- Becoming a full-stack freelancer
- The foundation of being a freelancer
- Honing your marketing skills
- Copywriting for small businesses
- Basic design for freelancers
- Understanding paid ads and funnels
- The strategy behind your business' marketing plan
- Confidence and conviction
- Persuading leads that you are the best option (because you are)
- FITFO in your full stack
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[00:00:00] Brian: Hello and welcome to the six Figure Creative Podcast. I'm your host, Brian Hood. If this is your first time listening to the show, you are in the right place right now. If you are a freelancer or preferably a creative freelancer who is looking to make this more than just a side hustle, more than just a side gig, you wanna make this your full-time thing.
[00:00:13] Brian: Maybe six figures or more, which is why we're called the six Figure Creative. If that sounds like you, then you are in the right place. Typically on the show, we bring other experts from other fields, people. Photography niche or videography, or graphic design, or my own background in the audio industry, we bring people from all different industries so we can learn from each other and figure out working in different industries that we can bring back to our own.
[00:00:31] Brian: I believe in learning from other places and seeing what they're doing, what's successful, what's not successful, and then bring it back to my business. However, lately I've been doing a lot of solo episodes, partly because it's the holidays and partly because I just really enjoy doing these.
[00:00:43] Brian: I do have a lot of plans to bring some guests on in 2023 and beyond, but it's just hard to do it over the holidays and to be honest, I've been neglecting what I call my guest acquisition funnel.
[00:00:52] Brian: This is funnel we use to actually reach out to people and get them booked on the show.
[00:00:55] Brian: So from time to time, I like to share my own experiences. for those of you know my background or anything [00:01:00] about me, was trying to count you up this morning, , when I was playing this episode. Now, I think I've, launched more than nine different six figure income streams.
[00:01:07] Brian: and not all these are like six figures a year. I just mean like things that I've put out into the world that have earned me more than six figures. I think I'm up to nine, maybe 10 at this. And so through all of these different income streams from all of these different industries and product types, I've had to develop a lot of skills, and I've had a lot of experiences, a lot of fails, a lot of struggles along the way.
[00:01:23] Brian: And so I like to just bring these experiences and these ideas to you in these solo episodes. and today's episode is no different. So we are halfway through January right now, January, 2023. And I have a question for you. Rhetorical question cuz you can't answer me or you can't answer me.
[00:01:36] Brian: Feel free to answer me. Like if you're , you're on a subway listening right now, you're on a walk, just talk back to me and people will think you're weird. It's fine. It wouldn't be the weirdest thing that happens on the subway. I definitely know that. here's the question. Do you think freelancing will be more or less competitive this year than it was last year in whatever niche you're in or whatever industry you're in, do you think your industry is gonna be more or less competitive in 2023?
[00:01:55] Brian: The answer to that is probably more competitive in most cases. Unless you're either in a dying [00:02:00] industry or you are in an industry that is like so unique. I'd be questioning whether or not you can actually survive and thrive in that industry to begin with. But for most people listening to the show, your industry will be more competitive in 2023 and beyond than it was last year.
[00:02:14] Brian: And I know in my own experience from my background in music production, the entire music industry from recording, to mixing, to editing, to mastering, to all of the little specialist jobs in between. That industry has seen massive change over the last decade, and it's gotten more and more competitive every year.
[00:02:28] Brian: As that skill gap decreases, there's amazing resources out there to learn how to do all of the skills, the creative skills around audio engineering and recording engineering and music production. And it's the same in pretty much every creative genre. It's an explosion of amazing free and paid resources out there in courses to learn every skill you need to.
[00:02:46] Brian: But I was looking at some statistics. I got data for you today this just kinda supports my argument of whether or not it's gonna be more or less competitive for all of you listening right now, five years ago it was 56 million freelancers in the USA alone. This year or less year, I [00:03:00] guess is the, the most up-to-date number they have.
[00:03:01] Brian: It was 70 million freelancers in the usa. So it went from 56 to 70 million freelancers over a five year period, and they're projecting in five years. By 2028, it's going to be 90 million freelancers. that is more and more people getting into the Lance game. And not all of those are gonna be in creative niches.
