The Art of Breaking Out with Craig McBreen







June 2018
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Brian Clark describes himself as a serial entrepreneur. He is CEO of Rainmaker Digital, founder of Copyblogger, and host of the Unemployable Podcast.

To say he's a content marketing expert would be a severe understatement. He's a guy with chops and I've been dying to talk with him for a while. If you're a solopreneur trying to make your way in the online realm, you should get out a pen and paper and listen to this interview.

Before starting the extremely popular site Copyblogger around 2006, Brian built three—count 'em, three—successful online service businesses before moving to a completely online business model (Copyblogger). Fast forward to now and the result of all the blood, sweat, and tears Brian put into Copyblogger—Rainmaker Digital.

Brian has always been about providing rock-solid advice and solutions that empower people to successfully grow their businesses through social media and online marketing. And in my humble opinion, he is "The Man" when it comes to this stuff. I know of no one better.

We discuss Boulder, Colorado, the hipster-tech-Mecca of Austin, Texas (he's lived in both hot spots), tech hubs in general, and why our online realm should give us freedom. The topic of freedom leads us to Brian's illustrious online career.

And what about the brand launch for Rainmaker Digital? We discuss why he decided to depart from the Copyblogger name. So there are some great branding lessons in this interview—detailing his methodical, subtle, and extremely effective transition from the Copyblogger brand to the big, bold, new Rainmaker brand.

We get into the rationale behind the controversial decision to kill comments at Copyblogger and why they might go back to accepting comments.

Brian's online story all started with the book Permission Marketing by Seth Godin. After a stint at a law firm, he started his own solo law practice, then moved to real estate—he built a virtual real estate brokerage around 2002. At the time people thought he was insane, well… let's just say Brian is pretty good at predicting what's around the corner. The point is that Brian has been hard at work in the online space since the early 2000's, meaning he as a ton to teach.

We get deep into authenticity and how to frame your online persona… starting with Louis CK, leading to James Altucher, and ending with Erika Napoletano. I'm a fan of each, and Brian articulates with great precision, lessons on how you can learn how to share the right part of yourself to your audience. We really get into a great discussion on entrepreneurship and MINDSET. We also get into his new personal project, Unemployable, and how it originated.

Brian has been featured in a variety of books, including Linchpin by Seth Godin, Epic Content Marketing by Joe Pulizzi, and Free Agent Nation by Daniel Pink.

Questions I ask:

  • What was the one driving force behind your initial online venture?
  • How can you share the right part of yourself to your online audience? Be yourself in a carefully crafted way? The best way to find your voice?
  • What is Louis CK's secret to success?
  • What is the one bit of advice you would give a budding solopreneur?
  • How, exactly, did Rainmaker FM get started?
  • Does a podcaster just starting out have a chance? (You'll love his answer).
  • Facebook—why did you leave Facebook?
  • What do you think of Facebook as a free promotional platform?
  • Why did you start Further?

What You’ll Learn:

  • About Brian's moment of enlightenment: In 2005 Brian had a life threatening snowboarding accident which led to brain surgery.
  • Why you now need a "producer" mindset.
  • About "Authenticity" in the online space—being the part of yourself your audience will love.
  • It's always about the audience.
  • The importance of positioning—finding a part of yourself that'll reach the right people.
  • You don't follow your passion. You FIND your passion.
  • Most entrepreneurs are seasoned 40+ year olds. (I rather like this.)
  • It's is never too late to start an entrepreneurial venture.
  • Why comedians are the best storytellers.
  • Every one of Brian's employees has come from his audience.
  • Email converts 40 times higher than social media.
  • Why you should study copywriting, now!
  • Why entrepreneurs should think of themselves as highly paid servants. (The servant mentality rules in the online kingdom.)
  • Lessons on how to fight your own resistance and the resistance of others.

Links Mentioned in the Show:

Brian's many properties:

Direct download: Brian_ClarkThe_Secrets_of_His_Success.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:15am PDT