We often get asked, what the heck we are doing the whole day long. With our nerdy computer stuff and those geeky tools. And how we even can achieve to earn money with it. It seems it's still a kind of a miracle what we are doing, especially for those who are working in the traditional (German) marketing and media scene.
You think this sounds weird? Especially as Germany is internationally considered to be THE automotive paradise — with its Autobahn, "The Ring", its cultural backgorund and all those premium car makers? Yeop, it's strange. But we got used to it.
It's quite easy (… er … for us). Let me explain.
When we rolled out our mother ship http://chromjuwelen.com back in 2005, it wasn't our intention to create another website, magazine, forum or community. Our vision was — and still is — to build a brand. A strong and on it own terms evolved brand which embodies a cultural habitus. A sender which inspires through its diversity. A winged word or "meme" which helps like-minded people to get connected to each other.
Of course — we know it's absolutely maniac and ambitious. Especially when you choose a German brand name like "Chromjuwelen" (= Chrome Jewels) which nobody will understand behind our German borders. Maybe we fail, because we overestimate ourselves. But as products — like cars or automotive parts in particular — have become evermore (ho-hum) equal, and most responsible decision makers believe (due to ignorance) more and more in crippling controlling aspects than in vision, passion and gut feelings — we got bored to the same extent.
We had a hunch there must be more people who feel the same. And getting feedback for our work substantiates our assumptions. Today we are convinced: People miss Movers & Shakers. But it seems there aren't too many courageous and visionary doer out there. And to make matters worse: We learned most people — especially car-minded — are hardly able to sort the daily info overkill produced by magazines, blogs and communities. Which means: they are gone. Because it's impossible for them to trace their 24/7 news feeds. Call it RSS, call it Facebook, call it Twitter, call it Tumblr ... call it THE INTERNET.
To keep it short: Our aim is to establish our brand Chromjuwelen as a lighthouse. A trusted beacon which helps sorting the good into the pot, while the bad ones go in the crop. In doing so we never intended to set the rules what is "kool" and what it is not — it is more that we are trying to curate as much inspirational content as we can find. The judgement, what is cool and what is crap, will be done be our readers.
Over the years we gained a certain amount of reach. Not only national, but also international. It has been a mountain of grass roots work, as the differences between Germany and the rest of the world is sometimes ... well ... disenchanting. It's not only this funky language called "Deutsch" that differs us from the rest tot the world, it is more the mindset which is totally divergent. And no – we don't not push our luck by claiming everything "awesome", "amazing" or "magic" to succeed. Don't forget — we are Germans. This would not work.
But anyway – we managed it. Which leads us to our first mainstay.
$$$ #1. We get hired. As brand ambassadors. To produce content and media – or just for advertising.