4 Books That Changed My Life

Confession time…

I’m really a nerd trapped in a strongman’s body.

I read voraciously, and when I do, I use a pen to underline important passages (no pocket protector for that pen…YET).  I read many things twice, even three times.   And once in a blue sunrise, I come across something that inspires me to read it over and over again.

These 4 books are like that.  I’ve read each of them at least five times.

This year, I shalt devour them once more.

To make a short story long, here they are:

1. Think and Grow Rich, by Napoleon Hill.  First published in 1937, it’s the best-selling personal development book of all time AND tops the reading list for most of the world’s wealthiest entrepreneurs.

But don’t be mistaken, this is not simply a book about how to get rich.  Andrew Carnegie hired Napoleon Hill to interview and stalk crazy successful humans like Henry Ford, Thomas Edison, and Theodore Roosevelt, to discover their methods and deliver the ultimate success philosophy.

What’d I tell ya?  That’s all kinds of cool.

(P.S.  Lately I’ve developed a preference for his later work, Grow Rich With Peace of Mind.  It’s more concise and is straight-up stacked with wisdom.)

2. The Magic of Believing by Claude M. Bristol.  Arnold Schwarzenegger, among others, has credited this book with changing his life.  And behold, the little Austrian boy has done okay for himself.

It’s sort of vomited onto the page with little direction in terms of chapter subheadings, but it’s filled from cover to cover with amazing stories that illustrate its core principles.

Truly an eye-opening read.

3. Psycho Cybernetics by Maxwell Maltz.  Dr. Maltz was a plastic surgeon.  He found that for most people, if you give them a facelift, a nose job, or remove a prominent scar, it would transform their entire personality.  But in some cases, even when the surgery had been successful, the patient would fail to notice ANY improvement in their appearance.

This led him to posit the existence of a self-image as separate from what we see in the mirror…and that the key to change lies in altering this self-image.

Deep stuff.

4. The Complete Works of Florence Scovel Shinn.  A contemporary of Napoleon Hill’s, she’s remarkable for being a woman in a field that – especially in the first half the 20th century – would have been uniquely male.

This one’s got a definite Christian bent (a lot of interpretation of the Bible), which might not be your cup of tea, but I still think it’s worth a mention.  I’ve given it to non-Christians who loved it so much it became their Bible.

She writes with a joyful tone and makes you feel playful about life.  It’s hard not to be charmed by her.  Also, her affirmations are great in dealing with fears and anxieties, and have guided me through some tough, valley-of-the-shadow-of-death type places.

By the way, you’ll notice not one of these was published any later than 1960.

There’s a method to my madness.

I like principles that have stood the test of time.

Anywhoo, put these on the reading list for 2019, or don’t.

Whatever minces your mackerel.

Just know that each of the above has helped me big time.

For further inspiration – and for email creation – follow the yellow brick road here to get your no-fuss Free Brainstorm Call:

http://calendly.com/conorkel/emailincome

But don’t delay.

I’m already booking projects several weeks out and my calendar is filling up.

Happy Reading,

Conor Kelly

 

 

 

Tryna figure out why the world is so cold

Here’s one for ya…

The other day I was doing a Google search and as I was typing my query one of the suggested searches in the drop-down menu was:

Tryna figure out why the world is so cold

(‘Tryna’ as in ‘trying to‘ in case, like me, you don’t always understand abbreviated English.)

And since Google’s suggested searches are often its most frequent searches I thought, “Dayum…all these poor S.O.B.’s out here…desperately wanting to make sense of the cruelty they’ve experienced.”

So sad.

Bit later I realized the phrase is a Mary J. Blige lyric.

Still…the world can be a cold place.  In business especially.  Until they know about you and your wicked ways, the market out there is VERY cold.  So what’s a late-adapting, spoon-fed Gen-X’er like me to do about it?

Simple…turn up the thermostat.

Allow me to explain:

I was recently asked how to sell to a resistant audience.  And while my first reaction was I’d never sell to anyone who’s resistant, I may have missed a beat in illustrating why – email.  Nothing works better than email for “warming up” an initially reluctant prospect.

Peep this.

