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The Secret Ingredient To Higher Paying Gigs | The Client Acquisition Series

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If you've been stuck at 4 or 5 figures per year as a freelancer, there's likely one ingredient that is holding you back from growth.
Without this ingredient, it is 100% impossible to get clients, grow your income, and get past the 6 figure mark (if that's your goal).
In this week's episode of the 6 Figure Creative Podcast, my buddy Mark Eckert and I map out the path you can take to overcoming all of the hurdles between you and this incredibly important missing ingredient.
In this episode you’ll discover:
  • How to move from four/five figures to six figures+
  • Why you aren't full time yet
  • How to revamp your entire public-facing identity as a freelancer
  • The difference between advertising vs. content marketing and why this matters for freelancers
  • Why you should be producing more than consuming
  • How sticking to a schedule or routine can tie all of this together

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[00:00:00] Brian: Hello and welcome to the six Figure Creative Podcast. I'm your host Brian Hood, and if this is your first time listening to the show, first of all, welcome and thank you for giving this show a chance.

[00:00:08] Brian: Everything on this show is all about how do you take those creative skills that you've honed and developed and put blood, sweat, and tears, and even money developing and growing and getting better at as a creative. How do you take those skills and then turn it into a six figure or multiple, six figure and beyond?

[00:00:21] Brian: Business that is the. Thesis of the show. That's why it's around and that's why hopefully you're checking the show out to give it a chance. If you are a returning listener and you've listened to the show over the last few months at least, then you've kind of been following along with what I've been up to on my travel.

[00:00:34] Brian: My wife and I went to Southeast Asia for the past couple months. It was 66 day trip total, and you can see, and maybe here, if you're listening to the show, you can see I'm back home. Finally, I'm in my studio. I've got my lighting around. I've got my nice setting and my background and everything, it's really nice considering that the last episode that she heard from me, I was literally lounging on a beam bag on the hotel floor because I was only like, Decent seating I had in the entire place, cuz there was no chair.

[00:00:56] Brian: It was either the bed or was it bean bag or it was a day bed in the window. so [00:01:00] I'm back home now. I'm finally like trying to get over the jet lag. It was like a 31 32 hour flight from Singapore. That's where we flew out of, although we were only in Singapore for like four or five days. Gorgeous city, by the way, like me and my wife. That was actually a huge surprise by how much we actually loved it and can't wait to go back to Singapore. But we spent about 30 days in Bali, split between two cities, and we spent another like 30 something days in Thailand actually, but split between multiple cities there.

[00:01:23] Brian: But we had like a 30 something hour flight from Singapore to Japan to Houston and then to Nashville. And that was all during, we left actually on Thanksgiving day. And then we got home that Friday afterwards and that's where the 12 hour time zone difference. So jet lag, crazy, trying to get over that right now.

[00:01:37] Brian: Waking up at 4:00 AM my biological clock is going crazy and has no idea what's going on. This week is gonna be a replay episode and before you tune out or turn it off and maybe you've heard every single episode on this show, if you're a long time listener. But these replay episodes are some of the most important episodes sometimes for a lot of you because there's a quote I love by Alex Hermo.

[00:01:55] Brian: We've talked about him a lot on this podcast, so you may be familiar with him, but he has this quote that stuck with [00:02:00] me. It's we need to be reminded more than we need to be taught. And these replay episodes are a great way for you to have some of these, these episodes that I think are either hidden gems or maybe sometimes are our most popular episodes.

[00:02:10] Brian: But these things that we need to be reminded of again and again. So I try to make these at least six months old or beyond. And this show is actually that I'm pulling from our backlog is from April, earlier this year. And this is one that I actually is part of our client acquisition series.

[00:02:21] Brian: It was supposed to be, but never actually got added to it. This is the lost client acquisition episode because I titled it something so. but this is something that I literally this morning was looking through a backlog and figuring out which one I wanted to select for this replay episode. But this is one that I watched the entire thing all the way through, and I was the entire time shaking my head, yes, I need to be reminded of this as well. And without this one thing that we're gonna talk about on this episode, you do not have a client acquisition machine. You will not get clients. And if you're struggling to get clients who will pay you more, this one thing we're gonna talk about in this episode is the key to unlocking bigger, better projects.

[00:02:52] Brian: If you are charging like nickels and dimes, this doesn't matter as much, but if you're trying to charge a lot, the more you charge, actually the more you need. The thing we're gonna talk about on the [00:03:00] episode today,

[00:03:00] Brian: so I'm not gonna drag out this intro anymore. I've got other things to do today to kind of, this is my first Monday back in the States after 60 something days of travel. I will be back at it with either a guest or a, my substitute cohost, mark again, which that's who is on this episode on, is recurring cohost on this show. But without further delay, here's my conversation with Mark Eckert. Today's episode I think is going to be a great one. Me and mark clean out a really, really good episode today that I think is going to be relevant for. Any of our audience right now, who is stuck in that four to five figure range, meaning you are earning not enough to be full-time mommy, really not even enough to be a strong part-time.

[00:03:32] Brian: And you're trying to, to find that I don't know what you would call it. The. Which is, I hate that word. The secret to success. Yes. The secret to success. It doesn't really work that way, but, but we're going to talk about this. We have a, we have a bunch of stuff planned today, but really like this has been the thing we're going to talk about today has been the secret.

[00:03:49] Brian: I'm going to use that word. I'm just going S I'm just gonna double down. It's the secret? The secret is the secret of my success. It's the secret of Mark's success. It's what we built. Both of our businesses, actually, all of our money. We both have multiple businesses. All of our businesses on the [00:04:00] backbone of this thing.

