Confidence is part of creativity that often gets ignored. Yet it’s confidence that allows creative exploration and insights to occur in the first place.
An artist who sits down to paint but is thoroughly convinced that she “isn’t really a painter” is already heading down a path where…
Happy Easter! He is Risen!
Fear is a potent human emotion that can sabotage success for even the brightest minds and biggest organisations. It can also undermine an organisations ability to harness the potential of those within it. Learning how to create a ‘culture of courage’ in which employees feel safe to push back, take risks and explore new possibilities is becoming an ever more valuable skill in today’s marketplace
Solve a real problem. You don’t start a company because you want to be an entrepreneur or the fame and glory that comes along with it. You become an entrepreneur to solve a real problem.
- Aaron Patzer
“There are no problems – only opportunities to be creative.”
“As the season of believing seems to wind down let me gently remind you that many dreams still wait in the wings. Many authentic sparks must be fanned before passion performs her perfect work in you. Throw another log on the fire.”
Sarah Ban Breathnach
“I am always doing that which I can not do, in order that I may learn how to do it.”
“To exist is to change, to change is to mature, to mature is to go on creating oneself endlessly.”
“Some men throw their gifts away on a life of mediocrity, great men throw everything they have into their gifts and achieve a life of success.”
“To live a creative life, we must lose our fear of being wrong.”
Joseph Chilton Pierce
“Creativity is inventing, experimenting, growing, taking risks, breaking rules, making mistakes, and having fun.”
Mary Lou Cook
“There are two ways of being creative. One can sing and dance. Or one can create an environment in which singers and dancers flourish.”
Warren G. Bennis
“I’m always thinking about creating. My future starts when I wake up every morning. Every day I find something creative to do with my life.”
17 Advanced Methods for Promoting Your New Piece of Content
Some people have so much success with their content marketing strategies that they have hundreds of thousands of readers. Of course, great content is a big part of the equation, but the other, often overlooked area of content marketing is content promotion.
This post will cover some of the more advanced techniques for promoting your content. The most successful content marketers use them, and they are reaping all of the rewards.
Here is how you can attract scores of new visitors with your content:
1. Ask an Influencer for a Killer Quote
Before publishing your new piece of content, reach out to an influencer or influencers in your industry. Tell them the topic of your content and ask if they would be willing to provide a point of view.
You can reach influencers at scale with BuzzStream. Fill in information about a specific niche (keywords), and you’ll get tons of contact information for people in those niches. You’ll be able to contact them via email and social media, which will allow you to ask for quotes about your topics and for other information that we’ll talk about later in this post.
Here is a more detailed description of BuzzStream and how to use the tool.
If your piece of content is a blog post, put the quote in the post and add a link to the influencer’s website and social media accounts, such as Twitter. Once the article is published, email the influencer and tell them the content is published and ask them to share it on social media and possibly include it in their email newsletter.
This accomplishes two things: 1) you gain exposure to a new audience, and 2) your content becomes more reputable because you’re associating yourself with an influencer in your industry.
Reach out to multiple influencers. You probably won’t hear back from all of them, but you should hear back from at least one or two.
Here is a message template you can use:
2. Create 20+ Snippets for Mega Sharing on Social Media
SEMrush pulled out a statistic for their snippet in this tweet.
A piece of content should produce 20+ snippets that you can share on social media. A snippet can be any of the following:
Variations of the title
Short statements from the content
Short quotes from the content
Statistics from the content
And much more
Go into your content and pull out at least 20 snippets. Then share the snippets on social media over the next several weeks or even months. If the content does well, continue using the snippets.
Additionally, there are a few WordPress plugins and tools that make it easy to tweet old content:
Tweet Old Post
Evergreen Post Tweeter
Buffer also is a great tool for sharing posts, new and old, on social media. You can queue an unlimited number of posts and set up custom schedules for the times you want to share them.
3. Mention Your Expert Sources When Sharing
Once your content is published, share it on social media and mention the people you’ve referenced. These can be part of the snippets you use from the previous section.
