Whatever You Do, DON’T DO THIS!

Yesterday, we discussed how well Disney has succeeded following basic relationship principles.  To recap, the key idea is that the more fun you are to be around, the more people will choose to spend time with you, as a friend or a customer.

Dan Kennedy uses Disney as an example a lot.  I’ve bought 10 of his books, subscribed to his $47/month newsletter for years, and I think I can summarize his core message in 3 words.


It doesn’t matter what you do.  You could be a chef or an architect and this would still apply.  Of course, if you’re in a creative profession, such as graphic design, photography, or music, it’s even more important.

Attention spans have shrunk to the point where most folks will only give you about 5 seconds to make an impression.  If they don’t immediately see a striking difference that matters to them, they’re already passing you by to look for another choice.  Okay, it might not be THAT bad, but you get the point.

Everyone feels like they’re crunched for time.

If you’re in business, you’ve got to make a positive impression quickly to make sales.

Even if you’re not in business, few folks want to hang out with someone who’s boring.  They’d rather spend time listening to intriguing stories, insightful humor, or going on exciting adventures.  If that’s not you, it’s time to try something new so you have something interesting to talk about.

Again, we covered this yesterday.

What I want to point out today, is that sometimes, it’s more important to be different than it is to be better.

Okay, let’s say you’re a graphic designer or photographer.  Everyone has a certain level of skill, and not everyone can be “the best”.  So what do you do?

Be different.

If everyone seems to be designing pieces that have a certain look, create a new look, even if it doesn’t look as good.

The fact that your work is different is enough of a reason for someone to take an extra 3 seconds and take a second look.  If that person is bored with all the “normal” designs, they will be glad to have found something new and different.  And that could lead to something BIG!

Ask Joel Grimes.

Joel is a photographer who decided to create a new and different look in his portraits.  At first, no one liked his style.  It went against everything they had been taught about how portraits “should” be done.  But he stuck with it.

Eventually, an art director decided to try something different, and called Joel to do a portrait of a famous athlete.  Pretty soon, another art director wanted Joel’s style for a piece he was doing.  Within a few years, Joel was the “go to guy” for sports portraits, because of the different–and harsh–look he created.

It got to the point where photographers everywhere were trying to get the “Joel Grimes look”.

Joel succeeded because he was different.

Not necessarily better.  Just different.

This echoes something that Terry Dean talks a lot about in his courses, such as the Internet Lifestyle System and Autoresponder Alchemy.  He calls it “contrarian content”.

Terry says that if someone gets to your webpage and thinks they’ve heard what you’re saying before, you’ve lost them.  You want them to read your headline and immediately think, “This is new.”  Not 3 paragraphs into the page. Right in the headline.

Whatever you’re offering, you want to present yourself, your products, your services, as a fun way to solve a problem or spend an afternoon.

Whatever you do, DON’T BE BORING!