image by lastonein
It’s amazing how the simple act of standing for something can have a polarizing effect on your business. Earlier this week I sent out the regular newsletter and the you-know-what hit the fan. It kinda took me by surprise. I wasn’t being controversial on purpose – just being me.
In the newsletter I talked about how I’ve been feeling a little overwhelmed as of late. Too many projects, and not enough return on those projects. So I decided to take some time away and put some thought into it. Here’s the paragraph that caused the firestorm:
I spent a few days in prayer and scripture study and came out with the revelation that I needed to follow spiritual promptings for my life and work’s direction, not just unthinkingly continuing to flail about.
Immediately after sending out this email, I got feedback. Most of it positive. Artists were saying things like, “I’m so glad you’re a Christian” or “I’m so glad that you listen to spiritual promptings.”
Then I got more unsubscribe notices than I’ve ever had in a single mailing (nearly 2%). People who don’t like religion, I suppose. Or at least don’t like me talking about religious things. It’s the first time I’ve done it on TheAbundantArtist.com – though certainly not the first time I’ve done so on the Internet.
Standing Up Gets Respect
Funny thing is, I checked my mailing list this morning and enough people signed up in 24 hours that it actually made up for that rash of unsubscribes. Apparently stating your beliefs earns you enough credit that people will sign up to hear what you have to say in the future.
Here’s the other thing, and I think this is really important. The people who sent me positive feedback? Several of them were artists who have either purchased coaching or joined the Abundant Artist Community. The ones who unsubscribed? They had never paid me for anything. If I had to make a prediction, I’d guess that they never would have.
I make my living doing this. It’s an interesting observation that those who have skin in the game will commit and be supportive, while those who don’t are far less likely to do so.
I’ll be the first to say that I didn’t really stand up and make a bunch of noise about something controversial. All I did was mention, in a passing way, what helps me get through life. People care about that stuff, though. It gets people interested. Now, I would never use my religion to sell something – I think that’s wrong on so many levels. What I won’t do is shy away from saying how I feel and what makes me tick.
The people and customers that I want to connect with will respect that. The same goes for you. Never shy away from making the art that is true to you. Never shy away from sharing the causes that you’re involved in. People will support you – and if you find that there’s not a lot of support in your life right now, it may be that you’re not connecting with the right people. Go find some new ones.