You dangle a juicy bit of bait (something you know your market wants) and give it away free in exchange for an email address.  Then, you follow up.  Endlessly.  Until they either buy or unsubscribe.

(Btw, both of those outcomes are desirable.  More on that in a future installment.)

The Chinese water torture…the drip, drip, drip of your unrelenting emails eventually brainwashes…er, I mean wins them over to your way of seeing the world.  And by then the world is far less cold I assure you.

That’s when you get messages like (I’m paraphrasing, I’ve gotten many of these over the years):

Conor, you got me.  I had my doubts at first, but slowly everything you’re saying just started to make sense.  And I’m not one for blogs or emails usually.  Yours just hooked me somehow.  When can we talk?

You heard it here first.

How to persuade even the most brow-furrowing, arm-crossing skeptic.

Alright, that’s enough for now.

I’ll levitate down off my soap box.

If you’d like done-for-you emails that get customers to track you down, credit card in hand and eager to buy from you, then get your no-fuss, no-obligation Free Brainstorm Call to see if we’re a fit:

http://calendly.com/conorkel/emailincome

With any luck, you’ll never need to figure out why the world is so cold.

Happy Warming,

Conor Kelly

a.k.a  The Muscle @ Marketing Muscle

How to get more clients by spending less on marketing

A subscriber writes…

“I feel like I’m climbing up a hill with this SEO thing…like it’s a big investment with little results.  Do you think if I took what I’m spending on SEO and put it into building my email list instead, I’d have better luck?”

Ah yes, the classic case of marketing mountaineering.

Far less invigorating than real mountaineering, it is.

Many never make it back.

One client had been plunking down an eyebrow raising 6K a month for a year on an SEO service, and only made it to the bottom of page one on Google.

It’s enough to cause hypothermia and starvation, namely of thy bank balance.

What do I think?

I don’t know about you, but I sure as heck don’t want the good folks at Google with their finger over the kill switch of my marketing.  If SEO’s all you got…you’re one boardroom meeting away from dead.

(I recently recounted my tale of woe; the time a policy update at Adwords sent my lead count spiraling down the drain and my cost per lead soaring into the stratosphere.)

For my shekels, you can’t help but get better (and more predictable) results with list-building.

I’ve said it before and I’ll keep belting this tune to the rafters until I get the hook: you OWN your list.  It can’t be policy’d, de-platformed, or curated out of existence by the powers-that-be.  Keep your subscribers edge-of-their-seats engaged, wondering what you’ll do next, and make them juicy offers they want that solve a pressing need they have…and you got yourself real – not hypothetical customers.

Throw in a sales page that converts…

And well, better keep the champagne on ice.

Besides, the marketing equivalent of a day on the golf course is better than sending your dollars careening down an icy cliff face in Google’s no man’s land.

Save your adrenalin-fueled adventures for the weekend.

Who’s with me?

Get off the mountain here:

http://calendly.com/conorkel/emailincome

Happy Golfing,

Conor Kelly
“The Muscle” @ Marketing Muscle

Do you have this common blind spot in your marketing?

Recently I was at one of my fave boutique coffee shops.

I like the owners.

I like the place.

And I noticed they’re not as busy as they could be.

So I said to one of them, “Why don’t you offer everyone who comes in 10% off their tab in exchange for their email address, which you’ll use to send them exclusive discounts.  Then, let me help you bring them in more often.”  His first question back to me was, “email, huh…but what do you think is coming next?  What’s the next big ‘marketing thing’?”

Like what?  You have some examples?

Video conferencing, video chat, text chat, chat bots, live chat, text messaging, social media, Facebook messenger, what’s app…all those things are already here.  And email is still going strong.

Not everybody checks Facebook every day, but the average person checks their email five times per day.  Email is pervasive, global, and foundational to way we communicate as culture.  And it will be for the foreseeable future.

Besides, this question misses the point.

I’m showing you how to bring in more business RIGHT NOW.  What does it matter what might be around the corner at some hypothetical future date?  Your customers are on email TODAY.  And it costs you nothing to promote to them that way.  The only legit excuse for not using email is you don’t like making money.

More:

I find many business owners have this blind spot when it comes to their marketing.