[00:03:18] Brian: Some of them are gonna be in things that are not creative at all, but some of those people will be in creative niches. The studies I've seen is of all the freelancers in America, about 20 or 30% are in creative niches like video, photo, music, audio. Copywriting, anything that uses a creative skill and is monetizing that skill with a service.
[00:03:34] Brian: So as more and more people start doing this, and as those people that are coming into this industry get better and better and better, because it's easier and easier to learn these skills, What can you do to stand out? That's really the key question here, and I believe it's something called a full stack freelancer.
[00:03:50] Brian: This kinda comes from the development world. So if we have any developers listening right now, you already know what I'm talking about. But a full stack developer is a developer who has a lot of different skills to be able to do the entire product stack. I'm [00:04:00] probably butchering this term. If you're a developer, I apologize, but it's learning a lot of different skills so that you can do backend development and frontend development. and it means that you can charge more because you're worth so much more to whatever company hires you for development. in the freelancing world, a full stack freelancer is just somebody who has what I call a T-shaped set of skills. If you look at the letter T, if you're looking on, on YouTube right now, the letter t. A T shape means that you have a very broad set of a lot of different skills that you're not a master at, and you go really deep in one or two sets of skills.
[00:04:28] Brian: That's the creative part. The thing that you are a master at, What a lot of freelancers make the mistake of doing is they're an eye shaped freelancer. They look at this creative skill that they love to do. Let's just say photography for right now. And you learn and hone that skill and you figure out how to use your camera and all of the different lenses and how to do lighting and aperture settings and blah, blah, blah.
[00:04:46] Brian: I don't know all the, terms. I'm not a photographer. I know just enough to be dangerous, but you learn all those skills. very deep in that skillset, and you're really good at it. and ignore the. You ignore that big wide range of skills you need to succeed as an actual [00:05:00] business owner. And because of it, you're stuck in what I call a red ocean. It's a body of water. Full of blood because everyone's trying to compete. There's sharks eating everyone. There's limbs hanging out. , it's a disgusting thing.
[00:05:11] Brian: And just to kinda give you an example of something, that we've kind of been looking at right now is if you were looking to hire a podcast editor, , shout out to Leland who's editing this episode, I believe, unless this is too last minute for him. If we're looking for a podcast editor for the show, we're gonna hire a freelancer. Now, if we have two people, we're looking at potentially hiring for the show, one is just editing and the other has a skillset for editing and copywriting. So they can do show notes and they can write the email for the episode, and so on and so forth.
[00:05:37] Brian: which person do you think we're gonna hire? We're gonna hire the person with, the more diverse skillset. Even if they're not the best copywriter in the world, they can still do what we need to do for this show, which is kind of what I started doing with Leland, So shout out to him and no pressure cuz he just started writing some of the show notes and emails for this show. And the reason that's more valuable is because we now don't have to hire a copywriter to then listen to the entire episode and create show notes in an email for this show. So now [00:06:00] our podcast editor, Leland, shout out to Leland again, has a very deep skillset in editing and production for the show and a wide, but narrow skillset in other areas. One of those being copywriting.
[00:06:09] Brian: So I think being a full stack freelancer is going to be the modern standard for how you're gonna become a six figure creative in 2023 and beyond. I just don't think there's any other way to compete I'm all for specialization. I love specialists. to be niche down and to be the best of the best in one narrow area is a wonderful way to do things.
[00:06:26] Brian: But that doesn't mean that's all you have to learn. You have to know these other skills. Not only do you wanna be successful, but you just want to Stay sane, get discovered, make more money, and just honestly, frankly, enjoy your life more because a lot of the skills that you need to develop as a full stack freelancer, again, I'm gonna talk more about what that term means in this entire episode, and maybe multipart episodes are gonna be devoted to all of the skills that go into being a full stack Lance. But a lot of these skills are not just for your business, they're for your personal life too. but if you just wanna have a better life in general, which includes having a business that you love and enjoy to run, and a business that you can [00:07:00] actually succeed in being a full stack freelancer, I think is going to be a necessity again in 2023 and beyond.
