Monday Morning Motivation Week of August 12

I LOVE starting the week (really everyday) with words of wisdom.
Todays are: 

“When you speak to everyone, you speak to no one.”
~ Meredith Hill

For the last few weeks, we have been talking about niches and niche marketing.

There are so many choices and options today when people are looking to solve a challenge or problem. 

How do they make that choice?

One way is that they find a trusted expert or authority who has built a relationship with them and has proven their expertise on their topic.

When your community needs someone that offers YOUR products or services, will you be TOP OF MIND and  the authority they turn to for assistance?

Here are some strategies to become “the authority” on your topic:

1. Focus on a niche

Don’t be the proverbial “ jack-of-all-trades and master of none”.  If you want people to see you as an authority, specialize in something.  Pick a niche that narrowly focuses on your ideal Customer. With this level of specialization, you can focus on what they need and/or want. You will be better able to personalize your message to speak directly to your ideal client(s) and connect with them emotionally. This is vital to your success in becoming an authority.

Don’t be afraid to experiment until you find the right niche for your business and community.

 2.  Choose the right channels. 

Once you have chosen your niche, you must also select the right channels to share your knowledge and expertise.  You don’t want to waste your time sharing your knowledge in place where your community is not spending their time.

Do you know if they spend their time on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, YouTube, or somewhere else?

Knowing this will increase your engagement with your future clients based on your relevant, focused  content.

Next week, stay tuned for item #3: Adding real value by knowing your audience.

Please review ALL OF MY Monday Morning Motivation blogs. Visit us anytime online for tips and training on how to build your business. Click on the link: https://www.vargasinsurance.com/blog/category/monday-motivation

Monday Morning Motivation Week of August 5

I start each week with words of wisdom, and today’s are:

“Attitude is more important than the past, than education, than money, than circumstances, than what people do or say. It is more important than appearance, giftedness, or skill.”
~ Charles Swindoll

After I gave notice to my “9 to 5” employer, I started working at Prudential with #TheMan as my manager.  Through his teaching, I learned the debit system; but more importantly how to collect, review insurance policies and uncover a new need for life insurance.  I was fairly successful. Though, anyone would have been successful with the training #theMan gave me. 

What’s “fairly successful”? Remember how I quit my “9 to 5” job to join Prudential? Well, I didn’t quit my 9pm to 12am midnight job nor my Saturday and Sunday taxi cab driving job since I didn’t know if I would make it selling life insurance.  But, after a year, I did quit the weekend taxi job. Why? Because I started making more money that both of my parents combined. That’s a quantifiable result right there.

I quickly learned that my “niche” was being present before someone purchased their home. 

You see, I figured out that if I could manage my homeowner insurance clients, there was high probability  that they would buy life insurance to cover their new financial need. I made more money selling life insurance than I did selling home or automobile insurance.

Here’s a book recommendation on how to narrow your niche to increase your responsiveness: 
“Badass Your Brand: The Impatient Entrepreneur’s Guide to Turning Expertise into Profit” BY Pia Silva

Niche selling gets great results! Without creating a niche, you can sell anything to anyone, but that doesn’t mean you should, right?

If you go to the general marketplace with the ”Hey I can help anyone with anything” speech, you’ve got about as much credibility as someone who says, “Hey I can mow lawns and i’ve got this hair re-growth tonic and I’m also a NASA astrophysicist.

No one takes you seriously when you try to be everything to anyone.
Consider this:

  1. Forget about the “anyone” and the “anything”. 
  2. Pick a “someone” and a “something”.
  3. Find the people with the problem.
  4. Pick one person with one problem and make them one clear promise.

This shifts your beige, general, bland message. Instead of the prospect thinking, “He/she ’s not really talking to me.” to “Hey, this person is talking about people just like me about the sort of problems I’ve got.”

Then, they pay attention and listen. 

Stop being broad, pick a micro-niche for the next 60 days, target it and get better results.

Stay tuned for why I stopped selling life insurance. 

Please review ALL OF MY Monday Morning Motivation blogs. Visit us anytime online for tips and training on how to build your business. Click on the link: https://www.vargasinsurance.com/blog/category/monday-motivation

Monday Morning Motivation Week of July 29

I’m always eager to start each week with words of wisdom, and today’s are:

If everybody is doing it one way, there’s a good chance you can find your niche by going exactly in the opposite direction. ~ Sam Walton

Have you ever heard the saying, the riches are in the niches?

