on September 24, 2006
Michael Port has written a very useful book with proven techniques and strategies for being successful. There are three main aspects to this book:
Your Foundation: Here you are taken through a series of clearly defined steps and exercises to `dump your dud clients' - a very useful piece of advice, to identify your target market and the benefits they are looking for, to identify how you want to be known in the market (your personal brand) and to determine how to present yourself so your ideal clients can find you.
Building Trust and Credibility: Again a series of clearly defined steps and exercises to create credibility and trust, to understand and implement the `Book Yourself Solid' Sales Cycle, to develop your marketing materials and to sell your products/services and yourself.
Seven Core Self-Promotion Strategies: The seven strategies are: Networking, , Direct Outreach, Referral, Web, Speaking and Demonstrating, Writing and Keeping in Touch. You do not have to implement all of the strategies, just those that are aligned with your strengths and interests. I found this section most interesting and useful, as I picked up ideas from all seven strategies, which again are presented in a series of steps and exercises.
If I have not made the point already, I will emphasize that the book is a series of clearly defined steps and exercises that should be followed to get the full benefit. This is an important point. From NLP (neuro-linguistic programming), we know that about 40% of the population enjoys and religiously follows procedures, a further 40% is great at developing procedures and has great difficulty following them (for this type of person, it is said that if you give them a guaranteed way to make a $1M, the first thing they will do is change the process!). And 20% have a balance between these two attributes. Hence 60% of the population will follow the steps and exercises in this book and significantly increase their chances for success. The other 40% will pick up some ideas and do it their way.
The author makes a point that to be truly successful, you need to let go of your limiting beliefs. However, he does not really tell you how to do this. Therefore, I recommend that if self-esteem or limiting beliefs have held you back in the past that you read this book together with a good introductory NLP book or hire a personal coach.
on March 28, 2007
If you were all anthropologists (or perhaps religious studies buffs) I would tell you that Michael Port's Book Yourself Solid is a modern hagiography. Reading, something like: how to do business with love.
He offers, I suppose, through his book=information product his well-modulated speaking and guiding voice to the hopeful and emerging service business professional, to blot out those dark, perhaps, honest statements that our best friends tell us. Many embattled road warriors also admit to having lost some essential part of their souls. 'They say': the economy is depressed, the market is going to implode, your business will fail, over one-half of all new businesses fail in x years; this is not practical, you should listen to reason, give up!
Michael Port spares a sentence or two to use your head, this includes doing research. He probably should emphasize the latter a little more. What he offers instead, within a practical framework, is some light. Some questions. Why not go big? Why not go bigger? Have you considered that you are meant to serve some folks, and not others? And, is it not 'nearly criminal' for you NOT to get off your butt and find those people? After all, people express their values by what they purchase. (Authors John Eckblad & David Kiel, explore the archeology of finances, in their 'If your Life were a Business, would you Invest in it?) Michael does say, if you are a service professional and don't want to 'serve' then get out now.
As a product of his time, Michael offers, in a James C Scott, kind-of-way a moral economy of words. The book is for sale, coaching is for sale. And, as any good guide, he asks us to enter into an experiment, a dispensation of belief. In this 'as if' world, the 'real economy' is not dollars, but heart. Albeit, the engine, is showing up to do the grunt work.
Listen, as my father who just turned eighty-six says, 'the proof is in the pudding.' This book is a well-bound workbook. It is a dialogue with exercises. When I read the free chapter on how to have a sales conversation I felt like a 'fish drawn to water.' Obviously, I needed to get in the pond and get wet. I sought out the hard cover copy at the local Indigo/Chapters (sorry Amazon) and paid the full, Canadian dollar equivalent of $31.00 plus 15% tax. No saving my money here!
Why? Because I am: (1) committed to my business, and (2) need to book clients solid. The book is a gem if you have this need. It contains a few surprises if you read it-all. Behind this book is a community; smart people who are bold enough to share while on the run. Is Michael Port the Messiah? No. (I am voting for Guy Kawasaki: The Art of Start is a time-tested, battle-hardened Guide for starting anything.) Did Michael Port save my life? No. Has diligently reading through this book moved my business forward? Yes.
PS. I ran into a business colleague today. I mentioned that I was just finishing the last chapter and last class of the 16 week Book Yourself Solid course on-line. I had never done something that radical before, I said'and I researched it thoroughly. 'Oh, I have that book,' she said. 'I haven't got past the beginning but I really liked Michael Port's Red Velvet Rope Policy. That made such an impact on me that I fired my first client ever. I even sent back a cheque. It was the hardest thing to send back real money. But I read that and thought, who needs the aggravation? Would you recommend the course?'
on September 13, 2006
Just another book about simple marketing ideas or should I say about how the author promotes his seminar business. If you think that the info in this book will get you clients, it won't. I would suggest that you read "The Obvious Expert" by Eldrige, it will give you 100 times more information than the seven simple ideas that are in this book that anyone in business use now without even thinking about it.
This book is very basic marketing 101. No new ideas at all!