Know Your Conditions for Connection: Case Study with Alex Blumberg
Hey welcome back welcome back as always let's take a look at what our goal is for this lessen our goal for today is to identify how you naturally connect with people so that you can naturally make your business mohr effective because each and every one of us has a unique way that were kind of hard wired to connect with people and what is marketing what is being in business at all if it's not about connecting with people so that's our goal for today let's take a look at what we did before though we in our last lesson looked at what your customers are already looking for because if you can craft messaging if you can put a product out there that essentially reads your customer's mind and answers that question that they already have half of your job of standing out is already done for you it's kind of a beautiful thing so in the previous lesson you figured out what customer need you want to fill so that you don't have to convey events anyone they want what you're selling it's that convinci...
ng part that feels really picky when it comes to sales isn't it if you never had to convince anyone if you didn't have to convert them on on what it is that you have to offer you'd never feel bad about sales when all you have to do is show up with what someone else is looking for you don't have to feel bad you don't get that icky feeling that's what I want for all of you that makes that's the easiest sales process there is, and we did talk in that previous lesson about how some of us have a job of educating our customers are our clients more how we start from a place of what they're already looking for and work them through a few different ideas before they're ready to buy from us? But the process is really still the same it's still about meeting your customer exactly where they are, where they're at with their particular need so that you can bring them what they already want make it really easy for them to buy from you. So let's, take a look at where we're at in bill to stand out business. We are now on lesson eight no, your conditions for connection. So if you've ever done everything right on ly to see a marketing campaign of fall flat, this is for you, we're going to figure out what your conditions are to create marketing campaigns that naturally connect people with you and naturally connect you with them because we all have different conditions for success when it comes to create connecting with other people, and like I said, marketing is all about connection it's all about establishing that relationship. With someone else so you guys have heard of relationship based marketing right? That's what this is all about it's understanding how your best or how you're most likely to create that relationship with people so I have something to tell you guys hello, my name is tara and I'm an introvert I don't do well walking up to strange groups of people and introducing myself I rather prefer to know who I'm talking to at any given point in time I rather prefer to be able to research them and know what they would expect for me I like to know the exact conditions they're the exact expectations of every situation and so while I might really like standing on the stage and connecting with you like this and this is one of my conditions for connection, I do not like walking into rooms of strange people with the name tag and a wine glass and a little snacky plate first of all, what do you do with your hand? What do you do with your hands? I don't know how do you shake someone hand when you're holding a snack plate and a glass of wine? I'm not sure I don't like oh, just whether it's a networking event whether it's a party like how do you somebody tell me you know when people are all grouped together and they're having a conversation do you just like walk in and announce yourself what do you d'oh? I don't know, I don't know, so what I do know is that this is how I connect with people. This is one of my conditions for success I love being on stage I love presenting my ideas to you, I love knowing who's going to be in my studio audience so that I understand what your problems are, what your questions are ahead of time and I can come and I can meet those those questions with answers that I feel really passionate about. I also love being on social media why? Because social media is a place where I don't have to have that instant reaction that makes me really nervous. I don't have to know what to say right away. I can take a minute and think about it, I can research the person who's, asking a question if necessary. I've totally done that before, too, you know, you asked me a question on twitter, and you're welcome to with the hashtags standout biz, right? You ask me a question on twitter and I don't want to just give you a generic answer click through your profile, I find your little link, I do a little research and then I get back to you man, social media is just such a great platform for introverts in fact, when I get asked well tara how does how can I make the best out of social media? I'm an introvert and social media wasn't built for me no no no no no. Who do you think built social media? It was a bunch of introverts who have a lot of problems making connections and networking events. Yes, yes. Okay, yeah, you know who those people were and I love them dearly. Okay, so those are my conditions for connection. What do you think some of your conditions for connection are? What are the things that make it really easy for you to meet new people start new relationships before we get to that we've got a very, very special guest who's going to join us and talk about how he makes connections with other people, so I'd like to introduce alex bloomberg. He is the co founder and ceo of gimlet media. He's got a brilliant podcast that I recommend to everyone called startups start at the beginning work your way to the end. It is brilliant and it will help you really understand the inner workings those inside connections, those inside relationships that make business happened. But alex is also a master storyteller and a master interviewer and that's why? I thought he was perfect to talk to us about how he sets himself up for success when it comes to meeting new people so let's uh let's bring up alex hey, alex hey, how's it going dad, I am so glad that you're here thank you so much. Thanks for having me absolutely so like I just said to these guys you are a master storyteller and a master interviewer and I'm wondering pressure no pressure no not