[Checklist] Top 10 Questions to Ask Before You Actually Press Publish

[Checklist] Ten Questions to Ask Before You Decide to Press Publish
 
 

You’ve got your killer article all set and ready to go – excellent! Time to set it live and reap the rewards, scouring the comments section of the weblog post for feedback. Prepare for fame, fortune and also the first 5 comments to point out each and every flaw. To help counter this possibility we have three magic words for you; content marketing checklist.

 

http://www.interviewdestroyer.com/2016/01/checklist-top-10-questions-to-ask.html

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[Checklist] Top 10 Inquiries to Ask Before You Actually Press Publish

[Checklist] 10 Questions to Ask Before You Decide to Press Publish
 
 

You have got your killer article all set and ready to go – excellent! Time to set it live and reap the rewards, scouring the comments section of your blog post for feedback. Prepare for fame, fortune and also the initial 5 comments to point out each and every flaw. To help counter this possibility we have three magic words for you; content marketing checklist.

 

http://freetrafficwiz.com/?p=2442

Get More From Landing Pages: 6 Ways to Use Them More Effectively

 

landing page

 

It’s the aim of most marketing and sales efforts:

 

Conversion.

 

All your work is designed to get visitors, leads, and even customers to take the next step.

 

Getting them more involved with your brand and products is necessary to drive sales.

 

There are obviously many ways of doing this. Blog posts, emails, e-books, and more.

 

But there’s one option that is almost always better at converting traffic to the next step:

 

Landing pages.

 

A landing page has a single goal, which you define. It might be to sign up to an email list, buy a product, or create an account for your site. 

 

Everything on the page is focused on achieving that goal, which is why they are more effective than other types of content.

 

But the term landing page is still pretty broad.

 

There are actually many different types of landing pages—each is ideal for a different situation in a different business.

 

If you understand what each type of landing page consists of, why it’s effective in specific situations, and how to make them, you’ll be able to use the right landing page for the right job.

 

And that’s exactly what I’m going to show you.

 

By the end of this post, you’ll know what the 6 highest converting landing pages are, when to use them, and how to make them.

 

1. Product not quite ready? Use a “Coming soon” landing page

 

One big mistake that you can make is to not promote a product ahead of time.

 

Just because a product isn’t fully developed doesn’t mean that people wouldn’t want to hear about it and get notified when it’s ready.

 

If your product presents a unique solution, your target audience is going to do whatever they can to get their hands on it, whether it’s now or in the near future.

 

Now, if you promote a product before it’s ready, you can’t send people to a sales page that doesn’t exist.

 

Instead, you should send them to a “coming soon” landing page.

 

These are becoming increasingly popular as companies recognize how effective they can be.

 

Essentially, you want to create a simple landing page that makes it clear that the product is coming soon and that allows the visitor to opt in to get updates on the product.

 

image12

 

This way, the marketing team isn’t just twiddling their thumbs while the product guys are at work.

 

Additionally, this type of landing page gives you really good validation.

 

If you’re getting terrible conversion rates from targeted traffic, then no one is interested in the product. You can save yourself a lot of time and money by either scrapping the product or taking it in a different direction.

 

The other benefit is a bit more obvious: you have a list of qualified leads.

 

When you do launch your product, it won’t be to an empty room. You can get your first wave of orders almost immediately, which will give you the feedback you need to refine the product.

 

Keys to an effective “coming soon” page: This type of landing page isn’t terribly difficult to create, but you still need to make sure you include all the most important elements.

 

I’m about to go over all the elements with you. They should all be included when possible, although not in any specific order.

 

First is the product itself. Visitors need to know what the page is about. In the example above, the product is mentioned “briefly” in the second largest line. It doesn’t need to be huge, but visitors should understand that you’re developing an actual product.

 

Next, make it clear that the product isn’t ready. This should be one of the largest parts of the page.

 

On top of that, you need to specify when the product will be ready.

 

If you’re not sure, you can be a bit vague and say something like “coming Winter 2016.” However, it’s better to get specific when possible. If you can, add a countdown to the page:

 

image04

 

Finally, it’s absolutely crucial that you clearly sum up what your product has to offer.

 

In one or two sentences, describe what your product is and how it can help your target audience. This should be one of the main focal points on the page.

 

For example, on the coming soon page you see below, it’s clear that “shopidex” is a community specifically created for small business owners looking for growth.

