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6 Tips For Emailing Busy People

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Everyone faces this problem at some point, so I want to share the tips I use to email busy people and get a response.

Why is hearing back from important people an issue?

The sheer number of emails being sent has something to do with it. The Radicati Group found that 269 billion emails are sent daily in 2017 and 2.4 million emails are sent every second.

Are you kidding me? That’s wild.

But in my experience, it’s not just the quantity of emails that leads to low response rates, it’s also the poor quality.

Most people write awful emails where they ramble on and on, have no clear purpose for emailing, and demand a response they frankly don’t deserve based on how they wrote their vague email.

For example, busy people have no time for emails that look like this:

Subject line: Please help!

Hey Brian,

I saw your blog and I really need help. My dad wants me to become an engineer but I want to be an artist. Sculpting has always been my passion but there are no sculpting jobs where I live in Nebraska.

I think I need to move to Austin, Texas. Do you think I do?

I hope you’re the person to help me with my problem and difficult future. Right now I just don’t know what to do and I’m frustrated.

But it’d be easier to talk about this on the phone. It’ll be worth your time. I look forward to talking.

Best regards,
David Silva

Do you notice the weaknesses in this email? I’ll lay them out for you:

  • Subject line doesn’t stand out or convince me to read the email. (A better one would be more specific and descriptive of what he’s going to tell me in the email.)
  • He doesn’t introduce himself so I have no idea how about his age, current position, education, skills, and financial status.
  • The entire email is vague and it requires me to assume or ask him details, instead of using that valuable time to respond if it were a specific email.
  • He’s asking me to decide his future and putting the work on me. Again, not enough information for me to decide (and I probably wouldn’t tell someone what career decision to make even if I had all of the information).
  • I have little incentive to help him because he didn’t persuade me he did his homework.
  • The closing assumes that we’re actually going to talk. I don’t appreciate that.

The burning problem is the people you want to email the most are the busiest and least likely to respond.

Just imagine how many random and pointless emails you get during the week.

And then consider a busy CEO, key decision maker, or author’s inbox. Odds are they’re getting about 10 to 100 times as many emails as you.

So what are you going to do?

You can give up and miss out on all the knowledge and connections that could stem from a few emails with a power player.

However, I recommend you master these six tips for emailing busy people so you can cut through the noise and stand out.

How To Write Better Emails

1. Keep it short

Again, these are busy people we’re dealing with. They have a tremendous amount of work responsibilities on their plate and no time for long-winded emails.

Not to mention your email is potentially cutting into their little free time to spend with their spouse and kids, exercise, or their favorite hobby.

You need to keep your email short and to the point if you want any chance at a response. All you need to communicate is who you are, what it is you do, and why you’re emailing.

Also, it’s good practice to only have one question in your email. The more questions you include, the more work you require of them, and the less likely you get a response to a single question.

Keep this initial email short and sweet.

2. Introduce yourself and what you do

Keep this simple by saying your name and your occupation (sentence one), and what you’re working on (sentence two). That’s it!

For example, “Hi Max, My name is Brian Robben and I’m an entrepreneur and author. This spring I launched my new digital marketing company X that focuses on telling local businesses’ stories and growing their audience.”

Some people go right into their ask without every introducing themselves. That feels strange on the other side and it’s a bad move.

So don’t tell your life story, but introduce yourself in two sentences and then move on.

3. Acknowledge the power-dynamic

When you’re asking for help from someone, you’re lower than them on the power index.

You need something from them. They’re not asking you for something, so act like it in your email.

One way to do this is to compliment them.

Congratulate them on their latest book, major accomplishment, or press spotlight. (This information is an easy Google search away.)

People love being praised no matter how famous they get. And this breaks the ice, so to speak, in your email.

Another way to respect their time is to give more effort writing the email than you ask them to read or do.

Your writing should be extra clear and concise, so it’s easy for them to understand who you are and what it is you want.

4. Show you’ve done your homework

The absolute, worst, terrible, most egregious mistake is to ask a question that is one Google search away.

It’s also bad if you ask for advice on a topic they’ve already written or spoken about in depth.

You’re just wasting their time and your time if you don’t do your homework in advance.

