Forgetting Labels: My Crazy Journey from ‘Pool Guy’ to Web App Developer

by Marcus Sheridan

journeyWe all label ourselves. I do. You do. It’s just what we do.

I used to be a ‘pool guy’. That’s what kids called me when they opened the door and screamed to their parents I had arrived. Yeah, they couldn’t wait for ‘pool guy’ to show up. Kids aren’t dumb. They know commerce from an early age, and the ‘pool guy’ at the door was a very, very good sign.

Heck, if I had a dollar for every time someone has called me ‘pool guy’ in the last 10 years I’d be able to write a book called ‘The 4 Minute Work Week’…but I digress, right Falchetto? ;-)

It Ain’t My Thing

Technology has never really been my thing. I spent hours and hours about 7 years ago trying to learn how to design a simple web page. But I stunk at it. In fact, computers have kicked my butt since day 1, even that stupid Commodore 64 over 25 years ago.

I don’t know why this has been the case, but that’s just the way it has been.

In late 2008, when I realized that the whole world of business and marketing would soon be strictly an online venture, I was desperate to understand web design, at least somewhat.

So I again gave it a go. Dreamweaver was the task this time.

But I failed, bad. It was like learning Chinese.

Thank You Captain CMS

About 6 months later, I stumbled upon Hubspot and their CMS and my whole world changed. For the first time, I started seeing that technology was catching up with dummies like me. Content Management Systems were the wave of the future. Average Jane and Joe, without being Techie/Coder types could finally be their own webmaster with just a little bit of practice.

It was one of the most exciting times of my life, without question.

In fact, it was like I had been an artist for years, with a canvas in front of me, yet no brush to work my magic.

With the advent of web design for dummies, I finally had my brush. I could now create.

And create I did.

Change Begins

Within a matter of 12 months, my swimming pool company’s website went from 20 pages to about 400. Our web marketing began to dominate its industry. Business boomed.

And as for me, I was like a kid in a candy shop. Looking at my analytics each day was thrilling. Watching that snowball grow from a small flake to a huge mass, rolling down a mountain and growing by the second, was simply exhilarating.

Despite my ‘technological deficiencies’,  I now saw myself differently, and this blog became an extension of that new found vision.

And with it, the ‘pool guy’ started become the ‘inbound marketing guy’.

In a matter of months, one label was shed, another was born.

The Magic of Content ‘Tipping Points’

Then came the beginning of 2011. One night, as I was happily sitting at my kitchen table and comparing all of my leads vs. leads-turned-customers from 2010, an epiphany hit me like a ton of bricks.

To make a long story short, I noticed a simple pattern, and it was this:

If I could get a lead (someone that filled out a form on my website) to view at least 30 pages of my website, I would close said lead about 80% of the time assuming I went out on a sales appointment.

Although these numbers may sound insignificant to most of you, to me it was groundbreaking, as the swimming pool industry average is around 15%.

Once I knew that 30 page views was a magic number, or content ‘tipping point’, I developed my whole sales process around this simple truth.

In other words, I worked doggedly to make sure prospects read 30 pages of our site before they had a sales appointment. And what were the results?

Well, to state it briefly, 2011 has been far and away our best year ever as a swimming pool company. We’ve broken all records in sales, closing rates, profits, etc. We even are booked-out until the beginning of 2012 with pools to install. It’s amazing. And it all came down to a simple ‘tipping point’.

A Simple Idea

When I realized the power of content tipping points, I started to teach this principle wherever I could. Soon, I found my hypothesis was correct—every industry, niche, and product has a content tipping point (Actually, there are multiple, but that’s for another day). Companies just need to figure theirs out and then they can be off to the races.

Once, when I was presenting this idea to a group of people at Hubspot, one of their great employees, Mark Kilens, made a simple yet forehead-slapping statement to me:

“You know Marcus, this would really make for a great App.”

And that’s when my brain started turning. “My goodness, I could create an app that would tell companies their content tipping points!”

Being a Hubspot client and coach, I decided to use their platform as my first testing ground. Within days, I hired a developer, gave him the vision, and we were off.

Weeks later, the Hubspot ‘Tipping Point App’ was born.

And then I gave it away to their 5000+ customers, for FREE.

Some folks thought I was nuts for not charging for such a tool, but I didn’t care.

This app for me was like Franklin’s lightning rod—a gift to society.

Now granted, my little app is in its initial phases. It will be further developed, added to, and then rolled out to other platforms (like WordPress hopefully).