 

image09

 

Visitors know whether they are in that target market and can easily decide whether they’re interested in that type of product.

 

You can expand past those few sentences if you like, but you don’t have to unless you have a rather complex product.

 

Finally, you need an opt-in, and you should also make it clear what your visitors are opting in for, e.g., “enter your email to be notified when the product is ready.”

 

Tools to help you make a “coming soon” page easily: While “coming soon” pages are simple enough that they could be built from scratch, you really don’t need to.

 

There are many tools that have these types of templates. You simply click on the “coming soon” template, then click on each piece of text, and edit it however you like.

 

One option is Kickoff Labs, which has 20 different themes for “coming soon” pages. It isn’t free, however:

 

image08

 

Perhaps the most popular landing page creator is Unbounce, and they have a decent selection of attractive “coming soon” page templates:

 

image03

 

Again, it’s not a free tool, but it’s easily worth the money if you regularly create landing pages.

 

Another solid option is Lander, which has a good collection of “coming soon” templates.

 

image16

 

The tool you use doesn’t really matter as long as you understand the principles we went over in this section.

 

2. How to incorporate video into an effective landing page

 

If you have a unique and potentially complex product, it can be hard to convey everything within a short page.

 

One great option is to include a video on the landing page and make it the primary element. You can still have text explaining the product and its benefits, but that’s included afterwards.

 

Here’s an example of this type of landing page on Crazy Egg:

 

image06

 

The video is the sole focus of the page. You could have text beside it as well, and even a button, but the video should stand out so that visitors understand that they should watch it.

 

Components of an effective explainer video: Videos can be a great tool on landing pages because very few people will scroll down a long page of text. However, a large percentage of them will watch a 1-2 minute video.

 

It also makes it difficult for them to skip past an important point by accident as you usually have their full attention as they watch.

 

But putting up just any video obviously isn’t enough.

 

A bad video will result in a bad conversion rate, just as a great video will result in a great conversion rate.

 

There are two main aspects of an effective video that you need to try to achieve.

 

The first is quality.

 

Videos have come a long way in recent years, and viewers expect professionally made videos.

 

This means:

 
 
    • no blurriness
 
    • good lighting
 
    • no background noises or echoes
 
    • no stuttering or unclear speech
 
 

on top of other things.

 

Unless you happen to have the knowledge and experience to produce a video like that, you’re going to need professional help (more on that in a minute).

 

The second main aspect is a compelling story.

 

People associate videos with entertainment. You have 1 or 2 minutes to tell a short, compelling story about why your product is important and why it’s awesome.

 

It doesn’t need to be complex, but you want to introduce your product, highlight the most important features, and show all the ways the viewer could benefit from them.

 

If you feel like you struggle with this aspect of videos, read these articles I’ve written in the past:

 
 
 
 
 
 

4 steps to create an explainer video: If you’re still with me, you probably have a good idea in mind for using a video on a landing page.

 

All that remains is to know exactly what to do to actually make one.

 

Step 1 is to decide on a budget. Quality videos often cost more than $1,000 per minute of video.

 

Remember that quality always comes first, so if you have a limited budget, make your video shorter instead of cutting corners on the creation.

 

Step 2 then, of course, is to hire a freelance explainer video creator. You can find these on any major freelance site (like Upwork or Freelancer) just by searching for keywords such as “explainer video” or “product video”:

 

image00

 

Again, you typically get what you pay for. Don’t cheap out unless you have no other options.

 

Alternatively, you can use a specialized marketplace for video creators like Video Brewery.

 

Step 3 is to work with your freelancer to develop a video outline and script. You could do this yourself to save a bit of money if needed.

 

image01

 

Step 4 is to simply wait for your freelancer to create the video, give them feedback for edits, and then publish the video.

 

If you’ve never created a video, this might seem overwhelming. Just break it down into small steps, and you’ll see that it’s fairly easy.

 

3. Selling a complex product? Highlight its features

 

If you have a complex product, creating a video is one way to convey all its features.

 

However, there are drawbacks of videos. For one, they are much harder to edit than text and images.

 

Second, not everyone likes video. Those people would rather read, so it almost always makes sense to have text on the page anyway.

 

Finally, Google can’t index videos well, so if you want your landing page to rank for any terms in the search engine, you’d better have a decent amount of text.

 

If you have a product with complex features, you’re not just solving one problem—you are solving many with your product.

