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Every business has its own challenges.  
The Personal History Business is no exception.

The first and foremost “sad and unavoidable truth” about the Personal History business is that

Personal Histories are not “hot” consumer items. 

You don’t see people searching madly on Google for the best deals on a personal history.  In fact, as far as Google, the largest search engine in the world, is concerned, “personal  history” doesn’t really exist. In the 12 years I have been working with personal historians, Google has never put “personal history” into it’s list of  searchable keywords or adwords. As far as Google is concerned,No one” is looking for personal historians on the internet.

Of course, “no one” is a relative term.  The current population of the United States as of this minute when I am writing is 317,545, 522 (if you are from another country, plug in your populations statistics here: _______) .  I am taking a guess, based on my long time work with personal historians, that in any given year only a handful of those 317.5 million people come up with the idea on their own that they would like to find a personal historian to do a book, a set of audio interviews, or a video-documentary of their family’s stories and memories.

With the exception of personal historians who have done their due diligence and marketing … for years… and have a large portfolio of completed work and a long string of satisfied customers – ‘no one’ is looking for a specific personal historian or the personal history business in general.

WHAT DOES THIS MEAN TO BEGINNING PERSONAL HISTORIANS?

  • It means if you don’t know how to do effective marketing, it would be a good idea if you learned!
  • It means if you have an aversion to marketing, it is good news that you can “change your mind” about that!
  • It means if you want to do the work you love – and you CAN and SHOULD be doing the work you love – you need to embrace the fact that you are in an industry where, mostly, your clients are not looking for you and you need to do the best you can to make it EASY for you to find your clients!

Tomorrow I will talk about the second major challenge: Personal Histories are not inexpensive. Talking about money to potential clients.

IN THE MEANTIME:  If you are looking for a business skills training for personal historians check out the description of the APH sponsored 6 month class, starting in March, on the APH Events and Classes webpage.

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