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238 - Stop Selling Through Significance

238 - Stop Selling Through Significance

Listen To Today's Episode: 

Episode Recap:

Selling through significance will stop your growth, selling through the success stories of your students will change everything. On this episode Russell talks about the difference between selling through significance and selling through the success stories of your students. Here are some of the insightful things to look for in this episode:

-- Why selling through significance will only get you to a certain point, and why it makes your audience feel dirty.

-- What it means to sell through the success stories of your students.

-- And why sometimes when we start off selling with significance, and why we should move away from it as quickly as possible.

So listen here to find out why selling with significance makes Russell and your audience cringe.

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Best Quote:

Guru A who I will leave unnamed, would have and does, if you watch all this person’s stuff. I gotta be careful to not say the person’s name. If you watch what that person does, every single time it’s “Look what I did, look how big my business is, look how much money I made. Look at, look at, look how great I am.” Selling through significance.


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What’s up everybody? This is Russell Brunson, welcome back to the Marketing Secrets podcast. Today I am in the penthouse overlooking Boise, getting prepared to finish the entire Traffic Secrets book.

Alright my friends, so yesterday as you know, I was driving down here to the penthouse, if you listened to yesterday’s podcast episode, I got here and I’ve been working on editing the book. We got the first manuscript finished, and now we’re going back through from the top editing and having some fun. We also spent probably 7 or 8 hours getting a shot set up to be the cover of the Traffic Secrets book, here in the penthouse. It’s going to look so cool.

Basically we pulled all the couches out of the front room and set up a desk with these monitors, and we have a crane in here with lights and everything, and tonight between 8:20 and 8:40 is when the light is perfect. You can see everything set up. So we have photographers, video guys, everything coming, and we are going to be capturing these epic shots for the video, or excuse me, for the trailer for the Traffic Secrets book launch. But not just the trailer, but also for the, it’ll be ads, and it will also be the book cover. Sorry. Trying to get a still image from this shot to be the book cover. So a lot going into it, but we’re excited, it’s going to be really fun.

So that’s what’s happening today other than I’m going to be working on the book. And it was interesting, you know, as I’m working on the book, and every hour or so of editing I have to stop and take a break just to get my mind re-excited and then I come back. And in between it I went and started watching some, you know, just on Facebook swiping and Instagram looking at stuff, looking for ads as I do. And I was looking through the ads and I saw this person, and the person is someone I consider a friend and I’ve known them for a long, long time online.

And it’s interesting as I watch the videos and then I start clicking around and looking at everything this person is doing, and it’s interesting to me because this person’s been around long enough, they’ve had success but they’re like, I can tell by the moves they’re making right now that they’re struggling a little bit, they’re hitting the ceiling, they’re trying to reinvent themselves. So I’m watching. And I know it because I’ve been through this cycle so many times in my own life.

Anyway, I’m keenly aware of it because I can, I can sense it just because like, you guys have heard my story. I’ve been up and I’ve been down, up and down, up and down way more times than anyone should in business. So I kind of, I can sense where he’s at in the spot right now. And as I’m watching all of the videos, all of the ads, all of the everything he’s publishing right now, he’s using significance to sell.

So what does that mean? Significance is “Hey, my name is so and so. I’m so great. Look what I did. Look I’ve done here, look what I did here, look what I did here. I’m amazing. I’m amazing. Buy my crap.” That’s selling with significance, talking about yourself, making yourself feel more significant.

And I want to step back really quick before I go too deep in this. You’re always going to do some significance in your selling right. If someone’s going to be buying something from you, they’ve got to, especially if it’s like you’re selling coaching or consulting or something and they’re trying to decide if they should plug into you. There’s always a little bit of that. And for most of us, when we first get started that’s all we really have, our own story, our own significance. This is what we did that is amazing, this is why you should trust me and hopefully I’ll help you have success as well.

So I’m not downplaying 100% because I understand a lot of us, me included, that’s how you have to start. You have to sell your own significance at first. But this person’s been in the game at least 15 years that I know of. And this person’s had success for other people, but they’re still relying on their own significance to sell their products and services and all their things.

And I guess I want to say that selling through significance works, but it only works to a certain level. If you want to get to the next level, the big secret is you can’t keep selling through significance. If you look at my ads, my emails, my podcast, the voice, the tone of the voice is coming from me and from Clickfunnels. And I’m going to say this with, now that there’s more people on the team, it’s not always me writing every email, clicking send on everything. So there have been times when my copywriters, or my teams of people have used more significance, and I see those messages and I’m always cringing. I message them, I’m like, “This isn’t about me anymore. This movement is about our people. This is about people we’re serving. It’s about their success. That’s what I want to be talking about.”

So I try to nip those things in the bud, some things still slip through. So like I said, you won’t see me doing videos of like, “I’m Russell, look how big my company is. This is why I’m so great. You should blah, blah, blah.” If you look at what I’m talking about, I’m always talking about the success of my students. I’m taking the significance off of me, and putting the significance on them. That’s the secret, that’s the key, that’s the next level. That’s how you go from where you are today to where you want to go. Stop talking about yourself.

