Why are successful people successful? Focus. What’s the other reason are successful people successful? They focus on what they know.
After months of debate, research, and pondering, I know what my writing focus is going to be, at least for the next 12 months–an influencer book, the tentative title of which is Influencer Inc.
This book is not about influence marketing
I do have this one qualm with the title. Influence marketing is a big thing and it’s growing, and I’m concerned people will think this is a book about how to use influence marketing. While this book will be useful for people who want to be hired as part of an influencer marketing campaign, or who want to become YouTube or Snapchat stars, this book’s primary audience will be business influencers. If you’re an executive, entrepreneur, programmer, designer, accountant, marketer, etc. with a successful career and you’re looking how to get a book deal, get paid to speak, grow a social media audience, write for top-tier publications, build an email list, become a thought leader, establish a personal brand, etc. then this book will be a perfect fit for you. I want to turn you into an influencer and help you get your message to your audience.
Why Influencer Inc.?
So what’s the story? How did I decide this is what I want to do? I’ve been trying to figure out what I want to do, what my “mission” is right now, and I’ve learned that you’re on to something and you might be close to discovering your mission when people start offering you money for something you do or know how to do.
Last November I met with the former CMO of a $2B company. She wanted to pay me to help her do what I’ve done over the past three years. She wanted to write for Forbes, get a book deal, and get paid to speak. She offered to pay me $1,000 per month to help her, merely by providing a few hours of advice each month. I turned her down. It wasn’t an easy decision. It seemed like easy money. But I didn’t feel prepared, and I didn’t want to let her down. But it got me thinking.
The more I thought, the more teaching people how to become influencers seemed like the direction I should head in. And I kept getting more and more validation for it. I would receive emails that said things like this (this was in response to someone I was telling about my CMO book that’s coming out in a month or two):
Been really impressed by how your personal brand has grown since I met you back in 2013…I think you could also publish something on building a personal brand using content marketing/media exposure…
I get this a lot. Everyone wants to know how I ended up writing for Forbes and how they can do it, too. It’s the most common question I get asked.
Then the other day I was watching a video of Bryan Harris talk about building an email list (you’ll have to click on that “sign up now” button and give him your email address to watch the video, I couldn’t find it online anywhere) and I had an experience that sealed the deal. Bryan was talking about quick and easy things one can do to grow an email list, and he said everyone needs a popup on their website. I already have one of those, and yeah, that one change has given me a lot of extra signups. Here’s proof:
This shows the number of new subscribers to the email list for joshsteimle.com. I wasn’t doing any signups at all in May of 2015, but then I installed a signup form and a popup and you can see how it’s grown from basically zero to a high of 43 new subscribers in November, and then it kind of tapered down a bit this year.
As a glass-half-full kind of guy I look at this and think “Gee, a year ago I had zero subscribers, now I have 532, and I’m adding at least 20 every month, and sometimes 40, that’s great!” But then the part of me that’s a bit more ambitious says “You should have 200,000 enthusiastic subscribers on your list. Get your act together!” That’s why I took the time to watch Bryan’s video, and when I got to the next tip of his after the one about adding a sign up form/popup, a light went on.
Bryan’s next suggestion was to go look at your most popular blog post. I quickly logged into Google Analytics to see what would come up, and this is what I saw.
My most popular blog post was about how to become a writer for Forbes. Not only was it getting the most pageviews, but look at the average time people were spending on that page. At 4:22 I know they’re not just hitting the page and quickly leaving–they’re reading that whole post.
I then decided to check out Google Trends, to see what it had to say about the word “influencer” and how many people were searching for it. Here’s what that looks like.
I believe we call that validation.
What Comes Next?
The best part is you get to come along for the ride as I write the book. I’ve already figured out some parts of becoming an influencer, but I still have a lot to learn. I’m going to do all the work of figuring out the best ways to create audiences on social media, grow an email list, launch a podcast, market via video on YouTube, Snapchat, and Periscope, and you get to learn without all the time and expense. Instead of trying 10 ways to grow an email list, you can just read my post about how I tried all 10 ways and found the best way. I’ll share pretty much everything here during the next year or so as I work on this. If you really want to get involved then implement the lessons I learn, comment on my blog posts, and who knows, you might end up in the book as a case study.
And of course if you want to know about each new thing I learn about becoming an influencer, as I learn it, then make sure you subscribe to my email list below. Easy subscribe, easy unsubscribe.Liked it? Share it!