[00:04:01] Brian: And anyone struggling in the four to five figure range does not have this thing. You are struggling with this thing, whether you know it or you are, you don't know it. And that thing don't turn it off. I swear, you're going to, we're going to explain this. That thing is trust. If you are struggling right now, you don't have enough clients to hire you.

[00:04:17] Brian: You're not getting the rates. You, you know, you deserve, or the rates that I tell you deserve because you probably deserve more than you're getting paid. Whether you believe you do what you're or you are, you don't, you don't have trust with the person who's going to hire you because. Anytime someone is making a hiring decision for whatever service you offer.

[00:04:31] Brian: They have the same question in their head that anyone has in their head. When they're looking to hire somebody that is, is blank. The right person for me is mark. The right person for me is good. Fortune media, the right, person to launch our podcast is four or five, six recordings. The right studio to mix our album is mark Eckert, the right person to do my dark indie pop record.

[00:04:50] Brian: There's usually examples from me and Mark's businesses. Anytime someone has this thought, they're either going to say yes or no. And for most of you right now, you're sitting there. You don't have enough clients to fill your [00:05:00] calendar because the answer is no, they do not trust that you're the right person for them.

[00:05:04] Brian: And today we're going to talk about. Building trust with your ideal client so that the nos turn into yeses and that trust is built so that you can scale your business, Get out of the day job. That's sucking your soul away and Yeah. mark, I'm excited for this one.

[00:05:18] Mark: are going to work on how you can get out of your day job by building trust with people who are already looking at your accounts or new people who might discover.

[00:05:28] Brian: Yeah. So, cause again, getting clients and this kind of goes back to just client acquisition principles. If you're trying to get clients, there's two parts to it. One is them even being aware you exist. That's, that's the hardest part for a lot of people, but once that awareness occurs, Trusting that you are the right decision for them is the even harder part to make happen.

[00:05:46] Brian: Because like, it's one thing to say, like to throw super-well ad out of the world and spend millions of dollars on it for your freelance business. But if they don't know those people trust you that it doesn't matter how much awareness you have. So at the end of the day, we're trying to do two things with, with what we're doing today.

[00:05:59] Brian: And we're going to [00:06:00] talk about today. we're trying to create awareness for your freelance services and at the same time build trust. And we're going to do that today through the thing that everyone knows about Here's the thing you're actually consuming right now, but no one wants to actually do. And that is something called content marketing. And before you turn this episode off, I just want to state that content marketing is the number one way to build trust with people, especially at scale. There's actually two ways to build trust. One is one-to-one, I'm going to go to networking events and meet people one by one, or I'm going to go to concerts.

[00:06:29] Brian: If I'm a producer looking for musicians to hire me, or I'm going to go to whatever, like one-to-one connections that takes time. It's, it's hard to do, especially if your people skills are lacking, which a lot of people, but the second way is through content is a one to many. That it to me is always the better answer because as a business owner, my job isn't to go around and meet clients all day long.

[00:06:48] Brian: My job is to, to actually fulfill the services that I'm offering. And I, and I do this and I've, and I've been doing this for a long time. Same with you, mark is I do this through creating content now, mark and I have both complete different approaches to content marketing. We're going [00:07:00] to talk about that today, but I first want to talk about something Martin and I think is holding so many people back, right?

[00:07:05] Brian: More than anything is the belief that they, they do not believe that they are qualified to create content around anything. Mark, you want to talk about that for a second? Cause I feel like this is an area that that you can speak on a bit as someone who is bad at what they do and still makes content

[00:07:18] Mark: Yeah,

[00:07:20] Brian: I'm just joking.

[00:07:20] Brian: It was a joke. It was

[00:07:21] Mark: no, it isn't. I am bad at what I do, but I'm going to make him count it. No, I'm kidding. Yeah, so I think the biggest problem, as you said, is like, there's kind of just a belief in yourself that you are qualified to do, anything as far as what you want to do. So like, if you are working a day job and you want to be a fucking.

[00:07:38] Mark: You feel somehow unqualified to talk about photography because you're not doing it full time. If you want to produce full time, but you have a day job, you feel not qualified to talk about producing cause you're not doing it full time. The whole point is it doesn't matter if you're doing it full time, you are good at a craft and you are much further ahead than the vast [00:08:00] majority of the people.

[00:08:01] Mark: I think creatives by and large. Are naturally a little bit insecure because creativity as a whole is subjective. Like you can't just say something's good or bad, it's all opinion based. So at the end of the day, you have to believe you have to have an opinion in yourself that you're good enough to make content.

[00:08:19] Mark: And chances are you are because if you can teach one person one thing or. One hour ahead of somebody else in your craft. There's so much that people can gain from that. So you are qualified. There is nothing wrong with that. And you shouldn't be insecure about that whatsoever.

[00:08:37] Brian: Yeah.

[00:08:37] Brian: So it's, it's one thing to hear that. And another thing to actually apply that to yourself. So I just want people to understand, like what mark said. true. there's a, an old thing that I heard a while back that you only need to be one chapter ahead of everyone else. And this is the same in like in, in, in school.

[00:08:50] Brian: Like teachers just read the chapter ahead when they're teaching their class. But it's the same, like if you're one hour ahead, one chapter ahead a one day ahead. One book ahead. Honestly, if you read one book or take one, [00:09:00] course, you're going to be about nine. You're going, gonna be ahead of like 99% of people about the subject.