how do you set yourself up for success when you are sitting down with an interviewee? What are those kind of conditions that you need to have in place to make sure that connection goes as well as possible? Uh well I think I mean, you know it is it's a slightly different setting probably because I am trying to go for specific moments on tape but I think what's similar is that you're trying to create an authentic connection uh, you know, an emotional connection so a couple things I do I think one thing I do is, um I try to dispense with the small talk quickly people want teo talk about real things most of the time and most of the time they get stuck talking about small talk because it's sort of socially acceptable. So you want to have just enough small talk so that you're not like a crazy person, you know, like, you know, you don't want to launch right into like, you know, so when you lose your virginity you know or whatever uh but but you want teo you know, so you could talk about the weather for a second or two, but then, but then sort of get straight to the meat of whatever you find interesting or what you find interesting about the person. The other thing I do often when I'm in an interview subject when in an interview setting as I share a personal story about myself, that sort of models, that kind of interaction that I'm looking for, like I will reveal something about myself, that's like, you know, a somewhat personal, you know, a moment that I was embarrassed for a moment that I had I was confused about something, some a small moment of vulnerability, not like again, anything big, but like something that's really, you know, a real feeling that I had a real moment of of so something that's like a little outside the script on dh that that generally people respond to that usually too. Yeah, I love that that's something that I talk a lot about in terms of marketing technique is that when you can reflect back to someone there experience or the experience that you want them to be having that it's a great way to connect, to create a connection with someone, so another thing that I'm trying tio. Teach in this boot camp is that there are some techniques that worked for some people on their some techniques that worked for other people have you found that there are certain story tech storytelling techniques that work really well for you that don't work for other people or vice versa storytelling techniques that maybe you've learned elsewhere that don't seem to make a connection for you? Ah yeah I mean well, let me see let me see I think I think there's a couple I mean I think what you're sort of the way I think about it is you know, finding your your authentic voice on again if we're talking about like storytelling we're talking about just making a connection at a sort of at a conference or something like that I think there's there's one set of rules, but if you're talking about something a little bit more formal like being on stage and presenting or you know you know, doing a podcast or whatever what I think a lot about is sort of finding your authentic voice which is the performed version of your true self and it's not the same is just being yourself because the self myself when I'm if I were just myself on the air I would be a lot more, you know, jumpy and anxious and I was like repeat my words a lot more and I would be a lot less concise and focused but I still khun sound like myself which because I've learned over time to sort of channel my my true self but make it a more tight edited perform diversion and I think that is just sort of trying to understand what you're but you know what you're good at certain people are more performative in general and they can, you know, put on accents and they can sort of do you know they have, you know, sort of like much more booming voices and they can sort of they can play it for drama more other people like me are a little bit more like, you know, sort of like anxious and doubting and so I tried to make that part of my persona and I think it's just sort of like imagining what who you are in, you know, in real life and then trying to style as those we're you know, trying to sort of pull forth those those those parts of your personality and hold them yeah, absolutely that's another thing that we're talking a lot about here is it's not just about authenticity it's not just about knowing who you are but really being ableto lean into the advantage that that gives you yes exactly yeah and like knowing that like you're not going to be everything like some people are just able to do things ah that that you can't do and vice versa, you know, so you know, like I'm always I'm always so jealous of people in my field hoo hoo khun could do a good do good accent, you know, sort of like or just have good recall for dialogue you know, like that's so helpful in storytelling and if you can if you can do an accent you're just like it just gives you this whole tool kid you know, in which to recreate a scene that I just don't have access to and I can't d'oh you know, I was lately I'm very jealous of those people is awesome. So when you're telling a story when you're trying to connect with your audience so whether it's on your podcast or when it was in radio what are some of the elements of story telling that you make sure to include to make that connection with your audience? Well, I mean, I think I think the the main thing is is the main thing I think that I think of two things one to talk in stories and what I mean by that is that there's a there's sort of a natural people are drawn naturally to narrative if I start out and I say, you know, I got up this morning and I but um issues and I walked out the door to goto work and on my way out the door I looked up and I happened to notice something I've told you a siri's of events and now you want to know what I noticed, right? Like absolutely just by virtue of it being revealed as a narrative, you know, unfolding as a narrative, you want to know what comes next and if I say I noticed the cloud it's not a very good story, and if I say I noticed ufo it's a very good story on, so and so it depends on what you've noticed, and then it depends on sort of what is, you know, what's at the heart of the story, but if you if you just if if you embed these narratives in whatever it is you're talking about that that's very helpful, I think of them as the building blocks of anything that I'm trying to get across, like you wanna you wanna have, like, you know, the moment I realized this was blank, I was at my desk, you