… am writing about the “Today I” message I sent you yesterday.


I began by saying that I “got a call from my neighbor, Rick.”

Actually, he’s my former neighbor, since we moved over the summer.

If I were a journalist, I would be obligated to be 100% accurate and include that fact.

But I’m not. I’m a storyteller (AKA, marketer). And stories need to lose extraneous information in the name of staying simple.

Look at your web site, your LinkedIn page, your bio.

Are you telling a story or simply reporting the facts?


… got a call from my neighbor, Rick.


He’s looking for a particular type of marketing help for his particular type of company.

He wanted to know if I was someone who could help him. (I’m not.)

But I was able to refer him to a friend, who may be.

People have very specific problems. When they identify one, they look for someone who can fix it (usually by asking people they already know).

Here’s what they are not looking for: “Highly qualified and experienced, well-rounded professionals who can contribute over the long term.” That’s what employers are looking for.

If you want people to refer business to you, you need to be viewed as the go-to solution for a particular audience with a particular problem.


… sent a special offer to people on my newsletter list.


I didn’t send it to people who have been on the list for a month or less.


Because I find it’s better to build a relationship before attempting to monetize it.

During that first month, those “new people” will receive five emails from me, each of which is focused on providing value, not selling them something.

In my experience, patience now leads to more sales later.


… saw a truck with the words “Equine Transport” printed on the door.


They don’t transport oranges, snakes, bicycles or anything else.

They don’t train the horses, or breed the horses, or board the horses.

Two words, and we know everything we need to know about them.

Doesn’t that limit their chances for other types of work? Definitely. But clients are what they want, not chances.

Speaking of which, knowing what you now know, if you needed a horse moved from one place to another, who would you call?


P.S. Equine Transport would be a great name for a band.



… got to my office about an hour later than planned.


I stayed home to watch the second half of last night’s college football championship game which I had taped the night before.

Even after 17 years working as a solo, when I “break the rules of work” by doing something like watching TV during the day, a voice in my head starts yelling at me to stop.

I try not to listen.

If you’re going to accept the risks that come with working for yourself, you probably ought to accept the benefits too.