 

There’s no way to concisely explain all those benefits in a few sentences.

 

If you try to, you might end up confusing visitors who are looking for one specific solution that your product provides, but not the others.

 

So, what’s the solution?

 

It’s to create sections on your landing page, one for each main feature.

 

The order is important. You want to order them from most commonly sought after to least sought after.

 

Here’s what I’m talking about: Aweber landing page has clear sections (with differently colored backgrounds) for different purposes.

 

The top section focuses on the 3 main components of Aweber’s software (they jump out in blue bolded text):

 

image13

 

The next section has a testimonial.

 

The page continues on, and you go through a few more sections that highlight different features and benefits of the product.

 

For example, further down is a section that highlights how easy it is to integrate the product with other popular applications:

 

image15

 

You don’t necessarily have to have differently colored backgrounds, but there should be clear divides for each section.

 

Explain each feature in plain language: One important aspect of creating a section for all the features of your product that is often ignored is the language you use.

 

It’s not enough to simply list the feature; you need to describe it in simple terms—those that your customers would use themselves.

 

Despite having a huge customer base and complex products, Hubspot still does a fantastic job of this.

 

Look at this example from one of their landing pages for their Sidekick tool:

 

image11

 

In particular, notice how clear each section is.

 

From the text color and size to the images and center dots, it’s clear where each section begins and ends.

 

Then, look at the language they use.

 

For example:

 

Sidekick shows you relevant details about your contacts…email opens, links to social profiles, and more.

 

Many companies would have written something like this instead:

 

Sidekick shows you insights into your customers’ web presence. Improve your demographic information collection and message targeting easily.

 

I would bet quite a bit of money that you’ve read something like that on a landing page before.

 

It leaves you scratching your head, saying “huh?”

 

While making your product sound complicated might seem like a good way to justify its cost, using vague, high-level language actually has the opposite effect.

 

Use simple and concise language, similar to your audience’s.

 

4. Stop selling to cold traffic, and use a lead generating landing page instead

 

Remember that landing pages can be used in almost every step of your sales funnel.

 

They are optimized for conversions…of any kind.

 

But in order for them to work effectively, your landing page visitors need to be in the right place in the buying process.

 

image10

 

Even the best landing page is going to struggle to sell a product if the visitor has never heard of it or your brand.

 

However, that very same landing page could have an amazing conversion rate when the visitors already know and like your brand. It could be even better if they’re really struggling with the problem your product solves.

 

Those people who’ve never heard of you, your product, or your website are called “cold traffic.”

 

The others, with whom you’ve touched base before are considered “warm traffic” and are much more likely to convert.

 

Is this really a landing page problem?

 

While at first it might seem like a traffic problem, it is a problem that can be solved with landing pages.

 

Instead of sending cold traffic directly to one of your landing pages that sells a product, you send them to an earlier in your sales funnel landing page.

 

Forget about asking them to do something big like pull out their wallets to buy something. Let’s get them on an email list first.

 

Once you get them to subscribe, you can start sending them emails and building a relationship. And eventually, you send them to that product landing page.

 

Starting your sales funnel with a landing page: A large percentage of highly successful businesses use this strategy. I urge you to consider it.

 

For example, Unbounce is arguably the biggest provider of landing page creation tools there is. They’ve done extensive testing to ensure that their landing pages have the lowest bounce rate possible (and highest conversion rate).

 

That applies to their templates for sale as well as to their own landing pages. Here’s an example of one:

 

image14

 

Notice how they focus you on the page to get you to give them your email address in exchange for their email course.

 

They make it difficult to even find the pricing page on this landing page because they don’t want their cold traffic to do anything else but to join an email list.

 

Unlike on a blog, where the value you provide through free content might be enough to get someone to sign up for an email list, cold traffic to a landing page needs an incentive.

 

As you might know, the incentive is called a lead magnet.

 

The more enticing the lead magnet is, the higher your opt-in rate will be.

 

If you have a great offer and send the right type of traffic to a landing page with a lead magnet, it’s possible to achieve conversion rates of over 50%.

 

The 3 keys to an effective lead magnet: Creating an appealing lead magnet isn’t easy, but it’s not difficult either.

 

It requires understanding of the three key factors that affect your conversion rate.

 

The first factor is relevance.

 

There are two components of relevance. The obvious one is that your offer has to be relevant to your traffic’s interests.