The people you mention will see that you’ve mentioned them and some will re-share.
Moz mentioned me when they shared this article.
4. Email Your Sources So They Read, Share, and Link to Your Content
Any time you mention someone, interview someone, include a link to someone’s article, etc., email that person to let them know you’ve done so.
Here is an email template you can use:
Again, you might not get every person you mention to share the article, but one or two might, and that’s more than would have otherwise.
5. Direct Message Influencers on LinkedIn So They Read, Share, and Link to the Content
Getting into an influencer’s inbox is very powerful, but not always possible. With LinkedIn, you can get in an influencer’s inbox even if you don’t have their email address. However, you need to have a connection with them on LinkedIn first.
So, with your connections, work your way up the chain. Connect with the connections of influencers. It’s easier to become a connection with an influencer if you’re a 2nd degree connection.
An even better way to connect with an influencer on LinkedIn is to look at their profile to find the groups they belong to. Join one of those groups. As a member of a shared group, you’ll be able to send a connection request.
Once you have connections with influencers, you can direct message them. Your connections will get a notice in their email inbox (depending on their settings).
Here is a potential message to send:
6. Contact People Who Have Shared Similar Content
Contact people who have shared content similar to the item you just published.
While researching your content, you probably came across such articles. Take the URLs from those articles and search for them on sites like Twitter. You’ll be able to see the people who have shared them.
Connect with them and send them a direct message. Or, if they have a website, contact them via email or via a contact form and ask them to read and share your content.
7. Contact People Who Have Linked to Similar Content
Find people who have linked to similar content, and contact them introducing your new (and better) content.
There are multiple tools that allow you to find links to a website or URL. Two of the best are Ahrefs and Open Site Explorer.
Identify content similar to yours. Copy the URL from these items and paste them into Ahrefs or Open Site Explorer. You’ll get a list of pages that have linked to these items. These will be your targets. To reach out and ask them to consider linking to your new (and better) content, go back to BuzzStream to find contact information.
When you find a site that links to content similar to yours, reach out with this message (email, contact form, social media, etc.):
8. Turn the Content into a Video to Appeal to a Totally Different Audience
Take your content (let’s say a blog post or a guide), and turn it into a video.
Publish it on YouTube, Vimeo, and other online video communities where there are millions of users looking for great videos. Optimize your video to gain more exposure.
The service OneLoad makes it easy to distribute your video to the various video sites. You upload your video to OneLoad, and they deploy it to accounts on all major video websites, such as YouTube, Vimeo, Yahoo!, and more.
You can turn content into video, but don’t overlook the fact that creating videos as your original form of content is potentially the best way to go. Once you record and publish a video, you can pull out the audio to create a podcast. You can pull out the transcription from the video to create a blog post and .pdf. You also can use the video content to create slideshows for SlideShare. Start with a video, and you can repurpose the content into many different forms for various communities.
People are watching more video now than ever before. Search engines recognize this trend, and they’re giving video more space in the search engine results pages.
Here is an example of this in action for the search “how do colors affect purchases”:
You see the YouTube video result. The key to this result is not that you are the first result on the page. It’s that Google will include a thumbnail of the video, which increases click-through rate. You can attract a lot of additional clicks by having your videos show up in the search results even if you don’t rank in the first or second position.
9. Turn the Content into a Slide Deck to Attract another Audience
Turn your content into a slide deck on SlideShare. It’s estimated that SlideShare receives tens of millions of unique visitors each month. That’s one of the biggest audiences on the web. According to Alexa, it’s in the Top 150 sites in the world.
Optimize the title and description. SlideShare also will transcribe the deck for you so all of your content can be crawled by search engines like Google and Bing.
SlideShare presentations, like YouTube videos, often rank very high in search results so you’re giving your content an even better chance of being found, and you’re repurposing your original piece into another format that targets another audience which may not have seen your content.
Here are a few resources for using SlideShare effectively:
The Marketer’s Guide To SlideShare
SlideShare Traffic Case Study
How Marketo Uses SlideShare for Inbound Marketing and Lead Generation
It’s easy to turn webinars into decks, but you can do the same with blog posts, videos, and more.
