Ryan Hanley

author, speaker, marketing geek

Crab Fishing, Steve Jobs and Long-term Success Online

deadliest catch success online

Do you watch Deadliest Catch on the Discovery Channel?

I love that show.  Completely addicted… I know power bloggers and motivators write things like “Turn the TV off and read or get something done…”

Blah. Blah. Blah.

Don’t Care!

Love Deadliest Catch… It’s part of my life and the hour a week is worth it to me.  Plus my awesome wife loves “The Deadliest” as much as I do so it gives us something else to bond over (since I simply can’t do real housewives or Kardashians).

What Does Deadliest Catch Have to do with Success Online?

deadliest catch success onlineWell my impatient friend… Longevity.

Deadliest Catch has now produced 8 seasons of content.

How do you make crab fishing interesting for 8 seasons?

Seriously, it’s just crab fishing.  Sure it’s dangerous as hell and sure the crazy video of the ocean is intriguing but you would think that after 8 seasons there wouldn’t be much of a story left to tell.


Aaahhhhh but that’s where you would be wrong.

What Deadliest Catch does better than almost any other reality based TV series is tell the human side of the story.

That is how you make crab fishing interesting for 8 seasons… You make the show about MORE than crab fishing.

Success Online is About You

Success Online is not about your blog… It’s not about your Facebook page… It’s not about you LinkedIn Groups… It’s not about your Google Adwords budget… It’s not about your backlinking strategy… It’s not about your SEO.

You… well… You and your story… Hold the key to success Online (Unless your a straight Ad based Internet Marketer then it’s not about you at all,it’s about all that other stuff).

How many articles have been written about Steve Jobs and his ability to market Apple products?  A million… Ten million… Let’s agree on “a lot.”

What is the one idea that every single one of those articles revolves around?

Steve Jobs told the story.

Steve Jobs told the story about  the product, the team, the culture, the emotion, the reaction, the joy, the trial and the success.

Then Steve Jobs would hold whatever gizmo he wanted you to buy next to his face and people would lose their minds…

People bought Steve Jobs.

No matter how many times Steve Jobs took the stage it was his story and his ability to make whatever product was in his hand feel bigger than just a product.  He made the iPod about more than just listening to music.

That’s what Deadliest Catch does with crab fishing.

And that’s what you and I must to do if we want to be successful long-term Online…

…with our blogs

…with our social networks

…with our newsletter

…with our products and services.

Our Online presence MUST be about more than what we sell.

#1 Way to Make Your Story About More than the Product

So if our Online presence must be about more than what we sell…

What Deadliest Catch Can Teach You About Long-Term Success Online @RyanHanley_Com

How do we make it more?

We pull away the curtain.  We show the back-end of production.  We invite our customers and clients to join us on the other side of the computer screen and watch the magic happen first hand.

Deadliest Catch has done this with one episode spin-off shows that target specific aspects of crab fishing that the main series does not have time to dive deep on.

An example is Deckhands (Deckhands are the guys on the actual deck of the boat that pull the crab gear from the ocean.  They are rough and rugged and sometimes have tragic but amazing stories).  

Because there are usually five to six deckhands on every crab boat the main Deadliest Catch episode does not have time to get into each guy and their story.  So what Deadliest Catch did was a one-hour special spin-off episode that focused on nothing but deckhand back stories…


These guys live wild and tumultuous lives based on the fact that they spend up to three months on a crab boat in one clip.

The result of this deep dive or behind the curtain episode is that I now have Favorite deckhands and really root hard for some of the guys to succeed and I watch each main episode of Deadliest looking for what this guy or that guy will do…

How This Applies to Your Online Presence

You may not be the best storyteller.

You may not be the funniest person alive.

You may not have the most confidence in your Online abilities.

But you do blog… You do have a Facebook page…  And you are trying to grow your business Online.

Let your customers and clients see how you do that…

…or better yet let them see how you make whatever product it is you are selling

…or give them a backstage pass to your service work preparation

…or talk about how your favorite hobby helped you start your business.

The exact topic and how you do it doesn’t matter as much.  It’s the point of letting down your guard down and showing your readers and fans and friends and followers who you are.

The Rub

People don’t buy iPods just for music… They buy them because Steve Jobs made them cool!

People don’t watch Deadliest Catch because they love crab fishing… They watch Deadliest Catch because the guys that crab fish are amazing!

And people don’t read your blog and connect with you on social media because they love to hear about your product… They enjoy YOU and how your story makes your product or service unique.

Tell your story… Let people behind the curtain… And be the Awesome You!

Thank you and Good luck,

I am Ryan Hanley and this is Content Warfare.

