Stand out marketing

In a world where technology is growing exponentially, you need to make sure you do all you can to stay up to date. Traditionally the strongest and most powerful civilizations have been those that have the most advanced technology and this translates to your work, your relationships, your health and about everything you do. You can’t expect to get ahead if you are constantly left behind and uninformed.

You have to know what is going on in your industry, understand the megatrends and how that will influence your work, your career, ways in which you will suffer and how you can better position yourself to take advantage of everything. It is a mixture of anticipating, predicting and creating different scenarios beforehand so that when one occurs you can be in a position of power. As in chess, we have to be thinking not one step ahead but 3 to 4 moves ahead and coming up with different responses for our opponents next move.

So you know you have to keep up with the trends and you know you have to adapt quickly. There are approximately 1.2 billion websites registered at the moment. Not all of them are hosted or receive traffic, yet they exist. Technology and the amount of information we are producing is growing exponentially. The online world has created so much opportunity for a huge part of the population to have access not only to information but to have a voice and be heard. Social media has connected the world in an incredible way. Something that just 50 years ago was completely unheard of and many people would never have imagined.

With everyone fighting for attention, you need to understand how to attract it and hold on to it. With an online property (a website), you’ll want visitors to become clients, followers, readers, whatever.

In order for that to occur you have to do a couple of things.

1- Make sure your website shows up in search engines on the first page. If you are not there, your business is hard to find, if not close to impossible, and that means little to no traffic. That also equals few to no customers online. As different industries start to evolve or even disappear with the developments in artificial intelligence and other technologies, having an online presence will become more important. You must help people find you. As more and more companies invest in online marketing and paid advertising, it will also become harder for the smaller player or business to get on the first page of a search engine. Many of the results will, unfortunately, belong to big brands.

2- Having an online presence alone will not be a guarantee of success. You will need to make sure you stand out. You have to determine what the plan is for that. What story will you tell your potential customers? How will you be perceived? To stand out among the rest there are some standard things you can do. Watch what everyone is doing in your industry and go in the opposite direction. Perhaps you could also use the concept of incongruence. People pay attention to things that are remarkable. Seth Godin talks about this idea in his book ‘Purple Cow.’ He was driving in the country and was enjoying looking at all the cows. Eventually, he got tired of them and thought the only thing that would grab his attention at that moment was something out of the ordinary, a purple cow. How can you turn your business into a purple cow that will capture people’s attention and cause them to develop curiosity about you and as a natural next step, be fascinated?

The internet with the ever multiplying amounts of data and information will only become more and more saturated. Now is the time to prepare for what will come next. In order to anticipate this, we have to come up with ideas of how we can separate ourselves from others. In order to do this you have to research. (Check this post out!)

Market Research and demand mining. Then product!

It’s tough to know how to create a working strategy. One that really is able to attract your target market to your business and motivates them to get involved, participate as a customer and become a lifelong loyal buyer. It’s even harder for new entrepreneurs who are going through all their cash and possibly living off their savings. More established businesses have it easier as they already have a steady income.Regardless of where you are, it is important to pay attention to this. Many think that first, you create a product and then you create the demand. That is definitely one way to go about it. We do what we love, follow our passion and live our dream only to see it float up ten meters in the air and blow up with all the pieces falling over us. It’s a common pattern and some of the most given advice. Sadly, for many of us, it is not going to work out.

You’ve heard the overused, even trite expression of “if you just try hard enough, you’ll get there.” There are some things you need to stop chasing. In a world of opposites, sometimes what we chase and want the most, moves away from us.

Sometimes, we really just need to move away or take a break from what we are doing in order to get a better perspective on the situation.

Dean Graziosi, the multi millionaire who built his wealth in real estate, TV and has written numerous best selling books says that first comes the marketing then comes the product creation. What happens is that you create a product that there is already demand for. You build something people want and with an investment in advertising and promotion people come to you and they buy. (depends on your marketing strategy of course)

Take a look at “Cinq Wines- Vinos Guatemala“.
They know who their target market is and that’s why their customer base has grown so quickly.

They have also made it clear how they are different from other wine importers with a unique selling proposition. Think of how your business makes the world a better place. Think of the overall belief of the organization and the people behind the business. What is the true vision and why are you doing what you do. The best companies are able to do this. (Look at Andres Ponciano Marketing)

Nike, for example, sells shoes. Shoes that are quite cheap to make in developing countries where labor is still found at a low price. Yet, Nike is not positioned as a shoe company. They honor the great athletes. Great athletes have used their shoes to win medals, set new world records and become even better athletes.

BY buying Nike shoes customers are taking part in something greater than just shoes. They are in a way rubbing shoulders with greatness. You can also consider filling a want that no one is taking care of.

If you look at all the problems that you have in your life, which ones are interesting enough for you to want to solve?

Take a look at the problems you, your friends, family, neighbors, and colleagues have. Which could you help solve? Which ones would you enjoy solving? Which ones if solved could earn you a nice living? Could you build a business out of it? Is there a small way to test a product with minimal time investment and how could you do it?

The key, however, is that you must first do the market research and that will allow you to come up with all the ideas that will have demand. Then your business will have a higher probability of surviving. If most businesses fail within a year, why not set yourself up to be in the best position to be successful?

Art- A different meaning

Art imitates life. At least that’s what I have heard since I was a child. Walking towards music class, hauling my recorder and music books or running to art class, anxious to find out what we would work on next. It’s not so much the tasks themselves that sparked my curiosity, but the whole process of discovery. Learning something new, a different perspective, movement, sound, style was the part that I enjoyed the most. The feeling of having your mind stretched and seeing something for the first time all over again. Perhaps that is what is so great about being a kid. That you get to use your eyes in a different way and that your imagination has no limits. A way that is fresh and is not yet repetitive or known. Day after day you’re constantly learning something new for the sheer love of learning and just because you’re curious. It’s a hard feeling to want to let go, but it tends to happen. At some point, it goes away, whether we knowingly let it or not.

School pushes us to focus on right and wrong, on what is accepted and not accepted and what is expected instead of the unexpected. We get bad scores, comments or looks if we don’t follow the herd and just agree with everything we are told.  The magic slowly trickles away and that wonder that we once felt with so much power, the one that made our body shiver and sent goosebumps running through our whole body, vanishes. Occasionally, we feel it again but it’s not the same anymore.

It is hard for me to remember what that was like. At times, it’s like we’ve lost our liveliness and we become someone else. Is that what it means to be an adult? To follow rules, accept everyone else’s opinion but your own and give up your own individuality. If that is what it means to grow up, I’d rather stay young. Stay a fool and experiment and come to my own conclusions and think for myself and stay curious and go against the grain and keep learning as if I were five years old and starting first grade.

Coming back to art and its many definitions, the dictionary seems weak in its description of what it is. If art as beauty is in the eye of the beholder, then art can be truly anything we wish it to be.

Reading a book on digital marketing and SEO I came across a thought that really hit home with me. It said, “creativity is for everyone. Creativity is imagination and everyone has that.” This is so true and yet we forget it. We tend to think some people are creative while others aren’t. Yet, creativity is everywhere. The way you walk, the movements of your body and the rhythm of your footsteps. The way your arms move as you stroll down the sidewalk. The way you write your name and the pitch and tone you speak in. The speed or tempo of your words as you say them. The dynamics and rhythm in the way you express yourself. Your vocabulary.

Everything we are taught about being creative or about creativity is the absolute opposite of this definition.

Perhaps it would be better to accept there is creativity in all we do. We are creative people in every aspect of the word.