Friday, October 17, 2008

Conferences Dissected

I attended two back-to-back seminars on the weekend and Jozef went to one – the first three day event was called "Silent Killer: Three Masters of Cashflow Super Conference" and the second one was the "Big Mouth, Big Money" speaking seminar, which were produced by Mal Emery, Australia's answer (according to his website) to Napoleon Hill, author of the famous motivational tome Think and Grow Rich!  Now Jozef and I are not seminar junkies by any means but we do believe we/you need to accumulate knowledge and add to our/your repertoire of skills in order to keep evolving personally and in business. I for one am great at planning and admin, am good at my craft, but I suck ('scuse the language) as many other creatives do at money matters, which is why I thought it would be good for me to learn more about passive income streams. Turns out the five days were well worth the investment in time and money – our heads were spinning with the possibilities once the training was over and with marketing ideas to integrate into Black Mermaid Productions'™ short term and long term business plan.  The introduction to the concept of passive income was by far the most eye-opening – there are so many internet marketing opportunities, systems and tools that it shatters the traditional paradigm of having to leverage time to earn a living. Many of the presenters were making upwards of $50,000 per month just by working two hours a day. The actual shift in awareness at least for me was in identifying some of these strategies as the perfect solutions for people working in the arts who are forced to compromise and take on mundane part-time or full-time work to finance their passion – whether that be writing, art, acting, music or other. What can happen now is that by shifting one's mind-set and focusing on a particular strategy such as ebooks, ebay, or developing and marketing an information product or service, artists can work from home for a few hours a day, get some cash flow happening, and then invest the majority of their time doing the thing they love most.

The two day speaking event was a revelation as well. The two key speakers were the classy and talented Mississippi-grown John Childers who I had mentioned in a previous post, as well as the complex and multi-layered Joel Bauer who is one of the most extraordinary showmen and speakers we have ever come across. 

I have always wondered what it is about Americans that makes them so articulate and a few years ago that question was partly answered by a well-travelled Australian teacher who I had been interviewing for a book I was writing. She said she was convinced that Americans spoke so beautifully because they had been trained from childhood to present speeches and show-and-tells from the podium to the rest of their class, so much so that it became second nature for them to sell themselves and their message with great passion and finely selected, honed and expressed words. 

Joel Bauer, has elevated speaking to an artform and in my estimation is quite frankly a genius. He understands neurology, he understands pitch and voice control, he provides amazing content, he understands linguistics and acting and entertaining, he understands psychology and human behaviour and the subtleties of the conscious and subconscious minds. Jozef and I were positively in raptures by the end of the event and we truly understood and appreciated the power of language and emotion to stir and captivate the soul. We were aware of how we were being seduced but we surrendered to the experience because these kinds of moments are rare and they can change you overnight and crash through personal barriers to take you to a new level. 

So here are some YouTube clips for you to have a look at to give you a taste of what we had, which is still resonating within us. 

And by the way all you comic book professionals .... boys, if you want to increase sales then wear a black suit, white shirt and pink tie. And girls, the instructions are similar for you – black suit (skirt not trousers) and pink shirt. That is the colour combination that most people trust.

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