What I Learned About Content Marketing From Buying Snow Tires

Snowy Road - What My Snow Tires Taught Me About Content Marketing

I have lived in Colorado for thirteen years. And every year for the past twelve winters, I have hated driving in the snow. I’m originally from Pennsylvania, where the Department of Transportation dutifully brings out the snow plows when the white stuff starts falling. In PA, the roads are consistently and quickly cleared. I never learned to love driving in the snow in Pennsylvania, but I tolerated it. I trusted that the plows would be there for me and make the roads safer and that I could get from point to point without putting my neck on the line.

When I moved to Colorado, I was completely shocked when I experienced my first major Boulder snowfall (we often get 6-12 inches of snow at a time.) During that first snowstorm, nary a snow plow could found on the roads of Boulder and the surrounding areas. And because no one was out clearing or treating the roads, the driving conditions were horrendous – huge slushy snow piles, slick ice patches, cars sliding all over the place. It was terrifying. I was also completely confused.

I asked a friend why Colorado cities don’t plow, and she told me that the Colorado snow melts so fast that it doesn’t make financial sense to clear it – if you just wait a day, it’s gone anyway! So why bother to pay for plows?

“But people have to drive in it while the snow is on the roads!” I argued. “What about the people who have to get around on the day of a big storm, and can’t just wait until the snow melts to get where they need to go?”

My friend shrugged. “Drive an SUV,” she said. “Or get snow tires.”

I privately rebelled. Studded snow tires cost an average of $400 for a small car, even more for larger vehicles. I wasn’t paying that much for tires just to compensate for Boulder and the Colorado Department of Transportation shirking their responsibilities. I would tough it out in my little car with good all-weather tires, and hope for the best. Colorado snow be damned.

I suffered through twelve – count ‘em, TWELVE – Colorado winters, stubbornly refusing to invest in snow tires and cursing CDOT (and the weather gods) every time it snowed.

I started to suffer from terrible anxiety every time I had to drive in the snow. I would avoid it at all costs, and when I did have to drive during a storm, my hands would shake. I would curse and cry and freeze up and generally fall apart (note: not the best state of mind when trying to drive on icy roads.)

The Final Straw

In December 2011, I had made a plan to drive up to a mountain town to meet a friend. When I was halfway up the mountain, the forecasted snow flurries changed to several inches of icy snow, creating slick and dangerous road conditions. I got stuck four times, my car completely unable to get traction on the snow. I finally turned around, realizing I just had to give up on reaching my destination that night.

The next day, I complaining to a friend about my horrible night getting stuck in the snow, and she confronted me about my snow tire avoidance. She told me having snow tires wasn’t a luxury in Colorado – it was a necessity. “Listening to you complain about getting stuck in the snow when you don’t have good snow tires is like hearing you complain that you’re cold in a sub-zero day when you’re not wearing a coat. Enough is enough. Get yourself some snow tires.

With gritted teeth, I did so, the next day. I paid a ridiculous amount for top-of-the-line studded snow tires. I was mad, but finally willing to just bite the bullet and do it.

The next time it snowed, I started my engine with suspicion in my heart. “How can these tires possibly be worth it? They won’t make that much of a difference,” I said to myself. “I wasted my money.”

I wasn’t even five minutes away from my house when I realized that my snow tires had changed my life.

With my new tires, I didn’t slide or skid. I didn’t fishtail around corners. I didn’t need to worry that I couldn’t stop at the bottom of a hill or start again after stopping at a red light. I could just….drive. My anxiety disappeared completely, and my entire relationship with snow (and Colorado) transformed. I actually LIKED the snow and could recognize how beautiful and peaceful it was. It was incredible.

What I Learned from My Snow Tires

What’s the lesson in this? What do snow tires have to do with content marketing?

Whatever it is that you are resisting – starting a blog, beginning your Facebook business page, starting an email list, buying a new tool for your business – ask yourself WHY you are resisting. Are you scared? Stubborn? Unconvinced? Resisting just for the sake of resisting? All of the above?