 

So, if your target audience consists of dog lovers, your lead magnet should be something like a book about dogs, not cats.

 

But your lead magnet should also be relevant to your audience’s problems.

 

If many of your visitors are struggling to find good ways to play with their dogs, you might offer an e-book like “5 Ways to Play With Your Dog More Efficiently.”

 

Compare that to an e-book along the lines of “25 Awesome Dog Names.” While it’s about dogs, which is relevant, it’s not relevant to any of that audience’s problems.

 

The second factor is related to relevance, and it’s value.

 

It’s very simple:

 

The more someone values your lead magnet, the more likely they are to opt in to your email list.

 

A 10% off coupon is more appealing than a 5% off coupon.

 

An e-book with 10 ways to play more efficiently with your dog is more valuable than one with only 5 ways.

 

Additionally, if your lead magnet solves a pressing problem of a visitor, they will put a lot more value on it, which is why relevance is also important.

 

Finally, the third factor is feasibility.

 

Remember that we can’t directly ask cold traffic to buy something because it’s asking too much too soon.

 

For the same reason, you don’t want to overwhelm those visitors with a huge lead magnet.

 

Imagine you offered this email course: “A 52-Week Course to Dog Training Master”.

 

While that would have more value than a 10-week course, it also doesn’t seem feasible to most visitors—it’s too much.

 

So, while you want to provide as much value as you can, there’s a certain point where the extra value becomes too much work for your visitors.

 

Find the balance between too much and too little value.

 

If you understand those three factors, you’re ready for my step-by-step guide to creating amazing lead magnets.

 

5. Focus on the problem you solve before introducing the product

 

I know you love your product, but sometimes, your customers don’t.

 

So far, we’ve looked at landing pages that focused on communicating the features and benefits of products.

 

Sometimes, however, they aren’t the most important thing.

 

For simple problems, customers already know exactly what they’re trying to find.

 

If you sell a product to such customers, you need to take a different approach.

 

On your landing page, you should have very clear, simple text as the focal point:

 

image02

 

That main text should describe the product the visitor is looking for.

 

Let’s say that a visitor knows they need an affordable shag carpet.

 

Instead of focusing immediately on the quality of your carpets such as the perfect softness, size, and all other sorts of things, you state the obvious:

 

Affordable shag carpets for any home.

 

Below that, you can add another sentence of your product’s best feature(s). Maybe the carpets are made with a special material that your customers might appreciate, etc.

 

The key here is that they care about finding the exact product they have in their mind first, before even considering the features.

 

The 2 most important parts of this type of landing page:  If you have a simple product that is suitable for this type of landing page, there are two keys to maximizing your conversion rate.

 

The first is your main statement, which is typically made as a headline across the middle.

 

The worst thing you can do is get clever.

 

State what your product does and offers in one concise sentence so that visitors know that they’re in the right place. Just like we did above.

 

The second key is having a good call to action.

 

The call to action is usually placed in some sort of button that you want the visitor to click. It then takes them to a sales page or some other landing page to learn more about your product.

 

Your button can potentially say a lot of different things:

 

image05

 

You can improve the effectiveness of your calls to action by using language that describes an action.

 

Instead of the common calls to action, like:

 
 
    • Learn more
 
    • Download
 
    • Buy this
 
 

create more specific calls to action for your product. If your product is a dog training manual, you could try:

 
 
    • I want my dog to listen!
 
    • I’m sick of disobedience
 
    • Download my dog training solution
 
 

To make it even more effective, apply urgency by adding a word like “today” or “now.”

 

Here is my complete guide to making your button calls to action more effective.

 

6. Let your visitor choose their own adventure

 

There’s one type of product that you might be selling that we haven’t talked about yet.

 

If you have a complex product, the other options we’ve looked at so far might not suit it.

 

Certain products have many different features, all of which could be their own products. Different customers might be interested in a specific feature and not care about the others.

 

If you use the other options we’ve looked at so far, you’ll be emphasizing certain features near the top of your landing page.

 

This is good for your potential customers who want that specific feature, but it will cause potential customers interested in other main features to lose interest and not convert well.

 

The solution is to give them a choice.

 

Instead of jumping right into a feature, you let your visitors choose what they’re interested in. Then, depending on the button or link they choose, you take them to a certain section of the page (or even to a different landing page).

