Who am I? And how can I make a success of your next project?
Who am I? That's a great question! Not only is it one that you absolutely should ask (not just of me, but of anyone with whom you are considering doing business), it's also a question that I have been seeking the answer to my entire life.
Clarity begins at home. You cannot truly know or serve another until you know yourself. Hence, I have spent many years looking within, as well as looking without. This fascination with understanding the psychology of human nature is, I believe, what drove me throughout my career to push the envelope, think outside the box, try new things, and approach everything from a more creative angle.
As a young magazine journalist, it wasn't enough for me learn the demographics of my readers from surveys. Snapshots and stereotypes have never been my thing. I wanted to put faces on the people I was writing for, to know who they were, what they thought, how they lived their lives, and what was most important to them. That curiosity kept me innovative.
Long before it became popular to hold focus groups and reader events I was pioneering reader holiday clubs; negotiating special deals for subscribers so they could afford to join other readers on trips to France, Spain, Switzerland, and other interesting places where they could see the sights by day and spend their evenings with new friends who shared their interests.
Writing articles about press trips to exotic resorts and posh health spas was a great way to earn a living, but hey, let's not kid anyone here—what my readers really wanted was a chance to experience those delights for themselves. And so they did, when 85 readers from all walks of life enjoyed a once-in-a-lifetime vacation at one of Britain's swankiest "health farms," who thought it was a novel idea when I proposed taking over the place for a whole week, filling it with my readers (housewives, working mums, women who wanted to lose weight and others who were desperately in need of pampering), and all at a special price that was well within their means. There's a lot you can do to make people's dreams come true when you know what people want, and dare to create a win-win scenario for spa owners looking for publicity (which they got by the bucketload), and women who deserve to be pampered like queens for a week.
Long before the advertising industry grasped the fact that it's women who make the majority of family purchasing decisions, or direct marketers understood that gardeners had needs, desires and interests other than stocking up on next season's plants and seedlings, I was persuading direct marketing companies that they could extend the value and shelf life of their product catalogs by providing gardening articles, calendars, tips, and 'ask your questions of the experts' sections—a bold idea when the prevailing formula was every square inch had to be a "selling" space. Those clients that were brave enough to try it not only tripled their profits, and secured the loyalty of their customer bases, it also led to Lavery Rowe Advertising in London crediting me with inventing a new kind of value-driven marketing vehicle: the old fashioned catalog was dead—the magalog was born!
Describing what and how I actually 'do' what I do is not quite so easy. If I had to distill it down in a few words, I would say that I am a catalyst, and a seasoned intuitive business counselor. As oneclient put it: I 'see' where the pieces fit together, and I catalyze and ground ideas, connections, relationships, and projects. I counsel clients from a point of view that combines expertise, intuition, inner guidance, and an ability to read the energy of both people and projects, with my 30-plus years of experience in business development, publishing and marketing.
So how the heck do you put that on a resume? I have no idea. But if you've read this far, then I imagine that who I am, what I know, and what I have to offer you might just be music to your ears.
What do I STAND for?
There are a lot of books around these days focusing on 'marketing from the heart' and 'making friends with the female consumer'—and about time, too! When I was Director of New Business Development at Lavery Rose Advertising in London, new clients would look at me as if I was crazy when I advocated that the best way to keep their customer, reader, or subscriber THEIRS, was by being considerate, sincere, respectful and appreciative—in short, treating them like you want to be treated yourself. Those who 'got it' and practiced it, soon understood why. And my opinion on this score has never changed.
Today, we live in an era where, thanks to the Internet the entire ethos of advertising, marketing, publishing, and communications is undergoing a radical transformation. With the advent and immediacy of social networking, YouTube, Twitter, fan pages and blogs, innovation and personalization are becoming key factors in every marketer's game. Things that once were considered to be impossible, illogical, or unworkable, are proving to be anything but. The old rules are dead, and new rules can't be invented fast enough to keep pace with the rapid evolution that is taking place.
The downside of this, according to some trends gurus, is that people have access to so many choices, the marketer can no longer predict or control the outcome.
And the upside is the power is now right back where it should be—in the hands of the people. Lies are no longer possible. Dissembling doesn't work. Dishonesty has had its day. We're living in a new paradigm, and the tool of discernment that separates the wheat from the chaff is the visceral vibration of sincerity, respect, appreciation, and sheer truth that cuts an immediate swathe through all else, and flies straight as an arrow to the center of the heart.
Truth cannot be hidden or mistaken. We all feel it. We all know it when we hear it. We literally RESONATE with it. Which is why, strange to say, I often turn down clients seeking my services. If you're not truthful... if you're not aligned with the energy of the product, book, business, idea or project that you are trying to put in motion, I won't take you on... Not because I'm an elitist, or a snob... but because in today's higher consciousness climate, it isn't going to work unless it is firmly rooted in truth and completely energetically aligned (you and me have to resonate, and so do you and your customers). And I'm not about to waste my time or compromise my integrity taking your money and allowing you to believe otherwise.
Some years ago I made a vow that henceforth, I only ever wanted to work with "real deal' people. It was the wisest and most honest decision I've ever made in my life.
If what I have written above resonates with you, then I will be delighted to talk with you and give you the best advice and service that I am capable of giving. And if not, thank you for taking the time to read this.
I wish you well,