Winning isn’t Anything

In media, few cups runneth over.
In media, few cups runneth over.

Though I decry our fame-focussed culture, I’m not immune to it.

Each time I appear in the media, I think: ‘THIS is it; THIS is my BIG SHOT!’

Yet so far, THIS hasn’t happened.

While shows like Oprah can grant instant fortune, ordinary public exposure seems cumulative.

Like mercury.


I invented a word. When a friend told me she’d used it in an article for a state-wide tabloid, I was elated.

I spent hundreds of dollars having a website thrown together at speed – to catch the torrent of visitors I imagined.

Two years later, Iess than a thousand souls have checked out liferal.

About six have used it.


When Joanna Maxwell interviewed me for a social media article in the Australian Financial Review’s BOSS magazine, I was even more excited.

Joanna warned me not to get my hopes up, explaining that most calls triggered by national exposure were from people keen to sell something.

She was right.


When my treatise on local councils aired on national radio, I expected every region in the country to call.

They didn’t.


When I appeared several times on two business audio magazines (the sort you listen to in cars) I thought I’d have to hire more staff.

At this moment, there’s only me.


When I won T-shirt design competitions for Christmas AND Valentine’s Day, I thought I’d be rolling in passive income.

Combined sales to date for both winning designs: 1.


When The Punter’s Ton made it into Purple Cow, I looked forward to a traffic spike the size of K2.

It didn’t even top B1 (though it’s early days).


I once followed the blog of a new business that featured several times on national TV.

After a short, sharp spike, sales returned to normal, then slumped.

Now the blog is gone.


Though none of my outings has filled Empire coffers with gold, they have combined to give me a solid, trustworthy ‘presence’.

Many prospects say they heard or read about me long ago, and that my cumulative content gave them confidence to try me.

Yet landing and keeping new clients always comes down to what I can do for them, not what I did for others.


My advice, then, is to build your brand slowly and carefully.

Magic bullets are rare and media hype usually isn’t one of them.

As my halting journey in the spotlight shows, 15 minutes of fame is mostly just that.

Unless, of course, you know better.

We’ve lately had brilliant comments from PR people.

I’d love to know what you (and others) think.

Consider this your call to


Paul Hassing, Founder & Senior Writer, The Feisty Empire