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Marketing Malaise? Here's How Sparketypes Can Help.

spark your business spark your coaching spark your marketing Feb 07, 2023

As a Sparketype Career Coach, I help passionate professionals, coaches & solopreneurs create and transition to careers they love, using the lens of Sparketypes and cognitive dynamics. And by careers I mean a job, business, coaching practice, or something else. For my coach and business clients, one of the biggest blocks after getting clear on their career (business) direction, is marketing. 

If you're a coach or other passionate solopreneur and love the important work you do and the freedom of running a business - but find marketing your business frustrating, depleting, unaligned or completely inauthentic for who you are - then you are not alone.

I can relate, because I have a love-hate relationship with marketing my business too. Yes, weirdly I love helping other businesses and solopreneurs with their marketing, but mine? It can be a struggle. 

Why? My hunch is that there are three main things going on:

  1. I'm more externally motivated, so when I work with others I can't let them down, and feel more of an energy to do the work. But it's hard for me to get motivated unless someone else is involved in some way, OR, I have a burning puzzle to solve (this sill come in later in the story...).
  2. I am endlessly curious about who other people are and how they can find ways to do things that are more aligned with their natural way of working best, so helping them with their marketing is like solving a big fun puzzle. But doing my own marketing (most of the time) feels old, routine, and boring.
  3. I know marketing too well, and can accidentally get stuck in my social self and programming and think I need to follow "best practices" in my own marketing. But when I work with others, I emphasize the importance of knowing best practices, but then customizing everything around who they are and how they naturally work best. When done right, this can look wildly unlike best practices, but actually is (and works for that person). I keep forgetting to take my own advice. 

What helps me to remember is doing a regular check-in around my Sparketype™ and personality style. 

Sparketypes help you to identify your unique impulse for the type of work that makes you feel the most alive, and the type of work that drains you. Once you know your Sparketype, it becomes an amazing decision making tool to help you really analyze everything about your current work, business or marketing and identify exactly what really energizes you and what doesn’t.

When you take the Sparketype Assessment, you get three results: Your Primary, Shadow and Anti-Sparketype:

  • Your Primary Sparketype represents the impulse for the work that makes you feel most alive.
  • Your Shadow Sparketype represents your second strongest impulse for work that makes you feel alive, but is often used in support of your Primary Sparketype
  • Your Anti-Sparketype represents the type of work that drains you the most, is a harder lift. This is work where you may have developed a strong skill set, but while you may be good at it, it still drains you.

** if you're not familiar with Sparketypes, you can learn more RIGHT HERE

I have a weekly practice where I take a look back at everything I did in my work (including marketing) the week before through the lens of Sparketypes, and make note of exactly what energized me, and what left me feeling depleted, in these main categories:

  • My actual work (my coaching, including how I coach, the topics I coach around, how long I coach for, how many times I coached, etc.)
  • The focus of my work (my niche, services, programs, etc.)
  • Who I work with (my ideal clients, partners, etc.)
  • My day-to-day business (where I'm working, how long I'm working, how I manage and structure my day and week, my systems and processes)
  • My marketing (what I'm doing, how I'm doing it, how often I'm doing it, what channels I'm using, etc.) 
  • My life (this is a whole other category that I'll talk about in a future post)

I then look at each item through the lens of my Sparketype and personality style, and note down what I was doing that was aligned with my personality style and Primary & Shadow Sparketype (the two Sparketypes that relate to the work that makes me feel the most alive), and what I was doing that was not aligned, or feel into the category of my Anti-Sparketype (the Sparketype that relates to the type of work that most drains me). 

I usually get some big insights (yes, and often similar big insights over and over because I tend to "forget" things a lot...). With this information, I can identify ways to change what I was doing to bring it more in line with who I am and what energizes me the most. Over time, this keeps me feeling the most energized and inspired as I can in my work, my business and my marketing. 

Does this seem like a lot of effort and self reflection to do every week? Yes! Is it necessary for people like me? Also yes. 

The reality is that I have a personality style that is not highly represented in society. This means that what I value and find motivating, and how I naturally work best is not like most people.

However, most of the advice around how we should manage our careers, structure our days, run a business or market our practices is designed for the majority of people. But if you don't have a personality style that's similar to the majority of people, then those systems, structures and advice likely don't work for you, or feel off, wrong or inauthentic. 

And this is where I find so many passionate solopreneurs and coaches run into trouble when it comes to marketing. Myself included. Most of the marketing advice out there works well for other personality styles (likely the personality style of the person giving the advice), but doesn't work as well for you. 