And you’ve almost mathematically eliminated your chance at hearing back from them, since laziness doesn’t persuade top achievers to respond.

But people are much more willing to help those who have put time and energy into helping themselves.

In your email, include a short paragraph (2-3 sentences) specifically explaining what you’ve done leading up to this point and (or) what you’ve learned.

For example, if you’re asking your friend’s dad to help you get your dream job, make the process easier for him by:

  • Communicating your selling points and the value you will bring to this company if hired
  • Telling him your work experiences and a bullet point list of what you’ve learned from each
  • Clearly explaining why you want to work at this company
  • Attaching your resume and cover letter

5. Make a clear call to action

You have to communicate a specific ask that is clear and easy for the reader to digest and respond to.

Again, when you make them to do the work to understand what you are asking for, you significantly lower the odds they will reply. Help them help you with a clear ask.

These are some examples of specific asks:

  • Are you available for a 10-minute phone call this week so I can pick your brain?
  • I also live in Chicago and I’d love to buy you a coffee to briefly discuss my job search. I’m free to work around your schedule all day Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday. What day and time works for you?
  • Knowing about our 14,000 email subscribers and $70,000 per year online business revenue, what’s the next step you would take to grow this operation based on your experience?
  • From the data I shared, do you know any investors who would be interested in purchasing equity in my startup?

In the midst of doing writing with concision and being prepared, don’t think you can’t be bold. You certainly can be if it’s written the right way.

6. Give the reader an out

Remember the power-dynamic, you want something from them. They owe you nothing. Treat it that way by giving them an out to not respond or help.

Ironically, acknowledging their busyness and lack of time is the exact close that gives you a better shot of getting a piece of their time in a response.

So you must communicate that you understand if they can’t respond in-depth or can’t reply at all because of their hectic schedule.

That’s the way it has to be. Because you being a considerate and genuine human will win over more responses than anything else.

Nice guys finish first in this arena. You should never ask someone for a favor and then demand their help.

Here are a few examples of closing paragraphs with an out for the reader:

  • I hope we can connect but I completely get it if you have too much going on.
  • If you don’t have time that’s not a problem. Keep doing your thing and continuing to inspire millions of people like me.
  • I can work around your schedule anytime this week and next week to make the 5 minute call happen. But if you’re too busy that’s no problem and I appreciate all you’ve done for me.

Then end it with a respectful ending such as, “Thanks in advance,” or, “I really appreciate your consideration of this,” and sign off with your name.

That’s how you write an email that produces an extremely high open rate compared to average.

My Email Asking For A Recommendation Letter

You can see that these six steps are on full display in my email where I asked a Miami University professor to write a recommendation letter back in the fall of 2014 (see this article if you need help securing recommendations).

Subject: I’m applying to law school — hoping you’ll write a reference

Hi Professor H.,

I hope you are doing well. I’m a little disappointed that I don’t have you as a professor this year, but I plan to stop in and say hello to make up for it.

I’m applying to law school next year and I was wondering if you’d consider writing me a strong recommendation letter. I know you are busy, so I can make it very easy for you.

– I can send you a one page summary of my credentials in the two classes you taught me (A in JRN 201, A+ in JRN 333)
– I’ll send you my transcript, résumé, and previous papers in your classes
– I can also send you major points to highlight and a list of law schools where I plan to apply

If you have time and would rather discuss this in person at the location most convenient for you, I am free all day tomorrow (Thursday, 8/21) or Friday, 8/22. Next week I am free to meet in person all morning and afternoon on Wednesday, 8/27 and Friday, 8/29.

I would be very grateful for your help on this. Do you think you’d be able to write a recommendation for me?

Thanks,

Brian Robben

How did she respond?

Brian,

Send me your DARS transcript, resume and the points you want me to highlight.
Also — the list of schools.
I will be happy to write a letter for you.
Let’s meet at my office tomorrow at 3 PM.

-H

I told you this email writing method works! I’ve used it countless times to ask for something and then get the information or favor I needed.

Now would she have said yes if I wrote a worse email? I honestly don’t know.

But I do know that I practiced an effective emailing technique and I gave myself the best chance of a response.

