One of my core values is radical giving. This isn’t about giving to get something back or giving as a tactic. It’s about giving to the point that the act of giving brings you joy.
Radical giving is a concept that people need to be convinced of, but if you try to develop this mindset, it’s going to have a huge impact on your business, your life, and everything you do.
Candidly, I didn’t always have this mindset of radical giving. In fact, I even practiced wrong ways of giving in the past.
But fortunately, my understanding of radical giving has grown. I want to share more about this process you you know where I’m coming from when I say that you (and I) probably need to give more.
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When I Gave Out Of Fear
When I had my first launch as an online entrepreneur in 2017, I didn’t make any sales other than the one that resulted in a refund. In short, my launch flopped, and I lost about $30,000. I was pretty much in the dumps by the end of the year.
Then on New Year’s Eve, while sitting in church, I heard the pastor talk about the power of giving. Something about it resonated with me and so when we were told to choose our words for the coming year, I decided that mine would be “giving” and “gratitude.”
Because my word for 2018 was “giving,” my first attempt at practicing it in my business was through a concept called “Pay What You Want.” The idea behind it was that I was going to run a series of workshops on the legal stuff for entrepreneurs and let the participants decide how much they would pay me. I think they could pick zero or any amount.
The problem was that it didn’t work. I wasn’t doing it to give. Candidly, I was doing it because I was afraid to ask people for money. I was afraid to say, “My product is worth X. Please pay me that amount of money.”
And so, telling people to pay me what they want was not coming from a place of giving. It was coming from a place of fear.
When I Gave Like Crazy
When I began joining entrepreneurial Facebook groups in the spring of 2018, I decided that I’d be a crazy giver.
I created freebies for the people in these communities who were all online entrepreneurs, my target audience. I created free guides without a call to action or a link to me. I just gave of myself, my knowledge, repeatedly in the group.
Then I started my own group around the time the GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) rules from the European Union were causing concern. Since I’m a lawyer, people in the group kept asking me about it and how they could comply with the regulations.
At first, I thought I would just look for training materials already available and just send these out to the group, but when I watched a bunch of the videos online, they all sucked.
I decided that I’d create my own training and just give it to people in the group for free.
People who were coaches and mentors, like Amy Porterfield, heard that I was giving this training material for free. Suddenly, I was being asked to be on podcasts to talk about the GDPR, and people were coming to me for training about GDPR.
That’s when things started to change for my business. I had a launch in May 2018 and all of the people who had seen me giving away my knowledge and time bought from me. My business expanded like crazy.
That sealed the deal for me. Nowadays, my mastermind peers, my wife, and my team all tell me to “give less” because they all think I’m giving away too much. I keep fighting them on this because I’ve set my mind on being a radical giver.
The Elements Of Radical Giving
Let’s talk about the different elements of giving.
Give Without Expectations
The first element of radical giving is that it has to be non-expectant. This can be hard to get your mind around because people usually give in order to serve their business interests.
Here’s the thing. If you’re giving to get something back, it won’t work. Radical giving isn’t a tactic.
You have to be giving because you get to the point that the act of giving brings you joy, and that’s why you’re doing it.
You’re happy to give even though you know that 99 percent of the people that you give to will never buy from you. You have to get to that point, and you have to get to the point that you honestly feel joy in the act of giving. And this is the hardest piece of radical giving.
Giving Should Be Joyful
The second element of radical giving is that it needs to be joyful. It’s not only you who must be joyful, but you also must feel this joyfulness in the other person.
The best analogy I can give is the joy on the face of kids when you give them something. For example, I feel joy when I give my daughter a gift and see the excitement in her face.
It doesn’t matter whether they’re still on my email list or whether they bought from me or not. What matters to me is that I got to help 6,000 people build their businesses. That brings me joy.
What I hope for is that when people see the joy that I have from helping them in their business, they’re going to feel connected to me.
Give Something That’s Actually Valuable
The third element of radical giving is that what you give has to actually be valuable. You should give away your best stuff. You can’t go looking around for what you have that no one really cares about and give that one away.
When you actually give some of your best information away, when you give things that either you have charged for in the past or that you would charge for, or that your competitors charge for, that’s when it’s radical giving.
I’m not suggesting that if you literally have one trade secret that makes all the difference for what you teach, you have to give that away.
What I’m talking about is you don’t come at giving from the perspective of, “Am I giving too much?” You should come at it from the perspective of, “Could I give more?“
If you shift the way you think about it, you will start to give away more of your best stuff. And guess what? It doesn’t prevent people from buying from you.
Sure, there will be people who will no longer buy after they get your freebie, but you will attract so many more people who will say, “Because of that, I want to buy from you. Because you’re willing to do that, I’m going to buy from you.” That will offset people who leave because you “gave away too much for free.”
How To Implement Radical Giving
How do you implement radical giving into your business? Well, there are right ways and wrong ways.
Give your time to your audience
This is what I did in Facebook groups. I become a super helpful resource in communities because I gave them my time.
It doesn’t mean that every time someone asks to pick your brain, you say “Yes,” but it means that you don’t automatically say, “No, not unless you’re going to pay me.”
Giving time to people also means that when you see someone in your community who is in pain, you are actually willing to put in the time to help them.
Give your knowledge
Share the information you have that can help people. Yes, you can do this without cannibalizing your product.
That’s what happened to me when I started. I was helping people with legal stuff, but I was also helping people with marketing stuff because I had marketing knowledge.
Because I had been doing this for a while, I understood funnels, inbound marketing, content marketing, and all those things. I could answer questions, so I did, and I gave away that knowledge. And guess what? That made people take note and say, “Man, this guy is helpful.”
Send people to competitors from time to time
This way of implementing radical giving is something that blows people away—sending people to competitors when they’re not the right fit for you.
For example, when I’ve had people ask me very specific questions about health coaching, I tell them, “Don’t go to me. Go to Lisa Fraley.”
Lisa Fraley is another attorney in the online space. She’s a certified coach who used to work as a health care lawyer. I tell people to go to her instead of me because she’s going to know a lot more than me in that area.
People think it’s crazy that I would do that, but I don’t care about that. I’m doing it because I believe that she can serve my audience better than I can about their health coaching questions.
Radical Giving Helps Build A Business Over The Long Term
Radical giving is not about short-term gains. It’s about building a business over the long term. Like you, I don’t want a business that’s going to be successful for a year. I want a business that will be here for a decade or decades more.
My view is that when you adopt this radical giving perspective, it can lead to monumental shifts for you.
When you’re a radical giver, you will have radical fans. These are the people who will stand up and shout down trolls who say mean things about you. They’re the people who are going to say, I don’t care what you’ve got to sell, but I’m going to buy it because I know your heart.
Your radical fans are the people who will go out and tell everybody that they should buy whatever it is you sell. They become your brand advocates and promoters.
These are the kinds of fans that will build your business over the long term. And the way to build that kind of loyalty is by being a radical giver.
Become A Radical Giver
If you want to build a business that will be here for the long term, one of the most important things you can do is decide to become a radical giver.
Notice that I didn’t say “to give,” but I said, “become a radical giver.” It’s about who you are. It’s about changing your identity.
I know that a lot of people are going to say, “That Bobby guy? He’s nuts. I’m not giving away my best stuff.”
If that’s you, I would encourage you to give being a radical giver a try because when you make this shift, it will be huge for your business, for your life, for everything.
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