[00:07:05] Brian: so let's dive into this. Let's talk about the skills required to become, Successful freelancer in 2023. And again, I think this is probably gonna be multi-part episode because there's just so many skills to cover. I have no idea how long I'm gonna go on these, but I've just got so many listed out here and I'm gonna try to keep this categorized in, in logical order here. So what skills are necessary to succeed as a six figure freelancer or six figure creative in 2023 and beyond? First is your creative skills, This is a given. You have to be good at what you do. No matter what you learn about marketing or sales, or people's skills or systems, or any of this other stuff, if you're bad at what you do as a creative, you're not gonna succeed.
[00:07:40] Brian: Or if you do succeed, you're not gonna have happy. that's like the first foundational thing. That's a duh. We, but we have to address that because you have to be good at what you do. and I only address this, because I still get applications for people who want me to coach them.
[00:07:52] Brian: for people who are still not good at what they do. some people have like, they lack self-awareness and they're way overconfident for how good they are. And some people have a lot of [00:08:00] self-confidence issues and they wait, underestimate how good they actually are. So the only way I know to do this is free you to answer a few questions. First of all, this is how to know if you're good enough at your creative skill in order to start working on the rest of your skill stack. First of all, are you good enough to get. If people are paying you, that's a good sign that you're good enough to start learning these other skills to stack onto your creative skills, first So that's the first thing. Are you actually getting paid? Are you good enough to get paid? If you're not good enough to get paid, are you at least good enough to get a free project outta somebody to work for free? Cuz a lot of times you might be good enough to get paid, but you haven't built the trust and credibility.
[00:08:33] Brian: You maybe don't have the network or the relationships to get those first early crucial projects. So can you get a free project from somebody if you can't even get a free project that is a dead giveaway that you are not good enough. So first, are you good enough to get paid? And if not, can you get free projects, whether or not you're doing free projects or paid projects?
[00:08:50] Brian: The second question is, do people come back to you? If they don't come back to you, that's a really good sign that again, you're not very good. They weren't happy for some reason. Now, again, it's not always just your creative skills that would keep somebody from [00:09:00] coming back to you. A lot of these other skills that are gonna be part of the full stack freelancer skillset, these other sales are still important for actually getting clients to come back to you.
[00:09:07] Brian: Or not pushing clients away, but at it core, if you're good at what you. People will generally, unless you completely made them mad or, or disappointed them in some other way, people will generally come back to you. And And the third thing to look at when trying to analyze your creative skills to see if this is really the weak point you need to work on before really focusing on these other parts of your skills stack is do you get referrals if your clients.
[00:09:28] Brian: Liked working with you enough, they will refer their friends and family and, other contacts to you. even if it's just a few people, every now and again, that's still probably a pretty good sign that you're good enough here's the kind of a, a hot take , if you will. I wholeheartedly believe this, The best freelancer rarely, if ever, gets. It's almost never the best freelancer, even within the, all the freelancers considered for a specific gig or specific job or a specific client, that client rarely, if ever chooses the best freelancer. The, I'm using air quotes here, the best freelancer, they choose the one who ticks all the boxes. The one who [00:10:00] makes them feel comfortable.
[00:10:00] Brian: The one. Answered all their questions. The one who made them feel like they can trust them to actually get the project done in the way that they want. And even if you are technically better than everyone else, if you lack all these other skills in the skillset for a full stack freelancer, you will still lose gigs to the person who is not as good as you.
[00:10:17] Brian: So if you're losing gigs to people who are not as good as you, chances are that's a dead giveaway that you need to work on the rest of your skill stack. So you're good at what you do. Now let's talk about the first kind of stack of skills that a freelancer needs. And I've got, let me count how many I have here. I have 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8. I've got eight different stacks of skills, and some of these have a lot of skills within the stack. So being a full stack freelancer is a lot of work.
[00:10:42] Brian: It is a lifelong dedication. You'll never finish this project. Basically, as long as you live, you'll always be adding to your skills stack. And if you ever stop, then you are stagnating as a creative, as a freelancer, as a human being. you're probably not gonna be very happy, I'm speaking for myself, by the way, so I, I don't wanna put this words into your mouth.
[00:10:59] Brian: but, [00:11:00] Personally, if I'm not growing and developing, then I'm generally not happy, and I've gone through seasons of my life where I've found that I'm not happy for some reason, and then I start realizing that I'm not doing anything new in my life and exciting and growing and developing to challenge myself.