 

Hubspot is a great example of this. They have a complex product that serves both marketers and salespeople. Each group is interested in different things.

 

On a Hubspot landing page, there’s a link to get more information on their marketing platform as well as their sales software:

 

image07

 

On top of that, they also offer a lead magnet, just in case any cold traffic finds their page.

 

When to use a “choose your own adventure” landing page: The main factor that will determine whether you should use this type of landing page is whether your traffic is comprised of different types of people.

 

Some products appeal to many different audiences, and those audiences need to be approached differently because they care about using your product in different ways.

 

Ideally, you’d send them to a landing page designed just for them, but that’s not always possible. That is when a “choose your own adventure” page is the next best option.

 

How to make your own adventure landing page: The great thing about this type of page is that it’s fairly easy to make. All you need are links to different landing pages or to content further down on your landing page.

 

If you need to implement the second option, it’s pretty simple.

 

There are two parts. The first is your anchor point, where the page will jump to when you click the link.

 

Put the anchor point on the heading of the section that you want someone to jump down to.

 

For example:

 

Hubspot for marketers

 

Then, go back up to where you’d like to place the link, but instead of putting an entire address in the link tag, type the “id” name that you specified after a hashtag when you created the anchor point.

 

Like this:

 

Learn how Hubspot helps marketers

 

Put that link in a button or panel near the top of the page, and the segment of visitors interested in those features can go right to them without getting confused.

 

Conclusion

 

Landing pages are an important tool that should be in every marketer’s arsenal.

 

But if you want to take full advantage of landing pages in your work, you need to use the right type for the situation.

 

I’ve shown you 6 of the highest converting types of landing pages, and you should now understand when to use them and why they work.

 

If you’re not sure whether a certain type of landing page is right for a situation you have, leave me a comment below describing the situation and your thoughts. I’ll try to steer you in the right direction.

 
 

 

5 research-backed tips for dealing with a narcissist

beach selfieDaniel Munoz/Stringer/Getty Images

You must be tired of them. They’re everywhere. Narcissists. And if you think there are more of them than ever, you’re right. Research shows we are experiencing a narcissism epidemic.

 

From The Narcissism Epidemic: Living in the Age of Entitlement:

 

In data from 37,000 college students, narcissistic personality traits rose just as fast as obesity from the 1980s to the present, with the shift especially pronounced for women. The rise in narcissism is accelerating, with scores rising faster in the 2000s than in previous decades.

 

Even music is getting more narcissistic. And what do most people on Twitter tweet about? Themselves, of course.

 

(And as for selfies… well, do I really need to link to any research about narcissism and selfies? No? Thank you.)

 

Now we all have a little narcissism in us and these days we have a lot more than we need around us.

 

Let’s learn more about what narcissism is, how to deal with narcissists — and even a bit about what to do if you feel you’re becoming one yourself.

 

You have entered the selfie-free zone. Let’s get to it …

 

What’s The Deal With Narcissism?

 

As Twenge and Campbell explain in The Narcissism Epidemic, it’s a myth that narcissism is just “high self-esteem” or that underneath it all narcissists are insecure and overcompensating.

 

Narcissists believe they really are that awesome — and you’re not. (The latter part doesn’t matter, narcissists don’t think about you much at all, frankly.)

 

How can you tell if someone is a narcissist? It’s easy; just ask them. Research shows narcissists feel so good about themselves they don’t mind admitting it.

 

And narcissism can be quite beneficial in the short term. They make fantastic first impressions. In job interviews and on first dates, narcissists get results. And in youth, being a narcissist makes you happier.

 

Narcissists are more likely to become leaders and narcissists who obsessively work hard are more likely to get promoted. But the stuff that works for them so well in the short term proves lethal in the long term.

 

That job interview is great but UPenn professor Scott Barry Kaufman explains that after three weeks people regard narcissists as untrustworthy. And narcissists might become leaders but they’re not good ones. And when prestige isn’t on the line, most narcissists don’t work that hard.

 

From The Narcissism Epidemic: Living in the Age of Entitlement:

 

…college students with inflated views of themselves (who think they are better than they actually are) make poorer grades the longer they are in college. They are also more likely to drop out. In another study, students who flunked an introductory psychology course had by far the highest narcissism scores, and those who made A’s had the lowest.

 

Awesome first date? Yeah, but relationship satisfaction with them shows a big decline after 4 months. As adults, narcissists aren’t happy. And if you’re around them, you won’t be either.