[00:09:04] Brian: So too. I don't look at whether I'm qualified or not. I'm just looking like almost we're going to talk about this later on, but like almost as documenting as you go, like, as I learned something, I want to talk about it as I consume something, I want to talk about it. the bottom line is you don't have to be the expert on the subject to talk about it. And I feel like, again, this is the thing that holds so many people back to create any sort of content. Is this huge fear of looking stupid or imposter syndrome. And again, just reading one book or one YouTube video, even like, man, I could go on YouTube right now. And I could pick any subject that I'd know nothing about. Let's just like lock, picking. I saw a lock picking Lori video. You've seen those on, on internet, right. It was, they get recommended to me now because I watched one of them and like, I got to watch like three or four, like hell even one video on lockpicking picking for beginners.

[00:09:49] Brian: And I could start creating content around that on some other platform, whether it's a YouTube at another utility. Basically ripping it off. I wouldn't recommend that. or just sharing it on Instagram, on a story or a real something I [00:10:00] just learned today on lockpicking is just doing this one thing here is like the trick to actually picking most locks is the 80 20 of lockpicking.

[00:10:06] Brian: Like, I don't have to be an expert to share content

[00:10:09] Brian: around certain things.

[00:10:10] Mark: Yeah. And I think like another thing with that, as far as like, You know, one chapter head or something. If, if there's anybody who's thinking, oh, well, that's, you know, that's not enough or whatever. I think a big thing is if you have a day job, right? If you are, if you have a nine to five and you have a boss, right, you are trained every single day.

[00:10:32] Mark: That you are not qualified to do something, right. You only do this. You're not allowed to do this. If you do that, you know, you might screw it up and you don't have approval. And that's just like, not how people who are self-employed operate.

[00:10:50] Brian: You don't have to have permission to do this. That's the thing is like we're giving you permission, but as someone who's self-employed, you don't have to wait around for someone to tell you that it's okay to do this. Like you have [00:11:00] at any point, the ability and the permission to go create content for this.

[00:11:03] Brian: And we can talk about later on what sort of content, what platforms, what makes the most sense, but at the end of the.

[00:11:08] Brian: day, creating something that shows that you are. At least in your client's eyes and expert, whether or not you believe you're an expert. It builds trust. And that trust is what helps someone determine you were the Right.

[00:11:19] Brian: fit for them or not.

[00:11:20] Brian: just think about this again, from a holistic perspective, we're not creating content just to be some guru on the internet to be the cringy guy in his garage, talking about how much more valuable knowledge is than my Ferrari. We're doing. To build trust with our ideal clients. And if you come on up from the perspective of, I'm not the expert, I'm not the guru.

[00:11:37] Brian: I am merely someone who is passionate about this subject. And I love talking about it. That is again, such a better place to come from, because if you mess up, you can own it. You can say, oh, you know what I was. So I was so wrong about this. And here's actually the way it is. I was wrong about this, but, you know, because I'm constantly learning, you can actually turn it around and flip it as someone who has.

[00:11:58] Brian: Open to learning new things, open to [00:12:00] being wrong, and people are attracted that type of person.

[00:12:02] Mark: Yeah. And I think another thing regarding trust it's very easy to say, oh, well, you know, Brian, mark trust isn't necessarily a huge deal. I, I feel insecure in my product or whatever, again, with kind of having in the creative world there being subjective viewpoints. Any creative thing, any business, whatever.

[00:12:22] Mark: Some of the biggest businesses in the world are invested in specifically because of trust Warren buffet literally, you know, invested in Coca-Cola and he, him and his partner, Charlie Munger, they state multiple times. It's a good business, but we just know it's going to be here because people recognize it.

[00:12:40] Mark: Geico, are they the best insurance? I don't know, but you know of them because they make them. Aware to everybody, you can't go on a single highway without seeing Geico. You can't go anywhere in the world without seeing Coca-Cola. So building brand trust, building trust with people, letting people [00:13:00] know that you do a certain thing, makes them more comfortable with giving their money to.

[00:13:06] Brian: Yeah. And so just to be completely clear there, Geico is buying. ' cause they're buying billboards, they're buying ads and they're buying that trust wheat. We don't have that freedom as solo freelance entrepreneurs. So the only way to compete with that to build that sort of trust is to earn it. And you earn it through content To me, there's no other way to do it. Then through content you can, unless you want to spend money on ads, you can do it that way, which is expensive. And most people don't have the technical ability and the know how to actually effectively do that. So the only other way is earning it and you can earn it one to one, like I said, or you can earn it one to many and that's through creating content.

[00:13:40] Brian: So I think there's a couple of things worth talking about around this, where again, we're, we're kind of talking about that, that innate fear of people saying I'm not qualified to create content. We still needed to kind of dissect this a little bit more. And say a couple of things when you're just starting this out.

[00:13:53] Brian: The most important part about creating content is to get those small wins early. Just [00:14:00] get a post-op of some sort, whether it's a YouTube video, whether it's an Instagram story, whether it's an Instagram, real Tik, TOK, post, whatever your content platform you've decided and a podcast episode, whatever you do, try to get early feedback and quick wins from people that surround you.

[00:14:15] Brian: And if you're not surrounded by the way, if you're not surrounded by people who will give you positive feedback, if you have bad coworkers or friends or family around you who do not support you. You've got to, you've got to change your S your surroundings. And I think an easy place, Martin, maybe you agree or disagree.

[00:14:27] Brian: I think an easy place literally go to our Facebook community,

[00:14:30] Brian: got a six figure creative.com/community. That'll afford you to our Facebook community. And in that community, you can post whatever content you were. You're. You're trying to get those small wins and you can get feedback from people. And hopefully our community is not toxic.

