There's a big push in the online industry to focus on yourself and what makes you different because that helps to create trust and authenticity. I'm all for this, but what about our audience?
What makes your audience different from every other audience?
What makes them so ideal for your business?
What are they struggling with?
What is the transformation they want (and how can your service provide it)?
When you're able to answer these questions, you can tailor your messaging so that it perfectly speaks to your people, making the decision to work with you an easy one.
In last week's show, we talked about the BOLD framework (check out last week's episode if you haven't, it lays the ground work for today's show), and today we're moving on to the O — other focused, because when your messaging is focused on others, on your audience, you are most likely out to change something in their business or in their life.
Let's dive in. You'll hear the ways in which you can shift your business to be other focused.
Tune in or read through the transcript below
Resources mentioned in this episode
Standing Out in a Crowded Market
I Believe Everyone Can be a Thought Leader (and Yes That Means You)
Unlocking Us feat. Ibram X. Kendi
Ditching the Lead Magnet and Build Your Email Community the Rebel Way
When you think about standing out or your Instagram posts or blog posts about how do you stand out in the online space, the focus is typically on yourself, how you're different, how your personality makes you unique or what your story adds to your one of a kindness.
And while these elements are important, I think they're missing a big, big, big opportunity to really make your business stand out by not focusing just solely on what makes you different, and shifting that focus to your audience, to your right clients and customers so that they feel seen, heard and listened to in your messaging.
That's exactly what we're going to talk about today on the podcast -- why focusing on your audience and your clients is one of the fastest ways to become the only option to them. So let's do this.
So what we're going to do today is dive back into the BOLD Framework, and to remind you, on the last episode of the pod, we talked about the B in the bold framework, which is BE the ONLY in your industry and to claim what you are the best in the world at.
Today we're going to focus on the O which is being other focused, being in the service of others, which is really what essentially thought leadership is for changing other people.
And in the next two episodes, we'll talk about the L, which is leadership and the D which is direction. So last week we talked about being the only, and now let's talk about the O-- other focused, and that means knowing who your business is for and creating a space of belonging for those people. And when I say, we want to know who our business is for, that also means knowing who your business is not for.
Before I dive in to the meat of this discussion, I did want to take a moment and reflect on who my business is for in light of everything that has been going on in the world, because the be the only claim what you're best at in the world episode happened before the murder of George Floyd, before all of the protests that happened in the United States and around the world. It happened before any of that.
If you've read the 3 Word Rebellion book, you know that I don't really hide my politics, you know that the 3 Word Rebellion was inspired yes from the entrepreneurs that I greatly admire, but it was also inspired from social movements, social movements, like Black Lives Matter. If you read the book, you also know that I give a critique of Donald Trump's Make America Great Again slogan the harm that that slogan does, because essentially what Make America Great Again does is call back to a time where many Americans were, and honestly most Americans, are still excluded. By most Americans I mean Black Americans and other people of color and that slogan continues to do harm.
I want to be absolutely clear that Communication Rebel, my business, and me as a person strive to be anti racist. That means looking at how I am racist. I believe that White people are racist and I think Ibram X. Kendi describes this best on an episode of Brené Brown’s podcast. He talks about how racism rains down on us in this culture. And we don't even know we're getting wet until somebody points it out to us and hands us an umbrella. So I've been doing, anti-racist work for on myself for about two to three years. And it's tough work to look at yourself and see how you've been indoctrinated into a racist culture and the harm you've done, the apologies you have to give to people that you've harmed and unknowingly harmed. That is the work. I believe that George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, they were all murdered because of systemic racism in this country.
So for me, I just want to be clear about that because being other focused and being bold in your business, in your message, in your thought leadership means that you take a stand for who you are for and who you are not for. This brand is not for people who believe that all lives matter. This is not for them. Okay. I did want to be clear who I'm for, who this business is for, and who this podcast is for. And we're going to be talking about this more in future episodes of the podcast. I am not an expert in DEI. I am not an expert in anti-racism. If you're on my list, you did get an email about anti-racism resources, but this is the work. So we will be talking more about this. We'll be talking more about this in the leadership episode next week as well, because this has to do with the values that we lead with.
