“Austin is a smaller version of New York city.”
This is what a friend of mine (from New York) told me once. I’ve heard that Austin and Seattle are similar in personalities, but I hadn’t heard it being anything like New York before.
Granted, I have not yet been to New York. Still, I’m not sure that I can agree with her. And certainly, it would probably be best for her to never repeat that to a native Texan who didn’t already love her. In fact, I’m not sure a native New Yorker would appreciate the comparison.
Still, if you stop and think about it, both cities are incredibly diverse in culture. Pretty much every kind of food, every kind of belief system, every kind of hobby can be found in both places. I never think about Austin’s unique nature much until I travel to other areas and suddenly realize that wait – something’s missing. Or when a friend comes to visit and comments on it.
Oddly, my friend’s comment got me thinking about competitive marketing in the Austin area.
Austin is a colorful and amazing city with a lot of talent to offer. And all of the surrounding cities take on a similar general personality. We’re laid back and friendly here. We don’t take anything too seriously, except our food and our friendships. And our social demographic is influenced by the fact that Austin/Round Rock is considered one of the most educated cities in the US.
There are so many diverse and interesting things that can be marketed or written about here. I figure working for Austin Monthly magazine must be a great job as a writer. Surely fun and rarely boring.
But then I was thinking about niche businesses. How marketing (and writing) changes when you specialize instead of diversify.
Austin’s happenings and culture seem like bountiful writing resources, where there’s a plethora of colorful possibilities – pretty astounding. There’s so much texture and color to explore here, all unified by the fact that is all quirky Austin.
But if I were to try to switch things up, and dedicate a specialized magazine to say – crochet in Austin – suddenly there is no diversification. Because in spite of our colorful and rich stories, Austin is still essentially a small town community. We don’t have the kind of population you see in other cities. Which also means that the amount of crocheters in Austin is pretty small. And hard to find. Or a least, when you need a substantial support system to justify such an endeavor.
That got me thinking. That in marketing you can be specialized, or you can be diversified, but it’s near impossible to be both.
Unless perhaps if you walk the fine tight rope of specializing in being diverse.