Passion can be one of the biggest differentiators for a brand. Where does your passion, or that of your employees, line up?
I used to have this bad habit of using absolutes. All. The. Time. I would tell people what to always do or what to never do.
- Everyone's target market is online.
- Always be transparent.
- Never take the first offer.
- There's a price for everything.
Then I started listening to myself. I went back and read some old posts on ancient websites and thought "what an ass!" because who the hell talks like that?
So I adjusted. I started saying things like "mostly" and "often" and "very likely".
I started leaving wiggle room for exceptions.
Because the Interwebs don't forget. And people take things literally. People will call you out when you're wrong and point out exceptions.
There are ALWAYS exceptions to the rule.
But here's the problem with "wiggle room". It leaves ROOM for lots of things. Like doubt. And excuses.
I was speaking to a small business owner who contacted me for marketing consulting and we were discussing Facebook as part of his strategy. He didn't want to do it. He had a friend, in a completely unrelated industry, who was doing their own marketing and skipping Facebook. And they were doing well enough. They were concentrating on LinkedIn and it made sense for that B2B industry.
I still think his friend could add Facebook to their marketing strategy but I can see their logic.
My prospective client had found the exception to the rule that allowed him to ignore a huge potential boon to his business. His potential clients ARE on Facebook. Not just because "everyone is on Facebook" but because his demographic data screamed it at us.
He's going to miss out big time if another marketing consultant isn't able to convince him that Facebook is a solid strategy for him. Maybe it takes some testing or some other type of convincing but it's not going to be me. And that's okay. Because he's not ready. Not yet.
Some people will never be convinced.
EVERYONE is NOT your customer. THAT is ALWAYS true.
So where do we live between those walls of absolutism and "wiggle room". How do we make our decisions? Do we follow the guidance of the gurus to the letter? Or do we look for all of those exceptions to the rules to guide us?
Do we live by the data or do we die by our gut?
What about you? Do you follow all rules or find the ways to break them? Do you look for exceptions or excuses?
Change. Innovation. Speed.
That's how the internet works now.
Remember when everything was linear? There was a beginning, middle, end.
Now content flows in every direction. And it comes in a larger variety of formats and platforms than we ever dared to dream possible.
Social media and mobile usage are only going to grow and evolve. The mass adoption is going to continue. And people are going to adjust their online publishing as we adapt to all these new behaviors.
Most people still think of search as our default discovery tool for information. For many it's true. Google still rules the online world. Bing is still making their search better. They're both evolving as they add more information coming from social media.
If you have a reasonable idea of what you're looking for you head to your search toolbar or search engine of choice. You type in a query and off you go. Into the land of discovery. You're in search of the best answer for whatever you need.
How does the future look for search? What are teens doing? Kids?
Do they think of it as "Googling" something or is it all just the "internet"?
As more people adopt behavior patterns presented by browsers such as Chrome doesn't it just become content?
It melds. It's the same. You type something into the address bar whether it's a website or query. It's just content.
For the future there isn't anything "magical" about this. Nothing special. And it certainly isn't limited to her computer.
Content, or information, transcends devices and lives wherever they live. It's on their iPads. It's on their phones. It's on their Xboxs and is invading every other aspect of their lives.
Information is ubiquitous
They're growing up digital. And we all have to keep this in mind as we move forward in our efforts to capture our audience. We connect and engage where they live.
The revolution is global. And search is important in how and why we connect. What type of content we create. How we put it out there.
Social and search are synergistic now more than ever and that isn't going to change.
Are you ready?
You already know that the world doesn't need more messages.
We get enough of them. All day.
So when you think about having to "market" your creative work it becomes a bit daunting.
We get those negative feelings coming in because we don't like being marketed to and we don't like advertisments.
Or do we?
I know. You're expecting me to defend advertising and marketing because I'm a digital marketer. But I'm not going to defend advertising and marketing.
I'm going to defend GOOD advertising and GOOD marketing.
The kind of highly targeted and helpful marketing that a good digital marketer specializes in doesn't have to come with baggage. We're not selling spam. You're not getting Viagra emails from us.
In fact, unless you're someone who is interested in art or photography, in some aspect, then I likely am not going to bother you. You won't even know I exist (unless you friended me on Facebook becuase we went to school together but even Facebook fixes most of that).
The world doesn't need more messages. What we need are better messages. Better messages about better products that will make our lives better in some way. Otherwise they are wasting our time and we don't want to bother with it.
Think about that last sentence. ...we dont want to BOTHER with it.
When you're looking at marketing your art work, your photography, or your gallery don't bother people.
Help them. Inspire them. Find the people who are already in the market for your goods and help them discover what your products or services offer. Educate them on how doing business with you will enhance their lives.
That's what good marketing really is. It's helpful.
I love that cookies have enabled marketers to track our Internet browsing habits. I'm not saying this as a marketer. I'm saying this as a consumer.
When I'm browsing the Internet, and Google knows what I'm reading, and Facebook knows what I like, I'm less likely to get ads that are bothersome.
That's a better experience for me and I'm sure it's a better experience for you. I'm bothered less by things that aren't of interest to me because my browsing and shopping history and ads are more targeted and helpful. People are finding me based on my interests and location and that means I'm more likely to actually need their services.
Think about those things when you're looking at branching out your creative marketing. Think about how your target audience can have a better experience online becuase of your marketing efforts and you will find that your creative business will be better off.