I am here to help those who want to become self-made experts
I am here to help you accelerate your cultivation of expertise, deepen your impact, extend your reach, and increase your profitability. If yours is the path of the self-made expert, I hope to serve you as a teacher, connector, or coach. You might be interested in:
I do not believe marketing is "whatever works". Instead, I operate from a distinct point of view regarding marketing:
- Marketing is connecting and building trust with perspective clients, not persuasion.
- Specialize. Orient to your specialization around people or an idea or a specific change you care deeply about.
- Get good at connecting and building trust with prospective clients in socially risky situations.
- Pursue organic word of mouth (WoM). Reject opportunities to pursue scale if they would work against your pursuit of WoM.
- Use direct response methods until you can afford to use generous, helpful brand marketing methods.
- Seek scrappy, opportunistic use of aggregators. Avoid relying on aggregators. If more than 20% of your leads come from a single aggregator, stop using that source cold turkey (if you're undisciplined), or if you are a disciplined executor--develop and execute a 90-day lead concentration mitigation plan.
- Every single thing you do is a filter for the kind of clients you want.
- Build and leverage daily habits where possible to create a body of work. If you do nothing else, publish daily to an email list.
- If you don't know what to talk about with prospective clients, ask about risk and/or whether they're up for a promotion this year.
My point of view implies that there are a few marketing skills that matter, and many that don't.
There are 8 skills that indie consultants must cultivate to become effective at marketing their services:
- Formulating an argument or point of view (PoV) and publicizing that argument/PoV
- Opportunistic use of aggregated channels (social media) without reliance on those channels
- Email marketing
- Identifying partners and building relationships with those partners
- Speaking-as-lead-generation, either IRL, via online channels, or both
- Self-direct learning and self-directed research
- Community-building or...
My services help you cultivate these skills.
Words to Live By
- The smaller your focus, the bigger it is.
- Specialization is a voluntary narrowing that is in service of a future wider impact.
- Your work is important.
- List size is a vanity metric.
- Profit over revenue.
- Skill creates deliverables; expertise creates impact.
- Your market position is a lagging indicator of the relevance and value of your specialized expertise.
- Profit is a lagging indicator of impact.
- Conversations first, automation later. Resist premature automation at all cost.
- Sorry, but you’re in a relationship business.
- Replace assumptions with data.
- Expertise is both the cause, and the effect, of marketing done right.
- “Your marketing itself must be valuable.” - Gary Bencivenga
- Give a shit. Be extravagantly generous yet focused with your shit-giving.
- Do not make long-term financial decisions based on what is happening with a single client.
- Skill satisfies; expertise delights.
- "I am a walking affirmation that imagination and focus and patience gets you closer to your aspiration." - Black Thought
- Your email list is a fractional distillery, not a retirement account.
- Go first.
Around the Web
Podcast Guest Appearances
- TOM MORKES: ITT 085: HOW TO POSITION YOUR COMPANY FOR RAPID GROWTH WITH PHILIP MORGAN: https://tommorkes.com/podcast/philip-morgan/
- Boutique Growth: The Power of Positioning and Specialization with Philip Morgan: https://boutiquegrowth.com/podcast/positioning-specialization-philip-morgan/
- Under the Radar: Episode 1: An interview with authority list builder Philip Morgan: http://nathanpowell.me/podcast/page/2/
- Growth Hackers: Podcast: How Smart Positioning Can Make Your Marketing 10x Better: https://growthhackers.com/articles/podcast-how-smart-positioning-can-make-your-marketing-10x-better?r=latest
- WP-Tonic: 163 Philip Morgan on Positioning Your Web Agency: http://www.podbean.com/media/share/dir-ip8ue-2140f29
- Clients from hell podcast: What’s your favourite position?: https://podtail.com/podcast/clients-from-hell-podcast/what-s-your-favourite-position/
- Happy Porch Radio: Episode #4: The Challenges of Recurring Revenue with Philip Morgan: http://happyporchradio.com/episode-4-challenges-recurring-revenue-philip-morgan/
- Bootstrappers.io: EFFECTIVE POSITIONING WITH PHILIP MORGAN – BOOTSTRAPPED WEB: https://bootstrappers.io/2015/05/29/effective-positioning-with-philip-morgan-bootstrapped-web/
- The Freelancer’s Show: https://devchat.tv/show_host/philip-morgan and http://devchat.tv/freelancers/160-fs-a-deep-dive-on-positioning-yourself-as-a-specialist-with-philip-morgan
- Nusii: Creative: A business podcast TCBP: EP04 FROM GENERALIST TO SPECIALIST WITH PHILIP MORGAN: https://blog.nusii.com/?s=philip+morgan
- Double your freelancing: The Business of Freelancing, Episode 22: Philip Morgan on Positioning: https://doubleyourfreelancing.com/positioning/
