May’s Book Of The Month, The Power of Habit By Charles Duhigg

May’s Book Of The Month, The Power of Habit By Charles Duhigg

You’ll see two major common threads that you’ll see with successful entrepreneurs

First: They read – or absorb training in some way (videos, audiobooks, or… good ole fashioned physical books).  Don’t believe me?  Ask any one you know who is doing well what book they’re reading at the moment – and it’s pretty damn rare for them to say ‘I don’t really read’.  You’ll usually get an excited response about what it is they’re learning – and what it’s meaning to them, how they are applying it etc.

Secondly: They have strong routine – even if they’re not really ‘disciplined’ people, you’ll find that when they are most successful, feeling that strong sense of flow – they have a routine of sorts.  It might be a step-by-step type thing, where they go through a strict set of tasks… or, it could just be so subconsciously created they aren’t even aware that they are doing it.

However… when they DO, they get in the zone faster, achieve more and have a higher sense of achievement too!

Which is why I’ve chosen “The Power Of Habit”, by Charles Duhigg as May’s book of the month.

About our book of the month club

I love to read, learn and find better ways to do things – and figured… hey, why not include a few other folks into this too!   Which birthed our Wildfire Concepts book club thing.

It’s a friendly group of people interested in learning more and doing better when it comes to marketing online – and just being a more awesome person in general.

There are no requirements, nobody is gonna force you to read x number of pages, or get cross with you if you skip a book entirely … this is here for YOU – so just jump in at your own pace.  Have fun with it, discover some new things about yourself and others – and please do post in the comments below too if you have any ideas that jumped out at you that you’d like to share too!

Want to get a copy and join in our discussions too?

May 2017’s Book: The Power Of Habit – Click Here To Get It On Amazon

June 2017’s Book: Abundance – Click Here To Order Your Copy For Next Month’s Discussions

(yep, I will get 4% commissions… lol, hope that’s cool.  It helps me keep things running here, so your purchase is appreciated.)

What is The Power Of Habit about?

This is all about discovering and learning more about our bad habits, so that you can take what you know from that and turn them into positive habits.  It’s about:

  • Understanding any of the negative habits you have
  • How they’re formed, and what drives them
  • How to change them in ways that stick
  • And maybe most importantly… how to not go back to them in times of stress.

These habits (positive or negative) massively impact every aspect of your life on a regular day to day basis.

The book really opens your eyes to how much of our day is driven by little habits that form our daily routines, pretty much on autopilot for the most-part.  Once you can SEE it, it gives you the power to control these habits – which, in turn, gives you more power to control your life.

The Power of Habit dives into the different areas of our lives that are influenced by habit, including social groups, our professional lives at home and at work – and even political movements, preferences and social change.

It’s an entertaining read that I guarantee you’ll find interesting – with a bunch of relatable examples from people who I felt myself relating to A LOT… it’s fun, insightful and scientifically based – and very approachable and easy to understand and process.

Duhigg shares a lot of practical tools you can learn and use in your life moving forward, including his ‘habit isolation technique’ and ‘alteration technique’.

I’ve broken down my own observations into ‘chunks’ so you can check them out, give your feedback on parts as you’re just digging into the book.

REMEMBER: There are no rules to this book club – of course, you’re going to learn more by getting the book and actually reading it yourself, but you might not have the time – and nobody is going to judge you for that.  If you’ve not even read the book, but some of the comments or discussion points trigger some ideas feel free to post and talk too.  We’re all about learning and growing together.

Here are my main takeaways from the Power of Habit book by Charles Duhigg, I hope you like/d it too!

  • Takeaway #1: Habits – What They Are & How They Can Help Us
  • Takeaway #2: Using Keystone Habits For Revolutionary Change
  • Takeaway #3: Simple Daily Routines
  • Takeaway #4: The Power Of Habits For Major Social Change
  • Takeaway #5: How Marketer Use Habits To Sell More
  • Takeaway #6: Positive Habits At A Corporate/Business Level
  • Takeaway #7: Get Power To Control Your Habits
  • Final Words
Social Media Strategy With Gary Vaynerchuk

Social Media Strategy With Gary Vaynerchuk

Practically everyone has some kind of social media presence set up, but too few actually have a well defined social media strategy.

To be perfectly honest, it’s not a huge surprise.

Social media keeps evolving at such a rapid pace that it can feel overwhelming.

If you DO fluke it and something starts working, it can switch on a dime – and suddenly your hot traffic source becomes as old and dated as a #winning meme.

Jab, Jab, Jab Right Hook by Gary Vaynerchuk was a great read that helps you strategise a decent social media strategy that will last for longer than a week.

And as part of my ‘improve myself’ mission I just read through this book thanks to a special prompt by fellow Internet Marketer, Lester Lim. (thanks bud!)

