It intrigues my why we use cliches. The most preposterous cliché users tend to be sportsmen, politicians, and business types of every persuasion. It’s a way for us to cover up what we mean or talk about things about which we have little idea.
Every day you’ll hear nonsense from sales people about why you should jump all over something there and then. Would you be prepared to purchase a product or service from somebody who perceived themselves to be a leading provider of paradigm shifting win-win situations? And always laugh in the face of some idiotic higher-up who tries to motivate via the power of cliché. Have you ever wondered where the extra 10% comes from when you’re giving 110%?
Don’t get me wrong; I’ve been known to use the odd cliché in my time and I’ve felt the need for a cold shower and a scrubbing brush afterwards such was my shame.
A close cousin (almost an inbred one) to the cliché is the buzzword. And this is where a gazillion and one Web marketers and Internet geeks come into play. Heaven forfend you should ever be affronted by a cliché-ridden Internet marketing salesperson who’s learned how to spell SEO (search engine optimization). The two are quite a volatile mix.
When I started the voyage of discovery in relation to blogging and SEO and began marketing businesses on the informative super-duper highway, I was but an avid user. I didn’t have a marketing background as such, even though I’d run my own business. I’d never written a blog, even though I’d read and commented on one or two. And SEO seemed quite odd. (Although, you can do a search on Google for sheet metal uk and sheet metal Wheeling and see who’s #1 – yes, the main Butler Sheetmetal site and the Tinbasher blog respectively.)
However, I always knew that if I could make an old school sheet metal business (by that I mean one that doesn’t really use CAD or CNC, so is far from inherently computer savvy) successful, then there was hope for any business. And all I used was a blog and a bit of the old grey matter. It was our main marketing channel, our main SEO provider, our main public relations device and our main feedback channel. We didn’t use any other form of offline advertising or marketing and haven’t done since. All the offline press we’ve recieved has been because of the blog.
Without really knowing anything about this weird and wonderful world of online marketing, I set about it with a certain gusto and no other plan of attack than to make it valuable and useful to those who might be interacting with it. I hoped that people might find it engaging, informative and an insight as to how we did business in a decrepit little jobshop in an unfashionable part of the UK.
To a certain degree, I succeeded in that respect as people have told me so and I also concur. The blog and myself haven’t appeared in various publications because they thought a few more trees needed killing.
But, that is building a reputation; a brand if you will. A brand isn’t much use if it isn’t associated with a business that’s turning in a profit. Now, we’ve also managed that – to the tune of approximately doubling turnover in the three years we’ve been blogging. We’ve also doubled staff from three to six to cope with the workload.
I know blogging your business works. It isn’t some hypothetical buzzword in my lexicon. I’ve also been extremely conscious of how I explain blogging to people who might not have much of an idea. But, I always have to start off with how well it’s worked for Butler Sheetmetal. I can throw clichés and buzzwords at you all day, but you aren’t really going to understand a single word I say. I’ve been mindful that in order for people to understand you have help them understand through their eyes.
It’s either that or hypnosis. And although I’ve been known to put people to sleep by simply talking, I’ve never been able to make them eat a raw onion.
I get like a kid in a candy store when I get the opportunity to get to grips with a new potential client wanting a blog or working with new social media tools – that’s excitable and wide-eyed as opposed to beserk on a sugar rush. I always have done and I always will do.
And you’ll very rarely hear me using clichés or buzzwords because I almost know what I’m talking about!