Welcome, I am feeling better today than I felt last week; I hope you are doing better too. I want to take a moment to really thank all of you who stop by week after week, day after day on this page. It amazes me how you all come from all over the globe to glean from here. It has also come to my attention that my most popular post of all time is the post on Define Your Dream: Asking the Right Questions.
This past week, I have wandered into your space and your minds to find out what it is about this post that has made it the most popular one yet. While I don’t have feedback yet, I assume that it is because for most of us, it is a huge issue, identifying and living our dreams. The truth is that we all can tell when we come across people who are living their dreams, the issue is we just don’t think we belong in that group.
This can be because every dream but ours looks like the most attractive one, or because we are still in the early stages of our dreams and we are not sure how we look to others. It can even be because we are yet to gather enough momentum to begin to feel like we are actually making an impact; for some of us, it maybe because we know what we want to do, but are not sure if it will work or not.
Whichever category you may fall, I am sure you have also asked today’s question, ‘What Works?’ I have asked this question time and time again and no matter the answers I find, one thing keeps reoccurring, and I hope that it will help you see that you are peculiar and called to peculiarly live your dream, irrespective of what others are doing.
When we started Effectual Magazine, www.effectualmag.com, we had two major issues we knew we had to get right or we might just close shop within a few months. The first was the size of the magazine. Practically every magazine around was at least A4 size, and filled with more images of cloths and shoes, than content; though they seemed to be doing well. When we started out we opted for the A5 size with more reading content than images, people kept telling us that we were not going to last in the market. They also told us that we had too much reading content packed into each edition that customers will not be interested to buy. Some self-appointed Consultant actually told me that the faith-based content is bad for business, as well as the passion with which we talk about our relationship with God. We listened, but stuck with what was unique to us, because we recognized that because it worked for others didn’t mean it will work for us.
The other issue was marketing. We knew that our size was not street vendor friendly so we opted to be a Subscriber-based magazine. We decided to use direct marketing and to keep expanding our subscriber base. Again, we were told that subscriber based magazines don’t work because they don’t get as much advertisement as the other magazines.
So you can imagine how we were treading in our early months with these two issues hanging over our heads. Even though this was the case, we were sure that there was a market for us, and that it may take us longer than every one else to corner our share of the market, but we were going to get what was ours if we continued to follow our convictions.
It has been years and a lot has happened, one thing that has worked out perfectly is both the size of the magazine and the content that we have continued to deliver on. Slowly but surely, our subscriber base has expanded with each edition and our market share is still increasing.
The point of today’s post is simple, when you are living a dream you need to have your own peculiarities. Be bold to chart your own course and do your best to stick with it as long as you are convinced it will work out in the end. Even if it takes a while, be willing to follow through on what you believe. If we had listened to everyone who complained about our size, we will be lost in the sea of magazines on the market, because we will be exactly like them! That it worked for others didn’t mean it was going to work for us. We had to find our own way.
If you are willing to find your way based on the convictions of your heart and the passion in your heart, it may take a while, but you will make it. Nevertheless, I promise you will make it.