As with all of the different forms of content that you create, upload your slideshow to different slideshow sites and communities online. Include a link back to your site and original content. Here are places to upload your slideshow:
10. Turn the Content into a .pdf
Use a .pdf as an opt-in to capture email leads on your website.
Hire a designer using a freelance website like Microlancer. They can create a .pdf template that represents your brand. Then send them a transcription of your content and have them paste it into the template.
The first template design might cost up to $200, but it should be less for future items that use the same template.
As with other content formats, you’ll want to share your .pdf content on .pdf sites and communities. Optimize the descriptions on these sites so you get links back to your site and original content.
Here are a few places to upload your .pdf:
11. Add a Link to Your New Content from Your Most Popular Archived Content
Go to your analytics program of choice and look for the most popular pages on your website. Don’t look at the all-time most popular pages because those can be skewed to older content. You want to highlight the content that is being heavily trafficked right now. So, look over the last six months or even the last month.
Next, use Social Crawlytics to determine your most shared content. To use the tool, you’ll type in your URL to find the most shared content on your site.
Next, on the most trafficked and shared pages on your site, add links to your new content. You can add links within the text. You also can put an advertisement in the sidebar or put a related content section at the bottom of the page, like this:
You can use sections below previous posts or add links within the content.
12. Submit to Content Communities
There are a number of sites that allow you to submit your content so their established audience has the opportunity to see it. The competition is strong on these sites, but if your content is exceptional (which you should always shoot for), you’ll likely attract some attention and get some good traffic.
Sites to submit content to include:
With Blog Engage, you can submit your content to be seen by a large audience.
13. Promote the Content on StumbleUpon’s Paid Discovery Service
StumbleUpon has a great paid discovery service that is perfect for content. Use this service to promote your new piece of content. You’ll pay for each visitor.
StumbleUpon users can be picky and they can make quick decisions about the content they see. Make sure your content has a clear and interesting title along with some kind of image at the top so you can intrigue the StumbleUpon audience.
StumbleUpon can send more traffic to your content than other popular social networks.
14. Create Content Ads on Outbrain
Outbrain is a service that promotes content on other pieces of content. For example, if you’ve read articles on a publication site like Fast Company, you’ve probably seen sections below the articles that promote other content.
When people are finished reading, they look for more content.
You can use Outbrain to bring lots of traffic to your content. The cost per click is relatively low compared with other advertising platforms, and you can target your ideal audience. It’s a good way to attract people who already are engaged with content similar to yours.
There are additional services like Outbrain that you can use as well:
15. Turn Your Content into a Killer Magazine on Flipboard
Sign up for the Flipboard app on your smartphone or tablet. You also can sign up on the Flipboard website using Facebook or Google sign-in. Next, install the Flipboard bookmarklet for Chrome. Go to the URL of your content and add it to your new Flipboard magazine.
Collect the best content for your niche, both yours and other great content, to create an amazing collection of content. Flipboard turns the content into a beautiful magazine that is a pleasure to read on a smartphone or tablet. Millions search for content within the app. By creating a must-see magazine with fresh, relevant content, you’ll attract readers.
You can mention other Flipboard users within the app to let them know you’ve included their content in your magazine, and you can mention other users to let them know they might be interested in checking out your magazine.
Big time brands like Inc., Fast Company, Huffington Post, NPR, and more all share content on Flipboard, and you can take advantage of the opportunity, too.
16. Publish Snippets on Sulia to Share with Millions
Sulia is a content-sharing site where the pressure is on your headlines and descriptions to capture the attention of the millions who use the site to find content.
Sign up for a Sulia account. Add the URL to your content. Create a catchy headline and catchy description. Then share the content with people on the site who are interested in your niche.
Sulia is perfect for using snippets from your content to get attention.
In the example below, Ad Age shared a video featuring Gary Vaynerchuk. They could have shared just the video with a basic headline and description, but they used a quote from the video in the description.