And when I received a yes, I wasn’t surprised. (Too bad I didn’t go to law school because that recommendation letter would have been awesome, I know it.)

Related: Why I Turned Down Harvard Law School

Final Words

Your response rate will dramatically improve when you use the strategy above to craft your emails.

It may take more time to write with this precision, but the results will be 10x better.

And the beauty in this is you can use what you’ve just learned all across the board: for grad school recommendation letters, networking with successful peers, seeking mentors, securing clients for your small business, and getting a response from your favorite celebrity.

All it takes is one well-written email to unlock a world of knowledge or opportunities.

(Hint: I’d bookmark this article for the next time you need to write an important email.)

Lastly, be sure to follow up and take action once your email is responded to. That’s the whole purpose of sending the email in the first place!

Related: Bill Clinton’s Networking Skills Won Him The Presidency 

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5 Things Successful Freelancers Do At Networking Events

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As an independent contractor or self-employed freelancer, your level of success depends on your ability to create and sustain relationships. The number of clients you have, the stream of work you produce and the revenue you earn are all contingent on the scope of your business network.

The more dedicated and intentional you are about forming quality connections, the more professional growth, impact and advancement you’ll experience. “By growing your network, opportunities arise, business partners appear, connections are made and trust is garnered in the local community,” says Sharon Schweitzer, best-selling author and consultant.

And in the freelance and entrepreneur world, the service you’re promoting is ultimately yourself—which makes it even harder. If you’ve ever tried to write a personal bio, you know what I mean. Promoting yourself can be challenging, but successful business owners and freelancers know it’s necessary.

As you attend various networking events to grow your network of potential client and those who can support your efforts, keep these tips in mind.

Come Equipped with Business Cards

Every networking event is a chance to gain new clients. As such, you need to present the most professional version of yourself. That version doesn’t just dress well and act polite—that version of yourself always has business cards too. This gives everyone you meet something to remember you by, while showing that you take your work seriously.

Remember that the design of your cards should not only be polished, with readable text and all the right information. It should reflect your brand and personality as well. Check out these interesting business card ideas to find inspiration and a unique style that matches who you are and the work you do.

Pro tip: Find a way to make your business card actionable or helpful. For example, if you’re a personal trainer, you could include a workout on the back of your business card. Not only is this more memorable, but you’re already helping the person who you just met—and you haven’t even done anything yet.

Release Fear

For some people, attending a networking event is stressful. Not only do you have to talk to people you don’t know—but you have to show them that you’re successful and worth connecting with. This is where the fear of personal failure, which was the number one fear among 1,000 Americans polled, can slow you down.

Successful freelancers push this fear aside to present a confident, successful person. To release any personal fears holding you back, use these tips from The Muse:

  •   Choose “non-lame” events and stick with events you’re excited to attend
  •   Stop saying “networking,” which makes it feel intimidating
  •   Volunteer at the event instead of going as an attendee
  •   Research the roster ahead of time so you know who will be there
  •   Reward yourself afterward, I.E. “If I give away all my business cards, I’ll…”
  •   Have conversation starters prepared
  •   Approach people in pairs, which may feel less intimidating

Pro tip: Practice your power poses before going to a networking event to boost your confidence. Amy Cuddy, a social psychologist, suggests that standing in these power postures, and using similar body language, boosts your confidence, even when you don’t feel confident. Learn the different power poses in her Ted Talk.

Seek Contacts to Fulfill Specific Needs

One of the many advantages going to a networking event is that it attracts different people with varying degrees of experience, interest and expertise to one place. As a freelancer, this means there are chances to meet a wide variety of people who could help you, from developers for your website to potential business clients.

Successful freelancers define what they’re looking for before they step foot through the door. I.E. a mentor, client, partner, or even just a fellow creative to bounce ideas off. Keep these goals in mind as you build connections at the event and afterward. Global entrepreneur Ted Rollins suggests:

“As these relationships grow, consider how they fit into that burgeoning ‘why.’ Someone could be more valuable in expanding your business, while another person might serve you best in a mentorship role.”

Pro tip: Stay in touch with everyone, even if you don’t need their help right now. This is one of the best times to be in touch with someone because it gives you a chance to help them instead. When the time comes to reach out for a request, you’ve done the work to maintain that relationship over time.