 

From The Narcissism Epidemic: Living in the Age of Entitlement:

 

A recent psychiatric study found that the biggest consequences of narcissism— especially when other psychiatric symptoms were held constant— was suffering by people close to them.

 

(To learn the four rituals neuroscience research says will make you happy, click here.)

 

So how do you deal with them? Here are 5 strategies from scientific research:

 

1. The Quick Answer: Don’t

 

I’m going to get grief for this being the first solution, but it is by far the best answer and one that we should all take to heart more often.

 

Narcissists lack empathy, they usually don’t work hard, and in a few weeks to a few months they make the people around them miserable. And narcissism is very hard to change. So, if at all possible, just stay away.

 

Some will say, “But I’m smarter than they are. I can change them!” Stop it, now you’re being narcissistic.

 

If you dig 80’s movies you might remember “War Games.” What did the computer realize about thermonuclear war? The only way to win was not to play.

 

What do rational people scream at the TV when watching haunted house movies? “GET OUT NOW!”

 

When there’s blood all over the living room, furniture is floating through the air and ghosts are speaking to you in Latin, smart people don’t prepare to battle the undead, they get out immediately and make an angry phone call to their realtor.

 

As MIT negotiation professor John Richardson says: never start with, “How do I make this deal?” Start with, “Should this deal be made?” With narcissists, the answer is usually no. It’s not worth it.

 

(To learn how to be happier and more successful without being a narcissist, click here.)

 

Okay, before the internet commenters tear me apart for the obvious answer of “Don’t deal with narcissists,” let’s move on.

 

There are plenty of times where we just don’t have a choice. You may have a narcissistic boss, co-worker or family member. Luckily, there are answers…

 

kim kardashian selfieDaniel Munoz/Stringer/Getty Images

 

2. Kiss Up Or Shut Up

 

Yeah, this isn’t a popular answer either. Sorry. But if you’re dealing with a narcissist and you’re in the less powerful position (like they’re your boss) there may not be a choice. At least not right now.

 

Clinical psychologist Al Bernstein recommends you kiss up to them or at least keep your mouth shut until you can get the heck out of there.

 

Via Am I The Only Sane One Working Here?: 101 Solutions for Surviving Office Insanity:

 

There is no way around this. If you want to communicate effectively with narcissists, you have to admire them, their achievements, and their toys as much as they do. Typically, this won’t require any great effort. They’ll be more than happy to come up with reasons to congratulate themselves. All you have to do is listen and look interested.

 

There’s this concept called “narcissistic injury.” Pointing out a narcissist isn’t all they think they are can be like pulling the pin on a grenade. A grenade you have to see every day of your life.

 

Realize that narcissism is an identity, just like religion or politics. When you argue about it, people don’t fold or change their minds — they just hate you. And narcissists are among the most vindictive people you’ll ever meet.

 

You might reply, “But I’m right about them!” You may very well be. But that only makes the situation worse. Burst their narcissistic bubble and you will pay. Dearly.

 

And if you’re in the lower-power position in this relationship, as with an employer, well, you may have found a way to get away from them… along with two weeks severance.

 

Reject them and they’ll freak out. Act weak and they’ll try to victimize you. Expose them and they’ll hate you forever. (Trust me, I’ve tested all these personally — and in a single conversation.) It’s just not worth it.

 

(To learn how to improve your self-esteem without becoming a narcissist, click here.)

 

Alright, here’s where the rubber meets the road. If you can’t get away from them, and they don’t have power over you, how do you deal with a narcissist?

 

3. Know What You Want And Get Payment Up Front

 

Don’t expect fairness. They’re just about themselves, right? Well, okay then. Know what you want. (They will, trust me.)

 

And then get them to pay up front with whatever it is you need before they get what they need. Al Bernstein explains:

 

Never extend credit to, or accept promises from, a narcissist. As soon as they get what they want, they will be on to the next thing, forgetting whatever they said they would do for you. Sometimes they make promises they don’t intend to keep, but just as often, they merely forget. Either way, you should keep a ledger in your mind and make sure you get what they dangle in front of you before you give them what they want. With other people, this mercenary approach might seem insulting. Narcissists will respect you for it. Everything in their world is quid pro quo. They will rarely be offended by people looking out for themselves.