- Hubstaff Agency Advantage: Agency Advantage 6: Philip Morgan on Commanding Premium Rates With Focused Positioning: https://blog.hubstaff.com/podcast-brand-positioning-strategy/
- Jake Jorgovan: 048: Finding development leads with Philip Morgan: https://jake-jorgovan.com/podcast/048
- Art of Value: How to Create Value Through Positioning with Philip Morgan – 084: http://artofvalue.com/?s=philip+morgan
- Bootstrapped Web:  Effective Positioning with Philip Morgan: http://bootstrappedweb.com/74-effective-positioning-with-philip-morgan/
- Buyer Insights: Find out how positioning can make you more money and deliver more value with Philip Morgan, Author of The Positioning Manual: http://www.buyerinsightspodcast.com/ccff6b05
- UGurus: E23: Building a strong pipeline of clients with Philip Morgan: http://ugurus.com/podcast/episode23
- Developer on Fire: Episode 142 | Philip Morgan – Sharing Hard-Learned Lessons: http://developeronfire.com/podcast/episode-142-philip-morgan-sharing-hard-learned-lessons
- The Startup Success Podcast: SSP 3.24 – Philip Morgan – The Positioning Crash Course: http://www.startupsuccesspodcast.com/home/ssp-324-philip-morgan
- 100K Freelancing: 0118 – Positioning and Professional Value w/Philip Morgan: http://www.100kfreelancing.com/0118-positioning-professional-value-wphilip-morgan/
- Bet the Jockey: IF YOU’RE SPECIALIZED IN IOS, YOU’RE DOING IT WRONG!: http://www.betthejockey.com/youre-specialized-ios-youre-wrong/
- Unofficial Shopify Podcast: How To Kill it With Ecommerce Content Marketing: http://www.unofficialshopifypodcast.com/560e2d27
- Duct Tape Marketing: Increase Profits Through Specialization with Philip Morgan: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zptcGUCkha0
- UI Breakfast Podcast. Episode 39: Positioning Your Services with Philip Morgan: https://uibreakfast.com/39-positioning-services-philip-morgan/
- Productize Podcast: How Smarter Positioning Helps You Grow (by Doing Less) with Philip Morgan: http://productizepodcast.com/how-smarter-positioning-helps-you-grow-by-doing-less-with-philip-morgan/
- Freelance Transformation: FT 031: Positioning Your Consulting Business with Philip Morgan: https://freelancetransformation.com/blog/ft-031-positioning-your-consulting-business-with-philip-morgan
- Traffic and Leads Podcast: How to find your niche: http://trafficandleadspodcast.com/leads-tip-how-to-find-your-niche/
- Everyone Hates Marketers: How Smart Positioning Can Make Your Marketing 10x Better: https://everyonehatesmarketers.com/positioning-makes-marketing-10x-better/
- Elusive Moose: Episode 26: Lead Generation with Philip Morgan: https://elusivemoose.com/2016/07/episode-26-lead-generation-philip-morgan/
- Simple Programmer: Philip Morgan identifies the niche to position in: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0fLiU6jUdZo
- CURTIS MCHALE: Positioning your business with Philip Morgan: https://curtismchale.ca/2016/11/11/positioning-business-philip-morgan/
- BMI Podcast: BMI 029: Generating Leads on Autopilot with Content Marketing: http://www.bmipodcast.com/bmi-029-generating-leads-on-autopilot-with-content-marketing/
- Pricing Power: #41 – Philip Morgan – Get More Leads Without Hiring A Sales Person: https://pricingpower.net/41-philip-morgan/
Articles, Mentions, & Guest Posts
- How to Build an Unmistakable Brand – These 8 Will Show You the Way: https://craigmcbreen.com/how-to-build-an-unmistakable-brand-these-8-will-show-you-the-way/
- mokacoding’s 2015 retrospective
- Positioning: How to Stop Cutting Vegetables With a Mallet (doubleyourfreelancing.com)
What My Clients Say
Positioning Accelerator Program Participants
“Helped me Transition From Staff Augmentation Development Work to Consulting Work”
“Gave Me Confidence About Building an Audience”
“Made My Marketing Significantly Easier”
“1 Month in the Program Got Me Set Up For Success”
“Helped Me Clarify Important Business Strategy Questions”
“Was a Great Catalyst for Growth in My Business”
“Helped Me Grow From 1 to 6 Employees”
“Thought This Would Improve My Website, But It Actually Improved My Business”
“Helped Me Launch My Consulting Business”
“I Wasn’t Looking for ‘Group Coaching'”
Honestly this program was a no-brainer for me personally. I had been thinking for about a year that I wanted a narrow niche. You were the first person I found that advocated it and I was immediately sold when I saw you had a group program.
My only hesitation would have been if you had called it group coaching (but you didn’t…you called it a mentorship). That was an important distinction for me. I don’t struggle with motivation, discipline or necessarily need the accountability to implement things (which is what most coaching programs provide). I was looking for feedback, fresh ideas and a consultant. You did make that clear so for that reason I had no hesitation.
Two months in, this is actually happening! By declaring a niche and expertise at least enough to get out there and start interviewing people and evaluating it, I became connected with people in the industry and was offered a recurring consultant job. I’m about to launch a more targeted website and I have lots of specific ideas for marketing and products now that I have a market to focus on.