know, back in college or whatever, and then right away, you're sort of in the middle of a narrative and so that's, the first thing that I that I that I talk about and then the second thing for me is, is that there be some kind of moment of revelation or humor or something unexpected should happen? Some moment of unexpected emotion, some moment of, you know, unexpected humor. You know, that seems to be and that's thea other sort of building black up like something where, like something lands in in a really authentic way awesome that reminds me of those and I don't want to reduce what you're saying it all but it it reminds me those buzzfeed headlines were those mashable headlines where it's like, you know, this was happening and then this and you just have to click on it to find out what that this is. No, no, absolutely and I think it's like one of the there's no question, I mean that's what that that's it that's what we're doing it and like the reason you stopped clicking is that sometimes you're just like, oh, that wasn't that good headline was better in the story, you know? But if if you khun do the headlight and then they had left and then the story's good like, you know that's, that's, that's a really good formula? Yeah, absolutely so last question you have a real talent for connecting with interview ease with your audience. I'm curious how you used similar techniques or what conditions make you really successful for connecting with your new team members? How do you get your team on board with your ideas or, you know, just get there by infer the direction that you want to take in your company um, I think I don't know. One of the things that I feel like doesn't work very well in audio is, uh, is b s you can hear it, I think even better than you can see it and that you can, and then you can read it, like b s is just anytime somebody's, talking insincerely about anything, or sort of perfunctorily about something. It just doesn't work. And and so I've gotten used to sort of cutting that out of, like my interviews and cutting that out, like, I don't use that as tape. Those are the things that get edited out, and I find that if you can try to edit them out of your own sort of talking, that that helps. If your team, if each like, I'm not saying you just share every single anxiety with the people. But if you try to actually hear what they're saying and tried to actually tell the honest. Truth about what you're feeling and thinking that that that seems to be so far working so alex, you've got a creative live class can you tell us what that's all about? Oh yeah it's ah it's called power your podcast with storytelling and it's all about like these techniques that I've learned over you know, from almost fifteen years of doing this from my time working at this american life and planet money to starting my own business. Andi just go through all that all the tricks of the trade that I've learned how to get how to be a good storyteller in a podcast how to get good tape, how to structure your stories and we actually make a full podcast story during the course of the two day class awesome and where can we find you and give let me tio online given the media dot com that's our that's, our website and you can listen to our podcasts one is called startup and then thea the one that we launched recently is called reply all and it's a show about the internet and it's awesome yeah, I love them both thank you so much yeah thank you so much for being here awesome alex a big round of applause all right, so when have you guys most effortlessly connected with other people in the past we heard about how alex connects with his interviewees it's how he connects with his audience how he connects with his team how do you guys how have you guys connected effortlessly with people in the past? I hope you've been thinking about this bridget you connect effortlessly with people online yes since I was like for the last fifteen years at least bridget do you mind me asking you how old you are thirty four thirty fourth you're thirty four I'm thirty two this digital native generation of introverts as well the introverted digital natives I feel very effortless connecting online it just makes sense doesn't it complete sense I've built my whole life around this as survive beautiful love it thank you melissa um on stage okay which performing speaking teaching physical stages online stages but that wasn't always the case I mean now it feels effortless but for anybody watching it did not start out that way so and you know, I think to contrast your answer with my answer I think what's unique about the way you connect on stages that you connect on stage using your talents, right? You see saying you form you improvise as opposed to all the time like me like I prefer to be on stage telling you what to dio or telling you how it isthe right? We'll do that too and I know you do that yes, but you have this you have this really talent for using your talents and again it's something that I've developed and learned how to do overtime and gotten comfortable with overtime I did not start out comfortable with it yeah, how about a different answer? Yeah, kathy definitely more face to face person because I'm a very expressive person so when I see this that you guys were saying online, I have like, just this week a person that started following me and she tweets me and she says, how is your day going? And I'm like, how do I answer that? I don't even know because I don't know you and so I guess I could take some tweeting lessons remain young people we can have like a beautiful thing I don't think everyone needs to connect with people online that might be my e I think just about everyone's business needs an online presence I think people need to be able to find you there, but just because they find you there, it doesn't mean that that's where they go deeper with you and so one thing that I really want to hit home in this particular lesson is that if connecting online doesn't make sense for you, there are def print ways we can channel that into your marketing is going to keep getting some responses here, but that really leads me to this next slide how can you channel that into the marketing for your business how can you channel that into marketing for your business? So what do you think? How could you take advantage of connecting with people face to face to market your business? Well, one thing I thought about doing is maybe more of a webinar or google hangouts or something where we can talk still be far apartment talk face to