Don't Be Afraid of Being Good
Quick question. There’s no right answer.
Who’s the best actor of all time?
Depending on your age, personal preference, and obsessions with a niche version of a popular BBC TV show, you might say Marlon Brando, Daniel Day-Lewis, or Paul McGann. Like I said, there’s no right answer.
Who’s the second* highest top grossing actor of all time?
This one does have a right answer.
It’s not Brando, Day-Lewis, McGann, Pacino, Hanks, Nicholson or Depp.
It’s this guy.
Frank Welker. His films have grossed over six billion dollars. And you’d struggle to pick the guy out of a line-up. So how is he more bankable than Johnny Depp or Leo DiCaprio?
It’s because he knows what he can do, he does it brilliantly, and he’s not afraid to let people know.
Frank Welker has voiced hundreds of cartoon (and CGI) characters, from Scooby Doo (and Scooby’s blonde mate Fred) to Megatron, to the dragon in Shrek. He’s been in 108 feature films, mainly doing animal noises.
He’s never going to win Best Actor at the Oscars, and he’s never going to be on the front cover of a tabloid – but when Hollywood needs a cartoon dog, CGI dragon or terrifying transforming robot, they go to Frank. Because Frank isn’t shy about telling Hollywood that he’s the best damn cartoon voice artist of all time.
The man on the street doesn’t know Frank, but casting agents do. And they pay him.
Find a Niche, Excel, and Self-Publicise
“So?” you may well be thinking. “What’s that got to do with marketing my business, copywriter?”
When I speak to clients, many of you have an issue with owning your niche. You’re either not happy with the lack of glamour in the niche you’re in, or you’re too humble about your achievements in that niche. I’ve genuinely heard at least one of you say the following:
“I’m not comfortable saying we’re better than the competition.”
There’s no shame in being better at something that only your clients really appreciate. There’s no shame in being the leading light in a very niche market.
If Frank Welker can have a website showing the world he’s proud of being awesome at pretending to be dogs and robots and Slimer from The Real Ghostbusters, you can be proud about what you do too.
So stop being humble. Find your niche. Excel in it. And tell the world.
That’s the best way to success.
*Oh, if you’re wondering who the number one top grossing actor of all time is, it’s Samuel L. Jackson. Which goes to show that being good in your niche might not trump being a bad ass mother– you get the picture.
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