I lost my edge and so did you

Have you lost your sizzle? Maybe your pop, panache or mojo?

I’ll do you one better and ask, has anyone ever told you you’ve lost it?

That happened to me recently and sadly I knew it was coming. I met with a close friend during WordCamp US and she let me know that I’ve lost some of my edge. This wasn’t easy to hear, but something that I knew was coming. I could feel it. And It might be happening to you or even your product — right now. Let’s dive in.

Why is this important to you?

If you’re reading this, you’re probably a consultant or a product creator. You need that edge. It’s one of the many important traits that entice people to do business with you. Eventually, it gets dull and you need to resharpen it. So let’s get it back!

Content creators

Creating content consistently is a damn hard investment. I know these challenges well. A lot of us turn to processes and templated workflows to encourage a strong stream of publishing. Unfortunately, that leads to burn out, not only for the publisher but for our audience.

Find a new angle.

Poll your audience and uncover a new story to tell. For my podcast, I’ve brought on a co-host to discuss our businesses more intamently, do website teardowns, and sprinkle in my original mix of interviews. Who knows what season 3 will bring? What I do know is that I’ll ask my audience first.

Product creators

As 2015 wound down, I noticed a steep decline in our Conductor plugin sales. This is a natural trend as the holidays approach, but one landmark I can attribute downturn to is we slowed/stopped promoting our Conductor Office Hours live YouTube show. I can’t emphasize enough that consistency is king in this space.

Present your product in a new light. Educate your audience on the benefits you’ve not yet tapped into within your marketing material. Get more personal with deeper sales cycles.

Switch it up.

Agency owners (Consultants)

We often get stuck on a hamster wheel of client services. As we seek to systemize our internal workflow, the work itself becomes cookie cutter and vanilla.

B-o-r-i-n-g.

We need to force ourselves to be in constant motion finding new types of clients, climbing to the next mountain top, and growing the business in new dynamic ways. Get out and speak to organizations that appreciate your knowledge. Challenge your business.

Example: I’m writing this as I wait to present the “20 Minute Website Plan” to an accelerator class that I mentor. Constantly giving back and talking about our agency helps me refine my thought process around the business and my clients. Bonus: I’m meeting new people and potential clients at the same time.

Flip the script.

The first step to recovery is being honest with yourself

I lost my edge and you will inevitably lose your edge. The lesson today is two parts:

  1. Understand when it’s happening.
  2. Challenge yourself to get a new edge.

If you’ve been creating content or promoting products for a while, you know exactly what I’m talking about. It happens to all of us and it’s part of a natural evolution.

Feeling burnt out? Audience not as engaged as they used to be? What are you doing about it?

3 Comments

Hey Matt,

You’re spot on. I felt like I ended the year with no edge, especially in regard to my podcast. At your encouragement (and the confirmation of a couple of others), I’ve switched to the “season” model and this year is off to a really exciting start. I think breaking the bigness of the podcasting task into more manageable chunks (defined “seasons) has made all the difference.

Thanks for sharing your journey and teaching as you go.

Cheers,
Carrie

Have to admire your drive Matt. Hope the new adventure is going well.

100% agree recognising one’s failings is the key to getting the edge back.
When you are able to turn your back on the denial of the ego and face reality, is when it becomes fun again to rebuild afresh.

I have a friend who is unable to see the small but fundamental failings that have led him to hard times in business, it’s frustrating and I fear for his business. If we don’t evolve our thinking and philosophy to match demands of the economy and clients… And ultimately let pride drive us forward… Then we are dead in the water.

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