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The one who got away

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Ever had that moment in life when you thought you lost a huge opportunity?

Of being with someone? Or working with someone?

In hindsight they were “the one”.

Perfect match.

But life throws us curveballs and sometimes we’re just not ready.

Not ready for them, or not ready for the opportunity.

Our world view, our mental model of reality just doesn’t fit.

And we pass it up.

Well, it’s probably happening right now to one of my clients.

See, last year I was referred to them by another copywriter.

Everything looked good on paper. It could have been a really cool (and profitable) project for the both of us.

But something got in the way and they decided to ghost me.

Fine, I thought, after the 2rd followup with no reply.

One thing that’s stamped in my mind, especially after an entire year of working basically just on referrals, is that neediness always backfires.

So, cool, didn’t need them and they obviously didn’t need ME.

Or did they?

Well… it’s 4 or 5 months past that now and something very interesting happened.

I sometimes do work for a pretty established marketing agency who basically just works with contractors to keep a small internal team for strategy.

This agency usually reaches out when they need help with their own clients. and I just come in, do the work and get out.

Spec ops kind of shit.

I love it, no time wasted, and it’s very profitable.

So they reached out and guess what? They are now working with that infamous client…

…and I’m going to work with them!

Indirectly, but still, you get the point.

There’s two big business lessons from this:

1) The digital marketing world is very small. Especially if you pick a niche.


2) Never burn bridges. As billionaire real estate Ryan Serhant says, “Keep multiple balls in the air”.

Also bonus lesson is, be very clear on what’s a good fit and what isn’t.

In this case this client is probably paying the agency 10x what they would have been paying me, but that’s also because they needed a lot more stuff (ppc ads, content strategy and writing etc.).

Would have we gone further directly and we might have realized we weren’t the best fit.

Reason why after a few followups I let it go.

Anyway, what goes around comes back around as they say.

Enjoying these? I posted the first legendary ~30+ “lost issues” (just me writing for myself) of this Conversion Alchemy Journal on my Medium page. Go give them a read and some claps (cool little extra you can also listen to them).



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Every week I write about what I’m learning at my copywriting/UX desk ,with fun, insightful and quirky stories.

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