There are very few new businesses in the world. Those that look new are in the realm of automation – using software to do things faster and more efficiently, and often at much larger scale.
So yes, we have new tools that have replaced notebooks and index cards. Or printing presses and TV studios. But we are all in the business of reaching people with our product and selling it to them.
Once we understand this, it does help to study example of those that came before us. Go back 100 years or a 1,000 and it’s, have I got a deal for you!
So the problem many of us come up against is feeling like we are copying those that came before us. We feel that way because many times we are still selling a hamburger, for which I will gladly pay you Tuesday.
But our goal remains – to find our blue patch of ground.
I blurted this phrase out when I finished the MANIPULATION book. That is my study of emotional triggers that make people buy. Yes, I am certain it has been covered before. At the same time, it felt like I had moved into a new space occupied only by me. And it was a great feeling!
Likewise, my wife has spent this year expanding her business form a solo practitioner into a full-fledged school, with faculty and multiple programs. She started in life as a second-generation music teacher. But somehow she got a vision of how to move it into her own blue patch of ground. It took work, and experimentation and a lot of noodling to get there for her. It also required investment that wasn’t always easy.
But now her thing has a heartbeat. It is it’s own thing, and exists on its own real estate. And the marketplace is responding.
Finding your own blue patch of ground takes more effort than using a slightly goofy phrase. If you are doing something and ever get even the slightest feeling that you are a fuzzy Xerox copy, I would say that is the time to get excited.
That means you have likely mastered the motions of the form, and if you’re not bored, you are feeling the itch to go big. To do something a little different, to re-position your offering so that it has more value to your customers and remains interesting to you.
And so I will end this newsletter by violating something I said just a few pages ago. It will take some time and it will take the discipline of thinking. You will want to iterate your current offer, or maybe you have a new idea you want to work on. You might want to go to the archives of the Internet and search the history of your industry – what has been tried and failed and what has been done but forgotten? What is the customer looking for, that they can’t describe but will know it when they see it?
Finding a blue patch of ground is an exciting moment. It might come to you in the shower or behind the wheel.
I don’t know what your blue patch of ground looks like. But I know that it will feel real, like a living thing with a heartbeat – and that it wants to run!
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