It’s always been personal. It was never about the brand, never about the business. It was always about how it made you feel, your experiences and your aspirations.
I’ve always liked business.
I grew up in hotels and it felt like I lived inside this never sleeping creature made of a thousand moving parts.
It was exciting.
I would meet dozens of new people every year, and became interested in their experiences, in what made them choose that particular place and what they would make of the memories they took back home.
"I mean, I learned marketing from many books, and schools, and people, but I think it was back then, at 9 or 10 years old, that I really understood its core."
I often see companies selling to everybody (this usually means nobody), pushing their product onto people’s (faceless) faces because they haven’t taken the time to do the research and make it personal.
I don’t mean creepy. I mean honest, respectful and meaningful.
We do get a bad rap as marketers (and rightly so sometimes) but I think the problem is usually due to a poorly executed strategy and a shortsighted company.
We are all people interacting with people, but behind laptops and data and business objectives, we sometimes seem to have forgotten.
Every time I feel like I’m too focused on the numbers, I try to take a step back and remember those days running around hotel corridors. The experiences the guests had, the memories, the nostalgia many years later.
That’s what I’m meant to focus on, that’s what we’re selling.
A word about sticking to your guns:
I have a DIY spirit. In life, this has proven to be inconsistent at times, but in work I feel like it’s a valuable asset. I truly believe that you do a better job if you understand what it’s made of, if you take the time to learn about it. I feel like tutors, books and gurus have tried to make me unlearn this approach. To automate, to generalise and disguise it as personalised. I refuse though.
It is and it will always be personal.