[00:11:12] Brian: So this is a lifelong thing. So let's talk about the first stack of skills, and this is a lot of skills to talk about, which is why I think this is gonna be a multi-part episode. this first stack of skills is marketing skills. if the left and right brain thing is true, where the right brain is like super creative and left brain is like super analytical and numbers minded, then this marketing skill stack is as far left brain as they.
[00:11:32] Brian: if you are like super right-brained, meaning you're like, you really just focus on the creative things. You don't really wanna think about the numbers and metrics and skills and marketing and sales and all this stuff. This is going to be a huge turnoff to you, but it's still a necessary thing to learn.
[00:11:44] Brian: You don't have to become a master at all these things. You don't have to become a marketer, but you have to understand at least the baseline level of all of these skills. If you want to be able to acquire clients for yourself in 2023 and beyond. So let's talk about some of the skills that I consider as part of a marketing skillset.
[00:11:59] Brian: [00:12:00] And this is in no particular order, by the way. This is just if you're trying to learn how to be a better marketer so that you can market yourself as a creative, which is an important part. Then these skills really, really help this area. So the first skill is copywriting. If you're a copywriter listening to the show, then this is not your problem.
[00:12:15] Brian: You already know how to do this. But for pretty much every other niche, listening to the show, every other industry listening to the show, audio, video design, photography, Any developers listening to this show, which developers or creatives for sure, you are literally creating software outta thin air. It's awesome. This skillset, copywriting is one you have probably not invested much into. Now. There are tools out there like, Chat, G P T and other AI tools like copy.ai or Jasper that are getting to a really cool place for helping you write copy.
[00:12:43] Brian: But getting it to write in a way that speaks to a human on an individual level and honestly even knowing what's good and what's bad, you have to have at least a baseline level of copywriting skill and order to even use these AI tools effectively.
[00:12:56] Brian: So I still think you need to study the skill of copy. Learn it, develop it, [00:13:00] hone it, because this is how in a modern era you communicate to people online, unless you're doing a lot of video content, which we can talk about later. A lot of video content or spoken word content like a podcast.
[00:13:10] Brian: The only other way to communicate with people online is with typing out words and becoming a decent copywriter, not even an expert. Again, this is a T-shaped set of skills, so you don't have to go deep on copywriting. You go wide and you just learn a little bit about copywriting. What's the 80 20? What's the 20% that's gonna get you 80% of the results in copywriting?
[00:13:27] Brian: and you work on that skill
[00:13:28] Brian: until you can effectively use. To do what you need. And again, copywriting is used everywhere. It's used on your website, any funnels you create, if you create lead magnets, if you ever create ads,
[00:13:37] Brian: it's used in the email templates you create for your clients, for your leads. it's for writing, the emails in your automated nurture sequence. Again, this skill touches so many parts of your business. Which is why it's so high up on my list. So that's the first skill in the marketing skill stack.
[00:13:52] Brian: So the next skill in the skill stack is basic design skills. If you're a designer listening to the show, that's the deep part of your skillset in this T-shaped skillset. [00:14:00] But for the rest of us, myself included, basic design is a necessity. As a freelancer, you generally can't hire out graphic designers for every little design that you have.
[00:14:08] Brian: Design to a point has a big effect on how people perceive you as a business. if your website any graphics or anything you post on social media, if that stuff just looks bad, as somebody who has a website building software called Easy Funnels.
[00:14:22] Brian: Go check it out if you haven't already. I have seen some ugly websites. I have seen some vile things in my life, , Some of you are listening right now and that is your sight that I'm talking about no offense, but definitely be better . That's what I'm trying to say here. So if you are awful at design, yes you need high professionals whenever you can, but a lot of times when you're trying to make that transition from part-time to full-time and you're still getting that snowball rolling where you can't really afford to hire out people, then you need to have a basic design skillset.
[00:14:50] Brian: Now again, some people are lost cause. In one or more of these areas I'm gonna talk about today in the rest of this episode, and maybe next week's episode as well. Some of these skills, you were just a lost [00:15:00] cause, but you still have to at least attempt to understand these things so that you even know how to hire somebody.