But for now, I’ll just enjoy a new label:

Marcus Sheridan, Web App Developer :-)

Our Potential is Boundless

The older I get, the more I realize that we have no clue as to our potential. We think we’re not ‘meant’ to do certain things. We feel we weren’t dealt the right cards to be this or that.

What a bunch of poo. :-)

Not to be cliché, but I honestly believe our potential is boundless. Why do we self-impose limits? Why must we stop short of the gifts and talents that are deep within each and every one of us?

Fact is, there’s no reason why, none at all.

I’m done with the labels. I see my potential as unlimited. And I’m sure as heck not afraid to admit that to myself. It’s there, so why not embrace it, right?

But I’m not special. You and I were created by the same hands. We’ve all got magic within.

Now let’s go find it, shall we?

 

Your Turn:

I have one major question to ask of you today my friends: What is a talent that you have today that clearly was not a ‘talent’ you had earlier in your life? How did you develop it? And what are you doing presently to dig deeper and continue to find the greatness within?

As always, I’d love it if you’d share. I’ll answer, and you may just enjoy the ride. :-)

PS: If you haven’t gotten my 230 page FREE Inbound Marketing eBook yet, whatcha waiting for??!

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{ 70 comments… read them below or add one }

Mikkel Plaehn October 13, 2011 at

Hi Marcus,

Thanks for introducing me to content marketing, it’s truly a great tool that you’ve sold pretty well to me. Even though i agree that there are tipping points, have you ever considered that some of them might be negative?.

In traditional marketing the plan how many TRP they’re going to buy, and what the effective frequency of the commercial is. If people are exposed too much of the same commercial, it will have a negative effect.

I know that the content marketing field is quite different as people search it out themselves. It is up to us as good content marketing people to structure the information right so the people visiting won’t feel baffled by the many different inputs we give them.

Building on these reflections i ask you: Have you ever experienced any negative tipping points?

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Marcus Sheridan October 14, 2011 at

I’m sure anything could be used the wrong way Mikkel,absolutely. But here is the thing:

Once you understand tipping points, and you know what your prospect is looking for, any content you send their way has a purpose. It has a goal. And one of those goals is to get to them to that magic number.

If they are a serious shopper, they will not burn out on great content. In fact, their trust in you will only grow.

Thanks so much for taking a moment to comment here Mikkel,

Marcus

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Tom Ewer October 13, 2011 at

I think I know why I keep coming back here and commenting – almost every single post you produce points out a fundamental that means an enormous amount to me! It’s a little bit spooky…

“The older I get, the more I realize that we have no clue as to our potential.” I really get this. People are so caught up in seeing the achievements of others and feeling like they have no chance. The point is, whenever you see someone who has done something outstanding, what you’re NOT seeing is the years of hard graft that made it happen. As M J DeMarco says in “The Millionaire Fastlane”, you’re seeing the ‘event’, not the ‘process’. You CAN experience those same events yourself…you just have to go through the process.

“What is a talent that you have today that clearly was not a ‘talent’ you had earlier in your life? How did you develop it?” I knew next to nothing about internet marketing, SEO, keyword research, freelancing, paid writing, and blogging just 6 months ago. That’s the short list. It is truly incredible what you can learn if you commit yourself. And that’s what it takes to develop talent. Commitment.

“What are you doing presently to dig deeper and continue to find the greatness within?” Everything I possibly can. Colin Wright recently wrote something for a post of mine (which you of course know all about Marcus ;-) ) that answers your question perfectly: “Anything you buy can be lost, stolen or destroyed. Self-investment is something that pays off immediately and forever”.

Always invest in yourself. Never stop learning. You’ll discover your “genius”, as you say Marcus, in time.

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Marcus Sheridan October 14, 2011 at

Spooky, ehhh Tom? ;-)

Love your quote about ‘the event’ versus ‘the process’ Tom. Comparing ourselves to others all day is a killer. To give you an example, I started this blog in November of 2009. Today, I have about 2000 subscribers. My friend Michael Stelzner started his blog the same month. It’s called Social Media Examiner. And oh yeah, it has 110,000 subscribers. Think about that for a second!

What would happen if I compared myself to Michael all day long? How depressing!

You’ve done amazing things in 6 months my friend. I watch many bloggers Tom. I do. I see them come and go based on a number of reasons. But if I may be completely honest bud, I think you’re hear for the long haul. You’re going to grow and grow and grow.

Well done my friend,

Marcus

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Tom Ewer October 14, 2011 at

That means a great deal to me Marcus – thank you :)

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Marcus Sheridan October 14, 2011 at

I mean it brother.

