Fads. None of us are immune to them all the time, it’s just that some are easier to resist than others.
For instance, brown was never the “New Black” for me, it was just brown. Chickens, on the other hand, now those were a fad I just couldn’t pass up.
Fluffy Yellow Chicks? I’ll take 5 of those Silver Laced Wyandotte’s please! We’re allowed to have 3 hens, but I figured there might be some natural attrition. I also allowed for human error that 1 or 2 might turn out to be Roosters. We watched in awe as the chicks went from fluffy, to gawky to beautiful. Well, all but one of them. I would stand out by the run watching them, the sun glinting magically off their iridescent tail feathers and remark to my partner “Baby, they’re so pretty! Except that one, why is she so ugly?” And then, one day, we heard a tentative, garbled Rrrrr-rrrrr-rrrrr. The ugly one, it turned out was our only hen.
Four out of Five chicks were roosters! What are the odds? And still, we sallied forth. You see, we were committed to the chickens now. $350.00 for a coop (some assembly required) $300 for lumber and chicken wire for their run. $30.00 for a heat lamp, $27.00 for an electronic thermometer to ensure they stayed toasty warm. Organic feed, feeder, waterer, litter, scratch. It all adds up. Not to mention the emotional investment of hand-raising them from chicks. Once the “Rooster Issue” was addressed, we found three replacements, a few weeks younger than our existing hen. They were big, strapping Jersey Giants, earning their name by the amount of food they consumed. All appeared to be well, until a Sunday morning in November “Rrrrrr-rrrrrr-rrrrr” we looked at each other horror stricken. Not again? Why us? Sure enough, one of the Giant Jersey Chickens was a Rooster.
The week of Christmas, my partner came to me “Close your eyes and hold out your hand” she said with a glint in her eye. What was this? An early bauble she couldn’t wait to give me? No, it was a beautiful brown egg. Success, finally. To date, we have received 11 such gifts.
Determination, commitment, resolve – All of these are key in achieving the end goal, whatever it may be. Egg self sufficiency, driving more traffic to your website, increasing your market presence, hammering down your brand.
Using Mrs. Knightly’s Chicken Analogy, let’s break it down, shall we?
Before you run out and buy a bunch of chicks, you need a coop (Brand) for them to live in, once that’s in place, you need an appropriately sized Run (brand guidelines) where the chickens can do what they do best. And now, you buy the chickens (Collateral, Web & Marketing). They should reflect the values, aesthetics and flavor of your coop (Brand), because they are an integral part in the end goal.
- Coop – Check
- Run – Check
- Chickens – Check
Oh. Small detail. You’ve got to feed the chickens so they’ll produce. You can have the most beautiful coop, run and chickens in the world, but if you forget to feed (market and adapt) them, they will not survive. To keep them really healthy, they need friends (Social Media connections) and a change of scenery (Refresh & Revise) every so often.
Next week, we’ll talk about the Perfect Omelet (Results).
Happy New Years!