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  • Why You Should Care About Audience Engagement

    Ever heard of “Puff Puff Pass Tuesdays”? Here’s what it is, and why you should care:

    Snoop Dogg was streaming a show on Vidi for fans who were grateful for the interaction, new music tracks and tour/album updates. They liked the show so much that Snopp Dogg started a formal weekly show, “Puff Puff Pass Tuesdays”, now in it’s ninth month on Vidi.

    By staying active and engaged with his audience, Snoop is able to communicate with the people who matter. He says, “It’s a give and take relationship. You don’t get money, but you get so much good info that when you do decide to sell it, you know you’re in the right lane….it’s the people who really affect the decision-making in the music industry.”

    Regular, deep interaction with your customers gives you the information you need to make powerful decisions about what products to roll out, what features to include, and in what format it will best be received. Fan/customer/prospect engagement makes all marketing activities more efficient.

    The October issue of Inc. Magazine features Eric Ries, who has developed a scientific method for building a profitable start-up.

    In 2004, Eric was Co-Founder and Chief of Technology for a start-up company. Their vision was to change the way people communicate with avatars. They dedicated their lives to building this technology – and they did so with the absolute belief in its success and inherent viral qualities.

    The first version was completed by deadline, but was low quality. Because they feared being seen as inexperienced programmers with a shoddy product, they put off the release, choosing instead to work on it for another six months. At the end of those six months, the product was much better, and they were proud to deliver it to the public.

    But – the public didn’t really care for it. Eric said, “Our fears were unfounded, because nobody even tried our product.”

    They spent the next several months making the product better…and finally began bringing in people for interviews and feedback. It was then that they learned what worked for their audience, what their audience didn’t care for, and what their audience hated. Many of the features their audience disliked were features he and his team had spent countless hours to perfect before launch.

    In the end, the product became a success–but only because of the last few months they spent talking with their audience, learning from the people who would use the product. Imagine how much time, money and frustration they could have alleviated if they had only started there.

    My new favorite quote, from Eric Ries: “Any effort that is not absolutely necessary for learning what customers want should be eliminated.”

    Engage. Ask. Discuss. Interact. Take feedback, and give the people what they want. That’s the recipe for efficient success.

    Wendy Brache builds and executes personal branding and online marketing strategy for executives and corporations in the high-tech sector. She is the author of Sales Force Branding: Differentiate from the Competition, and co-creator of the Sales Force Branding program. Wendy is a senior consultant specializing in B2B Corporate Social Media, Demand Generation and Marketing Automation, and is also a featured marketing technology speaker and columnist on renowned websites, such as Maria Shriver’s Women’s Conference, Chopra’s Intent.com and Denver’s GreatIdeasForKids.com.

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