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Joe @ Not Your Average Joe October 13, 2011 at

I’m sure the ladies don’t call you pool guy. The moniker is probably “pool boy”….

“What a bunch of poo.” There you go swearing again… :-)

I’ll be back later with a comment that has “value”. Great post, Big Cat!

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Marcus Sheridan October 13, 2011 at

Did ya like that Joe? ;-)

Yeah, it made me smile too as I wrote it!

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Beth October 13, 2011 at

I don’t know if it is a talent/gift that I didn’t have earlier, or just something that’s been developing over time… I was one of those kids that every one said talks to much. Now I blog, and no one can tell me to be quiet. Well, I guess they can but whatever… Now I have people calling me and wanting me to talk… not a bad trade-off. So maybe all those years of talking everyone’s ears off was the warmup to what I do now… teach and speak to people who want to listen! :) Oh and technology… It doesn’t function in the side of the brain I use! Websites are like learning calculous to me, and I was never very good at math!

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Marcus Sheridan October 13, 2011 at

You and I are very, very alike Beth. :-)

Really, I’m proud of what you’re doing. You’re truly doing what we’ve been taught to do for thousands of years– not bury our talents, but multiply them.

And that’s what you’re now doing as your write and speak. I think, and I’m not just saying this, that your life is getting ready to take off in some spectacular and unexpected ways.

I’m just glad to be able to watch it happen. :-)

Have a wonderful Friday Beth,

Marcus

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Beth October 14, 2011 at

Thanks Marcus, and as for the take off part… from your lips to God’s ears! ;) We shall see…

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Carmen Sognonvi October 13, 2011 at

I noticed a simple pattern, and it was this:

If I could get a lead (someone that filled out a form on my website) to view at least 30 pages of my website, I would close said lead about 80% of the time assuming I went out on a sales appointment.

Wow that is so cool! If you don’t mind me asking, what was the process by which you discovered this pattern?

Were you going back through every won/lost sale and sort of reverse engineering how you ended up with that outcome?

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Marcus Sheridan October 13, 2011 at

It actually wasn’t that difficult Carmen. I just looked at the leads that were in my system. I knew the ones I had met on a sales appt, and I also knew who had bought. So all I had to do was compare. That’s when I saw it all came down to number of pages. It was hitting me in the face practically.

I’d strongly suggest you do this right away if you haven’t. It’s an amazing experiment once you start to see it in action.

Good luck and thanks so much for the comment!!

Marcus

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paul wolfe October 13, 2011 at

Marcus

This is my favourite post I think I’ve read here. What a cool idea – that makes utter and perfect sense – a content tipping point.

I’m just starting a Content Marketing plan for my offline business – using a combination of what I read here and a framework provided by a book called Duct Tape Marketing. And one of my goals is to develop regular content for that offline business to increase leads and bookings.

A content tipping point….my head just about exploded at that.

So I gotta question for ya – it’s still too early for me to think about tipping points – but what I would like to know is how to start tracking and monitoring to ascertain this tipping point.

Personally I’d have turned this into an eBook and sold it for $97 – the information is that powerful. I’d have gladly paid! Really looking forward to follow up posts on this one….really, awesome realization. (And awesome that once you realized it, you implemented a plan to take advantage of it…..you know how freaking rare that is????)

Paul

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Marcus Sheridan October 13, 2011 at

I’m flattered Paul. Seriously. I know you don’t throw around compliments unless you really mean it, so this was awesome.
So to answer your question: This is a little tougher, because in order to track people, you have to use forms on your site. Once you get the email, you’ve got an IP address and can start to look at leads…and the ones that convert.

There are different analytic systems out there that are available to you. If I were you though, I’d start with ‘Clicky’. If you’re not using Clicky analytics, you’re nuts. I use it every day, which is why I know you were on this site 3 separate times today, for a total of 10 minutes, that you’re using a MAC, that your search engine is Firefox, that your signal is from Worchester Park, etc, etc, etc ;-) (Sorry, couldn’t resist) …..Seriously, if you’re not using Clicky, get it, and get the Pro Version. It cost almost nothing and you can learn sick amounts of data. Once you get your groove on with Clicky, then you should step up to a more intensive analytics platform. Fact is though, for each one of your Bass products, there’s a tip. If you learn what it is, you’re going to see some awesome things happen.

Cheers brother,

Marcus

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Eugene @ Content Strategy October 14, 2011 at

I’m with Paul on this one. I had to try really hard to keep my head from going into pieces when I read the tipping point thing. That is absolutely genius…and something that I haven’t seen before online – and I read a lot of crap online :).