After the super gross Content Rules book I read, Gary V’s book was a breath of fresh air – with REALLY actionable strategy in a way that made sense.

If you’re someone who struggles to focus on a book, or have in the past, struggled to read much – use this trick.

As you might have read in my Brainfluence book review, I’ve been trying a new strategy (inspired by the fabulous Tom Beal) to absorb more content from books and a huge part of that is getting a physical copy of the book, buying a highlighter and pen and actually marking the crap out it.

As a book purist in the past, this was a little tricky for me to do to begin with, but trust me – do it.  By using this tactile – hands-on approach it locks it into your brain WAY more effectively!

So with all of that said, let’s dive in to the key points that I’ve learned and grabbed from Gary’s Jab, Jab, Jab Right Hook

Today’s Book: Jab, Jab, Jab Right Hook by Gary Vaynerchuk


Overview: Jab, Jab, Jab Right Hook by Gary Vaynerchuk talks about how different social media platforms can be used to market your products and how to find the social platform for you.

Key Point 1: Take Time To Explore A Little

  • Many people think that just getting their message out there as loudly as possible on ALL social media sites is an effective strategy.  There is a belief that ‘more is better’, which can sometimes be true, but finding out WHERE to market effectively is as equally important as the product itself.
  • Gary shared a crazy mind blowing statistic about cell phone usage…  There are 325 million mobile users in the United States alone – big number, yeah?  But the reason this is just so insane is because, just 3 years ago the population of US was 316 million.
  • Why is this important?  Nearly all of those cell phone owners are on some form of social media.
  • eMarketer have said that people spend nearly half of the time on their phones spent on social media.  They also discovered that 71% of Americans have a Facebook account.  Twitter’s statistic’s state too, that there are more than half a billion Twitter users worldwide!
  • Baby Boomers have jumped aboard too, with a 42% jump in activity.  This is important to us as marketers because Baby Boomers account for 70% of spending in the US – and as marketers we, of course… want to go where the money is.
  • Growth is MASSIVE as accessibility skyrockets.  Gary shares an example about the technological advances between radio/print/tv etc.  sharing that while radio took 38 years to reach 50 million people, Instagram took 1.5 years. 
  • With social media becoming a major source of information and connectivity it’s imperative that marketers in whatever field are using social media effectively.

social media strategy

Key Point 2: Content Marketing Done Right, For An Engaging Social Media Strategy

  • Social media is an increasingly ‘noisy’ space, with attention moving swiftly.  Creating marketing campaigns is different now, you can’t make an ad and expect it to still be performing in this space in 6 months from now (like what used to work in television).
  • The new way to do things is to create campaigns that engross your customers in a story, building branding awareness and leading them to the sale . Fresh content that is enticing and feels motivating, makes people come back for more and keeps your customers engaged and entertained.
  • As Gary mentioned, content should be something they WANT to hear. He used the example of the Nike app as a great marketing campaign tool used by Nike. Users compare their achievements and their exercise accomplishments on a daily basis – so they themselves create content and give members a great reason to share it.
  • Anyone can avoid your ad by blocking or muting it, so you need to keep your content from being intrusive or annoying, it should perfectly blend with your consumer lifestyle and be genuinely entertaining and engaging.
  • You need to know your audience and the language they speak.  Any time you can get interactivity you on the right path.
  • Just having good, or even great content isn’t enough if it’s not in the right context.  Effective content needs to be native to that platform.
  • Example, a hairstyling tutorial posted on Pinterest can get thousands of views, but if you posted this on Twitter, it’s likely to flop. The Twitter audience engage on witty, quick and smart posts so posting a clever remark or a cheeky/controversial/edgy photo and Twitter will get you branded.

social media strategy

Key Point 3: Pairing Facebook with Marketing Properly

  • Accounting for more than one-fifth of the total web page views in the United States, Facebook is a strong platform to interact with consumers.
  • Facebook advertising is VERY cheap, compared to a lot of other advertising methods.  Companies spend thousands of dollars advertising on TV but actually have no real idea how many people see them. On the other hand, costing between $0.50 and $1.50 you can get a Facebook “like” which is an interactive action and can also lead to more shares/likes etc.
  • You need to be aware however. that Facebook’s main focus (besides them making tons of cash.. haha) is giving the consumers the best experience – not the advertisers.  They prioritise more prominent placement in people’s newsfeed, so when a consumer regularly likes or comments on a particular friend’s profile, then they see more from that  friend in their Newsfeed.
  • Similarly, if your content is enticing and it sparks a discussion, people comment and start liking then you have made a start.
  • Facebook have developed something called EdgeRank, which records user activity. When they interact FB keeps track of this as information called an ‘edge’.  Keeping your content loaded up with ‘edge’ points gives you higher exposure.
  • Facebook DOESN’T factor in clicks or likes from paid traffic, so even if a link has thousands of clicks and you are making millions of dollars with it, it won’t show in newsfeed unless it’s liked, shared and commented on.  So you need to make sure your content is engaging or Facebook advertising won’t be worth spending your money on.

