So, here we are in sunny Florida (and loving it). Yeah, a couple of pasty white sods from Toronto are spending a couple of weeks in the sunshine state. Man, the people that live here year round must just love it. The grass is always greener as they say and the grass in Florida is very, very green.
Well, we decided not to bring work with us and in order to honor that I decided this time not to write about work. Well sort of.
OK. I have a two year old Budweiser beside me (surprisingly still good – what does that say about my taste? or taste buds?). The in-laws are at the pool, the dog is running around like a caffeinated squirrel (damn Yorkies), the wife is outside on the balcony relaxing with a glass of Pino and I am sitting at my laptop itching to write.
The world is in a good place.
So, instead of watching TV last night we were listening to a podcast between Mitch Joel and Joseph Jaffe, two marketing gurus if you don’t know them, who were talking extensively about marketing as it relates to the world around them.
Hey, architect slash designer guy, what the hell are you doing delving into the world of marketing?
Well, like Mr. Seth Godin has said in the past, dive into another (related even) field to see if there are some new ideas you can get to help your own. A fresh perspective, per se. I do it because I have an insatiable appetite to learn new s**t and you never know, right?
So, Mr. Perspective, what’s the deal-eo?
Well, if you can get past all the grandstanding (their platform – their rules) they actually talk about some interesting topics on the subject of entrepreneurs and brand identity in the world of marketing but what really interested me was the ideas they discussed around the old adage “the message must have meaning” as it relates to the importance of creating value and telling a story that comes from a real place.
A real place? What a shocker!
The conversation that resonated with me most was how brands, ergo businesses, should recognize a need to band together to provide better solutions to problems instead of fighting each other so much to get to the consumer. Instead of slamming their competitor’s product or offering wouldn’t it be better for the consumer to see the potential of shared knowledge and experience coming together in a platform for positive change? Something to the effect of sharing experiences in a real way and demonstrating real human interaction by way of helping people.
Now, I get how altruistic that sounds but isn’t that a bit about why we all blog? Don’t we want to help people by connecting them to each other and to what we know? To help them grow?
Go ahead and call me a liberal, right wing so and so or whatever reasonable facsimile that works for you in your neck of the woods. I don’t care because I believe in that idea. Clearly, otherwise I wouldn’t be writing about it or blogging in the first place.
Here’s why I think the way I do.
If you look at Ashley Ambirge and her Middle Finger Project this idea may not be as obvious but don’t be fooled. It might be in your face and expletive filled language but the feeling is there.
This is what Joel + Jaffe were talking about with respect to bringing out that magic. The same goes for Adrienne Smith and her friends. She surely wants to grow her business but how? By helping people? Seems like it. I am new to her site but that’s certainly the feeling I got.
Then there’s some of the other blogs I read; Craig McBreen, theJackB, Bill Dorman, Danny Brown, Kaarina Dillabough, Ameena Falchetto and how can I forget my dear friends (whom I have never met) Gisele Navarro Mendez and Carolyn Brajkovich (the other two musketeers).
Each has their platform or business to run or are part of a larger organization or are hanging out their shingle in the on-line world. My point is that I read all these bloggers for two reasons; I learn from their offering and I learn from the discourse but most of all because they take the time to blog and share their world with me (us). Some are focussed on business and some are more focussed on life but each is uniquely interesting in their own way.
And they are just the tip of the iceberg. It’s like a revolution. The social web is a revolution for positive change.
I commented recently on Jens Berget slymarketing site about having enough time to read all these great bloggers. When I do find the time I am always amazed at the content. Maybe I am lucky to have found so many of these great connections or maybe it is the nature of the “new economy”.
I don’t work in the world of marketing, social media or am I a business owner or entrepreneur.
I can understand the difficulty in getting work and maintaining relationships because that’s where I come from just from a different perspective. My wife and I have a ton of passion for our industry; we have seen a lot in our days in the A+D world and that’s how we relate back to the challenges of building business on-line and off-line.
So, on we go, reading and listening to the business leaders out there offering their opinions and knowledge to the world, sharing their insights with the people who visit and reading their stuff feeling lucky to pick up on all the cool tips and tricks of the trade out there.
As we grow our on-line presence we will continue to engage and learn as much as we can while building on our own offering to the A + D market. It is critical to us to help people and at first we thought we were being way to altruistic and maybe a little too naïve (maybe we are) but based on the past few months we have seen that there is a reality to the ideas that the social web is really that; social.
Something that we have always purported in the real world is like-minded people seek each other out. The best team you can have is one that has and sees similar values. With that I leave you to continue to explore the virtual world.
It’s not a pastime anymore. It’s a commitment.
No call to action this week but feel free to give me the business end of your thoughts!
Signing off (for now) from sunny Florida.