The struggles of a wanna-be blogger (season 1, episode 1): Online marketing.Branding.

Branding. Marketing. Advertising. I’m not a huge fan of any. We pay too much for brands when in most cases a no-name would work the same at a fraction of the price. Big companies put a lot of effort to convince us that we want things we don’t actually need. Chocolate cereals, beverages full of chemicals, T-shirts, watches, smartphones, cars…you name it, there’s for sure an aggressive marketing campaign for it somewhere. Have you seen “The century of the self”, by the way? If you haven’t, watch it. It’s a great documentary (thank you, Țîrkiss, for recommending it to me!).

But with this blog I’m also supposed to create some sort of a “brand” and advertise it since ideally I’d like it to eventually become a kind of “job”. On my “About” page, I’m supposed to write who I am, what’s my story, what makes me special, why am I different from all the other bloggers out there. At least that’s what the professional bloggers say I should do. But I’m struggling…every time I review what I’ve written previously, I end up changing something or adding a new paragraph or just deleting it all and starting fresh. My Romanian and English versions don’t even match precisely because I still can’t decide on a final version. Should it be short? Should it be funny? Should it be long? What things in my life might be interesting for other people who don’t know me? Why would people who don’t know me want to read about my life anyway? And yeah…who the hack am I, after all?

Strategies, strategies, strategies…

I’m not really sure who I am, but I know who and what I’m NOT:

1. I’m not cool

I don’t have any tattoos, I don’t have any piercing. I don’t smoke. I don’t drink very much (I was never drunk in my life, I was usually the “responsible” one, holding my friends’ hair while they were puking after a crazy party, I was the designated driver). In high school, my idea of fun was solving logic problems or coding in Turbo Pascal. I was also a founder of an antidrugs organization, since I had too much time back then. I’ve never broken a window in my life, nor any body parts. I studied econometrics.

2. I don’t have a style

The purpose of clothes is to keep me warm, most clothes I have are recycled from my sister’s wardrobe or exchanges I’ve made with other friends. I don’t care and most of the times I can’t even tell if things don’t match.

3. I’m not a good consumer

I hate shopping, the only exception being books and maybe camping gear.

4. I’m not a good sales person

I like sharing stories, ideas, knowledge, bring an input to the table, but I don’t like trying to convince people that my view is the correct one. I might be wrong, I was wrong so many times before. What works for me, might not work for everyone else. And it’s condescending to assume that I’d know better than everyone else.

5. I’m not a journalist

I can recognize and appreciate good writing, but that doesn’t mean that I can do it myself. I’ve never studied journalism, so I have no idea what I’m doing.

6. I’m not special

I’m an average person struggling, like everyone else, to figure out what I want in life, what it’s all about, what’s the bigger picture. So I’m exploring, learning, searching for something without really knowing what that something is. I’m probably just searching for myself, for my limits, I’m curious to find out what happens outside my comfort zone. A good friend of mine thinks I should have named my blog “juststoprunningandlive”. 🙂 She might be right. Although I’ve tried doing that already and it didn’t work very well.

So then…how do we make a brand? No idea. I’m just walking baby-steps. I’ve jumped in the water and now I’m trying not to drown. Maybe if I just write what pops into my mind, this blog will eventually define itself. We shall see what happens. No plans. No expectations. In the end, if all fails, I can always register to a marketing biathlon.

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