social media strategy

Key Point 4: Using  Twitter #Effectively

  • Twitter lets you connect powerfully with your audience, but it’s often used really poorly.  For marketers it’s a dream come true, allowing you to directly connect with consumers.
  • Twitter pages are almost entirely public which makes it easier for anyone to connect and be seen by anyone and everyone.  When running a large Twitter account the feed can get inundated pretty quickly with approximately 750 tweets being posted per second you need to make yours stand out from the rest.
  • Getting noticed is by using a strategy Gary calls trendjacking. Most underrated and underused, trendjacking is a useful way to market a product. To trendjack, you find a trending topic (topics that Twitter’s algorithm shows as mathematically popular) and latch on to that.
  • Finding those opportunities is key!  Gary talks about a missed opportunity by the TV series 30 Rock.   They aired their final episode in Jan ’13 (after running as a highly popular show for 7 years) and the day after the final episode it was trending on Twitter.  The Jeans company 7 For All Mankind, who are nicknamed “Sevens” could have jumped on the 7 Trend, but they missed the opportunity.
  • (My personal note here) A GREAT more recent example of a company jumping aboard of a trending phenomenon is Kohl’s who jumped aboard the Chewbacca meme which went massively viral.   This was on Facebook (so not Twitter), but I thought it was worth mentioning here – in relation to Gary’s Twitter/Seven’s trend.

The Original Massively Popular Chewbacca Mom Video

And Kohl’s Marketing Team Response

  • Final words about Twitter is to use hashtags to stand out. You need to use them cleverly with humor or use or irony.  Using them #hashtags #justbecause it’s #whatyoudo is #boring.  Make them edgy, funny and witty or it just makes you look out of touch.

social media strategy

Key Point 5: Businesses Are Still Missing The Point With Pinterest

  • Any marketers whose targeted demographic is female are crazy if they aren’t using Pinterest in their social media strategy.
  • Pinning photos of your product with links back to your website is not only a simple, but most powerful for visual driven learners/engagement types of people.
  • You can have multiple pin boards and make them relate to the brand with a broader appeal.  For example, get a following for a tea company by hosting a pin board for tea cups that traveling pinterest users find in unique places all around the world.
  • Gary cites a survey done back in 2012 showing that Pinterest users were 79% more likely to purchase something they saw on Pinterest than on Facebook.  That may have changed a bit now, but still shows that it’s an excellent platform to market on and is a rapidly growing marketplace with over 50 million users by 2013 alone.
  • Females on Pinterest outnumber males five to one.
  • About half of the Pinterest members are mothers.
  • Knowing your avatar and buying audience is important in any marketing endeavour so knowing these facts make marketing home goods, parenting/family products or anything targeted to this audience perfect.
  • Gary says that in the past, a lot of marketers are steering clear of Pinterest mostly because of business dogmatism and legal issues, with the fear of sharing photos that they don’t own.  Until now though, no lawsuits have been filed, it’s mostly a case of businesses not understanding the marketplace and seeing Pinterest as a passing fad – which it by no-means is.

In conclusion

The main message in Gary’s book is that as more and more people migrate towards online activity and have it take a significant place in every day lives, it’s essential to make good use of social media strategy. 

Find out what platform is best for your brand, so that you can tailor your marketing to the audience.  There is no PERFECT platform for everyone, so read the book and see which one fits best with you, your business and brand.

I hope you’ve enjoyed this post and if anything has jumped out at you please share it in the comments below!

I also welcome you to share this with someone you think might benefit from a bit of social media goodness.  Hit the share button and make them (and me) smile.

Also, if you have any other books you have been thinking about diving into, but just haven’t had the time and want to know if it’s for you before grabbing it, post in the comments below!  I’m always looking for suggestions and love to hear feedback.

To your success!
– Cindy Donovan


Marketing Psychology With Roger Dooley

Marketing Psychology With Roger Dooley

Brainfluence By Roger Dooley is a book you should read if you have an interested in marketing psychology and influence, what makes people tick and productivity/motivational topics.

This last year I’ve made it my mission to devour as many books as possible, and though I don’t always remember all of the bits, I AM getting better at developing the discipline – and I’m finding that I’m learning more and seeing little ways that a lot of the concepts intertwine and can be applied!

So – what I’ve decided to do – is give you a bit of a breakdown of the key take aways that I’ve had when reading books – and this is the first of many, I hope you like it and that it motivates you to maybe pick up the book, either about marketing psychology like this, or just more books in general and share what you are learning with the community too.

marketing psychologyToday’s Book: Brainfluence By Roger Dooley

By the way, if you like this and are interested – Roger has his own podcast too here: Brainfluence Podcast

Overview: Brainfluence By Roger Dooley dives into the topic of why psychological mechanisms work and understanding a few neat tricks can help you be more influential when it comes to selling things using clever marketing psychology.