[00:14:42] Brian: I know that, but hopefully they'll give you some, what I call the uh, the sandwich. It is a compliment followed by. Constructive feedback. If there is any followed by one more compliment, that's the way all feedback should be given in our community. So that's me training you, but that's a great way place to get that first quick win, because that's what [00:15:00] builds confidence to then actually put it on the internet to the mass market.

[00:15:03] Brian: Otherwise, you're going to sit on this content forever. You're not going to post anywhere because of the fear. mark, did you have any fears around this when he first started posting? Or what did you do when you first started

[00:15:11] Brian: putting content on the internet?

[00:15:13] Mark: absolutely. When I first started posting content you know, early on, when I, you know, just started producing for a living, it was really going for it. I had to really kind of. Rid of the idea that I was annoying people online or that what I was doing, maybe wasn't good. So, yeah, I got a lot of feedback from a lot of of my friends, but the biggest thing, which I don't think you necessarily mentioned is actually posting it online, like to your audience and getting feedback, not just to a community, who's going to give you critique, but.

[00:15:48] Mark: Just putting it out there. There's going to be times where you post something and it might be a little scary, but I see as soon as somebody says, like, thank you, this really helped me. Oh, [00:16:00] this is so cool. Whatever. And you start a conversation with somebody you realize in a way, content marketing, the way that I try to approach any kind of marketing, whether it's for production or that pitch, whatever it is.

[00:16:15] Mark: I try to always make sure our marketing is inherently a little philanthropic. We're just trying to help people as much as we can. I don't think, you know, when people talk about content marketing, they're like, oh, I'm going to annoy people. Whatever, if you're annoying somebody they're going to unsubscribe like that and they're not going to, they're going to be like, wow, this person's doing this thing.

[00:16:36] Mark: And again, enjoy and really. Pat yourself on the back. If one person reaches out and says, thank you, or this helped or whatever.

[00:16:44] Brian: Yeah.

[00:16:45] Brian: And just to add to that, I do the same thing, mark. Like I already have an audience, so if I'm trying something new, I'll send feedback requests. Like I'll send it out to our audience to get feedback at a small scale before I launch it to something bigger. But I'm talking to people that don't have, even that they have no audience yet [00:17:00] to do.

[00:17:00] Brian: Like if you have no audience, like you're just launching your Instagram or Tik TOK account, or you're just launching a brand new podcast or a new blog or a new YouTube account, like your YouTube channel. That's where we come to us. People like our community to get feedback so that you can have that confidence to put it out to the real world.

[00:17:15] Brian: Because again, it's the small wind, even one positive piece of feedback from that, what I called the, the, the sandwich, Those two positives on the outside of the sandwich are going to be enough to get you to post it publicly so that you can start building an audience. So that later on, you can start testing new things with that audience that you've built. So let's move on to the next issue that I think people have when trying to create content to build trust with their ideal clients, because they don't know what to talk about.

[00:17:40] Mark: Yeah.

[00:17:41] Brian: I don't know what to talk about. What am I going to pose? Like I have to post like 30 times a day, like ticked. I mean, man, let me, let me go ahead and just say one thing.

[00:17:48] Brian: Forget what the norms say. Like, if you will, if you study like tick-tock, for example, they say posts like four times a day or like six times a day or whatever. I don't know what it is.

[00:17:56] Brian: I've seen my wife built her accounts. She's got over 13, 14,000 followers now in tech [00:18:00] talk and she posts like once a day.

[00:18:01] Brian: So like she, she doesn't even follow those best practices and she's doing great on there. Our account, we do post more frequently because I've hired a freelancer to do it for me. I'm not posting four times a day, but we do post about four times a day on there. But all that to say, like, you can make your own schedule first and foremost, so you don't have to adhere to some really strict, rigid, ridiculous schedule.

[00:18:18] Brian: If it feels overly. ' cause that's, that's a big thing that I want to make sure it's out of the way before we even talk about what content to talk about or what to create. there's a few different things that you said that I want to bring back up. You said when you post content, mark, you want it to be philanthropic.

[00:18:31] Brian: You want it to help people. I'm the same way. It's it's the way I'm like wired is I, I'm not, I'm not great storyteller. I kind of just get to the facts. Some people love that. Some people don't, most people resonate more with the story side of things and that's an area I'm trying to work on

[00:18:44] Brian: For example? Back on episode 175 of the podcast.

[00:18:47] Brian: We had Rachel Green on the show from green chair stories. the title of episode is the six figure creatives guide to copywriting for freelancers. She posts Instagram reels and all of her content is like mostly just comedy. She's just a funny person. [00:19:00] And, and so you don't always have to create how to, as long as you're like entertaining people, it still builds trust. Like if you think about like a copywriter for her specific service, She has a ton of photographers that follow her.

[00:19:10] Brian: And a lot of our content is comedy around photography. And that builds a relationship. There is some sort of like value add stuff that she does sometimes to build a trust factor. But a lot of times, if people just like you, that automatically builds trust. So you don't have to do always how to content, but let's talk about again, how to determine what you need to talk about.

[00:19:27] Brian: One note we have in our ally market, I just want to read is shifting your mindset from, I only care about what I'm passionate about to. I only care about helping a specific group of people. I think that's an area, a lot of anyone trying to launch content to put regular content on the internet, who's struggling with understanding of what to create, has to make that mindset shift of instead of only caring about what I'm passionate about.

