It may not have escaped your attention that if you are a blogger trying to earn your stripes you need to promote your content in numerous active channels to put people in front of your content. Promotion lets people know you are hip and happening. Hitting the streets with your work is your divine right! Why make a written piece of work if you can’t share it?
Then we focus on social communities, where we get acceptable behaviour, then violations. It’s the break on the runaway train to greatness.
Being rapped over the knuckles for Self-Promotion
It has become a rather growing theme that in certain communities the act of self-promotion is considered a crime.
The act of repeating a rather low quality message numerous times.
You’ll most likely get ejected for this or muted. It’s not a good strategy. On Twitter, repeating some of your tweets are no bad thing but on many other social sites you might become a hate figure if you are seen repeating yourself too often.
It depends on whether you want to really push the envelope and risk consequences or want to be modest.
Spamming in community areas is a strong no-no. Often you should try to avoid becoming too much of a dominant voice because you crowd out others around you. It can cause an arms race where the person who spams the most wins the spoils. This isn’t a mark of quality in a community. People are turned off very quickly by obvious attempts to oversaturate with self-promotion. If you give nothing back, why are people likely to be interesting in participating?
Another dark mark is directly contacting people with shares with the expectation they’ll take a look. If there is anything that looks like a cut and paste job, it is bound to be a more blunt force method of pushing your message across.
What’s up with advertising?
We’ve grown a bit weary to advertising as a unified world. Advertising doesn’t hold a person’s attention like it used to mostly because we’ve been bombarded with it for a long period of time and in order to stand out you have to go considerably further to impact your target.
I find adverts repulsive. I like to record programs on traditional channels and fast forward the adverts. Do you do that? If there is an advert I don’t like hearing on the radio I am sometimes compelled to lower the volume or turn off the radio altogether. Do you do that?
The other problem with advertising is that it can be indirect. Sometimes you might think to yourself “Who is this advert really for, it’s lost on me!”
So when you see a channel full of adverts often you might think, what is the benefit in that for me?
This leads to policing and moderation….
What’s the problem in a Police state?
Unnecessary brutality is a key symptom of a Police state. That is to say that for the good of keeping self-promotion from the eyes of the viewer, there ends up being very little incentive for content makers to participate. The reward of being part of a group is that you can share your stuff (even if nobody looks at it).
Facebook have been starting this process. The content published now only reaches a small percentage of the total. It has been filtered for the good of humanity. If you are cynical which happens to me most days, you could say the good of Facebook’s bank balance, which is already rather plump.
If you pay for it, it’s alright, isn’t it?
Paid advertising is now and has been the route that many social media outlets like to tout. Google has made most of its money on this activity above all others. Facebook generates huge revenue from paid advertising, having a large community of high grade businesses. Twitter and LinkedIn also make money from the same.
One of the major concerns with paid advertising is that you don’t have an iron clad return. You’ll be given guarantees but they have to materialise. You could run your advert and see nothing back. It is a gamble at the end of the day.
There is another argument that you drive the horrible industry that you are trying to escape from. Remember all those adverts you fast forwarded through? You are adding to that pile. There is something to leaving your sensibilities at the door when you get involved in business yourself but it smarts doesn’t it.
Is there any way to go about self-promotion in a ‘righter’ way?
Sadly not! No matter how you tackle this issue, you’ll have to look self-promotion in the face. Your stuff cannot exist in a vacuum. You have to work at building influence in order to become a stronger voice.
“He the man, She the man!”
I mentioned before in a previous post about becoming the Fonzy (Fonzarello from Happy Days) of the social world. Unfortunately, you have to embrace a bit of that ‘super star’ in order to succeed at the network. Promotion is a numbers game, you can write the worst title going and people will look if they see enough other people doing it. The tips that these big wig bloggers might tell you mean nothing when compared to the weight of number.
Weight of Number is a topic I will look at in more depth this year but in short summary; attraction can be influenced by social activity in numbers.
A lot of time you only reach the right level of exposure being in the right place at the right time. That special influencer spotted you at the right moment and shone the torch light on you. You then need to perform the right activities to succeed after that point. Throttle up or choke.
The false expectation of virility
We expect and pray for viral success, it is the reason why we share what we do. We want to join together thousands of like minds on a topic and reap the benefit whilst they get their fix.
The truth is, and this is an unfortunate truth, we may never go viral. We might produce the most epic content going but it may never be seen in the viral numbers we are expecting. Only a very small number of high quality content ever sees viral levels of traffic.
Even if we see a viral hit, will it have the impact that we hope for after? Will it retain sustained traffic in higher numbers, opening the flood gate, or will we still chart in the same level of numbers we were used to before?
We are under the false impression that our cookies are the best tasting cookies in the world. We haven’t realised that they got a bit burnt in the oven and tastes a bit salty. “It’s an acquired taste for a more complex palate.” We might say. Actually our baking is weak.
No calls to the CDC anytime soon….
Over To You
What are your thoughts about self-promotion? Love or hate?