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I read a blog post today about the concept of being popular. It postulated that being the winner in any kind of contest or marketing effort required watering down our crazy to be safe enough for lots of people to like us. As humans, it went on to say, we just want to be loved and accepted – even by people we don’t know.
While I have the greatest respect for the author of the post, I think he’s got it a bit wrong.
Winning an Iowa straw poll usually does mean pandering to masses of voters and playing it relatively safe (read: Mitt Romney). But that’s not how businesses succeed.
And in PR and Social Media, the winners are usually the ones who break the mold and go out and do something mind-blowingly different.
How many times have you pitched a story to a reporter or editor only to be told “We just did something like that” or “Where’s the news here?”
And in social media, it’s the unusual posts with a link the to wacky picture or poll that win the most feedback and engage your friends and followers – and create new ones.
PR people get paid to dig deeper, go beyond the obvious and stop just short of the ridiculous. And it can often bring us the widespread attention, and eventual acceptance and buy-in, from those potential customers and evangelists we are seeking.
So go out today and do something that gets you voted off the island. It might be the best strategy you can use for 2012.
What’s your take on being popular?