So, I went to a burlesque show and learned about marketing in business

A burlesque show taught me about marketing

I asked a girlfriend of mine how she wanted to celebrate her birthday with me, thinking that we would go out for dinner, or maybe an art opening, or something otherwise normal and friendly.

She wanted to go to a late-night burlesque show.

Keep in mind, my friend is an ex-hippie/punk rocker who has always walked on the wild side.

So I said yes, because what the hell? And I thought it would be fun to observe the shadow side of sexuality, because I’ve been doing a lot of exploration into the shadow side of my business of late (more on this soon!).

We decided to go to the show without her husband.

Turns out it was a burlesque competition - like who can get the best audience response. I love that about Asheville, NC, where I live. We’re always on the edge of what’s possible. Here’s what I learned about marketing from these burlesque geniuses . . .

Embodying your authentic Truth matters when you are trying to sell yourself.

There were four contestants at the burlesque show, and only one could win.

The first (a man) eliminated himself in the first round because he was funny and engaging, but there wasn’t a lot of substance to him - the audience couldn’t connect to him personally - his passion, his sexuality, his drive.

Don’t give them what you think they want.

Contestant #2 eliminated herself because she put on a STUNNING show, and showed a LOT of nudity - giving the audience exactly what she thought we wanted, but she was so far removed to what she was doing with her body it seemed like she was just dancing for us, not for herself. And that came across as disingenuous.

Looking perfect isn’t enough.

Contestant #3 eliminated herself because her big marketing strategy seemed to be that she had a perfect body. And having the perfect package, marketing strategy and sales funnel isn’t enough if your prospects don’t get a sense of YOU.

Be Yourself, no matter what.

Contestant #4 won because she was having a rocking good time, doing exactly what she wanted to do, and she came across as engaged, passionate and authentic. And, just for the record, she was definitely not the most stereo-typically attractive one there.

So, there are some thoughts for you to consider when you are marketing your business. How can you be more authentic in your messaging? How can you connect deeply with your prospects at heart and soul level?

I’d love to hear what you come up with! Reply below.

6 comments

What a fun way to explore and express that no matter where you are or what you are doing, showing up as yourself is #1! What a fun story! Thanks for sharing.
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Emma Churchman

Thanks for this feedback, Stacie!
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Susan Palmer

As a ballroom dancer I struggle with this a lot, especially when doing a sexier dance like the rumba. There is a myth floating around in the back of my head that says it's inappropriate to be dancing sexily in front of people. Yet that is the character of the dance. In order to demonstrate it properly there is a fair amount of hip/body movement. I get embarrassed every time.
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Leslie Atkinson

Great article on showing up as you!!!
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Emma Churchman

Susan: Thanks so much for sharing your perspective as a dancer. I'm curious if you see any connection between this and how you show up in your business: like are there places where you get embarrassed in your business? I see this show up for entrepreneurs a LOT in sales conversations - not wanting to feel uncomfortable or make anyone else feel uncomfortable, for example.
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Emma Churchman

Thanks so much, Leslie!!
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