Use Your Nesting (Personalization) Instinct To Market Your Business

Janet Christy

I have just returned from a vacation at Myrtle Beach, SC. My husband and I stayed at a camp ground – a huge one. This camp ground includes permanent sites with everything from vacation homes on stilts to campers with rooms and porches built on. It also includes hundreds of temporary spaces filled with RVs, fifth wheels, pop-ups and tents. Almost all sites, whether permanent or temporary, include several things: a porch or awning; rug (or outdoor carpet); a means of washing the sand off – shower or hose; chairs; an eating table and a place to hang clothes to dry.

As always I was struck by the nesting people do at their sites – no matter how temporary. Some of the ways people personalize their nests:

  • Color – of their camper, tent or house; of their chairs; of their rug or outdoor carpet.
  • Type – of their seating such as upright or lounge; of their eating area – plan table or covered with a net tent.
  • Decorations – maybe a sign with their name; lighting such as hanging lanterns around their awning or wire palm trees glowing with LED lights; and windmills of figures with flailing arms and legs.

Most people use golf carts to get around a large camp ground and they even build mobile nests on these simple modes of transportation. You see them decorated with:

  • The colors of their favorite school or team.
  • Customization to make them mini versions of ‘57 Chevys or other cars.
  • Chrome, decals and big wheels.

This nesting is even evident on the beach or at the pool where people personalize their smaller space with tents, towels, chairs, coolers and bags sporting colors or logos personal to them.

But nesting does not just occur on vacation, this instinct causes people to make other spaces their own:

  • Tags, steering wheel covers, floor mats, special cups and more create a nest in a car.
  • Pictures, pencil holders, name plates, small stuffed animals, plants and signs that say “I’d rather be _________” are just some of the things people use to make a cubicle, desk or office their nest.
  • Magazines, books, posters, afghans and gadgets are a few of the things people use to create a nest within a nest such as a teenager’s room or a favorite reading area within a home

Nesting is an instinct that helps carve out our own space, put our brand on something common and create comfort in cold or unfamiliar surroundings.

But this instinct can also help us market our businesses. If we tune in to our nesting nature we will find ways to carve out a space for our business, make it stand out from others and create a company that beckons by offering the comfort of problems solved and pain alleviated.

It is often said that for a small business the owner is the brand. Even if a business grows to have hundreds of employees and multiple locations the mark of the original owner(s) is still branded on the business. This is evidence that the owner(s) used their nesting instinct to create and market a business.

You can harness your inborn nesting nature to fine-tune and market your business. Here are some suggestions.


  • Remember you (or you and your partners) are the brand. Use colors and symbols that mean something to you because you are the one(s) who have to live with them and sell them. You get noticed if you feel good in what you are wearing, in how you look – so will your business.
  • Use tag lines and phrases that represent you and what you want your business to be about. An example is the tag line for my business. I believe that marketing is about finding the best angle and using it effectively to cause an action, so my tag line is – It’s all about angles.


Use methods of promotion and marketing that make you stand out to those who are or should be your customers/clients. Be consistent and persistent. Carve out your space among the competition. For those campers with their sites they want to stand out from the rest and they find ways to do it year after year.

Here are some examples:

  • If your customers and prospects read trade magazines, advertise in or write for those magazines – show your personality to attract their attention.
  • If your clients and prospects are members of an organization, join or find a way to participate – build your nest within their nest.
  • If your likely customers are men or women or teenagers or seniors be sure you stand out to that group. There is a reason that Mother Nature made those magnificent tail feathers for peacocks and gave lightning bugs their glow.
  • If you and your skills are the product, then using nesting methods to make your place among the competition should come naturally – it’s not bragging, it’s marketing.


Marketing is attracting attention and making your business known. If you fight your instinct to nest – carve your own personal space in the business world – you hamper your ability to attract attention. If you do not use your need to personalize, you will miss the opportunities to make your business stand out and be remembered. If you go against your natural instincts, you will be uncomfortable and you will likely not do the marketing that it takes to make a business successful.

So go forth and build your business nest.

Janet Christy, Founder and President of consulting firm, Leverage & Development, LLC
Copyright 2011 Author retains ownership. All Rights Reserved.

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