This is a personal story. Approximately 11 months ago, in November of 2015, my blogging career was taking off.
I had begun blogging in May of 2015, and by November I had around 10,000 email subscribers. I had recently written an article that was getting lots of traffic. Out of the blue, I received an email from Matt Downing, telling me he really liked the article.
Unlike so many others who had asked to professionally design my website, Matt asked what he could do for me.
In my popular article, I mentioned the importance of saying "thank you." Matt said he was extremely grateful for the article, and thought it was great. Matt is a copy editor and also a web developer.
For some reason, Matt didn't rub me wrong like most people who cold-call me for business. Actually, I probably get 10-20 random emails per month from people asking if they can "optimize" my website.
But Matt didn't do that. He genuinely asked me questions about myself, my goals, and how he could help me. I could tell he was sincere. I could tell he had actually read my work, and wasn't just sending me hashed emails that he has copy-and-pasted to hundreds of other people.
Matt told me that he emailed Paul Jarvis, a popular blogger and podcast host, out of the blue and eventually became Jarvis' copy editor. I can see why Jarvis would want Matt, unlike so many others, Matt was sincere and helpful.
I decided to jump on Skype with Matt to discuss my goals and see if there was anything he could do to help. He spent most of the time listening. Then, after hearing my story and aims, he told me he wanted to help. "Your website is terrible," he said bluntly, "But your content is incredible. I want to help you."
I knew Matt wasn't just saying what he thought I wanted to hear. He was giving me genuine advice, often which I didn't want to hear, but which I knew was accurate.
I decided to hire him to design my website. At the time he contacted me, my website was about as bad as websites gets. Admittedly, I'm not tech-savvy at all. I had a simple Wordpress theme, and not much aesthetic. I knew my website was holding me back. I also knew Matt was the guy to help me get to the next level in my professional writing journey.
Within two weeks, my new website was built. I was surprised how much confidence and clarity the web design gave to my brand and messaging. I wanted people to come to my website and see it.
Since then, Matt and I chat every 1-3 months to discuss adjustments I want to make to the website. As usual, he gives me his honest advice, often challenging the changes I want to make. After thought and discussion, we generally come to an agreement which is much better than my initial idea.
I don't know where Matt Downing came from. But I'm glad he had the boldness to enter my life, to tell me what I needed to hear, and serve me powerfully. There's a reason people like Matt get the types of clients they want. They can quickly discern what a person or business is really trying to do, and they then help that person or business better clarify and accomplish their vision.
Interestingly, a similar experience happened recently but with someone else. A guy name Kai Whiting, who is an editor and founder of Quake Books, had read my eBook. He loved the book but also knew it could be better.
He sent me an email telling me we needed to talk about my eBook. His email, similar to Matt's, didn't come off as insincere. I could tell Kai was interested in my work and wanted to help.
We jumped on the phone and he spoke more directly to my heart than anyone has spoken since Matt 11 months earlier. Actually, Kai spoke more directly to my heart, my dreams, and my passions than anyone has spoken in years.
My conversation with Kai was so personal and relevant that it bordered on the spiritual. I even wrote an article about how that singular conversation 1) got me out of a funk, and 2) confirmed to me that I was on the right path.
Unsurprisingly, I hired Kai as an editor and consultant in helping me with a book proposal I was writing. Kai has also helped me improve the writing of several of my articles in many ways.
I couldn't be happier that both Matt and Kai are in my life. They are the team I'm building around myself to ensure my success. These people speak the hard truth to me. They know my vision, because they resonate deeply with it. We've created huge win-win relationships.
Matt and Kai don't have a hard time finding new clients. They are amazing at what they do. They both jumped into my life without my soliciting their services. I couldn't be happier.