Use the Skill of Active Listening

This interpersonal skill is highly regarded in professional settings because it shows other people that you want to form a reciprocal relationship instead of just a self-serving one. Mind Tools describes an active listener as someone who makes a “conscious effort to hear not only the words another person is saying but, more importantly, to understand the complete message being sent.”

To practice this at a networking event, approach people with an open stance, hold eye contact, remember to smile and use receptive body language—freshen up on receptive body language with this guide from Skills You Need.

Don’t forget to ask questions that start with “Who?” “What?” “How?” and “Why?” The more attentive you are toward someone, the more they’ll trust your motives.

Pro tip: Practice active listening in every area of your life—with your friends, your family and your spouse. Work toward being an active listener, even in the simplest of conversations, so it comes easier to you when it matters most, like when you’re meeting a potential investor or business partner.

Send a Follow-Up Message Promptly

Communication is critical to solidifying your new potential relationships and successful freelancers follow-up within 24 hours. When you do, express your gratitude for their assistance, offer any other relevant information that wasn’t shared in person, and reiterate what a pleasure it was to meet them.

Not only does prompt correspondence keep your name fresh in people’s minds, it establishes you as a genuine individual whom others feel secure doing business with. If the context is appropriate, you can even add personal touches like inquiring about a recent vacation they took or mentioning a common interest you share to express that you’re invested in them relationally.   

Feeling uninspired? Check out these follow-up email templates.

Pro tip: After following up via email, connect with anyone that stood out to you on LinkedIn. This is a second chance to remind them of who you are, and once connected, you can casually interact via “liking” posts and commenting. This ensures you stay top of mind and makes it even easier for them to reconnect with you at any point.

Step Into the Networking Arena

Learning how to network effectively is an asset you can take straight to the bank. Move outside your comfort zone, engage with other professionals, and use these pointers to maximize your efforts and form connections that will provide value for many years to come.

BIO: Jessica Thiefels has been writing for more than 10 years and is currently a full-time freelance writer and self-employed content marketing consultant. She’s been featured in Forbes and Business Insider and has written for Virgin, Glassdoor, Lifehack and more. Follow her on Twitter @Jlsander07 and connect LinkedIn.

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Why Your Salary Is Costing You Millions In Earned Income

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The average person craves a salaried job the for comfort, security, and the guarantee they can pay their bills.

But a salary will cost countless people millions of dollars in earned income throughout their career.

It’s ironic that we want a guaranteed income so we can live comfortably leading up to and through retirement.

That’s what society promises, at least, until things become uncomfortable.

Once something bad happens—you get fired, laid off, don’t save enough, salary increase doesn’t keep pace with inflation, make bad financial choices, have expensive kids, get divorced—and now you’re far away from a comfortable retirement nest egg plus have less skills and determination to go make your own money.

The salaried gig looks great on the outside, until you dive deeper to see that it’s often the single biggest demotivator and limiting factor to earning more money.

Your Salary Kills Urgency And Entices Laziness

Though not entirely similar, a salary shares some common characteristics of communism.

You get the same paycheck every month regardless of your performance—pretty close to communism.

At many jobs, a guy like Bill will voluntarily show up at 6 AM every work morning and leave at 8 PM, while slacker Johnny over there shows up at 8 AM and leaves at 6 PM and is paid the exact same wage as Bill.

The paycheck doesn’t reflect the reality that Bill worked 20 plus more hours than Johnny and got a heck of a lot more done than Johnny.

Talk about unfair? The salary gig is cruel, I’m telling you.

And since that situation isn’t fair, human nature will get Bill to think, “Stop working so hard. Why bother to put in the extra hours if I’m not rewarded? I’m going to start acting like Johnny because he’s doing just what’s asked of him and the boss doesn’t notice my performance.”

Now I’m not naive to think that bonuses, raises, and promotions aren’t a thing in the workforce—a differentiator from communism.

However, those are just too much out of your control to count on and you’re not rewarded until months or years later. And they often require smart salary negotiation, which is difficult if you’re not practiced, on top of luck.

Plus, in the example above, if Bill decides to work less and deliver less value then he won’t get the bonus or raise even if there’s one available.