Quotes, statistics, and more can increase clicks from content-sharing sites like Sulia.
17. Share the Content on Your Tumblr Feed
Here’s an example of a niche business using Tumblr: Writer’s Relief. The company uploads regular content to Tumblr. The majority of the content they upload consists of photos, illustrations, and other visual items. You can see that these items (and the items Writer’s Relief shares from its own website and blog) are shared by followers.
Here are two ways to share content on Tumblr:
First, include a link with each of your updates. Make it a call-to-action. Your followers will see the link, and so will the people who follow the people who re-share your update.
Second, when you share content, include links in the first couple of paragraphs. Here is an example from Writer’s Relief:
See that link to “self-published” in the first sentence? That link is shared not only on Writer’s Relief’s Tumblr page, but also on the Tumblr pages of the other 67 people who shared it. That’s potential for a lot of links.
With this strategy, you get a link to your main content (which, in this case, was a blog post) and to another piece of content because you put in a link early in the post.
In order for your content marketing strategy to succeed, you need to increase your promotion efforts. The methods outlined above are the same strategies used by the most successful content marketers in the world. Now it’s your turn to build a big audience.
Team-Building Egg Scavenger Hunt: This activity focuses on enhancing problem-solving, social skills and group cohesion, and is easily adaptable.
- Write up sequential clues for the group to follow and put them into plastic eggs (ex. Look where the tiny people live = in the doll house).
- On the back of each clue, direct them on what they should do before moving on. This could be answering a question, completing a task, etc. You could also include treats in some of the eggs (ex. stickers, candy, etc.)
- Hide the eggs in order around the office. My agency also has a nice outside area that was perfect for this.
- Have the group negotiate and vote on rules (ex. how is it decided who reads the clue?)
- Give each group member a basket (or bag) and provide them with the first egg/clue.
- The whole team must decide where to look together and complete their task, before going to the next location. Everyone’s ideas are discussed and the group negotiates the order of locations they will search.
- Be there to redirect, set limits if needed, and positively reinforce good social skills. I have raffle tickets I give out (here).
- This can also be easily be adapted for an individual session the “tasks” portion of the activity can be used to change the therapeutic focus.
- Not everyone celebrates Easter so it is important to talk to families about this activity beforehand to ensure it is appropriate. Alternatively, you could do a scavenger hunt without the eggs element.
When is the last time you powered down. All the way down. Not asleep. Not in airplane mode but ON | OFF. Try it with me now. Take your phone out, if you’re not already futzing with it, and turn it off (note: this is not advised if you are reading this on your mobile. In this case you are probably too far gone). Fair warning, you will experience a short stint of anxiety and emptiness. These mobile withdrawals are unpleasant (and slightly pathetic) but the sobering and liberating experience is worth more than your 25th snapchat today. I promise.
I was a mobile junkie. The phosphorescent glow left me mesmerized and needing more. Each Snapchat or push notification fueled my need for news, updates, and winning the battle against boredom. At my worst, most conversations with friends and family would start with “do you have a charger?”
I remember the turning point. I had just returned from a camping trip where I ‘witnessed’ a beautiful sunset. As I was reminiscing over the dozens of photos I took, I barely had any recollection of ACTUALLY being there. I was so focused on eternalizing the moment through my phone, that I hadn’t taken the time to eternalize it in my brain. I accepted my addiction and decided to make a change.
Full disclosure: I’m a technologist that works almost exclusively on mobile. I’ve had the opportunity to build some really neat things (thing 1 and thing 2) alongside very talented people. So my telling you to put your phone down is a little bit like a girl scout telling you only to buy 2 boxes. We (as app makers) want them to be addicting. Like a potato chip manufacturer, we try to put just the right crunch and the perfect amount of salt so you can’t help but have just one more. We want you to get addicted. It puts the potato chips on our table.