There are content marketing strategies and tools that can completely transform your business. If you are dragging your feet about using them, investing in them, or putting them into practice, do whatever you need to do to get past your resistance.

Start that blog. Put up that Facebook Page. Buy that new software that will save you hours and hours of wasted time. Sign up with a business coach.

Get past your pattern of denying yourself something that can make a huge different in your business and your life.

Once you get started, you’ll likely love the result and ask yourself why you waited so long. I know I did.

So take it from me – survivor of many a Colorado winter. Not doing something – when you are resisting just for the sake of resisting – causes far more suffering than just biting the bullet and doing it. Because once you get started, it will be like sledding down a steep hill – exhilarating, enjoyable, and totally worth it.

Thoughts on this article? Stories about getting past resistance that you’d love to share? Leave your comments below!

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Comments

  1. Welcome back, Beth!
    I loved this story. As a solopreneur with a new business, I resisted thinking of myself as “internet-based” and thus rationalized not stepping into the virtual world of promoting my business. For me, getting clear that just because I was “relationship-based” (ie my clients come to me usually because they met me in person or someone who knows me referred them) didn’t mean I could ignore the world of blogs and newsletters, email marketing and social media. I needed the snow tires!
    I will say one thing: I want help with these tools — understanding which to use, how to use them and even a lot of coaching to venture out there. That’s where you come in — thank goodness!

  2. I couldn’t agree more! One of the best ways I’ve found to overcome resistance is to tap into a fun way to do what I’m resisting, no matter how unorthodox or goofy. Resistance, even resistance to resistance, is one of the main causes of suffering. At its heart is the fear of life, and can be met with compassionate lightheartedness.

  3. You picked the perfect analogy for me…because I too resist buying snow tires, yet I’m petrified about driving in the snow. Guess I should take your advice …on the tires as well as the other areas of life where I resist. Thanks!

  4. My SUMMER tires, on their own larger rims are sitting just outside my gate. It’s time to take OFF my studded tires and go with the summer tires. The studded tires have very clearly saved my bacon several times when people have spun out in front of me, in both directions and when deer and elk have crossed the road on my way home to Lyons. Thank heaven for them. I’m always carrying precious cargo–my clients’ dogs–up and down the mountain and I get a little obsessed with safety. But the resistance, ahhh…. Too familiar. I’ve spent my adult lifetime turning over rocks, looking for that source. So today I will borrow the image of your smiling face and bring it here to help me move through three important things on my list. Nothing works as well as camaraderie.

  5. Hey, Beth. We are on the same wavelength! I’m currently writing an article about “toleration” – putting up with crap we really don’t have to because of apathy/resistance/fear. By making a small investment – in time, money, or effort – we can transform those regular aggravations into an easier and more productive life.

    The time for “putting up with it” is over – especially when we are the ones putting up with ourselves! Let’s resolve this junk once and for all and move on to a happier existence.

    Yay, snow tires!

  6. Carol Haralson says:

    Hi Beth! Oh my gosh….this was sooo written for me! Two and a half YEARS ago I got myself a Word Press (org) site, dot commed my name, have been paying for hosting (2 1/2 yrs of hosting!) and have yet to figure out how to use the darn thing – even though I yearn to start my blog – I’ve done nothing to get going…..I agree with Betsy that I have learned to “tolerate” my life and this has to STOP NOW! I know deep down that the blog I want is one of the tools that will release me to, again Betsy says it best, MOVE ON TO A HAPPIER EXISTENCE (THANK YOU BETSY!).

    Thank you! I’m so happy I found your site!

    • Carol, let me know if I can help you get that blog up and running – I would be happy to do some consulting with you and give you a jump start! :)

  7. I also learn about it,putting the real story is can be a success and might be unique one for a content marketing,in Finland content marketing really helps any business specially SEO stuff and giving nice traffic learning and improving your strategy about it is a very important factors need to consider and thanks for this.

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