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Are You Working Hard to Blend In?
Marketing your business can be hard work.
If you’re doing well with your online marketing you’ll be creating content, sharing updates, responding to social media, writing blogs, recording and uploading video…
… it takes time!
But that’s all OK if the effort you’re putting in is working. If you’re getting conversations, leads, enquiries, sales, followers, fans, and advocates then it’s worth it.
But what I find all too often is businesses and marketers working hard just to blend in – it’s a real waste of effort, time, and money.
But how can you work hard and blend in?
As I log onto Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and my email I see a familiar sight.
The content I see on social media and in my inbox is all so similar. Why? Because it’s incredibly easy to look at your competition and your peers and timelines and simply do the same as them, even if it’s not on purpose.
Go to your nearest competitor now and stalk their social media and subscribe to their emails with that unknown Gmail account and you’re all set to copy them.
Scroll through social media and you’ll be inspired to create similar content and emails for your own marketing even without realising it. I know – I’ve done it too!
I met a guy called Brad Burton when I started out in business and he has many great quotes, including this one:
How true is that!?
That other company already has that brand, that message, that tone of voice, and those style of videos.
Last week on this blog I interviewed some top video marketers and one of them, Wes Linden, said:
“I understand why people would go to a tribute act of the Beatles since they’re no longer around, but why would someone click on a tribute act of Gary Vee on video when if they wanted that, they could just click on him?!”
Gary Vee is great but there’s no point in copying what he’s doing.
What I see online is this middle ground – same as everyone else – marketing. Automated social media, ‘newsletters’ in my inbox, and everyone is one step behind the rest, doing what worked last year when no one else was doing it.
They’re basically working hard to blend in.
How can you be different?
The answer is simple: find your place and style.
Work out what your business is and how you want it to be perceived online and offline and create content around that.
Be brave and create content on new platforms in ways you’ve not seen done before. Do that selfie video, try Snapchat, start a podcast on your most unknown service or quality.
Keep doing it when it’s not working…
Now, you need to bear with me on this one.
When you start vlogging or podcasting or doing a weekly interview on Instagram Live, it’ll take time for people to get on board with it. If I’m honest, nothing I’ve done with marketing was ever an overnight success.
Give it focus, give it time, and give it some more effort.
Ultimately if you’re creating new ideas and content then it’ll capture attention… as long as it’s of value to your audience.
The way to stand out is to be unashamedly you. Don’t copy and don’t blend in.
What’s your most popular piece of social media content from the last 12 months?
- It’s an off-the-cuff video or selfie isn’t it?
- It’s a photo of something or someone behind the scenes.
- It’s not the normal content you share and it’s not what others share either.
- It’s rough around the edges.
- It was a mistake at the time.
It was a “screw it – let’s send it” piece of content, wasn’t it?
More often than not it’s the off-brand and off-message content that breaks the mould of what you’re sharing that flies smashes your reach and views record.
Why? Because it stands out from your automated stream of stock images and shiny polished content, that’s why.
Be real, be spontaneous, be different. Social media was built for this!
We’re sharing more and more content like this on our blog now
Why? Because other marketing agencies are all over the “How to” guides and they’re all doing the “Facebook just launched this new algorithm update” posts, so I stopped doing that content.
Now I listen more than ever to my customers and followers and I create content that I think they need and that they might not have read or watched yet.
That’s how this blog came about. I said, “You’re working hard to blend in” in our workshop this week and this concept was born.
Stop doing what everyone else is doing and do what everyone else could be doing. Be a maverick, be brave, be different, and be big enough to admit that not all of it will work first time, if at all.
Copying everyone else is easier as you don’t need to come up with the style or content ideas and the chances are it’ll work for a while. But it’s more fun out here on the edges – breaking and making the rules. And it’s generating more enquiries and leads too!
Stop working hard to blend in!
Work hard to create new and exciting content instead.
If you don’t know how, then maybe you could ask a cowboy…
What do you think you could do?
Could you create new and exciting content? Or do you simply find it too hard? I’d love to know in the comments as this really fascinates me.
Tags associated with this articleBrand Content Marketing Social Media
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