There have been several great posts and humbling videos about mobile abuse so I hope I’m not beating a dead horse. I have no doubt that mobile is the future that is already here. Thousands of great apps have enriched and enhanced every aspect of our lives. As a human being, many of these triumphs are trumped by the overwhelming anxiety phones have instilled in us. We’ve trained ourselves to constantly seek refuge from boring, everyday life through our phones. We’ve grown so accustomed to this behavior that we can’t shut it out, even during truly exciting or beautiful times in our lives. We resort to the tapping & pecking muscle memory. The reality is 95% of each day is boring, everyday life. I had to hit rock bottom to realize I didn’t want to spend 95% of my life glued to a screen.
How I interacted with people in real life had fundamentally changed. I couldn’t have one conversation without checking my phone. I needed it.
**inner-dialogue intensifies** “I wonder what [friend who isn’t present] is doing? I hope the Badgers won (edit: they didn’t)? Did that dude from work ever email me back? How is the INTU stock doing today? Did I get any more Instagram Likes?”
Having access to this data around the clock while attempting to hold a meaningful conversation with a good friend I hadn’t seen in weeks was impossible. I’m embarrassed I let it get to the point where if I wasn’t tinkering on my phone, I was thinking about it. I bet if you start paying closer attention to your mobile habits, you’ll notice it too.
this is your brain on mobile
I want it here. I want it now. We live in an uber-convenient (hue hue hue) time where ride-sharing, same-day delivery, and instant gratification are the norm. This also means we are doing our nomadic ancestors a serious injustice by not walking anywhere anymore. I live in one of the most walkable cities on the planet, San Francisco. I Lyfted everywhere, got groceries delivered, etc. My phone just made it too convenient to be active. If I was walking, my phone was in my face, and I became a hazard to myself, other pedestrians, and drivers.
Decreased recall & critical thinking. Remember the glory days when you would spend an entire afternoon playfully arguing with a spouse, sibling, or friend about some trivial factual disagreement like which NFL team had the most Super Bowl wins? I do. My brother and I would spend entire afternoons having intense debates about the most Google-able, answerable topics. The truth is the answers never mattered as much as the conversation. It brought us closer. It taught us how to communicate. How to debate. Today that intense argument would have fizzled out in 2 minutes with Google having the final say.
On the clock. Around the clock. There is no 9-to-5 anymore. I’ve accepted that. What I haven’t accepted is after receiving an email at 10pm I’m expected to respond within 10 minutes. The line between work and home is static. What’s worse is I somehow used tweets and snapchats as a vehicle for validation and self worth. So even those activities felt like chores. Constant push notifications, emails, and messages meant I could never shut down andturn off.
The following is a transcription of adramatic reenactment of a real text exchange. Thenames have been changedor omitted to protect the innocent.
Appointments are moving targets. Let’s take another trip down memory lane, the year: 1992. You call your buddy from the landline and agree to meet at the local park in 30 minutes. Wanting to impress your friends, you get lost in the activity of adding those tinkling gadgets to your bike spokes for almost an hour. As soon as you snap out of your childish trance, you race to the park to try and catch your friend, but he’s nowhere to be found. The next day you have to sit and hear about how they ambushed the neighbor girls with water balloons. You missed it.
Phones have turned us into inconsiderate and tardy buttholes. I lost respect for my friend’s time and being punctual wasn’t a priority because updating them with an ETA became passive and far too easy.
I’m bored. Entertain me. Here’s the thing about saying, “I’m bored.” It’s a (boringly) grey area and a slippery slope. What used to be a thrilling experience (like riding the subway for the first time) is now mundane. Why not pass the time with a quick game of Three’s? This time spent crashing a fucking bird into a pipe quickly accumulates where a significant amount of seemingly insignificant yet beautiful moments pass you by whilst staring at a screen. Also…taking a picture of a beautiful moment still doesn’t count if the picture and filtered output is the end goal. Take that moment in. Truly experience it. Not from behind a Sepia filter.
So I made a change.
I made a promise to myself and my friends to live a more fulfilling life. I let a 2.3 x 4.5 inch piece of glass, metal, and plastic get in the way of that. I made a few small changes that compounded into a better prescription than any anxiety medication. I started rehabbing slowly by rethinking how, why, and when I used my phone. I became very meticulous about when I could and could not use my phone. I went as far as making it inconvenient to use apps I didn’t actually NEED.
