Growth Hacking Interview Series #90: Peter Banerjea
Peter Banerjea is Co-Founder of SuccessIsWhat, a productivity coaching firm. He is a contributor to top blogs like the Huffington Post, Addicted2Success, Time Management Ninja and more.
Peter has trained and coached hundreds of business leaders from organizations like AXA, JCB, GKN, Kuoni, etc. as well as several entrepreneurs from across the globe.
How did you start out as a marketer?
My expertise is now in content marketing, but I started out by using Google Adwords for my Corporate Training Business back in 2012. We used to offer training to organizations in Sales and Leadership.
Adwords gets you results immediately. However, it can’t position you as an authority like content marketing does.
That's why I started building up a presence through content marketing. Once people saw the successes I was getting they began to ask me to consult for their companies.
We have a lot of readers who are bent on becoming freelancers, aside from freelancing how else can someone earn online, and what is your advice?
Why do you want to label yourself as a freelancer? Why not aspire to be called an expert? You can stand out from the crowd and command far higher consulting rates.
The only way to achieve that is to develop your expertise and authority in one particular area. As David Allen says, “You can do anything, but you can't do everything”.
I would suggest that you stop trying to look for multiple ways to earn online and instead focus on building a scalable business.
The ugly truth is that most freelancers are earning far less than what they would if they had a job. That's not because of a lack of talent. It’s because they lack focus.
If you were given the chance to build your career all over again, what would you do differently so that you will achieve your dreams faster?
My co-founder and I could have started blogging when we were in B-School – back in 2004-'06! We would be in a different league altogether now!
How is your typical work day structured?
On most days, I wake up at 6 and work for 60-90 minutes before breakfast at 8.30. On days when I don’t have to visit a client's office, I work till 11.30. Then I go for a run or practice a bit of martial arts at home.
Other fixed daily rituals that I follow include half an hour of meditation and pranyam in the evening, and reading from my Kindle for half an hour before I go off to sleep at 10.30-11.00.
I typically work for 6-7 complete hours a day. (Breaks are not included in this figure. That's extra.) Unless it's absolutely necessary I avoid working for more than 7 hours.
I believe in the quality of work, not the number of hours.
Can you tell us about a past situation where you had to juggle multiple projects with competing deadlines?
My first advice is to avoid getting into a situation where you have multiple projects and deadlines. As Warren Buffet says, you have to say ‘no' more often if you want to become really successful.
Too many things take away your focus and you have to compromise on quality. As a result, you might even lose customers.
Having said that, there might be small periods where you have to handle multiple tasks.
I remember a time last year when we were doing a sale at SuccessIsWhat and I had to simultaneously put in a lot of time with a digital marketing client.
I have a habit of waking up early so I made it a point to wake up at 5.30 to ensure that I got as much done as possible before visiting the clients office at 11am everyday.
The key is to make sure that you have uninterrupted focus on a single thing at one point of time. That helps you get a huge amount of work done.
What recently-developed marketing strategy, technique or tool interests you the most right now?
Check out Contentmarketer.io, an awesome promotion and outreach tool developed by growth hacking expert Sujan Patel. It will save you more hours than you imagine!
What do you do to stay up to date with new marketing techniques?
I am a member of Jon Morrow's Serious Bloggers Only Mastermind Group as well as his Guest Blogging Program.
Jon has a brilliant team – Glen Long, Marsha Stopa, Liz Longacre and Shane Arthur among others.
They are some of the smartest people I know. I just follow their guidance. That's all I need!
If there's one Marketing Guru you'd recommend who and why.
Jon Morrow, CEO of Boostblogtraffic. He probably knows more about blogging than anyone else on the planet!
Can you tell us about a project you’re most proud of from your past work history?
There are many, but I can't share those success stories because of client confidentiality. However, I can share one blog post of mine that got excellent traction:
This is a roundup on my own blog that got quotes from some of the biggest experts and CEOs in the productivity space.
What advice would you share with other Marketers who want to become more productive?
The reason why most marketers fail to deliver results is because they lack focus. Focus on one domain and stop trying out everything.
Learn it well and execute it. For instance, at SuccessIsWhat, we are bloggers – we don't try Facebook ads, Social Media or Podcasts. It's simply not scalable.
A company with a big marketing team can afford to successfully be on multiple platforms, but if you are an individual, or a small team, just go after one channel. Stop trying to copy Hubspot!
The other important advice is to create ‘timeboxes.' That's a dedicated time of the day when you work without interruptions from people, device notifications, etc.
Use a timebox to work on the most important tasks. The ones that make the most impact to your success metrics. For instance, if you are a blogger – its writing.
If you can execute this one productivity technique, your output will skyrocket.