That info is way too good to just drop it into a blog post like this and keep going :).

I’ve recently started using Clicky and its awesome. Thinking about throwing down for the pro version (got take the new site seriously :)). This app sounds amazing though. Is this only going to be for Hubspot users or are you going to turn it into a stand-alone thing?

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paul wolfe October 14, 2011 at

Yeah I’ve been thinking all day of how to structure an eBook package with the App – you could sell that baby for some decent levels of income – and you would sell quite a few of them too I’m guessing.

@Marcus – do you ever monitor people and deliberately target more content to be put in front of them to ‘convert’ them quicker? Or do you create content sequences to draw them through your material quicker and get them to the tipping point quicker? (And if you don’t – why not? ;))

Dude, seriously – there’s a book in this that would help shoot your star into the content marketing stratosphere. I don’t say it lightly. Think of the testimonials you;’d get from people who’s used the app – dude, you should be all over this one!

Paul

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Marcus Sheridan October 14, 2011 at

Friend, let’s talk next week, what say ye? (I could use some 1 on 1 Wolfe guidance ;-) )

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Marcus Sheridan October 14, 2011 at

The reason why you’ve never seen this before online Eugene is because I discovered it :-)

Actually, I’m sure others have talked about similar stuff, but to me, it’s the next great frontier of content—tipping points.

Your words are incredibly kind my friend.

Marcus

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Ryan Hanley October 13, 2011 at

Marcus,

I freaking love you dude… This post has me so jacked up. That’s how you create content Web App Developer… You bleed on the computer keys.

To answer your question: I can create content at will (so technically I think I’m writer but I also do video… whatever). My label is currently “Insurance Agent”, but that is blurring more and more everyday as I take on the concerns of Insurance Agencies frustrated by social technologies, inbound marketing, content creation, and social results… I blog as often as I can and recently released my first eBook (through Anthologize thanks to you!) and I’m in the process of putting together a much larger original work book. To expand my message I’m taking the show on the road trying to book some presentations outside my geographical area to a larger audience.

You’re an inspiration bro…

Thanks

Ryan H.

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Marcus Sheridan October 13, 2011 at

You bleed the computer keys.…Hahahaha, that’s so awesome Ryan :-)

Ryan, I see exactly what you’re doing my man. And I have a strong feeling where you’re going as well. You’re willing success into your life and there is serious magic behind your thoughts and vision.

Just keep pushing it brother…and make sure you keep this cat informed too!!

Best,

Marcus

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barbara October 13, 2011 at

You are amazing. You are the epitome of the “you get what you give” philosophy, which I adhere to as well.

As for hidden talents… I believe God gives us gifts that we are meant to use. Until we actually do use them we are swimming upstream. I know this to be true with my Art and now my Writing. My life is so much more content and peaceful now that I am doing what I was intended to do.

Sometimes the things that come so naturally to us we discount. Someone compliments you on something you’ve done and you dismiss it as “oh, it was nothing.” When the truth is it was you living your truth. Once you ‘get’ that it is smooth sailing!

Thanks for another great post!
b

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Marcus Sheridan October 13, 2011 at

This was great. I mean REALLY great Barbara :-)

Yes, we get what we give. This ‘Law of Karma’ as some call it has proven itself to be true to me again and again and again over these last few years.

I’m at the point now where I just have a ‘knowing’ that things will fall into place…just right.

Thrilled for you Barbara, and thrilled you were kind enough to leave this comment,

Marcus

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Tom Treanor October 13, 2011 at

Marcus,
That’s a really inspirational story and I think a lot of people (including me) can identify with the freedom and opportunity that CMS’ and content marketing have provided. The opportunities for creativity and success on your own terms are truly amazing.

Thanks for posting,
Tom

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Marcus Sheridan October 13, 2011 at

“On your own terms”…Yeah, I really like how you said that Tom. The flood gates are open, just waiting for guys and gals like you and me that just needed that extra bit of help. So now that we’ve got it, what are we going to do about it?

Sounds like you’re doing quite well my friend!

Thanks so much for taking a moment to comment Tom,

Marcus

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Justin | Mazzastick October 13, 2011 at

Hi Marcus,
I can totally relate to your story. I wasn’t even computer savvy until I started my blog this year. Other than typing in a Google search and surfing the web I didn’t know much else.

Now, offline I am helping other people set up and run their own money making websites. Its amazing what we can do if we just allow ourselves to do it.

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Marcus Sheridan October 13, 2011 at

This year Justin? Dang brother, that’s awesome! Seriously man, I’m very, very impressed and you’re a testament of exactly everything I talked about in this posts.