A new phone layout to prevent phone abuse. Only necessary apps on the home screen. Everything else tucked away. Inconvenience is the point. Ween yourself off. Turn OFF all badges, sounds, vibrations, and alerts.
In addition to this change, I started noticing more and more opportunities to cut the mobile ties. I’ve summarized these tricks into a program I’m callingthe mobile cleanse.
The mobile cleanse
- Keep it in your pants. This is an obvious one. It’s rare that you need to use your phone (or genitals for that matter) when in a social setting. There are obvious exceptions like your group needs directions or you want a reasonable amount of photos of a once-in-a-lifetime event (weddings, baby’s first steps). Brunches and sunsets happen every day. No need to miss the actual experience by snapping 5,000 pictures of it. Respecting these limits will enrich every interaction you have with every day objects, people, and life. If you feel the itch to pull out your phone in a break in the conversation…‘silence’ it. Undoubtedly your friends will whip theirs out, making the temptation almost unbearable. If you want to truly cleanse, this step is unbreakable. You can also influence your friends’ behaviors by playfully shaming them when they pull out their phones unnecessarily (‘Oh hey Hollywood!’). To get started with this one, I instructed my friends to punch my arm if I broke this rule in their presence. I adapted quickly. The itch soon decreased. Slowly at first, but after a few days of withdrawal it was completely gone. I no longer relied on my phone to solve any anxiety or unnecessary emptiness. I was human again.
- Brain first, phone second. Can’t think of the artist for a song you just heard? Siri can’t help you now. Exercise your brain, and try to figure it out for yourself. If you still can’t get it after a few minutes of focus, shift your attention to something else and it will come to you sooner than later. Be sure to carry a notepad (that’s right…actual pen and paper) to jot it down so worst case you can Google it later.
- Hide and delete. This is the mobile cleanse mantra. Say it with me now… “Hummmmmmm…hide (inhale)…and delete (exhale)…and hide (inhale)…and delete (exhale).” You don’t need 200 apps. Uninstall the ones you no longer use and tuck the non-essentials into folders a few swipes from your main screen so it’s inconvenient to access them. You’ll soon realize how little you actually need them. My essentials include: phone, text, Spotify (music is my guilty pleasure. I’m not perfect), and Wunderlist (I’m a big fan of sole-focus task management…more on that in a second).
- Never push. Always pull. Unless your wife is expecting a baby at any minute, there’s nothing more important than the people you are with in that moment. Turn ALL notifications & badges off. Set your phone to silent (not VIBRATE). Don’t even allow yourself the temptation to swipe and catch up on the latest insta-snap-vine-whatsapp-videos. Don’t take away from the beautiful, seemingly insignificant, uninstagrammable moment you are having with the people you love. These nasty notifications also distract you from work, hobbies, and passions. Keep your focus. Buzzfeed’s top 25 beach bodies can wait. When mobile browsing is acceptable, PULLthe information you seek (manual refresh, etc). Don’t let it come to you. Cold turkey. No exceptions.
- Your delivery is free if it’s a mile or less. Never Uber / Lyft / Sidecar if your destination is < 1mile. If weather and conditions permit, you can walk. Walk to the corner store for groceries. Get out of your house and and enjoy the fresh air (10 bonus points if you get to your destination without taking a picture. 20 points if you can walk without music. Another 50 points if you don’t need Google Maps to get there).
- Buy a watch. I would often catch myself pulling out my phone to merely check the time (and then check the time again since I never actually remembered it the first time). This frequent ‘time check’ reenforced the habit of constantly pulling out my phone and undoubtedly led to unnecessary browsing if a waiting notification piqued my interest. Buy a watch. Wear it.
