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I Just Wanna be Normal

Joe Greeley here, for Nimlok Minnesota.

Do you ever want to just blend in?  Do you ever want to just disappear and just be part of the crowd?  Recently we were talking about that, and I got to thinking about my teenage years, growing up in the 80’s, right?  I just wanted to blend in, just wanted to be part of it.  Wanted to be cool, but not too cool, you know?  I just wanted to say, “Hey, Mom.  I just want to be normal.  I just want to fit in.  I just need some Zubaz.  I need a hacky sack.  I need a boom box.  I need some big hair.  Got to listen to some big hair bands.”  You know, those types of things.  Which was usually followed by, “What is wrong with you, kid?  Are you on dope?”  “No!  I just want to fit in.”  Well, anyway, it’s a good thing.  I should have probably thanked her for not buying me Zubaz because that trend lasted about two and a half minutes, and I can only imagine what the photos would have looked like.

If you really wanted to stand out in the 80’s, you got yourself a crew cut, you listened to Kenny G on your clock radio, and you probably wore khakis around.  You know, things like that.  Or shorts with black socks.  Back in the 80’s.  Not cool, right?  Talk about standing out.

But now everybody wants to be a little bit different.  They want to do something different.  They want to look different.  They want act different.  They want to make their mark.  We get that a lot with people coming to us.  A lot of prospects and clients are coming to us saying, “Hey, we need to do something different.  We need the WOW factor.  We need to be edgy.  We need to attract more people.”  And that’s wonderful, and I’m all for it.

But here’s the thing.  When the rubber hits the road, about 8 out of 10 really revert back to their comfort level.  They go back to fitting in.  They go back to what’s comfortable.  They go back to what they’ve been doing before.  Now that’s OK, but then you also have to realign your expectations to say, you’re probably going to get what you got before.  You’re probably not going to make much of an impact, by getting more people, by getting better engagement, by getting noticed.  Things like that.  So you really have to realign your expectations.

But the big question here is, WHY?  Now, I know it’s scary.  You spend a lot of money, a lot of time, and a lot of effort, and your butt’s on the line for doing this, right?  Think of it this way, though.  Your butt’s on the line either way.  What if you do the same thing?  You look similar.  It’s not that much different.  We get the same results.  And we still spent that much money.  To me that’s even, even scarier.

So why not?  Stand out.  Again, start with your goals.  What are our goals?  What do we want to achieve?  How are we going to achieve those?  Let’s do something different.  Let’s get more people here.  How do we attract more people?  How do we keep them?  How do we engage?  How do they have a better experience with us?  Who are we going to send?  Should we send different people?  You heard me say a lot of this last week, and I’ll probably say it again next.

But look at the different things that you can do, and don’t be afraid to stand out.  To be different.  It doesn’t mean you have to be wild and crazy.  But do something unique that they’re going to remember you by, and not just blend in with everybody else.

A famous author of our time once said, “Why be the same?  You were born to stand out.”  Dr. Seuss.   The Doctor was a very, very wise man.

Anyway, I hope this helps.  Let us know how we can help, and thanks!