[00:15:06] Brian: going back to copywriting, by the way, if you are trying to hire a good copywriter, how do you even know how to hire a good copywriter if you don't even understand the basic fundamentals of copywriting? It's the same with design, understanding basic. Essentials, why something looks bad.
[00:15:19] Brian: I'm a terrible designer, but over the years, things that I design, which I try to do the least amount as possible, nowadays, things that I design look better and better. And if all else, if you were bad at design you, and you know you're bad at design, the best thing you can do is just mimic somebody else.
[00:15:35] Brian: I hate to say this cuz this is like not creative at all, but this is also knowing your lanes.
[00:15:38] Brian: Most people, when I see those atrocious websites that I was talking about, where it's like a vile website, just awful, disgusting, makes my eyes hurt, makes me cringe when I look at it. Those sorts of people that are bad at design, they're trying to reinvent what a website is. You should never reinvent what a website is when you're bad at design.
[00:15:57] Brian: Just go find a website that looks. Don't [00:16:00] plagiarize it, but copy it design-wise and do your best to mimic it. If you go to the six figure creative.com, that landing page right now, at least of early January or mid-January 2023, is a design that I found on someone else's site that I liked I took the inspiration from what their site looked like and brought it over to my.
[00:16:17] Brian: So that's the second skill in the, the marketing skillset set, is just basic design.
[00:16:20] Brian: The third skillset, and this isn't for everyone, but if you know a little bit about this, it can be a big game changer for many freelancers. is ads Learning how to run paid ads. Now this doesn't work for every industry and not every person is even ready for this yet, but knowing the basics here can be powerful when it comes to getting leads.
[00:16:35] Brian: Starting to build an email list. And then using your new copywriting skills that you've been honing and developing in order to nurture and build the relationships on a one to many scale. As freelancers, we're kind of stuck in like the 1990s networking world all handshakes and bumping bellies or whatever people say, like it was back in 1990.
[00:16:51] Brian: That's how they network Back in the day. You'd go to networking events and you would shake hands and be a a familiar face. that stuff completely went away in 20 20, 20 21, and people were [00:17:00] forced to go online to do this. That trend had already been happening anyways, so over time, you were able to scale yourself, especially if you're not like a people person.
[00:17:07] Brian: You don't like being in large groups and you're not an outgoing person. Then learning these sorts of skills like ads paid acquisition, or one to many, methods for getting in front of people. Paid advertising can be a wonderful way to do this.
[00:17:18] Brian: And in order to actually make Penn advertising work, just so you know, we don't just run ads to our services or say, hire me, hire me. Like That's the most desperate shit ever. It does not work. You need funnels. You need lead magnets. There's a lot that goes into this, which kind of sums everything up.
[00:17:32] Brian: Into kinda the final scale in this stack, there's really a lot more to this, but it's understanding marketing strategy. Marketing strategy is the big picture overview of your entire marketing portion of your business. Again, getting the right message to the right person at the right time.
[00:17:45] Brian: Marketing strategy. Allows you to zoom out and stop worrying about all of these little individual pieces of the overall marketing machine, and instead put a really good big picture plan into place. And then implement each section at a time knowing how they all work together.[00:18:00] So if you understand the skill of ads, you've built out funnels with great copy in them, you've created good lead magnets, you've created great follow up email.
[00:18:08] Brian: You know how to use marketing automation and basic tools. Again, more skills in the marketing skills stack. You even understand content creation on social media or long form content like a podcast. Again, more skills as the marketer. Skills stack. Strategy is how you tie all of these together in a cohesive way, instead of just dabbling in each individual area in ways that don't synergize with each other. So that is part of the marketing skillset. There's so many more skills that go into this, But that is a big chunk of the marketing skillset, copywriting, basic design, ads and funnels, content creation, marketing automation, and really just understanding big picture strategy of how to make that all come together. If you don't know these skills, again, don't worry about this. There are plenty of resources out there.
[00:18:47] Brian: This podcast is one of those resources. We talk a lot about marketing on the show. That is one of my core competencies. honestly, at this point, that is the deep part of my tea, I've honed that skill over years and I've, become a marketer because that's something [00:19:00] I genuinely enjoy.
[00:19:01] Brian: But for those who don't genuinely enjoy that and can never see yourself genuinely enjoying that, you still have to understand the basic parts of this if you want to be able to stand out in 2023 and beyond. but that's just the marketing skills stack.
