Selling Yourself (Not As An Escort)
I got told this interesting bit of advice by my screenwriter teacher in Los Angeles a few years back. He said “Remember, no one wants to make your movie.”
I remember being a little taken back… No one wants to make MY movie? But my movie is fucking great… It’s got Jonah Hill and Robert De Niro in it. Yes, they haven’t read it and yes, I don’t know them… but still.
This took a while to digest but it was just true, so true. Of course no one wants to listen to you, make your shit or buy your product, initially.
I was originally going to write about how ‘no one knows who you are’ and you should self promote… I’m changing this on the fly to more ‘how important selling yourself is’. Now I know we all thought of ourselves as high class escorts just then but get ya filthy heads out of the gutter. It was probably just me thinking that way.
Before starting my business Priceless Productions I was the creative guy who made the funnies. From writing and directing to acting and editing that was my thing. I knew I was good as it and I thought that was common knowledge… What a mistake.
I thought I was going to be flinging clients off now that I wasn’t locked into my full-time job – a nice mixture of arrogant and dumb thinking – a very common mixture I use.
Shit no, fuck no. No clients, no real contacts, nudda nothing. The last 8 months for me has been learning on the fly how to sell myself and convince others to buy me and the product I sell.
I can’t say I don’t feel like a used car salesman trying to flog off Smart Cars. It’s not my bread and butter and I feel like a fuckwit while I’m doing it. That’s common.
A couple things help and this might just be an opinion but I hope it may be advice to you.
1. Believe in what you’re doing/selling.
I don’t think I could possibly sit in a meeting room full of people if I was selling Smart Cars. “Ahh… 4 out of 10 people said they don’t point and laugh when they see them – less than 50% which is AMAZING guys… Can I put you down for two??”
Believing in something makes you passionate – and when someone sees you being passionate, they’re more likely to buy in what you’re doing/selling. Doesn’t mean you need a Jim Carey type over-acted performance. Just be up and about and some data to back it all up (that helps).
If you are selling something you don’t believe in, get out. Get out while you can… Heard that saying ‘Adapt or Die.’? You’ve ran the numbers, risk and competition better that anyone and if you aren’t buying it, why the fuck would anyone else?
Yep. Any business book ever has this point in and if you think I had a better, more up to date point than just ‘networking’ you’re maaaad.
Kids, be nice to everyone at school and everyone you ever meet. They will be the ones you contact years later when they are ‘Head Of…’ or work at the brand you want to work with. If you’re a shitbloke/chick and you need to do lots of networking to get business – good fucking luck, fall back into line and get a safe job.
I’m not your Mother (that I know of), but it’s simple be nice, be genuine, be kind and be a fun drunk. Yeah, that last one helps a lot. That advice isn’t in business books… it’s certainly not gospel, and there a many ways to get new business, I personally have just found that great nights out have sometimes ended in new business.
3. Have a pitch deck.
I don’t know when we switched words from ‘Powerpoint Presentation’ to ‘Deck’. I mean I get it, it sounds better but it also just sounds a wankier.
Work on a pitch deck – get it tidy, get it slick, get all the great data that backs up what the fuck you’re doing. It just compliments you, your product and when you leave and they have something to show the big dawg decision makers at the company you’re attempting to infiltrate.
4. Care but don’t care.
a) This is how you lower blood pressure. This is how you don’t grow grey hair too rapidly and how you reduce chances of ye’ol meltdown. Much like a redneck American on a budget flight the last thing you want to do is publicly meltdown in front of 250 people.
Remember, the universe is massive and you’re a little bit of breathing bacteria that can walk. Have a crack obviously but the world keeps spinning and just keep having a crack until the breakthrough comes. Knowing how small you are can sometimes be a way to give yourself some perspective. It’s intuitive and counter-intuitive to a degree.
I think the point is, there are bigger things in the world/universe that are going on. That point felt like I make decisions based on my star sign, those type of people are mental – stay away from them.
b) Put many stakes in the fire. The old all eggs in one basket thing, don’t do it. Even if you’re waiting to hear back on a decision high up, keep ‘prospecting’. That’s a word someone told me, it means keep trying to get work…
You have two problems, not enough work or too much work. I know which I’d prefer. If you’ve budgeted right – you can run through that working algorithm Drop it > Delegate it > Do it. With too much work, just delegate it.
c) This also stops you from looking desperate. I’ve got a rule on house parties. If the host texts you saying ‘where are you? It’s going off here.’ That’s a clear indication that it’s not going off there. If there is no message… It’s going off.
For business it’s a finer line. Don’t send the ‘it’s going off here’ text but don’t go too silent you’re forgotten about. How you walk the tightrope is up to you.
Selling yourself is so important. Be humble arrogant, if you can work that out.
Subscribe to maxprice.net
Listen to my Podcast.