Where are you going?


Got up this morning to go in the attic and find the post card I am referencing. Of course, I must have put it “somewhere safe”. And now it’s no where to be found. Don’t you hate that? So this photo is from Flickr viaSLDigital. If I run across the real thing, I’ll replace it and let you know.

About a month ago I moved to a new house. In the process of moving as I was sorting out what to keep and what to toss, I stumbled on an old post card. I have no idea where I got it, but I know it found it’s way to me when I was about thirteen. On the front of the card was a picture taken on the shores of Carmel, CA.

At thirteen, I carefully wrote the words you see above.

Going there one day…

As I held the rediscovered post card in my hands I could remember the feeling and the reason I wrote those four little words. Living in a small town in South Carolina, going to Carmel by the Sea sounded as far fetched as going to the moon. At that point, I had most likely never traveled more than 30 miles from my home. I knew then in my heart what I know to be true now:

If you don’t set your heart and mind on a destination you will never get there.

I also knew my life would be richer and better and more exciting if I could experience new things and see the world.

As marketers in this brave new world, the destination question and purpose behind it is a question we should ask over and over and over. Where are we going? What are we really trying to do? And why? What are we trying to change or make better in our world?

There is so much talk about ROI of social media and word of mouth marketing. I know some of you will roll your eyes and say “Of course. Set goals and measure them. We know that.” But don’t you think the shiny new objects in the room have us all turned a bit upside down and some of us on occasion are guilty of forgetting the very basics?

One of my favorite stories to tell is the Fiskateers. (Yes, still.) I remember and love one of the key drivers behind creating the Fiskateers. Fiskars simply wanted to create an emotional connection to their customers. And I can honestly say they got that! And in the process changed the way they do business. As Jay Gillespie says in our book; “Today we are constantly engaging the actual people that use our products. They are are absolutely fueling better products.”

And isn’t that the ultimate ROI?

I also have never, ever forgotten Scott Monty’s simple proclamation of Ford’s goals: To humanize the brand. Don’t you love that as a destination? Personally, I think they’ve done it. Over and over and over.

So where are you going?

Personally, professionally and as an organization? Put a stake in the ground and ask yourself at the end of every single day:

Did the things we worked on today, take us closer to where we want to be? The businesses that make their goals personal get it right in my humble opinion.

I’m lucky in life.
I have traveled far and wide. For me it was heartfelt goal that had to be met. Haven’t made it to Carmel. But I will.

How to do you make your business goals personal? How to you get them stuck in your heart?



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