So what does this mean? Is it possible to market your business in a way that is both effective and feels authentic and aligned for you?

The answer is yes. The reality is that there are many different ways to market your practice that are effective, follow best practices AND are aligned with who you are. 

And the two best tools I recommend using to figure this out are:

  1. The Marketing Hourglass (a customizable best practices marketing strategy framework), and
  2. Sparketypes (a personality psychology modality that helps you identify your unique impulse for the types of work that make you feel the most alive, and the types of work that drain you). You can add your personality style and cognitive dynamics onto this if you want to go even deeper. 

Here's an example of how I use my Sparketypes to help get me motivated around my marketing:

My Primary Sparketype is Scientist, and this is my main impulse for the work that makes me feel the most alive. The impulse for Scientist is to figure things out, solve puzzles, find solutions. Scientists love a burning problem to solve!

My Shadow Sparketype is Sage, and this is my second strongest impulse for the work that makes me feel most alive. The impulse for Sage is to awaken insight, it's about teaching something in away that gives someone an "aha" moment and leaves them better of than they were before. 

My Anti-Sparketype is Nurturer, and this is the impulse for the work that is the heaviest lift for me. The impulse for Nurturer is to be of service and give personal care and support. 

So how does this apply to marketing for me?

At a high level, it means that I try to make everything I do to market my business fall into my Scientist or Sage Sparketypes, or ideally both. 

An example of this would be this email I'm sending out. My Scientist impulse has figured out a way to solve the marketing program for people who need a more customized approach to marketing and align everything they do with who they are.

Then my Sage impulse wants to share this information with you in the hopes that you have an "aha" moment, and leaves you for the better (knowing that it could be possible to make marketing feel better, and inspired to take some action in this area). 

I can apply this Scientist/Sage partnership to blog posts, podcasts, videos, social media posts, workshops, speaking events, and a number of there marketing vehicles. It's less about what I'm doing (writing a blog post) and more about the impulse behind what I'm doing (I'm solving a problem and sharing the solution with people in hopes that they'll have an "aha" moment). 

What this means, is that I have to continually solve problems in order to share this new insights with others. This could be completely new problems, related problems, or nuances to the same problem. 

For example, I love looking all the different ways Sparketypes and personality styles can be applied - careers, marketing, your niche, running a business, hobbies, life, and all the little splices in between. 

And what does my Sparketype tell me about the type of marketing that could present a challenge for me?

Well, one of the biggest pieces of marketing advice out there is to choose a marketing activity and be consistent. Unfortunately, anything routine or consistent falls into the Nurturer category for me and becomes a very heavy lift over time. In fact, almost anything I have to do more than once falls into this. 

This means that if there is something that I do need to do consistently, I need to figure out a way to do it all at once and find some sort of technology to share it or send it out on a routine, consistent basis over time for me. Or not do that at all, and find some other way to market that is more in line with my Primary and Shadow Sparketypes. 

How can you develop a marketing strategy and system that is aligned with who you are?

The first step is to take the Sparketype Assessment (if you haven't already), and identify your Primary, Shadow and Anti-Sparketype. When you take the assessment, you'll receive an email with your results. Read through the results to make sure they resonate for you. You can take the assessment RIGHT HERE.

The next step is to spend some time taking stock of where your Sparketype shows up in your work, your business, your marketing and your life right now. I recommend tracking this over seven days. Make note each day of where you felt sparked and energized and where you were depleted, and then at the end of the week, make note of any themes that emerge for you. 

Once you've spent some time getting more clear on how your Sparketype is showing up in your work and life, I recommend using the Marketing Hourglass methodology to review your marketing and identify ways to bring it more into alignment with who you are.

I'll share more about The Marketing Hourglass in an upcoming article, or if you want support now with creating a marketing strategy that's aligned with who you are, book a consultation with me to get started.  


About the Author: Nicole Croizier is a Certified Sparketype Advisor, Senior Professional Career Coach, Master Certified Soul's Calling Coach & Facilitator, and on the leadership team for the International Association of Career Coaches. She combines her 20 years of experience in marketing, recruiting, career development, and resume writing to help passionate professionals decode their career discontent, reignite their career spark, identify their ideal job, and transition to meaningful work they love.

She's also a Master Certified Marketing Consultant, and has helped hundreds of passionate professionals, coaches, consultants and solopreneurs spark their work through her own programs and as a coach instructor for Martha Beck's Wayfinder Coach Training and The Soul's Calling Academy.  If you’re looking for a career transition magician, then book a career strategy call with Nicole now or explore her programs below:



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