See, there are several reasons I have to make this confession at least once a year. Firstly, I want everyone to know that I am not trying to pull something over someone. It is all in fun and for entertainment. People are drawn to Thad's sense of humor and if it can lighten just one person's day then it is worth it!
The other reason is because of some of the comments and private messages I receive. So, I want to take this opportunity to answer some of those folks. I have summed up some of the similar questions and comments into one to make it easier to answer.
1. Your grammar and spelling aren't very good and you won't make it in internet marketing!
That is true in MOST cases! If you want to be professional, you need to look professional and that means your speech, writing, dress, etc; however, Thad is NOT trying to be professional. Thad is a "hillbillyish" character and he has a role to play. If done properly the bad grammar and spelling can enhance the character and make it more real.
2. It is not very nice to make fun of hillbillies!
It is never nice to poke fun at other people. With Thad I am actually poking fun at myself. Generations of relatives on my dad's side of the family are from Cumberland, Kentucky. Their later generations are from Tennessee and Texas. That pretty much makes me a red-necked hillbilly and I am proud of it!
3. Where did you get the idea for the character of Thaddaeus T Hogg?
The idea for Thad came from one of my favorite comdedians, Jerry Clower. He was a southern boy from Mississippi and I LOVED his humor. The folks at Stumpwoody Holler are somewhat based on Clower's Ledbetter family. Thad is probably close to the Marcell Ledbetter family! If you have the opportunity to get any of Jerry Clower's material I would strongly suggest you do so. It is very funny stuff!
4. Can a person really make money with characters like Thad?
ABSOLUTELY! I really haven't tried to monetize Thad but there are many different directions you can go with something like that. People love to laugh; especially, in times like these! I can't even begin to list the ways that Thad could be monetized. Thus far, I have just chosen not to do it!
5. What are your plans for Thad?
Short-term I plan to just keep doing what I am doing. Long-term, I would like to set up a whole community that surrounds Thad and Stumpwoody Holler. I would love to take it in the same direction as Garrison Keillor and Lake Woebegone days.
6. Why is Thad so popular?
Thad is popular for several reasons. He is funny. He is simple. He doesn't attack you. He has a roundabout way of saying things that people understand. He is honest. He has integrity. Basically, he is the kind of guy that people can relate to.
Look back at those reasons why Thad is popular and put those in perspective with internet marketing. If you will brand yourself with those qualities you will be able to go far in your online endeavors. Heck, you will be able to go far in LIFE!!!
7. Isn't it illegal to have multiple identities in the Warrior Forum?
I don't know if it is illegal or not but Thad is an open secret. Most of the people in the Warrior Forum KNOW that I am Thad.I think the key to having more than one ID in here is INTENTION! WHY do you have more than one? A lot of people create multiple IDs for nefarious reasons but that is not what Thad is all about! I guess the proper creed to follow is, "Do no harm!"
8. Doesn't it get confusing posting under two IDs?
If you only knew!!! I will post something for Thad and it will be under my own name. Then I have to rush back and delete it before someone sees it. I have gotten several PMs where someone said, "Hey, I say you changed the ID on your post. I just wanted to let you know that you can get in trouble with the mods if you are caught!" I appreciate them looking out for me!
9. Where is Stumpwoody Holler?
Stumpwoody Holler is in the best place in can be... in your mind! In marketing, if you can get into your audience's mind and get them imagining what you want them to see, you have created a very powerful tool. I want people seeing the holler as THEY want to see it. There is no way I could make it any better than that!
10. Is Thad real?
Let me take this last question as an opportunity to give you some marketing advice. I have touched on this in the last question but I want to reiterate!
Thad is as real as a person will let him be. As I said before, I WANT people to form their own ideas about who and what Thad is. Their mind can give him a life that I never would be able to.
In marketing, you need to develop the skills to plant the image in someone's mind that you want them to have. You don't have to do more than that. They will enhance that image. They will "evolve" that image. They will take possession of it. What will they base it on? Several things but most importantly... YOU!
If they see you as spammy, dishonest, shysterly or they see you negatively in any way, they will see your product or service the same way. Your product or service will be judged with the same barometer as they judge you.You are selling yourself just a much as you are selling any product or service.
I guess we could sum it up by calling it "character" and you either have it or you don't! If you don't I suggest you get it. If you have it I suggest you enhance it.
Thaddaeus T Hogg has character and people like him. They would love to mosey on over to his shack and have a steaming bowl of Porcupine Stew followed up with a heaping plate of elephant fritters! Now, when you can make people like THAT you know you have something going for you!
I hope this has helped you in some small way. You take care and have a great whatever it is wherever you are!