“No writer should minimize the factor that affects everyone, but is beyond control: luck.” – John Jakes, Born Mar. 31, 1932.
A positioning secret which probably seems counterintuitive to many, is to admit that your success is due in large part to luck.
And I don't mean like a gambler's cocky bragging about how you're always lucky. I mean a humble admission, with gratitude, that fortune smiled your way but a time or two.
This is effective for a variety of reasons.
1. It makes you appear humble. You can be the biggest egomaniac on earth and people will forgive it – if you just ALSO publicly thank your good fortune and acknowledge its role.
That humility shows potential followers that you remember being in their shoes once.
2. You're only really admitting what most people already secretly believe. They believe that the success of others is not because anyone is actually BETTER (smarter, fitter, sexier) than they are – other people are just luckier.
They believe that if they got the same lucky breaks, things would be different. You admitting your luck validates their belief. This makes them trust you.
3. It puts your results into their realm of possibility. Anyone can be lucky. They are already qualified in this skill.
4. People like to have a lucky friend, especially if they can benefit from that luck. So present as though you are sharing your windfalls. Spreading the wealth. Sharing in the abundance that you received yourself in part to random chance.
5. It preserves their ability to see themselves in you, and relate to you, no matter how successful you become. They will always feel you're “the little guy” at heart. You will always seem like an underdog. One of them.
6. The presumption is that your products/training/advice will essentially convey the advantage of your lucky breaks in exchange for money, rather than waiting for random chance.
You sell the “shortcut” that eliminates the need for luck. They can follow directly in your footsteps and replace chance with the benefit of your experience.
7. You embody the combination of readiness and hustle, paired with a lucky break. Unlike a lottery winner, you actually are someone with hard-earned experience and therefore, valuable advice and insight. But you are also lucky, so you have that magical appeal of the lotto winner, too.
It's a powerful combination of admirable qualities. And portraying the role of luck in the way I describe makes those qualities a core thread in your personal branding origin story.
And be sure to acknowledge it often. Luck comes to the prepared, after all.
So, don't forget to write to your audience about how lucky you are. You've been in the right place, and the right time, with the right people. Magic has happened. Don't let it go to waste. Tell people about it.
<!—- lagniappe So above, we talked about how you can use the admission of lucky breaks to build your influence and authority with your audience. But how do you HAVE those “luck” moments? Where are they hiding? How do you endeavor to manufacture them? 1. Develop a work discipline. Show up and commit to produce regularly. Quality is accepted as variable. The goal is consistency and ONLY consistency. Dedicated hours, promised output. This makes sure you’re in active, fighting shape should a lucky break occur. 2. Favors and Reciprocity. When the opportunity presents itself for you to easily grant a favor to someone of value, take the time to do it right. But then be sure to cash in the reciprocity. Connections create beneficial happenstance. 3. Irons in the fire. Always be testing and trying different new things. Not too many. But always be working on a handful of different things in a given field. This exposes you to more opportunities to encounter happenstance and serendipity. 4. Many eggs, many baskets. Have a few different niches, arenas, bailiwicks, etc. Variety and the ability to speak to different folks about different subjects at different levels of interest - that opens you to so many potentially beneficial, or at least educational moments. Four seems good. After all, you can’t ONLY rely on luck, right? —->