It took me three weeks to write one email.
Check that, it took me 40 years to write one email.
My buddy Kevin Peyton and I were talking before the event. We were there to support our friend Jen Powers and her charity Tried and True Parenting.
Tried and True sets out to give parents the tools needed to do the most important job on Earth–raise a child.
Kevin asked me “how long did it take to write your book”?
Without skipping a beat, I said “40 years”.
The light went off in his head, he immediately knew what I was saying.
He was looking for tips for writing his own and was maybe looking for a more reasonable timeframe.
But, it’s true. It took me 40 years to write my book. I couldn’t have written it 20 years ago. I couldn’t have written it 10 years ago.
All of my life experiences, education, professional experiences were needed to produce this book–my story, my business religion.
So, recently I decided to write a weekly email to reach out to my past podcast guests. I needed a way to stay in touch with them so as to deepen our relationship. As described in my book, the best way to do this is through storytelling, hence the email.
As I started writing the first email I got stuck.
What do I want to say? What do they want to hear? How could I bring value to them? What in the world would make them open my email every week?
There are only a handful of people that when I get their emails, I immediately read them–every single time.
Who is that you ask?
First, my wife. Next, my two kids. Of course my family, why? Relationship.
So, when a marketer sends me an email, soliciting, I can’t delete it fast enough. Why? No relationship.
However, there are a few marketers that whenever I see their name attached to an email, I open it immediately!
Ryan Fletcher, Ryan France, Eric Verdi, Jay Lieberman, and Seth Godin.
Who are they?
Fletcher, France, Verdi and Lieberman is not a law firm, no, they are my brothers. Not biological brothers, but kindred spirits. Writers, entrepreneurs, visionaries. All building their businesses for a cause.
Why would I open their emails and read their content every time?
First of all they bring value. They write about subjects for which I am most interested. Storytelling, philanthropy, self development, business building.
Second, by reading their writing, I feel like I have become connected to them. You know, like family. My tribe. Around a set of shared beliefs.
Which is also why I open Seth Godin’s emails.
Seth Godin is a writer, entrepreneur, and marketing expert. I found him by listening to my tribe. He was mentioned so many times I had to hear what he had to say.
Seth Godin keeps my attention because he brings me value with every email, and of course I feel like we are family. Part of a tribe.
All of these characters have built with me a relationship. These writers have won me over through making a connection through their storytelling.
That’s what I wanted to do with my first email. Connect with my audience, so that when my next email shows up in their inbox, they will, like I do with my tribe, anxiously open it.
So, I ordered my Starbucks Tall Blonde Roast, added 2 pats of Kerry Gold butter, splashed in some Brain Octane and started to compose my first ever weekly email.
What to write?
My goal is to write a weekly email in story form. Each week I unveil a new episode to keep the audience coming back. Not just my current audience but future readers as well.
How to begin?
I needed an origin.
That’s where 40 years of life kicked in.
I wrote about the biggest failure of my life.
Yep. I just laid it out there, my biggest failure.
What’s that you say? What was my biggest failure? Well, you’re gonna have to subscribe to my weekly email at www.SalespersonToSuperhero.com to find out.
It took me three weeks to write that email. Why? I wanted to set up the premise–one of the greatest comebacks ever.
Now, I might fail. I might never have the comeback I hope for. But, I know this: I ain’t no quitter, and if I fail, I’m going down fighting.
Even a fighter who fails trying is a compelling story, don’t you think?
That, my friend, is how an email takes 40 years to write.
I’m can’t wait to see what the next 40 years brings.