Playing to your strengths & Knowing the Territory
I tried, I tried, I tried, but this woman didn’t listen to me. Instead, she hired out of state consultants who didn’t know her, nor did they know the territory (the district in which she was running for office.) She is bright with an extra-ordinarily winning personality – yet they kept her hidden.
Her strength is how people who meet her respond to her. They treated her as an object to be marketed, not understanding how powerful she would have been had they let her loose. It reminds me of Sarah Palin’s story about how the “handlers” stifled her.
Furthermore, they didn’t understand who we are in Silicon Valley and they didn’t tailor her campaign to reflect our demographics or our values. They made it generic.
In all campaigns, whether they are political or business – you have to know your product or service and how to market it to your target potential customer (voter.) Generic doesn’t work.
I had arranged for her to be on three radio stations, potentially on two local TV networks, and to speak to about a dozen local service organizations where she would have an audience of between 20 – 50 people at each event. Her team chose not to allow her any of this exposure. I strongly suggested she participate in a panel that would have been televised. There were 300 people in the audience. The newspaper reported on her absence – giving her bad marks.
She capitalized on her title – but here in Silicon Valley almost everyone has a title. We are not impressed with them – we are impressed with what we perceive – which means she needed to let us – let her potential voters – see what an interesting, intelligent and personable woman she really is.
Why did they keep her in hiding? Because they made it generic.