You know, after all those years of working in marketing and PR and branding and communications, I should be rather adept at ‘targeting’. At defining my market. At tagging my line. . . .
Oh the hours and hours and hours of my life that have been wasted in meetings about ‘target markets’ and ‘brand’ and ‘image’. On defining just what it is we offer our clients – or is it customers? which sounds better? what, exactly, is the difference between a client and customer? is one too American? which one?
It’s so, so, so very important to get all these things right. Words and colours and job titles and segments and positioning and, and, and. . . .
Yes, I know all the rules and all the details and all the metrics and, and, and. . . .
And all I can think is for fuck’s sake don’t you people have lives?
Of course, there might be some merit in it. It probably would have been helpful for me and for you if I had defined a bit more specifically what I meant by ‘ranting’ and ‘rambling’. Or, if I had honed in a bit more on what it was I was planning to rant and ramble about. Or even, dear reader, if I had decided whether you should be male or female; or young, middle, or old; or, or, or. . . .
But I didn’t.
I thought, I’ve got some things on my mind, and I’d like to exercise my fingers and my brain just a bit, and maybe there’s somebody out there who might have an interest in something I say.
Or maybe not.
When I was younger – in high school and college – my friends got quite the kick out of my ability to tell a story with absolutely no point what-so-ever. It’s not that my storytelling was bad, really, it’s just that they were never quite certain when the story was over.
Now, my habit is of just stopping talking. Mid-sentence, mid-thought (from my listener’s perspective), I’m done. It doesn’t bother me, but the man tells me it can be really rather irritating.
In between, during those years that filled my time after college and before the man and I had our major lifestyle change, I actually became really rather good at focusing in on the details. At thinking through the positioning and messaging and the ‘experience’.
I think I did, anyway.
People paid me a good bit of money to do that, anyway.
Now, though, now I have the luxury of returning to the free-float. My mind goes here and it goes there. Things make me happy and things make me angry.
I like not fitting into a box.
I like being a little difficult to categorize.
So, I didn’t think about a brand. I didn’t think about a market. You are not a target.
You are just. . . .