So I just read an amazing book called Zero To One by Peter Thiel. He’s the billionaire who started Paypal and I wanted to talk about a few things he mentions in this book and how it relates to your speaking business.
I don’t know about you, but when a billionaire talks about business, I listen. And more importantly, I figure out how I can take that information and apply it to what I’m doing.
One of the first things he says in the book is this…
“Every moment in business happens only once. The next Bill Gates will not build an operating system. The next Larry Page or Sergey Brin won’t make a search engine. And the next Mark Zuckerberg won’t create a social network. If you are copying these guys, you aren’t learning from them.”
I thought that was great because it’s so true.
Lots of speakers are trying to copy Tony Robbins, Brian Tracy, Les Brown, or whoever you know about…or whoever you’re learning from. Speakers are trying to learn exactly what the other guy did and they want to copy it but it’s impossible.
Tony Robbins built his business because he met these guys who helped him create his infomercial…they put up all the money and he was the guy in front of the camera. Nowadays, creating an infomercial costs too much so you can’t blow up out of nowhere like Tony Robbins.
There’s another motivational speaker named Brendon Burchard. Lots of speakers try to copy him but he got big time because he met a few top notch internet marketers who promoted him. These were internet marketers with lists of 100,000 people or more saying, “Hey buy this guy’s stuff.”
So unless you can meet these top internet marketers or create an infomercial, you can’t copy what they did.
The way you’re going to learn from them isn’t to say, “Ok let me just duplicate what they did.”
You learn from them by looking at Tony Robbins and seeing what really made him successful. What really made him successful was his level of commitment…the fire in his eyes. He was so committed to making it work that it happened.
Brendon Burchard was able to build relationships with the top internet marketers in the industry. So you might want to learn how to build great relationships like him.
You can’t copy them, you can only learn what made them a certain way…don’t copy the tactic, pay attention to their psychology.
Another part to this that I want to mention is Peter Thiel’s quote where he says…
“Successful people find value in unexpected places, and they do this by thinking about business from first principles instead of formulas.”
Now what does he mean by that?
Well I mentioned this in a couple of other videos before…
What he’s saying is that there’s no such thing as a formula for success. You get this a lot from seminar people. They say that if you follow their formula then you’re going to build a successful business just like them.
But there’s no such thing.
A real formula means that if you follow it, you get the same results. There’s no deviation from it.
Coca-Cola has a formula for their drink and when you follow it, you get the exact taste…no matter how many times you try it. Scientists do all kinds of experiments and when you follow their steps, you get the exact same results as they do.
But that doesn’t happen in business.
There’s no such thing as a formula, only principles.
If there was a formula for success then that would mean EVERYONE who followed it would succeed. And if a billionaire, who specializes in building business, hasn’t found a formula for making a business successful then it’s not as easy as the seminar gurus make it sound.
The worst part is that you’re learning from people who are successful and they’re telling you that there’s a formula out there. They’re telling you that if you follow what they say then you’re going to get the same results. And you think to yourself, “Well, he’s pretty successful so it must work.”
And then you buy their product.
I know there are several well-known speakers out there with a speaker training program who tell you that if you join their program then you’re going to be as successful as them. And it’s coming from very well known guys so you know they’re making money.
The problem is that there’s no such thing as a formula. If there was, then that means EVERYONE who joined their program would become as successful as them…but that never happens.
The way you’re going to make things work is to go in with the mindset of learning from principles. So you think about how you’re going to fully commitment, how you’re going to make a schedule to market yourself and stick to it. You think about the principles of your speaking business rather than trying to copy what they did.
Now one thing Peter Thiel really goes into detail about is why you need to create a monopoly. Basically, when you have competition, you don’t have profits because everyone lowers their price, they make small improvements that aren’t game changers, and all kinds of things.
And when he says, ‘Monopoly’…what he means is that you build a company that’s so good at what it does that others can’t compete. You’re just so good that nobody can offer a substitue to what you’re doing.
And he says that the way you create a monopoly is to solve a unique problem.
Google solves a unique problem with the search engine. Search engines gave horrible results before Google. And when they solved the problem, they did it in such a way that it changed the search industry forever.
Peter Thiel says that a true monopoly is 10x better than anything that even resembles it.
Now he also mentions that it’s really hard to create a monopoly with a service business.
But as a speaker, you still want to really think about what he’s saying. Most speakers just think about the message they want to deliver. They have a message that they say will help change people’s lives…but so does everyone else.
Almost every speaker is the exact same and that’s because it’s really hard to be so different when it comes to the speaking business…so we’re all kind of starting off on the wrong foundation…but the principle still stands.
Think about how you can be 10x better than anyone around you.