Key Point 1: Reduce The Pain Of Buying To Convert Tightwads 

  • A study in Carnegie Mellon University – and also a Stanford University experiment monitored brainwaves of people encouraged to make a purchase.  The brain scans showed that the activity when the offer didn’t resonate with them stimulated the sections in the brain similar to actual physical pain.
  • To minimise ‘buyers remorse’, finding that pain point, whether it is helping the visitor find a price point they are happier with (i.e. changing a $120 annual gym membership to say only $10 a month, or $0.33 a day), or identifying what is going to make the potential customer less likely to have negative feelings about the purchase.
  • Dooley mentioned another study conducted by a Carnegie Mellon University and discovered that “Tightwads” (people very thrifty with their cash), often needed a ‘logical’ reason to purchase.  When offered a massage deal, if the angle was along the lines of massage for pleasure, they were 26% less likely to buy – but when angled as back pain relief they were only 9% less likely to spend their money.

Key Point 2: Make Use Of All Senses

  • This one is a little tricky for people who are predominantly marketing online – but Dooley references Martin Lindstrom’s books “Buyology” and “Brand Sense” – in how flight attendants at Singapore Airlines have used sensory triggers to develop the brand image.  They all wear the same perfume, the airline uses hot towels and match the aircraft’s colour scheme to their uniforms.
  • The sense of smell is a powerful trigger too, Martin Lindstrom claims that 75% of our emotional reactions are closely linked to our sense of smell.
  • A test between two identical Nike shoe stores, one scented/one unscented saw 84% of the test subjects rate the scented room to have more superior shoes.
  • Taking this to online, as I mentioned… could be tricky!  If you have any ideas as to how to implement that kind of thing online let me know in the comments below.  On the other hand, if you have a coffee shop, or a hairdresser – take a minute to think about how your business smells…

Key Point 3: Whack A Baby On It

  • Marketing psychology comes into play when using images in marketing, but none as powerful as a face – people identify and connect with faces – but even more powerful is to put a baby’s face on your ad.
  • If a baby isn’t going to match your marketing approach, then use a baby faced person, an adult with facial characteristics that are young looking and trigger vulnerable emotions.
  • High level activity in the medial orbitofrontal cortex (the part of the brain that is responsible for emotion) is triggered only 150 milliseconds after having seen a photo of a baby.
  • Dooley’s theory here, is that it likely links back to evolutionary reasons – babies are vulnerable and increase their chances of thriving and survival if adults have an emotional connection to the child.
  • Also, he mentions to make sure that when you place a face (baby or otherwise) on an ad, to make the person face whatever you want the viewer to focus on.  James Breeze, a usability specialist has done extensive testing to discover that when someone is looking at an something, we look at it too.

Key Point 4: Speak Into Their RIGHT Ear

  • I found this point VERY cool, because I’m a HUGE fan of schmoozing… that little bit of small talk before you dive into your pitch, or whatever it is that you are trying to convince someone.
  • Dooley discovered that when speaking with people – when you talk to someone in their right ear, there was a huge increase in compliance in whatever it is that you are trying to pitch someone.
  • Dr Luca Tommasi and Daniele Marzoli from the University Gabrile d’Annunzio found that this worked in multiple situations, including testing it at a night club – where the test subject found they had more success ‘bumming a cigarette’ if they asked the person into their right ear.
  • Try it next time you are at a marketing event… get dinner with the person you want to do business with and make sure you sit to the right of the person you want to schmooze!

Key Point 5: Surprise The Brain

  • Researchers in the UK discovered that the little part in your brain that predicts what happens next, the hippocampus, does it by automatically recalling a sequence of events that we have experienced before and ties it in with an expected reaction.  When it doesn’t go how we predict, the brain wakes up and pays attention.
  • A great example of this is in an example like taking a common phrase and twisting it slightly, so that instead of saying “A Stitch In Time Saves Nine”, they might write… “A Stitch In Time Saves Money”.
  • The idea here would be to make your sales copy more “brain catching”, so placing words in unlikely places, or changing the way a word is used – eg. instead of telling your customers, “it’s time for coffee”, surprise their brains by saying something like … “Let’s coffee it up”

OK!  So – there is loads there.  I hope you picked up a few marketing psychology tricks and that something has jumped out at you, helped you out in some way and just triggered some ideas that can help you build your business.

Check out the Brainfluence By Roger Dooley book if you want to learn more about marketing psychology – and, if you have any books you would like me to dive into please leave them in the comments below, I’m always looking for interesting reads.

– Cindy Donovan