The Unprofessional Touch

Perhaps, my website is still not very accessible to the individuals I seek…

Following on from my previous post, perhaps I should zoom in super specifically on my target audience, and create a homepage which matches them and their interests –

There is indeed a disparity between my blog and my website, so perhaps I should make my website fit the honest and upfront form of my blog.

I’m here to support the struggling start ups and small businesses, and those interested in becoming self employed, who, like me, get near to no practical support.

My website does not clearly communicate this objective, even though it declares, “Digital Marketing Support for Small Businesses” in big letters at the top –

Perhaps, my website is still not very accessible to the individuals I seek…

Perhaps it actually looks too professional.

As an Unprofessional, it should be more welcoming to other unprofessionals – that is, others who are struggling, perhaps even with advisors who don’t want them to admit to being or recently being on benefits.

Its really a gem –

Don’t tell anyone you attend the job centre.

Sincerely, the Job Centre

Why?

Are we unworthy of acknowledgement?

Should we pretend that this part of our life is unimportant, or irrelevant?

I venture that no one who has ever experienced unemployment, especially long-term unemployment, can possibly understand what it means to try and break free of the physical and psychological barriers which hold you in your box of “The Unemployed”.

Nor will they understand how backwards it is to tell an unemployed, benefits claimant that they should hide that they are an unemployed, benefits claimant.

Doesn’t this feed into the taboo of not admitting to being a “benefits scrounger”, as we are more commonly known?

Well, b*llocks to that.

My target audience is others like me –

Not snobs, not successful business owners who can afford more experienced copywriters, but others on tight budgets who just need that extra bit of help to get going.

I’m pleased that this disparity was brought further to my attention –

I will need to assess what my next move will be, but I have some ideas…

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“Professional” White Lies or “Unprofessional” Black Truths

I’ve had conflicting advice: To share my history/ my story, to not share my story…

Even the job centre (scheme) think I should hide that I’m currently a customer of the job centre and scheme.

I remember once asking one of my previous job centre advisors (back when I was in the regular job search pathway and when my health was still very dodgy), “How should I lie to an employer when they ask why I think I’m better than one of their more able-bodied applicants?”

“Well, you shouldn’t lie –”

“But how else can I compete with them -”

I also recall more recently receiving help for my diabolical CV –

“Instead of focusing on the negative, let’s focus on the positive”

That’s fine – except I have a 6 year void of negative. “How can an employer ignore that?”

*silence*

For my copywriting business, I’ve had conflicting advice: Namely, to share my history/ my story, or not to share my story…

I venture that it is better to be upfront about my work and health history than not to be, which is why I am honest about it in this blog.

Who can say what is more unprofessional – having to give a hurried work and health history on the spot when asked about my employment history by a business owner, or, Including information about my work and health history on my website, for any interested parties to see.

I know neither is particular endearing, but if my truth is so unprofessional, then that can’t be helped – unless I am to lie.

And if I’m not to lie, then I have to be truthful, own way or another.

This issue has been (fairly) brought to my attention by my job centre scheme advisors, and I await their answer to the truth conundrum I present.

As I explained to one of them today, my target audience is made of others who are close to the the bottom of the ladder like me – those who perhaps understand and connect with “my story”, and who can see my potential nonetheless since they themselves have also faced hard times and others prejudging them.

This has, of course, been the reason I have struggled to get started on LinkedIn, as I have described in previous blog posts. Despite how full of personal stories LI is, I know that my story (since there is not yet any tremendous, successful ending) is certainly too “unprofessional” to share.

This is why I have not ventured into any Sheffield Chamber of Commerce get-togethers at Cubo, the same place where lies my job centre scheme:

To be unemployed is (of course) to be “unprofessionalism” itself.

Maybe this is a vicious circle I can never leave –

Or maybe, I can just get on and absorb all the reasonable advice I get, always aware that my “situation” is a bit unique, and apparently, there is no clear way forward.

