Note from Corbett: today’s post is by Amy Clover. Amy just launched a campaign in support of a cause that’s very close to her heart. Watch the video later in this post to see exactly how she implemented the strategies she’s about to share with you.
Also, after Amy’s post I want to tell you about a very special live session I’m hosting this week with Derek Halpern, the man behind perhaps the fastest growing blog on the planet (Social Triggers). Read to the end to learn more and register.
Take it away Amy.
Last July, I got a sinking feeling that I wasn’t living up to my full potential.
I was heading up a growing blog (StrongInsideOut.com), writing about things that matter to me (health and personal development), and I was making a good amount of money doing what I loved (personal training).
The brand I had built around Strong Inside Out was thriving, but it needed something more to take it to the next level.
There was this constant voice at the back of my head telling me that my message should be bigger than me.
After a period of assessment, I realized that my brand was just that: a brand. The buck stopped there.
- I needed a bigger following
- I wasn’t spreading my message beyond my readers like I hoped to
- I wasn’t creating change, or helping as many people as I wanted to
In order to take it up a notch and really make a mark on the world, I decided to create a movement out of my brand.
Since then, I’ve developed The 30×30 Project, a 30-city tour across the US and Canada of donation-based bootcamps that will benefit the non-profit, To Write Love On Her Arms. The IndieGoGo campaign just launched Friday!
I’m happy to say that my movement is well under way, and now I’m here to help you ignite yours as well.
You have a unique message you need to get out to the world. If your branding is strictly, well, branding, then you’re missing out on a wealth of community support, momentum, and loyalty that can take your blog or business to the next level.
When people feel like they’re fighting WITH you, instead of watching you fight your own battle, they’re more likely to support and encourage you however they can. When you succeed, they feel like they’re achieving a personal success as well. That’s the key to launching your brand to the next level.
Let’s go through the 5 crucial steps it takes to make a message into a movement.
1: Base Your Movement in Altruism
Before I decided to do a tour for charity, I was superficially altruistic.
I was (and still am) giving 5% of the proceeds from my only ebook for sale to To Write Love On Her Arms. It felt like a measly effort to appeal to people’s charitable senses.
It was only when I stepped back and allowed myself to see the full spectrum by asking myself, “How can I help the most people with my skill set?” did I begin to sense the spark that would light my movement.
When you base your goals in helping others, your tag line becomes your message. Your brand becomes a mission. Your drive becomes a need to help that cause.
When you’re working for more than just yourself, your selfish goals of success become a purpose that other people are more likely to get behind.
Ask yourself: “How can you help the most people with your unique skill set?”
2: Destroy The Box
Thinking bigger than you ever have before takes guts and a willingness to fail. You have to step outside everything you know to dream up your movement.
What matters to you, and what’s the most unique, grandiose way you can accomplish it?
Don’t be afraid to dream too big here. There’s no such thing.
When you have your big dream in mind, map out what it would actually take to achieve it, and if you’re willing to put forth the effort, go for it.
Nothing is too silly or ridiculous as long as you can find an actionable path to it.
Make sure the steps are things that you can control, rather than ethereal steps or hopes. You must be able to DO these things.
3: Be Brave
“If you want something you’ve never had, you must be willing to do something you’ve never done.” ― Thomas Jefferson
You will be the leader of this movement. You will be the face of your message.
Creating a movement requires an extraordinary amount of bravery. If you want to fuel your cause, you must have the courage to stand out and demand that your presence be known.
Here’s a secret I don’t tell many people: I’m a recovered shy kid. I grew up quiet and introverted, and now I have to consciously pull myself out of my shell.
If I can do it, you can, too.
Your foundation of altruism comes into play here, as well. Every time I go out and meet new people, or really put myself out there, I remind myself: “My message needs to be heard, and the people I am helping need me to be strong.”
It gives me courage every time, and I bet it will for you, too.
4: Create An Insane Work Ethic
Since you’re a Think Traffic reader, I highly doubt you have anything less than an insane work ethic. Entrepreneurs know that it takes work to earn that 4-hour workweek!
Even so, a movement requires a similar, yet different kind of work than starting a blog or business might.
A movement is a community-based endeavor; the people you’re helping and those fighting alongside you being your community. You must work at building that following and loyalty by helping them as much as you can, whenever you can.
Again, be selfless here. You’d be surprised how selflessness is the most efficient form of selfishness.
The logistics of creating a movement are just as demanding as starting your own business. The only thing is, this time around, if you fail, you’re letting down more than just yourself… No pressure. 😉
Knowing that you’re working hard for all those people you’re trying to help can be kerosene to your fire if you let it.
Keep persisting. Make the time to make this happen.
For ideas on what to do for the launch of your movement, check out How To Launch With A Bang; it has tons of good advice for getting the word out.
5: Get Over The Fear of Asking for Help
You’d be amazed at the reception of your movement if it’s truly based in altruism and your USP is in place.
Your friends, community and network is there because they like you! They are your support system and they’ll be happy to hear that you’re doing such amazing things.
You still have to make sure, however, that when you reach out, you’re not putting them out.
Every time you reach out to someone else, try one of these two approaches:
- Offer them or their community something beneficial. If you’re asking to guest post, really think about how you can add value to the site. Same thing with your own community: offer up some way to award them for helping you.
- Simply share your movement with them. If it speaks to them, they will offer to help on their own or continue the conversation with you in a more open way, giving you an opportunity to ask for help more organically.
All of your networking has been for this moment. All your community-building has led you here. You’re in the big leagues now, guys.
Take these actions, and you’ll be ready to rock your movement in no time!
Speaking of not being afraid to ask for help…
My IndieGoGo campaign for the 30×30 project is running as we speak. I’d be so grateful if you would take a few minutes to check out my video and help however you can:
Are you going to take the leap from brand to movement? Take this opportunity to get some readers fighting on your side from the start.
In the comments, tell us about your movement and the first step you’re going to take to make it happen.