face. I was like, that is a great idea, and I find a lot of people who do connect well face to face, do very well with that kind of just live to camera webinar and google hangouts is perfect for that, too, because so for me, I like I don't mind being on camera at least not after for creative live workshops, no mind being on camera, but the unexpected interaction from the audience can be a little. It can throw me off a little bit. I like question an answer, but someone just kind of china ming in might throw me off a little bit. Google hangouts is cool, though, because you can actually. Integrate that capability so if you do want to work with people a little bit more spontaneously you just give them a link into your live hangout and they conjoining via video or via audio and you can get that kind of interaction and put it on display for a lot of other people because sometimes you know when you connect really well one on one with people it could be like well how does that scale the way that it's scales is by doing that in front of people right so it's interviewing people for a podcast it's doing webinars with you know, perspective clients and an answering questions or doing a case study live and then putting that on display right so it absolutely can scale and it absolutely could be done online how could you do this offline? Well I already do it offline good I do I do a lot of networking and so I already talked with people that ever the thing I do yeah. So how about hosting your own event? Oh, definitely something out of your workshop. Yeah, afternoon type thing yes for sure. Yeah. The same techniques that work for getting people into webinars work for getting people into live events how many of you guys do live events to market your business beautiful? I am so glad to see that it's something that we forget about you know we're so in this online business building a world that we forget that some of our best clients might live five minutes away from us and if you can host an event where these people can come in and you can connect with them and whatever whatever situation you choose that could be great forgetting maybe your first ten fifteen thirty clients on dh really getting your business off off off off to a great start and of course it can last much longer than a great start to but it can really give you good practice for figuring out how you're going to take your business online how about one more the trees very much a coffeeshop girl one on one and so I connect better there than actually like in a traditional office environment okay, so it has to be the small group or went online but in a coffee shop beautiful do you think that maybe one of your conditions for connection that is kind of the energy that comes from being in a room like that it's definitely the energy in my office is an art gallery and it always has been on dh it's something about the energy of that space and it breaks down the barriers I think with my clients and I especially like on such a heavy topic beautiful beautiful yeah so we each have these really individual conditions for connection with the conditions that really make us naturally successful at starting a relationship furthering a relationship with someone that someone have a condition in mind that just hasn't been said yet yeah best with people when there's a group dialogue there's a little bit of both there is teaching but then there's also I feel like I'm alone s receptive when I'm teaching okay, it seems ironic right? And one of your fascination languages this mystique, right? No, no hour and innovate shin how are an innovation? Okay, interesting. Did you score high in mystique to remember? No. Okay, never mind forget what I was saying I find that that's common with mystique people but beautiful I yeah, I like that and I like what you said about being receptive to because so much of connection is not just giving the receiving as well and really when I'm up on stage when I'm in this particular condition of mine a big part of that is receiving from you it's your input it's your questions you guys make me ah better presenter so that not only am I connecting with you, but I'm better connecting with our online audience as well makes sense cool thank you so much for sharing so surprise you've got into the second quiet power strategy easter egg so if you'd like to get a fee free pdf copy of my brand new book you can go to tear it until he dot com slash egg too terry gentilly dot com slash egg to answer a very easy question that's there enter your email address and we'll send your free coffee of the book so that's our second easter egg thanks for watching all right, you want to go? You guys want to find out what your homework is for today? Cool. So homework today is to identify three to five of your conditions for connection, identify three to five of your conditions for connection we've talked about, you know, being on stage, needing to know what expectations are needing to be able to research someone before you respond to them knowing that you the answer that you have to give them or the response that you have to give them is the right one for that person we talked about connecting with people live in person in groups on stage. What else did we say in a coffee shop? What are some different scenarios that make it really easy for you to connect with people? That's what we're looking for a plane and simple what air some different scenarios that make it easy for you to connect with people now, then you're going to select two to three marketing channels, so in other words, ways that you can connect with people in terms of your business that leverage those conditions, so maybe one is webinars another is twitter and another is facebook or maybe one is live events another is teaching on stage and another one is you know, putting videos out whatever the whatever conditions you have find a marketing channel that makes sense with those conditions do you have any questions about what how that might line up or do you feel like you get at patrice? So with I always feel like my situation is so darn difficult but with the coffee shop so how what will my marketing channels for that look like? And I asked because I have privacy considerations so you know, if I'm meeting someone in a coffee shop and they want to talk about something that's confidential then how does that line with me? Yeah, so let's so first let's put this in terms of maybe meeting new people and so I think one way you know you're a kickstart labs member and I think one way you've been