You Need To Be More Like Michael McIntyre!
If you haven’t yet heard of Michael McIntyre then you really should have. He is by far my favourite comedian and is probably the UK’s most popular comedian of the moment. So why am I writing about him on my website which is predominantly focused around Internet Marketing? Well what I do as an Internet Marketer is help others to also become successful in Internet Marketing. And there are many things that can be learnt from Michael McIntyre (comedian) that can be applied to your work ethic, your desire and your determination to “make it” online.
You see, I first come across Michael McIntyre on a stand-up show he did in the UK called “Live at the Apollo”. He was great! He was funny! No, he was hilarious! And he just seemed to appear from nowhere! It was only when I read his book “Life & Laughing: My Story” that I learnt of the continuous gigging, the thousands of pounds he spent to perform at the Edinburgh Festival (the festival where “stand-up stars are found,” as Michael puts it) TWO years running (yes, the wannabe comedians had to pay £4000 just to perform there in the hope to get noticed), the endless knock-backs and the mountain of debt he got himself into while trying to become a successful comedian.
And I must say…the two chapters-from-last of his book were so inspiring that I had to share this with you. Here is the gist of those chapters (including a summary of what lead up to that point in his life) and what YOU can take from them:
Michael had been trying to make it as a comedian for about 6 years. He had an agent who got him gigs but they seemed to be the same gigs in the same chain of comedy venues each time. Only the city varied. He was always the opening act, and despite working hard and continuously improving his material, he was never given the opportunity to headline.
Michael was FRUSTRATED.
He was £30,000 in debt (approx. $50,000) when he discovered the news that his new wife Kitty was pregnant. Rather than being able to rejoice at the prospect of becoming a dad, all he could think was, “How am I going to pay for this”.
It was at that point that Michael thought, “I have 9 months to sort my life out. 9 months to take control of the mess that is my life and provide for my family”
[CLUE: We all have our “reasons why” when we get into Internet Marketing. If your “reason why” is big enough, you will find a way to succeed.]
So what did Michael do? The first thing he did was to work harder on his act. He had been told by the critics at the Edinburgh Festival that the strongest part of his performance was his improvisation rather than his pre-written material. He knew that it was the improvisation that got him the most laughs and therefore he enjoyed that the most. So he focused on developing that.
[CLUE: There are so many ways of getting the same result in Internet Marketing. E.g. there are many ways to generate leads. There are many ways to build a relationship with those leads. Pick a method that you are best at and enjoy the most, and focus on that one.]
He also used his current situation as a source of material for new jokes. For example, he wrote a joke around the old wives tale that having sex and eating curry are the best things for inducing labour, and how it was obviously men who made that up. That there were men all over the world sitting in pubs saying, “I can’t believe we got away with that!”
[CLUE: One of the biggest stumbling blocks for budding Internet Marketers is finding content to email to their lists or write on their blogs. There is so much inspiration to be found just in the things that are going on around you, in your lives, in the media, in books you have read, etc, that are relevant to Internet Marketing and lessons that you can share with your list/fans/readers. This blog post is a great example. I finished reading Michael McIntyre’s book today and here is a blog post on it!]
So Michael had been working on and improving his material for 9 months but by the time his baby son was born, nothing had changed. His career still hadn’t progressed and he was even more in debt than before.
CRUCH TIME. What did Michael do? What would you have done in this situation?
Michael had been trying to be a comedian for sooo long. 7 years, £30,000 and a son later, was it time to say, “Enough is enough. I have tried, I have failed, it’s time to settle down and get a ‘proper’ job”?
He assessed what he had been doing for the past 7 years and decided it wasn’t working. That it was time to try a different route. He had been with his agent for 4 years and it wasn’t working out. He started to research which agents had successful comedians on their books.
Then he found the agency that was obviously the best in the industry with names like Jack Dee, Lee Evans, Jonathan Ross, Dara O’Briain and Alan Carr on their books. He called them and arranged a gig where he could perform and two guys from the agency could go to watch to see if they wanted to work with him. They loved him and through this agency, Michael got the gigs and the TV exposure that launched him into being the highly successful and well known comedian that he is today.
[CLUE: Surround yourself with the best in your industry and you will have a MUCH better chance of success.]
When Michael asked his new agent, “Are you going to make me famous?” his agent replied “It will be a couple of years yet.” The truth was, it was only MONTHS.
Have you heard this quote before:
“Many of life’s failures are people who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up.” ~ Thomas Edison
This could so easily have been Michael McIntyre. He had been battling for years and was expecting success to be at least another 2 years away. As it turned out, it was just around the corner.
I think we can all take a lot of lessons from Michael McIntyre. It is these qualities of desire, determination and doing whatever it takes to succeed that will bring your success.
Never ever give up.