Another example…the first thing I ask new clients to do when they sign up is make a list of warm contacts with similar but non-competitive businesses we can co-promote with.  For a chiropractor, it might be the personal training studio located nearby.  Often they’re surprised when they realize all the contacts they have but aren’t leveraging.

Call it shiny object syndrome…

I call it marketing myopia.

It’s that shortsightedness that afflicts all of us every now and again when we’re busy doing what we do.

What opportunities might you be missing?

Here’s how to find out:

1. Step into Dr. Muscle’s office.

2. Let me outfit your marketing with some corrective lenses.

3. See the world (and your bank balance) in glorious technicolor once again.

Then we can all go out to lunch and celebrate.

Your prescription here:

https://calendly.com/conorkel/emailincome

Happy Seeing,

Conor Kelly

a.k.a  The Muscle @ Marketing Muscle

Do not put these two words in your offers

While back I sent my client their email promo.

I’d crafted a fine offer.

Put some “muscle” on it (iii eee spiced it up with a few psychological triggers to help folks buy).

Then, I entrusted them with its care.

When it landed in my inbox, they’d added a bunch of words without telling me.

Where I’d made a point of emphasizing this was an exclusive offer to our subscribers…tacked on was the statement please share this with anyone you think would benefit.

In our next meeting I queried, “so…who added this bit?”

The business owner cautiously admitted “that might have been me”.

I said, “yeah…don’t do that.”

The two words not to put in your offers?

Please share.

Here’s why:

One, exclusivity is one of said ‘psychological triggers that help folks buy’.  Humans are enticed by access.  And our nervous systems are wired to think of what is rare as valuable.  If just about anyone can have your offers, there’s a good chance no one will want them.

Two, it can come off as needy and hurt your positioning with your prospect.

In fact, using please DON’T share often packs more punch.

Finally, to paraphrase Perry Marshall, every time you hit ‘send’ you are training people to read your next email.  You do this mainly by keeping your content interesting, relevant, or entertaining in some way.  But bigging up the exclusivity of your offers doesn’t hurt either.

Who wants to miss out on a great deal?

The only time asking readers to forward your emails can work is if you frame it as “I’m on a mission to help” as I did once with a client who did magnesium infusions to cure headaches and migraines.  The treatment is (a) ridiculously effective (one woman got rid of a 17-year headache her first go), and (b) everyone knows at least one person with this problem.

Such was my logic.

Most offers aren’t like that.

Anyway, take it for what it’s worth – the psychology of this works everywhere, not just in email.

Heed my cautionary tale today.

People like exclusivity.

Why not give it to them?

Happy Excluding,

Conor Kelly

The Muscle @Marketing Muscle

P.S.  I have great news for those who have been asking.  I recently freed up time in my schedule to take on one more local business.  If you’d be interested, just reply “interested” in the comments and I’ll get you all the details.

Weird St. Patrick’s Day

This is weird.

As we get set to lather on the green face paint, imbibe all things green, and dance a wee jig in honor of the great Patricius…here are a few strange St. Paddy’s Day facts:

*The original colour worn by Patrick and to mark St. Patrick’s Day…was blue.  It became green the more the party went global – ostensibly due to the Emerald Isle’s greenness, shamrocks, leprechauns, every Irish national sporting uniform ever, and the green in the Irish flag.

*Patrick’s real name was Maewyn.

Very Lord of The Rings.

*Herpetologists – i.e. folks who study reptiles agree that there probably never were snakes in Ireland for Patrick to drive out.  Too cold.  So the snakes of legend are thought to be metaphorical.  At least they weren’t the ironic kind – those smug bastards.

*Once upon a time, in the ol’ U.S. of A. the Irish were considered a migrant crisis.

Good one to remember.

As they poured in to the states on the Eastern seaboard, they were discriminated against harshly.  Now they’re a force in American culture and politics.

#Truth

*The world’s shortest St. Patrick’s Day Parade takes place in Hot Springs, Arkansas and is just 98-feet (or 49 leprechauns) long.

Crucially, this allows for more pub time.