 

Dealing with a narcissist regularly is like having a pet tiger: you always have to be careful that one day he’s gonna see you as dinner. But if you don’t have a choice, negotiate hard. This is nobody to be win-win with.

 

Always reward behavior, never words. They get what they want when they do what you want.

 

Now I’ve been very negative toward narcissists (understandably) but they can be worked with and can even be good employees. Yes, really.

 

Why? Because they want something. They really need to look good. And if you can align your desires with their desires, you may find yourself with an unstoppable achievement machine.

 

From The Narcissism Epidemic: Living in the Age of Entitlement:

 

One possibility is to set up a situation where acts of caring and kindness are aligned with admiration and success. In other words, show narcissists that they can get their narcissistic needs met by acting like decent, caring people.

 

Give them a way to be impressive if they do what they are told. This makes them much easier to deal with than lazy people, trust me. Just make sure you get what you want first.

 

(To learn how to negotiate from the FBI’s lead hostage negotiator, click here.)

 

But what if you’re not in a position to reward them with what they crave? How can you keep a rampaging narcissist in line?

 

himym how i met your mother cast neil patrick harris jason segel josh radnor cobie smulders Daniel Munoz/Stringer/Getty Images

 

4. Ask Them, “What Would People Think?”

 

Narcissists don’t feel guilt, only shame. They’re all about appearances, right?

 

If they believe something will hurt their reputation, they will think twice. Al Bernstein explains:

 
 

If you are in a position to advise, ask what people would think. Narcissists are not stupid; there are just things, like other people’s feelings, that they rarely consider. If you have their ear, don’t tell them how people might react; instead, ask probing questions. Narcissists are much more likely to act on ideas that they think they thought up themselves.

 
 

Emphasize community and use disappointment, rather than anger, to keep them in line. They want to look good. So help them look good by helping them dogood.

 

(To learn an FBI behavior expert’s secrets for how to get people to like you, click here.)

 

This piece is about how to deal with narcissists… well, what if the narcissist is you? It’s an epidemic, remember? And if you’re not a narcissist, you might be infected. As the studies show, plenty of others have been recently.

 

So how do you avoid becoming a narcissist — or stop being one?

 

5. Be Dexter

 

We all have some narcissism in us. It’s natural. And narcissism may work for you now but, as we saw, the odds are very very much against it bringing you success, good relationships and happiness in the long term.

 

So how do you stop being a narcissist or make sure you don’t become one? You need to make sure you maintain empathy for others.

 

Stop trying to stand out, get attention and be so darn special. Al Bernstein says:

 

Narcissists will be further damaged by just about any situation in which they are treated as different from ordinary people.

 

It’s okay to be ordinary. (And if that concept terrifies you, you are already on the narcissistic side of things, so read this piece on empathy now.)

 

Problem is, overcoming narcissism is hard and takes a long time. And if you’re a hard-working narcissist, it may be bringing you enough rewards in the short term to feel like it’s a good idea for the long term.

 

What do you do then? Redirect your narcissism.

 

I offer you a new role model: Dexter. Yes, the serial killer who kills serial killers. (I know, Dexter is a psychopath not a narcissist but, jeez, work with me here, okay?)

 

Dexter has a problem — a serious problem, no doubt — but he tries to be good.

 

Dexter acts ordinary. He struggles to develop empathy. And he redirects his impulses to do things that benefit other people. (That’s where the comparison ends. I’m not telling you to kill anyone, okay?)

 

This attitude (sans chopping people up) can produce results.

 

From The Narcissism Epidemic: Living in the Age of Entitlement:

 

…if you can’t stop feeding the ego, you can align your narcissism with behaviors that help the community.

 

I’m sure a lot of narcissists run charities. And they get lauded, praised and admired. I’m okay with that kind of narcissist.

 

(To learn how to fight your own narcissism, click here.)

 

Okay, let’s round this up and get the final secret on how to deal with the me-me-me people…

 

Sum Up

 

Here’s how to deal with a narcissist:

 
 
    • Don’t. Think haunted house. Get out of there first chance you can.
 
    • Kiss Up Or Shut Up. If they’re your boss or they have power over you, fighting makes it worse.
 
    • Know What You Want And Get Payment Up Front. Don’t assume they’ll play fair.
 
    • Ask, “What would people think?” They want to look good. If they think they’ll look bad, they’ll behave.
 
