Skyrocket Your Business Without Selling Your Soul With Ryan Holiday – FA109

Insert Titillating Headline Designed To Compel People Into Clicking

Pageview competition is driving news sites (legitimate and not-quite-so legit) to “out outrageous” each other.

I don’t watch the news because it’s full of negativity that ruins my mental health. Why all the negativity in the news? It gets people to watch, to read a paper, to visit a blog. Humans are innately attracted to bad events.

News Media Know You’re A Rubbernecker

Since we can’t help ourselves, we look, we click — we are entertained by tragedies that befall other humans. We might feel empathy for the people we see in the news. Some might even send some money to charities helping those people.

But in the end, the news is entertainment. Entertainment that must fight for your attention.

I only pay attention to tech/software/business news because 1) I’m a geek and love the stuff and 2) it keeps me informed on innovations in business.

But… business news, tech news, software news isn’t immune to the economics of Pageview Profits. They must get my attention so I don’t go to their competitor’s site for the same news. These sites may even trick me with misleading headlines (which pisses me off and sometimes I don’t go back). They also have to fill the Internet with dozens of posts a day — most of which are just filler with a catchy headline and a few sentences.

My Site’s Totally Epic, Dude!

What does this rant have to do with you and today’s episode? Everything.

We are seeing the misleading headlines filtering down to just regular blogs. Bloggers are trying to “Out Epic” each other and then fall into a trap of needing to “Out Epic” themselves.

When battling for clicks to your site, you may end up on a treadmill of churning out stuff designed to just get people to visit your site.

Become Newsworthy Without Selling Your Soul

In this episode, Ryan Holiday, author of Trust Me I’m Lying: Confessions of a Media Manipulator, shows us the inner workings of a click-based economy and the hyper-competition that comes with it.

He shows us the holes in the system that allows people like him to manipulate what becomes deemed as real news.

There is good news for us ethical business owners.

We don’t have to manipulate, but we can influence our market so we break through the noise and grow a great business.

Use PR To Propel Your Business

I’ve talked to a lot of business owners who have gotten hung up on the shady tactics Ryan shares in his book, but you’ll hear in this episode how to take the shade off the tactics and ethically become a newsworthy business.

I specifically ask Ryan to teach us how people in a small niche can move up to national (even international) prominence if they have that level of ambition without selling their soul in the process.

Trust Me I’m Lying is an excellent business book (even for honest people) if you pay attention to the leverage points that are highlighted and find a way to honestly get your story onto content sites in your industry.

Enjoy your Foolish PR Adventure,

Tim “Honest Abe” Conley

Mentioned In The Show

Trust Me I’m Lying Book
Trust Me I’m Lying Site
Blue Ocean Strategy
Mixergy Interview With Ryan Holiday

Check Out The Controversy Between Ryan & Help A Reporter Out.
HARO’s Shankman responds to book.
Ryan hits back.

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  • Hey man, James the scientist here.

    I’m going to have to work on my radio voice, I sounded catatonic! I was hyper nervous though, that was probably why.

    Anyway, thank you so much for the advice, Tim. Very solid! I definitely am going to run with it 🙂

  • I’m sure the majority if everyone who’s come in contact with the book thinks he’s insincere. After reading it, that will probably change.

    A lot of people who haven’t read it are also those yelling the loudest that he’s a scam, or whatever. I’ve read it a couple of times and it’s a fascinating read.

    I do wish he’d given more ideas as to HOW to solve this and a better alternative. But I guess that’s pretty hard, and would require a change not only to the revenue model but also a fundamental business model change, as well.

    People don’t want to do that. It’s too much work.

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  • Love, love, love this podcast Tim.

    As someone who knows these tricks, I wish that Ryan had kept this stuff secret.

    Having little bit more experience with the media than most (eg. had a story become the lead news item of every news outlet in Australia) I can vouch for much for this.. including having multiple press releases printed word for word.. it really staggers you the first time you see that.

    • Glad you liked the episode. I think Ryan and his book are very interesting and definitely something even an ethical business owner could tap into.

      • For sure. For example there’s nothing unethical about you sending press releases which are then reprinted verbatim.

        The three magic words of PR : “Find The Story”

        It’s easy enough to put out a press release saying “Wow, we have this great new website and we want to make money, please link to us”

        OR you find the story yourself and give it to them on a platter!!

        I was talking to Dan Andrews a couple of months ago in Bali and he was lamenting that he didn’t have a ‘story’. This is a guy who chucked in a very successful corporate job to go to Asia on a wing and a prayer and runs a $2m a year business. From his laptop. Next to a beach. That’s an amazing story.

        EVERYONE has a story even if they’re not Tim Conley or Dan Andrews. Even lil’ ol me.

        Every business has a story. People freakin love stories – give em stories.

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