Lessons from the Big Dawg

It’s a pretty surreal experience stepping off the train at Maidenhead. It gets even weirder when ten minutes later you find yourself sat in a conference centre room with Tim Westwood. How the hell did that happen?

Well, somehow it did. This month’s Boot Camp did indeed feature a talk from the Big Dawg. Although disappointing in its lack of novelty sound effects, his talk was fantastic. He’s such a passionate man, with principles that I think we all felt a little in awe of. Also, he’s really bloody tall. Like giant tall. Enormous, building toppling, T-Rex fighting tall.

His advice to us was simple: “It’s out being out there, it’s not about chasing the money. The money will just come.” He works really sodding hard. For him, working life is not about the Monday to Friday, 9 till 5 routine. It’s all about doing more of what you do. He spoke of how he’ll play anywhere if he’s booked, that’s easy. But he works hard at the nights he runs. He might not even make money on them, but he uses them as a way to keep in touch with music, with his fans and to keep building the amazing network of street teams that he has working for him. He spoke of his love for Twitter and YouTube, disseminating content wherever he could and using the networks to keep in touch with everyone who attends his nights.

Andy Parfitt described Westwood as one of the best marketers he’s ever met. Westwood’s relentless involvement in his industry was definitely something that made us all wince in shame, I can honestly say that not one single scholar has that kind of connection into our customers or markets. Also, from a purely ego driven point of view, how can we get the kind of reputation and respect that Westwood commands? Sure as hell, Beyonce does not call me when she lands at Heathrow. This fills me with disappointment every single day.

So, some things that Westwood makes us want to do:

  • Get out there. I work in fashion but NEVER go to anything vaguely industry related. Why not?
  • Get closer to our customers. Hang out where they do. Listen to what they listen to. Watch what they watch.
  • Get talking. Build those relationships with peers, customers, colleagues. Talk, talk, talk.
  • Get learning. I want to know more about our product, our muses and certainly more about our industry.
  • Get dancing. EXACKLY.

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Love, as always,

Helen

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About helenium

@helenium
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