So this is the worst segue in the world, but I want to tell you being other focused is more than just being clear on who your ideal client avatar is. It really is about creating that space where people can see themselves belonging in your brand. How else can we do that? Outside of being explicit on who we are for and who we are not for?
One way we can do that in a very practical sense is an I versus you ratio.
One of the things people ask me all the time on social media, they'll say, Michelle, I take all this time. I spend like 36 minutes writing a great social media post, and I don't get any engagement. I'll take a look at their social media posts and I can tell them exactly why the post is all about them. It's all I language, there’s no room for the other person. Of course, they don't get any engagement and it's the same when I go to somebody's website copy when I hear all about I, me, and my business, and this is what we believe. There's no room for the other person who is reading.
I think it's very important to have a 20/80 ratio with your content. 20% of your content can be focused on you and the other 80% should be focused on your people. So you can do this simply by just looking at the pronouns. 20% of your pronouns can be like I and me, the other 80% should be you pronouns. Talk to your people, ask them questions, engage them. Your action step here is to go look at your copy. Look at your last five social media posts. What's your ratio? Is it 20% focused on you and your business? And is it 80% focused on the people you're talking to? Or is it 50/50? Is it 80/20 the other way? Once you start focusing on other people, you'll see them want to engage with you more.
The second way to be more other focused is to create room for self reflection in your business.
By self reflection I mean having space when people engage with your content, with your social media, for them to think about themselves. One of the most powerful things about the 3 Word Rebellion is that when you come up with a great one, it makes people curious about what it means, but it also makes people ask, what does this mean for me? Because people are thinking about themselves, right? And this is why quizzes make such wonderful opt-ins and lead magnets, or as I like to think of them, as community builders, if you've listened to that episode on building your email list, because we see a quiz and we want to know more about ourselves.
I really believe Seth Godin is a master at writing for self-reflection. He sends daily emails that make us think about ourselves because he's always answering questions. So here's your action step. How can you create more room for people to reflect on your work, in your content, in your copy, in what you're posting on social media? How can you create that room for self reflection, where they're thinking about themselves, where they're answering questions about themselves, how can you do that more or do it better? So you're not always asking them questions necessarily, but you're like Seth Godin and implying questions.
If you're not on Seth Godin's email list, if you want to masterclass in this every single day, I highly recommend your action could be signing up for his email list and reading it, not for the content, but for how he writes. If you haven't noticed, do you see what I'm doing with these action steps? I'm making you self-reflect haha. Interesting. Right?
Finally, the reason this other focus is so important and why it should be a part of your thought leadership is because people love thinking about themselves.
It may sound so counterintuitive, but if you want your business to be memorable, if you want it to stand out, the thing that you must do is create a place for people to think about themselves, because that is what's truly going to make you stand out in their minds. You're going to be the person who helped them have a realization about themselves that brought them to an aha moment. That is what's going to create that stickiness, that memorable-ness that you're looking for.
So what's one thing you can do to be more bold and more other focused in your business and your thought leadership? Do you need to go look at your copy and see how other focused you are? Maybe you need a new opt-in or community builder that's asking more questions and having people take more actions.
I'd love to know the one action that you're going to take from this podcast episode. So come find me on Instagram and send me a DM and let me know what action you took.
And if you find yourself doubting that you are hitting the mark with your message, you're just not sure if people are able to see themselves in your copy in the marketing that you're doing, that is something we can look at during a Bold Messaging Session. And frankly, it's one of my favorite things to look at, how do we make your message more audience centric so people think about it and want to do business with you.
A bold messaging session is the way to get a one off 90 minute session with me where we dive into your existing message and make it clearer, more memorable and more desirable to your right person. So if that sounds interesting to you, and you'd like to have my brain and 25 years of experience on your business and your message go to DrMichelleMazur.com/bold andbook your session.
So until next time, create a bold message by being other focused.
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