Image courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net

About Ryan Hanley

I help make sales easy through content marketing. My work as a marketing strategist, keynote speaker, and Amazon bestseller author will help your business establish authority, attract an audience and grow revenue. Hire me to speak at your next event or grab a copy of my new book, Content Warfare.

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  • http://www.mitprof.com John Ernest @ MIT Houston Texas Engineering

    I especially enjoy how you connect one great thing into another. Deadliest catch is one of the most amazing shows I watch on Discovery Channel, next after Mega Structures when it was still being aired. You have to be amazing if you want to be successful and if you want people to follow your posts. Thus, you should make sure that you us Just Be Amazing SEO methods to your advantage!

  • http://www.guideandnews.com Ehsan

    Hey Ryan, I must be agree with what you said, Apple iPad isn’t high selling because of the buyers wants to listen music, they are buying it because of Steve Jobs.

    I’m watch Discovery daily, but I never watch Deadliest catch yet. Will watch it.
    Thanks for the awesome article bro.


    • http://www.ryanhanley.com Ryan Hanley


      Thanks for stopping by dude… I think you’ll love Deadliest Catch… Great show.

      It’s all about the story brother.

      Ryan H.

  • http://www.ryanhanley.com Ryan Hanley

    Thanks Allen! You’ll love Deadliest Catch.

    Be good buddy.

  • http://travelinsurancequotess.blogspot.com/ Lisa Donaho

    Wow….I am agree with you, and i think the caused by this deeply jump or behind the layer show is that I now have Preferred deckhands and really primary hard for some of the people to be successful and I observe each primary show of Most harmful..Thank you so much..

  • http://theviewfromhere.ca Ralph

    Nice analogy – the show, the seasons, ’cause it’s real and about real people. It all makes so much sense.

    First time here but have seen you pop in and out of a few sites that I frequent. Love the deal here. It’s cool.

    Behind the curtain, huh? I love that analogy as well. Sure, it’s awesome to FEEL the love, the sweat and the work behind the screen. You really struck a chord here and demonstrated it well. Thanks for the inspiration.

    • http://www.ryanhanley.com Ryan Hanley

      Ralph I’m so happy you connected with the material. Letting your readers behind the curtain yields amazing results… Let me know how it works for you!

      So glad to connect with you!

      Ryan H.

      • http://theviewfromhere.ca Ralph

        Likewise. Be by here more often now. See you around the “sphere”. And yes, I will let you know how it works out.

  • http://www.stevebaines.biz Steve Baines

    Great post Ryan!! I have been doing some experimenting on my blog and can definitely tell you that the posts I haven’t let my readers ‘pull back the curtain’ to see who I am, have sucked! I wish you would have written this blog a month ago…lol…live and learn.

    Awesome – love it! Thank you!

    • http://www.ryanhanley.com Ryan Hanley


      You are killin’ it dude. Love your style… Love your posts. Can’t imagine your anything you put sucking…



  • http://www.aaronbeaudette.com Aaron Beaudette

    Hi Ryan, well this might quite possibly be your best post EVER! You hit it on the head with passion dude. Personalize it. Let people know you are warm bloded and not just marketing some ho hum product or service…i lkie it. Bet your next post wil also be your best ever. One thing i like about your stuff is you never run out of creativity; like the rolling stones… Ur no one hit wonder!

    • http://www.ryanhanley.com Ryan Hanley

      Wow Aaron! Thanks so much bro… I read something somewhere that I wish I could source but it said… “Not being Passionate is Not cool…”

      That has always stuck with me.

      Appreciate you taking the time to leave your thoughts!

      Ryan H.

  • http://www.brentmkelly.com brent Kelly

    Apparently, I need to watch more TV!!! Seriously, this Is a great post and should help motivate others to let them know that we all have a story to tell. If it was like everyone else’s story it would be boring.
    Much of the content that is out there is reproduced (myself included), but our personal story is what makes it different and interesting.

    • http://www.ryanhanley.com Ryan Hanley


      You hit it right on the head buddy… In a general sense there is rarely a truly original concept created these days… However our personal spin and how our story and lives and experience effect that concept our what make our voice original…

      Thanks buddy!!


  • http://mightywisemedia.com Eric T. Wagner

    Nicely done Ryan.

    Great example. Great lesson. And you’re 100% right — we tune into things because of the “story” of the people behind it. Goodness — I guess that’s why your wife watches Real Housewives, right?

    Thanks for sharing this little story my friend. :-) Eric

    • http://www.ryanhanley.com Ryan Hanley


      Thank you… It’s all about the story my friend. I appreciate you stopping by!!!


  • http://waltgoshert.com Walt Goshert


    I freaking love Deadliest Catch.

    How about a TV series of Insurance guys escaping near death from infected paper cuts, nearly crushed to death from a falling file cabinet, or having to wear a sweater in their office because the furnace is on the blink?