[00:19:12] Brian: There are other skill stacks you need to acquire if you want to be a successful freelancer and stand out from the crowd. Get out of the red ocean. the next skill stack is your sales skills. Again, as a freelancer, you can love sales, you can hate sales. I don't really know what your opinion is on it. I like sales. I don't hate them. It's not something I like, love to do, but I, I'm good at it so I enjoy it. People who are good at things naturally and start to enjoy it more and more.
[00:19:35] Brian: So if you're bad at it, it's probably why you don't like. but the sales skills include confidence. I'm not sure if confidence is a skill. I literally just Googled it to see if confidence is a skill according to the top results on Google. Confidence is a skill that can be learned.
[00:19:48] Brian: And even psychology today said that as much as 50% of confidence is genetic, the which implies that the rest can be learned. I'm just gonna say confidence is a skill that can be learned. part of it is just[00:20:00] building up small wind.
[00:20:01] Brian: Over time so that you gain confidence in yourself. I think part of it is becoming great at what you do. It's being excellent at things so that you have confidence. I think a lot of self-confidence issues stem from us not thinking we're good at what we do. Some of us is because we are genuinely not good at what we do.
[00:20:16] Brian: So the more we develop ourselves, the more we improve, kind of what I said at the beginning of the show where I like this is a lifelong journey we're on right now. Whether you want to or not, this is a lifelong journey we're on. I don't see a way that you can continually get better every single year and not grow in your own self-confidence.
[00:20:31] Brian: But if you don't have self-confidence, sales becomes incredibly difficult
[00:20:34] Brian: Because sales requires a lot of different skills we're gonna talk about, but At the forefront of it, sales is conviction. You have to have conviction for what you do, belief in what you do. And if you don't have confidence in yourself in what you do and what you're offering, you won't have conviction.
[00:20:48] Brian: And if you don't have conviction, you will not make the sale. People can feel your conviction with something people can tell if you don't believe that you're the best option for them.
[00:20:56] Brian: And so the best way to get better at sales, other than just doing it [00:21:00] over and over again, getting on the phone with people or getting on a Zoom call with people or getting in person with people and then just learning that skill through time. is to build confidence and conviction in what you offer people.
[00:21:10] Brian: The second skill in the sales stack is persuasion. Persuasion has a bad rap. Cause I think people, especially like marketers, you see online. In a lot of different areas, like the gurus, those people use persuasion in maybe a negative way, and so people just put a blanket statement that being persuasive or using persuasive psychology, persuasive maneuvers on people is somehow evil alert a bad thing.
[00:21:30] Brian: I think persuasion is a tool and just like a hammer is not evil unless you're bashing someone's head in with it. I think persuasion is not evil unless you're using it with evil intent. So I think you can use persuasion to help someone help the. for example, if you're a web designer and someone comes to you from my world who has one of those vile, atrocious, horrible websites and they want you to redesign it, and you look at the site and it's the worst thing you've ever seen in your entire.
[00:21:54] Brian: Then you know you have conviction, which I talked about a second ago. Conviction and confidence that you are the best option for them you [00:22:00] may be the only person they're talking to, or even if they're talking to other people as potential options, because you have confidence, because you have conviction, because you've invested into your skillset, you are probably genuinely the best option for them.
[00:22:09] Brian: when you are the best,
[00:22:11] Brian: And you failed to persuade somebody to hire you. they're left either spending way too much money with somebody who's not as good and they're not gonna get as good of a product, or they're left going back and just leaving their website as it is, which is a vi, atrocious, despicable website.
[00:22:24] Brian: some choice words I'm using today. When people go back without improving their life because they didn't hire you, then you have failed. So in a scenario like this, persuasion would've been a, tool of good use. It would've created more value in the world because you would've helped somebody get this despicable, atrocious website off of the internet, which helps them get more clients, which helps them improve their life, their self-confidence, their bank account, all because you use the tool of persuasion.
[00:22:49] Brian: I probably should have been recommending more books along the way here, but there is a book.
[00:22:52] Brian: a book called Influence by I believe, Robert Cini or Kini. Anyways, influence is the book. It'll be linked in our show firstname.lastname@example.org [00:23:00] slash 2 35.
