We hear it a lot. "Follow your heart."
But what does it mean to “market with heart?”
To me, marketing with heart, or truth-telling, is a way to BE REAL and WHO WE TRULY ARE when sharing our offerings. It's a new way to market, and it's VERY effective. Here's why:
Many marketing experts tell us to paint a façade, create an illusion, or a fantasy that grabs people’s attention, then push on their pain points in a way that manipulates their fears so they will buy your thing.
To my eyes and ears, this is unethical and needs to stop. It also feels icky.
Why not be who we are?
I believe that who we are is ENOUGH. Actually, more than enough. Each of us carries a collection of unique and compelling life experiences and beautiful story arcs that illustrate challenges overcome, lessons learned, and medicine to share. It's all inside us!
Yet so many of us wrestle with how to describe our work, how to convey the passion we feel for it, how to draw people in, and how to generate interest so we can keep building our vision so it not only supports the clients we serve, but also supports us creatively and financially.
We wrestle because we want to do it right, without resorting to unethical tactics that prey on people's fears. And we certainly don't want to exploit ourselves by sharing details from our lives that shock people into action.
What if, instead of preying on their fears, we inspire their hearts?
To market with heart asks us to drop the façade, align with our deeper purpose, then build our marketing platform from there.
GREAT NEWS! I'm leading a workshop on "Marketing With Heart"
in February. Scroll down for more details.
When we tap into our inner fire (note: all entrepreneurs have this, it’s what fuels us), we find words that tell the origin stories of our heart-work. And this is the stuff that resonates with people and draws them in. And far from icky, it feels solid, plugged in, passionate – and magnetic. These are the feelings we’re aiming for!
Uncovering our origin stories takes courage and tenderness. Sometimes it takes awhile for the seeds of our stories to sprout and grow. Is it worth the effort? I say YES.
I just heard from a client this week who worked with me on her brand story two years ago. She told me she is just now starting to feel a sense of change and expansion (in her life and business) as a result of that work. Things are clicking into place for her, and she's feeling more confident than ever.
Yes, it's worth the effort. This kind of change is deep and rooted.Our truth and our stories form the foundational soil from which our important, life-changing work in the world grows. We are the change-makers the world needs now. Let’s not shy away from our stories and truth.
NEW WORKSHOP: Marketing with Heart
Join me in Bloomington, IN for this special workshop for independent, entrepreneurial women! Together, we'll learn how to…
Last weekend I spent time with a group of women in the woods studying wholeheartedness and the healer archetype (from The Four-Fold Way, by Angeles Arrien).
We examined the following quote by poet David Whyte:
“You know that the antidote to exhaustion is not necessarily rest? The antidote to exhaustion is wholeheartedness.”
Now that's a quote you can chew on, right?
It invites us to take a closer look when we're feeling exhausted and burnt out. It's an opportunity to ask ourselves, "am I really tired, or have I become disconnected from my creative passion?"
Of course, there are times when we're experiencing that bone-deep exhaustion so many women feel at the end of a long day – taking care of others, parenting our children, keeping our home, preparing meals, and maintaining a career – all in a culture where we’re paid less and expected to do more than our male counterparts.
Try telling a bone-deep exhausted woman she doesn’t need to rest; she just needs open her heart a little more. Um…no. Sometimes we just need to rest.
And then there are times when opening our hearts can tap us into a deeper wellspring of energy.
For entrepreneurs, here's a way to open your heart that's quite effective:
Remember your WHY.
Please join me in congratulating my client, Kathy Mickel, on her new website!
Kathy's WHY is to help others rediscover their direction and meaning in life. Her story describes how she found her own direction and the courage to leave the corporate bubble to start her own yoga coaching and retreat practice.
Yesterday felt heavy. Dr. Christine Blasey Ford gave her testimony on Capitol Hill. Her story (plus those of the other women who've come forward) take me right back to the realities of being a teenage young woman in the 80s. There's no way to soften the harsh reality that sexual harassment and assault was commonplace back then – and, sadly, still is. We just have a wider vocabulary to name it now.
This is why telling our stories is a game-changer. Anita Hill risked everything to share her truth. She was humiliated and her perpetrator did not suffer any consequences. But her truth opened up a whole new conversation around sexual harassment in the workplace. And now, Dr. Ford is doing the same - putting her life on the line to share her story, challenging the prevailing notion that sexual assault is acceptable, even encouraged, behavior to be filed under the category of "(rich, white) boys will be boys."
It's hard to stay grounded right now. If all of this has been triggering for you, you're not alone. Revolution isn't easy. And I think we're in the midst of a revolution – the dismantling of the patriarchy – and it won't fall without a fight.
Women who share their true stories are part of the revolution. Women who leave the 9-5 to start a business of their own are part of the revolution. We are strong and our creative fires burn with ferocity. When the system fails us, but we get busy creating our own realities –even if we aren't sure how to do it.
I realize this is a departure from my normal subject matter in this newsletter, but I felt compelled to write it. And perhaps it isn't a departure at all, but more like an amplification. Our stories are healing medicine. Sometimes the medicine takes a long time to work, that's all.
Onward with love,
Author and Branding Consultant
I am passionate about helping mission-centered business owners share their message through compelling written and visual content.
My memoir, What I Gave to the Fire, is available in both print and Kindle formats on Amazon.com.