The idea is that a salary often persuades workers to do the bare minimum to keep their job and keep getting paid.

It doesn’t entice individuals to give their all each and every day to not only make themselves double the income, but the company double the return on investment in them as well.

Knowing a paycheck is coming has a cocaine effect where you’re addicted to that monthly guaranteed income even though it’s not in your best interest to rely on it.

What’s worse is the damage it does to your overall net worth.

Guaranteed Income Costs You Millions Of Dollars

The addiction of needing a salary will costs millions of people, millions of dollars in lost income.

Let’s take a look at the multiple reasons why a salary sets you up to fail in the chase towards wealth.

For one, the average salary increase in the US doesn’t match the potential of a hustler who gets to decide their own income based on their work ethic.

A May 2017 forecast from WorldatWork predicts that salary increase budgets for U.S. employers will grow 3 percent on average in 2018 across most employee categories.

Say you make $50,000 a year at your 9 to 5 job you despise. Are you going to bust your butt for 261 work days in the year for a 3% salary increase? I’m not. We’re only talking about $1,500 at that rate.

The work compared to the payoff doesn’t add up to a good deal. It’s not motivating to me. It shouldn’t motivate you.

I could work at McDonald’s and come out with more dollars per hour than that thievery.

You’ll drag your feet for a 3% salary increase (+$1,500), but perform like a workhorse if you have a definite opportunity to double your current income (+$50,000).

That’s a difference in $48,600 between the two of them for the year and this is just the beginning. The difference is exponential over the lifetime of a career.

Second, when your income is entirely in your hands—be it as a beginner entrepreneur, commission sales rep, recruiter, or other job—your butt is on the hot seat from the get go to perform.

There’s no room to take it easy if you want to eat that week and keep your business alive.

Plus, you’ll be motivated to save extra money since this can turn into the business’ emergency fund or a payroll account to hire some contractors or full-time employees.

Meaning each dollar you earn has a higher purpose than eating expensive meals and treating yourself to materialistic clothing purchases.

And by investing in your business, your company and you personally will take home more profits than if your income was tied down by a normal 9 to 5 job.

I’m not surprised when I look at the richest people in each state only to find that none of them are salaried works but entrepreneurs and business owners.

Now you don’t have to be an entrepreneur, but you do need a job with no ceiling on your income if you want to get maximum performance out of yourself and the rewards that come with it.

Third, the rate of your learning is immensely sped up when you have to rely on your own work ethic to make money and pay the bills. You can’t afford to be out of the know in your industry if you want to compete with your competitors.

This is the pressure that forces you to gain knowledge and then use that experience to win more deals for yourself.

Plus, you can compound your knowledge to make more money in the future or consult others on the keys to success based on your experience. These opportunities aren’t there in the corporate world.

By getting off the addicting salary drug and choosing your own medicine, you force yourself to provide value to others so you can ultimately get paid what you’re worth.

And the more patient and skilled you become, the greater this income increases over years then decades.

That’s how your income grows by hundreds of thousands of dollars every year, which adds up to millions, instead of 3% and $1,500 (if that) every year.

Work Like You’re Not On Salary

You only get to do this thing called life once.

Why take the safe and boring road with a salaried job that is like driving a minivan straight on a flat road until retirement, when you can take the thrilling road in a sports car up a mountain with jagged cliffs and unbelievable views?

Bet on yourself. Work your face off. And work like you’re not on salary.

By mixing things up, you’ll discover if your company rewards you for going above and beyond what’s asked of you.

And if they do incentivize your efforts then you don’t need to find a different job. Maybe it doesn’t though and you see the writing on the wall: you’re worth millions more than you will ever earn here so you find a better job you love.

It’s like any pursuit in life, you need to get out of your comfort zone to truly push yourself, grow, and become the best version of yourself.

Happiness comes from personal growth. So take the jump and make the most of it.

Millions of dollars are nice, but the feeling of personal satisfaction from working incredibly hard and getting rewarded for it will far trump the money—every time.

Related: Would You Live Off A Dollar A Day To Achieve Your Dreams?

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What You Should Know If You Start A Career In Marketing

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Silvia Li, young hustler and marketer extraordinaire, contributed this one of a kind article.

