Matt Haag Image from shockmansion.com
This part of the No Bull series looks at how fundamentals in self publishing can create everlasting wealth. You can draw lessons from the life of Matt Haag who three years ago was working at McDonald’s for near minimum wages. Now at the ripe age of 22, he is a professional gamer earning nearly a million dollars a year. See part one of the No Bull series here. Part Two
Matt Haag represents the new form of self publisher, a multi media success, that can see income shift from subsistence to millions within a year. Self publishers can now easily use books in print, ebooks, blogs, as well as video and audio communication. Mr. Haag has 1.5 million video viewers which he has built into a fortune.
Why is Matt Haag such a successful Online Video Star?
According to the New York Times article what makes Matt Haag so watchable is that teenagers find YouTube stars easier to relate to and more candid than famous people from places like Hollywood.
The article says: Mr. Haag’s fans are right in line with this thinking. They seem to regard him as an exceptionally interesting friend.
Mr. Haag’s videos, raw and unproduced, add to this feeling of intimacy.
Fans know that Mr. Haag’s mother suffered from seizures for most of his life. When she died two years ago, he sat on a couch at home and recorded a YouTube video in which he thanked followers for their heartfelt messages on Twitter. He appeared distraught and shaken but also genuinely thankful.
In this era of the big, slick, impersonal multinationals, small, rough and intimate are good.
The basics of successful self publishing are based on attracting like minded souls who have a common interest. This is a three step process:
#1: Attract a steady flow of interested readers. Start with your passion and use The Seven Ps.
#2: Use a set pattern of information to politely weed out readers who really do not have a common need, ideal or interest. This is an important step. The temptation is to keep as many people as possible on your list. Bigger is not better. Focus is the key. Larger lists have more complications (and consequently costs) and create resistance. If you email information that is not desired you can create a negative backlash that wastes time and diminishes the overall success.
#3: Develop an intimate relationship with the readers who are not weeded out and do have a common need, ideal or interest.
Is this comment too simple? Too obvious?
Profound might be a better word because many people fail to start self publishing because they ignore this small business reality. They think they should wait until their small business is perfect on all fronts.
This is wrong!
A reader sent the note below. I thanked him. Their comments helped me see a really vital point about having a small business.
Gary, You seem like a bright guy. Can’t you figure out how to make your links clickable? It’s bad enough that your emails look as ugly as Hillary Clinton but at least you could make it quick to get off them. You do good work that looks like hell.
These notes highlight a very important small business reality.
You can survive flaws. Sometimes flaws even make your business stronger.
The reader is right about the graphic quality of our website. Our website graphics are pretty simple. In fact we are currently upgrading the site by making the graphics even simpler. Simple can look ugly in today’s world of highly refined graphics.
We keep the site simple to make a statement. “We are not a big multinational company”. We want readers to know that what we share is direct from us. Readers are often surprised (and pleased) when they send an email and the reply is direct from me. That’s the way we want our business to be, from person to person. This is the tool you and I have that no big business can duplicate, a direct line from the reader right on up. A direct line of care for the reader.
Developing an intimate relationship with your readers is on the the most powerful basics you can use to create a stream of everlasting wealth.
When we had a print publishing business I was known as “Mr. No Graphics.” We never advanced beyond 8 1/2″ by 11″ white paper and black ink. Nor did we try. Our graphic design bill for all our web sites is zero!
In the print business, I had one logo (that cost $50 in 1985) that never changed. When we shifted all those years ago from typing our copy from a IBM typewriter to a word processor, we used a font so it made it appear that we still typed the text.
Core is the key word for long term survival in small business. What we do…every day..always…is what we enjoy…our small business core.
#1: Get out that daily message 365 days a year.
#2: Make sure our emails are answered.
#3: Do our research.
#4: Fill all our orders personally.
#5: Make sure our bills are paid and that we have no debt.
#6: Go for a walk, eat right and get a good night’s sleep.
#7: Look within (meditate) to better see what we should reflect out.
Amidst the billions of people on earth there are a few (we have about 30,000 of them) who prefer the authenticity we offer rather than slick graphics.
Your small business does not need the entire world… unless you do.
Merri’s and my system works for us and our readers. Our system is designed to find readers we can satisfy and easily shed those who are not.
Imperfect systems as Matt Haag and our business prove, work. Mr. Haag’s business has brought him a great deal of wealth in a hurry. I hope he sticks to these basics, because if he does he can have everlasting wealth.
Sticking to the basics has brought Merri and me great income, has enriched us materially and spiritually beyond our imagination and introduced us to incredibly wonderful people. Sticking to these basics has worked for us for 46 years.
This message is not meant to condone our flaws but to highlight that every business has them. Do not let the fact that you cannot be everything stop you from starting your own business. Concentrate on your strengths and passions. This is enough.
Turn your passions into profit. If you figure out your passions and create a business around them, you’ll attract like minded souls who love what you do and your business flaws and all can bring you everlasting wealth. That’s no bull.