Trust Agent Training: Vol. II
You all must have something in your life that you want to improve on, whether it is your triathlon time, your lasagna recipe, or your business strategy. Sure, you can train longer for your triathlon, but you will not win the next race unless you have some strategic advantage that makes you better than all your competitors. You must figure out a way to train more efficiently than the other racers. In this section we learn how to mold the game to work in our favor.
The act of gatejumping as described in Trust Agents is defined as “finding a better way to do what is already being done”. A great example of this is how bookstores were the gatekeepers until Amazon.com “gatejumped” them to provide a better way to buy books. You do not necessarily have to think of an idea, just figure out what works better with the resources available in this technology driven world.
Trust Agents divides this idea of “Make Your Own Game” into three sections:
1. Play the Game
Who doesn’t like playing games? But continuing to play the same game gets boring, so let’s challenge each other to make the game fun. At TriMark, we are blazing our own internet marketing trail. We continue to do things differently than others which has added great value to our client’s marketing plans. Think what you can do to change your game so that you own it. You must set goals to measure your success which means tracking your progress towards these goals by monitoring frequently. A yogi for example, who teaches at a local yoga studio and blogs daily, should not only gauge his success on the number of people at his classes but also by tracking his inbound links to the blog, blog traffic, sentiment for classes and blog content, and revenue from classes and blog.
“Skate to where the puck is going to be, not where it was,” –Wayne Gretzky. I think this quote is excellent for summarizing how hacking will be a vital role in becoming a trust agent. Everybody is doing similar business and selling the same types of products but how you modify the game to benefit you is the secret to establishing you and/or your business as an authority. A great example from the book was how Christopher Penn, co-founder of PodCamp, was responsible for adding millions of dollars revenue while at the Student Loan Network by launching a podcast about financial aid for parents, school staff and students. He provided value to these people that they could not find anywhere else. Without a marketing budget and dwarfed by the Sallie Maes of the financial aid market, Penn was able to give valuable advice that people wanted to know. He was also able to translate it into sales for the Student Loan Network.
3. Create Your Own Rules
There will be others who have “gatejumped” the system so now you must be able to create your own rules. The beauty of the web is that there are not strict rules for operating online. A print newspaper for example is delivered each morning and written in the same format and on a strict time schedule. Online blogs make it easy for anybody to spread their ideas, write on their schedule, and send out a tweet at a specific time when they know their community will respond . Listen to how Katie Couric creates a new path for delivering news through the use of social media.
Let me know below if you have applied any of these ideas to improve your Game and what results you have seen. If not, take some time to brainstorm on how you can apply these ideas. We are now well on our way to becoming trust agents! Until next time…