The separation of talent and skill is one of the greatest misunderstood concepts for people who are trying to excel, who have dreams, who want to do things. Talent you have naturally. Skill is only developed by hours and hours and hours of beating on your craft.
How do you make your brand have a mass effect by having mass appeal? Today my brand was sent out in an email along with other products to over 600,000 email subscribers. I’ve been able to manage marketing efforts like this a few times during the history of my brand. I remember the first time it happened, “My products are going to be sent to hundreds of thousands of people?” I waited with baited breath. You see I’d thought like most people I imagine that what my brand lacked was exposure. If only I could get my products in front of more people’s eyes. Surely they would want it. If only 2% of the people who received the email opened it, of those few individuals some would purchase my product and I would see a large uptick in sales for that week. It didn’t happen leaving me to scratch my head as to why.
Consumer behavior isn’t that simple. It’s not simply enough that the product that they see is good. It isn’t enough for them to see something they like on the internet. How many times have I seen cool things on the net and not purchased them? Isn’t that the whole purpose of Tumblr and Pinterest? Their very existence is for you post all of these pictures of things you like, without actually buying any of it. The ultimate poser move, “These are all of the things I would buy if I were actually into buying things.” People don’t just buy things they like, the formula is so much more complex than that, it is so much more complex than I want it to be.
The hardest question that experiences like this make me ask myself is, “If I get my brand in front of a few thousands eyes and nothing significant happens where do I go from there?” It is a very defeating question. What’s the point? Just stop now. The world doesn’t care about these products. They have their loyalties already, how exactly will you steal theirs? There are no shortcuts I’ve found. I haven’t been able to go from 0 to 100 like the success stories of a lot of other brands. However nothing in my life happens that way. What did I expect? I didn’t get to where I am overnight and it is going to take more than a few mass emails to get me where I want to be. Despite the fact that I feel my pictures are better, my collection more cohesive, my website more appealing. It’s time to put my head down and just try to be incrementally better next time. To quote Big Willie, (Will Smith) “You don’t set out to build a wall. You don’t say ‘I’m going to build the biggest, baddest, greatest wall that’s ever been built.’ You don’t start there. You say, ‘I’m going to lay this brick as perfectly as a brick can be laid. You do that every single day. And soon you have a wall.” Tomorrow it’s time to get my head out of the clouds and lay another brick.