Jacq was watching a rerun of Shark Tank last night with her mom and she came across Steve Gadling, who pitched his business to the Shark Tank. What was he doing? Drawing cats. Not very well, mind you. And just with paper and a Sharpie. And he wanted ten thousand dollars. Part of his pitch was a little dance, and a “song.” Watch this video:
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People are talking about how sponsored posts are showing up in their stream on places like Instagram these days. I saw one the other day for some TV show. It was a bit jarring, because I was pretty sure I wasn’t following Liev Schreiber. And that’s the thing. A sponsored post would work so much better if the people running the sponsored posts improved context.
Sponsored Posts Are Useful
I’m a fan of sponsored posts, but only if they match the intentions of the person creating them. For instance, later today, I’ll be launching a project with Jacq on BossFit about the Spartan Race. It’s paid content. It’s sponsored. And it’s on a site that’s dedicated to fitness and the business professional. It makes sense to be there.
I had the pleasure of being interviewed by JJ Ramberg at MSNBC’s Your Business show. Here’s the segment on The Freaks Shall Inherit the Earth:
The following is an excerpt from my new book, The Freaks Shall Inherit the Earth, published by John C Wiley and Sons. The important concept I’m hoping to get across as a cornerstone for this book is that it’s important that one learns deeply about belonging:
Business is About Belonging
I’ve received compliments with a consistent theme over the past decade or so. People tell me, “You really do care about people,” and “I feel like you see me and understand me” and “I’ve really enjoyed meeting and getting to know the people you’ve gathered into your community.”
I need to start this post with a disclaimer: I have occasionally done work for Dell, and am friends and have been friends with several of their staff. I have a very personal wish and hope that Dell succeeds as a company, and many of the best social media stories ever told were told about Dell, especially about my friends like Lionel Menchaca and Richard Binhammer (both since moved on). I am biased towards Dell.
I had the most fascinating experience recently. I put out a survey to the subscribers of my newsletter. The very last question on the survey asked whether you’d refer Owner magazine to their friends. Some number of them said, “I would, but I don’t even know the URL.” Others said, “I didn’t know you started a magazine.” And so on.
I swear, to ME, it feels like it’s all I talk about. I tweet almost 30 tweets a day almost every day pointing people to Owner. My About page starts by saying I’m publisher of Owner magazine. Ditto my social media profiles. My LinkedIn profile leads with it. I link to it all the damned time. And yet, people keep saying, “Oh! I didn’t know you were producing a business magazine.”
I just got done talking to friend and coworker, Ron Hood, and he said the most marvelous thing. He said that many times, in a conversation with a client or someone connected to our business, he’ll feel a nice connection with the person. He’ll say, “Oh, I’ll have to add you to my Christmas card list.” But that’s only the beginning.
Ron then sends the card a few days after he tells them this. It could be May. It could be July. And it’s a Christmas card, not a card. It’s whatever it is, a tree or Santa or Jesus. I don’t really know because I’m not on his list. Yet.
I started my blog way back in 1998, when it was called journaling. I had no idea what to do with it. I started the way lots of people did back then: I wrote about whatever was on my mind, however trivial. Every media software I’ve used since then has been some mix of personal presence building plus an attempt to add some level of value to the larger story. Both are important. And there’s no great time to start. But there’s always a chance to be “too late.”
Build Your Digital Presence Now
Start an account somewhere that lets you tell the story you want to tell, in the way you want to tell it. You like taking pictures and sharing them? I love Instagram for that. You want to make videos that show the behind-the-scenes of your great company? Maybe get a YouTube account. I’ve said this for years, and I’ll repeat it now. If I had to choose ONLY ONE digital online property, it’d be a self-hosted blog. Why? Because we “rent” all those other places, and even though we tend to rent server space, the rules of our hosting provider are usually far more in our favor than any social media software out there. (Related to this, my friend, John Saddington invented a photo sharing app and WordPress combo that lets you publish photos to your very own WordPress, if you didn’t feel like using Instagram or Flickr or the like.
Want to really upset some nerdy types? Use any of these tweets on them (it’s totally okay if NONE of this makes sense to you – just try it!). And if few or none of these seem wrong to you, well, that okay, too. Points if you get each of the references.
Yesterday, I shared something with my accomplices inside the Brave Group. It won’t be public knowledge for months to come.
I make no secret of the fact that my newsletter is my favorite way to connect and communicate and that I share my best stuff there and not here on this blog. In fact, I’m thinking of taking down the RSS feed for this blog at some point. Not because I don’t want to interact with you. But because the blog is the fake storefront. This here? This is where Google sniffs around to see if I’m worthy.