I’ve invested a LOT of time into making stuff over the last three years.
I’ve produced somewhere north of 500 published articles, 150 podcast episodes, a documentary, and however you want to quantify what I’ve put out on social media.
But, naturally, I’ll look at that time investment from time to time and wonder, “What was that all for?”
Look, I’ve been beating the drum of consistently putting out your signal for years.
If you know your voice, trust your voice, and consistently use your voice to share your message – people will start to take notice. And if they agree, they’ll keep paying attention.
But after three years of publishing, I realize I’ve underestimated the importance of quality over quantity.
I don’t know of a better method for finding your voice or building a publishing habit than just publishing consistently (if not constantly).
But that only gets you to a point.
As Marshall Goldsmith says, “What got you here won’t get you there.”
Think about your biggest, work-related goal(s) right now. Some goals I’d expect:
- More clients/customers
- Higher-paying clients/customers
- Earning more income
- More subscribers/viewers/listeners
Now let’s examine how you can most likely achieve those things:
- More clients/customers → Greater awareness
- Higher-paying clients/customers → Higher perceived value
- Earning more income → More clients OR higher paying clients
- More subscribers/viewers/listeners → Greater awareness OR higher perceived value
See how they are all related to two things?
- Greater awareness
- Higher perceived value
And if you dig even deeper…
You gain greater awareness when from people share your work with other people. You can only reach so many people as an individual – at some point, the work has to speak for itself and spread amongst strangers.
Higher perceived value comes from peoples’ belief in the value of your work.
So, at the end of the day, in order to create greater awareness or achieve higher perceived value, your work needs to be remarkable.
Remarkable sounds like one of the words that companies use to describe their products in ads – word like “superior” and “best” that no longer have a lot of meaning.
But remarkable is different.
Remarkable literally means to “be worthy of attention.” For something to be remarkable means that someone would be compelled to remark on it.
Making something remarkable means making something worth talking about.
In fact, by definition, we only talk about about remarkable things. By speaking about them, we inherently prove them to be remarkable.
OK – I’m putting aside the dictionary now.
That’s a REALLY high bar.
What was the last article, podcast, video, meme, product, or service that you were so impressed with that you couldn’t help but tell someone else?
If your work can’t meet that bar, your reach will be limited. Your potential will be capped.
If you can’t reach remarkability, you will have a tough time achieving any of the goals we listed out above; you’ll be limited to your own, first-degree reach.
You CAN’T get extraordinary results with ordinary work.
Only remarkable work stands out above the noise.
Only remarkable work has uncapped potential.
And there will always be someone else who is willing to go the extra mile, to create extraordinary work to get those extraordinary results.
So if you’re feeling stuck, in a rut, or like you’ve hit a ceiling – take a look at your output.
Is it remarkable?
And for an even more harsh, but useful test: did anyone remark on it?
If it isn’t remarkable, don’t expect remarkable results.
PS: Think about general “remarkability” as the average remarkability of everything you create. Being remarkable once isn’t enough – you need to deliver over the long-term.
PPS: This was inspired by my conversation with James Clear on Creative Elements. If you haven’t listened already, I highly recommend it.