If you’ve got fast-car-lovin’ humans in your house, you might recognise his name.
Top Gear saw his entry into this house, along with a new husband who brought with him two extra televisions into our abode that only had one – and that was hidden away behind a cabinet and only brought out for special occasions (thanks, Steiner early education schooling!)
And then we booted him out (Jeremy, not my husband), some years later, deciding he was an angry old white man who couldn’t manage non-violent dialogue when his on-set food went cold.
People that throw hands don’t usually get a second chance in this family.
But then Clarkson’s Farm came along.
My daughter (turned 18 this week) experienced her very first crush when she spotted Paul West on River Cottage. She was about 12 at the time and she spent days daydreaming about marrying Paul and raising organic pigs and dreamily talking about the way he laughs. Hilarious, if you know her now, although her current love does resemble Paul a bit… And so started a family-wide obsession with farming shows enjoyed by all members of the Crisp Crow nest from smallest to wrinkliest.
2021 Jeremy got a second look-in. Via his farming show.
What’s this all got to do with copywriting and/or brand building?
Well, the entire time I was watching Clarkson’s Farm I was mulling over that meme that offers up the concept you can pretty much do anything if you pretend you’re a mediocre middle-aged white man.
if Jeremy Clarkson can run a farm, my smart women can certainly write copy that makes them money.
For starters, you are probably already better at writing things than old Jem is at raising sheep, right?
So you’ve a headstart.
Not only that, we can utilise what Jeremy did to subsidise his massive lack of knowledge and apply it to our own messaging and way of doing things.
Here’s what I think we can steal:
If you’d rather listen to this blog, you can do it right here!
1. Personal Brand Power
In the last episode, we find Jeremy’s pretty much not made any money from the farming itself. No huge shock for viewers, after we witness him drop hundreds of thousands of pounds on bits of enginey things he probably doesn’t need (made me think about all the AppSumo deals I’ve ever subscribed to but we’re not spend-shaming past Jay here).
What he does make money from is the Farm Shop. In fact, in one of my business groups a woman said she waited THREE HOURS in the car line at the Farm Shop just to buy a little something something from Clarkson’s Farm.
What’s that all about?
Personal brand power.
Jeremy is a brand.
So are you.
You just may not have the pull he does yet. But he certainly wasn’t whispering about hoping people will come buy his farmed stuff to himself when he launched the shop, oh no, he was posting all about it all over his own social media accounts.
What was he offering? Nothing special – same stuff all farm shops offer all over the world and a few more potatoes besides – but did that stop him asking people to drive into the Cotswolds to buy his particular stuff? No, not at all, because he has the chutzpah of the MWM.
In short: use what only you have got (you!) to tell people how good your stuff is. And they should come check it out.
The shop showcases the smart thinking of diversification – offering more than one product or service to a different set of ideal customers or clients. I bet it would take you less than 10 minutes to think of an aligned but separate offshoot of your current business you could create to bring in a second stream of income from something you already do.
The answer probably isn’t a television show, but it could be something that’s produced as a by-product of what you already sell that’s tasty for a totally different kind of customer.
In fact, that’s a challenge – what else do you have in your arsenal you could start selling this month?
And still on the topic of the Farm Shop, this leads us to my favourite example of smart copy and messaging…
3. Wicked-Smart Messaging
Jeremy’s shop is called The Diddly Squat Farm Shop.
If you’ve been exposed to more than a minute of Jeremy himself, you can probably hear him saying that.
Which is why it’s so good.
It’s bang-on brand voice and it doesn’t even promise something above-average!
The Diddly Squat Farm Shop’s Home Page copy offers:
“ the Diddly Squat Farm Shop is a small barn full of good, no-nonsense things you’ll like. We do not, for example, sell kale.”
* Giggle *
The real genius, however, is in the advertising copy.
Jeremy’s candles’ copy is loosely inspired by the stuff fluffy Gwynny sells via Goop, and are branded with ‘This Smells Like My Bollocks’ in bold font – loud and proud.
OK, so if you’re a candle maker in a massively saturated market (which you know you’re in the second if you’re the first) I’m not suggesting your packaging copy be offensive or rude, but there’s certainly something in packaging messaging so completely on-brand, it couldn’t possibly be mistaken for someone else’s. Which I think is a lesson we can all consider, regardless of what we’re selling.
The milk is labelled ‘Cow Juice’ to boot, which would totally have be buying it and keeping the bottle. Because I’m easy to amuse.
Jeremy might come across as a bit of a turtle, but if you rate him by the collective smarts of the team he chooses to help him manage the 100 acre farm he suddenly finds himself head of, he’s the smartest man alive. In fact, I challenge anyone who doesn’t agree Kaleb is the star of this tele series.
If you’re trying to run a 100 acre anything – even 100 square centimetres of thinking space in your own head – without help, well, that’s why it all feels impossible.
Every single fantastic businesswoman I know, regardless of her 7-figure status, is enjoying her business success because she has a squad.
It doesn’t matter what you sell.
It doesn’t matter if you’re bootstrapping or scaling.
If you don’t have a team you can call on to outsource to, bounce ideas off, or ask for straight-up advice, you’re drowning in late seasonal showers with your wheat rotting.
No one wants rotty wheat, especially in their mind-field, so get yourself some good people – paid or trade – to be part of your squad. Pronto.
This MWM knows the power of BTS – behind the scenes.
In addition, if this feminist-fuelled family can set aside and consider forgiveness to the point we’d watch him blunder and muck-up his way through another television show because of the interest of watching someone do just that, I reckon he’s probably clawed back more than a couple of old viewers of his stuff since the incident with his producer first hit the news.
We want to know you.
What you love, what you stand for, what you struggle with.
We’re nosy and we’re curious and we crave connection, especially since the C word, and if you’re only showing us the highlight reel, we won’t feel like we can resonate with you because we know we’re as messy as all get-out and you won’t seem real at all.
I might not like Jeremy Clarkson’s MO.
I’m not sure I even like Jeremy Clarkson.
Which is a bit odd, as I’ve just written an entire blog about him.
But I am sure I like Clarkson’s Farm as an example of what can be achieved with (let’s set aside the 100 acres, the fame, and the TV series money involved) personal brand, clever diversification, brand voice, a cracking team, and letting your viewer see a little of your behind the scenes action.
If we’re going to have to let him back onto our family’s screens, the least he can do for me is help me help smart women like you figure out what you can take from his show and use it to your own advantage.
In this way, we’re making ol’ Jer a step in the rising tide of revolutionary women leaders with brilliant messaging.
And I can cope with that.
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