Want to Blow Up? Build Your Own Network.
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I used to have my own show, Turnaround King on National Geographic. While it’s great having a show on a network, I like to control what I put out and when I put it out, so I turned the tables by snubbing offers from traditional television and cable networks and choosing to create, fund and launch my own business network. I wanted to create a digital network to become like the Netflix of Business. We live in an age now of on-demand where people want to watch their choice of shows on their own schedule.
I was motivated by the success of on-demand channels like Hulu, so I created GrantCardoneTV to make business solution content available when people want it. There are 7 billion people on the planet and I want to give them solutions that the traditional networks and cable, for whatever reasons, just will not offer. They all copy one another, delivering the same bad news in the same bad way and it doesn’t help anyone improve their condition in life or in business.
GrantCardoneTV launched in September 2014 tapping into my popular YouTube channel and social media networks. I had originally called it Whatever It Takes Network but that was a mistake—you need your name out there at the front. It was the late Joan Rivers who planted the seed in my mind to create a network when I shared with her my frustration with the traditional networks a few years ago. Ms. Rivers was interviewing me and my wife Elena for the show “How’d You Get So Rich” when Joan told me, “Grant, you have the talent and the resources. Do it yourself.”
When you take a frustrated successful entrepreneur that has a “whatever it takes” work ethic, you get change! I started creating content for my new network. In this world content is king. I came out of the gate with five new shows and an original reality series. I got together expert guests to air on my network, including authors, motivators, entrepreneurs, and financial experts covering topics like start-ups, finance, investing, real estate, network marketing, and branding.
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I began live streaming on the network from my studio in Miami Beach. The Cardone Zone (career & finance), Young Hustlers (millennials), and The G&E Show (business & marriage) have been hit shows to this day. Since I am always telling people to do whatever it takes and push beyond what’s comfortable, I knew I had to launch my own network because it was a leap into a new world for me. It was a little scary, but obscurity to me was even scarier.
There have been some growing pains, but GrantCardoneTV has grown into a hit network for entrepreneurs, business owners, go-getters, startups, sales organizations, and success-minded people that want to control where they get their news and their solutions. I’m continually looking for talent to cover topics like advertising, branding, business, career, education, entrepreneurship, finance, investing, money, marriage, network marketing, real estate and more.
My biggest hit so far on the network has been the Ultimate Job Interview reality show I produced. I know it’s difficult for small businesses and entrepreneurs to find and hire great people. I interviewed over 800 people to work for my company when I moved to Miami and was only able to hire six and I was wrong on four of them. Rather than bitch about it, I created a TV show and auditioned people so that I could push people to the extreme to find out if they actually fit my culture.
You too can be a person that offers an alternative resource for ideas, strategies, and information for people. With the average person spending over four hours a day on television, radio, Facebook and YouTube, there is plenty of space for you to take a cut in that pie. Become an expert and celebrity in your space. The reason why almost nobody is doing it is because it takes a massive commitment and a lot of work to do it right.
You have to constantly do new shows and put up fresh content. You need to get others on board who want to produce content on your platform because of the value that you provide. To really get your own network off the ground, you need four things:
1.Obsession: If you don’t have a passion and even an obsession for what you are pushing, don’t even start. The obsessed know that if they aren’t all in on their venture, they will get rolled over by others who are. Go ask those who live in Silicon Valley how they feel about immersion, hundred-hour workweeks, and borrowing money from family and friends to get to market. Talk to an artist or athlete, someone who is obsessed with and constantly improving their particular talent, and see them come alive talking about that thing they do. Are you obsessed with something? That’s the first step to starting your own network.
2.Hustle: Let’s face it, you can start a network, but you won’t be able to stick with it let alone grow it without a lot of hustle. In addition to being obsessed, you must be driven, dedicated, all in, committed, and relentless. You can’t buy those things at the grocery store. Having a great network is not going to be easy. It takes effort.
3.Vision: You must have an idea of what kind of network you can have and what it will look like. Your obsession should come with creativity. You need big ideas and a clear picture of what you want to bring people. Do you have a vision of being an authority on something and getting your message out there? What do you do better than anyone?
For me, I remember I realized it really bothered me that there were guys in the sales industry who were better recognized than me. It killed me that my name wasn’t up there with the sales greats like Brian Tracy, Tom Hopkins, Og Mandino, Napoleon Hill, and Zig Ziglar. Where was my name on that list? It made me angry that people were interested in their information and not reading mine only because they had not heard of me. But that was my fault—I had not been obsessed with worldwide expansion.
This is something I did, and I think it can help you too. Take a piece of paper. Draw your face in the center of it—that personalizes the exercise and reminds you who is at the center of all of these things. Then draw two columns, one labeled “professional life” and the other “personal life.” In each column write down what you have expertise in and what traits mark you. My chart looks like this:
Once you have this list, start breaking down the categories. On the professional side, I began to think about what it meant to be a “sales genius.” I revolutionized the sales game when I was thirty years old and am still doing it today. Being a sales genius also meant I could talk about different topics within sales, including closing the sale, customer service, customer control, follow-up, cold-calling, running a telemarketing team, long sales cycles, retail sales, Internet sales, webinars, selling from the stage, real estate sales, insurance sales, and on and on.
Once I had this list, I came up with a short statement of who I am and why I dominate this particular area of expertise. My statement was “I am the Godfather of Sales. No one is better, no one is more current, no one is more effective or relevant than me. It might sound like I am bragging but it’s not bragging if it’s true. The biggest companies in the world trust me and my company to help them customize sales approaches and customer experience approaches to improve results.”
Next, I came up with the benefits I could offer others in each of these categories to further clarify my message to the world about what I can do for people. I know that I can teach anyone how to be great at sales and like it. I can take a good salesperson and make them great. I can take a great salesperson and make them a master. Use the little exercise above to clarify what you are the best at and what you are an expert in. Now you have some direction for your network.
Are you ready to blow up?