[00:19:49] Brian: Instead of only caring about what I want to learn, think about it from the perspective of my ideal client, what did they need to know in order to trust me

[00:19:56] Mark: Yeah, So I think the main thing is any time [00:20:00] you are, you know, if you're just doing something as a hobby, that's fine. You can kind of post whatever. But if you're trying to build a business, what is a business inherently like? Let's think at the base core of business is. A vehicle that people give you money for you to solve a problem for them.

[00:20:17] Mark: That is it. That's like the most basic concept of business people, trade dollars for you to solve something. So well, it's incredibly important that you are passionate about what you're doing. What's extremely important is that you are letting people know that you help solve their problem in some way.

[00:20:34] Mark: And that way can come up in a lot of different ways. Good to say, Hey, have you had a problem finding a recording engineer? You should use me. No. It's sometimes people just want somebody who kicks ass at a specific thing. If you're a photographer and headshots are really easy for you.

[00:20:51] Mark: Then just post content talking about how you love doing headshots and how you love doing portraits or something like that. If you're a producer, [00:21:00] talk about a specific genre, you kick ass in. But the main thing is that a group of people resonate with your posts and they say, oh, that person is for me. That is the most important thing is.

[00:21:13] Mark: They are both passionate about that. And I, I connect with this person. That's great. And once you can kind of facilitate that, no matter what everybody's going to just kind of think of you for that specific thing. And you can kind of just create content always involving that.

[00:21:29] Brian: And that.

[00:21:29] Brian: was how you got your start as a music producer, man, you were posting content all the time about indie pop production, which was the niche that you were a part of. And basically, I mean, honestly, you were just kind of documenting as you went, you weren't doing. Anything crazy. You're just saying like, today I'm doing this thing and this is what I had on like this, this is what I'm working on is what it sounds like, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah.

[00:21:47] Brian: Like talk about your, your content approach when you were doing indie pop production. Full-time.

[00:21:51] Mark: Yeah. Literally I would document any time I was making a record and if I was making a record, I would make multiple pieces of content too. And [00:22:00] the whole thing is I would just post these tracks, just like literally a video. of me, you know, or not, even of me, I would look to do a video of the computer with the speakers playing in the back.

[00:22:10] Mark: We were like, oh my God, this record rips. I love making this kind of music. I would say indie pop or synth, pop, whatever. And then I would just make a simple call to action. Hey, you're working on your record or you're thinking about working on your next single reach out to me, you can DM me or click the link in my bio.

[00:22:27] Mark: And I just did that every day. And so what kind of happened over time is I became the go-to person for this. And what's really interesting is, you know, at the time I didn't have any real credits. I was really just working with, My friends or just a couple of local clients, but that kind of built online.

[00:22:47] Mark: And because I was known as like the indie pop or synth pop guy, you know, over time, bigger artists from other, you know, labels and, you know, engineers started reaching out to me and then I started getting credits [00:23:00] on way bigger records, because I was known as the guy who did this specific kind of thing.

[00:23:05] Mark: So I went from a bedroom producer. Really didn't have any credits. I wasn't making any real great money at the time too. Everybody knew me as the indie pop synth pop guy, and then hip hop producers and engineers. You know, I now have a credit with future and little baby and Russian and, you know, because I made a specific kind of dirty synth pop sound.

[00:23:27] Mark: So those guys would reach out to me cause they knew I did that specific thing. That can

[00:23:31] Mark: be way bigger credits than I ever thought I'd

[00:23:33] Brian: Yeah. I mean, now you're one a multi-platinum producer. What is the official

[00:23:37] Mark: Apparently. Yeah. Yeah. My multi-platinum producer and I, that wasn't even my goal originally, which is funny, but it's kind of cool how, like that ends up when everybody

[00:23:45] Mark: knows you for one thing.

[00:23:46] Brian: so that's one approach is just documenting as you go. And a lot of times like those little tips and tricks while it's not necessarily, to me, it's a, it's a really tough balance because a lot of that stuff gets too nerdy. And so when you get really nerdy, the only other people you're attracting are [00:24:00] people like you, not your ideal clients.

[00:24:01] Brian: And that's the, that's not really the area you want to be, because now you just have a bunch of followers of other people, just like you, other photographers or other music producers in your, in your case, mark. So the way I always try to err, on the side of the. Any content I create, even if it's documenting what I'm doing, needs to be from the perspective of what's in it for my client.

[00:24:18] Brian: Not for me, not for other nerdy producers, no one cares about the settings I use in my compressor. And none of that matters. It's what is the coal thing that's relevant to my ideal client.

[00:24:27] Mark: Yeah. If you're, if you're a producer, for instance, you know, instead of talking about like all these presets and you're like, oh, I'm going to make a tutorial or, you know, whatever. Talk about, if you're a vocalist, this is the best way to get your take five tips to get your best take that I've noticed while I'm in the studio, we get the absolute best takes.

[00:24:45] Mark: There's no pops. Like it sounds great. They always have a great performance. You know how to set the room, how to set the vibe, whatever you want, just make sure it's helping them. And then I also want to kind of break into something while we're on it. The main point of all of this is if you are stuck at a nine to five, [00:25:00] and everybody knows you as the dude who's working at the juice bar or whatever, the whole point is that you are, what, what content marketing would anything does.

[00:25:09] Mark: If you go into the history of marketing and advertising, it is literally just kind of either changing the opinion or changing the view of the public on a thing. So if you are posting every day saying you do this specific thing, the point is that you are really creating an identity for yourself to the public.

[00:25:28] Brian: It's a brand you're building a brand.

[00:25:30] Mark: Yeah. But when people identify you with this one thing and you are the first thing that pops up in their head, when you think of car insurance, save 10% or whatever, by switching the Geico, you just have that in the back of your head. You know, I mean, it's, that's what you're going for.

