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playful experimentation: lab notes on blogging

2011 January 30

the secret lab notebook

Playful Experiment lab notes: blogging experiment

Ahem. Yes, about the blogging experiment I mentioned in my last post.

I decided not to join the Ultimate Blog Challenge group as it would require far too many posts in one month for me to write–31 posts in January. I would have had to write 29 today, then another one tomorrow.

That’s not going to happen.

I did love seeing the group promote each other on Twitter with the hashtag of #blogboost.

extrapolating the results: a desire for meaningful connection

In keeping with the spirit of this theme of “playful experimentation”, I’ll note that I’d love to build a group of like-minded people that support each other, whether it’s on social media or not. That’s what I was drawn to, not necessarily blogging every day, though building a blogging habit would be a terrific byproduct.

This is surprising to me as I confess to being strongly introverted. But it’s really about meaningful connections. As an employee, you have a built-in community. As an entrepreneur, I can choose to build the community I want.

Maybe I’ll add this to my Style Guide.

I love what Maryann Devine is doing: Secret Play Dates. Each Tuesday, spend an hour working on a project. That simple! Her approach is gentle and creative, which I love. Check it out.

conclusion: the importance of structure

In all honesty, I started this blog post thinking the blogging experiment was a fail.

But this theme I’ve chosen for myself, “playful experimentation”, has given me a structure to take a look at what happened from an objective perspective, and turn the experience into something useful and dare I say, actionable.

photo credit: beinshitty

playful experiment: blogging

2011 January 2
creative play in Puerto Vallarta

my playspace at Lisa Sonora Beam's creative retreat in Mexico (January 2010)

I just published a post on my other blog about my intention to let the concept of “playful experimentation” guide me through 2011.

What does this mean for this website?

Lo and behold, I choose blogging as my first experiment.

Hitting the “publish” button a little more often and dancing with visibility.

Although I intend to do this on my own, I’m tempted to join the Ultimate Blog Challenge that started  January 1, 2011. It’s free!

Want to play? There’s room for you too.

finding your marketing voice: developing a style guide

2010 October 26
tags:
by joy

1925 French style guide

I love Crys Williams of Big Bright Bulb and her blog post about hand puppet marketing.

Through the web and social media, you can find people who are making a living unconventionally.

In writing and blogging, people talk about finding your writing voice.

Fashionistas bombard us with tips to flatter our body shapes and “signature style.”

I think it wise to bring this into our business thinking, and encourage you to explore, experiment to find your own marketing voice and style.

marketeers types of all shapes & sizes

Let me reassure you, there are marketing people of all types, even in conventional, corporate environments. There are legions of marketeers who look squarely at the data in direct marketing. Their world is about mailing packages, buckslips (those mailing inserts shaped like a dollar bill–hence, buck), response rates and test cells.  In technology, product marketeers connect the world of their customer to the world of technical engineers.

In advertising, there are marketing folks who talk to the clients and make the presentations, and those who work behind the scenes as artists, creative directors, media buyers and production managers.

There is a place for you, too.

Crys brilliantly illustrates something I’m working on in my own business: workarounds. Like her, I am an introvert. I can also call myself a marketing professional, as both an employee and as a consultant. When people think about marketing, they picture the brash ad executive or a sales person.

I am neither.

You may think you have to play all the roles within a conventional marketing department. Yes, there are conventional things you can do.  But you don’t have to do this, not anything, not if it causes you pain and suffering.

a style guide for making connections

At the core, marketing is simply making a connection to your customer.

How do you make friends? Do you volunteer? Do you meet people at church, professional trade shows, your running club or a writing group?

Do you ask one or two people to coffee or lunch?

Or do you meet people through social media or other online communities?

Use that as a starting point and a marketing “style guide” for yourself. Is there an equivalent space or way to reach your audience? What is the most likely place you’ll run into them, online or off?

I feel comfortable in the world of social media. But I do attend smaller in-person events, or events that I know will attract like-minded people.

And I’m the type to take you (and maybe one other person) to lunch. Close to my side of town. With ample parking.

So, keep it simple.

Experiment in small ways so it feels like a playful excursion rather than a high stakes game.

Let yourself explore.

Then show up for yourself.

image credit: Le Petit Poulailler (cc license)