What is clear, however, is my business is only hopeless when I stop believing in myself –

As “unprofessional”, or “unconventional” as I am, I’m still a very capable copywriter. And I can present a neutral website stuck together by feeble, “white lies”, or I can have the “unprofessional” truth available, and an “unprofessional” but honest website to match. “Black truths”, so to speak.

Who’s caught between a rock and a hard place?

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Ineffective Marketing Material Used Too Infrequently

FATE would have it that the least qualified person in the world’s BEST chance at reasonable employment is to sell words.

Yesterday was an interesting day for critical self-appraisal and for sampling Ben and Jerry’s Banoffee ice-cream (which was also interesting) –

The truth is, my qualification in copywriting means almost nothing. It means a great deal to me, as I learned a great deal studying copywriting, and I earned my certification. 

But in the real world of customers and sales, new copywriters may frequently be bought by means of who they know, not what they know. And with a long history of unemployment and introversion, as I have already shared – I have no network, and no professional network.

My attempts at networking and seeking both voluntary and paid work have been choppy, and this can be blamed on a few things:

  • I’ve never set up a business before and have had some great advice but mostly I’ve had to wing it 
  • My value proposition is obviously all over the place (lack of confidence, experience, connections, business knowledge – I can’t really pin point one reason for this humongous problem)

And most importantly:

  • I haven’t sought to rectify the “Its not what you know, its who you know” problem with MASSIVE action (as Grant Cardone would have insisted)

But like I said, I hadn’t realised the extent of this failure until just recently.

“In times of economic decline [or just super hard times] MASSIVE ACTION is needed”

I’ve spent A LOT of time just trying to sort out this website (I had designed a whole other website which was trash so had to start again from scratch) –

And still, there’s plenty to fix on this, my online home. And on my similarly, semi-constructed social media.

BUT those aren’t the real issues! The #1 issue is my NETWORK –

Its my lack of network which is ensuring my lack of prosperity:

I’ve failed to apply the law of averages appropriately with a strong value proposition – I’ve used ineffective marketing material and I’ve used it too infrequently.

Last night, I started firing out audio messages on Instagram – something I completely forgot was possible. It’s quick but you only have one chance to say what you have to say, and if like me you are good at mumbling and getting words wrong when speaking, you can end up sending an audio message with at least one error in it. I think half my messages included me messing up my words a little even when I was reading them. 

So perhaps this isn’t the most effective way to communicate either, BUT, it is more personal than sending a written message,  and it is a lot quicker than recording and sharing many video messages –

But still I know that video messages, introductions and presentations are deemed the most effective, second only to face-to-face meetings.

On RuPaul’s Drag Race, contestants are tested on a variety of skills including choreography, stand up comedy, singing and acting. I’m yet to see any contestant conquer them all, although there are many excellent, highly skilled individuals who may just have one weakness –

My main strength is my copywriting. Everything else is a huge challenge, ESPECIALLY networking. The one thing I need to do well.

Imposter syndrome came yesterday and told me that because of this, I was, in fact, the LEAST qualified person on the planet to be a copywriter.

How inconvenient it is, therefore, for peace on Earth that Ruth Klempner DARE bring chaos by means of farfetched schemes and BLATANT overambitiousness?

It is the hand of fate. 

FATE would have it that the least qualified person in the world’s BEST chance at reasonable employment is to sell words.

I responded in various ways to this scary conclusion, but none of them have included throwing in the towel.

I know exactly what I’ve done wrong and why after almost a year, my business has still not started.

Its not that I can’t do it, its that no one knows me enough to trust or vouch for me. And how many times have I already admitted to that in this blog!

SO – MASSIVE ACTION IS NEEDED!

I need to pull on my best and brightest personalised messaging and marketing pants (with matching hat of course) and with a Value Proposition which makes irresistible sense and which works, I need to find my clients…

Reports of my death have been greatly exaggerated

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