*In the town of O’Neill, Nebraska (named for its Irish founder) residents wear green not only on St. Patrick’s, but on the 17th of every month.  That’s dedication.

*On the tiny Caribbean island of Montserrat, St. Paddy’s Day is a national holiday.  Montserrat boasts a rich Irish and African heritage.

Like me.

(The Conz began in The Ivory Coast.)

*Finally, here’s a clip of one of my fave Conor Kelly productions.  It’s a workout routine I shot while vacationing in Ireland, with just about the most scenic backdrops of any workout video I ever done seen:

Olivia was so inspired she insisted I film her very first Yoga instructional video…

Well that’s all for the weird and the wonderful of the day.

In the words of my ‘bredren’…

May love and laughter light your days

And warm your heart and home.

May good and faithful friends be yours

Wherever you may roam.

May peace and plenty bless your world

With joy that long endures

May all life’s passing seasons

Bring the best to you and yours

Happy St. Patrick’s Day,

Conor Kelly

ENCORE: 5 Anti-Tips For Your Best Summer Body

Just 12 weeks ’til summer.

Perfect time to start thinking about your plan “swimsuit readiness” plan.

I’ll be real, the following tips aren’t likely to help you with any of that.

BUT…I found this in the archives and it made me chuckle.

Should be worth at least a smile to you.

Enjoy!

-Conor

***

I used to write a lot of lists.

‘6 tips for x…’

‘4 ways to do y…’

It was the format for several of my most popular emails.

Problem is I’m easily bored.  Lists are overdone.

Anyway, the notion of anti-tips jolted my cerebral cortex into bringing forth what follows.

Here’s how it doth work:  do the exact opposite of what I recommend here, and you’ll b-line it straight for a lean summer body with a coke and a smile.  Minus the coke.

I think you get the idea.

Let’s begin…

1. Eat as much of it as you want as long as it’s healthy.  Healthy food is high in nutrients when compared with fast-food, for example.  Ever noticed how you can railroad empty calories at a mighty clip? That’s because they don’t contain any real nutrition, so you’re body barely registers any satiety.

Non-processed, organic, high-fiber foods are so nutrient-dense that your body thrives on much lower intake levels.  This mirrors how sparse food was when we evolved the ability to derive energy from plants and animal flesh.

But if some is good, more is better…right?

Besides, the plump lady behind the lunch counter says I can eat as much quinoa salad as I want because it’s healthy – so it MUST be true.

2. Try a RE-tox diet.  You want to enjoy the fine weather and the fresh air.  The last thing you need is a bunch of washroom breaks slowing you down.  Keep your water consumption to a minimum, and avoid anything high in fiber.  Also, you might like the binding properties of copious amounts of cheese.

Keep that colon on lockdown until the fall.

3. Use a pro-inflammatory approach.  One thing you’d really hate is if your joint pain lessened to the point of inspiring you to be more active.  Really cuts into your investment of sunbathing time.  Just remember the four food groups: pizza, ice cream, beer, and cigarettes.  In fact, eat as much sugar as possible – raw, off a spoon, if need be.

The average Canadian eats 68 kilos of sugar per year.

Ask yourself, are you getting behind?

4. Avoid heavy weights.  God forbid you should build any muscle that might turn your metabolism into a blast-furnace for burning calories.  Then you’d lose your excuse for all that healthy food in #1.  Plus everyone knows that heaps of long, slow walking is how you lose weight.

5. Sleep less, and ‘freak out’ more.  Stress is good for you.  Ever heard of ‘fight or flight’?  Burns fat.  Burns muscle too, and runs your organs on overdrive, but heck, nobody’s perfect.  To really accentuate the effect, fly into a rage at every opportunity (I mean really lose your s**t) and load your system with as much caffeine as possible.

Sleep only when desperate.

Healthy sleeping patterns of seven or more hours per night render #’s 1, 3, and 4 less effective.

Now if your brain hurts from twisting my hints to figure out what I really mean, you’re either taking #5 literally, or you’ll benefit from the un-reversed truths in my 16-Week Transformation Program. 

Call (416) 826-4844 to request your complimentary personal training consultation, and discover the path to your best body – in all seasons.

Happy Freaking Out,

Conor Kelly