As an entrepreneur you are highly motivated, have lots of productive energy and crave anything which promises to make you stronger, faster or better in business.
You can also wear many hats and have your fingers across many pies. All of these things make you great at what you do – but they also make you extremely vulnerable to Shiny Object Syndrome (SOS).
In the internet world, ‘shiny objects’ are not literally shiny, but they promise so much and are just as distracting as a shiny bauble is to a young child. The result is an instant fascination and obsession.
Some examples include apps, gadgets, social platforms, tactics and even the advice of some coaches and gurus.
Your natural inclination to seek out and test anything new can cause you to start project after project and make change after change without ever settling on one option.
Unfortunately, we see a lot of people with this syndrome. They work themselves and their business into a frantic fever – only to end up drained, both financially and emotionally.
Despite this, most don’t even realize it! The syndrome keeps their focus on finding the next shiny silver bullet for all their problems.
Symptoms of Shiny Object Syndrome
In case you fear you might be one of the unsuspecting sufferers, here is a list of the most common symptoms of Shiny Object Syndrome.
• A pile of half-finished projects
You get excited about new ideas and projects and get off to a flying start but because you never took the time to think it through properly, you hit a wall and lose interest. Now all you see when you look at this once shiny thing, is how inadequate and problematic it has become, and it makes you want to move on.
• A Patchwork of tactics without strategy
When thinking about your sales and marketing, what do you picture in your mind? Do you think about the big picture and how everything connects? Or is your imagination fully consumed by the bells and whistles on just one tiny part?
If you are more focused on how many likes your Facebook post received, than how your sales pipeline looks, then you likely have SOS.
• Constantly switching coaches and courses
Many people with SOS are constantly changing coaches and courses – because they have a serious Fear of Missing Out. They are always coming across something which promises to be better than the one before.
With all this conflicting information, even though they follow ALL the advice, they get little to no results because their marketing is a hodgepodge of different approaches and tactics.
• Do you have trouble saying ‘No’?
A simple giveaway tell for those with SOS is that they can’t seem to say no. They are always up for almost any offer which promises to give THE ANSWER they are seeking.
• Not gaining traction
All the symptoms listed above mean that SOS cripples highly productive people and grounds them. No matter what they do they can’t progress or gain traction in their business. They feel like they are spinning their wheels and getting nowhere.
• Burning through cash
Another telltale sign of SOS is that those affected by SOS can be burning through their cash and not getting any return on their investment. Or worse, they are spending it quicker than they can replace it.
The Cure for Shiny Object Syndrome
Before you go chasing any new thing or make any changes, first focus on the fundamentals – your customers, your products/services, your marketing, and your sales process.
If any of these are out of alignment with each other, then it will be extremely difficult to move the needle in your business even if you have what you believe must be a silver bullet.
Ask yourself the following questions;
1. Who is the small fraction of my market who are most receptive to what I have to offer them?
2. How good a job am I doing at speaking in their language and building relationships with them?
3. Once I have their attention, do I strike the right balance between providing them value upfront and selling?
4. Are my products and offers priced, designed and delivered in a way that is most appealing to them?
5. Do I have full visibility of my customer’s journey from start to finish and all the touchpoints along the way?
6. Do I have clearly measurable short term and long-term goals and a well thought out, realistic strategy to achieve this?
7. Do I have a way of measuring, benchmarking and forecasting my sales and marketing performance against these goals?
8. Is my technology as smart and my strategy? Does it do everything I need it to do and connect information between all the different customer touchpoints?
If you answered ‘no’ or ‘I am unsure’ to any of these questions, then its time to return to the drawing board and do your homework. But don’t worry, you don’t have to do it alone.
Join our invite-only Know-Like-Trust Facebook Group where you can ask questions and get support from us, and the community of marketers and entrepreneurs – as well be the first to receive exclusive content.
We hope to see you there! Until then, please keep your gaze away from tempting shiny objects.