Thanks so much for taking a moment to drop by on this man!

Marcus

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Michael Schechter October 13, 2011 at

GET OUT OF MY HEAD! Funny, I find myself thinking a lot lately between the “what is it that I do” and “stop worrying about “what it is you do” and just do more of it” thing lately. You start rolling around the “Am I a jewelry guy who does tech” or “Am I a tech guy who does jewelry” and before you know it a month has gone by and you (read: I) haven’t been enough of either.

More and more these days, I think it’s just about finding the right path. Forging ahead on it and occasionally taking the step back to mine for insights like your 30 page “aha” moment.

Besides the labels inevitably tend to be more for others than for yourself. And despite a few key family members who wake up in my bed most mornings (seriously I feel like I sleep in a small clown car), I’m really not all that interested in driving my decisions making based on terms of others. And on that note, my late night rant ends :) Great post!

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Gini Dietrich October 14, 2011 at

1. I’m super proud of you.

2. I want the app!

3. I can’t use Hubspot because I spent way too much time and money on my CMS and I’m not switching.

4. I want the app!

5. I’m super proud of you!

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Marcus Sheridan October 14, 2011 at

Regarding #5… and in all seriousness… that means a bunch to me Gini, coming from one of the people I respect most in this world as someone who draws every ounce of talent and productivity possible from each and every day.

Have a wonderful weekend my friend :-)

Marcus

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Nic Cartwright October 14, 2011 at

1. I want to know what your title will be next year… Pool guy to Web App Jedi to ?????

2. Nice skills on the base jump.

Great read. Of to re-calibrate my personal settings!!!

Lions rule

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Marcus Sheridan October 14, 2011 at

1. Hmm, guess that is a ‘to be determined’ my friend. ;-)

2. Yeah, sometimes I need some blogging relief, ya know? ;-)

You rock Nic, thanks for the support!

Marcus

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Jason Diller October 14, 2011 at

Marcus.

This is def. some next level stuff.

I’m jealous.

Pages viewed is def. a KPI regarding sales and conversion rates.

I’m running over to hubspot to download it now.

To say I’m really impressed on what you’ve accomplished would be like saying the Red Sox kinda had a bad September.

Have a great weekend bro!

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Marcus Sheridan October 14, 2011 at

‘The Red Sox had a bad September’….Hahahaha…Now that would be an understatement, you’re right brother ;-)

Appreciate Jason. I do. But there will be more. Much more.

Stay in touch man, we still need to share a stage together soon,

Marcus

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John Falchetto October 14, 2011 at

Now you are coming straight down my aisle buddy :)

Everyone has skills that they are not using or most of the time under using. Defining which skills they can use and outsource the rest is probably what we should all focus on.

Just yesterday I was speaking to a client who wanted to revamp his website and he said I’m going to buy photoshop and do it myself. Err like hell you are, as a skilled musician your are going to outsource this site redesign asap.

Now how get we get this app to work with google analytics? :)

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Marcus Sheridan October 14, 2011 at

Love the advice you gave to the client brother. That’s awesome and exactly what he needed to hear.

As for when this gets on GA, now that’s a bridge I’m working very hard on as we speak. I’m sure there will be more to come there ;-)

Have a great weekend bro,

Marcus

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Al Smith October 14, 2011 at

Wow. Again. this is a fabulous post, Marcus. Just great insight and quality content, as only you can provide. Content tipping point. Awesome. So proud of you and congratulations on the app.

I will continue to explore my writing and speaking. These are the areas I am working on. Spreading and sharing the CARE message via any means possible. Their WILL be an intro video for the November guest blog series. Yes sir.

Keep on rockin our world with your brilliance, my friend.

Al

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Marcus Sheridan October 14, 2011 at

You’re always so incredibly kind with your words Al. They mean a ton to me brother and I know you’re on your way up as well my friend.

Keep believing.

Keep caring.

Marcus

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Ana @ Free SEO Report October 14, 2011 at

You have come a long way from the pool guy to The Sales Lion, Marcus.

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Marcus Sheridan October 14, 2011 at

Thanks Ana, I really appreciate your kind words. :-)

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James Hussey October 14, 2011 at

Keep writing like this and you’ll make all my link round-ups…

I love your story, Marcus. The local SEO bit is awesome, it’s something I’m spreading to my entrepreneur off-line friends from high school, it’s unreal how many are struggling simply because they haven’t marketed online (largely a guerrilla effort).

In answer to your question: SEO / copy writing / affiliate marketing – all skills I never dreamed of having pre-2009, now it’s what I live on. Also: published author? What? Yeah, that, too – and it’s all unreal / dream-come-true stuff.