Selling through significance, it’ll work and get you to a certain point, but if you really want to expand and really have a massive impact and appeal and get to more people, it’s selling through the stories of your success stories. That’s the big secret.

I was listening to someone’s podcast the other day, and in the podcast they were interviewing Stu McLaren, and Stu’s been a good friend for forever. And they were telling the story that Stu came over for this podcast interview or something, and ahead of time Stu had a piece of paper and was jotting down names. And the person was like, “Oh, are you writing notes.” And he’s like, “No, I’m not writing notes. I’m writing names of people who’s stories I want to tell. People who are students, stories.” And the person interviewing him was like, “Well, that’s interesting.”

And they said later on in this podcast, they said, “What’s fascinating is every time  I ask Stu a question he never ever said, ‘Yeah, well my first membership site, blah, blah, blah. I got all these members and they loved me.” Every single time they’d ask a question, he’d respond to the question with an answer from one of his success stories. See the distinction there?

Guru A who I will leave unnamed, would have and does, if you watch all this person’s stuff. I gotta be careful to not say the person’s name. If you watch what that person does, every single time it’s “Look what I did, look how big my business is, look how much money I made. Look at, look at, look how great I am.” Selling through significance.

Stu on the other hand, sells through the success stories of his students. A lot of S’s in both of those. Selling through significance and selling through success stories of your students. And selling through success stories of your students is the thing that will grow. It’s the thing that will makes it so people don’t feel dirty when they buy from you. Every time I watch Guru A’s videos, every time I’m like, “Gah, this person loves himself.” It just, I always feel dirty afterwards, and it can’t just be me. It’s the market.

The lowest tier of the market is going to be like, “Oh, that person made billions I’m going to go and give him all my money because of it.” The lowest tier of the market, that’s what they respond to, but the dream clients, the people you want to serve, will not respond to that. Okay. They don’t, they won’t. They respond to the success stories of your students.

So again I’m putting this side by side, on the left hand side Guru A, sells through his own significance, his or her I should say, through their own significance, and Guru B, I’m going to put Stu’s name on it because Stu’s the man, sells through the success stories of their students. One of them is cleaner, one of them feels better, one of them will give you more longevity. From a risk standpoint, you’re more compliant from the FTC, from the advertising guidelines of sharing the success stories of your students.

All these things are better when you shift away from selling through significance, and start selling through the success stories of your students. So that’s what I want you guys to do from this podcast is look back at your market, with your advertisements, your emails, look at your ads, look at your Facebook Lives, look at your videos, look at your instagrams, look at all the things. And start asking myself, am I selling through significance? Am I just trying to show people how cool I am and hopefully they’ll come give me money. If so, maybe that’s the wrong motivation, the wrong direction.

Instead, what if I shifted back and took a step back and said, “Look, I’m going to figure out the success stories of my students.” And start compiling those stories as opposed to building up your own. I quit telling my own stories a long time ago. Nobody wants to know, ‘Oh Russell Brunson, his company makes whatever a day.” It’s funny, when I was making a million dollars a year, I wanted to tell everybody in the world, “I make a million dollars a year.” When we shifted to a million dollars a day I stopped caring, and people stopped caring. I stopped sharing it. It didn’t matter anymore.

What mattered instead was like, “Oh here’s this person. Look at the success they had and look at this person and the success they had.” That’s when it becomes real. That’s when it becomes tangible, that’s when the movement grows. When the movement is you bragging about how good you are, the movement will never grow. When the movement is you sharing the success stories of your students, that’s what makes people want to be part of your movement. That’s why they connect, that’s why people come to Funnel Hacking Live. Not because they want to see Russell get his Three Comma Club award, they couldn’t care less about me. They want to see their peers get their Two Comma Club award and they want to visualize themselves getting it next year. That’s the secret, that’s the magic.

So I just want you guys looking at your market, your advertising, you story telling, your videos, your everything through that lens. If you want to have impact, if you want to stay relevant for a very, very long time, you have to stop selling through significance. Shift that away and start selling through the success stories of your students.

Alright, that’s all I got you guys. If you enjoyed this at all please tag it. Take a little picture on your phone and then post it on Instagram and Facebook, do #marketingsecrets and then tag @RussellBrunson if you’re on Instagram. And then @RussellBrunsonHQ I think is my Facebook. I should know these things. Anyway, just tag me. I’m not going to lie, I love opening my newsfeed and scrolling through and I see all the Marketing Secrets peeps who are tagging me with their screenshots and saying I love this episode because of blah. It makes my day.

So If you want to make my day and want to show up in my newsfeed and have me know your name, that is the secret. I don’t check emails, I don’t check personal messages, but I’m always scrolling through my feed and people are tagging me with marketing secrets to tell me why they like it. I always look at those. I also by the way, read the comments. So if you have a few extra seconds and you want to build up my significance and make me feel better about myself, please go to iTunes and leave a rating and review.

But you know when all is said and done, it doesn’t matter because I don’t really care about my own significance. The bigger thing is I want to tell your story. So do the stuff we were talking about, have success with it, report back, so I can brag about you and put you onstage, share your story with the world because your story needs to be heard.

Alright, that’s all I got. Thanks you guys. I appreciate you all, have a nice day, and we’ll talk to you soon.


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