    Just spit balling here…

    The point is, whether it’s on your own blog, photo shares on Pinterest, Facebook Pages, or Youtube videos, you are spot on…

    Even if you sell boring crap, you’re still selling it to people.

    Your content must weave a story.

    For more on this, especially for financial services peeps, Susan Weiner has a couple good articles on telling stories, with links to a couple great examples.


    • http://www.ryanhanley.com Ryan Hanley


      I would watch that show… Paper cuts can be a bitch.

      Seriously though thanks for sharing the resource there are some great examples!

      All the best!


    • http://www.brentmkelly.com brent Kelly

      They could do an insurance agents version of Survivor. If you don’t close the deal you get voted off. Must watch TV. Think of the drama and backstabbing:)

      • http://www.ryanhanley.com Ryan Hanley

        Think of all the great policy form talk! ha!

  • http://www.gindin-insurance.com Dave Berndt

    Maybe we could tell stories about how we shop their accounts with other companies because they want to save money. Or about how many customers lie about their MVR or claims history because they want to save money but we always catch them. Insurance is pretty boring. What we do each day can be pretty boring even when we save a customer $500. Learning about our customers is not necessarily boring. Learning about their lives and what they do and how we can help them protect them from loss or help them recover from loss, that’s not boring. It’s all how you look at it.

    • http://www.ryanhanley.com Ryan Hanley

      Dave… Absolutely NO DOUBT… You get it. You got it. Love it.

      It’s all about THEM.

      Thanks for adding your thoughts… so valuable!


      • http://www.gindin-insurance.com Dave Berndt

        This gives me an idea for the next blog. TITLE: “It’s all about YOU….the customer!”

        • http://www.ryanhanley.com Ryan Hanley

          Love that… Great post title.

  • http://www.blognetworking101.com Jeevanjacobjohn

    Awesome post, Buddy!

    There is just one thing to learn from this post, but it is something we all find hard to do – Being yourselves. You are right. Our business is about us and our story, not about the content we right. That’s why people follow some bloggers and not others, even though they all share the same tips, content wise.

    I don’t have cable tv (I am already busy without), but I think I have seen deadliest catch (or it must have been some other show that is similar).

    Anyways, I love how you related all this. If Steve Jobs wasn’t the guy he was, then many people wouldn’t have brought Apple products. Apple wouldn’t be a company with high brand value.

    It is about us. Our story.

    Thank you for sharing, Ryan,

    Jeevan Jacob John

    • http://www.ryanhanley.com Ryan Hanley

      Jeevan… Really appreciate you stopping by dude and I couldn’t agree with you more… Apple is the company that it is because of Steve Jobs and his ability to tell a story and understand that people buy the story.

      Have you ever talked to an Apple use about Apple products? They act like it’s some elite club that only the truly enlightened join and every other computer or technology user is someone Less…

      Which I find to be awesome. That is all because Jobs and his story telling ability.

      Thanks so much dude.


  • http://www.thesaleslion.com Marcus Sheridan-The Sales Lion

    Dude, I LOVE deadliest catch!! It’s one of my workout shows and I’m really digging the social episodes with the Twitter integration.

    And isn’t it funny how it never grows old seeing that first pot come up?

    Kinda like pushing publish and watching the results 😉

    You rock Hanley.


    • http://www.ryanhanley.com Ryan Hanley

      Every time that first pot comes up the anticipation makes me think about opening up my Google Analytics account… Probably not a healthy correlation but I can’t help it.

      Deadliest just kills it… The show is amazing and never ceases capture my attention. It’s probably the only television show besides some sporting events that I look forward to.

      Thanks for stopping by my man and appreciate everything you do!!

      You da bomb.


  • http://www.vitalchats.co.za/ Wade Balsdon

    Thanks Ryan. This is precisely what I needed to hear today. I will take this is a great birthday present today. Thanks :-)

    • http://www.ryanhanley.com Ryan Hanley

      Happy birthday Wade!

  • http://brettcohrs.com Brett

    True that. I have a feeling if I slowly tweeted the ISO – GL form, I’d lose my followers. And if I did a dry analysis of each clause in my blog, potential clients wouldn’t flock. Insurance, itself, is pretty boring. I mean, let’s be honest.

    But… helping businesses get off the ground. Helping a nonprofit get a grant. Helping a homeowner get paid when something horrible happens to their house. Those are stories.

    • http://www.ryanhanley.com Ryan Hanley

      Brett… 100% bro! That’s the deal. Tell the story… Make it human. Digital Marketing is an extension of who we are not a completely different personality. You love giving to Nonprofits explain how your charitable giving and the relationships that created has allowed you to work with some amazingly philanthropic people…

      Great stuff!!

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