Do you have the mindset that leads to B2B copywriting success?
Carol S. Dweck, Ph.D., a researcher at Stanford University who studied mindsets and published her findings in the book Mindset: The New Psychology of Success, tells the story of trying to see how children handle failures. She gave a group of children two series of tests in her research and found an unexpected result.
First, they were given a series of easy tests, followed by difficult testing. One group consistently complained that the difficult testing was too hard, it was unfair, and it did not accurately measure their ability.
Surprisingly, another group had comments like, “this is hard, but it is really fun,” “I like this challenge,” and “it teaches me something.”
Obviously, there were two mindsets. She called the complainers “a fixed mindset” and the other group “a growth mindset.”
Dweck expanded her research on mindsets to college students, adults, businesses, CEOs, sports, child-rearing, parents, teachers, coaches, relationships, and marriage. She gave the example of a young adult who had a bad day. He scored a C+ on a midterm and got a parking ticket the same day. He called his best friend to unwind but his friend was too busy to talk and gave him the brush-off.
This example was presented to young adults and again, two different responses were observed. The group with fixed mindsets said things like, “I’m a reject” and “I’m a total failure. Everyone is better than me.” They felt the happenings were a measure of their worth. Their plans to cope included, “I won’t put so much time and effort into doing well again” and “I’ll do nothing, stay in bed, eat chocolate, and avoid tests or measurements.”
Contrast this with a similar group with a growth mindset. Their responses were, “I need to try harder in class,” “I need to be more careful when parking the car,” and “I wonder if my friend also had a bad day? I’ll call him tomorrow.”
The fixed mindset often says, “if at first you don’t succeed, you probably don’t have the ability” or “nothing ventured, nothing lost.”
The growth mindset, on the other hand, often thinks just the opposite. “Nothing ventured, nothing gained” or “there is no failure, there is just something else to be learned.”
Alfred Binet wanted to measure children who were not profiting from the Paris Public Schools, and wanted to design a program to get them back on track. In so doing, he invented the IQ test. This was not intended to measure lifelong ability, but just to see where those children were at that time. People have the capacity for lifelong learning and brain development, and later IQ tests may be quite different from earlier ones.
A B2B writer must possess a growth mindset. A B2B writer should be someone who understands that everyone can evolve and expand their abilities and increase their brain development.
You, as an aspiring B2B writer, need the growth mindset and must focus on your writing with this mindset. Dream of yourself as a B2B writer, doing what a B2B writer would do.
Pick a company. Imagine all you can do for them. Look for topics that can be adopted to help your company get its products out. Imagine some samples of writing. Write them. Then, critique them. Nothing worthwhile is easily accomplished. Persist. Don’t be discouraged — keep going!
What would you do if 100 responses came back, or if your only response referred you to five others in the next two to three months?
Remember that a company selling to other companies is usually larger, has a better budget, is likely to have many projects, and may want a “team member.” After all, the CEO certainly doesn’t want to or have the time to write. He or she wants to be CEO!
You are more important than you know. If your writing is successful, your CEO is more likely to be successful. Could it be that he or she needs you MORE than you need him or her?
Keep your growth mindset. Find a group of B2B writers and interact with them. Learn and have fun with them. Contact experts in your area and try to befriend them.
Stay current with periodicals, courses, or tidbits in your area. Keep your electronic community familiar with your name. Be active on LinkedIn.
Your success depends more on your personal efforts than on your IQ.
“Important achievements require a clear focus, an all-out effort, and a bottomless trunk full of strategies, plus allies in learning.” (Mindset: The New Psychology of Success, Carol S. Dweck, Ph.D.)
Get out and go! You already have everything you need. And, you learn by doing!