It's Fri ... I mean Monday, Monday, Gotta Get Down on Monday
So I'm sure by now most of you have seen Rebecca Black's Friday video, but if you haven't, you should hop on over to YouTube for a bit and have yourself a watch. All done? Good. Let's have ourselves a little chat.
So, the video is ... interesting, to say the least. But, musical quality aside, there's a lot we can all learn from the video. After all, as of 3/25/11, her video has 47 million views on YouTube and I don't even want to know how many downloads on iTunes. That's enough, at least for now, to make her the most famous 14-year-old on the planet. To get that much attention, she must have done something right. So the question becomes, what parts of Black's Bieber-esque success can you mimic and apply to your business?
1) Have a sense of humor
You don't have to make the greatest memetic schadenfreude-event to ever hit the internet, but a little levity in your marketing can be a good thing. Megacorporations like Geico and E*Trade have made careful, professional use of humor in their advertising to great benefit, and there's no reason you can't do something similar.
2) Be a good sport
Poor Ms. Black certainly has her share of haters. If you want to see the best example of the concentrated, murderous, rage-filled bile a YouTube comments field typically houses, take a peek on the comments field on her video. Combine that disgust-cauldron with the absolute trashing she's been taking on Twitter, Facebook and in the entertainment press, and you're looking at an enormous flood of negative criticism. But, seeing Black talk about her video live, you'd never know she was suffering through such negativity.
In an interview with Jay Leno she did on March 22, Black answered questions about her critics with nothing but well-meaning smiles and laughs. She also said she donated all the money she made off her video's success, which is quite substantial, to her school and the Japanese quake relief effort. While a lesser person, say the person writing this blog for example, would have taken the opportunity of a captive national audience to give all his or her critics the finger and gloat about newfound, enormous and accidentally earned riches, Black chose the high ground. Not only does it speak a lot about her character, it also makes her irresistibly likable. Hating someone that good-natured is just impossible, and it's a handy trick you should keep in mind when dealing with customers.
3) Have rich friends
Hardly an underground D.I.Y. hero, Black's video was the product of her (presumably) rich parents and the skilled vanity record company Ark Music Factory. And while not all of us can enjoy the luxury of a wealthy family, we all have the ability to make rich friends. Networking is important for any business, but especially so for the promotional industry since it depends so much on personal relationships. Make sure to set aside some time weekly to talk to your peers, your clients or your suppliers for networking purposes. Remember too that "rich" can mean a lot of different things, from a high amount of actual wealth to to having a lot of social networking reach, being exceptionally creative or even just an important connection to a lucrative prospect.
Until next week!
MONDAY MIKE FACT: I have caught myself singing the Friday song to myself on numerous occasions since I first heard it. I am reasonably unproud of this.