Love your story, keep swinging that big bat for quality content. I’m hooked.

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Marcus Sheridan October 14, 2011 at

Isn’t it wild you’re now making living on something you knew absolutely nothing of just over 2 years ago James?? (Doesn’t say much for a 4 year degree, does it? ;-))

Thanks again man,

Marcus

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bo October 14, 2011 at

labels are nothing when you realize that live is yours to live.
the weak accepts labels and live within it.
the strong disregards labels and does whatever he/she wants and there’s no “impossible” or “out of reach”.

you define your own limits.

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Jimmy October 15, 2011 at

I used to be very fearful of speaking publicly and making presentations. Now, I crave it. In fact, I look for opportunities. I realized that I have a gift to speak to people and engage people. I enjoy researching on my presentation topics and would go to great length to prepare for a wonderful presentation. I get the thrill of seeing my audience faces transfixed to the front just amazed with what I am sharing. I know now to become a good presenter in the personal development field. I am attending courses and working actively towards that. My website is just a platform for me to sell my seminars and training. I am implementing your inbound marketing slowly Marcus. thank you.

I have one question: How do you get your readers to reach the 30 page tipping point once they come in as a lead. Please share.

BTW, would love to have your opinion on a debate I am conducting on my site on personal development in schools.

Cheers

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Marcus Sheridan October 17, 2011 at

Hey Jimmy, I think your thoughts and goals here are simply awesome man. I’m happy for you, I really am.

As far as getting my readers to the tipping point, it’s all about ‘assignment selling’, which is I’ve written about here on TSL so just google the phrase and you’ll see exactly how I help folks reach the magic number.

Thanks again Jimmy,

Marcus

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Jimmy October 17, 2011 at

Marcus,

Thank you for your affirmation and tip on assignment selling.

I have also been reading you inbound marketing book intensely. 3/4 way through. Thanks for all the great information.

BTW, I was wondering if you could add your views to a debate on personal development for schools that I am hosting on my site current. The link is on commentluv.

Cheer

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Jens P. Berget October 15, 2011 at

Hey Marcus,

I really like the “pool guy”, there are so many web app developers here in Norway, but I have never actually met a pool guy :)

What you’ve done is amazing, and seeing an unlimited potential is very important. I feel like there are so many things happening in society, and just from growing up in the 80s and today, there are two completely different worlds. I was one of the first people who started to use computers, I bought a Vic, a Commodore, an Amiga, and so on. I had about 10 computers before I could even use them for anything but play games. Then, I started to learn all the technical stuff, but decided that it was too difficult.

I have never been interested in business really, and that’s something I wish I had been from growing up. I wish I was a little more like Gary V. who sold baseball cards when he was very young and had this “I want your money” mentality. I hav e never been this guy. If I’ll label myself, I’m the “I don’t want your money guy”. And that’s a problem when it comes to business, and especially running your own business :)

But I’m learning. And I going back 10-15 years, when I was at the University with my masters degree in political science, I would never have thought that I would be online doing marketing and writing a novel about a serial killer :)

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Marcus Sheridan October 17, 2011 at

You are such an interesting guy Jens, and I’m just not saying that either. You are humble, honest, and open about where you are with things. But what I like so much about you is that you really do have this ‘personal improvement’ mentality where you experiment and get better with each and every day—like this inbound marketing thing your doing at the University, and the novel, and the blog….it’s cool to watch.

When I come to Norway (which I clearly will in the next 5 years), I’m looking forward to meeting you in real life my friend.

Cheers,

Marcus

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Stuart October 15, 2011 at

Wowsa, Marcus adopts a new persona! You’ll always be plain ol’ ‘Marcus the Sales Lion’ to me amigo ;-)

As I’m a ‘self-help’ kind of guy, I have to agree with you when you say “our potential is boundless”. We won’t be able to do everything we want to in our lives, but we can do ‘anything’ we want to. And I don’t just say that as an airy-fairy mantra, I believe it’s the rock-solid truth.

I’ve said this before Marcus, you’ve come a long way since we first met back in late 2010. It’s been an honour to watch your growth not just with this blog, but with your whole life.

In fact, you’re a perfect example of an ‘ideal blogger’ – someone who works mega-hard, ensures that they provide value with every post, builds relationships that are meaningful, and isn’t afraid to embrace new challenges and opportunities as they come.

I’m proud of you amigo, I truly am :-)

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Marcus Sheridan October 17, 2011 at

I don’t know why you’re so kind to me Stu, but you are buddy, and I’ll sure take it.

