So, why would I take 90-90-1?
For the uninitiated, today is day 2 of the 90-90-1 that Chandni and I are onto. My first post is here. This is the second. While yesterday I talked about marketing, today I want to talk about why I am taking this challenge in the first place.
In the challenge, she and I have chosen one thing to work on for 90 minutes first thing in the morning for the next 90 days. In my case, it’s my personal brand and I will use the instrument of writing to work on it. I could have chosen to make videos, create podcasts, doodle, talk, think, daydream but I think like most things, I wanted to kill two birds with one stone – so build my personal brand and work on my writing muscle. Like other times I have taken challenges, I dont have a daily word-count goal. I merely want to work on it for 90 days and I want to create a visible body of work (not just a stream of thoughts).
Lemme also talk about why I am taking this challenge and what I hope to achieve out of this.
A. I suck at consistency.
This could be a good way to beat that. Apparently, habits take 21 days to form (or may be 66). If I can do something for 90 days, each day, without rest, I hope I am able to build the muscle that allows me to do the large things that I want to do.
B. Do more with whatever time I have left
I am realising that at 40, I am beyond my useful age and if I still have to make that dent, I need to be able to work harder than others and longer than others.
While life is not a zero-sum game, life definitely is a race. You can choose to make it a rat race. Or you can choose to make it one where you are inspired by ones you can see running to their own music and pace. Someone’s going fast, someone’s going slow, someone’s in circles, someone is merely on a treadmill.
You look at these people and you take inspiration from these people and sing your song. In my case, the song is of someone that’s out to make a dent. Whatever that dent is. While I dont know what that dent is, SoG looks like it. And to be able to be that inspirational father figure of sorts, I need to be better than most men these young kids would have seen. And within that closed circle, I may not be able to fix things (the way I dress, the hair I have, the shakal I have), but I am sure I can fix others (like, having a body of work that precedes my reputation)
C. The C4E Village
As the C4E village grows larger, as one of the early members of the settlement, I am aware of the responsibility on my shoulders. I need to be the provider till others mature and start looking beyond themselves and to the village.
Right now, most of the villagers think of themselves first and then of the village. I am hopeful that a time will come when the collective, the village will become larger than the self. Till that time, I need to make sacrifices and provide. I can’t just go buy those airpods that I know I can afford but I dont want them because I can use that money to hire one more person. I can’t go live in a fancy house because the rent I pay could be used to pay for dinner at a C4E Table. And so on and so forth. And to be able to do all of this, I need to be someone that attracts work. And that will happen once I am a magnet of sorts that attracts potential clients, large deliverables, and money!
D. The SG Personal Brand
Now the personal brand is one of those things that I can’t seem to put my finger on. On one side, I know it all. I even wrote a long piece about it that apparently a lot of people find useful. And on the other, I am unable to build it for myself. I think I know the answer to why I haven’t been able to build it. Three reasons actually.
- I refuse to accept a niche. Most personal brands are built at the intersection of niches. I am a man with a wide range of interests and I refuse to get siloed into one. And this has caused me a lot of anguish.
- I refuse to create click-bait-y content. The lesser said about this, the better.
- I am not consistent. This I am hoping to fix over the next 90 days. 89 now. 88 tomorrow.
So personal brand.
Lemme talk more about it and see if I can make a decision today. If I can, it would be awesome. Read on to find out more.
So, what do I want to be known for?
If I were to make a list from the top of my head, I would say the following (and these are probably in order because this is the order in which these phrases came to my head)…
- Young People
- Writing (I know this is a repeat but I dont want to stop)
- Inspiring people
- Life coaching (lol)
I thought there would be more! Most of my thoughts seem to be swirling in these zones only. I had imagined my life is more diverse than this. Lol. Rude shock in the morning.
So, if I were to use the Ikigai thingy to evaluate and pinpoint what Id like to work on, I would have to make a chart. Lemme make it. But wait. Before that, I made a chart a few years ago. Lemme share that.
Funny that from there on, not a lot has changed. In fact, nothing has changed! Talk of people not evolving. Sigh.
Ok, we shall not beat ourselves about it.
Coming back to personal brand and the 90-90-1 thingy, I will get back to the reasons I listed above and marry those with things I want to stand for. I am looking at an intersection of the following…
- the need of running the kitchen at C4E
- the want of making a dent
- the things I want to be known for that allows the two of the above.
To me, the answer seems clear like the day – that I need to write about marketing over the next
90 88 days.
While the way you market and where your audience hangs out has changed (see my piece from yesterday), a few fundamental things haven’t changed. People are still people and we are all an outcome of millions of years of evolution. There is no way that would change in a few hundred years of modern-day life. And thus I continue to believe that they want to survive and procreate. And thus the basics of marketing before the world became digital will continue to stay relevant. With a few changes. Such as…
- The newer delivery vehicles that digital has unleashed (always-on, all the time, connected despite physical distances)
- The evolving habits, cultures, opinions, mindsets of digital-first people
- The physiological shift in the way people live and think and behave and operate because of how digital meddles with our brains (more loneliness, more screens, more need of “me” time, more individuality, more of more!)
- The neverending hedonic treadmill that the entire world seems to be riding on, all the time
And I think this lens of traditional marketing in a world in flux is an interesting lens to be writing on. Just that I need to sharpen the niche. Maybe write about just a discipline. Or a cohort. Or a line of products. Or for a certain TG.
I may not be able to decide today. Hopefully, we will do so as we go along. Over the next few days, I will find a lens within marketing that allows me to take a unique position per se. You have any ideas?
So that’s for the day.
Over and out!
PS: As I write these over the next 3 months or so, I plan to share early drafts with some people. If you want to get those, give me feedback before I publish, lemme me know and I will add you to a WA group. Lol, I love these groups ;P
PPS: I realise that this has become a subconscious stream of thoughts that Julia Cameron often talks about. I love such coincidences!
Index: 90-90-1 Project. Day 1, 2