- No phones in the bedroom or bathroom. Let’s focus on the bathroom first and how much time you save without your phone (see below for a non-scientific study of time spent on the toilet with and without a phone each day). Also the risk of accidentally dropping your iPhone in the toilet shoots dangerously close to zero if toilet tapping isn’t allowed. Now for the bedroom. It’s proven that looking at bright screens just before bed increases the time it takes to fall asleep. Step 1 ABSOLUTELY applies in the bedroom. Imagine two star-crossed lovers staring deeply into eachothers’ phablets. Playfully destroying pigs or experiencing mind-numbing insta-gasms. Yeah you get the point. If there’s one experience I don’t want to miss for a new LinkedIn connection, it’s one where I can truly connect with the person I love.
Time spent pooping
This is exaggerated. If you are actually pooping for 10 hours per day, please see a doctor.
With great power comes great responsibility
I wish I could have made this lifestyle change a year ago. So many missed or wasted experiences. We have more computing power in our pocket than that necessary to put the first man on the moon. Yet we don’t know how to harness it because it’s advancing faster than our ability to absorb it into our lives in a healthy, constructive way. Remember kiddos…
An Apple a day keeps the doctor away. An Apple every 20 seconds…well…that’s too many fucking Apples.
Best of luck with the cleanse. Please share / recommend this article to help friends become human again and tweet me directly (@jgvandehey) to let me know how it goes or if you need a sponsor, support, or tips. It is now safe to use your electronic device (in moderation).
C.S. Lewis on Social Media…
C.S. Lewis is famous for wearing quite a few hats in his time: novelist, teacher, critic, and apologist – to name just a few. “Social media marketing expert” was most definitely not one of those titles. (In truth, Lewis wasn’t that keen on technology on the whole.) But, great minds like Lewis and Tolkien have a way of speaking universal truths that even apply to fields they couldn’t have dreamed (cough, cough… social media marketing).
The BuzzPlant team is a tight group of Lewis nerds (we even got to do some marketing work on a Narnia film), so indulge us, won’t you?
“It is a good rule after reading a new book, never to allow yourself another new one till you have read an old one in between.”
Classic advertising wisdom says a customer has to hear a message seven times before it really registers. Repetition is key in driving a message home. So, if you have something important to say on a noisy platform like Twitter, don’t be timid about repetition in your Tweets. Guy Kawasaki says to repeat Tweets four times a day. (And if Guy does it, it’s usually a good idea.)
“We are what we believe we are.”
Solid branding is a fundamental part of any social media marketing strategy. You can’t post spammy offers one day and then try to get buddy-buddy with your followers the next. Consciously create your identity before you get going. (Yes, it will change, but it helps to have a strong starting point.) And, as Lewis suggests, you will become that identity you believe yourself to be.
“Experience: that most brutal of teachers. But you learn, my God do you learn.”
“Failures are finger posts on the road to achievement.”
“We all want progress, but if you’re on the wrong road, progress means doing an about-turn and walking back to the right road; in that case, the man who turns back soonest is the most progressive.”
I love all three of these quotes, but especially the last. That image of a man having to completely turn around – even when he could push further down the road and meet some small success – is so poignant, but at the same time inspiring. If you really want to do a marketing job right, you’ll eventually find yourself in a situation where you have to trash your ideas and go back to the drawing table. It hurts; but it’s always worth it.
“No man who bothers about originality will ever be original: whereas if you simply try to tell the truth (without caring twopence how often it has been told before) you will, nine times out of ten, become original without ever having noticed it.”
By all means, read the case studies. Observe how the companies you admire do their social media marketing. But when it comes to your own marketing strategy, don’t try to force yourself into being the “local” Whole Foods, the “small business” Leo Burnett, or the “indie” Spotify. Instead of copying the social media styles of larger companies you admire, march to the beat of your own drum.
“A children’s story that can only be enjoyed by children is not a good children’s story in the slightest.”
Lastly, I think this quote speaks wonderfully to the potential depths of social media marketing. Just because it’s Twitter or Facebook doesn’t mean it should be flippant and shallow. Keep your message simple, by all means. But give it depth. The Facebook brand page might actually be one of the best pages that illustrate how a simple message can go so deep.