really successful with connecting with my audience has been in that forum and I could see a forum really kind of representing that coffee shop experience where there's this energy of conversation and back and forth going on but you're also able to speak to one person's concerns or answer one person's question and so maybe plugging into a couple different online forums is a really good way for you to make that initial connection and then you could move it to mohr of up a private channel where you know you're doing a skype consultation or you do maybe they are local and you can invite them to a coffee shop and then yeah, you're gonna have to bring him into the art gallery office or or on the phone and have that confidential conversation but in terms of that initial, you know, obviously and maybe it comes with a disclaimer that says if I'm not your lawyer yet you don't don't don't I swear by my advice, but this is the direction that I would put you in I think forums are great way and I'm just I've loved watching you connect in the kickstart labs for him, ok? Yeah, cool any other questions? Melissa yeah eso for this, for the purposes of this exercise would you consider writing to be absolutely, absolutely and then specifically, where you going? Publish that writing are going to publish it on your blogged your email newsletter are you gonna publish it and other people's publications because all of those different pieces have slightly different conditions for connection right? S o the medium is writing the channel would be how you deliver it great. Thank you, yeah lisa, did you have a question? Writing is, well, perfect night, okay, yeah, one more thing there because, like, I've got this idea that maybe you could put the writing out in really random ways like I don't know quite how to explain it, but it's like putting it in unexpected places because part of my whole thing is that very unconventional sort of surprising aspect of things on I'm wondering like where could I put the words that maybe would be different for people that would sort of be in a different space to where they might normally expect to see them? So I don't have an answer to that question I think that your unexpected creativity needs to come up with your own answer there, but what I can say is that if that's the direction that you choose because that's one of your unexpectedness unpredictability is one of your conditions for connection, then I'd say you do need a platform or a way of communicating where that writing is happening, right? Okay, so you need an audience you need someplace to concentrate that audience so you know when actually maybe pinterest is a really good place for you because pinterest becomes a hub where lots of different types the media can come together yeah, yeah, yeah meghan, you were a way to connect is by teaching I think I like live teaching the best but it's hard to scale? I think that kind of teaching like teaching a person in my community um and so I have some online classes and what I've done is have a face book groups that people can answer questions you can ask questions, I think that's my favorite, my second favorite, is a lot of times people will come up and say, do you mind if I ask you a gardening question? I know it's like my favorite thing about sand completely so so I'm wondering if there's something else I should be thinking about? Um, well, you know, I think there's there's some people in my world right now, they're almost kind of for going the the blogged posting and instead doing like a monthly webinar where maybe maybe it's time for you to invest in a lightweight video set up something that it's not your not tethered to your computer when it comes to doing a webinar, but that you could stand up and actually demonstrate something so that your teaching and maybe you've got a chat room where people can connect or like what I was talking about with kathy, maybe people can actually come into the webinar and ask you live questions there as you're demonstrating something but just that one technique or that one idea that you want to share with people once a month. S oh, there's, something predictable, there's, there's that constant content delivery service. Essentially, that keeps people coming back or it could be something that is paid for as well maybe you keep up the block and you do a siri's of paid webinars where people can come into your garden shed or into your garden and and watch you work you know, I have thought about the logistics scene kind of overwhelming but yet to actually be in my garden, especially since gardeners love to see other people's gardens yeah, absolutely outside would be great. Yeah, so speaking of logistics, I'm glad you brought up logistics. Logistics is where a lot of noise happens in the market there's so many people telling you how to do these different things is what I want youto take home or one of the things I want you to take home from this lesson is that when you know what your conditions for connection are and you know what marketing channels best relate to those things you can shut out all the noise that has to do with other channels and on lee look for the things that are going to work for you so that's an opportunity for you to stop, you know, stop watching what people were doing on facebook stop watching what people are doing on twitter and just pay attention at least for a short term period tio how do you set up a remote uh, web in our studio what what's the technology? What are the tools that you need for that? And so you could just pinpoint that one piece of the signal inside of the noise eso thatyou're not overwhelmed so that you're not constantly going back and forth on things, but that you're really focused on consuming just the information that you need? Yeah, this should be able to supercharge all of your social media, learning or all of your marketing, learning from the get go all right. And then once you've chosen, once you've identified your conditions for connection, had chosen those two to three marketing channels that you're going to focus on. Tweet me at terra gentilly hashtags standout biz with your selections so that's your homework for today's lesson let's, take a look at what's coming up next in the next less and you'll identify what makes your voice unique and how you can amplify the differences to stand out it's all about inv investing in your unique point of view, and we've got a really fun activity to go along with that. So if you want to find out about that, you'll have to join us for tomorrow's lesson.