Sunday, November 25, 2012

The Truly Surprising Essence Of Marketing Prowess

Peggy Williams, a wonderful Alexander Technique teacher now long gone, came to Sydney to teach on the school I started back in 1983. As she was teaching, I asked her who she thought was responsible for the outcome of the lesson?

“Oh that’s simple,” she said “I am 100% responsible.”

I was rather shocked by that, and quickly shot back:

“But what about the student?!”

“Oh…” she smiled coyly, “…the student is 100% responsible.”


I’ve made a lot of mistakes: embarrassing ones, expensive ones, divisive ones - you name it, I probably did it once. But I love making mistakes, because every time it happens, it tells me to rethink, to collect more information, to deflate my oversized ego and ask for advice. It is a moment when the universe speaks back to me: “Jerry, you are being delusional.”


Yes. Most of my mistakes happen when I am “being creative” rather than “being present”. Being present to what? To you, my partner, friend or client. What is it you want? How is that I can help you? If I don’t serve you, I don’t serve me. We are in this together, and I am the only one who can make this work, just as you are the only one who can make this work.

A victim doesn’t think that way. A victim never makes a mistake, is never wrong, is inflating their ego, inflating their sense of righteousness. And a victim never learns. When you refuse to be responsible for your mistakes, you are going to war against the world. The world is trying to tell you something, and your response is to say “No. I am right, you are wrong.”

Where are you blaming some-one for your experience right now?

You may be right, but if you don’t receive what is happening, you will continue in the same way. As W. C. Fields loved to say: “If at first you don't succeed, try, try again. Then quit. There's no point in being a damn fool about it.”

So at the core of your marketing skill is this ability to quit carrying on the same way, to humble your Self, to listen, to be ready and willing to be wrong, to make mistakes. When you are afraid to make a mistake, you are afraid to take a risk. What is a risk? It is doing something you have not done before - going towards the unknown. How are you doing that right now?

Alexander's discoveries are all about how you travel from the known to the unknown, and marketing is a fabulous endeavour to apply this work. When you open your mind to communication with strangers, to people who need you (though they don’t know it yet) , you are putting yourself in this place of the unknown. This is the work. This is marketing.

Marketing is not something you add to your skill set once you finish your Teacher Education - it is integral to it. It is essential. It is about developing the ability to match your need with another person’s need. This happens in the context of one lesson, and it happens in the context of a global community.

A critical difference between belly-to-belly communication and long distance communication, is that your mistakes are exaggerated in long distance communication, because you don’t get to see how people react, and there are a lot more of them. When someone is standing in front of you, it is easier to notice when they are engaged by you, when they are not. But with multiple numbers of people on the other side of a website - how can you gauge their reactions? When you know the person who is listening to you (niche marketing) you are far more likely to gauge their reactions, which means you are more capable of matching their need. You understand them.

The most successful marketers are the ones who are honest, who are true to who they are. Your first work, which happens in BodyChance, is to know who you are, to know what you need. From the truth of that arises a person secure in their true Self. A secure person is willing to take risks, willing to be wrong, willing to make mistakes.

Today is a good day to start.

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