When you substitute, you rob the customer.
When you substitute, you shoot yourself in the foot.
When you substitute, you demonstrate a lack of commitment.
Today we’re going to explore five substitutions that don’t work, along with what you can execute instead:1. Copy is not a substitute for care. Just because your marketing department whipped up a clever statement about security and smeared it all over your collateral materials doesn’t mean customers feel seen, safe and heard. Caring is a way of thinking, a way of speaking and a way of being that reminds people that you bother to bother, every single day. Does the brainless disclaimer at the end of your emails make customers feel safe or executives feel protected?
2. Passion is not a substitute for reality. That’s great if you love your product more than life itself. But if you want to make money, there has to be an intersection between your obsession and the marketplace need. If you want to make history, you have to solve a problem that’s real, urgent, pervasive and expensive. Otherwise you’ll be passionately irrelevant. Are you making something useful or just making something?
3. Information is not a substitute for interaction. Access to knowledge is nice, but access to each other is necessary. That’s what customers crave, come back for and tell their friends about: How interacting with you makes them feel. This is the core value that your brand delivers. And if you’re not making a conscious effort to deliver meaningful interactions in addition to helpful information, customers will view you as a commodity. How do people experience themselves in relation to you?
4. Celebrity is not a substitute for credibility. Just because people recognize your name doesn’t mean they see any promise attached to it. And just because your hilarious video went viral doesn’t mean you’re going to get hired. Credibility comes from creating an unquestionable knowledge base. Credibility comes from establishing a zone of trust around you. And credibility comes from building a consistent timeline of execution. What is affecting your ability to be taken seriously?
5. Strategy is not a substitute for execution. Instead of holding a meeting before the meeting to prepare for the deployment of your plan so you can formulate a strategy to start the initial stages of brainstorming for your pre-launch initiative, just go. Just start something. Stop planning. Stop talking. Take some initiative and ship something that matters. Even if you’re not ready. Even if the final product isn’t perfect. Forget about “ready, aim, fire!” and consider, “try, listen, leverage!” What are you waiting for?
REMEMBER: Substitution is the shortcut that actually takes longer.
Don’t buy into the lie that you can cut corners to save a few bucks or a few minutes.
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How do people experience you?
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That Guy with the Nametag
Author, Speaker, Entrepreneur, Mentor
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