When college students majoring in marketing graduate, they expect to land a job in which they can apply all the skills they learned during their four years in school.

When I was a freshman, that’s what I thought. Looking back, I was naive to think that way.

Marketing strategies are changing every day. Consumers are behaving differently every day. Generations are shifting. And textbooks, unfortunately, haven’t changed in years.

Simultaneously, competition for marketing jobs is insane.

You have to stand out among many other graduates to land a job where you can make enough to pay your bills and loans, while having enough to travel and enjoy personal life post-graduation.

So what should you know before diving into a career in marketing?

What does it take to get a job in marketing?

What do you actually need to know to enter the real world of marketing?

Without real marketing experience or projects, there’s a lot you can learn ahead of time to maximize your chance of landing a marketing job.

In my career working with the world’s top entrepreneurs on marketing, I have learned a number of lessons that I wished I knew on my first day as a marketer.

To all of you starting a career in marketing, here’s a list of lessons and things you can do to prepare before starting your first job.

The list is a collection of advice from all the lessons I’ve learned – including my experience launching the largest startup publication on Medium to trending globally on top storytelling sites to working on digital campaigns that have trended internationally and creating global movements.

It takes more than a resume to work with the best talent in marketing

When I set my sights on becoming the best marketer in the world, I knew I had to surround myself with the best.

I started by providing value.

I reached out to one of the best entrepreneurs in Los Angeles who ran an education technology nonprofit called Yang Camp. And I sent her a list of ideas that I thought would help her grow her organization.

I didn’t know if the ideas were any good, but they certainly got her attention. I didn’t need a resume to get the job.

Don’t get me wrong. My resume was helpful but at the time, but other people might have looked more qualified in paper.

I had told myself and told others that I would find the best ways to provide value and that my resume didn’t completely reflect who I was.

I worked extra hard.

I created partnerships all across Los Angeles with schools and nonprofits to ensure our curriculum was being taught in different schools and afterschool programs across the city.

We worked with Microsoft and Girls in Tech Inc. to bring together over 100 young students to learn about STEAM.

I created campaigns that everyone in the Los Angeles area saw.

Little did I know at the time that in order to work with the best, it wasn’t about my resume. It was about being resourceful, strategic, and resilient.

Since then, I’ve signed up for a lifetime of tackling complex problems and working with the best talent in the United States.

Most of you have had a summer internship somewhere, perhaps a startup or famous marketing agency or well-known organization or nonprofit.

Guess what? So do hundreds of people in your school. The fact that you had an internship helps, but it doesn’t necessarily help you stand out and show that you’re the best candidate.

It might get you an interview but it’s still not enough to show who you really are and what you can accomplish.

Companies are seeking folks who can come up with new things so extracurriculars or projects that show you were a key asset are always a plus.

To show real impact in marketing, you need to show that you’re up-to-date with the latest trends.

As mentioned earlier, marketing is changing every day. Own your resume – show your uniqueness, your value, and your impact.

Find a team that will empower you to learn – Teamwork makes the dream work

To maximize your satisfaction at work, find a marketing gig where collaboration is part of the culture.

Trust me, this will reduce misunderstanding. It’ll establish a well-connected community with ample opportunities for you to grow and learn from executives and other managers.

While companies that let you do your own thing will be fun and allow you to tackle new challenges, working directly with a team will provide you a lot more mentorship and guide you in the early phases of your marketing career.

During the interview process, make sure that they have open communication channels and continuously boost employee engagement.

During your interview, ask your interviewer if the organization encourages everyone to regularly report their likes and dislikes.

Do they help employees feel like an integral part of the company’s grand vision? If their answer doesn’t make you happy, make sure to ask more questions to understand where they are coming from. If you completely disagree, maybe it’s not worth working for that organization.

Corporations with pre-set hierarchies make it tough for employees to give feedback or learn new skills. That’s why you need to find the best fit and balance. Read the job descriptions well and find a place where you feel comfortable.

When I worked at Startup Grind powered by Google for Entrepreneurs, the largest independent startup publication in the world inspiring and connecting 1,000,000 entrepreneurs, I immediately knew that my boss was a leader.