The regular feedback and perspective on all the ideas that kept emerging so I didn’t get hyper-focused on my original hypothesis and plan. (it did end up changing!)
I liked the format of Slack where I could post my latest development and get your thoughts on it within a day or 2. It kept momentum going.
I liked that you have a background as a marketing writer and can help polish copy so things get sent and done. (I tend to overly obsess about my writing before I hit send)
The group was small enough and it felt very personal. You knew me and my business as well as you would have if it was a one-on-one consultancy.
As far as true measure-able benefits (results!) I’ll let you know in 6 months 🙂 but I can already attribute a $2,000 paycheck from that live event that I wouldn’t have probably been in the position to get if I hadn’t been purposefully researching and declaring my interest in that industry. And I’m on contract to do that same event 4 more times in 2016.
I would absolutely recommend this to others (and I already have!). As a solo business owner it makes things so much simpler and easier. I have a much easier time knowing what marketing to do and what content to create. There’s so much more organization and focus in my business.
Looking forward to coming back and wrangling my content into something manageable! Really love the resource center accountability program you’re putting together.
-Connie Holen, Web Designer for Yoga Professionals
“Wasn’t Sure the Expense Would Produce Tangible Benefits”
I wasn’t sure that the expense of Philip’s mentoring program would produce any tangible benefits to my business. I signed up for 1 month to see…
Three months in, it’s turned out that working on my positioning with Philip has led to a complete shift in the way I think about my business, what I offer, and where I want to go in the future. Together we have developed tactics to define my position, but the real value for me has been the strategic thinking that the process encourages.
The weekly hangouts have been an important part of this process. Sharing the journey with other class-mates helps with accountability, and helps me deal with parts of the positioning process that seem overwhelming.
I’ve actually learned a lot from other business owners in the program and I’d recommend this to people who have some idea of the business that they want to build but who aren’t quite sure of who their customers are, or what they need.
– Keith Devon, WordPress Developer
Your body of work is by far the most practical and actionable
I’d like to believe that I employed some of the techniques and mindset from your body of work & calls helping me to clarify my positioning.
I’ve been through several positioning, marketing, and networking programs, both professionally and on my own, most of which are focused on sales in isolation from delivery/production. From the perspective of someone who is “selling” AND delivering the end product, your body of work is by far the most practical and actionable.
The strange thing is, I’m trained as a scientist, not a marketer… yet I was chosen out of hundreds of others who actually have a relevant degree or credentials. I’m using this result and momentum to approach other similar companies and expand my network.
I Wasn’t Sure About Investing This Much
Working with Philip and his My Content Sherpa service was the first time I’ve paid for help with content marketing. I see it as a long-term investment.
I was happy to get high quality content with very low effort on my part. Specifically, Philip is able to distill my random ideas into concrete resources that will help my business grow. Additionally, I’ve gotten:
- Constant progress on creating new content
- Great advice on marketing tactics
I would definitely recommend Philip to other dev shop owners. I see the value. Even though I feel like I could produce similar content, I understand how time consuming it is and realize it likely won’t reach the top of my todo list without help.
I just have to add: I really like the focus on multi-article resources. I think that provides a lot more value than a collection of random blog articles.
Jason Siffring, Owner, Surprise Highway
I Just Didn’t Think Content Marketing Would Really Work For Me
But I found that–with the right help–it does work! I love how Philip makes me sound like my best, most intelligent self to my audience.
- Philip lets me do what I do best (talking) and turns that into content.
- Philip provides vision that this approach can, and will, work. I would have quit long ago otherwise.
- I can tell people I have a list and invite them to join it!
I’d definitely recommend Philip’s services to others who need more leads or a bigger audience.
Marcus Blankenship, Development Shop Owner Coach
So Much Value In 1 Hour
Phililp’s pre-engagement questionnaire was gold! I learned a ton going through the process of filling it out. I would have paid for that alone. After our one hour strategy call with Philip, we decided to focus our agency on SEO work for mid-sized and start-up tech companies—and we’re excited about it! We are starting to get speaking engagements because of our new niche. We are big fans of yours Philip and received so much value from hiring you!
Dale Bertrand, President, Chimaera Labs
I Wasn’t Sure If Philip Would Accept Me Into His Coaching Program
I’m a business process consultant, and I am just now transitioning from full time employment to working as an independent consultant. So I wasn’t sure Philip would agree to working with me, even though I was sure working with him would be beneficial.
My goal was to make the most progress possible in a short amount of time (3 months). I was able to get clear about what I do as a result of Philip continuously pushing me forward beyond my fears and comfort zone.
Philip also helped me:
- Get clear about what I need out off marketing.
- Get clear about my message.
- Get clear about which medium I will use to build trust.
I would definitely recommend that other freelancers or independent consultants work with Philip if they want to very quickly get clear about their positioning and marketing.
Zishe Schnitzler, Business Process Consultant
400% Increase in Email Opt-Ins
Hey Philip, my email subscriber opt-in rate is up from around 2 percent to around 8 percent since making the changes you suggested. The changes only took a few hours to implement, so I’m especially delighted w/the results!
Jonathan Stark, Author of “Hourly Billing is Nuts”