For a long time, I focused on the practical side of marketing. After graduating from Wellesley College, I worked as a media buyer for J. Walter Thompson (Unilever), as an account executive at TBWA/Chiat Day and Fallon McElligott (NBA), as a marketing manager in a Shelton, CT-based semiconductor company, and as a business manager at a construction firm. It was all about doing the right thing and getting results. And that was great. But something was missing. It all seemed very mechanical.
When you contemplate what can happen in human connection, marketing sparkles with possibilities. This matters particularly for service-based professionals who need to market their humanity AND their expertise. I get the allure of the “right strategy.”
When I was a youth speaker obsessed with the Founding Fathers, I made cold calls to PTA parents, posted to Facebook, wrote a book – 5 Rockstars of the American Revolution – and eventually got on the History Channel and the Today Show. All the right things. (Yup, I met Henry Rollins – twice).
In 2014, I experienced a career turning point: it was time to change direction but I needed to generate income quickly. Whatever came next, I decided I wanted to operate from my deepest why. I was done only following “good strategies.”
So I dove off the deep end with my eyes closed, literally.
I had created a mindset practice in 2001, and I always knew I could lean on it in an emergency. It was time to use it for all it was worth. I used it (I now call it The Generosity Practice and have created a book to teach it) for hours and hours, until my panicked body relaxed and I knew what was next.
The core of this meditative, generative practice is deciding how you want to be in joyful service to your people, to the world, to life itself. What is more energizing than making a real difference? With that as my baseline attitude, I reached out to the right people, and generated lucrative work contracts that I loved. Instead of creating a “good marketing strategy,” I focused on being in joyful, generous service. I loved the work – ghost writing, writing coaching, project managing for brilliant entrepreneurs – and I was making good money.
Beginning in January 2015, I have taught the Generosity Practice in over 150 individual sessions, in non-profits, in businesses, in schools, in public webinars, at yoga studios, and in 2 world-wide field-study programs, where people in 5 countries used the practice for 30 days and reported their results on short videos.
They marketed more consistently
Showed up more boldly
Sold more effectively
In 2016, I conducted another field study with 40 business owners to explore this further. As I created their marketing plans, I used the Generosity Practice to pinpoint their marketing message. There’s a deep level of the practice that works great for this. What I discovered was that each person had an archetype which captured how they love helping others, how they change lives, and how they could show up to get better clients. Imagine! An archetype that reveals all that. And it gets better.
I looked at all 40 marketing archetypes of those business owners, and I discovered 5 categories that everyone fell under: Nurturers, Adventure Guides, Door Openers, Steady Presences, and Celebrators. These were more than simply convenient boxes for my work. Every “type” has their own way of changing lives and getting clients. I’ve been studying these Innate Marketing Genius types for 5 years straight, and it still amazes me how different an Adventure Guide real estate agent is from a Steady Presence real estate agent, just as an example. They change lives in their own unique way, and that’s why people hire them.
Not only that, but every client I have ever worked with has one perfect marketing strategy that shows their strengths, honors their business needs, brings them to life, and gets them clients. When I first started working with clients, I was mildly terrified to walk into our sessions and state, “I am going to identify your perfect marketing strategy.” I was making it up as I went along! But it’s proven to be true over 5 years of client work. Every single business owner has a “right strategy” for them. It simplifies everything and gives peace of mind and results.
You have something incredible and unique to you that magnetizes clients (that Innate Marketing Genius archetype). AND your marketing can be simple and revitalizing. It will establish your expertise and show your care, thereby making you a compelling expert. That’s what I do for my clients and it’s an honor and a joy every time.
(Between you and me, if you hire me, I might hire elephants to walk by the conference room at the moment where your unique marketing archetype is revealed. It’s a big darn deal.)
Finally, in 2021, I created The Generosity Practice Book: 40 Days to Unstoppable to teach the Generosity Practice in a beautiful workbook form to creative leaders and change-makers. It’s gentle and fun, and makes this work accessible to all. In 2022, I shared my Generosity Practice story in a TEDx talk.