“A dream you dream alone is only a dream. A dream you dream together is reality.”
— John Lennon
Everything about brands that transcend – and businesses that remain in business – is connected to connection. We no longer live in an economy driven by transaction. Today, our economy is driven by experience. And no experience is richer, more fulfilling, or more apt to lead to a next experience than one that includes REAL connection through shared values.
If I believe what you believe, I wanna hang out with you, man. If you believe what I believe, you’ll be singin’ my song by morning. If we bond over what we both feel is true and right, it beats a pinky swear by a clear mile.
Over the course of several days last week, I talked in broad strokes and specifics about how to connect with prospects and customers by sharing your values and beliefs. (If you missed those posts, you can catch the last of them, which includes links to all three, by clicking here.) And one of the specifics I mentioned was the cultivation of a Dream 100 list.
I learned about the Dream 100 from my mentor and online Superman, Russell Brunson. And he learned about it from Chet Holmes, in the book The Ultimate Sales Machine. And each of the three of us has spun it to suit our own beliefs and values around business. This is how it works for me:
Your Dream 100 is a list of 100 influencers you’d most like to get next to. These 100 people share your values, and stand to help you communicate those values – in any number of ways – to your prospects and customers.
When I created my Dream 100, I started with a list of influencers in marketing and branding. But I quickly realized that the list would be much more meaningful for me – and so would the relationships I was on a quest to build – if I chose people who believed what I believed. People who inspired me or moved me to act because I was pickin’ up what they were puttin’ down — AND my heart was in it.
So, to begin, create a list of your core brand values for reference.
Next, create four separate lists, each with 25 dream members:
- Social Media Personalities
- Business Owners/List Owners
And here’s an important trick in choosing a Dream 100 group that will work with you, and for you:
Choose folks who serve your ideal clients, but don’t compete with your products.
For instance, I sell informational products related to branding. I have all kinds of business gurus on my Dream 100 list. And they all serve target markets that I pursue. But not a single one of them offers branding in any form. This allows me to be faithful follower, collaborator, thoughtful commenter, and strategic alliance… without ever being perceived as a competitor, threat, or imitator. As my good man, Russell B says, I fit into the ecosystem organically. And as I grow, I’ll become an integral element in the environment.
Now… here’s the most important task associate with the Dream 100:
Make getting to know these influencers part of your daily routine.
Note that I did NOT say: “Create a great big project and throw yourself into it for three days.”
Sure, connections might happen as part of a big project. But connections are sustained over the long haul. Which means your Dream 100 represents an ongoing labor of love that you MUST build into your weekly to-do list, or it will never get done. (Not sure how to do this? Don’t sweat it. Tomorrow, I’m going to give you some surefire ways to connect, show respect, and impress.)
Still asking, “What the hell is in this for me?”
Content for Curation: Your Dream 100 will be, literally, a wealth of information. Share their posts, articles, interviews, episodes, anecdotes, and quotes with your own list. And when you do so, share them with thoughtful comments of your own that relate the dream connection’s core values back to yours. So folks can see what you stand for by what you share. (When you tag the dream connection in the share, they’ll also begin to see the connection, and they’ll be grateful for the exposure.)
Exposure to Other Audiences: Many of the folks in your Dream 100 will have their own lists, followings, or fans. As you get to know them, you’ll have opportunities for access to these crowds. Initially, you may just hang around in their spaces as a thoughtful commenter. But eventually, if you create a relationship with true value on both sides, you may collaborate on products, cooperate on affiliate sales, guest blog, or any number of other things that put you in front of a dream audience.
Validation by Association: The old, “it’s who you know” line never really goes out of style. And with your Dream 100, who you know will give you street cred. Find ways to get next to them, or in their circles, and share it with your list. Remember, though, that this is about values and connection. Not about showmanship. So make it count. Perhaps you interview your Dream connections for blog posts, telesummits, podcasts, or other content that’s geared toward your beliefs and values. Join their Mastermind groups, courses, or coaching groups, or attend their smaller live events. When you find legitimate ways for them to see you, then you can set out to be seen with them.
Learning and Expansion: We’re all exposed to gurus and thought leaders day in and day out. I have unlimited resources to turn to for learning, and I know you do, as well. With a Dream 100, you’ll be able to do a deep dive over time. You’ll expand because, by sharing, commenting, correlating and continued presentation of their materials, you’ll assimilate those materials. It’s one thing to read a book. It’s another thing to read a book, break it down, and provide a blog post or video that teaches the material to your prospects.
In tomorrow’s post, I’m going to talk about how you can add value to the lives of your Dream 100. And on Wednesday, I’m going to talk about how your relationships with your Dream 100 can add value to the lives of your prospects and clients.
It’s a win-win-win, this Dream 100 thing. I seriously can’t get enough of it.
So get a glass of pinot noir and a bag of those really good kettle-style potato chips with the salt and the pepper (if that sounds delicious to you, we’ve got a chance for a real connection), and get your list started. I’ll catch you on the flip side.