[00:25:47] Brian: Yeah. And so you had built a brand as the go-to indie pop producer, and now you have other content for.

[00:25:52] Brian: your other businesses and I'm the same way. And, and man, if I would have like, think about this, like in 2008, Which was the year before I started my studio. [00:26:00] It was my second or third year working at game stop, which is a video game store here in the U S I was earning, I had, I had moved up.

[00:26:07] Brian: I'd started at $5 and 15 cents an hour, and I'd moved up to $5 and 50 cents an hour in those two years. And after that, I just quit the job and went straight into the studio. the problem with that is. Coming to the store every day, friends saw me like that was their identity in their brains as, oh, he's the guy that worked at GameStop that that was like their, their view of me.

[00:26:26] Brian: Now. I also had a band at the time. So that was actually probably more of my identity than the GameStop thing. Lot of you don't have that. You're going straight from day job as a whatever to now you're trying to be this business owner. Switching identities is a very difficult thing, especially if you have, if you're doing nothing on content.

[00:26:42] Brian: So this is, again, this is all part of that approach of rebuilding your brand. The guy who worked at the video game store, earning five 50 an hour with the wildly inappropriate boss, 10 years older than him who sexually harassed him now that you look back on it. And th that those literary stuff has happened to me.

[00:26:56] Brian: Yeah.

[00:26:57] Brian: I didn't, I didn't understand at the time to now, I make [00:27:00] content just about every day or every, every, every few days I'm creating some piece of content that shapes my brand for all my businesses. And I, this podcast is a huge foundational part of the six-figure creative as a brand And as.

[00:27:10] Brian: a business.

[00:27:10] Brian: And so like, this is, this is, again, this is all a huge, huge driver of my business.

[00:27:16] Mark: And as you grow, you know, your identity is going to refine and then shift, you know, for instance, everybody knew me as the indie pop producer. And then I started that pitch.com, which we license everybody's music. And so now everybody knows me as the sync licensing guy or the music executive or something like that.

[00:27:34] Mark: And people are like, yeah, so what's your background? And I'm like, I'm a multi-platinum producer. And they're like, what? It's kind of funny. It's like, you know, people will change their view over time. You know, at the start, you know, because I think everyone ends up in music for very, you know, insecure reasons or whatever.

[00:27:50] Mark: You're just like, oh man, people know me as this thing, but I want them to know me as this thing. But even before producing, I was the drummer,

[00:27:56] Brian: Well, yeah, so this is, this actually really goes perfectly back [00:28:00] to episode 180 5 and 180 6. We had a two part, a series called the six levels of freelancing. This is like, you've done the exact same thing that me and Krista, which is like, we started the. Now we're here. Now we start at the bottom and we, we, we made our identity and our name in a specific area.

[00:28:14] Brian: And then we built that we built up the levels and now at level six, and there's even a level seven. If you listen to the episode series, we've, we've kind of graduated from just simple freelancer to multi-business owners now, and we we've built a foundation under us that that's sustained that we've built a really healthy foundation and content is a huge pillar on that overall foundation that if it wasn't there, it wouldn't work.

[00:28:34] Brian: So let's move on to the final thing here. I think this is the, the, the final. Big elephant in the room to talk about when creating content and God, I tell you like my specific coaching students has begun for them. If, if, if content is the route we go with them, I don't have time to do this. I don't have time to do this.

[00:28:49] Brian: Mark, we were, we were playing this episode out. You put this, you put this banger of a line in here. You need to replace consumption with production. As someone who listens to like multiple podcasts episodes a day, this resonated with me. Now I will [00:29:00] say this. I listen to it on walks. So I, I can't really create content while I'm walking.

[00:29:03] Brian: I guess I could, but it's it's still like, I'm consuming a ton of content every day. And if I were struggling with time, I would say, well, maybe I should replace some of that consumption with, with production, but mark, we're gonna do a little fun challenge here. I think I invite anyone in our audience to do this as well.

[00:29:19] Brian: If you're on an iPhone, I think out, I think Android phones probably have, this is what. Uh, Search for screen time, open up screen time, look at your week and, and you can do categories if you want, but I'd actually prefer showing apps and websites, mark. And we're gonna look at last week's averages. So I'll give you my numbers first.

[00:29:36] Brian: Marking, give your numbers next.

[00:29:37] Brian: my last week's average was two hours, nine minutes a day. My top app was Gmail with two hours and 26 minutes for the week. Number two was messages and hour and a half. Number three was Chrome with an hour and 23 minutes. And then number four. Was RSS radio, which is my podcast app with one hour 21 minutes. But by the way, that's wildly inaccurate because I definitely listened to [00:30:00] way more.

[00:30:00] Brian: I think it doesn't track it. If the app is not open, like actively on your phone, but then we get to social media. I don't know about you, mark. I'm curious what your social consumption is, but Facebook has an hour, 11 minutes last week, total, not per day, but just total and Instagram was 43 minutes and Tik TOK is way down there for 18 minutes last week.

[00:30:16] Mark: Right. Okay. So you're going to think this is Larry. So my business has been. You know, all my businesses are built from, you know, content online, everything. Right. As far as Facebook, Instagram take doc, they're not even on my phone. So, so like I've, I've completely removed. No. And then on my on the Chrome or safari, just like, as far as having access to Facebook, Instagram or tech talk, I actually have a limiter for an hour in total for the day and my wife she has the passcode, so I can't even go past it actually.

[00:30:51] Mark: No to no, they're blocked. They're blocked entirely. Sorry. If I download the app, I haven't had. But yeah, so my daily average is this is a lot it's four [00:31:00] hours and 45 minutes. but productivity and finance is three hours and 29 minutes of that.

