Much has happened since I last shared with you, I went out played drums, traveled with my bride, and spent a lot of time reading and researching, but most of all, I took a break. I took a break to experience some new and different things. I highly recommend you take a timeout to learn, and to have new experiences other than what your regular routine and work might be. Otherwise, everything feels like a blur before your eyes.
Many of you should understand what I mean by “The Blur”, and how the blur might impact you and your world, mostly your business if you own or run one. I’ve been talking about it for years here on this blog. Two things probably make you feel like you are out of control, by trying to keep up, and not willing to change how you think about the future of your business.
The world moves at a faster pace than we can possibly keep up with, and much of what we see doesn’t well into our daily routines, it’s just not easy or comfortable, it means putting ourselves and possibly our businesses in a vulnerable place. If you frequent this blog, you’ll know this is not a new, I’ve said this for many years.
Most people are trying to build the next Microsoft, the next Twitter, the next Facebook, and even the next Amazon. The problem with that thinking is this, you’re looking into the past, you aren’t looking ahead, you aren’t paying attention to what people want! Do they want another Facebook, another Twitter, and are I say it…..another Microsoft. I think not.
Yes those giants are building and getting bigger, even expanding. In November 2012, Microsoft expanded to Vancouver with another sweat shop called, Black Tusk Studios, a game developer. In March 2013, Amazon opened a new development centre in Vancouver. Facebook opened an office in Coal Harbour downtown Vancouver, and in June 2013, Twitter announced plans to open a world-class Global Centre of Excellence in Vancouver as well. So, you’re already too late aren’t you?
Why are they moving to Vancouver? They are trying to find more talent and take them south, you can’t compete with Twitter & Facebook on the recruiting front, they often pay software developers in excess of $100,000 per year right out of the gate. They are scooping up developers, and they MUST have a degree from a top 100 University. Unless you have large amounts of funding, and lower your standards, you should stop and regroup before you spend another dime.
My advice is, and always has been, if you want to build the next best thing, drive down main street and ask yourself what’s missing. Start there, and then do your homework, even if you think a value added service should be built to an already existing success like Facebook or Twitter, if yes….then do your homework.
Mobile is a huge market, 40% of Facebook’s action comes from Mobile, that should be an obvious indicator to what’s happening.
All this movement is happening fast, it’s a blur. It’s like life it’s self, time keeps on ticking, it never stops, but we tend to.
The best way to slow it down is to take time to regroup, spend time with those you care about most, then regroup, re-strategize, surround yourself with smart people, and get to work. Life doesn’t have to be a blur, and neither does your business. Take the time to bring clarity to your work, build a clear vision, not a something moving so fast it’s a blur.
It used to be, the only way to win at acquiring customers was to buy as much advertising as you could afford. The more you spent, the higher the results. That is and was the traditional advertising model that worked for a bricks & mortar business. Today the game has changed, yes traditional ways still work, not because it’s effective, because it’s what older generations prefer it, and they still have the money.
It’s easy to reach a traditional buyer, just run enough ads on traditional advertising vehicles, and you’ll get their attention. Today the customer with money is getting younger by the minute, and we need to market to them differently. We have to make offers that make us extremely uncomfortable. It used to be, if you wanted to get the greatest reach, you ran radio & television ads, newspaper has never had the same reach. You could run 30 second ads on radio for $30 a piece, but to get the frequency for it to be effective, you had to run more than 3 spots a day. The minimum would be 10 spots a day, because the life span of a radio ad is much like a Tweet on Twitter, about 20 minutes. So to have a successful customer acquisition campaign you had to spend significant amounts of money. The same held true for television, but at a much higher cost, not to run the ads, but to make the ad. Customer acquisition campaigns can also be considered branding campaigns, but they are different.
Today we have the Internet, we can reach more people via the NET than we could with radio & television together, for FREE! I’m not telling you anything you don’t already know, I am wondering why there is still such resistance to it. The resistance has the power to kill your business, and you the business owner must guard against it, not succumb to it.
The challenge with having such great reach on the Internet isn’t the cost, it’s being found, and being heard. Hence, we have a new kind of advertising vehicle like Google, Yahoo & Bing. These powerful search networks have really just adopted the traditional way of advertising for the Internet. If you want to be found, land on the first page, you now have a sufficient budget to have that desired result.
Today you can purchase qualified traffic, which, if you speak to them the right way, will become newly acquired customers. The same challenge you had with traditional mediums, holds true with digital ad networks, you need to dedicate resources to get the desired results you’re looking for.
The secret to customer acquisition today, is by leveraging and Open & Free Business Model, where free is the driving force. Like the resistance, free has the same problem, for reasons unknown to me, entrepreneurs and business owners can’t seem to wrap their brains around free. We understand loss leader concepts, but not free, I suspect the fear of giving something away and not getting paid is far greater than we would like to believe.
Companies that have figured out how to use free, have also figured out how to generate revenue because of it. Companies like Google, Spotify, Skype, Vimeo, Twitter, Evernote, Grooveshark and many more. These companies have proven free works, and they have mastered acquiring customers, they have mastered list building to the 9th degree. It does work, but we seem to have more reasons not to use the model. Whatever the excuse is, it’ll work.
You want to get more customers, give them something they want….for free, and then figure out how to monetize your new customers. The old business models are in the genre of win-lose, the open and free business model is about win-win, where everyone benefits. Mater giving products and services for free, and you will have an entirely new market to sell to. The concept makes sense, it just sounds and feels foreign.
FREE is not the enemy, free is your best friend, learn to embrace free, figure out where free fits in your business, because free is the secret to customer acquisition.
- The Definition Of The Open & Free Business Model (owengreaves.com)
- The Future Of Business – Build Small Loyal Communities (owengreaves.com)
- The Future Of Business – Create. Differentiate. Deliver. (owengreaves.com)