Platform Authenticity: When Self-Promotion Is Annoying

Feb 28, 2013 | Personal Branding

There is a fine line between marketing your marketing and being a litterbug.

Promoting your content is essential. If no one is reading it, it doesn’t have value. But how you approach marketing your content is equally important.

Try an experiment. Visit five large LinkedIn Groups in a specific category (marketing, sales, project management, or something else), and see how many times you see the same discussion posted in multiple groups.

My guess is two-thirds of the posts will be the same. This isn’t marketing. This is spamming. The way people are marketing their content on LinkedIn is nothing short of obnoxious.

Dump and run is not a strategy

Posting links to your content on as many sites as possible is not a marketing strategy. It’s dumping and running.

The behavior is rude and disrespectful, because it doesn’t honor the audience you’re trying to engage. It’s like treating each group as a mailbox to dump your junk mail.

If sharing a link doesn’t strive to spark dialogue or create engagement, it’s just going to be discarded.

It’s a matter of context

Michael Hyatt wrote in Platform: Get Noticed In A Noisy World, “Marketing is no longer about shouting in a crowded marketplace; it is about participating in a dialogue of fellow travelers. Marketing is no longer about generating transactions; it is about building relationships.”

Engaging your audience requires context. There’s nothing wrong with sharing your links on Facebook and LinkedIn, as long as they are contextualized for each group and audience. Without context it’s just social media litter.

When sharing a link consider the audience. Who are they? What kind of content are they looking for? How will they engage with you? How can you help them?

It’s not about you, it’s about everyone else

No one is hanging out on LinkedIn, Facebook or Twitter desperately waiting for your next update. They’re there for themselves. They’re there for entertainment and information. They’re there to pass the time. How can you help them in that journey?

People with large platforms clearly understand it’s not about them, it’s about everyone else. Their number one priority is their audience and serving their needs. And you can see it in these content creators’ behaviors. They’re not only purposeful in the content they create, they are purposeful in how they market their content and engage their audiences.

Platforms are built on trust

Seth Godin’s primary measure of success is trust. In his interview with Jonathan Fields on the Good Life Project Seth explains, “For me, I want to scale trust. I’m not measuring revenue. I’m not measuring profit. I’m measuring trust.” (He explains this at 18:53 in the video.)

Seth’s comment is profound. His measure of success is his ability to scale trust. This approach influences his content, how he is marketing his content, and how he is growing and engaging his audience.

Scaling trust is a good mantra to drive your marketing efforts. Marketing your content is not about pushing out links. It’s about building relationships, engaging your audience, and giving them things that enhance their lives.

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Jeremy Miller

Top 30 Brand Guru

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