It’s been officially 2 weeks since my test projects kicked off.
While the Marketing Consulting piece (Cliqstan) was thought to be the harder of the two projects to make successful, I’m finding that developing a new blog in an era where there are millions of blogs is the most trying. Sure marketing consultants are a dime a dozen too, but for now my process consists of me approaching companies/entrepreneurs to share strategy approaches for problems that are easily known or they have identified – it’s either hit or miss but the foundation already exists, making it a bit easier.
A blog has a completely different push style (push definition here) for gaining and growing a customer base. (1) It’s digital. Even with a large budget it’s hard to break through all of the noise on the internet. (2) It’s a blog. No one asked for another one, so there’s not a lot of people in the market for a new online mag, newspaper or opinion. The good news is, I’ve identified how I would have to think about this differently. When something already exists, it’s easy for a marketer to come in a poke holes in existing marketing practices and point out the cash cow or growth opportunity for moving forward. Being in the trenches before the foundation is laid is where I’ve realized I am, so new thinking is the only option.
The question I was forced to really ask myself – “what’s actually different about the plan for TheBarLift.com that would make someone care?” The pessimist answer to that question? Nothing. The optimist answer to that question? Nothing yet.
I’m an optimist, but I’m very real about the core needs of my audience as well as its attention span and overall “so what” attitude. That short attention span and “so what” attitude pushed me down to the point of frustration this past week but great things came from that frustrated moment and collaborating with my non-marketing partners. After white boarding all of my ideas and testing the positioning statements among the group, TheBarLift.com’s subtitle and true positioning came about. The beauty of this positioning is that it’s so true to the habits and banter among my core group of friends and many others that how and what we develop as far as content, is far from a frustrating thought because it’s life.
Lesson of the week: Dig deeper when creating your own platform, just as you would researching your customers to understand that true core need (usually found through a series of “Whys” and “Hows”). While you’ll still need to gather more insights to properly target your audience, if you can start from a place that resonates with you (or an audience close to you or your profession), you can better understand the gaps and really understand what’s needed to create a valuable and profitable competitive advantage for yourself.
I’ll be officially launching TheBarLift.com (including it’s positioning) in the coming weeks. Please continue this journey with me as I go from marketing employee to Marketing Consultant and Entrepreneur.