Since day one, he encouraged me to own projects and try new things. I could sense it during the first interview call that he was someone to trust and who would empower me to dream more.

Throughout my time at Startup Grind, I learned all things about marketing including public relations, content marketing, SEO, social media, and influencer marketing.

Crazy thing is that I learned by example and by doing my own research.

Because my team trusted me and worked with me, I was able to grow and launch the largest startup publication on Medium.

Early in anyone’s career, you’ll have multiple ideas to make your organization grow. Write them out on a list and share them with your supervisor. She’ll have feedback.

If my boss, hadn’t given me an opportunity to try this new project, I wouldn’t have grown this publication, which at this point, has been read by millions of people.

The content of the publication has now been syndicated to large media outlets including BBC, The New York Times, and more. It has even surpassed the White House’s Medium publication, which is pretty incredible.

As a marketer, I’ve been lucky to work with the smartest people on Earth. I’ve been able to work with serial entrepreneurs and New York Times Best Sellers.

But none of these collaborations would have happened if I didn’t work with a team that trust me and empower me to grow.

Make sure you find that early in your career.

Marketing isn’t all about brand awareness and viral campaigns. It’s about business impact.

Marketing innovation has made huge leaps and shifts in the last few decades but there’s something that hasn’t changed.

Marketing strategies need to be tied to creating revenue or reaching a goal in the short-term and long-term.

When you launch a new strategy, you need to ensure that you have an overall vision on how each thing you create leads to a greater impact in the organization. Your video went viral! Great!

But did the right audience see it? Did they share it with other people that are interested in buying your product? Make sure it does!

During my time as Head of Marketing at Hostfully, a venture-backed startup focused on the vacation rental space based in San Francisco, I built a marketing infrastructure that ensured that every single marketing stream would lead to possible sales.

To do so, we needed to figure out where our users were and where they spent the most time.

I spent days researching and building the different personas of vacation rentals. I created a content strategy that would promote our brand without mentioning our name.

Instead, our main goal was to provide value to customers, which would ultimately lead to more people referring others to our blog. Our blog became a large percentage of our traffic and led to more active and paid users. In a few months, we brought tens of thousands of users.

Business impact needs both quantitative data and qualitative data. They will both show you what’s effective, what’s not effective, and whether your hypotheses made sense.

Effective marketing campaigns focus on creating content that users get value from and eventually will convert to paid users.

You need to be ready to think critically and understand who your users truly are. How can your company serve them to be better?

Make sure you know this in every organization you work at.

Mentorship and freelancing – Learning outside of work

Early in my career, I learned the importance of mentors. From day one, I found people who I looked up to and wanted to learn things from them.

I found Twitter to be one of the best tools to network. Twitter, in fact, changed the face of my career as a marketer. I met the best talent in Silicon Valley through this social platform.

I followed their conversations and engaged with them on a daily basis. Little did I know that I would get to know them in person. Because of these initial Twitter conversations, I had the privilege of working with them to launch the first Startup Weekend focused in the Latinx community.

This event held in Oakland brought together entrepreneurs in the Bay Area who were eager to build products.

Do you know what else has helped me to become a marketer? Freelancing. As you see, I’ve worked with all sorts of organizations throughout my career.

How did I find these? By building a brand online.

I’ve been a viral blogger on Medium, Commaful, and on my own blog, WRITE LAB.

People have read my blog for years and have seen my thought process and experience. This has led to getting cold emails from founders and venture capitalists reaching out to work with them.

Last year, I worked as a content marketer with devAcademy, a tech company in Peru where I developed the company’s first content marketing strategy that led to ten thousands of unique views in just a few weeks.

I also revamped their website content to improve their user experience and conversion rates.

This job was very fulfilling because I got to work with an entrepreneur who is a hustler. Not only did I learn about the tech ecosystem in Peru, but I also learned more technical skills and what it takes to become an entrepreneur.

If you’re a marketer, you need to learn multiple skills. Go learn outside of work – network, read a book, freelance, and volunteer on projects that you’re passionate about.

These are all of the things I wished I had known before I started my marketing career. If I could go back in time, I’d try to accomplish all these things earlier in life.

I hope you found this list beneficial in planning a successful marketing career.

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