Growth // Codex Newsletter
A Weekly Digest Dedicated To Helping You
Produce // Promote // Profit
Better // Smarter
Welcome back Creative Misfit, this past month has been… interesting.
From some of us getting stimmies to stock market brawls between retail investors and hedge fund bros, to the vaccine rollouts causing a spike in business confidence…
We’re entering a fun time, I’m glad I listened to my hunch of spring 2021 is go time, more on that later. But first, how are you? Have your goals changed?
Made adjustments you enjoyed in how you work?
In the previous issue we started talking about producing better, and the importance of staking your claim
As we move into what to some appears to be better times, it’s essential for all of us to start getting a good grasp of our talents
Our REAL talents – not degrees, or certifications – as things shift, the better equipped you are, the more confident you are, the better work you’ll do
If you missed it, or would like to reference it again, here’s issue 15 // the builders’ blindspot where we dug into improving how we
This week, we go into the inner workings of improving how we
Everything is theoretically impossible until it is done.
Robert A. Heinlein
A few years ago, I was training this brilliant newcomer – she was fresh out of college, having just gotten her MBA, and ready to take over the world
One day during a brainstorm session I noticed she was doing the most to avoid implementing what I had done and given her to work with
We were in the middle of building a campaign for a growing food franchise that spans the entire east coast – it was go time
At the root of her struggle was the fact that to her, I was a college dropout, which meant (to her) that I lacked some knowledge on how things work.
I was inspired, because watching someone else go above and beyond to not need anyone else reminded me of what it was like coming up, not having anyone
She has given me an idea 💡, and I couldn’t resist a good game
“If your way wins, I quit, if mine does, you join the campaign we’re putting together – deal?” I said with a smile I couldn’t hide 👀
She stared at me for what seemed like 5 mins without blinking… she wanted me gone… a swift victory that delivered both a rookie of the year accolades with the added treat of teaching this dropout a lesson
Why did I put my cushy contract on the line with such conviction?
Time and experience has taught me to always bet on what people do, more than what they say
Let’s explore, shall we?
Take a second, and picture texting your friend that you just got a really good idea 💡
What would you say? How would you say it?
Would they be supportive? Happy for you? Ask to help?
This is what advertising actually IS
Picture it, you’re texting a friend // significant other with some plans, you can text them “I’m going to __, you should come” or “have plans on __?” amongst so many other openings that ultimately act like a prompt… that’s how you start with advertising
A few years ago, as I was working on expanding a real estate brokerage, all the ad gurus told us to buy billboards, ads in the New York Times with our arms crossed and big smiles letting people know we were the neighborhoods best and pay $10,000 a month for their assurances that we would make it.
Except, we were on a budget, and I had noticed the rents were rising faster than mortgages in price, so how did we advertise?
We wrapped 3 trash cans along Bedford Ave (Brooklyn, NY) in black with the words“rent box”, resembling the mail drop boxes in older apartment buildings, with the words “insert rent check here” and a white arrow pointing at the top of the can
Inspired by all the conversations we’d had with people who were thinking of renting, with a little quintessential dark NYC humor, the results were over 1000 visitors to our website a DAY, visitors greeted with the message “why is your rent more than a mortgage?”
We didn’t have $10,000 for the ad gurus handy, what we did have was a connection to the people we were serving
As tech gets better and better, It just isn’t being used to its full potential
Take, for example, Google PPC (pay per click) vs Organic traffic and you’ll be met with everyone from thought leaders to their mother copy and pasting Pinterest checklists on how to do it
In theory, the checklists make sense, in practice, however… you’ve got this weird practice of people wasting time and energy on stuff that just misses the mark and seems… contrived, scattered about – kind of like brands right now
Getting Found By Your People
In the Google PPC (pay per click) vs Organic traffic debates, it comes down to this, who do you serve? who are you? and how much are you actually listening to your people
Here’s how we went about making tweaks and improvements that led to us leading a business recovery program, putting together a summit to help founders not need VC money, and what could potentially be the next Food Network for people who love life with a little sazon
While we know things like PPC & SEO work for some companies, we know a different approach is possible so we started by asking ourselves
- What do we love?
- What do people actually pay for?
- What are we good at?
- Who do we NOT want to work with?
Once we answered this, we saw we had some work to do, so we went down this checklist: (reword // work this)
- How well do we know our audience?
- Who is your audience and what are they going through right now?
- What do they really need from you??
- Read the room. Some are scared, some are lonely, and many more are genuinely struggling. Be sensitive to their journey and perspectives.
- Authenticity. Cynicism is all the rage so do not make claims you can’t back up or offer fake value and non-discounts.
- Is it necessary? Unless what you have to say is valuable to your audience or the world, it will just add to the noise.
- Ask them HOW it’s helping them
What this helps us do is identify things like the frequent roadblocks our people face, the things they aspire to accomplish, their attitudes towards certain things, and how they make decisions
Here’s a starter guide for you that illustrates how we process our findings (it’s a generic version, make it your own)
Next issue, we’ll dig into improving how we
He who fears he will suffer already suffers because he fears.
Michel De Montaigne
Till next time, here’s to escaping average
P.S. There have been some folks who’ve said “man, I’d love to say thank you, how can I?”
Well now if you’ve found value in any of this content // info, we finally found a great way, you can now buy us a cup of cafecito here, this helps support this newsletter and much more