[00:31:05] Mark: But yeah, messages where the top two hours and 23 minutes.

[00:31:09] Brian: Which I understand. Cause you actually spent

[00:31:10] Brian: a lot

[00:31:10] Brian: of time, like actually messaging people.

[00:31:12] Mark: Yeah, WhatsApp is two hours and 19 minutes. We have a lot of international enterprise clients and they just like to talk on you know, WhatsApp, Chrome is two hours and 11 minutes. Gmail's an hour 33

[00:31:23] Mark: YouTube, an hour 20. So there

[00:31:24] Mark: there's.

[00:31:25] Brian: I was going to say of all of that, you spend an hour and 20 minutes consuming content last week.

[00:31:29] Mark: yeah. I, I actually you can see this so well, you're going to love this, the background of my phone. You're ready for that. Can you see us? Can you, is it backwards?

[00:31:39] Brian: Yes. It says keeps your blind. No, it's not backwards?

[00:31:40] Brian: Keep your blinders on. it. says for anyone What Not watching on YouTube

[00:31:43] Brian: right now. Here's my background on my phone. It's it's blurry cause it's not auto, but it just says, Be fully present.

[00:31:49] Mark: Okay. So we're both basically like block things out.

[00:31:53] Mark: I love that.

[00:31:54] Brian: we're doing this exercise for one. This is probably making for terrible content. Doesn't matter. The whole point of this is to show, like, [00:32:00] if you look at your phone and your consumption of social media or other platforms of content is extraordinarily high and you're producing no content, then you have no excuse.

[00:32:10] Brian: You need to swap that from. Consuming all this content to now start producing some cause like, like I said, I could go watch one YouTube video or listen to one podcast episode that.

[00:32:18] Brian: would give me enough content for probably at least a few days, maybe a week of small forum content on social media or at least my one week YouTube video or one week of podcast content.

[00:32:28] Brian: Like it took me, it took me and mark 15 minutes to plan out this episode.

[00:32:32] Brian: It's not a ton of time.

[00:32:33] Mark: Well, yeah, I mean, it kind kinda just goes to say, it's like, if you can just find all of the bullshit in your life and replace it with something good, you know, Everybody you look up to is a producer. In some, I'm not saying audio producer, but like everybody, you look up to creates things. They're prolific.

[00:32:51] Mark: They make a lot of things. They're not consuming things and waiting for judgment and just wasting time. That's the only difference between you and your goal is it [00:33:00] builds trust, you know, as we were talking about, but it overall that just results. The by-product of that is you grow a great business for you.

[00:33:08] Brian: Yeah. and this is here's, here's just, step-by-step how to Brian coming out without the stories. For some actionables on this, if you don't have time to do this first step is to just make time. It's just like anything you're you don't have time to go to the gym. You make time, you don't have time to read you make time.

[00:33:22] Brian: to create content. You don't have time. You make time. So that's the first step is just making time by sacrificing something else. It's usually consuming content. If we wouldn't even do like Netflix, if you were to look at like how much time you spend on Netflix during the week or other like stuff at night or weekends, it's probably many, many hours, but step two of this, as far as actual steps is to build out a system for content creation.

[00:33:42] Brian: Mark, you have a system for content creation.

[00:33:44] Mark: Yeah. So my whole thing for content creation is. Put time aside and I consider it kind of like a business development time. I literally create a system in which I don't have to have any critical thinking. So I have very busy days as, [00:34:00] as I'm sure you do Brian, and as I'm sure everybody here has a busy day, whether you have a nine to five or you're full full-time already, you got busy days.

[00:34:06] Mark: So the whole thing is make sure that you don't have to think about it. So create a tasks or a couple of tasks, you know? It could be. Film and video on this subject. And you can just have a, you know, a couple buckets of different subjects. The second one post to Instagram, number three, caption should say this, you know, and you just repeat that over and over and you can have variations of the caption, but the whole point is you don't have to think about it.

[00:34:33] Mark: You're just following directions.

[00:34:35] Brian: Yeah, you were going to, you're going to be way better off just posting. With a system, even if it's not perfect than to sit around and dabble all day, trying to get this perfect post up and spend a hundred hours doing a video and like get the perfect caption and find the perfect time to post if you just make regular content and post it, even if it's half ass, honestly, like even if it's half-assed, it will still do better than not posting content at all.

[00:34:57] Brian: Um, So that's the first thing is like create a system [00:35:00] next is create the content. And so. There's a few ways to create the content. We don't have a ton of time to go over this because mark has to go. But mark has a hard cut off three minutes ago.

[00:35:08] Mark: That's

[00:35:08] Mark: fine. We got some times.

[00:35:10] Brian: I just want to talk about this really quick to actually create the content.

[00:35:13] Brian: There's a few different approaches that you have around content creation. And this all works for different types of people. Option one is to batch the content, meaning you create, let's just say an entire month's content or your entire week's content. On one day, option two is to create a routine around your content.

[00:35:27] Brian: So for me, this podcast, there's a routine around it for the YouTube video that I was doing for a long time and cut off for other reasons, we talked about a few episodes back. The YouTube video was a routine. I work way better in a routine setting where I can just have something recurring on my calendar every week that I have.

[00:35:42] Brian: Like, I know I can look forward to, I know this, the, the routine around it. I work much better routine. I don't do well in batching. And then the third option, and this is a little more advanced. This is what I'm doing more often. Mark already does a lot of, as a team, you have a team. As much of it as possible so that you can literally show up, shoot the video or [00:36:00] make the content, or make the batch of whatever it is, and then hand it off to your team to do literally everything for you.

