Deciding If This Is Vampire, Fit or Favor?

When your authority building really starts cooking, you’ll see an uptick in all sorts of requests to hop onto your bandwagon.

The list of “please will you”—write a guest post for my column, sit for a podcast interview, host my content for your audience—keeps accelerating. You name it and you’ll get asked to do it.

But here’s the thing.

Quickly deciding if the request is more vampire (where they’ll suck the life out of you), great fit or a favor will save you a ton of time and trouble.

Because “opportunities” that fall into each of those categories deserve to be treated differently.

Vampires often cloak themselves in something that sounds tempting. They dangle an interesting proposal—an interview on a major platform or a potential alliance with a highly visible “celebrity” in your niche.

Sometimes, just a few clicks of research can show you that this is a vampire opportunity with far more benefit to them than to you.

Other times, you may engage briefly, but when the hairs on your neck suddenly stand up, pay attention and get out. Extricating yourself before you get too entangled will save your attention for something that actually matters to you.

Great fits on the other hand, just feel right from the very beginning, kind of like when you see “the one” across a crowded room.

You bond—probably in email or on social—and then you talk or zoom or maybe even meet when it’s clear that you can collaborate on something that benefits you both.

Heck my podcast partner Jonathan Stark and I created three years and counting of podcast episodes sparked by a single call.

The difference between a great fit and a slick-talking vampire is that BOTH parties are genuinely looking to help each other live out their mission.

But there will be other worthy folks who need help too—think of their requests like favors.

You obviously can’t help everyone but how great to help those with whom you resonate?

I like to follow Adam Grant’s “otherish” giving concept: we give to those most likely to generously give to others.

So if a new podcast host wants an interview and they’re working hard to please their start-up audience? Easy yes. (Easier still if their audience dovetails with yours.)

Quickly categorizing help requests—especially if you get a slew of them in response to a media bump—is a stress reliever and force multiplier.

Because the faster you neutralize vampires to focus on great fits and worthy favors, the faster you’ll get your message out to those who want to hear it.

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