I started my insurance career 40 years ago working for Prudential Insurance on their debit system.

Are you asking yourself, “what’s a debit system?” Good!

The debit system was when you purchased life insurance from Prudential (Hancock, Metropolitan and all of the other mutual insurance companies).  It used to be that the life insurance agent who sold you the policy would come by once a month to pick up your premium. Gasoline was very cheap and that’s the way the life insurance business had been done since the beginning of time.

What you should also know about me is that I was a longhaired, motorcycle driving, cigarette smoking, 20 year old working 2 full-time jobs.

My interview went like this: On the urging of #TheMan, he told me to go to the local Prudential life insurance office for the interview. He thought the manager would be impressed with my work ethic as a 20 year old.  

Spoiler Alert: The manager was not impressed. He seemed more bothered that I did not get a haircut nor did I shave. I also wore a leather jacket and carried my helmet into the interview.

I was told I would be contacted after the interview. The home phone (landline was our only form of phone communication) rang about a week later. #TheMan told me that if I was willing to shave, get a haircut and buy a suit, I had a job. He also said that if I didn’t have a car, one would be provided. My salary for the first 13 weeks would be more than what I was making working the other two jobs combined.

He asked if I wanted the position. I told him that I did.

More next week!

Please review ALL OF MY Monday Morning Motivation blogs. Visit us anytime online for tips and training on how to build your business. Click on the link: https://www.vargasinsurance.com/blog/category/monday-motivation

Monday Morning Motivation Week of July 15th

I LOVE starting my week with positive words of wisdom. This week’s are:

The best way to learn to be present and develop presence is to have the experience of someone you respect and admire being present with and for you. ~ Mark Goulston

As I have mentioned in earlier emails, I was a speaker at IAOA in January. This gathering, our country’s youngest and brightest independent insurance agents, is one of the highlights of my year.

The trip started with our airplane ride to Phoenix. I don’t know what you do on an airplane, but I usually work writing blogs, creating  posts and/or laying out chapters ideas for the book I’m writing.  

Suddenly, I got a look from my wife, Kathy that screamed, “hey, I’m over here, why aren’t we communicating?”  

I put my laptop away, we watched a movie, fell asleep and had a great flight.

The conference is 2 ½ days of presenters and break-out sessions all day. The event is choreographed so that all of the members in attendance get maximum exposure to one another. Kathy spent this time by the pool, visiting the local things to do and working on her hobby.

When the conference was over, we hung out for a couple of days to enjoy the weather, but so did many of the other independent agency owners. And everywhere that we went at the hotel, we ran into each other and started chatting about how we’re doing, what we’re doing and our “secret sauces”. 

One of the agents asked me if I was afraid of sharing my secret sauce.  I replied, “you may already know the sauce, but you still have to cook it.” I borrowed that from a chef friend of mine!

Here are a few of the most common barriers that keep us from being present and mindful:

  • Thinking about the past and the future
  • Multitasking
  • Being in denial
  • Obsessing on thoughts or observations
  • Pushing away thoughts or observations
  • A lack of intention
  • A lack of compassion
  • Judging, analyzing, criticizing or evaluating

Judgment is one of the most common ways that keeps you from being mindful. Whether you are judging your experience as good, bad or ugly, it’s an obstacle to being fully present in the moment. We do this all the time. Everyone does. The way to do it less is to notice it and move your thoughts on and not let judging interfere with your ability to be mindful. It’s ironic isn’t it? You have to be mindful about being mindful.

Try spending a few days noticing all the judgments you make throughout the day: 

  • “What is that lady wearing?” 
  • “Yuck, this food is gross!” 
  • “I should not be the one handling this!” 

Any time you catch yourself playing Judge Judy, notice it, label it as a judgment, and resist the temptation to judge yourself for being judgmental. More irony, right?

Pay Attention!

When I came to this realization, my first thought was paying more attention to Kathy. I know how I feel when people don’t listen to me or pretend like they’re listening to me, so I have to apply the Golden Rule:
Treat her as I want to be treated.

This one is easy because I want to treat my wife better than I want to be treated. There’s an episode of the Cosby show (sorry), “The Dead End Kids Meet Dr. Lotus” when Theo is given great advice from his father. He’s told to repeat these words: “I will pay more attention to my partner.” 

Remember  “Tomorrow isn’t promised, all we have is today.'”
~ Sylvia Solomon

My second thought? Next week!