[00:23:01] Brian: But that book does a really good job of breaking down five or six of the key psychological persuasion principles that just works on humans. And again, you can use these tools for evil. it has no morality attached to it.
[00:23:12] Brian: It is neither good nor. But you can learn these skills for good in your business to create more value in the world.
[00:23:18] Brian: And part of being more persuasive is even having basic things like a sales script to follow, or a sales process to follow. These are all parts of being better at sales because you're not just winging it every time you have a process you follow, you have a script you follow. You have the ability to help someone understand where they are now, where they want to be, and how you bridge the gap.
[00:23:38] Brian: This is all part of sales skills
[00:23:40] Brian: that will help you on your journey to becoming a six figure creative. So we've talked about marketing skills, we've talked about sales skills. Let's talk about the last skills stack in today's episode. Then we'll break it up to next week.
[00:23:51] Brian: this is one of my favorite skill stacks and one that people just don't do. It blows my mind. this should be a more surprising one for people because marketing skills and sales skills, like [00:24:00] obviously those are skills, you know, you need to develop in order to succeed as a even if you're not investing those skills, you know, those are skills you.
[00:24:06] Brian: But this next skill stack is one you probably haven't thought about, and this skill stack is the problem solving skills.
[00:24:12] Brian: This is a skill stack. This is a set of skills you have in order to overcome problems. And being an entrepreneur, this is nothing more than just an endless world of solving problems. Everything is a problem to be solved. Every single thing, every roadblock, Every objection in a sales call, every funnel that fails, every lead magnitude fails, every client you lose.
[00:24:32] Brian: These are all simply problems that have to be solved. They have to be overcome.
[00:24:37] Brian: This is your ability to fit foe, and if for a long time to listen to the show. You know that, you know that acronym, F I F T O, figure it the out. You are not an employee anymore. The sooner you get away from that, mindset of being an employee where people are gonna tell me what to do, I'm gonna have a manager and he's gonna gimme a task to do today. I'm just gonna do those things. That doesn't exist anymore. You are on your own. Which means if you want to succeed, then when [00:25:00] you hit a roadblock, you can't just take it to a manager.
[00:25:02] Brian: or you can't just wait around for them to bring things to you or tell you how to fix things. You have to do it yourself. You are in charge of solving all of your own problems. So when that tax bill came in that you somehow didn't know was gonna come, because this is your first year freelancing, you didn't think that you had to pay quarterly estimated taxes, or you didn't put any money away in savings to pay your taxes.
[00:25:19] Brian: This, year, oops. That's a problem to be solved. That's a problem to overcome. And that's a big problem, by the way, . But it has to be overcome. I've done it before my first year. That's what happened. that was a problem that I had to solve. I had to figure it the out. So there are like three skills within this skillset that are worth noting. And there's more than just this, but these are the three that I came up with. The first is just the skill of Googling stuff. never understand how people can go through life not knowing the most basic, easy to understand, easy to learn things.
[00:25:47] Brian: They could just Google all the time I get asked questions that I can just Google. Just today someone asked me something that I just Googled, even on this episode earlier, you heard me, say, I just had to Google this thing because I wasn't. All the time I Google things, my [00:26:00] default response to something I don't know is I ask Siri, I ask Alexa, I'm whispering.
[00:26:04] Brian: Cause I don't want these things to listen to me right now because they'll come alive. Or I'll ask Google and I guess soon to be, I'll ask chat g p t cuz that usually has pretty good answers. But I'll ask some sort of resource that has a deeper, wider breadth of knowledge than I have.
[00:26:17] Brian: And that is search engines right now. And maybe eventually it'll be ai. But Googling things is a skillset you have to learn because not all of the answers you find on the top of Google or immediately will be the correct answers. You have to know how to reword things, which actually comes up to my second skillset within problem solving, and that is troubleshooting.
[00:26:33] Brian: There is a natural way of learning how to troubleshoot things when something's not working. One of those on Google would be if I'm not getting the answers I want immediately. How do I reword this to get the answer that I need? How do I maybe go to YouTube and look up videos instead? How do I maybe use quotes or use some of the filtering tools inside of Google in order to get the results that I need?
