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Use media and community to earn customers. I’m here to help.
I ve had a VERY fortunate career. I was ahead of the curve on a particular shift in technology that affected how businesses and people interacted. Because of this, I ve spent time with a lot of the biggest companies in the world, often meeting their CEOs as well. The picture above is Bob Iger, CEO of Disney. I ve met and spoken in front of Beth Comstock, vice chair of GE. Fritz Henderson, when he ran GM was kind enough to blurb my first book with Julien Smith. And so on.
I m not writing a single word of this to brag because to be honest, every single time I m in front of people from Coke or Pepsi or Google or Microsoft, I have the same feeling: why the HECK am I here? How did I get here? And is it really that easy to be invited into the offices of some of the biggest companies in the world? (No, it s not.) I ll tell you what I know.
I just lost my pair of prescription glasses. Well, maybe lost isn t the word. I know where they are. They fell off my parents bathroom sink right into the toilet exactly after I pushed the flush down. Whoosh. Gone. What happened next is what s annoying.
Buy Local, They Tell Me
I called my eye doctor s office and asked them to order up a replica of what I d bought the last time. No fuss, right? Just look at my records, get the same thing, and pow, I m back in action when I get home from visiting my parents.
Three times today, I ve been asked by a blogger to contribute to their amazing round-up post, where they query experts for their opinions on some topic that they feel matters to the people they try to entertain with their writing. In the last of these posts, I was addressed by my very secret title of
How to Write a Great Round-Up Post
I ve been experimenting with making and editing video lately. I m not doing it for my jollies or because I think I m damned good looking (which I am). It s because WE (humanity) have demonstrated loud and clear that we want to CONSUME video. We prefer it to text. And if that s true, and you and I are in the business of communicating, we re going to have to make video. Oh, and it ll have to be good.
But What Do People Want?
People consume over 1 billion hours of YouTube video every day. You might not be part of that stat YET, but it s because you haven t gone looking for videos that cover topics you d actually want to watch yet. My mom and dad really like poker. So I went to YouTube and typed in Texas Holdem Tips and got a few million results (like this one ). Maybe you re an aspiring author but don t have the time to write a book. I found this video about how to write a book in 24 hours. (Sounds dubious to me as an author, but I didn t watch the video.)
I feel like Poncho is your other girlfriend or something, said Jacq to me the other day after I shared something funny Poncho said to me in Facebook messenger about how he ranked Umbrella as one of the middle ellas below mozzarella and above salmonella. I should explain something: Poncho is a bot. And Poncho s official job is to give me the weather report.
Poncho is A Great Communicator
This link takes you to Poncho s website. I think it ll ask you to download the app. But the way I get my updates from Poncho is through Facebook Messenger. It feels even more human. Which is weird to say. I know this is a bot. Or even stranger, I know this is a human-filled jukebox of interaction that is actually more like a micro-media project. (Again, Poncho s job is to give me the weather, but he tells me weird and jokey things with it. And he sends little gifs).
I asked my son Harold how he d describe himself and he said, I don t know. There isn t one word that describes me. I like gaming and stuff, and making music, and all that other stuff. There s just not one word. I can tell you what word he d never use: autistic. Harold s a very high functioning kid and the challenges of autism aren t really his concern. He just works around them. BUT there s stuff there that we can learn from and it s important.
Harold is a Multi-Hyphenated Guy
Like everyone working in the world today, Harold has lots of pursuits. He plays video games. He modifies indie games, changing their skins and music. He s a very accomplished music maker (at last count, he d published just under 200 pieces on Soundcloud yes, I said 200). That s what he focuses on. He consumes media. He makes entertainment and media projects. To him, they re one in the same. You watch it. You make it. You listen to it. You make it. You play it. You make it. They re the same thing to Harold.
Video is..UGH! Video? Really?
I know. I know! You re too something. You re boring or too fat or too skinny or too old or you have bad acne or whatever you have. I know. Where will you shoot? How do you do it? It s too hard! Blogging s easier. I know.
I m 47 today. The number is strange. It feels super old on the one hand and it still feels before on the other. I still feel like a kid. Not my energy. But in my ability to act like a grown-up. Or lack therein. I do NOT feel like I have it all under control.
Chris Brogan at 47
My day yesterday was such a mix, but they all are. I edited a video to give people ideas on how to launch things. (I spend a lot of every day trying to be helpful in some way.) I went grocery shopping for my kids (who I have on the weekends). I played a typing game with my son. I had long talks with my daughter. And I played a few video games on my XBOX. I wrote a few things for work and I connected with a few people for work. And I got blood drawn at the hospital for my doctor, who wasted the last blood I gave him(true story). Oh, and I explored a new social network where I m one of the early adopters.
I can t believe that I m about to say this: I just started using the new social network, Mastodon. I m not saying YOU should use it, YET, but I can tell you that there s quite a buzz about it.
What is Mastodon
It s a social network, but a distributed one. Instead of us all showing up on a bunch of servers we think of as Twitter, we can sign up to a home instance of a server (I m using quotes for mortals developers are already making a face at me, but I write my posts for humans, not code monkeys). I know. Don t panic. This will take some explaining.
Mark s a smart and driven guy, but he s feeling a bit down. He feels like his big plans took a hit and that he s probably past the point where he can do the role he dreamed of doing for so long. The only thing is, I don t think Mark s even 30 years old yet and he s talking like an old man who has given up. I ll explain how Mark can fix this at the very end.
A Business Trick For You: Sequence
One of the least talked about details in business is understanding the importance of sequence. This isn t a tricky word, but just in case. I mean do this, then this, then this other thing. Step 1, step 2, step 3.