During my recent trip to Taiwan, I had the delightful opportunity to spend an afternoon with master blogger and tea aficionado Stéphane Erler of the Tea Masters Blog. At one point, the conversation turned to teapots and the process of “curing” the vessel. Repeatedly brewing the same type of leaf in the teapot permeates the porous clay with the flavor of the tea, lending more depth to the amber elixir.
Stéphane warned that many tea enthusiasts become too wrapped up in the teapots and lose sight of the star: the tea itself.
His mentor taught him that curing teapots is very similar to rearing children. It’s a time-intensive process that requires constant attention. When this impatient American pressed him for an average timeline, Stéphane suggested seven to eight months of daily brewing to season a new teapot. If you divide your time between two teapots, the curing period doubles. If you only brew tea sporadically, the process drags on with slow results.
My Aha! Moment
The conversation reminded me of a few other areas in which I’ve allowed myself to get distracted. Specifically, my sales and marketing have fallen behind schedule because I keep running across a new tool, technique, webinar, etc. So I drop my current plans and check out the new approach… until something else catches my eye.
I decided then and there to follow the same advice that we offer clients: Focus on one area and get that in working order before moving on to the next project. (Think of the classic spinning plates routine, where the entertainer starts one plate spinning and then tends to the rest in rapid succession.)
- A few months before this vacation, I resurrected our monthly newsletter with its new look and shorter format. (Sign up for it here.) Next week will mark our fifth consecutive issue.
- At the start of the trip, we launched this blog. Is it in its final branded form? No. Do we have all our cornerstone content in place? No. But we’re working on it.
- Next up: We’re launching our new website, which has been a work in progress for the last nine months.
Each morning, I remind myself of this new, one-track approach as I brew tea in the tiny teapot from Ten Ren in Taichung. The same tea, the same pot. And it tastes heavenly.
Are you multi-tasking your marketing? Torn between updating your website or overhauling your sales letters? Maybe you’re debating between launching a blog or starting a newsletter. Pick one project, and make it happen.
If you need a writing assist, let us know.