[00:26:51] Brian: There are skills around Googling that most people don't know, and I, I'm surprised they don't teach this, stuff in school because I don't need to know what year [00:27:00] President Truman first came into office. I can just Google that. President. Truman
[00:27:04] Brian: inauguration date,
[00:27:06] Brian: 1945 was the year he became president. I don't know why that was the president that came to my mind. I don't have any. Affinity towards him. I probably haven't thought of him or looked him up ever, , but that is what Google's used for. that doesn't need to be my brain.
[00:27:18] Brian: So I don't know why I need to learn this in school. I need to learn how to, access this information, how to go through the piles of information on the internet in order to find the thing that I need. That's a skillset. and it's an important one. As an entrepreneur, as a freelancer, I wish Google gave an end of year rap like Spotify does, to tell me how many searches I did, what my searches were, like.
[00:27:36] Brian: I would love to know how many times I searched Google in a year. Cause I know they know that about me. It is a really important part of my life and is a huge part of my success. And I don't think humans understand the advantages we have in this era where we have that much information at our fingertips, and people just are not using this to their advantage.
[00:27:52] Brian: It is insane.
[00:27:53] Brian: So this is a skillset that goes into problem solving that you have to learn how to use to your advantage. and this leads us to [00:28:00] the third skill within the problem solving skillset that is worth honing, learning, developing, improving, in order to become a better problem solver.
[00:28:07] Brian: And that is decisiveness. You cannot solve problems. You cannot figure it the out if you can't make a decision and at least try it out. Part of troubleshooting is we find a solution that we think might work. We try it out, it fails, and that's a new data point for us. So we go back to the drawing board why did this fail?
[00:28:23] Brian: What else can we try? Try that out. If you are not decisive, you'll never get through the feedback loop of learn, try, fail, because you never even try. when you're out. Analyzing a spreadsheet of like 86 different data points on like, what's the most logical way to do this thing that you're trying to do?
[00:28:38] Brian: I'm out there just trying every single one of them, and I will learn faster than you. I will get to the answer faster than you because I made a decision faster than you and I personally this is not my strongest suit. I still will think about things for too long. I still overthink things, so I'm not perfect in any of these areas.
[00:28:53] Brian: Decision making is a really important part. That doesn't mean you never get outside opinions, But part of being a good decision maker [00:29:00] is understanding when you have enough data to take a imperfect action. And this is especially important when it's in action that can be reversed.
[00:29:06] Brian: Most of the things we're making decisions on from day to day are reversible decisions. They're not permanent decisions. It's not like you were having a child. And that child will be with you for the next 18 plus years, and there is no going back. You can try that, terrible copy on that Facebook ad with a bad graphic design. You can try it and to see if it works. You waste five bucks, who cares? 10 bucks, 20 bucks. You can launch that new landing page. You can try that new pricing if it fails. So what? Just try it again. Try some other pricing next.
[00:29:31] Brian: Part of being a better decision maker and getting better at problem solving is becoming more decisive so that we can try things out in order to find what doesn't work, so that we can eventually get to the one thing that does work, which is problem solved.
[00:29:44] Brian: So we've covered creative skills, marketing skills, sales skills, and problem solving skills. In this episode next week,
[00:29:50] Brian: we're gonna talk through numbers and metrics, those skills and things associated with that. Ooh, fun. We're gonna talk through people skills. Which is a huge part of being a successful [00:30:00] freelancer. We're gonna talk about the skills around focus and discipline, and two other skill stacks worth talking about.
[00:30:06] Brian: So that is all I have for you today on today's episode. I hope that this is a good one, but this is the kind of stuff you need in 2023, especially for those of who are stuck on this is a side hustle and you haven't developed the full stack freelance skillset that you need. This episode and next week's episode is gonna be huge for at least understanding and guiding which directions you need to point yourself in 2023 To grow and develop as a freelancer, so do not miss next week, and if you want to develop your marketing skills a bit, make sure you get my client acquisition toolkit, just go to six figure creative dot. Slash toolkit, T O O L K I T, and I'll walk you through all of the different elements you need to have in order to build a client acquisition machine. and it'll help you with a lot of the marketing skillsets you're gonna need in 2023 and beyond.
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