You and I have grown together. We’ve applied the principles and made them work. We’ve willed success and we’re willing greater success. What is cooler than that?? I know of no such thing my friend!

Cheers mate,

Marcus

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Kristina L. October 15, 2011 at

Hi, Marcus!
My second time here.
Great sharing, it’s more than a life tale – a lesson how creativity when unbound becomes the most powerful human tool. For myself, I can only say that I’m always learning – if I would stop it then it would mean I am giving up from life itself. You can’t know too much. And your story is precisely that. Never give up and always keep improving yourself. Thanks!

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Marcus Sheridan October 17, 2011 at

– a lesson how creativity when unbound becomes the most powerful human tool

Hmmm, I really like how you put that Kristina!

Love your attitude and very much appreciate your willingness to stop by and leave a comment as well.

Thanks so much,

Marcus

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Nancy Davis October 15, 2011 at

Hi Marcus,

When I was growing up, my Mom was not a great cook. She only made a few things really well, and the rest was…bland. I grew up with no interest in cooking or sewing and nearly failed Home Ec.

When I got pregnant with Douglas in my mid-thirties, I had a very strong nesting instinct. I was on bed rest because I was so sick, and I watched cooking shows nonstop. I actually would sit and watch with a notepad and pen. This was how I finally taught myself how to cook.

Turns out I am a really good cook. I always told myself I stunk at anything home/wife related. That is not true at all.

I can do lots of things that I tell myself I can’t do. I can cook very well. I can raise a child. I can even fix someone’s computer!

Just this past week at my new job, I had to fix my bosses computer. I needed help to get it done, but I did fix it. The feeling I had from that was amazing. I got my first email account in 2005, so I know very little about computers, and now I am fixing minor problems!

I really liked this post Marcus, thanks for getting us to think about our other hidden talents!

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Marcus Sheridan October 17, 2011 at

I can do lots of things that I tell myself I can’t do. I can cook very well. I can raise a child. I can even fix someone’s computer!

Now that is AWESOME Nancy! Go girl!

Love your take on this, you’re an example to all!

Marcus

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Christina Pappas October 16, 2011 at

First of all, I am not a HubSpot customer any longer :( but I want this app!!! Where can I get it?!?

Because I am the oldest child, I have been know as a type-A all my life so with that being said, when I want to learn something, I frickin master it! There are lots of things I know how to do today that I didnt know a few years ago or earlier in life. One of the things that I have been working on in the last 10 years or so is my confidence. Not necessaily a talent but it takes some work sometimes. I have bridged out and made attempts to attend more live events by myself and strike up conversations with people. I have gone out to dinner by myself and even flew to Miami for a weekend at the beach – alone. I still struggle sometimes but now I recognize each struggle as a new opportunity to learn how to overcome a new challenge. May not be the loudest, most outgoing person in the room anytime soon, but I have certainly learned how to be a great conversationalist.

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Marcus Sheridan October 17, 2011 at

LOVE this example Christina. You’ve taken one of your great challenges and confronted it– dead on. Do you realize just how few people would do those things you mentioned? That’s awesome!

Well, I’m now looking forward to where you type-A mastery takes you next!!

Have a great week,

Marcus

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Jack @ TheJackB October 16, 2011 at

Stats are a wonderful thing. I have all sorts of fun reading mine, seeing who comes, how long they hang out and what they focus on. Keyword searches are good for this too.

Really the stats are a goldmine of information the trick learning how to mine and use the real stuff because fool’s gold is interspersed it all too.

It is really what you do with all that data that makes a difference.

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Marcus Sheridan October 16, 2011 at

That’s a very good point Jack. You can get lost in stats all day long, but have nothing to show for it as well. That’s why I think it’s important to have a purpose when we scour over things like Google Analytics.

If you don’t mind me asking Jack, I’d love to know the most important lessons your stats have taught you over the years.

Thanks bud,

Marcus

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Jack @ TheJackB October 17, 2011 at

Marcus,

That is a hard question to answer. My stats have shown me that I have far more readers than commenters. It is a reminder to me that the lurkers are always there and that it is worth reviewing what pages/content receives the most attention from them.

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Mark October 17, 2011 at

Pool Guy sounds actually cool. But the shift in profession to Web App Developer is impressive. I agree on our potential being boundless. You showed such dedication on your learning and you made huge progress. I am starting out myself and I want to learn CMS. Thanks for the site you recommended. I think your app is very innovative and I will be sure to give it a try.

