I’ve recently had the revelation that niche marketing is actually personal marketing; and not only not niche, but not marketing.
What we are really doing as entrepreneurs is reaching out to one set of eyes, one heart, and one mind of a person; singular. What sparked this insight was not the gazillions of books I’ve read, not the industry I’m in, or the great thinkers who have been saying this all along….
What set off my thinking was an engagement with a quiet, little consultant I hired to help me understand and use Outlook. As he taught me the functions, Outlook changed my outlook.
The clog in my filter was language. The words people use to talk about this topic. I heard them but I didn’t connect them.
Here is the conversation that broke through my filter.
“How have you been tracking your email correspondence?” he asked.
Well, I file them, use X1 or Jan Wencel helps me.
“Do you know how many times you’ve communicated with each person and if you’ve spoken to them on the phone?”
Have I called them?
“Are your contacts..well…just contacts?”
“Do you know how your relationships are progressing?”
It was in that instant that I realized – why isn’t THIS what I’m doing? How many new relationships have I not yet built that need building? How many friendships and professional associates are just sitting there unexplored?
What was I thinking while I was busy broadcasting? Isn’t it the job of every business to reach across the divide and connect like a human being? It’s not just about reaching out. It’s about reaching IN.
I’ve been so busy niche marketing that I’ve missed my own point. I’ve been saying the word “engage.” Yes, it’s the right word but it isn’t the right word.
Open, develop, nurture, appreciate, listen, build and deepen.
It may lead to business, it may lead to friendship, it may lead you to an alliance. In the best case scenario, it’s all of the above. Liz Strauss, I’ve been listening and now I’m finally hearing you. You’ve been reaching in and sharing it. This is another way to connect.
It’s like seeing the boot in the tree of a hidden picture. Once you see the boot, you always see the boot.
Mastering Outlook is another story.