Time Magazine called him “the most sought-after wizard in today’s advertising industry.” He managed one of the most successful advertising firms in history for more than two decades, and he did it with the effortless charm of those we are so fond of calling talented.
If you were to ask those who work in advertising who’s the person who got them into the industry, most of them would say his name.
David Ogilvy. An eccentric character, Commander of the Order of the British Empire, the proud owner of a castle in France, Ogilvy was a phenomenal copywriter who revolutionized the world of advertising.
What I find most fascinating, however, was the mindset that often dictated his unorthodox approach towards his creative work.
1. Turn the Dunning-Kruger Effect on Its Head
A healthy dose of arrogance can be the best cure for the Dunning-Kruger effect.
There are no question marks. There’s no room for doubt, and the bitter truth is that, in a world of half a billion blogs, the bottom is overcrowded by those who don’t believe in their abilities.
How do you build supreme self-confidence as a blogger?
- Confidence is the side-effect of doing the right thing for the right reasons. Don’t sell your soul for readers, don’t write about topics for the sole purpose of making money. Write about topics that inspire you, topics that engage you mentally and emotionally.
- Add a “the” before the word “blogger.” It’s uninspiring to call yourself a blogger. One out of millions of others. Instead, try to be one of a kind. Ogilvy competed in a class of his own.
- Look for validation in the right places. If the narrative doesn’t suit you, change it. Look for evidence of your talent, print out positive comments, and read them over and over again, early in the morning. Use them to build your confidence.
- The hustle keeps you humble. Focus on the work, focus on reaching for mastery, on making each of your articles the best article on that particular topic on the web. I wake up at four in the morning to punch the damn keys. I write two blog posts before everyone else wakes up.
Most bloggers out there struggle because they aim too low. They don’t want to make a dent in the universe, they want a bit of side-money. They just want a thousand readers. They want a few comments. They just want to know they’re not invisible.
In the words of Ogilvy himself, “aim for the company of immortals.”
Each and every single day. And you will find yourself doing twice the work in half the time. You will realize that you can provide more value to more people in ways you never even thought possible.