“And that’s when I realized I had put the tire on backwards…”

Flashback: it’s 2008.

A woman I had just started dating had spent the night for the first time (😍) and had to be at work by 8am β€” across town. So, we set the alarm, got to sleep at a reasonable hour, woke up early, and walked out to my car.

The rear driver side tire was flat.

That’s no good.

But, fine. Adventure time! I can change a tire in 10 minutes, demonstrate my mastery of all things car-related, and get her to work on time, right?

(Recommend listening music: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZnHmskwqCCQ)

Okay, I dive in:

  • Find the jack
  • Jack up the car
  • Find the lug wrench
  • It’s not the in trunk.
  • Crap.
  • It’s on the shelves in the garage!
  • Get the tire off
  • Look in the trunk
  • It’s full of junk. The spare tire is under the junk
  • Crap.
  • Throw everything out onto the side
  • Haul the tire out
  • Put the tire back on
  • Realize I put the flat tire back on the car (seriously)
  • Crap.
  • Take the tire off. Put it on the other side of the garage to avoid any future issues
  • Put the correct spare tire on. the car
  • Jam the lug nuts back on there
  • Tighten the lug nuts
  • They… don’t quite seem to fit at first but then pop into place.
  • Good.
  • Jump in the car and start driving.

Cue the most horrendous screeching noise you have ever heard in your life.

Date: “Is it supposed to sound like that?”

Me: “…no”

I call a cab. She calls her work and lets her assistant know she had a flat tire. Cab arrives. She’s safely off to work and I get a goodbye kiss.

I turn around and look at the car.

What the heck had I done wrong?

I had put the tire on backwards.




I jack up the car again, flip the tire around, bolt it back in place, and go for a test drive. We’re fine. I get the flat tire replaced. All is good.

I was thinking about this story earlier today on my morning walk. It’s too common for us as business owners (Me included. Hell, me especially) to accidentally have one part of our business just a wee bit off (like putting a tire on a car backwards) and have it prevent the whole system from working correctly (…like trying to drive with a tire bolted on backwards…).

Specifically, my Outreach Consulting agency, Double Your Audience.

The business is fine.

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But like any business, small details get smudged over, tires get bolted on backwards, and the system as a whole starts to make a grinding noise as you try to use it.

  • My positioning is rough and undefined
  • I haven’t done market research with my target market for multiple months, leading to…
  • My marketing messaging being out of date
  • My service offerings being out of date

And on top of it all, wonderful people (πŸ‘‹) who opt-in at Double Your Audience end up on the same list as people who opt-in at KaiDavis.com, meaning they’re getting marketing messaging about freelancing and getting more clients, not about:

  • Getting on podcasts on as guest (http://podcastoutreach.com)
  • Landing guest articles
  • Promoting their content
  • Building and managing their most valuable relationships

My marketing, messaging, and service offerings β€” let alone how and when I’m talking to customers and subscribers β€” lost coherence and resonance with the audience I’m talking to.

So, what to do?

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Well, I’m going to refine and retool Double Your Audience, my Outreach Marketing and Digital Public Relations consulting agency. From the ground up. Following the best practices and best principles that I advocate:

  • Positioning: Refine the positioning of the business, specifying exactly who the business works best with and what outcome the business can provide
  • Market Research: Go through a market research campaign with the target market to learn about the pains and problems they’re looking to solve
  • Service Offerings: Refine my service offerings to better address the outcomes that the target market is looking for
  • Marketing Messaging: Refine my marketing messaging to line up with my target market and my service offerings

And a whole bunch else: refine my lead magnets and opt-ins, put together an email nurturing sequence, refine my outreach campaigns…

And I’m going to do it live. Well, as live as it can be. I’ll show you what I’m changing β€” and I’ll also explain why I’m changing and how I’m making the changes to the business, so you can see how this process works.

The metaphorical tire might be on backwards β€” but it just takes a bit of work to jack up the car and flip the tire around.

But now a question for you: What would you most like to learn from this experiment? What questions do you have about retooling a consulting business? What would you like to learn as I conduct this grand experiment?

Hit reply and let me know.


β€” Kai

p.s., She ended up getting to work on time and everything was A+ fine. 😍

I write a high-quality, daily newsletter about marketing, growth, and lead generation for indie consultants, freelancers, and service professionals.

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