We can think of marketing as having two different ways.
The first way of marketing is presenting ourselves, skillfully, strategically, deliberately.
It’s writing our persuasive website copy, designing a logo that gives just the right feel to the brand, it’s concocting our taglines that inspire and inform people.
This is the common form of marketing. It’s important.
The second way of marketing is revealing ourselves, transparently, vulnerably, passionately.
It’s sharing the blog that we don’t want to share because it’s too personal, or feels inappropriate. It’s offering our naked heart, without agenda.
This is the less common form. It’s essential.
You could think about the first kind of marketing as being about surfaces. How do I appear to the world? What will people’s first impressions be? Will I be attractive to my ideal clients?
Surfaces are not less important. It’s like wearing clothes, or getting a haircut.
The second way of marketing is about the heart. It’s revealing who you really are, even though you may doubt the strategy of it. It is removing the curtains, beautiful though they may be.
The realized entrepreneur understands both these ways of marketing. For he understands that he is both depth, and surface. She wants to be seen for her true heart, and for her true skin.
He works hard to create surfaces that reflect his depth in powerful ways – marketing that can attract people magically.
And she also remembers that the heart of meeting is in revealing herself, and relating to the world from chosen nakedness.
This First Way of Marketing Is Like Makeup
I love it when my partner wears mascara and eye-liner. It brings out her big beautiful blue eyes in such an evocatively delicate way. It draws out her natural beauty. It helps me see more of her. I love seeing her.
And then there’s the woman whose make-up is so thick and loud, that I cannot see her true face. Her natural beauty is smeared over like a mask that she hides behind.
Salt, I find, is a wonderful ingredient for bringing out the flavors in a dish. I taste them more. But too much and it tastes like something fake and unpleasant. Sometimes, food can be so salty, I don’t know what the natural flavors actually are, or even if there are any.
So many people are marketing themselves with mountains of makeup and salt, while our hungry marketplace is crying out for something real, something heart-full, something truly beautiful.
Marketing Is Simply Relating
Marketing is a practice of relating with the world around you, not persuading the world of your worth.
Marketing is about seeing your community, clients and customers. And being seen in return. It’s a practice of speaking and being spoken to.
Makeup is good, and fine. Use it to bring out your attractiveness, and have those with roving eyes notice you amongst the crowd.
But don’t hide behind it.
The first way of marketing is an invitation, not a mask.
What’s in your heart? What do you care about so much that you feel ashamed to shout it to the entire world?
I want to meet you, feel you, see you.
Will You Show Yourself?
You are beautiful.
It’s not a beauty that can be assessed according to a universal scale, or compared to the beauty of another. It’s yours. Truly and completely.
And the more you are able to push the voice of your anxiety away, and disclose that beauty, the more the natural world will rise up to meet that beauty.
When you reveal yourself, your true self, your true community will discover you.
If you fake it, and manufacture your image from the form of another, you will attract people who are meant to be served by another.
If you craft your marketing with thick makeup, trying to persuade the world that you are someone you are not, you will attract customers who relate with you as that someone you are not. And they will expect of you, the promises of that someone you are not.
And they will not be served.
And you will not be seen.
Let your marketing be a full expression of who you truly are, and not a mask to divert people’s powerful gaze.
Let them see you.
Let those who turn away, turn away.
Let those who come closer, come closer.