    • Be Dexter. If the dark side of The Force has you, channel your need to look awesome into helping others.
 
 

In the long run, narcissists almost always lose. We see plenty on TV, but those are the very few that got lucky. And, trust me, they’re not all happy.

 

Stay away if you can, otherwise you will be victimized by them or, even worse, you will become one of them. When I spoke to Stanford professor Bob Sutton, he told me his #1 piece of advice to students was this:

 

When you take a job take a long look at the people you’re going to be working with — because the odds are you’re going to become like them, they are not going to become like you.

 

And if you spend more time with good people you will become, um, good-er. Here’s Yale professor Nicholas Christakis:

 

We’ve shown that altruistic behavior ripples through networks and so does meanness. Networks will magnify whatever they are seeded with. They will magnify Ebola and fascism and unhappiness and violence, but also they will magnify love and altruism and happiness and information.

 

Every chance you get, surround yourself with people who are good to you. And be good to them.

 

Don’t fight narcissism. Starve it.

 

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GamesBeat 2016 is moving to L.A. on Aug. 1-3. And we’re kicking it off with a new VR day

Terranea Resort in Rancho Palos Verdes, Calif.


We’re pleased to announce today that GamesBeat 2016 is heading south to Los Angeles. And it’s going to have a new one-day event dubbed VR Pulse to zero-in on the excitement of virtual reality games and entertainment.

 

Our ninth annual GamesBeat event takes place at the Terranea Resort on August 1 to August 3 in Rancho Palos Verdes, California. The resort is on the beautiful Pacific Ocean and offers some awesome amenities, like a spa and golf. You can register for the event here.

 

GamesBeat 2016 brings together top execs, investors, analysts, and entrepreneurs from the hottest companies to explore the gaming industry’s latest trends, growth opportunities, technical directions, and newest monetization opportunities.

 

Who should attend?

 
Kate Edwards of the IGDA and Dean Takahashi of GamesBeat at GamesBeat 2015.

Above: Kate Edwards of the IGDA and Dean Takahashi of GamesBeat at GamesBeat 2015.

Image Credit: Michael O’Donnell/VentureBeat
 

This event is specifically designed for gaming executives, investors, developers, and entrepreneurs. Here’s our link to stories from last year’s event. We’re still contemplating our theme, but last year’s event was all about the Game of Thrones, or the battle among game companies for supremacy.

 

2016’s topics (so far)

 

New platforms such as augmented reality and virtual reality; creativity and diversity; game investments; monetization strategies; deals; brands; and esports.

 

VR Pulse is a one-day event on August 1. It features VR and AR talks as well as a showcase where we’ll highlight curated startups on stage.

 

We’ll lead into the opening reception for GamesBeat 2016 on the evening of August 1. A full day of sessions follows on August 2, with a second day of talks on August 3.

 

It’s no accident that our first VR-related event is in Los Angeles, as we know that both games and the larger entertainment industry will be critical in helping this new platform take off.

 

Our advisory board for this event includes: 

 
 
    • Michael Chang, senior vice president of corporate development at NCSoft West
 
    • Greg Essig, head of business development at Mobcrush
 
    • Megan Gaiser, senior creative leader and strategist; principal at Contagious Creativity
 
    • Perrin Kaplan, principal at Zebra Partners
 
    • Ophir Lupu, head of games at United Talent Agency
 
    • Wanda Meloni, executive director at the Open Gaming Alliance
 
    • Ali Moiz, CEO at Vulcun
 
    • Maarten Noyons, CEO of the International Mobile Gaming Awards
 
    • Ian Sharpe, CEO of Azubu
 
    • Mike Vorhaus, president of Magid Advisors
 
 

For general event information, please contact events@venturebeat.com and reference “GamesBeat”

 

For sponsorship information please click here, and a member of our sales team will contact you.

 

If you are interested in volunteering at GamesBeat, please apply here

 

To apply to speak at GamesBeat, please fill out the form here.

 

To apply for a press pass, please fill out the form here

[Checklist] Ten Inquiries to Ask Before You Press Publish

[Checklist] Ten Questions to Ask Before You Press Publish
 
 

You have got your killer content all set and ready to go – wonderful! Time for you to set it live and reap the rewards, scouring the comments section of your weblog post for feedback. Prepare for fame, fortune and also the initial 5 comments to point out every flaw. To help counter this possibility we have three magic words for you; content marketing checklist.

 

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