As I cycled on the bike that doesn’t go anywhere this morning like a rat in a cage trying to keep down the middle age spread (can I say that at my age?), it struck me that almost everything I do these days requires marketing. It’s not longer good enough just to do something but now you have to find a way to tell people about it too. Ok, probably, it’s always been that way to some degree but now with social media and the way the world is, it seems that the louder and more effectively you sing your own praises, the more success you enjoy.
But is it really that simple?
On the one hand, it is. You must confidently and unflinchingly go forth and use every opportunity to tell the world about whatever it is you are doing if you want success. It doesn’t matter if this is the software business, an investment opportunity, a book, a movie or whatever. People need to know – they always did – but now, there are so many other people shouting you have to find a way to shout louder or more effectively simply to rise above the noise. The playing field has been leveled people – anyone can get visibility and everyone now has a shot at 30 seconds of fame – if you just know how to sell yourself.
On the other hand it isn’t. Shouting confidently may attract peoples attention but you won’t keep it long if you don’t deliver. It’s not JUST about marketing but about delivering too.
I have done a lot of brand work and strategic marketing with my clients and what I just wrote above really translates into the following;
1. You must have a brand – a brand is an ‘image’ if you will that can be experienced by an audience.
2. The brand must resonate with the intended audience and it should be attractive and have brand promise – it promises to deliver something the market wants.
3. Finally, people’s experience of the brand must be true to the brand promise and leave them wanting more – the experience of the brand must build brand loyalty.
It’s part 3 that a lot of people forget. Shouting and appealing to people to come and visit your blog for example, isn’t going to build a following unless you actually write on that blog and write compelling articles that reinforces your brand promise and brings people back for more.
So, we can all shout and shout loud. We can be effective at reaching a market but if we don’t deliver what we promised, it is all for naught.
Knowing all of this, I have often likened people to brands. In fact, people are complex as they actually develop multiple brands – father, brother, son, professional, drinking buddy etc. These are all brands and we promise things to our friends and family through them. But if we act differently to what we say about ourselves, people quickly see through the act and instead of building good, solid relationships, people see you as false, untrustworthy and an actor on life’s stage.
Anyway, I am trying to build a brand as an author. I am shouting and I hope I am delivering the what I shout about too. So, here is one shout – please go along to my new author Facebook page and like it – maybe even share it. Help my shout out reach a wide audience please. If you could do that for me then its up to me to do the rest and deliver what I promise….
Thanks a lot.