[00:36:04] Brian: That's a little more advanced, but that's the ultimate goal around content creation. Because as you get bigger, as you get more clients, as your content catches on, as you actually build an audience of people who care about you and trust you and hire you, you're going to have less and less time to do the content.

[00:36:17] Brian: So you have to reinvest money into building the team.

[00:36:19] Mark: well, I kind of want to go back to the routine thing to the routine can be a schedule, but it can also just be a place that you'll find yourself in. So like, I don't work well with a schedule at all. Like my team constantly gets annoyed at me because. Unless it's like a sales call or, you know, if, you know, if it's like a podcast or something I'm doing weekly and it involves other people, that's fine.

[00:36:42] Mark: But if it's a schedule and I'm the only person there, I'm probably, yeah. I don't know. So what you could do is what's a place that you find yourself in. If you're in the studio, like in the recording studio, if you're in a photography studio, if you're doing whatever, what you can do is you can actually batch content [00:37:00] during that time.

[00:37:00] Mark: Again, these don't have to. Huge productions. They can be 15, second videos, 25, second videos, pictures, whatever. And you can get a bunch of content. And if you're there constantly, you can kind of batch it while you're just documenting, being in a certain place. I think that that's been, that's really worked well for me because that's just how my brain works.

[00:37:21] Mark: If I just sit down and. Okay, mark. It's, you know, 9:00 AM. You have to make however much content during this time. I'm probably just going to be like uh, so I, I kinda like to have that energy moving. It's just how my brain works. and as far as the team goes yeah, it's a lot more advanced and I I'd say the best way to kind of start with a team is. Build up something really, really well where, you know, how things run and you're confident with it. And somebody understands, like people are actively reaching out and they say, I want to be a part of this.

[00:37:58] Mark: How can I help?[00:38:00]

[00:38:00] Mark: And if they have a chip on their shoulder and they really want to work hard and they get it, then that's really exciting because it can compound everyone's efforts. It can help everyone involved.

[00:38:10] Brian: Yeah.

[00:38:10] Brian: And I'll tell you right now, if you, if you struggle with building a team, Creating content is actually a really secret weapon of building a team is people that your best people to work for you are the ones who love your content the most, which is a weird thing. But I wanna, I want to wrap this up and just say a couple of things.

[00:38:23] Brian: At the end of the day, one of my favorite mottos is done is better than. And as, as creatives we deal with, I think a lot of us deal with perfectionism issues where we will, we refuse to release anything out in the world unless it's perfect. And I looked up the definition of prolific. You mentioned the word earlier, and it said where that's been on my mind lately, prolific and there's multiple definitions, but the one I want to zoom in on here is a prolific means present in large numbers or quantities Clinton.

[00:38:48] Brian: And I feel like the people, like you said, the people who are most successful in business is if content marketing is a, is a big part of the business. It's the ones who are prolific. They're the ones putting out the most stuff they're plentiful. And those [00:39:00] people are usually the ones who are okay with the most small errors there.

[00:39:03] Brian: They're like, I'd rather get it out in the world, even if it's imperfect, because to me being. Is the goal around content and then the lower the bar, the lower the bar is. So your content, the more you're going to put out and the more success you're going to see, the higher the bar, you, you have the less content you're gonna put out and the less success you're going to see, it's really weird.

[00:39:22] Brian: The more perfectionist you are, the less success you will have. And I feel like you, you work the same way, mark.

[00:39:27] Mark: Yeah. Yeah. And also, you know, don't think that everybody's eyes are gonna be on you. Nobody's going to give a probably.

[00:39:33] Brian: That's the

[00:39:34] Brian: realistic approach is no one will care.

[00:39:36] Mark: Yeah. And the thing is, if anybody cares, you've kind of done your job. I mean, the, the hardest thing is to go from crickets to something going on, just getting people to give a at all is a win.

[00:39:49] Mark: So I would just focus on kind of making a splash here and there, as opposed to just staying silent and perfect by yourself.

[00:39:55] Brian: Yes. And finally, like pick the medium that is going to. benefit [00:40:00] your strengths the most and mitigate your weaknesses the most. So if like, if you are just awful at communicating vocally, a podcast is not for you. Probably not a YouTube channel.

[00:40:08] Brian: Maybe not even social media stories. Maybe you need to create content and you need to write more. Maybe you need to post photos with good captions on instant. Pick one that matches your strengths. If you were a great photographer, videographer, then Tik TOK, or Instagram is likely your area to be. But for Me like I love talking.

[00:40:25] Brian: I love talking to people. I love interviewing people. I love talking to my friends on, on a microphone. I got in trouble in school all the time for talking.

[00:40:32] Brian: So podcasts makes the most sense for me.

[00:40:35] Mark: Yeah, I don't shut the up. So it's like, it's easy.

[00:40:38] Brian: Yeah. Yeah. So I think That's anything, any final words here, mark, before we send you off to your next thing, that you're late to our.

[00:40:43] Mark: That's fine. You know, it's fine, but uh, yeah, I think that about sums it up and you know, another interesting thing is if you're ever scared of like the super artist types, saying, oh, you're putting out all this content you're assessing. Andy [00:41:00] Warhol has some great quotes. He said something along the lines of number one, art is what can be convinced.

[00:41:06] Mark: And he said, I think something along the lines of the greatest art is building a business or something like that. So, you know, if they want to talk they're talking on Andy. And I think Andy's probably superior to the vast majority of your haters. So just keep it.

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