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Marcus Sheridan October 17, 2011 at

Thanks Mark, appreciate that!

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leon Noone October 17, 2011 at

G’Day Marcus,
I’ve developed a real talent for curmudgeonliness. And I think that, judging by people’s responses, I’m getting good at it. Now that I’ve got all that embarrassing personal stuff out of the way………..

Y’know Marcus, in some circles today, it’s fashionable to decry talent, even to deny that it exists. So I’ll use this opportunity to say that I believe that talent does exist. Babe Ruth had a good dollop of it. especially for belting the cover off a baseball. And, of course, Sir Donald Bradman’s batting average has never even been approached. Look him up on Google Marcus!

But there seems to be this notion about that anybody can do anything. It’s all a matter of obeying the dicta of some exalted guru and all will be well. And we hear frequently of the people who “got” whatever it was and went on to “conquer the world.” And good luck to them for that!

Interestingly, we never hear a word about the thousands of people who followed the same dicta of the same gurus and are still frustrated car washers.

But let’s not delude ourselves. Even the genuinely talented have to bust their gut to fully develop their potential. But the notion that any tall and strong kid can become another Le Bron is , well……nothing more than a notion. And it’s likely that there are a few youngsters out there who could become “Le Brons” but who’ll never have the opportunity.

The best we can do mate, is be really thankful for the opportunities we get and use them as well as we can. If it turns out that we have genuine talent in our chosen field, then we’re more fortunate than most.

Sadly, lots of people simply wont have the chance, or the talent. But if Usain Bolt isn’t a genuine talent……

But I have learnt that it’s very important to have fun.
Regards
Leon

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Marcus Sheridan October 17, 2011 at

The best we can do mate, is be really thankful for the opportunities we get and use them as well as we can. If it turns out that we have genuine talent in our chosen field, then we’re more fortunate than most.

You always have such a way of mixing humor and wisdom Leon, and this was no different old friend.

You’re right. I’ll never dunk a basketball—ain’t going to happen. But as for that 3-pointer? Yeah, I think I can do that! ;-)

Thanks again mate,

Marcus

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John Sherry October 17, 2011 at

Marcus you’re a great case in point. It’s about evolving and growth, as much of the individual as the business. We all have core skills and offer certain products and services but underneath us is more – the market may be niche but so are we. We are tips of the iceberg as there’s more beneath the surface naturally connecting to what’s already out there. Your road trip from pool guy to app creator is logical and seemless because you look for routes to people, extras from yourself, and profiles and messages that links the two. Success leaves clues and you’ve left a huge trail here – don’t sit still, expand, embrace new ideas, and above all else, connect and share, it’s the one trait we humans are awesome at!!

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Marcus Sheridan October 17, 2011 at

John Sherry– Mr. Perspective….that’s you my friend.

We are tips of the iceberg as there’s more beneath the surface naturally connecting to what’s already out there.

That statement couldn’t be more true nor could it be said any more perfectly John.

Thanks my friend,

Marcus

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Jk Allen October 17, 2011 at

This was great stuff Marcus. I enjoyed it because this has been the constant story of my life. If I get curious and interested, I try it out. If I like it after a try or two, I’ll usually venture in that direction for a little while (like my new project).

One talent that I’m getting better and better with is web design. My first shot was the summer of 2010 when I started my blog and since then have continued to develop my skills. Most of my learning has come from trial, error, interest, and curiosity (my recipe for elevating myself).

I’m had to put a label on. I simply have too many things that define me and my skill sets. But if you want to put a “hustle” sticker on my back – I’ll take it!

You’ve had a great journey over the last few years man and I wish you continued success in whatever you get into next.

PEACE

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Marcus Sheridan October 17, 2011 at

A ‘hustle’ sticker on your back…Hmmm, now that’s a product you could sell on your site JK!!! :-)

Appreciate the kind words man. It has been fun learning from each other. I know I see you as an example and you motivate me to be better brother. :-)

Have a great week my friend,

Marcus

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Grady Pruitt October 19, 2011 at

This is the second post on labels I’ve seen in the last few days. I know I have leaned too heavily on my labels. I’m working on changing that. I’m learning to move beyond them.

Thanks for sharing!

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Marcus Sheridan October 19, 2011 at

Good for you Grady. We’re all a work in progress man. Just keep moving forward brother.

Have a great rest of your week,

Marcus

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Grady Pruitt October 19, 2011 at

I wish I had thought of this last night but I happen to think of a great line from a movie…

“From now on, you will address me as ‘you idiot!’, not ‘you captain!’… You know what I mean!” Lonestar (Spaceballs)

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