I hope this never happens to you!

Posted on by Selena Soo, in 'Uncategorized'

I just got back from a super relaxing trip in Miami. It was the best.

I loved swimming in the ocean, meeting up with friends, and having pina coladas and tuna & coconut ceviche by the pool.

While the summer has been great, what you might not know is before I left for my birthday vacation, I had to deal with something quite unpleasant…

I’m sharing it with you today because I think there’s a valuable lesson here.

***

Earlier this month, I discovered that a student who took my INFLUENCE course plagiarized my course content, emails, and sales copy for his own program.

I was shocked to see word-for-word paragraphs directly lifted from my program materials and sales copy. Not only that, but he didn’t even finish paying for the course!

I discovered that something was up when I received a mass LinkedIn message from him — using plagiarized copy from my Publicity Mastermind page to invite me to have a 1-on-1 call about his services. (Can you imagine my surprise?!)

I went to his website, where I was shocked to find page upon page of plagiarized content.

The funny thing is — plagiarism happens more than you might think.

In fact, when I told my lawyer what happened, she said: “Congratulations, you’ve hit the big time when someone is copying your stuff.”

Others would say to me, “Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.” And while I know that to be true, let’s just say that I wasn’t happy in the least.

***

Now I know that all of us have experts, authors, and coaches we admire.

Perhaps we took a course of theirs, or maybe they inspired us to start our own business doing something similar.

Sometimes the line can be a bit murky. What’s inspiration and what’s imitation?

So today I want to talk to you about how to create content that may be inspired by others, but stays uniquely you.

When you discover copy you love, here’s how it can serve as inspiration…

1. Dissect why their copy resonates with you.

We’re drawn to people when we see a piece of ourselves in them. And we’re often drawn to the type of copy we’d like to be able to write ourselves.

Identifying *why* someone else’s copy resonates with you provides clues about what elements you should include in your own writing.

For example, maybe you like a certain expert’s playfulness and humor. This can be an indication that you should explore humor in your own copy.

Or maybe, you found someone’s sales page to be extremely compelling. Try to investigate the psychology behind why their copy resonated with you. This can help you to create that same impact in your copy — but in your own voice, and speaking to your audience.

2. Communicate ideas by sharing your personal story.

Very few ideas are totally unique, but the way you communicate the ideas are.

One of the best ways to convey important ideas are through stories.

Do you have a personal story you can share on the topic you are inspired by?

For example, let’s say an expert you admire shares 5 steps to bounce back after a difficult time. You could write a piece about the biggest challenge you faced in your business, and how you personally overcame hard times.

3. Credit the expert.

Maybe they shared a powerful insight that you know that your audience would find super valuable.

If the idea or phrasing is unique, you can always credit the expert. It’s always in integrity to give credit where credit is due.

This is also a great way to add value to the expert you admire. Not only are you publicly expressing appreciation for the expert, you’re promoting them to more people.

(It’s important to note that many experts have reposting guidelines on their website or in their newsletters, which you may want to check out first!)

I hope these tips help as you write your unique content & share your ideas with the world!

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